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Book & Beauty haul (April 2017)

Hi sweethearts!

Yesterday I picked up some new books & beauty bits and thought I’d share them with you all on here; It’s been a while since I done a haul. So let’s jump straight in:

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I picked these books up at a variety of different charity shops up my local town centre. Charity shops are a goldmine for books. The books I picked up were:

  • Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
  • Memory Wall by Anthony Doerr
  • A Death in the Dales by Frances Brody
  • Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller
  • Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Each of these books cost no more than 50p and are all in excellent condition – virtually brand new. Me Before You: I have recently read and reviewed already on my blog but I had borrowed it from a friend and wanted my own copy for my bookshelf. Memory Wall by Anthony Doerr is probably going to be amazing; I’ve literally just finished reading All The Light We Cannot See by Doerr and it was phenomenal so I have high hopes for this one. A Death in the Dales by Frances Brody, again, I have high hopes for. I previously read Sisters on Bread Street by Brody (and reviewed it on the blog) and thoroughly enjoyed it so I’m looking forwarding to reading this one. Our Endless Numbered Days sounds good. I’ve never read a Claire Fuller book (I don’t think) and I love discovering and supporting new authors! Great Expectations. Charles Dickens. Can you believe I’ve never read this? I can’t wait to read it. I’ll be sure to let you all know what I think of each of these books (once I get through them all)!

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Moving on to the beauty bits I picked up yesterday…

  • Makeup Revolution Ultra eyeshadows (32 shades) ‘flawless’ palette
  • I<3MakeUp ‘I heart chocolate pink fizz’ palette with 16 shimmer & matte eyeshadows
  • L’Oréal Infallible total cover foundation in shade golden sand (21)
  • Make Up Gallery blending sponge

I can’t remember what I paid for these actually (and I’ve binned the receipt) however I got a really good deal. Superdrug are doing a 3 for 2 right now across all beauty products – on any brand. How amazing is that? As you can see I mixed and matched with my brands and made the best out of the deal. I picked up the 2 palettes and the foundation from Superdrug with this promotion and I got the blending sponge out of… (wait for it)… Poundland! Yeah, Poundland. You can pick up great little finds in bargain stores: You just need to keep an eye out!

I can’t wait to start playing around with my new make up and I’ll be sure to let you all know what I think of them. Keep an eye on my Instagram for some looks with these products!

Have you read any of the books I picked up? Tried any of these products? What’s your favourite thing in this haul? I love hearing from you guys!

Charlene McElhinney

 

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I want to help myself; I just don’t know how.

Today I planned to go to the gym, read a book in a coffee shop, go and get my hair done (which I’ve been putting off for about 4 months) and just generally have a productive day with my day off college. Instead I did nothing. I could barely leave my bed. I was so down. I slept most of the day away; I’m so annoyed at myself.

I know it’s not my fault but I just don’t know how much longer I can keep living like this. My mental health is holding me back so much. I am so great at giving other people advice and helping them on their down days and when it comes to me – I’m useless.

I feel like I’ve totally let myself go and because of this I hate being out in public; I’ve been spending a lot of time indoors lately. I want to go to the gym and do something about it but I’m paranoid that people will see me, that recognise me, and talk about how I’ve let myself go and lost all of my progress. I know I’m probably just overthinking but I still can’t bring myself to go. I’m consumed by these negative thoughts. They control everything I do. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it.

I wrote a book all about my mental health and it has been helping other people and comforting them etc. Why can’t I read my own book and take comfort from it? I can’t take my own advice. When I read it, I scrutinise it, I think it’s not good enough. I think I am not good enough. At anything.

I’ve mastered pretending I’m OK by smiling and making other people laugh. But it’s draining me. It really is. I’m not OK. I need to admit this and accept it. I need to stop pretending I’m fine because I’m not. So many people in this world take their own lives, self-harm and beat themselves up because they keep their mental health issues locked away within themselves and try and ignore it but I can’t keep doing that because I do not want to go down that road. I want to help myself. I just don’t know how.

 

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#beechat’s 1st birthday

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Today is #beechat’s 1st birthday: Can you believe that?

One year ago today I hosted my very first #beechat and the topic was ‘pizza’. It was a totally spontaneous and spur of the moment thing – I had participated in one twitter chat before and I wanted to create a community of my own to host twitter chats on. (Little did I know it was going to grow & grow and become much more than just a platform for twitter chatting)!

