Blogmas Day 10: Books to Give This Christmas

Giving books is one of the best things about Christmas for me. If I can find a book for someone, I will. So how about some ideas that I can personally recommend to you all? These are all books that I’ve read this year and should be available in all good bookshops.

 

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Poetry

This is Rupi Kaur’s second collection and was even better than the first, which I didn’t think was possible. The collection can also work as a stand-alone collection if the person your buying for hasn’t read the first. You can read my review here.

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Young Adult 

One of the biggest superstars came back after 6 years away with a cracker. Turtles deals with the complexities of living with OCD as well as a missing mystery billionaire. You can read my review here.

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Autobiography 

This isn’t something that I would have just picked up off of the shelf, it was only after hearing an interview I decided to give it a go. This goes far beyond an autobiography it talks about gender, sexuality, loss and depression. It was really eye-opening. Review here.

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Historical Fiction

It has been a long time since I’ve read a good Historical Fiction novel. Set in the 1930s and featuring an LGBTQ protagonist this is a must-read. Review here.

Memoir 

I couldn’t just pick one these were both amazing. My Lovely Wife is about a families struggle with Bipolar Disorder through the eyes of a partner. My Shitty Twenties is the memoir of Emily who unexpectedly fell pregnant in her early 20s and what it was like to have her life change so unexpectedly, review here.

 

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Contemporary Fiction

This is super weird but really enjoyable. Told from the perspective of an unborn foetus this looks at the world in a truly unique way. I absolutely loved it and would read it again and again.

 

IMG_5143 (1)Fantasy 

If you have someone in your life who loves Game of Thrones and is having withdrawal symptoms this is perfect. This is set before A Song of Ice and Fire but it’s just as engaging and a lot shorter than the songs in the series.

 

Have I missed any great reads? Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

This post is not sponsored in any way.

Blogmas Day 9: 5 Ways to Stay on Budget at Christmas!

I don’t know about you but I’m definitely feeling the squeeze this Christmas when it comes to money. Now I absolutely love Christmas it’s my favourite time of year but it is so easy to spend more than you have and completely blow your budget out of the water. I love giving gifts, I love buying things that will make people happy but I don’t have an unlimited resource and making myself skint won’t make Christmas any more special. So, how do we save some money? Here are 5 things I’m doing to save a few pennies.

Take cash out 

It’s very easy to hit up the plastic and not think about it too much because it’s not physically in front of you. Come on, we all do it. So, instead, I will take cash out with me that is all I have to spend and once it’s gone it’s gone. This is hard because you can think ‘what if’ but that leads me on to my next point…

Plan ahead 

I love lists, love them. Trying to have a rough idea or something to aim for when you go Christmas shopping, otherwise, you might get in a panic and just buy whatever is there at whatever the price. Plan ahead, you’ll thank me later.

Prioritise who you’re buying for 

I’m a giver, I would happily buy Christmas presents for everyone, but my budget just won’t stretch to that. Write out who your priority buys are, immediate family for example, and make sure they’re covered first. It’ll mean more to you get a cherished family member something a little bit more special than splashing out on Janet from accounts for Secret Santa.

Think about handmade 

What are you good at? This might be an ideal route for gifts. I’ve handmade a few gifts this year and know that although they aren’t top of the range gifts, they will be loved and cherished.

Don’t fall for ‘sales’ 

In the run up to Christmas, there are plenty of ‘sales’ BUT be wary as retailers can be quite sneaky with boosting prices the week before and then giving a ‘sale’ and it returns to its original price. Sneaky, sneaky.

What are your top tips for sticking to a budget at Christmas time? Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

Blogmas Day 8: Christmas Wishlist

So, what’s on my list to Santa this year, well here’s a peak! This year I honestly didn’t know what to ask for so these are just things I’ve seen and thought, that looks cool!

Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them Illustrated Edition

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I am a huge fan of the illustrated editions because they’re just so beautiful and well thought out. So, of course, I put this at the top of my list. I can’t wait to see what the illustrator came up with.

