Home Hacks

Home Hacks

Good morning everybody. How are you all? I am losing track of the days at the moment to be perfectly honest. Thank goodness for my meal planning, otherwise I think all the days would just be one big blur.

I thought I would write a blog about some home hacks I have been doing recently. After all, who doesn’t love those little light bulb moments? 💡

  1. Limit packaging in the freezer. Take the food out of the packaging and put it into freezer bags. This gives you so much more room for storage.
  2. Use a lint roller for dusting lights. It picks up the dust so quickly.
  3. Use a dishwasher tablet to help clean your oven. Dip half of the tablet in water and then watch your oven door come up like new.
  4. Make the bed every morning! Even if you don’t normally, this makes such a difference to your mental health and well being.
  5. Baskets. I use baskets for storing everything and it is so much easier to find the things you need, when you need them. Baskets in the fridge, baskets on the surfaces. Baskets baskets everywhere.
  6. Spinning organisers are so useful for storing products under the sink or for storing makeup. They are so easy to use and you can quickly access the things you need.
  7. For touching up scuffs or scratches on walls, use samples. Dulex do some amazing samples for such a small price.
  8. Stick down your carpets and welcome mats with heavy duty tape. It stops them from moving around when hoovering.
  9. I said it before and I will say it again. Plan your meals ahead of cooking. It makes dinner time more enjoyable and yep, you guessed it – easier!
  10. Cut your sponges in half. They last so much longer that way and you don’t need a whole sponge anyway for cleaning! 🧽

Do you have any home hacks?

Time Fillers

Time Fillers

Good afternoon on this gorgeous sunny day guys! It’s day three of the UK lockdown and I’m over here keeping as busy as I can. So now you have been told you can’t go out, how do you fill a day?

Don’t get me wrong, I know the novelty will wear off soon and we will all be complaining of how bored we are. I am someone who likes to potter about at the shops and I really do miss my coffee shops and garden centres. But I am also someone who never really went ‘out out’ a lot. I quite enjoy my own company and my partner and I may occasionally go out for a pub lunch or for drinks but we aren’t missing the ‘social scene’ as such. Well, not yet anyway!

Zumba workouts, organising, re-organising and cleaning, writing, reading, dipping in and out of work related emails and work setting & binge watching series (currently watching The Marvellous Mrs Maisel and loving it!) are just a few things I do each day to keep myself busy. Also, if you don’t have the House Party app then get it. My colleagues and I had a chat yesterday on there and it was so nice to just speak to everyone.

So, what are you guys doing to keep yourselves busy? I would love to hear some suggestions of other things I can add to the list.

Lots of love x

 

Thank You

Thank You

Good morning guys. Happy Mothering Sunday to all the mother’s out there, especially my own who is just the light of my life and the woman who has truly shaped me to be who I am today. I love you very much.

I logged on this morning to write a blog post about my new skin care routine but it didn’t seem right. Instead, I wanted to say thank you.

Thank you. Thank you to everyone who is working tirelessly around the clock to help protect those who are vulnerable and those who are sick. What an incredible job you are doing! Thank you to those who are helping out their neighbours, their friends and local communities. Thank you to those people who are still spreading happiness and joy when times are tough. Thank you to all teachers, support staff and childminders who will be returning to work tomorrow to look after those children whose parents are key workers. Thank you to everyone who have put others first.

Cue the sarcasm.

Thank you. Thank you to those who are unkind with their words and their actions. Thank you to all of those people who have strategically entered supermarkets to stockpile. Thank you to those who despite the advice, are still having social gatherings and putting people’s lives at risk. Thank you to those who are rude, obnoxious, ignorant and selfish.

So let me ask you, which category do you fall into? #weareallinthistogether

FAQs

FAQs

Good evening guys. I hope that everyone is well! I wanted to start this blog post off by saying a huge thank you to all of you who are following my blog. I can’t believe that there are over a hundred of you signed up. Thank you so much. ♥️

I thought it was about time to do an FAQ post. If you follow me on Instagram you’ll know I upload content quite frequently and I get quite a lot of DMs so I have put together a list of questions that have come up on more than one occasion. Here goes.

Is what you do online your full time job? No. I am a primary school teacher. I really enjoy creating content and writing blog posts but I also love my job.

