Thursday, 28 November 2013

2014 Blogger Challenge!

I have a lot of work at the moment so when I came across this little piece of awesome on Barbs' blog, I just couldn't resist joining in on the fun!

This was basically thought up by Gaby of AnotherGirlyBlog who now has over 200 bloggers on board! 

So what is it about?
On the 1st and 3rd weeks each month of 2014, Gaby will send out a topic for each blogger involved to write about. It doesn't matter what type of blog you are, she's encouraging bloggers to write about things they wouldn't usually cover which I think is rather exciting and I can't wait to start! 
I've been struggling for ideas and time recently so having set topics and blogging times will be quite interesting and I hope it works out pretty well!
I really hope to meet and speak to new bloggers through this and if you're interested, all you have to do is email Gaby with your name, URL and email address by following the link to her post above and she will add you to the ever-growing list! 
The first email goes out on 9th of December so hopefully you guys will join in the fun! 
Jess xx

Monday, 25 November 2013

Family outings!

I said a couple of weeks ago about going to London with my family but having to come back home due to my brother being ill. We returned on Saturday and it was so amazing! 
We went to Covent Garden for the day and the Christmas decorations were up! Covent Garden is my favourite part of London anyway but it looked so pretty. There was a huge tree in the centre with lights and baubles and in the market, there were huge baubles hanging from the ceiling! It's got me in the mood for Christmas now so beware, festive things are definitely coming your way on this blog soon!

It was so tall! The lights were flashing and it looked so pretty.

Giant baubles are awesome!
We first went to Zara where I tried on (and eventually bought) a really gorgeous sheer black long sleeved top with buttons down the back and a white peter pan collar! It's really gorgeous and I know I'll get a lot of wear out of it, I'm a sucker for collars like that! I also tried on the dress from my On top of the world Polyvore but it was too small and didn't have the next size up so I had to sadly leave that behind. 
We had a look in Kate Spade and the range there at the moment is sadly not to my taste but I found a piece that I've had my eye on for ages but more of that when Christmas comes around as everything bought was taken by my parents and hidden to be given back at Christmas! 
We went to an amazing steakhouse called Hawksmoor just opposite Kate Spade and it was so so amazing. We went there the last time too and I love it so much, I've never had better steak! If you're in London, I highly recommend you check them out, you won't regret it!
I also finally got to go to Laduree and I can tell you now that it's hyped for a very good reason. I got 6 macarons (or macaroons…however you spell it), 4 in the whackiest and loveliest sounding flavours and 2 safer, normal flavours. I've eaten them all now and the slightly odd flavours tasted the best; Rose, Gingerbread, Strawberry Candy Marshmallow and Orange Blossom. The Lemon and Raspberry flavours weren't as nice which is strange! I'll definitely be buying more though next time I'm in London. I love the little box they come it too, I'm definitely keeping that!

It's a bit blurry but I love the packaging so much!

How pretty are these? Almost too good to eat! Almost...

Left to right: Strawberry Candy Marshmallow, Orange Blossom, Rose, Gingerbread, Raspberry and Lemon

Once we got back, I went round an old friend's house to watch the 50th Anniversary episode of Doctor Who. It was incredible and she had even baked chocolate chip cupcakes and decorated them with blue icing, blue glitter and a mini edible TARDIS!! I really enjoyed the episode but I think there were a few things they could have improved on - I can't wait for the Christmas episode though, I'll just be sad when Matt Smith leaves, I think he's great in the role and I'm still not sure how I feel about Peter Capaldi…we shall have to see.

I think she should make cakes and sell them, they're so yummy! 
This week is going to be really hectic with coursework and homework so I will have to see when I get time again to actually write another post - bye for now though! 
Jess xx

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Soap and Glory Girl-O-Whirl Gift Set

I've been feeling quite under the weather the last few days so to cheer myself up, I went to Boots today and bought the Soap and Glory Girl-O-Whirl gift set! It was on offer this week for £19 down from £40 so I decided that I would treat myself and I bought it!
I've never really tried Soap and Glory products so I'm really excited to see what this set is like!

It comes in a gorgeous, sleek zip-up case with the soap and glory emblem on the front. I think it's quite big but I love the layout in the case. It's thin enough to slip into a larger handbag so would be good for travelling somewhere for a few days as it has pretty much everything a girl needs for a face of make up! 
Such pretty packaging!
I love the layout, I can't wait to properly try everything out!

The set contains: 
- 6 Lidstuff eyeshadow shades
- 6 Supercolourfabulipstick shades 
- Thick & Fast super volume mascara
- Sexy Mother Pucker gloss stick in Nudist
- Glow All Out luminizing highlighter
- Solar Powder bronzer
- Eyeshadow brush
- Lip brush
- Blusher brush

The eyeshadow shades are perfect - there's a great mix of neutrals and brights with matte and shimmer shadows which is great for mixing and matching looks! I'm really excited to see how they look on and how long they stay for!

