Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Pintest: Hair bows and "the ultimate office hairstyle"

Welcome (dun dun dun) to my Pintest themed series! In an effort to keep posting regularly while I'm on prac (first day today, yay!), my thoughts immediately turned to a series set of posts, and Pintesting sounded fun.

Today? I'm testing two hair pins which I've had on my boards for ages - the bow bun and "easy" hair for work. For your reference: my hair's just below shoulder level with layers.

First up? The bow bun.

Image sourced from Pinterest

...ok, so I didn't look that glamorous, but this was my result:

Bow bun!

I made a bow on my head. With added flyaways simply because my hair's slightly layered. My poor brother, Dad and dog (not joking) had to deal with me running around going "LOOK WHAT I DID TO MY HAIR ISN'T THIS AWESOME". I regret nothing. It's not exactly the most practical hairstyle ever, (it's a bow and I claim to be an adult some times) but it's still easy and a useful skill just in case.

Secondary style: this one:

Image sourced from Pinterest

Ok, this one I was excited for- a hairstyle that's not a ponytail that I could wear to school? Count me in.

"Easy" office hair results

"Easy" office hair

Back of the "easy" office hair

Results: well, maybe? Not a huuuuge fan of how much the hair tie shows at the back, but I suppose it's cute?
Might give it another go on a future date to see how well it works with a hat.

Any other hair pins I should give a go? Ones that are wearable with a hat would be right at the top of my to-do list. Let me know below!

Catch you next time,

Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Review: The Desolation of Smaug

Title: The Desolation of Smaug
Director: Peter Jackson

Image from Rabble Rouse the World

...I'll try to do this review as honestly and as intelligently as possible. Otherwise we might end up with a giant "SQUEEPRETTYDRAGONISPRETTYORCSARESTILLTERRIFYINGGANDALFISABADASS" sort of post. Sadly that is a fairly accurate description of me at the end of the movie (happiness also aided by the fact I received news of what grade I have for my final prac and internship, and it's pretty much the exact grade I wanted. But I digress).

The Desolation of Smaug is the second part of Bilbo Baggins's journey to the Lonely Mountain with the company of dwarves, in order to reclaim the throne for Thorin Oakenshield. Only issue is, there's a giant dragon guarding the treasure. The movie doesn't start exactly where we left off, but 12 months prior- when Gandalf meets Thorin Oakenshield in The Prancing Pony to convince him to claim his home back. In this mountain / giant treasure pile is hidden the Arkenstone- which Thorin would have to find and use to unite the dwarves once more.

Going into the movie, I was rather skeptical about seeing Smaug in all of his pretty dragonness for the first time. ...He's awesome. And gigantic. So in my opinion, he's an awesome dragon. I most definitely enjoyed this movie - all three hours of it. It didn't seem too long, and I sat there appreciating all of the detail put into the film and enjoyed some genuine laugh-out-loud moments.

On the inclusion of Legolas and Tauriel - I'm actually ok with it. The logic that "well Legolas would've been around anyway, so why not?" actually makes sense to me, and besides. He skated down stairs on the back of an Orc. Badass. Tauriel I'm also so ok with - sat down and thought about the number of females (if we exclude her for the time being) in the movie, and that left me with two: Bard's daughters. (ignoring 1-line females and extras) Which is the reason why I'm ok with her creation and inclusion.

If you have't seen it - go see it. It's worth everything. I'm so excited to see the final installment of the trilogy, and to finally re-read the book for the first time in around a decade.

Catch you next time,

Friday, January 17, 2014

The Review: Torn

First review of the year - let's do this!

Title: Torn
Author: Karen Turner
Genre: historical romance

Let me preface this by saying: I love this genre of book - it's pretty much my go-to.
I was also lucky enough to win my copy through Redcliffe Style!

Now we've gotten that out of the way...

Torn follows 14 year old Alex who's entire world is uprooted when her mother returns home from escapades in the court heavily pregnant with her new fiance and his two older children in tow. These new arrivals shake her existence and everything that she's held dear to her during her lifetime. Patrick, one of her new step brothers begins to drive a wedge between her and her brother Simon; however Alex seems to find herself drawn to him regardless.

While entering into womanhood, she realises her affections for Patrick is much more than solely sibling fondness. With turbulent times ahead both for herself and England, Alex finds herself betrayed in the worst possible way.

I'll admit, it took me a while to get into the book - but once I was into it, it was rather difficult to put down. It's a well written book, and I found myself getting rather attached to Alex; when something unfavorable happened to her I was genuinely feeling sorry for her. The ending is rather abrupt and unfinished but then I did some Googleing, and it is book one of a series.

