DIY skin care recipes that I love!

2014-04-20 07.05.58

I really enjoy finding homemade skin care recipes so today I thought I would share my favourites with you guys!

1. Baby Soap as facewash

This is what I use on a daily basis to wash my face. I haven’t tried a lot of face washes but I have found that in the past, either that are really expensive or they break me out. When I was a teenager, I just used to wash my face with a bar of dove soap and warm water, but after using baby soap one day, I think it’s way better! Plus it’s something I normally purchase anyway so it’s very affordable! I love the Ecostore and more natural baby soaps but Johnson & Johnson does the trick too!

2. Baking soda deep cleanse/black head remover

Mix 1tsp baking soda to 3-4tbsp water and apply to face (problem area if using for black head removal) Leave on for 1-2 minutes before rinsing off and drying. You can also use milk or coconut milk in place of water if you really want to be pampered!

I saw this on pinterest about 8 months ago and  was really sceptical about it since I badly damaged my hair by washing with baking soda once. After doing some research I have realised that the key to this one is DILUTION! Baking soda can be very harsh on your skin so it’s important that you don’t use too much directly on your face. Some of the recipes I have seen recommend mixing it into a paste, in my experience do not do this! It works much better if you mix it into a elixir type of thing and apply to your face using a cotton pad/face cloth. Don’t leave it on too long, I usually wash it off as soon as it starts to tingle. I also only do this once a month or when I feel like my face needs a good clean. This will strip all your natural oils so it’s not a good idea to do this one on a daily or weekly basis. It’s also important to follow this one up with a moisturiser.

3. Coconut milk cleanser

Apply coconut milk to face with a cotton pad and leave on for 5 minutes. Rinse with water and pat your face dry face.

Unlike coconut oil, I LOVE using coconut milk on my hair and skin. I also use coconut milk to deep condition/clarify my hair every couple of weeks. I find it so soothing and gentle on my face and it doesn’t leave me with excessively oily skin like some other natural cleansers I have tried. Try and use organic coconut milk if you can, but don’t worry too much, the tinned kind has been ok for me so far 🙂

4. Green Tea Cleanser

Add 1-2 teabags to about 1/2 cup of boiling water. Steep for 5-10 minutes before allowing to cool. When it is cool enough, apply to face with cotton pad and rinse with warm water. 

So I literally just tried this and I LOVE IT. The green tea was really soothing and gentle on my face and it smelled divine! And afterwards my face felt so fresh and smooth. Green tea is really fantastic for your skin and it makes a fantastic cleanser. Just make sure you steep it for at least five minutes to release all those wonderful antioxidants!

5. Green tea and rose petal soak

Fill bath first with only hot water. While bath is running, add 4-5 green tea bags and allow to steep for 5-10 minutes. Add 1C of rose petals to bath and top up with cold water to desired temperature. 

Doesn’t that just sound heavenly?? I adore bath soaks, I have so many great recipes for ones I have tried and others that I am wanting to try! But I wanted to share this one because it’s rejuvenating and luxurious! I generally don’t wash my hair or body with any kind of commercial soaps when I do this, I just light some candles and lay back and relax. It is so therapeutic!

6. Moisturising Rolled oat bath soak

Cut a piece of muslin into a square. Add about 1C of dry rolled oats to the middle of square and tie with a rubber band (or hair tie or baking twine or whatever you have handy) For a relaxing sleepy time bath, add a few sprigs of fresh lavender if you have any.

Rolled oats are a fantastic moisturiser so this one is great if you have dry hands, feet etc. It’s really gentle on your skin and leaves your body feeling so soft. As you sit in the bath, the pouch will become saturated and the oats will go soft and gooey and a creamy liquid will be produced and released into the water. So what I also love doing is using the pouch directly on my face, neck and body after it has been in the water for a bit as a body wash. It’s fantastic. This one is also ideal for little ones before bed, especially with the addition of lavender. You could also add a chamomile tea bag to the pouch if you want something even more dream inducing! Just make sure you don’t fall asleep in the bath!

7. Aloe Vera as moisturiser

Apply aloe vera (either fresh from the plant, or in gel form) to the skin as moisturiser for a fresh face.

I have tried a bunch of different things in place of a commerical moisturiser but I have found most of them to leave my naturally oily face feeling weighty and greasy. Aloe Vera is perfect if you have oily skin, as at least for me, it doesn’t have the same effect. Despite being told that adding oil to an oily face is a good thing, I have tried time and time again to use oils (coconut oil, olive oil, calendula oil) only to be disappointed. Perhaps I am not giving my skin enough time to get used to it before giving up, but I cannot stand having an oily greasy face. Using Aloe Vera has worked really well for me in the past. I am looking forward to trying to make my own actual moisturiser soon, whenever I can get around to it. This recipe looks fantastic!

