EVENT: STILA SUMMER LAUNCH EVENT



Today I went along to Harvey Nichols Birmingham for the Stila Summer Launch. Their new products include 12 brand new lipglosses and 2 brand new eyeshadow palettes! The event was great and the lovely Sascha went through the new products with us and did a whole make up look using the new products and some Stila must haves!

The new Stila Beauty Boss Lip Gloss comes in 12 amazing shades from those everyday nudes, red and pinks to a more bold bright pink, purple and darker shades like Bonus Baby and In The Black. 

'Stila's new lip gloss features the next generation of light-refracting, iridescent pearls to create intense shine, pure color and amplified dimension. The hyaluronic filling spheres and luminous oils add natural-looking volume and glow, without burning or stinging

The packaging is gorgeous, similar to the glitter and glow eyeshadow packaging but longer in length. The applicator is lovely and you get a really decent amount of product. The formula isn't really sticky, it's smooth on the lips and leaves them feeling hydrated.  They are £14 each which is such a good price as you get alot of product! 

Stila have released two very impressive eye shadow palettes, one of which is limited edition! They are £48 each which I think is a little pricey however you get 12 really decent sized shadows! They are amazing quality and you get a great selection of colours and textures so it's well worth the money. 

Happy Hour is a limited edition luxe palette of 12 shades!

All 12 shades are specially formulated with micronized, silicone-treated pigments for superior blending and ultra-rich, uniform color and dimension.'

They are full size shadows so you get a lot of product in the palette, there's a good mixture of matte, shimmer and glitter shadows so this palette can create so many looks! Happy Hour has a pastel colour pallete, theres a gorgeous rose matte and nude matte shade, a black and cream/white matte shade. Theres a gorgeous lilac glitter shade which looks fab! The deep gold shimmer on the top row is beautiful! This palette has such a fab range of colours to play with. 

The After Hours palette is a little more me! There's more shades that I would wear and I think most people would feel the same. I love the burnt orange and peachy shades!! These are beautiful. There's some nude and brown matte shades that you can use along side the gold and champagne glitter and shimmers! The colour pay off of each shade is gorgeous and the glitters and shimmers are so pigmented and creamy! They are seriously beautiful palettes. 

We also had a look at some 'must have' Stila products for the summer! Such as the Lingerie Souffle Skin Perfecting Primer and Skin perfecting colour. These create the perfect base for those warmer days! Heavens Hue Highlighter is such a gorgeous highlighter to add some glow to any look! 

It was such a lovely event, we have kindly been gifted a couple of the new lip glosses! Excited to try them as I'm not normally a fan of a lipgloss! 








AD REVIEW: THE LITTLE OWL SOLIHULL


[AD-Gifted]- Our meal was kindly gifted in return for a review. My review is honest and my own views and opinions.


This evening we headed to The Little Owl in Solihull, it's on Bickenhill Parkway, so super close to the airport, International rail station and the NEC, so a great location if your in Solihull or surrounding areas and looking for a little pub for food and a few drinks.

The Little Owl is our local Vintage Inn pub, they boast about their burning log fires and beautiful beer gardens. They serve hearty pub favourites as well as a seasonal menu so there is something for everyone. They also have a great selection of drinks, even their own Cask Ale. They also do Sunday Lunch so if your after a traditional roast then check out your local Vintage Inn. 

We pulled up and it's such a lovely looking pub, I can't wait to head back in the summer and have a few gins in their beer garden. It's a very pretty pub and inside didn't disappoint either. It is so cosy and rustic! The log fires and brickwork are lovely, even the chairs and artwork on the walls were just so charming. 

We ordered drinks first, I had a Pink Gin and Lemonade and Clint had a Pint of Doom Bar which is one of their Cask Ales. 

We then had a look at the Menu, as well as a main menu they have daily specials and also offer a Lunch and Dinner time set price menu so be sure to head on over to their website and check out their offers. They also have a Childrens menu and Vegan Menu. 

I ordered the Wagyu Burger and skin-on fries. The Wagyu Burger is made from Premium beef and served in a Brioche Bun with Salsa, mixed leaf and horseradish served with onion rings! It was an impressive burger. It was so tasty and the horseradish was lovely!! You can create the perfect burger for you as they have a good list of add on's for the burgers. 

Clint opted for the Lasagne, (surprise,surprise) he loves a good Lasagne! and this one ticked all of his boxes. He said it was delicious! He basically scraped the bowl clean! It comes with Triple cooked chips and is a really good portion size. It looked so good! He also said his Doom Bar Ale really complimented the food. 

