Goals for 2019

Tuesday, 15 January 2019
A belated Happy New Year lovelies!

I'm so sorry for the delayed new year post. I've made the most of my second week off of work and giving myself some self care time, taking some time away from social media, spending time with my family, focusing on a new year, better me! (I saw that quote on Lydia Elise Millen) and it really stood out to me. Now back to normality! I know myself I love the feeling of a new year and a fresh start, getting a new planner and pen, feeling oh so organised, but it also makes me feel an element of anxiety and pressure to make all these changes and to me it signifies all the things I need to achieve, which is positive, but scary at the same time, as I may not achieve them.

So I decided to set small goals for myself, on more of an achievable level, so I don't put pressure on myself.

 1- Read 6 books this year.
Now, compared to others' new year book goals, this is extremely small, but due to my busy job and always working, I knew I didn't want to set the bar too high, one of the books I am aiming to read this year is William Makepeace Thackeray's 'Vanity Fair', this is a huge book that will take quite a bit of reading time up, but I am excited for this. Especially in Spring, where it's a lovely, warm day, lots of flowers blooming and getting absorbed into another world.

2- Sustainable clothing - Time capsule wardrobe.
I have seen a lot of talk about this, the amount of clothing and money we waste every season on trend pieces, it made me so aware that I'd rather save up a bit longer to purchase one timeless and good quality piece of clothing, to then create a time capsule wardrobe, than buy lots of pieces for the same price as one, but they won't last, and will start to look unfashionable. I can just imagine a wardrobe filled with pieces that are stylish, simple and full of pink to use year after year.

3- Pay off my car debt.
When I passed my test I went to get a car straight away on a PCP plan, the past year I have saved and saved to pay this off early, I have a little more saving to do, but I'm hoping to have this debt gone this year. I think having no debts help to have a healthy and happy mental state.

4- Healthy lifestyle.
Last year I began trying to find a good balance between my eating habits, exercise and incorporating a healthy lifestyle, whilst being at full time work. I have been following Anna Saccone Joly and Lydia Elise Millen with their healthy lifestyle journeys, they have given the best content on how to be sensible and still enjoy foods, without taking on any detox diets or unhealthy diets, a way to sustain a healthy, happy relationship with food, working out and balance. Their content has given me the best, positive way to gain a healthy lifestyle, I don't want to do crazy diets, I've deprived myself and made myself ill before, so there won't be any cutting of food groups, no restrictions, a healthy balanced diet, with a sensible amount of working out, a small workout each morning is what I am aiming for!
I highly recommend looking at Anna and Lydia's YouTube videos and blogpost's if that's one of your 2019 goals!

I'd love to hear your new year goals in the comments or follow me on Instagram and Twitter @KellieSaunders1 and let me know!

Kellie Jo

What I Got For Christmas 2018

Sunday, 30 December 2018
Hello lovelies! 
I cannot believe it's nearly 2019 and I am posting another 'What I Got For Christmas Haul'...This year has gone by so quickly!
I hope you all had a magical Christmas, filled with lots of family time, carols, hot chocolates and everything you wished for. 

I have done this post every year for around 5 years now, it always seems very popular and I enjoy writing it, so I thought I'd carry on tradition and do it again for 2018.
I was very lucky to be spoilt again this year, so I wanted to share what I got and give you some 'wishlist' inspiration. 

Here are some of presents I received from my Mum and Dad - 
Lots of beautiful bath sets one from 'Baylis and Harding' with an adorable 'Time to Sparkle' toiletry bag, a 'Ted Baker' set in the scent 'Fragrant Bloom' and 'Vintage and Co' set.

 An 'Imperial Leather Unicorn bubble bath', a 'Vanilla Sugar' bubble bath, a 'Baylis and Harding' bath frizzer set, a 'Mad Beauty, Marie, Bows and Whiskers' bath milk and two 'Holla-graphic' bath bombs.

A mini Lush haul - 'Snow Fairy' shower gel, 'Candy Cane' bubble bar, the 'Princess' bath bomb and snow fairy scented 'Magic Wand'.

Also from my Mum and Dad, some bits that aren't bath related...
I went to see 'Mary Poppins Returns' and I can't begin to tell you how magical it was! I was thrilled to get the prettiest set of 'Mary Poppins' socks with lovely quotes from the movie and a beautiful pastel pink nightie set with 'Practically Perfect in Every Way' covering it, with an adorable eye mask to match.

Beauty wise they got me one of my favourite perfumes 'Estee Lauder's Youth Dew' Christmas pack, an 'Armani' mini perfume set, I love these to test a mixture of perfumes instead of buying the full size bottles and one of the MAC eye shadows from the 'Shiny Things' collection, this pretty, sparkly eyeshadow is called 'P for Pink'.
I was thrilled to find Megan Hess' 'Coco Chanel' book in my gifts, I love her illustrations and cannot wait to absorb into this world of beauty and class.

They also gifted me a couple of clothing items, the first is a beautiful pink jumper from 'Dorothy Perkins', it has a lovely sequin detail at the neck line. They also got me a baby pink hoodie from Primark, it has the warmest fleece lining. They also got me my calendar choice of the year which is the 'Barbie Couture' one.

