Wednesday 30 September 2015

My first ever NUFC match!

Firstly, I have to say a huge thanks to who chose me as one of their lucky winners on Twitter. Without them, I never would have had in my possession 2 tickets for the Newcastle vs Chelsea match on Saturday 26th September and therefore would never have experienced my first ever football match. Thank you Wonga!

I wasn't originally going to bother going to the match thinking that my other half would maybe prefer taking a friend with him but instead, he asked if I'd like to go and I said yes - and so glad I did!
We travelled by public transport and after getting off the metro, we trudged up towards St James Park where I was absolutely gobsmacked by the sheer amount of people. My other half kept tight hold of me as we headed to collect out tickets. We received our envelope containing 2 tickets for the Platinum Suite and that's when my excitement began to surface.

We found our seats with ease after receiving helpful directions from the stewards - all of whom did a sterling job on the day!

This is how it looked when we first found our seats. I, being the novice that I am, didn't even realise that this was some of our team having a warm-up and kick about before the match lol

Around 5 minute before kick-off, I noticed 2 men coming onto the pitch carrying these huge NUFC flags - wish I knew where to get my hands on one as they're fab!

Next, quite a few children arrived and stood around this ready to lift and carry it off the pitch in preparation.

Not a great pic but this was the mascots arriving on pitch just before the players appeared.

And here we have the players doing the pre-match handshakes .......and the excitement really kicks in!

I'm not what you'd call an expert when it comes to football, but I do enjoy watching the game and this was the most incredible experience I've ever had. The first half was absolutely amazing and NUFC played really well tackling for the ball, chasing it down and even managing to score 2 goals!! The crowd was absolutely fantastic and all giving their full support to our beloved team - I was so proud to call myself a Geordie! I did notice a few cold stares etc towards the Chelsea fans as they began chanting, but the strong police presence meant that there was no fighting or scuffling anywhere far as I could see. When that first goal went in, I found myself on my feet, arms in the air shouting like a mad woman - and loving it!! The thrill and excitement totally took over the calm side of me and I surprised myself as much as anyone by my natural reactions to the game. I found myself booing when Chelsea had the ball and shouting 'Go on lads' when we had possession - so out of character for me. When Chelsea scored their first goal in the second half, I was absolutely gutted as were many other supporters. We simply weren't as strong during the second half and seemed to have given up on getting a win which was very disheartening, especially after the amazing display shown in the first half.

Anyway, I'm no football reviewer, just telling it like it is from the perspective of a novice. Overall this was a great game where the passion from out players was shown throughout the first half but sadly didn't continue during the second. The end result was 2-2 and both Chelsea goals were scored during the second half where we really let ourselves down.
I would definitely love to attend more matches as the buzz, atmosphere and everything else was flippin amazing but sadly will have to start saving before that's gonna happen! I seriously recommend that this is something everyone should do at least once in their lifetime.

Thursday 24 September 2015

Metallic Skin Jewellery from Azzy London

I recently came across some gorgeous temporary metallic tattoos from Azzy London whilst browsing the great wide web and thought I'd share with you some of my faves!

This gold feather tattoo really grabbed my attention due to the gorgeous design and sheer size. The detail really is amazing and they are so easy to apply. All the metallic tattoos come in a quick and easy to open poly pack and can be applied almost anywhere on the body. Simply cut to size and apply to a dampened area on the skin. Each pack comes with full instructions so you really can't go wrong and they're easily removed with oil, nail polish remover or even sticky tape - amazing eh!

These Aztec temporary tattoo bracelets are amazing! They look just like a real bracelet and the colours make them all the more realistic. Fantastic size and a great way of adding a bit of bling without the risk of losing it ...perfect and all yours for just £7.50.

There is also a gorgeous range of Indian inspired jewellery which I personally think is stunning ......

These ones cost £5.50 but as you can see, you do get a few!

There really is something for everyone and they vary in price depending on what you're looking for. I particularly like this Onxy Myth selection as it's so versatile  .......

