Wednesday, 9 December 2015

I'm a hopeless romantic and an even worse blogger!

Hello you might remember me, my name is Abbie or you may remember me by my alias Kittens in Top Hats or even as the elusive A written at the bottom of a post. I used to be one of those people that would blog their every move and Instagram their every breakfast plate (yeah, I was one of those types). But unfortunately life did that complicated thing of getting in the way.

I take my hat off to every single one of you hard workers that complete a day of work, uni, school, full time parenting and carry on blogging/vlogging. Because this can be a full time job in itself?! Not excusing what I have done because I love my little blog and I love every single one of you but my workload seems to be never ending especially over the last few months and there is only so much a person can take.

I've been working an awful lot and have been carrying the load a manager should but without the managers pay packet at the end of each month. I've had a lot of ups and downs within my family life  and social life as well but thankfully that has all come out on top and is the only thing pulling me through right now.

My health and my confidence has taken a real knock of late and I know I'm not the person I want to be or use to be of that matter either. When faced with a crossroads I feel like someone ran off with the map and I'm left stood there with no idea which way to turn or what to do with the best. If I've learnt anything over the last couple of months it's the following:

1) Mum tends to know best however it's best not to let her in on that fact.
2) Trust your gut.
3) Gingerbread Lattes are fantastic.



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Don't think of this post as one of those 'woe is me' pity parties because I just wanted to babble all these feelings i've had crammed in my head and truth be told, I miss you all and I miss this space.

Hopefully next time won't be so far away, much love always. A. x

Monday, 26 October 2015

Ladies who lunch

At the end of September my mum, sister and I went out for a fancy lunch at a boutique hotel on the dorset coast in Christchurch. 


It was glorious weather, the sun was shining and my glass was filled with the most luscious gin and tonic known to man. So smooth I could have drunk it all hours of the day. 


I'm a big fan of anywhere that has a special bar just for Moët and Chandon champagne. I felt like it was a day in the life of kim Kardashian. 

For starters I had a gigantic yet gorgeous cheese soufflé. 

It may not be the most aesthetically pleasing but it tasted like a creamy, cheesy cloud. It just melted on your tongue it was so good. 


Followed by roasted hake, triple cooked chips, steamed cherry tomatoes, watercress and a green peppercorn sauce. So so delicious! 


Dessert was dark chocolate brownie with a poached pear and pistachio cream. Death my chocolate indeed! 


A very ombré latte. It was too pretty to stir.


Petit fours finished off a perfect lunch. 💖 

All my love, a. X

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Hair ideas

I've had a blonde ombré hairstyle for almost a year now and as much fun I've had going blonde. At first I thought it was just a silly saying but I've honestly had such a confidence boost since doing it. I feel better, look better and it's made my skin look so much more tanned and radiant because I'm quite pale dark hair completely washes me out!! 


So for eases sake I've decided to dye my hair darker again. Not only because it's such a pain with my roots regrowth but also it looks so much less brassy in the winter months too.  

 
This is what it was like when I redyed it again about two months ago. 


Even though it's been a recent dye job I can't help but feel a bit bored by the colour already. I know it sounds bad but I get quite bored by styles quite easily! So I've found some inspiration from Pinterest on some new looks I quite like and would love to know your thoughts! 


I'm thinking of going a chocolatey brown colour with lighter brown and caramel highlights. 


I love Chrissy Teigen. Her hair looks so voluminous and bouncy here. I love the natural highlights pulled through. 


Out of all the styles I think I love this one the most. I love the lighter bits pulled through. 


This style is slightly darker and I'm not sure whether it'll wash me out. It's been so long since I've been a proper brunette! 


This one is a bit more ombré than the rest. I don't think I could for a full colour. Some highlights would definitely lift the dark. 


One thing I've noticed is that I definitely love Jessica Alba and her hair! 

What do you think? What is your favourite? 

Lots of love. A. x

DEGUSTA BOX

Hi!! I recieved another Degusta box and I think that this one may be my favourite yet! 



As you may know by now I am completely mad on packaging and I love the cute box this comes in. 


The produce is tissue wrapped and had a green sticker keeping it in place saying 'open me, eat me...try me'. I love little touches like this. 


Look at all these yummy goodies inside. I have a massive sweet tooth so just one quick glance I was already drooling!

Look at my delicious loot! I can't quite to delve into this. 


First things I picked out were these two alcoholic ciders. They are 4.5% alcohol volume. One of them is an apple cider an the other is pear which tends to be a bit sweeter. I can't wait to try. 


I got two packets of 3 Reese's peanut butter cups which are my FAVOURITE things ever! Such a guilty pleasure. If you've never tried (you don't know what you're missing) but think, a creamy peanut butter consistency in the middle encased in milk chocolate. So indulgent. I think I may use these to make some cupcakes or something similar. 