Now for what my Fiance got me this year - We went to the Disney Store close to Christmas time and I saw this beautiful 'Mary Poppins Returns' Barbie doll. I know what you're thinking.. "Kellie, you're 23, you really don't need a Barbie doll", but from such a young age I was always obsessed with Barbie's, I had a huge collection and Barbie was a huge part of my childhood, I still love just admiring them. This one is a collectable, I haven't and do not plan to take her out of the packaging, I just admire the beauty of it.
He also knew how much I loved this year's 'Victoria's Secret' fashion show robe, all the sparkles and gorgeous shade of pink, I love the idea of stepping into 2019 feeling glam wearing this.
As a baking lover, one thing I have been wanting to try for the longest time after seeing so many YouTubers talk about them is 'The Biscuiteers' biscuits, they always have the most beautiful, detailed designs and since he took me to see 'The Nutcracker' ballet two weeks ago, he got me 'The Nutcracker' themed ones, they're delicious!
Another Megan Hess book I was wishing for was this one 'New York, Through a Fashion Eye', like 'Coco Chanel', I can't wait for more fashion inspiration!
Jamie knew I adored 'Cath Kidston's' newest CathKidstonxDisney Bambi collection, the beautiful floral pattern with Bambi and Thumper, he purchased me to two 'Royal Stafford' plates and cutest cup to match.
As it's been just over a year since Jamie proposed to me, he chose the 'Disney Tradition' where Mickey is proposing to Minnie and I think this one is beautifully designed and is very special.
Last but not least, he also bought me some Lush bits - 'Twilight' bath bomb, 'Sex Bomb' bath bomb, 'Butterbear' bath bomb and 'The Snow Fairy' jelly bomb.

My sister and brother in law to be got me the Minnie Mouse 'Nutcracker' and later I was gifted the Mickey 'Nutcracker' to match in a secret Santa. They're perfect and great to signify the year I got to see the ballet.

What was your favourite thing you got for Christmas?

I hope you have a wonderful new year, set some productive goals and have a healthy, happy new year!

Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @KellieSaunders1

Kellie Jo

Christmas Time in London - Shopping, Sightseeing and The Nutcracker Ballet

Tuesday, 25 December 2018
Merry Christmas lovelies!
The most magical day of the year is here and I hope you're all having a healthy and happy time.

I thought for a special Christmas Day post I'd talk about the most Christmassy day I had in London last week.
As a birthday present my fiance booked us tickets to see 'The Nutcracker' ballet at The London Coliseum, I have wanted to see this ballet for the longest time and I couldn't believe it was finally here, I get to see Clara, The Nutcracker and The Sugar Plum Fairy in real life instead of on a screen.

We took an early train to Covent Garden to have a little shop around...We was greeted to this beautiful Christmas tree in the middle of Covent Garden, making us feel even more festive.
We took a look around the shops, the Chanel boutique was full of luxurious perfumes and beauty products. I also learnt Holly Golightly was completely right about Tiffany's, how gorgeous is their little blue box wreath?

The one place I really wanted to go to on our trip was Laduree, I have dreamt of going to this whimsical, pastries and desserts delight ever since I saw Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl having the biggest bubble bath, whilst eating a decadent Laduree macaroon! 

We had a lovely lunch at Frankie and Benny's and as we had time before the ballet started, we decided to take a stroll through Trafalgar Square and visit Buckingham Palace, for some reason it seemed even more magical a week before Christmas, as I type this the Queen's speech is on the tv, a lovely Christmas tradition.

We walked straight to the Coliseum from Buckingham Palace and was greeted with the most beautiful building, adorned with garlands and wreaths.
I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the most breathtaking ballet pointe Christmas tree, which was inspired by 'The Waltz of Flowers', the bottom started with fuschia colours and it gradually spirals up to a blush colour on top. 

I took a look in the Coliseum gift shop, as I mainly wanted to buy a programme, but at the till I saw this stunning, pink nutcracker tree decoration, I couldn't leave without it as I knew it would be perfect on my pink wonderland tree.

Other than the bits I got from the ballet, I done a couple of purchases whilst being in Covent Garden.
I have been wanting to make my first Charlotte Tilbury purchase for a while and I couldn't decide what to get, but I saw this perfume and fell in love with it, it's in the shade 'Super Cindy'.
In Laduree I chose the six macaroon pink box, two raspberry, two chocolate, one vanilla and one pistachio, I also purchased a pack of their festive biscuits for my Mum and Dad.

I hope you're all having a wonderful time and Merry Christmas!!!

Enjoy your evening...

Kellie Jo 

Christmas Baking - Nutcraker 'Land Of Sweets' Inspired Cake

Saturday, 15 December 2018

Hello lovelies! 

I can't believe Christmas is so close! I love seeing the beautiful fairy lights surrounding houses and all the festive cheer around. It's starting to feel extra magical, the more we approach the special day! 
One of my favourite things is festive baking, last year I saw Sophie from 'The Frosting Fairy' do her own interpretation of a Nutcracker style cake, which inspired me to make my own. 
Here is how I made my 'Nutcracker- Land of Sweets' inspired cake.

