Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The Importance of Clear Communication in Blog Collaborations

Many of you that have been following along for a while will know that I’m known for honesty and integrity when it comes to blogging, I've gone on record several times for that reason. I regularly work with brands, setting out digital strategies for working with bloggers and online ‘influencers’. I pride myself on the ability to communicate effectively and help other Bloggers do the same. It might be a surprise then, because it certainly was to me, that having worked professionally in the digital world for almost six years now that I can still be caught out.

I’ll err on the side of kindness and put my most recent debacle down to digital ignorance rather than deliberate misrepresentation but it’s a cautionary tale nonetheless and one that can be learned from. For the most part, the PRs and agencies in Ireland are some of the best in the world and adapt very quickly to our ever changing digital landscape; for the most part. 

What follows are some golden rules for professional blogging relationships, there’s something to be learned here for everyone (myself included): - I’d love to hear yours too – from either side of the coin…

Our Cork Adventure - Cobh & The World Famous Titanic Experience!

Welcome back to our Cork Adventure, if you haven’t seen where we’ve been so far, catch up here. We're big fans of the staycation and firm believers that a holiday on home soil can hold it's own against any other destination, once you have insider travel tips to get the best of our Emerald Isle. For our Cork adventure we were ideally based in Clonakilty, staying in a 6 bedroom Clona Holiday Homes rental in Clogheen Village, find out more about them here

Monday, June 29, 2015

Monday's Moments ~ 29/06/15

Monday's Moments are my silver linings. My opportunity to be grateful for the little (and the sometimes not so little things) in life. There's a mind shift in finding the victories in everyday life. Each week I give a salute to 5 of these Moments that chase my Monday Blues away. 

Below, in no particular order of deadliness is what I'm grateful for this week:

Friday, June 26, 2015

How to Make DIY Peppermint Sugar Lip Scrub!

I've been writing of late about my love for minimal makeup and a stronger lip in the summer months. What's the one bane in the lives of girls that want to rock a stronger lip? Yep, poor lip condition. I've been a lover of Lush's tasty lip scrubs for years but having seen several DIY scrubs on the procrastinator's dream that is Pinterest, I took to my cupboards to see if I could fangle my own. I give you the simplest thing I've ever made, a DIY (& entirely edible) Peppermint Sugar Lip Scrub! 

Chances are you have these very four ingredients in your press as we speak!
DIY Peppermint Lip Scrub ~ Seriously Simple!

  • 3-4 Drops Peppermint Essential Oil (you'll find it in most Health shops)
  • 2 tsp Sugar
  • 1 tsp Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 tsp Honey (more if you prefer a sweeter taste)
It really is that simple. Mush it all together until it's completely blended and select your container. I went for these miniature Kilner jars because Kilner jars. You'll find them in Heatons for €2.69 or online ANYWHERE. 

While the above is the basic ingredients, should your container be larger, as mine was, you simply multiply the above to make the desired amount. It took 3 lots to fill this little jar but it will keep once sealed. 

Not only does it look great for minimal effort but it tastes absolutely delish too. Seriously refreshing in the summer months and a boon for gently scrubbing your lips to perfection in minutes. This little pot is happily sitting atop our microwave and both the lads and myself are giving it a go as we pass. Our lips have never been more kissable!

It was only when I was putting this scrub together that it dawned on me how lovely these scrubs would be as home made gifts. The fact that this one is literally child's play means it would make the ideal, super cheap Thank You Teacher gift that the little 'uns could make themselves for leaving school this month. Don't you think? 

What do we think? Would you give this a bash? 

Knock Knock - New Keanu!

After John Wick I have a feeling we're going to see a Keanu resurgence similar to the McConaissance - so when I caught the end of this trailer and saw Keanu still rocking his Wick look I thought it was another action - but nope.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Things That Rustle My Jimmies

Granted this has been one the best weeks in my blog life, following my slot on Xposé and the astronomical response we've had but still, STILL there was a rustling of the jimmies this week. 

