Lifestyle

Get to know me

26991864_10208546181691140_7073057351961175541_nHello everyone and welcome to my very first post here! I have some really exciting ideas for this space but I thought what better way to start than to get to know me a bit better so here are a few facts about me.

My name is Kelly (in case you couldn’t tell from the title) and I’m currently 24 years old. I’ve been a blogger on and off for the past six years but earlier in the year decided to close my main blog down as I had fallen out of love with it and found I was just doing content for the sake of it. I very much fell into the “blogging made me do it” category which was not only time consuming but expensive too!

For the past four years I have also run another blog which focuses solely on history. Whilst it was a challenge at times running two blogs, I felt it was important to keep them separate because they have two completely different types of audience.

I’m obsessed with shoes and have so many pairs, some of which I am ashamed to say I’m yet to wear. I’d love nothing more than in the future to be able to display my shoes in cute cabinets for all to see. For now though, they are scattered everywhere and anywhere. I’m also obsessed with butterflies and love wearing tops with butterfly print on, inspired jewellery and always stop to watch them as they fly past too!

Talking of flying, I’m also obsessed with aviation and for quite a while, wanted to be air cabin crew. I decided against this in the end when I realised how hard the training was and how much you had to remember on a daily basis. I do however still love taking IMG_8633photographs of planes and attend many airshows throughout the summer months.

A couple of years ago, I bought a better camera to help me take photos and have since been learning how to use it. I’m hoping that as my blog progresses, so will my photography.

I’ve been lucky enough to visit some amazing places over the years and can’t wait to share my experiences and tips with you on this blog. Whether its days out, weekends away or holidays in some amazing countries, I’ve loved every minute of it.

I have a dog named Trixie who is now five years old and I absolutely adore her. She is a Patadale cross Jack Russell who loves nothing more than long walks in the countryside followed my snuggles on the sofa when we return.35508636_10209415620266561_4646815144351891456_n

I’m very much a shopaholic and can be very impulsive. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve bought something, to then wonder what on earth I was thinking when I got home. This is definitely the case with make up! I’m forever buying new pieces of make up to try and yet, whilst I enjoy experimenting with make up, I don’t wear it everyday.

I’d much rather enjoy a cosy night in with a takeaway and a film rather than a late night out somewhere drinking. I’m very much that person that by nine at night, the pjs will be on. That’s probably also the reason why I own more pjs than any other item of clothing!

Cosy nights in wouldn’t be complete without my amazing boyfriend Andy, who also happens to be a great photographer, so any outfit shots you see on my blog will probably be thanks to him. 41479908_10209889031421544_4602219579794522112_n

So that is just a few facts about me that I wanted to share with you to get me back into blogging. I’m not entirely sure what my schedule will be yet as I think I’m just going to take it as it comes and write when I’m in the mood to.

I’d love to know something interesting about you so leave one fact in the comments below.

Bye for now

The Kelly Diane Report

 

Fashion

Cardigan Of My Dreams

As I introduced my other half the other day via my Get To Know Me post, I asked him to take a photo of me wearing my new cardigan of my dreams.

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After hunting in three different Primark stores, I was finally able to locate one in my size on eBay. This super snuggly leopard print cardigan is so warm and I know I’ll be getting a lot of wear out of it this season.

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Lifestyle

Why there won’t be a Lush haul

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

If you’re new here, you might not know, but I have been a blogger for six years. Unfortunately, a while back I decided I no longer wanted to blog and I therefore deleted all the hard work of those years. Recently, I decided to rejoin the blogging community and so am starting from scratch again.

Every year without fail, I’d always buy pretty much all of the Halloween and Christmas range from Lush to do a haul. I think last year, I spent about £50 buying all the cute little bits and have spent most of 2018 using them up!

I saw on twitter a couple of months ago that the Halloween and festive ranges were now available at Lush and so did not hesitate to pop onto their website to have a browse, purse in hand, ready to spend. However, I was so shocked that I didn’t buy anything and don’t intend to either. Since when were bath bombs nearly £5 each! I suddenly felt like I needed a mortgage to be able to afford them. I ended up thinking that for the price of a one use bath bomb, I could buy a bottle of just as lovely smelling bubble bath and have change left over to add a bottle of wine in too!

Over the following days, I was pleased to see that I wasn’t the only one that was feeling this way and I read so many comments from people saying how ridiculous the prices were and how they wouldn’t dream of spending that amount of money on a one use only item. So therefore, I have decided that I will not be doing my usual Lush shopping and so there will be no Lush haul on the blog this year.

