31 October 2017

October 2017: Roundup, Highlights + Favourites

One month closer to Summer and one month closer to Christmas, whoo! October has gone by in a absolute flash. I really shouldn't be so surprised but because every month is same, but it really does feel like it should still should mid 2017. 

October has been a busy yet exciting month. I've officially finished my studies for the year which is the best thing ever. Spare time has been spent visiting family which has been really refreshing and motivating. I also spent a night in Okiwi Bay in the Marlborough Sounds with an Aunty and Uncle I haven't seen in forever, it was so amazing to catch up with them. 

I took a week or so off this month from posting to my website because I was so busy with my studies but I'm now back and I can't wait to properly get back into the swing of things with my site. 

For the month of November I'm going to be based in Christchurch for work which is so exciting. I'm so grateful for the opportunity and the experience I'll gain. It'll also mean Im able to spend a good chunk of time with my Christchurch family and friends. I'll still be posting to my website on normals days at the same time of 630PM but make sure you're following @bonnieellenxo on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for regular updates. 

I have a slight obsession with stationery but for the longest time I've wanted to teach myself Calligraphy and just different styles of lettering. Everybody raved about Tombows Dual Brush Pens and how beautiful they were to write with, so I got some, well actually I got the whole set, oops. While I'm still getting to the calligraphy side of things, I also really enjoy using them in my planners. The colour variety is amazing and there are some truely gorgeous shades. 

I first brought this lip balm when I had extremely chapped and wind burnt lips last summer. I was really struggling to find anything that kept my lips hydrated while keeping the product as natural as possible to avoid any extra irritation. But then I found this gorgeous natural pawpaw lip balm and it changed the whole game. It kept my lips hydrated for ages while the natural oils and shea butter helped heel any chaps and wind burn. I've been using it again a lot recently and I think it's safe to say it's going to my a staple product this summer. 

Well after hearing everyone rave about it, and then trying it at a friends I decided I'd just get it for myself. It's definitely one of the best and I'm really enjoying putting it on my face. 

I'm a super big fan of highlight products in general, but this Skin Halo in Diamond Dust by Mecca Max is probably one of my most used highlighters in my collection at the moment. It's affordable and so gorgeous on the skin! 

One of my fave YouTubers has just gone out and created her very own Podcast. Don't ask me how long I've being watching Esteè on YouTube because I honestly couldn't tell you but when she announced that she was bring out a Podcast I was beyond excited. The Heart Of It is my current favourite Podcast to listen to and it covers some of the best topics. If you enjoy listening to Podcasts, I highly recommend The Heart Of It by Esteè Lalonde. And while you're there, check out her Instagram, I'm a big fan of that too! 

B x

29 October 2017

What's Making Me Happy Right Now 2.0

'm all about positivity and sharing it with those around us, whether that be on social media or in person. Last month I wrote up a post about the things that we're making me happy in the present time. I really enjoyed the write up process of it and it really was awesome to be able to see some of the positive things in my life, at that current time, in one post. This kind of post is something I want to share more often on my website, maybe every few months, as a way of sharing around some positivity, inspiration and just overall happy thoughts. 

We are nearing the end of October now which is a clear indication for those of us in the Southern Hemisphere that summer is on its way. There have been a coupe of really warm days which has me super excited for the arrival of summer. 

My friends and family are continually contributing towards my happiness. I probably don't acknowledge it enough but I'm so incredibly grateful to have such supportive friends and family. I'm really looking forward to Christmas and New Year period when we're all going to be together. 

Over the past couple of months I've been really good at taking time off. Taking time away from working has meant that I'm able to look after myself a lot better and I've been able to just do things for me. I know that it's coming up to a super busy period in the year so fingers crossed I can keep up the occasional day off here and there. 

I want to take this opportunity to share some of the content and their creators, that have had a positive influence in my life recently. I'll leave links to their Instagram below but they also all have incredible YouTube channels too. Check 'em out and let me know what you think. 

Megs: @wonderful_u
Katheleen Lights: @kathleenlights
Meghan Rienks: @meghanrienks
Kalyn Nicholson: @kalynnicholson13
Shannon Harris: @shaaanxo

B x

26 October 2017

Grief: Nine Months Later

Here I am talking about grief again but this time nine months later. Nine months ago it felt like grief had taken over my life. Nine months later, I've had the chance to reflect on how grief effected my life back then compared to how it effects my life now, along with how I choose to deal with it. 

