The Christmas Jumpers we want this festive season

Friday 15th December is Christmas Jumper Day. Christmas Jumper Day raises money for Save the Children and is a great way to raise money for a fantastic cause. If you want to organise your own in your workplace, or within your group of friends you can do so by following this link.

We thought we would pull together a guide for you to help you find that perfect Christmas Jumper. Don’t worry we have a jumper to suit all needs, whether you want that very OUT THERE jumper or a more sophisticated one, we have you sorted!

This one from Topshop is so cute! At the moment we are a sucker for anything pink, and Rach is obsessed with penguins so this jumper is the top of our list! Its only £32, and with a student discount you can save a little extra too!
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For those woman who will be pregnant over the festive season we are loving this jumper from Boohoo, the slogan is so quirky. This comes in green and burgundy and we think we love them both!
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Make sure you also visit Marks and Spencer’s for your Christmas jumper. This red knitted one looks super comfy and you can even buy a matching one for your , now that’s pretty jokes!!
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Oh my gosh, Matalan have the most incredible selection of Christmas Jumpers and it was so hard to pick our favourite, however in typical Annie and Rach style it seems the alcohol themed jumpers were our firm favourites!

Annie’s nickname is Bambi, so we could not feautre this really cute Disney Bambi jumper from H&M. It’s only £17.99 and looks quite light so you won’t get super hot in the office. We often find that with Xmas jumpers we get so sweaty, but this one from H&M looks ideal, plus it’s Disney, whats not to love!
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We are loving pom poms at the moment, we love them in summer and are so pleased they are still around for winter too. This pom pom jumper from ASOS is adorable and we think we love it a little too much! At only £28 its would be rude not to right?!
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These couples jumpers from Next are adorable – they are so simple but so effective. Now where do we find a boyfriend to buy one for?!!
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Okay so this one is a very typical Christmas jumper, going for the fair-isle look and is a bargine £18 from Asda!
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We cannot write a Christmas jumper list and not include one that lights up because a light up Christmas jumper is pretty cool! Oh and its also musical too! Better get yourself down to Tesco ASAP because its reduced from £20 to £16!
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If we are honest we could go on an on for days sharing Christmas jumpers with you all, as you have probably gathered by now we love Christmas and we sure do love our Jumpers.
Remember that Christmas Jumper Day is for a good cause, and all proceeds go to Save the Children.

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Snowball Energy Balls

Well it isn’t going to snow know this December (when does it evaaaa)? So we had to take the matter into our own hands and make some snowball energy balls. This recipe is super quick, super simple and most importantly super delicious.

These snowball energy balls contain ingredients that you can find in your kitchen cupboards, apart from the chocolate because who has spare chocolate lying around the place? Not us it gets eaten within minutes of it entering the house, if it gets that far!

The recipe makes roughly 16 energy balls that you can keep in the fridge or freeze them to enjoy in the future. Don’t you just love it when you fancy something sweet and then you remember you have some delicious treats waiting for you in the freezer!

What you’re gonna need:
250g Oats
50g Flax seeds
150g Peanut butter
150g Maple syrup
100g White chocolate
50g Cranberries
100g Desiccated Coconut

Let’s get to it:
Line a baking tray with parchment paper
Add all the ingredients apart from the coconut into a large mixing bowl
Stir until all the ingredients are combined (you may need to use your hands)
Roll the mixture into balls (size of your choice)
Roll each of the balls
Place the desiccated coconut onto a plate
Roll the energy balls over the coconut until covered
Place in the fridge for an hour
Store in an airtight container and keep them refrigerated for up to a week- if they last that long of course

How to De-Stress over the Holidays

Life can be so hectic and sometimes the only time we allow ourselves to chill at home not doing much other than eating and spending time with family is at Christmas time. We have spoken to endless amounts of people about this prior to writing this post and almost everyone says the same thing- Christmas is the only holiday we spend at home doing nothing and don’t feel guilty for it.

It’s important that we have time to switch off from everyday life and the stresses that can come from it. Take the time to do the things you love but don’t usually prioritise or have time to fit in around your daily routine whether this is baking a cake, going for a run, painting your nails or watching your favourite TV show that you are now 5 seasons behind on.