How did you get through a broken engagement? What a question! For those of you who have read all my blog posts throughout that journey, you’ll know a little more in detail. The process of cancelling a wedding etc. was just a case of being organised. Everything else takes time and now I am happier than I have ever been.

Why did you start blogging and creating content? It was something I was always interested in doing. When my engagement broke down I decided to go for it. I write music and play the piano so writing words is something that comes naturally so I thought why not start a blog to document my journey and it helped me so much. I would recommend it to anyone – even if you don’t publish it online.

How does gifting work? This is a question I get asked a lot actually. There is no one size fits all for gifted items or working with brands. For some of my collaborations I have approached that brand but for others I was contacted via DM or email. If you want to start working alongside brands then just have that confidence and I only ever work with a brand if I am really passionate about it. It just makes the content and blog a lot more natural. 

Do you dye your hair? I have done in the past but no. I don’t dye my hair. 

What are you favourite makeup brands? I love L’Oreal and Iconic London. They are my two favourite makeup brands because I love a glowy finish and these brands do so many products to be able to achieve my desired look. 

Where do you shop the most for your clothes? Not going to lie, Ebay! I am such an advocate for Ebay. I don’t think people understand how much money you can save using Ebay. You need to be smart about what you search for and recently I have switched to only buying brand new with tags items. Favourite brands are Marks and Spencers, Warehouse, Seasalt, Boden, Fat Face and a trusty old supermarket fashion brand! Don’t knock them until you try them. 

Do you have any siblings? I have one taller younger brother. He’s amazing! 

What is the nail varnish you always wear called? Opalescent 500 by ANNY. However, I can’t find it anywhere online or in the UK. Sorry guys! I will need a dupe soon so any heads up would be much appreciated. 

What camera do you use? I have a Samsung Galaxy A50 phone and that’s all I use. I also use my trusty phone holder for my car to record videos sometimes. So glamorous I know!

How long have you been with your new partner for? It will be a year next month!

What do you like and dislike about social media? Instagram is such an amazing platform for connecting with other content creators. I have made such amazing online friendships with some really inspiring women. Having said that I absolutely hate people who are fake online and who have ulterior motives. Jog on if you aren’t visiting my feed for the right reason. 

What are your worst habits? Playing with my hair! It’s such a bad habit. I am currently trying to grow the front bits out but I can’t stop touching them!! Any tips other than pinning them back, please let me know! 

Thank you once again guys for all of your support. It means so much and I really love that you want to read my blog. If you haven’t done already please head over to my Instagram page @rebeccaavalentina and hit that follow button. Lots of love 😘

 

 

 

Things I Know Now

Things I Know Now

For those of you who have been with me on my blogging journey since the beginning, you will know all my ups and downs over the past year. For those of you who are new, it’s pretty simple. I was engaged. I got dumped. I moved on. I found my partner who I am with now. That’s pretty much it in a nutshell. It hit me that we are almost a year on and boy have I learnt a lot! I have learnt more than I ever thought possible. If you are going through a rough patch with your other half, or you’ve just been dumped then maybe this blog post is for you. You got this.

After being with someone for seven years, getting engaged and planning a wedding you really do think that everything will be alright. You never plan for the ‘what if’ moments or think about the worst case scenarios. In hindsight I should have known better.

The whole ‘dumping’ process lasted just over three weeks. It was a very confusing and dark time where I completely lost myself. I just wasn’t me but in that time I couldn’t see that.

Then it was all over. I remember this weird fog being lifted after hearing my ex tell me all of the reasons why he no longer wanted to marry me and why I was in the wrong. Why I was in the wrong? Oh honey. Everything became clear and in a split second I became one of those girls in a Rom-Com who sucks it up and says it as it really is. There was no chance I was going to let him get away with it.

A year on and I don’t regret a single word I said. In the early days after the break up, I wish I had said more perhaps. Now, I just wish him well.

If this blog post resonates with you and you’re feeling like you need a little reminder of how you can handle this then just know these three things.

