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Date Night | A Summer Evening At Côte Brasserie

  • Wednesday, 24 June 2015

 



 
Me and the boy have decided that we should go out for dinner more. We live in York city centre and so have a huge selection of beautiful restaurants right on our doorstep. However, like most couples I know, we are often tired after working and tend to opt for a quiet night in with a film and a take-away. However, we have made a pact to have more date nights, less takeaways and explore our city's best eateries. Last week we went to Cote Brasserie which is a wonderful French restaurant. The décor is very simplistic with very classic and slick feel with multiple shades of grey and brown. I wore a high-neck black top and a black skirt with a slit, both from Topshop. I paired the outfit with nude, dusty pick court shoes from New Look and a triple faux pearl necklace from Primark. I chose a natural make up look with Nars Sheer Glow foundation, Topshop Magic Liner and Mac's Brave lipstick.







 
Cote offers an early bird menu Monday to Friday 12pm until 7pm in which you can have two or three courses. We each opted for three course, although it was a good job the boy was with me as he finished off each of my courses! For starters I had the Duck and Chicken Liver Terrine with toasted ciabbatta bread while James opted for Leek Spaghetti with Poached Eggs. It was beautiful, if a little on the large side and was served warm on a rustic wooded board. For mains we both ordered the Three Minuet Steak with Peppercorn Sauce and Fries. This was cooked to perfection and tasted so delicious. Desert was a Dark Chocolate Pot toped with Crème Fresh which complimented the chocolate making it very bitter-sweet.
 
We both had a lovely time and it was so nice to get dressed up and head out for a meal. I much prefer cutting out takeaways and saving the money to go and  spend the evening together. It is so easy to get wrapped up in life and bogged down by work that it is nice to just spend some time out of the house together to chat and catch up on things.
 
 
Do you like going out for meals? What do you like doing for Date Nights?
 
 
Maddy
xxx
 

Real Techniques Sculpting Set Collector's Edition

  • Monday, 22 June 2015

 




 


 
Real Techniques are fast becoming my new go-to brand when it comes to make up brushes. I find that they are so lovely and soft, keep their shape and apply make up precisely as I want it too. As an added bonus they are also really affordable and look really cute - what more could I want from a make up brush? I quite like that they also bring out limited collection packs of brushes every-so-often which are usually a fantastic bargain. I picked up the Collector's Edition Sculpting Set a few weeks ago which were originally priced at just over £20 (a bargain in itself) but I spotted them whilst they were on offer for a mere £13.99! I was so chuffed when I saw this and added them to my basket straight away.
 
This is a really lovely collection to own and I use each of the three brushes in my everyday routine. There is a Setting Brush which is slightly larger than a blending eye shadow brush. Originally I used this brush to apply powder around my eye and nose area, which I think is what it is supposed to be used for. However, for the last few weeks I have been using it to apply my new Mac Pro Long Wear Concealer which is in liquid form. I find that applying the concealer with this brush provides a very flawless and evenly blended finish.
 
I have been using the Fan Brush, which is a flat hand-fan-like shape to apply my powder once I have applied my foundation and concealer. It is beautifully thin which means that it doesn't pick up too much product and evenly distributes the powder over my face. The final brush in the pack is the Sculpting Brush which is recommended to be used for contouring. As this brush is quite dense, I have found that for me, it works better when I use it to apply blusher as opposed to bronzer.
 
I have really been enjoying these three brushes and would definitely recommend them as a set to be used for everyday use. I would suggest having a play with them rather than just using them as they are recommended as you may find, like me, that they are better suited for different products.
 
 
What are your thoughts on the Real Techniques Sculpting Set?
 
 
Maddy
xxx

A Step Into The Kitchen | A Greek Salad

  • Friday, 19 June 2015



 
A dish with a twist; Greek salad, a light lunch or evening meal...
 
If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you'll know that I have just been on a lovely family holiday to Cyprus for a week in the sun. If you fancy seeing some pictures from my trip or having a read of what I got up to, I published a Look Book last week here. We decided to have a really relaxing time whilst we were away so there was lots of sunbathing, lounging by the pool and meals out. I ate a lot of salad, mostly Greek salad which is beautifully simple and delicious. Since being back in England I have been trying to eat a bit more healthy and so have been having the odd Greek salad on an evening.
 
Carrying on with my 'A Step Into The Kitchen' series, I thought that I would introduce the simplistic Greek salad which you could have in the traditional sense or with a bit of a twist depending on your personal taste. The basics to a Greek salad are all fresh ingredients served raw and chopped into bite-sized pieces.
 
Red or White Cabbage
Lettuce Leaves
Tomatoes
Cucumber
Onion
Olives
Feta Cheese
A Light Oil/Basil Dressing
 
These are the eight main components of a typical Greek Salad which makes it extremely easy to prepare and fairly cheep to buy. Especially if you think that you can buy a whole cabbage which will keep for a while and provide many salad portions. The feta cheese and olives will be the most expensive part to this dish but you only need a small amount and you can taste the flavour throughout. Although this is a substantial dish for me, it can leave me feeling a little peckish a few hours later and so if I decide to have this as an evening meal I have also been adding extra ingredients. Pictured above is tuna and red onion mixed with a small amount of mayo, and below that is chicken with a honey and mustard dressing. These extra toppings help to keep me feeling fuller for longer and make it a bit more of a substantial meal to have on an evening as opposed to a light lunch.
 