From a brand which I haven't before heard of Kents Kitchen I recieved a pot of Posh Noodles in spicy Szechuan. It's only 242 calories and perfect for a work lunch. All you need to do is pour in some boiling water, leave it for about two minutes, give it a stir and you're reading to gobble it up! 


This was from a company called Mallow and Marsh and I got a mini box of three raspberry marshmallows. I must admit these were actually eaten on the same night I opened this, they were that good. Less like a conventional marshmallow this was like a hybrid with nougat. It was airy, yet had a chewy element to it. The raspberry flavour was really nice too, it wasn't too strong which I liked but you could definitely taste it too. 


Wine gums remind me of either a) being a child and munching through a pack hoping for a black or red one. Or b) that old charlieissocoollike video on YouTube where he eats his way through about ten packets of wine gums. I was very happy to see this bag are all black and red ones aka everyone's favourites! I think I may keep this stash in my car. 


Jelly Babies are a firm favourite in my household so I'm sure these will go down a treat. Similar to the wine gums the black and red jelly babies also happen to be my favourites too. 


I got these Compete energy bites in mocha flavour. I've been thinking of getting back into running and my fitness again so this would be a perfect quick energy boost. 

 
Inside, they look like this. You can snap off a square so you can throw it in your handbag or gym bag. Each square contains 135mg of caffeine. 


I got this bottle of Sweet Sally of spiced tea. This sounds so interesting, I've never tried anything like this. I'm not entirely sure whether you can drink it just how it is or whether you can warm it up. It contains a mix of different flavours and spices so I think it would be quite warming in the winter. 


I got these two cartons of Up and Go breakfast drinks in vanilla or chocolate flavour. They are high fibre and high protein plus, like the name says, it's great for when you're up and on the go. Just shake it up and drink. 


I also got this The Olive Shop extra virgin olive oil. It came in such a nice bottle. It feels like very thick glass, which naturally I felt looked more high price (It does retail at £5) and the olive oil is sourced from Italy. 

I can't wait to try out the rest of these fab products! Hopefully I'll be able to update you with recipe posts that I've used these in. 

All my love, a. x

Monday, 21 September 2015

My biscuiteers biscuit

Hello you beautiful little cinnamon swirls! I got sent a lovely package from the wonderful people at Biscuiteers. If you haven't heard of them (where have you been?!) they are a company with the best mission statement in my opinion "why send followers when you can send biscuits instead?" I agree! Nothing says I miss you or congratulations or just hello like a parcel of gorgeous biccys! 



First off. Let's appreciate the cutest packaging ever. I am a complete sucker for stuff like this and this won me over straightaway!  

 
Pulling back the lid was a piece of fuschia pink tissue paper held in place by a white sticker. The sticker has a rolling pin on it with Biscuiteers written on it in white writing. I love these small touches. 

OHMYGODDDD

look how yummy this looks! A perfect unicorn biscuit finished off with the sleekest rainbow mane. This biscuit is more beautiful and perfect than me. And to top it off too it tasted amazing! The biscuit wasn't too soft and wasn't too hard, in the words of Goldilocks it was just right. 

I would definitely order something off of the Biscuiteers website in the future. I think it would be a perfect gift for any occasion or even just for a little treat for yourself! 

All my love, A. X

Sunday, 6 September 2015

Family wedding.

I went to my first proper wedding yesterday and it was honestly magical from start to finish. So much so I'm genuinely considering a career as a professional wedding guest! Just imagine how much fun it would be to get all dressed up, share the love and happiness, eat good food and have a boogie to finish off! Perfect career path if you ask me!


Classy toilet selfie before hand!  

 I felt quite emotional just as a guest so I can't even imagine how it must have felt to been one of the bridal party. To marry the one you love, surrounded by a room full of people who love you and care deeply for you. I feel I could only count my true friends on one hand so I'd struggle to fill a pew in a church let alone the whole place!  But I have plenty of time to worry about that type of thing yet I'd like to think! 


Congratulations to the Bride and Groom! 💗

Monday, 31 August 2015

My Swig flask.

Hello you lovely lovely people! I am currently sat horizontally on my sofa, completely chilled on the last Bank Holiday Monday off until Christmas. Eek! A few weeks ago I was contacted by the very kind people over at Swig Flasks about collaborating with them. As you may have noticed by now I am a huge fan of nicely packaged items. 



All good things come in blue boxes and this just proves this. It's a light blue box with a black ribbon tied in a bow around it. The brand name Swig is embossed in a bold, black font. 


Inside it goes on and gets even more gorgeous. The hip flask is a solid stainless steel and has a vibrant orange leather pouch. The pouch has a lovely feel to it and has a clean black stitching around it. 

