I’ve just finished reading The Foster Husband by Pippa Wright. I’ve read a book by her before called Unsuitable Men which I quite enjoyed. This one was in the same sort of style – easy to read, fast moving with a bit of humor thrown in. I kind of wish I had saved reading this until I went on holiday as it would make the perfect book to read on the beach!
Last weekend I had the chance to visit the Intercontinental London Westminster to indulge in their Chelsea Flower Show Afternoon Tea with Laurent Perrier Rose Champagne. The menu has been inspired by the flower show and the room was decorated with gorgeous flower displays. When we arrived we were shown to our table where our waiter introduced himself and then left us with a glass of bubbly to choose our tea. There were so many to choose from including black teas, white teas, green teas, flowering teas and herbal teas. In the end we went for the White Peony described as “Delightfully refreshing, rounded and full-flavoured with sweet and fragrant notes of melon” and the Taiwan Li Shan – “Highly floral complex and refreshing with a glycerous and wonderfully creamy texture”. I wasn’t too keen on the Taiwan Li Shan but the White Peony was lovely.Once we were settled with our teas the first plates of foods arrived. The bottom layer was a selection of finger sandwiches – the beef and horseradish ones were so delicious we asked for seconds – and the middle layer was a blackberry Eccles cake and slice of fruit loaf each. The top layer was by far the most exciting and looked so pretty! Every perfectly formed cake/pastry tasted divine and looked so beautiful I just had to take photos of all of them….
1. Lavender and strawberry tart
2. Jasmine and jivara mille feuille
3. White chocolate and orange blossom shot with pistachio crumble (this was exquisite!)
4. White chocolate marshmallow teacake infused with White Peony tea
5. Raspberry macaroon
6. Violet éclair
After we had finished the cakes and pastries, a plate of freshly baked scones arrived with Devonshire clotted cream, homemade strawberry jam and lemon curd. Again, these tasted amazing! Even though we were feeling full from all the food and champagne we both managed to squeeze in two scones topped with masses of cream and jam.After another glass of champagne, we were brought the finishing touch – a glass teapot containing one mango and one raspberry mousse lollipop and a white chocolate butterfly. It was the perfect way to end a wonderful afternoon! The service was faultless and our waiter couldn’t have done more for us, explaining what was on each plate and topping up our champagne whenever it looked as though we might finish a glass! The atmosphere was relaxed, with a live harpist in the background, and even though there were lots of staff ready to help, they weren’t hovering near the tables making us feel as though we were being watched all the time. I would love to go back to the Intercontinental and would definitely recommend the afternoon tea if you are looking for something special to do.
Today I thought I would tell you about my new perfume, Victorinox Victoria Eau de Toilette. It smells much more flowery than the sort of scent I usually go for but also smells quite sweet – it’s a lovely combination. It is described as having freesia, plum and blackcurrant top notes, Bulgarian rose, lily of the valley and viola heart notes and cedar leaf, sandal wood, white mush and myrth base notes. It is quite a strong scent so you don’t need to apply more than a squirt or two and it lasts well throughout the day. Victorinox Victoria is from the makers of Swiss Army Knife and costs £51 for 100ml. It’s not a brand I had really heard of before but I am glad I found it!
A few weeks ago I was sent a couple of packs of Kallo rice cakes to try. One pack was caramel and the other blueberry and vanilla. I wasn’t really sure when I would eat these as they aren’t really all that easy to take into work for lunch without them falling apart but I’ve found the perfect time to munch on them! I recently signed up to run 10k with work (which I am seriously regretting – I hate running!) and these are a great snack between getting home from work and going for a practice run. They are really tasty and the blueberry ones are a pretty purple colour! The rice cakes cost £1.79 per pack and you can find them in Tesco.
A few weeks ago I came across a fabulous website called Not On The High Street. They have so many lovely things from clothes and shoes to home and garden stuff. I could so easily spend hundreds buying things for my new flat! I’ve just moved into my first unfurnished flat so most of my stuff comes from Ikea – I would love to get a few of the bits from this website to make it a little more unique. In the end, after hours of browsing, I couldn’t resist the cute Parrot Print Dress by Instant Vintage. I’m always a bit nervous ordering clothes online as I often end up having to send things back because they don’t fit right. Fortunately this dress fits me perfectly and I love it! I will definitely be back on this website to pick up some little extras for my flat!
ps… sorry for the rubbish photo in the mirror – I live on my own and don’t own a fancy camera with a timer/tripod so this is the best I could do!