So there are a few recipes that you might want to try! I have a bunch more that I love to make but I didn’t want to make this post too long, so I just included the ones that I use most frequently. Please let me know if you would be interested in another post like this and I will get onto it!

Planning my glittery 21st


So as many of you know, my 21st birthday is on the very near horizon. I absolutely adore planning parties so for the past month I have been organising a pretty ‘Gold + Sparkle’ party so I can celebrate with my friends in style. I chose that theme because it sounds so glamorous – and it would give me ample chance to get out my glitter, and we all know that I love glitter. One of the things I desperately wanted to have was custom made party crackers so I jumped on google and found out how to make them. I ended up making these:


They were really fun and easy to make and I have made about 12 so far, I need to make about 20 more. But I have my technique down pat now so it shouldn’t take too long to whip up a few more of these little beauties. I also made glitter dipped candle jars but I don’t have a very good picture of those so I will leave that to your imagination. Along with these, there will also be lots of gold helium balloons, fairy lights and an exquisite cake. I have ordered a custom cake from By Anna  and it will be a double tiered lemon layer cake topped with fresh flowers and sprinkled with edible gold dust. I just can’t wait!

I also have a few fun and games in store for my guests, including mardi gras beads and some good old fashioned party fun. I am going to attempt to make champagne jelly shots sprinkled with edible glitter but I am not sure how that one is going to go! Of course the party is taking place in the funtion room of a bar so there will be plenty to eat & drink as well. I’m really looking forward to this, I haven’t had a proper party since my magnificent Alice in Wonderland themed sixteenth!


2014-02-28 17.08.592014-03-15 18.37.342014-03-02 15.45.282014-03-12 14.49.02971765_10152281623988374_1650945036_n

March has been a good month however I have found my energy levels have dipped slightly so I have been neglecting my blog of late. The changing of the seasons always tires me out as I adjust so I expect that I will be fine in the next week or so. Charlie is as vivacious as ever and lately we have been spending a lot of time at the local pool and going for walks. I really enjoy this time with Charlie, he is now old enough that we can go for proper walks without his push chair, which has really opened up the doors for outdoor exploration. I have found myself relaxing a little as I transition into this new phase of parenting. Charlie is no longer a little baby and after nearly a year of being a worrisome new mother, I find that I am more confident in myself and in Charlie. We don’t really do ‘activities’ anymore, sometimes I will present him with in ‘invitation to play’ but mostly I have been immersing him in practical life which I now see as more beneficial. I have been trying to stick to our daily rhythm but I find it hard to stick to a schedule with Charlie, as every day is different for us. I feel like as he gets older he will need more consistency with our daily routine so I will need to work on that.

I have observed some huge leaps in Charlie’s skills lately. His speech is developing quickly and he seems to be learning at least 3 new words a day. He still mostly speaks his baby language but I am becoming more in tune with that so often I can pick up words and understand his wants and needs a bit better. He is also beginning to understand and comprehend English a lot better, he responds to requests and listens to commands. He is making connections with things and I can tell that he has just undergone a significant mental leap as he seems to be able to do more things with ease now. He is big on imitation lately and loves copying what I do. He’s a very ‘well behaved’ toddler too and will often sit through coffee dates, supermarket trips and long car rides without complaint. He is an absolute pleasure and I really do enjoy his company.

I am really looking forward to the next three weeks as starting on Wednesday Chris will be on a break from work. We don’t often get to spend a lot of time as a family together so it will be nice having him around for three whole weeks. I hope that we can go on a few day trips as there is a lot to see and I truly believe that exploration is paramount to teaching a toddler. It is also my birthday next month and I am 21 so I have been excitedly planning my party. The next month looks like it will be a very good one and we are heading into my favourite season now so hopefully I will have more motivation to blog. This month has been a quiet lull after a busy start to the year.

January + February

What a lovely and beautiful start to the year. We have been going on a lot of drives and adventures lately and I adore taking Charlie to see new places. He impresses me with how he takes everything in and delights in every new experience. His spirit is as beautiful as ever and his personality so bright.

This month, we welcomed a new family member, little Baby L, a gorgeous wee boy who is so alert and relaxed.

I have learned how to crochet this month which has been super exciting.

Though summer has been mostly lovely, I am eagerly awaiting the new season. I can’t wait to see what the rest of 2014 has in store for us.


tumblr_n0g9hsu8Pt1rrr430o1_500 tumblr_n0ugs6TYvp1rrr430o1_500

tumblr_n0pk9xZhGd1rrr430o1_500 tumblr_n0veb8eQ7b1rrr430o1_500 tumblr_n05h16ynji1rrr430o1_500tumblr_n12xwdQ5Tb1rrr430o1_5002014-02-22 20.21.09 2014-02-24 15.37.34

A Valentine’s Day/Husband appreciation post

Or how I’ve spent the last three years in bliss.

