The Happiest Wrapping on Earth*

Honestly, November has FLOWN by. Its now officially less than a month until Christmas, and I’m feeling super unprepared, but one thing I have got under my belt now, courtesy of the wonderful CoconuTacha, is some incredible Disney inspired wrapping paper, so at least when I do get my Christmas shopping done, the paper is all wrapped up, if you pardon the pun..

Tacha is an incredibly talented UK based graphic designer, and I love the unique style of each of the park icons featured on this wrapping paper. In each set you get 3 A2 size sheets of wrapping paper, plus 4 gift tags, so you’re completely covered for all your wrapping needs.

The paper is a really high quality – way nicer than your regular supermarket roll! – with a glossy finish, and its so beautiful that this is the kind of paper that you’ll want to unwrap carefully so you can keep it again! Also a great secondary use would be as a photo backdrop for blog photos – I may just keep a sheet for myself for this very reason!

And if you’re on the hunt for a cute little stocking filler, Secret Santa gift or just something to treat yourself with, Tacha also has this limited edition ‘Magic Castle’ enamel pin available on her store. Its so pretty and so different from any other castle pins I’ve seen and the colours are stunning together, and for £5 its a steal!

Cute wrapping idea: attach a pin to the gift tag of your present!

There’s currently 10% off both the wrapping paper and pin until the end of today so if you like what you see, head on over to Etsy now, and even if you’ve got your wrapping paper sorted, you should definitely check out Tacha’s designs on both her Etsy store where you’ll find an amazing selection of stationery, planner stickers, art prints and more, and also on Redbubble where you can get her designs on everything from t-shirts to phone cases.

Are you Christmas ready yet?

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*The items featured in this blog post were sent to me, but all views are my own.

Lesson Learnt by a First Time Fake Tanner

That’s right. First timer..

I’ve always thought myself lucky in that I’ve always tanned fairly well naturally, but that generally involves spending a lot of time in sunshine, which is something that I haven’t really had much of recently, and with my trip to California looming, and my legs shining whiter than the moon, I decided that I was going to do something about it.

Being a first timer, I knew that a proper fake-tanner was never gonna be a good idea, so instead I opted for a gradual tanner instead, and took a recommendation to try Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Natural Bronze lotion, and here are a few things that I’ve learnt along the way..

Always read the label

So my first tanning faux pas came the morning after my first attempt. It said on the label to wash hands after use, and did I? Well my bright orange hands in the morning might give away that answer..

Get a feel for it

If its your first time using a particular product, trial it carefully. Either test it on a small area that can’t be seen, or do a super light layer to see its effects before you totally slather yourself in it.

If you’re uncertain, go gradual

There was no way I could have thrown myself in at the deep end with a regular fake tanner on a first attempt!

Even coverage matters

Even when using a gradual tanner, being sure to get a clean spread is still super important to avoid any weird lines or streaks.

Creases collect

Knees, armpits, ankles are a few of the biggest culprits, watch out for weird lines and darker patches!

Exfoliators and scrubs are your friends

Orange hands, weird patches, these products are like little erasers.

Results are slightly addictive

Once you find a product and a routine that works and you start seeing results, you might find it a little difficult to stop.

I’m really happy with the results I’ve been seeing, even after just a few weeks. It started out as just a way to fake it until I get to California and can build a little bit of a tan for myself, but I may just have to keep it up through the summer, especially as everyone knows you can’t trust the UK sun.. But also cos its cocoa butter based and it smells delicious.

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The Ocean Chose Me*

As a blogger, I think it was the greatest email of my life when I was contacted by the Disney Store to be part of their 30th anniversary celebrations.

Its definitely no secret that Disney plays an enormous role in my life. As well as bringing me so much happiness, its brought some incredible people into my life, and I have so many wonderful memories, not only from recent years, but throughout my whole life, and while I have over 22 years of magical Disney memories, I don’t think anything has made me happier than the release of Moana last year.

A lot of people fell in love with the movie when it came out for the obvious reasons: it was a stunning movie with an incredible storyline, world class cast and catchy soundtrack, but for me, the release of this film meant so much more. In the run up to the release, I wrote about why Moana is so special to me, but the long and short of it is that it means the world to me that Disney made a movie celebrating the culture of my cousins and their side of my family, creating a princess that they can not only look up to, but can identify with.

The first time I watched the movie, I cried because baby Moana is a spitting image of what my girls looked like as toddlers, and as Moana grows up, she practically turned into my eldest cousin, Bella, just in animated form. My uncle is Samoan, one of the Pacific Islands that inspired the movie, and even he cried when he saw it in the cinema.

Disney Store were kind enough to send me this adorable Moana doll to celebrate the anniversary and recreate some scenes from the movie, and the ocean called me down to the beach to recreate that beautiful scene from the start of the movie, when the ocean chooses Moana to restore the heart of Te Fiti. The doll is so pretty, and detailed right down to the little sandy feet, and of course I also had to take my Pua and Hei Hei tsum tsums!


Want to be part of the celebrations? Recreate your favourite Disney scenes and share them on Instagram and Twitter using #DisneyStore30!

Happy anniversary Disney Store!

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Chocolate Orange and Baobab Dip with PandaVita*

If you think that Baobab is the weirdest part of this recipe, just you wait.. It is as yummy as it looks though, promise!

