Thursday, 29 October 2015

Mona's Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes

Before I started blogging, the idea of online friends seemed bizarre and frankly a little bit weird. I couldn't see how anyone could make natural friendships online, not like you would in real life, but I was so wrong. After a while I realised I'd formed quite a few online friendships, they all happened naturally. Some I now talk to all the time. Being chronically ill I've become slight isolated from the outside world, so these friends have become a life line in keeping me sane and connected. 
One of my friends is Mona, who I 'met' through Instagram. Mona loves a lot of similar things to me; dresses, Harry Potter and sweet treats. She has the most beautiful curly hair and she's just the loveliest, kindest girl. We struck up a bond over cakes and dresses along with our talented illustrator friend Morgane. Most weeks we end up oohing and awing over cakes and what we would share if we were to have our own tea party. 

The other day Mona posted a simple recipe for pumpkin pie cupcakes which looked so delicious. Pumpkin is one of my favourites so I knew I had to try and make this recipe.

Rewind to my teens and I hated pumpkin, maybe I had a bad experience with a pumpkin soup, or maybe it's the smell they give off when you carve them - whatever it was my hate has long gone and been replaced with love. Oh yes! I love pumpkins. From pumpkin pie to Yo Sushi's pumpkin korroke - which my best friend and I refer to as just "pumpkins" and have to order them straight away - we're obsessed! Last year I made Pumkin and Maple cupcakes (here), but this year my energy is pretty low so I needed a really easy recipe, a five minute chuck it all in a bowl and mix affair. I found exactly what I was looking for when I saw Mona's recipe. It's essentially a recipe for mini crustless pumpkin pies. The filling is always the best so I knew I would love these! I tried them out a few days ago and they taste amazing! I added a little vanilla bean paste to the cream and topped with honeycomb pieces, I totally forgot to dust them with cinnamon until after I had added my autumnal cake toppers I picked up in Tescos a while ago.

It's been so lovely to try out Mona's recipe and to be able to share on here. I would really recommend it to anyone who loves pumpkins. It would be a fantastic one to try out for Halloween parties this weekend.
Full recipe details can be found (here)

Emma Xx

Sunday, 18 October 2015

Autumnal outfit with Jord

Shirt - Sainsburys (here)
Courdory Skirt - Sainsburys (here)
Denim jacket - Thrift
Boots - Bertie
Watch - c/o Jord (here)

It's been a while since my last outfit post, a few months in fact, and I was starting to get a little anxious that I still wouldn't be well enough to post.  Autumn outfits are one of my favourites and I love the colours available this year, mustard yellow and burgundy red are two of my favourite autumnal colour combinations. Luckily last week I found myself able to stroll into the park behind my house to take some photos. It's a lovely park; it holds a kind of peace and stillness in an ever growing busy suburban jungle. Sometimes I can look out my window and see it's completely empty and at other times it's manic with footballers. The trees are beautiful but not yet in their golden orange prime.
For this outfit I went out of my comfort zone with this skirt from Sainsburys. I've only been shopping on my high street twice in the last six months, so being able to have a quick look at the local supermarket is sometimes the best I can get without sensory overload. I often find Sainsburys have good clothes that reflect current trends and at a reasonable price too. I've wanted to try a more figure hugging outfit for a while and this skirt was cheap enough for a little experiment. Im glad I tried something new.

I'm so excited about my new watch. It's been a long time since I owned a watch, in fact the last time I wore a watch I was in school, it was a stretchy linked number with a square face decorated with tatty teddies and far from the sophistication and style of my current watch. For the last year watches have been more on my radar thanks to Instagram and blog posts but I'd not seen a wood watch until I read about Jord watches on The Dainty Doll House's blog. The idea of sustainable, fashionable and well made timepieces appeals to me greatly. Fashion and nature are two of my favourite things and Jord have done a fantastic job at bringing them both together in their watch designs. I chose the Cora watch in Koa and rose gold. I love the colours and they have a lovely autumnal feel as well as being subtle enough to go with many other outfits. Thanks to the lovely people at Jord for sending out my watch, which, coming from America, I thought it would take over a week or maybe more to arrive, but a few days later my jolly postie was at my door with a joke or two and a box in hand. 
Inside was a beautiful wooden box, and inside that my even more beautiful watch, the craftsmanship that's gone into making my Cora watch is incredible. One of my favourite things about it is that if you turn it over and look at the back you can see all the inside mechanisms working away. 
Since I've started wearing this watch I've had a few people stop and ask me if it's actuallymade of wood, followed by a surprised look on their faces. It's definitely a conversation starter! 

Emma Xx

Thursday, 1 October 2015

My New Favourite Face Cream - La Potion Infinie

Up until fairly recently I've taken my youthful complexion for granted but the realisation that I'm about to be a whole quarter of a century made me realise I needed to up my game and look after my skin more and I needed to find something better than what I've been using. My normal face cream routine consists of using Olay or slightly more high end Rituals 24 hour Hydration Gel Cream. I've been wanting to try something else, something that might just keep those wrinkles at bay a little longer. I do already have wrinkles or laughter lines which are worse from squinting when I needed to wear glasses and before I found the joys of contacts. The damage is done, or so I thought. It seems maybe there's still hope! It's funny how things work out, literally days after writing on here that I will invest in lots of anti wrinkle cream the opportunity to try out ARgENTUM apothecary's la potion infinie (here) came my way in it's beautifully designed box.

I'm really intrigued by the science behind the patented recipe. The cream contains of Silver Hydrosol and DNA HP, two natural antioxidant ingredients. Silver Hydrosol, which is made of pure silver, has antibacterial properties, while the HP in the DNA HP is a natural marine based ingredient which promotes cell regeneration, collagen production and reduces lipid peroxidation. It's said that the ingredients may improve fine lines and wrinkles. The cream is made in small batches in France, and unlike a lot of big brands, the cream is never tested on animals, something I feel is really important.

I was curious to see how it would work for me. Being 99.5% natural ingredients the cream has a wonderful herby smell. It feels very rich which worried me as normally rich creams leave my face feeling greasy but this isn't the case at all. After the first application my skin felt smoother and softer than it's ever felt. Cue me asking anyone to "feel how soft my face is!" - Maybe that should come as a side effect!

I found I needed only half the amount of cream I would normally use to cover my face which makes me think this will last twice as long as my usual brands.

Just over two weeks in and my face feels great, I can see an improvement to my laughter lines and overall complexion, something no other face cream I've used has achieved so far. Although ARgENTUM is a lot more expensive than what I've been using in the past - a pot costs £147 - a price I wouldn't normally spend but one I would consider in the future if my miracle cream continues working it's magic! Talking of magic, every pot comes with it's own card illustrated by artist Joe Wilson to capture the world of ARgENTUM and our own inner characteristics. Every card is different, my card is "the magician".  A really lovely touch.

I feel a little better armed at facing my birthday in a few days and ageing in general, leaving more room to celebrate! Hurrah!

Emma Xx

La Potion Infinie c/o Argentum Apothcathy but opinions & laughter lines all my own.