Azzy London are well worth checking out if you're looking for something a bit different but also something to add a little glamour to your outfits without the need for actual jewellery. I hope to be reviewing some of these soon so please keep a lookout!
You can also follow them on Twitter or like their Facebook page.

Nail polishes to avoid at all costs!!

Whilst out the other week, I came across this little set of nail polishes in my local Savers and simply couldn't resist shelling out the £1.99.

As you can see, it contains 12 small bottle of polish in various shades and comes in this handy little decorative plastic pack. I'm a HUGE fan of all things nails and am building up quite a collection which I take any given opportunity in adding to. I did consider grabbing a couple of these, as I figured they'd be ideal as Christmas stocking fillers (sorry for swearing!), but in hindsight, I'm really glad I didn't!

These polishes have the most toxic, disgusting strong odour I have ever had the misfortune of smelling and many of the pots were unusable due to the polish having set in the bottles and being uber thick and gloopy good at all! They do come with a warning in tiny print stating that they are unsuitable for use by under 14's and I can see why!!

This was one of the worst in the pack and refused to spread despite adding a tiny bit of nail varnish remover to try and thin it out a bit - very disappointing!

If you're looking for nail polish sets to give as gifts, then I strongly suggest that you give this one a miss because despite it being cheap, it's also unusable, and like I mentioned earlier, the smell is so overwhelming it will have you coughing & wretching for ages!

Thursday 17 September 2015

Lavender & Tea Tree Moisturising Face Cream from AA Skincare

I received a bottle of Lavender & Tea Tree Moisturising Face Lotion free of charge from AA Skincare, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Moisturisers are a huge part of my beauty routine as my skin is often really dry which can make it sensitive and uncomfortable. When I was asked to review this product, I have to say I was thrilled as it contains a few ingredients which I was sure would be beneficial to me. Tea Tree Oil contains antiseptic properties as well as being good for the treatment of acne. I don't really suffer from acne but do have the occasional breakout so was curious to see if this would help calm my skin and maybe prevent future breakouts.  Lavender is known for its calming properties and can be used to help treat eczema so I knew it should help give my dry skin some much needed nourishment.

The lotion is dispensed through a pump action top, which although it took a few pumps to release the first drop of moisturiser, is a simple way of giving just the right amount of product. I found that 2 pumps was enough to give good coverage over my face and neck. The first thing I have to say is that the tea tree and lavender smells really come through on this so if you're not a fan, you may be better holding your breath during application! I personally struggled with the strength of the smell but persisted regardless and admittedly, it did subside after just a few minutes. As this is a lotion, it was non-greasy on my skin and dried in well whilst still leaving my skin feel nourished and fully moisturised. I used it twice daily over a week and have noticed an improvement in the texture of my skin and a definite reduction in blemishes. My skin tone appears more even and I haven't really suffered with any spots since I began using the lotion. Although I did struggle slightly with the smell, I am really glad I persevered as this is an amazing product which shows significant improvements of my skin.

Lavender & Tea Tree Moisturising Lotion is available to buy from AA Skincare and costs £5.56 for a 100ml bottle. This product is currently on offer giving you a discount of £1.40 (usual price £6.96).
Readers of my blog can use code BLOG20 to receive an extra 20% discount lucky lot!!

If you feel this moisturiser isn't for you, then please check out the other varieties available as there's something for everyone.

Thursday 10 September 2015

Alva Sensitive BB Cream SPF20

I received Alva Sensitive BB Cream free of charge from My Pure, in return for an honest review. All opinions are based upon my own experience.

I'm a great lover of BB & CC creams because although I like a bit of coverage, I also like to keep it light and breathable and they give me the ability and confidence to do just that.
The packaging for this has been kept pretty simple and I really liked the design of the box. I found myself giving this a good shake before using and although it came out at a reasonable consistency, it did sound a bit runny when shook.

