Hair and Hangovers

Hello lovelies! Sorry it's been a while. To be honest I've not been feeling that up to blogging lately, lots of eating and sleeping and catching up with friends and family has been keeping me distracted over the festive period. Its new years eve eve and this is me only starting to feel a bit back to normal! Tree is down and christmas pressies are finally away (does anyone else do that thing where they just keep all their presents in a pile for ages and sit and look at them?! haha) Things have been totally dead on the work front, but at the end of January we are filming a second series of Fill Your House For Free with Kirstie Allsopp so I'm looking forward to that, and hopefully things starting to get busy again work wise. The joys of being a limited company. I am so grateful for the time off when I have it, and the freedom that comes with being my own boss but reality starts to sink in when nobody gives me holiday pay at this time of year!

Remember I was having a bit of a moan about my hair? The Bleach London kit did me well but my roots started to grow in pretty quickly. So the week before christmas I went to Rainbow Room just off Glasgow's George Square to get it redone. Above is the before (in the car park lift on my way to the salon - classy) and below is the after...

4 hours and some chopping and colouring later, this is what I ended up with :) An ashy blonde, couple of inches off the bottom, and the bangs are back.

I know the ash blonde is a complete contrast to my dark brows, but I really love it. For the first few days it didn't feel like my own hair! It was just the overhaul I was looking for, and I can't thank Rainbow Rooms enough for the great job they did. I've been told I can go back in for a complimentary fringe trim too, which I think is a great wee added extra and will be helpful when my fringe starts to brush my eyelashes. Hopefully I won't let it go for as long as that though.

Boots had a 3 for 2 on their Bleach London products again so I restocked on the silver shampoo and conditioner. I was so tempted to get one of their coloured dyes as my third product but was a bit hesitant after hearing mixed reviews about them. Plus I don't want to alter my blonde locks so soon! I opted for the split fix serum which I have been using to smooth my hair down while still wet before I blow dry it. After drying, I straighten and use a little bit of hairspray to tame it, and finish up using this Moroccan Oil Glimmer Shine Spray. I hate having too much product in my hair, but still don't like it feeling flat and lifeless so I have found that using the split fix serum, a tiny bit of hair spray then the shine spray have been the perfect combo. The shine spray leaves my hair looking glossy and feeling smooth, without the build up. I'm worried that the normal Moroccan Oil would be a bit too heavy for my hair so I'm glad there is a lighter alternative.

The day after my hair was done, I donned my glad rags for the evening and went on a Christmas night out to the Cathouse with Heather, Emma, Kyle and Grant. I wore this dress from Missguided,  and was initially a bit worried about boobage control... but improvised with some double sided tape from my kit box! It was a really good night, but my goodness I cannot handle hangovers anymore. After having lots of hair lovin' myself I gave the guinea pigs and Dexter some tlc for a couple of hours on the friday night before we went out.

My weapons of choice for the animals! I never knew until recently that Paul Mitchell did a pet range. My mum has been using their shampoos etc for as long as I can remember, so I was intrigued to see how this range compared. I do like to give the pigs a wee bath every few months as they can get quite stinky (sorry piggies)

Well hey there Oscar! This is his 'before' (mega lolz)

And during! I like to make sure that the water is nice and warm for them, I was so worried in the past about burning their sensitive skin but found that they were just as uncomfortable in water that was too cold. Think something along the lines of baby bath temperature.

All wrapped up in his towel and ready for a blow dry. This is definitely the part that he liked the most. Who doesn't love the feeling of a warm hair dryer when you're all chilly and just out the bath.

Gary was away out by the time it came to Dougals bath so I didn't want to stress him out by pausing for too many pictures. I used the oatmeal shampoo and spray on conditioner on both pigs, which smelled more like marzipan! I cut their hair too while it was wet (which I find to be easier) and once they are completely dry (you need to be very careful of this, they would catch a chill if you put them back in the cage even the tiniest bit damp) clipped their toe nails. As you can see Dougal is quite a shaggy character, he is named after Dougal from the Magic Roundabout after all, so I found the spray in conditioner had the best effect on his hair. I chopped off any matted pieces of hair and was able to brush through the rest. Oscar wasn't as much in need of a bath as Dougal was, but I'd like to keep on top of it now that I have these products. Just want them both to feel as clean and comfortable as possible.

