31 March 2015

Trim Tuesday: Week 3

Start weight: 11 stone 3 pounds
Current Weight: 11 stone 3 pounds

*sigh* It seems like all the problems I knew I would have haven't gone away, I'm really fed up with myself.  It was my boyfriends birthday this weekend so cake, wine and snacks were had.  It's so hard not falling into this trap as I am always away on weekends!  The only good news is I am doing at least some exercise every day, although I probably need to up it some more.

This weekend I am a 3-day festival, so drinks will be had and my food options will once more be limited.  I just have to hope I can dance it all off!

Does anyone have any advice?  I'm struggling.

30 March 2015

Richard III reinterment and Visitor's Centre

Last weekend I did something completely different with my Sunday, I went to the reinterment of a King who died over 500 years ago, a bit different from searching Netflix in my PJ's.  In case you aren't aware, Richard III was found in a car park in Leicester in 2012 and was finally put to rest last week.  My friends Darren and Will are also massive history nerds so we jumped in the car and headed off to Leicester to see what really was a once in a lifetime event.

Once we got into Leicester the crowds were already starting to build, luckily it was also a really beautiful day.  We headed off for something to eat, got a map from the people on the information stands and headed for a wonder around, before getting to the new Richard III Visitor Centre in plenty of time for our tour.

I have to admit I was a bit skeptical when I first looked into the Richard III Visitor Centre, looking online there wasn't really any information as to what's actually exhibited (they really need to improve their website, it's a massive injustice to the place) so I thought it might have been a really small affair that was hastily put together to cash in on their new-found tourism.  Luckily I was very wrong and was very pleasantly surprised.

The ground floor in this mini museum is dedicated to the history of Richard III and the famous battle that took his life, and it is presented in a really modern way that stops it falling into the boring museum category.  There's a great use of technology to bring the story to life in an interesting and understandable way.  Upstairs the museum is focused more on the legacy of Richard III.  Why we have certain (often untrue) impressions of him, how he is portrayed in films and tv, and how they found the famous 'king in the carpark' after so many years, including how they certified that it really was him and how they used modern technology to show what he would have looked like.

Afterwards, you can go to the area where they actually found his skeleton.  This again was really well done, the area it was in was so nice with quotes and people on hand to ask any questions you had.  I really would recommend this to everyone, it was such a good day and we all admitted we were impressed.

After this it was time to pick our spot for the big event, seeing the King's coffin go through the city.  We chose a spot close to where the procession begin, the atmosphere was electric, everyone around knew this was the kind of thing you would only see once in your life, the funeral of a king who died over 500 years previously.  We waited for over an hour and luckily, the weather held out.  There were lots of people with white roses at he ready, either attached to their clothing or to throw at the coffin as it went past.  Soon they were finally here, after the obligatory police the first things we saw were a couple of medieval Knights, which even with the given time period I have to admit took me a bit by surprise.  Next it was the coffin itself, pulled behind a horse-drawn funeral carriage.  I took a quick snap as you can see above but after this I wanted to put my camera down and experience it first hand, as this was the kind of thing I wasn't likely to repeat in my lifetime.

It really was a unique day, did you see it on Channel 4?  

25 March 2015

Bloggers VIP day at RSPCA Sheffield

A couple of weekends ago I was lucky enough to attend the VIP Bloggers Day at RSPCA Sheffield, a day full of doggy and cat cuddles, it was like all my dreams come true!

The day was organised by the ever-so-glamorous and super friendly Georgina, who I have had the pleasure of meeting a few times, she is honestly one of the nicest people I have ever met.  We were greeted by the staff with some much-needed tea (I am not a morning person), we were a small but perfectly formed group of some of the nicest people I have met in a long time!  The Animal Care Manager Tony introduced himself and gave us a brief overview of how the RSPCA works, before getting more in-depth talks about animal and dog behavior from the fantastic staff.  We were given plenty of chance to ask any questions we wanted about our own pets or about the facilities and all the staff were so knowledgeable and their passion really showed.  Did you know that the RSPCA doesn't receive government funding?  That really surprised me. I also found out that if you want any advice about your pet, then you can just pop in for a chat, they aren't just there to help rescue animals.  It's something I will definitely be keeping in mind when I get my own doggy.

After the talks it was food time! Sandwages and cake were all supplied (and baked) by the lovely guys at the local ASDA.  I just couldn't resist the pawprint cupcakes, just look how cute they are!

After lunch we were taken on a tour of the facilities, and it's much bigger than I thought.  As well as the cat and dog sanctuaries there is also a Community Memorial Centre for all the animals that have passed away in their care, I think this is such a brilliant touch and it is so beautiful, it's really touching.  There's also some additional space where they are hoping to build a centre for small animals, if they can raise enough funding.

