Weekend Check In #3

Drinking: Starbucks Pistachio and Rose Mocha, this drink is amazing!  One of my favorite speciality flavours in a long time, soooo good!

Health:  Daily walks with this little stinker!  Meet our new bulldog, Betty, in this post here and check out her instagram at betty.the.bully  Since getting a dog, I have never been more knackered, haha!

During the week, I am in charge of morning walks which means sometimes getting up at 5:45am to take her on a mile long walk.  On the weekends, we try to get her out to the beach, it’s great fun, but can be exhausting!  Need to build up that stamina!IMG_20160214_122603

Wearing:  Mittens and gloves as it’s been bloody freezing lately!

Reading:  Currently reading Disclaimer by Renee Knight.  This is a bestseller and also recommended by Ruth Crilly of a Model Recommends.  It’s about a woman who’s deepest, darkest secret is coming to light years after the fact.  I’m about a quarter through, but so far its been a page turner!

Makeup:  I got a little haul from Makeup Revolution as a treat for passing my driving test.  The Lip Hugs are my new favorite lipstick formula, they are so moisturising!  And the White Chocolate palette is perfect for me, filled with golds, taupes, and earth tones, it’s absolutely gorgeous!

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Playing:  Late to the band wagon, but just downloaded Neko Atsume, the Cat Collecting game!  I’m sure you’ve heard of it, but you basically decorate your yard with treats and toys to entice cats to visit, you collect photos of the different cats, highly addictive!

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xx

Sanctuary Spa 5 Minute Thermal Detox Mask

I picked up this mask while browsing in Boots, I wanted something to help with my congested winter skin.  And I found that this product fit the bill!

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This is a self-heating clay mask, but to be honest, it only really feels warm when you first apply it to your skin.  I’ve found that with all the self-heating masks I’ve tried to be fair.  It’s a very thick consistency.  One thing I do really like is that it doesn’t dry completely so you can comfortably move your face without feeling like it’s going to crack about.  I use it about twice a week, usually apply it before I get in the bath for the ultimate pamper.  It has helped clear my skin and I found it to not be drying like some clay masks.

This is something I would definitely look at repurchasing!

What is your favorite pampering face mask?  When do you like to apply your masks?

xx

Meet Betty: Our New Bulldog

You may have seen me vague tweeting at the beginning of the week being quite anxious/excited about something.  And now I can share with everyone, my husband and I got a bulldog!  We bought her from a private seller on the Pets4Homes site, her owner had a very sad situation going on and had to give her up.  We saw Betty’s ad 7 minutes after it was posted, she sounded perfect, she has been raised with kids and other dogs, housetrained and crate trained.  Also after doing some research about bulldogs, they sounded like the perfect breed for my husband and I who both work due to their very lazy nature!

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Betty is a blue and white English Bulldog.  She’s been such a joy to have, she is so well behaved, she doesn’t bark (she does snort, grunt, snore, burp and fart though, haha!), walks perfect on her harness, is happy to sleep in her crate when we’re not home, and has also done very well for her first test run off the lead on the beach today!

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After doing a ton of research about bulldogs before we bought her, there are some things to note as they might not be for everyone.  They are prone to a multitude of health problems, including hip displaysia, breathing problems, skin allergies, obesity and the list goes on.  So you need to have good insurance.  And while they don’t need much exercise, they do need a lot of maintenance in the grooming area.  We clean Betty’s face wrinkles daily and we have to dry her paws well after walks as they are prone to yeast infections in these areas.  She gets oatmeal baths to calm her skin.  And she also eats hypoallergenic dog food.  They aren’t cheap.

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Despite all this, we absolutely love her, I’ve been wanting a dog my entire adult life and she just makes my husband and I so happy.  She loves her toys, but they are hard chewers so you need to get sturdy toys if you want them to last!  She’s snoozing on the couch next to me as I write this.  Couldn’t get much cuter:)

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If you’d like to see more of Betty, check out her instagram: betty.the.bully

Let me know if you have any questions about Betty or bulldogs in general!

xx

Weekend Check In #2

Drinking: Water, lots of water.  We got a Brita Filter recently and it has really helped encourage me to stay hydrated!

Health:  First off, absolutely loving my Fitbit Charge HR, you can read my review here.  I have also started doing Lucy Wyndham-Read’s 2016 HIIT Workout before my daily dose of Yoga Camp with Adrienne to get my heart going!

Wearing:  Lots of Primark workout gear!  I would recommend this for home practice as some of their leggings are a bit see through, but who cares if your in your own home?  It’s cheap and does the trick so I’m not constantly doing laundry.

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Reading:  I have been continuing the Flavia de Luce series, by Alan Bradley.  This series has crime, murder most foul, chemistry, dark humour and an 11 old heroine who is sometimes too smart for her own good!

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Makeup:  Not makeup per se, but skincare, I have rediscovered my once beloved Peaches and Clean which is kicking my winter skin back into shape.

Playing:  This video from my holiday in Oz over and over…

 

My FitBit Charge HR

Recently, I had a bit of Quidco money that had accumulated and wanted to get myself an after Christmas treat.  Originally, I was going to treat myself to the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette, but then the Fitbit caught my eye.  I have been doing Adrienne’s Yoga Camp for January and I already used the S Health app on my Android phone to track my fitness.  I did want to track my exercise more accurately so I started researching the different Fitbits/fitness watches.

