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Christmas Gift Guide 2017


Hello there!

It's finally December and I am kicking off this month with a Christmas Gift Guide for you! There's so many amazing products out there this year and I thought i'd compile a list of some pretty cool things for you and your loved ones.

This year I'm actually really into Christmas and can't wait to see what amazing photos and memories I can make. I'm sat writing a list of festive things I want to do. I can't wait to head home when the semester's over and see my parents little grotto again.

I hope you like what I've selected and if you've done your own gift guide leave it below so I can get some more Christmas shopping inspiration!

Happy Holidays! 

For the beauty fanatic...




For your busy bee...



For the man in your life...




For the perfect interiors...





What are you looking forward to this Christmas?

Thanks for Reading! 

Shay x

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My autumn wardrobe picks!


Hey there!

As you may know from my previous post, I am an autumn baby. It's one of those little things in life I had no control over but I really love that's part of my life. Yes it's always freezing when it comes to my birthday night out but the colour palette at this time of year is so worth it.

This is the time of year that I can't wait to have a car for. Going out on long drives to forests, national parks and taking the dogs out for a play in the leaves. Oh, and a drone, I would love to get a shot over a forest with one!


Anyway...

Cosy autumn fashion is probably my favourite part of this time of year. Fluffiness, cosiness, tartan and anything fleecey! I love it. Living up in Newcastle, we spend most of the year wrapped up fairly warm (unless you're from the area, seriously... these people don't wear jackets on a night out, it's incredible!) and so I like to put a bit of thought into buying my A/W clothing as I wear it a fair bit throughout the year. It also helps the student budget stretch that bit further.

So I thought i'd share with you some of my purchases for this A/W and a few of my favourites from the internet:


I LOVE this jacket from George. A faux fur trimmed hood and puffy enough to keep the wind out. I got this as I was getting tired of wearing my long furry Primark parka and wanted something easier to wear. I got my wish. It's got ribbed edges which pull it in at your waist, making it feel far more flattering! 


I used to hate bobble hats. I always thought they looked weird, but a good 7/8 years later, I've dug this Accessorize one out of wardrobe and never really taken it off this month. It's super cosy!


I LOVE this little bag! Primark have really upped their game with bags, and the quality does seem to be getting a lot better than my previous purchases. I got this as a little bag for nights out and day trips where I'm not taking my camera and lots of other unnecessaries! I really love the fact that three months on it's still maintained its' structure. Primark have now launched it in a burgundy colour and I kind of want it too...
I also have my fingers crossed for a pair of Uggs this Christmas as my old pair are pretty destroyed from years of trudging through mud and snow and I know for a fact I'll be getting plenty of cosy knits from my family!


Let me know what your favourite picks are below! 

Thanks for reading!

Shay x 


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24 | A birthday lunch at the Dog and Scone (I met a Corgi!)


Hey There!

I cannot believe I'm now 24. It really does feel like the past few years have slipped away without me really noticing them! As I type this, I'm looking above my wardrobe at a canvas my parents had printed for my 21st. On it are loads of family pictures of me over the years, some from Disney, my first day at secondary school and my embarrassing toothy gap from when I was seven! I cannot believe I received that three whole years ago...

So 24 finally hit and i'm still a little unsure how I feel about it. Am I mid-20's now, or can I still play off being early 20's? (I'm hoping the latter.)

This year I really wasn't sure about presents or even a plan for the day. I went a bit mad with the student loan and spoiled myself so I had no real idea what to ask for! I kind of wanted to sweep the day under the rug mostly and just focus on work but I'm really glad that didn't happen! I felt a real mixed bag of emotions about turning 24. There's so many things on my list that i've yet to do and have written out a list for the next year! ( That's another blog post!)

I was really looking forward to it because we were going to The Dog and Scone - Newcastle's dog cafe. Excited wasn't the word, especially when I found out that they had a corgi. (I'm forever sharing corgi videos).

When we arrived, I was a little nervous but as soon as I saw them all running around and playing I couldn't wait to cuddle one!


The first dog I got to hold is teeny tiny little Sugar, a teacup pomeranian. Now, if you've followed me for awhile you'll know I'm wolf mad. German Shepherds are a close second. I really didn't think I'd find a teacup pom so cute that I was nearly in tears when she decided to cuddle into me! I have to admit, I was kind of in love with her by the end of our visit- mostly because she really doesn't care about how small she is! She'd start fights with the other dogs over the beanbag and none of them would bother with her. I was slightly scared of her size when Rob picked her up, she was smaller than his hand!!

teacup pom newcastle dog and scone

teacup puppy

We ordered some pretty delicious ham and cheese toasties and I was really shocked to be surprised with a huge slice of red velvet cake! IT WAS DELICIOUS! I had no idea I liked red velvet cake until now, and I know for a fact it's going to be my birthday cake next year.

boy corgi


Okay.. here's the bit I was so excited for!! I MET MY FIRST CORGI!