We didn't have starters so that we would have room for deserts! There was a really good list of deserts full of your usual pub favourites. I had the chocolate brownie, and Clint had the Banoffee Pie! Both looked amazing and were really well presented and good sizes. It was lovely and rich but not too rich! The Banoffe Pie looked lovely and Clint really enjoyed it! If your not one for a big pudding, why not order a hot drink with a mini pudding?!

Overall we had such a lovely evening at The Little Owl, the atmosphere was really nice, it was chilled and their was a really nice vibe! The food was great and it is such a stunning pub. The staff were all really friendly and our server was so helpful and offered recommendations. I really want to go back for a Sunday Lunch as it looks fab!! I also think we may spend a few afternoons in the summer chilling in the beer garden! Would defo recommend! 




















LIFESTYLE: 6 Easy Ways to Bring A Touch of Class To The Boudoir

Your bedroom should be a veritable temple of rest and relaxation. It should be a sanctuary within a sanctuary; a place where you can go to relax and unwind and let ourselves be lulled into a deep and restful sleep. However, it’s also a place where we may want to bring a very special guest. If you’re a devoted singleton who wants to wow their new beau with their classy boudoir or simply want to inject a little more style and charm into your sleeping space, here are some great way to bring class, style and sophistication into the bedroom.




Keep it natural


We’ve already talked about the virtues of adding a touch of nature to your home’s aesthetic. Wherever possible you should avoid synthetic fibres and plastics in the bedroom. Avoid bedding that contains synthetic materials like nylon, terylene and polyester as these can make it harder for the skin to breathe and for you to get a good night’s sleep. What’s more, they can look visibly cheaper and detract from the air of class and sophistication you’re trying to project. Opt instead for bed linens that are 100% cotton or made from another naturally derived fabric (I’ve actually heard a lot of wonderful things about bamboo based bed linen). Not only do these make for a more restful night’s sleep, they also make your space look cleaner, tidier and classier. For a little flourish of colour add one of these hotel quality bed runners from Richard Haworth. What better way to sleep classy?


If you can… canopy!


A canopy bed makes a great statement and draws the eye while elevating everything around it. The great thing about canopy beds is that whatever your personal style may be there’s a good chance that there’s a canopy bed out there for you. Whether you’re going for a sense of classical opulence or something more contemporary and minimalist, a canopy bed is a wonderful feature that adds a wow factor to your boudoir. Needless to say, however, you have to know your space before introducing a canopy bed. If it looks like you’ve barely managed to squeeze it into your room it will cheapen the aesthetic and moreover make your bedroom look cramped.


Wall art


Wall art can make for a great statement piece that lends not just class and sophistication but a sense of personality and character to the bedroom. However, it’s important to choose a piece that is personal to you. Avoid the kinds of mass-manufactured prints you see in Ikea and its ilk. It adds little to know personality to your room when you add an over-familiar print of a New York City skyline or a quiet dock to your wall.


Be bold, be provocative, be whoever you want to be through your wall art. You don’t even have to spend a fortune. University campuses and of course good old Etsy are great sources of high quality art that won’t break the bank.


Remember, less is more


There’s no class in clutter! Not only can clutter detract from the creative flourishes and classy fixtures of your bedroom, it is also visually distracting and can add a sense of chaos to even the most carefully honed aesthetic. Moreover, it can be surprisingly damaging to your mental health and prevent you from getting the restful night’s sleep that we all need to maintain our physical and psychological well being.


Smell classy!


Of course, class is not a concept that’s confined to the strictly visual. It’s also something we experience through the nose. Why else do we spend a small fortune on designer perfumed before stepping out for a big night out. The great thing about scent is that it can be used to create virtually any kind of atmosphere without clashing with your decor. Your choice in scents can be fresh and clean, warm and cosy, spicy and sensuous, it all depends on your mood. However, I’d avoid harsh perfumes, sprays or plug-in deodorisers. These are the home equivalent of lynx body spray. Instead use diffusers filled with essential oils. Use mint or citrus oils for a fresh scent (these can also aid concentration if your bedroom doubles as an office), sandalwood and ylang ylang can add a comforting ambience while jasmine, cinnamon and marjoram can add a more exotic and sensual atmosphere.


