Archive | November 2016

Keeping up with the Joneses

I’m always game to try a new restaurant out, and even more so, when it’s kid friendly! So I’ve been wanting to try The Joneses out for a while now, but just haven’t had the opportunity. We ended up going for a drive on Saturday and I thought it was perfect to stop there with 2 of my 3 kiddos.

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There’s a place called The Treehouse Kids literally 5 steps away from the restaurant where your kids can play while you eat. So this sounds like a dream for any parent!

When you get there, the place sure doesn’t look kid friendly as I think the decor is quite elegant. I was worried my 1yr old would pull everything to the floor. We went to check out the play area first and signed the 2 boys in. Okay firstly, I am NOT a mom that leaves my kids anywhere. There are kiddie play places where you can drop them off, have them, tagged and collect them later. I cannot do that, so even 5 steps away, I found this to be incredibly hard, especially with my 1yr old. On top of that, he was left alone while the receptionist ate lunch. She said as soon as she was done with lunch, she’d be tailing him. I asked my 4yr old to just hang out with his brother until they could allocate somebody to watch him.

We chose a table on the deck with full view of the play house so I could see baby boy with every step that he took…and poor middle boy following him around while everybody else played. The receptionist did eventually start tailing him and I sent hubby to tell middle boy his babysitting duties were over (as he was still tailing him with adult supervision).

We ordered some drinks and tapas and within about 20 minutes a minder came with baby boy as he was not happy there. I was relieved actually.

Drinks were prompt and I found the menu to be very interesting. I loved the idea of tapas for R20 and R30 per plate, so I just chose 2 as I wasn’t super hungry. I also asked for a child seat/high chair and one was brought so my 1yr old could sit and eat and I didn’t have to worry about him running around.

I ordered the beef ravioli and the beef short rib. The beef short rib was really delicious! I could eat a whole plate. My husband had some sticky rice dish (will pass on this next time), chicken kebabs (yummy) and chicken wings (he enjoyed). My mother in law had a broth which she loved, the beef ravioli and pork ribs. She enjoyed all 3 her dishes.

So my negatives about the place:

  • I could be wrong, but when the place first opened, if you ate for R100 (example), your child could play for free, so I was a bit surprised that I had to pay for the boys to play. (This however is a positive and negative. – see below)
  • I wish I felt more at ease with my child being in their care. We were only 1 of 3 tables so it wasn’t busy, though there was a party winding up. There was a minder that was so involved and playing with a little girl, I was wishing my baby boy ended up with him and not somebody just trailing him. He’s 1, he needs some sort of guidance and interaction, but perhaps age 1 is too young for this sort of situation.
  • The place is lovely, but I’m honestly so scared that my 1yr old will destroy the lovely decor. There are stunning porcelain plant holders on a low ledge that I know my boy will push over if given the chance.
  • I wish the railing was a bit more protected. I worried that my son could fall through and into the pond.

Positives:

  • Paying for your child to play isn’t the end of the world if you consider that perhaps not 1000 kids will be playing there, because their parents don’t want to pay to play. So it may be quieter which I like.
  • There is a minder to watch your kids. I’m not saying I will make use of this option again for my 1yr old, but for slightly older kids (and my older kids), I think this is a great option.
  • The food was really nice. (We had a bit of a mix up where they gave me my mil’s pork instead of my beef, and I’m allergic/don’t touch pork with a 10 foot pole and I ended up taking a bite. An apology from the manager would have been nice, but I know to pay better attention in future. )
  • The menu really offers a lovely variety and suits every pocket I think.
  • The glass of wine was nice and full!! Full marks here….you know the sad situation when you get 1/3rd of a glass of wine. ha ha
  • The kiddies menu is really packed with options for the kids.

I’d definitely say try them out. They seem to have great holiday activities for the kids and the Treehouse also does parties. They’re situated in the Bloomingdales Nursery Centre in Walmer.

Have you ever been to The Joneses?

Mini Clicks Haul!

The struggle to stay away from Clicks and Dischem is real…..especially with these 3 for 2 promos that seem to run when you have no money! Like this Clicks one ended on the 21st! I mean…come on??? Throw a girl a bone…or some cash….or free make up vouchers. Too much to ask for?

So I innocently went to Clicks the other day because I really wanted to get some Essence nail polish. I was really keen on a coral shade that I used last Summer that is now finished…literally my Ride or Die last Summer ❤ Off I went and I passed the Revlon stand and thought that I really wanted to try the Gel Envy top coat and well, pick another 2 shades to go with it….score. *big grin* Let’s see what I got.

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I saw these 2 Revlon colours together and I just had to have them.

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Pocket Aces (130) that’s not pink, not red and not coral, but if I have to commit I’d say a bright coral? This colour just screams SUMMER!