This shouldn’t be just at Christmas time though, try and schedule a weekend in every now and again where you just spend time doing the things you really want to do. We always talk about how much we LOVE these weekends, we wouldn’t want these kinds of weekends all the time because we wouldn’t appreciate them as much but it is nice when you have been so hectic just to sit at home on a Saturday evening with a glass of wine in hand watching your favourite TV show.

We have set ourselves a challenge to make sure we start to schedule in these weekends, putting our self-care and health as a priority. This is going to be really hard for us because we always love being on the go making the most of our weekends and making them as jam packed as possible, but we know sometimes we end up burning the candle at both ends and it usually results in us becoming poorly which isn’t something we want.

So we urge you to do the same as us, start off with Christmas (if you can and have the time off work). Really allow yourself to switch off from your daily routine, say goodbye to the stressful morning commute, work deadlines and everything anything else that angers you or causes you stress on a daily basis. We can assure you your body and mind will thank you for it and you will feel so much better for it, going back to work in January feeling refreshed with a new optimistic mind that is ready to smash everything that comes your way.

So we are going to help you to start, grab a pen and paper and write down everything you love doing in your spare time that you want to do regularly going forward you can see some of the things that are on our lists below:

Annie
Bake banana loaf- my favourite
Swimming
Catch up on Nashville- best TV show ever
Go for a long walk in the woods
Straightening my hair

Rach
Painting my nails
Reading and finishing a book
Cleanse my skin
Cross Stich
Reading my favourite magazines

Christmas at Waddesdon Manor

Waddeson Manor is a Manor house (surprisingly) located in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire. Waddeson Manor invite the public to join them for festive fun during the months of November-December (Wednesday- Sunday from 11AM-6PM).  Weekends are very busy at Waddeson Manor so they do suggest if you can to visit during the week.

We visited Waddeson Manor on Sunday 26th November and had the best day ever. We arrived at the car park at about midday and wondered over to the bus stop (about a 5 minute walk from the over flow car park). There was a short que but we got on the next available bus and the journey was about 5 minutes.

We had tickets to the Manor House so upon arrival we walked up the path and entered the house to ensure we didn’t miss our time slot. We envisioned the house to be full to the brim of beautifully decorated Christmas trees in every room (Annie’s mum had been the year before and said the Manor House was worth a visit). This year however the theme was animals but we felt like they could have made the exhibition a little bit more festive it was in fact very odd and a bit of an anti-climax. So if you are thinking about going to Waddeson Manor this isn’t something we would recommend doing spend your £10 on a couple of mulled wines instead.

The Christmas markets we located either side of the manor with a walk way and grass in between. The stalls had lights around them which looked particularly pretty at night. As usual most of the stalls were food related, not that we are complaining at all! We tried a lot of cheese, chutney and fudge on our way round and it was all delicious.

It took us about an hour and a half to wonder around the markets, we still had about 20 minutes before our afternoon tea so we enjoyed a delicious mulled wine & hot chocolate to help warm our bones a bit.

Festive afternoon tea at Waddeson Manor was incredible, it cost £25pp and was worth every penny. We were served a glass of champagne on arrival before ordering our tea off of the menu. They had a great selection of teas on offer but we all picked the English breakfast tea, it always feels wrong ordering a tea that isn’t English breakfast when having afternoon tea.

The selection of sandwiches or sandwich alternatives we should say were incredible and we all agreed that we much preferred having sandwich alternatives as they were less filling which meant we had plenty of room for the cakes. The sandwich menu included; Brie and cranberry tart, pork chipolata wrapped in bacon with honey mustard, smoked haddock rarebit and more.

The selection of cakes and desserts were also delicious and we loved the variety of flavours on our platesd. The menu included; mini mince pie, winter spiced apple pannacotta, homemade scone with jam and clotted cream and many more.

We didn’t feel like we were being rushed at all during our afternoon tea, the waiters and waitresses left enough time between the sandwiches and cakes which meant we really got to enjoy our time. The atmosphere was perfect and we were lucky to have a round table (we don’t know what it is but we just love a round table they are more sociable that’s for sure).  We would highly recommend the afternoon tea in Waddeson Manod and it was definitely one of the highlights of our day.

We left Waddeson Manor at about 16:30PM and noticed the que for the buses was incredibly long, although they said the que goes down quickly we actually opted to walk back to the car, we had just eaten a lot of cake and decided we could do with the exercise. Waddeson Manor have created a path that is well lit but we must have taken a wrong turn and ended up walking along the road which actually turned out to be the better option. The path wasn’t muddy but it was incredibly slippery so although probably a more direct route it probably wouldn’t have saved us much time.

