Will I give up?

I’ve always put off joining a weight loss club of any sort cos I’ve always been determined to do it on my own. HAH. Doesn’t work for me. When one of my friends had been successfully losing weight after joining Slimming World, I was so tempted to start. But there was absolutely no chance in hell I was going to weekly group weigh ins so I decided I’d do it online. I’ve been absolutely loving it so far and it has added so much food to my diet that I wouldn’t have even touched before! I’m really enjoying cooking absolutely everything from scratch and it’s definitely a lifestyle and not a diet! It takes a lot of organisation but I’m determined this time!

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Don’t get me wrong, it’s not been easy. Sometimes I really just want some greasy food and to pig out but I’ve only slipped up a few times! I’ve struggled when it comes to eating out with friends etc so on days that I’ve done so, I just try and have a smaller meal for dinner if I’ve been out for lunch. I’m just not one of these people that can go out and order a salad when there’s so many things I’d rather have on the menu. Like, how can you say no to a mug of chilli and garlic bread? But that’s my weakness and I need to work on that. But baby steps. Will I give up trying to change things? Hopefully not this time.

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I think when changing your lifestyle like this you need to have the correct mentality to do so which I have always struggled with. It’s bloody hard. Especially when you can’t see change and feel absolutely no different. I know it’s a long process and these things don’t happen over night and as Elliot keeps reminding me ‘it’s a marathon, not a sprint.’

For someone who has to have long term plans, I find it IMPOSSIBLE to see where I want to be with my body and relationship with food. I feel like I’ll never get there because to be honest, I’ve never been there before. And that can be scary but should also be exciting. Googling pictures of what you want your end goal to be DOES NOT WORK. I also am absolutely TERRIFIED of change so I’ve found changing my lifestyle pretty difficult. I’ve been changing little things at a time so hopefully these little changes will be here  to stay. This is why I am writing this post, because if I’ve shared it then I’ll have more motivation to keep going.

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Weight loss aside, changing your attitude towards anything can be quite a struggle. For some people, it can be quite simple but for others like myself, it takes proper hard work and determination. In my next post, I’m going to share some tips on how I have changed my attitude, and not just towards my lifestyle.

Do you find changing your attitude difficult?

Much love,

louise-x

July Reads

July was a GOOOOOD month for books. Great, in fact. Check out what I was reading…

 

Wilde Like Me

Wilde Like Me / Louise Pentland

Meet Robin Wilde! You’ll make a friend for life and she’ll take you on a journey you’ll never forget …Single mum Robin Wilde adores her six-year-old daughter and loves her job as a make up artist’s assistant. She has a wonderful best friend and an auntie who is bonkers, yes, but loves her to the moon and back. But Robin has a secret. Behind the mask she carefully applies every day, things just feel … grey. And lonely. She struggles to fit in with the school mum crew. Online dating is totally despair-inducing, and she worries every day about raising her little girl with self-confidence, courage and joy.What Robin longs for is someone (over the age of six) to share with – someone who’s always on her team. After 4 years (2 months, and 15 days!) of single-mum-dom, it’s time for Robin Wilde to Change. Her. Life. Exciting new opportunities are about to come Robin’s way … Perhaps a man, perhaps the chance of a lifetime …What will Robin do with the possibilities she creates for herself? And what potential will she unlock if she takes the leap?

Ahh, I had pre-ordered this and was so so excited when it arrived! I absolutely love Louise and just knew it would be a great read. It was so so funny at parts and I laughed out loud quite a few times!

 

My Not So Perfect Life

My Not So Perfect Life / Sophie Kinsella

Katie Brenner has the perfect life: a flat in London, a glamorous job, and a super-cool Instagram feed. Ok, so the real truth is that she rents a tiny room with no space for a wardrobe, has a hideous commute to a lowly admin job, and the life she shares on Instagram isn’t really hers. But one day her dreams are bound to come true, aren’t they? Until her not-so perfect life comes crashing down when her mega-successful boss Demeter gives her the sack. All Katie’s hopes are shattered. She has to move home to Somerset, where she helps her dad with his new glamping business. Then Demeter and her family book in for a holiday, and Katie sees her chance. But should she get revenge on the woman who ruined her dreams? Or try to get her job back? Does Demeter – the woman with everything – have such an idyllic life herself? Maybe they have more in common than it seems. And what’s wrong with not-so-perfect, anyway?

This was hilarious from start to finish! I absolutely loved Katie. She’s one of the loveliest yet funny and straight talking characters I’ve ever read about. I love the plot and the ending and pretty much everything about the book. Although I was still so unsure of Demeter!

