Author: LaurenDungey

Trying to make sense of March.

March, the start of Spring, and for us it’s usually a month of celebration with Parker’s birthday, of happiness with Spring walks, of excitement with Easter arriving soon and a glimpse at another bank holiday on the horizon. But due to the recent outbreak of Covid 19 in the UK and the world, things have been a little, well different this year. It’s all been very strange and if I’m honest my anxiety has overwhelmed me at times. I’ve really been trying to make the most of it, whilst obviously being very aware of everything happening. Some moments I feel like it consumes me. The media, the news, the figures. It’s a really scary time, especially as no one has been through this before. So much uncertainty, so much confusion, and so much worry. You’d think that staying at home would be relaxing but if I’m honest it’s completely thrown me off. 

Trying to make the most of it? By accepting facts. Parker is extremely vulnerable as he has Cystic Fibrosis, so we have to self isolate for 12 weeks. Three months in our house and in our garden. We’ve had all his medications now delivered to the door but one thing we’re really struggling with? Food shopping, home delivery to be precise. I cannot get a slot, I’ve tried every hour at every supermarket and I’ve admitted defeat. I’m so blessed to have Paul, we can share the load. So one of us will only go out when we absolutely need to, to get food and when we do it’s a strict regime when we get back. Strip off at the door, put the clothes for the wash, get showered, then anti bac the bags, the products bought, the car keys, my phone. Anything that could be contaminated. It’s actually quite frightening and the times I have had to go out in the past week, it’s given me so much anxiety. I’ve hated it to be honest. But I have to remember it’s only temporary.

Keeping safe, staying home. It’s strange really isn’t it? Not knowing what’s to come in the near future. I’ve been furloughed at work until the end of April, but after that I’m unsure. With Parker in the extremely vulnerable group, I know I won’t be able to return to work then. I miss my colleagues, they’re all such good friends, I miss daily working life, the satisfaction work brings. I miss the school drop offs and pick ups. If I’m honest, I miss chatting. Not anything meaningful or deep, just ‘wasn’t the traffic awful?’ Or ‘beautiful day, looks like springs on the way!’ I never thought I’d miss small talk. 

It’s funny how the little things, become the biggest things, and just mean the most. I always say the blogs that take the longest to write are the ones that I’m most passionate or emotional about. Writing these words with so much uncertainty, with no knowing. Just writing, just feeling, just trying to put into words all my thoughts down here in my safe space. One thing I’ve been asked about is home schooling, as Parker’s in reception I’ve been trying to focus his learning in small groups throughout the day. Maths, writing, reading, art and of course P.E with Joe Wicks. All in fun bursts, not putting any pressure on him and making it as fun as possible. We’d been given some homeschooling sheets from school which he completed last week and this week were moving on to the online schooling, so fingers crossed it’s easy to use! Monday done it seems okay! It’s all actually been so far so good, maths using Easter eggs, writing letters to elderly family members for English and drawing with chalks in the garden for art. Parker thinks this is all fun, and even though he said he’s looking forward to going back to school he’s doing well. I’m so glad he’s aware of Coronavirus but not worried by it. The most he knows is that we’ve all been told to stay in and to wash hands lots. And for a 5 year old who’s had all his birthday plans cancelled he’s doing pretty well. 

I’ve been trying to remind myself this all temporary, and that we’re not stuck at home we’re safe at home. So many key workers are putting themselves on the line daily so that we can minimise the spread, so that we can stay safe and keep the vulnerable safe. We all need to be mindful, think before we act and speak, which is why I think this has taken so long to write. I don’t want to sound like I’m moaning but this is my space to vent. So I’m writing this being mindful that others are struggling more and that my worries in the grand scheme of things aren’t too bad. They’re not great. But they’re not too bad. And all I know is that thinking of others right now, it’s more important than ever. I know so many of us want to see loved ones that do not live with us, but right now it’s safest to FaceTime, to write letters. To stay home. To let people know that even though you’re not physically there, you’re there for them. 

