Sunday, 28 December 2014

Week by Numbers: Christmas, rolling pins & Ariel

The excitement of Christmas is well & truly settling to make way for the New Year. So while you pick at the last bits of your Christmas dinner that's leftover (seriously, we've still got turkey to tackle in the Lo household), why don't you sit back, relax - go on, make that cuppa, I'll wait - and scroll on through my week of all things festive.

7 favourites...

1.) Another week, another Christmas jumper: 'Kissing guys for mince pies'. I like to have a Christmas jumper for every occasion - I've got novelty ones that friends LOL at, and fairisle one I whip out for more stylish affairs - and this, is perfect for when I'm feeling a bit cheeky (which is 90% of the time).

2.) As you've gathered by now, I fucking love Christmas. Everything from the food to the fun and games. But when it comes down to it, the thing that makes me the happiest about the festive period, is seeing my family and the ones I love.

As the little diddy 'Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas' says: 'Faithful friends who are dear to us, gather near to us once more.

And, of course, my dad ended Christmas by falling asleep in front of the telly. LAD.

3.) It may be because it's the season of giving. Or it may be because it's the season for gluttony, but I've been baking like Mary Berry on speed. Gingerbread for get-togethers, cranberry and white chocolate cupcakes for gifts, and mince pies for Santa, naturally.

4.) I grew up with 2 siblings of lego-builders, so when it comes to gifts, there's a high possibility that there's one that requires building. This year, the stakes were raised, and we moved onto nanoblocks, which may be the most fiddly things in the world. But the end result is so damn cute.

5.) Snow! I know snow is a pain after a while, and I try to avoid driving in it at all costs. But it still feels as magical and beautiful to me now as it did when I was little when I see that first snowfall. This is the first time my 2-year-old nephew has ever encountered snow too, and his reaction to seeing it falling, and touching it for the first time, was truly adorable as he watched on with amazement. I think my heart might have burst.

6.) The I.T Crowd. I'm VERY late to the party, but I put it on on Netflix on a whim when I was unpacking when I got home last week. A week later, I've watched it all from beginning and end, and now have a unhealthy appreciation of Richard Ayoade's humour and Chris O'Dowd's accent.

7.) I am very lucky to not only be able to spend my holidays surrounded with love, family and food, but also to receive gifts, for which I'm always grateful for. This year, not only did I get some beautiful, decent headphones to stop myself being crappy, cheap ones that constantly break, a book of one of my favourite people who makes me cackle like a witch, but I also got an Ariel doll. Yes, I know i'm 22, but you should've seen my face when I ripped open the paper and realised what lied beneath the paper. It was a flashback to me as an excited 6-year-old.

Little Mermaid for life yo!

3 thoughts...
"I never want to eat again..."
"Did someone say cheese board?"

1 outfit...


I had festive fawns prancing around my dress for Christmas day, complete with red lips and bow. This was until I had to changed into my onesie to optimise my potential to eat more food. Priorities right?

What did you do to spend your holidays this year?

Stay happy!

Until next time...

Saturday, 27 December 2014

12 loves of Christmas

Happy Holidays boys & girls!

As we wind down from Christmas and slowly digest our overloading of turkey, I realised, I can never remember the lyrics of The 12 Days of Christmas past '2 turtle doves' - except '5 GOOOOLD RINGS' of course.

So, here's my own spin on the classic instead. Just call me Adele, lyrical extraordinaire. Filled with all the things I've loved this festive season, here are the 12 things I've loved this Christmas!

On the 12th day of Christmas, the festive season gave to me...

12 sing-a-long songs
In no a very particular order. I don't care what anyone says, but Mariah gets me into a festive spirit without fail. Every damn time. (And I like to think I can sing along to it spot on as well when I blatantly can't - Santa must have missed the memo of that Christmas wish)

11 presents wrapped
I LOVE PRESENT WRAPPING. Just jingle my bells and call me an elf.

10 fabulous nails
What can I say? I like my nail art.

9 in my crazy family
That's what Christmas is all about isn't it? To have those dear to you, near to you.

8 hours of sleep
ABSOLUTE BLISS. Any other time of the year, I'd be lucky if I got 6 hours being the night owl that I am. 

7 classic films
These are the films that I've grown up with and grown to love, and every year when I watch one of them, I feel that all Christmassy and shit.

6 festive accessories
What can I say? I love my novelty accessories.

5 warming drinks
Half the reason why I get festively plump over the holidays are due to mulled wine and Baileys, which is essentially alcoholic cream...
(And this year, I discovered Egg Nog too - god help us all)

4 christmas jumper
I love Christmas. And I love knitwear. Match-made in heaven.

