Celebrating Our 6 year Anniversary at CAU

Yesterday marked the day that me and my boyfriend have put up with each other for a whole six years! (I can’t believe it either) I love any excuse to wear a half decent outfit and eat nice food so we decided to try CAU at St Katherine Docks for a change. It’s an Argentinian restaurant with really tasty, quality food but a laid-back vibe and the staff were really friendly and chatty. We were sat by the window and here is our lovely view below.

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I went for the Sirloin steak with skinny fries and a CAU cooler to wash it down with and the other half tried an Argentinian roast dinner, complete with onion rings.

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For dessert I fancied something light so I tried grilled pineapple with rum caramel and coconut ice cream which was delicious and very summery.

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As the weather was pleasant during the day I wore a pastel blue skirt from H&M with a lace shirt from Primark and a yellow jacket from Zara which you can see in one of my previous posts. I would definitely visit CAU again, maybe during the summer and try some of the small plates and a cocktail or two.

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Prêt-à-Portea at The Berkley

Afternoon tea has become one of my favourite ways to spend an afternoon which is surprising for someone who doesn’t actually like sandwiches! But then again, I do love cake. I’ve wanted to combine my love of cake and fashion and try the Prêt-à-Portea at The Berkley, which is based on designer collections from the current season for a while now and it certainly didn’t disappoint.

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Everything was pretty tasty but my favourites were the salted caramel eclair inspired by Simone Rocha’s collection and the iced biscuits based on pieces by Fendi and Dolce & Gabbana. Unfortunately, the Caramel Room where the tea is usually held was being refurbished so we had our tea in Kauffman’s but it was still a quiet, chilled atmosphere and a pleasant experience.

Happy Easter

This year is whizzing by and it’s already Easter but I can’t complain as I love time off work and chocolate! I haven’t been able to lie in for the past two days though which is so frustrating as I love my sleep but I just know when I have to get up for work on Tuesday that I’ll suddenly have no problems falling back to sleep. It’s always the way.

I’ve spent 6 days in my new job so far and it’s going pretty well. (I hope so anyway) The people are really nice but I still feel like I don’t have a clue what I’m doing and I think it’s going to take a while to all click into place. I’ll always struggle with early mornings so that’s nothing new but I do feel better mentally now I have purpose. I’ve also started weaning myself off my anti seizure medication and if all goes well I should be off it completely by mid May. I still don’t have any desire to drink alcohol though, probably because it gives me headaches and affects my precious sleep. I think I’ll just save booze for special occasions or when I really fancy a drink, like a cold Pimm’s on a hot summer’s day which I love.

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Today I went to The Royal China at Canary Wharf with my boyfriend for a pre anniversary lunch. It’s not our anniversary until next sunday but I will use any excuse to stuff my face. Here I am (above) attempting to pretend that I’m trying to eat a giant Easter egg, as you do.

I plan to relax round my boyfriend’s tomorrow after hitting the gym to try and burn off all the food I ate today then I’m going for afternoon tea on Monday with my mum and her friend. I hope you all have a lovely Easter and long weekend.

What To Wear for a Job Interview

Last week I went for my first job interview in years and I actually managed to get the job! The role is for a charity so less corporate than my previous jobs and places that I’ve interviewed at in the past but I still wanted to look smart. Zara is great for stylish work appropriate pieces that stand the test of time so I turned to my trusty grey zip pencil skirt that I’ve had for about 6 years and threw on a boucle jacket (both from Zara) over a pussybow shirt from Dorothy Perkins. My loafers were from Linzi which is one of my favourite places for reasonably priced but decent quality shoes.

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The interview was quite informal, the contract is for 3 months and the team seem really nice but I’m still very nervous about starting a new job after being out of work for nearly 9 months. I suffer from fear of the unknown and I’m really hoping that I’ll be able to get the hang of things quite quickly and that it won’t trigger bad head pains. It’s certainly going to be a shock to the system for the first week or so!

Check It Out

I am often inspired by other bloggers and the way they put outfits together. They sometimes remind me of long forgotten pieces that I have in my wardrobe and that I can revive by wearing them with something that I wouldn’t usually put them with. This outfit was inspired by a recent blog post by Georgia Hathaway as it reminded me that I had a pair of skinny monochrome gingham trousers that I bought from primark last year. She wore a similar pair from Zara with a polo neck top, leather jacket and nike trainers which made me see a pair of trousers that I’d always worn for work with brogues and a blazer, in a more causal light.