Coffee the corgi is the only boy dog at the cafe and it kind of showed. He just wanted to play all the time and ran around on his own bossing everyone about and getting moody because no one would play fetch. He soon perked up when one of the girls started chucking his rope ball about! I had always thought corgis were small dogs, but he ruled the roost there and was definitely one of the biggest dogs! I was a little saddened that he didn't really want to be cuddled but I did love that he was totally his own dog and had plenty of energy- something I really admire about the breed and makes me really want to get one one day. I got a slight lick when I went over to say goodbye too!

I was very surprised by how taken I was with the little yorkshire terrier, Yuki. Not really my sort of dog at all but when she ended up in my lap she fell sound asleep and I found myself excitedly whispering to Rob to get a picture of her.

yorkshire terrier yuki



After spending a bit of time playing with them all and cuddling them it was sadly time to leave.
But it was now time to head out with friends and have a few drinks to celebrate! A rare occurrence for me!

We ended the evening with some snacks and chocolate cake watching netflix and to be honest it was a great end to a lovely day!

Monday was spent scurrying around the metrocentre buying birthday pressies and I was well and truly spoiled this year by everyone! Lunch and a pretty sizeable Lush and Body Shop haul later, I was on my way home back to post-birthday masters work reality- a 2,000 word essay due in on Thursday!


I'm so glad my 24th was as good as it was as it's put me in such a positive, excited and motivated mood for the year ahead and has just made me love everyone close to me all that little bit more!

chocolate cake drunk laughing


Thanks for reading! 

Shay x
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Checking out the new Mcdonald's!



McDonald's has been part of my life since forever. When I was a kid, my Mum used to save happy meal toys from when she had them and give them to me ( I had a lot of them!). At university, it’s become a ritual on a night out to grab a McDonald's before the taxi home!
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The Three Discovery Store - Learning everything Iphone 8 and IOS 11



Hey There!

I’ve decided to start a new blog category so that I can share all my favourite tech products, reviews and tips. I’m a real tech nut and love finding new useful apps so I’m hoping you guys like it.
                                                         
Three kindly invited myself and other bloggers down to London to visit their Islington Discovery Store to check out the new Iphone 8 Plus . 

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Annivesary trip to York & dinner at the Red Chilli





I’m sat writing this on the train down to York for the day. In a few days we celebrate our one year anniversary and we decided to seize the good weather and head to one of our favourite cities...
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THE BODY SHOP X THE G EDIT


The Body Shop has always been one of my favourite beauty and skincare brands because of their stance on animal testing.  Then I became a blogger and they made my dream come true by inviting me to their events. Last Sunday, they hosted an Autumn event at their Metrocentre shop in the platinum mall...
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THE NEXT CHAPTER...



Hi Everyone,

I have never been so happy to see the behind the scenes of my blog! Hallelujah we have internet!

So for those of you who may be wondering what I'm on about, the past couple of weeks have been a bit crazy and haywire around here!

I've moved out of my student accommodation and into the loveliest flat and.... I've started my masters degree!!

It wasn't a given but I thought I would apply anyway and today I've just got back from my induction session. So for the next academic year, I'm going to be studying a MSc in Digital Marketing at Northumbria!

I'm so excited about it and loved walking back on campus, ready for this all to start.

I've also moved into a flat with Abbie ( go and check her blog out!) and I love it! It's so nice to have a living room and a bath again! I've already got Lush in my sights to get some bath bombs!

You may also notice the blog has had a bit of a redesign and I'm very happy with it. But please let me know what you think!





Thanks for Reading! 

S x
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KISS VIP NEWCASTLE EVENT AND NAIL REVIEW!


Hi Everyone!

Last week,  I attended the KISS VIP event in Newcastle and was completely blown away by an incredible evening. A night of drinks and beauty chat with the lovely NEBloggers...
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I'M MOVING OUT!



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Pushing past the procrastination- making time for exercise!



Procrastination is honestly my biggest problem at the moment. I have so much going on right now with sorting my life out after graduation- flat hunting, packing and full time job hunting that I kind of don't have spare time. However, I do seem to find the time to watch Netflix and TV everyday.

I have a confession to make...


