Organic Skincare for Pre-Teens and Teens with Green People

I am a huge fan of using natural and organic skincare, it’s something that I was brought up valuing by my mum and it really impacts the choices I make even today. I’ve partnered with Green People quite a few times over the years while blogging and have always loved their products, whether it’s their sun lotion for myself and my kids or their everyday skincare products. Now my eldest girl is ten, I’ve been wanting to find her skincare products that will be kind to her young skin but also help with any blemishes.

Green People to the rescue with their Oy! range. Oy! or Organic Young is their range of certified organic skin care products for tweens, teens and anyone else prone to troublesome skin – I know I am at times! With a capsule collection of face wash, moisturiser and treatment serum, and a blemish concealer that calms the skin and improves the appearance of breakouts we’ve got a winning combination. Add to that their natural roll on deodorant and all bases are covered.

My eldest girl has been putting the Oy! range to the test for the past 6 weeks and has had fantastic results. She has swimming training every day and spends most weekends in the pool too. This exposure to chlorine can cause her skin to dry out and to break out. Since using the 3 step skincare her skin has been clear and soft with fewer breakouts. 

 

 

We are so pleased that this range has been developed with pre-teens and teens in mind. I feel so confident in the brand and know that my daughter’s skin is being looked after with products full or organic, natural ingredients.

We’ve got two full sets of the Oy! Green People range to giveaway to you my lucky readers. Just enter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

 

Disclosure – We were sent this range of skincare for the purpose of this review. As always all views are our own.

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A wardrobe update with LOTD

With summer well and truly behind us and those cold months fast creeping in it’s time to put away our summer clothes and dig out the cosy knits and ankle boots. If you’re anything like me you’ll mark this change in season declaring that you have absolutely nothing to wear and wonder what on earth you wore this time last year!

I don’t like to buy lots of clothes or hoard loads that I rarely wear, instead I try and have some kind of semblance of a capsule wardrobe… though it’s not as minimal as I’d wish it to be. I’m not self disciplined enough for that yet! I like to have a mix of clothes that are ‘fast fashion’ items that are cheaper, on trend and not likely to go beyond the current season and more expensive staple items that I will keep digging out of my wardrobe year after year.

When the lovely folk at LOTD, an online clothing retailer, got in touch to see if I’d try out their clothing I thought it would be a good chance to give my Autumn Winter wardrobe a little style injection.

As an online store I would say that price wise, LOTD, (Look Of The Day), sits around the same bracket as places like New Look and even Primark. It’s for the ‘on trend’ items that give your look an update and mean that you can have stylish clothes for the every day. 

I love the embroidered detail on patches, it gives a bit extra to the staple plain white tee. The same with the printed tee below. I can’t see my love for the slogan tee slowing down anytime soon!

The ‘leather style’ skirt is one I haven’t braved before, but with an affordable price it’s worth the experiment. I don’t think it will be an item I reach for every day (!!) but it’s good for mixing things up and helping me step out of my denim comfort zone.

This jumper has to be my favourite from this selection of clothes. I have worn it so much this past month. I’ve worn it with jeans and skirts and just keep going back to it.

Another favourite has to be these ankle boots. I love the detail and the buckles and it gives a little something extra to a plainer outfit.

This is a colour I wouldn’t normally gravitate to, you know me and my love of black! Yet I wanted to try out the different neckline and ruffles. It’s such a cute top and one I need to be brave with and wear more.

SHOP THE LOOKS….

White floral embroidered tee (I’m wearing S) | GRL PWR tee (I’m wearing S) | Black Midi Skirt (I’m wearing M) / Black three gauge jumper (I’m wearing M) | Black studded boots (I’m a size 6) | Stone Turtle Neck top (I’m wearing 10)

I deliberately didn’t choose any trousers or jumpsuits as I’m only 5ft 3 and have to shop in Petite sections for those. Over all I would say that LOTD is great if you’re looking for a little style injection, to update your wardrobe with on trend everyday wear that is affordable. I’ve had these items for over a month and they’re all washed and worn really well.

