Showing posts with label christmas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label christmas. Show all posts

Come what may

Christmas Market

Well hello 2017, it sure is nice to see ya! It's taken me a few days longer than planned to get this blog post up, as I've been hit with that cold and flu bug which loads of folk seem to be suffering from at the moment. But to be honest it's set me up in a good mindset for entering the new year - taking life slow and steady. I have a few personal goals which I'd like to achieve this year, but all in all I want my pace of life to be a lot less frantic and a whole lot more purposeful. Sure, I always live my life with purpose but when you cram so much into so little time... the time you do spend in that moment is always gone in a flash. This year I really want to focus on 'the now' as much as possible. I'll make plans and have goals (girl boss for life, that's never gonna change!) but I won't worry if things don't go to plan or I venture off the path I've set. Being a control freak and a worrier when it comes to anything and everything really doesn't generate the best quality of life. No matter what each day brings, I want to listen to my body (physically, emotionally and mentally) as much as possible. Say yes more, say no more, break the routine, and not let anxiety and habits determine how this year, and years to come, will pan out.

My Purrfect Christmas

Dexter

Back in June I signed up to Cat In A Flat, and 6 months later I've had the pleasure of looking after 10 other cats as well as my own fluffy two! I had a handful of enquiries about cat sitting on Christmas day, but this year after visiting my Mum in the morning we'll be heading up to Perth for the night to stay with Pete's dad and have our dinner there. So if I'm not watching anyone elses kitties, what will I be doing with my own? I thought I'd write up some suggestions for how you can best prepare your cat and your home if you don't have a sitter for them, and will be off visiting family or friends this Christmas.

The Grand Central Sleepover 2016

Christmas tree

I can't believe it's already been a whole year since the last Grand Central Sleepover! We kicked off December with what's becoming an annual tradition, and a really lovely way to spark up that festive spirit. Plus, any excuse for a night in with pj's, snacks, and some of my bestest blogging babes. Lovingly organised by the wee legend who is Laura - myself, Lynsay, Lori, and Lisa and Sami descended on the Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow's city centre for a very merry girls night in.

Cruelty free brands for gifting this Christmas

Cruelty Free Christmas

Since April this year I decided to make the switch to going completely cruelty free with my skincare, makeup and hair care products. It's been a really interesting process and I'm still learning something new every single day about animal testing and the different regulations (and often loopholes) which various companies adhere to. I'll only be doing one gift guide this year,  so I thought it would be apt to do a little round up of some of my favourite cruelty free brands which are all perfect for gifting your loved ones (or hey, yourself!) this Christmas and beyond.

It's beginning to look a lot like...

Christmas Tree

Oh y'know, Christmas! (Or maybe Catmas, which will sound more appropriate by the end of this post) I feel like that last blog post opened the floodgates for my festive cheer to come pouring in. Panto time, Christmas tree decorating, present wrapping, and watching some feel good festive films on TV. This jolly and sparkling time of the year is definitely in full swing.

Winter Skin - From prep to party!

Naked Face
Face of the day

2015 has been the year of skincare obsession for me. After my skin took a turn for the worst (pretty much out of the blue) back in the spring, it has been a long and frustrating struggle to work out why it happened, and how to maintain the progress I have made so far. I last blogged about my skin back in September, so I thought I'd give you another update a few months on, and share what products I have been using.

A Bathmas Gift Guide

bathmas 

I can't believe that tomorrow is the first of December. Where has this year disappeared to?! I have just started doing my Christmas shopping in dribs and drabs, and I've really had to rethink my game plan this year. I have a lot of family and friends to buy for, and I absolutely love buying people presents. I just don't know where to stop, and when you end up spending £30+ for over 20 people... It all starts to add up. We've got a house, a puppy and a holiday to save for next year, so I've tried to be a lot more savvy with my present buying this Christmas. I'm trying to gift everyone with just one really special pressie, rather than 3 or 4 (often daft) things each. Does anyone feel like just one present feels really lonely? For example if I bought a friend a new diary from Paperchase, I'd need to get the matching pen, desk planner and other little bits for them... This is how it gets silly and out of hand!