Then came the highlight of the day for me, we were split into two groups and shared our time between the dogs and cats!  First up I got to hang out with the most gorgeous little dog called Alice, no photos unfortunately as she is part of a court case, and she was the most friendly loving dog, I really do not understand people who mistreat animals.  We got a great bond going and I was genuinely sad when I had to leave her behind, it was part of her rehabilitation getting her used to people and I hope she gets a loving forever home soon.

After my time with the dogs it was time for the cats.  Now I am definitely a dog person but even I was taken by these sweet little things.  The cats all have their own rooms with heated floors and plenty of toys, talk about luxury.  I had so much fun playing with them all.

Overall, it was a fantastic day, but it was sad leaving all the animals behind, I made sure I gave my mum's dog Willow an extra big hug when I got home!  If you are looking for a pet or want any advice I highly advise you to take a look at The RSPCA Sheffield, they are always in need of extra funds and volunteers too, so any way you can help I know the staff (and animals!) would really appreciate it.  

24 March 2015

Trim Tuesday: Week 2 with Dreamcatcher Clothing

Start weight: 11 stone 3 pounds
Current Weight: 11 stone 2 pounds

Not exactly a revolutionary weight loss but this time around, I am taking any loss as a success.  I am away every weekend from now until June so dieting completely is almost impossible, but slow steady weight loss is better than none, so as long as it's going down I am happy.  This weekend I had a 60th birthday party and a weekend away so it's not too bad.

What I am trying to fixate more on is exercise, and in the last week and a half I have definitely improved.  I can already tell that my stamina is improving and my strength slowly, but the biggest improvement is in my joints.  If you have been reading my blog a while you might know I have terrible joint problems, recently my knees have been terrible, they hurt all the time.  When I first started working out again last week it got much worse to begin with, but slowly it's got better, now it's not hurting on a constant basis at all.  It hurts slightly when I am doing certain workouts but that's all, it's got so much better so fast, I hope it's here to stay!  

I also found out that exersizing has made me want to snack less, which is strange, I definitely thought it would make me more hungry but I am not complaining.

Now you might remember a few months ago Dreamcatcher Clothing gave me a beautiful off the shoulder top to review, well they contacted me again recently to see if I would like to review their new range, which included a beautiful vest top that I thought would be perfect for working out in.

As with all Dreamcatcher clothing, it came with a lovely scented bag, a motivational quote card and was beautifully wrapped.  The top itself is lightweight and so soft and comfortable, great for working out.  I got the top in a size 12, as with it's longer length I was worried about it's fit over my hips, however unfortunately this means it is a bit too big at the top.  I have to wear a sports bra with it for fear of flashing everyone around me!  It is designed to have a loose fit for comfort and would be good for doing yoga in.

How has your weight loss week been?

23 March 2015

Vintage Inspired Spring Footwear Wishlist

The weather is warming up, the sun is actually coming out (it's true, I saw it on Sunday I swear!) and all my favourite vintage-inspired brands are bringing out their Spring/Summer collections.  I thought I'd share with you want I'm dreaming of stepping out in.

Starting off with the most sencible out of the bunch, these super cute Flower Power canvas shoes* from Jones Bootmaker are cute and also perfect for running around in!  I love exploring in Spring so these are perfect for throwing on and tracking around all day, who said trainers can't be stylish?  Next up these oh so sweet Everline shoes by Bait Footwear remind me of the 'special' party shoes your mum might get you when you were little, so cute!  Lastly for flats, and something a little more smart, these Grill shoes* by Jones Bootmaker put a pastel twist on the classic Brogue, and I do love a good pair of Brogues!  

Next and we are onto some casual heels, starting with these Rhonda wedge shoes by Miss L-Fire, a great summery mix of raffia, silver glitter and berries, perfect for picnics and BBQ's.  These Robbie Cream heel's by Bait footwear are just so versatile, such a great colour and style, they might have to be mine next payday.  Moving onto something smarter once more and these Cloud shoes* by Jones Bootmaker are perfect for the office, again, there based around brogue's because I love that style so much!  I hope they never go out of style!

Now time for the fancy shoes!  You might recognise these Starlet heel's by Tuk from past posts, or at least the style.  I have featured them before in a beautiful mint green but they have just brought them out in this gorgeous red Polka Dot and they would go perfectly with a few dresses I have, including my fist ever wiggle dress that I just bought from Lindy Bop.  Last but not least, these Betty Fair Blue shoes by Bait footwear are as cute as their name, straps are essential for any heeled shoes with me, and with such a gorgeous little bow!  I am head over heels in love with them, Bait really know how to get to me!

What shoes are on your spring wishlist?
*Sponsered links

20 March 2015

My Dream Experience: Visiting Bath

There are many places in the UK I would love to visit, but unfortunately I've not yet had chance.  I have only just passed my driving test and I still don't have a car.  I've always had to rely on trains, which sometimes isn't just inconvenient, it's also very expensive!  That's why I have never been able to visit the Beautiful city of Bath.

