Honeymoon swimwear

With Mexico on the horizon I've been dreaming of warm, sunny weather, white sands and margaritas. I am definitely what you would call a beach girl; give me a sun lounger with a great book and I'm one happy lady. Now being such a lover of beaches, you would think I have a wardrobe full of beautiful swimwear, but how wrong you would be!

Trying to find pretty, well fitting swimwear is a nightmare. Most places don't stock bikini tops in my size and I really struggle to find bottoms that don't cut into my inner thighs. I can wear size 10 trousers but sometimes even size 14 bikini bottoms still cut me in the wrong place. Swimsuits can be even more of a challenge. And don't get me started on how tiny everything is, I mean is it really so difficult to buy swimwear that covers you up properly?

One of the only places I can get swimwear in my size is at Bravissimo. I already own a couple of their bikinis and a gorgeous red swimsuit that I reviewed last year. As it's my honeymoon I want some new pieces to wear and these 6 are on my current hit list. I mean aren't they just gorgeous - so colourful and fun!

I'll be honest these don't all come in my exact size, ah the joys of a 28 back, but I can get away with wearing a 30 without too many issues. All I need to do now is pick some, help!!!!

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Wedding Plans | 10 weeks and counting

Work has been so hectic lately that I've just realised we've hit the 10 week countdown to our wedding - Argghhhh!!!! I'm starting to get a little bit excited now, well a lot actually! We've spend months with very little to do as our wedding arrangements come as a package but now things are finally starting to happen and I'm loving it.

My dress arrived and I had my first fitting earlier this week. I think I fell in love with it all over again it's just so beautiful, I honestly felt like a million dollars. I can't wait to share it with you all. My sister Siobhan came down to visit and she got to see the entire look for the first time. She was such a little cutie and got super excited and smiley which really made my day. 

We also managed to pick out her bridesmaid dress and I absolutely adore it. I was quite relaxed about what she wore as long as it was a maxi and worked with our colour scheme - yes I finally picked one. She decided on this beautiful blush maxi dress from Jenny Packman. It has the most amazing floral detailing with mixes of sequins and suede and fits her figure to perfection. I think she's going to look unbelievable.

I have my jewellery, veil and shoes all organised too so things are finally falling into place. My jewellery was a gift from Eric and it works perfectly with my dress. Gosh I'm just so excited about everything, I'm actually smiling away to myself as I type this haha! The veil was my sister Sarah's and it's really special that I'm wearing it as she can't make the wedding. The reason..... she's pregnant!

Yes that's right, the big news I mentioned last week is that I'm going to be an auntie again - BEST NEWS EVER! I can't explain how happy this makes me, Sarah and Craig are going to be the most amazing, loving parents. I just wish they were coming to Mexico to celebrate with us all.

Looks like 2015 may be the best year yet xx

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Make up | New for 2015

I've no idea how this happened but I seem to have forgotten to post my annual 'What I got for Christmas' post?!?! I think I was distracted by some family news that I can share with you all later this week.

Anyhoo, here's some of the new makeup I got for Christmas...

Nars Sheer Glow Foundation | I've wanted to try this foundation for an absolute age but just never took the plunge. It's been a hit with some of my favourite beauty bloggers so I expected amazing things. I've only used it a couple of times but I've been impressed with its coverage and durability. I'll give it another few weeks and then give my full thoughts but so far so good.

Loreal Nude Magique CC Cream | This was a stocking filler from mum and dad. Yes I do still get a stocking - for me Christmas isn't the same without one. I never bought into the whole BB, CC cream hype last year but I must say I absolutely love this product! The green pigment balances my rosacea perfectly and helps give me that flawless finish I crave. And don't worry once you blend it turns into a lovely nude shade like a typical foundation, not a Wicked character in sight!

Naked On the Run Palette | Isn't this some of the most beautiful packaging you've ever seen? My sister Siobhan knows me well, it was love at first sight when I ripped of the wrapping paper. The set contains 6 eyeshadows (1 acts as a highlighter too), blusher, bronzer, mascara, lipgloss and an eyeliner. For travelling it's the perfect palette as it really has everything you could want other than foundation. Again I'll put up a full review in a few weeks as I haven't used it as much as I'd like, it was just too pretty to play with at first! Sad but true....

Clinique Chubby Stick | I have several Chubby sticks but oh do I love them so. This is a mini stick which came as part of a Christmas set. It's a lovely deep raspberry shade called Plushest Punch. The colour is a lot bolder than I usually go for so I was surprised at how much I like it. Pink isn't normally me but this is just so vibrant and fun you can't help but smile when you wear it.

Do you have any new make up to share?