The Out of Office Girl

Out of Office Girl / Nicola Doherty

Alice Roberts is having a rubbish summer. She’s terrified of her boss, her career is stalling, and she’s just been dumped – by text message. But things are about to change… When her boss Olivia is taken ill, Alice is sent on the work trip of a lifetime: to a villa in Sicily, to edit the autobiography of Hollywood bad boy Luther Carson. But it’s not all yachts, nightclubs and Camparis. Luther’s arrogant agent Sam wants him to ditch the book. Luther himself is gorgeous, charming and impossible to read. There only seems to be one way to get his attention, and it’s not one her boss would approve of. Alice is out of the office, and into deep trouble…

A good book. Very easy read. Not a life changing book or anything but a really simple feel good read.

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Behind Closed Doors / BA Paris

Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace. He has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You might not want to like them, but you do.
You’d like to get to know Grace better.
But it’s difficult, because you realise Jack and Grace are never apart.
Some might call this true love. Others might ask why Grace never answers the phone. Or how she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn’t work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim. And why there are bars on one of the bedroom windows. Sometimes, the perfect marriage is the perfect lie.

Ohhhh, I loved this read. If you love a good suspense book then this is the one.

 

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The A to Z of Everything / Debbie Johnson

P is for Paris where it all began. J is for Jealousy where it all came undone. But the most important letter is F. F is for Forgiveness, the hardest of all. Sisters Poppy and Rose used to be as close as two sisters could be, but it’s been over a decade since they last spoke. Until they both receive a call that tells them their mother has gone – without ever having the chance to see her daughters reunited. Andrea, though, wasn’t the kind of woman to let a little thing like death stand in the way of her plans. Knowing her daughters better than they know themselves, she has left behind one very special last gift – the A-Z of Everything.

This was such a heartbreaking read. I related so much to Rose at the beginning but ended up loving Poppy just as much! Really conveys what grief is really like!

 

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Finding Audrey / Sophie Kinsella

Audrey can’t leave the house. she can’t even take off her dark glasses inside the house.
Then her brother’s friend Linus stumbles into her life. With his friendly, orange-slice smile and his funny notes, he starts to entice Audrey out again – well, Starbucks is a start.And with Linus at her side, Audrey feels like she can do the things she’d thought were too scary. Suddenly, finding her way back to the real world seems achievable.

I think this story is an excellent representation of what it’s like living with social anxiety. I think it is a great way to educate young adults about anxiety and mental health in general. I was gutted that we didn’t get to find out what actually happened to Audrey at school.

 

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A Summer Fling / Milly Johnson

When dynamic, power-dressing Christie blows in like a warm wind to take over their department, five very different women find themselves thrown together at work. But none of them could have predicted the fierce bond of friendship that her leadership would inspire…Anna, 39, is reeling from the loss of her fiance, who ran off with a much younger woman. Her pride in tatters, these days Anna finds it difficult to leave the house. So when a handsome, mysterious stranger takes an interest in her, she’s not sure whether she can learn to trust again? Then there’s Grace, in her fifties, trapped in a loveless marriage with a man she married because, unable to have children of her own, she fell in love with his motherless brood. Grace worries that Dawn is about to make the same mistake: orphaned as a child, engaged to love-rat Calum, is Dawn more interested in the security that comes with his tight-knit, boisterous family? When a sexy, footloose rock singer catches her eye, will Dawn have the courage to follow her heart? At 28, Raychel is the youngest member of their little gang. And with a loving husband, Ben, and a cosy little nest for two, she would seem to be the happiest. But what dark secrets are lurking behind this perfect facade, that make sweet, pretty Raychel so guarded and unwilling to open up? Under Christie’s warm hand, the girls soon realise they have some difficult choices to make. Indeed, none of them quite realised how much they needed the sense of fun, laughter, and loyalty that abounds when five women become friends. It’s one for all, and all for one!

As you know by now, Milly Johnson is my fave author! And I absolutely love when she has more than one main character. I loved all the girls stories in this novel.The characters are all so realistic and you go through ever emotion with them!

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Stillhouse Lake / Rachel Caine

Gina Royal is the definition of average—a shy Midwestern housewife with a happy marriage and two adorable children. But when a car accident reveals her husband’s secret life as a serial killer, she must remake herself as Gwen Proctor—the ultimate warrior mom. With her ex now in prison, Gwen has finally found refuge in a new home on remote Stillhouse Lake. Though still the target of stalkers and Internet trolls who think she had something to do with her husband’s crimes, Gwen dares to think her kids can finally grow up in peace. But just when she’s starting to feel at ease in her new identity, a body turns up in the lake—and threatening letters start arriving from an all-too-familiar address. Gwen Proctor must keep friends close and enemies at bay to avoid being exposed—or watch her kids fall victim to a killer who takes pleasure in tormenting her. One thing is certain: she’s learned how to fight evil. And she’ll never stop.

