VLOG 1: The Zoo

Hello darlings!
I just wanted to do a quick post to share some exciting news with you all: I posted my first ever VLOG on YouTube today. Yeah, I finally done it.

My Blog/Twitter followers have been asking me for a while now to start doing VLOG’s and I have been really nervous and tentative about doing it: Until now.

Yesterday, my boyfriend and I visited Edinburgh Zoo (both of us had never been to the zoo before so it was such a new and wonderful experience). I decided this would be the best time to create my first VLOG as there would be lots of opportunities for me to talk about things and also the camera wouldn’t be focused on me 24/7 (and the penguins and meerkats were a lot cuter to look at than me!)

Alastair and I don’t really go out much. I mean, we go drives and spend endless amounts of time together at home, but we never go out on dates or anything – and I guess that’s mainly my fault. My anxiety is really bad. I also think this has rubbed off on him as he feels much more comfortable sitting in the house with me than going out places; but yesterday we did it. We both enjoyed it so much and so hopefully this becomes a regular occurrence – going out and doing things from time to time.

I was super nervous about vlogging but I am so glad I done it. The response I have received since I posted it, several hours ago, has been heartwarming. Every one has been complimenting my voice/accent (which is crazy as I hate the sound of my own voice) and I haven’t received a bad comment yet – touch wood.

I’m already thinking of ideas for my next one and looking forward to it. I do believe this will really help me increase my confidence and hopefully help me get back in to singing again! So watch this space, lovelies.

If you want to check out my youtube channel (and subscribe to me for future videos) then click HERE.

Until next time
Charlene McElhinney

EMAIL: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com


Beechat & JohnRdToVolChat collab

The blogging community is a wonderful family to be part of if you know where to go and connect with like-minded others and blogging chats are the perfect opportunity.  
Blogger chats as it says, are a networking tool for bloggers of all niches to come together and to share what they love most; blogging.  
Newbie bloggers, experienced bloggers and everyone in between connects via a question and answer format, providing the creative energies to flow through one’s mind to their fingertips, showcasing what it means to be an individual. 
Both Charlene and I regularly participate in a variety of chats and we’re also hosts of our very own chats. We thought we’d share with you what our chats are all about, the importance of choosing the right chats and our top 5 blogger chats (in our own opinions)  

I’m Charlene McElhinney and I’m very excited to be discussing blogger chats in this post with the lovely @JohnRdtoVol. Both of us host our very own Twitter chat and yet they are each entirely different in their own unique way. My chat is called beechat. I picked this name spontaneously and I immediately liked it because it was short, sweet and simple (for me, I wanted to keep it short as Twitter only lets you have 140 characters per tweet). I began my beechat roughly 4 weeks ago. I participated in my first ever chat and I just HAD to host my own. With no experience or knowledge about Twitter chats; I went ahead with it – and it went amazingly! Beechat is not about any particular subject – it varies constantly – we have discussed topics such as Pizza, Blogs, Friendship, Money and many other things. I have also previously had a few guest hosts (who approached me and asked if they could host) this was also a success! Beechat has actually only been running for almost one month now and I am overwhelmed by the support and engagement I have had so far. With 368 followers and my own ‘beechat snail mail’ project going on – I think I am doing pretty well. 

John: Many of you will know, my chat is #JohnRdtoVolChat – creative right? Not being aware of any other volunteering specific chats around, I decided to create #JohnRdtoVolChat for charities, volunteers and everyone interested in the voluntary sector to come together into 1 place. Blogger chats have also intrigued me in a way, that the freedom of speech takes forefront of the questions and discussions presents themselves in a way that diversifies the chat.  

I didn’t even know chats existed until a year into writing my blog, so when I wanted to do more for the voluntary sector, I decided to take the plunge and lead the way in digitalising communications onto one platform. 3 weeks in the chat and many have featured all around the world, connecting in a way we’re able to learn from other cultures, yet still bring together our passion for volunteering. The chats are always in sync with one another and continue in a similar theme on a week to week basis. I am about to bring something new to the chats in a few weeks, but you’ll have to watch this space to find out.  