3 heart-warming activities
Ice-skating, wig-wams and Christmas stalls (heart: SWOON)

2 books to read

Both smooshy and adorable to get stuck into.

and 1 very fully tummy!
Every year, I fill up my plate full of stuffing, roast spuds & pigs in blankets. Every year, I don't know when to stop. And every year, I end up lying on the floor, thinking I never want to see any food again.
The best.

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas, filled with fun times, yummy feasts and lots of memories with the ones you love!

What's your favourite part of Christmas?

Stay happy!
Until next time...

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Week by Numbers: family, friends & hangovers

I am pretty hungover and nursing a big mug of tea while I type this.

The reason for this will become apparent further on in this post. I know you're all sitting on the edge of your seats eagerly waiting to know. 
(UPDATE: I started writing this yesterday, and am thankful to say the hangover is well and truly gone after lots of packets of McCoys flame grilled crisps and a much-needed journey to sleepsville.)

This week, I think I've reached the peak of my festive spirit thus far, have travelled across the country and have spent a lot of time tangled up in my duvet.

7 favourites...
1.) THIS BAG. Yes, it's a milk carton. No, it's not the most sensible thing in the world. And yes, it's amazing, thanks for saying so. I love it. And judging by the amount of times I got stopped by people who complimented, a lot of other people love it too.

2.) This book got sent into work when I was at Now, and I know you're not supposed to judge a book by it's cover, but c'mon, how can you not with this pretty site! Oh, and it's a joy to read as well. Kind of important for a book.

3.) I haven't listened to The Kinks in AGES, and their songs are just incredible - lyrically and musically. I love them and have missed them, and have been on a listening binge. 'Sunny Afternoon' is always winner.

4.) Being back home for Christmas is absolute bliss. Copious amounts of tea, a fireplace, my dad's ever-amazing food, driving my little car again, and my bed (GOD I'VE MISSED THAT BED). I refer to many places as home - like when I'm in London, I say I'm going home, as in back to my flat - but there's just nothing quite like your true home. 

5.) I had a big Christmas dinner with a whole bunch of my friends from school. I'm very lucky that I've gathered some pretty great people as friends throughout life. And it's not that often that you stay so close to friends you made when you were young. But this not-so-little bunch (there's nearly 20 of us...) that I made at school, are still here even after leaving school 4 years ago, with uni, jobs, and relocating along the way. It's pretty rare that we can ALL get together, and even though there were a few absentees who we missed, it was just really nice that after all this time, we were still laughing, drinking, hugging and shouting 'Cheers!' just like we did back at school (which also solves the mystery of the hangover...) It was ridiculously fun and just what the festive doctor ordered.
They're bloody good eggs. Ever single one of them.

6.) Look at these nails. They're festive as balls baubles! My aunt has just gotten herself a snazzy machine that lets you print ANYTHING onto your nails - she runs a salon, she isn't just really extravagant with her nail art. I'm going to be taking full advantage of it thanks very much. Next stop, Mean Girls nails...

7.) I'm at my brother's house at the moment, and there's been some seriously lovely family time. There's been pub grub, and I've spent the day singing along to 'Frozen' with my nephew & niece (no, I'm not sick of the songs yet thanks very much). I flipping love being an Aunty - you get to have all the fun, play with toys and hear all the hilarious things that kids come out with, without any of the responsibility or mess of nappies or tearful tantrums. Winner.

3 thoughts...
"WHY have you done that?! We were never just friends, and we definitely aren't friends now!"
"How much do you have to blend out black eyeshadow before it stops looking like a panda..."
"How have I got SO many clothes?! This wardrobe is jam-packed and I want to wear it all!"

1 outfit...
dress:ASOS, boots:ASOS, belt:ASOS... (I promise this isn't sponsored by ASOS, I wish it was though!)
Sometimes, you just can't beat a LBD. And I went all-out for my Christmas night-out. My favourite belt that makes me feel like a WWE wrestler was on, there was mistletoe in my hair (cheeky!), and I even had shimmery gold and black smokey eye make-up. I never wear eyeshadow! And after a long and exhausting hunt for the perfect pair of over-the-knee boots at the perfect price, I finally found these babies and I love them, love them, love them!

What's your week been filled of?

Stay happy!
Until next time...

Friday, 19 December 2014

15 Things I'd Tell 15-year-old Me

I've come back home for Christmas, and as I've bought back a silly amount of stuff with me, I've had to go through a lot of my old stuff and get rid of a ton of unnecessary things - broken fancy dress accessories and make-up that's 5 years old - I also discovered my old diary and my cringe glands just exploded.
The worries and stresses in my life when I was a teenager were ridiculous and totally uncalled for.

So, here's what I would tell teenager Amy, to make her realise that Fall Out Boy and boys in general, aren't the be all and end all.

