A Look Around Aulani’s Deluxe Studios

Staying at Disney’s Aulani Resort in Hawaii has been an absolute dream of mine for years now, and part of me still can’t believe that I’ve actually ticked it off the great Disney bucket list now.

During our stay in paradise, we actually stayed in two different rooms, both of which were Deluxe Studios, which is the second level of room at Aulani after a standard hotel room. There are several options in terms of the view you can have – standard view, garden view, pool view and ocean view – and we spent 6 nights in a standard view and our last night in an ocean view. Put simply, the better the view, the more you pay, whether that’s in cash or DVC points.

Each deluxe studio sleeps up to 4 people, with a regular double bed and a sofa that converts into a double bed, and there’s a large bathroom and a little kitchenette which is equipped with a fridge, microwave, coffee maker and toaster. They also all have a balcony/terrace area with chairs and a little table so you can sit out and enjoy the sunshine.

Of course this is still Disney, so the decor of the rooms perfect, including the amazing Mickey table lamp and hidden Mickey bedspread..

But also just look at the view that we had from our ocean view room on the last night:

Can I go back now please?

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To My Former Best Friends

They say the average friendship has a lifespan of about 7 years, and while this seems like quite an upsetting figure, I’ve come to accept it.

What this fact doesn’t really seem to consider, however, is that just because a friendship ends, it doesn’t mean there’s nothing left behind. Some friendships end for the wrong reasons, leaving sadness or bitterness in their wake, while others just fade away, leaving happy memories and nostalgia, and I really think that no matter what causes a friendship to become a thing of the past, that person will have always played a really important part of your life, and there will never be any truly hard feelings left behind, especially when it comes to the best friends.

To my childhood best friend..

I don’t even remember how we became friends. We met at school and things must have just clicked. We did so many things together, both in and out of school, and we were inseparable. I felt us start to drift when you moved schools, and I didn’t get to see you every day. You made other friends, and even though we still saw each other most weeks, I just knew that these friends were a bigger part in your life than I was. It was ok. You were destined for popularity, and I just wasn’t, and when we made it back to sharing a classroom again in secondary school, I just decided to stop clinging on. We were still classmates until we were 16, but all the years of friendship seemed to be forgotten, or at least we made it seem that way.

I still think of all those years with happy memories. We made a girl band, we knew each others families, and for so many years we came as a pair. Nothing changes that, and I really just hope that you’re happy.

To my teenage best friend..

You were the first person that I thought would be in the running for my maid of honour whenever I got married. We met through mutual friends, and although we were part of a larger group, we gravitated towards each other and there was just no stopping us. We went through boy troubles together, so many school exams, first nights out and so much more. But we were two very different people, we always were. I always thought that was why we worked, but over time our differences took over. I think we both tried to stay friends after we finished sixth form, but when we only saw each other a handful of times in that first year, I think we both stopped trying.

I saw you the other day. In fact, I think we’re working in the same building, and I think you saw me too. I don’t know if you didn’t recognise me or just didn’t want to say anything, but either is ok. I have so much to thank you for, you were my rock for so many years and I have accepted that our friendship faded out. I think it was best for both of us, but I still think of you often, and honestly with you all the happiness in the world.

To my first ‘adult’ best friend..

I thought you were a little crazy when I first met you, but I quickly got past that, or at least I liked the crazy. We made quite the pair. Despite being adults, the friendship was very similar to my younger friendships – we dealt with the boy problems, work problems and everything else along the way. You cut my hair in return for baked goods, and taught me how important it is to fill in my eyebrows. I never minded that you started going out with my ex. It had been so long since we’d been a couple and you were much better suited for him anyway. But I warned you what he could be like, and every time you came crying to me about it, I couldn’t help but think I told you so, and then you’d just run back to him anyway.

I let you drift out of my life because it was easier for me. You stopped showing any real interest in my life, and only wanted to come to me with your problems, or to make a competition out of things. I don’t like the term toxic but I felt like you weren’t in it for me anymore and it was draining the fun out of it. You don’t need me anyway, you’re headstrong and independent and it makes you stronger than I think you realise sometimes.

We had so much fun, and I’m sad it had to come to an end but it did. You seem happier now anyway, and I hope that continues for you.

My best friends now are very different to the ones that have left my life. I feel like I’ve got it right now, and have friends in my life who are gonna make it past the 7 year mark. I am happy, and I hope that my old friends have found friends who make them feel the same way that I do now.

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Moving In Update #2

Its been just over two weeks since we got the keys and spent the first weekend in our house, and although Matthew went up the following week while I stayed down south, this weekend we spent our second weekend in the house together.

Being totally honest, I’ve found it really difficult being away from the house, and having another 4 weeks until I finish work and we can move up properly means that the few weekends we can go up between now and then are packed with us doing as much as we can to make it ready so we don’t have to do too much once we’re in for real.