Many of you will have noticed that I am madly in love with my husband. Even with his silly jokes and whack sense of humor, I love every bit of him forever and always.  I’m not sure how many of you know this but we met in a bookstore. That’s how it all began. And before you start getting any romantic images in your head, I should stop you there. I pretty much stalked him around the bookstore before awkwardly asking for his number and running away. Smooth, right? I guess that’s what you get for being fifteen. Sometimes I can’t believe that I did that, it’s so not me. But I am extremely glad that I did because that one act brought the most amazing man into my life.

It didn’t get off to a great start though. Just after our first awkward encounter, I found out that he was in fact only in Christchurch for a holiday and that he would be leaving in a couple of days. We texted a lot but never met up.  Over the next two years, we had a lovely long distance friendship, which later became a relationship.  During our long distance relationship, we would send each other little gifts in the mail and a gazillion texts per day. Some of my favourite memories from that period was the time he randomly sent me a bag of marshmellows and of course, my first real bouquet of flowers. In 2010 he moved from Auckland to Christchurch to be with me and we have been inseparable ever since. In the three years that we have been together we have moved cities twice, had a baby and got married. It’s been a beautiful three years and I feel like we have done so much in such a short space of time. But I am loving every moment of it and couldn’t imagine my life any other way.

Chris has so many wonderful attributes that I find it hard to pick just a few to talk about. He is the kindest friend I have known, the most supportive and loving husband, and a doting father to our son. He has a kind heart and a beautiful mind, I find him so interesting. Sometimes we stay up far too late just chatting about life and the universe. The way he holds my hand gives me chills and I enjoy just being with him every day. I have enjoyed the past few years and I am looking forward to a future full of fun and adventure.

432367_4346113405464_1336546612_n207578_1781348567946_5171626_n249351_2040142757639_7640424_n 387611_2707340077155_132916612_n546156_3195209673590_135411477_n428347_3095975472797_143484752_n IMG_20120721_201053409573_10151086671308374_1336417992_nIMG_1544

IMG_4515 Photo 017IMG_6300hinton-582014-02-12 16.58.43

My current book wish list


  • Visiting hours by Shane Koyczan
  • Love and Misadventure by Lang Leav
  • I Wrote This For You by pleasefindthis.
  • ; by x.q
  • The Anatomy of being by Sinji Moon
  • Words from a wanderer by Alexander Elle
  • A Lover’s Dictionary by David Levithan
  • The Realm of possibility by David Levithan
  • I need you more than I love you and I love you to bits by Gunner Ardelius
  • Tiny Book of Tiny Stories Vol I – III by Joseph Gorden-Levitt
  • Crush by Richard Silken
  • Love Poems by Pablo Neruda


  • Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy.
  • Tender is the night by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
  • Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
  • The Iliad by Homer
  • Atonement by Ian McEwan
  • Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro.
  • Lolita by Vladimir Nobokov
  • Pale fire by Vladimir Nobokov
  • The Enchanter by Vladimir Nobokov
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare.
  • Lady Chatterley’s Lover by DH Lawrence.
  • The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera.
  • Looking For Alaska by John Green
  • The Fault In Our Stars by John Green
  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak.
  • The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • Fairy Tales by E.E Cummings
  • Enid Blyton Book of Fairies by Enid Blyton

Non Fiction/Other

  • The Absorbent Mind by Maria Montessori
  • A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
  • Pale Blue Dot by Carl Sagan
  • Cosmos by Carl Sagan
  • Love Is Enough: Pre Raphaelite Paintings and Poems by Clive Wilmer
  • Pre Raphaelite Circle by Jan Marsh
  • Last Pre Raphaelite by Fiona McCarthy
  • A Home Companion by Wendyl Nissen
  • Hall of Useless Collected Essays Simon Leys
  • Why Your Five Year Old Could Not Have Done That: Modern Art Explained by Suzie Hodge
  • Storyland Cross Stitch by Sophie Simspon.
  • Flowers At Home by Sandra Kaminski.

Invitation to play {play dough}

20140201_12582120140201_12581420140201_132640 (1)20140201_132629 (1)

For a while now I’ve been wanting to try some ‘invitations to play’ as Charlie doesn’t really like  structured activities like transferring pom poms or sorting shapes. He probably will learn to love those activities but at the moment, he really enjoys free play. He likes being left to explore things at his own pace so open ended ‘play invitations’ are the perfect way to get him engaged in an activity.

