Monday, 27 July 2015

Lush Oxford Street Mini Haul

The Thursday before I went to Centerparcs, which was actually a month ago now CRAZY, I headed into Central London to meet Kirsty and the first place we headed was to Lush on Oxford Street. If you haven’t been to this store yet, you’re missing out, admittedly it’s a lot smaller than I expected but it is 3 floors which is still HUGE. The bottom floor dedicated to their spa and fragrances. The ground floor dedicated to soaps, shower gels, makeup and face products. The top floor is hope to all the bath bombs, bubble bars and your gifting section.

I haven’t ever experienced anything like this before. There are SO many products and way too many to choose from. I already knew exactly what I wanted but I was still tempted by a couple more. I work in retail and I always think it is important to deliver great customer service. I have never been anywhere were I feel I have received such amazing customer service but when I went into Lush I felt it was incredible! The girls were so helpful and so enthusiastic about the products which was refreshing and it definitely helped me to decide which products to get.

Lush Oxford St Exclusive

I chose 4 all together and I so wish I had gotten more now! I got The Experimenter, Pink Flamingo Bubble Bar, Frozen and Intergalactic. The Intergalactic is actually a present I gave to my Dad but it had beautiful colours and I can imagine it was very relaxing.

Lush Oxford St Exclusive

The Experimenter is one you have probably seen before, it’s the hexagonal shaped bath bomb exclusive to Oxford Street which has four different quadrants in pink, blue, yellow and white with a thin line of purple through the middle. It even has popping candy in it! I cannot wait to see the beautiful and bright colours that it turns the water! It smells incredible as well with strong tones of vanilla which is such a comforting scent. This is one that I will be saving for a rainy ay so I can enjoy a relaxing bath.

Lush Oxford St Exclusive

I am absolutely obsessed with Frozen, I think I’ve watched it over a hundred times as it’s 1 of 3 movies on my laptop. So the minute I saw that Lush had released a Frozen bath bomb I knew I absolutely needed it, the need was so unreal!! It was the first one I picked up and with the grapefruit, neroli and rose oils it smells absolutely incredible. I love fruity smells, I find it really refreshing so it was even more perfect for me.

Lush Oxford St Exclusive

The third product that I got for myself was the flamingo bubble bar. It’s pink and makes bubbles, where can I go wrong? If you haven’t seen already, I have a bit of a thing for flamingos and pink, my bedding is bring pink with white flamingos and I cannot wait for payday so I can get some more flamingo themed homeware! Anyway, the Pink Flamingo has rosewood oil, bergamot oil and Ylang Ylang oil plus their fair trade organic cocoa butter in it, so I can only imagine how good it is on the skin.

I haven’t used any of them yet as I do this thing where I save all my things for ages till I use them. Not for any reason in particular, just I’m not in any hurry to use them so I savour them a little longer. On the plus side, my room smells Lush.

Adele's Journey
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Sunday, 26 July 2015

All Change Please


Right now, I’m packing up my house in South London ready to move back to the South Coast. To say I’m gutted has to be an understatement. I’ve been here 4 years now and while I’m going on to better places and I’m about to start a new adventure, there are some amazing people I am so sad to leave.

I had a rollercoaster of a ride during my 3 years at Uni, and since I failed my exams a few too many times, I couldn’t go back to finish my course. It was the right thing to do, but I felt like it was right to stay where I was. So I did. Unfortunately it is crazy expensive to live around here, and I can’t possibly justify staying here any more.

People have told me that they understand how I feel or that I can go back to see them again. Sure I will be back, I know I will, I can’t leave a place I love and not go back. But I don’t think anyone can understand what it was like being part of such a great team at work. We would have moments where we would hate it but more often than not, we would love it. For the first time in my life, I felt happy and I felt like I fitted in. I made friends who I had to see on a daily basis, it was great. Of course I’ll find another team that I love working with but until I start my new job I will probably doubt this.

I’m going to miss them and I’m going to miss this place. But I also hope I can afford to come back one day. At the end of it all, I have to do what’s right for me and ultimately, this is it. People I thought I could never prove myself to, are well and truly happy for me, proud of me as a matter of fact. If I could take them all with me, I probably would!

10 months ago, when I accepted the job, I was a state, I had had a rough summer of it, I wasn’t going back to University and I had no idea where my life was going or even where I wanted it to go. I have become a much better person, calmer and a passion for what I do, something I never knew I had in me. For me, this is a personal achievement. There are a small handful of people that I could not have done this with, without their encouragement and pure believing in me.

From each and every person of that team, I have learnt something which I will take with me to my new job and to my future. I have learnt about passion, determination, strength, to let my personality shine through, kindness, confidence, and everything else. All of which I had in me to begin with, I just had to let these come through, and they have and I’m so happy.