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Beauty: Urban Decay Naked Heat Masterclass with Danielle Roberts!


Do I really need to tell you all about the Urban Decay Naked Heat Palette?
Freshly launched it is EVERYWHERE in the blogosphere and is the subject of much admiration right now on Youtube.

It is the newest addition to the best-selling Naked palette range by Urban Decay and it is clear that they have listened to their customers and released a warm palette. I am yet to buy it but after swatching it, I am pretty sure it's going to be mine soon!

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Food: Lunch at the Dog Leap Cafe

dog leap cafe review newcastle city centre

I love that even though I have lived in Newcastle for 5 years nearly now, I can still find new places that I've never visited before. Through blogging I've come to explore so many cool little nooks around Newcastle and when I found out that Dog Leap Cafe had opened, I was excited to try it out...


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University | I'm a graduate!


Hi Everyone!

I'm back! I've taken a really long hiatus on this blog just whilst I finish up university. After all the stress of third year and hand-ins I needed some time to figure out a few things and just to breathe. I also definitely lost my blogging mojo and I completely blame that on the fact that blogging is now an industry/job. (more on that later!)

But let's get back to the exciting news!! I  AM FINALLY A GRADUATE!

On Monday I graduated from Northumbria with BA (honours) in Media and Journalism and I am honestly so proud of myself.


On Sunday, my parents came up from Reading and we headed out for dinner with Rob. This little trip was a bit of an intense couple of days due to the graduation and it was also the first time they were meeting Rob! Glad to say that it all went well and everyone got on like a house on fire!

We headed to our family favourite, Pizza Express for dinner. It's a sort of tradition that all good news gets celebrated there and I've been there for many birthdays and results days over the years so it made sense as our choice for my graduation dinner!

After dinner, I took my parents to see the pub where I work so they could see it. With my parents living at the other end of the country, a lot of the details I tell them about my life exist only in phone calls and I wanted them to see it. It's a gorgeous old pub with a record player and I knew for a fact my parents would like it!

We then wrapped up the evening with a few drinks at the hotel before grabbing some sleep for the big day...


On the morning of graduation, I was so nervous. I get really bad stage fright and I'm naturally quite shy. I curled my hair myself but got my nails done in a shiny rose gold (which I think went quite nicely with my shoes!).

Graduation itself was a blur. Because of the bad weather ( of course it would rain on my graduation!) there were hundreds of people crammed into the uni restaurant in between ceremonies. It also meant that getting decent photos of the day was a bit of a struggle! Rob and I ducked out every time the rain stopped to find places around campus and to be honest, I quite like the ones we got!

When 4pm rolled around it was my turn to graduate. I was so nervous sitting in my seat and in the line but it took not even a few seconds to hear my name called out, cross the stage and shake the chancellors hand and away down the ramp!

Rob and my parents were sitting at the end of it, so I purposely didn't look up at them in case I tripped. Sitting back down in my seat, I had such an adrenaline rush... it was over. I'd done it! I didn't trip and I was now officially a graduate!




During the ceremony itself I had a wee bit of a teary moment which I tried to hide. Our chancellor gave a funny speech on we should just let our parents preen us and take as many photos as they want, especially our mothers. We weren't going to outrun them today!

It was funny but it made me a little sad as up until that point I hadn't even thought that my mum wasn't there. It meant so much that my parents came up from the other end of the country, but of course, there's still that feeling that someone is missing.

Her speech was then followed by asking the graduates to stand up and scream and shout to show support for our families who had supported us throughout our degree. For me, this was a really intense little moment where I realised my mum wasn't here but I had my aunty and uncle.


For those of you who may not know this, they adopted me when I was five. My mum had serious health issues and it seemed best that they looked after me. 18 years later, and I'm still theirs. I felt so emotional realising that we had done it as a family- this degree wasn't just mine it was ours.

I'm the second person in my family to get a degree after my aunty and it was something that they promised my mum. They promised to give me the best of everything they could and that they would help me do well in life. It felt like we had achieved such a milestone as a family but also as a team. I felt so proud that I had done it myself but to know that we did exactly what we promised my mum, made it that much better.


After the ceremony I handed my gown back in and my parents headed off for their hotel.

Rob and I headed back to mine and got changed asap, neither of us particularly enjoy being dressed formally! We then headed out for dinner to Lau's 202 which is an amazing asian buffet in town!

On a final note, I can't believe how proud I am of myself. It took me 5 years and switching degree twice before I found something I loved and could push myself to work hard in. A couple of amazing internships and awesome voluntary experiences later, I am now a graduate.