Couldn't forget about Dexter! I did give him a bath when he was a baby but I wasn't up for the stress of doing that before a night out. I know cats clean themselves but Ragdolls have very long and thick fur so do need a wee hand in keeping on top of things. I used the waterless foam shampoo on Dexter, which comes out like a mousse which you keep brushing through and after about a minute it completely dries in! I've never used a product quite like it. The breeder I got Dexter from uses talc on her cats, but I'm worried about the effects of him licking it off (as you can see in the photo above he was trying to give me a hand) but these products are all animal safe and completely non toxic so I'm not as worried about him ingesting it. The wipes have been handy for his eyes and paws too, and erm, bum. I don't want to freak anyone out here but any other owners of long haired cats will know what I'm on about. Chasing your cat around with wipes in effort to remove any dangling nuggets is definitely not the nicest of jobs! Haha.

Come saturday morning after the night out, I was feeling absolutely bloody awful. At 24 I still haven't found alcohol which I can drink that doesn't make me feel ill the next day, or the perfect hangover cure for the morning after.

For now, bacon rolls and a glass bottle of irn bru seem to be the best contender. Hangover comfies of choice include this tartan crop top from Abandon Ship Apparel (which Leah got me for Christmas) cat leggings and comfy bra top from Persunmall. I've been rotating between the two recently. Who has time for uncomfy bra underwire poking into you when you're feeling on deaths door? Also, I apologise for the recent mix of SLR photos along with iphone ones. I need to get better at sticking to my proper camera in 2014 but sometimes it's just so much easier taking a wee sneaky one with your phone or ipad.

I was extremely thankful to have received two parcels the morning before which were going to help me through my hangover too. This festive kit from Pioneer, which container paracetamol, coffee, sweeties and new headphones. And a parcel from my gal Chloe with new eyelash curlers, nail art, a christmas bauble for the tree and lots of yummy edible things from the Christmas market on her recent trip to Germany. Sugar definitely helps!

I laid easy on the alcohol for the rest of the festive period, and on christmas day where I had lots of family to visit and was driving the whole day. I didn't manage to escape the food hangover though. SO MUCH FOOD. I love this time of year, the food especially, but my goodness I feel like I'm only just recovering from it now. Too scared to step on the scales but safe to say that a full detox will be commencing on January 1st! I will be back with a more festive post soon, if you're not all too fed up of them already.

When life gives you lemons, grab the tequila.

One thing I really struggle with at this time of year is choosing what to watch on tv. I don't watch much telly normally anyways (which is pretty bad for a person who works in that industry...) but all of a sudden there is SO much great stuff on. As I sit and type this in the living room, I'm torn between Alice In Wonderland, The Muppets & Lady Gaga at Christmas, The Snowman, and Harry Potter: Behind The Magic. Love them all!

I've been house bound today, cleaning, wrapping presents and generally getting organised for these last couple of days before Christmas. The party season is well and truly upon us and I've spent the last week getting primmed and prepped for some festive activities with my friends. I've had a batch of bad luck over the past week or so, which has really been testing my patience. A bunch of negative blog comments, my Papa having a bad fall off a set of ladders, and someone crashing into my car without stopping to leave their details - to name just a few mishaps. So apologies in advance if I don't seem my usual chirpy self :( I'm been determined to get through it with a smile still on my face. Lets just say, bring on 2014.

Winter waxing you say? I went for a Brazillian Wax at Stripped Bare in Glasgow (based inside L.A Fitness, just across from Central Station), which may seem pointless when you're not donning your bikini in December, but it's something that I always feel so much better for after getting it done. Gillian used the hot wax and the whole process took about 20 minutes. It probably would have been quicker if I wasn't squirming so much, I must admit that it was pretty painful but Gillian was great at putting me at ease. I think I just need to accept that I'm a big wimp when it comes to this sort of thing! The Brazillian cost £35 but a standard bikini wax is only £16 if you're looking to have a bit of a taster before going the whole way. To wax or not to wax, what do you think/prefer?

