I find that December is all about looking back at the year more so once we are over Christmas and heading towards New Year. People never really seem to reflect on Christmas I found this tag last Christmas however I did not have time to publish it so I thought I would share it this festive season.
I am all for stockings I think sometimes the small useful presents mean a lot of more than huge items which for some people might think is very strange but that is just me. Today I am going to share with you a few ideas which I have on what you could stuff in girls stocking this festive season. Some of these are actually gifts which people got this festive season so I hope the person who these are gifts are for is not reading this post.
Lip kits are something which has massively exploded this year and they are something which every single brand seem to have brought out. Primark is one which has made their own and they have done it in one of the most autumnal/winter colours which I think is going to rock this festive season. Primark is not a company which is going to break the bank they are only £3 which means that it would be great for secret Santa they come in a range of colours so this means that it does not matter if they are not going to like this shade I am sure there is a shade for everyone. I would love to receive another one of these because they are of such good quality.
The final item which I have in this gift guide is this unicorn slippers which are adorable these are something which I have had for a few months so I am unsure if they will still actually have these in stores but I am sure that they will have something very similar these are very fluffy which means that they are going to be great for the colder months when you just want to be super cosy. I think that these are only £3.50 from Primark which means that they are not doing damage your bank balance too much and they again could be a great secret santa present because we all know people do manage to do them in the offices and workplaces. They have soft soles which means that you will not be able to wear them outside without trashing them.
A couple of other ideas which you could use to put in girls stockings:
- Bath bombs you do not have to use Lush there are some other cheaper brands
- Sweets/chocolate who does not love these
- Face masks we all need treats
- Jewellery you do not have to spend so much money Primark and Jewellery box do some amazing bits.
Christingle is one of the items which I actually featured in my July favourites which is surprising as this body conditioner is actually part of the Christmas collection this is why I have waited so long to do the review because you should be able to get your hands on this product now.
I really love using this should I have really bad sunburn in the summer months but also I love to use it on very aching muscles which I may have from all of the exercise which I do I walk at least 5 miles most days which means that sometimes I get very tired muscles and this works wonders for that.
If you do not know how a body conditioner works you just lather it all over your body before getting out of the shower, I do this away from the flow of the water to prevent water getting in the pot and also massage it into my skin before been washed away. Then you get back into the shower and rinse the lotion off. I have used it as a body conditioner as well in the past this is if you want a more intense use.
This body conditioner does actually moisturise your skin which is something which we all need in the winter months you do not need to use of the body conditioner due to the jojoba oil and murumuru butter which can be found in this product. Peppermint and methanol crystals as the main ingredients this does actually mean that your skin is left supple and pump as well which I have found is great as my skin was super tight after been burnt in the summer and also I want to be pump skin because I feel like it always looks better.
It’s unlike anything that I’ve tried from Lush before – a strong, crisp and very refreshing spearmint and peppermint aroma with a note of menthol that gives it a slightly clinical element as well this may not be a scent for everyone so I would recommend that you do smell this body conditioner before you purchase this item.
I am loving using this product again due to the fact that it helps my skin repair myself which is something I need with the harsh winter months. This produce leaves your skin moisitured but beware it does have a greasy feeling for a while after leaving the shower it may be for around 5-10 mintutes and you would not want to put clothes on during this time.
I will be purchasing more of this beauty before the this goes again for another year. It sure is one of Lush’s hidden gems.
Have you tried a body conditioner before if so what did you think?
I am all for stockings I think sometimes the small useful presents mean a lot of more than huge items which for some people might think is very strange but that is just me. Today I am going to share with you a few ideas which I have on what you could stuff in guys stocking this festive season.
What would Christmas be without getting socks I am sure man gets socks over the festive period. These are a pair which I love and these are from heat warmers which have these grips on the bottom which means that you can grip to flooring such as laminate flooring because I know how easy it is to slide on that type of flooring. These are actually the Hulk one which would mean that they would be perfect for any kind of Marvel fan I know that they do actually do them in most of the Avenger’s characters. I think these would be great for people who have cold feet a lot because for sure these are thick. Of course, you could buy them socks which is their preference
Bath bombs might be something which you think of girls instead I know a number of males who do actually use them. Due to the rising trend of males actually using them they now do once a which are a lot masculine than those you used to be able to get. For example, the bomb cosmetics do this one which as you can see is the shape of a grenade and this one does actually smell like it is a scent which lynx could use it is that nice. I am so tempted to use this one very soon because I am sure I would get a lot more love out of it than the males I have in my life. I know lush do some amazing bath bombs as well and they start at £3.50 so do not have to break the bank however if you are wanting to save a little bit bomb cosmetics ones are usually a little bit cheaper.