Minimalise your nightstand


Finally, if your nightstand is cluttered with all manner of cosmetics, makeup, hair products and your other daily armaments to help you in your battle through life, you may find that not only is it tricky to relax in your bedroom, the space’s classy aesthetic is also compromised. Try to keep the items you keep on display to a bare minimum and keep the rest in a storage ottoman.

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LIFESTYLE: HOW TO KEEP YOUR HOME SAFE WHEN TRAVELLING

Is there anything more enjoyable than setting forth on an adventure, somewhere abroad, somewhere you’ve never been before? If we all had our way, we’d do a lot more than we currently do! And it’s not hard to see why -- life is rarely as enjoyable as when you’re with your loved ones, living a carefree existence. But of course, if you’re going to do that, you need to be carefree, and that can’t happen if you’re worrying about what’s going on back home, and specifically, what’s going on at your house. Below, we take a look at a few ways you can keep your property safe, which will give you one less thing to worry about when you’re travelling.

Source: Pexels.com

Stay Off Social Media

If you don’t post photos of your exotic getaway to Instagram or Facebook, did it even happen? It seems many a person decides to take a trip purely so they can show it off to other people! But if you’re going to share photos -- and why not? -- then it’s best to wait until you’re back home. While you might be hoping to make people back in the office jealous than you’re in the sunshine, you’ll also be advertising the fact that your home is sitting empty to the world. Criminals do take advantage of this fact!

Home Security

Of course, there are no guarantees that just because you haven’t hung a sign over your house saying “we’re away,” that your home will be left alone. You can never be sure when a criminal will attack your home, regardless of whether you’re in the country or not. While you can’t control that aspect, you can control how easy it is for them to succeed. An advanced home security will be an integral part of your defence against would-be criminals. If you’re looking at upgrading your system, take a look at https://budgetboost.co/best-home-security-systems/. They outline a few systems that come with a mobile app that’ll send you notifications when something untoward happens, allowing you to take action no matter how far away from home you are.

Hire a Homesitter

It’s not just criminals who can compromise your home when you’re away. This is a home, where any number of issues can happen! A good way to keep your home in tip-top condition is to have someone stay there while you’re away. There are plenty of housesitter websites that can connect you with reliable people. If you’re going on a more extended trip (say, a couple of months or more), you can also look at renting out your property. It’s an excellent way to keep it safe while also getting some rent money and topping up the travel fund.

Friends Dropping In

If all that sounds too complicated, or you’re only away for a week or so, have a friend or family member drop in every couple of days. They’ll be able to check that everything’s just as it should be, and also pick up the mail -- a pile-up of letters can be a sign that a family is away.

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LIFESTYLE: ADDING A TOUCH OF NATURE TO YOUR HOME

Who doesn’t love to take a trip into the great outdoors? There’s nothing better than being surrounded by trees, beautiful views, fresh air, and, essentially, life. Yet while most of us enjoy being in the great outdoors, we don’t always get as much of it as we’d like -- instead, we spend the bulk of our time away not only from nature, but the outdoors. From our works to our cars to our homes, we’re nearly always inside. However, just because we like or need to be inside, that doesn’t mean that we can’t get a dose of nature, especially in our homes. Below, we take a look at a few ways you can bring some of the outdoors into your property.




Source: Pexels.com


Let There Be Light


The reason we feel so disconnected from the natural world is because we’re always facing inward. In our home, we’re penned in four walls, and sit facing away from the windows, which, in any case, are often small. During certain months of the year, or if we live in a built-up area, the only light we receive is artificial. But it doesn’t it have to be this way. One of the best ways to make your home feel more natural is to open the space up, and let in as much light as possible.


Into the Outdoors


Another useful way to add a touch of nature to your home is to make less of a distinction between where home ends and nature begins. Incorporate French doors into your property, and you’ll have created a funnel that draws you into your back garden. It might seem like a small thing, but you’ll find that you’re more likely to spend time in your yard area if there’s only a pane of glass keeping it at bay.


Natural Features


Who says that natural features only belong in the great outdoors? You can bring them into your home, in various ways. For example, you can get a fire that burns real wood from https://ultimatefires.com.au; it’ll invoke those lovely evenings spent around the campfire when you take a trip into the great outdoors. Elsewhere, you can make the most of natural textures such as wood and stone. A distressed wood table, for instance, will give off that outdoor country vibe, while a stone kitchen countertop will give your home that elemental feel.