 

Disclosure – I was sent these items from LOTD for this feature

Photos – Robyn Swain Photography

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Ham and Jam – The Best Independent Coffee Shops in Preston

Update – Sadly Ham and Jam has since closed down

You know me, I love pitching up to a good coffee shop, grabbing a coffee and getting some work done, so it makes sense to share some of my favourite places with you. This is the second post in my series of The Best Coffee Shops in Preston and features Ham and Jam. if you missed the first one on Town House, then quick go have a read. Ham and Jam is situated in the town centre next to the Guild Hall and very close to the bus station. This is an area that’s seeing a lot of change and (much needed) regeneration at the moment.

When I first spotted this coffee shop with Jenny on our photowalk earlier this year I was drawn to it immediately. It’s a wonderfully light and bright space, with it’s full windows, white walls and industrial touches. I love sitting up on the high stools in the window and watching the world go by.

Ham and Jam

I’ve been here for coffee catch ups, work dates and on my own armed with my laptop. I will say that I have found their wifi to be a little intermittent so I always make sure I have alternative work to do that doesn’t involve the internet just in case. The wifi is free though, which isn’t always the case in some cafes.

Their coffee is good, as you’d expect! I’ve not eaten there due to my frustrating yeast and dairy intolerances but I’m reliably informed by my husband that it’s good. Think warming, home cooked style chillis and ciabattas, not to mention a great selection of cakes.

I love their ethos and ‘strap line’, you might have spotted it on the window above, A welcome retreat from a busy life. It definitely has a relaxed atmosphere and you feel tucked away watching the busy world pass you by.

They are very community focused and hold various events during the week, such as acoustic open mic sessions, gallery nights, and even calligraphy workshops. 

If you live in the North West or are more specifically local to Preston then do pop in and give it a try. There’s a huge multistory car park just a couple of minutes walk away next to the bus station so it’s super easy to get to. FYI they’ve not asked me to write this post, I just enjoy sharing businesses that I love. 

 

Find them here – Lancaster Rd 50, Preston, Lancashire.

Opening times – Mon-Sat 7.30am until 6pm, Sunday 9am until 4pm

Follow their social media here – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

 

See more of my favourites here – The Best Independent Coffee Shops in Preston

 

Photos by Robyn Swain Photography

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I’m a Joanie Gal

I love finding brands and stores that just get you. Know what I mean? When you find somewhere that sells clothes you can see yourself in and it’s super hard not to just add the whole lot into your basket, whether virtual or physical. Joanie Clothing is one of those stores for me. They are inspired by vintage clothing and all their pieces have a retro vibe to them without looking like you’re just dressing up in your Nan’s clothes for a fancy dress party. 

If you’re a regular reader you’ll know that I’ve mentioned Joanie on my blog a few times now, here and here, so you can imagine my excitement when they got in touch asking if I’d like to work with them. I obviously played it cool, who am I kidding, I jumped at the chance with all the gushiness of a teenage girl talking to her crush.

I choose a casual outfit and two dresses that can be dressed up or dressed down depending on the occasion.

First up, that Brunch tshirt and a denim skirt. Hands down I have never owned or worn such a soft and comfy top. It feels like pajamas, which for some one that wishes they could wear jamas all the time, this is pretty special! 

Margo Brunch Club Tee – Pink £18 | Rhoda A Line Button Denim Skirt – £30

Next up – the comfiest dress I think I have ever worn AND it has pockets. It’s available in a few colours too, and there’s even a similar one with no spots.. which I’m so tempted by.

Clara Polka Dot Dress £38

Last but definitely not least is this beauty. I’ve already worn it out to a party, a Christening and just in the day too. I love the flattering cut and those sleeves are just beautiful.