Charlene: I believe my chat is different from John’s as his focuses on mainly volunteering, sharing stories and appeals to charities and volunteers etc. In saying this, JohnRdtoVolChat also opens doors for people who have considered volunteering and helping out and don’t know the first thing about it. Beechat doesn’t have a specific ‘target audience’ to be candid. The topics vary so much that 
anyone can participate (if you are keen on the topic). I guess our chats vary because JohnRdtoVolChat has a niche whereas beechat is spontaneous and totally random.   

John: Beechat to me is very different to #JohnRdtoVolChat as like Charlene has said, it’s the topics which make us far apart. #JohnRdtoVolChat has it’s own niche and is very specific to its target audience, but this signals the differentiation between chats and why it’s important to understand what works and what doesn’t. Beechat is more open in terms of topics used, and it highlights many chats are more about friendships and life, whereas #JohnRdtoVolChat is much more of a professional cha where we discuss how we’re going to make a difference in society in a collaborative way. I say this, but beechat is one of my favourite chats to participate in, and I don’t put it down to the participants, I put it down to Charlene. Charlene to me is one of the best hosts out there and in time her warm personality will be known by the whole community. 

Charlene: I think Twitter chats are an excellent way to meet people, to promote your posts and to connect with other bloggers – and other people in general. There are numerous chats on Twitter now; some of which have the same theme every week (such as fitness, animals, beauty, etc) and you have some, like beechat, that cover a range of topics alternating and changing every single week.  
I have been blogging for several months and I had never been a part of the blogging community until I participated in my first Twitter chat. It’s an incredible thing to be a part of and even better to host! I think it’s crucial to get involved in Twitter chats if you are a blogger because it is just such a wonderful opportunity – you would not want to miss it! I wish I had done months ago. 
Personally, my favourite Twitter chats to be a part of (not including beechat or JohnRdtoVolChat) are: 
#Latenightbloggers (run by @teaisfortina)  
#misfitbloggers (run by @daintyaliceblog)  

John: I agree with Charlene; 
#fitbunnieschat is also a favourite of mine 
And lastly…. watch this space! Charlene and I are working together to create a brand new chat!   

These are our thoughts about Twitter chats and I hope you’ve enjoyed our collaboration today and I want to thank Charlene personally for putting up with me so much and for writing this blog with me.

I hope you have enjoyed this ‘collab’ with @JohnRdToVol – let me hear your thoughts below! Until next time
Charlene McElhinney





EMAIL: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com


Mini Haul & Update

Good evening! 🙂

Today I purchased a few things and my lovely Twitter followers voted on a poll saying that they wanted me to do a haul: So here I am. I also wanted to give you an update on how my mother got on at the hospital yesterday as I know many of my followers have been concerned about her! 

Mum is back home and the operation went as well as it could have. Luckily she was able to come home last night when dad and I went to the hospital at visiting hour; she was very eager to get home to her own bed! Thank you all for being so supportive yesterday. It was such a long and hectic day. I’m glad the hardest part is over and done with now and it’s important that my mum rests as much as possible for the next while (so I’ll be running around looking after her). I’m sure she will make the most of it! 

One of the things I purchased today was a foundation brush from eBay. It cost me £2.95 and will be here within the next 2-3 days. I actually haven’t worn liquid foundation in ages but I plan on starting (so any suggestions on a fabulous liquid foundation would be highly appreciated). I guess I thought it was important to have the brush before the actual foundation, silly me. 

Next, I treated myself to a new felt eyeliner. I have taken quite a liking to felt eyeliners as it’s bit like using a pen (and I’m a lot better at writing than I am applying make up) so I thought I would push the boat out a little bit and buy myself a good one. Previously I have bought cheaper ones and they have sufficed but I wanted to get a really good one (also so I could blog about it). I got this Kardashian Beauty midnight black deeply felt eyeliner from TK Max: It cost £3.99. The RRP is around £6 or something (TK Max is always good for a bargain)! I will be sure to let you know my thoughts on it once I have tried it out..

