Sunday, December 30, 2012

bucket list 2012

2012 its hard to believe is very nearly at it end!!! in one way it seems like it has only just started but then if i think of all the things i have done this year it feels like a lifetime. for me 2012 was the year when i got to travel alot and see some amazing things in the states; trips to oregon, boston and connecticut and a little further a field vancouver and victoria. it also marked the end of my first year as an au pair and after such an amazing experience i decided to stay another year. through this amazing thing i also got to meet some of the most lovely people ever and now have friends all over the world. i started my own little corner of the world here on this blog and have "met" some lovely people through it :)

so with 2012 very nearly over i thought i would have a look back at some of the things i have accomplished and can now tick off my bucket list. i actually have the full bucket list in a board form on my pinterest account and if you would like to see it click here :D

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ticked off my bucket list in 2012...
go to the hard rock cafe / have a clam bake / make 2012 a great year / dye my hair / get my dad to stop smoking / visit vancouver / live past 21 december 2012 / make smores around a fire / learn how to use chopsticks / perfect a cupcake recipe / swim in the pacific ocean / shop on black friday / go on a roadtrip / go to a mardi gras celebration / put a piece of gum on the gum wall in seattle

ticket off my bucket list so far...
go to prague / go to times square / see a reindeer / read the twilight saga / rock a bold lip / live in the usa / move to seattle / try macarons / move out on my own / visit auschwitz / move to a big city / read all of the harry potter books / attend a masquerade / graduate college / be a bridesmaid / shoot a gun / swim with dolphins / try sushi / visit disney world / drink coffee in seattle / go to prom / swim with a sea turtle / own a macbook / learn to drive / carve a pumpkin / build a gingerbread house / learn how to surf / go to germany / make a snow angel / spend an entire day watching disney movies / go to lego land

empties : winter edition

as we are nearing the end of the year i thought i would do my very first empties post seeing as i have got quite the stash of bottles and tubes that need clearing out. i love reading empties posts and also watching empties youtube videos as you get to see what people really think of products as they have had a proper chance to use them, you aren't just getting there first impressions. 

this season was my chance to try some of the famous cult beauty products including bioderma and the caudalie beauty elixir (full post here). both were lovely products but it would be bioderma that i couldn't live without as i have noticed a positive change in my skin since i started using it, now when i cleanse my skin feels throughly clean and it makes sure every scrap of make up is removed gently. winter for me was also when i had a good skin care overhaul and really started to take care of it by adding in steps to my regime that i had never touched before. origins plays a big part in this and so far i am loving so many of their products, i love that they are all natural and it seems so does my skin. two that i seemed to fly through were the make a difference skin rejuvenating treatment and the spot remover acne treatment pads. as soon as i was out of the moisturiser i went out to buy another one and am already making my way through it, its thick enough that my skin is hydrated but as its more of a treatment than a thick cream there is no residue left and more importantly no excess oil or grease. the acne treatment pads were nice but i prefer the regular spot treatment as i can target a specific area and its alot stronger so you can feel it working as soon as you apply it. 

my hair has been styled and cut the same for years (just past shoulder length and slightly layered) however at the end of the summer i decided to grow my hair and now have a certain of it down my back (think just past bra strap level) so as with my skin i started to pay more attention to the ends and its overall condition. two products that i loved but unfortunately wont use for a while as my hair has got used to them so the effects are great any more, is the herbal essences long term relationship shampoo and conditioner. designed for long hair with added red raspberries and brazilian silk these made my hair feel strong and in great condition. hopefully after a good break i can go back to using these and see similar results like i had a few months ago. the burts bees shea and grapefruit deep conditioner is a lovely once a week treatment. my hair was soft  but not slippy like i have found some deep conditioning treatments leave it. it has a very subtle scent to so you don't get a waft of it every time your head moves. i am currently trying other masks but would buy this one again. the living proof style extender was a nice product but for me didn't do what it said on the bottle (post here). final hair care product is lush big shampoo. i have heard so much about this product in the bloggy world and decided to get a sample. this is lovely and throughly clarified my hair, i was initially a little worried about putting chunks of sea salt on my hair but it was so nice and sort of exfoliated the scalp and lathered up so so much. when i have finished my bumble and bumble sunday shampoo i will definitely be buying this :D