Harry Potter A History of Magic 

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I’m going to be going to the exhibition in London and after flicking through this in my local Waterstones I’m so excited for the exhibition but, at the same time, I’m not keen on having to carry this hefty hardback around London so hopefully, I’ll find it under the tree!

Guylian Chocolates 

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Do these even need explaining. They’re so, so good. SO GOOD.

Nike Sports Bra & Bottoms

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I want to get really into my fitness because I’ve been slipping (again!) so I’d love some new work out clothes. Also, can we appreciate how beautiful these are that I found on Pinterest it’s a shame they’re from the 2014 collection!

A History of Britain in 21 Women

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I saw this on Leena Norm’s Youtube channel (link here) and it sounds amazing and I want to know more about some of the incredible women from my own country.

Reptar Pop Vinyl 

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The Rugrats were a huge part of my childhood, I saw this and thought it looked so adorable. He’s so tiny and cute!

Harry Potter Primark – Anything! 

The new range at Primark has made me fall in love, I want all of it. I just said to my family if you’re stuck just pop into Primark there’ll be something!

 

What’s on your Christmas list? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Blogmas Day 7: Book Review – Trump’s Christmas Carol by Lucien Young

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‘I have the best ghosts, everyone says so’

President Ebenezer Trump is a rich old fool whose heart is as small as his hands and his words as false as his hair. On Christmas Eve, he is visited by three spirits, all intent on changing his evil ways….

Back with another cracking piece of Satire Lucien Young this time turns his attention to Donald Trump. After the brilliant Alice in Brexitland , I was super excited when Ebury got in contact with me to ask if I would like to read Trump’s Christmas Carol. This follows the American president as he is visited by the ghosts of Christmas, that is Nixon, Clinton, Obama & the ghost of Christmas to come.

Of course, this does take a dark route at times, I did feel a little uncomfortable in regards to how Ebenezer views Ivanka and that, perhaps, it didn’t need to be added but that’s just my own view. I have no issue with the criticism and satire of Trump himself, in fact, the kind of things he says have been seen as comedy gold. So for the majority of the story, this truly reflects the situation.

Of course, this pays homage to Dickens original A Christmas Carol so we have a Tiny Tim, this time, however, he’s under the threat of losing health insurance with the end of Obamacare. Oh and thanks to Trump’s irresponsible tweeting America is a nuclear wasteland in 2025.  I absolutely loved this detail, because despite the humour in this there is an underlying issue with modern America and the Trump era. This is one of the things that Young gets right he makes us laugh at the ridiculousness of our political situation without forgetting the issues at hand.

I really enjoyed this as a quick read with a lot of humour. I gave this 4 stars because I really think that Young has a true talent for satire. Of course, there are some wonderful illustrations too which add to the comedy. I would highly recommend this as a Christmas present for anyone who likes politics and satire. Thank you so much to the author, publisher and Netgalley for this digital copy.

Blogmas Day 6: Costa Hot Chocolates, Ranked!

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Every November I’m eagerly awaiting the time when Costa bring out their Christmas drinks menu because I am absolutely in LOVE with their hot chocolate menu. So, I thought what better for Blogmas than to rate these festive treats because of course I’ve sampled each of them and there’s still a few weeks to go!

Coming in at number 4… 

Billionaire’s Hot Chocolate

I heard SO MUCH about this, everyone was raving about how tasty it was, how it was a game changer. Unfortunately, for me, it didn’t taste as good as I thought it would. It just didn’t have a wow factor for me. I know it’s still the favourite for a lot of people though!

Number 3 goes to… 

Black Forrest Hot Chocolate

I know, I’m shocked too. Usually, this is my favourite festive drink every year but this year it’s slipped down the list! While it has a yummy taste of cherry (and not just a cherry on top like last year), the actual syrup really sits at the bottom of your cup, so when you get to the bottom you might get a mouthful of syrup which is a bit too much.