For those of you new to our little corner of the web (Hiiiiii *waves maniacally*), these posts are one of our most popular. To rustle one's jimmies is to seriously annoy them, almost to the point of stabbiness, but not quite. Each week I unrustle those jimmies by seeing them for what they are and turning them into a positive through the magical medium of gif. Like so:

1. Swearing I'll Never Procrastinate Again... Procrastinating... 
Then Having to do 45 Things at Once! 

2. Having to Spend 5 Minutes Proving I'm Me so I Can Pay my Bills on the Phone - 
Who's Pretending to be Me to Pay My Bills - 

3. The 'It's Only 25 Fridays to Christmas!!' 
Facebook Posts...

4. The RIDICULOUS Humidity Lately!!

5. Waiting an Entire Year for Orange is the New Black to Return then it Being RUBBISH!

Tell us, can you relate? What's been rustling your jimmies this week? 
It's cathartic to share, swearsies!

Also, if you liked this you can check 
out our back catalogue over 
there on the right ----->

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Jo Malone London ~ Mimosa & Cardamom Collection Review!

The heady humidity in Dublin this week feels like exactly the right time to tell you about the newest scent coming up on the fragrance release calendar, Jo Malone's Mimosa & Cardamom Cologne. And much like every Jo Malone scent I've ever tried, it smells nothing like anything that's come before. It launches September but we have the skinny today!

Jo Malone Mimosa & Cardamom Range
Freshly crushed, spiced cardamom is buoyed by honeyed golden mimosa to instantly transport you, one inhalation and you're miles away, if ever a scent were to smell like holidays, this is the one. Creamy tonka and smooth sandalwood blended with Damask rose & Heliotrope earth this bohemian fragrance and give an incredible powdery heat to the scent, once dried down.   

Master Perfumer Marie Salamagne explains her inspiration for this release: 

“We looked at places like Marrakesh and Tangiers which were bohemian havens in the sixties for people such as the Rolling Stones to literary characters like Sebastian Flyte in Brideshead Revisited. Jo Malone London wanted to draw on this inspiration but also bring a sense of modernity to the scent. We looked at what the bohemian spirit means today from new bohemian fashion with its eclectic prints, colourful pattern and drapery to a love of travel off the beaten track.”

Jo Malone London Mimosa & Cardamom
The surprising thing with Jo Malone fragrances, I find, is how their reaction to your own chemical makeup can change the scent so noticeably from one person to another. Though Mimosa & Cardamom is a unisex scent, I was full sure that it's bright floriental notes would mean this would be 'Pour Momme' as we call it around here. That was until Adam tried it before his trip to the gym. He arrived home converted. 

On him, it genuinely smells nothing like it does on me. His skin seems to bring out more of the sandalwood notes, making it a warmer, more masculine cologne, whereas the brighter mimosa notes are the first thing to my nose when wearing it. Both versions are a scent to behold though. Now if only I could teach him to spritz sparingly! 

Jo Malone Mimosa & Cardamom is designed to be layered too,
giving a spicy kick to English Pear & Freesia &
an show stopping warmth to Tuberose Angelica
Transported by Jo Malone London to a Bohemian Dream in Dublin City Centre!
The Mimosa & Cardamom range boasts the Cologne (€52-105), Body & Hand Wash (€35), Body Creme (€65) and, of course the Home Candle (€52). As ever the idea behind these scents is for you to enjoy them in whatever way you feel drawn to. If you pop by any of the stores, you'll be offered a complimentary arm massage to decide which scent speaks to you on the day. An experience in itself. 

Having enjoyed lunch with the ladies last week with the scent of the candle wafting on the warm Dublin breeze through the room, I know that that's firmly at the top of my wishlist for late summer and long into the early winter evenings. Closely followed by English Pear & Freesia for layering.