I’ve also been trying to keep myself in routine as much as possible. Getting early nights on week nights, setting alarms for the week mornings. Getting showered and dressed most days (although I’m leaving the hair and make up behind!) and just feeling a little more productive so that when it is the weekend, it feels like a weekend. Some days, we’ve watched movies and played board games, others we’ve done so much reading, school work and baking. It’s all a balance and you’ve just got to find the right balance that suits you. 

I’ve had a few messages from people on social media, and they’ve been so so lovely. Saying that they’ve loved my content this week from home, and honestly it’s such a lift. I’ve been trying to stay as positive as possible as other wise my anxiety will consume me. If you don’t laugh you’ll cry right? I know it’s a very serious situation. And there are so many that are suffering and so many loved ones lost. It breaks my heart. And that’s just it, if I think about it too much I’d just be sat in one place, crying letting it consume me. And I will not let it consume me. I will try and make the most of a shite situation. By putting me and my family in as safe as position as possible, by being there for others, by remembering to take the time. For me. For doing what makes me happy, and one of those things? Blogging.

It’s taken me nearly a week to write this. Maybe it’s because talking about my anxiety is such a mental weight being lifted, that it takes time to get it out correctly and how I want? Maybe it’s because it’s just actually emotionally draining admitting I’m not okay all the time. Maybe it’s because if you’re sat here reading this and you can relate, I want you to know that I’m also here for you and that this is all a bit shite but it’s only temporary, and I hope that I don’t mean to sound like moaning mertle. 

So if it all feels a bit shite right now, it’s because it is. But we’re all in this together. And we will get through this. Take care of you, check in on others over the phone or over social media and most importantly stay in where you can. Remember you’re not stuck inside, you’re safe inside. After all, after the storm comes the rainbow.

And just like that, The Mum Style turns three.

Happy birthday to me! Well not to me. To The Mum Style, to my Mum Style. This week my blog hits three years old. Three years of my own personal journal being open to so many of you, all of my thoughts, my feelings, my best moments and some of the hardest moments, all written down all shared for the world to see. Even in the last year, since my blog turned two, and I wrote about my journey, I think so much has changed.

My attitude to my blog has changed so much, I’ve learnt the value of my words. How much they actually mean to others and most importantly, to me. I once was wrongfully dismissed from a job and the reason behind his choice was one because he said he didn’t like me, but secondly because he said I was too much of an influence, he said people listened to me, they took on what I said, they valued my opinions. At the time I thought it was an insult. That it was the worst thing that anyone could say about me. But after the owner of the company said I did no wrong, and apologised for everything, I started to think about it. Is being an influence the worst thing in the world? Especially when used in such a positive way?

This happened years ago and I’ve definitely taken on board that having people listen to you is a blessing, that you have to believe in your words and also that most importantly to be careful in knowing that what you say matters. That people reading your words and relating, is something that is so valuable. That my words mean something. All I ever want to do here is express my thoughts, my feelings, whether it be through a review or a page from my own life and diary. All I aim to do is talk about down to earth life and spread positivity. All I want to be is someone I can look up to, and if anyone else feels like they’ve taken some positivity or something from here then that is a massive bonus. Reading over my stats from the last year I’m so in awe of how many people take the time to read my words, how many people understand and relate to what I say. To how many of you follow my blog for updates. I honestly feel like it’s all still so surreal.

I’ve thought a lot about my blog name so much over the past year. Do I change it? Does it really show my identity? Who I want to be? And after so much thought I think it’s the most perfect name for my blog still. Although so much has changed in since I created this space and I’ve changed in so many ways, it’s still me. The Mum Style. I’m a mum, and I believe every mum has style. Every person has style. But style? What does it mean? To me it’s how you do things, not just how you dress. But your attitude, your opinions, how you show yourself to the world. And as a mum who is so proud of who she is. It’s perfect for me. This is me. And this is my mum style. The Mum Style.