I ended up choosing the Fitbit Charge HR because of the heart rate monitor.  You can measure how many calories you burn during exercises where steps aren’t what counts (such as yoga) because it calculates it based on your heart rate through out.

I ended up getting a small Fitbit Charge HR in black and so far I am really happy that I chose this over the Ambient Lighting Palette.  It measures your steps, flights of stairs climbed (or equivalent if you’re going up hill), your sleep, heart rate of course, and calories burned.  It also automatically picks up when you are doing certain exerices (running, walking, cycling) and tracks this as well.  The Fitbit app is great and easy to use.

Pros:

-Notifies you when you  hit your goals/also sends notifications to encourage you if you haven’t met your goal towards the end of the day

-Silent vibrating alarm (you won’t wake your partner in the morning)

-Display shows the important stats, easy to use

-Stopwatch feature to track exercise that the app might not automatically pick up

-Battery lasts 4-5 days and only takes about 2 hours to charge

-Works as caller id for your phone (I don’t really use this feature as you would need to have bluetooth on your phone and it drains my battery)

-The app is great, easy to use, lots of features, you can choose which stats matter to you

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Cons:

-Sleep tracker isn’t completely accurate, it tracked one of my yoga sessions as restless sleep

-It’s a bit bulky on my wrist (but I have really scrawny wrists to be fair)

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-Water resistant, but not waterproof, ok to wear in the rain, but not in the shower

-Automatic exercise tracking not always accurate, during one of my anxious driving lessons. it thought I was cycling because of how high my heart rate was (oops!), but you can go back and delete and edit incorrect entries

Overall, I absolutely love this tracker.  I’ve done a bit of research and it seems to be the best all rounder for the average health nut in terms of fitness trackers.

I also have been using the Bounts app in conjunction with it, this app lets you earn points for steps and exercise that can be exchanged for vouchers and other prizes!  My referral link: https://www.bounts.it/registration/?getme100points=ellis747

Do you have a fibit or fitness tracker?  Which one are you using and why?

xx

Books I Read in 2015

This year, I set a reading goal to read 50 books this year.  Unfortunately, I missed it by just one book!  Didn’t read as much during my Australia trip in December as I thought I would, haha!  Still, 49 books isn’t bad!

I am not going to list all 50 books here as that would be a bit much, but you can check out my complete list on my Goodreads account here.

The 49 books I read totalled 17,074 pages!

Longest Book I Read:

Bleak House by Charles Dickens-The longest book I read at 1,017 pages, however I did not find myself getting bored and found this book about the a court case that just won’t end highly entertaining.  Definitely a must read classic.

Most Popular:

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak-This book won many awards and rightfully so.  It had me in tears by the end, but if you haven’t this yet, pick it up, you won’t regret it.

Least Popular:

A Night Inn Hell by John R K Powell-Well, they all couldn’t be good…I picked this up due to being set in Dorset where I live, but it was pretty terrible.  I don’t think it was proof-read and the language did not seem to match up with the era the story takes place in,  bit of a confused story line.

Some Great Series I Discovered:

Flavia de Luce Series by Alan Bradley-This is a series about an 11 year old little girl who is somewhat of a chemistry genius and manages to solve a series of murders.  Hilarious and whimsical!

D.I. Kim Stone Series by Angela Marsons-If you like crime/thriller type novels, this series is excellent.  Can’t wait for the next book to come out!

Books I Gave 5 Stars:

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen King

Lost Girls, Evil Games and Silent Scream by Angela Marsons

The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

Hide Her Name by Nadine Dorries

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

We Were Liars by E Lockhart

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

Have you read any of these books?  Thoughts?  What was your favorite book of 2015?  Any recommendations for my 2016 reading list?

xx

 

 

New Year 2016 Resolutions

Happy New Year everyone!  I hope everyone had a great Christmas/New Year’s Eve.  It’s time to look back on last year’s resolutions and look forward to what I would like to accomplish for 2016.

Check out my 2015 resolutions here.

Get My Driver’s License-I will begrudginly say fail for this, but just by a hair hopefully.  I actually applied for my provisional, started taking lessons, passed my Theory test and my actual test is booked in for the end of January so I am hoping I can tick this one off fairly soon.

Exercise-I will say this is a success thanks to Yoga with Adriene, I absolutely fell in love with her channel.  I completed 30 days of Yoga and managed to do her other videos 2-3 times a week fairly consistently as I actually really enjoy yoga.  I am taking part in her Yoga Camp for January, 30 days of free yoga videos, join here if you haven’t already!

Home Improvements-Another successful resolution as we managed to repaint our lounge, renovate our bathroom and replaced all our windows and doors this year!

And for consistency’s sake, 3 new resolutions!

Get My Driver’s License-Third time’s a charm?

Adopt a Dog-I’ve wanted my own dog for ages, I always thought when I was an adult with my own house, I’d automatically be able to have my own dog, but unfortunately it’s not that easy.  I think the mister and I are in a place now where we are able to have our own pooch.

Keep Up with Regular Exercise-After 3 weeks in Oz over the festive period where you pretty much live on cheese, chocolate and booze, I want to make sure I keep exercising regularly.

Have you made any resolutions for 2016?  How did you do on last year’s resolutions?

xx