Plants and Veg


One of the best, most effective, most sweet smelling ways to bring nature into your home is to add things that grow freely in nature, such as flowers, plants, and vegetables, which you can keep on display in your kitchen. The flowers and plants are particularly recommended -- studies have shown that they’re able to boost our mood.


Decorations


Finally, take a look at incorporating nature into the decorations that you have around your home. Pinecones, jars of pebbles and sand, and other items you can find on your country walks will all work well, as will adding works of art that have a nature theme.

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OUTFIT POST: LEOPARD PRINT MIDI SKIRT

SKIRT: BOOHOO // JACKET: NEW LOOK // TOP: NEW LOOK // BOOTS: 


We headed into Birmingham today for lunch at Bodega, see my full review here...  Afterwards we went to Cannon Hill Park and took Amelia to the Wildlife Center and then visited my nan's grave before heading over to see my Grandad so busy day!

I thought i'd wear my new leopard print skirt from Boohoo! I've been loving my polka dot midi skirt from Primark and really wanted to get another one that was similar. I spotted this one on Boohoo and thought it would be perfect as it's petite and i'm quite short and sometimes find midi length things a little too long. It was an absolute bargain too, only £13.50 so I just had to get it!

It was a little nippy so I popped my leather jacket on and kept it simple with a little Black top and my Black boots. I think the skirt would look so good with a cute slogan tee or even with a jumper tucked in.

Clint and I are both off for the rest of the week so I'm hoping to have another outfit post up later in the week!






FOOD: BODEGA CANTINA BIRMINGHAM REVIEW

  
[ *GIFTED- this meal was complementary] 

Today we headed into Birmingham for lunch at Bodega Cantina to check out their menu refresh! Bodega is South American inspired cuisine. 

'The menus are created using original ideas, authentic recipes and inspiration from the team’s vast South American travels (feel free to ask us about them!)'- from Bodega website 

Bodega have a great menu with loads of choice, they offer a street menu, small plates and large plates so there is something for everyone no matter how hungry you are! The menu is really clear and they are great when it comes to allergies, they actually ask you when they seat you if you have any allergies which is amazing! 

I ordered the Dr. Pepper marinated pork Quesadillas, they were soo tasty! We also ordered a side of Nachos- They are the best Nachos i've ever had! They come with loads of salsa, guacamole and sour cream and are topped with Jalapenos. Clint went for the Chipotle beef brisket chilli burrito, it looked really good, it was filled to the brim. He had it hot! and said it was delicious! 

You can actually order from the street menu like us or the small plate section during the week and get your main and a drink for just £7! It's such a great deal if you out in Birmingham during the weekdays. 

The new menu is amazing and full of loads of really tasty sounding food, I think we will be heading back really soon to try a few more dishes. I love the sound of Bodega’s Burger a la Parilla and Peruvian Seco de Pollo, so need to check them out. 

I think their prices are really reasonable and the food is sooo tasty and great quality. If your looking for somewhere new in Birmingham to eat and you haven't tried Bodega before i'd really recommend checking it out. 

They also have a great kids menu with loads of choice and it includes a side, drink and desert for £5.95 and sometimes they do offers during the kids holidays so check that out too!

Bodega also have a really impressive drinks menu full of beers, cocktails and spirits. I had the Hummingbird mocktail, it's amazing! I'd love to go along on an evening and give some of their alcoholic cocktails a try too!

The atmosphere was lovely and all of the staff were really friendly. We had such a lovely time and would really recommend it to everyone, people with or without kids. It's the perfect place for lunch with the family, a few drinks after work or even dinner and drinks on date night! 


















OUTFIT POST: DAY OUT IN STRATFORD UPON AVON


JUMPER: FEMME LUXE FINERY *(GIFTED) // SKIRT: PRIMARK //  BOOTS: ROCKETDOG *(GIFTED)

We visited Stratford Upon Avon today to go to The Butterfly Farm. It was a gorgeous sunny day, a little bit nippy but I was so comfy and cosy in my new Femme Luxe Finery  jumper. It's this gorgeous bright mustard colour! I love it! It looks fab with my new skirt from Primark. It's a midi length pleated skirt with monochrome print. 

We loved the Butterfly Farm, Amelia really enjoyed it. We then had a spot of lunch and a walk along the river. We had a game of mini golf - I won!! Then sat on the grass and made the most of the weather! I'm super excited for summer but loving cooler days like today where I can still wear a comfy cosy jumper but don't need a coat and can have my legs out! 



How have you spent your weekend? 