The hipflask lays on top of a stunning paisley print padding. Adding to the modern, stylish aesthetics. I feel very cool just looking at these photos. 


Engraved on the side of these flasks is the word Swig and then directly beneath this is also your Swig society identification number. 


Above is the flask completely naked. So clean looking and smart. Perfect for any occasion I think!


SLEEK. 


I am so massively impressed with everything to do with Swig Flasks. They have been absolute dream to work with. Their products are absolutely gorgeous and could be ideal gifts for a birthday, graduation, wedding or anniversary. you can buy the flask naked or you can get it in a pouch in a variety of colours. 

I have loved writing this post and hope you're just as impressed with them as I am. Whatever the weather, whatever the occasion I think this the perfect accompaniment alongside my phone and purse in my handbag.  So thank you very very much Swig Flasks it has been an absolute pleasure and I wish you all the best in the future I'm sure you'll go from strength to strength! 

All my love, A. X 

Saturday, 29 August 2015

My third Degustabox!!

Good morning my little rays of sunshine, how are you all on this beautiful Saturday morning? I for one am having a lovely day of work and am making the most of it. I have spent all of this morning catching up with vlogs and blogs alike and will spend the afternoon with my family and doggy down by the coast.

A few days ago I was very lucky to receive yet another Degustabox. I admit and I do apologize that the last one I received I only posted about a few days ago due to my poor internet problems at home. Upon opening this box I decided that the contents is probably my favourite to date and I'm very excited to share with you all. As you all might be aware by now I have the worlds biggest sweet tooth. Ever. In a restaurant I'd always much rather opt for dessert over starter. At the cinema I'd get either popcorn or a humongous tango ice blast over nachos or crisps. So when I saw all the delectable sweet treats in this months box I was so excited to try them all.


I love the giant box the Degustabox comes in. It's always so exciting opening this to see what treasures lie inside. 


The first item I saw was a box of Barilla Penne Rigate pasta. I love pasta, italian food and basically any carbohydrate! I love this pasta shape it's great for pasta salads too.


I'm very very excited to try these three sachets of Dr.Oetker mug cakes. They came in lemon, rich chocolate and chocolate chip flavour. All you need to do is put 60ml of milk into a mug and then mix  a whole sachet into the mug. Mix until smooth and then microwave for a minute and then its ready to eat!


I got two packets of Ryvita's in sesame seed or cracked black pepper flavour. I used to love Ryvita when I was at school. It's a good source of fibre and you can make so many different flavour combinations with numerous different toppings. 


I received a jar of Barilla Arrabbiata pasta sauce which also happens to be my favourite. In our local italian I always have their penne arrabbiata. It's a chunky tomato sauce with chilli in too. It's got quite a kick to it, so if you like spice you'll definitely like this I think. 


I love herbal teas. My favourite has to be lemon and ginger as its so refreshing. I'm really looking forward to trying this Williamson tea made from Kenyan black tea which is so rich in antioxidants and ginger tea. 


I've tried these Bahlsen choco leibniz biscuits before but with a plain biscuit and dark chocolate coating so I'm very intrigued to try ones with a cocoa biscuit and a white chocolate coating. 


Also by Bahlsen are these very yummy Pick Up! biscuits. It has a thick layer of dark chocolate in the middle surrounded by two deliciously buttery biscuits. 


Life Tonics is a relatively new brand to me. After looking on their website they stock a variety of different flavours of coconut water. This one above has added mint which I think sounds amazing, I love coconut water and mint so I'm looking forward to trying this. It'd be a great addition to a smoothie mix too.


Above is a selection of different Walkers shortbreads I got. Typical to the Scottish heritage I love the tartan pattern on the packaging. I got chocolate chip flavour, plain all butter shortbread fingers, fruit and lemon shortbread and the oats and honey flavour too. I love how they come in handy small packages, perfect to pop in your handbag when you're on the go. 


I got another package of the Fru Snax this time its peach slices with vanilla yogurt. They are only 47 calories and the produce is freeze dried so all the nutrients you'd usually get from the fruit remain too!  


I got another bottle of my fave Little Miracles. I really liked this one last time. It's crammed full of flavour from the pomegranate and acai. The green tea element means its so good for you whilst also giving you a good boost of energy and caffeine too.


Above is a can of Scheckters organic energy which is quite similar to the Little Miracles one. It's full of fruit juices like lemon, pomegranate and elderberry juice. It also contains natural energizers like green tea, guarana and ginseng to help you have a quick boost of energy.


I'm not a baker nor a cook so I'm very much looking forward to trying this Delicious Alchemy chocolate brownie mix. This is a gluten and dairy free mix and you really have to do is add one or two ingredients. I will definitely write a post about this one! 

I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did. I can't wait to share more with you. All my love and have a fabulous August bank holiday weekend. Love, A. x