for me winter means lots of body scrubbing and lots of moisturiser to makes sure my skin doesn't dry out in the colder months. soap and glory flake away is my all time favourite body scrub - it smells heavenly (she says sat typing and sniffing the empty jar at the same time) and as its very granulated and contains so many essential oils its helps smooth my skin. another favourite is the carmex healing lotion, i use this as a body cream and love it as it sinks into my skin instantly and its not really scented so doesn't over power or interfere with the shower gel or scrub i have used before. both of these products i would buy time and time again. for shower gel recently it has been the lush limited edition (boo hoo) twilight shower gel. again i am sat sniffing the last bit of smell out of the bottle. i love this, the lavender sends me straight to sleep and the surprise glitter at the bottom is such a lovely touch, if only it wasn't just available at christmas!!! my last two products go together, the hugo boss orange perfume and body lotion. both such nice products with slightly sweet scents but as i am always switching and trying perfumes i wouldn't buy this again just now. 

i hope you all liked this post, sorry for it being so long but my collection of empties had gotten a little large. i love reading posts like this so am hoping you will too. have you tried any of the products featured and if so what did you think? if you would also like a proper review on any of these please just let me know :D

Friday, December 28, 2012

covergirl hot passion

as with yesterdays post i am trying to prolong the festivities that christmas brings and today rather than nails its a bold lip. red is the ultimate festive colour and i have been rocking it this holiday period. but its not just any read, apparently its the red taylor swift wears and swears by and as you know i love talyor's style (post here). so when i heard this was essentially her shade i knew i had to give covergirl hot passion a shot. 

the covergirl lip perfection lip colours are rich super pigmented lipsticks that are enriched with a silk moisturising complex to help hydrate the lips even when the colour is applied or has worn off. this shade is gorgeous, it is a true red with a slight blue undertone, and who doesn't love slightly whiter teeth. the wear time is very good and after the colour itself has worn off slightly my lips still looked red as the for me the lipstick has a slight stain to it, at bed when i took off my make up the stain took forever to remove - good for wearing through out the day though. i  am loving this shade it is super easy to wear and instantly adds a big pop of colour to any outfit :D

Thursday, December 27, 2012

revlon rainforest

i've said it many times before but for this post i'm going to say it again, i love christmas! but now that the big day is unfortunately behind us i am trying to prolong to festivities with this lovely shade. rainforest was the first revlon color stay nail polish i bought after hearing amazing reviews and lots of raving from miss glamorazzi and i'm so glad i listened to them. rainforest is a lovely dark green polish with flecks of tiny glitter pieces in the same shade running through it. its one of those colours that looks really festive but as its so dark the glitter only shows in some lights so i would wear it all year round. 

the range of polishes themselves are also lovely, the brush is wide enough to cover the whole nail in one stroke but not too huge that you make a complete mess of your manicure. the longevity is also good, no chips for three days on my nails. and my favourite part is the colour range - soft muted colours to the extreme brights, i have already added to my ever growing collection including french roast, rich raspberry, bold sangria, indigo night and blue slate, look out for posts to come of all these gorgeous shades :)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

caudalie beauty elixir

as its nearly the end of 2012 i thought i would review what i think of as one of cult beauty items of the year. now even though the caudalie beauty elixir has been around a while and every blogger and their dog has done a review on it i still thought i would throw my two pence in just in case you wanted to hear it lol, so hear we go...

described as a part toner part serum mist the caudalie beauty elixir contains grape, orange blossom, rose, mint and rosemary which working together help to calm and freshen the face while tightening pores to give a radiant complexion. the product can be sprayed after cleansing as a toner or used as a setting spray or make up refresher. the scent is the most controversial topic between beauty bloggers and one where there seems to be no sitting on the fence, like marmite its either love it or hate it. personally the smell doesn't bother me and mixed with the refreshing nature of the mist does make me feel more awake. however after using an entire bottle, just a few sprays morning and night, i haven't seen a change in my skin for the good or better and with such a price tag am not sure if i would repurchase a skincare product that feels nice but doesn't actually have any real benefits. have you tried what might be one of 'the' beauty products of the year?

