Friday feeling

Hello lovelies. I'm smiling because it's friday! This week has been a busy one at work, but I had a bit of time off to go to a course at HM Revenue & Customs. I spent the morning/afternoon drinking lots of free tea, and learned all about the ins and outs of being self employed. I'm going back to a second course which specifically covers business expenses and capital allowances. I thought it would make my brain hurt but I'm feeling good about it so far. Let's see if I'm saying the same thing when it comes to doing my tax return. FUN! (or, I may just kidnap an accountant...)

The highlight of my week was meeting up with two old pals from uni, Luisa and Joanne. They took me to pop my Ichiban cherry, and I got the yummiest bento box I've ever had.

This is the only proper picture I've taken on my camera all week, so I thought I'd do a little photo dump of all the semi interesting pictures from my mobile phone. I tend to take some snaps this way when I'm out and about or want a quick'un, because the lens on my SLR weighs more than a small child. Enjoy :)

Hetty and Henry ♥

Red Velvet Cupcakes

The dress that I don't know when I'll ever wear again...

One of our more junkier food shops... but defo my happiest time of the month!

Home made tiffen and meringues from Gran Liz

BBC I-player on my dad's Ipad on christmas day

Millie's Gizmo impression :)

Morning walk to work

 The best tunes when I'm in need of cheering up

 My two favourite boys

Chilling with my roomies!

Trying lots of different tea's this year. My fave so far ♥

My best friend right now! Tattoo is healing nicely, but it is so itchy :(

She loves a wee cuddle when I get in from work

How they clean the windows at the BBC. The whole building is one GIANT window!

The city of lights hanging above my noggin every day

A sneaky cupcake for breakfast? Don't mind if I do! Went into the shop in person rather than phoning up, and finally re-booked my cupcake class again for next thursday night. Lets hope I don't need to cancel it again.

This weekend I'm off to Edinburgh for my step mums hen weekend. We're spending saturday night in the George Hotel (which I've stayed in before with David) and on sunday I hope to go a wee wander around the shops and spend my £25 voucher at Hannah Zakari. My faithful Loop NYC purse broke the other day :( A piece of the main structure has snapped, so it just flops open and wont stay closed. Really gutting, I'm a total devoted wee granny when it comes to having my favourite purse. So I'm hoping to pick up a newbie from HZ perhaps. Lusting over the new Katy Perry OPI's, and Vera Wang has brought out yet ANOTHER version of Princess! Preppy Princess this time. It smells lovely (pretty much the same as every other one, haha) but I'm not a fan of the design on the bottle. Been dying to hit the gym this week but I'm struggling with the tattoo, its too itchy and really sore when I bend. Might attempt to go later though, depending on how long it takes me to pack my bag, fake tan (first time in forever!) and suss out an outfit for tomorrow. I'm pretty hopeless when it comes to dressing up. Totally indecisive and stress myself out more than necessary, so wish me luck :)

Also, wanted to say thank you to anon for their wonderful comment on my last post. Shame you have to hide behind a blank profile to express your opinion, like an absolute loser! Didn't you read what I said in the post before that last one? Or the little blurb on my sidebar? Next time email me, I'd be very interested to hear your insightful opinions on a one to one basis. Internet trolls are my absolute fave ;)

Ayden x

(Ps. and even bigger thank you to the other 52 comments on my last post which actually had heart/substance. Made me smile lots)

I just want to live while I'm alive.

 I'm pretty sure I have used those lyrics for a blog post before, but it's just too true. Plus, who doesn't love a bit of Bon Jovi? Or a bit of a GLEE remix that's been in my ears this week. Since I posted last sunday, I've been working, chilling, going to the gym, seeing my nearest and dearest and smiling and a few things in between. Here is some of them:

Tulips from my lovely wee old neighbour, Iain. He brought this to the door and said "I do this for everyone in the close at this time of year, to remind them that spring is on its way" There is only another 2 couples in our close, and then me and David. He is such a kind old man and takes care of the communal garden, with all the flowers and hanging baskets and even vegetables. Once the flowers have sprouted (is that the right word?) we've to give them back to him and he will depot them into the garden. I know its silly but I am so excited to watch them grow :) I REALLY don't want them to die in our care. That would be an epic fail.