This bright pink/coral padded sports bra cost me £4.50 from F&F active wear. Tesco is always my ‘go to’ for gym wear at the moment – and I keep discovering such amazing bargains (which is always a bonus). I really look forward to wearing this. Especially when I have a tan as I just know this will compliment it! 

Again, another F&F buy! A very cute active sports vest with mesh at the sides and the straps! Originally cost £12 but I got it for £8. I tried it on in the shop and it was very comfortable so I look forward to ‘sporting’ it at the gym. Do you see what I did there?..

I also purchased a deodorant, 8 cans of sugar free Irn Bru – for my mini fridge and a baguette today. (I know that’s not what people want to read about so I shall not be taking pictures of these and writing about them). Ha ha! 

I hope you all had an easy Monday yesterday and if you have any suggestions on decent liquid foundations please do let me know!

Also, be aware that I am hosting a GIVEAWAY on my Twitter account @blogabtnothing1 which ends this Saturday at 00:00. See my pinned tweet on how to enter! 

Until next time
Charlene McElhinney

EMAIL: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com

My brother’s 21st

Hello, you lovelies. 
I thought I would write a quick blog post about my outfit that I wore to my brother’s 21st party (as I received some very sweet compliments from quite a lot of people – thank you, thank you, thank you). 
The dress I was wearing was actually a last minute decision. I had changed my outfit about 7 times – I’m not exaggerating. I was doing a ‘fashion show’ for my friends so they could help me decide and I spontaneously changed literally 20 minutes before we left the house because my friends persuaded me to wear this red one. I purchased this little red number from eBay for £8 all in (including delivery). You can’t complain about that, eh? It was super duper comfortable and made of excellent quality material so I was very pleased with it. I danced in it all night long and I have absolutely no complaints. Thank you eBay. My shoes were a purchase from Amazon UK and those little beauties cost me roughly £23 in total. Now, that is a hell of a lot for me, I am usually a total bargain hunter and the majority of my clothes – and shoes – cost me less than £10. However, I thought as it was a special occasion, I would treat myself. I’m glad I did; lots of people loved my shoes and kept asking me where I purchased them from! So there you go, guys, the good old faithful eBay and Amazon never let you down. I love online shopping! 

I got my hair and make up done by the fantastic Michelle Barr at Fivestarbeauty Cumbernauld. Michelle is also a great friend to me and I would always recommend her to anyone who wants to feel glamorous for a night out. What do you think? 

Here’s a photo of my brother, my mum (in the green strappy top) and my dad and of course, my fabulous auntie Ann Marie – with the short blonde hair. These 4 people are all so special to me. We have been through a lot this year after losing my precious Gran McElhinney (who I missed severely at the party) and we have all had to remain strong together and be one another’s rock. I don’t think we could have got through it without one another. My mother, the wee soul, has to go in for an operation tomorrow morning. I’m so worried about her: We found out a few weeks ago that she has Breast Cancer. Tomorrow morning she is going to go in and hopefully have it removed. It is day surgery – so I pray that she is able to come home afterwards and rest in her own bed – I will be sure to let you all know how it goes. Keep her in your prayers tonight, please. 
Well, angels, I think I am going to wrap this up here as I am typing this from my phone and my battery is rather low. I hope you all have a pleasant Sunday and an easy week ahead! 
God bless you!
Until next time
Charlene McElhinney 

TWITTER: @blogabtnothing1
EMAIL: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com

Liebster Award

I would like to thank Siobhan for nominating me for the Liebster Award. I am really looking forward to doing this post (so thank you very much, Siobhan, for the opportunity). For those of you that don’t know: The Liebster Award is essentially a way of networking for new bloggers. It is to allow them to gain some recognition and make connections within the blogging community.

