29 October 2015

Scary Halloween Nail Art

Ooh it's been a while since I posted some nail art! Mainly because I haven't been doing any nail art recently! My nails are always painted of course (ew bare nails! shudder!) but they have just been plain colours, well when I say plain usually the brightest neons I can find or a 'classic' bright grass green.

Anywho Halloween is the perfect excuse for painting themed nails and when I spotted these cute wee nail stickers in sainsburys I couldn't resist!

 Step 1.... pull out all the Halloween type colours from one's stash... I have gone for:

  • A Ciate red
  • W7 in 15 Fluorescent Orange (My absolute fave nail varnish ever!)
  • Seche Vite - THE best top coat
  • Barry M black, number 47
  • Barry M Gelly purple
  • Sinful Colours in Exotic Green number 1105
Step 2... Prepare your nails.  I take off my old varnish with little remover pads from Superdrug, they are so convenient, perfect for taking away on holiday.  

I clip my nails and then file with my Leighton Denny glass nail file. I resisted buying this for ages after being disappointed with glass files in the past, but oh my I was wrong! This thing is fab, it is a lot more expensive than a regular file but will literally last forever and is so much better for your nails than a regular file too.

Then I add a teeny drop of cuticle oil, massage in and push back cuticles with your nail or a hoof stick, then wash hands.

Step 3... Decide on your colours and paint nails, I went for three colours; orange, green and black for the three types of stickers I have and did alternate nails with 2 coats on each nail.

Step 4... Once nails completely touch dry apply your stickers.  These were from Sainsburys in their Halloween section and I think were only a pound.  They are really sticky and last a good few days without peeling off.  I simply stuck them on using fingers, but you could use tweezers if you want more careful placement.

Step 5... Once your stickers are in place I finished off with a coat of Seche Vite which makes my nails extra shiny, prevents chipping so quickly and will just help to keep the stickers on longer.

 Ta da, perfect scary Halloween nails!

 And these were my nails from 2013.... You can find the full post here.. 

I didn't blog these beauties (shock!!!), but these were last years, I simply just instagrammed them, but I think these drippy blood ones were my favourite Halloween nails to date!

I created these just with a nail dotting tool, using the smallest size to dot on the drippy blood.

Do you paint your nails for Halloween? I would love to see...

26 October 2015

Gorsebank Glamping: A Review

This past weekend I went Glamping! We chose to go to Gorsebank which is near Dalbeattie on the Scottish Solway Coast.  We've been before but this time we took a bunch of friends and glammed it up a bit in one of the bothies!

We booked Bothy Number 1 which sleeps six.  This is a large old barn building split into two.  The bothy next door sleeps up to ten (but we don't have that many friends! lol!).

The booking process was easy enough, with a great website and full info there.  You simply check the availability and book online and pay a deposit to secure your required dates.  When you arrive you will also pay a £50 pre authorisation on your credit card, but that's just a deposit and you get that back, provided you leave the bothy as you found it!

For 2 nights in mid season the bothy cost us £220, but when you divide that by 6, it is only £36 each which is bargain tastic for a weekend away.

You can pay for extras too to make your trip extra 'glam', there is a hot tub for each bothy that can be hired for £69 for two nights and also a gas BBQ for hire for £12.  We also paid extra for the firewood (being October!!) and that was £7 for a large basket that kept us toasty for the entire weekend.

We actually didn't go for the hot tub this time which was super sad.  You can leave booking the hot tub until just a few days before.  The hot tub and outside area is for private use of bothy only, so nobody else would be in it!  But we were cautious and decided to see what the weather was going to do first.  The forecast for the weekend was torrential rain (typical!) so we didn't book it.

The weather was actually not that bad for our weekend, nothing like the forecast, so I was a little sad as I would have liked some hot tub time.

I was very impressed with the bothy and the campsite facilities.  It is a lovely small campsite and is mostly families or people coming for the biking (more on that later!) and it is really quiet.  It is on farm land and is family run.  There are animals everywhere, lots of horses, there are fishing ponds, Herdwicke sheep and of course the farm cat! As it is a working farm you are not permitted to bring your dog with you.

There is a small tent pitch and camping pods, tepees and timber tents for hire too if you want a cheaper option or you are a smaller party.

Inside the bothy was brilliant! The most well equipped bothy I have ever stayed in!  It had everything you could possibly want and was very comfortable and clean.

