I’m currently sitting with a cup of tea and a cookie whilst writing this blog post, yes you heard correctly they weren’t all devoured straight out of the oven or eaten raw as a mixture which I have a bad tendency to do.. These cookies are AMAZING, more like a cookie shaped rich cake than a traditional cookie but never the less delicious. I’ve been meaning to bake a recipe from Love Tanya for such a long time but just never got around to it; so on Friday night I made them as a treat for the start of the weekend. I made the exact cookie recipe but used two large bars of cadbury’s chocolate instead of white, milk, dark and daim bar chocolate as I don’t like white chocolate and just fancied milk chocolate in my cookies. I love baking as it is really calming and therapeutic and I would love to write more baking blog posts (if you want to see them!) as it’s a real hobby of mine. So lets get into it..

You will need: 
(what I used)
  • 200g butter 
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 275g self-raising flour
  • 75g cocoa powder
  • 2 large bars of cadbury’s
(extra things Tanya used)
  • A little dash of milk (I didn’t use this as my mixture wasn’t too dry but if it had been I would have added this)
  • A large bar of white, milk and dark chocolate
  • 3 daim bars
First things first I preheated my oven to 200 degrees celsius or 180 degrees celsius for a fan oven. Then I prepared my three baking trays by lining them with greaseproof paper which just means that the cookies will slide off easily once cooked.

You can do this by hand or with an electric whisk but you need to beat your butter and sugar until smooth and creamy.

Next you need to whisk in your egg and dry ingredients until combined then fold in your chocolate chunks. If your mixture is looking too crumbly or dry, this would be the point where you add a small amount of milk to loosen it. I used my hands at this point to make the mixture stick together in one ball and to incorporate the chocolate chunks evenly. 

 Next I rolled the mixture into nine balls, the recipe stated that it makes ten but I didn’t want to have to cook the 10th one individually so made them all a little bit bigger. I spaced them far apart as when they spread out in the oven I don’t want them to merge together. 
Then cook your chocolate cookies (to be) for 11 minutes, Tanya says they look underdone but if you leave them in any longer they overcook and become hard. I completely agree that they look undercooked but they were actually perfect when I tasted one. It took me two loads to cook my cookies as I could only fit two trays in the oven at once, it was worth the wait!

 When your cookies are out of the oven they should have dropped significantly and look like muddy puddles in my opinion.
You now have to leave your cookies to cool for thirty minutes so they set and I found whilst hot they were very flimsy and definitely waiting for them to cool is a good idea. I know the temptation of wanting to eat them hot out of the oven is very strong but it’s worth the wait!

Now volia, here are the world’s most delicious cookies! This is definitely my favourite cookie recipe at the moment and I’m sure these beauties will be entering my stomach again very soon. Let me know if there’s anything you would like me to bake step by step as I really enjoyed taking photographs of the stages. I would love to know what you think of these cookies, if you’ve tried them out or any other recipes from Love Tanya then be sure to let me know! 

One of the favourite things in my room has to be my sample jar by far. It contains all the freebies you get given when you buy products and I also put the one use face mask sleeves in here. The jar is from ikea so was as cheap as chips and there’s a real mixture of things inside from shampoos and conditioners to perfumes and I have a lot of eye creams in here! There was a lot more products in here but I gave my Mum quite a few so she can see if she likes any enough to buy as she is looking for some new products at the moment especially eye cream. If you have any good recommendations for anti-aging, dark circle and wrinkle combating eye creams I would love to know in the comments so I could pass your recommendations on! Went off on a bit of a tangent but I just think by storing them in this jar I will be more likely to reach for them to try instead of being in a draw, and it does look super cute.