Liebster Award Rules (For Nominees)
-Thank the blog that nominated you and link back to them.
-Answer the questions asked by the blogger.
– Nominate 5-11 other bloggers.
-Give them 11 questions to answer.
-Don’t forget to let your nominees know.
-Post your blog link in the comments section of your nominators post.

Questions from Siobhan:
1) Who inspires you most and why?  The person who has always been my inspiration is my Gran McElhinney. She passed away last year and I was, and am still, absolutely heartbroken and devastated – but she will always be my idol. She is just everything that I aspire to be. She is impeccable. She is hilarious, holy, beautiful, elegant, wise and honest. There are not enough words to describe just how much I have always admired this perfect, precious, lady. And I always will.

2) Which of your blog posts are you most proud of? I think the blog post I was most proud of was the one I wrote about in depth about the loss of My Gran McElhinney. I am also proud of all my posts which I wrote about Depression and Anxiety; they have been very personal and sometimes my only escape. Looking back on them, I feel a sense of pride, I was able to open up and talk about my experiences and share them with the world.

3)If you won £50 million, what would you do? Firstly, I would want to open up some sort of cat sanctuary and adopt lots of neglected and abused cats and nurture and care for them. I would also want to see that all my family were alright and help them out in any way I can. And I think I would also spend a lot of money on surgically getting hair removed as it is such a nightmare getting waxed every single month! (It’s much better than shaving though!). – These are just some of the things I would do. I could write a list…

4) What are your top 3 must read blogs? LexiLife95, Sunshinesarahxo & Littlethinkerx

5) Pick your favourite blogger. Why are they your favourite? To be 100% candid; It’s very difficult to pick one individual person for this question. There are so many beautiful people that have been such a massive part of the blogging community, for me, and encouraged and supported me all the way. I don’t want to mention names incase I miss any of these wonderful people out – I guess I’ll just give a shout out to the blogging community here! Woop Woop!

6) Do you prefer Spring or Autumn? I would say Spring. Spring is like a breath of fresh air.

7) Do you prefer hip hop or country music? I like a good old bit of country music, me.

8) Do you prefer foundation or concealer? I would go with foundation. My skin has no blemishes or anything to cover (it’s very seldom I get a spot etc) so concealer isn’t always necessary for me.

9) Describe your blog/brand? My blog began as I was suffering from Depression and Anxiety: Writing was my only escape. I used my blog as an online journal and spilled my thoughts and feelings on to the internet for everyone to see. Now, blogging is everything to me, I enjoy it so much. The blogging community is absolutely amazing. I blog about everything and anything.

10) What is your favourite social media platform and what do you like most about it? When it comes to blogging: Twitter. Through and through. Everyone is always eager to share links and support one another’s work. There are numerous Twitter Chats to get involved in. Everyone is so helpful and selfless. Yes, I’d say Twitter.

11) What is your favourite blog post written by another blogger? I could kick myself at this question. I read a blog post once from a very empowering lady who spoke out about Vaginal Discharge (and other lady things). She was so honest and true. I can’t seem to find her blog again and it’s absolutely irritating the life out of me. I would love to share it with you guys. If anyone manages to find her – please let me know!

My nominees:

I can’t wait to read all of the replies and responses!

My questions are:
1) Who/What is your biggest inspiration in life?
2) Have you ever been unsure about a post you have shared but you done it anyway? Which was it and why did you finally share it?
3) Name 3 bloggers that you admire.
4) Do you prefer mascara or false eyelashes?
5) What are 3 things that make an excellent contribution to your blog views?
6) Why did you start blogging?
7) Which is your favourite blog post – written by another blogger?
8) Are you a morning person?
9) How do you keep yourself motivated?
10) How often do you blog?
11) How different would your life be if you didn’t blog?

REMEMBER to find me on all of my social media platforms, I would LOVE to hear from you guys! 

Until next time
Charlene McElhinney

EMAIL: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com 


Catch Up

Hello! I haven’t wrote a blog post (for myself) since Friday and I just wanted to write you guys a summary of what’s been happening this week – and all that jazz. I wrote a guest post for the lovely @andreaothela which went live yesterday. I’ve still been writing away and hosting my Twitter chats; I am loving absolutely every single second of being a Blogger.