Top Coat (010) which is a top coat…..

Full House (320) which is a blue/turquoise/aqua colour. I am just so obsessed with this shade and I know it’s going to be on my nails most of the Summer.

These Revlon nail polishes retail for R119,95.

So when I see new Essence products, I literally cannot control myself. I was broke, so knew I could not afford much (um anything, but hey did the baby really need formula?), but I wanted to just at least try one or 2 items.

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Smoothing cuticle and nail care oil (RSP R37,95)

My cuticles have been so dry and awful looking, so I really wanted to try and find something to help with this problem. This oil smells so good! I apply it at night before bed (thanks Pink Peonies for that tip) and I think already coupled with hand cream at night, it’s making a difference.

Matt Matt Matt gloss in the shade 02 – Beauty Approved (RSP R49,95)

I’ve seen these glosses all over social media, so I think I’ve been brainwashed into thinking I had to try them (good one Essence PR!). Okay so I get confused with how a matt is also a gloss, but anyways…. this is very comfortable on the lips and has a mousse sort of texture.I’d describe it as a nudey pink/brown?  It doesn’t dry down to feel completely dry on the lips and it does transfer with every touch, but with Essence, for the price and colour range, I don’t really complain about their products unless it’s a total disappointment. I did need 2 applications, but I do feel it’s quite opaque with even just one swipe and I do love the applicator on the wand.

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Lastly in my mini haul are these Essence the Gel nail polishes. My pictures were taken in bad lighting so apologies as I don’t feel it’s a true reflection of the actual shades.

Forgive me (13) that’s a beautiful pastel pink. (right)

Pretty cool life (83) is a very cool toned mint green colour that I think will look gorgeous with the pink shade. (middle)

Indian summer (24) is a beautiful pastel coral colour that I can’t wait to use. (left)

These Essence nail polishes retail for R29,95.

All the nail polishes I bought on the 3 for 2 promo, so I only paid for 2. Whoop! Did you manage to pick any up? Are there any other shades you feel are a must have for Summer?

New Real Techniques Bold Metal Brushes

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How gorgeous are these? ❤ I’ve always wanted to own any brush from the Bold Metals collection, but sadly, I can’t afford them. That doesn’t mean that I can’t admire them like a stalker though. So when news hits that 2 new brushes are being launched? Be still my heart!

The Triangle Concealer Brush (1443) is the gold one. I actually love the idea of this brush. 3 sides, for concealing, blending and spot coverage. I think especially when you want to conceal a spot, it’s nice knowing that you can isolate one side of the brush for that and not spread any nasties to the rest of your face.

The silver one is the Tapered Shadow Brush (1448). This brush is described as ‘densely packed and precision cut for a smooth foundation of eye colour’.

These brushes are available at various retailers and will retail around R329,95 (shadow brush) and R379,95 (concealer brush). They’re launching in November sometime, so keep an eye out for them.

Do you own any Real Technique brushes? Their regular blush brush is my absolute favourite brush!

 

The Charlie’s Pizza Experience

People that know me, know that I don’t love commercial pizzas. You know the ones that come in multiple deckers, overloaded with cheese and toppings? That is just not my scene. I didn’t know what it was, why I had this dislike for pizza, but I just started to avoid it. I know some of you are like…okay crazy lady….. *rolls eyes at me*

AND THEN IT HAPPENED…..one day I was introduced to a different kind of pizza. Super thin crust, not round (in a traditional 360 degree way), little bits of cheese dropped onto it, freshly grated parmesan, fresh rocket/basil and meat toppings. OH. MY. SOUL. What is this sorcery?

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Charlies Pizza is located in Summerstrand and I have to say it is one of my (and my husband’s) favourite food spots in Port Elizabeth. Any time we can sneak away for a lunch date this is the place we literally run too. The restaurant itself is spacious and the décor simplistic, but modern. One thing I love (besides the FREE WIFI) is also that they write the specials on the wall, so no need to ask or look around on the table for a menu with the specials on. The price is also there, so you know immediately what suits your pocket and what doesn’t.

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On the topic of suiting your pocket, we saw they had panini’s for R29,99 and we decided to get one to try. I ordered the basil pesto, cheese and tomato panini. Gals….their basil pesto is out of this world ❤ You can see they also aren’t shy with lettuce, as this is something one really looks forward to….half a head of lettuce on your roll. ha ha. Jokes aside, and excess lettuce removed, this panini was fantastic and tasty.

Disclaimer: I am not a photographer and especially NOT a food photographer. I apologise to the owners of Charlies Pizza if my food pictures negatively affect their business, but what I lack in talent in capturing food pictures, I make up in the love I have of the food I tried to photograph.