 I actually feel a bit awful writing the above when there are so many people on this planet who don't even have a roof over their heads or a warm place to sleep at night. So I'd like to even up the materialistic side of this post and say if you're in Glasgow, Edinburgh or Aberdeen doing your Christmas shopping, please pop into Social Bite for a sandwich or coffee. 100% of their profits are given to good causes, and 1 in 4 of their team are formerly homeless people. They also feel the local homeless community through their 'Suspended Coffee and Food' initiative. This means that customers can pay in advance for a coffee or any item of food from the menu, and a local homeless person can come into the shop to claim it. Social Bite are based in Scotland, but I can imagine there are other similar ran Social Businesses across the UK. Please take 5 minutes to look one up, and give a little kindness to those who really need it most at this time of year.

This must be it, welcome to the new year.


I really did have the best intentions of writing one more post before 2014 was out. But quickly came the succession of Christmas, Boxing Day, moving house, and Hogmanay... followed by the week long food coma and epic sleeping sessions. I feel like I only properly woke up when it got to the 5th of January and thought shit, time to get my life back into action!

I don't have any new year resolutions as such, because I constantly feel like I am giving myself a hard time in terms of self improvement. I always strive to be the best version of myself, which can't be all bad, but actually IS bad when it gets to the point of worrying myself to death over how good a daughter/friend/collegue I am. Writing ridiculous, unachievable lists and punishing myself when I don't get everything on them done to a perfectionists standard. Worrying when I have nothing to worry about because when things are going smoothly I am paranoid that I must have missed something?! What's the deal with that eh? I think my sensitive but determined personality, mixed with a history of Generalised Anxiety Disorder can often be a recipe for disaster. But in the past while I have learned that it's about accepting and embracing this, rather than fighting and trying to control it. The most favourite piece of advice someone gave me in 2014 was 'be kind to yourself'. Such simple words, but extremely important ones that should never be over complicated. Which our generation seems to be very good at doing.

 I had a really interesting chat with my friend Ashley recently (who took the picture above) about how we are the first proper digital generation, with our lives often revolving around facebook, instagram, twitter etc. And hey, even blogs! But I don't mind that so much. I enjoy documenting my life in a diary form and being able to look back on where I've been and the journey I have came on. I guess I like instagram etc for all the same reasons, but I also really dislike the negatives that come hand in hand with social media. People tend to share only the good stuff online, so it's easy to look at others and get yourself down about how perfect their life seems. I rarely share anything negative on my social media, with my reason being drawing attention to something which has made me angry, makes the anxiety and anger linger on for even longer! That's just my coping mechanism to help days I am feeling down pass quickly. It doesn't mean I have the perfect life and I need to remember the same goes for others. Staying genuinely positive is really important to me. Today I had a little black cloud following me about because Binx smashed my ipad screen, my old landlord was annoyed at me for something, my new flat isn't still quite ready yet so I am living out of a suitcase at my grandparents house for a week, and trying to get my taxes done with no internet and no printer for all the documents I need. The more I pay attention to the silly things that annoy me, the bigger an issue they become in my head. So now I tend to acknowledge these annoyances, and if I can do something to change them - Great! If I can't... forget that shit and tomorrow is a brand new day.

I understand that a New Year is symbolic to a lot of people for a fresh start, and a chance for new beginnings. I feel like my internal clock restarts every night, so if I've had a bad day and feel a bit teary I can often sleep it off and wake up with a clean slate the next morning. I always set myself daily goals, but seeing as it's January I have been setting my sights on some more long term goals too.

Establish a better work/play balance - This could be quite challenging due to the nature of my job, but my social life seems to go from one extreme to the other (ie when I'm working, I don't bloody have one!) I'd like to try and strike a better balance, rather than disappearing off the face of the earth and feeling like I've sold my soul to the TV industry.