The #beechat community is now a platform for bloggers and writers to gain engagement on their posts and social media platforms; It also has a snail mail campaign with over 80 bloggers involved in exchanging hand written letters to one another from different countries. Added to this, #beechat still hosts its weekly twitter chats (twice a week – every week). You can join in on #beechat on a Monday at 5pm-6pm (BST) & Thursday 9-10pm (BST). The topic varies week to week and we even have guest hosts every so often!

I have created a platform on Facebook and Instagram for the #beechat community too and I hope to grow these over the coming year. 

I have a few ideas and plans for #beechat and will put these into work over the next year or so (hopefully)… 

I just want to say thank you to each and every one of you for making #beechat what it is today: I am indebted to you all. I am bursting with pride at how supportive, welcoming & encouraging the #beechat community is and I just want to emphasise how amazing you all are.

I’m actually hosting a giveaway on beechat’s twitter page if you want to enter please go and see my pinned tweet! (@CBeechat)

Have a fabulous day darlings & keep BEE-ing fabulous!!!

Lots of love

Charlene McElhinney

(@blogabtnothing1)

 

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Meet Orla McElhinney: My niece

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I am immensely proud to introduce you all to my precious little niece, Orla McElhinney, born a couple of days ago: 11.04.2017 at 15:38 weighing 8pounds and 6oz. What an absolute bundle of joy she is!

orla x

I can’t quite believe how incredible it felt to hold such a delicate and pure little soul in my arms – someone so extra special and remarkable! I have never oohed and aahed over a baby before, I used to think all babies looked the same, but by goodness: I’m in love.

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My Gran Rundell holding her 52nd grandchild

 It’s so bizarre that my parents are now ‘Gran & Papa’; my brother is now a daddy! Time just flies by. My Gran Rundell held her 52nd grandchild in her arms yesterday (her face in the photograph above says it all). She was beyond proud! My brother is going to be an excellent Father and I couldn’t be happier for him!

I just wanted to write a brief blog post and share some photographs to introduce you all to the new light in all of our families lives! Isn’t she just an angel? Welcome to the world, Orla McElhinney.

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Gran McElhinney with Orla (my mum!)
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Papa McElhinney with Orla (my dad!)

 

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My boyfriend, Alastair, with Orla.

And, lastly, my brother (Aaron McElhinney) and his girlfriend, Shannon Brogan, capturing their first family photo with Orla McElhinney. And of course – it is my wonderful(!) photography!

I am beaming with pride at how perfect Orla is; I can’t imagine how they must be feeling! I’m so excited about what the future holds for Orla. One thing is for sure though: She is going to be absolutely spoiled!!

 

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#Day5&6 of the Easter Break: (Uni Applicant Day, Brow Threading & Shopping)

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Hello lovelies!

Yesterday wasn’t very eventful so I decided to just hold off until today to do a collaborative round-up of yesterday & today. So I’ll quickly give you the gist of what I got up to yesterday then move on to the exciting stuff that occurred today!

Yesterday consisted off a very chilled out day with Mum & Dad. It was lovely but I didn’t have all that much to write about really. It was just quality time spent with my wonderful parents that one can only fully appreciate in that moment. I popped up the town centre yesterday though to get my eyebrows & upper lip threaded! I must be insane putting myself through that because they really aren’t that visible – just vellus hair that everyone has –  I’m just paranoid about those kind of things and put myself through the brutality of threading to prevent worrying about it.

Today was a glorious day. I had an applicant day for Stirling University. I’ve received two offers from this University for completely different courses so my options are really open. I went to another applicant day for Strathclyde University last week (where I have also received an offer for). I think attending these applicant days is beneficial because it definitely gives you a feel for the place where you could potentially be studying for the next few years!

The weather was astounding today: It was probably one of the warmest days Scotland has seen all year! It was a privilege to walk around such beautiful grounds on such a delightful day. I didn’t even have to take a jacket with me (which is a total rarity here)!

The campus was remarkable.

As soon as we arrived there was people there to guide us to where we needed to be. Everywhere we went throughout the whole campus, the current students couldn’t have been more helpful! Everyone was so informative, attentive & welcoming. The applicant day was evidently planned out and organised efficiently and was definitely a whole other kettle of fish from the other applicant day I had attended previously. There was lots of stalls, freebies, campus tours, talks, presentations etc. There was loads to do! With it being such an extraordinary day outside, we took advantage of this by walking around the grounds, and I managed to do over 10,000+ steps today and smash my step target goal! I also had the opportunity to meet a few lecturers on the courses I had received offers for which was propitious and educational for me.

