Diet Dodgyness

Somehow it has been almost three weeks since I last blogged.  My absence has been a mixture of too much going on and somehow not feeling ‘it’, whatever ‘it’ is…..

A few months ago, in a bid to shift a few extra pounds I turned to the new diet sensation everyone seems to be dabbling in, the 5:2 diet.  At first things went well, in only a couple of weeks I’d lost 7lbs.  The fast days weren’t actually that bad, I planned it out really well and got as many nutrients as possible from the 500 calories available.   The problem started a few weeks in, the day after a fast day I just couldn’t stop eating, and because it wasn’t a fast day and I could just eat as I wanted, I just kept on eating.  After a while I noticed that the non-fast days were really bad for me.

So a couple of months on, the 7lb is back on plus another 2 and I’m feeling pretty crappy.  I’m now finding it really hard to get into a healthy eating zone and barely staying the right side of not treating myself like a human dustbin!

Our holiday is in 4 months, so I really need to knuckle down and get back into a healthy eating zone and start looking after myself a bit better.

Since the wedding, whenever I need a cheer-up, I take a look at our wedding photo’s, so here’s a few of my favourites – excuse the dodgy cropping, I didn’t want to add anyone to this post who might not want to be added!

Me - getting ready

My make-up artist let me down two days before the wedding, so I ended up doing it myself!

My bouquet

It took me months to decide on which sort of flowers I wanted for my bouquet, and then one day I saw the picture below and I knew that was exactly what I wanted.  However, due to the time of year when we got married I couldn’t have the  white peony’s as they were our to season, but it still looked gorgeous and I was thrilled with it.

Bouquet - mag picture

Me - In church

I loved my dress so much – in fact, I still have it hanging on the back of the wardrobe door because I just can’t decide whether to pack it away into a box or chop it up and display the bodice bit in a picture frame (my bridesmaid made us a boxed picture frame containing a copy of our invite and a few dried flowers from the bouquet, so I would do it to match that style).  I got it from Monsoon and I just knew when I put it on that it was the one for me.  I really didn’t want to be all trussed up and struggling to breathe and I also wanted to be able to go the the ladies on my own without a friend having to help me hold up the dress!!

 

Me - signing the register

I love this photo – it just shows in my face how happy I was (and still am – dodgy diets aside!!)

Wedding - Me in the car

Wedding cake

We pulled our wedding together on a really tight budget and to save on costs I made the wedding cake myself – and it turned out alright, even if I do say so myself…

I feel much cheerier after having a little look back through those amazing memories :o) 

The Travelling Birthday Shoes

Blogging has taken a bit of a back seat over the past few weeks as a combination of work, a trip away and a birthday has eaten into typing time.  Being a May baby, the football season usually dominates over how hubby and I will be celebrating.  With our delayed honeymoon trip booked for October we’re keen not to be spending too much money and our trip to Bath back in April was our joint gift to each other.  However, the gods of frugality shone down on us and an opportunity to get away for a night cropped up.

We’ve visited and stayed in Portsmouth a number of times over the past few years as it has the perfect combination of shopping (me) and naval history (him); it was on the top deck of HMS Victory that hubby asked me to marry him, therefore making his interest our interest.  So when an opportunity to visit the Mary Rose exhibition for free before it opens to the public came up, it was too good an opportunity to pass over.  Hubby pulled out all the stops and in line with our budgeting plan found a cheap B&B to stay in which was literally walking distance from Gunwharf Quays (so we didn’t have to pay for expensive parking) and we made use of our trusty Taste Card for dinner in the evening.

I’m usually really lucky when I visit Gunwharf and always walk away with a few really amazing, top quality bargains from Hobbs and/or LK Bennett, but this time although there were bargains to be had there was nothing that really jumped out to me and so for the first time ever I walked away without a purchase. 

We did see these huge cups in the Denby’s outlet, which we had a good LOL over as I drink A LOT of tea and they could actually be the perfect size for my habit….