Sit my bike test - After riding Motocross for most of my teenage years I think it's time I bit the bullet and got myself a road bike. Seeing my Dad and his new Triumph has reinforced that the bug has never went away for me. Fingers crossed this is the year where I'll be financially stable enough to go for it!

Take more photographs - It is so easy to rely on the quick convenience of an iphone to take photos. This year I want to fall in love with my SLR all over again and start taking proper photographs, especially for on my blog.

See more of the outdoors - Scotland is downright beautiful, and has so much to offer right on our doorstep. I would really love to go on more adventures like the trip I look to Loch Tay in December. Get out into the fresh air more regularly and help blow away any cobwebs that start to build up. I'll always want to see more of the world, so some travels abroad this year wouldn't go a miss too if money permits.

Reach my final goal weight - I worked pretty hard towards the tail end of the year to loose some excess weight I had been carrying, and I actually felt so much better for it (physically and mentally!) Keeping healthy is a long term goal for me rather than giving in to fad diets. I'm a bit nervous about stepping on the scales after Christmas, but I just plan on taking it a day at a time and hopefully wean myself off 'I'll just have one more handful of chocolates' autopilot!

Learn to say yes and no confidently - I absolutely love this article written by Mark Manson called 'Fuck Yes Or No'. It's all about dating but I think it makes total sense to apply it to the rest of your life too. I am going to say yes more and make time for the things I do want to do, and not give myself a hard time for saying no where I would normally give in for the sake of pleasing others. If you're looking for a bit of wisdom and motivation to kick start the new year I would recommend having a look through Mark's website, there's some fantastic pieces on there which definitely strike a chord or two, and you probably don't realise how much you agree with the advice and observations which he verbalises so well, until you've read an article and think THAT MAKES SO MUCH SENSE!

These are just some thoughts I've been sitting on for a while, and in 2015 I would really like to manifest them into a reality. I'd love to hear what your hopes and dreams are for the coming year. I'm always around on twitter or instagram for a blether (@hellorogue) 


Glasgow at Christmas

I love my city, I really do. Glasgow always has so much to offer, and even more so at this time of year. It has been absolutely brilliant finishing up work and getting to spend time with my nearest and dearest, catching up and getting ready for the festive celebrations. Oh, and not to mention the small detail of packing up my entire flat and moving out right between Christmas and Hogmanay (good one Ayden, I know) But hey, New Year equals a new start, right? Here's a run down of my favourite places I've been exploring on the run up to Christmas:

Glasgow On Ice


My old flatmate Claire and I had a little day in town at Glasgow On Ice thanks to simplyhealth, then for a semi healthy lunch at Wagamama afterwards. The Ice Skating is at George Square along with some fairground rides and stalls selling mulled wine and other delicious smelling Christmassy food and drink. Claire is a personal trainer who runs her own spin studio, and has always been very sporty so OF COURSE she took to the ice skating perfectly straight away. It took me on the other hand a few circles of the monument before I wasn't skidding about like Bambi. Ice Skating is a great way to stay active over the indulgent festive period, along with the likes of skiing and my favourite - snowboarding! Can't wait to get back on my board in the New Year, the mountains of Scotland are starting to look pretty snowy already.

Blitzedmas


Blitzed is a 1940's themed club night which happens every few months or so in Glasgow. The Christmas edition was at SWG3 so I took my friend Sally along who was up from London to visit. We went for the 'dolled up' ticket which included getting our hair done by the amazing Miss Dixiebelle's (who did my hair for Luisa's hen party last year) along with some mulled wine in a lovely VIP dressing room. Once we were ready, we headed downstairs to dance along to the swing band performing and get our photos taken in the Bygone Photobooth. Such a different and refreshing type of night out to go on, and it was great seeing everyone making a real effort with their outfits, makeup and hair.