I know the industry is changing and I do think about how blogging will change. As everyone focuses more on social media, on vlogs, on instant content, I do think, a lot. In the past year I’ve been so blessed to gain thousands more readers, so many more followers here and I do want to up my style, the way I blog, the amount of passion and time I put in. The dream I’ve mentioned previously is to make this my life. To not worry about the Monday to Friday job but for now this is all just a dream, the bills won’t pay themselves after all!

So my plans? I’m going to move with the times. My blog? Will be a main focus, to spend more time writing, creating, reviewing and expressing. To give you more fashion, more local businesses more small businesses. More supporting people. More supporting brands I love. And more supporting and loving me. And for moving with the times? Watch out, The Mum Style will focus more on videos! More outfit of the days, not necessarily hauls, your girl can’t afford that! Let’s be honest. But more chatting, more opening up. I feel such a sense of community through Instagram and my blog and I hope you love our morning insta story chit chats as much as I do!

Something I want to brave into is definitely more on mum blogging. Being a mother is something I’m so proud of. I want to share more, I always worry about who’s watching and reading so much and I worry about how Parker will feel about my blogging one day. But talking more about days out, about day to day motherhood, it’s important to me and I want to share some things I’ve had kept in for a while. I want other mums who may sometimes feel the way I do to be able to relate. Because sometimes as a mum I have no idea if I’m doing it right! Or whether anyone feels the same? So I’d love to chat to you all more about motherhood.

Sometimes I worry about where I fit in, where I am in the world of blogs and instagrams. I’m not your typical mum blogger, photos in my pants, I’m not your typical fashion blogger with insta worthy outfit of the days, most days it’s a photo in my kitchen with bad lighting. But it’s something I’ve learnt. I don’t need to fit into a box to be worthy. I can be who I want, sharing everything, the self love, the pjs and day to day outfits, the family memories, the brunch stories and the good times and the bad. It’s me. I’m Imperfectly, perfectly me.

This space online. It’s my happiest space in the world of social media. Where I feel comfortable to say exactly how I feel. I’ve always been honest on all of my platforms and social media accounts, but blogging, it feels so personal. It feels so raw. This space has helped my confidence, my anxiety and overcoming my fears so much. I feel a sense of community. I have so many friends, so many of you supporting me. Blogging has helped me find me. It’s brought me so many unbelievable opportunities. So this year, for year three, we’re going to make it a good one. I’m going to bring you more of what you all love, along with some new additions!

So here’s to turning to three. Three amazing years, of self love, self belief and self confidence. Taking the step to setting up my site all those years ago was one of the best decisions I’ve made. Here’s to me, to The Mum Style, to my Mum style. Happy birthday to me! Well not to me. To The Mum Style, to my Mum Style. X

Pancake Pro? Let’s say No…

What’s that phrase again? Out of the frying pan and into the fire? Well in this case straight into the food waste bin. Okay, okay so it wasn’t ALL that bad…but let’s say I was ready to bin the frying pan by the end of it! Pancake day, a day that I always took for granted, that was always so easy when I wasn’t lactose intolerant, I would buy those pancake shakers, the ones where you add milk and then just like that – pancake pro. And even last year I did home made following a recipe carefully, but just using a milk alternative. Still perfection. But vegan pancakes? I think I’ve met my match this time.

First up the recipe. Where to start? I thought for this one yes babe, let’s do it for the blog! Let’s inspire my fellow vegans and all the pancake lovers to try something new, to whip up not one, not two, but three different vegan pancake recipes. I thought I could rate them, which ones were top dog. But hilariously I gave up after recipe number two…It was late, I was done for, and the food waste was looking pretty full. Not the vegan attitude I aspire to follow. But that’s life, we make mistakes don’t we! And mine was attempting to make pancakes for the sake of this blog! Have you noticed it’s my first year writing a pancake day blog? You’ll also notice it’s definitely my last pancake day blog! 