I always struggle knowing which shade to choose when it comes to products like this but it wasn't too difficult here as there were only 2 to choose from .....medium brown or light beige. I opted for the medium brown as it seemed to have less of a pinky tint and I hoped was the best match for my skin. I really don't like it when BB cream/foundation is applied heavily and leaves unsightly tide marks around the jawline so I try to get as close a colour match as is possible.

Although slightly blurred (sorry), you can hopefully see that this cream comes out looking pretty white least until you start rubbing it in!

Once rubbed in, it blends with your skins natural tone giving a good, even finish which is shine free. It blends easily and doesn't have any kind of a smell that I noticed. Despite it being lightweight, it still gives really good coverage and hides blemishes well, making the skin look even and giving a good base for any other make-up you wish to apply. I did apply moisturiser before use as my skin is really quite dry and this often results in the odd flaky patch of skin where foundation/BB creams seem to stick. Moisturiser helps alleviate this problem and gives a good base for applying the BB cream. My skin still felt breathable after application and didn't need to be reapplied at any point. It washed off easily at the end of the day which impressed me as some can take a while to remove! My skin can, on occasions, be sensitive but this was perfect. No irritation, no redness and no itching so all in all a really great product.

This cream covers 6 of the basics:
1. It moisturises
2. It's mattifying
3. It contains SPF20
4. It firms the skin
5. It corrects the complexion
6. It strengthens the skins immune system

I would highly recommend this product as it really does work ...and feels lovely on the skin too!

You can buy Alva Sensitive BB Cream in a 30ml tube for £30 which is slightly out of my usual price range, but I would happily splurge for special occasions or when finances aren't so tight. It is available from My Pure.

Holy Island by LJ Ross

I received a copy of Holy Island free of charge from the author, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Holy Island is set on the quiet Northumbrian island of Lindisfarne, where most of the inhabitants have lived there all their lives and know each other well. When the body of Lucy Mathieson is discovered on The Priory, the whole island is left stunned and speechless. No outsiders were able to access or leave the island during the time of death due to the tides, which meant that it had to be one of the locals ...but which one and why? Detective Chief Inspector Ryan has been taking some time out after a major case and found himself hiding away on Holy Island, putting himself in the perfect place to head the murder investigation. Lucys' death wreaks of some form of pagan ritual so Dr Anna Taylor is called in to help police with their inquiries. Anna was originally from the island but left years ago to free herself from her past, and indulge in a new beginning. Coming home brings back many bad memories for Anna which she has to overcome, including meeting up with the sister she never really got along with. There is an instant attraction between Anna & DCI Ryan but will they take things further during such an important investigation? I'll leave that for you to find out!

I'm always a bit dubious when I pick up a new crime novel, especially one which has be gifted to me for review, as it's one of my favourite genres and I have pretty high expectations. What I'd seen and heard about this book really piqued my interest, and I'm so glad it did! This isn't a book which had me gripped from the beginning as such, but it did spark a curiosity which meant that I needed to know more.
Ross has an excellent use of vocabulary and manages to give a deep insight into each character without giving too much away at the same time. As a reader, I was quite overcome with emotion at some points of the book and found myself pulling the odd face as descriptions of the murder were revealed ....even the odd shocked expression! Ross writes with great passion and I have to say that I loved every bit of this story and the clever way in which it all came together. I find that as I read, I tend to try and predict what the outcome will be but this had me guessing all the way through and each time I thought I had it sussed, another spanner was thrown in the works. I seriously loved the ending ....nothing could have prepared me for it which is one reason why I'd highly recommend this as a crime novel. It has everything, murder, mystery, suspense, it's all there!
I can't wait for her second novel to be released and look forward to reading it.

Want to get your hands on a copy? Of course you do and it's available for kindle as well as paperback!
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About the Author

Born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, LJ Ross moved to London where she graduated from King's College London with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in Law. After working in the City as a regulatory lawyer for a number of years, she realised it was high time for a change. The catalyst was the birth of her son, which forced her to take a break from the legal world and find time for some of the detective stories which had been percolating for a while and finally demanded to be written. 