Chocolate orange baobab dip

Ok, so you’re wondering what baobab is though, right?

PandaVita Baobab Recipe

Baobab is a tree native to Africa, and the Disney fans among you would recognise it as the tree that Rafiki hangs out in during The Lion King, and its also what Animal Kingdom’s Tree of Life is based on. Its an extraordinary looking tree, often describe as being upside-down, as when its not covered in leaves, the branches resemble roots, spanning out from the enormous trunk, so it looks like someone’s just flipped it in the ground!

Baobab is one of the latest superfoods, full of Vitamin C, fibre and anti-oxidants, and the guys at PandaVita challenged me to come up with a yummy recipe using their new organic baobab powder.

I wanted to make it healthy-ish, and the citrus taste of the powder lead me to a decision that it had to be chocolate orange, but the secret – and strange! – ingredient? Chickpeas.

Try it and see, its super easy!

  • In a food processor, blitz together 200g cooked chickpeas, 4 tbsp cocoa powder, 3 tbsp honey (or maple syrup), and 2 tbsp orange juice, with a teaspoon of baobab powder
  • You may need to add a little water, depending on the consistency, and you might also want to add a little more honey to sweeten it to your taste. Also, if you don’t want chocolate orange, you can substitute the orange juice for 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract and 2 tbsp water!

Store it in the fridge, and you’ve got a yummy dip that’s perfect for rice cakes or apple slices!

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Lush Sparkle Toothy Tabs

Lush Sparkle Toothy Tabs

When I did my huge Lush order a little while back, I finally bought a product that’s intrigued me for a while now, and that’s Toothy Tabs.

I mean, we’re all brought up being taught how important it is to brush our teeth, and even as adults, tv adverts are full of toothpaste and electric toothbrushes, and dentists telling us what’s best for our teeth, so the thought of ditching the Colgate and Oral B, but still cleaning my teeth was a little weird.

I figured if I was gonna try something different, I might as well go all out, so I chose Sparkle, which is lemon, grapefruit and black pepper – no more mint!

So how do they work?

Basically, you take a little tab, and crunch it up between your teeth. It starts to froth, and you start to brush! First impressions: TOTALLY STRANGE. For starters, not having that instant minty taste was really odd, and the pepper flavour took some getting used to, but once I got past that, I really started enjoying the tabs!

Being a dry tablet, you don’t get as much froth as your regular toothpaste, but personally that didn’t bother me as I always find with toothpaste, I’ve spat most of it out within the first minute. The flavour is strange, especially with the pepper, and I like to rinse my mouth with water after I’m done brushing, but it is a fresh taste, and there’s no real aftertaste, so you don’t have to worry about your breakfast tasting weirdly minty.

Despite being a total change from my regular toothpaste, I actually really like the tabs, and I actually think my teeth look cleaner directly after using them, which I don’t get with toothpaste. Other benefits, of course, are that they’re natural and cruelty free, but while I’d love to use them as a complete replacement to my regular toothpaste, my mum pointed out that they do lack in fluoride, which is important to prevent tooth decay, so while I probably use them 2-3 days a week, I’m not giving up normal tooth brushing.

Would you give your toothpaste a break for these natural nibs?

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Elete Holistic Hydrate Review*

Elete Holistic Hydrate

One huge aspect of healthy living that is overlooked by so many people is hydration. It takes little to no effort, but the benefits range from better skin to reducing bloat and helping with weight loss.

Keeping hydrated is something I feel strongly about, so when the guys at elete Holistic Hydrate got in touch and asked me to try their Electrolyte Hydration drops, I was really interested in how I could potentially up my hydration game.

In recent months, I’ve almost entirely cut out fizzy drinks and made a concise effort to reduce my squash intake, so I primarily just drink water or fruit tea, so it was really important for me that the eHH add-in drops were as tasteless as they claimed to be. At first, I was super careful in measuring out the correct amount needed to add to each drink I made, but it soon became clear to me that I really couldn’t taste any difference, so I became a little more relaxed with my measurements – a short squeeze into my water bottle before workouts did the trick just nicely!

So what are the advantages of eHH over branded sports drinks?

Well, your average bottle of Lucozade Sport contains around 30g sugar, which yes, is great for energy, but they also tend to be loaded with artificial sweeteners (especially the low-cal versions), which quite frankly go straight through you, so yes you’ll be running faster, but only really in the direction of the toilet.. Hydrated? I think not. eHH is 100% sugar and calorie free; its completely natural. It also helps you hydrate faster, reducing the amount of fluid needed to get rid of that thirsty feeling, which your body often confuses as hunger.

Considering I’m a person who doesn’t believe in ‘artificial’ fitness supplements, eHH has got me pretty excited to be adding a natural product to my regime!

PS: You can get 10% off online using BLOGGER DISCOUNT!

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Disney Packing Must-Have #1

The first of many posts, I’ll be posting a different packing must-have every day! 🙂

Mini Sharpies

As well as taking up less space, mini Sharpies come with handy little loop you can use to attach them to bags or zips, so you’ve always got one to hand; you’ll need them!

Sharpies make the perfect pen for autographs – nice and fat for characters to hold, don’t dry out easily, available in every colour imaginable and, of course, permanent, so perfect if you want autographs on tshirts or other unique items.

On top of autographs, having a permanent marker to hand means you can label your resort mugs, bags, strollers, valuables, children..