Let’s start from the beginning. At the start of this year I bought Ferne Cottons recipe book ‘Happy Vegan’ when I chose to make the lifestyle switch to become vegan. I was browsing through recipes to feature here and I found this one. Ferne knows what she’s doing I thought? I mean she’s written a book! Well Ferne I can say this recipe – success! Although I made a few changes such as not adding flax seeds due to lack of supplies, and switching the rice flour for normal to suit what I already had in the house. It worked pretty well! So what did I use? Well wouldn’t you like to know. I think I was doomed from the start of the pancake making process, when I realised my scales for weighting out ingredients were completely dead. The dial kept moving when it was still and as I kept adding flour, nope not a single ounce was detected! So there I thought that’s it, ready, steady, let’s guesstimate! 

Banana vegan pancakes. What did I use from what I can remember? 1 mashed banana, about 100g of self raising flour, half a teaspoon of baking powder, a dash of vanilla extract, a pinch of salt and a good few glugs of almond milk. Then I whisked with a fork in a jug until as smooth as can be, a thick but consistent texture. No idea if that’s how they were supposed to be! Next into the frying pan! It said to place small ladles of mixture into the pan on a low heat and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side until you can see bubbles appear. I saw them, I flipped them – with a spatula, not in the air I’m no pro remember! Honestly for me it’s the time taken to watch them, and wait for them that gets to me! It’s one of the most heart racing things in the world. Try to turn too early – a mess. Turn too late – a burnt mess! Somehow and believe me, I have no idea how, these were a success.

The toppings! Always a make or break argument. I was going all out tonight! So first contender, the good old banana and chocolate. Seeming as these were banana pancakes I found it quite fitting to add fresh banana to these and also a drizzle of choc shot! A vegan alternative to chocolate sauce and a great hot chocolate alternative that I have fallen in love with. Time for the taste test. Bloody wonderful. I tell you one thing Ferne cotton knows what she’s doing! This recipe made so many pancakes that I also switched things up and did a batch with strawberries, blueberries and of course maple syrup! My absolute all time favourite pancake toppings. 

Next the disaster. I have no idea where I found the next recipe, obviously google. But by who, I have no idea. All I know was I mixed plain flour, caster sugar, salt and sunflower oil together. From the image online it looked as if it was going to make crepe style pancakes so I got excited. Got the big pan out. And forgot to add oil so it wouldn’t stick. Also conveniently added self raising flor to this when it said plain. The pancake rose, the pancake stuck. The pancake went out of the frying pan and straight into the bin! The food waste bin that is! At this point the pan was going into the bin too. But I thought persist, head back to your faithful and trusted little pan. So I did. And we got there, ever so slowly we got there, finished off with a big squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a teaspoon of caster sugar. A childhood favourite! But one things for certain, I’m heading to the nearest supermarket after swimming and finding some free from pancakes today, you know the ones you pop in the toaster! Because what I did last night? Nope never again. Nada. I do not have the time or the energy to deal with that again! 

Anyway it’s Pancake Day and let’s enjoy the fun of grabbing them pre-made from the supermarket, or shaking them, or making them, or flipping them and definitely eating them. And today rest assure I’ll be buying pre-made ones! Have you ever had a pancake day disaster? Or do you play it safe and buy ready made? Let me know below! And have a great pancake day! I do love a holiday that celebrates food after all! X

My obsession for earrings grows as I discover Kara Creations.

Let’s talk jewellery. I’ve always been a magpie when it comes to it, the shinier the better, the brighter the better, it finishes off every outfit perfectly. And my obsession? Earrings. Tassels, hoops the lot! I’m in love with all the colours, textures and prints. I have a pair for every outfit!

So when the lovely Kathryn from Kara Creations reached out to me and asked if I’d like to receive some of her products to review I couldn’t wait to say yes! Supporting small and local businesses is something that means a lot to me. When you buy and share the love to a small business you are directly paying In and supporting a person, a team, to a dream. We all start somewhere and I feel so lucky to have been gifted a beautiful range of earrings from Kara creations to share with you all.