What do you think of the Lush prices this year?

Will you still be buying from them or are you going to find alternatives too?

Lifestyle

Advent calendars – Are they worth the hype?

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Photo by Markus Spiske temporausch.com on Pexels.com

Firstly, if you’re new here then welcome and if you’ve been here before than welcome back. I’d love for you all to click that little follow button to make sure you stay up to date with all my latest content.

As you can probably tell from the title, today I thought I’d discuss advent calendars and whether they are worth it. For the last few years it seems as if the likes of beauty and lifestyle calendars have been growing in popularity as well as price year on year.
What happened to the days when we used to get a small square of chocolate each morning and be happy for that? Now it seems we all want the luxury items at a fraction of the cost, which there’s nothing wrong with as long as you are getting value for money.

I must admit that I have never been a huge chocolate lover (I’m sorry, but I’m not) and there were countless times where I’d forget to even open the window of my advent calendar before school because, in reality, I just wasn’t that excited about it. I think my mum secretly knew this and so set about making her own advent calendar for me and collected different chocolates, sweets and accessories that she knew I would like. Fair play to mum, she really thought about it and I found myself opening the doors each morning to the likes of Frys Turkish Delight (my favourite), mint humbugs as well as festive earrings and hair bobbles. To me, that meant more because it was tailored to what I would like and enjoy and I appreciated the items so much more.

A few years ago, I noticed that bloggers and Youtubers were starting to talk about and unbox these beauty advent calendars and I must admit, I was sucked in. At that particular time, my blog was very much focused on reviews of products and so I thought this would be a great way to build my stash, try out new products that were usually out of my budget and just generally have a bit more luxury during the festive season.
I can even remember the first beauty calendar I had – a Sanctuary Spa one. I paid about £20 for it and loved opening the doors every morning, so much so that I actually used to wake up extra early, so that I could take the time to open the window and enjoy the product. Now, just two years later, I’ve seen a similar calendar retailing for £40!

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

The second beauty advent calendar I bought was the ASOS one last year, which again, I loved. This time I paid £70 for it which now looking back seems extoursionate. Having said that, I was really happy with the contents and the size of the samples I was trying and even to this day, I feel that I got value for money. As an added bonus, I wrote reviews about the products and over time, gained a lot wider audience. The same year, I decided to treat my mum to a beauty advent calendar too and so bought her the M & S one. The deal was you had to spend £35 to get the calendar for £35 which, for both the products received and the look on mums face each morning as she opened the little boxes, was well worth the money.

The beauty and lifestyle calendar videos have started popping up all over YouTube and Instagram already even though its only October. I won’t deny that I have been looking to see if there is one that catches my eye but they all seem so much more expensive for what you actually get. I even looked at a budget friendly one from Wilko but after watching an unboxing of it, I soon realised that the products looked quite cheap
and more suited to a child than to me. I can’t help but think that over the last couple of years, this hype has resulted in them being more expensive with less quality over the products. I won’t say that I’ll rule out buying one, because in truth, I’ve got my eye on the Yankee Candle one. However, I’m certainly thinking more over it and want to buy something that will benefit me and my life rather than just give me products
that will probably sit in a drawer for months before being used or given away.

What are your thoughts on the beauty and lifestyle advent calendar craze?

Do you intend to buy one? If yes, what will you choose? If no, why? I’d love to know!

Lifestyle

The Autumn Tag!

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Photo by Rene Asmussen on Pexels.com

Hello everyone and welcome back to my brand new blog. Summer seems to have definitely passed us by now and I can’t wait to snuggle on the sofa with a blanket, film and hot chocolate in the evenings. I also love this time of year because its when I always previously felt inspired to write blog posts the most and so what better time of year to restart blogging again. Today I thought I’d re-do an old favourite – The Autumn Tag, hope you enjoy!

What signifies the start of Autumn for you?

I live close to a park and you can always tell Autumn is on its way when the leaves on the trees changed colour and start to fall to the ground. I love the crunch sound when you walk over them, before the rain sets in and makes them slippery.

What is your favourite Autumn scent?

I don’t have a particular Autumnal scent that I love because a lot of them are too overpowering for me but I love the smell of the Essence candle in Toasted Marshmallows scent at this time of year.

What is your favourite Autumn colour?

I love wearing a lot of grey and a lot of rusty colours during the Autumn. You can pick up some cute jumpers and sweatshirts in these colours as well as some pretty scarves.

