Sunday, 31 July 2016

Thoughts of the week

1. The Taylor Swift/Kanye West saga continues. I wish Kimye would just let it go, it only makes them look petty.

2. Not having Bella around is really strange. In one way it's a relief because I know she's happier, I miss her though.

3. I got some wool lined boots last week. They're the best thing ever. I finally have warm feet again.

4. I've noticed that a lot of bloggers aren't clear about the products they are provided for review. They have a blanket statement saying that products may have been provided for review but they don't specify which ones. That irks me no end. If you've been given something, say so. To me if a blogger is sent something that's no big deal. It becomes a big deal when they aren't clear on what has been sent for review. 

5. The Bachelor has started again. Whilst I don't understand why anyone would go on a show like that, I love watching!

Friday, 29 July 2016

FFS Friday - Goodbye Bella

Last week we made the heartbreaking decision to get rid of our dog Bella.

It was horrible.

I couldn't say goodbye so Chai and I went out whilst they came to pick her up. 

This has been a decision that's been on the cards for a while. It's not something that we wanted to do but in the end we realised that it was the kindest thing to do.

I'm of the belief that a pet is a part of the family and you have them for life. It was that belief that kept me stuck and made making the decision to let Bella go really difficult.

Things haven't been going well with Bella for a while now. I'm allergic to her. I have been since we got her but it's gotten increasingly worse to the point where I now have an allergic reaction every time I touch her. My eyes water and get itchy, I start sneezing, I get a rash and I get asthma. 

This meant we couldn't have her in the house. Leaving her outside in the cold is cruel but I had no choice.

She keeps on getting a skin condition where she gets sores and her hair falls out. We've seen three different vets who all give us different advice and none of them have been able to fix her for more than a few months. 

The vet thinks that my increasing allergic reaction may be due to her skin condition.

The skin condition meant that we couldn't walk Bella because she had no hair on her neck so her collar would rub and make her skin bleed. This meant the poor girl spent her whole life in our backyard. 

Being a medium sized dog she needs a lot more exercise than she can getting living in a backyard.

I spent a lot of time thinking about Bella and wondering how I could get over my allergy and fix her skin condition. My Dr told me there wasn't much I could do about my allergy and the vets have been unable to fix her.

After a while I realised that all my reasons for keeping her were about me and that I wasn't truly considering her needs.  

I realisated that keeping her was cruel and selfish. I was keeping her because I wanted her not because it was best for her. So we let her go. We explained to the boys that she deservs to be with a family who can love her and treat her properly. They were sad but accepting.

Bella was a rescue dog. When you get a rescue dog one of the conditions is that if you need to rehome the dog they will do it, so we called them and arranged for Bella to be rehomed. It only took four days for them to find a foster carer for her. 

The foster family came to pick her up and she was so excited to go with them. We've contacted them since and they've said that she's doing really well, she loves their other dog and sleeps inside by the fire. 

Whilst I'm really sad that she's gone and I miss her, I'm so glad she's not out in the freezing cold anymore and I'm confident they'll find a loving home for her. 

Goodbye my beautiful Bella. 

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

July Favourites

After a few months of not being particularly excited about any of my products, I'm back with lots of things I've been loving lately. 

Amazinger Face by Zoe Foster Blake - Zoe is so funny, I love following her. The first edition of Amazing Face was great, the second one is just as good. I got mine for only $30 from Big W.

W7 Glowcomotion -  I normally steer clear of glow products, they don't work well with ageing skin, however Glowcomotion is the exception. It's a gorgeous highlighter, I've been using it on my brow bone, the inner corners of my eyes and on my cupids bow. 

Rimmel Volume Colourist mascara -

ModelCo Brow pencil - When we went on holiday I took a brow mascara instead of a pencil. I hadn't used the brow mascara before and on first use I realised I hated it. I need more coverage than a brow mascara gives, so I bought the ModelCo brow pencil, mainly because it was cheap. I wasn't expecting much but it's brilliant!

Max Factor Mauve Moment Colour Elixir lip pencil - Those of you with pigmented lips need this in your life. It's great for defining my lipline and is the same colour as my lips so doesn't change the colour of my lipstick. 

Mac Midimauve lipstick - I finally managed to get my hands on Midimauve and it's true love.