Our main focus this weekend was our bedroom, as Matthew spent the previous weekend painting the wall behind our bed, which meant we could set to work in building the furniture, and by that I mean the wardrobe. The wardrobe was a real test of our relationship and our patience, not so much with the building but trying to put up the sliding doors on it.. But we did it, and it looks good now and we’ll never have to do it again.

The bed went up (even though we don’t have any bedding for it), my dressing table went into place and we hung the mirror and put the lights on the wall, and although there’s still quite a finishing touches to put in the room, its actually a proper bedroom now.

In the last week our sofa also arrived, so we finally have something other than a beanbag to sit on, yay! The living room still needs to be painted, and we’re waiting for a rug to arrive, but we did buy some really nice little plant pots from Ikea to go across the sideboard once we’ve put the TV on the wall. Unfortunately, however, in the last week half the grass in the garden has started to die, so we did the adult thing of buying a hosepipe and a sprinkler and spent Sunday trying to revive it!

The offices haven’t seen much action, although my little pink armchair arrived which I’m super happy about! The ratio of stuff in the garage seems to be tipping more towards having more cardboard and rubbish than boxes of our stuff, which means we might actually be making some progress, and definitely means that a tip trip is in order, but we’ll save that for another weekend.

I won’t be in the house for the next two weekends now at least which makes me sad, but I’m so happy with how its looking already!

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Cruelty Free Summer Makeup – All Under £10

There’s nothing worse than having your makeup routine completely perfected, only for summer to come around and through humidity, heat and hay-fever your way, and it changes everything.

Not only does summer mess with my skin, but I’m now on a makeup buying ban for a little while, and I’m also no longer buying makeup that isn’t cruelty free, and while you’d think that these bans would limit my options for the summer, I’ve managed to find myself a summer kit that’s not only completely cruelty free, but actually every item is also under £10!

Primer – The Ordinary High Spreadability Fluid Primer – £5.50

This is my all year round primer, but it really holds its own even against the struggles of summer!

Foundation – The Ordinary Serum Foundation – £6

I love both of the foundations from The Ordinary, but tend to use Coverage more in the colder months and switch to Serum from Spring onwards as its a lighter formula but the coverage is still very good!

Blush/bronzer/highlighter – Makeup Revolution – (my set now discontinued)

I’ve had this little palette for a while now, but as the shades are a little darker than what I would normally wear, I save it for summer when I’ve tanned a little bit and can get away with glowing a little more.

Highlighter – Makeup Revolution Baked Matte Lights Highlighter – £3

I love this highlighter as its a great base for building on. I normally start with a good layer of this matte highlight and then go over it with a shinier highlight.

Eyeshadow primer – NYX Proof It! – £6

I swear by this primer, and if you read my blog a lot you’ll have seen this mentioned over and over because it is really that good!

Eyeshadows – Colourpop Supershock Shadows – $5

The only downside of these eyeshadows is having to pay international shipping and customs (I actually bought mine in the US) but I think they’re fab! They blend so nicely and hold up well under summer conditions.

Brows – NYX Tame and Frame Brow Pomade – £6

Ever since I reviewed this recently I’ve been using this pomade. Its such great value for money and such a good product.

Mascara – Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara – £8.50 (for travel sized)

I only bought this in a travel size because I do love my current mascara and I just wanted to try it out, but its a fab little cruelty free mascara.

Setting spray – Urban Decay All Nighter – £10 (for travel sized)

Say hello to your new favourite setting spray and say goodbye to your makeup running. Despite being a travel sized bottle, its still pretty large and will last you through summer no problem!

Here’s to a summer of long lasting makeup!

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Things I’ll Miss About Bournemouth

I’m currently sat in our new house, on our new sofa that was delivered on Wednesday. I am content, but a little sad to know that we’ll be driving back tonight and that its still another 4 weeks until I can officially this place home.

Whenever I’m at home in Bournemouth, I miss our house so much, but I know that in a month’s time when I’m done with work and Matthew and I permanently move up north, besides the obvious things that I’ll miss like my family, I will miss the beautiful south coast that I grew up on.

The beach

Growing up in a town with one of the UK’s most beautiful beaches, I think I’ve taken living by the sea a little bit for granted. People always ask me if I spend all my time at the beach in the summer, and quite honestly I really don’t, and tend to actively avoid it in the summer because its so busy, but it is one of my favourite places to run in the evenings and I do think I’ll feel that little twinge from not being a 20 minute walk away from the water.

My gym

It seems like a really silly thing to miss, but I love my gym in Bournemouth. Its a 25 minute walk away, which I love doing, and I love knowing my way around the gym and seeing familiar faces every morning, and although I know that a gym is a gym, I’ll be really sad leaving.

Local shops

As a good little millennial, I do most of my shopping online to avoid too much human interaction, but there are some stores in Bournemouth that I won’t be able to visit anymore, like my two favourite fabric stores.