I am history mad and I love architecture.  For our anniversary last year myself and my boyfriend visited York and loved it, and I think Bath if even more beautiful!   I would love the opportunity to go to Bath for our second anniversary in May, if I could, here's what I'd love to go and see.

Bath Abbey Tower Tour and Afternoon Tea

I lived in Lincoln for 6 years and the cathedral there was one of the highlights, I love the architecture of these type of buildings as well as the history.  This building looks stunning and I would love the chance to go explore, and what better way than to finish it off with a scone and tea, yummy!  Especially after climbing the 212 steps and enjoying the beautiful views over Bath.

Now, you can't go to Bath without visiting it's namesake, the famous Roman baths.  There is so much history and beauty in here you really can't skip it, however in the Summer months they offer something that makes your average tour even better.  At this time of year they open up the baths at night, all light up by candle light, so you can take a tour in this lovely romantic setting.  Then to finish off, a gorgeous 3-course dinner and a bottle of wine at the Roman Baths Kitchin.  I couldn't think of a much more romantic way to spend my anniversary.

I do enjoy a good museum, and my love of all things Americana means this is a must visit.  There's a shuttle bus from the town centre directly to the museum which is perfect for us car less folk!  

My other half is a huge lover of ale, so this would be the perfect stop off for him.  They do a brewery tour which includes a free drink, a great opportunity to try something new.  It looks so rustic and cosy, I can totally imagine us snuggling up together over a drink or too, it has tasty food too! 

I love these kind of local museums, it's really nice to try and learn more about the area your visiting, plus there's classic cars, which I love!  

Now, being the book nerd I am there is no way I could come to Bath and not visit the Jane Austin centre, exciting enough just for those famous costumes alone!  You can dress up in some of the regency costumes, I can't say no to that.

Being a blogger there is no way I can miss out on a fashion museum.  It has a fantastic display of dresses throughout the ages, it'd make a great afternoon swanning around, dreaming of what I would be wearing in a bygone age.

My other half is a huge fan of Jamie Oliver, he watches all his programs, has all of his books, and everything he cooks up has some kind of Jamie influence, and it must be working in his favour because he's a great cook(I'm lucky I know).  So we would definitely be popping in here for lunch one day to check out his famous recipes.

Bath's Bath's of course!

Now you can't go to Bath and not check out there Bath's (how many times can you say Bath in a sentence?).  What a perfect way to end a fantastic romantic weekend away then with a Therme Spa Bath overlooking the famous sites.  It's supposed to have all kinds of health properties, and it would make the perfect relaxing end to the perfect (fantasy) short break.

This doesn't even scratch the surface of what Bath has to offer, for instance the Haynes International Motor Museum and the famous Wookey Hole Caves.  In fact I have a Pintrest board dedicated to all the amazing things I would love to do, it really would be a dream trip.

If you want to have a chance to win some money towards your dream life experience, you can enter Ocean Finance's 2nd Time Lucky Campaign.  Just jump on the website and let them know what experience you would like a second chance at getting you can win £300 or £5000!

Have you ever been to Bath?  Have I missed anything?

17 March 2015

Slimming Solutions: Teatox

As you will have seen from yesterday's Trim Tuesday post, my weight loss effort is go!  I am willing to try almost everything (as long as it fits in with my Slimming World plan) and you can't really avoid the concept of these slimming teas lately, so I thought, why not give it a try?

I've got to be honest, I was (and still am to some extent) pretty skeptical.  We all really know that you can't lose weight realistically by doing something as simple as sipping tea (if that was true us brits would be tiny) but can it really go some way to help us shedding some unwanted pounds?

I was sent a 14 day Teatox plan by the guy's from Slimming Solutions, and got to work.  Well it's not really work, it's drinking tea, best weight loss tool ever right?  I have tried a similar tea before, the popular Bootea, but I didn't have a great experience.  If you know how these tea's work, you'll know why.  The night time tea works as a 'mild laxative' and I'm not really sure how the daytime works, but I think they are supposed to help you detox, I can't be certain how effective it is.  

Now with the Bootea I woke up every day with stomach pains, running to the bathroom....You can figure out the rest, it was not a nice experience.  Luckily for me this Slimming Solutions teatox didn't have these effects on me at all, and generally seem a lot gentler.  You only take the evening tea every other night, rather than every night, and I didn't experience any stomach pain or horrible feelings, and no dashing to the loo either! 

As for taste, I am not really a fan of the daytime tea, I struggled to drink it, but I have to say I actually really liked the evening tea.   I actually started to look forward to having it before bed.

Overall, if you're looking for a miracle, you aren't going to get it from tea.  However if your feeling bloated of it or if you just want to try and shake your body up and boost your weight loss, then I think you can get some results with this tea, I'd definitely recommend it over it's rivals.

What do you think of this detox tea trend?
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