Talking about stripped bare, the picture above is my completely bare face after an Espa Skin Radiance facial at The Retreat in West Lothian, which is about halfway between Glasgow and Edinburgh. It is such a lovely little beauty salon, with cosy treatment rooms (as you can see above) and in the front shop they stock some of my favourite brands including Xen-Tan, HD Brow and Ciate. As I mentioned before it is closer than Edinburgh but ironically not as easy to get to, which I would say is the only downfall! Public transport to get there was too fiddly so I decided to drive and got lost on the way there, but found on the way back it only took about 25 minutes. I always get quite stressed driving to places I have never been before, but the facial was so relaxing and really chilled me out. I think it had quite a noticeable effect on my skin too. This is my first experience with Espa products and I'm really pleased with the results. What do you think?

The third and final bit of pampering I indulged in before the Christmas festivities properly started was a trip to the Aveda Spa in The Scotsman Hotel in Edinburgh. It was cosily nestled away underneath the hotel and felt like a little world of its own. I went for the Stress-Fix Body Massage, and bloody hell I was needing it. I normally ask for a medium pressure when getting a massage, but for this one I asked the therapist to work quite hard into my shoulders and back because they felt quite tight and full of tension. I honestly felt like a whole new person after it, and the 45 minutes didn't quite seem like long enough! I would definitely go for longer next time. I floated home on cloud 9 feeling all content with a clear head, and there's something about the smell of lavender that is always quite soothing and reassuring. Wish I'd taken my bikini for a wee swim beforehand, the facilities looked lovely and you can't quite tell by the picture above but the swimming pool is hidden under a bridge that takes you across to the treatment rooms and looked very atmospheric with the lighting.

Pampering over with - time to party!

With the lovely ladies Claire and Sheri at the Abandon Ship Apparel Christmas Shopping night, where you got 20% off any purchases if you wore a Christmas jumper - score! I got some last minute christmas bargains while wandering around the store with a Kopparberg in hand, and afterwards we went back to my friend Kyles office for pizza and wine.

I had a little afternoon tea in the house for my friend Luisa, who is heavily pregnant so isn't partaking in any mulled wine or nights out. My flatmate Gary joined us too and it was nice to have a (sober) chinwag in the house over tea, cake and sandwiches! I got a selection of goodies from the Greggs just down the road from my flat which was quite handy, and cut the sandwiches into smaller pieces so that we all got a bit of everything. The thai red chicken seemed to be the biggest hit though. And I saved my favourite cake all for myself...

The pink jammie! The donut to end all donuts if I don't say so myself. You have no idea how happy I was while this picture was taken. No shame at all, my friends, no shame :)

On saturday night I went back to my home town to have a Christmas Night in with my friend Gemma and a bunch of girls who I went to school with. It was great to catch up after not seeing them in so long. Gemma is the best party planner I know, and had loads of nibbles on the go - not to mention jelly vodka shots and cotton candy cocktails to name a couple! I wasn't drinking because I was still hungover from the night before, and you can see my new hair in the above picture but I'll save that properly for the next post.

After a week of afternoon tea and alcohol, I got to combine the two on a wee date with Scottish Ballet. This was without a doubt the day that really made me feel festive.

Myself and a bunch of other bloggers went to the Blythswood Square Hotel for some 'making of' films about their Christmas Ballet, Hansel and Gretel, topped off with Woodcutters Wife cocktails, hand and arm massages from the lovely spa staff and a Hansel and Gretel themed afternoon tea.

Oh dear, you can't take us girls anywhere! We did find the perfect mirror for a selfie in the Theatre Royal foyer haha.

The production was absolutely beautiful, and I had thought the standards of Scottish Ballet couldn't get any higher but they continue to raise the bar with every single show. From a Design point of view I was in absolute heaven. Scottish Ballet really honour the old time skill of scenic painting, with beautiful hand painted backdrops and set pieces which look 3D thanks to some clever use of trompe l'oeil. I'm always just dying to get a look at the set up close and personal! The reveal of the witch's cottage was definitely my favourite piece.