Okay, back to the food. People…this pizza may not look like much, but don’t let that fool you.  The flavor packed into this pizza is out of this world. On the menu it’s a gorgonzola/salami and avocado pizza, but I swop out the salami for chicken as I don’t eat salami. This is the pizza of my dreams. There aren’t enough descriptive words for the love affair my husband and I have with this pizza. We’ll randomly check in and be like: okay so you had 2 slices already right? #ImWatchingYouWatchingMe  We try to pretend we’ll order something different, but all roads lead back to this pizza, and my husband ordinarily does not even eat gorgonzola. PS You have got to try it with the fresh chillies they serve on the side.

The waitress there is one talented lady as well! We had the most complicated drinks order and I’m always swopping toppings out and this gal didn’t break a sweat….or even need a pen and paper. I asked her: Are you sure you have all that? Needless to say, everything came exactly as we wanted it.

What I did not photograph purely because I eat it before anybody can ask me for a piece, is their Macadamia nut cheesecake. *shakes head* I can’t think about this cheesecake without wanting to cry. I can only think that this cheesecake is made with unicorn and fairy dust. The macadamia nuts are caramalised, but unlike other variations of this cheesecake at other establishments, these nuts do not threaten to break every one of my teeth if I try to eat it. It’s soft and crunchy and just pairs so well with the cheesecake.

I can’t vouch for all their dishes obviously, but I can say that we’ve never left there disappointed. I’m also very grateful for the fact that they will swop out toppings for me without a fuss. I hate going to a place and I get a stare and a: ‘I need to talk to the manager’, as when you don’t eat pork products (it’s not religious, just a preference) a menu can be limiting. I can go there and know they will always try to accommodate me without making me feel like I’m difficult. They also make a darn good cappuccino. Great food and great service, that’s a good standard to have 🙂

Have you eaten at Charlies Pizza & Pasta before? Are there any other great restaurants in Port Elizabeth that I have to try?

 

 

Eyeshadow primers {Budget vs Splurge}

It’s usually very disappointing to splurge on a product and then find that it’s awful or sub standard. On the other side of the spectrum, it’s also easy to spend a huge amount of money on budget products and find you hate it. Even budget purchases add up, so it’s a wonderful feeling to find a budget item that is of good quality.

Makeup was never my thing. I got into the game very late in life. I was the one asking my sister or cousin, or heck any 5 year old in the vicinity, to do my makeup. I kid you not, once my 8yr old sister in law put makeup on for me and I thought she did a great job. lol. I just found that no matter what I put on my eyes, it looked like somebody had beaten me up. I couldn’t figure it out and just told myself that eyeshadow was just not for me…..until I started following beauty blogs and learnt about a thing called an eyeshadow primer/base. Say what??

I’ve purchased a few eyeshadow primers, and thought it would be a good idea to compare and test 2 of my favourite primers, one being a budget spend and the other being a slight splurge (for me).

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I’ve got the Essence I ❤ Stage eyeshadow base versus the Benefit Stay Don’t Stray primer. I tested this by doing my eyeshadow identically on both eyes, but with the Essence on the left and Benefit on the right side. There were supposed to be pictures to accompany this post, but I forgot!! So sorry. I did however randomly ask family members which eye looked better every few hours, so rest assured, an in depth study was done. ha ha

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They both have doe foot applicators, so application is really easy. You just dot on each eyelid and then I blend it in by lightly dabbing with my ring finger.

Both of these are available in different shades, which would obviously be better for comparison purposes if they matched, but I’m more interested in the quality. The Essence comes in a lighter shade and the Benefit comes in a darker shade as well so there’s a colour in each brand to suit any skin tone. (In picture above, Essence is the deeper more tan colour and the Benefit one is the lighter porcelain colour)

The results? After about 8 hours my eyeshadow looked identical. No creases, no fading. My family members did think the eyeshadow on the eye with the Essence base looked slightly more vibrant, but seeing as it’s a darker colour, I think that provided more intensity to the shadows, as the Essence suits my skin tone better. The Benefit product doubles as an eyeshadow and concealer primer, so it can be used on the under eye area as well, as a primer for your concealer.

I LOVE Benefit cosmetics as the quality is great and the packaging is so cute! I also LOVE Essence as it’s a brand that doesn’t break the bank and they produce high quality products.

You can’t go wrong with either of these primers in my opinion, it just depends on what suits your pocket I think.

Essence is available at Clicks and Dischem and this primer retails for around R51,95 and Benefit is available on Red Square (for us Port Elizabeth gals) and retails at R365 for a full sized product. The one in the pictures above is a deluxe sample size I received as part of a kit I bought.

Do you use an eyeshadow primer? Have you tried any of these? If you know of any other good ones, let me know and I’ll be sure to try it out.