Rimmel Moisture Surge Sheer and Shine lipsticks - I'm in love with these lipsticks, the formula is wonderful. I keep one in my handbag at all times. If you haven't tried them yet, go out and get one now. 

Flight Skincare Eternal Anti-aging serum - Love, love, love. My skin is feeling amazing since I added this and the Bliss serum to my routine. I use it twice a day and layer the Bliss serum over the top. 

Urban Decay Anti-Aging Primer Potion - I'm not a huge fan of the original Primer Potion, I found that my shadow still creased and it irritated my eyes. The anti-aging version is a totally different story. It smooths out my eyelids and my shadow stays crease free all day. Once I've finished my TFSI I'll be buying a full sized tube.

Sally Hansen Complete Care - This has been doing wonders for my nails. I put it on when they were all short and horrible, three weeks later my nails are long and strong, it's magic.

Bliss Peeling Groovy serum - Along with the Flight Skincare serum Peeling Groovy has been keeping my winter ravaged skin happy. My dark spots are fading and my skin looks clear and feels smooth. It's love.

*Note - The Bliss serum, W7 Glowcomotion, Rimmel products and Sally Hansen polish were sent to me for review. 

Monday, 25 July 2016

My Favourite Baby Products

Whilst I'll happily slather all sorts of different products on myself, I only use natural, organic products on the boys and I use as little as possible. If I can avoid using something on them, I do. I've tested out a lot of different products, there are only a few that I've purchased over and over again.

Burt's Bees Nappy cream - This is great for daily use, however if they have bad nappy rash (thanks teething!) it can be a little too much as it's quite fragranced. It can also be a little difficult to get hold of if you don't live near a David Jones store.

Weleda Calendula Nappy Change Cream - If I could only use one nappy rash cream this would be it, it's amazing. As well as being great for nappy rash it's also wonderful on sore, irritated skin. I slather it on my dry hayfever eyes every night.

Sukin Bath and Body Wash - Sukin products seem too good to be true. They're natural, easy to get hold of and very reasonably priced. A huge 500ml bottle of their Bath and Body Wash only costs $11.95. It has a pump top for easy dispensing and lasts for ages.

Gaia Shampoo and body wash - This is super gentle, non fragranced and doesn't sting if it gets into their eyes. We don't use any other shampoo. I buy the big bottle when it's on sale and as we only use it as a shampoo it lasts for at least six months.

Audra James bespoke products - All Audra's products are wonderful. If the boys have a specific skin condition Audra is the one that I contact and she'll make me up a remedy for them.

What are your favourite baby products?

Sunday, 24 July 2016

Thoughts of the week

Today I will choose love
Tomorrow I will choose love
And the day after that, I will choose love.

If I mistakenly choose distraction, perfection, or negativity over love, I will not wallow in regret. 
I will choose love next. I will choose love until it becomes my first response … my gut instinct … my natural reaction. 

I will choose love until it becomes who I am.
© Rachel Macy Stafford 2015

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Saturday Skincare - The Jojoba Company Absolute Serum

Image credit

It's long been my belief that natural anti-ageing products don't work, at least not the ones that I've tried. That is until I came across The Jojoba Company Absolute Serum.

Here's what The Jojoba Company say: The ultimate anti-ageing serum. Absolute Serum contains and innovative, unique combination of active ingredients, silymarin and carnosine clinically proven to decrease frown lines by 24%, decrease crow's feet by 27% and increase skin firmness by 19.5% after just four weeks of treatment.

Sounds too good to be true doesn't it? I didn't have high hopes when I started using my Absolute Serum but after two weeks I was amazed. My skin looked and felt amazing, smooth and glowy. After four weeks my fine lines had reduced and I was getting compliments on how well I looked (which was amazing as I'd just had Eljay so was an exhausted Mombie).

I've since gone through at least three bottles and I'm still in love. At $69.95 for a 30ml bottle it's very reasonably priced. With once daily use the 30ml bottle lasts me around four months.

If you are on the hunt for a natural anti-ageing product that works, look no further. 

Ingredients: aqua, glycerin, jojoba seed oil, kakadu plum fruit extract, ginseng siberian root extract, lilly pilly fruit extract, bitter orange flower oil, sodium hyaluronate, lecithin, carnosine, vitamin e, silybum marianum fruit extract, alcohol, benzyl alcohol, salicylic acid, sorbic acid, chrondrus crispus, potassium sorbate, citric acid, sodium benzoate, citral, geraniol, limonene, linalool. 