Pmouth - big cup of teaPmouth - big mug

The exhibition was very interesting, but there’s no photography allowed inside so I have no pictures to show.    

During our Bath trip in April we discovered that Slug and Lettuce do BOGOF cocktails all day, every day – so it would have been very rude not to indulge again.  We sat in a window overlooking the entrance to Tiger Tiger and watched all the young folk tottering around on ankle breaking heels/trousers hanging below their bottoms going in and out of the club.  I love people watching :o)

I drank so much that I totally forgot to get an outfit picture, but I wore these amazing new shoes which were a birthday present from my step-son.  Aren’t they gorgeous! 

B'day shoes

They are the same style from M&S as the nude one’s I got for Christmas which I have worn loads as they have a good heel on them but the platform at the front makes them supremely comfortable.  I’ve wanted a pair of animal print shoes forever and they were a total surprise too, which makes them all the more perfect.

Back on home soil my friend gave me a really cool shoe shaped cake slice and some freesia’s, which I’ve been enjoying the scent of all week.

Cake slice

b'day flowers

If you’ve made it this far, well done, I’m concerned that this was a bit of a Zzzzzzzzzzzzz blog!  I’ve got some posts in the pipeline about some discount make-up products I’ve been trying out and my hit and miss experiences with fake tan, so I’d better go and get on with those.

Have a lovely weekend,

Kellie xx

Sunshine – Friend or Foe?

20130509-003010.jpg

I’ve not blogged for a while and it’s from a combination of things really. Firstly, it’s been quite a busy time due to the Bank Holiday and extra days off; there’s been lots on at work but mostly it’s been the weather that has been putting me off writing.

I love the sun, but I don’t love how I FEEL in the sun. During the winter I can cover up in boots, tights and cardigans and give little thought about why I’m wearing something and put it on because I like it. In the summer Operation Cover-up begins in earnest and what I can wear to cover my flabby upper arms, swollen ankles and chaffing thighs fill my mornings with dread. I truly hate getting ready for work in the summer – and now I’ve thrown out my trust linen trousers I’m really at a loss as to what I should wear.

It also doesn’t help that I keep losing and gaining the same half stone (which should really turn into a loss of a few stones to be honest).

Normal service will resume when I’ve pulled myself out of my grumpy hole.

Bath City Break – The Wanderer Returns

Well, naughty me, I’ve not blogged in two weeks!  Time just seems to have slipped away from me with a combination of work, a trip away with hubster, having various friends over for drinks/dinner/board games, celebrating 6 months of marriage and most joyously, the sun FINALLY putting in an appearance.  This winter has just dragged on and on and the appearance of Spring has made me feel much cheerier.  We have already had our first barbecue of the year last weekend and tonight we zoomed straight home from work so that we could spend some time sitting in the garden before the sun went down.

Our trip to Bath was a joint birthday present, mine is in a couple of weeks and hubby’s was in March, so we decided to go away in the middle of both – and before the accommodation prices go even higher as we move into Summer. 

Bath is notoriously really expensive to stay in, so we decided to stay at a guest house which included parking and breakfast.  All the rooms had en-suite facilities, so it was really like a hotel but just on a much smaller scale (some guest houses/B&B’s only have shared facilities, so you need to double-check this before you book).  As well as the accommodation being expensive, so is the parking – I’d say almost the same as parking in inner London in some streets – so we were really luck that we got the parking included too.

Our base was really well placed and we only seemed to be 10 minutes walk from anything that we wanted to see.  We did so much walking that by the second afternoon we were about fit to drop and had to go back to our room for a disco nap before we headed out for dinner that evening.

I’m started to get a bit more savvy with my packing as I get older.  In days gone by, I practically took my whole wardrobe with me so that I had loads of options to choose from, where-as now I try to stick to a ‘capsule’ wardrobe where everything can be interchanged or worn with a couple of outfits.  On this trip, I decided I was only taking my brown Duo riding boots and my black Duo suede boots (I have been known to take about 5 pairs of shoes for two days away!).  From that starting point I plotted my outfits.