A little cross stitch I made and framed for my lovely friend Dominique. She has let me borrow lots of her work and graphic design related stuff for some set dressing I did at work last week. It's not perfect, I mucked up the first 'S' - completely forgot how to do them! But for the second cross stitch I've ever done, I'm pretty pleased :)

After popping past uni to see my old tutor, I went round to the chinese supermarket with my friends Luisa and Joanne (they're taking me to Ichiban for the first time on monday night, I cannae wait) with some sweet treats in mind. They wouldn't take card unless I had over £5 worth of stuff, so after a cringy moment at the checkout, Joanne paid for me! ♥ It was only £3.50 for everything I got. But I feel like our generation are rubbish at taking compliments and accepting money from people! I got David some ramen and iced tea, and the above for myself. By the time I took this picture, ALL had been consumed. Basically inhaled them on the journey home from town. Haha so it's just empty packaging, which I know is a bit lame but I'm a total sucker for this kinda imagery. Have you tried any of the above or can suggest more stuff I would like?

I haven't worn fake tan in a while, but this Vita Liberata - Rich Silken Chocolate is meant to be amazing. I've got a voucher for a spray tan at their section in House Of Frasers, but the room is out of action at the moment :( Which is gutting because I have my step mums hen night next weekend and the wedding next month. I was hoping to get bronzed for either one, so the kind folks at Vita Liberata sent me out two full size bottles (one face and one body) and a tanning mitt, for free! To keep me occupied in the mean time. Now THATS good customer service. I wasn't even hankering for freebies, honest. Mary Portas would defo be impressed with this eh?

Ever wondered what that little back 2 mac logo on the inside of the packaging means? I feel like they keep it pretty hush hush, and I only clicked onto this fab recycling exchange 6 months ago. Basically, if you keep 6 empties from mac, you can hand them in exchange for a lipstick of your choice! Not all lipsticks are included (limited edition ones etc) and I think in the US you actually have choice of eyeshadows too. Plus, only some containers apply to the scheme, not all of them. The empties I had saved were a Prep and Prime, Mineralize Skinfinish, Zoom Lash Mascara, 'Hue' Lipstick, 'Ever Hip' Lipstick from the Liberty collection (sad to see that pretty packaging go) and a Fluidline eyeliner. Been gagging to try out a nice red, a la SJ from cowbiscuits. She is one of my fave girlies and always wears red so well. I was a bit intimidated at first (as much as I am with toxic tale... maybe even more) But here was my attempt...

I've heard lots of people wearing Ruby Woo, and Mac Red but I opted for Russian Red. I think I made the right choice. But for it being a freebie, rather than £13.50, you can't really go wrong. Also, should I be wearing a matching lip pencil to make it look neater etc? The thought of a lip pencil scares me, and makes me think of Jackie McQueen from Hollyoaks... But I'm aware it might actually help my rouge applying skillz!

Today I am having a textbook sorta sunday. Had a lie in, lots of pj time, tidying up, watching sunday afternoon telly (and Hollyoaks omnibus, since when I miss a couple of episodes I havent got a bloody clue whats going on) seeing my daddy, step mum and baby bro, and going on the hunt for some Benpanthen (on a sunday of all days... Asda pharmacy should be a winner!) Becauuuuse, yesterday I got a new tattoo :)