Mark got straight to work with his favorite job, getting the fire started.  The fire is essential this time of year as this is what heats the bothy.  It did a fantastic job we were too warm most of the time, and the bedroom upstairs was very toasty.

There are 2 comfortable sofas and even a TV! I don't approve of the TV when camping so we tried to not use it too much.  If you are going for a camping adventure with friends it should be 'different' to staying at home... but then again if you are staying for a week with kids the TV might be a god thing!

We did however bring the Wii, which we thought was a better idea so that we could all play together and be social.  We had a competitive game of Mario Kart!

The kitchen literally has everything you need! Small and basic, but very clean.  All you need to bring is food!

I always bring with me when any type of camping, a tea towel, washing up sponges, liquid and some sort of antibac spray. Lots of these kind of places provide these, but better to be safe than sorry!

We had easy frozen pizza the first night and then my friend Emma made a delicious veggie curry for our second night, yum!

I loved how light and bright the barn was, they have done a super job converting this.  I've stayed in places before where the stairs are very steep and pokey, but these are the opposite, as you can see!

Upstairs is just one large bedroom to sleep six.  There are 2 double beds and a bunk bed, so it is probably best to pick a group of people who know each other well!

Couldn't fault the bedroom, beds comfortable and large enough and it was very clean.  The pipe from the fire goes up through the bedroom and at one point in the night it was too warm, so heating shouldn't be an issue.  They also put in 2 electric heaters in the bedroom and there is a rail for clothes.

When glamping I usually bring a duvet instead of a sleeping bag, I find sleeping bags uncomfortable.  It is perfectly acceptable to bring lots of cosy things to make your stay as comfortable as possible.  We all brought blankets and slippers too!

Also good idea to bring a sheet to put on the bed, this bedroom had sheets but some places I have been to don't provide them and have horrid plastic mattresses.

I guess what makes this 'camping' and a 'bothy' rather than a cottage is the fact that there are no toilet facilities in the same building! All campsite users share the main campsite facilities in a separate purpose built barn.  There are 4 female toilets and 4 male and 2 showers each too, with lockable doors.

The toilet block is central and lit up throughout the night so easy to get to, it is also heated!  The shower is fantastic! The hottest most powerful shower I have had for a while.  The toilet block is kept very clean but of course it is a wooden barn, so there are insects and it is basic.

So what is there to do during the day?

Well biking of course! We love this campsite because you leave the farm through the track and you are right on the 7 Stanes Dalbeattie mountain biking trail.  Mark and I love biking and have done many of the local trail centres but friends Pam and Emma have never tried it, Pam even admitted to not being on a bike in 20 years!  So we 'convinced' them to give it a go.

You can hire decent mountain bikes at Gorsebank, they cost £17 for 4 hours for an adult bile with helmet, this is adequate time to get round blue route if you are a beginner or red for the more advanced.

Above photo is before and underneath is after... all made it in one piece, still smiling!

We did the blue route which is the entry level mountain biking route and 14 km long, it took us a couple of hours to complete.  the trail is mostly fire road with some big climbs and a few bits of more interesting single track. I would have liked the ladies to experience something more technical, and the fire roads went on for a bit, but they seemed to enjoy it!

Mark and I did red route the following day and that is a huge contrast to blue.  There are no massive ups or downs, but it is very very technical and rocky! If I am honest it is not my kind of trail, probably my least favorite so far of the 7 Stanes we have tried.  But any kind of biking is always fun for me!

Another idea for daytime activities is a trip to nearby Kippford.  We have Dalbeattie itself a miss after driving through in the eway there it didn;t look massively interesting.  Kippford on the other hand is stunning.  A tiny harbour village with lovely scenic coastline and beautiful houses and cottages.  There is also a little gift shop, restaurant and pub.

There is a lovely walk along the shore and onto Rockcliffe, the next little place along.  The interesting thing about Kippford is the beach, it is made entirely of shells! Very odd experience walking on them, you feel a bit sad when you hear the crunching sound!

Marky wondering if it is a wise idea to walk out to that island in low tide (probably not NO!!!)

Friends Em and Pam enjoying looking for rock pools and crabs on the beach.