A huge thanks to Joanie Clothing for gifting me these clothes, for Robyn Swain and her photography skills and to the Harris Museum in Preston for letting us take photos in such a beautiful space. FYI I’m wearing size 10 in the dresses and skirt and S in the tshirt oh and I’m 5ft 2.

Are you a fellow Joanie Gal?

 

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Why I don’t really post on Instagram at the weekend

If you follow me on Instagram you may, or may not (probably the latter..) have noticed that I rarely post any photos over the weekend. That may seem rather odd or counter intuitive to most bloggers or instagrammers, so let me share why it’s ended up this way.

When I first started blogging back in 2011 over on the now defunct butwhymummywhy.com I loved writing about my life, my kids and our holidays and days out. I would share photos and even discuss topics like toilet training and trying to get a full nights sleep. Times changed however, and I became increasingly aware of just how much I was sharing about my girls and their lives. Even though I’ve never referred to them by name (like me they have unique names so would be easy to find), I started to feel rather uncomfortable about the digital footprint I was creating for them without their express knowledge, not that toddlers can really have an understanding of the internet! As they got older I chatted to them about it and we agreed that it would be best for all of us if I changed tack and relaunched as a lifestyle blog rather than a family or parent blogger. Now my girls are coming up to ten and seven I’m so pleased with the decision we made.

I’ll occasionally share a photo of them on here, with their permission, and you often see them pop up on my Instagram Stories but rarely will they show up on my main feed. This isn’t because I’m self obsessed, as you might assume (!) it’s more that it’s not a platform I want them on. My private and personal Facebook is for family and friends that are faraway to share in our lives and see pictures of the girls. Not my blog’s Instagram, which let’s face it, is in no way private!

As my weekends are spent with the girls, whether it’s ferrying them to parties or swimming galas, playing games, going on walks, baking or just watching films. It’s our family time. Time out of work and for the most part time away from social media. This has meant that over weekends I’ve not posted anything on Instagram and at first I worried about it. Silly worries, like would it negatively impact my reach and stop people seeing my photos. The kinds of things us bloggers often worry about really. It can be a rabbit hole of worry, and it’s one that I’m refusing to fall down. I really want to stop second guessing myself and the decisions I make.

This is no comment or reflection on any other bloggers or instagrammers, we all make choices that are right for us, our families and even our businesses. I’ll never make it as a famous blogger or instagrammer but I don’t really mind. I’m happy with the boundaries I’ve set and if that means taking a break over the weekend and not sharing much about my children then I’m fine with that.

I’d love your thoughts on this, let me know in comment below.

 

(featured photo by Robyn Swain)

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Find A Very British Hygge in Autumn

Are you even a lifestyle blogger if you haven’t typed the word ‘Hygge’ on your blog or social media in recent years? I think we’re all pretty clued up in one form or another on the Danish concept, just maybe not how as a British person we’re actually supposed to pronounce it! Much can be taken from the idea, whether it’s focusing on experiences over material things, cosying up in these colder months, embracing the small things or just having a sense of appreciation that brings contentment.

I’ve been reading A Very British Hygge by Simon Sinclair and found so much inspiration in the simple ways it brings this ritualised appreciation of calmness to life in our British home.

While reading the book a quote particularly struck me,

The most important contributor to our psychological wellbeing is the strength of our relationships, and hygge definitely tends to encourage more close and intimate times with loved ones.

– Dr Mark Williamson, Director of Action for Happiness, a think tank and social change movement

Now, as an introvert I’m pretty content with my own company and when I thought of hygge it would often be in the context of being on my own. I hadn’t really considered it as a shared moment or experience. Having a little time to reflect I’d definitely concur with this quote and I can think of so many times where I’ve felt the peace, security, warmth and simplicity of a hygge style moment with friends and family. Whether it’s chatting over wine in front of an open fire, snuggling up on the sofa with my girls watching a film or sitting side by side with my husband while we both read a book. It’s those little ‘nano-nirvanas’ as this book likes to call them where we feel that all is right in the world and we just feel content. 