So I guess I have to look at it like that, these people have taught me things and helped me be who I truly am and if I can do this in my new job as Supervisor, then I will have achieved something. I want to go back one day and remember how great these people are and I know I will.


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Friday, 24 July 2015

Summer Garden Parties with Talking Tables

It’s that time of the year again when we all want to be outside, with friends or family, enjoying the wonderful weather (on the most part, come on England!) and having BBQs and picnics. Sounds perfect right?

Well, with Talking Tables* it can be that perfect! They so kindly sent me some of their products from their Truly Alice and Truly Scrumptious ranges, and I am absolutely in love! I want to have parties everyday just so that I can use all of these amazing products.

I want to play afternoon tea parties like a little girl with all of this lovely stuff. I’m thinking mini cut out sandwiches, scones, mini cupcakes, macarons and the best tea in town (green tea, obvs). You’re all invited!

Talking Tables

What I love the most about some of these items is that I can reuse them for more parties or even for decoration. The bunting and the Truly Alice signs can be used time and time again. I think it can be quite difficult to find party decorations that are affordable and also classy at the same time. Not all cheap decorations are tasteful, sure they are fun but they aren’t very pretty and are made from thin materials that break if you touch them. However, with Talking Tables you get what you pay for definitely, everything except the plates and cups can be reused. I’ll stop going on and share some pretty photos of what I’ll be using to host some amazing summer parties.

Conveniently, my sisters 18th is in a couple of months time so we will be getting out these decorations to lay on the finest spread, Alice in Wonderland themed of course. I am in love with these gorgeous little Drink Me bottles that would be perfect for mini cocktails and I also love these tags which can be used as table decorations, place tags or a little invitation. It makes the dream of a Mad Hatters tea party come true.

Talking Tables Talking Tables Talking Tables Talking Tables Talking Tables Talking Tables Talking Tables Talking Tables Talking Tables

I, for one, cannot wait until they release their Christmas ranges! I can only imagine how incredible they would be and I will definitely be the first one buying this range and planning a Christmas party.

So whose coming over for a garden tea party?

Adele's Journey

 

 

*I was sent this product for review purposes and as always my views are my own.
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Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Drinking Tea with TeaShed and Cocktails with Popaballs

As one of the brands getting involved with our first Pretty Lovely Bloggers Event, it was only right for me to make sure that their products were suitable for the 50 bloggers we have attending right ;)

The TeaShed

I had never had Earl Grey tea before but since the other tea was Green Tea (and I have boxes of the stuff everywhere!), I thought I would try something new and go for the Earl Grey. Needless to say I was not disappointed. As tea comes, it cam be pretty basic, paper tea bags that break if you tear them apart too hard and the taste of cheaper tea bags can be practically non existent. This is not the case with TeaShed* tea. They use silky pyramid tea bags with 20 in the bag. They come in a reusable paper cup (no waste on packaging eh?!) and are funnily named Mr Grey’s Tea. I love all the names of their teas, they are witty and make you giggle a little bit, we all appreciate a good pun at the end of the day.

The TeaShed

I honestly thought I wouldn’t enjoy the Earl Grey tea at all, but I was so wrong. I prefer my tea quite strong anyway so I really enjoyed this. I haven’t quite mastered how I like it made yet and I will definitely have to order more soon as I am on the last few tea bags! It has the taste of strong tea with a hint of orange in it, it definitely isn’t for everyone and as British people we are accustomed to our standard Breakfast Tea, but I can’t urge you enough to try Earl Grey. If you love strong Breakfast Tea then you will love Earl Grey!

The other product I had the pleasure of trying was the Blueberry Popaballs. I had seen so many pictures on their Twitter and Instagram pages of people using their Popaballs in cocktails and prosecco and I absolutely had to try some like this! I didn’t have any prosecco in but I did have a frozen cocktail in so I grabbed this and put so Popaballs on top. It was so good! I can only imagine how goo they would taste with prosecco.

Popaballs

I thought I would come up with some other ideas that weren’t necessarily alcohol based but the list for those is endless. I think these are great just to pop in some water with a drop of juice and mix up to flavours and also with some lemonade (and a cheeky splash of vodka).

Popaballs

The next thing I’ll be ordering from Popaballs is one of their Bubble Tea Kits, on The Tea Shed website they have a Bubble Tea Subscription box but before I sign up to that I want to make sure that I actually like the bubble tea. So I’ll be ordering one of these with Mango flavoured powder and Peach Popaballs. I’ve got a love for mango and peach at the moment so I think this combination will be perfect. However, the combination possibilities are endless so you can choose something that you would love!