All in all it was a fab day out and we would definitely recommend a visit, if you are travelling a long way though we would suggest you definitely grab a bite to eat whilst you are there and take a walk through the gardens. We loved our day at Waddeson and it was the perfect way to kick start our month long festive fun.

December To Do List

Is anyone else obsessed with writing to do lists? We have one master copy to do list but then we also seem to have so many other daily to do lists flying around reminding us of all the work we have to do. We have therefore decided to document our December to do list (mostly fun things).

Life can get so busy especially in December that sometimes we forget to just stop and take a look back at everything we wanted to do, so we thought if we document it we have to do it right?

What is on your December to do list? We would love to know as always!

Blogmas- We are so excited to be taking part in Blogmas again this year, we loved it last year but it does mean our to list has grown and Blogmas has justified its own to do list.

Baking everything Christmas related- We love baking all things seasonal especially at Christmas time! We spend our lives on Pinterest gathering all the inspiration we need to get in the kitchen and make the house smell like sugar and spice.

Attend a carol concert- This is one of our favourite things to do at Christmas time and last year we didn’t get round to going to a carol concert together.

Drink copious amounts of Mulled Wine- Need we say more? We love mulled wine and we even made our own last year which was incredible.

Watch endless Christmas films- Snuggled on the sofa with the fire on, hot chocolate in hand wrapped in a blanket our idea of heaven.

Winter walks- Just because its cold outside doesn’t mean you have to spend all of your time inside, get outside and explore the countryside.

Eat all the advent calendars- Chocolate for breakfast? Errrr yes please!

Put up the Christmas tree and outside lights- A tradition that will never end!

Wear tacky Christmas jumpers- If you see two girls wearing identical tacky Christmas jumpers walking around you can probably assume that is us.

Watching and take part in Vlogmas- We will be taking part in Vlogmas for the first time this year, we won’t be Vlogging everyday but we will try and film as often as possible. Watching Vlogmas is one of our favourite things to do we always catch up on it in the gym when we are doing some cardio.

Spend time with friends & Family- December is the month were everyone makes the effort to see family and friends and we absolutely love it.

Buy Christmas presents- Thankfully we have already started (super organised this year) but we still have a few more bits to get!

Hello Blogmas 2017

*Inserts we cannot believe it is already Christmas, how has this year gone to quickly already etc etc etc*

Welcome back to Blogmas 2017 we are so excited to be doing Blogmas again this year, we loved taking part last year and knew straight away we would be doing it again…so that’s bye bye social life hello blog 24/7.

This is only our second year of doing Blogmas, but we already feel way more prepared this year, we did start planning in August after all. We might be crazy but time literally goes so quickly and we knew if we waited any longer we would blink and it would be December 1st. Or it might just be that we are control freaks and like to have everything organised as its one less thing to worry about and after all good things take time and we wanted to make sure we produced good quality and useful posts.

Last year we tried to keep as many of our posts as possible Christmas related, so this year we are mixing things up and we won’t just be sharing Christmas related posts instead it will be a bit of everything. We made this decision because we didn’t want to be repetitive with our posts and we find so many people take part in Blogmas that the Blogesphere can become saturated with Christmas posts.

We have started a YouTube channel (which you can find here) where we will also be Vlogging as much as possible. We won’t be able to take part in Vlogmas as we both have full time jobs in different locations so it wouldn’t really work but we cannot wait to share our weekend adventures with you!

The Advent Calendars we are dreaming of

Advent calendars in the last couple of years have taken off. There are so many different types of Advent Calendar and gone are the days of just getting chocolate in your advent calendar. Now you can get cheese, coffee, gin, nail varnish… you name it, it exists! There are also 25 day advent calendars but also 12 day ones too – the world’s gone mad!
Now sadly we aren’t the richest girls around so cannot afford to spend £100 on an advent calendar. However here’s a list of our favourite Advent Calendars for 2017.

Jelly Bean –Beanboozled
Not a fan of chocolate but love Jelly Beans there this advent calendar will leave you wondering what flavour your going to get, will it be naughty or nice, that’s the risk you have to take!