Where do I start? This is what I dislike about not posting for a few days: I have so much that I want to share with you guys and I’m afraid it’s going to all be a bit unplanned (which it is) and all over the place. But hey ho. I’m literally just out of the bath (and if you have me on Twitter – you will know that I was participating in Twitter chats whilst soaking in my bubbles – and that I planned to do my blogging whilst I air dried).  So here I am. Is it just me, or do you always feel the need to have a shower after your bath? Especially if I am washing my hair. I can’t wash my hair in the bath; I can never seem to get all of the bubbles out. Fun fact: I used to be one of those people that washed their hair every day however, ever since I starting going to the gym constantly; I don’t feel the need to wash it as often. What’s the point, it’s just the gym, right? It’ll get sweaty anyway. That’s what I keep telling myself.

Today I had a doctor’s appointment. It drained the life out of me (not the actual appointment – the dreaded waiting room). Waiting rooms make me anxious enough never mind waiting near enough one full hour before being seen. I was talking myself in and out of what to say and getting myself all worked up. My mind was in overdrive (the usual really, I suppose, except the environment I was in made it a whole lot worse). I have a few appointments this week. It stresses me out when I have a lot on throughout the week. I write myself a ‘To Do List’ and I make sure that I use a highlighter to score things off my list as I go – this is also a great motivator for me! 

After the doctor’s, I went with my mum and dad to visit my wonderful Gran Rundell. My mother, Gran and I played a game of Scrabble and… I WON! This is such a massive achievement (if you knew my lovely family, you would totally understand). My Gran was so pleased to see me as I had not seen her in a couple of weeks. She is so damn cute!

Tomorrow, my big brother turns 21 years old. I can’t believe it. He is having a 21st party this Friday so I will be sure to write a full post on that! And share with you whatever I decide to wear (I still haven’t a clue)!

I got a lovely new phone case today. It is a marble effect and it is super lush! It even feels amazing too. It’s been a while since I had a new phone case so I can’t stop looking at it.

I was also at the gym today. I wasn’t there long so I just crammed in a really intense session – it was pretty good – if I do say so myself!

I’ve been up since early bells this morning and I’ve got lots done. I hope that I sleep well tonight! 

Until next time
Charlene McElhinney x

Find me on:
EMAIL: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com


Intergalactic Bath Bomb from LUSH

Ever wondered what bathing in deep space would be like?”

I am totally new to LUSH products. Since I started blogging I have seen numerous posts about how wonderful lush cosmetics are and of course this enticed me to try some of their products out. I recently tried the experimenter bath bomb (which I also wrote a blog post about) and I was thoroughly impressed. I didn’t possibly think they could beat that: But they did. 

The Intergalactic bath bomb is absolutely mesmerizing. As soon as you drop it in to the bath tub it fizzes immediately. The blue bursts from the bomb and fills the whole tub with deep blue water. As it begins to calm down; swirling rainbow colours begin to appear and it is so exciting to watch! After the bath bomb comes to end – the whole bath is a stunning deep blue colour – it is shimmery and sparkly (as there is glitter in the bath bomb).  The scent is tremendous: It is peppermint but not too strong – just right. As I bathed in the glittery, blue, bath I felt so relaxed and at ease. It left my skin super smooth with a slight shimmer (from the gold glitter).

I could not recommend the Intergalactic bath bomb enough: I am already eager to get another one. It costs £3.95 from LUSH cosmetics (I got mine online). You must try it! (If you are a bath bomb lover). I am 100% sure you will not be disappointed.

Have you tried this bath bomb before? Were you thinking of trying it? Let me hear your thoughts, lovelies.

Have a great weekend.
Until next time
Charlene McElhinney

EMAIL: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com
FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/charlenemcelhinneybehindthissmile
INSTAGRAM: http://www.instagram.com/charlenemcelhinney
TWITTER: @blogabtnothing1