What do you think of Earl Grey tea? What would you put with Popaballs to make your perfect drink?

Adele's Journey
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Monday, 20 July 2015

Pretty Lovely Bloggers

Pretty Lovely Bloggers

You may have noticed on my twitter, if you are following me, that I am incredibly excited for all things of life at the moment. I’ve got an exciting two months ahead of me.

Myself and Kirsty from Just A Little Bit Ginger have launched an exciting new project, Pretty Lovely Bloggers, an events group bringing events to places across the UK, or at least the South, South West and West Midlands. Our first event is due to take place on the 19th September in Birmingham and we are beyond excited. We’ve managed to get some fantastic brands involved along with 50 great bloggers.

Our aim behind Pretty Lovely Bloggers is to connect bloggers with each other but also with some great brands that they may not usually get the chance to try out or they might not have seen before.

We find unique brands that each bring something unique to the table. All of our brands have different products to each other so we don’t overload you with lots of products based on the same thing! We also have some companies attending the event so our bloggers get face to face interaction with them which could lead to potential collaborations in the future.

While we have aimed to bring you incredible goody bags, that quite frankly, money can’t even buy, this is not all we are bringing you. We have managed to put together a raffle to raise money for Mind Charity. There are some amazing prizes and the charity is one close to my heart so I am hoping to raise a lot of money for them while the bloggers get to take  home some amazing prizes.

One last thing we want to bring to you is events you actually want to attend. Everyone wants something different from an event, so if we can make just a few of you happy, then we’re happy!

If this sounds like something you’d like to attend, then make sure you sign up here.

What kind of events would you like to attend?

Adele's Journey
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Monday, 13 July 2015

Posh Pickles

When I received this little jar of Sa Va Tu’o’ng Ot (a Vietnamese Lemongrass and Chilli Relish) through the post from Posh Pickles*, I was so excited. At first I had no idea what it was, I tend to forget what I’m expecting far too quickly! However, when I opened it I was quickly thinking of everything I could make with it! Unfortunately it was around the time that I completely lost my appetite and this was not something that I wanted to just eat for the hell of it, so I saved it until today so I could enjoy it and man I did!

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This spicy, sweet, sour and salty marinade from Vietnam goes perfectly with salmon in my opinion. However, on the website they suggest using it with a beef or pork stir fry or smothered on chicken before roasting. Or even more so, mix in with pork meatballs or eat with some delicious sausages. I’ve never been one for following recipes so I paired my relish with salmon cooked in flakes of chilli and ate it with some cauliflower rice. Honestly, I enjoyed this meal so much!

Recipe:

Ingredients:

1 Salmon Fillet

1 tsp Chilli Flakes

2 tsp Sa Va Tu’o’ng Ot

Cauliflower Rice

Method:

Pop the salmon fillet in some tin foil and sprinkle the chilli flakes on top. Cook in the oven for about half an hour.

In the mean time, make the cauliflower rice using the recipe here. For this meal I only used chilli, pepper and onion as I was in a rush and this was all I had in the fridge! But typically I would make the whole recipe as it is so damn good, and guilt free too!

The “rice” goes perfectly with the salmon. Once the salmon is cooked, put it on the plate and spread some of the relish on top. I’m so proud of this plate of food and it’s the best meal I’ve had in a few weeks!

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If I was making this again, I would cook the salmon in the relish and I would probably use some with chicken or something a bit more adventurous. I really like the idea of having a whole chicken and roasting it with relish on.

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I’ve been looking at all the other pickles, chutneys and preserves that Posh Pickles do, so here’s a little wish list of the ones I’m now dying to try!

PoshPickles-20140621-12Raspberry and Redcurrant Jam


PoshPickles-20140621-16Rich Tomato and Sultana Chutney


PoshPickles-20140621-7Fiery Chilli Extra Jam


PoshPickles-20140621-24Rich Tomato and Chilli Ketchup


If anyone fancies sending me these so I can try new recipes, I would be eternally grateful!

A massive thank you to Steph at Posh Pickles who has been so generous and helpful too!

What do you think of the products from Posh Pickles? Would you like to try them too?

Adele's Journey

 

 

*I was sent this product for review purposes and as always my views are my own.
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Saturday, 11 July 2015

Adele's Journey #10 | Solopress Making Memories Campaign

adelesjourney1

It's been a while since I properly blogged and I was going to have another week off while I get my house sorted to move but I couldn't possibly pass up on the delay on this post!