I was quite disappointed in this book to be honest. I felt like the book was so slow until the final 100 pages. I never give up on books but almost did with this one but I am glad I didn’t as the ending was great. I just wished more had happened earlier on in the book.

Have you got any recommendations for me? Let me know!

Much love,

louise-x

July Favourites

I feel like July was a reallllllllly long month but I don’t feel like I have many favourites at all! But the few things I was loving this month, very super amazing!

 

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NYX / Contour and Highlight Palette

I’d had my eye on this contour kit for so long and when I was in Milan, I bit the bullet and treated myself. I wasn’t sure how effective it would be on my skin as it’s a powder kit but I was so pleasantly surprised. There are different contour shades, some lighter and some darker which is great for different skin tones. I personally use the lighter tones as I’m quite pale. The highlights are just amazing! Again, there are four shades, and my favourite is the first shimmery one. When I wear it I feel like my face has been carved by angels. I love this product so much and what is great is that it is refillable and completely affordable at only £18.

NYX / Butter Lipstick / Mary Janes

I absolutely adore NYX lip products. And when I seen this absolutely gorgeous red shade, I had to have it. I’ve been obsessing over red lips recently, even though I can’t pull it off like Cheryl Blossom in Riverdale. Honestly, make up goals. I love this shade by NYX and it applies so smoothly. It can get a bit messy if you’re drinking coffee etc but it does last pretty long.

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Bellapierre / Cosmetic Banana Setting Powder

This product honestly sets my make up so well. I tip some onto my skin and leave it for a bit then brush the product over my face. I don’t use powders on my face anymore as it feels too heavy and it feels like it’s clogging my skin but honestly, this powder is so lightweight so I have been using it every day to set my makeup!

 

Love Island

I’ve been a Love Island loyal since season 1 and rooted so much for Hannah and Jon and in season 2, Kara and Nathan. Now season 3 has come to an end, I am lost. I haven’t really backed a couple from the beginning this season but I absolutely love love love both Camilla and Jamie. I was so chuffed for Amber and Kem winning cos they proved so many people wrong. Now I have Love Island blues.

 

Wilde Like Me

Wilde Like Me / Louise Pentland

Meet Robin Wilde! You’ll make a friend for life and she’ll take you on a journey you’ll never forget …Single mum Robin Wilde adores her six-year-old daughter and loves her job as a make up artist’s assistant. She has a wonderful best friend and an auntie who is bonkers, yes, but loves her to the moon and back. But Robin has a secret. Behind the mask she carefully applies every day, things just feel … grey. And lonely. She struggles to fit in with the school mum crew. Online dating is totally despair-inducing, and she worries every day about raising her little girl with self-confidence, courage and joy.What Robin longs for is someone (over the age of six) to share with – someone who’s always on her team. After 4 years (2 months, and 15 days!) of single-mum-dom, it’s time for Robin Wilde to Change. Her. Life. Exciting new opportunities are about to come Robin’s way … Perhaps a man, perhaps the chance of a lifetime …What will Robin do with the possibilities she creates for herself? And what potential will she unlock if she takes the leap?

Ahh, I had pre-ordered this and was so so excited when it arrived! I absolutely love Louise and just knew it would be a great read. It was so so funny at parts and I laughed out loud quite a few times!

And I think that’s it for this month! What have you been loving?

Much love,

louise-x

Louise Chatters: July

Well well well… What a busy month! I think anyways. I feel like I’ve not had a minute to myself all month but obviously that’s not true. I’ve spent most weekends socialising though which is good for me!

At the beginning of the month I took a trip home to meet my friends newborn. It was an incredible weekend and I had so much fun! And baby Lewis is an absolute beaut!

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I had a tapas and gin filled night with Karina, Elliot and Emma and it was such a chilled out and great night! The food doesn’t actually look that appetising but it was SO yummy!

Some of the girls from home came down for Sophie’s birthday and it was such a good night! I’ve not had a night out like that in such a long time and it was just so fabb!

Sophie and I treated ourselves to a spa day at the end of the month and went through to Falkirk for lunch and massages! It was such a lovely and relaxing day and we were both absolutely exhausted by the end of it. Tough life, huh?

I started Slimming World mid July and I’m actually enjoying it so much! I’m not going to the groups or anything because that’s just not me but I’m doing it online and I’ve lost 8.5lbs in two weeks! Chuffed doesn’t even cover it. So I’ve been doing lots of meal prep because I cannot be bothered to cook some nights after work! I’ve still been having the odd treats but shhhh.