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Lifestyle | Work Trip to Copenhagen

Last week I went on a last minute work trip to Copenhagen. Usually work related trips are jam packed with meetings and I have very little time to see where I'm staying. Luckily due to flight times I ended up with loads of free time over the three days to explore the city and surrounding areas. All I can say is wow, Copenhagen you are simply a stunner! 

I was staying in a hotel in Osterport which happened to be where the Little Mermaid statue lives. She's a gorgeous little understated piece of art right at the waters edge. There was also a lovely area down by the harbour filled with quirky little shops, restaurants and bright buildings at every turn. I've never seen such a mix of beautiful colourful buildings in one place. The only negative was the cold, I've never felt anything like it. It chilled me to the core and I got a lovely cold as a parting gift! I'd definitely go back in the warmer months though, who knows I may even make a romantic weekend out of it....

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Favourites | 2014 Skincare

2014 skincare favourites

I have never been a skincare girl - well lets be honest haircare and makeup were never my thing either until I started blogging! Nevertheless, in 2014 I made a huge effort to spend more time on my skin and figure out what works best for me. My go to products are ones that have helped to restore the balance to my skin and make it really glow. These little beauties above fit those needs perfectly.

I've been using Clinique's 3 step for over a year now and the combination gives my skin everything I'm looking for. They cleanse without being too harsh, restore moisture and leave my skin feeling silky soft and fresh without that nasty squeaky sensation. Simply perfection! For Christmas I was lucky enough to get the Clinique Sonic System Purifying Cleansing Brush. I'll write a full review shortly but I must say I've been impressed with the change to my skin so far.

At night I like a slightly heavier moisturiser than my Clinique lotion. My go to product of 2014 was the Eucerin Hyaluron Filler Day Cream. I know, I know a day cream at night, but I prefer the consistency of the day cream. It melts into my skin, gives an amazing boost of moisture and helps plump it up to keep fine lines at bay. The smell isn't the best though, so I'd be careful of how much you apply!

My last pick is a product which really helped improve my overall skincare routine, Bi-facil make up remover. Yes, this is an eye make up remover but what a game changer. I have a habit of leaving my mascara on overnight which made my entire eye area look simply terrible. This cleanser removes all traces of my make up without any irritation and leaves me looking fresh the next morning.

Although my skincare has improved 1000% I realise I still have a long way to go. Over the next few weeks I'm planning on investing in some face masks, serums, eye creams and oils to really help my skin look its best for my wedding day. I'd love to try some Ren products next, particulary their Invisible Pore Detox mask. I'm hoping to reduce the size of the pores on and around my nose and I've heard some really great things.

What skincare have you been loving recently?

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Wishlist | Oasis January Sales

1 | 2 | 3 | 4
5 | 6 | 7 | 8
I love a good sale! This is the first year I haven't hit the town to grab a bargain or two and it's been more of a struggle than I expected. With Mexico a little over three months away, I thought I'd see if I there were any honeymoon outfits I could bag for a pretty penny. Oasis is one of my all time favourite stores and these were my picks...
My plan is to go for simply styles that can be dressed up or down with accessories. As you can see I went for lots of bold colours and pretty prints. To be honest picking my top 8 items was a challenge, the sale had soo many things I adored! I surprised myself by choosing two jumpsuits but I really loved them both and may have purchased one oops! The blue dress is equally gorgeous and would look great with some gold strappy sandals and a (hopefully) good tan. Another favourite is the black sequin dress. I think it would be perfect for a night on the town in Miami with my hubby - eek!

Do you have a favourite? x
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Wedding Plans | How to afford your day

Rustic Wedding Box Set - Cute Box and Chalkboard Sign - Honeymoon Fund, Guest Book Alternative

One of the hardest things when planning a wedding is working out how to afford everything you want. No mean feat! I absolutely do not claim to be an expert but I think Eric and I have done quite well getting everything we wanted within our budget. So I thought it would be nice to share some of the tricks we've used to stay on track.

One: Pick everything for your dream day | This is your moment to go a little wild with your imagination and choose your perfect day. Do you want a big do with all your family and friends or is a small intimate ceremony more your thing? Is a destination venue on the cards? What kind of food and drinks would you like? Music styles, live or recorded? I had massive dreams for my wedding day and writing everything down really helped de-clutter my thoughts and come back to reality a little.

Two: Work out what your budget will be | Now all the dreams are out there, sit down and work out what you can actually afford be it £5000 or £25000. Eric and I wanted to pay for everything ourselves so we opted for a long 30 month engagement and a saving plan that we could realistically achieve month to month. Yes, the number will look scary but if you break it down to a monthly number I promise it is achievable.