So to conclude I highly highly recommend Gorsebank, I really love it here.  If you are new to camping it is the perfect place to go.  With no toilet facilities inside the bothy it does make it more of an adventure and more like camping than renting a cottage.  It is a fab budget friendly place to go for a weekend away with loads to do on site and in the area.

Where are your favourite places to go camping and glamping?

22 October 2015

October Faves...

OOOh a new little series for the blog... Inspired by my fave vloggers... They all seem to make monthly faves vids, well the beauty vloggers do anyway.  

Don't worry I'm not about to start vlogging anytime soon, yikes! Love watching them but the idea of doing it myself, just no! hehe.  So each month I plan to put together some faves, from music I'm obsessing about, TV shows and movies I can't get enough of, the shoes and clothes I am drooling over, you get the idea.... 

Hope you enjoy this month's faves...

First up these beautiful printed animal shaped cushions from Sass and Belle. I cannot stop looking at homey items in the hope I am moving soon... Any excuse for all new soft furnishings! (Image Sass & Belle)

HOW good is Walking Dead? I realise I'm a little late to this particular one, but Mark came home with the 1-4 box set recently and I am obsessed.  We always watch it just before bed though so the zombie dreams have been interesting! Try walking out through town in the dark on your own  late at night after watching it... yeah, convinced everyone I saw was a 'walker'! (Image amc)

Seriously! Seriously! Just look at these sparkly beauties. Impossible to resist... I might just have to splurge on payday... I mean it would be awful, just awful not to have one of these to wear for all the Xmas parties I will be going to! These are of course Tatty Devine. (image Tatty Devine)

I am actually obsessed with Fleur now! She is by far my fave Youtuber and I am loving the fact she is blogging everyday in October.  As a new fan I am even working my way through all her old vids, I've watched all her Bride de Force ones and her vlogs from April and February too! Vlogs are just perfect for nosy people like me, MUCH better than fake 'reality' TV anyday.  Check Fleur out now! (Image Fleur de Vlogs, YouTube)

An acorn shirt? How cute is this? I just love acorns, it is so lovely for this time of year.  I haven't purchased it yet, but it is a serious contender for the Autumn wardrobe updates... This little beauty is from Mod Dolly. (Image Mod Dolly)

The Age of Adeline. Oh this movie is just perfect, such a lovely lovely story! Plus Adeline's wardrobe, I want everything! I think Blake Lively is fab in it and erm her boyfriend is a bit dreamy isn't he.  He was in Game of Thrones and Nashville recently too. Watch this now if you have not done so already, or simply watch it again! (Image The Age of Adeline Movie)

Literally cannot stop eating this stuff! Nature Valley's new Granola. OMG yum! I do love a bit of Granola in the mornings, by far my fave breakfast.  I spotted these in the supermarket, and had a quick peek at the calories, but they come out as less cals than my usual variety so I snapped them up. They are quite expensive and you don't get much in a bag, but SO worth it.  I have to be careful though as I could easily just snack on bowlfuls of this stuff.  I top it with a vanilla Muller Light for a scrummy breakfast. It feels like you are eating dessert!  Win. (Image Asda)

Again on the home furnishings theme, I spied this amazingly cute Autumn woodland bedding on the Asda website, and best thing is it is SO cheap, at only £12 for a double set with pillow cases.  The quality is fab too and I am sure it makes my bed even more snuggly than normal. (Image Asda)

What have you been loving this month? Do you do these sorts of posts or vids? Would love to see if you want to leave a link...

21 October 2015

Design your own Joules Wellies Competition

Do you love the brand Joules as much as me? Quirky prints, bright colours and super wearable shapes, what could be better?

I have been a huge fan for a while, especially with their wellies! So when Joules got in touch to ask if I would like to help them promote their competition, well I didn't hesitate!
So Joules are inviting people to visit their website and design their own welly.  Not only is the app really fun, there are colours to choose from and prints, or simply draw your own! But you could win the chance of getting your wellies made, PLUS the winner also gets a luxury 3 nights Golden Oak Treehouse break worth £5,000, yes please!

The winning welly design will go on sale at Joules.com

10 runners up will receive a £250 Joules gift card.

Competition closes on 4th December.

All proceeds from the sale of the limited edition winning welly will be donated to our charity partners via CHARITABLY JOULES

Well if you think you can improve on the perfection of my current Joules wellies (in the pic above), blue polka dots and red trim (love!!!) Check out my competition entry... Bright pink with mustard yellow trims, bright blue stars and cute yellow bees. Yes please... who would NOT wear these beauties!

