Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Late Summer Homeware Haul

You may have noticed from my last post (click here if you fancy a read), but I've been feeling the need to splurge more than a little recently, and I don't know if it's because I've recently got married and want to nest, but I've been wanting to buy lots of bits and pieces for the home.  I've been hitting up TK Maxx and John Lewis most for my homeware buying needs, check out what I've been getting...

Wooden Wick Scented Candles (£6.99 each, TK Maxx) - I know summer isn't actually over yet, but since it's been getting a bit darker and a good deal cooler, I'm completely in a candle mood.  These two candles are deliciously scented and even better they've got a wooden wick that crackles away merrily like a fire when you light them.  I don't want them to ever run out.

Star Basket (£6.99, TK Maxx) - My kitchen table has become a bit of a dumping ground recently.  Literally, whenever we come into the house keys, wallets, post and all manner of other random things get dumped there until it feels like it's overflowing.  This basket is my attempt to ensure the flotsam and jetsam doesn't get too out of hand, it's small enough to not take up the entire table, but big enough to be a bit of a catch all for the detritus.  Here's hoping it works!

Sea Grass Place Mats (£1, John Lewis) - This is my attempt at brightening up my kitchen, I love the bright colour and the cotton edging on these.  Hopefully they'll last well, but whether they do or not they were a bargainous price!

Oriental Patterned Bowls (£14.99, TK Maxx) - Just how pretty are these bowls?  I've been eyeing a similar style in Waitrose but didn't want to pay £4 or £5 a bowl; I was helpless to resist when I saw these ones in TK Maxx though, I love the mismatched patterns and finish; so pretty.

H20 Embossed Glasses - I really like the style of recycled glasses and the embossed, typographic design on these really caught my attention, I've got a bit of a thing for anything with this design.  They'll get plenty of use in my kitchen anyway.

Do you get in the mood to buy homewares at times like I do?  What are your favourite shops?

Sharon x

Monday, 25 August 2014

Late Summer Beauty Haul

So I may have felt the need for a bit of a splurge recently.  It's been a while since I've really bought much in the way of luxury makeup or skincare so when the opportunity arose to do a little spending, I kind of went crazy.  Read on to find out what I got my mitts on...
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette (here) - I've had my eye on this beauty of a palette since it first came out as a limited edition last year, so it felt like it was about time I treated myself to it.  I know the Ambient Lighting Powders have been incredibly hyped up in the blogging world but from what I've seen so far it's with very good reason.  I can't wait to start making use of this palette in my everyday routine.

Lipstick Queen Endless Summer Lipstick in Aloha
Lipstick Queen Endless Summer Lipstick in Aloha (here) - This is such a beautiful sheer cherry red lipstick, I couldn't resist when I first saw it and I haven't been disappointed so far.  I'm looking forward to trying more from the Lipstick Queen range.

Rodial Super Acids X-Treme Pore Shrink Pads
Rodial Super Acids X-Treme Pore Shrink Pads (here) - Rodial isn't a skincare brand I've tried before, but there's just something about the range that has been drawing me in recently.  It's definitely early days yet, but if these deep cleansing pads are anything to go by I'm excited to try more from this brand.

Trilogy Hydrating Mist Toner, Trilogy Certified Organic Rosehip Oil & Trilogy Eye Contour Cream
Trilogy Hydrating Mist Toner (here) - I love this toner, especially in summer; there's nothing quite like a quick spritz on the face to cool down my skin.  I couldn't resist picking up another bottle, especially as with two Trilogy purchases I got a free gift.
Trilogy Certified Organic Rosehip Oil (here) - it's been two years since I reviewed this lovely oil (see that review here), and I still use it every day.  I can't bear to run out so whenever I see an offer and I know I'm running low, I'll always pick up an extra bottle.
Trilogy Eye Contour Cream (here) - I was so pleased to get this eye cream as a GWP, it's not one I've tried before but has been on my wishlist for a long while.  I'll enjoy giving it a whirl.

Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser, Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic, Liz Earle Skin Repair Moisturiser, Liz Earle Gentle Face Exfoliator
Liz Earle August Skincare Essentials (here) - You can't deny that these skincare essentials offers from Liz Earle are an absolute bargain.  I've been running out of a lot of my skincare recently so this gave me an opportunity to stock up on some staples without spending a fortune.  You save a pretty impressive amount buying these items all together too.

