29 May 2014

Long distance relationships

I'm a nomad. Leave me in one place for too long and I start to get fidgety. 

I've moved all over the shop and I love it... picking up friends and exploring new cities along the way. 

But there's one major drawback. My besties are all over the ruddy country! 

I met this wonder while working in Bristol.

Happy days back in Bristol.

Seven years on and she's now the ultimate grown up, settled in her beautiful Wiltshire home which boasts actual chickens and a pheasant. 

But I'm still on the move, which means we have to make do with a long distance romance. 

Last weekend, Kim came to stay with her husband Gareth.

As it was completely pissing it down, we decided a trip out to the Peak District would be a great idea.

We found a cave and went on a tour underground but, as we squeezed our way down into the depths of the earth, I came over all anxious.

So I surfaced above ground and made another friend. He's also cool about the long distance thing.

Totally baaaa-my about this guy.

Meanwhile the intrepid explorers marched on, emerging later looking pretty excited post-cave explorations.

Babe in the caves. 

Blue coats are a thing right now. 

Husband practiced his tourist pose. 

Sure. Why not? 

Because she's a wonder, Kim presented me with a beautiful bunch of roses having learned from my blog that I now like roses

That's one of the major downsides of no longer living in the same place. All the trivial stuff, like what flowers we like, doesn't get a look in as we catch up on all the bigger stuff, like what jumpers we like.

Too. Pretty. 

We rounded off the weekend with endless eating, drinking and games of Articulate.

And as the merry-makers made their way back home, I was safe in the knowledge that I'll be seeing them again in just a few weeks.

In your face, long distance!


23 May 2014

Insta-crushing on Rosie

Confession time: I've developed a shiny new obsession. Instagram perving. 

Not on boys... on clothes. Instagram is packed to the rafters with stylish little selfie-takers and I can't get enough.

The feed commanding my attention right now belongs to Made In Chelsea's Rosie Fortescue.

Instagram / rosiefortescue
Instagram / rosiefortescue

Think fabulous fashion finds, oodles of #ootd and plenty of pretty jewels, mixed with a bit of luxe and the odd sausage dog.

So really, what's not to love?

Rosie's latest Insta offerings have got me wanting a French mani with a twist and a lot of pink roses. Which is weird because I don't even like roses.

Plus, her monogrammed Whistles bag is all kinds of perfect for summer.

Instagram / rosiefortescue
Instagram / rosiefortescue

It's not just Rosie who keeps me pressing the refresh button. Here are some other Instagram recommendations...

Elle magazine. Mostly beauty products with a smattering of fashion and quite a few cocktail snaps, this feed has a super summery feel.

Lorraine Pascale. You know Lorraine... bakes amazing cakes. Right now she's on a summer fitness mission and has been busy cooking up lots of healthy new meals. Because she's such a love, Lorraine will often write the full recipe in the caption underneath.

Sonja Stephen. This little wonder is a friend of mine and Editor In Chief of Cosmopolitan Middle East. I KNOW, right?! Follow her for dreamy beach snaps of Dubai and luxe living in the sunshine. Perfs.


21 May 2014

Celebrity breakfast inspo: Juicing, honey!

I once found myself sitting opposite a rather famous American celebrity in the very polished surroundings of London's May Fair Hotel.

I was interviewing her for a magazine and she was working to a tight schedule, so we agreed to combine our chat with breakfast at her hotel. Two birds, one stone.

The menu looked delicious, but my date didn't need to see it.

Actually, she barely needed to look at the waiter... her fabulousness infused the air with 'I'm ready to order' signals which brought him bustling over telepathically.

"I'll have an egg white omelette," she began, before listing ALL the things which simply could not mar her breakfast. Butter, a calorie, flavour (probably).

My breakfast of old. Nuh-uh honey. 

Breakfast arrived. Mine comprised of a full fat latte resplendent with a slab of chocolate on the side. Hers, a black coffee and a pile of white goo on a plate.

I devoured the chocolate in one go, hoping she wouldn't see. No such luck.

"Honey, that's not a breakfast," she said, eyeing my dirty British eating habits with disdain.

I should point out that this woman had made a name for herself as a dancer. So, a famous American dancer. Therefore, TOTALLY in to eating well.

"Oh. Right," I stumbled. "How should I get myself in to peak condition, then?"

"Honey," I'm assuming this was a term of endearment and not an advocation of the sweet, sticky stuff. "Honey, you gotta eat less and work out more. You gotta eat clean."

What I like to munch now. 

My new Stateside bessie was right. After gabbing about her life for way longer than we were meant to, I left the hotel feeling inspired to super charge my breakfasts.

I'm never hungry first thing, but I am thirsty, and recently the wonders at SaVse sent some juices to try. "Drink your greens" they told me.

SaVse smoothies are jam-packed with goodness. 

Pretty colours, happy breakfast. 
OK! I've been necking one each morning this week and I'm hooked.

I love their strawberry, orange, celery, kale, broccoli and spinach smoothie. Refreshing, filling and full of vitamin C make it a win win.

The broccoli, pear, spinach, kale, kiwi, lemon and banana is another favourite. It tastes delish and is the colour green. My fave model EVER Rosie Huntington-Whiteley likes a green juice and she always looks ridiculous.

Strawberry goodness. Don't mind if I do!

My least favourite is the beetroot, apple, avocado, lime, mango and lemon flavour, which was just a bit too beetrootry (a word?) for my morning tastebuds.

That didn't stop me drinking the whole thing and feeling all kinds of virtuous afterwards, though.


These beauties are cold pressed which, if you're into science, means none of the flavour and nutrients are lost through heat treatments.

SaVse raw smoothies have no added sugar and count as two of your five a day, so stars like Michelle Keegan and Pixie Lott are big fans.

Plus my American dancer friend would totally approve, honey.


10 May 2014

Summer skin boost

Now that the temperature is gradually on the rise, I'm starting to shed some of the many layers I've been cocooned in over the winter. 

See ya later, second jumper!

It also means the countdown to getting my limbs out has begun... and I need a serious beauty boost before that can happen.

Thankfully, the lovely ladies at Spa Find have come to my rescue with this little bundle of joy.

I've long been a fan of their shampoo and scalp mud but this young upstart - the Heavenly Hydration Salt Brushing Treatment - is a new rival for my affections.

It's a serious exfoliator. There's no faffing around mid-shower with this guy, you need to apply it on dry skin before washing it out.

But it's worth it. Dead Sea salt buffs away old skin cells, and coconut oil leaves you feeling super smooth post-shower.

Next stop, I slathered on High Strength Body Balm and I can't praise this enough.

It's allergen free, which suits my sensitive skin, and it's got this deliciously light citrus scent which encapsulates summer and kind of makes you want to eat it. (Don't.)

Most importantly, though, it's deeply nourishing and felt like the perfect way to round off a good old exfoliate. My skin felt soft for days.

By this point my hair was feeling a little left out, so I massaged Spa Magik's Hair Magic Serum through my wet locks, wrapped 'em up in a towel and pranced around for five minutes before showering it out.

I let it dry naturally - I avoid my hairdryer like the plague because I find any heat treatments dry my long locks out.

The result of my serum-fest? Hello, glossy hair!

I'm yet to try the Sunsafe SPF 50, because I'm a naughty little sun worshipper and I use a lower factor when the spring sun is out.

So if you can't find the time or the dollar to get to a spa, I'd recommend giving these little lovelies a go.

Now I just need to stop myself from singing Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince's Summertime on a loop.
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