Obviously, with my quite slim but stumpy apple shaped body I look like an oompa loompa in comparison to Georgia with her model’s physique but it pushed me out of my style comfort zone and got my creative juices flowing. I plan to do a few more ‘inspired by…’ posts like these in the future.

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I’m just chuffed that I managed to fit into these size 8 Primark trousers but they were so tight that the button left a mark on my stomach for a few hours after taking them off! I made the look sightly sportier with a bomber jacket from Stradavarius and my Nike Air Force Ones. My chunky polo knit is an oldie from Gap which I’ve had for about 8 years. It shows that you can create a new and different look from items that you already have in your wardrobe without the need to go shopping.

Review of No7 Matte Lip Crayon in Blazing Coral

Almost every time I shop in Boots I’m given a voucher for £3 off No7 products which I don’t always take advantage of but when I do I’m not disappointed. Coral is probably my favourite lip colour and I wanted something with punch to wear in the warmer months so when I saw this lip crayon I had to have it!

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I do love lip crayons as they are easy to apply and you can almost draw on a polished pout without the need for a lip brush. I also love the formula of this as it almost glides on, like it says on the packaging and it also feels smooth and moisturising on your lips. The colour lasted around 2 hours and I was drinking and eating during that time which is quite impressive.

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Overall, I would definitely recommend this lip crayon and would like to try other colours in the future.

Living in Limbo

I thought I’d write a very honest post about how life feels for me at the moment as I wondered if anybody else feels similar and I also don’t really have anything else to blog about at the moment to be completely honest! I used to love going out and meeting new people but now I tend to avoid those situations when I can as I’m at an awkward point in my life. When people talk about work and their social lives I can only really listen as I don’t have much to contribute. I feel like all the good days are in my past and I’m impatiently waiting to get as close to full health as I can, to move out of London and to start a new job that is local to where I live. Hopefully then I’ll feel like I have purpose again and can feel part of conversations rather than just a spare part who has nothing to contribute.

I’m sorry if this post is very writing heavy (It seems that most blog readers are obsessed with the visual element of photographs) and that it isn’t the most positive but I do think that it’s important to be honest and say how you really feel. So many people are ashamed of their negative feelings and don’t want others to think badly of them, so they gloss over their true feelings and put on a bit of a front but it’s ok not to be ok.

I’m trying to get out and reconnect with friends and family members which is helping my state of mind but I’ve been hit with some sort of virus this weekend which has knocked me back down a bit. I’m sure this feeling will pass and I have lots to look forward to in the summer and Autumn such as a family holiday in August. I just can’t help but sense a black cloud looming over the future though and a fear that something is going to happen to ruin the things that I’m looking forward to. Does anyone else ever feel like that or is it just me? I think it’s like a ‘too good to be true’ complex that I have! I hope I’m wrong anyway and that things do improve over the coming months.

Ladies Who Lunch

Today I met up with a friend who I haven’t seen in years and it was so lovely to catch up. It’s also nice to get out of the house and actually make an effort with my outfit rather than just throwing something on! We enjoyed an early lunch in Byron followed by some window shopping and I must say, I’m loving all the spring florals, peasant tops, bright colours and 90s inspired pieces in stores at the moment. Roll on Spring! I went for quite a matchy matchy look with camel and beige tones and a hint of black.

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I love my Camel coat from New Look which was a bargain at £30 and my patent boots from the Zara sale. I wore them with a mini skirt from New Look, that I can just about squeeze into as it’s a size 8 and a roll neck jumper from Uniqlo. I’m looking forward to the warmer weather when I can wear lighter clothes and get away with bare legs.

Ways to boost a Low Mood

I often have days where I feel pretty down and would rather just go back to bed than face the day but over the years I have learnt what can help lift my mood. These ideas may not help everyone but hopefully at least one of them will help or will inspire you to think about what will perk you up personally.