1.) First of all, stop acting like you're really grown-up and being a complete know-it-all. You're 15 for Pete's sake. You literally know NOTHING.

2.) That boy that you think you love, and whose name you scribble all over your school planner? Yeah, he doesn't fancy you back, and he's really not worth all your time and attention. It's really not as devasting as you think. You're better off giving that attention to Pete Wentz.

3.) Oh, and on that subject. That emo thing you're going through, is just a phase. Yes, I know you love My Chemical Romance, but you also love McFly. After the emo era, you'll be a complete tomboy refusing to wear skirts and dresses, before finally realising that they're actually your one true love, and you just a big fat girly girl through and through.

4.) You know when you thought you were a punk as well? Definitely not. All punks from the 60s would spit on you for thinking you legit are one. Yes you like The Ramones, but fingerless, fishnet gloves alone don't make you part of a revolutionary, iconic group.

5.) Stop drawing copious amounts of thick, kohl, black eyeliner around your eyes. It's not fetch.

6.) Just because something looks good on your friend, doesn't mean it'll look good on you, so don't go out and buy it as well. You'll find out in time that cinched-in dresses are your best friends, and straight-legged jeans will fit you much better than trying to squeeze into skinny ones that cut off your circulation.

7.) WKDs and Smirn-Off Ice doesn't make you well hard. They're gross and sticky. And BLUE. That should say it all.

Seriously. Just look at what it does to you and your tongue.

8.) You and dad might not get on at the best of times, but stop acting and thinking it's because he's trying to ruin your life - he's just trying to stop you from doing so to yourself. He loves you to bits, and you argue because you're being a difficult teenager, like everyone else. He's actually hilarious, busts out some amazing moves on the dance-floor, and your love for him will become apparent when you get some sense into you, and when you move out, you'll miss him like mad.

9.) There's more to life that Barry M glitter dust.

10.) There's no need to take 120 photos from one house party. Or a shopping trip as a matter of fact.

11.) And there's also no need to print them all out either. All the free 40 prints from Photobox in the world wouldn't be enough for your need to cover your entire wall with photos.

12.) Your time spent on MySpace will be replaced by this site called Facebook. It's kind of the same except you don't have to constantly have to re-arrange your top 8 of friends. Instead, you'll have over 100 of them, some of which you'll want to unfriend due to their Facebook statuses.

13.) Oh, and on that point, you NEED to stop taking photos of yourself in THAT MySpace pose. It really isn't flattering. Neither it is to pretend you don't know a photo's being taken...

14.) And stop editing your photos so much. You're not David LaChapelle.

15.) Last but not least. Stop worrying about everything. Boys, school, friends, 'being cool'. I can tell you that it all works out and you're a happy bunny, so don't spend as much time crying black streams of eyeliner down your face while listening to Taking Back Sunday. Just enjoy being a teen while you are one.

There's no other cringe-worthy time like it.

Stay happy!
Until next time,

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Week by Numbers: ice-skating, wig wams & sequins

One of the golden rules of a good journo's guidebook: don't waffle and waste valuable space with unnecessary words.

And I am often guilty of doing this.

A lot of the time, I want to share things that have happened in my life, or just simply a photo, but they don't always warrant a whole blog post, and I just end up writing words just to write words to go alongside something I want to post.

So, I've decided to round up my week with the things I've enjoyed, seen, thought and wore, and it's also a nice way to make sure I post regularly as it's not something too big or serious stuff. Sometimes, a week will go by, and I'll know I haven't done a post but all I want to do after work is drink gin and watch New Girl, not write out my feminism manifesto.
And I'm not taking any credit for this, because I blatantly stole this from Hannah's Gale's blog and her '7 Things This Week' posts. (Hope you don't mind!)

So here it is, the start of a new series!

This week, it's been mainly filled with festive fun unsurprisingly, and missing people and places. 

7 favourites...
1.) The festive season means that my Christmas jumper game is on top form. Already whipping them out since December 1st, but it was officially Christmas Jumper Day for Save The Children UK, and I wore this sequinned beauty to work, where we were also visited a mariachi band with a surprise serenade of Feliz Navidad. Standard.

2.) I have a fear of ice-skating because it's LOADS OF BLADES ON SLIPPERY ICE. But, I love roller-skating, so I decided that it was only logical that I'd enjoy ice-skating as well. Right? And my partner-in-crime Kim has wanted us to go for ages, and could not see how I could dislike something that was so, 'me'. It's festive and all kinds of cute for gods sake. So, I sucked it up, headed to the National History Museum, and after having robotic straight legs for the first 10 minutes, I got my roller-skating groove on and felt insanely happy and Christmassy at the fact I was gliding around in circles, on frozen water, with my bestie, while Mariah Carey was playing.

