Sunday, June 24, 2012

On Any Given Sunday

Cancer is a big word and it has a different meaning to every person. To me it means fear.

My grandfather- my mum's dad, died in 1992. He had lung cancer. He was 46 years of age. Both of his parents were lost to cancers. My grandmother survived cancer 5 years ago. It's not unreasonable for me to fear losing my parents, particularly to this disease.

It is for this reason that the charities I choose to support are cancer charities. It's currently Race For Life season. I wanted to run this year, but the side effects of my current drug regimen meaning running 1, 5 or 50 KM is off the cards. Lots of people I know are running this year, but in the absence of a limitless bank balance, I simply can't sponsor everybody.

So this Sunday. This is what I'm doing. My contribution to kicking Cancer's backside. Just like I'll be doing next Sunday, and every week until the promotion ends....


On every promotional bottle of Aquapura water there is a code, which when activated at http://www.everybottlecounts.co.uk/ means that Aquapura will donate 10 pence to Cancer Research. It may not be much, but this is every label collected for a week. And I will continue to do this for as long as it runs. 

So Cancer, bring it. Because I'm ready to fight as hard as I can to send you back to where you belong. 

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

I'm In Deep

Can I get a little jig of joy or squeaky noise that I only have one more exam to sit now?! Please? This time tomorrow I will be done, jabbed, and enjoying an ENORMOUS cup of coffee (in the absence of the ability to drink a cocktail).

In the mean time, the realisation that having an appointment today meant I would in fact need to leave the house ergo also put on some actual clothes and some make up. I didn't think it would be light enough to get these photos, as Cumbria sure knows how to see in the Olympic Torch- with pouring rain and wind... but my little alcove continues to serve me well.



Denim Leggings, Primark
Jumper, DIY (HERE)




I also had a bit of a fiddle with my hair today. I have tried many types of curls in my hair and have never really found a style that's suited me right. I had never tried just doing the ends, so I thought I'd give that a go, the result is something I really like, and provided I can find a way to keep them from falling out in 10 minutes flat, I'll be replicating it, as it only took around 8-10 minutes to do with my GHD straighteners. I think the sit a bit more naturally on my tiny head and side parting...



Poser... Moi?

These are iPhone photos, as it has a front on camera, it's the only way I can get a steady picture of myself...

Right, better get back to murder and theft... exam topics rather than the crimes themselves... however tempting they may be at times.

 If you fancy a nose through my eBay goodies, I'm still trying to sell some bits. I'm going to be moving house in around 6 weeks time, so my mum and I are downsizing with particular attention to clothes that are now to big for her or too small for me.... There's some real bargains on some never or barely worn clothes, you can see all my eBay goodies on the eBay Tab under my header or HERE. My local charity shops aren't accepting donations and I REALLY don't want to have to throw this stuff out. 

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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Studulika

So what do you get if you add a couple of insomniac nights to a couple of hundred studs and a languishing sweatshirt?

Sweatshirt H&M, £9.99 (old)
Studs, assorted from THIS eBay seller
Insomnia, Model's own, c/o seemingly everlasting CPE's. 




Having tried on a number of studded jumpers and cardigans from Topshop, and finding that none of them fitted, I took matters into my own hands. I found the pyramid studs by simply searching 'studs' on eBay and they came in at £4.99 for 100, they arrived super quickly and the service from the seller was so good that when I realised that 100 wasn't really enough to create the splatter effect I was after, I order 100 silver domed studs and 100 gunmetal domed studs, total cost for both was about £6 (including postage). They have spikes on the back which you simple push through the fabric and fold in using the end of a pair of scissors to secure. I'm sure there's plenty of special tools out there, but they don't seem very necessary for these simple studs.

I used all 100 pyramid studs on the splatter effect and also the should details and I've used rough 40 of each of the different domed studs (going on what's left in the bag...)

I'm really pleased with the over all effect of the studs and I cut the ribbed band off the bottom hem and both cuffs for a better shape to the sweater. The total cost of this jumper, including the postage for the studs is around £22, not bad when I was seriously considering keeping an ill fitting jumper costing £38 (inc delivery). Studding is also highly therapeutic at 0400 when you can't sleep. Just so you know....

Whilst I'm loving all the studded items on the highstreet at the moment, I can't help feeling it's quite overpriced when you can do the same things yourself for verging on half the price, and it's the kind of project that could be done in a couple of hours whilst you're watching a movie or TV or (like me) not sleeping even nattering with a friend, that said, I know studs are doing the DIY rounds at the moment, so link me in if you've posted a stud DIY, I have maybe 120/30 studs left to use and could do with some inspiration. 