I feel down for various reasons but one of them is due to recovering from illness which I know that some other bloggers can relate to. Some days or weeks I feel almost normal but other days I’m in a lot of pain with my head which gets me down as I should have made a full recovery by now. Things like stress and alcohol make it worse or can trigger pain so I try to avoid them as often as possible but it means that I now live a life with restrictions. I miss being free to do a day’s work or drink a couple of cocktails without ending up in pain. One thing I can still do is eat and I definitely make the most of that!

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Food, Glorious Food

I like to go out for meals with my boyfriend, friends or family but I also like to treat myself occasionally to something sweet such as these Lorchidee macaroons which I picked up yesterday. I was a complete greedy guts and ate 7 of them which I wouldn’t encourage but it really did help to cheer me up! Obviously, eating treats like this everyday becomes expensive and isn’t the healthiest but it’s a great pick me up on those days when you need extra help. An alternative is to attempt to make your own healthier baked goodies or dishes which provides a distraction and something yummy at the end of it!

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Take a Bath

One thing I look forward to daily is a nice, relaxing bath which is great for de-stressing. Being in the bath always feels so warm, comfortable and safe and it’s like almost washing your cares away, albeit temporarily. There are also so many bath products available that can help lift your mood, from aromatherapy oils to fun bath bombs or bubble bars. Lush is my favourite bath time treat emporium so I always enjoy a Lush bath.

Exercise

Even if you don’t fancy sweating it out at the gym, something as simple as going for a walk can release endorphins to beat the blues. As there are no pleasant walking routes where I currently live I try to get to the gym at least twice a week and despite struggling to motivate myself to go, I usually feel much better afterwards. If you have a garden or open space that you can use then using a skipping rope is great exercise. I did try this myself but unfortunately I’m useless at skipping!

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Reading

Getting into a good book or having a blog or magazine reading sesh definitely takes my mind off things and provides a positive distraction. I’ve been known to read a book in a day when I’m really engrossed and I find it easy to get lost in the story which is strange as films or TV programmes struggle to hold my attention.

Music

When I’m feeling down I like to listen to songs that remind me of happier times or novelty ones that make me laugh. (I’m talking ‘It wasn’t me’ by Shaggy rather than ‘Bob the Builder’) Party music is also a great mood lifter and is usually my genre of choice on my iPod at the gym as it gets me through the workout.

If you find yourself feeling down when you’re at work try to get away from the desk for a short break if you can or plan something exciting for lunch, whether it’s reading a new magazine, meeting/calling a friend or treating yourself to your favourite lunchtime dish. When I worked full time I’d often plan to get myself something tasty for lunch which helped get me through the day. One thing to avoid when your mood is low is constantly scrolling through social media. I made the mistake of doing this yesterday and it make me feel much worse. Just make sure you take time to do what makes you happy and look after yourself.

Valentine’s Outfit Ideas

If you’re lucky enough to have a special romantic meal or a date night planned for or close to Valentine’s Day but aren’t quite sure what to wear I’ve put together a couple of outfits that will hopefully give you some inspiration. I’ve gone quite literal with the theme of love with a red and black colour palette but pink also works well or you could completely avoid anything valentines related and go for a different colour scheme altogether.

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I think heart print is so cute and really fitting for the occasion! I got this shirt from New Look a couple of years ago but printed shirts are all over the high street at the moment. Teaming the shirt with a red faux leather pencil skirt from Primark, lace tights and heels from New Look dresses it up for a slap up meal or cocktails.

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Red is a classic colour to get you in the mood for love and romance and it also happens to be one of my favourite colours, particularly this bright, pillar box shade. This Topshop flute sleeved dress is one of the favourite pieces in my wardrobe and although I bought it last autumn there are plenty of similar colour block dresses currently available. I teamed it with thigh high boots from Public Desire and attempted to slick back the front of my hair by pinning back my fringe but the wind messed it up a bit! The joys of British weather. Speaking of our climate, you will need to throw a coat over these outfits and I would suggest a smart crombie in black or camel or a faux fur number. You also can’t go wrong with red lipstick, even if your outfit is pretty casual. I’m ashamed to say that the one I’m wearing is really old from Rimmel and has probably had its day but I can’t bear to part with it.

I hope that this has given you some outfit ideas and however you spend your Valentine’s day, I hope you enjoy it.