Wednesday, 30 January 2013

A grand adventure ... to see the Northern Lights

I recently heard about Money Supermarket's "A Grand Adventure" competition where bloggers are invited to plan their own epic adventure with a £1,000 budget - detailing where they would go, what they would do, and how they would make the £1,000 stretch. I never have any luck with competitions, but thought it couldn't hurt to have a go!

My destination of choice? ICELAND

Now some of you are looking at me in disbelief, pointing out that it's already freezing and why on earth wouldn't I want to go away to somewhere hot?! Well, ever since I've seen Iceland advertised on the London underground I've been dying to go. There are some really good travel packages meaning that it won't cost an arm and a leg to get there. For example, the Northern Lights package starts from a mere £299. This includes return flights, bed and breakfast in a hotel for your entire stay and a tour of the Northern Lights. Not bad going, eh? There are also "extras" that you can add on as a supplement (these being as little as £15). The exchange rate for Icelandic Krona against £ sterling is meant to be really good at the moment - so this would be the perfect holiday destination for a trip on a budget.

Iceland is a photographer's dream and I would document every step of my journey on my blog - just like I've done for my Paris trip and my Barcelona trip... 1  /  2  /  3  /  4  /  5  /  6

I would go and see the Northern Lights, revelling in its amazingness and taking lots of pictures:


I would take a trip to the Blue Lagoon which has been voted as one of the top 10 spas in the world and is host to natural ingredients such as mineral salts, algae and silica - all supposed to help balance the body and mind:


I would go to the Golden circle to see Nature's finest including Gullfoss waterfall and Geysir geothermal area:


Whale watching would be a must:


 Maybe, if time permits, a boat trip to the glacial lagoon:


I'd also walk around exploring - FREE! - taking pictures and enjoying the sights. I would sample the locally caught fresh fish - I have heard that their Hakarl (Icelandic for "shark") is an "experience". If you eat it, you follow it with brennivin (a local schnapps) and get much respect from the locals because it smells and tastes pretty putrid. When / if the cold gets too much, I would sniff out a nice pub / bar with a roaring log fire and consume many a hot drink to keep toasty! Maybe try some of that brennivin. Which is apparently referred to as "Black Death".

With such a good exchange rate going at the moment, it would be the perfect time to go. With a £1,000 budget I'd be able to treat myself and my fellow traveller to various tours and extras and we'd hopefully have enough spare change rattling around for visiting nearby towns and a nice meal or two. 

To sum everything up, Iceland 2013 would be a memorable trip with lots packed in without the need to file for bankruptancy. A very refreshing thought in these difficult economic times!

Come find me on Twitter / Bloglovin / GFC

** Image source: IcelandAir **

Monday, 28 January 2013

Liebster Blog Award


Thank you so much to the lovely Rhiannon of The Sparkly Panda who's nominated me for a Liebster Blog Award! I only discovered Rhiannon's blog recently as she was my partner for the Bloggers Secret Santa in December. Ever since I clicked through to her blog to get ideas of what to buy her, I have been glued to her blog posts. Head on over to her blog and show her some love [here]. This particular award gets a thumbs up from me as it's aimed at blogs with 200 followers or less and it's a great way of discovering new blogs.

So the rules:

  • List 11 random facts about yourself
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you by your nominator
  • Ask 11 new questions for all the bloggers you nominate for the award
  • Nominate bloggers with 200 followers or less
  • Go to each of the bloggers pages and let them know they've been nominated

11 random facts about me

1. The Liebster Award button makes me think of Jammy Dodgers. Nom. Totally want to eat some now.

2. I can't have unpainted nails or toe nails. It just feels weird.

3. I have never been to a festival before and it kills me. 2013 HAS to be the year. Please.

4. I like everything Alice in Wonderland. Every time there's fancy dress it's all I want to dress up as.

5. I only wear moisturiser, eye liner and mascara. This face never sees foundation or concealer.

6. I have no interest in Kindles. No offence to anyone, I just love the smell of books too much

7. I love having my hair stroked / plaited / played with. It makes me melt.

8. I'm a Brit who doesn't drink tea or coffee. MADNESS. I'm trying to get into green tea though.

9. I can't drink vodka any more ever since I had my drink spiked in a club. It was not fun.

10. Guy wise, I seem to attract weirdos and commitment phobes. ASK ME OUT ALREADY.

11. I only started drinking and liking milkshakes in 2012. 


11 questions from Rhiannon

1. If you are stuck on a dessert island, what 3 things would you want with you? 
Someone to keep me company and a notepad and pen because writing is my life.