LIFESTYLE: PUT YOURSELF FURTHER WITH THESE TRAVEL ADVENTURES


When we think of travelling, we often only think about going somewhere with gorgeous weather so that we can spend our time relaxing on the beach. It doesn’t always have to be like that, though. If you want to be a bit more active, there are plenty of different ways to enjoy your time travelling. In fact, you might want to see how far you can push yourself by taking part in one of these epic travel adventures!

Go On An Epic Cycling Challenge

If you want to ensure you get plenty of exercise still when you are on holiday, you could always go on a cycling trip. There are lots of cycling routes that go across central Europe, but if you would rather do one closer to home, why not attempt to cycle the length of the country? You can start at John O’Groats in Scotland and end up in Land’s End in Cornwall. Do you want to know how far is it from Land’s End to John O’Groats? Well, it’s quite far, but biking it will certainly be quicker than walking. Plus, you will feel like you have really achieved something at the end!


Climb A Mountain

Lots of people see climbing a mountain as a very worthy challenge, and this may be one travel adventure that you have set your eyes on. There are a few mountains to choose from. If you want an epic adventure, then you could fly out to the likes of Everest or Kilimanjaro. If they sound way too challenging, there are still some impressive ones to climb in Britain as well. Snowdon in Wales and Scafell Pike in North Yorkshire are two examples.

Try Solo Travel

For some people, going on holiday on their own is a big enough challenge. This can take a lot of self-confidence, but it will be very worth it indeed. You will be able to do exactly what you want to do, and won’t have to compromise to please anyone else. Not only that, though, but many solo travellers find that their confidence is given a big boost when they do spend time away on their own.




A post shared by Christianne Risman (@christiannerisman) on

Go Trekking

Another great activity to try when you are travelling the world is trekking. This is just like hiking but on a whole other level! You will be trekking over some difficult terrain, such as over desert and through rainforest. But it goes without saying that you will see some truly spectacular sights and landscapes!

Horseback Riding

If all of the above sound a little too active for you, you could always try out horseback riding. That way, you can see some equally fantastic landscapes, but you won’t have to worry about all the physical exertion! There is no better place to try horseback riding than in the regions that were known for America’s Wild West. Once you are there, you’ll be able to experience life as a cowboy and will have plenty of chances to go out on the horses.

Which adventure will you pick?



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LIFESTYLE: CARING FOR YOUR FIRST HOME


When you move into your first home it can be easy to get wrapped up in your new life and forget about some of the routine maintenance that you need to do to keep your home in good condition.

Boilers

As soon as you move in you should check your boiler.  You can never be certain when the boiler was last serviced, and even if you are only using it for hot water, it could be dangerous if it needs attention.  It is not explosions you should be concerned about, but carbon monoxide poisoning. This problem kills people in the UK every year, so get the boiler serviced straight away by a qualified engineer. Then make sure it is done again at the same time every year.

Seal The Window Frames

Buy some window sealant and reseal all the frames. It does not need much of a hole in the existing sealant for water to seep into your home. There are different types available and you need to ensure you but the right one for your type of windows, but in the long run, this job that takes just a few minutes for each window, could save you a lot of hassle.


Check Out The Conservatory

If your first home has a conservatory you need to check the condition of it. They are a great addition to any home, adding another very useful room. However, they can lose a lot of heat in the winter because of the amount of glass and get too hot to use in the summer for the same reason. The answer to this problem could be a thermal conservatory ceiling, just like the ones at Rundle and Dorey. This would make the conservatory useable all year round and then you will feel the benefit of the extra space.

Clean The Gutters

Unless you have a pair of ladders when you are viewing a property, it is not always possible to look at the state of the gutters. This is quite a simple job to do but can save you getting watermarks on the outside and inside of your new home.

Often, wearing a pair of rubber gloves and pulling any debris out is enough, but if there is a lot, you may find a trowel helps. Then run some water through them with a hose. Not a great deal is needed, just enough for you to see if the gutters are leaking anywhere. If they are, get them repaired before they can cause any damage.

This is another job you should do every year and possibly twice a year if there are a lot of trees in the location you live.

Touch Up The Paintwork

Paintwork that is peeling does not only look shabby, it means the paint is not providing the protection to the wood underneath that it should. Any areas that are small just sand, prime and paint, but if there is a large area, it is probably worth doing the whole affected wall.

Routine maintenance does not have to take a lot of time or cost a fortune, but can save you both of those things if you keep your property up to scratch.

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