That immediate grief was a weird emotion for me to feel because not only had I never lost a loved one before, let alone losing two loved ones within less than a month, but also because I didn't know what to expect. I had no control over it and I was so use to actively choosing to be happy and choosing how I felt towards a variety of different situations in my life, I didn't really know what had hit me. I think with grief, you've got to allow yourself to feel it. Acknowledge it. Don't try and swept in under the rug. It's important to remember that we all react to grief in whatever way feels right to us. I had never experienced this level of grief before so I was unsure on how I would react. It was a big learning experience. I found it odd that while I would cry, I would also find moments to laugh. What brought a smile to my face through the moments of despair, were all our precious memories together. I say my reaction to grief was weird one because I'm not one to show a lot of emotion. I'm normally the one that's holds it together for everyone else, comforts others and then when I'm home or alone, that's when I'll  lose my shit. Grief brought out things in me that I never would've done otherwise. Talking in public, I avoid it at all costs and you'd be lucky to see my cry, ever. Well I spoke at both services, not alone but with cousins and you probably couldn't understand a word I was saying due to the tears. 

Nine months later, it still hurts. It hurts like it was yesterday. I can’t count on two hands the number of people that have told me it gets easier. Maybe they were  attempted words of comfort, I’m not sure but one thing I am sure of is that it doesn’t get easier. Grief becomes permanent part of your life and it never goes away, instead you learn to deal with it, you learn to cope. You become resilient to it. It becomes a part of your everyday life and along the way you find ways to cope. 

There is no right way to deal with grief, everybody is different but I think it’s important to stay true to who you are. It might take awhile but find ways that will help you cope and you'll find people who you feel comfortable talking to. I think it’s important when you lose someone special to never stop talking about them, never stop sharing photos and never sharing memories because they moment you stop doing that, is the moment they’re really gone. 

B x

10 October 2017

Why Do I Keep Trying To Fit In?

There is so much tragedy in our world at the moment and I feel like we just can’t get away from it. With what’s happening in Puerto Rico at the moment after Hurricane Maria to the mass shooting in Las Vegas, it’s never ending. 

It just makes me so incredibly sad and frustrated to know that this is happening in our world and people are suffering because of it. 

Natural disasters aren’t something we have any control over. Peoples lives, homes and belongings, it all can be gone within seconds and I can’t even begin to imagine how that feels to not only have lost everything you’ve ever known but then to have to start to rebuild a life after such devastation. 

And don’t even get me started on the fact that a human can pick up a weapon and ends lives within seconds, it’ll never settle well with me. 

I’ve been thinking about this post for a while now, what I’d talk about and how I’d address how I’m feeling. After the past weeks worth of tragedies I’ve decided to take a different approach. At the end of April, beginning of May I wrote a blogpost titled, ‘Being Branded The Boring One’, which I’ll leave linked but I talked about how I’ve been labelled ‘boring’ because I’m nineteen I don’t go out every weekend, choose get absolutely intoxicated or particularly enjoy going out to bars and night clubs. 

It’s not that I don’t like alcohol or drinking because I do have a few drinks every now and then. And it’s not that I have anything against bars and night clubs, it simply comes down to purely not enjoying myself while I’m there yet I still find myself being pressured, not by others but myself to go out and enjoy those experiences that apparently all teenagers and young adults are meant to have. It needs to stop, the pressure I put on myself to fit in and be like everyone else is ridiculous. 

Life is way to short to be doing shit that doesn’t bring you joy and happiness. Look at our world and the tragedies that occur daily. It’s disgusting and not okay. Nobody should have to experience and know what it’s like to live in constant fear. While I’m fortunate to live in a pretty safe country, tomorrow still isn’t guaranteed. 

My message to you is, be authentic, be grateful, be loving and be happy. Life is to short not to be. I wake up each day thankful that I’m still breathing because I know someone out there didn’t. 

My love, thoughts and prayers go out to everyone and anyone in this world who needs it right now. 

B x

8 October 2017

Birthday Gifts For Mum

Slightly different post from me today but it's good to be different, right? I always struggle with buying gifts for other people especially when you've been buying gifts for someone your entire life. It was my Mum's birthday in September and I was struggling to decide what I wanted to get her. Nicole, my little sister, and I decided we'd combine forces and get something for our Mum together. 