Tell me, what's your ultimate Jo Malone London fragrance? Are you a cologne or a candle lover? I gots to know!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Monday's Moments ~ 22/06/15

It's been a while for Monday's Moments AND SO MUCH HAS BEEN HAPPENING! Apart from the fact that last night was our Summer Solstice and today is our Travel Expert & the best Sister in the world's birthday - here be just five of the Moments chasing my Monday Blues away: 

1. Yourells Salon in Galway, not only transforming my grúaig for my Xposé interview in The g Hotel but giving me a bag stuffed to the brim so that I could recreate the look after our Pool Party! 

2. Not choking, drooling, passing out or otherwise embarrassing my mother during my Xposé interview!

3. Aaron landing a job with event specialists Brand Army!

4. Adam not only finishing his Leaving Cert but finishing school FOREVER! No more uniforms, no more book lists, no more restricted lunches, 
It feels like I've finally left school myself - no lie! 

5. Getting to watch The Script in Croke Park from Na Fianna's Corporate Box on Saturday night. A night of bubbles & Sushi in Croker - 
We had the night of our lives and we're ruined now!! 

Again, as has been the case for the last several months, things have been pinch yourself, knock on wood amazing and I couldn't be more grateful. It's just looking back through these posts that reminds me how far we've come. It's like prozac on the regular!

Tell me this and tell me no more, what's going great with you right now? I always love to hear of silver linings brightening up Mondays worldwide!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Entourage - Movie Review

Who's In It?


What's It About?

Vincent Chase and his entourage of friends, brother and agent team up with Ari Gold one more time to make Vincent's directorial debut.

Any Good?

Having never watched Entourage before neither me nor De Maaa knew what to expect, and it took maybe 20 minutes to realise what it really is - The Inbetweeners with money.

The story is total #firstworldproblems, Vinny Chase goes over-budget on his film Hyde, which causes mental case and studiohead Ari Gold to take a trip to Vegas to get more money from financial backer Billie-Bob Thornton. Billie-Bob's rich father character is busy, so he sends his son Haley Joel Osment with Ari to decide whether to throw in more money - simple enough story but the characters really make it shine.

Ari Gold in a picture (literally too)

I liked everyone in this, but my favourite had to be Ari Gold. A whackjob with an anger problem and controlling wife, his scenes with cameos from people like Liam Neeson were hilarious - everyone either hates him or is terrified of him. The entourage themselves were great together - it was like watching real friends mess with each other when they made sly jokes, the cast was just fantastic together. E and Turtle were hilarious - one trying to pretend he's a soft romantic soul while sleeping with everyone he can and the other getting in the ring to fight Ronda Rousey to win a date (I'd probably do the same to be fair..).

My favourite character had to be Ari, but Haley Joel Osment was great on his on as the spoiled kid in love with Emily Ratajkowski. I really enjoyed this (probably because I loved The Inbetweeners), and have started watching the series which I HIGHLY recommend.



Thursday, June 18, 2015

Things That Rustle My Jimmies

Once more the time is upon us, it's time to right the wrongs of the week that was, to unrustle the jimmies for the week ahead. In no particular order so:

1. Suddenly Acquiring HAY FEVER!

2. The Bus Disappearing from the Real Time Signage JUST AS IT'S DUE!

3. The Lollipop Android Update Turning My Phone into Something for the Visually Impaired!

4. Being So Hormonal That I no Longer Chew the Food I'm Gorging On!

5. The Excessively Long Intro to Orange is the New Black That Plays EVERY SINGLE TIME!

See? That feels so much better already!

C'mom, you've seen how easy it is, tell us, what's been rustling your jimmies this week?

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Limited Edition Virgin Mojito Body Range from The BodyShop incl GIVEAWAY!

If ever my 'Cocktail Half Full Kinda Girl' tag line was an appropriate one, it was when I audibly squealed on first sniffage of the new Virgin Mojito range from The BodyShop. Lads, it's DELECTABLE! You know that burst of zesty iced mint freshness you get from a freshly poured mojito? This is exactly that. Oh you don't? Well.... this is exactly that. 