I got absolutely soaked on the way home thanks to our glorious scottish weather, so please excuse the slightly drowned rat look. I only realised when I got home that I hadn't taken a picture of my dress! It is from Apricot but I got it at the Glad Cafe Clothes Swap the week before (which there really needs to be more of by the way, my wardrobe got just the boost it was needing!) I felt like a little girl in my mint dress and sparkly shoes :) If you've not seen a christmas show or ballet yet this year, Hansel and Gretel runs until the 8th of Feb and is touring Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Inverness, Newcastle and Belfast. You can click for the dates here.

I'm going to be a bit all over the place in the next week with lots of family to visit over christmas and boxing day, but will have a couple more posts up before the year is out. I'm going to finish my wrapping tomorrow and Erin is up from London so we will be having a wee night out to catch up. Getting too old for all this drinking and dancing malarkey :)

Sunday Best

Not done one of my sunday best posts in a while, but today I'm watching my friend Grants greyhound Mandy, so we're chilling on the sofa while I wrap some Christmas presents and start the Christmas card list. How this time of year has came around so quickly I will never quite grasp. This time last year I was secretly planning our Iceland trip for New Year and really struggling to keep it a secret from John. Can't believe that was a year ago now. Take me back there please!

A wee tune to listen to while you read this post - recently Grant and me featured in our friend Iain's music video for his new band We Were Hunted. I'm not being biased because he's my pal but I really love the songs they've brought out so far. Something feel good for a sunday :)

Their first single and music video featured one of Scotland's favourite bearded/tattooed men Chris John Millington. Got to love a good beard. Selfies with Chris at 3am on a saturday night outside the Cathouse are completely necessary!

I was a bit late to jump on the Christmas jumper bandwagon, couldn't see one anywhere that I really liked so when I took part in the Missguided crafty Christmas Jumper competition it was time to get my creative brain on.

Grumpy cat! I used this internet meme as my inspiration (even though I'm not really Bah Humbug, I do love Christmas) I've not had much tv work recently so it was nice to sit down and do a little crafty  project for myself. You can vote for your favourite over on the facebook page, I'm a thousand or so votes behind the other bloggers but not fussed, it was such good fun to take part in! Once I had sorted out my Christmas Jumper I couldn't leave poor Dexter out...

Bought him a little santa suit from Pets at Home - and he is SO angry with me in these pictures. Proper grumpy cat haha. He kept on turning away and not looking at me, I'm such a mean kitty owner. I think he looks super cute but I won't pester him with this outfit again until Christmas Day. Sorry Dexter!

Having no freelance work at the moment has meant lots of quality time catching up with friends and family. Me and Greig went to our favourite tea joint in Glasgow last week, Tchai-Ovna. It's well worth a visit if you're in the west end. I went for the Mulled Wine tea and tried the Mary Poppins tea for the first time too (honey and raspberry, yum) First time I've ever drank tea without having to add milk or sugar, which sorta felt like an accomplishment for me.

I hadn't been down to Gourock for ages to stay with John because he has been away on various tour with work, so took a trip down to visit him last weekend and we watched the Royal Variety Show, ate pizza and talked absolute rubbish. My favourite cup to drink out of lives at his house. Jammy Dodger appreciation society right here.

I did a little shoot with my friend Ashley on friday morning which was great fun, I'm always in awe of how talented she is. I wore my R2D2 dress which is a bit of a Black Milk spin off, but is actually a much cheaper version from RoseGal for those asking on instagram. I've only got leggings from Black Milk, none of their dresses, but the quality of this one is pretty good! As I said I don't have a dress to compare it to but can't really complain for a third of the price.

John treated me to some early christmas presents to cheer me up last week. I got shellac nails done with a bit of christmas sparkle, and this necklace above from Bonnie Bling. Quite possibly my favourite scottish saying ever!

The Bonnie Bling necklace was on sale at the Abandon Ship Apparel pop up shop I went to on friday night. They've got a store in Princess Square until the end of January, and on friday night were offering 20% off if you wore a christmas jumper! Afterwards we went to my friend Kyles office in Central Chambers for pizza and wine, and I came home feeling pretty tipsy. Those wines in a cup and cans of Cosmo you get from M&S are dangerous business. I'm used to being alone in the flat some nights but Dexter was being a bit of a creep and sat like this on my bedside table for over a minute! I have no idea what he was staring at in his meercat like pose... But I really don't want to know haha. Demon cat!