On one of my bedside tables (from m&s if you were wondering), I have a stack of three things, the first is the Love Tanya book by Tanya Burr herself followed by Girl Online by Zoe Sugg topped off with a very cute diary from next which is gold and glittery saying “live life in glitter” which sounds SO much like a Louise (sprinkle of glitter) saying. The books are very different, one a fiction book and the other a autobiography, I absolutely loved them both and can’t wait for Girl Online 2 to come out in August! Can you notice the theme with the books? Both youtubers.. I think it’s so lovely to support them in their projects that they do outside of youtube and they both have an infectious writing style which means you can’t put the book down! The diary is very cute and I mainly just use it for display but occasionally I have written to do lists for the following day in it before which I find very helpful as I’m such a forgetful person. 
Well I basically love my bed, its my favourite thing in my bedroom and I love love love my bedding but I thought I would be a bit more specific and choose this cushion I got in the gift shop at Harry Potter world in Watford! Essentially this is a wine coloured purple cushion with a deep yellow trim and writing. I chose this cushion as all the other cushions were the houses in Hogwarts and this one was the most classy and the colours fitted in perfectly with my bedroom. The shape of this I love and it’s so soft, it feels like velvet, it’s one of those cushions you lie on and feel comfortable and doesn’t scratch your face. 
This is my chalk board which I got from a local village fair last September and the hanging ornament is actually a Christmas decoration from next but I love it all year round. The chalk board is pretty basic with three hooks, a ledge and a crystal look heart hanging in the cutout but what I love the most is what’s written on it. I change the quote depending on what my favourite quote is at different stages in time. Recently, well for a couple of months actually, this has been my favourite quote – “If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely” by Roald Dahl. I think this is SO true, we’re so caught up in a society where looks come before personality but honestly beauty is skin deep and I remind myself if I feel down about the way I look that that as long as I am kind and caring, I will always be beautiful. The ornament means a lot to me, I saw it in a shop when I was at a pretty low point in life and my Mum bought it for me and said “we believe”. She believed that I would feel happier and when you feel sad you think it’s gonna last forever and you will never be happy again. But you do, I feel so much happier than I did a few months ago, last year and a few years ago even. I’d go as far as to say that I’m the happiest I’ve ever been in my life, dealing with your problems head on and telling them you’re going to kick their ass is the first step, often the next step is telling somebody how you feel, somebody you trust. I’d love to do a post on finding happiness and ways to accomplish this, I need to write it down in my blog post ideas book before I forget! So essentially I think having a mascot whether that be a teddy or ornament like mine that you see every morning and every night really helps keep hope that one days things will get better. Wow.. this has got deep haha. 

This is a collection of items but as a general thing I really like my windowsill. It has flower tea lights from Urban Outfitters, a rose petal martini tin candle from Urban Outfitters, a hand tea light holder from a one of a kind shop called Raspberry Bizarre and a hanging lantern tea light holder from Centre Parcs! The flower tea lights came in a set of eight so I have four on one side and four on the other but I don’t light them as they would lose their detail and they’re far too pretty to burn. The rose petal martini candle smells amazing, I love this candle and I think they’ve stopped selling this scent which I’m really disappointed about. The packaging on the candles was so chic and classy but now they’ve changed the packaging and I’m not a massive fan.. This candle also seems to have such a long burning time which is great as it’s not a massive candle in the first place. The hand tea light holder has an almost granite appearance and I really like it as it reminds me in an abstract way to give and not always receive by the gesture of the palm. The lantern fits in nicely with my room and I just think it adds something different to my windowsill rather than all candles. I also love anything that free hangs like dream catchers etc so this is rather satisfying!

Items mentioned above – Ikea jar, my bedside tableGirl Online by Zoe Sugg, Love Tanya by Tanya Burr, the diary and the hanging ornament were part of the next Christmas shop so it has been discontinued, the Hogwarts cushion is unique to the harry potter gift shop and I can’t remember for the life of me the name of the stall selling the blackboard! Finally here’s a link to the urban outfitters candles as I can’t find the specific products I mentioned.

Last month I visited Rome, I went for 4 days from Thursday to Sunday. Rome is a now favourite city of mine and I had the most amazing time. I might do a blogpost on Rome with lots of photos and I’ll stop rambling before I start weeping because I’m not there now. These are high end products which is why I wanted to wait till I was going on holiday to purchase them as often you can get them better value. In Rome, there was two sephoras (yes I went and bought something in both of them) which worked out cheaper than the sterling price. But.. they had 15% discount cards as well so I actually saved a lot more! I got one product in duty free at the first leg of the journey as we had transfer flights and we wouldn’t have time in amsterdam to shop. 
The first product I bought was the chanel perfection lumière foundation in the shade 20 beige. I have never used a foundation before I purchased this as I have always been very dubious as using the wrong foundation can really badly react with your skin causing irritations and breakouts. I have never felt the need with my skin to use a foundation until recently when I found unevenness in my skin tone and spots more frequently. This is a special formula for oily skin, if your skin isn’t oily then there are chanel foundations for pretty much every skin type. This is quite a liquid consistency but it glides over the skin beautifully. It is light to medium coverage but I think it does a really good job especially at covering redness and imperfections. This is sold on the high street for £36 but I bought it for £30 in duty free which is a sixth of the price off. I think I got a good deal and the people in duty free are so helpful when you’re looking for a product but aren’t sure what you want exactly. I apply this with a foundation brush to the areas that need it then buff it in with a buffing brush. If my skin is having a good day, I mix a bit of primer with a small amount of foundation and use it like a tinted moisturiser. 