Bournemouth Air Festival

Every summer the world of aviation lands on on Bournemouth beach, and even though in the last couple of years I haven’t always made it down to the beach itself, the whole town gets to experience the festival as the planes fly over, so I’ll miss randomly spotting the Red Arrows, or feeling the ground shake from the engines of the Eurofighter Typhoon when it goes over.

Southern weather

Sure, the UK doesn’t always have the best weather, but its normally always just that little bit warmer down south at least, and now I’m heading further up the country I think I’ll miss those few degrees, especially in the winter!

I know that I’m going to have such an adventure living somewhere totally new, but Bournemouth will always be a very special place to me.

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Five Things I Learned From Jobs I Didn’t Get

They say if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. Well, I’ve worked a number of days in my life. And while I’ve learned a lot of things in my working life, many of the things I have learned have actually been from the jobs that I didn’t get along the way.

Just because its your dream company, doesn’t mean its your dream job

A few years ago I squealed for joy when I found out my local Lush store was reopening after a huge shop refurb, and were looking to hire a whole bunch of new staff. I smashed out a cover letter that very night and was absolutely buzzed when I was not only invited to a group interview, but also invited back to a trial shift/second interview. Where I fell down was the trial shift, because I wasn’t as totally in your face as your typical Lush employee (if you’ve ever been in a store, you know what I mean) and because I didn’t jump on shoppers the second they walked in through the door, I wasn’t Lush material. I was semi-devastated at the time, but then I realised that the pushy sales assistant thing is definitely not my thing, and I would have felt really pressured in that job.

Passion counts for a lot

You can prepare for an interview all you like, but some interviewers want to see how much you want the job more than necessarily having all perfect answers. Feedback from one interview that I didn’t get hired from was that while I had great answers and they said I could have easily got the job, but other candidates showed more enthusiasm about the role and were more passionate about starting a career in that field, and that was just something that I couldn’t beat.

Just because you don’t get the job first time, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t reapply

Technically, this isn’t about a job that I didn’t get, because its about the job I have now, but that’s exactly the point. I interviewed for this job once, and when I didn’t hear back for a while, I assumed that it was a no, which was then confirmed when I heard back about a month later, but I was invited to a meeting to get some feedback. During this meeting, I was told that there were two positions to be filled, and three people that they were torn between, one of which was me, but they settled on the other two. However, another role had just become vacant, and while they had to advertise the role again properly, they asked me to interview again, and well the rest is history!

Ask for feedback

Whenever you here back from a job that you didn’t get, don’t be afraid to ask the question of why you didn’t get the job. Take any ‘negative’ reasons as constructive criticism and learn for the next time, but also listen to the good things they will inevitably say about you, and also don’t feel hard done by if the reasons are that other candidates had more experience or were better suited – that’s not a problem with you!

Sometimes you’ll just never hear back

Unfortunately, there are some jobs that won’t even reject you, they’ll just ignore you. A lot of companies now even put it on their job applications to say that they won’t respond if you’re unsuccessful, leaving you completely in the unknown as to if you’ll ever hear back, and why you didn’t get it if you never do. I’ve learned not to take it personally and just move onto the next, their loss!

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My Favourite Disney Accessories Right Now

I feel like this post is a little moot as I haven’t actually stepped foot in a Disney park this year, nor do I have a park trip planned for this year, but they say absence makes the heart grow fonder and I’ve definitely felt that.

BUT you know me and a lack of a trip doesn’t really stop me from shopping, and as someone who loves to include Disney style in my every day life as well, I’ve been adding to my stash of Disney accessories lately, and there are some particular favourites of mine right now that I thought I would share!

I’m a self-confessed ear addict, but as I already have more pairs than I know what to do with, not to mention the fact that those bad boys really can only been worn in the parks, I’ve had to curb my ear buying this year, and instead I’ve fallen in love with these cute little knotty headbands from Crittear Country. They’re super cute, really comfy and, style dependant, very subtle!

On the topic of hair accessories, I’m also still loving these Mickey ear headbands from Closet Geek which are another current favourite method of keeping my hair under control!

Ok, so I had never really understood the hype about the little plushie passholders that are all the rave in Tokyo Disneyland until I bought my Gelatoni one in Aulani. I swear that thing was surgically attached to my neck the whole time we were on that trip and it was the most useful thing! They’re such an easy way of carrying cards and money, and even my phone (iPhone SE) fit in it, meaning I never really had to carry a bag, and I swear this is a game changer for when I hit the parks again next year!

I’ve always been an Alex and Ani girl, but feel like I can only really wear those in the parks, whereas my Lillian and Co bracelets are the perfect subtle addition to an everyday outfit. All three quotes mean so much to me and I’m so in love with these at the moment!

Another of my most recent purchases was this beret from Just Peachy because it’s DONALD. This is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen and as soon as it was announced I knew I had to have it. It’s got an embroidered bow at the front, but also a little tail at the back plus a little ribbon and you bet I’m going to be coming up with every excuse to wear this from now on!

What are your favourite Disney accessories?