Goals for Autumn

Edinburgh, Life

Hi team!

I know, it’s a dirty word, but its being used in the name of me getting out and about and achieving my goals.

While I might have not gotten along in my goals for summer as best as I’d like, I am on my way to manifesting the shit out of them. I am now on a better eating kick, with loads of veges and salads being inhaled. I am now doing yoga every day, sit-ups a few times a week, and runs never, but I have bought new trainers so that counts right?

My lounge is now being used as a lounge but isn’t decorated yet – however we can now host people properly. Win in my books.

This autumn I want to make sure that I keep embracing the moment. I am still getting used to being self employed and definitely push myself to over achieve. However I would say at this point I seem to have a better relationship with work/home life, and now that my lounge is sorted to a good level, I am definitely having more people around for dinner and drinks.

I want to keep pushing myself to cook well, instead of relying on my old tried and true recipes and really try and push myself to cook more interesting things with vegetables and try new healthier recipes. AND take my lunch to the office – this is a big hurdle. I am also thinking of going to see a dietician to make sure that I am eating all the things I’m meant to and knowing acceptable levels of sugar to eat as I definitely am a chocolate scoffer!

I also want to keep working on my fitness routine, as it has taken a lot of trial and error to get to 4 things that work for me, and that if I do, it helps a lot. At the moment I will run 4 days a week, core work 4 days a week, yoga 7 days a week, and meditation 7 days. This gives me a holistic approach to what I want to improve on and make sure I am healthy and my heart is ticking.

What are your Autumn goals? Let me know in the comments!

T xx

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Review: Simple Vital Vitamin Day Cream

Beauty, Review

*Update September 2018 – I have moved onto a Soap and Glory Microsmoothing Creme (review to come) not because I found anything wrong with this cream, but because my skin changed and I wanted to change with it! However I still love this cream and applaud Simple for all they do – I do have their micellar cleansing water to try so look out for that! In the meantime, read my review below!*

Hi team!

So this review is in a two part series of the everyday moisturisers I use, and the first one is the Simple Vital Vitamin Day cream.

I first got introduced to Simple when I came into the UK, and had tried a few of their products, but make the jump to using their moisturisers a year or so ago which I wanted to start taking my skin seriously. I have slight eczema around my nose, large pores and scars from pimples, and slight wrinkling starting to appear. So I started a proper skincare routine and flagged these two products to use first to see if I could see a difference.

So the product says that it has 3 vitamins, no artificial perfume or colour, and SPF protection, with hydration for 12 hours.

The texture is like softly mixed cream, and melts into the skin without leaving a greasy residue. My skin felt plump and hydrated and very soft!

I layered it up with my makeup and went to work, and it worked with my foundation well, as my foundation is matte and powder based, so it still managed to keep my skin hydrated though that.

I also find in the winter it really works hard for your skin. Here in Edinburgh, the wind, rain and snow have a huge effect on my skin but the cream seems to calm it down and stop any redness or any rawness. I find i just have a rosy glow.

So  I would rate this product 10/10 and am a lifelong user now!

T xx

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My Maori Heritage.

Review: Soap and Glory Beauty Sleep Accelerator

Self Worth and Self Confidence.

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What’s It Like To Be A Millennial And Own Your Own Home.

Hobbies, Life

Hi guys!

So this week I am talking about becoming a homeowner. Its been very interesting watching the debates on millennials buying their first home. We saved hard and borrowed money to get our first home, and will be in debt, however we really made it our focus to get our own home. We hated flatting and wanted something of our own. We were very lucky to get our house as you see below, however it is a real struggle to buy. Our friends have been hunting for a long time and have bid on a few houses, however someone always bids higher. It can get quite frustrating. I would like to see how the market changes and see how this changes for people of our age in the near future. Before, during, and after buying my first home I learned a lot, and also noticing how hard it is to buy a house now. This may be a series I get into, but this is what we are at at the moment.

So we looked into buying, and you do get quite excited at the market. There are so many cool/odd houses out there, so you have to make sure you know your price (deposit will usually denote this), your area or areas you are looking to live in, and if you want a newer build or a doer upper. Having lived in nice new flats and older flats, we wanted to have a house we could fully stretch our creative wings in, and do it the way we wanted.

We were a bit of a surprise, as we got for the first house we put an offer in for. We went about 15% above the price, which for the market in Edinburgh at the moment (and I’m sure many other places) is what’s happening at the moment.