Kellogg’s – Kellogg’s Variety Advent Calendar
This is such a good idea, its tradition that you always open your advent calendar in the morning, so why not open it and have a surprise cereal for breakfast. We love breakfast and love cereal so this would be the ultimate advent calendar.

Perk U Latte – Coffee Advent Calendar
As you probably may have gathered, we love coffee so this Advent Calendar is our dream! For £40 you get 12 different coffee’s to choose from, we would be happy with that!

The Body Shop –25 days Ultimate Advent Calendar
This is £99 but the products inside are worth £214, so you may think this is a bargain! Wish we could spend £99 on an Advent Calendar for ourselves let alone a present for our mums for £100 (crazy money!). If we won the lottery than maybe we would treat ourselves!

Johnny Loves Rosie –Star Print Jewellery Advent Calendar
A bonus here as this calendar is on sale for only £38.50 and contains 24 pieces of jewellery. We think this is such a sweet idea for an advent calendar and would love to receive a new piece of jewellery every day.

My Protein –High Protein Chocolate Advent Calendar
High protein chocolate….. now we are talking! This would be the perfect start to the morning before heading to the gym. Order fast as we reckon these will sell out at only £4.99!

AsdaCheese Advent Calendar
Asda have a cheese advent calendar and we couldn’t be happier! We adore cheese so how amazing is this idea!? The person who came up with this idea deserve a reward! However how weird will it be storing it in your fridge – haha!

Master of Malt –Ginvent Calendar
At £124.95 this is very pricey, but you are getting 24 mini bottles of gin so some may say it’s excellent value! We love gin, but cannot justify spending this amount of money on an advent calendar.

So we didn’t want to exclude our male readers, so here are some cool advent calendar’s for you men too!!

ASOSThe Grooming Advent Calendar
This includes a mix of products for hair and skin and features products from Elemis and Carmex plus many more. There are 24 products and then on the 25th day you get a discount code for ASOS.

Snaffling PigPork Crackling Advent Calendar
This advent calendar will go down a treat with any pork crackling lover and not a bad price at £17.50

Beer Hawk Beer Advent Calendar
This may be the firm favourite with the men in your life, a beer advent calendar is the perfect gift for him. 24 craft beers for £75.

BLOOMS DAY 24 – Our favourite Blogmas posts

We have loved taking part in our very first blogmas this year. We have loved writing all the posts but also reading other bloggers posts too. We thought we would share our favourite #blogmas posts for 2016.

Christie Louize – It was very hard to pick our favourite Chrismtas post, however it had to be The Definitive List of Christmas Food, because well, we love food too! We also completely agree with the number one choice, we LOVE pigs in blankets too, best part of the Christmas meal. However we would eat everything on this list apart from Christmas pudding, we agree this being the worst!

Belle Momento – We first discovered Francesca on twitter and so glad we did as we love following her blog. Francesca’s post about Christmas wrapping is absolutely fab and the photography is amazing. We both love wrapping up presents, but struggle to make them look ‘pretty’ so this post has given us some inspiration. Maybe next year we will do some cool wrapping! Check out this cute post here

The Blossom Twins – We love following the Blossom Twins blogposts and twitter accounts, we particularly like that there are two of us and two of them too!! We loved their Getting into the Christmas Spirit post because it completely sums up Christmas for us. We love Christmas movies and we love Terrys chocolate orange and for us this is how we get into the Christmas spirit. We would also add mulled wine to the list, the smell of mulled wine throughout the house definitely gets us into the Christmas spirit too! Go read their post here

Hay Sparkle – The gingerbread cucpcakes post was a firm winner for us because we are fellow bakers too and also love baking with ginger this year. These cupcakes look super cute and we will most definitely be making them next year. Check out the recipe here

The girl with an accent – If you don’t know what to cook this Christmas then this post is the one for you! There is so many good recipes here, we were drooling at the idea of feta and spinach stuffed French bread, mmmm! The candy cane cupcakes are also super cute.

Daisy Ashcroft – we are gonna be honest it was extremely hard to pick our favourite post from Daisy’s 2016 Blogmas. Daisy’s photosphraphy is dreamy, and one day we wish our photography skills were as good as hers! However we decided to go with Apple and Cinamon Muffins post, because the flavour combination is fab. These would be great muffins to take to a Christmas party, however we would also eat for breakfast too, oooops! Make sure you check out her other blogmas posts including the Elf of the Shelf ideas for adults which is pretty funny!