I would love to create space in my home to encourage that kind of feeling for us as a family and for guests when they visit. This is why I’m always on a mission to simplify and get rid of clutter. Minimal and cosy are far too often considered to be opposites but I find spaces that lack clutter and feel organised to be much more relaxing. It doesn’t need to be clinical with nothing on any surfaces. It just means that what you do have is carefully chosen and appreciated. This is something I try to do in our home… it’s just a shame I have two children that like to hoard and a husband that doesn’t notice mess!

I love this corner of our living room, just curling up here with a book and a hot drink makes me feel so calm and relaxed. It’s perfect for this time of year, with the days getting shorter and the evenings growing darker earlier day by day. 

A Very British Hygge by Simon Sinclair is published by Everest Home Improvements, so you can expect reference to feeling safe and secure in your home with their windows all in all, however, it’s a little book packed with tips and I love the way Hygge is explained from a British perspective. You can find out more about this book and get some more hygge inspiration here.  I’m so ‘British Hygge’ right now it actually hurts, I mean my love of Autumn and minimalism and feeling cosy all rolled into one concept, what’s not to like.

Ways to find Hygge through the season of Autumn

 

Go to the beach and eat fish and chips under a blanket

Go blackberry picking, then come home and make jam

Play board games and drink hot chocolate

Bake two apple pies, one for you and one for a neighbour

Learn to knit and make a scarf

Gather leaves and twigs and do some Autumn crafts with them

Collect sloe berries and bottle them in gin to make sloe gin

Have a hot bubbly bath by candle light

 

 

 

How do you Hygge in Autumn?

 

This is a commissioned post 

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Simple Scandinavian Home Styling with JYSK UK

When I think of the Scandinavian home styling trend I think of muted tones, linen textures, bare pale wood with a little monochromatic touches and of course a lack of clutter. That’s how I’ve interpreted this trend for my home with the addition of a growing collection of plants too. Our home is a new build so a blank canvas of white walls, grey carpet and wooden doors, in my eyes a perfect fit for this home style trend.

Recently JYSK, a homeware store founded in Denmark and now an international brand, got in touch asking me to share how I give my home that Scandinavian feel, when it’s really a new build in the North West of England! Long term readers will know that we only moved in to our house in the summer so we are still putting our stamp on it and experimenting with styling and furniture in each room. I love the fresh feel of a brand new home pair with simple Scandinavian home styling.

I’m still playing with our dining room which is open plan following on from the kitchen. We get so much natural light that I’m desperate to keep so the white walls are definitely staying. I’m still disappointed that my dresser top is too tall for this room but I think popping a painting above the bottom of the dresser helps. 

I’ve gone with greys for our bedroom and kept a clean monochrome feel to the accessories. I don’t like rooms that are too monochromatic as it can look overstyled but having a few accessories helps break up the white and grey.

Our shared workspace and music room is very much a work in progress still. What you can’t see it the piles of books and boxes next to this desk! Having a tidy (and pretty) desk helps so much with my productivity and I love quirky storage like this wooden box. I’d like more and then attach them to the wall for a functional feature.

I love the simple Scandinavian feel these accessories add to our home.

SHOP THE LOOK..

simple scandi home styling
simple scandi home styling

 

THORMOD wooden box | THORULF artificial plant | MAID plant hanger | KARLANTON mirror plate

AGERMYNTE grey tablecloth (140-240cm) | TORKILD decorative house shaped box | KASTRUP dining chair 

 Cactus ornament

There are lots of simple ways you can bring a bit of Scandi styling into your home. Whether it’s with having a bit of a clear out and decluttering, thinking of your use of storage, or even just adding some plants! I love how simple and design led the products at JYSK are, and they are really affordable too.

What do you think of the Scandinavian trend?
Do you have it in your home?

 

 

Disclosure – I was sent these items from JYSK UK for the purpose of this feature.

Linking up with The Twinkle Diaries and Boo & Maddie for Home Etc

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