A fragrance is something which does not have to be super expensive. Depending on what the man in your life your purchasing for likes, for example, I know some men do not likes ones could be classed as too Floral. Fragrance is not really something which I have purchased for many people in the past however, I have purchased a few this year due to the novelty element for example I know a few weeks back that Zara has some captain America fragrances and someone pretty close to me loves the Marvel films which meant that I could not resist purchasing. I had a quick sniff of it and I feel like it is one which could be used every single day and it was very cheap I feel like it was only a maximum of £5. Which means that it could be great for teenage boys as well it doesn’t have to be the adults always having the fun.
Cufflinks are something which I feel like every man needs to own a lovely pair of but due to the fact that people that most people do not actually wear them frequently. If you have a car nut in the family like I do you might want to check out gears cufflinks I feel like they are very stylish and are not super tacky. These ones which I found were only £4.99 which I feel like is a gift which could be great for a secret Santa as well. These ones are of great quality as well which means that they are not going to break when you used it at them the first time.
Other ideas which you could use for male stockings such as:
Accessories such as belts
What are you going to put in the male in your life in your stocking?
Clothes are another area which no doubt if you are a little bit like my family an area which you can declutter. I still have things which I have not worn since having Jess which I now no longer like so I have bagged them up and sent them to the charity shop I know this is something which I should do more often because I have way too many clothes which I no longer wear and then wonder why I have no space at all. Since the weather has changed why not got through your winter clothing and get rid of bits which either no longer fit you or that you don’t like who knows you might earn something on Ebay for your troubles.
Decorations these are not something which we as a little family have a lot of but every year when my Mum gets the decorations out there are always a few which she is like oh gosh I do not know why we actually kept that one. Usually, the reason she is staying this is due to it been past its best so this year before you put the decorations back in the loft the ones which you are not using why not check if they are still in a good condition or if you still like them because if the answer is you do not like them why not declutter them and make some precious loft space again. I know this is something which I will be doing most years when we get our own house together.
Gifts you do not want that are still in the packaging I am sure there is a few of those sitting around in your house. Either ones which you have been gifted or ones which you have purchased for other people and then for some reason never ended up giving them. This is something which I have done in the past and it means that you can save some money which is something which I feel like people want to do this a lot if this time of year. I have once it with beauty products which I have not loved for it sample I have split them and given them to multiple people because I know that I would never actually use them. Make sure that you do not regift to the person who you gave you it because I feel like they might actually realise what you have done.
What areas are you looking to declutter before the festive season is completely upon us?
Tomorrow is actually shopping small business Saturday I think it is a day which has come over from the US and it is always the first Saturday of December. If you have read my blog, previously you will know that I like to support smaller companies whether that should be companies who make bows or toddler clothing to beauty products and candles.
As Christmas approaches quickly and many of us are still yet to purchase gifts so those who we love why not have a look at some of the smaller companies. Today I am going to share with you 9 of my favourites who I have either used this festive period or have used in the past don’t forget some of these people run them as a hobby on top of the full-time job and the majority of them are also parents. These companies can change people’s lives forever so please support them.
A company who I know I have mentioned previously is a bow come true I actually got some bows for the rugby final back in August and Jess’s Birthday bow from this company. Along with a handful of other bows, I have not actually purchased her Christmas ones yet however, there is a penguin one which I have my eye on and a few more so beware I am sure a bow haul will be coming up before Christmas. If you want your little girl to have something pretty in her hair these would make an amazing gift, they would be great in a stocking you do not just have to get festive ones she still is making normal ones which you can wear all year along and they are such a reasonable price of around £2.50. You do not have to be a toddler to rock a bow either.
Another, company that I have used a couple of times now and would recommend is Pretty penguin clothing. Recently, I purchase Jess a children in need skirt from this store and she has so many compliments on it when I took her to nursery. They are such good quality fabrics in a lot of different designs I think we currently own about 4 different skirts they also do bibs, leggings and rompers. I am unsure what size they actually go up to so this is going to have to be something which you might have to contact them about. I have my eye on a few more skirts for the future which after Christmas I think I am going to purchase. These skirts wash so well I could not be more impressed they are only £8 for the size which Jess needs which is crazy as that is cheaper than some of the high street stores.