A little more about Kara creations? Kara creations was created by Kathryn and Rachel, two sisters from Pembrokeshire, Wales. As a matter of fact where I grew up! The passion began when Rachel was involved in a car accident and broke her ankle, whilst on recovery she self taught to crochet from YouTube. She created her first blanket and that’s where the dream began. Her sister Kathryn then started to make jewellery with her, spending time together as sisters, whilst Rachel was pretty much house bound. The business has blossomed and they’ve had such an amazing response to their beautifully handmade jewellery and blankets, and you’ll see why below!


Stepping into Spring with Evans

Stepping into Spring. Where are you Spring? I’m ready and waiting! I think I’ve said goodbye to Winter already, I’m not going to lie. Done, goodbye, see ya later Felicia! I’m just not here for it. Every weekend there’s a new weather warning? Like what is it, the rain the wind. Storm Dennis this weekend. I just cannot wait to feel the sun on my skin, to feel the crisp air and the smell of fresh cut grass and most importantly the fashion! 

Although I love layering up there is no better feeling than not having to wear tights, are you with me on this one? To not worry about adding the scarf, the hat, packing the gloves and of course to not getting the Brolly in and out, only for it to turn inside out! So this week I want to bring you a couple of looks that are perfect for Spring from Evans clothing. I’ve written about Evans before and how much I’ve loved re-discovering them and their on trend style. So when they reached out and asked if I’d like to pick some items to be gifted I couldn’t wait to choose! 

I went for two looks, both very me and both perfect for dressing up and dressing down, and of course both perfect for that transitional period between Winter to Spring, and then Spring to Summer. First up was this gorgeous ditsy polka dot shirt dress I’m such a massive fan of a shirt dress, and this colour was perfect for Galentines! I wore it to work and then straight out afterwards and it was comfortable to wear all day. The fabric is really lightweight but still warm enough to wear in this chilly weather! I love the print as it’s colourful but not too much for day to day. I paired it with a pair of ankle boots but it could also be dressed right down with a pair of trainers, or even glammed right up with a pair of block heels. I love the length of this dress, it really is a great cut as it’s long enough and comfortable enough to run after the little one and stay covered but also I love that you can undo a few cheeky buttons to show off a little skin for date night! Either at the legs or bust!

This dress is available in a size 14-32 so a really good plus size range. I received mine in a size 18 and it was a perfect fit! No pulling at the bust and plenty of sleeve room for movement, no restrictions at all! I’ve actually worn this dress so many times since I received it last week as I just love it so much! I also paired it with this gorgeous rust satin knot headband, also gifted from Evans. Headbands are going no where and I think they are a great accessory for any occasion and this one from Evans is so comfortable on the head, as with some headbands I find they can really dig in after long wear, but this was lovely and no pain or pressure after wearing all day and night! The rust colour also sits perfectly with the dress, so I added a waist belt (it does come with a matching fabric belt but for me I wanted more of a statement belt) a pair of earrings I’m ready to go!

Evans Blush One Button Coat.

Evans Rust Satin Knot Aliceband

But what about those blustery days? The ones where it isn’t raining but it’s still so cold! Have no fear the Blush one button coat is here! Also gifted from Evans and also another true to size perfect fit. I received mine again in a size 18 and it was so roomy! Great for adding layers underneath. This one runs from a size 14-32 again so a great size range. The fabric is so soft and I’m really feeling the tailored look! So smart for at the office or for brunch with the girls, but also a really great option for pairing with jeans and trainers for a more casual look. Also pockets? Who doesn’t love pockets in a coat?!? This whole colour combo of this outfit I am totally here for. Blush is such a perfect colour for Spring/Summer and this outfit fits together beautifully. Such a romantic vibe for every day and all very versatile pieces that are great when styled all together, or on their own as part of any outfit.

