The Alternative Valentines with Death to Flowers

Want to give a gift for Valentines Day but are sick of the standard red rose or cliche cuddly toy? Look no further than Death to Flowers and their fun filled range of alternative gifts. It doesn’t forking out an arm or a leg either as they have just launched mini boxes of fortune which cost an affordabe £6 each.

Each box contains a fortune cookie which hides a snippet of celebrity wisdom, a heart eye emoji tattoo, a quirky postcard AND the cookie come packaged in adorable mini takeout carton. They kindly sent me over a box so I could see what all of the fuss is about and I have to say, I’m pretty taken.

I received the “what would Leslie Knope do?” box which is just perfect for anyone wanting to show their best gal-pal some love next weekend. You can pick which postcard accompanies your box and the slogans on those are equally cool and quirky.

Need a cookie that gets a different message across? Pick a pearl of wisdom from Jeremy Corbyn, Beyonce or Snoop Dogg to say what’s on your mind…this really is such a fun idea and perfect for all kinds of gifting occasions, not just Valentines Day (check out the Club Tropicana
box for an injection of Summer love!)

Who would you like to send one of these to this year- I’m not sure Ben would appreciate one but I do wish I’d saved this for my bff!

(and for the record, the cookie is pretty darn tasty too!)

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Preparing for Valentines Day with Rakuten

Neither Ben or I are massive Valentines Day fanatics but at the same time we do like to mark the day with a card and token gift as well as some time spent with each other. As this is our first year in our own home and the 14th happens to fall on a Sunday we’re planning a very quiet and cosy day enjoying our flat.

Rakuten kindly got in touch asking if they could lend a hand by sending out a box full of treats to help make the day extra special as well as giving us some credit to spend on the site (which obviously went on homeware, but more on that in a later post!). Today’s post touches on the contents of the box and some ideas for a cosy day in.

It was lovely to receive a selection of beauty products in the box for a spot of pre-Valentines pampering (I seem to have become quite the pampering fan of late!).
When it actually rolls around to February 14th I shall be going OTT (for me) and stringing up the foil hearts, scattering the love hearts tea lights and chocolate hearts on our coffee table and preparing myself for an easy day of cosy indulgence.

We’ll be doing things on a budget this year and to be honest I can’t bring myself to pay £30 per person on a themed meal out when we can cook for ourselves at home. I don’t profess to be the worlds greatest cook but I can whip up a mean pasta bake that we both really enjoy and from the comfort of our living/dining room we can pop on a soundtrack of our choosing, open a bottle of wine and sit back and relax our way- no cheesy love songs and satin roses on the table here!

When it comes to gifts we quite often go down the homemade route and this year will be no exception. Last year I whipped up a batch of coconut ice in heart shapes for Ben and this year I’m considering something like these biscuits along with a home made card and the promise of breakfast in bed (I happen to excel at scrambled eggs on toast!).

What are your plans for Valentines Day this year? Do you prefer a quiet night in or a posh night out?

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Dressing in Style for a night at the Casino*

A while back, probably when I was still in sixth form there was a bit of a trend among my peers for skipping a night out clubbing and heading to one of Bristol’s casinos instead. I can’t say I ever took them up on the offer. Not that I’m against a bit of responsible gambling once in a while but more (and this sounds very shallow) that I didn’t know what to wear- I wasn’t a stylish teenager, in fact I’d hardly declare myself stylish now and deciphering the dress code sent my anxiety through the roof. I was thinking back to this the other day and decided to pop together a little post that would have been VERY helpful for my younger self.

(all from a selection at ASOS)

A lot of casinos will have a dress code in place ranging from smart casual to a more black tie type deal. You should be able to find this out on the casinos website beforehand so there is no chance of being turned away at the door. Personally I’d prefer to go for a more dressy approach just because I can and because when I was younger I just wouldn’t have had the confidence for this. You don’t need to spend a fortune to look like you own a fortune- shops like New Look, ASOS and H&M all have some chic and simple dresses or smart trouser suits that won’t break the bank and can easily be incorporated in to you every day working wardrobe too so you aren’t splashing out for just a one off night.

Of course if the effort is all too much, and now I’m older and lazier (not to mention more boring) I’d probably rather stick to an online casino where I can have a flutter from the comfort of my sofa wrapped up in my dressing gown….you know, I might even invite some friends round and throw my own casino night, dress code not required! Click here to play for fun and earn money from the comfort of your home.

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The Cosiest Coat Ever!

I’m trying really hard to get back in to the swing of things when it comes to outfit posts but between picking up extra hours at work and the dodgy at best winter lighting conditions it’s proving a hard task. Still, the other weekend Ben and I managed to get as far as the park behind our new flat to snap some shots of my newest addition to my coat collection, long overdue of course as it was actually a Christmas present!

Coat: Pull&Bear | Pinafore: Primark (similar) | Roll Neck: Topshop (available here) | Boots: Sarenza

I actually first saw this coat when I was out in Spain with my Mum. Pull&Bear is one of my favourite shops to visit when over there as it is so reasonably priced, essentially Zara’s little sister. I couldn’t rationalise buying such a big, fluffy coat when the weather was 30 degrees and sunny but vowed that once back in the UK I would visit the shop in Bristol and make it mine- along with countless other things I saw when I was over there!).

Ben thinks the coat looks a bit ridiculous and initially asked if I was actually going to wear it in public. He’s soon got used to it though and it has put a complete stop to my moaning about being cold all of the time which is no mean feat.

This is a bit of a random ensemble, I haven’t quite got my head around “put together” outfits at the moment for whatever reason. It’s just so much easier to chuck on something sloppy and some flat boots and declare it done.

Anyway, goodness knows when I’ll next get an outfit post up so in the meantime let me know what you think of this coat and if there are any European brands you love when both home and away.

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Be My (pretty pink) Valentine

There was barely a day between the vanishing of Christmas stock from the shops and the arrival of both Easter and Valentine’s Day. As much as I think most holidays have become somewhat over-hyped and commercialised I’m still a bit of a sucker for a theme and will look for any excuse to pick up a treat or six.

Ben and I aren’t really big on Valentine’s Day and this year we’ll both be working and then probably just collapsing in front of the TV for a lazy dinner and movie night when the 14th rolls around, therefore I was pretty excited when a package of the prettiest pink beauty products from firm favourites I Love… and Balmi arrived giving me the perfect excuse to indulge and pamper myself a bit.

I Love…products are a long time favourite of mine which you’ll know if you’ve been reading the blog for a while. The strawberries and cream fragrance is probably my number one scent for them, rivalled only by pink marshmallow so using these products has been a real treat. The hand cream has been my saviour of late as between work, moving and the cold weather my hands have been looking a little worse for wear. Often I find highly scented products such as these irritate my skin or further dry it out but I’m delighted to report that this isn’t the case and I have the softest, sweetest smelling hands in town. Up until now the pink marshmallow fragrance was a new one to me and I’m bordering on obsessed. This is the perfect way to kick start a gloomy morning even if the scent does make me rather hungry and craving sweet treats.

When it comes to lip balm there is only one brand for me these days. Far from being the gimmick I thought it might be I’m really in love with Balmi products and have amassed quite a collection. My most recent acquisition is the strawberry variety- as well as keeping your lips super smooth and soft they also make a rather lovely little gift for your best friend, mum, aunt (indeed just about anyone!) to show you care this Valentine’s Day!

What’s your favourite scent when it comes to shower and body products? I can’t resist anything fruity or sweet…

Any Valentine’s plans yet?

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Post contains products gifted to me by the brands.