Almost there, number 2 goes to… 

Lindt Hot Chocolate

This is your classic hot chocolate with a luxury twist. This was absolutely gorgeous and you could definitely taste the difference when Costa is using Lindt. So if you want a normal hot chocolate with a bit more luxury this is the one for you.  Sometimes I like something

And finally in at number 1…

Mint Hot Chocolate

When my Mum and Sister told me this was their go to this year I wasn’t keen because I don’t like overpowering mint. I was a little apprehensive but decided to give it a go, I’m glad I did. This has a perfect mix of mint and chocolate and, thankfully, isn’t too overpowering. Throw on some whipped cream end enjoy the tiny candy cane, you won’t regret it.

 

Have I got it all wrong?! Let me know your favourites in the comments below!

Blogmas Day 5: Christmas Q & A with Adell & Nate!

I really wanted to make Blogmas about the community so for today’s post I have Adell & Nate answering questions about what Christmas means to them! Don’t forget to go and check out their blogs too!

 

What are you most excited about this Christmas?

Adell: Going around my nan’s and tucking into her Christmas roast. It has been a tradition for my entire life but I still love it!

Nate:  I’m excited to experience Christmas at Disneyland (California). it will be fun to be working in the parks and help others have a wonderful Christmas.


What’s at the top of your wish list?

Adell: I’d love to get a drone but those are just so expensive, but realistically I would be overjoyed to receive a new camera lens. One more to add to my small collection.

Nate: A nice steak dinner

Favourite Christmas movie?

Adell: Home Alone! Although I do watch a lot of Harry Potter movies in the run-up to Christmas.

Nate: The Santa Clause

Favourite Christmas song? 

Adell: All of the classics!!! But seriously I love ‘Merry Christmas Everybody’ by Slayed. It’s one of those songs I just belt my heart out too, a family favourite as well… so here it is Merry Christmas, everybody’s having fun… (I’ve got this stuck in my head now haha).

Nate: Hallelujah by Pentatonix

Favourite Christmas food? 

Adell: My nans roast on Christmas Day! A favourite snack of mine is Lebkuchen Stars. These wonderful little biscuits are from Germany, and let me tell you they are delicious. They have a soft consistency and they are sweet and spicy at the same time. They’re also coated in iced chocolate, I adore them.

Nate: 

Hot cocoa


Your perfect Christmas in 3 words.

Adell: Family, Food, Snow

Nate: With loved ones.

 

 

Blogmas Day 4: Last Minute Gifts for the Feminist in your Life

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Now, I know, some of you out there have had your present shopping done since September, I salute you, but some of us still need ideas. So, how about some ideas for the kick-ass feminist in your life? I’m really excited to be working with House of Wonderland for this post and thank you so much for sending the above goodies for me to enjoy! So, let’s get on with those ideas.

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Stronger Than You Think Enamel Pin

How great is this pin? With a Rosie the Riveter style to it, it would look great popped on a denim jacket or bag. A fab stocking filler or little something extra.

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You Can Change The World Print

Feminism is all about making change happen so how about this print just to remind your favourite feminist that they can and will change the world.

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Survivor enamel pin

I’m so pleased that I was given one of these pins for myself. I 100% identify as a survivor of various things and I love this as reminding someone that you love and believe in them.

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Girls Supporting Girls Mug

Because what is being a feminist about after all?

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Stronger Than You Think Tote Bag 

You know the age-old ‘oh just get a girl a bag’ how about one that reminds her how strong she is? Sign me up.

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Girl Gang Candy Yellow Banner Necklace  

I love these necklaces, who wouldn’t want to be a part of a Girl Gang, these would be great for your own group of gals as a cute matching gift.

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Enamel Feminist Candy Bar Necklace 

I was also sent this and I’m in LOVE with it, it’s feminine but also makes the statement of I’m a feminist and proud. This is perfect for your loud and proud feminist friends.

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What Would Freida Do Print  

Another great print for those who love art and the wonderful Freida Kahlo, absolutely beautiful and a great tribute to the woman himself.

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Feminist with a Femilist notebook

‘Cause us feminists have a lot to do.

Thank you once again to the amazing House of Wonderland for the opportunity to work with them on this post! For even more of their wonderful products and to support a small business visit http://www.how-store.com/ . Also make sure to give them a follow on Twitter & Instagram.