New Beginings

Hi guys!

So I’ve had a little break from blogging while I sort a few things out. However, now i’m ready to return, it didn’t feel right to just forget about my last post and continue with my usual types of blogposts. I am well aware that it was a super negative post as i was in a bad place at the time, but now i’ve found some light at the end of the tunnel – here is a new, more positive update post for you all.

I honestly don’t even know where to start, these last few months have been a whirl wind. Mentally i’m in a much more positive, happy place. Although I was super skeptical about starting anti-depressants, they have really helped me. I truthfully believe I wouldn’t still be here had I not pushed the doctor to give me some, they have been a litteral life saver.

Next, after what feels like a long search, I finally found the perfect job for me! I tried everything from waitressing to retail, but nothing felt completely right. I just felt so lost which didn’t help things, but eventually I stumbled across the most amazing company and was lucky enough to get the role of a full time Support Worker. I start in a weeks time and I am so excited, although it is a complete career change I just know in my heart this is what i’m meant to do. My new boss believes in me, and I genuinely want to help people so they never have to feel as low as I have. This is a massive turning point for me both career wise and financially, so I cant wait!

Finally, I just feel more like myself again. Before I was rotting in bed not doing anything, paralysed with anxiety. With the help of meds, family and friends, I am doing so much better! I’m motivated, enjoy activities ive always loved such as going to the gym and baking, and i’ve got a much more objective, calm way of looking at things for the most part.

Life is just all falling into place, and i’m so excited to get back into blogging – especially as its practically the festive season! I will try and schedule some posts so I can upload once a week like normal, but my new job will be quite full on so please bare with me if I miss an upload. I need to find my work, life balance now my working hours are massively increased.

Finally, thank you guys for sticking by me! It means the world to me, your kind words havent gone unnoticed and I appreciate it very much. Thank you!

Next week will be a normal post, but until then, take care!

~ Emma

Im not okay.

Hi guys. Before I start i’d like to say this is definitely not one of my usual posts. This post will discuss depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts. If that triggers you, this is your warning to please click off the page now. I have lots of other lighter content you may enjoy instead. Thank you.

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So ive been thinking about this a lot lately. Ive tried writting it out lots of times but nothing ever sits right with me. But today im going to try a different approach, im litteraly going to write as i think, no fancy editing or anything. This is just me having a raw, honest chat, in the hopes it helps me as well as one of you.

I am not okay.

I havent been okay for months, it began around september 2019 and has progressively got worse, with life changes and the virus playing a big part. But its also fluctuated, i fell into a large depressive episode from september 2019 – february 2020. Things improved and i felt better, i started a new job in march and thought that was it. However from april 2020 onwards, ive been really low.

Ive had no motivation, spent a lot of time sleeping away worries, had mostly anxious nights, stopped excersizing and eating well, as well as lost all of my confidence and self esteem. In the end it impacted my work severly, and I was encouraged to see my gp and therapist. On september 18th 2020, i got diagnosed with moderate depression and anxiety.

I guess this takes us to present day. Honestly, i feel so lost. My work hours have been cut to the bars minimum, and ive lost all interest in that job anyway. Ive tried to look for new things.. yet im not sure what i want to do yet. Do i quit my current role, or is depression making me feel that way? My therapist thinks its down to depression, yet ive been put on a long waiting list for cbt so havent discussed too much yet. I just dont know what to do.

Ive also been offered anti-depression tablets. I keep hearing the phrase ” it gets worse before it gets better” when people talk about those.. and thats what puts me off. My mind scares me, i have a lot of dark thoughts at the moment… i dread to think where i’ll be if i get any worse.

But I need something, as i keep having anxiety attacks in my sleep and sad, suicidal thoughts. Lots of them, all very loud and pushy. I need help right now… not 4-5 weeks down the line. I just want everything to stop, but i cant see any way out.

I dont know where im going with this. I just feel like a burden if i discuss this with friends. This is just my place to vent.

I just feel sad, and i dont know when or how ill get better. I dont even know where ill be in 3 months time. I just thought its better to be honest and explain where ive been – as you guys deserve it.

Its just one day at a time i guess. But until then, thats where im at.

My productive morning routine

Hey guys!

I don’t know about you, but morning routines, evening routines and day-in-the-life vlogs are definitely my favourite thing at the moment. I love being a little bit nosy and seeing how other people start and end their day, and how it may be different from my own routine. Today I thought I’d have a go myself, so lets get started.