P.S. Kudos if you picked up the Harry Enfield reference in the title!


P.P.S. I'm still selling lots of bits and pieces as my local charity shops aren't accepting donations... Help a girl out?
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Sunday, June 17, 2012

All That Glitters

May not be gold (or my nail polish for that matter) but this is gold and it certainly  does have some sparkle.



Gold ring with Sapphire and Diamonds, gift

This ring was a gift from my grandmother last year, it was given to her by my (late) grandfather, we think sometime in the 80's (judging on the Diana-esque style...) and now she's struggling to get some of her jewellery on due to swelling in her hands, she's started giving bits and pieces to my mum and I.

Jewellery is a bit of a tradition in our family, my grandmother has a pretty massive collection, most of it given to her by my grandfather, and I'm starting to amass a fair bit myself, as jewellery has been my choice for gifts for lots of occasions like my 18th, 21st, etc, and I love that it has some meaning behind it. Having pieces like this are every bit as important too, as they are irreplaceable and of huge sentimental value as well as being beautiful.

It's taken me well over 6 months to get round to getting this resized by my local jeweller as I have sausage fingers compared to the rest of the women in my family, but I'm so glad I did, I love this ring, and cannot wait to wear it now it actually fits.

Is anyone else in love with sparkly things as much as I am? Do you think jewellery is a great way to remember special occasions? And what's you're most treasure piece of jewellery?

P.S. I'm selling more of my life on eBay including some Topshop Martha jeans, THIS versatile dress- bare legs if the sun comes out, tights and a jacket for the more realistic expectations of BST... and some bits of my mum's which she never got the chance to wear before she started losing weight- THIS sequinned tunic would be lovely for a wedding or a night out...

You can see all my listings HERE or via the eBay tab in my navigation bar.


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Friday, June 15, 2012

I Wish

Jeggings, Primark
Shoes, Clarks (39.99)
Celine Satchel, Nica ( £25 in sale, now sold out)


Actually, I'm wearing jersey trousers, a Danger Mouse tee, no make up, a furrowed brow and my hair is scrunched up in a top knot...

Credit for the inspiration on this post goes wholly to the lovely Harriet. Allow me to explain. She recently posted about a lazy day outfit, thing is she looks awesome (better in fact than when I make an effort), and it made me think about my own current attire- see above, as I'm currently living in said attire, whilst I continue through with studying for my CPE's (half way there now!).

Damn I'm looking forward to getting dressed again!

This time next week.....


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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Recently...

There's going to be no Chloe Likes To Eat for a while, as food is a bit of a sore point at the moment, and I'm not especially keen to do a weekly Instagram post, but I did realise that a bit of an update on recent happenings might be good to do. So here goes...

LONDON

Ministry of Sound for Thomas Gold, A Whitehall Stay, Afternoon Tea, Bathroom Goodies (which I stole) and Westminster for the Jubilee

COMFORT

When the going gets tough, the tough take comfort in.... Pizza, bacon Sandwiches, text messages, shopping and reminiscing on the long gone good weather.

WEARING

Popping my false eyelashes cherry, shiny sherbert nails, going skinny, SHOES, posing, matte sherbet nails, Hello Kitty, handbag purchase (hello sales shopping...), green wool


AND MONTY...
Our 9 year old Cocker Spaniel Monty, in various poses including waiting for me to give him some of my banana/apple (fat chance matey boy!) and sleeping. The cat in the middle was named CamoCat by T as it likes to chase it's matching friend in the long grass. It also likes to follow me about when I see it outside the house.

WORKING

Revising, Revising some more. Getting flights and visas and jabs and meetings sorted for Nigeria- less than a month to go, making sure my friends also make it to our exams, and more revising....

So that's recently. Most of these are Instagram shots, and you can find me as chloelikestotalk and I have a mini feed running on my sidebar too.
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Monday, June 11, 2012

Left My Heart in Tokyo

For some reason, Uniqlo is one of those shops I always forget about, until I'm in London. Which is frustrating because it's a shop I really, truly love.

For those not familiar, Uniqlo is a Japanese brand, and they specialise in cool basics with a trend twist. They've done collaborations with German designer Jil Sander (the popular J+ range) and more recently Orla Kiely and Laura Ashley.

Don't be fooled when I say basics. Uniqlo is far from boring. But their pieces are staples. One of my favourite items was the purple wool dress (it finally gave up the ghost this year, when I wore holes in the elbows...) I wore HERE. This Green Jumper is also a firm favourite.



