Goodbye 2013, hello 2014...

2013 has been a really great year for me for many reasons including visiting my first plus size fashion convention (Plus North) in Manchester and meeting so many lovely people.  In 2013, my blog became "noticed" and I was fortunate to be contacted by PR companies to review plenty of gorgeous clothes and jewellery.

Mr FH and I travelled down to Southampton for a weekend away which proved rather eventful and we, of course booked our wedding date.  I have enjoyed 2013, without too much heartache and pain which has made a nice change for me with the few years before that (prior to 2010) being some of my lowest times with losing my dad to cancer and going through the physical and verbal abuse from my ex boyfriend and do you know what, I have a feeling that 2014 is going to be even better than 2013...

From the amazing start with our wedding coming up, we already have so many plans that we want to put in place.  For once, I want to completely let go of my weight issues.  Although I am embarking on "Simple Start" by Weight Watchers tomorrow, I don't want to tell myself that I am on a diet and that I can't eat certain things. This will set me up for failure so instead, I want to look at this "change" as a new lifestyle.  I am getting older and I don't want to get diabetes or heart problems so I am doing this for ME.  Not to look into the mirror and see a skinny person before me but to look after myself from the inside out and do everything in my power apart from sheer luck to stay healthy.  

Whether this works or not, I don't want to let it hang over my head and call myself a failure. I have yo-yo dieted so many times going from a size 12 up to a 22/24 and have stayed around the same weight now for years so even if I change my eating habits and stay the same weight, my body is clearly happy with the weight I am and I need to accept that.  No more poking my fat rolls while looking in the mirror or feeling extremely guilty if I eat that piece of chocolate. 2014 is going to be the year that I let go and start living.

Another reason for me wanting to get healthier is that by the end of 2014, I would quite like to be carrying a baby!  I don't know if we definitely will plan for this coming year or not, because it does depend on a lot of factors but hopefully, all things crossed we will have a baby in 2015.

Along with personal goals and plans set in place, we also want to share some experiences together and finally get our asses to Wembley to watch an American Football game.  We'd like to go on our first proper holiday together as a family and of course for our careers and my blog to take off even more than they already have.  

So, 2014...  you're nearly here... Let's start it with a bang!   Oh and by the way, stay posted for some outfit reviews coming your way very soon! 



I've been lucky this Christmas...

This is the first time I've done a Christmas gifts post, and I'm a little late considering it is New Year Eve but we are planning a nice night cuddled up on the sofa and I have a few minutes to spare. Neither I nor Mr FH are big drinkers and I am going to be starting "Simple Start" with weight watchers tomorrow so I didn't really see the point in eating everything in sight that's left in the kitchen.

Anyway, back to Christmas.  I always get beautiful gifts at Christmas.  Everyone knows me so well and although sometimes I get nervous around surprises, they never disappoint.  I much prefer giving presents than receiving them. Here is a selection of my Christmas gifts that my family and friends gave me this year...

Some of my gift highlights were Daisy by Marc Jacobs gift set from Mr FH.  I had been leaving plenty of hints about this but I never imagined that Mr FH would have listened to me and to be honest I was worried it was a bit expensive. I was so shocked when I opened it on Christmas Day.  My mum treated me to Nina L'Eau by Nina Ricci which is an absolutely gorgeous scent and the one that I wanted to wear on our wedding day. My step son (with help from daddy) got me "This Means War" on DVD, which is rather sweet because it's rated a 12 and he wanted to watch it with me. I had to explain it was a film for old people and suggested we watched Thomas the Tank Engine instead!

My future mother and father in law bought me some scented socks, body lotion and a bridal garter!  I was so excited when I opened it because I hadn't actually bought one of these yet and it also has my something blue on it :) Mr FH's auntie gave me some awesome cat socks from Accessorize - they aren't pictured here because I've already worn them!  They are so soft and comfy and everyone knows that anything with a cat on will be a winner :) She also gave me some hand lotion and my future sister in law gave me a cookbook (also not pictured) along with a cute marriage sign which I absolutely love and a chocolate orange (already in my tummy!)
I had an absolutely fabulous Christmas Day with Mr FH's Auntie cooking us a roast dinner - and beef too!  I ate so much I felt like I was going to pop and I was a little greedy with trifle and cheesecake! It's only one day though and I enjoyed every minute of it!


All About My Christmas...