Jess is a child who is really not that bothered by chocolate and due to the fact that we end up leaving home very early in a morning she would not be able to eat the chocolate and I do not think that she would be that bothered when she gets home. Instead of actually purchasing her a chocolate advent calendar this year again I have decided to make her a book advent calendar as reading books is something which she really enjoys before bed. I think it is a good way to be able to get new books into your children’s collection you could do this by picking books up in the charity shop because you can get some very cheap good quality books doing this. You could also pick them up in the works when they do they £10 books for £10 offer which is what I did.
If you are unsure on the concept of this basically you select 24 books for your child wrap them up like a present. Last year I purchased some cheap gift tags and wrote the number on them and then you open the one which corresponds with the date like a normal advent calendar. You could write on the wrapping paper should you want and this is something which I might do this year I am undecided yet.
The books which are in Jess’s advent calender if you want some inspiration in what books to purchase for a 2 year old are the following.
Home is where the heart is by Lisa Alderson & Alice King
The greedy dog by Alex Firth
I love you sleepyhead by Claire Freedman & Simon Mendez
Stop Monkeying around by Cupcake
Hungry Harry by Joanne Partis
What you doing in my bed by Daniel Bedford
What’s in your pocket by Ruth Symons
My big shouting day by Rebecca Patterson
Bedtime for little bears by David Bedford
Hold Tight by John Prater
Grubs Pup by Abi Burlington
Grub in love by Abi Burlington & Sarah Warbuton
Who loves baby? by Julia Hurbery
Your the Best
I love you Daddy by Jillian Harker
The very sleepy sloth by Andrew Murray
This is my pet
Lion Practice by Emma Carlisle
You and Me always
Bedtime Hullabaloo by David Conway
Shy Little Lion
That’s not funny bunny by Bethany Heines
Dog did it by Lynne Garner
Bye Bye baby brother by Sheena Dempsey
What are you putting in your little ones advent calendar this year?
Christmas can be an expensive time of year but it does not have to break the bank. This year we are trying to save money because we are actually looking to purchase a house our first family home next year so of course at them moment every pound matters because we know getting the deposit and then all of the other hidden costs is going to cost a fortune.
This year we have set budgets for people so that we do not go crazy when we are shopping and spend way to much money. We are lucky and do not have a lot of people to buy for I think in total it is around 10. However, anyone who has a toddler knows that you can blow your budget just thinking about it because you want to make them have a great time and toys other things such as clothing you want them to dress in are not cheap. So today I am going to share with you ways that we are trying to save the pennies this Christmas.
– The first tip I would say is set a budget we have done this for example we have different budgets for different people with people like our parents having a higher budget than my brother. Having a budget means that you are less likely to end up spending more than you planned.
– Don’t be afraid to shop early if like us you see something which you know is going to be perfect for someone and it is discounted maybe in August pick it up make a note of what you have purchased though so you do not end up having too much for one person. This is what I did with Jess’s book advent calendar I made it when the works had their 10 books for £10 offer.
– Shop around the amount of times I think I have found a really good deal to only find that it is actually cheaper on amazon than it is in the store advertising the discount. I always check if the item is not one on the cheap side the price on Amazon and even have been know to do it in store because I have the app on my phone.
– Shopping online google discount codes valid for that shop sometimes you can get as much as 20% off and sometime free delivery which is always handy because all them £3.95 delivery fees add up and could nearly be a budget for a person. While on this topic if there is an option of free click and collect to store rather than paying the deliver fees why not do this. I have done it in a number of stores including Sainsbury & Next.
– Cashback sites such as Quidco and Topcashback can be your best friend recently when renewing the car insurance I used this site and managed to get £29 back by going through this site and on a recent Christmas present I managed to get a couple of pound back on a purchase. Every little bit helps I am trying to remember to do this throughout the year.
– If you are purchasing experience days do not go straight to Virgin Experiences shop around for example last year I purchased a fast car experience day I actually managed to save over £100 by shopping around so it is worth checking sites such as Buyagift, Wowcher, Groupon & Travelzoo all of which I have used and would recommend.
– Need things such as small socking fillers head to places such as B&M, Home Bargains, Pound stretcher & TkMaxx they have a fantastic selection of things which are not too expensive for example I know you can get things such as sweets for a fraction of the price in their I have been known to purchase them before. Sometime you can get gift sets for a fraction of the price of Boots and Superdrug so it is always worth checking out.