Truthfully, the first thing I do when I wake up is pick up my phone and have a little ( or long ) scroll through social media. I just like to take these moments to reply to any messages I received during the night, and briefly update myself on what’s going on in the world right now.

When i’m finished scrolling, I get up and make my bed. This step is absolutely non-negotiable, because it means that i’m done sleeping and the day is starting whether my grumpy, pre-caffeinated self likes it or not. If I leave my bed a mess, it can be so easy to just crawl back in and go back to sleep, then before you know it you’ve wasted the best part of the morning. Plus, it always feels nicer getting into a made bed, rather than a messy one, at the end of the day.

I then stumble downstairs in my zombie like state, and make myself either a cup of tea or coffee. Tea is for most normal mornings, and coffee is for the odd occasions when i’m really struggling to so need something stronger to get me going.

If its a weekend or day off work, then i’ll start my morning excersize after my coffee has gone down. I usually do a 30 minute burst of hiit, however it depends how I feel on the day and how much time I have. I then will have a quick shower, brush my teeth and get dressed before having breakfast ( at the moment, it’s either shreddies or porridge with banana) as i’m usually starving at this point.

Finally, I’ll apply some light makeup ( very much similar to my minimal makeup routine), and put my hair up with a cute scrunchie, then head out of the door to start my day.

That’s all guys, although this was a bit of a different post I really hope you enjoyed it! What’s one part of your routine that you can’t go without?

Take care

~ Emma x

Homemade Chicken Pasta Bake

Hi guys!

So this year, i’ve really tried to make more of an effort with cooking meals. I’ve always made excuses like ” I don’t have time to cook” or ” I can bake, but i’m no good at cooking” but decided that if I want to loose weight and be healthier, then I need to start cooking things from scratch. Anyway, I love pasta – you can never go wrong with it. So after watching a Jade Billington vlog where she made a sausage and pepperoni cheesy pasta bake ( Sounds yummy, but no one in my house would like it except for me) I decided to make my own, but adapting it a little bit to suit my family. Heres how I made it.

Ingredients:

  • Pasta ( I didn’t measure it, I just did it by eye)
  • Sunflower Oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Paprika
  • Chicken
  • Tomato Ragu
  • Mature cheddar cheese.

Instructions:

Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees. Put some pasta in a pan and add sunflower oil (or any other cooking oil you may have) into a pan, before adding a pinch of salt and boiling water. Leave the pasta to simmer for 20 minutes.

Cut your chicken into small chunks so it cooks quickly ( or you can buy it readily prepared) and put it into a baking dish with a small amount of oil. Cook for 25 minutes, turning the chicken occasionally to ensure both sides are cooked.

When the pasta is soft, drain it and add a teaspoon of butter to add flavour. Mix thoughroughly. Take your chicken out of the oven, and coat it with a sprinkling of salt, pepper and paprika – before moving it to a different bowl.

In the same baking tray, pour a small amount of pasta sauce in the bottom of the dish so its covered. Then begin to layer it with pasta, then chicken, then cheese. Continue these individual layers until the pasta and chicken is gone ( It should create 2-3 layers.).

Bake for 30 minutes. Once its finished, take it out of the oven and serve immediately. I like to add serve mine with garlic bread and salad, but it’s completely up to you!

Final thoughts:

Although i’m a bit gutted that no one else wants to try this with sausage and pepperoni ( Like Jade did), it still tastes amazing with chicken and is super easy to make! I would definite recommend it for anyone who wants a easy, rich, filling and comforting meal!

Whats your favourite pasta dish? Let me know in the comments below!

Take care,

~ Emma x

Warm summer eyeshadow – Naked Honey tutorial and review.

Hey guys,

One of my favourite eyeshadow colours is gold. I have brown eyes, so find gold really compliments my eye colour. I’ve also had compliments on it, so thought it would be a good idea to get a nice gold eyeshadow pallete. I picked up the Naked Honey pallete and decided to try it out so I could share my thoughts with you guys. Lets get started.

Firstly, after applying concealer to my lid, I blended it out and dusted the shade Flyby all over the lid. Next, I took the shades sweet on a fluffy brush through my crease, before using the same fluffy brush to apply Swarm and Keeper over the top, and also run it along my bottom lash line. I then used a clean fluffy brush to soften the edges, before using my finger to apply the shade Amber all over the lid. To create a slight halo eye effect, I took the shade HBIC and tapped in the centre of my lid. Finally, I used a small angled brush and the shade String and placed this along my lash line – to make my eyelashes appear thicker before applying a black mascara.