 

We would love to know your favourite #blogmas posts, please share them with us!

 

BLOGMAS Day 23 – DIY Gingerbread House

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One afternoon in November we found ourselves in IKEA browsing the Christmas department when we happened to come across a Gingerbread house. IKEA had a beautifully decorated house on display and immediately we knew we had to make our own.

We have so many memories of making gingerbread houses when we were younger! In fact we didn’t make them our parents did and most of the time they ended up in a collapsed heap on the kitchen table.

The gingerbread house from IKEA was only £2.50 and tastes just like biscoff. We knew on buying the decorations we had to head straight for the royal icing as this was our only hope that the house would be a success. With a lot of perseverance and copious amounts of icing our gingerbread house stood strong for the first time ever.

We decided to decorate our house with Jelly tots, Strawberry laces and Smarties. We found that the lighter the sweet the easier if was to stick on the house so we would definitely suggest using Jelly tots or something similar.

This is such a fun thing to do with kids around Christmas time, and maybe a fun activity to calm down all the excitement on Christmas Eve, something to keep them occupied for at least half an hour!!

We had so much fun and will definitely be making  this a new tradition maybe next year we will brave it and make our own gingerbread….

 

BLOGMAS Day 20 – Department Stores at Christmas

The best time to visit department stores is without a doubt at Christmastime. You are sure to see some epic Christmas lights and Christmas window displays to get you in the festive mood. No matter what city you are in the department stores will not let you down

Selfridges-Selfridges in London, Manchester or Birmingham is great.  All brands, products and Christmas gifts all under one roof what more do you want. Browsing the food halls in Selfridges is always a delight, especially when they are giving out free samples. The Selfridges in London always has great window displays, with the front of the store adored in lights. When in Selfridges do not forget to visit the Christmas department, maybe it is your tradition to buy a new bauble each Christmas, or maybe you need some inspiration – Christmas Shop is the best place to start! Selfridges in London has a new bag hall and its amazing, so do not forget to check it out!

Harrods-Harrods is so beautiful covered in all the lights and is such an iconic building in London. Even if you cannot afford to buy anything here its always such a great experience. The food hall is simply stunning the decor is amazing. Do not forget to visit the white and black halls with the perfume (also know as the perfumery and cosmetics hall).  Do not forget to visit the signature Harrods Christmas World which transports you to a magical Christmas world (not literally!) If you are wanting to treat yourself why not visit The Georgian for Afternoon Tea.

Hamley’s- You are never too old to visit Hamley’s and its even more of a fab and magical experience at Christmas time. As soon as you enter the doors you feel like a kid again, with the shop assistants flying aeroplanes around you or showing you magic tricks, theres something for everyone here and you won’t be disappointed. I would advise to go early to later in the day as Hamlets as become somewhat of a tourist attraction. Do not forget to purchase the iconic Hamley’s Bear!

Fortnum and Mason- When in London, you must visit the “Queen’s Supermarket” (!!). Fortnum and Mason transports you back in time and its so quintensitally English you will want to spend all day here! From sampling chocolates on the ground floor to googling handbags. Do not forget to visit the Christmas Hamper department and look at the iconic F&M Hampers. They make excellent Christmas presents too!

John Lewis- Who doesn’t love John Lewis, and I think its their delightful staff that make the shopping experience what it is. Nothing is ever trouble for the partners and they are always there to help. The great thing about John Lewis is that most towns and cities in the UK will have one, so anyone can visit! We do love the John Lewis cafe because their shortbread and flapjacks taste amazing! However if you happen to visiting the John Lewis on Oxford Street make sure you visit the roof garden in association with The Gardening Society. You can purchase Christmas trees here and also enjoy some food or a glass of champagne. There aren’t that many tables so I would advise you to book. However if you don’t mind sitting outside with your drink its okay to just turn up.

Liberty – A quintessentially British department store is a must see at Christmas. Liberty has a whole floor dedicated to Christmas (floor 6 to be precise!) and its a magical winter wonderland. Even if you don’t buy anything its nice to visit Liberty’s and do a spot of window shopping. Liberty’s is located at the top of Carnaby Street so why not check out the cool lights here and there are many shops to visit here too!