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We also got to meet the Stirling Squirrel mascot that was floating around the building/grounds!
 I felt so comfortable at Stirling University and could definitely see myself studying there but it’s just the commuting that could perhaps be a bit of a problem! However, I still haven’t made up my mind yet. It’s good to keep your options open. I have the opportunity to study English, Journalism, Creative Writing and Psychology this year so it’s a lot to consider! I really need to weigh up my options and decide what way I want to go!

After a successful day at Stirling University; my cousin and I done a spot of shopping in Stirling. Why not take advantage of such a beautiful day in a stunning city? I popped into LUSH and treated myself to a few bits & bobs. I also picked up a lovely denim skirt, some new cosmetics & some exciting face masks whilst I was out and about on my travels!

I’ve had a wonderful day and I’m feeling good. I’m so glad I went to the applicant day. Have you ever been to one? Or an open day? Did you find it beneficial? I love hearing from you guys!

Love

Charlene McElhinney

 

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#Day4 of the Easter Break (dyeing mum’s hair, selling on eBay & starting a novel)

I’ve had positive feedback from you guys regarding this daily posting and updating my happenings during the Easter break. Thank you ever so much and I’m glad you’re all enjoying it.

Today I done a variety of things – all from the comfort of my home. I didn’t go anywhere today (thus preventing me from hitting my daily step target but hey ho). I dyed my mum’s hair for her, I managed to list an abundance of items for sale on eBay and I started plotting out the chapters and storyline for my first novel. I even managed to write out a rough draft of my first chapter!

After publishing a collection of poetry and receiving such a positive response; I have just grown as a writer and as a person and I want to just write, write, write, write, write…

I’ve been doing lots of thinking today, too. I’d really like to become a freelance writer. It’s hard work and I know it requires putting yourself out there and being as confident in yourself as possible but I definitely want to give it a go! I’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain. Meanwhile, I can study and work on this novel that I’m really excited about!

Last night, I began reading ‘All The Light We Cannot See’ by Anthony Doerr and it’s apparently really deep and emotional. I can’t wait to get properly lost in it. Don’t you just love when a book does this to you? I’m only 30 or so pages in at the moment but if you follow me on GoodReads then I’ll keep updating my thoughts on there; alternatively you guys can watch this space and I’ll be sure to upload a full review on the blog once I’m finished.

Anyway, I don’t want to waffle on too much. This is just my 4th entry into my Easter Break diaries and I’m very much enjoying sharing what I get up to with you guys. Have a lovely evening and join me over on #beechat @ 9pm (BST) if you’re around on Twitter at this time!

Love

Charlene McElhinney

 

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#Day3 of the Easter Break (7am gym session & scrabble at gran’s house)

Today was day 3 of the Easter Break; I went to the gym for the third day in a row. I managed to get myself there by 7am this morning and I didn’t leave until roughly 8:30am.

My main goal over the Easter Break was to get back into regular gym sessions; I’m on the right track by getting myself there, every day, thus far. Happy days.

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(I love a game of Scrabble with Mum, Dad & Gran).
After the gym, I popped home to Mum & Dad’s house, and Batman came to see me. His paw was looking slightly better and he wasn’t limping as much! I gave him lots of attention and fed him and he went on his merry way. I couldn’t stop thinking about him all day, though. Was he wandering the streets? Is someone else feeding him? Perhaps he does have an owner? But if he has an owner: Why aren’t they caring for him? Surely they would have got his paw treated (or at least have kept him inside until it looked better)? Why isn’t he micro-chipped? Or neutered? I just hate the thought of anything bad happening to him.

Dad, Mum and I went to visit my Gran Rundell today. I taught my Gran how to play Boggle and we had a few rounds of that before getting the Scrabble board out! The four of us had two games of that, which lasted hours, and I think Dad won both rounds.

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I arrived home to some blogger mail: Book mail, to be more precise. I love book mail. I received this copy of Nikki Duboses’ ‘Washed Away’ from darkness to light. The cover looks so interesting and I can’t wait to read it. I will be reviewing this book on the blog within the next few weeks so watch this space lovelies! What do you all think of the cover?

Anyway, that’s all I got up to today. An early trip to the gym, a visit to my Gran’s, some exciting book mail in the post – oh and I sold an item on eBay! (I used to sell on eBay religiously and I was never out of the post office: This is me just trying to get back into it now)!

Did anything exciting happen for you today? Are you a Scrabble lover? Drop me a comment. I love hearing from you!

Until Tomorrow!

Charlene McElhinney

 

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