Day One – daytime & evening

blue dress + boots - BathMulberry dress - Bath

Daytime: dress – Dorothy Perkins; cardigan – H&M; belt – Primark; tights – M&S, boots –  Duo; necklace – Accessorize; flushed face and messy hair – crazy Bath wind.

Evening: dress – Monsoon, belt – Debenhams; necklace – Next; boots – Duo

Day Two – daytime and evening

Bath - day 2 outfitBath - evening 2 outfit

Daytime: shirt – H&M; jeggings – Dorothy Perkins; scarf – Primark; boots – Duo (same as before)

Evening: shirt – Peacocks; jeans – Dorothy Perkins; scarf – Oasis; boots – Duo (same as before)

 The Roman Bath’s were really interesting, we spent a good 2 1/2 hours there and literally listened to every word on the audio tour which comes with the price of the ticket.  We paid a bit extra and got entrance into the Fashion Museum which is located in the Assembly Rooms.  I can also recommend Bath Abbey, which is only about £2.50 to spend as long there as you wish. 

We obviously went to look at the Circus and the Royal Crescent, but sadly the museum at No. 1 Royal Crescent wasn’t open as it is being renovated.  I also took a trip (on my own – couldn’t put hubby through it) to the Jane Austen exhibit, which I found really, really interesting.  All in all, it was a fantastic few days away.

Here’s a random selection of photos from the trip away.

Bath Abbey - ceilingBath Abbey - window pic

Inside Bath Abbey was beautiful.

Bath Abbey

A strange art installation at the Abbey

Roman Baths - outside Abbey viewRoman Baths - Sulis

 

Duo shopDream boot - Duo

Look what I found!!  I also spotted the next pair of Duo boots I NEED!

Jam cocktail - Bath

Cocktail’s were flowing – even from jam jars……

Slug ladies room - Bath

Quite possibly the most glamorous ladies toilets ever……..

 

 

Wedding Outfit and Duo Boots Update

I’ll start with my boots update.  You may recall that I wrote here about the zip pull breaking on my trusty, 4-year-old Ravenna black riding boots from Duo.  I got straight onto their customer service team to ask if there was anything that I could do about fixing them.  I got a reply back from then within 24 hours asking if I could take a photo of the problem as the extent of the break determined what they’d need to send me, but basically they said they could send me two full length zips and sliders, or for a fee I could send them back to Duo to be refurbished.  On sending the picture over they determined that all I needed was the pull, which they have since sent me, free of charge, along with a video on how to fit them at home.  Needless to say, I’m VERY impressed!

Ravenna Black leather ladies-boots 2498 small

 Hubby and I went to a wedding reception on Saturday evening, and it gave me the perfect chance to breakout my latest fall-back dress.  I brought this last autumn in Debenhams from their Duo range.  I was literally walking through the store to get to the other side of the shopping centre and it just caught my eye as I was on the escalator.  My friend had arranged a quite formal party evening as part of her Hen weekend so I was thrilled when I saw that it was reduced from £100 to £50.  You can imagine my elation when I got to the till and it was reduced again to £25!  Since the Hen weekend I’ve found another 3 occasions to wear it, so when it comes to cost-per-wear, this dress is currently coming in at £6.25 per wear – pretty amazing for formal wear!Steve Lamb wedding outfit

Each time I’ve worn it I’ve changed the accessories, for example instead of the black patent belt, shoes and clutch I’ve worn it with a patent red belt and shoes, a red bangle and nude tights.  I’ve been trawling ebay trying to pick up a pair of hot pink shoes and accessories to wear with it too.  As it was from last year, it’s not on sale anymore, however many companies still use the same block or pattern year-on-year and just change the fabric or cut of the neck etc, so a dress in exactly the same shape is currently discounted on their website.

 Debenhams dress

 Do you have a fall-back dress you just couldn’t live without?

Knee Length Dress Victory

Due to the Easter break I’ve not had a chance to blog for over a week.  There’s been lots going on but nothing that is really all that interesting to blog about, so I won’t drone on and on.