Eden Beauty Garden


With so many parties and nights out to attend over Christmas and New Year, I decided to try out eyelash extensions for the very first time because I suck so much at putting fake eyelashes on! The picture above is with absolutely no mascara, just my own lashes plus the extensions. They are completely flawless and I want to keep them forever. Alas they only last around a month, depending on how well you take care of them. I've not been wearing any eyeliner or mascara, or rubbing my eyes like I usually do, and I have only noticed a few starting to fall out in the last couple of weeks. Being finished at work means I was able to get some super girly nails done too, and went for these red sparkly gel's. Extensions of course, my own nails are nowhere near as long or nicely shaped at this, but maybe one day! Both my lashes and nails were done at Eden Beauty Garden which has just opened inside Central Chambers. Slightly more pricey than most places in town, but I think the extra £10 or so is completely worth it. I've had so many beauty treatments done which are a slap dash job with no care taken at all. The girls at Eden take such pride in their work and it shows, because my nails and lashes are the nicest I've had and have lasted longer than I ever expected them to.

Heenatastic


You've probably seen traces of Heenatastic starting to appear across quite a few Scottish Blogs at the moment, and for very good reason! Sadia's work is amazing and when my friend Heather text a few weeks ago to say she was booking us in as a pre-christmas treat I was so excited! The first pictures are mine and Heather's henna the night it was done, and the third picture was taken by my gal Ashley today (patiently awaiting good news at the Apple Store as my iphone battery is dying a death) It took around 3 hours for both our hands to be finished, and I'm hoping it will last for the next few weeks. Definitely a wee something different that I would like to treat myself to every couple of months. I'm already looking up inspiration pictures for my next visit.

Bath St Tattoo Collective


It wouldn't be Christmas if I didn't treat myself to a new tattoo! But I guess I don't even need that excuse haha. Rizza Boo from Jolie Rouge in London was up at the newly opened Bath Street Tattoo Collective doing a few days as a guest tattooist, so I booked in with her as I have been following her work from ages. So so happy with how this one on my side turned out. I'm booked back in with Billy Hay in January to get my shins done which should be... fun? The shop is looking amazing and they have so many great artists working there! Would definitely recommend them all if you're in Glasgow and looking to get tattooed.

Loch Tay Highland Lodges


Getting away from the city for these final few pictures, me and the girls headed up to Killin for a couple of nights in one of the glamping domes at Loch Tay Highland Lodges. Our dome had a lovely wood burning stove, oil lamps, bean bags and a massive bed to keep us cosy while sleeping under a clear sky full of stars. This is Scotland in Winter though, so it was still pretty nippy! We spent our time eating, drinking, playing Disney monopoly, exploring, plus a day trip to Callendar for a look around the quaint little shops and an awesome pub lunch. I took some footage of the trip so hope to get a video up soon. It was the perfect chance to blow away the cobwebs and get my head together before the busy weeks ahead.

I'll be fitting in one more post before the year is out, and in the meantime I hope December is treating you all well ♥

It's the most wonderful time of the year

Can you believe that Christmas is almost upon us? I seem to go into complete denial until I'm having festive tunes and soppy tv adverts forced in my face. I'm no Scrooge, I just can't grasp how quickly this year has flown in! I've been getting organised and using Clipix to gather all my favourite finds from various corners of the internet. Mostly ideas of things I would like to buy myself once this job is over, presents I would like to buy for other people, and websites that are generally just awesome and contain lots of hidden gems that you wouldn't always find in the shops. I've picked my top 13 as a sort of Christmas wishlist, and I hope you like them or they direct you to some sites or brands you've maybe not stumbled across before.

Christmas Wishlist

From left to right...
1. Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 - £90 @ Urban Outfitters
2. Ginger Pleasures Gift Set - £45 @ Origins
3. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle - £68 @ Chanel
4. Girl Boss Book - £15.31 @ Nasty Gal
5. Magical Unicorn Slippers - £24.99 @ Firebox
6. Kitty Coin Bank - £14.99 @ Firebox
7. Clementine Print - £15 @ LaLaLand
8. Toast Heated Pillow - £29.99 @ Firebox
9. Personalised Stack Rings - From £35 @ Bloody Mary Metal
10. Cinderella Play Dress - $95 AUD @ Black Milk
11. Peanut Butter Maker - £49.99 @ Firebox
12. Blue Unicorn Kigu - £39.99 @ Kigu
13. Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade - £15 @ Beauty Bay

Of course my furry friends wanted in on the action too - so I let Dexter and Binx do their own wishlist for Santa from Pets At Home. They have both been very good boys this year - Dexter is being a great big brother to Binx, and Binx is settling into his new home with us really well. My little wild cat has been an unexpected addition to the family, which has incurred me a few extra costs but I wouldn't change it for the world! So this list is a mixture of practical things they could really be doing with, and some other goodies thrown in for fun.