The breeder I got Dexter from is retiring after 20 years of breeding Ragdolls, Maine Coons and Chihuahua's. She sent me this picture of her very last litter and my heart is about to explode! Look at how adorable these wee babies are. I would love another cat at some point next year when I move into my new flat. Dexter has really enjoyed having my new flatmates cat Tinkerbell around, they're like best friends now and it will be really sad to separate him. So maybe at some point next year I will be looking for a wee pal for him :) If I can convince John of course!

Have a lovely sunday whatever you're upto ♥

Winter Warmers

I'm currently sitting watching The Grinch while my flatmate puts up the Christmas tree (he is the king of trees, I don't mess with his decorating skills) and getting cosy in my onesie. Not just any onesie mind you.

Meet the magic that is OnePiece. I'm not gonna lie, I've had this on every night since it got delivered. I know not everyone is the biggest fan of jumpsuits like this, but it's comfy and cosy and I absolutely love mines (the Marius in grey/white/navy) I'm itching to wear it going snowboarding! Maybe somewhere indoors like Xscape though, where I'm less likely to fall over and get a wet bum.

If you were at the Clothes Show Live in Birmingham over the weekend like myself then you might have seen their massive stall. It looked like their team were having a lot of fun :) They have so many different styles and colours on offer, if you're looking to buy one as a christmas present or perhaps one for yourself, then you can get 20% off with the code 31LITTLEBLOGOFHORRORS which is valid until 23rd December. Be sure to let me know if you order one, I promise you won't regret it.

I've been enjoying some lovely new gold and shimmery eye makeup from MeSoMakeup. The shimmering eye and lip pencil is from Barry M, and although I would use it on my eyes I am not so sure if I'd be brave enough for on my lips. I also got the Lily Lolo (a brand which I have been wanting to try for AGES) mineral eyeshadow in Vanilla Sparkle. Both are highly pigmented and long lasting, and have been adding a nice festive touch to my daily cat eye look. MeSoMakeup also stock some other brands you don't always get on the high street, and the Zombie Girl Mineral Collection from Concrete is next on my list. Best packaging ever (if you love a zombie like me)

Onto hair, in this post I styled my locks with the Uevo Design Cube Soft Gloss, imported from Japan but available from The Hyde Park Hair Shop. First up, it smells AMAZING. Almost good enough to eat. I only need a light hold across my fringe but do like to mix it up with a bit of texture and the soft gloss was perfect for that. It has a really subtle shimmer throughout which left my hair looking nice and shiny. I hate hair that looks overly styled (unless deliberate) and I can't wait to show this cube to my Mum, who is a hairdresser turned session stylist for fashion shoots. Think this would be a perfect addition to her kit.

Would you judge me if I told you I have no shame at all in jumping to the shops in my OnePiece and Hello Kitty Vans (They're not just for the kids, you can get adult sizes at Spartoo) Well, I have no shame! My love for Hello Kitty and Vans makes these shoes the perfect combination. Even if the first compliments I got on them were from my little sister. December has been all about keeping cosy for me so far, I don't think I'm ready to give up my comfies for party dressed just yet.

Something a little bit different to end the post, but recently I gained a lovely who flatmate (and her cat, who Dexter is in love with!) called Claire and she is my old personal trainer from boot camp. She has been amazing company and a great influence to have around the house at this time of year when it is easy to indulge a little too much. She has been giving me PT sessions every week and I've been using this new Water-to-go water bottle, which has been given her seal of approval!

Apart from being a pretty sturdy water bottle, it contains a filter system on the inside that can turn bathroom, stream or rainwater into perfectly safe drinking water. The filter lasts about 3 months/200 litres of water and doesn't cost much to replace (around £7) which is pretty good considering how much we spend on bottled water when out and about. I know this is the season of mulled wine and hot chocolate, but I've made a vow to myself to drink more water and not completely loose sight of my healthy eating amongst the churros and bratwursts at the Glasgow Christmas Market...