I kept the utensils simple because I didn’t want to overwhelm him and  my objective was to just get him touching and feeling the dough. I wanted him to experiment with it’s different texture and learn about how a material such as dough can change shape and form.  The jelly in the dough turned it into a multi sensory activity because of the different smells. I was a bit worried about Charlie eating the dough – and he did try a little – but quickly realised that it wasn’t a food as soon as it hit his tongue. The best part of this unstructured activity is that it was pretty much self led play so it allowed me to have a chat with my grandad while he visited instead of constantly trying to keep Charlie entertained.

I enjoyed watching him experiment and become comfortable playing with it and I must admit that I played with it too – it seems these things remain fun and interesting, even into one’s adult years! 🙂

A year of Dates {January}

So as many of you know, this year for The Manly One’s Birthday I decided give him a gift that’s a little different. On his 24th Birthday, Jan 6th, 2014 I presented him with 12 envelopes. Each envelope contains a mystery date that I have preplanned – one date for each month of this year! Last night we went on our first date which he had no idea about until we got in the car to go. We were running late (as we usually do these days) so I didn’t have time to snap a picture – but I took a photo of the first month’s date card so you can get an idea of what we did!

2014-01-31 14.39.22Salt on The Pier is a local restaurant up the road from our house which overlooks the ocean. It’s a beautiful place to go for a romantic dinner out so I thought that after a busy end of the year, The Manly One deserved a nice relaxing evening out – so that’s what I gave him. We had a table by the window so as we enjoyed our meal, we could admire the beach below.

2014-01-30 20.10.08We sat down and ordered our meals and got chatting. It was really nice unwinding and spending some quality time together. The manly one of course, was my favourite view! While we were chatting I spotted a rather phallic looking salt shaker, so I snapped a pic because why not:

2014-01-30 20.38.08After a while our meals arrived and boy – the were delicious! I had a Pesto Filled Chicken Mignon on a potato gratin with season veggies:

2014-01-30 20.43.19And Chris had Malborough Salmon on Jambalaya Rice:

2014-01-30 20.43.29The meals were so delicious and we were stuffed by the time we had finished…. but we ordered a dessert to share anyway – Raspberry Panna Cotta… YUM!:

2014-01-30 21.11.52After dinner, the plan was to go on a nice romantic walk on the beach – to sink our toes in the sand and dip our feet in the water – after all, it is summer isn’t it? Well, apparently not. Last night it was rather cloudy and cold so we decided to go to our favourite bar The Last Word for a drink instead! The Last Word is a cocktail and Whiskey bar and The Manly One and I love going there to try new things! The atmosphere is very intimate and cosy, so it was the perfect setting for our romantic night out.

2014-01-30 21.59.41I had a dram of a Bowmore 12yo and The Manly One had a dram of Bunnahabhain 25yo. Sometimes we go in there half knowing what we want and other times we just pick something off the menu and give it a go. I wouldn’t have picked mine if I had known what it would taste like – but I’m really glad that I did because I enjoyed it very much. It had a very smokey flavour which was nice and different – I usually pick sweet tasting drinks! The Manly One’s was nice and he enjoyed it – I sampled a little bit but it was too strong for me and I didn’t like it! haha.

2014-01-30 21.59.48

We had a beautiful night and The Manly One seemed to enjoy himself! I am looking forward to the rest of our dates – I know that The Manly One will enjoy our next date – but I’m not giving anything a way just yet!

2014 Goals


So far 2014 has brought us some quiet and calm after a busy end to 2013, which I am very thankful for. But as the new year has now begun, I thought that it would be a good time to do some goal setting for this new and beautiful year. Goal setting is very important to me as it helps me clear my head and get my bearings for the months that lay ahead of me. I love feeling organised and prepared and having goals to work towards lifts my psyche and state of mind 🙂

2014 Goals and Resolutions.

  • Focus on healthly eating.
  • Do at least 30 minutes of cardio, 4-5 times a week.
  • Lose 2 dress sizes by June.
  • Continue to explore my passions more deeply through formal study at University.  Hopefully in the July intake.
  • Encourage my creativity by writing more often and making the effort to view and be involved in the arts community.
  • Focus on my love of poetry by going to live spoken word perfomances and joining a poetry club.
  • Work towards making our home a montessori friendly environment.
  • Encourage lots of natural/open ended play with Charlie.
  • Take Charlie to 2-3 activities a week.
  • Spend more quality time together as a family without distractions.
  • Save 5k by December.
  • Finish paying off old personal loan debts by June.
  • Make frequent gratitude posts on my blog to remind myself of the things in my life that I am thankful for.
  • Support the Manly one in finishing his diploma and finding a new job by August.
  • Bring back the old me. Sometimes I feel like I am turning into a frumpy old housewife. Make social contact a priority. Wear heels. Do my hair.  Remember that these things make me feel good.
  • Be better with maintaining relationships with people. Make coffee dates. Visit people. Stop hiding away at home for days at a time.
  • Be a better daughter, grandaughter, best friend, sister and wife. Put more love and care into these relationships.