After awhile we decided that the best option for Mum would be a few goodies from Lush. We knew that if we got her a few products it would encourage her to look after and pamper herself. After the year she's had, she definitely deserves it! 

Lush have some incredible gift boxes that range in prices and products but rather than buying a ready made gift box, we thought we would create our own wee gift box of some of our favourite products from Lush. Nicole and I love Lush, so we really enjoyed picking products for Mum. We tried to buy a range of different products and between us both I think we did an alright job. 

I'm going to list all the bits we got and also leave them linked if you're interested in finding out more.  

"If you're a sucker for the strong, dark stimulating type, take a shot of this coffee infused filled mask to the face. Wake up and invigorated the skin with the rich aroma of freshly brewed coffee." 

"An exfoliating shower scrub that can also be used to wash, volumes and add shine to hair. Packed with mineral-rich sea salt. This exfoliator can be used as a gentle scrub on wet skin or on dry skin for a really good buff before you get in the shower. Sea salt, a natural antiseptic as well as exfoliant, is combined with lots of lemon juice to leave your skin feeling rejuvenated and it also adds shine and volume to hair." 

"Sometime you just need to shut yourself off from the outside world under a blanket of fruity foam that will put you back in the right frame of mind to face the world. This bar is supersized, so you'll only need to crumble a small amount under your tap to make enough bubbles for a long comforting soak." 

"As soon as you drop this into your bath, tension is banished as the bergamot and frankincense oils are released. Bergamot is used in aromatherapy for anxiety, depression and nervous tension and is both relaxing and uplifting as well as antibacterial." 

"When you've got that feeling - tired, stressed out and anxious - you need some sensual healing. The fragrant blend of jasmine, ylang ylang and clary sage will soon have you relaxed and feeling in the mood."

"Let your troubles melt away as skin is soothed by marshmallow and calming marigold powders. If it's bright yellow and pink sandwich of colours doesn't bring to mind dolly mixture, its candy floss scent surely will. Whether you're young in years or young at heart, sweeten up with waters shaded a dusky peach." 

B x 

5 October 2017

Review: Lush Sleepy Lotion

"Cloak yourself in dreamy touches of oatmeal infusion, lavender water and heavenly fair trade organic cocoa butter." 

Lush Sleepy Lotion, well oh my, what a product to have my hands on. I was actually introduced to this product by my sister ay before it became the hype. It took me awhile to get my hands on because it was a permanent product, it could be now I'm not sure. I finally manage to get myself a tub and holy crap, it smells incredible. 

The idea of the Sleepy Lotion is that you use it before bed and the scent helps you relax leaving you with a peaceful nights sleep. While I agree that it's a beautiful product to use at night, I wouldn't say that it helps me sleep any better than before, or maybe it does and I just haven't noticed it, who knows. 

It contains a bunch of my favourite ingredients like, Almond Oil, Lavender Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Organic Coco Butter and Ylang Ylang Oil. It also has Tonka Absolute which is what gives the lotion its sweet vanilla scent but Tonka is also great for anti-inflammatory purposes. Sleepy Lotion is just a dream. 

B x 

3 October 2017

What's In My Backpack

A few months ago I brought myself a backpack and it's a Laura Jones Small Quilted Backpack. It's the perfect size for everything I want to carry around on a everyday basis and more. It retails for $50 NZD and I think that's super affordable for the quality of bag you're getting. 

I carry the bare basics in my handbag and I try not to hoard receipts and rubbish in my bag. I permanently keep things likes my favourite hand cream which is currently the Essano Nourishing Hand Cream, lip balm, headphones, a face powder, hair tie and all those kinds of bits and pieces. 

I also keep my wallet, Kikki K Textured Leather Card Holder, my keys, a water bottle and my phone. I don't carry too much with me which means that my bag stays light but it also leaves room if I need to taking anything specific with me on any given day. 

B x

1 October 2017

18 Before 2018 Goal Setting Challenge By Lisa Jacobs

Super quick post from me today but Lisa Jacobs over at marketyourcreativity.com has brought out her yearly goal setting challenge once again. I participated last year for 17 Before 2017 and I'm participating again this year. 

This post is to encourage you to set 18 goals you want to accomplish over the next 3 months before 2017 is over. 

I'll leave links to Lisa's site and Instagram so you can check more of her content out and what 18 Before 2018 is all about. Get involved and let's end 2017 on a high. 

B x