My thoughts are that although I love my other naked palette, this one is definitely my favourite! I’ve worn this look on previous nights out and I’ve always had compliments on how it makes my eyes look – which I haven’t had with any other pallet before. I also find that these colours are quite special because they’re not just your normal matte browns and gold shimmers, they have a yellowy mustard tone to them which is something I haven’t seen before from other brands.

Aside from it being different, it’s also such an incredible quality – as all the Naked palettes are. Both the shimmers and mattes are very pigmented, blend beautifully and look stunning on the eye. They are also super creamy and buttery. My only complaint is I wish the first cream shade was matte as thats what I prefer, but I have lots of matte cream shades so that doesn’t matter really. Overall, this is a wonderful pallete that can be used all year round, and is definitely worth the money.

Whats your opinion on this pallete? Let me know in the comments below.

Take care

~ Emma x

Dating App Detox

Hi guys

So today I felt like talking about a topic that I haven’t really spoken about before, but feel it may be good to share as I feel like it isn’t spoken about too often. In May, I decided to delete all my online dating apps after nearly a 2 years of using them on and off.

This was something i’d been thinking about for a long while, however I always found excuses to keep the apps and keep swiping. I guess the constant swiping became a bit addictive. Just the thought of knowing there was so much possibility and potential out there made me feel good, and the surprise of seeing how many matches I got excited me.

I went on my fair share of dates, most of them with lovely people – however it never really worked out for a variety of reasons. Yet there was a constant ticking in my mind that from the age of 21, I needed to try harder and put myself out there to get in a relationship – because I believed that if I wasn’t married by 30 or sooner then that makes me a failure. This is still a mindset that i’m working hard to drop every day, but it really put pressure on me to keep trying with these apps for so long.

Of course, this attitude along side no dates ever really going anywhere became exhausting. I can’t pinpoint when exactly, but it became very clear that it was making me feel quite down about myself. I’d question my self worth a lot, like if I was pretty enough, or if I was good enough, or if I was ever worthy of having a healthy, loving, romantic relationship.

In may, my last… thing… ( not really a relationship but nearly a relationship) ended, so decided it was time to quit dating apps and start putting myself first. I was tired of being so down and it was becoming too much of a distraction, so didn’t feel worth it anymore. If anyone has been througb this, you’ll understand me when I say the first week was a struggle. I looked at dating apps multiple times through the week, and I downloaded a few.. but never logged into them. I just deleted them again and decided I needed to keep myself busy as it was constantly on my mind.

The second week was similar, I thought about them constantly when I was bored. I knew exactly what I was missing, and although I know they aren’t great for me – I missed the swiping and the short term feelings of excitement. Instead, I found myself having to make a conscious effort to stay busy to distract myself from these thoughts.

However, after the two week mark it got so much easier. I kept my head down and got on with my own projects, such as this blog and getting my driving theory finished. ( I passed first time, yay!). I also learnt how to cook, excersized both at home and the gym, and really made an effort to make more friends and reconnect with my existing ones. I feel like this was the massive turning point, where it all suddenly clicked in my head that I am better off taking a break from dating apps. I just needed to spend more time with myself and stop obsessing over my mental ticking clock and live in the present because I am good enough, with or without a partner.

It’s now a two months later, and i’m very proud of the progress i’ve made. I can safely say that although I definitely have lonely nights on the odd occasion ( Putting youtubers on in the background easily fixes that), I don’t miss dating apps as much anymore. I actually feel a lot more at peace without them, and even feel a relieved when I hear of guys not treating their girls right… because for once its not me and my life is actually quite peaceful without men right now. If anything, I just wish that I’d have taken this break sooner. I am very proud of what i’ve achieved so far, however I can’t help but imagine how much quicker I could’ve gotten my driving theory and other tasks out of the way – had I just put my head down sooner and stopped wasting so much time on apps.

Maybe in the future, when I have my own house and car I may consider looking into dating apps again, depending on how I feel when I get there. However i’ve had this time to reflect so will definitely take a different approach. I will ensure that I don’t neglect myself in the process, and try to not take it too seriously. Things like this are not worth feeling sad over, if it works then great, if not then no biggie – life goes on. Life will always go on, because you are really stronger than you think.

Have you guys ever been on datings apps? If so, what did you think?

Take care

~ Emma x

Making Friends In Your 20s

Hi guys!

