Sunday, 31 January 2016
My skin has been a nightmare for the past month or so, I think mainly due to the cold weather and the insane amount of chocolate and general garbage I consumed at Christmas. I found that my old cleanser (a Garnier foaming lotion) was really drying my skin out and I was getting really rosy cheeks, but not in a cute way; in a more of a "Oh cool now I need 4 different colour foundations on my face" kind of way. I wanted to highlight a few products that I invested in that saved me from "Winter Face"...
Tuesday, 26 January 2016
- I work regular hours: Start at 9, finish at 5, every day. No "stay until the last customer leaves" crap, I can leave something and finish it the next day. Ahhhh, consistency and routine; the anxiety-riddled humans' dream.
- I can wear my slippers under my desk. YEAH, DID YOU THINK ABOUT THAT, OFFICE JOB HATERS?!
- I get free drinks. Coffee, tea, soft drinks, juice. I also get free breakfast. What a time to be alive.
Tuesday, 12 January 2016
I recently watched a video by Emma Blackery that talked about popular cosmetic brands that test on animals. Having recently done some research into this myself, I thought I would post a useful infographic that I found on the PETA website that shows which popular cosmetic brands are testing on animals as we speak. Some of them certainly shocked me, I didn't expect to see Dove, MAC, Stila or Maybelline listed. I don't know if I'll ever feel quite the same about my bathroom!
Monday, 11 January 2016
Thursday, 7 January 2016
Starting a blog can seem like a huge and complicated process. It really doesn't need to be, and if you do enough planning and research beforehand you can get a blog up and running in around 2 hours. For those of you who might be interested in starting your own blog, this is everything you need to know become a bonified Blogger...
- Choose a blogging platform. A blogging platform is essentially a basic content management system. You will use to it create blogposts and then categorize them appropriately. The two most popular blogging platforms are Wordpress and Blogger. I use Blogger because it allows a much higher level of customization (to change the way the blog looks and feels) without needing to pay for a template. I believe Wordpress is the biggest platform because it is the easiest to use, but I just couldn't get along with the limited functionality and I have enough experience of basic coding to be able to manage my Blogger site myself. Choose your platform and sign up for a free account with them.
- Pick a domain name. This is the URL that people use to access your site. For example, mine is www.reviewsatrandom.com. If you are serious about starting a blog then you will need to pay for a domain name. You can use a free one provided by your blogging platform but it will read "www.reviewsatrandom.blogspot.com", for example, which is so ugly and also doesn't lend itself to being taken seriously as a blogger. I host my blog with Go Daddy who gave me a really good price and have a lot of additional extras you can order; I ordered a custom domain email address (firstname.lastname@example.org). I pay very little for the privilege so it's definitely worth looking into. It's worth noting that if you don't pick a custom domain name (that you pay for) you don't own your site or content. The host can delete it if they wish, without your consent. Try to pick a name that gives a rough idea of what type of content your site might include. Failing that, pick something catchy and memorable.
- Set up your web hosting. If you choose to use Blogger then Google will automatically host your blog for you which makes the whole process super simple. You won't need to purchase additional hosting; you can just input the domain name you've purchased and get cracking. Google will also make sure you're appropriately included in Google search results to help you get your content out to a wider audience. If you choose to use Wordpress you'll have to set up hosting with a hosting provider such as BlueHost and you'll need to pay for it.
- Design your blog. Think hard about how you want your blog to look. If you're going to be writing instructions or recipes you'll need a clean and simple blog design. You might want to create a colour scheme or theme that reflects your content in an interesting and dynamic way. Most recently I've opted for a very muted colour scheme but in the past I've gone full garish glitter. Blogger allows you to heavily customise your blog design and it's easy to lose a few hours of your life to the Template Designer tool. Whichever design you settle on, make sure it enables easy digestion of your content. Anything overly busy might discourage your readers from sticking with your post, but that doesn't mean you have to stick to the common "grey-scale" themes if you don't want to.
Tuesday, 5 January 2016
- Learn to "DIY". I want to learn to put up a shelf, paint properly and hang a picture frame on a wall. If Ben ever leaves me I can replace all of our wedding photos with photos of the cat and put them on the wall. In the shape of a cat.
- Drink more wine. I mean, I don't know if it's really medically possible or aligns well with my monthly budgeting, but I think it's important to have a stretch target isn't it?
- Learn to cook more things. And better. "More better things". I realised that the reason I don't enjoy cooking much might just be because the only things I can cook are a roast dinner, pasta or fajitas. I've got about a dozen cookbooks & I vow to use them.
- Worry less. 2015 was a year of wedding planning, balancing family & friends, and working stupid hours to pay for everything. I somehow feel that things I would have fretted about a few months ago just wouldn't matter to me now. It's amazing what a bit of perspective can do; 2016 shall be an anxiety-free year.
- Travel more. I want to see more of the world while I've got the chance (that sounds more ominous than it is), and this year I'm looking forward to some family holidays which makes me very happy indeed. I can't remember the last time I went anywhere with my Dad!
- Give more. I'm keeping up my monthly donation with Mind UK & I'm still going to be working as an ambassador for mental health in the office. I've also decided that this year I'll be donating to The British Heart Foundation on a monthly basis. The British Heart Foundation spend their research funding on understanding diseases such as angina, heart attacks, heart failure, abnormal heart rhythms and high blood pressure. Heart and circulatory disease takes the lives of more than 400 people in the UK each day and this cause has genuinely never been closer to my heart (no pun intended!) than it is right now. The BHF are hosting a Wear It Beat It event on Friday February 5th this year, sign up your office and give more here: https://wearitbeatit.bhf.org.uk/
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