We bought a two bedroom, semi detached house with a front garden and a backyard. The house also has an attic and a basement. It was the last house on the street to be the price it was, as the other houses are valued as much higher than that – that is the trick of getting the worst house on the best street.

We love the area we are in, and its close to where we first lived when we were in Edinburgh, plus its great for work for both of us. It has supermarkets nearby and a few great cafes and bakeries around for my sweet tooth.

Some of the decorating decisions in the house still tend to baffle us. There were about 5 layers of wallpaper in the lounge, each from a different decade – you can definitely tell by the print!

There is also a very handmade garden shed in the backyard filled with tools left by the previous owners. I spent a sunny afternoon ridding it of all the spiders and getting rid of the very old ant killers that probably would have killed a bear, they were so old.

It has a great rose garden in the front that I’ve not only managed to keep alive, but flourish. It’s been great having a garden as I find it’s very relaxing to do and you feel that you’ve done a proper job once you have finished.

We so have done our room, some of the spare bedroom, the kitchen, and are now starting on the lounge. We haven’t had a couch to sit on in two years (unless we want to go and sit on the spare futon bed upstairs, and also haven’t had a TV licence as well for that time, as life gets busy trying to sort the house and work. I am looking forward to the next step of the lounge, where we have now stripped the wallpaper and can start decorating.

In the kitchen we bought a display kitchen unit in B&Q, and fitted it with the help of my husbands parents. We have a butchers block, replaced the very old washing machine, and got a second hand oven from our friends. The next step is to install big glass sliding doors, to open into the garden, cover the floor with something more permanent, and replace the backdoor, which is just an inside door (another fun decision).

In our room, we painted it a very pale mint green, got a King Size bed, and moved in. I suspect it will be the last room in the house to get done.

The spare room we painted sunshine yellow, and chucked in the furniture to make it a decent spare room for when friends come to stay. However I definitely want to make it into a luxurious spare room for guests and hungover stayers. Like a nice hotel!

Our bathroom we have just finished, and its a doozy. We have white ceramic tiles with black grouting, and a line of green tiles in the middle. On one wall we have dark brown tiles that look like wood, and a bathroom suite that we also got ex display from B&Q (SUCH a bargain). We also know that we will redo the floor when we do the rest of the floors but for now, we got a grass print lino down and it actually surprisingly fits in well.

Owning a house is hard. When we first bought the house, I was unhappy in my job, and trying to make a change. Now, I have found a great job, but it’s hard to juggle that, doing housework, and then DIY on top of that. I often find I don’t have a  lot of spare time now, but this summer it has been great to invite people over for BBQ’s and host, and people love coming to see the house and it’s progress.

I definitely feel like in one years time we will be even closer to being finished, and have started to add on features to the house to improve. We just got approved for our mortgage again, so that’s great to hear that we are doing a great job on the house.

I will probably post up photos at some stage, but because it is my home I know you’ll respect my space. However follow me on the links below and I may just pop up things time to time as a behind the scenes!

T xx

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Review: Swamp Queen Palette

Beauty, Review

*Update September 2018*

Hi guys! So I published this awhile ago, and it’s always fun to revisit old blogs. I am stilla huge fan of Grav3yard Girl and this palette is still my day to day eye palette – I’m still obsessed! Read one of my very first makeup reviews below!

Hi team!!

So I was very lucky to get the Swamp Queen eyeshadow palette for Christmas, and was excited to try this baby out!!

Background: Swamp Queen is the creation of Tarte Cosmetics, and a Youtuber named Grav3yard Girl. She is amazing and wacky and awesome – I definitely recommend watching her!! Anyway they did this amazing collaboration, and I have always heard Tarte have a great reputation for cosmetics, so I was excited to try the two in one!

So it has 9 eye shadow shades, a bronzer, a blusher, and a highlighter.

There are lot of browny and purply tones to mix and match which are amazing for a day time look and then darker tones to smoke it up for evening. I use big baby, haunting and uncommon pretty much every day, and blush with does this thing really work!

The packaging is adorable and so the quality of the makeup is great, my makeup brushes aren’t the best unfortunately so I can’t get much colour on them so I have to keep building colour but with colours such as man cat and dogman even with a crappy brush it gives you great colour pay off!

The highlighter is an icy white and I just use it on my eyebrow bone, and the blush gives me a pink glow although you have to use it sparingly as the colour payoff is amazing!!

All in all, I would give this 7 stars out of 10. I want to try more Tarte cosmetics after this definitely after trying this product!!