From top to bottom: Vanilla, Minky,  Wild Blue, Dandy Plum, Black Gold and Smokin' 
This is the only part of this kit that I've tried so far and I love it. I've never used a crayon lip product before and I quite like it! The colour is absolutely perfect, a brighter pink than my lips with a slight shimmer to make them look subtly prettier! Another great feature is the twist up bottom when you've worn it down enough! It's like a massive lip gloss in chap stick form which I really like!  
I love the packaging!
I've never used a crayon style lip product before!
Once I've tried the rest of the products, I will update you on what I think! 
Sadly, today is the last day of the Boots offer, I was a bit late on the bandwagon! It says on the Soap and Glory website that it is coming soon there though so hopefully you'll be able to get your hands on it imminently! 
Jess xx

P.S. I also justified buying this afterwards as a pre-emptive congratulations to myself - I've been given an ABB offer from Birmingham University! I'm super excited because Birmingham was one of my favourites! 

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

On the same note...

I also found this short story by Haruki Murakami - it's incredible and will only take 5 minutes to read at most!
Jess xx

Girls Who Read.

I love this video. Definitely worth watching.

Jess xx

Monday, 18 November 2013

Monday Musings.

I can't believe how good this weekend has been. Since getting my offer on Friday, everything has been going amazingly well! 
A few things going through my mind currently:
- I am never moving out from under this duvet, it's far too warm.
- I'm super excited for Uni now, only have to wait until September!!
- I need to clean my room.
- I need extra hours in the day TO clean my room!
- The temptation to buy this make-up set is almost killing me...I have until Thursday to crack.
- My English coursework plan is due in a couple of
- People that you can talk to for hours or days on end and still not get bored are the best kind.
- Finally feeling close with my college friends is the nicest realisation.
- It's so close to Christmas!!!!!!!!!!...I still need to buy my friends presents.
- I have never been more grateful for fluffy snow boots in my life - even without snow they're the best for cold days. 
- I need to find a pretty Christmassy nail polish for next month, but which to get?
- I need to re-watch the Aristocats again sometime, I miss this song.
- This is my 250th post!

That's pretty much what has been going through my head the last few days, mainly the song though...It's my favourite! 
Hope you guys had as great a weekend as I did! 
Jess xx

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Google searches.

I had a quick look at my page stats and one of my most popular posts was my review of the Collection cream puff lip cream. I wanted to know why as it wasn't anything special or out of the ordinary with hundreds of comments...(unlike the Holiday post that got me and Kate talking...ahem.) so I googled the lip cream....and there my blog was, third hit down, under a link to the boots website. The only other blog review above mine was one from a blogger with 1700+ followers so that didn't surprise me...but every single other blog review under mine had at least triple the amount of followers I do! 
I don't know how this happened and I'm still in shock, my blog is a first page google hit!!!!!!!! It's not really much to be proud of but I'm so happy right now! 

It's right there and I can't believe it! Right under Boots!
Jess xx

Friday, 15 November 2013

The University Chronicles: My First Offer!

After returning from college today, I had my second driving lesson of this week. It went amazingly well and it feels like driving is starting to click into place, my teacher said it was my best drive yet! At the end when we were going to organise my next lessons, I saw that I had a few emails. I had a quick look and there it was, an email from UCAS track. I didn't know what it was, from which uni, if it was a rejection or offer but I still shrieked a little and had to check. My hands were shaking as I logged in and I was so excited when I saw that I had received an offer to study at Cardiff next year for BBB!!! I probably terrified my driving instructor as I proceeded to laugh, shriek and jump about in my seat for the next few minutes because I was so happy. My first offer is also my first choice! 
I've been smiling ever since I found out and I'm really happy that at least one of my Uni choices like me enough to give me a place next year if I get the grades! 
I don't mind what happens with my other choices now as I have my first choice and an interview next month which I'm feeling more confident about now! If I get any more offers then I will be incredibly pleased but I won't be overly disappointed if I get rejected from some of the others. As long as I have another offer for my second choice then I am completely happy with myself as I will know I'm good enough for two of my chosen Universities!
I just have to work incredibly hard to get my Bs now!
Jess xx

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Listen Without Understanding.