2. Do you have a hidden talent? 
Nah. I'm pretty rubbish!

3. Dress, skirt or trousers to wear for the rest of your life? 
Given the title of my blog.... dress! ;) 

4. What's your favourite flavour of cupcake? 
Raspberry and white chocolate

5. What are your biggest blog inspirations? 
My favourite blogs? I have tons but my pick of the bunch are (in no particular order...) LLYMRS, Mariannan, thelovecatsinc, Head over Heels, SallyTangle, Josie Loves Shoes and CHIPPED NAILS AND CHAPPED LIPS

6. Ten years from now, where do you want to be? 
It's a soppy one. Ten years from now I want to be alive, happy, healthy and married to a wonderful man who is not just my lover but also my best friend.

7. What is the one food you could live on forever? 
Too difficult. It'd be between fish finger sandwiches, Iceland party food, hash browns, potato croquettes and sweet potato fries. Gawd, I'm hungry.

8. What is your favourite day of the year? 
I think it has to be Christmas day. There's so much love on that day plus the food is amazing.

9. Morning or night person? 
Night owl right here! Mornings are killer

10. How do you spend your free time? 
I read. I'm a gamer. I write lots. I like photographing food I've made + food in restaurants.

11. Why did you start blogging? 
I love writing and wanted my own little slice of the Internet to make my mark. 


The blogs I nominate are:

SallyTangle - always the most dreamy, beautiful photography. One of my favourite blogs.

Beans on Toast - studies a computing based course like I did. Perfect lifestyle blogger.

Vicki Ruann - has the perfect mix of everything. Wishlists, outfit posts, week in pics...

iamlaurenpotts - loved her Amsterdam posts. And the woodland walk video her and her boyfriend made

Little Nomad - always the most incredible photography that makes me yearn to travel


... and your mission - should you choose to accept it

.... is to answer these questions:

1. If you could have ANY animal as a pet, what would it be?

2. Flats or heels?

3. With Pancake Day approaching, what's your pancake of choice?

4. What would be your perfect date?

5. Cats or dogs?

6. What - or who - can't you live without?

7. iPhone, Blackberry or neither?

8. Is there a celebrity in particular who inspires your outfit choices?

9. What / who annoys you the most?

10. Tell us a joke.

11. Is there a blogger trend that you don't "get" and never will?


I'm also opening up the above questions to anyone else who wants to participate - so feel free to join in! :) 
Thanks again for the mention, Rhiannon! x x

                                             Come find me on Twitter / bloglovin' / GFC

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Slipping over on the ice is snow joke

When it comes to potentially slipping over on the ice, it's snow joke. For years I have had a beaten up old pair of trainers that appear whenever the white fluffy stuff does. They are big. They are clumpy. And they cut the backs of my feet to shreds. They look like they mean business with their sturdy get up and grippy looking soles, but they can't grip for s**t. The other day something clicked. I looked around and realised the old folk were moving about on the icy surfaces faster than I was. Even the ones with walking sticks. And I know some say no pain no gain but this was ridiculous. I was in pain and I certainly wasn't gaining anything. Definitely not speed - at best I was probably doing about a quarter of a mile an hour on foot. If that.

So after work I went to hunt down a replacement pair and I knew just the place to go:



I know that those puffy snow boots that give you cankles would have been a slightly cheaper alternative, but I wanted something that I could wear at other times of the year too. And yes, I could've got some Timberland dupes, but I've seen how the backs can fall apart. I'm hoping that by getting the real deal, they'll be an investment that will last me for years. Do me proud, Timberlands!