Pets At Home

1. Rattan Cat Carrier - £39.99
2. Christmas Tree Hat - £5
3. Baby Bea Kitten Treats - 79p
4. Litter Kwitter - £39.99
5. Red Necktie - £4
6. Microwave Heatpad - £22
7. Floral Scratch House - £10
8. Turkey Dreamies - £1
9. Willows Activity Centre - £100

Have you started your Christmas shopping yet? And do you prefer to do it online or in person? This weekend myself and Heather are heading to the Country Living Christmas Fair at the SECC to get properly into the Christmas spirit! Also to find some much needed festive inspiration to get started. 

I have 2 free tickets to give away to the fair this weekend in Glasgow, running from Friday to Sunday. So if you would like to enter, leave your name and contact details in the comments and I will choose a winner on Thursday 20th. Depending on what day you would like to go I can meet you in person beforehand to give you the tickets. I'll be going this Saturday :)

Christmas and a brand new year.

Hello there! Don't know if its just me, but after the past couple of months flying in so quickly I feel like January is absolutely dragging in. It's a bit belated but here's a photographic run down of what I got up to in the last days of 2013.


My lovely gal Erin came up from London for Christmas and we had a much needed night out in Glasgow. Cocktails and a huge catch up followed by some dancing and weight watchers chicken curry when we got home at 4am (in reality one more takeaway over the festive period wouldn't have mattered but I was feeling drunk and sensible!)


On Christmas Eve I went to the Itison Drive In Movies at Loch Lomond shores. This photo is absolutely rubbish, and makes it look like we were miles away from the screen but it felt a lot closer in person. We arrived about half an hour early for the film at 4.30pm, but were still about 8 rows back, so next time I'd definitely go along a bit earlier to get a closer spot. I initially thought the showing I'd booked was for It's A Wonderful Life... so was a bit confused when Home Alone came on! Woops! I've not seen it in years though so it was still really good. Turns out the 8.30pm showing was It's A Wonderful life, but unfortunately it got cancelled due to the weather so I was quite glad to catch the earlier slot. We had bought coffee and munchies from the drive through Costa on the way to Loch Lomond, but when we got there Street Food Cartel were selling hot food and some other cinema-esque munchies, that were actually really reasonably priced! The sound for the movie was through the radio and you tuned into the station they had advertised at the welcome gate. The wonders of technology eh :) You're meant to keep your engine off but about halfway through the film the rain came on, so I had to put the wipers on but it didn't majorly effect our viewing. I've heard of these drive in movies being held at Valentines and Halloween too, and it was a nice change from the normal cinema (albeit a bit more expensive) and I'd definitely like to try it again.


After the movies I went down to have dinner and drinks with my good pals at The Spinnaker in Gourock. There was a table of 15 for dinner, and about 4 of us left standing at 2am when the bar called last orders. Despite how late we stayed out, I wasn't hungover for Santa coming and managed to get up at a reasonable time the next morning :)


Happy Christmas Day face! Excuse that little bit of burnt bacon, but bacon pancakes (or french toast) and maple syrup has to be my all time favourite breakfast. One of the first pressies I opened was a lovely Joules dressing gown (pictured above) and it was so comfy I actually wore it on top of my party dress for the drive between my Mums, Grans and Dads house. Just cause it's Christmas and there aren't rules when it comes to things like that on Christmas Day... right?