What is your favourite Autumn drink?

As soon as the weather starts to get colder, I love nothing more than a steaming hot mug of chocolate, complete with cream, marshmallows and sprinkles.

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Photo by Tiago Lino on Pexels.com

What TV show, new or old, are you looking forward to this Autumn?

I’m not a fan of The X Factor (sorry, not sorry!), but I absolutely love Strictly Come Dancing, with all the glitz and glamour of it all. I must admit though, its not the same without Brucie!

What is your favourite Autumn fashion trend?

This season so far I’m loving all of the mustard colours as well as the leopard print and can’t wait to get my hands on some new pieces to add to my wardrobe.

What is your favourite frugal Autumn activity?

It may seem like more of a summer activity but I love walking on the beach with Trixie. Unfortunately where I live, dogs are only allowed on the beaches from the end of September until May so I take the opportunity at this time of year to do it as much as possible. It means I can wear cute jumpers, hats and scarves whilst being out in the fresh air and exercising at the same time. An added bonus is that all it costs is a bit of petrol, a small amount for parking and the price of a hot drink to warm up at the end of it.

What is your favourite make up look come Autumnal weather?

I love eyeshadow with a copper tone as I feel it suits my skin, eye and hair colour. I’m actually currently looking for a new one to try so if you have any recommendations, please let me know in the comments.

I love reading tag posts because you find out things about a person that you might not have found out otherwise and its also a great post that you can get new ideas from. Feel free to complete the tag yourself and if you do, be sure to leave a link to your version in the comments down below as I’d love to read them.

 

Lifestyle

My Autumn Bucket List

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I absolutely love this time of year don’t you?

The leaves are changing, its cold enough to wrap up warm and have hot drinks to warm you through. I thought I’d just put together a few ideas of things I’m looking forward to this Autumn but I thought I’d better just mention before we get into it that I’m not a lover of Halloween and so this post isn’t going to revolve around that (I’m sorry!)

Here are a few things that I am looking forward to though:

  • Autumn walks with my family and dog Trixie
  • Taking photos of the new season – All those colours make a photo so pretty!
  • Wearing lots of cute, warm knitwear
  • Making a stew in the slow cooker and coming home in the evening to eat it
  • Having a cosy night in with a blanket, film and a takeaway

I always find that Autumn goes so quickly and before we know it, it will soon be Christmas!

What are you looking forward to doing this Autumn?

Do you love Halloween or aren’t you that fussed?

Leave a comment with your answer. Don’t forget to hit that follow button if you’re not already so that you don’t miss out on any of my content.

Lifestyle

They Shall Not Grow Old Film Review

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Award winning film director Peter Jackson was tasked way back in 2014 by the Imperial War Museum to create a film to mark the 100th anniversary of the armistice. Four years later and I was sat in a cinema, waiting with anticipation, to watch They Shall Not Grow Old – the end result of four years of hard work by Peter and his team.

Throughout the years, countless film producers have been the name behind various film productions based around events of the First World War. Most notably for me would have to be War Horse and as such, many films have depicted battles and weaponry used. Not many however have shown what life was really like for those men in the trenches and how they felt at different points during those poignant few years.

In schools today, we learn a little bit about the First World War, about trench life and the soldiers who fought during that time. Yet in reality, its hard to really understand and relate to such events from fuzzy black and white photographs and film clips or by reading a small extract of a persons experience. I’ve always found, throughout the years, that the best way to understand someones experience is to listen to them and take note of how they say things as well as their body language. You can tell a lot by taking note of this rather than by reading a few sentences in a book.

Sadly of course, as time has gone on, we no longer have any of those soldiers that we can ask about the First World War and so now we have to turn to archive footage instead.
This is exactly how Peter and his team created this film. He has used original archive footage, taken during the First World War and added colour and sound to bring those men to life. They are able to tell their story with their own words and from their own experiences in chronological order, from recruitment to armistice. The results are truly outstanding and something not to be missed. What started as a short documentary in theory, soon turned into a feature-length film.

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I first heard about this film a couple of months ago now when I first saw the trailer. It looked just the thing I would be interested in, having run A Wartime Life blog since 2014 and I knew I could also gain a lot of knowledge through it. I must admit though, that with other events taking place in my life, I completely forgot about it until my friend Cris brought the subject up and suggested we went to see it. So here we were, sat in the cinema, waiting for the film to start.