Good Things Manuka Honey Creamy Cleanser and Good Things Manuka Honey Daily Moisturiser
Good Things Manuka Honey Creamy Cleanser (here) - This range is completely new to me, but I've heard very good things about this cleanser from a few bloggers.  It was under a fiver too.  Bargain!
Good Things Manuka Honey Daily Moisturiser (here) - I mainly picked this up because it intrigued me, and I really can't resist a bargain.  Here's hoping it's as good as people say the cleanser from the range is.

As well as beauty products, my hubby and I have been buying a few things for the house too, but I think they may be best shown in a separate haul, to follow very soon.

In the meantime, leave me a comment and let me know what beauty products you've been buying and loving this summer.

Sharon x

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Film Review | Guardians of the Galaxy at City Screen Picturehouse, York

It was with giddy anticipation that I sat down at City Screen in York on Friday night to watch this latest offering from the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Despite my incessant tweeting whenever a new Marvel Studios film hits the big screen, you might not know that I'm generally a huge fan of these films and their comic book origins (albeit to a slightly lesser degree on the comic side of things).

Guardians of the Galaxy is definitely one of the more obscure would-be-hero teams in this particular film universe, so I wasn't entirely sure where this story would go, but I have learned to trust in Marvel Studios.  With the exception of one or two releases that were slightly wide of the mark (Iron Man 3 anyone?) I have never left the cinema feeling in any way disappointed with the experience.

Guardians of the Galaxy
Image Source
Without giving away any major spoilers let me tell you a little bit about the film.  Our leading man for this fantastic space opera is Peter Quill, who really wants to be known as Star-Lord (played to rakish perfection by the Chris Pratt).  We first meet the man trying to steal a mysterious orb from an abandoned planet and thereafter being set on a collision course, not only with several villainous types determined to have said orb for their own nefarious planet destroying purposes, but also his soon-to-be friends and somewhat mismatched team, the Guardians of the Galaxy.

First up is Gamora (played by Zoe Saldana), the rather seductive green-skinned assassin, trying to do the right thing in the face of her powerful and evil adoptive father Thanos.  Next up are Groot, the humanoid tree creature (voiced by Vin Diesel) and Rocket, the genetically altered raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper), the bounty hunters who are in it for the money (at least at first).  Last but not least is Drax the Destroyer, the muscle bound alien intent on revenge for the death of this family.  This band of criminals and misfits are thrown together by fate and set out to try to achieve what seems like an impossible task, saving an entire planet and probably universe from main villain Ronan (the delightfully dark Lee Pace).


Stacked up like this there's no way this film should work, but oh it really does and so well too.  This film has everything I want from a cinema experience and more; from Peter's back story where your heart absolutely breaks to the laugh out loud moments in Groot's joyful destruction of any obstacle in his path and Drax's completely literal interpretation of anything said to him.  Not forgetting the pure childlike awe you experience at the magnificent alien landscapes presented to you, or the spectacle of the immense and absolutely epic spaceship battles and action scenes.

Guardians of the Galaxy has so much heart in each of it's lead characters too, but most often witnessed in the enterprising and foul-mouthed Rocket and his unexpectedly loveable and warm companion Groot.  How Vin Diesel managed to convey so much with just three words (all Groot says is "I am Groot") I really don't know!  Almost another character is the film's incredibly well chosen 70s and 80s soundtrack, blending seamlessly into every scene but making it just that little bit more memorable too.

Image Source
Seeing how the Guardians are fitting into the wider universe already occupied by superheros including The Avengers is just brilliant for Marvel fans and honestly I left the cinema at the end of this film feeling thoroughly entertained and almost elated.  Seriously, you should just go and see it!  I know I'll definitely be seeing it again soon.

Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy is out now in 3D and 2D at City Screen, find the listings here.  You can also find City Screen on Twitter.

Have you seen Guardians of the Galaxy?  What's been your favourite film so far in the Marvel Cinematic Universe?  If you fancy a natter about all things geeky, come and find me on Twitter.

Sharon x

*Tickets provided free of charge, all geeky gushing is my own.
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