Visit the page now and have a go yourself.... http://getcreative.joules.com/


Pop over to the competition site NOW, and have a go for yourself... http://getcreative.joules.com/

I would love to see your designs too...

19 October 2015

An idea for a lovely Autumn Walk

We went for a lovely walk this weekend starting in Grange, Borrowdale, up Castle Crag and on to Rosthwaite, it was a warm sunny Autumn day.  This is a favourite walk of ours so I thought I would share the route so you can go too!

Time: Give yourself a good 3 hours (remember to take some water and a snack!)
Length: 4.6 miles
Level: Moderate - It is a mostly flat walk, but the ground very un even in parts, one very steep climb.

I would not recommend this walk for pushchairs or wheelchairs, there is a lot of rather big rocks and steps to climb over and if you do Castle Crag, this is very steep. The walk would be fine for older children.
Start in Grange, Borrowdale, Cumbria.  There is a little car park just by the bridge as you drive into the village, or many people choose just to park along the road. There are no parking restrictions or costs, but watch out for double yellow lines on some parts of the road.

Grange has two good cafes, perfect for fuelling up before your walk.  There are also some public toilets in the village.

The path starts to the right of the main cafe, sign posted to Hollows Farm campsite.

Follow the pretty road along until you see the left hand turn for Hollows Farm.

The road left is now more like a track (but do watch out as cars do still go up here to the camp site car park) walk along with the wall on your left, you will see the large camping field on the left and woodland camping to the right.

You will come to the campsite car park on the right and then the river on your left. This area is just stunning! A great shallow pebbly beach area for paddling and swimming in the summer months!

Don't walk along the river, instead turn up to your right up a steep path from the small bridge.

 This is quite a steep path now and as you can see it is loose uneven ground.

Keep walking up the path until you spot the steep sloping slate sides of Castle Crag to your left. There is an obvious path that stretches out in front of you, this is not the one to take... there is a smaller less obvious steep path to the left.

This next section is the more challenging part of the walk. You are basically walking up a massive slate spoil heep! There is a very obvious path marked out that zig zags up.  Be very careful here (I was a little unsure of this bit) the ground is not solid, so just take your time.

As you can see it is worth the climb! With views of the Borrowdale Valley and Rosthwaite to one side...
 And Derwent Water and Keswick to the other.

Walk back down from the top to the half way point, just down from the very top slatey section.  Don't continue right the way down the as you came, instead you will see a path and stile ahead of you.
The path now is quite a steep down, with some purpose built steps through the bracken and on to Rosthwaite ahead.

Once down the path is flat and even.  The walk all the way to Rosthwaite is very pleasant and easy now.  Look out for the Herdwick Sheep!

Keep following the path along the river, you cannot go wrong! You come to the cutest little bridge, stop and play some Pooh Sticks!
Follow the pretty track all the way along to Rosthwaite Village now.

Spot the little bush full of cute little pals!

Rosthwaite has a good sized car park, a little cafe with fab outside eating area and public toilets, what more could you need! There is also a rather nice large hotel with bar just across the road as you come out the end of the village.

 Stop for a selfie!

Basically you now re-trace your steps and go back out of Rosthaite the way you came.  Back up the farm track out of the village to the river.

Before you get to the bridge, there is a little cut in the wall and some stepping stones over the river, this is a nice little alternate route for a small section.  The stepping stones are fun!

 You will see the sign post for Grange... Just follow this along...

You will come to the gate and the steep path that you followed down from Castle Cragg.  Don't worry we won't go back up, instead keep following the flat path ahead.

 The rest of the lower path now mostly looks like this, with trees either side, very very pretty!

With lots of climbing frames to play on!

There are some steeper sections to climb, but it just keeps the path interesting. Just keep going along the most obvious path and you can't go wrong.  There are a few little paths that lead off but eventually get back to same place anyway!

You soon meet the river again, and the pebble beach paddling area again that you will recognise and the camp site ahead. You are now walking back along the first section past the campsite and back up the road into Grange.

At the end of the campsite track turn right along the road to Grange.

To end our walk we decided to pop into Keswick to our favourite cafe, the Filling Station for some rather large sticky chocolate orange cake! er yum!

What are your fave Cumbrian walks? I would love to find some new ones.