*Note - My first bottle was provided for review, all the bottles since I have purchased myself. 

Friday, 22 July 2016

FFS Friday - Holiday blues

As I mentioned previously, last week we went on a family holiday to the Gold Coast. It was exhausting. FFS.

It was so exhausting that I needed a holiday to get over our holiday. FFS.

Tiger's family were all there. His brother and parents. FFS.

The BIL was great, if it'd just been him and us it would have been an amazing holiday. Add the PILs to the mix and it's a recipe for disaster. FFS.

BIL and MIL clash. MIL really gets on BILs nerves and he can't keep quiet about it so they're constantly arguing. I usually agree with everything that BIL says so find the exchanges quite amusing. Not FFS.

MIL is such a stressed person and it's made worse by being away. FFS.

Within a few minutes of being in her presence we'd all be feeling stressed and wound up. FFS.

Tiger takes forever to do anything as does MIL so when they are together a lot of time gets wasted. We wasted two whole days doing nothing. FFS.

The first day we headed out to get breakfast and got back to the unit at 4pm. FFS.

Most of that time I spent waiting around with BIL, FIL and the kids. FFS.

Both MIL and Tiger took turns keeping us waiting. FFS.

First MIL decided to go to the chemist. It was less than 50 meters from where we were. She came back an hour and a half later. FFS.

She tried to get us to believe that she'd spent that whole time looking for a toilet. Yep. FFS.

Then Tiger decided he needed to go to the toilet. Off he went, leaving his man bag and phone with me. He came back an hour later. FFS.

That's how the days with them went. FFS.

We'd take a few steps then someone would need to go to the toilet so we'd all stand around waiting. They'd get back then someone would be hungry, etc, etc. FFS.

I am not a patient person. FFS.

After we'd wasted two whole days waiting around we were only left with two and a half days. FFS.

As you can imagine, those days were crazily busy as we tried to fit in all the things that we wanted to do. FFS.

MIL as usual was worried about everything and constantly on high alert. FFS.

It got to the stage where every time she opened her mouth I felt like telling her to shut up. FFS.

Never again. FFS.

To add to the fun, Chai's anxiety/clinginess has got worse the last few weeks. FFS.

He was doing so well then he started getting clingy again. FFS.

Whilst we were away it was a lot worse. FFS.

He'd panic if he didn't know where Tiger and I were. FFS.

I feel so sad for him when he's like that. FFS.

I think that MIL's constant anxiety made Chai's anxiety worse, it's like everyone was feeding off her so feeling stressed and wound up. FFS.

It'd be great if she would get medication so that she can feel/be normal but FIL won't allow it. FFS.


Wednesday, 20 July 2016

What was in my travel make-up bag

Regular readers will know that we recently got back from a family holiday. When we go away I like to pack as lightly as possible and don't mind using the same products every day, I see it as a good chance to make progress towards using things up. I try to take as little as possible with me, I know that if I pack a whole pile of products they won't get used. This trip I took a few products that I'd like to hit pan on and others that I want to start making a dent in. Here's what made the cut.

Crop Natural mineral pressed powder - I picked this up on sale at Coles and I'm really enjoying it. It's a light powder that I use to set my make-up.

Estee Lauder mocha eyeshadow duo - This was a gwp years ago and it's one of my most loved palettes. The colours are gorgeous. If I ever manage to finish this I'll definitely replace it.

Nude By Nature Ultimate Perfecting brush - Love, love, love. Ultimate Perfecting brush is one of those 'do it all' brushes, it's so versatile. I use it to do my whole face excluding eyeshadow. It's great for foundation, blush, bronzer and powder. I'm considering buying a second one so that when one is in the wash I've got another one to use.

Clinique Moisture Surge CC cream compact - I'm loving this foundation for days when I want light coverage. It needs to be set with powder so that it doesn't shift, but once set it lasts all day and provides lovely hydrating coverage.

Revlon Devotion Ultra HD matte lipcolor - Ultra HD matte lipcolor is easily one of my favourite lipstick formulas, it was love at first application. They don't feel like a matte lipstick, they feel creamy and smooth.  