 Sponge Cake Ingredients - 
4 Free range eggs
225g/8oz Caster sugar
225g/8oz Self raising flour
2 Teaspoons of baking powder
225g/8oz Butter at room temperature 
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
2 teaspoons of strawberry flavouring

Frosting Ingredients - 
600g Icing Sugar
300g Unsalted softened butter
2 Teaspoons of strawberry flavouring
3 teaspoons of pink colouring

Step 1- Line your cake tins with greaseproof paper and pre heat your oven to gas mark 5.

Step 2 - Put your caster sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl and cream together, once creamed add eggs, flour, baking power, vanilla and strawberry flavouring and mix together.

Step 3 - Place an even amount of mixture into each cake tin and pop in the oven for 25-30 mins, at this point, take a knife and place a tiny slit in your cake, if your knife comes out of the cake clean, it's ready to come out of the oven.

Step 4 - Place you cakes on a cooling rack and leave to cool.

Step 5 - Whilst your cakes are cooling it's time to prep the buttercream icing! Cream together your butter and icing sugar, once combined add pink food colouring and strawberry flavouring.

Step 6 - Once you cake has completely cooled down, it's time for the best part, decorating! I put a thick buttercream layer inbetween both cakes and a thick layer on top. To decorate I used mini meringues, mini mint flavoured candy canes, teeny, tiny snowflakes and three sugar mice in white and pink to finish off my 'Land of Sweets'.

Here are a couple more photos of my creation...

I hope you enjoyed this Nutcracker/baking crossover, I had so much fun creating this!

What are you most excited for this Christmas?

Follow me on my Twitter and Instagram @KellieSaunders1, I'd love to nosey at all your Christmas, magical feeds!!

Kellie Jo

Pink Wonderland - Christmas Decorations Haul and Tour

Sunday, 2 December 2018
Hello lovelies and happy December 1st!!!
I can't believe it's a month until Christmas, the most magical time of year. Full of whimsical decorations adorning trees, shops windows and houses. Hearing The Nutcracker being played softly in the background of every home. I have very nearly completed my Christmas shopping, so I thought, it's time to get my 'Pink Wonderland' tree underway...
This is my second year of having a 6ft Christmas tree in my bedroom and I wanted to continue purchasing more pretty and special decorations for my tree and getting the perfect tree topper.

I was lucky enough to find my perfect tree topper, this beautiful pink fairy from Gisela Graham, her Christmas pieces are always some of my favourites, they're so dreamy.

As you'll see in some other pictures, I already own the most glamorous 'Nutcraker', dressed in white and champagne colours, but I needed my 'Sugar Plum Fairy'. I purchased both from Matalan, but the Nutcraker is two years old now, they have had some of the prettiest pieces for Christmas this year.

The most girly bauble I have ever seen, shiny, millennial pink and fluffy...Another pretty Matalan find.

I love having my tree filled with ballet themed ornaments, this one took my eye as it reminded me of a dancing snowflake. There were only a few when I purchased this one and every time I visited afterwards, they didn't have anymore, so I feel this was meant to be. This was once again from Matalan.

My favourite Disney princess, Aurora. I was keeping a close eye on the Disney website when they started releasing the ornaments, I was upset when I could see every princess but Aurora, I knew her pink dress would match my tree theme so well. I looked in store multiple times and still no luck...Then they started having one of their offers with a discount on baubles, I walked in store and done a little squeal, I saw Aurora for the first time and with an offer! I purchased her straight away and popped her in my Disney's 'The Nutcracker and the Four Realms' tote bag from the Disney store.

I couldn't believe my eyes at this beautiful decoration, Cinderella's carriage, full of sparkles, I couldn't leave Matalan without it. This is a perfect addition to my tree.

I was in B&Q taking a look at the Christmas section and like usual, anything pink and sparkly always catches my eye. I thought this was a cute, glittery unicorn and very matching to my theme.

I am obsessed with fawn's, anything Bambi-like and vintage deers. This pretty little deer is from The Range and I couldn't believe this was only 90p!!! Sparkly bargains are my favourite...

To add a final touch to my Christmas tree I wanted to add a tree skirt. In every Christmas/holiday movie I see they have tree skirts to make them look even more beautiful and festive. The Range had a lovely selection. My Mum and Dad got the traditional, cute Santa one, whilst I purchased this beautiful white and silver, sparkly snowflake one. This matches my white tree and finishes the tree perfectly!

Just when I thought I'd finished my bauble buying for the year, I visited my local garden centre and I walked through a winter wonderland. Through that I found a pink wonderland, within that magical place was the prettiest bauble you ever did see. Embellished with pearls and sparkles...

Here are some photos of my 'Pink Wonderland'...

Have you put your tree and decorations up? What theme have you gone for this year?

I'd love to see your own personal 'wonderlands'...Tweet me yours @KellieSaunders1 

Have the most wonderful, festive week filled with mint flavoured hot chocolates, presents wrapped in pretty ribbons and sparkles at every corner...

Happy December!!!

Kellie Jo