A new experience for me, after the film was to be a Q & A, where I hoped I could
gain even more knowledge about how it was achieved. This was certainly true because I learnt just a little of how much hard work and time the process took. From the 100 or so hours of footage taken, each small clip had to be restored into black and white, where understandably in time they had faded. The clips then needed to be sharpened as well as the speed changed using modern day technology, so that it didn’t look disjointed like some of the old Charlie Chaplin films used to. After fixing the visual of the clips, so that they were clear enough to be used, colour was then added to them to really bring the clips to life.

As well as the visual film, added to this is voice overs, so that you can understand somewhat of what is being said. The voice overs have been done in two ways. The first is with the use of lip readers to establish what was said in a particular clip and subsequently re-recording the speech so that it can be added to the clip. The great thing about this idea was that they also used the voice of somebody from the area in which the regiment in the clip was from. For example, if the clip was a Lancashire regiment, they used somebody with a Lancashire accent. By doing this, it made it so much more relatable when you recognise an accent.
The second way they used voice overs was extremely moving because they used the voice recordings of just some of the soldiers that had been interviewed about their experiences after the war. Although it wasn’t mentioned in the Q & A, I’m presuming these recordings were also restored because they are so crisp and clear, that it feels like you are in the same room as them and that you are being told their story personally.

Although I knew it was a film I was going to enjoy watching, at the same time I wasn’t sure what to expect. The film started off in black and white, which made me think that, despite what I had read, the film would only contain a small clip in colour. However, shortly after this thought crossed my mind, the clips were suddenly all brought to life in colour. The amazing contrast between seeing the Western front in black and white at the beginning, to suddenly being able to see the same again in colour, complete with soldiers in uniform was unbelievable. The first time I heard a soldier talk in one of the clips, I was completely taken back! These were real people, young men, many of them a lot younger than they should have been, with families at home, all on an adventure together.

I’ve read countless accounts from soldiers on the Western Front over the years and one of my favourites to read was that of Harry Patch. Not because he was a local man and so close to my heart, but because of the antics he described him and his mates getting up to. I could picture them having a kick about during their rest time back in a local French town. I never thought I’d see it with my own eyes and that it wasn’t just the odd few that had a laugh and a joke along the way. Instead, during this film, what became apparent to me was how, no matter what they had endured, or how tired they were, they were still always able to have a laugh and a joke around. Peter and his team have really been able to capture that camaraderie within this film and the fact that it’s in colour makes it so much more relatable. I could almost pick out people I knew from the men I saw before me that were so much similar to those men in my own life. I could tell the joker, the serious one, the tired one etc.

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Despite the film being about war which, lets face it, it’s never going to be a happy film in a sense, I found myself laughing at some of the tales I heard. One such tale was that of the toilet facilities or lack of them as the case may be. I was in stitches as a voice over described the moment something went wrong and a few soldiers found themselves in the mess! What I didn’t realise until I got home was that the said voice over for that clip was the recording of a man who I, without knowing it, have followed his grandsons journey for the last few years as they rebuild a Bristol Scout, the very plane that the man in the clip flew. (For anybody interested in this project I’ll leave a link here so you can find out more about it)

To round off this review without giving too much away, for me, the most interesting part was the end. I don’t mean when the film finished, instead what I mean is when armistice
began and the moments leading up to it. I’d read stories of how some German soldiers hadn’t got the memo and so had kept shooting, but what I’d never heard before was,
how, near the end, some German soldiers actually helped the British. I witnessed these wonderfully restored clips of firstly German soldiers surrendering as the end of the war drew closer, where they were marched off in groups rather than killed as some might think. I saw wounded British and German soldiers being helped by each other and I saw again the two enemies having a laugh and a joke, swapping hats, sharing food and just generally laying side by side. This is something that is very rarely publicized aside from the Christmas Truce of 1914, which you can read more about here. To me, that was my favourite part of the film, because not only were they helping each other as the war drew to a close, but when armistice was declared, many German and British soldiers heard that news together, as young men who had been fighting a war, and not as enemies who wanted to kill each other.

When I got home, I read the news that They Shall Grow Not Old has been a sell out and that more dates are soon to be added. I would highly recommend, if you get the chance,
to go and see this amazing film for yourself. Even if you are not necessarily into the First World War, the message behind this film really makes you think. Not just about the past, but about the future too and what we can do as a nation, to prevent similar bloodshed in the future. Overall, an amazing film which I can’t wait to watch again. I’d also like to think that more films and documentaries will now be able to show restored clips in colour to bring other historic events to life and that’s all down to Peter Jackson’s vision and his teams hard work.