I did tweet a picture last night when I got home, which was taken right after it was done. Its been wrapped up and very bloody since, but this morning I gave it a clean and took advantage of taking a picture in the natural light. It took 3 hours, and was done by Stephen Kelly at Irezumi in Glasgow. He was the same fella who did my swallows two years ago, and I was so pleased to have found him again when he tattooed my friend Erin! It's sore, and red, and swollen. And towards the end of the sitting I was lagging :( 3 hours is definately the longest I'd be able to sit for. My pain threshold is utter balls, and it was one of those 'why do I do this to myself' moments. But it is worth it ♥

Oh, and some final good news which made my week... remember that Next Christmas Blogger Challenge I did in December? Thanks to all your amazing support, I came 4th out of the 65 blogs which took part! So many of them being much bigger than my little blog of horrors. So I was really shocked. Thank you all so much who clicked for me, and stuck by me posting every day for 12 days :) I'll now have a crazily generous amount of vouchers to spend at Next, and with much needed for the flat, and my dads wedding coming up soon with pressies and an outfit to be bought, this is really going to help me. So the biggest ever thank you :)

Ayden x

Sunday Best

Literally feels like it has been so long since I last did a Sunday Best post. Sunday's used to be my day where I would definately post a blog. I guess it was my attempt to have a regular feature, and make things a bit more organised on here. Oh well, that plan failed miserably. But really, I'm cheating you with the title. Because before even starting this post I know it is just going to be like every other post I write. Eclectic and 'life update' springs to mind! :) Maybe that is my theme. My niche.

I think I am going to spend more time just doing what I do, rather feeling like I need to 'fit in'. Doing what I do right now is me. And actually, it makes me happy. And it fills me with happy feelings when I read your comments and know that you can relate to me, or you feel like we would probably be friends in 'real life. Chances are, if you like what you read, then we would. Like anyone, I am not 100% comfortable in my own skin at times. I get scared, lonely, childish, geeky, upset, delirious, fall back down and get up again. And sometimes just land on my feet. I think the blogging world brings a lot of pressure, and certain expectations. But at the end of the day, I am just a normal girl. I am aware of the wide audience of people who are on here reading about me and my life (Hi Dad!) Haha. Of course, you are all welcome to! (but there are some people who are not, people from my 'past' who have maybe found me on here because I don't have facebook) But hey, I can't exactly pick and choose eh.

I noticed a few of you left a comment saying you liked how I was always positive in my posts. This means a lot to me - I am very much a positive and 'get up and go' kinda person. But at the same time, I'm just a normal girl with an often dysfunctional life. More often than not! There is a HUGE chunk of my life which is just not for the internet. And I don't think that is a luxury which people only possess online, to enable them to 'edit their lives' to make them look like something they're not. I think it is a right we have, as human beings. To share what we want, when we want. To not have to 'apologise' for being a 'bad' blogger. Who even made up these rules?! When did it all become so serious, and bitchy, and competitive? I'll be hanging on to my manners, and always maintain a polite etiquette. But I'm done living up to anyone's expectations. Here are the highlights of my week so far (with work, sleeping, eating, gym, kisses, and watching the bed intruder song over and over on youtube being the very boring/normal bits in between!)

My giveaway prize from the awesome Jessica over at Midnight Black.

Plus this sweet card ♥ hello rain!

A little present from Raffles Bizzare. Jess's creations are all handmade with an alternative twist, and you can view her bloggity blog here. She could have not have chosen a more perfect piece for me! :) Sits perfectly between my swallows, and for being so lovingly made and great quality is an absolute steal on her website at £6. I am certainly impressed. But go on over and have a look for yourself and see what you think!

This was me yesterday morning, sporting my lovely new makeup and teapot necklace. Thank you so much Jessica and Jess! This was my first time trying Too Faced makeup, and I really like it. I'm a total sucker for the leopard print blusher! Its bloody lovely. Have you tried anything from Too Faced? Keen to buy more from this brand. I haven't used the Bobbi Brown Makeup Remover yet, but I am so excited! I am a bit guilty in being a bit of a baby wipe whore, and I know they can be a bit harsh on the eyes so a proper makeup remover has sparked extreme excitement :)

Not much else to report, apart from the perfect end to a hectic week at work. This is how I spent my sunday...