Three: Prioritise | If I can give any advice about wedding planning it would be this! Take time to decide what you absolutely cannot live without. That original list will soon seem like a distant memory. For us, our number one priority was having a destination wedding with our immediate family. Once we had decided that, it gave us our budget for everything else. I mean why spend thousands on a dress when it means your dream venue is out of the question? Take time with this one, its the most important thing you will do.

Four: Start saving | The tricky part, actually saving for what you want. We found the easiest way to do this was to change the way we used our bank account. Our joint account became a 'bills only' account and we set up a few more for spending money and savings. We transfer a set amount at the beginning of each month to ISA accounts so we know we're always saving. The good thing is we can easily transfer money back and forth fee free as and when we need to pay wedding related bills.

We also consolidated lots of things and cut our monthly bills down. For example; our phones were out of contract so instead of getting new ones right away we kept our handsets and changed to monthly payments which halved our costs. All those extras you can't live without (yes that includes Sky Movies and Sports), you can, really!

Five: Live a little| Trying not to spend money is a very difficult thing to maintain over a prolonged period of time. To combat this, Eric and I set up two new accounts that we also transfer money too at the beginning of each month. This is essentially our pocket money! Yes, I am back in school.... Seriously though, this pays for all of our meals out, clothes, haircuts, drinks etc. It allows us to still feel like we get treats without cutting into our savings. If all you do is save, you'll start to really resent it. This has been a life saver. We also really appreciate having lunch in town or a coffee as we don't do it all the time.

Six: Negotiate|Don't be scared of this last one. Eric and I have got a few great deals by simply asking if that's the best price people can do. You'll be surprised how quickly someone will be able to take 10% off and it quickly adds up to some serious savings. Who knows you may even save enough for that extravagant extra you had on that original wishlist.

So there you have it a few ideas on how to afford your perfect day. Is it difficult, yes, but is it worth it in the end? Absolutely! With a little over three months to go, Eric and I have paid for almost everything. It means there's a lot less stress and we can even afford to treat ourselves a little with some new clothes for our honeymoon.

All it takes is planning and dedication x

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2015 Resolutions

Looking back at last years resolutions I really didn't achieve any of them. I could feel disappointed about that but after the year I've had I'm really not. All I can do is hope 2015 will be a better year.

Direct your attention and be mindful about where you spend your time and energy ;)

I actually thought about not making any resolutions this year but I like goals to work towards. I'm not going to promise to blog more; instead my resolutions will be small, tangible goals that I can work on day to day.

Complete Insanity Max 30: I want to be in the best shape of my life on my wedding day. It's that simple really. I've done a few beachbody workouts and they always give me results. I'm kicking this one off on 05 Jan and I'll be posting weekly on my progress - eek!

Cut the junk: Yup, that's right my diet is completely changing too... 
Eric and I have designed a food plan with set meals for every day of the week. I'll talk more about this later but it includes 2 vegetable juices a day, lean proteins, plenty of vegetables and raw foods.

Skincare: In November I had my first ever facial at 30 years old. I'm sure many of you are recoiling in horror but it's true. I want to have regular facials, body treatments and really take time daily to look after myself. No more dirty brushes or sleeping with my make up on!

Work/home balance: Last year I got a massive promotion which I know will involve a ton of overtime and stress. I'm already working at nights and during some holidays. My goal is to make sure I don't compromise my personal life for my work one. I want to work to live, not the other way around.

And that's it, 4 simple goals. So here's to 2015, may it be the best one yet!

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2014 - A mixed bag

Well 2014 it's safe to say you were a challenging year! To be honest I'm not even sure if challenging is the right word, unpredictable may be a better option. You've included some of the best and worst moments of my life.

My number one 2014 moment had to be being a bridesmaid at my sister Sarah's wedding. She was so beautiful and it was just the happiest day. No drama, just wonderful people celebrating an amazing couple - simply perfection. A very close second has been planning our own wedding. It's been a blast and I've loved every second. My favourite part so far has been shopping for my wedding dress. There's something about finding the perfect dress that just makes you feel so beautiful and confident. My heart still flutters every time I think of it.

Then of course there was a torrid of terrible events. I had a medical drama which thankfully turned out to be minor but would have had serious implications on any potential children in our future. I lost both of my gran's unexpectedly over a very short period of time and my aunt was diagnosed with cancer. Life pretty much went on hold and if I'm honest I've really struggled get back to normality.

From a blogging perspective, 2014 has been awful. I've lost count of the number of times I've taken breaks or written posts that I've never published. I really struggled to stay in love with my blog with so much going on. It's gotten me down a lot but I've made a decision to just leave all that negatively in 2014 and start fresh next year. I will get my mojo back!

Right now life is good, if a little quiet. It's the perfect combination. The loss of loved ones cast a major shadow over the year as a whole; 2014 I have to say I'm not going to miss you!

Laura xx

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