The second look I went for was my style through and through. I felt so confident in this dress and honestly it’s because I felt amazing! This is 100% my go to look for every occasion and every day. Trip to the park? This dress. Into the office? This dress. Out for dinner? This dress. So what am I banging on about, well it’s the Black floral frill hem dress. It’s a beauty and she’s selling fast! This is such a fab dress for Spring, you can roll the sleeves up, unbutton it a little, and all I can imagine is as the days start to get a little warmer, is pairing it with a pair of platform sandals and a pair of big sunglasses! You feeling those vibes too? Well for now it’s a tad cold for that! So I’ve paired it with my favourite leather look jacket, again a belt to accentuate my waist and my comfiest pair of trainers. I actually wore this on our family walk and park run and again no restrictions and was such a great fit! I received mine in size 18 and again this dress runs from a size 14-32.

Evans Black Floral Frill Hem Dress.

Evans Turquoise Beadband

I’m such a massive fan of a midi dress the lengh is perfect and I also love the print! The colours again are just so beautiful and I’ve matched it with another statement headband also gifted from Evans. Blue is such a fab colour that is great for all year round and honestly this is a look you will see me in most weekends at the park! Although you may even see me on date night in it, blue clutch bag, cheeky pair of stilettos, an added red lip and off I go!

These two looks as I said before are fantastic for this time of year. You can really switch up the look just by adding accessories and taking your own twist on it! So what do you think? Shall I do a day to night look book blog featuring these two? Or would you like to see more day to day options? All I can say is Evans has you sorted for this season. With a great plus size size range and so many on trend looks to choose from you really are spoilt for choice! If you’d like to take a browse at any of the items mentioned in this blog then I’ve linked them under each picture today! Are you ready to step into Spring with Evans? X

Let’s make this V-Day, Me Day.

Are you ready for it? The best day of February? Nope not pancake day! Although that comes a very close second! I mean February 14th. Valentine’s Day. Not for you you say? Well let’s see, we’re not quite there yet, but seriously what are you doing this Valentines? Are you romancing it up? Are you making it a Galentines? Or are you saying nope and saying let’s put me first this valentines. What would I love? How can I treat me? Self love is the greatest love of all time after all! Every valentines I’m not going to lie, I use it as a massive excuse. An excuse to make time for the one you love. In our busy lives sometimes the date nights can be pushed back, the taking a walk together, talking the time just to be together. And it’s normal it happens to everyone. To all couples, to friends. Especially with friends, being married doesn’t mean I’m missing out on Galentines! But what about me? What about making V-Day into me day? 

After years and years of hating my body, I love nothing better than to celebrate self love by putting on the most gorgeous sets of lingerie and feeling incredible! Lingerie is so empowering and can make you take on a whole next level of confidence! So this valentines I thought I’d bring you three different looks to treat yourself with this valentines! I was gifted these sets from the babes at Brastop. As you may know Brastop a company that I go to time after time, they’re my go to stop for all things bras! They sell all my favourite brands and have such a good size range for fuller busted babes. So they very kindly gifted me these sets to share with you, so are you ready?

First up, this really cute and super pretty Swirl set by Flirtelle. I totally fell in love with the gorgeous pastel blue colour and the material is super soft. I love this set mainly because it’s pretty and it’s fun! It’s a winner for day to day but also wrapping up in a fluffy dressing gown with your slippers and your favourite book. It’s a really comfortable set that also has great coverage. I love the swirl detail and the way the bra and the briefs match perfectly. Who doesn’t love to match their sets day to day? I received the bra in a size 36H and the briefs a size 20. As always I like to size up in briefs to have extra comfort. This set runs from a size 32FF to a 40K, and the briefs a size 10-22, so a really great bust size range. The support and overall fit on the bra is great and I love wide straps for comfort. The briefs are also really comfortable with a mid rise style leaving you feeling secure and supported all over. This set is perfect for feeling pretty and comfortable this Valentines.