– Something which I have been known to do in the past is trawl eBay sometimes you can get unwanted gifts for a fraction of the price I have done this for people’s birthday’s in the past. I have also purchased clothing which can be only worn at occasions such as Christmas which has been hardly worn I have found this is a good way to be able to get items such as Christmas Jumper’s for Jess. Don’t forget you can also sell your unwanted items and make some cash I know this is what I will be doing with some of Jess’s old festive outfits.
– Use Loyalty cards last year I has purchased Jess a car seat from Boots which meant that I got a shed load of points.I actually saved them and used them at Christmas when I needed to purchase some gifts from there I think in the end I got around £70 worth of gifts for around £7 which is amazing and I did not do anything. Boots was the cheapest place to purchase the car seat and I got the gifts as a result. This year I haven’t shopped in Boots as much so will not be able to replicate that crazy amount but even if you just have £5 worth of points its always worth cashing them in during the festive season.
– Looking to purchase a gift card try purchasing them off Zeek which a website that is the main marketplace for giftcards either buying or selling. People sell them as they are from stores which people do not end up using so it means that you can get them sometimes for as much as 20% off. You could use them to purchase gifts or give them too people as gifts as long as you know they may not have that long left on them.
What are your top tips to saving money this festive season?
This is the year where I am going to take more pictures of Jess because I have realised that since she went to nursery I rarely take pictures of her which mean I have so many gaps in my albums when I look back on her life. This is for sure something which I really want to change because I can not stand it she is growing up so fast and I want to be able to remember it for as long as possible. We all know that time does not stand still and in the future when she is all grown up I want to be able to look back on them.
I know this post is super late and I do not have pictures of all of the gifts because as some of you may know I have had two Christmas’s one with actually family and then one with my boyfriend which occurred a couple of days after. This means that I only actually have pictures of what I got from my secret Santa’s and my family because I was such a lucky girl it has meant that I have not been able to take pictures of them all.
The first gift which I am going to share with you is one of my secret Santa’s, unfortunately, one of the items which was an ornament which said Merry Christmas actually managed to break in transit. Two of the other gifts arrived which were not smashed or damaged in any kind of way which is always nice. The first item is a Golden Wonder Lush bath gift set which is something which I am going to adore due to the fact that as you all know that I love baths and Lush is one of my favourite brands so this will be something which I will be using soon. The other item I received from the same secret Santa was a beautiful Salted Carmel Primark candle this is not something which I would have purchased myself due to the fact that Primark is not a shop that I really look at the homeware section in anymore.
Another secret Santa which I took part in choose these amazing gifts for me. Can you see the running theme which with the bath gifts I love Father Christmas from Lush and this was one which I never managed to get many of this year for some reason. Another bath related products I received was the sweet snuggles bath crystals these are something which I can not wait to try as I am always using bath bomb or bubble bars so this will be a difference for me. I also received these glitter nail polish which would be perfect for a party or the festive season so |I am sure these will have some much use. A final couple of itemsI received are the these Yankee candle wax tarts as you all known I love to burn candles and I rarely purchase this kind due to having the flamingo candle scent box every month arrive.
My parents treated me to some amazing bath bombs which smell like strawberry and cream and also strawberry and champagne. I am unaware which brand they came from due to them purchasing these when they were away and there are no markings on the box which I received and somehow managed to forget to photograph them in all of the excitement of Christmas.
My brother also got me some retro sweets which you can imagine I have been a bad blogger and could not wait to tuck into them. I have had a few of them and I have managed to misplace them already maybe this is for the best because otherwise they would have been gone within no time. I will not be able to fit into the leggings which my parents purchased me from Next if I continued eating I have not managed to even try them on yet so this is another reason they have not been added. I hate having to have two Christmas’s sometimes as you end up leaving things and then when you go back it is back to normal life.
I was treated amazingly by another secret Santa I have these two amazing pairs of socks which for me is good due to the fact I never seem to have enough. Even though these are Christmassy they do not bother me because I will be able to use them all year around, I was treated to some chocolate which for me is always welcome I never seem to consume much because I have to share with people. This is one which I will not be sharing with other people. I received another Yankee candle which is a frosted cranberry this is one which I am going to really adore because it smells beautiful already. The book of mum is one which makes me laugh because I actually bought the book of dad to my boyfriend this is going to be a good one to read when I am having a nice coffee. The final item which I received in this package is a beautiful Rimmel Gold Polish I am unsure what shade it is due to Jess have got her hands on it and I currently cannot find it.