Virgin Mojito Body Scrub
First up we have the Virgin Mojito Body Scrub. This wibbly wobbly tub of zesty heaven is your first port of call for summer scrubbing. Ideal to give your shower a blast of minty lime freshness in the morning, there's nothing quite like this scrub to set you up for the day ahead. While I wouldn't say it's the scrubbiest scrubber in the world, I would say that the combination of Fair Trade honey & tiny scrubbers are enough to, not only revive your skin, but to leave it visibly softer for a long while after too. 

Virgin Mojito Body Sorbet
For those of us that prefer a softer scented affair, the Virgin Mojito Body Sorbet ticks all those boxes and then some. This super soft sorbet absorbs almost immediately and leave the most beautiful sheen for up to 24 hours on the skin. Truly, my only difficulty with this was the undeniable urge I had to ask strangers to smell my arms. Community Fair Trade Aloe Vera & extracts of Caribbean Lime and Mint makes this sorbet one you're gonna want in your summer skin arsenal. 

Virgin Mojito Body Butter
The BodyShop body butters have always been and may always be my favourite part of any limited edition collection and the Virgin Mojito range is no different. We're talking the intense hydration and skin comforting that you're used to with this one but the addition of Carribean Lime & Mint to the Fair Trade Shea Butter elevate the Virgin Mojito version to another level entirely. 

I've been pairing this with my favourite summer scent of all time, Aqua di Gio Femme from Armani and I can't tell you the compliments I've had. I'm talking people turning to sniff the air in my wake á lá Linda Bellingham in the Bisto ads (Lord rest her soul). 

Bottom line is thus. If you are in any way mojito inclined then you need some, if not all of this limited edition Virgin Mojito line on your radar, in your life & on your body. STAT. 

For those of you lucky enough to live on the Emerald Isle and left with a serious case of the WANTS following this post - nip on over to our Twitter & don't say we don't spoil ye!

Our Cork Adventure ~ The Model Railway Village!

We started our adventures with the best tourist attraction for children in West Cork, The West Cork Model Railway Village in Clonakilty. As we went early in the morning we had the place to ourselves, it was wonderful to stroll around in the sunshine & let the children explore at their own pace. 

It’s a handmade scale replica of the old West Cork Railway featuring the towns it served back in the 1940s. Cillian thought this was magic as the church bells even ring in the church & as you pass a little road with a pub you can hear the music & revelry going on inside. We loved that there was a raised platform so even the smallest of smallies could oversee the entire village too!

Seamus’ favourite part was the latest addition of Michael Collins’ homestead of Woodfield, Sam’s Cross complete with a uniformed Michael Collins standing at the door. It really is a lovely way to spend a few hours taking in the sights of Clonakilty, Kinsale, Dunmanway & Bandon. Orla loved the scale model of the star shaped Charles Fort with the little soldiers marching.

Inside the main building you’ll find a small cinema with a video on loop detailing the running of railway line of yesteryear. Across the hall is a interpretive centre with images of the history & heritage of West Cork.

There are lots of things to keep children entertained & you can choose from the outdoor playground or the indoor soft play area with a chalkboard wall & mini toy library. You would pay much more than the entrance fee for the soft play area alone so it’s fantastic value for money. 

Facilities are great, they have a baby change area & wheelchair access throughout. The cafe & gift shop are separate from the main building & are housed in authentic train carriages. We had to call into the gift shop to pick up the obligatory pencils for school, not bad at only 75c each.

As we went off season & midweek the Choo Choo road train wasn’t running but during the summer months it runs 5 times a day & brings you on a tour of Clonakilty town & back to the Model Railway Village. 

We paid €20 entrance for a family ticket, you are not restricted by time so you could spend the day if you liked. For an extra €10 you can add the Choo Choo train to your ticket, well worth it at that price! There is ample free parking on site. The Model Railway Village is open 7 days a week from 11am – 5pm. 

Have you been to the Model Railway Village in West Cork? What did you think?