The Dating Game: Calling time…

Calling timeSo…

After being single for six months, learning quite a lot and experiencing the darker side of human nature, I’ve made like Cheryl Cole and secretly found myself a bit of ol’ romance.

No, I haven’t got married but I have got a boyfriend. My 25-year-old ass is firmly off the shelf and I’m pleased to report I’m quite smug about the whole thing.

Without going into too much detail – because let’s be honest, no one ever actually wants to hear about vomit-inducing happiness – I’ve basically ended up with my high school crush.

Regression at its finest (11 year-old me is unbelievably chuffed, 25 year-old me is quietly high-fiving herself), but so far so good.

In all honesty, I didn’t think I’d really bother with the whole relationship shebang again, in fact I was gearing up to buy a few more dogs and pack up, off to Scotland armed with a one-way ticket.

But, out of nowhere a flash from the past and some excellent banter led to something that was worth not heading to the highlands.

So you see, there is hope. I’m not saying you need to have someone – far from it in fact – but if some love and romance is what you’re after, it will come.

And on that note, I’m going to sign off before love hearts start to make an appearance and I make myself throw up thanks to all of the sickly happiness.

– love Stef x

Mani Monday #25

A close friend of mine walked down the aisle last week and tied the knot with her long-term boyfriend. After a week of hunting down the right dress for the occasion, I needed nails to match.

Honestly, finding the right dress is a blog in itself; I didn’t want to wear black or white, but something pretty enough for an evening do, so I went for a yellow dress with a cream pattern and a peter pan collar. Now all I needed was a matching manicure taking full inspiration from my outfit.

The yellow nail paint is quite thin and requires a lot of layers, so the trick is to use a white base coat.10508418_10154317133920545_1500448065_n

I still had to do two layers of the yellow for even coverage, but the white base coat helped show off the colour and lighten it up at the same time.

For my nails to really pop, I used a nail stamp to add a lovely flower design. The design is actually only four flowers so I had to repeat the stamp on each nail about three times. To finish, I used my favourite matt top coat.

I was really please with the way my nails looked.

– love Clare x

Sundaes at Sunset

As you may well have noticed, summer finally decided to arrive, only it was a little late coming to the west coast of Scotland where I have been for the last week (and where it has rained every goddamn day).

But, last night was an absolute beauty of an evening and we just had to make the most of it. So, we went for a little drive up the coast to the seaside town of Largs, to have some fabulous ice cream at Scotland’s best – Nardini’s.

*Forgive the pics – it’s the best an iPhone 4s can do*

The building alone is inviting – very art deco and trendy. We made our way in and the pics are deceiving – the place is huge!

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We headed over and took our seats outside to take in the sun, sea and specialty hot sundaes.

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The hazy days seem longer in these parts, and the sun doesn’t set until after 10pm, so we sat taking in the view, before a stroll along the beach.

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We got back to the car and drove up what felt like a giant mountain to watch the sun setting over the Clyde.

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And on the drive home I caught the last of the sun and the beautiful sky around said giant mountain.


If you’re ever on the west coast of Scotland I recommend you pay Largs a visit – the views are just stunning. The ice cream ain’t so bad either.

– love Carla x

Latitude 2014 – Who I’ll be watching

I’m off to Latitude this weekend to frolic in a field like a slightly tipsy fairy – unfortunately it’s only for the Sunday, but I thought I’d get everyone into the festival spirit with a little playlist.


The Black Keys – Lonely Boy

Tame Impala – Elephant

Haim – Don’t Save Me

Lykke Li – No One Ever Loved

Clean Bandit – Rather Be

The War on Drugs – Red Eyes

George Ezra – Budapest

As an added bonus here’s a few of the acts I’m gutted I won’t be seeing as they play on the Saturday:

James Vincent McMorrow – Higher Love

Jungle – Busy Earnin’

Hall & Oates – You Make My Dreams Come True

– love Stef x

School daze

Okay, so I spend a lot of my time daydreaming.

You know the sort of daydreams, where you come up with ridiculously unrealistic scenarios in your head and you just wish you could live it. Now I am at an age where I sit daydreaming about times that have passed, things I’d have done differently, and things I still hope to do.

When I was younger, my head wasn’t so away with the fairies as it is now. I lived in the moment if you like. I communicated with the people around me, enjoyed the long hazy days of summer, made new friends, lost old ones.