 

Michael, Sophie, David and I also went to a Vintage Bus Museum in Fife. We had been drinking the night before so I wasn’t 100% myself but I honestly had such a good day! There was so much to see and it was a really interesting day out!

My mental health has been SO good this month so I’m taking it as it comes. There’s nothing better than feeling good! I’ve been doing lots of self care and reading lots and lots which has been making me super happy. And as always, the people in my life have been super fabby.

Fingers crossed next month is just as good! What have you been up tlouise-xo?

Much love,

 

How I Unwind ft. SENSSE

At least once a week I try to have a mini pamper night to unwind from work and just life in general. This most likely involves the same process as others, a deep conditioning of the hair and a good face mask. Nothing beats feeling chilled! For others, it’s probably not a big deal but for me, it’s an hour where I completely shut myself off from everyone and practise self care. I absolutely love a good pamper and a proper good soak in the bath but unfortunately, our little flat doesn’t have a bath so I try to make up for the relaxing I would do in a bath in other ways.

During my weekly unwind, I take longer on my skin care and give myself that little extra TLC. I absolutely love the feeling of a completely fresh face.When I got the chance to review SENSSE Silicone Facial Cleansing and Exfoliating Brush, I was quite excited because I absolutely love anything that can go with skincare and make you relax at the same time!

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When this arrived I was immediately impressed by the packaging. It was so simply yet so modern and definitely gave off the impression of a luxury item. It came with a charger which I think is fab as I can never find batteries for anything! It also came with an extremely sparkly wallet thing that you can keep the brush in but I am not to keen on the style so that’s been put to one side.

If I’m being honest, I was pretty sceptical about the product itself. I didn’t think using a vibrating cleansing brush would add any relaxation or significance to my skin care routine at all but I was wrong.

I used the brush alongside Lush’s 9 to 5 cleanser which was such a great combo. I apply the cleanser as per normal and then switch the brush on and use it in gentle circular motions over my whole face. It’s actually so surprisingly relaxing as if I was getting a massage on my face. You can increase the intensity of the vibration of the brush which as I turned it up, it felt a bit too much but I guess that’s personal preference. I usually use cotton pads to remove my cleanser but I left it on for quite a bit longer when I used the brush and it felt like it was proper absorbing into my skin. I felt so fresh faced after and have used the brush a good few times since! 20630090_10159195835310512_533665048_o

The brush is so easy to clean, especially if you need to wipe away any excess cleanser, however, there was no product left on it once I had used it which I found very impressive. It’s such a handy size and is definitely perfect for travelling!

For me, using the cleansing brush is a bit too much effort to use as part of my everyday skin care routine but that’s because I don’t spend as much time as I probably should. I will continue to use this during my weekly pamper session though as I really enjoyed the effect it had on my skin. Overall, I was so impressed with the SENSSE Silicone Facial Cleansing and Exfoliating Brush!

What do you do to unwind? Is skin care part of it?

Much love,

louise-x

The Self Love Tag

‘If you like the way you look that much, baby you should go and love yourself..’ OKAY THEN JUSTIN IF YOU INSIST.
When Envy tagged me in her post of The Self Love Tag, I was actually quite excited. That’s quite sad isn’t it? Getting excited over a blog post. Anyway, I think this is the ‘Tag’ post I relate to most and think absolutely everyone should do to feel good about themselves and remember that there is only one of you on this planet. I also think this is a really relevant post to begin my re-branding.
I was thinking the other day, that when people are talking badly of someone because they’re selfish, they usually say, ‘oh, she loves herself.’ But I think there’s a difference between selfishness and loving yourself. It’s good to love yourself. If you don’t love yourself, then how can you expect anyone else to? Anyway…
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The Rules:

1. Answer all the questions honestly

2. Tag five people who you want to bring a bit of happiness to

What is something that is getting you down at the moment?

There’s a couple of situations in my life right now that are really bothering me. Like, really bothering me and I think about them everyday and the anger still hasn’t left. I’ve done everything I can to try and fix it but nothing works. I’m trying so hard to be positive with things just now and this is the only thing that niggles away at me. Hopefully time will fix it but who knows.

What is something that makes you happy?

Food. Obvs. Doesn’t food make everyone happy? It’s great. Something that makes me happy is when I have spent time with friends or family and I’m left feeling very optimistic about things. That always makes me happy and it’s been happening a bloody lot recently which makes me feel so good!

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Name 3 guilty pleasures!

Teen Mom UK. I have absolutely no idea why I was so obsessed with it when it came out in the UK because I never watched the original ones.  But they have confirmed a second season and I am so BUZZING.