I love listening to songs in another language while I'm working. It makes it easier to concentrate as I can't sing along or listen to the lyrics closely so it forms a lovely background hum instead of distracting me from work. 
My favourite foreign language songs currently are by a singer called Luce Tremblay-Gaudette. I absolutely love her and even though I can't understand a single word, the songs are so sweet and happy sounding, they just put me in a good mood. You can listen to her 5 track album here.
Jess xx

Tuesday, 12 November 2013


I have an incredibly bad case of over stressing about nearly everything. I worry about work, friends, family, money, my future, my appearance, my health and about a million other things all at once. Sometimes, it isn't so bad, but when I really think about what I have to do, it completely overwhelms me and I get really panicked. 
I didn't get good grades at AS so I have to do 3 extra exams in June which means I have to start revising earlier and a lot more. Now my UCAS is being processed by my chosen Universities, I'm worrying whether I will get any offers because my predicted grades I have been given aren't particularly good and one of my back ups changed their grades to be slightly higher, meaning my favourite University is actually my lowest grade so I have no back up choice. I've been a given an interview next month so I'm also worrying about that, just incase I'm not good enough for them or if I say the wrong thing. 
I feel like I'm running out of time and like I don't have enough time to fit in all of my homework and coursework while fitting in the books I need to read from my personal statement from my interview and I just feel completely overwhelmed with the amount of things I need to do, all with equal importance so nothing can be prioritised apart from by due date. 
I already spoke of being diabetic and I'm scared that if I end up stressing too much, my blood sugar will start to get out of control and I'll end up with unwanted health problems. I've also gained a bit of weight in the last few months which is also bad because it means my lack of exercise is actually making a difference and I feel like I'm being generally unhealthy but I can't do anything about it because I only have time for homework and the occasional blog post when things get too much. I know I need to change my ways but I just can't seem to fit anything into my schedule. 
I don't get to see my friends outside of college apart from the very occasional party so I feel like I'm drifting away from them which is terrifying as most of them have been my friends since I was 11 so I cant bear to think of losing them because I don't have time to fit them in at the moment. 
I also know that I need a job to fund anywhere I do end up going with people as it will inevitably cost money but I don't have time to get a job and wherever I do apply, they never even interview me, let alone offer me the job as I have no experience whatsoever. It worries me that I'll never be able to get experience so I won't be able to get a job in Summer when I will need to be saving up money for University.
The only things that are keeping me sane at the moment are this blog and talking to a new friend on Tumblr as it's nice to get to know new people (hi Jake, if you're reading). 
I seem to be crying a lot and feeling really moody because of this lately but I don't really know any ways of de-stressing. 
If anyone has any tips for not stressing out completely and having a breakdown, I'd very much appreciate it right now.
Jess xx

Sunday, 10 November 2013

University and Make Up.

This has been a rather good weekend!
On Saturday, me and my family went to London for the day but my brother felt ill so we ended up going home quite quickly after arriving. We managed to go to lunch at a restaurant called Hawksmoor before we left though and it was incredible. I had been there for breakfast before I went to my lecture day at UCL and that was also amazing but our lunch was the best I've ever had. It was in the centre of Covent Garden and quite difficult to find but so worth it, the food is so so amazing there. They're a steakhouse and they live up to their name fully. I had a really gorgeous fillet steak which was the best I've ever had! I had a quick look in Kate Spade before we left too but it wasn't as amazing as usual which was sad! My parents said that we can return in a couple of weeks when my brother is better so that will be fun!
Once we got back home, I found a letter from Reading University asking me to visit them for an interview next month! I have slightly lower predicted grades than what they want but because of my experience, they're giving me a chance which I'm really grateful for! It's a great course so I'm quite excited but very nervous as I don't know if I will be good enough!
I'm a type 1 diabetic which means I have to do injections. I have done since I was 10 and I have a severe phobia of needles so they gave me a spring loaded device so all I have to do is push a button and the needle will be automatically released. I used to have breakdowns when I tried to physically inject myself but I was told a few weeks ago that they've stopped making the spring device so I've been having to try physically inject myself so I can incase one of them breaks. I've been panicking about it so mum bribed me with a shopping trip. I've managed to do it a few times now so after Sunday lunch, me and mum went to Reading and went shopping! I got a few great pieces that I've been wanting for ages but I don't get to have them until Christmas so you have to wait and see what I got! I'm really excited though! 
Jess xx