I've seen many bloggers posting a Christmas edition of "get to know me" and I thought it would be fun to join in!  I love Christmas, putting the decorations up, spending time with family and friends, choosing gifts for other people and of course now I have a five year old step son, things are a lot more magical around here!

What do you usually do on Christmas Eve?
These days, my Christmas Eve's alternate as once every two years we have my step son for Christmas Eve.  Last year, Mr FH and I spend Christmas Eve at our local curry house and enjoyed a romantic meal.  This year we will spend it together as a family watching Christmas movies snuggled up on the sofa.

Who do you spend your Christmas Day with?
Before my dad passed away, I spent Christmas day with my parents, my half-sister, her husband and my niece.  These days, things are a lot different and I spend Christmas day with my mum, Mr FH, my step son (for half of the day) and Mr FH's parents and auntie.

Do you enjoy giving or receiving gifts?
100% giving gifts for this one.  I love choosing gifts for people and spending the time to choose something that I hope they will love. I also like surprising my family with gifts and seeing their faces when they open them.  I must admit I'm not great at receiving gifts as I don't like to be the centre of attention when people open their gifts one by one.  I get a little shy!

What are you wearing on Christmas Day?
This year, I had two options. One was a gorgeous black, red and gold lace skater dress with red heels and the other was a purple embellished dress from new look with gorgeous purple kitten heels.  I've opted for the purple number although I think I might get a bit cold!  It's a bit of a tradition for my mum and I to buy something new to wear each Christmas Day.

Do you enjoy shopping for gifts for loved ones?
I really enjoy choosing gifts for my family and friends.  I have quite a small network of people to buy for, but I get super organised and get everything done as early as possible.

Have you ever received a gift you didn't like but pretended you did?
Yeah, I think that everyone goes through this. I'm not un-greatful so there's no way that I would tell someone I didn't like a gift!  I do know people, however who do tell you they don't like something and I find that really bratty!

What would your ideal Christmas be?
I'd love to go somewhere with snow, in a log cabin with family and friends and have a Christmas in front of a wood fire. That would be amazing!
What is the best Christmas gift you have ever received?
This one is a bit difficult as I have received some lovely gifts over the years. Although it's technically not a Christmas gift (It was meant to be), probably Mr FH proposing to me.  He was going to do it on Christmas day then changed his mind and did it on New Years Eve to make it even more magical.  Another of my favourite gifts was a pair of pink crystal earrings from my dad but unfortunately I lost them a long time ago which makes me feel really sad.

If you could choose one person to spend Christmas with, who would it be and why?
Apart from my family of course, I wish I could have my dad back for just one more Christmas. Since he passed away, things have been very different around Christmas time.   


Last Minute Christmas Present Buys: Perfume!

I have completely finished my Christmas shopping as I'm pretty organised when it comes to this time of year but I know many people, including Mr FH have in the past shopped for presents on Christmas Eve.  To me, that is just INSANE!  I can imagine them scrambling around trying really hard to find something and ending up buying the easiest thing to hand.  If I am wrong please let me know!

I thought it would be useful to write a blog post on women's perfume. Perfume is a very personal thing and due to our own natural scents it can smell completely different on two different people (as me and my mum found out in Boots the other week!)  The perfumes I have chosen to write about are relatively safe as they are quite sweet and gentle in fragrance.

Daisy by Marc Jacobs
I used to have a house mate who wore nothing but Lola by Marc Jacobs and although I didn't mind the smell, she used to wear quite a lot of it and it became overpowering.  The reason I tested this perfume was actually because I liked the look of the bottle.  Marc Jacobs perfumes always have such unique, beautiful bottles!  I was pleasantly surprised by this perfume as it smelt natural and quite floral but it didn't overpower.  Whenever I try perfumes on, I tend to spray them on my wrist, and then walk about for an hour before seeing how the scent has settled.  The bottle is a gorgeous floral display of plastic daisies and looks much more expensive than it is. Daisy by Marc Jacobs has a massive YES from me and starts in price from £45 at various high street and online retailers. You can also buy gift sets in two sizes which feature body lotion and shower gel along with a bottle of perfume. This is on my Christmas wishlist!

