Wednesday, 16 May 2018

The Snack Diaries | Part Eight

Doisy & Dam Date & Himalayan Pink Salt Milk Chocolate
(From Too Good Farm Shop, £1.45 for 40g)
This was a special treat purchase for me. The small portion gave me a chance to try out the unusual flavour, with a piece each for the family, the taste was great and more delicate than I imagined. It’s organic, made in the UK, soya and gluten free. The packaging is gorgeous too!

Bradbury’s Apple Fruit & Grain Baked Cereal Bars
(From Home Bargains, £0.89 for 6 bars)
These were an experiment for me, they are priced extremely reasonably and I’m glad I gave them a shot. The fruit taste was a little artificial and a bit too sweet for me though. I would still say try them for the price, great to put in your lunch box or to cut up into pieces and have with yogurt.

Nine Carob, Sesame & Flax Seed Snack Bars
(From Too Good Farm Shop, £1.99 for 4 bars)
These were my favourite from the four choices, extremely tasty with the chocolate on top but they didn’t feel too sweet or unhealthy. They work out 50p per bar, so they are okay to have once in a while. The packaging is very modern too!

Whitworths Yogurt Coated Banana Chips
(From Poundland, £1.00 for 150g)
Poundland snacks are so great, they offer such a wide variety of nuts, seeds and fruit sometimes coated in either yogurt or chocolate. The banana chips were a bit too crunchy but the yogurt coating was tasty. I prefer their chocolate coated raisins and yogurt coated peanuts, there is something to please everyone in the range.

I enjoyed getting back into the snack series posts. 
Let me know what you have been snacking on lately! :-) Xx

Thursday, 26 April 2018

Superdrug Vitamin E Day Cream

Today I’m going to be reviewing a day cream that I purchased and have been testing out in the last month. I went with the Superdrug Vitamin E brand because they have a budget friendly range and all the Superdrug own brands are cruelty-free and have the leaping bunny logo. This item is also vegan. The Vitamin E range often have an offer of buy one get one half price and I bought two of this product, one for my mum and myself. The original price for one day cream is £2.99 for 100ml which is still affordable. There are a few other bits in the line that I might like to try as well such as the face wipes and the night cream.

I have been using this day cream often since I bought it. One of the reasons I was attracted to the product was because it has a SPF15, and is perfect to apply onto the face in spring and summer. A little product goes along way so I think the tub will last me a very long time. The cream is a white in colour but sinks into the skin quickly and with no trace afterwards. It works well with my sensitive skin, and I’ve seen a noticeable improvement after frequent use. The fragrance can be described as a light floral scent which is acceptable. My mum recommends this product too after giving it to her as a gift. Buy online here.

If you are after a new day cream, I would suggest this one to my blog readers! 
What skincare products have you been using lately? :-) Xx

Friday, 20 April 2018

Co-op Coconut & Honey Hair Products

Today I wanted to share a review of a shampoo and conditioner I’ve been trialling. I’ve been looking into supermarket own brands and I recently bought some products by the Co-op. It’s lovely to see that Co-op’s offering is both inexpensive and cruelty-free. I spent £1.09 for each 300ml bottle which seems really great value. The products have the leaping bunny logo as well as the V no animal ingredients logo. The packaging is simple yet striking with the graphics and is also recyclable. I can imagine most people enjoying the very pleasant, refreshing scent of coconut and honey.

Now onto the details of how the actual product rated. The shampoo was my favourite scent out of the two, and the consistency was just right and lathered well. It made my hair manageable in the shower and later left my hair squeaky clean and shiny. The conditioner was lovely too, and again made my hair manageable and in good condition. The coconut and honey fragrance lingered on afterwards. A little product went along way with both.

Overall these items were a success, and I enjoyed giving them a go. The Co-op have some other haircare choices in their line so I think they are worth a look into. If you are just getting into cruelty-free, these could be a good way to start.

Have you tried supermarket own brand beauty/toiletry products before? 
What’s your current favourite shampoo and conditioner? :-) Xx

Saturday, 14 April 2018

My Easter Weekend Photo Diary & Chat

It’s been a little while since my last blog post, so hope you are all well and had a good Easter. I wanted to share with you some clips from what I got up to. On Good Friday, my friend and I went to Saltburn-by-the-sea for a morning out. We had a wander around the centre and discovered The Lillian Daph Store which I hadn’t been in before but it was a really cool shop, with many floors and lots of interesting homeware pieces. I’m hoping to pop in again, just for another look and maybe to capture some more photos.

Later we went into The Sitting Room café, which I’ve visited quite a few times now. They seemed to have updated the menu, I had a rose hot chocolate and it was unreal. I really want to go back to try the other kinds of hot chocolate they had. The staff are so welcoming, and the interior is super cool.

I didn’t do much more until Easter Sunday, my family and I jumped in our campervan and headed to the local woods for a walk and a brew. It was so quiet when we got there in the morning. Later in the day I had a different friend pop by for a catch up which was lovely. Easter Monday was just a chill day.

How was your Easter?
Let me know if you got any Easter eggs! :-) Xx

Monday, 2 April 2018

Easter Rocky Road & Happy Easter

Wishing you all had a lovely Easter, and whatever your plans hope you enjoy the last day of the long weekend. Today I’m back with another baking post, and I’ve been making Easter themed rocky road. I used the rocky road squares recipe from GoodFood 101 Cakes & Bakes book by the BBC. This baking book is particularly great for sweet treats, they have a lot of indulgent recipes perfect for special occasions.