 
Do you like eating Greek Salads? What type of salad do you like to eat?
 
 
Maddy
xxx 

Lifestyle Post | A Night At Humble Bee Farm

  • Wednesday, 17 June 2015

 
I really struggled this year as to know what to get the boy for his birthday. With us both working we pretty much buy what we want when we want it, and I wouldn't have wanted to get him anything music related or electrical as I know he would want to pick that out himself. So I had a think and decided to take us away for a night somewhere. I was recommended a 'Glamping' trip by a friend which is basically "posh" camping. The idea is that you stay in a little pod which has electricity, heating, lights and a little fridge and a kettle, yet you're still experiencing the outdoors, surrounded by wonderful scenery. We both had a lovely time and went out for a beautiful meal at a local pub around the corner. I would really recommend Humble Bee Farm if you're from the North and fancy a cheaper slightly alternative night away, without all of the fuss of camping. The staff were really friendly and welcoming, and with it being a working farm there was lots to see. It is situated in between Scarborough and Filey, both of which are lovely little sea-side towns and we spent the following morning having a walk by the coast enjoying a lovely cup of tea. Below are just a few pictures of our stay - hope you enjoy!
 


















 





 
Would you like to try a 'Glamping' experience?
 
 
Maddy
xxx

The Best Way To Combat Breakouts | Lush's Mask Of Magnaminty

  • Monday, 15 June 2015

 



This peppermint mask does everything it can to fight eruptions and outbreaks and return your skin to tip top condition...
 
If you read yesterday's post about my recent purchase of Lush's Skin Drink Moisturiser, then you'll know that around a month ago I re-vamped my skincare as my face was suffering from quite bad breakouts and I needed to get it sorted. Along side using Skin Drink twice daily I have also been using this Magnaminty Face Mask for 10 - 15 mins twice a week.
 
I have really been enjoying using this product for the last few weeks as I really feel like it has improved the quality of my skin. It contains Peppermint Oil, African Marigold Oil, Evening Primrose Seeds, Honey, Talc, Kaolin, Bentonite Gel and ground Aduki Beans, which creates a very unique smell which is predominantly minty. I really like using this  on an evening, usually while I'm having a bit of a pamper in the bath as I find the smell quite relaxing, just before going to bed. However, I have used it on a morning a few times and it has really set up my skin in great condition for the day. It almost feels as though you can feel your impurities and breakouts shrinking away whilst this is on the skin. What I love most about this product is that once it has been removed your skin feels beautifully soft, not dry and tight like a lot of products that are designed to get rid of spots can tend to make the skin feel. Another bonus is that you hardly need any of this product in order to cover your whole face, so it should last a nice amount of time.

 
What face masks do you like to use to keep breakouts to a minimum?
 
 
Maddy
xxx

My New Skincare Staple | Lush's Skin Drink Facial Moisturiser

  • Sunday, 14 June 2015




If your skin could reach out and grab a drink, this would be the one it would go for...

About a month ago my skin was absolutely terrible. I think it was a combination of being poorly, stuck inside with a lack of fresh air, a rubbishy diet (because I wasn't feeling well) and a lack of exercise (again because I wasn't feeling well) and it was a really big blow to my self confidence. I have always been pretty lucky when it comes to break outs on my face as I have always seemed to get them few and far between. Lately however, it has become a daily battle to try and get my skin back on track. I decided to head out to Lush and thought that maybe if I re-vamped my skincare products it might breathe a little life into my skin. I opted for Lush as apposed to a beauty counter as I thought that the natural, organic ingredients may do my skin some good.
 
I left the shop, after a chat with one of the lovely sales assistants, with two products, one of which was their Skin Drink Moisturiser, if you want to find out what the other one was you'll have to pop back and have a read of tomorrow's post! The problem, it seemed, with my skin was that although it had been breaking out of late, it was lacking a lot of essential moisture and it was the lack of natural oils that was increasing the production of spots. I know it may sound a bit backwards but this little pot of cream has actually done wonders for my skin over the past few weeks. It contains water, Sesame Oil, Rose Petal Infusion, fresh Avocado, Almond Oil, Cocoa Butter, Aloe Vera Extract and Evening Primrose Oil, all of which, as I'm sure you can imagine, provide an awful lot of rich moisture. This product however soaks in unbelievably well and doesn't leave the skin feeling greasy in the slightest - it does actually feel as though your skin has had a huge drink!
 
I have been applying it to my skin morning and night after cleansing and I have noticed an incredible difference in the appearance over the past few weeks. The smell of the product was something that I had to get used to as it doesn't have the most conventional skincare scent, but it makes my skin feel so soft and hydrated. I would really recommend it as a moisturiser if you are having problems with your skin in terms of breakouts, and don't be too put off by the fact that it is an intense and rich cream.
 
 
What skincare staples do you use to prevent or help with breakouts?
 
 
Maddy
xxx
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