Secondly an option that is perfect for the bedroom but also for popping those heels on and feeling like your singing along with Christina Aguilera in Burlesque! This set isn’t really one that you can get away with for day to day, but I think that’s why I love it so much! I used to struggle so much trying to find a babydoll or chemis that fit a fuller bust, I always found they’d be sold in dress size rather than bust size. But here we are again with another scorcher from Curvy Kate. The Starstruck baby doll. I don’t usually opt for a padded cup but this gave that VaVaVoom lift to the girls and gives such a stunning shape. This is a great option for if you did want to surprise that special someone, yes I mean you! To dress up and to feel great! I love this one as sometimes when you’re not having the most self loving day you have got that little bit of extra coverage to make you feel a little more comfortable. The sheer chiffon skirt is a really great layer and is so beautiful. I received my babydoll in a size 36HH, and it runs from a size 32G to 44G so a really good option for seductive with a little more coverage, with a great size range. When there is padding I think it can be best to size up to ensure no spillage, especially if you’re a bottom heavy bust as I am. The fit once sized up was perfect, and I’m not going to lie I think the girls looked amazing and honestly, I felt amazing! The details in the matching briefs are also something I really love, I love the they are a cheeky Brazilian style that do show off a little more bum. I love the matching details to the babydoll and the geometric lace is really gorgeous. I also love the seductive black and silver colour of this set, and the detachable suspender clips! A great option to have especially when it comes to raunchier lingerie. The briefs run from a size 10-20. I wish this expanded a little more to match the amazing size range of the baby dolls so here’s hoping this is something for the future! This set is such a good option if you are planning a candle lit dinner and you are after that little bit more coverage and more of a playful vibe!

Last but 100% certainly isn’t least is a set that I’ve now owned in three colours because I just simply love it so so much. From one of my absolute favourites – Scantilly by Curvy Kate. Scantilly to me is the daring more raunchy side to Curvy Kate. The side that shows a little more, that dares to bare all and more. And this set? The Surrender. The most beautiful detailing and the particular attention to key aspects that make this set perfection. First up the colour. A stunning emerald green, paired along side the most beautiful nude embroidery detailing. I’ve owned this set in the red and black, but this is definitely my favourite so far. The mix of the sheer cups and the over cup strapping is so sexy and so pretty, the design overall is a massive winner for me. I received the bra in a size 36H, very true to size. This bra runs from a size 30DD to a 40HH. The briefs, we have to talk about the briefs, the peephole detail is a cheeky one I love a cut out back! A bit naughty but sophisticated, with a sheer front. I received mine in a size XL and the fit again was great. This set is definitely one if you’re feeling a little more naughty and want the added excitement of Scantilly in your life.

So there we have it! My round up of my top three lingerie picks for the fuller busted babe this valentines. Whether you’re after a set that’s pretty and cute, a set that’s a little more playful or a set that lets out your naughtier side hopefully there’s something for you here! As always I’ve linked the sets below if you want to treat yourself this Valentines, or if you’d just like a browse. So let me know, will you be celebrating self love this Valentine’s Day? X

Flirtelle Swirl Balconette Set

CurvyKate Starstruck Padded BabyDoll

Scantilly Surrender

Self care, it isn’t selfish, it’s a necessity.

It’s January the 728th. It’s cold. We haven’t been paid in what feels like forever. And I’m running low on positive vibes for the new year. No wait I’m not running that low on positive vibes but I’m definitely in need of some inspiration. The new year goals are going well though, I still haven’t had a drop of alcohol and still fully vegan. So I guess there’s a positive. As soon as Christmas is over I feel this overwhelming craving for sunshine, to feel the warmth, to feel the sun on my skin, to not have to wrap in one hundred million layers. 

So with all the negatives of January I’m using it as an opportunity to rejuvenate. To have some much needed me time. To turn the negatives into positives. And if I’m honest one thing I really have been better at this year is making sure I take the time for my own self care. After all self care isn’t selfish, it’s a necessity. Yes a bubble bath and a face mask are both great self care routines and usually that is 100% what my Sunday evening routine consists of, but what about other forms of self care? The ones that may seem simple but on the bad mental health days are actually massive achievements. I’m talking about putting you first. Washing your hair, feeding yourself, doing something you love.