I still feel your teenage years are the best, it’s a time to be stupid, creative, make decisions and then change your mind. I almost feel sorry for the kids now, thanks to technology they can’t have the enjoyment of using their brains.

At school they have their phones glued to them, and yes I understand the need for safety so parents know where their kids are, but where’s the safety when an 11-year-old gets mugged for an iphone? Get them a 3310 and be done with – it serves its purpose without them becoming heavily reliant on it.

(Any of the younger generation reading this, a 3310 is an indestructible mobile phone, you’ll probably find one in a museum.)

And it’s not just the kids’ brains that are fried, they get away with a lot less thanks to technology – and I can’t help but feel sorry for them. Things are much more regimented now than when they were when I was in school. Gone are the times when you can skip French and doss at your mates house to watch Cartoon Network.

Now parents get a text if their child isn’t in a class. I’d merely be told off three days later by my tutor, who I fondly remember used to say: “Just don’t do it again, petal.”

Kids can’t even get creative with excuses anymore, “My friend was having an asthma attack in the toilet” was a common one, now what do they say, “I was charging my phone in the science lab.”?

As I got older you didn’t need so many excuses, and by the time I got to Year 11 they didn’t even try and make you go to your class, just as long as you weren’t disrupting anyone else they would leave you to it.

Many a maths class would be spent in one of the “sound proof” music rooms pretending to do coursework for all intents and purposes.

But kids with smartphones? I mean really? We all had mobile phones in school – I’m not that old – but kids seem to have lost the ability to put pen to paper. Do they not realise passing notes is fun?

We used to send the odd text to our mate in a different class but that’s about it, the phone was literally used as a phonebook, and only came to life once the last bell went.

Now you see them all huddled in groups playing Candy Crush or whatever other rubbish is free in the App Store at break time.

I fear the kids of today won’t be able to look back on fond memories like I am able to, they just don’t know how to have fun anymore.

They don’t use their imaginations and they barely look up from a screen long enough to acknowledge you. And these kids are our future. 

There is something innocently beautiful about having your head in the clouds, and I fear that the kids are just plain missing out.

I vote we ban kids from having smartphones, and issue them all with an old school Nokia.

Bring back the daydreamers!

– love Carla x

Out with the old…

Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” – Confucius

I forget where I first heard this saying, but it is a mantra I have tried to live by, dragging myself through education to be able to write for a living.

I enjoy people and the stories they tell. I like to talk, but more importantly listen. I strongly believe that knowledge is power, and you can achieve anything you want to if you put your mind to it.

Well, that was until reality hit.

Turns out, that money IS everything, and a lot of the time it’s about who you know, not what you know.

If only someone had told me sooner.

Now, at the tender age of 25, *sob* I have made a conscious decision to leave journalism  actively stop looking for jobs in journalism  give up put my journalism career aside and open door number two.

When I was younger I was always a little unsure of what I wanted to do – it appeared everyone around me wanted to be a vet, a nurse, or a teacher – all of which never really appealed to me.

It wasn’t until I got talking to a helpful lady at a careers fair, that I realised it was almost decided for me what I would do. She asked me an odd question, and it appeared I already knew the answer to my future and which career I would pursue.

She asked what kinds of games I used to play to occupy myself as a child. It turns out this wasn’t as odd as it sounded.

While my friends used to play “doctors and nurses”, or “school”, I used to sit sellotaping paper together to make my own books, cutting up magazines and making my own newspapers, and even writing songs (not that you will ever hear them. Ever).

So it turns out I was always inclined to do some form of writing.

That moulded my life and my education for the last 10 years, which is why it saddens me to say that I am leaving journalism.

I always wanted a career, and not just a job. So the back-up career was law. That’s right kids, a solicitor was my second choice.

And now I get to embark on new opportunities, learn new skills and see where this path takes me.

I am excited to be learning something new, but sad to stop the one thing I have tried to achieve for so long. I always felt I was more Carrie than Miranda, I connected more with The Devil Wears Prada than Legally Blonde, but hey – they’re all smart women.

I can only hope that I will enjoy this new venture as much as the old one. I am a little nervous, going into this with very little knowledge of the job at hand, but I am all for learning and I do believe in the power of education.

There is just a lot of learning and I haven’t picked up a text book in years.