Thursday, 7 November 2013

General Life

Everything is going pretty great at the moment. My UCAS has been sent off and I'm so happy! I have 4 emails from the unis to tell me that they've received my application which is so great but so scary! I just have to wait to see if I have offers now!
I went to college early today and got a costa with one of my closer friends which was amazing! We had a really great chat about loads of things and the christmas drinks came out today so that was super exciting! I love the Christmas drinks and food, they always taste so yummy and are absolutely perfect for this time of year. 
I'm loving college at the moment in general, we aren't getting much homework which is nice and the work is interesting and a lot of fun so I want to learn more! I'm doing my english coursework this half term, meaning I have to read and analyse a couple of books as well as the book that we are taught in class. It's so much fun getting to choose the books and question to do for my coursework - as long as it relates to identity, I can do pretty much any question I feel fits my books the best! 
Instead of choosing from the list we were given, I came up with my own question! 
To what extent do the writers of your chosen texts suggest that failure to live in the present inevitably leads to obsession and isolation? 
I think it's such a great question that fits with all three books and I'm so happy me and my teacher managed to verbalise my question after explaining to her what I wanted to say! 
My three books are: Translations by Brian Friel
Jezebel by Irene Nemirovsky 
The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman.
If you read these, or the blurbs, they sound like they would have nothing in common but they're all fantastic for this question! I'm actually really excited to properly start my coursework now!
Sorry I'm not blogging much at the moment, there isn't much to talk about! I'll start posting some reviews of my half term purchases soon though!
Jess xx

Monday, 4 November 2013

Petite Anglaise by Catherine Sanderson - review.

I said in my previous blog that I have many reviews that are in the works - here's the first!

Petite Anglaise - Catherine Sanderson

You may have seen my first thoughts of the book but now I have finished it, I'm sharing my thoughts of the book in its entirety! 

I'm not sure how I feel about this book if I'm perfectly honest. 
On one hand, I really loved the writing style and descriptions, it made me want to visit Paris even more than I did already! On the other hand however, I hated the characters. They irritated me to no end and I only kept reading because I wanted to see how it ended (and Catherine's writing style was really easy to read which made it a hard book to put down ironically...) and if any of them had a pivotal moment where they suddenly became likeable and nice people. 
I also liked how realistic it was but obviously being a memoir it was going to be. I felt like it was purely an escape for the author to brag about her sudden internet fame and her failing love life. 
Catherine seemed to revolve her life around the men she was involved with at the time and her success as a blogger which, for me, gave her an inhuman feel, as we find out less about the actual person, and more about the blogger. She seems to be under the impression that blogs are places that people hide behind as a shield for their true selves which annoyed me as I know plenty of people who use blogging to enhance their personality and become more confident in themselves - I know I have. 
I think throughout the book, Catherine comes across as self-centred and selfish, making her very unlikeable and in turn, make the reader unsympathetic towards her. You end up feeling sorry for her daughter as Catherine seems to not realise the effects that her actions will have on her once she is older. She seems to naively think that balancing a booming social life and raising a small child is possible and simple when it obviously isn't, especially when she is a single mother with no one to look after her daughter properly. 
Overall, while the writing style was lovely, Catherine was far too irritating and the book drips with self-deprecating rubbish as an attempt to justify her actions.
After I finished the book, I went on to her actual blog and found her quite funny and a seemingly lovely person. The book definitely shows that some people aren't who they make themselves out to be sometimes.
The bottom line is that I'm happy to have only spent 20p on it as I would have been highly disappointed if I had spent the original £12.99.

Jess xx

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Hi-ho, hi-ho, it's off to work we go...

It feels odd that I'm going back to college tomorrow after only getting back from my holiday yesterday. It also feels odd blogging again as I've been blog free for the last week! I also have no posts in my drafts or scheduled posts so I have no ideas to work off; the only posts that I have lined up are reviews/showing freebies I've acquired over the last few weeks or so which can get a tad boring. You'll have to bear with me over the next week as I try and balance college work and writing new posts again!
The trip to Norfolk me and my family went on this week was a much-needed break as I haven't been on a family holiday for two summers! It was nice to relax and do minimal homework but that means that I've had to do lots today to catch up which isn't so nice! 
We spent a lot of time at the beach as we couldn't really anywhere with the dog and the rest of the time was either at home or in the nearby town. Even though we did next to nothing, it was a great holiday as I got to spend time with my family and do nothing without worrying about anything.

I actually really like this picture of me!
The beach we spend each morning walking Snoopy on apparently had a Humpback whale just off shore a few days in a row which was really exciting! We didn't see it but it was funny when there were lots of people with their binoculars and cameras crowding on the dunes to hopefully get a glimpse of it! 

After a three hour car journey back home, I got a message from one of my secondary school friends asking if I wanted to go to see some fireworks with her and another friend. We went and it was amazing. I haven't been to a fireworks display for quite a long time so it was exciting to wrap up and catch up with a couple of really good friends while watching really pretty fireworks! It really felt like what I imagine autumn to be like which made me super happy!

I love fireworks, they're so pretty!

Sadly, I've had to do lots of homework today due in this week so it's been quite boring but I've been able to stay in my pyjamas all day which is always a nice bonus!
I've also found out that me and my family are going to London next weekend which is always really exciting - I'm planning on dragging them to the new J. Crew store that opens on Regent's Street on Friday, I'm super excited - I'll update more when I've actually gone!
Jess xx