 

Belle Box Unboxing

My 1yr old has been battling with an ear infection, sore throat and teething for the last few nights.  If I’ve gotten an hour’s solid sleep in the last 3 nights, it would be a lot. My husband and I are like zombies, snippy zombies that want to eat each other’s brains. Or maybe the 1yr old’s should be an option as well?? ha ha….maybe ha ha….maybe I’m serious….

So every morning I wake up tossing between 2 moods, wanting to die or praying for it to be 10pm already. Not that 10pm would bring any relief, because that’s when the fun starts! This morning I heard the doorbell and didn’t really wonder much about it, because I’m not expecting anything to be delivered. I was crawling towards the lounge when I saw a package on the table. I didn’t want to act  too excited as I honestly couldn’t think what it could be….and then I opened it and I smiled inside.

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Hello? What have we here? Seems I bought this in my sleep a few weeks ago, because I genuinely forgot about buying it, but buy it I did. I see I have an account registered and everything. So this is a monthly box, but it isn’t a subscription box. You opt to buy it every month before the 15th and it then gets delivered at the end of the month. The box costs R200 and then there’s a delivery fee of R50 and it comes straight to your door. I did see on the Belle Box website that they would be introducing a debit order system, so that would probably be a lot more convenient than going and purchasing it yourself every month.

Now to the exciting part….what’s in the box???

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So there were quite a few goodies inside the box. Let’s list them in order of what I’m most excited to try out.

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BYS Eyeshadow brush

I love makeup brushes, so I’m always going to be excited to try a new one out. I had to Google this as I’ve never heard of this brand before. It appears to be an Australian brand so I’m not sure if it’s available locally.

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Beautiful Earth Skin Care Trial Pack

  • Facial cleanser (30ml)
  • Facial toner (30ml)
  • Moisturising day cream (25ml)
  • Repairing night cream (25ml)
  • Facial serum (5ml)

This is  quite a cute mini set and I like that I get to try a range of products out before I decide if I want to purchase any of it. Also this brand is certified by the Natural Products Association as all fragrances are derived from essential oils and the products contain no parabens, sulphates, colouring, mineral oils or glycols. I’ve used some of their baby care products, so it is a brand I like and trust. I’ll do a review on these once I’ve used it.

Also from BE was a baby bum cream sample (not pictured here).

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Crème Sand Scrub (Coconut & Papaya)

I always love a good body scrub and this sounds like a lovely combination, BUT I wish they’d  listed the ingredients on the tub. I’m hoping I’ll find it online somewhere or perhaps I can enquire from Belle Box as well.

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R50 off a Mischu purchase (online)

I had to go and check the website out as I am not familiar with the brand and I was ecstatic to see that they are a coffee site and they stock pods that are Nespresso machine compatible. The postage I found a bit steep though, so I wish the voucher was instead for free postage and I find the pods are not much cheaper than Nespresso pods. That being said, I will give them a try as I always love discovering a good cup of coffee ❤

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BYS Complete Cosmetic tissues

How long can I make a paragraph about tissues? Are they 2 ply, single ply? They’ll be handy for my bag I’m sure. The end.

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Funky Fish Phone Sticker

Initially I thought these were nail art bedazzle stones and I was SOOOOOO excited, then I realised it was a sticker for my cellphone. I don’t know, I just feel like I’m passed the age of putting stickers on my phone. I did try to use it, but it blocks the speaker if I stick it on my current cellphone cover, so I can’t use it. I’m sure my 8yr old would love to bedazzle her tablet with this though, so it won’t go to waste.

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Five Roses Bombay Circus Tea

I do love chai tea (though coffee will always be my first choice and love), so I’ll give this a try.

So for R200 do I think this box was worth it? I do. The Beautiful Earth trial pack alone I am sure is valued at around R200. Then add on all the other bits and bobs and I think it’s worth giving this box a try. I was hoping for another makeup item, but keen to see what’s in store next month. The November box is currently on sale for delivery at the end of November.

Have you tried out the Belle Box yet? Do you think you’ll order one in future?

 

COLab Luxe Shine Spray

Have you ever wished you could spruce up your hair with instant shine and a lovely fragrance as well? You don’t have to wish anymore with the COLab Luxe Shine Spray!

colab_lux-shine_rt_light-back_rgb_hires-1COLab Luxe Shine Spray is infused with a nourishing blend of precious oils, silk extracts & shimmering diamond dust. Diamond dust?? Doesn’t that sound fabulous! This luxurious feather-light mist adds a touch of silken gloss, smoothing and illuminating your hair.

The fragrance is deeply sensual with notes of Cashmere, Bergamot and Oud. The COLab Luxe Shine spray gives an indulgent finish, straight from the can.

This glossing hair fragrance is available at selected Clicks stores and retails for R129,95.

Let me know if you’ve spotted this or even if you’ve used it yet. I can’t wait to try it out.