I did go for a couple of nights out over the Easter break.  On Good Friday we met friends in All Bar One by the London Eye for an afternoon drinking session.  I was slightly concerned about getting totally sozzled, which wasn’t time wasted on worrying as I took 4 steps from the pub at 10:30pm after getting there at 3pm – and promptly fell over!

Our friend picked us up on the way to the station so I didn’t get time to take a photo before we left, so this is me at the end of the night………… I don’t look too bad, all things considered!

ABO outfit

This outfit was a real step away from the norm for me, as the dress, which I got from Dorothy Perkins, barely grazed my knees – I’m definitely a knee’s covered girl.  However, hubby was most encouraging that it was a really nice outfit and so I thought sod it and wore it anyway.  The cardigan is an oldie-but-goodie from Monsoon (literally 5 years old), the belt was £3 from Primark and the boots were from Evans a few years ago.

Saturday was pretty much wiped out because of my gargantuan hangover.  I did manage to refurbish the spare room curtains, but it took every ounce of energy and I was glad to finish and re-claim my place on the sofa. 

On Sunday we, swapped Easter Eggs, pottered around the house and in the evening I met friends in Wimbledon for dinner and cocktails.  I wore my black Dorothy Perkins skinny jeans tucked into my Duo black suede boots.  The top was a purchase made last summer from Wallis and the jacket was from the Next January sale.

Easter eggs

Outfit - Cote 4 Nicola's b'day

Here’s a picture of me drinking a Top Hat full of cocktail! 

Top Hat picture

On Monday we had a real spring cleaning session and then before we knew it we were back around to Tuesday and off to work again😦

Casual Weekend Outfit

We didn’t do a lot over the weekend, which was quite nice as the past few weeks have been quite busy.  Friday night was homemade pizza night, with plenty of wine flowing and dancing around the kitchen to Louis Prima!
pizza - mixing doughDough ballsPizza

On Saturday we woke up to snow and although it wasn’t really settling, it was coming down thick and fast meaning it was a tough choice to change from my snuggly pyjama’s and get dressed to go out.  Eventually we pulled our fingers out and went over to Wimbledon to return some purchases which didn’t work out.  As I was getting dressed tragedy struck when the zip slider from my favourite (and oldest) Duo black riding boots disintegrated in my hand as I was pulling them up over my jeggings.  I’ve emailed their customer service team to see if there is anything I can do to fix them, as I’ve always looked after them, re-heeling and re-soling regularly etc. and as they aren’t exactly cheap I’d like to get a few more years wear out of them yet!

In the end I wore my brown boots instead and pulled together a casual, Saturday outfit of my new favourite skinny jeans from Dorothy Perkins, a Breton top I’ve had for a few years from Esprit and an oversized floral scarf from Primark.  And because it was so cold I pulled on a navy waist-tie cardigan from H&M so that I could layer up and keep the chill at bay.

Mother's Day outfit

Whilst we were out we popped into Asda to pick up something for tea and I spotted this gorgeous underwear set for the amazing price of £6!  Even full price the set wasn’t expensive at £9.50.  The fabric is a gorgeous satin effect in a pale, nude pink with feather print in various shades of grey (50 shades perhaps……..?) Because it was supermarket purchase I tried it on a cup size up and it fitted perfectly.  I had taken a picture of myself in it, but I’m not brave enough to post it – so here are the PG versions🙂

Asda set - top

Asda set - bottoms

Asda undies - with tags

I’ll report back on how it washes, but the fit is great and it feels really nice on.

We’re also in the process of booking our delayed honeymoon which we delayed as we didn’t have enough in the budget to do both last year, so we just went away for a few days to Edinburgh (which was amazing and a nice break after the craziness of planning the big day).  Anyway, we’re on the cusp of booking 5 days in New York and a week in Mexico to coincide with our 1st anniversary in October.  Once it’s fully booked I can get started on planning my holiday wardrobe!!!!!