I took them out on their first outing today and they were an absolute dream on slushy, slippery surfaces. Snail pace Lucy is no more! I'm already thinking ahead to my next Timberland purchase. I love their other boots they do but they'd sold out in my size when I went the other day :( So far I've been styling them with loose fit boyfriend jeans but I've been scouring LookBook and WeHeartIt for inspiration:


What shoes do you wear when it snows?
I'm sure you lovely lot are all a lot more graceful on the ice than I am!


Come find me on Twitter / bloglovin' / GFC

Monday, 21 January 2013

The power of a blog. Discuss.

I sometimes think that we under-estimate the power of a blog. What we may see as our own materialistic ramblings with a sprinkling of outfit posts can be oh so much more. Blogs are having an increasing influence on High Street collections and the pages of fashion magazines. Items that bloggers feature can quickly become hot property and fly off the shelves like no one's business. We are not solely lusting over new clothing we think we need - we are also being inspired and shown different ways of styling our existing wardrobe staples. Your follower count is irrelevant - you can still inspire whether you are a big time blogger or a lesser known one like myself. There does seem to be a bit of a blogger "look" developing  Think Litas and Litas look-a-likes, disco pants, and rose gold jewellery. Blogs clearly have a great influence on deciding up-and-coming trends. But are they also turning us into an army of clones?

A question to all fellow bloggers: How do you feel knowing you've influenced someone to wear or buy something? 

Flattered? Or is it a little annoying? I imagine that for those of you on the negative side of the fence, you may see eye-to-eye with the aforementioned clone comment. But on the other hand, I guess it's probably quite touching if a stranger takes the time to contact you saying they like your style. 

Another thing to remember... no matter how popular the blog, bloggers are not celebrities. And most are certainly not living on a celebrity budget. Who are they? They are students / in full-time employment / struggling to make their cash last until the end of the month / fellow shopaholics... just like you and me. Their body type / complexion / hair more closely matching your own than that of air-brushed models you see in magazines. I find that blogger style is usually something that is very easy to relate to.

With this logic, it's hardly surpising that we are taking more and more inspiration from blogs and every day street style in lieu of high end fashion magazines and campaigns. With bloggers like you and me, blogger fashion is less "out there" and often a a great deal more practical for every day life. Those stacked Prada heels you saw in Vogue? Gorgeous, but hardly suitable for me to run for the train in each morning.

So where did this all stem from you ask?

Well, I realised the other day just how much I am influenced by other blogs. It was only the other week that one of my favourite bloggers Sarah featured the most exquisite piece of jewellery on her blog. My eyes lit up at the price (only £7.40.... no joke!) and fully aware that F21 do some amazing statement pieces, I promptly headed on over to their website to see what other necklaces they had on offer. In no time at all, the number of items in my basket started to multiple. In the end, I ordered a dress... a blouse....


..... and cheekily snapped up the necklace that Sarah featured. How could I not? It's too beautiful. 

And if you want any further evidence of the power of a blog, know this.... that necklace came in two different colours - plain or a peach sort of colour. The plain one that Sarah featured has sold out. The peach one has not. High praise indeed. Which leads me on nicely to my recent Miss Selfridge order....


Typical blogger basket much? Skater skirts being yet another blog regular. And the kimono? I'd been eyeing it up for ages but some how resisted temptation. Then I saw Lily rocking it and I was powerless to resist. 

I am weak. 

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Sales? What sales?

Those of you who have been with me right from the start know my thoughts on salesThis year was another disappointment. But January isn't over yet. And most places seem to be slashing their prices even further. I however refuse to call them January sales - most started pre-Christmas after all. 

I went to Watford to try my luck and found so little, I'm not sure it was worth the trip. Although saying that, I was pleasantly surprised by the Watford Primark, finding things that I couldn't possibly have got online:


... I grabbed some reduced cards in Clintons ready for next year:


... and then spent a mere £3 on a mini satchel in River Island:

Is it a key ring? Is it a mini purse? Who knows!