My amazing boyfriend managed to get me some items which I told him I wanted it was that bad I actually ordered one and then added the rest to his amazon basket. A little surprise did occur for me thought he decided that instead of having a new 64gb memory card for my camera he upgraded it to 128gb which means I may start doing Youtube when I get a better camera. I actually also received the dot creates ultimate blogger planner which means I can be more organised and post more on my blog. These gifts may seem really random but he actually managed to purchase some Manfrotto tripods and the Manfrotto 6 bulb led lights which were amazing because for a while now I have said that I want to improve my lighting so this is what I have done. I even just before Christmas invested in a blogger background which you will have seen but there is going to be still some posts from before I got it as I take my pictures in bulk and I had it delivered to his house as another extra Christmas present from me to me. I realised that I have not even mentioned the weekend away which he treated to me as part of my Christmas present we went to an amazing log cabin at Kelby Forest the weekend before Christmas. This was amazing to be together and have so much chill time watching films, cooking and also taking the opportunity to go for a forest walk and use the hot tub. I have a feeling that it will not be the first trip we take to a log cabin or a weekend away just the two of us. Maybe we will get away somewhere at Easter.
Can you see a running theme here I have some amazing gummy bears from Haribo which are one of my favourite treats I feel like I may have to consume them when Jess is not around. Another item I received is this amazing foot cream which is going to be good for me due to the fact I am always on my feet and they are a part of my body which I never seem to treat.Slipper socks are something which I always think about purchasing and never seem to so these are going to be super handy for me because I then can go to sleep in them because I always seem to be able to sleep in my slippers. The final item is a diary which I have decided that I am going to use for my uni work due to the fact I have two others for blogging.
Enma managed to pick me up some amazing gifts for our secret Santa she sent it in one of the most beautiful boxes which I have already put items in. The first item I opened was these amazing fluffy socks which are something which I adore because of the fact I get really cold feet when I am commuting to uni so these are going to be perfect in the winter months. I have another sweet treat which is these peanut butter M&M’s I have never tried them which is special because when I ever I have them I will think of this swap. As you may have noticed in this chat I am obsessed with bath products and I managed to get even more in this swap I received the gingerbread and another bath bomb from the bomb cosmetics I can not remember what it was but I have already used it. Tanya Burr is a brand which I have never really looked at for no reason maybe because I thought it was for younger people but the quality of this cheek palette is amazing I would love to try more of these products. I have these amazing macaroon candles as well which are amazing I feel like they are way too cute to burn so you may be seeing them in the background of my photographs instead. I also have this amazing Green tea facemask from Sephora I really don’t want to fall in love with them because of the fact I know I can not get them in the UK easy. The final couple of items which I received were lip products the first was a makeup revolution matte lipstick in the shade exposure I really do not own many nude lipsticks so this is something I feel like I may get a lot of use out of it. The final item was a colourpop satin lip in Magic wander again this is a nude lip I can see me layering the two items and getting a lot of use of them. I will tell you this I do not see it been the only colourpop item I own.
My boyfriends parents seem to be getting to know me to well they got me a virtual reality headset which is something which I would not have purchased for myself but it is something which I can see us having so much fun with in the future there may be some videos and pictures on Instagram so you should follow me over on there. They also know that I adore twiglets and they managed to get me two tubs of them which I have nearly demolished one whole tub in a week and I have to keep having them to taken off me because I feel like could sit and eat a whole tub in one sitting. They also know that I am obsessed with Lush instead of getting me bath bombs they decided that they would get me 6 bottles of 100g shower gel these included Lord of Misrule, Snow Fairy, The comforter, Yuzu and Cocoa, Wash that man right out of my hair and finally Rose Jam. I plan on leaving them here because then I can use them throughout the year because some are Christmas exclusives. No joke I can not wait for Valentine’s Day Lush they may be a haul coming before the end of this month I love Lush that much.
The final item which I am going to include in this post is an electric toothbrush there is a funny kind of story behind this. Days before Christmas my brother somehow dropped my toothbrush on a solid floor and broke it. This meant that my parents thought that they would treat me to a new one I found a great deal on Amazon and managed to get a £120 toothbrush for around £50. I have used it and it is really powerful for me it feels like you are having a scale and polish at the dentists. It even beeps every 30 seconds to tell you to go to a different section of your mouth. I feel like this is a product which I may do a review on soon.
I also received some other gifts but they were either smellies which I didn’t think you would want to see or personal gifts. If you would like to see reviews on anything please let me know
What did you get for Christmas this year?