She lives with her husband and young son in the south of England, but will always be a northern girl at heart.

Her first book, "Holy Island", has consistently been listed as an Amazon bestseller since its release in January 2015 and hit the Amazon UK Kindle #1 position in May 2015. She is currently working on the next book in the DCI Ryan series, "Sycamore Gap", which is due to be released on 12th September 2015. 

Monday 7 September 2015

Superdrug Open House Event Thurs 24th September 2015


– Retailer’s ‘Open House’ event offers unique opportunity for health and wellbeing brands –
Following on from the hugely successful beauty Open House event launched by Superdrug in April, the retailer is now extending the invitation to up and coming health and wellbeing brands. Superdrug is looking for new healthcare suppliers that would like to explore the opportunity of launching their products or services with the high street chain either in store or online.
With an increased focus on health and wellbeing, Superdrug is looking to expand its product and service offering by supporting new talent in bringing their concepts to market both in store and online. From start-up companies looking to get their foot on the ladder, to emerging brands in healthcare innovation or even kitchen-table inventors with an idea they’d like to bring to life, Superdrug is opening its doors. On Thursday 24th September brands will have the chance to showcase their healthcare products or services to Superdrug’s health and wellbeing experts.
Superdrug is at the forefront of accessible healthcare on the high street and the Open House event is designed to make it easy for smaller companies to pitch to a national retailer in a friendly and informal way. With Superdrug Health and Wellbeing categories[i] spanning everything from traditional areas such as diet and sexual health through to emerging categories like genetics, there are plenty of opportunities to pitch to become a supplier. Whether brands have a product or service suited to an existing category or even launching a completely new category, Superdrug wants to hear from suppliers for both in store and online opportunities.
Healthcare Director at Superdrug, Steve Gray said: “Championing new and innovative talent in health and wellbeing is something we are committed to, ensuring that we are continually growing our product offering to stay relevant to our customers. We have a rich history of bringing healthcare innovation to the high street and it’s important to us that we continually evolve to meet the needs of our customers. This Open House event is a unique opportunity for suppliers, regardless of size or scale, to meet with our healthcare team and we’re excited to hopefully discover the next big thing.”
Gray continued: “Superdrug appeals to everyone, so there’s no restriction on what we’re looking for. It’s open to all types of health and wellbeing suppliers with new and innovative products and services and we look forward to welcoming them on the 24th September.”
The Superdrug Health and Wellbeing Open House takes place in Central London on Thursday 24th September. Suppliers who would like to attend should email for further information.

Tuesday 1 September 2015

New Release: Burnt Secrets by Barbara A Martin

Book Information
Title: Burnt Secrets
Author: Barbara A. Martin
Series: Bodies Everywhere #2
Release Date: September 1, 2015
Genres: Clean Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Barbara A. Martin

Marge and Abby are once again "helping" law enforcement. This time the FBI, DEA and NCSBI are hunting down a drug smuggling cartel operating throughout Western North Carolina.​
Our dynamic duo cannot help but get involved when their ever increasing team of amateur sleuths, The Murder Club, discovers there are spies everywhere, even Mountain Springs Hospital where Marge and Abby work. Most alarming is the infiltration of certain law enforcement agencies. And these smugglers like to silence enemies by completely disposing of the bodies. ​
Once again strangers want to tip off Marge to what’s going on instead of telling the police. This results in Marge getting increasing grief from her nemesis, Special Agent Paul Froman. His description of her as a "human trouble magnet" infuriates Marge. What she doesn't realize is she's slowly melting his hardened heart with her honesty, intelligence, and spunk.


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Author Biography

Barbara A. Martin is an indie author of clean cozy mysteries. She owns where she promotes 'clean' indie authors' new book releases, trailers, artists, photographers, and arts & crafts. She is a voracious reader, mostly of mystery, historical fiction, and romance, and writes a weekly books' review blog at

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