In the run up to Christmas I saw loads of adverts for a website called Semichem which I had never heard of before. I had a look at the website and ended up ordering the Lanvin L’Homme Sport aftershave as a gift. Semichem sell beauty products, perfume/aftershave and makeup. They also have a slightly random “House” section which has things like air fresheners, bin bags and batteries! Semichem has a big range of brands from Rimmel and Dove to DKNY and fcuk. There are some really great offers and you get free delivery if you spend over £25. The aftershave I ordered was dispatched really quickly and was packaged well so there was no chance that it would have smashed in the post. I hate it when things aren’t packaged properly – I ordered my work Secret Santa gift from Play and it arrived with the cardboard box all broken so looked like I was giving my Secret Santa a gift I had left over from last year! Anyway, back to Semichem… I will definitely be using Semichem again, there are some brilliant deals and I had really good service.
This is a bit different to the products I usually write about on my blog. I almost didn’t write this post but then thought that surely some of you also suffer from the effects of snoring?! My boyfriend has snored for his whole entire life. When we moved in together in September I was worried as when we used to see each other at weekends during uni I always struggled to sleep with his snoring. He had tried throat sprays, nose sprays, snoring strips but nothing helped. I kept hoping I would get used to his snoring when we moved in but it just didn’t happen! I couldn’t get to sleep if he was asleep before me and he would wake me up countless times during the night as his snoring was just so loud! It got to the point where I was falling asleep on the sofa in the evenings and being so tired that I could barely keep my eyes open in work. I was also getting pretty grumpy from the lack of sleep! Then he tried the Snore Mate by Helps Stop Snoring. It is amazing – and that is not an exaggeration! The Snore Mate is a mouthpiece which holds your jaw forward while you’re sleeping the keep the airways open. You put the mouthpiece in hot water before you use it the first time so that it moulds to the shape of your mouth. Nick found it a bit uncomfortable to start with and kept taking out in his sleep but within a week he was used to it. The mouth piece hasn’t stopped his snoring entirely but it is now so much quieter than it was meaning he longer wakes me up during the night. He doesn’t snore non-stop through the night any more either. We are both sleeping a million times better since Nick started using the Snore Mate as I don’t keep trying to roll him over to stop the snoring! This is the best stop snoring product and I would definitely recommend it to anyone with the same problem! The Snore Mate costs £30.99 in Boots.
A few weeks ago I ordered a canvas from HelloCanvas who I hadn’t actually heard of before but they are apparently the worlds largest creator of photo on canvas prints. I’ve been so impressed with them – my canvas arrived really quickly and it looks good. I wasn’t sure that the photo I chose would work on canvas but I actually really like it. It’s one of the photos we took in Thailand and it’s nice to have a memory of our holiday on the wall. Not that it is actually on the wall yet – I’m going to give it to Nick for Christmas!
Our canvas is 50x70cm and cost £37. HelloCanvas do lots of other sizes though ranging and the prices range from £13 to £99. HelloCanvas remove red eye and dates for free which is handy and you can get different effects put on your photos. There is also the option to get a frame. I like buying gifts like this for people and will definitely use HelloCanvas again!
My latest pair of headphones are from Bassbuds, just plain black but with Swarovski crystal on the back making them a little different. The headphones give a really good sound quality and have a handy pause/play button towards the ear end which is good as you don’t need to keep getting your iPod/phone out of your pocket. You can also use the headphones as a hands free as there is a tiny mic as well. They come with some spare pairs of ear buds in different sizes and also a storage bag. These headphones cost £34.95. I’m really pleased with how good these are!Bassbuds are offering you lucky lot a £5 discount voucher to spend on their headphones, just enter the code BB38487.
A bit random but I just had to tell you about my new simplehuman soap dispenser – I love it! It has a motion sensor so when you put your hand underneath it dispenses just the right amount of soap depending on what volume setting your dispenser is set to. It needs four AA batteries, holds 384ml of soap and is really easy to refill. The dispenser costs £39.99 which is quite a lot so is probably the sort of thing you would buy as a gift for someone who has everything or someone who loves pointless gadgets! It’s amazing!Do you like the look of this? Would you ever buy one?