But my final thanks has to go to Rob- who basically got me through the stress of 3rd year. My final year project magazine wouldn't have existed if it wasn't for his help with the local cycling community and his listening to my rants about lecturers, software issues and deadline stresses. He was my photographer, second pair of eyes, shoulder to cry on and stress helper- thank you!

I can't believe this part of my life is over. Well, for now maybe. I've not completely ruled out further study for perhaps a masters or what route I want to go down just yet but I would love to come back and do it all again.

Northumbria you were amazing and I am so sad to be leaving such a wonderful campus and lifestyle behind but the adult world calls!


Don't forget to follow me below! S x
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A Day at Cyclist Track Day North With Cyclist Magazine


It's not everyday I end up throwing a bike worth a few months rent around a track but when the opportunity arose to attend the Cyclist Track Day North ... I had to go...

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YoSushi: Flavours of Japan Menu Tasting!



I’ve never really been one for pushing myself out of my comfort zone. Especially when it comes to food. I like to enjoy my food and I tend to eat the same meals over and over again...


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An Interview with Joe McElderry!



It's not everyday you get to meet someone like Joe McElderry. Working for 'Nights out in Newcastle' I headed down to the press day for a big announcement to do with the musical 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat'.

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Easter Sunday at Ouseburn Farm!

ouseburn farm easter lambs chicks


Easter Sunday this year was spent at Ouseburn farm playing with ducklings and lambs before heading off to visit the Lord Nelson which was docked in the Tyne. A busy but exciting day! Brace yourself for lots of cute photos!


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Cycle Diary: Our first Bike Ride together!


On Saturday, I went for my first ride out in Newcastle by myself. It was so much fun and reignited my love of the outdoors. On Sunday, we decided to head out together for our first ride!
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Cycle Diary: My first ride out this year!



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Newcastle Races with Ladbrokes


To celebrate St. Patrick's day I was kindly invited along to the Newcastle Races by Ladbrokes. A formal event for once on this blog- are you shocked? You should be, you're about to see me in a dress...


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GRWM FOR THE RACES: THE WAX BAR




The Wax Bar recently launched in West Jesmond and I was excited to see what they had on offer. After hearing from a couple of friends who attended the launch party about how good it was, I was intrigued to try their services...


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Lord of the Dance: Interviewing the Leads!



Before the opening night of Lord of the Dance: DangerousGames opened at the Sage for a four night run in Newcastle, I headed backstage for Nights Out inNewcastle to interview the Lord of the Dance himself and Morrighan the Temptress…
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Lord of the Dance Review




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Home: Perfect Spring Duvets & Bed Linen

Living away from home gives you so much freedom. I love it and I can't believe I've been living away from home 12 years already! 

Given that storm Doris (what a name for a storm might I add) has blown her way across the UK, I was pretty happy to get home and snuggle up in my bed and binge watch some TV.

I love my room here at True, a cosy studio flat with its bright white walls and splashes of colour. So when it came to deciding how to decorate my room I decided to go with seasonal options.

Through autumn and winter I had a stag and wolf bedding set, lovely warm autumnal browns and crisp white and grey wolf bedding.
Looking ahead now to the next student loan as well as spring and summer, I want to have cute floral bedding. Soft pastel hues and anything that is going to bring some feminine softness to my room.

Now I know, florals? For Spring? (Anyone else got Miranda Priestley in their head)


via GIPHY

But I can't help it. I love this time of year when everything just starts getting better! More sunshine, colour and cute prints! 

With my flat being a studio, my bed is my bed and my sofa and is the main part of my room- so it needs to be treated with such respect and decorated accordingly with something suitably Spring-like. So I thought I'd share a little bedding wishlist of mine, ready for the next student loan!


 
Canterbury Blue Duvet Set
I cannot tell you how long I have lusted after this bedding set and I think this student loan is the time to get it! I love the fact that it's reversible and has cute polka dots on one side and a gorgeous floral print on the other!


I thought I had fallen in love with the first Canterbury set but oh no this is so beautiful. A bedding set that seems very 'in' right now with soft pinks and greys and an adorable check print too! 

What I love the most about these Canterbury sets is that they have matching curtains too to bring the whole room together. 

Duck Egg Blue Satin Set

How unbelievably gorgeous is this set? A gorgeous duck egg blue set made from satin- the bedding of my dreams! I really can't wait to buy some new bedding soon- especially as I'll be moving into my new place later on this year and have a real chance at redecorating!

If you want to see what other gorgeous bedding & king size duvet covers there is on offer, go on over to Yorkshire Linen's site.