3.) I looked over some photos that I took last year while I was studying my Masters degree in Sheffield, and the reminiscing made me miss last year so much, I nearly cried. I love living in London and not having essays to do and all of that other grown-up shit. But,my heart aches when I look at photos of flat C20 playing Articulate with countless beers, and memories of my and friends in fancy dress in a club that's playing 5ive and does quadruple-vodkas for £2. And impromptu night out? No problem, all the people I want to hit up only live in a 5 mins radius. In London? No chance. Everything involves immaculate planning and the closest someone lives is half an hour away. Where do I sign up for another degree?

4.) I bought a new hat. That's all. I needed a new bobble hat, and having an enormous head means it's  often quite a task to find one to fit. So this little baby is quite an accomplishment, and a warm and cozy one at that.

5.) Then Queen that is Rosie Wilson, one of my uni friends from Sheffield, was in London for the night. So I snapped her up for the evening and  met her in Shoreditch. Went to a Wig-Wam bar where we sat around an open fire, roasted marshmallows and drank buttered rum and eggsnog (nop, that's not a typo. You read that right. Snog. Oo-er!). We then found a gem of a place to eat where it was happy hour, yummy and cheap as chips. And it was called Drunken Money - what else could you ask for? After moving on to a club that did mini-golf, I realised that I was home and as much as I love Islington, I'm now on a mission to move to Shoreditch.

6.) I stayed up to 3am one night watching clips from SM:TV Live and miss Saturday morning kids tv from my childhood immensely. Also, Ant & Dec were right cheeky monkeys and I don't know how they ever got away with half the stuff they showed at 9.30 in the morning, but by golly, I'm so glad I grew up watching it.

7.) After being asked by Grazia to join them and work on the re-launch of their website. And with a blink of an eye, the day for the site's new, shiny, glam makeover to be unveiled had come, and it was time for my to say my bittersweet goodbye. I loved the team, the office, the content and the people there, and I hope and am sure our paths will cross again in the future!

3 thoughts....

"How is it humanly possible for Blake Lively to look so goddamn chic while she's got a big baby bump?!"

"Well, my calling in life was definitely to work on SM:TV Live."


and 1 outfit...
Sequins, beads and a furry, sparkly jumper that even a Care Bear would be jealous of.
jumper:H&M, skirt:Topshop

What have you been up to this week?

Stay happy!
Until next time...


Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Step into Christmas!

When the 1st of December rolls around, I am Little Miss.Christmas.

The Christmas jumper will be on, the festive songs will be on full blast and I will have already eaten a whole box of mince pies.

My and my 2 housemates that I lived with at uni (they're becoming a bit of a regular feature on here now aren't they?) used to have a yearly tradition to go to Winter Wonderland every winter, and forget about all our deadlines and other uni-related stresses, while eating chocolate covered churros and soak in all the festive fairy lights.

However last year this tradition got broken due to all of us being silly-busy. And the thing is the times we did go to Winter Wonderland, yeah we felt all festive and fuzzy inside, but honestly, we didn't do THAT much.

So this year, we ventured onto new pastures, and hopped on over to Winterville at Victoria Park. And boy, did we do lots of activities!

We devoured into crab burgers (mine had pickled cucumbers, chili and wasabi mayo in - yum!), sipped on hot toddys and mulled wine to keep us warm, laughed like mad as we got spun round like mad on fairground rides, and then, we only went along and did one of my favourite fun things.

Ever since me and Hannah went one summer (here - deja vu!), I wanted to get better at it and after buying my own roller skates at a bargin, I have a blast on them! 
I'm still no pro, I mean, there were guys and gals there dancing around on them, and I just stared at them in awe. And they, are my aim.

Dressed in a Christmas jumper (naturally)...

And a great big lilac tutu - because why not...

And my Ace of Hearts at hand, we scooted along. 

I mean, when your outfit of the day is this...'s pretty great.

After wearing ourselves out like a couple of kids running around in the park, we made out way home, and as we were walking to the station, a guy behind me said, "Excuse me. My little girl was just telling me how much she loved your skirt and wanted me to tell you!" 
Isn't that the sweetest thing! It brought a big smile onto my face, but if only she knew how much room I took up on the tube home...

Do you know why I love Christmas so much? 

Yes, stuffing yourself silly with food is fantastic.
Yes, wrapping up presents for others makes me feel like an excited lil' elf (and getting gifts ain't too shabby either).
Yes, the tinkling lights and cheesy songs make me feel all sparkly and magical - even more so than usual.
And yes, spending time with the ones you love is something that is priceless.
But at Christmas, everyone seems to band together. Everyone just seems, nicer somehow. Friendlier. You forget all your troubles, squabbles, worries and stresses that you may have, and just let go.

What your favourite thing about Christmas?

Stay happy!
Until next time,