  1. If when something like this happens to you and you didn’t see any of the warning signs, just stop. Stop and think about what truly makes you happy. I don’t mean the habit of them, but really and truly them as an individual. Do you want it to continue?
  2. Are you being true to yourself? Are your hopes and dreams equally as important as theirs? Are they supportive of you? Are they willing to sacrifice things for you? If the answer to all of these questions is no then you might have to have some honest conversations with yourself. Life is too short and knowing what I know now, I wish I had had those conversations earlier with myself.
  3. Before I met my partner who I am with now, I did not believe that relationships like ours even existed. I didn’t know that I could feel so valued and so loved by an individual who makes me feel so special each and every single day. As a realist and someone who has been hurt before, I know that I might be a little more cautious with my partner now but at the same time I have jumped in with two feet. I took that risk and I am so glad I did. Perhaps you have been with someone for several years now, you know nothing else, you’re getting a bit older and you are absolutely convinced you are doing just fine. Maybe you are fine and maybe everything is ticking along just swell. But maybe you have those reservations buried deep in the back of your mind that you would never say out loud. If the latter is what you are nodding along to whilst reading this, do something about it. Communicate. Be honest. Value yourself. I wish I had known this then.
If You Don’t Have Anything Nice To Say…Unfollow Me

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice To Say…Unfollow Me

I recently shared a quote from Biana Sparacino over on my Instagram feed. The last sentence reads, “There is nothing stronger than someone who continues to stay soft in a world that hasn’t always been kind to them.” In an online world of keyboard warriors, trolling and negativity, when will enough be enough?

In the past I have been quite vocal about Instagram as a social media platform and how  my experiences using Instagram have been mostly positive and supportive. Mostly. Hiding behind keyboards and comments is something I don’t think I will ever understand. What you see online on people’s feeds is what that individual has chosen for their audience to comment on, engage with positively and hopefully enjoy. Unfortunately, some people have different agendas. 

‘Follow’. When I click on that follow button it is because I find that feed aesthetically pleasing and I enjoy engaging with the creators content. It doesn’t even cross my mind to follow a creator so that I can send negative comments to them. Making that choice can have catastrophic consequences. We never know what someone is really going through. We never know what happens offline and behind the Instagram feed. 

When will we learn to be responsible for our actions? When will we learn that by jumping on the bandwagon and engaging in online feuds, that it might seriously affect an individual? When will we stop? How far are we going to take it?

I will never share what comments I have received or what DM’s I have had the pleasure of opening. I will however, speak out about how disappointed I am. Disappointed and disgusted. It’s a good job I have a thick skin.

If you don’t have anything nice to say then unfollow me. 

 

Twenty Things I Have Learnt In My Twenties

Twenty Things I Have Learnt In My Twenties

#1 Don’t be afraid to spend time alone.

#2 Stay away from people who don’t fill you with positivity.

#3 Don’t do anything that doesn’t feel right.

#4 Don’t bother comparing yourself to others. It gets you nowhere.

#5 Don’t be afraid to say no.

#6 Always be kind.

#7 What’s inside is far more important than what’s on the outside.

#8 Laugh everyday.

#9 True love does exist.

#10 Never give up on what you want. Work hard for it.

#11 Hangovers do get worse as you get older.

#12 Let go of things you can’t control.

#13 If you aren’t happy, change it.

#14 It’s OK to not want to go out and stay in your PJs all day.

#15 If you want to do something, just do it!

#16 Friends and family are so important. Cherish them.

#17 Be comfortable in your own skin.

#18 Never stop learning, growing and trying to be better.

#19 Remember that you can ask for help, whatever age you are.

#20 Appreciate what you have and not lust after what you don’t.

Happy Birthday To Me

Happy Birthday To Me

Tomorrow I turn 29.

For the first time ever, I haven’t been at all excited about my birthday. Perhaps it’s got something to do with it being the last year of my twenties but instead of a having a pity party for one, I decided to put a positive spin on it in this blog post.

I remember when I was a lot younger I used to think turning thirty was so far into the future. Fast forward to the year 2020 and here it is. Staring at me right in the face and waving at me from behind number 29. My teenage self would be saying ‘Hang on – by the time I hit thirty I wanted to have babies, be married, have a house, have a really good job and still look pretty good for being thirty’.  Does life every work out the way you hoped and wished for it to? No. It is even better.