This isn’t something I talk about much, but I over think a lot. I’m sure we all do, but honestly theres always that little part in my brain that that wonders what people might be thinking of me. Or what would happen if i’d have taken a different path in life? Would it lead me to be now married with a baby yet? Would the change mean I’d have my own house, or would my carreer be different? Would I even be blogging at all? All of these thoughts go through my mind from time to time, but one thing I really think about a lot is making friends in my 20s.

It’s tough, to say the least. Don’t get me wrong, I do have some friends and i’m super grateful for them as they’re all amazing – and I hope to keep them in my life forever. However, sometimes I wish I had more friends that were local, as life can get a little lonely sometimes.

One thing I have learnt is that it may be nice to go to more events and activities to make friends – it’s also important not to loose track of who you really are in the process. For example, I thought I would try classes at the gym to make friends however in all honesty – I dont enjoy them so prefer to continue working out alone. The same thing can be applied with drinking and nights out, as although I like a drink it’s a rare occasion, not a weekly thing.

Therefore, it’s just better to do what you feel most comfortable with and not push too hard, as it will give off a lack of genuiness – making it harder to make friends. Obviously dont ignore people, just try and get a balance so you can still enjoy what youre doing, without anything coming acrossed as forced.

Another thing I have tried is Bumble (not sponsored). I guess I was drawn to bumble because a lot of my friends are scattered across the UK and not particularly close, so I wanted friends close by. Although this can be challenging and still continues to be, it can be so worth it if you find the right person. I find starting conversations and opening up to new people quite hard in some situations, but love that bumble offers a range of starter questions in order to help get conversation going if you’re stuck. I’ve spoken to some wonderful people on there and have made a few friends, it’s just a case of remembering to get the right balance, so you’re still talking to all of your current friends as well as the new people you meet.

This next point is similar but you could also start reaching out to people on apps such as twitter and insta. For example, if someone is asking for recommendations on a topic you’re knowledgeable about, then send a friendly reply. Or if someone says something funny and you have a witty comeback to make it funnier, then try it. 95% of the time people will respond well, and if you continue to do this then over time it can help to begin a friendship. The worst that can happen is that they ignore your tweet, and in that case, it may just mean you’re not a great match and that it’s for the best. Either way, you’ll never know until you try.

Finally, don’t forget that this can be a long process, and its important to embrace being alone sometimes too. There will sometimes be days where your friends can’t meet up with you, so you’ll need to become okay with being in your own company. Althoiugh that can be hard at first, it can be a really great opportunity to not only learn more about yourself, but also put more time into things like hobbies or acts of self care. So put the kettle on and switch on netflix, because you deserve to feel happy and content. You are enough.

That’s all guys, I hope you liked these tips. How do you find making friends, and do you have any advice regarding this?

Take care

~ Emma x

Baking Chocolate Crunch

Hi guys!

So lately, all I’ve spent a lot of time binge watching Sophie and Dave vlogs on YouTube. ( They’re so sweet, you should really check them out.) In one of their vlogs, they made chocolate crunch and I felt really inspired to try it myself. It’s quite difficult to describe, you have to have tried it to know what i’m on about. I think the best way to describe it is if a bourbon biscuit and a brownie had a baby, that is how it would taste.

This is such an easy, effortless recipe to make! If you would like to make it, you will need:

  • 300g Granulated Sugar
  • 300g plain flour
  • 80g cocoa powder
  • 180g butter

To make chocolate crunch, you will need to:

  • Sift the sugar, cocoa powder and flour into a bowl.
  • Melt the butter, then pour it into the dry ingredients. Mix it together until combined.
  • Pour it into a greased baking tray, and pat it down firmly. Bake for 30 mins at 180 degrees.
  • Once out the oven, sprinkle sugar over the top and wait for it to cool, before serving.

Final thoughts:

This tastes amazing! Although i’m not really sure what you’d class this as, (its not really a biscuit or brownie), I think this is my new favourite treat! I remember eating this in primary school and completely forgot that it existed until now. Its super easy to make, and you can either eat it alone or add warm custard to it, its completely up to you. It’s definitely worth a try if youre short on time, but really want a chocolatey sweet treat!

Whats your favourite dessert?

Take care,

~ Emma x

July Favourites 2020

Hi guys, so lately I’ve been shopping a lot. Honestly, now work is a little more normal I’ve felt so much more relaxed in regards to my financial situation, so have splurged a little more than normal as I hardly brought anything for 3 months. Therefore, I thought it might be fun to show you guys what I brought! Plus I feel quite nostalgic when it comes to these posts, as its what my blog was very much made up of in the early days back in 2016. Anyway, without further a do, lets get started.