Firstly, coffee and a catch up with my lovely friend Leah (who's JUST started blogging, hiya leah!) I then met up with my girlie Katrina for our afternoon of pampering at the Blythswood Hotel Spa. We got our vouchers in a goody bag from Ann at the Scottish Ballet Cinderella opening night. You can read about our night here. I felt absolutely spoiled that evening, and got to meet a handful of fellow scottish bloggers which was an absolute treat too. Today I had a really wonderful time, completely chilled out and such a relaxing atmosphere. The lighting, music, and aromatherapy smells sent us into a content little daze the whole time we were there. This spa is hidden under the ground of the Blythswood Hotel, and literally felt like we had wandered into our own little world for the afternoon. We had complimentary use of the Thermal Experience, which was a series of hot, cool, wet, and dry rooms. All kinda interlinked, with crazy fancy names and the main aim to soothe, relax and detoxify your body. David got me an Afternoon of Indulgance at the Spa for my christmas, and had already bought it when I came tottering home with my voucher from the Ballet! But he is pleased to know I can't wait to go back. I'll need to save it for a month where I'm stressed having being busy with work or whatever, and am in need of a real pick me up.

After the thermal experience, we got into our robes and slippers and went for our champagne and shape and polish. Got my nails done a lovely coral colour, and Katrina's were a cute barbie pink. We chilled in the relaxation room for a while after that and drank some twinings herbal tea (brought me back down to earth after the champagne) I could have went for a sleep there and then, but we got ready and went for some dinner. We had such a wonderful chat the whole day, and I know it might sound daft but the whole vibe in the spa has made me feel in a really good place just now. My skin feels nice, pores all fresh, and my head feels clear. I would definately recommend doing something like this if you're feeling a bit flustered, or if life has got that bit chaotic. It has made me think I would rather invest in some spa time or treatments a few times a year, than go crazy month to month with retail therapy. It's a different kind of therapy... and not one that I thought I would like or really be able to get into. But I certainly did :) Maybe hence the intense rant at the start of this post? You know I'm not going to apologise though, cause I mean every word ♥

Ayden x

doing just fine

Me and my new buddy, Mr Lotso Huggin' Bear. His tummy smells like strawberries too, auw. Fell in love with him after watching Toy Story 3 (even tho he is a wee bit of a baddy) A few people told me before I saw it, that I looked like Bonnie. This is Bonnie...

Haha, I really dunno? Maybe with my shorter hair and natural colour. But maybe she just looks like any little girl with dark eyes and hair! I also loved that Totoro made an appearance in this film ♥ He is my favourite Studio Ghibli character EVER.

I've not really been 'in the loop' on twitter and with my blog commenting this week. I am reading/watching, but a little bit sad I can't join in. Work has been so busy, lets just say I am not built for 8am starts. Total wuss. So not been doing much in the evenings, but here's a little run down of what I was upto before tv land took over my life again:

Sushi with the Mr.

On our way to see Tron in 3D (I had laffy taffy, a Oh Henry! bar and a mini tub of ben and jerrys chocolate brownie ice cream while watching it. Almost went into a sugar coma, I kid you not)

Milkshakes and gourmet burgers in Ketchip with some old uni friends. Then onto the Hillhead Book Club which was so cosy. I planned on getting a pot of tea, cause I was so full after lunch, but the strawberry and lime cider was too tempting.