Friday, December 21, 2012

tarte mini haul

tarte is a gorgeous brand whose products i have been lusting over for ages. their lip tints and blushes have been talked up all over the blog world because of their luxuriousness and wear time. tarte amazonian clay 12 hour blushes are infused with natural clay and baked in the sun to give them their twelve hour claim. blissful is a lovely pink shade that look a little barbie in the pan but soft and natural on the cheeks. you literally need to dab your brush in the powder once and swirl the shade onto your cheeks lightly to create a colourful blush as the product is so pigmented. the clay in the blush minimises oil on the area applied so for me with slightly oily skin is a perfect product.

as happy as i was with the blush i was even happier when i did my usual online shopping check for coupon or discounts and found a code for a free mini sample of tarte's pure maracuja oil, a very generous sample i might add. now as i have said i have slightly oily skin and in the past would have been petrified of putting extra oils on my skin but recently i have read so many blog posts and seen so many youtube videos that adding good oils to your skin is beneficial. maracuja oil is rich in vitamin c which makes your skin appear brighter and gives it a natural glow. this product claims to infuse life back into tired skin and rebuild and repair it.

i have incorporated this product into my daily skin care routine and am already seeing the benefits. before bed i put drops of the oil onto my forehead, cheeks, nose and chin and massage it in. this only takes a few seconds as it is so absorbent, a trait i love as i hate the feeling of products just sitting on my skin. as well as being easily absorbed there is also no greasiness what so ever. since adding this into my regime, i have noticed my acne scars have faded slightly and my skin definitely looks healthier. i will definitely be looking into using another oil after having finished this one :D have you ever tried a face oil?

Thursday, December 20, 2012

its totally fort worth it

hope you guys will forgive me for my little blogging break this week, i literally logged onto my computer to write a post today and realised i hadn't in a while even tho i had post ideas at the ready, completely slipped my mind but with the holiday very fast approaching (5 sleeps!!!) everything has been go go go. 

anyway today i wanted to share with you my nail polish of the week. for a while now i have been loving very warm festive colours; reds and golds, but this week i have been loving this silvery shade by opi. its totally fort worth it is a quite sheer silvery colour with tiny reflective particles that in the light are pink and gold. i love this colour as it is so pretty especially when the gold and pink show up. this shade is not only great for the holiday season but for everyday as it fits firmly in the nude family, its so wearable. to get this effect i had to apply 3 coats but as opi polishes dry so fast its not so much hassel :D

Monday, December 17, 2012

gfc blog hop co-host

It's Tuesday again which means it's time for the GFC Blog Hop!
When I want to follow a blog the first thing I look for is GFC (Google Friend Connect), it's so easy and  nice to be able to go and see all of the blogs you follow in one spot. It's really a great tool to have. 

One side note- Did you know you can follow through GFC using your Twitter Account? TRUE, it's definitely an option!

Ok, so let's get to the party, shall we?

RULES are simple:
1. Follow your host via GFC
The First link below
2. Follow your co-hosts via GFC
The Next 8 links below
3. Link up below using your main blog url not a specific post.
4. Make sure to visit some of the blogs in the link up and follow them via GFC 
and if you want to leave them a comment, I'm sure they'd appreciate that as well.
5. Tweet about this blog hop

6. Share about this blog hop by grabbing a button and putting it on your sidebar!

Post Sponsor Ad:

Sunday, December 16, 2012

all things christmassy

8 more sleeps til christmas!!! :) this week has been all about the up coming holiday season, our tree is now up in the living room, i had a monster of an afternoon wrapping all my presents and the boys and i have made enough christmas cookies to last us well into the new year. if you haven't guessed already i love christmas and for me its the time of year when we go all out, so the next couple of weeks are jam packed but today i thought i would share with you some of the fun things i have been up to.

my friends and i went over to bellevue for the evening to see snowflake lane which is basically a mini christmas parade complete with music, dancers and fake snow all in the streets which i loved and just made me feel so christmassy. we also went to the botanical gardens where they have converted the entire place into a light fest. it was so pretty and so cool, there was even a complete aquarium made from lights.