A few weeks ago, I was contacted to ask if I would like to get involved in a campaign called Making Memories. I jumped at the chance and emailed back right away with pictures of all my family and the most wonderful book was put together for me! If you follow me on Instagram then you will have seen a little spoiler of what I received! I actually did a little scream when I opened it as I completely forgot it was going to be arriving that day! (Can you tell by all the exclamation marks just how excited I am?)

solopress #alittlememory

I received a selfie stick which is going to come in handy when I go to a festival at the end of the month with my family so we can make more memories together! I also received a book I have been dying to get for ages, One Line A Day For Five Years. This is something I will most definitely be keeping at as I completed one month at the beginning of the year in a small notebook of my own and I found it helped to reflect on all of the good things that happened that day and everything I should be happy about. So for me, this book is going to be incredibly valuable and I will be starting it right away! It will help to cherish the smaller memories that  I may forget as they may not be as significant as the bigger ones but they are still important nonetheless.

The main star of the show is the most adorable memory book which they selected from 15 pictures I sent them and focused on my family. To me, and I'm sure to many others, my family are so important and are always there to offer the best advice when it is needed. So the book revolved around my family and it is something that I will share with them for many years to come! It's going to take pride position on my desk when I move back home so it is always there for me to look at when I need some inspiration and motivation. It holds some of the best memories and my most favourite photos in the entire world.  I love the fact that we can use social media as a digital way to share our photos and almost use it as a storage space for our photos, however there is something so much more memorable about having your photos printed or put in a book like this for example.

The campaign itself is hosted by Solopress and I admire the company for coming up with such an amazing idea. For every picture posted on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #alittlememory, £1 will be donated to Little Havens Care. This has the potential to go far and we could raise a lot of money for charity this way! The power of social media should be used for good always! All you need to do to get involved is share a photo, or as many as you want, with the hashtag then tag someone else to do the same, this is helping Little Havens Care and also sharing a memory at the same time. Don’t forget to tag me in it if you do share a photo!

little havens

Little Havens Care is based in Essex and is a children’s hospice dedicated to making special memories for children with life threatening conditions. They opened in 1998 and were one of the first children’s hospices to open in the South East. They offer support and advice to these families through their journey dealing with the child’s life threatening condition and after the child has passed away. I can’t even begin to imagine what it can be like for these families to deal with such situations, so for that I want to do as much as I possibly can to raise just a little bit of money for charity!

So if you do actually read this, I nominate you to share #alittlememory of your own and tag @adelesmith_ so that I can see something important to you! Don’t forget that we could make a huge difference to a great charity the more photos we share!

Adele's Journey
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Friday, 10 July 2015

Adele's Journey #9 | Dealing with Change

adelesjourney1

For anyone who regularly reads my blog, you may have noticed, although I highly doubt it, that it has been several weeks since I have managed to post anything on here. At no point in these last several weeks have I thought about giving up my blog as I love it way too much to do that, but my mind has been otherwise occupied and I’ve even been MIA on Twitter, that is how distracted I have been!

For some time now, I have known that I will be moving back to my home town and living with my parents for a little bit, I am really looking forward to being back at home as I will be able to spend more time with my family and dogs and also save up a bit of money to go travelling and do something fun!

Only a couple of weeks ago I was absolutely desperate to move back, I got a new job and I would have moved back there and then if I was able to. However, being the unbelievably nice person I am, I couldn’t leave my manager in the lurch like this and little did I realise then, that I would be completely and utterly devastated to be leaving.

I honestly thought I would be glad to get out of here, finally being able to be back home, working my way up the career ladder and focusing on myself more than just plain living. I was extremely wrong and the past week has been so tough, I have barely slept and I’ve not eaten a proper meal since Sunday. I am in complete denial about leaving some of my most favourite people I have ever met and leaving a place which I have been living for four years and it’s a pretty great place at that! If rent wasn’t so expensive around here, I would be staying!

I haven’t been in a position like this since I was 10 or 11. It was the time that we were taking the 11+ to get into Grammar School and I put unbelievable amount of pressure on myself to do well and get into this school, which I did with flying colours. I barely ate because I was a nervous wreck but it was one of the most stressful times in my life because I wanted to go to this school so much.

Ok, this isn’t a hundred percent the same but it is on the same level of panic and nervousness and unknown of exactly what the future will hold. I have completely lost my appetite but my stomach is rumbling or making any sign that I’m staving hungry, which is odd. The heat also doesn’t help with my loss of appetite, damn the heat! I also haven’t slept over 5 hours a nigh all week and this is coming from the girl who needs 8 hours or there are serious mood swings coming your way!

In other words, life has been pretty hectic recently and I hope it will calm down soon so I can feel a little more normal and human again. But for now, my blog posts will be few and far between for the next few weeks until I get myself sorted in my new job and back at home. Don’t forget to come say hi on twitter though!

Adele's Journey
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