It does make a fabulous Summer read, and I would highly recommend it.

Catch you next time!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Nothing quite beats...

...bread fresh from the oven.

17. Learn how to bake bread.
Bread = awesome.

Also because it's number 17 on my 23 before 23 list. Mostly because bread is awesome (these are foccacias, by the way!). Complements of (essentially, don't judge) a "packet mix" of bread, which consisted of bread flour and a packet of yeast; this saved me from having to get new yeast, yay!

Italian herb and cheese; Rosemary and garlic

My pick of flavors? Italian herbs and cheese on one, and rosemary and garlic on the other.

Rosemary and garlic

Rosemary and garlic
two sprigs of rosemary
garlic powder
olive oil

Roughly chop rosemary and scatter across uncooked bread. Sprinkle garlic powder evenly across the uncooked bread, and drizzle with olive oil.

Italian herb and cheese

Italian herbs and cheese
(herb combination chosen from the back of a dried Italian herb mix)
Chunk of cheese

Roughly chop all of the above herbs. Shouldn't need more than 2 sprigs of each, depending on taste. Grate cheese, and scatter herbs and cheese on bread. Drizzle with olive oil.

My personal favorite? The Italian herbs and cheese. Mostly because I'm not a big fan of the rosemary as it turns out, though with spaghetti? Best. Thing. Ever.

What are your favorite bread topping? Let me know, and I'll give it a go!
Catch you next time,

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Happy End of The First Week of 2014!

Hope you had a wonderful Christmas and new year!

To explain why I haven't had an actual post so far this year is this: I've decided to focus on planning ahead and making sure I'm proud of each and every single post (and item I create) rather than going "OMG IT'S TUESDAY I NEED TO MAKE SOMETHING".

...Which happens pretty much every Tuesday.

So this year, I'm planning ahead and (hopefully) writing loads of posts which I'm super proud of. One thing which I did love doing was a series-post (refer to the Christmas just gone!) so there's plans in the works to do that!

My current sewing story? Bought 3m of bias binding to trim the hem of my circle skirts, and am around 15cm (yeah you read that right) short. Did not think I'd be using that much bias binding...

Meanwhile, I'm most active on Instagram (currently participating in January's photo a day challenge), but feel free to follow me whereever (links in the sidebar!) while I get ready for a good year!

See you soon,

Monday, December 30, 2013

23 before 23: 6 month update!

Back in August I posted about 23 things that I wanted to achieve before I hit 23 next year (read about it here). Since we're at the 6 month mark, I thought an update was in store!

Writing this post and reading over my list I'm realising how much I've got to achieve - school holidays now, time to get busy! So far I've achieved...

12. Spend a day at the beach
Check! Was a gorgeous day and both myself and my boyfriend came back without being completely roasted. Considering how pale we both are, that was a surprise.

23 before 23 - number 12~

19. Find a signature makeup look
It only occurred to me the other day that I'd done this - I <3 my winged liner and bright lip.

20. Read 2 "classic" novels
Done and done!
Clearly I've gotten lazy with my book reviewing, haha. I've since read The Great Gatsby, Little Women and am currently marathoning my way through Anna Karenina.

I've noticed it just seems like I'm not a Jane Austen fan but have enjoyed all of the others that I've read. Next on my list? The Odessey!

21. Spend more time with friends
So happy with my progress with this! I've met a whole bunch of new friends and have been trying to spend more time with my friends. Still feel there's more progress to be made, but I'm actually motivated now :)

22. Find that perfect shade of red lipstick
DONE! By accident, too. Got my November Bellabox (each month they send you a themed box filled with beauty themed goodies), and in it was a red lip crayon! I'm 100% in love with it, and (...ignoring the fact it isn't a lipstick as such) it's pretty much perfect for me! Here, have a link! (please note: non-sponsored, I just love the product) I also picked up my very first MAC lipstick in a gorgeous red, too :)

And that's it. Hmm so many more things to do, and six months remaining. Guess I'd better get on it!

Hope you have a fabulous new year, and see you in 2014 for a fabulous year!!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Christmas Movies, part 2!

Bring on part 2! (and the final post of my 5 for Christmas!)

Remember, green is a movie that I've seen before, and red is a movie that I haven't!