One of my goals for this year was definitely to take myself on more dates, with myself! Of course more date nights with Paul are on my to do list this year but having me time is also massively important. I’ve had a couple of coffee dates just me this year so far and I feel it’s been amazing for my mental health. I’m even having one now whilst writing this! Just having the time to sit and think over a good brew. To write down my plans, to take some time to blog, and even to read some of my favourite bloggers new posts. I also love to people watch, not in a stalker way like Joe/ Will off ‘You’ ( if you haven’t seen season two yet you’re missing out! ) But in a way that I like to see what everyone else does over a brew. A catch up with friends, a date, just a cuppa and a read of the morning paper. It’s quite lovely really how much a warm beverage can mean so much and so many different things to so many people. 

And if like me you’re feeling the pinch of January on the bank and a coffee shop may not be the first go to for some time out, something I’ve also really enjoyed doing is going for a walk. Simple right? But so effective. Coat on, boots on. Just walking. Walking where? Having a mooch around town, having a walk past the canal, a trip to the park, out to the woodlands, just walking. It’s so funny how just getting some fresh air can be so wonderful for the mind and soul. We have a much loved spot up the Quantocks in Somerset. There’s something about the woods and the fields that is so relaxing! Being at one with nature with no distractions is actually really refreshing, no telly, no phones, no daily life reminders. Just me, my wellies and my loved ones, talking about nature, thinking about how wonderful where we live is. 

Another self care routine that won’t hurt the bank is having a sort out, a switch up. We’ve had a good post Christmas clear out and taken so much to our local charity shops and recycling centre. All items we don’t use or wear or just have never used. It’s felt so good giving it all to charity and honestly if I had more time, volunteering at a charity shop is definitely something I’d love to do. Just having the sense of community and knowing you’re helping. But right now I know I can’t give up anymore time, so I’ll help by donating. I’ve been listening a lot to ‘Heart’ breakfast in the mornings on the school runs and something Jamie and Amanda are talking about in January are their feel good deeds. How helping other can actually make you feel really good about yourself. Putting a really positive spin in January and I’ve loved it! Hearing what everyone’s up to and how they’re helping someone else. So I packed up all the gifted clothes and clothes that just don’t fit or that I just don’t wear anymore and I donated them to charity. Some well loved, others hardly worn but all in great condition so hopefully someone in the Taunton area will get a real bargain! And the charity shop a few pounds! 

For me January really is about taking the time and the space you need. I actually feel really rejuiuvinated at the coming end to this month. I feel like I’ve not set unrealistic goals and I feel a sense of achievement for focusing on me. It’s definitely something I want to do more of. I’ve also made sure I don’t push myself. Learning today no for me is one of the biggest forms of self care. Saying no to go out when you just feel exhausted. Saying no to cleaning up when you could just do with a relax. But also saying yes. Saying yes to every opportunity that could add some happiness. Saying yes to having a friend over for a cuppa and saying yes to putting myself first sometimes. As I write this blog I’m sat in one of my favourite coffee shops in town. On my own. No distractions. No to do lists. Just me and my thoughts and my phone, writing down all of my thoughts and feelings.

If I’m honest I never knew just how much blogging could also be such a massive self care help for me and how it’s affected my mental health and my overall well being. My own little journal, my happy place in these words. For me my blog is my online diary, of what I love, of how I’m feeling and most importantly my own reminder. On the days I feel like I’m failing, or that I’m not good enough. It’s a reminder that I’ve got this, and that if my words only inspire me on the bad days then that’s honestly good enough for me.

January may be very nearly over and after reflecting on this month through these words it really hasn’t been as negative as I thought. Maybe 2020 will be the year of self care. Self motivation. Self love. So try to put yourself sometimes. Take that break, take that walk.How do you practice self care? What’s your favourite self care thing to do? Let me know in the comments. And if all I’ve learnt from 2020 is that self care really isn’t selfish. It’s a necessity, then that’s a pretty good start of the year for me.