It's a couple of years old, but still going strong. From memory it cost around £20.


 I saw some beautiful jersey skirts instore with their pleats and dipped hems are bang on for this seasons skirt trends. Uniqlo seem to specialise in all the things that I seem to miss from my wardrobe the most- shirts I can wear with jeans or a pencil skirt, a jumper that is a classic shape but a colour that grabs your attention.

But by far the best thing about Uniqlo is their price point. I like a bit of Primark as much as the next person. I love being able to pick something up that I can wear and not worry about if I'm not so fond of it after a season or if it's maybe not fit for much after wearing it for uni or work incessantly. But I also understand thae value in paying a bit more. When I first wandered into Uniqlo I genuinely expected it to be out of my price range, I don't usually expect to look at something of Merino Wool and be willing to pay what's on the price tag, but the jumper above are a clear example of their good value. That my jumper is still going strong, and that my dress lasted as long as it did, are indicators of just how good the quality of their items are. But that neither item cost more than £20 makes me a very happy little bunny.

So behold my latest Uniqlo purchase...




That's right. City Shorts. If you could have seen the joy expressed on my little face when I found a whole corner of the Oxford St store dedicated to shorts... It might even have been ecstasy. I've been desperate for a replacement pair or 2 of longer shorts for a while as my favourite Spanish pair are really on their last legs- there's really only so many times a girl can repair the seams on something... but my problem has been find the right style and the right fabric. Needless to say it's taken a while.

These beauties feel like a cross between lightweight denim and linen, which is not surprising given that they are 98%cotton content. The fit is dream like and true to my earlier swooning over Uniqlo value, they cost just shy of £20. They're so brilliant, I bought this pale pair and a a pair in black (as direct replacements for my Spanish pair). They also come in a blush pink and sandy colour too.

I'd love to get back to Uniqlo soon, as they have a brilliant selection of Hello Kitty Tees- yes I'm actually 3 years old, not 23, and Barbie designs (see last clause...). Uniqlo do have an online store, but for some reason I can never find anything I like on the site. Which is particularly odd as it's a simple, clean and easy to navigate site. I just don't find it attractive or inspiring in the same way as the stores. More perseverance needed on my part I feel.

A quick heads up that Uniqlo also do similarly awesome mens wear too. It's probably the signle best introduction I have ever made for T, he promptly spent a small fortune their stocking up on Polo shirts, linen shirts and shorts. It's proven highly useful for him as his uniform favourite combo is jeans/chinos/shorts and a polo shirt...

Have you ever bought from Uniqlo? Does anyone else find the same problem with the website? And what's been your best purchase?

P.S. This isn't a sponsored post, I'm just sharing my Uniqlo love.

P.P.S

Thank you for all the really lovely and supportive comments on my post Nobody Ever Said It Would Be This Hard. Whilst I like to keep CLTT as mostly a place for positive things in my life, it's also a little bit of a therapeutic thing, sometimes putting something down in print or on paper is how I get them straight in my head, and the support that comes from sharing that in blogging is immeasurable. So thank you, and I try to leave replies for all the comments on CLTT.
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Saturday, June 9, 2012

Coffee Monster*

I LIKE coffee. I like my coffee in bed. I do not like being a clumsy OAF who spill coffee in her bed. Especially when I have pretty sheets....



No seriously, coffee stains are an absolute beast to remove, from your favourite white shirt or cream jacket or pale bedlinen, and when I was contacted about the power of Vanish, I thought I really ought to share because Vanish has been the key in removing stains from all of the above- yeah, you'd think I would have learned that pale fabrics and I are not a match made in heaven....

Aside removing coffee stains, Vanish is pretty good at removing the lethal homemade tomato sauce stains that my dad seems to manage to get on EVERY white garment he owns, even red wine from a very very pale chiffon dress. The Vanish website also has some pretty good tips on how to get the most out of their products. Given that those oh so recognisable pinks tubs are a fixture in our utility room, I found it interesting to see how I could get more out of them. Well worth a look if you (or someone whose clothes you wash....) is as oaf like as me with a penchant for all things staining- from food and drink to outdoors and DIY!
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Thursday, June 7, 2012

Nobody Ever Said It Would Be This Hard

Anyone who says that relationships are easy, they're lying. I truly believe that there are always going to be a variety of things or times where a relationship is going to be tough- whether it's an argument over the status of the toilet seat or that your partner disappears for months at a time. But nobody said it was easy, and it's not.