My mum made an amazing rib roast with all the trimmings. I really miss my Mums cooking and safe to say this was pretty epic. We had prawn cocktail to start and home made sticky toffee pudding for dessert (I was too hungry to take a photo of our starter and too tired and full to take a photo of the dessert)


The food coma started to settle in as I got home and changed into my jammies, and got Dexter changed into his unicorn horn which you can tell he loves.


My family and friends were so generous with presents, I couldn't believe how epic a swag I had gathered until I got home and unpacked it all! I know some people like/don't like present pictures, but I have been a REALLY good girl this year (promise) so here ya go. I got a lovely mix of jammies, food, underwear, smellies, books, clothes, makeup, purses, tea and other random bits. Tea and cats definitely seemed to be a reoccurring theme.


One of my favourite pressies was a ticket from John to see Disney Fantasia live in concert, performed with an orchestra as the film played in the background. IT WAS AMAZING. Here's what I wore:


Feeling a bit stuffed after all the christmas and boxing day food, I wore an old faithful Topshop dress which ties just under the bust with plenty of room for your food baby! haha. My Bonnie Bling necklace I featured a couple of posts back matched the little red love hearts on my dress quite nicely.


Tights from my friend Olivia which she bought me for Christmas. I am so happy to have cat tights in my life and I never want to take them off! (they've even got little tails on the back)


Forever Vintage bracelet from Glitzy Secrets. I know this is a totally different style from the red Bonnie Bling necklace I have on in this outfit too, and I don't own much other jewellery as sparkly as this, but I wanted to add a little bit of pretty bling to my outfit for the semi-fancy occassion :)


Finally, some ghd Straight and Tame Cream on my hair to keep it as sleek and straight as possible. I have been alternating between applying it when towel dried, or after blow drying, and I can't quite decide which method works for me best yet! It is definitely making a difference to my hair though, and as a cream doesn't leave any sticky residue on your hair. Of course, this night we made our way to the Hydro and the heavens opened so my nice straight hair didn't last for very long.


We dropped by Bread Meets Bread for burgers and poutine before the concert. There are so many meat restaurants opened in Glasgow recently and this was one we had yet to try. It was so good! We jumped on the train to the Hydro and had a lovely time at the concert. I had actually never seen Fantasia before but recognised a lot of the music from it. The orchestra were magical and it made for a really special concert with the film playing on a massive screen in the background too. Have you ever been to a concert like that?


The theme of burgers and cheesy chips continued into 2014 when I caught up with Olivia for lunch in town last week. I ate a silly amount of food and consumed a lot of drink on new years eve too, and I vowed that this would be my last (the above was at Burger Meats Bun, another meaty fave in Glasgow!)

In the last week or so I have been making a conscious effort to start eating better, it really did get a bit silly over the festive period as I'm sure a lot of you can relate to. Above is a few of my faves from this week - home made red thai curry, poached eggs on rye and linseed bread, and steak on a bed of steamed vegetables with a honey and soy glaze. John has been the best influence when he's came up to stay with me, and I think it's always easier to cook like this when you're doing it for two people rather than just one.


I did get naughty and do a big batch of baking, but it was for Luisas baby shower on sunday! I went for butterscotch cupcakes and they seemed to go down well :) She's from a big Italian family and always puts on the best spread of food. We had chilli, salad, bruschetta, olives and pitta bread. Along with Luisa's amazing oreo brownies. I deliberately kept the leftover cupcakes at Luisa's house because I knew if I took them home with me it would be too tempting not to nibble away. Luisa is due her baby boy in 4 weeks time and I'm so excited for her. Seems like not so long ago she barely had a bump and we were planning her hen do and talking about bridesmaid dresses and a baby on the horizon. It seemed like such an age away, but the time is almost here!


 Anyways, I hope when January is out the way this year will start to quicken up a bit. I'm looking forward to getting back into work, snowboarding before the season is over, moving into the new flat, and booking some potential adventures for over the summer. I had quite a tough few months towards the end of 2013, but I've brushed it off my shoulders and I feel excited and optimistic about what lies ahead. I've got good people around me and a spring in my step, so 2014, bring it on! ♥