At least one of the naked palettes is on every beauty loving girl’s wish list! In sephora I bought the original naked palate, can I just emphasise how much fangirling I did when I saw it. I chose the original palette because I felt like it had the most wearable colours with browny and pinky nudes and a couple of darker shades. These eyeshadows are so pigmented with very little fall off which is great if you’re like me and do your base makeup first! I actually use a couple of the colours as top lid eyeliners as they’re so pigmented that you can’t tell that it isn’t a pencil. I feel there is a lot of possible combinations with the perfect colours for a nude eye, a bronze eye, a smoky eye and a pinky purple eye. So many people say they hate the velvet, magnetic packaging but I absolutely love it. I think you get an amazing quality brush as most palette brushes are rubbish and I never use them, I would actually buy the brush as a separate product! I do kind of wish the mirror was the full size of the inside lid as it would be a perfect on the go makeup mirror, you can’t see much in the small mirror. I think I bought this for €50 which in pounds works out about £35 so its not that much cheaper than if you buy it in sterling but I don’t think I’d spend that much money if I wasn’t in holiday mode abroad.

Before I start can I please just emphasise how coral/red this lipstick looks in the photos, but please trust me that this is a pinky nude. This is the nars lipstick in the shade brigitte, I really love the name, it sounds like an English boarding school girl’s name. These lipsticks are so moisturising which I find so helpful as I naturally have really dry lips. I love the sleek, magnetic packaging, I think it makes it really feel like a luxury product. This was a “I’ve already spent so much money so one more thing won’t hurt” buy. I’ve never been super into lipsticks like aside from this I only have a red lipstick and a pink lipstick but I think as I’m growing up and exploring more into makeup, lipsticks are entering my makeup bag. I really love this product and it’s my go to lipstick to wear effortlessly. I can’t remember how much I bought this for but I got a good price for it as sephora had a 15% discount but it is sold on the high street for £24.

This nars highlighter has been raved about by youtubers for a long time so I thought it was about time I tried it for myself. Copacabana illuminator is the most popular highlighter in the range and it comes in liquid or stick form. I chose liquid form as the stick is quite a bit dearer and the woman in sephora said the tube actually lasts long. The swatch of this looks silver and metallic but it is pink and once blended in it just gives a subtle highlight that shimmers in the light. Again, I can’t remember how much I paid for this but it is sold for £23 on the high street.

These are swatches of all the above items – top left to bottom right – Nars brigitte audacious lipstick, Nars copacabana illuminator, Chanel perfection lumière long-wear flawless fluid makeup, Naked eyeshadow palette naked, buck and toasted 

When I purchased the Liz Earle cleanse and polish, there was a promotion on where if you bought the 100ml pump for £14, you got two muslin cloths and a Liz Earle eyebright soothing eye lotion included free of charge. It was a very clever marketing technique as a friend who I was shopping with and I both bought it! The first thing the women on the Liz Earle counter told me was that it has won numerous awards, I hear that a lot and didn’t think too highly of that achievement but after using the product I 100% understand why. The packaging of this product in my opinion is amazing, I love the pump and how one full pump is the perfect amount, for this reason I don’t like the idea of the 200ml tube as you would have a tendency to use more than you need. It would be perfect if they made a 200ml pump! This product has rosemary, chamomile, cocoa butter and eucalyptus essential oils and this smells to me like a spa, it smells unbelievably good, I think thats why it feels like a pleasure taking my makeup in the evening when it can often be a chore. Once you have a pump in your hand, you’re meant to massage it between your palms until its warm then massage it into your face. It’s like a cleansing butter almost but not as thick but feels so luxurious. This breaks down all your makeup (including eye makeup) and gives you really bad panda eyes but once you’ve washed your face in circular motions with a hot muslin cloth, it’s gone without a trace. I most likely wouldn’t have bought the muslin cloths if they hadn’t been in the offer but I genuinely don’t think the product can reach its full potential without using these. You get two muslin cloths in a pack and they say you can use one of them twice until you have to wash it so they would last you two days if you used them morning and night. I personally only use this product in the evening to take my makeup off as I like a lighter, more refreshing cleanser in the morning.