I made a large batch, which after the photos were taken I cut into snack sized bites. I added marshmallows and walnuts into the chocolate mixture, and used everyday milk chocolate from Aldi which was melted on a hob. I decorated with Aldi’s own brand mini eggs which I can’t fault in comparison to the Cadburys choice. I tried to keep the ingredient prices cheap and cheerful and the cost added up to about the price of one rocky road in a posh café.

My bake seemed to go down well and I recommend you give it a go. I would love to know if you have done any Easter posts, I’ll do my best to visit them if you leave a link.

Speak soon,
H x

Saturday, 31 March 2018

Recent Reads Reviewed #6

It's Not How Good You Are, It's How Good You Want to Be by Paul Arden - 5/5

I’ve owned and loved Paul Arden books for years so decided to re-read the three in my collection. This one is the first in the series and is basically like a pocket guide to success in life and business. I really resonated with the author’s words relating to creativity and design although I could see this book appealing to a broad range of people. It was also an extremely quick, easy read as are the others.

Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite by Paul Arden - 5/5

Sometimes sequels can be a bit of a disappointment but Arden’s second book was equally as good. The author continued with his fresh, innovative ideas around graphic design and life. I can’t recommend the series enough.

God Explained in a Taxi Ride by Paul Arden - 5/5

I loved that the author tried something different with this book, I thought the concept of learning about religion in a taxi journey portion was excellent. His explanations were made very clear and accessible. I still give this book five stars but it’s my least favourite out of the three I’ve reviewed.

Infamous by Lauren Conrad - 3/5

This is the final book in the fame game series and holds a special place in my heart for sentimental reasons. I’ve slowly been making my way through Lauren Conrad’s fiction series as a light read on holiday which has taken me forever to complete. The basic plot focuses on friends living in Hollywood being filmed as part of a reality hit show which is loosely based on The Hills. It’s a fluffy, escapist read which at times I enjoyed but was dissatisfied with the ending sadly.

We Were On a Break by Lindsey Kelk - 5/5

I went into this book with mediocre expectations but was delighted to find it had quite a bit of emotional depth to it, interactions between the characters were written well, particularly Liv’s set of friends who had me in the giggles. The basic plot revolves around a break up between Liv and Adam and as the story progresses we see whether they find a way back to each other or not. I heart this novel, it would make a perfect holiday read!

Do you prefer reading fiction or non-fiction? 
Will you be doing any reading over the Easter weekend? :-) Xx

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

White Chocolate Cornflake Cakes with Mini Eggs

Hi and welcome to my first Easter inspired blog post for 2018. I’ve had the baking bug lately and have been busy in the kitchen making things for Easter. I first started browsing inspiration on Google images and someone had made cornflake cakes but with white chocolate. I thought this was a great adaption to a classic. I then referred to my Cakes & Cookies for beginners book by Usborne cookery school for a basic cornflake cake recipe, I kept exactly to this but instead of using milk chocolate I used white chocolate. Afterwards I decorated with mini eggs which was my own twist.

I hadn’t made cornflake cakes in what seems like forever, I forgot how simple they are! I was pleased that my white chocolate alternative was a success, it gave the recipe a slightly different look and taste. I can see myself experimenting further next time, for example I could use a different cereal or replace the mini eggs with some other themed treat. If you are wanting to whip up something quick for Easter I recommend you give these a go. You could even wait until after the weekend to use up left over chocolate eggs.

Are you going to make any Easter treats this holiday? 
Wishing you a lovely week whatever you are doing. :-) Xx

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

The Smeltery Restaurant at Mima Review

Following my previous post I wanted to share with you my thoughts on The Smeltery, a stylish restaurant part of the Mima gallery in Middlesbrough providing wholesome food and a great atmosphere. My friend and I were visiting the art exhibitions and we stopped for a bite to eat, I was really excited to try this eatery as I’ve seen some positive reviews on it.

We both had a chick pea, potato and greens salad, which I found unusual and very appetising. I’ve never really had anything like that before so it made a lovely change. The prices were fairly reasonable and the décor was on trend and arty. Overall I would love to go again, particularly to try other things on the menu, they seemed to have some interesting options that I imagine change quite regularly.

I give the restaurant 5/5 stars and would recommend you give it a go if you are in the area. It makes a great afternoon particularly if you check out the Mima art gallery as well which is free. Click here for the official restaurant website and here for the Mima website.

Does this look like a place you would like to visit for a meal?
Have you been anywhere interesting lately? I would love to know! :-) Xx

Monday, 12 March 2018

Review and Tour of Middlesbrough Mima Art Gallery

The Mima, short for Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art is a large art gallery in Middlesbrough centre square. I went with my friend before Christmas, to view the latest exhibitions and have lunch in their restaurant. I enjoy visiting it when I can, and I had a lovely afternoon with my friend. I’ve been a visitor to the Mima for a while now, I used to pop-in more regularly when I was at the local University. It’s probably one of my favourite galleries in the area, the exhibitions are always changing, so you can expect to see new things quite frequently.

The one we saw was full of colour, striking imagery and cheerful pottery. The exhibition spaces are very spacious, and there are many floors with different things being shown. They often have classes, workshops and the occasional craft fair too. I would recommend you visit if you are in the area, it is free entry throughout and there is a restaurant called The Smeltery as you walk in. I will be doing a review of that soon. More info on Mima here.

Do you like to visit art galleries? 
Have you heard of the Mima before? :-) Xx