Nina L'Eau by Nina Ricci
This perfume is the one that I have chosen to wear on my wedding day.  I stumbled across it completely by accident as I literally walked into a perfume shop and asked the assistant for gentle fragrances that would be suitable for a bride.  I have a tendency to be a bit trigger happy with my perfume so she recommended me a number of more subtle scents.  I've never smelt any of the Nina Ricci perfumes before but I was pleasantly surprised.  Nina L'Eau has a gentle, fresh smell about it with hints of grapefruit (believe me it smells better than it sounds!!) and it comes in a beautiful apple shaped bottle.  The good thing about this perfume is that you can buy a tiny bottle for approximately £20 to £24 so if you are on a budget, it is worth checking it out.  Again with this scent, it is very gentle and not overpowering.  

Miss Dior by Christian Dior
You surely must have seen the adverts with Natalie Portman on the television this Christmas?  I was really excited by this perfume and couldn't wait to give it a try.  The bottle and advert look so classy I thought that it would be perfect for my Christmas wishlist.  I was wrong.  Now, if your other half likes quite old fashioned, strong perfumes, this may work for her but for me it was far too smelly.  I can't imagine anyone young wearing this at all.  It's not cheap either at around £65 for a smaller bottle! :(

Purr by Katy Perry
Before you read the title and think, Felicity.. REALLY?  I wanted to try this perfume ever since I saw the bottle as the top is shaped like a CAT!!  I'm not a fan of Katy Perry so when I asked the male assistant in the perfume shop if they had the Katy Perry perfume with the cat bottle, he looked at me quite quizzical as I continued "I like the bottle and I've never smelt it before".  He sprayed it on my wrist and I was expecting quite an awful smell but after an hour or so walking around the shops, smelt my wrist and I was actually surprised by how "normal" this perfume smelt.  I would say that it has quite a young smell about it and reminds me somewhat of the impulse sprays that you can buy. It smells quite musky with toned of Jasmine.  This perfume is really reasonable and I've seen it on sale for less than £20 - however the price does reflect the quality and the smell doesn't last as long as more expensive perfumes.  If your partner is a crazy cat lady like me, she may love it!

As you can see, my first three picks look a lot more exquisite and if I had to choose just one, I would choose Daisy by Marc Jacobs...


Christmas Plus Size Partywear 2013 from Simply Be

If you're a regular reader of my blog, you'll know that I am a complete sucker for partywear especially when it comes to Christmas!  Every year, my mum and I normally treat ourselves to a new Christmas Day dress/outfit.  This year, with the wedding fast approaching might be the first year in a while that I break the tradition but with so much temptation around... it's going to be difficult!

After experiencing Simply Be's party dresses previously including the Paper Dolls brand it was my first port of call when I decided to look online at the variety of dresses available this year.  There are some absolute beauties so here are my favourite picks...

Short Embellished Prom Dress, £160.00, Simply Be

I first spotted this gorgeous short embellished party dress in the Simply Be catalogue and I have been drooling over it ever since.  I'm not normally someone who wears white/ivory, but it looks so stunning and pure - I even contemplated changing out of my wedding dress into this one in the evening on my wedding.  The detail on the website is a little unclear.  I'm not sure if this dress has an elasticated back similar to my previous purchases or if it is completely fitted.  Either way, in the right size this dress would make you stand out from the crowd of black and red dresses that are in fashion this year.

The embellishments look very detailed and as shown in the photo above, this dress would look stunning with nude sparkly accessories or even silver to complement the beading on the dress.  This dress isn't cheap, and is currently £160.00 but even the frugal part of me is sorely tempted.  Available in a size 14 to 32, with some sizes selling out already grab it before it's gone... (now where's my bank card!)

Next up is something similar in shape but complete opposite in colour!  I have noticed that red and black are cropping up in this years winter party dresses so why not combine the two with this absolutely jaw dropping floral dress with lace sleeves!  

In my opinion, this dress looks a lot more exquisite than £45 so it makes it a perfect bargain for a plus size party dress for this year.  What I like about this dress is the lace detailed sleeves and the vibrant print.  I like how they have styled this dress with a bundle of necklaces in an almost punk feel.  I would probably combine this dress with either black or possibly bright red accessories depending on the mood I was in.

Another bonus about this beautiful dress is that every single size is still available on the Simply Be website from a UK 12 to 32.  From looking at the detailing, this dress isn't elasticated or stretchy so I would probably go for my normal size for fitted dresses.  I would love to know your thoughts on this dress as I fell in love with it as soon as I noticed it!

*PLEASE NOTE* This dress is currently on sale for £36... so I just ordered it myself!! :)