the final thing of this week was i got to go and see the nutcracker at the pacific northwest ballet. but the big twist is that my host dad works there so i got to watch form backstage. it was the most incredible experience!!! you could see all the costumes up close which are so pretty and so detailed and see all the staging being bought on and off. but the best thing was that during the snowflake dance my friends and i got to use the snow bags and make it snow on stage!!! after all this i am so ready for christmas to get here and cannot wait to give the boys their prezzies :D

Saturday, December 15, 2012

the girl with the dragon tattoo

image via
this book has been in my to read pile since i saw the movie last year and this week i finally got down to it on the list. in all honesty i wasn't sure if i was going to like this book as it is not what i would call my usual read, however i did enjoy the film so decided to give it a try.

so those of you that haven't seen the movie or read this book here is a little plot summary for you. "harriet vanger, a scion of one of sweden's wealthiest families disappeared over forty years ago. all these years later, her aged uncle continues to seek the truth. he hires mikael blomkvist, a crusading journalist recently trapped by a libel conviction, to investigate. he is aided by the pierced and tattooed punk prodigy lisbeth salander. together they tap into a vein of iniquity and corruption."

this book had me hooked about a hundred pages in even though i already knew the outcome. it is so fast paced you cannot hep but get sucked into the plot. stieg larsson has created some fantastic characters that feel like they couldn't be more different from one another but having them be so different makes for some excellent scenes. the girl with the dragon tattoo is full of mystery and crime solving and loads of action thrown in. the big mystery itself is complicated so that you want to find the solution but wasn't so over my head that i had no clue what was going on. i loved this book and cannot wait to read the next too :D

Thursday, December 13, 2012

penny talk

penny talk by essie has been on my nails all week this week, its a colour that i have had in my collection for a while but for some very strange reason i have yet to try it. but i had to break this little streak and i'm so glad it did. penny talk is a lovely rose gold colour that is unlike any other nail polish i have. depending on what look you like on your nails you could get away with just one coat for a more understated look or go for two for a really solid colour that screams metallic. as i have said before i love essie nail polishes, on my nails their formulas last around three to four days depending on how much i put my nails through and the colour pay off is amazing and for this colour so so pretty. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

not quite there yet co-host

Welcome back to the brand new link up 
Not Quite There Yet!
This link up is specifically for non-mommy and/ or unmarried bloggers.
(We still love all you married with kids folks!)
This will be a weekly link up rotating through different social media outlets for us to connect through. I hope that this link up will facilitate the making of many new friendships and partnerships. We are all in the same boat, let's get to know each other and support each other through life's twists and turns.
Alright, let's kick this thing off!
We will be linking up our Twitter accounts this week.
You know the drill...
1. Follow your host. That's me! :D
2. Follow ALL of your co-hosts. please and thank you!
3. Link up your Twitter account (not your blog).
Next week we will be connecting via GFC!
4. Find some other great bloggers and follow along. And be sure to send us a tweet so we can all follow you back!
5. Button up and spread the word! Share this post on Twitter & Facebook!
If you are interested in co-hosting email me at  dalayna {dot} dillon {at} gmail {dot} com.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

christmas cookies

theres only 14 more sleeps until christmas!!! :D i'm a little excited, can you tell lol. christmas is my favourite time of the year, i love everything about it...the living room complete with decorations and a wonderful smelling tree, pretty lights hanging outside, big family meals and children being excited all the time. as my family are in the uk i love getting involved in all the little things to get ready for christmas over here in the states so that it still feels just as magical.

this week the boys and i went over board with making christmas cookies, we now have 3 tins of them in the kitchen thanks to our massive baking session, a holiday party with a cookie exchange i went to for all the seattle au pairs and a tin we got as a present - not that i'm complaining about the abundance of cookies :) so i thought i would share the ones we made with you guys. we used the same recipe that we always use, the one i have posted about before, if you would like to try it the recipe can be found here :)

also some of the yummy looking ones i saw on pinterest, and because i haven't done it for a while i'm also going to be linking up with michelle from the vintage apple for oh how pinteresting.

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