 The Santa Clause
Stars: Tim Allen, Eric Lloyd, Wendy Crewson, Judge Reinhold, David Krumholtz, Peter Boyle
Watch it with: slightly older children who are slightly sceptical about Santa, and understand what a “clause” is.
TiniRating (TR): 6/10
Summary: Scott Calvin is a Grinch. So when Santa accidentally falls off his roof (and promptly disappears), Scott puts on his suit, unintentionally accepting “The Santa Clause”.
Quickie Opinion: Definitely a feel-good Christmas movie! I really did appreciate the little “adults only” references- like the hot chocolate being “shaken, not stirred".

 The Nightmare before Christmas
Stars: Danny Elfman, Chris Sarandon, Catherine O'Hara, William Hickey, Glenn Shadix, Ken Page
Watch it with: Anyone. Except for the children who are easily scared of course.
TR: 8/10
Summary: Jack, the Pumpkin King from Halloween Town has grown tired of the same thing, year in, year out. While wandering through the forest, he stumbles upon a portal to the various other holiday-towns, and settles on Christmas Town. Needless to say... cue the misadventures and subsequent attempt to take over Christmas Town!
Quickie Opinion: I can’t believe this was released in ’93! Also that I hadn’t seen it yet! Guys, the music’s fabulous (Jack’s song “What’s This?” reminded me of Jenna Marbles’ “What are This”, haha) and the story’s definitely giggle-worthy (not to mention Zero is adorable!) – watch this!!

Home Alone
Stars: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern, John Heard, Catherine O'Hara
Watch it with: those friends who don’t mind a bit of reminiscing on the 90’s or kids who appreciate a good giggle
TR: 7.5/10
Summary: Kevin’s family accidentally leave him at home when they
Quickie Opinion: great for a dose of nostalgia- I grew up watching this movie at Christmas time! Probably why I think so highly of it- though it is still enjoyable after all these years!

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
Stars: Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Randy Quaid, Juliette Lewis, Johnny Galecki, John Randolph, Diane Ladd, E.G. Marshall, Doris Roberts, William Hickey, Mae Questel, Miriam Flynn, Nicholas Guest, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Watch it with: those who appreciate a little slapstick comedy
TR: 5/10
Summary: All of the misadventures of having your entire family over for Christmas, National Lampoon style.
Quickie Opinion: “Eh” sums it up – I was amused in some parts, but for more I was sitting there making a facial expression similar to: o.O

Die Hard
Stars: Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Alexander Godunov, Bonnie Bedelia
Watch it with: your dad!             
TR: 6/10
Summary: On a trip to California to reconcile with his wife and driven to her work’s Christmas party, everyone in the building is taken hostage. McClane manages to escape armed only with a handgun...
Quickie Opinion: It surprised me when Die Hard was considered a Christmas movie... Turns out it is. Alan Rickman is deliciously evil (that’s a thing now), and while this isn’t usually my sort of movie I quite enjoyed it!

Miracle on 34th Street
Stars: Maureen O'Hara, John Payne, Natalie Wood, Edmund Gwenn, Porter Hall, Gene Lockhart
Watch it with: older children or people who seem to have forgotten the real meaning of Christmas!
TR: 8/10
Summary: The actual Kris Kringle is annoyed that the Santa in the Macy’s parade is a drunk and complains to the (mildly grinchy) parade manager, Doris. Being a fabulous Santa, he’s hired to be the Santa at Macy’s, and attempts to ungrinch-ify Doris and provide her daughter with the ability to imagine.
Quickie Opinion: Fabulous! Equally as enjoyable as the modern movies but definitely more classy. Will totally watch this again next Christmas!

It’s a Wonderful Life
Stars: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Henry Travers
Watch it with: despite the trigger of suicide, the family!               
TR: 4/10
Summary: George Bailey is a man who has given up on his dreams to try and help others- and on Christmas eve his thought about suicide prompts an intervention of his still-wingless guardian angel to show him all the lives he’s touched.
Quickie Opinion: ...it starts out on such a depressing note! (Please be aware that I’m hesitant when watching classics, as I’ve found they don’t meet my overhyped expectations)  That’s the worst about overhyped movies- I frankly found this one quite dull...

 Meet Me in St Louis
Stars: Judy Garland, Margaret O'Brien, Mary Astor, Lucille Bremer, Tom Drake, Marjorie Main
Watch it with: anyone and everyone who likes musicals!
TR: 7/10
Summary: It’s all about love (focussing on the two eldest daughters) and waiting for the St Louis fair at the end of the year!

Quickie Opinion: Absolutely loved it- it’s definitely a fabulous musical and is officially one of my favourites J

Well, I'm all dried up on Christmas movies for the time being... Hope it all makes sense!

What's your all time favorite Christmas movie? Let me know below :)

For part one, click here!
See you tomorrow,


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