Have you tried this palette? What do you think?

T xx

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My Maori Heritage.

Review: Soap and Glory Beauty Sleep Accelerator

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My Maori Heritage.

Life, New Zealand

Hi team!

This week I want to talk a little about my Maori heritage. This is by no means exhaustive, and I may come back to the subject as I am learning all the time about where I have come in and my history. But for now, here is some info about my heritage.

So at home, I was equipped with resources to learn about my Maori heritage. I am part of the Maniapoto family in New Zealand, and am 1/4 Maori. The Maori Language and culture is something I would love to learn more about, and now, armed with more knowledge, I am hoping to reconnect with my culture in a more serious way as the Maori culture is very interesting and an inherent part of my past, present, and future.

In primary school, I was taught some Maori songs, and things like colours. This is something I still know today, and is a great way of instilling the Maori culture into kids when they are young. New Zealand is great at teaching the Maori language and way of life to kids and there are also immersive schools for the Maori language and tikanga (protocol).

As I grew up, I knew that I had a marae that was my family’s, and that many occasions have been celebrated at, including my Koro (Grandfather)’s birthday. It is a great place to be, just outside of Taupo, and once you get the hang of how things happen on the Marae, it is a great place to meet your relatives and other people. My Marae has a protected church on the land, with a graveyard of ancestors beside, and also the main meeting house and a wharekai (place to cook and eat). You all get stuck in and everyone has a job to do if you are the hosts, providing for your visitors.

I have two aunties and an uncle on the Maniapoto side, and many cousins. I once looked up Maniapoto on Facebook and got so many people, and apparently I am all related to them one way or another. My Koro’s name was Maniapoto Maniapoto, but everyone called him Manny. I loved the idea of naming him twice.

As I get older, I have wanted to reconnect with my culture and learn everything I can about where I have come from and how I can be there for my iwi in the future. I want to be able to know the protocol of what goes on at a Marae and be able to step up when I can to help keep our little bit of land well looked after. I am overseas, and this makes it very hard to learn the language and be immersed in the culture. However I have some great books listed below that are going to help me! If you can recommend some good language apps for me, please do.

To connect with one’s culture can be scary. You want to learn all you can, but sometimes you don’t know where to start. Treat it like a lifelong thing. I’m not going to be fluent in Maori in a years time or know the proper way to do things, but I am going to work steadily at getting know part of who I am.

Have you ever taken this journey? Tell me what you did.

T xx

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Review: Soap and Glory Beauty Sleep Accelerator

Beauty, Review

Hi team!

This Monday I am reviewing yet another Soap and Glory product (they don’t pay me, I just love the product) and today’s one is the Beauty Sleep Accelerator – Night & Flight Moisture Miracle.

This is a fabulous night cream. I am a fan of a day and night cream, with night creams being my ultimate favourite. And because I go on long flights home to New Zealand, this means this product is perfect for me, as I do the full face cream and hand cream and water cocktail to keep my skin looking great when I land, as that Jet Lag hits me haaaaaard.

I love that Soap and Glory have gone beyond the bath range and focused on skincare. People can be very particular and loyal to their skincare, and there are many types of skin and skin issues out there, so people take finding a brand that suits them seriously.

BSA (I will now refer to the product as this) has ingredients like night blooming cactus flower, peach, and rosehip. The smell is incredible.  Definitely very peachy and juicy, and I always get my husband to smell my face as soon as I put it on as I feel everyone needs to smell this smell! Delicious.

I pop it on after washing and toning my face, and let it sink it in before applying my eye cream. Overnight it gets to work, moisturising, firms skin and repairs. I used to have a horrible patch of dry skin between my eyebrows that has since vanished, the red parts around my chin have faded, and my eye lines, though minimal at my age, are being kept at bay. Think of this as a big drink of water for your skin. Now imagine it on a flight.

On an airplane, they never bring enough water around, you are in airconditioned airports and planes, and doing your normal skincare routine is usually out the window as you have to squeeze into the smallest bathroom, and have to do it quickly so there isn’t a huge queue tutting at you when you hop out looking like your gorgeous self. On a plane, I would still wash my face (or use wipes), tone if I can, and then pop a generous amount on to set in. Pop some eye cream on, put on your face mask, perhaps some lavender oil into those funny pillows you give you, and I guarantee you you will wake up looking better than those air attendants that always manage to look great at 3am.

