Hello everyone and happy Christmas-week! I hope you've all had a relaxing, stress-free weekend that hopefully wasn't too filled with retail chaos. After attending Blogcademy I had a massive to-do list of things I want to do. One of those things was to get a bit more personal over on my YouTube channel. You hear my opinions about beauty products all the time so it was nice for me to think about some other topics and look at what you wanted to know. If you like this video do let me know and I'll try to do more of them in future.
PS-I apologise for the sudden lighting change towards the end of the video. The weather when I filmed this was crazy, alternating between intense thunder storms and then clear skies which made filming a total breeze *ahem*. Hopefully it won't be all over the show next time I film something.
So you've left things a little bit last minute. I'm not judging you, much. I'll let you in on a secret, I'm not finished my Christmas shopping either. It's Blogmas Day 7 and we've all rounded up some of the best buys you can gift this season. They're easy to grab if you've left things a bit late too. I'd recommend making a list before you leave though as the malls will be frantic. Here's my recommendations for the last-minute shopper..
Nars Lip Pencil Coffret, limited edition-Now isn't this a beauty? Quite literally. You get three Satin and 2 Matte lip pencils from Nars in this set. A few of the shades are limited edition colours but my favourite Cruella is in there. They come beautifully packaged in an acrylic container which can always be reused after (hello makeup storage). If you're buying for someone who loves lip products they're bound to love this set.
Amber Whitecliffe Maketu Tee-It might be obvious that I am a bit obsessed with this top and I do love supporting local designers who make their wares locally like Amber does. This top looks stunning on and the fabric is beautiful.
Yes Please by Amy Poehler-This may well be one of the best memoirs I have read this year. Amy's is hilarious and filled with entertaining stories and life essays. She also has a brilliant tribute to her BFF Tina Fey in there. If they're a Parks & Recreation fan, an SNL fan, even just an Amy Poehler fan (like me) then this will go down a treat.
Kikki K 2015 Inspire Diary-I've actually picked up this diary for myself and love it. It's colourful, but still grown up. In other words it won't look too childish on your desk. There's positive anecdotes throughout and plenty of space to write all those notes and aspirations down. Definitely check out Kikki K's diaries if you're in store. They have such a great selection.
*What gifts do you think we should buy in the last minute Christmas rush?
The best present ever-For the longest time I have wanted a subscription to Frankie. I feel like magazine subscriptions are one of those things we tend to not buy ourselves and I am always so happy when I am gifted one. My lovely family got me a subscription to Frankie this Christmas and the first issue came earlier in the week and I was so excited. This issue also comes with an awesome wall calendar for 2015 and some illustrated Australian postcards. It's loaded with a lot of extra content too and I can't wait to read it on my mini-breaks.
Hydrangea Ranger Pop Up-One of my favourite local designers, Hydrangea Ranger has a pop-up store open at the moment at Widdess in Ponsonby. If you're a bit behind with your Christmas shopping for your girlfriends, Mum, Nan and the other important ladies in your life then I suggest you head here. There's rad prints, jewellery, vases and more. I wish I could go there in person but instead I'll have to look at the beautiful 'grams of the setup.
A word for 2015-I'm not sure about you, but I don't really like the idea of New Years Resolutions. They're great in theory, but I find it lame when I don't meet them. Instead I prefer to make short term goals within the month or across a couple of months. I really like Shauna's approach though. She's chosen a word for the year and is making goals around that. Her word was create, and I'm still thinking of one for myself. Would you like me to do a post when I decide?
Lindsay Lohan's Top Shelf-Lindsay Lohan was my idol for the longest time. Her movies were a huge part of my childhood+teen years and I still watch them now. I was excited to see her Top Shelf featured on Into The Gloss this week along with her beauty secrets+loves. She's a Charlotte Tilbury fan, Mac makeup maven and isn't afraid to mix and match fragrances. Fellow fans or beauty lovers, go have a read.
An easy+delicious Christmas treat-Peppermint+chocolate are one of my favourite pairings. Throw Oreos into the mix and you have something rather delectable. Last week I made this Peppermint Chocolate Bark and it was amazing. Aside from being ridiculously simple to make, it's perfect to whip up last minute for a Christmas party or if you have unexpected guests turning up for drinks and gift exchanges.
*Have an amazing weekend everyone, and good luck if you're out doing your Christmas shopping this weekend. I have one present left to buy but I think I'm just going to get it online. I don't fancy going near another shopping mall for a while. Tonight I am off to Katy Perry with a family friend. I'm so excited to finally be getting to see Katy live. Tomorrow we have a pre-Christmas party of sorts at our place and other than that I'll just be chilling and attempting to start packing my bags before I head away early next week.
Also, you may notice Blogmas halting. I didn't really realise how full on I was going to find that and maintaining my regular blog schedule+everyday life. This week has honestly been so crazy and I'm knackered. There'll be another post up tonight but there may not be any others. Sorry guys! I now have way more respect for people who daily blog and vlog because it's a lot of work.
I wish this photo had a scratch and sniff function because you'd be wanting to devour the chocolate bark you see. It's Day 6 of Blogmas and we're all heading to the kitchen and cooking up something tasty and festive for you all. I opted to make Peppermint Chocolate Bark which I'd seen on Pinterest a few times. This seems to be quite the American thing. It's super easy to whip up and requires next to no effort but it still looks great and tastes delicious. If you want to find out how to make this then keep reading..
What You'll Need:
1 cup of Oreo cookies (chopped). *For reference, I got the box in NZ supermarkets which has several tubes and I think I ended up using all except one or two of the tubes inside it.
1 cup Milk Chocolate Chips. *I used the Cadbury ones because they're the best in my opinion.
1 1/2 Cups White Chocolate Chips. *These seemed harder to find so I just bought some Cadbury white chocolate buttons.
10 Mini Candy Canes (crushed), about 1/2 cup.
A cake tin. *These may not be called cake tins but y'know the things you cook brownies or slices in? Them.
A sheet of cooking paper.
-Melt your milk chocolate chips until smooth and pour over the baking paper. Sprinkle with the chopped Oreos and place in the fridge to chill for ten minutes.
-Melt your white chocolate until smooth and pour over your oreos and milk chocolate layer. Side note: White chocolate seems to melt a lot faster so keep it on a lower temperature if you want to slow the process slightly. Add the chopped candy cane pieces on top and place in the fridge to chill until set. I found about 10-15 minutes was fine.
-Break up your bark, eat, serve, gift and enjoy! This is really so simple, it's probably not right to even call it a recipe but it honestly tastes so good I just had to mention it.
*Do you have any Christmas recipes you love?
It's time for another little life in pictures style update. I feel like this post is food heavy. That was unintentional. I just happen to have eaten a bit of aesthetically pleasing food recently. That's all there is to it really. I'm a tad tired from writing Christmas posts all week so apologies for the lack of chatty banter!
-Delicious waffles at The Chocolate Boutique in Parnell with Tara and Ellen. They were amazing!
-Reading Frankie magazine on the train. A regular occurrence.
-A little pamper night with Golden Wonder, my favourite Lush bath bomb and a read of Girl Online.
-Peonies! They were good while they lasted.
-Christmas Crackers I grabbed at Kmart to take down to my family when I stay there next week.
-My previous pinboard which was inspired by wanderlust and adventure.
-Another snap at the Chocolate Boutique. Look at all those lollies!