Don’t get me wrong – there is an element of truth in the above and yes of course I think about all of those things and how disappointed that not all of my boxes have been ticked yet. But then I think about all of the boxes that I never even thought of for myself ten years ago. Overcoming some of the hardest times to make me who I am now, getting to know myself, being confident in the type of woman I am etc. etc.

So whilst I sip on a G&T with my lovely other half cooking me a birthday dinner, for those of you who might start to be feeling that little bit older, that little bit more out of your comfort zone – just remember when you wanted what you currently have.  Those things that haven’t quite made the cut yet just need a little more time.

 

High Street Glow

High Street Glow

Happy Sunday gang! I hope everyone has had a great weekend. ♥️

Whenever I think about makeup, I think about how to get that glow. I have written a couple of blog posts about different makeup routines trying out different products but this is my every day go-to makeup look.

I have been using these same products now for months and they are all from the high street. As much as I would love to use higher end products, my bank balance just doesn’t stretch that far I am afraid. If you want an affordable glowy makeup routine then here are some incredible products that won’t let you down.

First up, Glow Cherie from L’Oreal Paris. Before I even found this, I was using Bonjour Sunshine Liquid Bronzer by L’Oreal – equally as amazing. Glow Cherie wakes up your skin with a luminous, radiant glow. This hydrating skin enhancer covers imperfections and skin instantly appears healthier and glowing. Sometimes I only wear this!

If I want that extra glowy, dewy look then I put a pump of Glow Cherie mixed with No 7’s Skin Illuminator and Miracle Glow from Max Factor. This combination is flawless. All of these products can be used on their own but I love mixing them together.

The concealer I have been using for years now is L’Oreal’s True Match The One in shade Ivory. The coverage is great and really covers up those dark circles and blemishes.

With four pigmented shades, L’Oreal Paris La Vie En Glow Highlighting Palette is a must have addition to anyone’s makeup bag. The colours in the palette are warming on the skin and give you that radiance.

Let’s talk about Iconic London. I have been using the original illuminating drops for about three years now and I am still obsessed. You only need a tiny bit and you have cheek bones for days.

Finally, 24h Eyeshadow from Bourjois in shade Beige brings the look together. You know those makeup tutorials we all watch with the inner eye highlight? Look no further! Admittedly, this is a new addition to my makeup bag but I am loving it so far.

You can pick these products up anywhere – on the high street, on Amazon and on Ebay brand new. If you want that long lasting glowy look, I can say that I have tried and tested them all and that my daily makeup routine is easy, gorgeous and most importantly affordable. ✨

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Sleep Routine

Sleep Routine

Raise your hand if you want to get a good night’s sleep? Who doesn’t! We all want to wake up feeling fresh and looking fab. Beyoncé has a lot to answer for…

Besides the lack of the ‘I woke up like this’ look, I can safely say that my sleep routine is pretty robust and works everytime. The only time I ever find it hard to sleep is being in a new place and in a new bed for the first night like when you’re on holiday. After that first night, I am fine. So here are my top tips for a good night’s sleep.

Ear Plugs

I swear by these small genius inventions. I used to wear them because my ex snored. Fortunately, my partner now doesn’t but because I am such a light sleeper and I have super sonic hearing, I wake up at the drop of a pin. Putting ear plugs in correctly takes some practise as wearing a pair every night in the wrong way can cause pain and discomfort. My favourite brand of ear plugs are Moldex. They are super comfy and easy to pop in. Ear plugs won’t be a forever thing and it’s something I would like to train myself out of but boy does it mean you get a good night’s sleep. Always carry a pair if you are going somewhere on your holibobs. You never know when you might need them.

Sleep Spray

 I have been using ‘This Works Sleep + Pillow Spray’ for a good year or so now. It smells divine, it works a treat and I can’t say anything negative about it. Go and grab yourself one if you struggle to sleep.

Reading and Podcasts

I am the first to admit I am not a huge, avid reader. I never have been. However, since getting into Podcasts and having books on my Kindle I really try to do one or the other before bed. For me, it makes me super sleepy and ready for bed.

Do Not Disturb

Switch this on if you want to get a good night’s sleep. Seriously.

Lists

If I am worried about anything at work, at home or in my personal life I write how I feel about it before I go to sleep. Getting it down on paper really helps to just park it for the night. Trust me, it works!

♥️