Manicare eyeshadow brush - An oldie but a goodie. I've had this for about fifteen years and it's still going strong.

Revlon Honey Balmstain - Another staple in my collection, the perfect mlbb shade.

Max Factor Mauve Moment Colour Elixir lip liner - Max Factor lip pencils are unsung hero's. They're creamy, long lasting and reasonably priced.

Chantecaille Shy cheek creme - When I was doing my last inventory I rediscovered my Shy blush so put it into rotation. It's a big call but I love this nearly as much as I loved my Hourglass blush.
Real Techniques expert face brush - You all need this. I have two, one that I use for blush and one for foundation/powder.

Clinique Shadow tint for eyes - The label has worn off but I think it might be Lots o' Latte.

Garnier Miracle Skin Cream Eyes - I'm not sure why this was in with my make-up bag, it's clearly not make-up. 

Not pictured is my Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Boy. It's one of my all time favourite lipsticks, the colour is perfection.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Lip Oils

Lately I've become slightly obsessed with lip oils. I'm very glad that they seem to be the latest fad, it means I can collect more! If you know of any other brands that do lip oils please let me know, I need them all.

The term lip oil makes me think of a very runny, greasy product, but the lip oils that I have are far from runny, they have the texture of a gloss and are some super hydrating

The Saem Eco Soul Tint in Oil - I haven't heard of Eco Soul before and can't find much about them online. From what I can see they seem to be a Korean brand. I found their stand when I was in Bali, as soon as I saw lip oil I was sold. Essentially this is a lip gloss. It has sheer coverage, smells like citrus, lasts about three hours and feels hydrating. 

YSL Volupte Tint in Oil - Imagine a lip stain in an oil formula and you have Volupte Tint in Oil. On initial application it looks like a sheer gloss but as the gloss fades I'm left with a pretty, sheer tint that lasts all day.

Sephora Collection Lip Oil Infusion Colour and Care - If I was working the Sephora Lip Oil would be something that I kept on my desk and reapplied every hour. The colour is sheer but buildable, three coats gives a decent hint of colour. Texture wise this is halfway between the Clarins and Barry M lip oils. It lasts about two hours before I need to reapply and feels hydrating.

Lancome Juicy Shaker - In my opinion these aren't an essential. They look cute, they smell and taste great, but they apply clear and are gone within fifteen minutes. If you like flavoured lip products and don't mind reapplying very regularly, grab one. If you're after something hydrating or with a tint, this is not the one. You can read my full review here.

Clarins Instant Light Lip Comfort Oil - I have two shades, the limited edition Raspberry and Honey which is permanent. Whilst Raspberry looks pink in the bottle it applies clear, as does Honey. If you are a fan of thick glosses, this is the lip oil you want. It feels very hydrating, quite balm like and lasts for around three hours before I need to reapply.

Essence Winter? Wonderful! Tint and Oil and Barry M Lip Oil - The Essence and Barry M Lip oils are very similar. They both smell lovely, have no flavour, apply clear, are light, glossy and last for about an hour before they need to be reapplied. I purchased my Barry M lip oil from ASOS, I haven't seen them in Australia yet. The Essence oils are limited edition, so get to Priceline now if you want one.

Hourglass No.28 Lip Treatment Oil - This is easily my favourite and of course the most expensive one. It's so worth it though! I have the red tinted version, I'd really like to get the clear version too. Out of all the lip oils this one is the most hydrating and longest lasting, it's more like a lip balm than an oil. 

What are your favourite lip oils? Any others I need to try?

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Thoughts of the week

1. I really want to go to the Lip Lab and make my own lipstick and lipgloss. Actually I'd make two lipsticks, one matte and one glossy. They'd be pinky mauve and caramel or butterscotch flavoured. Only problem is we never go to Sydney. Pity there wasn't a Lip Lab in Perth, I'd be up there in a flash.

2. Aldi opened here a few weeks ago, I'm amazed at how cheap it is! Has anyone tried their skincare or make-up? What's it like?

3. I think the whole superfood thing is a load of rubbish. So is the smoothie thing.

4. People confuse me. I don't understand why they are so judgemental. What I find really amusing/confusing is when they complain about someone doing something that they do all the time. It's okay for them but not for anyone else? How is that right?

5. I really like Keith Urbans song The Fighter