What makes a pretty bed linen set for you? Any other bedding recommendations? 

*This post is in collaboration with Yorkshire Linen but all views expressed are my own*


Don't forget to follow me below! S x
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How Northumbria changed me.. ¦ Studying Journalism at Northumbria


I can't quite believe that it's almost the end of my third year at Northumbria. In a few short months I will have graduated and be going out into the wide world... I can't quite believe it. (Or maybe i'll stay and do a masters, who knows?)

I thought I would write a post summing up my experience here at Northumbria. I have a little whil left which is going to be so busy with deadlines and graduation prep, so it makes sense to do it now. I also want to have a blog post to look back at.

As a Journalism Student...

My course

I originally came to Northumbria in 2012 to study Law and after quite a few hiccups it really wasn't for me and September 2014 I transferred to study Media and Journalism BA (hons).

In my first year I studied Broadcast and Shorthand- two brand new concepts to me! As much as I hated shorthand I'm so glad I took it as it has already been useful during my work experiences and volunteering.
I made my first group video project which was exciting and gave me additional video editing skills.

Over my time here I've used pretty much all of the Adobe Suite, had access to a real radio station and am now about to get a weekend of work experience with the BBC. I've gone from knowing nothing about the professional world of journalism to spending time as the intern of a sports journalist and in the office of one of Britain's leading cycling magazines.

I'm now working on my final year project, my own magazine which is so stressful but is finally giving me the chance to put all my skills and experiences to use!

I'm also now part of a university radio show, Cyclebabble, which is so much fun!

Placements


For my third year we needed to get a work placement. I was so nervous I would never get anything but I got two! 

I spent three weeks at Cyclist magazine and it was so motivating and exciting. It's made me so damn certain I want to go into journalism, especially the magazine world. For my practical project I'm even making my own magazine.

I got industry standard training and learned what it was like to be on placement. I even got published in the next month's magazine and got to cover the Olympics on their website! A truly unbelievable experience!



Trips and Media Volunteering


Over the past three years, I've traveled up and down the country pursuing my career as a journalist. I had such a blast at the Tour de Yorkshire and even got chatting with the local BBC radio team. It was amazing to see the womens' race finally get the same coverage as the mens!

I got to see my idol Lizzie Armitstead in the flesh which was awesome!



I was ecstatic last summer when I was selected to be a Sports Media Intern at Northumbria. Through this, I met and interviewed an Olympic athlete, covered Team Northumbria in so many different sports and got my first news articles published in The Chronicle. Oh and weekly trips to watch the Newcastle Eagles play!


Over the past few years I've volunteered as a media volunteer on and off. I even made NSUTV committee this year!

I did my first presenting job in Freshers Week and it was such a laugh but gave me great experience for going out into the world!

It got me really interested in vlogging and despite my shyness, I created some vlogs over the years!

Have a little look below at some of the great stuff we got up to as part of NSU/TV:







As a person...

Volunteering- Northumbria offers so many ways for you to enhance your CV whilst having fun. I was really shy when I first started here and it took me until my final year to really open up and try a whole host of new things!


In my final year alone I've volunteered for the NSU's TV channel and radio station, as well as offering up time through the community projects. We filmed freshers week, interviews with celebs and all the goings on on campus! The best part is I've made some fantastic like-minded friends! It's nice to finally meet people who have such an invested interest in cameras like I do!


One of my favourite projects I've worked on was volunteering my time at Brysons animal shelter. We helped them sort a lot out and I've been going back up every week or so to help out and then walk some dogs!




I got to indulge my other hobbies through volunteering- as committee member of the Equestrian and Journalism societies. I've seen us go from having no team in the Stan Calvert to us doing so well this year! 

I've come out the other side of this degree feeling far more confident than I ever did when I started it. Switching courses was definitely the right decision for me as I feel I really have flourished as a journalism student.

I'm going to miss the fantastic facilities (the whole Adobe Suite- my good friend! and the cosy new booths in the library where I've spent countless hours editing) but I do plan on continuing my love affair with Sport Central Gym! I've recently gotten obsessed with the gym and ours is definitely one of the best. 

My confidence has grown so much since I started here and I feel far more ready to take on life after graduation now that I've had work experience and that my little blog is growing. 

I can't believe it's nearly my turn for the cap and gown- I'm kind of sad about it, but I can't wait! I've had a great time here at Northumbria and will always treasure being a 'poly'!



I have loved studying here in Newcastle and Northumbria has been home for so many years. I really hope to stay here after all of this and experience more of this wonderful city!

Don't forget to follow me below! S x
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