So I've been eating VERY well as you can see haha. Not! I have started hitting the gym again after finally getting my induction, which means I have my own little key and programmes written onto it for times/speeds/difficulty for 4 different machines. My routine at the moment is an hour, and the past 2 times I've burned approx 430 calories. Going to revise my routine in 4 weeks, once I'm physically a bit fitter, and maybe try mix it up with some body combat classes and zumba. I mean very well, but it never stops me reaching for the biscuit tin every day! I have lost 6lbs in the past month, and I'm not far off my 'ideal' weight. So just going to try continue the way I'm going :)

I totally meant to share with yous properly what I got from the sales. Amongst some lush boxes, makeup, and a few other non sales bits and pieces including my hollister cardi and varsity jacket from new look, most of the sale shopping I did was in Urban Outfitters. This is a shop which I love to 'oooh' and 'ahhh' in, but 99% of the time I find that the clothes are way too overpriced, or too 'cool' for me! I don't mean to sound like an idiot, but I find fashion (especially vintage, and anything else a little bit 'out there') intimidating. I tend to stick to what I know.

But this year, the Urban Outfitters sale has been brilliant - I picked up all of the above over christmas and new year, and all were heavily discounted. I also got a little dark pink peter pan collared blouse, which I've forgotten to picture but was reduced from £35 to £9.99. I paid between £10-20 for each item above, and most of them were originally priced between £30-£60. SCORE.

Again, I'm maybe a little late jumping on the bandwagon for this popular dress on the left - I know a few of you bloggy ladies have it. Was full price but I needed a little something nice for my step mums hen night at the end of the month. How would you jazz this up for a night out? I got the top on the right for £8 in the sale, you gotta have a bit of leopard print in your life :) So in hindsight, I feel like I spent my christmas money well. Not to mention the topshop goodies I got from from christmas eve sales. All in all, my wardrobe is looking a bit more 'together', but there are still a few strong key pieces which I feel I need. I have no sense at all when it comes to fashion, I'd love Victoria to style me for the day and be my very own Gok, and for Ella to take me vintage shopping for the first time and eradicate my fear! ♥ She runs her own business & vintage stall, and has just opened an online shop. You can find it through her blog, which I've linked to above to please go check her out. This is as close as I get to vintage shopping, but always end up walking out empty handed...

A wander around DeCourcys Arcade In Glasgows west end. So many cute and quirky wee shops down this end of town, so if Ella came to visit this is defo where I would take her :) and if Gem (Fatale) and Gem (FGWL) come to visit Bonnie Scotland this year, this is defo where I will take them! Not to mention the tearoom that's opened in it too, and my fave girls at The Maisonette.

I had to cancel my Cupcake Class for the time being, due to work but I hope to reschedule again soon. The shop it's being held in is my absolute go-to for special occasion cupcakes. They are the best I have ever tasted... If I learn how to make them this good, I'll need to treble my time at the gym!

(Above, cupcakes from the Cupcake Shop which I have given and recieved. Looking forward to getting all domesticated when it comes to cooking/baking, and being crafty again this year. And I mean non work related crafty!)

This weekend I am going for a little spa day with my lovely friend Katrina, which is going to be an awesome end to a hectic week. And I've also rebooked my tattoo for next weekend - typical as soon as I started to fill my diary, I got a phonecall about a job. Not complaining though :) Just meant I had to do a bit of 'shoogling' about. Would be lost without my diary, I am not able to retain much information in my noggin. This will probs be my last post until next week, but there are a few things I want to mention before I go. I keep on forgetting to answer questions which you lovelies leave at the end of my posts - I do pride myself as being quite a good commenter (not this week tho, soz!) but I often forget to answer anything which is asked to me. So if you do have a question, please ask through my formspring, and I defo will reply! I don't get asked much on it very regularly. You can also talk to me via twitter and I've still got some items up on the blog shop which are all £6 and under.

I'm pretty sure there was something else I was gonna mention, but again my brain doesn't hold stuff for very long, gahh! When it comes to my obsessive list making - if its not written down, it doesnt exist. Think I need some brain training along with my trips to the gym. Or maybe its just too much hollyoaks and river city turning my brain to a pulp. Haha, loves it though ♥

Ayden x