Summer Party Family Style

As my family lives far and wide across the U.K. it’s not often that we all manage to get together in the same place. But with my great Uncle’s 70th looming, him and my Aunt decided to celebrate with a big blow out to make the most of the sun with good food and good company, and boy they didn’t let us down.

We arrived and walked round the corner of the house into what must be as close as England is going to get to being a tropical paradise!

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While the children made the most of the pool the rest of us relaxed in the sun and had a good old fashioned catch up.

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For once in my life I forgot to photograph the food which should tell you just how good it was! They had laid on enough for a small army with everything from hams, salads, fresh bread, salmon, and anything else that you could possibly want.

But a special mention has to go to the wine which I did manage to photograph, which had been flown in all the way from the Alps! Crisp, fresh and fruity it was a perfect accompaniment to the delicious feast.

DSC03278DSC03281  DSC03286  After all that feasting we decided to wander around the tropical paradise (and take a few photos as well).  DSC03311 DSC03312

Hidden behind these Hydrangea’s which had me swooning they were so beautiful, I discovered a little hideaway from all the craziness, squirreled away in the tropical forest.
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What I wouldn’t give for one of these in my back garden as my own little office/ reading nook.

Swooning over, I couldn’t help but strike a pose against the beautiful flowers.DSC03361Dress: Zara (Similar here, here and here), Denim Jacket: Topshop (similar here), Bag: Kate Spade (similar here), Sunglasses: ASOS, Pumps: Topshop.

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Usually I am the type of person who dreads these sorts of ‘smart/casual’ occasions as I often end up either too smart or too casual, but this recent Zara purchase has saved me. The more eagle eyed of you will recognise this as the dress I graduated in which emphasises just how versatile it is, not to mention how obsessed I am with it! Paired with my favourite Topshop denim jacket and pumps and my Kate Spade Saturday bag which I picked up in New York shortly before they closed, I think I’ve finally nailed the smart casual brief.
DSC03408DSC03398 DSC03412  After all that ‘hard work’ there was nothing left to do but enjoy the rest of the day, which is already one of the highlights of my Summer. I’d love to know if any of you have any tips of how you strike the balance of that dreaded smart/casual dress code and your favourite ways to have fun with your family this summer!

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Dear Santa, For Christmas I would really like…

142324So my favourite time of year is almost upon us and after compiling my picks for both the boys and girls in your life, I thought I would share the top items I’m hoping for Santa to put in my stockings this year.

I am a massive fan of mugs, to the extent that I could probably have every single person I know round for tea and have the perfect mug for each of them, but that doesn’t mean I need to stop now, does it? This is to cute and as a suck for a fairy tale love story I can’t help but fall for this adorable H&M mug and who knows it might bring me my own Prince Charming in 2015!

Having maintained this blog for 6 months now (where has the time gone?), I have realised just how much I have been enjoying it and now really want to get my hands on some proper hardware to take it to the next level. I have everything crossed that I’m super lucky and find this awesome Sony under my tree, especially just in time to take some great photos in New York!

Now every year in my family we have a tradition that on Christmas Eve we get a new pair of pyjamas and these Christmas pudding ones are the best I’ve seen to make sure I wake up on Christmas morning in the most festive mood ever! Not to mention I will definitely be dropping hints that they’re now on sale!

Ever since I saw these on a Zoella video a few months ago I have been completely in love. I think they are the classiest, prettiest, girliest most beautiful headphones I’ve ever seen, and if it wasn’t for the (ahem) slightly steep price tag I would’ve been the proud owner of these for a very long time. But hopefully I’ve been a good enough girl to receive these this year, especially as they would make that 8 hour to New York so much nicer and stylish!

As you can probably tell travel and comfort presents are a bit of a recurring theme in my list this year and this gorgeous Mango jumper fills both of them. I am an absolute jumper obsessive during the winter months and although I put myself on a jumper ban this year, this totally doesn’t count as a) it’s cream and I don’t have a cream one and b) definitely doesn’t count if you don’t buy it, yes?  Pretty awful excuses but if you can’t be ridiculous at Christmas when can you, plus it’s also on sale (cough).

As a reknowned foodie but also beauty junkie this book seems like the perfect mix not to mention it will hopefully make 2015 a healthy one. Everyone I know who has this absolutely raves about it plus there’s always something nice about chilling out with something to read on Christmas day after you’ve eaten your weight in food.

After I have literally just admitted to my beauty junkie ways it’s probably no surprise this has surfaced on my list. One of the must have makeup kits of the year and adored by beauty bloggers everywhere this has had a firm place on my list since I first heard about it. As a massive fan of the Naked palettes, this to me is the perfect combination of everything you need on a night out in one cute little package and considering how much you get in it I think is incredibly good value as well!

Stereotypical girl present right here but who doesn’t love a candle and even better an adorable initial candle! From Kate Spade’s Saturday brand (which is somewhere I’m definitely heading when I’m in New York) it’s super cute and the perfect addition to add to my new house when I move next year!

Another one in the way of planning ahead to moving is this adorable tea towel, which at £2.99 is by far the cheapest item on my list, and although is incredibly boring, is hands down the cutest one I’ve ever seen. I hope you all get everything you want and more for Christmas and if you’ll excuse me, I’ll now resign myself  to my tea towel spinsterhood 2015. 🙂