Singing out loud with head phones in on the way to work. Okay, I only ever do this when I’m walking on the back road but it feels so good. Dreading the day I get caught though.

15 year old Justin Bieber’s album My World is honestly my biggest guilty please ever. I absolutely love it. FAVE FAVE FAVE. Do you know what? I don’t even know if it’s a guilty pleasure or just a pleasure.

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What is something about yourself you’d like to improve on?

I can be quite paranoid at times and I’d love to not be as bad one day. I am constantly doubting myself and always worrying about things. I always think people think the worst of me which is not great for my self esteem. I am working on it though!

When was the last time you belly laughed?

Last night. I find myself properly hard laughing quite often when I’m with friends because they are just so funny and we manage to get ourselves into some strange situations. But I properly belly laughed last night with Michael when I never realised that my screensaver had started playing but the music for the TV show was still on and I thought that the changing screen of The Great Wall of China and then a Mediterranean beach were the opening scenes of The Handmaid’s Tale. Obviously it was a ‘had to be there’ moment but most of my life is to be honest.

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What is your biggest insecurity/fear?

Losing everyone I love – whether that be by death (soz, morbid) or just by drifting. It gives me the absolute fear the thought of growing up and being lonely ya know.

Name a song that always cheers you up when you’re down.

McFly – Love Is On The Radio. Without a doubt, 110%. I have music for every kind of mood but that is definitely my all time favourite that really lifts my spirits when I’m down. Honestly, put it on just now and I promise that you won’t be able to stop smiling.

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Name 3 things you like about yourself

I can make people laugh (which I bloody love doing by the way. Even if I don’t mean to.) There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing someone’s face brighten up.

My hair isn’t too bad to be honest. It almost always plays ball and grows pretty quickly so that’s always a relief when it gets cut too short. It can also hold a curl for ages and I like it’s natural wave.

My music taste is AMAZING. I absolutely love when I haven’t listened to a certain playlist in ages and then when I do, each song is an absolute tune and I’m like ‘I made this. I am the creator of this mix of artists put together. I am genius.’

What is an achievement that has made you proud of yourself this year?

This year? Damn. Ehhhh… I actually haven’t really achieved much this year which is annoying. There’s little goals at work I set myself and I’m pleased when I meet them. In fact, there’s quite a lot at work that I have achieved that I’m proud of. I’ve managed to learn quite a lot and grow in such a short period of time.

Tell us your happiest memory.

Do ya know what? I have so many happy memories and can’t pick one so I think I’ll leave this one for another time and maybe give it a post of its own.

I wish I could do something in person to give the following 5 people happiness but I hope they find this tag as reflective as I did!

Karina Turnbull

Holly Da Silva

Kirsty Jarvie

Megan Rees

Chloe Tommo

Much love,

louise-x

5 Reasons Why I Decided To Re Brand

For quite some time now, I’ve realised that I’ve been losing my direction when I’m blogging. I sometimes lack motivation and ideas but when I have them I put everything into it. So I’ve decided that I now know what I can do to change this.

Boredom

Quite frankly, I am bored of my own blog. And if I bore myself, I’m not exactly going to keep the attention of my followers, am I? So I knew I needed to change something if I wanted to continue writing.

I found a niche

When I first started this blog, I knew it wasn’t going to fall into a niche. I just wanted to write whatever I felt like at the time. And to an extent, I still will be. What I’ve realised is, that my passion lies in writing to make myself feel better or get things off my chest. Even my ‘monthly favourites’ posts may seem like they are more beauty based but to be honest, it’s just things that have made me happy during that month. So, I’ve decided to focus on Mental Health & Well-Being. That’s what most of my post are based upon, and I honestly think I’ve finally found my niche.

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Because I no longer care about what other people think

When I began writing about mental health, I was absolutely shitting myself. Part of me thought ‘I don’t want everyone knowing what’s going on in my life’ and then the wiser part of me thought, WHY NOT, I’m not the only one who has a bit of a shit time in their head. Well, I’ve now got to the stage where I no longer care about what people think.

To raise awareness of mental health

If people don’t talk about mental health then how can we fight the stigma? Hmm. Exactly. So, if I do my tiny little part of talking and sharing my experiences, maybe even more people will open up and start to help themselves get better.

To help others

If I can help one person, even the tiniest little bit, by sharing my tips or experiences then that would make me so so happy. Lots of people are talking about mental health now, especially in the blogger community which I think is absolutely incredible. GO TEAM.

SOOOO, many of you might not give a damn or even notice a difference but I wanted to share with you why I have decided to re-brand. I hope you’re all well.

Much love,

louise-x