You never know, there may still be a book in me yet, but for now it’s time to get my head out of the clouds and buckle down. Who says you can’t change your mind?

Wish me luck, I’m gonna need it!

– love Carla x

Mani Monday #24

At the beginning of the year there was a big push for textured nail polish – everything from matte nails to sugar coated. Naturally, my interest was piqued but particularly by feather effect polish.

The first feather effect polish I saw was Nails Inc On The Money Feather Effect polish – which made me think of Van Gogh’s Starry Night – what else could make my nails look like that?

Unfortunately, I never did buy it. However, a few weeks ago I walked into my local Boots and came across Sally Hansen’s Fuzzy Coat. I couldn’t leave without it.

What do I think now? I should have brought Nails Inc.

Firstly, it’s like a glitter polish when applying… It takes some time and thinking to have an even distribution.

Secondly, it sort of melts the base coat, which means it takes time to dry. If you smudge it you can’t save it. You can see from the pics why you need to let it dry completely.

In saying all this, I do love the texture and it’s a great style to use either to highlight one nail, or you can do all nails for a bold look (I recommend 2-3 coats).

I don’t see Van Gogh though, and that’s really where my disappointment stems from.

Have you had much luck with this polish, or can you suggest a better one?

– love Clare x

30 Day Ab Challenge

We do love a good challenge, diet or basically anything to stop the ever mentioned desk-chair arse from getting any larger.

Previously we have tried the 30 Day Challenge which had great results and involved a real lifestyle change for the better, the Juice Diet which although gives weight loss, it is hard to sustain if you want to use your brain for anything other than being awake.

So that brings us here, to a non-diet, toning challenge. As the fatty of the two of us, it was my job to man up and try to wobble less, so here is the challenge:
30-day-ab-challenge-chartThe idea is to start slow, improve technique and in turn hone and strengthen your core. The website has the video links to show you how to execute the moves correctly.

So here is a break-down of the challenge:

Day 1: This is ridiculously easy, watching Eastenders while doing the moves, it took around six minutes of my life.

Day 3: Planking isn’t all that fun… It’s hard to not hold your breath when you do it, and my abs are starting to feel it.

Day 5: I am very aware of my abs. I don’t want to use the term ‘abs’ since I don’t look toned or ripped and I have a lot of weight to lose, but the muscles are starting to feel worked and tight – and for some reason my ass muscles hurt too. That can only be a bonus, right?

Day 9: You would think the sit ups or the crunches would be the hardest, but no, no. It’s the leg raises. I mean, who thought of this move?

Day 13: LEG RAISES SUCK. I have never felt this weird ache sensation so much, it’s not my stomach that hurts, it’s a whole new world of pain.

Day 15: I am quite sore and my general middle area hurts, but I am halfway through. YAY. So here are the stats:

Visually: Still a fatty. No joke, my wobble area still looks as wobbly as it did 15 days ago.

What the tape measure says: An inch from my hips (the very widest area) and half an inch from my waist (if you can call it a waist, it’s not all that defined if I’m honest)

Okay, so I have lost an inch and a half, so something is working. But I am also trying a diet I have devised myself, which appears to be slowly bringing the weight down. I don’t know if it is all due to the abs challenge or not. All I know is, it huuuurts.

I’ll think about the pain next time I want a cheeseburger.

Day 18: Remember at Day 9 when I said leg raises were the hardest? Well, that was before I had 110 crunches to do. Oh. My. Days.

Day 22: I lied. Planking is the WORST. And is also the reason my ass hurts.

Day 25: This is literally taking around 30 minutes of my time now, including breaks, and well it still hurts and doesn’t feel any easier at all.

Day 27: See Day 25

DAY 30: YAAAAAY! IT’S OVER! FINALLY! Well I still hurt – I feel quite tender, the challenge didn’t get any easier, and I can’t even see any abs. Not one. I thought I’d look like Action Man by now! In all seriousness, I don’t look any different, but my jeans feel a little better. So here are the last overall measurements.

Hips: -1.5 inch Waist: 1 inch

Okay so the numbers have gone down, and as I said before I am on a diet I have devised for myself, but that’s for another post!

If you’re into challenges then go for it, but this is one I may only tackle again before I jet off to Oz in January (eek!)

Did you have better results than me?

Are you a dietician/fitness expert who wants to use me as a guinea pig? If you are, that would be swell – get in touch!

– love Carla x