This thriftiness is very unlike me. But then sales weren't all that this year. I had better luck online:


... and two pairs of Jeffrey Campbells that have YET to turn up on my door step. Impatient much? I'm still seeking out a reduced pair of Dr. Martens / Timberlands / both.... know of anywhere?

Did you pick up any sales bargains?

Please link me to your items / related blog posts / Tweet me @Lucy_Angele ... for I am nosy! :)

Thursday, 10 January 2013

I CAN'T SLEEP

Not sure if it's just me, but I'm really having issues sleeping at the moment. At night I just can't seem to switch off. My mind is constantly buzzing and my naturally excitable nature doesn't exactly help either. I've tried all manner of things this week - from OD'ing on hot milky drinks and relaxing herbal teas to spending hours on end in a bubble filled bath. Granted, I then get more sleep than I would without these things, but it still isn't enough. I can't function without sleep. How I'm even managing to type this now amazes me.  

I read the other day that to have the best possible sleep, your room needs to be a haven of peace and tranquillity  It is supposed to be clutter free because a tidy room = a tidy mind. Oh boy, am I screwed.

To say my room is cluttered is an understatement. I am way too sentimental and I hoard a lot. That cute Valentine's Day card I got? Probably should be binned. The past is the past after all.

I think my aim in 2013 is to learn how to let go. I plan to bag lots of things up and take them to car boot sales and charity shops. I will find new storage solutions to lose the clutter, and I hope to re-decorate completely. If you know of any great storage tips / decoration ideas, please link me to them below! :) 

So far Tumblr has inspired me a lot:


Beaten up suitcases and chests for storage, exposed brick walls, lanterns and fairy lights galore, candles, a chalk board wall and bringing the great outdoors.... indoors. And check out that glass roof.... *swoons* 

Which room is your favourite?

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Expect nothing - you will never be disappointed

I don't know about you, but I find diary hunting a right old faff. I'm always on the look out for something a little bit different that is easy on the eye and small enough to cart around in your suitcase bag. Last year, tempted by a ridiculously beautiful diary cover, I went for a page-a-day diary. Worst. Idea. Ever. I've actually lost count of how many times I forgot about plans later in the week because it was pages away and out of sight. So if you're ever considering a page-a-day affair... don't do it. It will screw up your social life. A double page spread with your weekly shenanigans all laid out right in-front of you is the way forward. 

This year I spent more than I'd usually choose to spend on a diary... but it was worth every penny. 
Let me introduce you to the new love of my life:


This diary ticks so many boxes. It's light. It's small. It has a week-by-week view. It's sarcastic and - pardon the French - fucking hilarious. When you first open the diary, a couple of sheets of paper fall out. The first:


The second, in case - God forbid - the Disappointments Diary is.... disappointing. Imagine(!) They even provide return codes. I wish reasons like these could be used for the likes of Topshop, ASOS and etc



The publishers only printed a limited amount of copies and they log which number diary you've got:



As with most diaries, there's that obligatory first page for personal details such as name, next of kin, medical conditions and so on. I love the last couple of lines:



Every week you are provided with a pessimistic quote. Here are some of my favourites:



Because everyone needs to plan and sort their shit out:



.... and plenty of space for your contacts. You just have to decide which category they go under:



Being an aspiring writer, this next section really appealed to me:



I'm also an avid writer of To Do lists... which the diary "helps" you to prepare for:


To sum it all up, I love all the little details and silliness that you get with this diary. As you flick through, the pages become greyer and greyer which is meant to signify an impending sense of doom (apparently!). And the thing that really makes me laugh? The disappointment you face when you first remove the diary from that padded envelope. I found out about this diary through work as it was featured on one of our publications' websites. And on that website the diary looked pretty sizeable  Remove it from that padded envelope and you'll find it's actually pretty small. It's all part of the fun though!

I paid full price for mine but they are currently on sale if you wish to purchase one for yourself / family / a friend / your cat. You can find them here: www.disappointmentsdiary.com 

What do you look for in a diary?