  • Nakd Strawberry Sundae bars. In the past, I have tried some Nakd Bars before, like the cocoa orange one and carrot cake one, but haven’t been overly impressed with them. However, this new one is a game changer! It is lush, honestly it reminds me so much of the creamy part of strawberry cremes from Quality Street. Its heavenly, definitely worth a try if you want a healthier snack.
  • Next, I brought these little black floral shorts, with a white daisy print. When I first picked them up, I assumed they were a cute floral skirt. However, once I got home and tried it on I was even more happy with this purchase. These are probably the comfiest, light weight shorts I own, and go so well with their a black, white or yellow vest top. Mine are a size 10 and cost £9.99. You can find them here. https://www.newlook.com/uk/womens/clothing/shorts/black-floral-print-flippy-shorts/p/651396609
  • Another item from Newlook, is a white floral peplum top. I wasn’t too sure about this purchase when I first tried it on, however it has grown on me. I got it in a size 12 to be on the safe side ( I’m technically a 10, but some materials don’t quite have enough stretch so I have to size up.) and i’m so glad I did. It hides my tummy for when i’m feeling self concious or bloated, but also has the most adorable frills on the sleeves! Again, it is super light weight and comfortable to. You can find it here, for £15.99 https://www.newlook.com/uk/womens/clothing/tops/white-floral-and-spot-peplum-top/p/659968619
  • Finally, I have been loving the Revolution X Skincare, Jake Jamie Strawberry Donut Face mask. Firstly, this smells just like real strawberry donuts, its heavenly! Secondly, it comes in a little glass pot which makes it feel so much more expensive and luxurious. This has easily become my go-to for pamper evenings. I just rub on a small, even amount of this all over my face with my fingers and wait for 15 minutes, before washing it off with a hot cloth. It always leaves my skin feeling so soft and glowy, so makes the perfect pick-me-up after a tough week. You can buy it here for £8. https://www.revolutionbeauty.com/uk/en/skin/face-masks/revolution-skincare-x-jake-jamie-strawberry-donut-face-mask/1183185.html

Thats all guys, what have you been loving this month? Let me know in the comments below.

Take care,

~ Emma x

Honest Soph X Revolution Review

Hi guys!

Okay okay, so I admit I may be a little bit late to the party on this one. As you may or may not know, I did a review on the Soph X Revolution highlighter palette a few years ago ( Here’s the link if you haven’t seen it https://littleharto.wordpress.com/2018/01/24/review-on-the-soph-x-makeup-revolution-highlighter-palette/ ) But since then, i’ve spent a lot of time umming and arring over her eye shadow palette. However, I finally caved and brought it, and have given it a fair go so I could write a review for you all! Lets get started.

Firstly, I love the packaging. The pallet comes with a matte creamy casing, and a big mirror on the inside, not only is it handy, but it also looks quite aesthetically pleasing. However, the packaging does tend to look quite grubby fairly quickly. I’m not too bothered by that, but it may be something to think about if it does bother you.

Onto the actual eyeshadow. The pallete contains 14 matte and 10 shimmer shades. They range in lots of different colours, from your every day nudes, to bright colours, to metalic shimmers. There really is something for everyone, which can be ideal if youre just starting out with makeup and aren’t sure what your preferences are yet.

Let’s talk about the mattes. They are incredible! They are so pigmented and blend so easily – they very much remind me of high quality mattes such as the urban decay shadows. Buttery and easy to work with, but can also be build-able if you use a careful, light hand. My Favourite mattes are Rosewood, Iced Coffee, Tiramisu, and Cuppa Tea.

However, i’m kind of sad to say that I don’t really love the shimmers as much. Some of the colours, such as Smokey Bronze and Copper Coin are stunning, but others don’t work for me. I find the pinky shimmer really crumbly, and I struggle to work with lighter shades like Grow Old and Fairy Lights. It’s almost like i’m trying to get the shimmer to come off onto my finger and onto my eyelid, but it just doesn’t want to come out of the pan. Therefore, although there are some stunning shimmers, they’re not too consistent.

Here’s some swatches.

My final thoughts, are that this pallet is still a good quality for £10. I would personally buy this pallet for the mattes alone, and some of the shimmers are stunning with very little fall out. What do you guys think of this pallete? Let me know in the comments below!

Take care,

~ Emma x