The other great thing about this cream is that you can use it during the day too. If your skin is going through a dry patch, pop on a mask, tone, then pop the cream on. It will push moisture into your face and by days end, you will look and feel fab.

I can’t say enough about this product – it really is a treat in my nightly skincare routine, and if I could take a bath in it, I would!

T x

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Self Worth and Self Confidence.

Life, Mental Health

Hi team!

So this week I am talking about self confidence and self worth, both of which I struggle with on a daily basis.

Self confidence is something that as I am getting older, is getting harder and harder to achieve. It is never too late to start work on this, and I am, doing yoga, mediation, kicking up my exercise game, and spending time pampering myself. I am also trying to say nice things about myself and appreciate myself and my physical health.

Some days it can be very hard. If I am not feeling confident I will put on glasses and headphones and steel myself against the world, not looking people in the eye, not sticking up for myself, and beating myself up when I make mistakes. Because I get quite bad anxiety, this plays into it as well, until I don’t feel that great about myself and try to ignore my body tell me to look after myself. I also have started the fun game of treating food as a reward, and while I have gained a bit of weight, I am not finding it that much of an issue. However I have noticed my fitness has gotten worse and this in turn makes my confidence take a dip. It’s funny how much of your confidence relies on certain weird things huh?

My self worth is tied up in my job. Whatever job I had, my self worth has always gone up or down depending on what day I had at work. Weird/stupid right?

This is a trait that I am desperately trying to knock out, now that I am a freelance Social Media Consultant, as I am now my own boss, however the thoughts and opinions of my work still manage to make me feel amazing or worthless. I do tend to go to ‘the world is ending’ in these kinds of situations, and I am learning to dial it back when a minor inconvenient thing happens. Working in retail and with the public did contribute to this heavily, with me taking things very personally when a customer yelled at me, because my self worth was tied up in my job, and I often left work stressed, thinking about the situation for the next week and getting high levels of anxiety. If I got told I was doing a good job, I was on a high. If I got told I wasn’t great at my job (which happened towards the end of my retail career) then I would sink into a depression.

I want to question you. Where is your self worth based. Is it in your family? Your work? Yourself? And when do you feel the most confident?

T xx

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That’s right, I have Anger Issues.

Life, Mental Health

Hi guys!

So this is a blog about a trait of myself that I don’t like, and am trying to control a lot, nearly every day.

For those of you that know me, this may be obvious or not obvious, but I do get angry, and quite a lot.

These days I tend to work through it as I have a routine I now go through to calm myself down, but before it was really hard, I would either internalise it, or go and punch a pillow or something (such a badass).

Anger and losing my temper is something that I deal with a lot, and it’s something that I constantly work on. When something doesn’t  go my way I couldn’t deal with it like an adult, instead either bursting into tears of frustration or throwing a wobbly as they say. I hadn’t developed the skills to deal with this well, and this was something that as I grew older, I knew that I needed to deal with in the right way.

Having high levels of anxiety and depression as you can imagine didn’t help this, and would help turn this into a blind fury, where I would lash out with words that I later regretted. I would pretty much say I am sure I have said something terrible to almost everyone in my life, and am thankful that a lot of them didn’t ditch me. I tend to spout opinions that I don’t mean, or get worked up on issues that I find very hard to deal with, and it can be hard to calm down after this. This is something I try to control, but often if I am anxious, or tired, its almost a place of comfort, to make myself feel better by saying things I don’t mean, and if I were in my right mind, I wouldn’t say. Sometimes I have looked back at the things I have said over the years, and gotten very anxious as it’s something that I think about when I see that person next.

What goes hand in hand with this is my work on saying ‘sorry’. Often if I made a mistake, I wouldn’t take accountability, or say – yes that was me, I am sorry I did that. I would instead over compensate to that person, to try make myself feel better or mask my shame on having done something wrong. Taking accountability is a very important step in getting better and I am trying my hardest now to stand up and say when I have done something wrong and to apologise – and to most importantly accept that an apology doesn’t always mean forgiveness. If someone doesn’t forgive me then I have to make sure my anxiety doesn’t go overboard, and I don’t stress about it for weeks.

I am very thankful that my anger hasn’t gone into the physical side – although I don’t think it ever will, as my true self would never even think of such a thing, but I can see how people get so worked up that the drive to punch something or someone comes about. This is not condoning it at all, but you can see how fights happen in high schools, or in bars.

Do you struggle with anger? How do you work on it?

T xx

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