But nobody ever said it would be this hard either. To quote the song is probably cheesy, but it's bang on the money. This weekend I spent in London, as I do many long weekends, because they're the best opportunity I get to see and spend time with my partner T. This weekend was both wonderful and slightly different. This weekend was my birthday, and T's is not long ago, so it was a chance to celebrate. And we did. We had a lot of fun at an EPIC set by Thomas Gold at Ministry of sound....



And had a beautiful stay in a Whitehall hotel and some afternoon tea....




But this weekend was also emotional. And difficult. And the aftermath is still sinking in. And it hurts. Do not misunderstand, we are still together, we did not have a huge fight- been there, done that. But my partner is gone.

He is of course, with the Forces. It's something that makes me very proud because his journey there has been a long and twisted one. I love that he is driven to do it, and admire that it's all he wants to do. I can never and would never begrudge him his dream, because I too wanted to join the Forces. But kissing goodbye to the person who is my partner, who makes me laugh even after a nurse has had 5 unsuccessful attempts at taking my blood, who stuck with it, even through the difficulties I faced with both my health and completing my degree, is hard when you know it's not for just a month, and that there will be no several hundred text messages a week (yes really) and that you don't yet know if there'll be opportunities for letters or emails. That's hard.

I always knew that this time would come, and in my head I thought I would handle it, and that I'd get on it with it. But nobody can tell you how hard it is to say goodbye. To break the embrace. And not to cry.

Adjusting to our time apart is tough. It's caused many a disagreement and cross word between T and I. Being together can be just as tough- yes that's a bus lane between us in bed, yes you need to respect that when I'm asleep. No I will not be happy if I wake at 0400 and you're tangled around me, making me overheat... But here's what I learned this weekend:

Nobody can ever prepare you for how hard it will be, which is why nobody ever said it would be this hard. And if it were easy, there'd be something pretty wrong. A relationship isn't easy street, but there's a damn good reason we do it despite that.

To anyone who made it to the end of this, I applaud you, and if you're reading this and it helps you remember what you love about someone or it reminds you why their so precious, then I'm glad I wrote it. But mostly, this post was for me. And for that, I will not apologise, but I hope you'll understand.
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Saturday, June 2, 2012

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow*

I am notoriously bad for remembering to get my hair cut. There. I said it. I have, in case you might not have noticed, quite long hair, and that means, to a greater or lesser extent, I can get away with it. However, when contacted by the lovely people at Wahanda.com and asked if I'd like to partake in a voucher to spend, and with a view that I may be a bit closer to or certainly spending a bit more time in London in the not too distant, I was only too happy to accept and see what was on offer.

So, for those of you who may be unfamiliar with Wahada, it's an online one-stop-shop for health, beauty and wellness. You can find everything from Hairdressers in London to Hair Removal in Lanarkshire. Impressive no?  The site features deals, discounts and the option to buy vouchers both for yourself or for others, which is great if you're looking for a gift for a friend, relative or just for a cheeky treat.

When searching, as I did through the London Hair offers and deals, Wahanda have pretty much nailed it. Options to set price minimums and maximums, specify the type of treatment you're looking for and the date for which you want your offer to be available are all MAJOR plus points in my book, who wants to sift through hundreds of irrelevant offers, however nice they may be?! My only slight niggle, was that for a city the size of London it took me a while to work through options that were give or take in the right area of London, as not all entries on the site have the helpful little map at the right hand side.

So aside easy search options, what else does Wahanda have going for it? Well they have some pretty damned good deals on their website. I pay a ludicrously small amount to have my hair cut at the moment, and am fully expecting to have to pay more as I head further South. That doesn't mean I won't do my best to get myself a good deal, and that's what Wahanda are offering. Many of the salon vouchers are 30%, 40% and even 50% off their usual tariffs for colours, cuts, blow drying and styling, and when some of the full price treatments are almost 7 times what I currently pay, I'll take a 40% discount with both hands and no, I will not let it go.

So aside some great deals, an efficient search function and being able to do it all from the comfort of your own home, what else does Wahanda have going for it? Why else would you be tempted? Well.... this...



See the clean and simple website- one that doesn't distract with moving bits or annoying pop ups? See the star ratings based on customer reviews? See the helpful map and contact details for the salon? The description of the salon, further recommendations close by, and recommendations of what's good? All these are reasons I'd use Wahanda again, for Hairdressers, for beauty treatments, for gifts. You can't really argue with efficient, good value for money and choice, can you!

And as for me, you'll have to wait and see what I booked!
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