Tag Archives: Christmas gift guide

LUSH Christmas 2016 range – It’s in the Air!

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One of the best things about Christmastime is back. LUSH always come out with their best stuff towards Christmas, so when I was invited to their LUSH Blog Party at LUSH Luxembourg, I was so chuffed that I could go. As always, they greeted us with delicious nibbles and drinks, and showed us all the beautiful new products. I mean, just look at that igloo made of colourful soap!

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The ever-wonderful LUSH staff presented the new Christmas range through an adorable Christmas story, which involved a Santasaurus (seen at the top of this post) going on a journey. They really got into it, including a full-on preview of the magnificent Papa Noël face jelly:

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Here are the amazing products I left LUSH with (and I’ve already used most of them!):

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Basically, LUSH products are highly recommended as Christmas presents, or treats for yourself. Remember to keep an eye out for their Boxing Day sale as well.

6 Books You Should Totally Give As Christmas Presents

(Kittens, unfortunately, not included.)

(Kittens, unfortunately, not included.)

For a lot of people, a well-chosen book is the perfect gift for the holidays. Here is a selection of books which I think would make lovely presents this year:

  1. In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware – a crime story that they won’t be able to put down.
  2. Gramma by Leanne Ellul – a Maltese book that’s aimed at teenagers, but I fully enjoyed it as an adult.
  3. Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur – beautiful poems for the super-woman in your life.
  4. Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen by Mary Norris – for anyone who’s obsessed with language/spelling/grammar.
  5. Graffiti by Savannah Brown – a book of poetry by a teenage YouTuber (she’s now 20 though, I believe), and she’s my new favourite poet (after Kate Tempest, of course).
  6. Hold Your Own by Kate Tempest – this woman is incredible. That’s it. Just buy this book for yourself, for your dog, for your colleagues. It’s great.

Happy reading and gifting!

Christmas Wishlist 2016

Christmas Wishlist 2016

Another year, another Christmas wishlist.

As many of you may know, Christmastime is one of my Favourite Times of the Year, so I’m always excited about the prospect of gift-buying and gift-getting and food-consuming. Although we all know it’s mostly about the mulled wine. Oh yeah.

(They have a special type of mulled wine at the Christmas market here in Luxembourg – which kicks off this week – with a little hovering thing over the mug of mulled wine which they LIGHT ON FIRE, and my Christmas-market-bestie Tiara is visiting in a few days and I cannot WAIT to consume this with her once again.)

So, apart from mulled wine money, this is my wishlist for this year:

  1. HP Sprocket – I saw this on a YouTube ad, and it’s enchanted me. A little printer to print phone pictures?! Perfect.
  2. Book vouchers/bookdepository.com vouchers – I am very much in a book-buying swoop at the moment. All the books.
  3. A trip to a second-hand bookshop – This year I’ve rekindled my love for second-hand bookshops. I love them, and I love spending time in them and leafing through the beautiful books.
  4. Flight tickets to Malta – Being in Malta is still one of my favourite things ever. I cherish the time so, so much. Maybe that’s the best thing about living in Luxembourg. :P
  5. Flight tickets to almost anywhere, for that matter – Travelling is firmly towards the top of my list of priorities at the moment. I’m so open to new adventures.
  6. A good handbag (I’m always in need of one) – And I don’t even know where to start. Where does one find a good handbag? Argh.
  7. Skater dresses (always) – Still my daily uniform for any occasion. I love wearing dresses. Give me more.

Have a wonderful Christmastime.

7 Books You Should Totally Give as Christmas Presents

Death_to_stock_photography_weekend_work (10 of 10)

In my world, books are the perfect gifts. They’re the gift of an experience, as well as a physical product, and it’s such a personal offering – (hopefully) the person giving you the book thought about the contents and story of the book, and they’ve decided to actually give you the opportunity to own this new story and this new physical book. Bonus points if the book/edition is particularly nice to look at and to own.

Here are some suggestions of books which might be perfect for friends/family/acquaintances this Christmas:

  1. Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – a beautiful story for the fledgling feminist in your life.
  2. The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson – a Gothic novella for someone who’d love a quick, exciting read of a classic.
  3. Family Matters by Rohinton Mistry – a vivid story about family and struggles, perhaps for someone who’s dealing with ageing family members or tough circumstances.
  4. An Atlas of Countries That Don’t Exist by Nick Middleton – a really gorgeous coffee-table book for the history/geography lover in your life.
  5. Yes Please by Amy Poehler – a hilarious compilation of anecdotes and strangely useful advice for a kick-ass woman.
  6. Wild by Cheryl Strayed – a moving story for anyone who might be feeling a little lost.
  7. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie – my favourite whodunnit for someone who loves a good riddle.

Hope you receive a tonne of beautiful books yourself this year. :)

Christmas Wishlist 2015

Christmas Wishlist 2015

 

Christmas is about a month away! Very exciting, particularly because I’m fully engaging in the “going-home-for-Christmas” process, since I’m flying over to Malta from Luxembourg for a few weeks (including a little jaunt up to Rome for a few days too!). My heart warms up at the thought of seeing so many friends and family members at Christmastime.

And then there are the present exchanges! Who’s excited? I am. Here are some items on my Christmas wishlist this year:

  1. Books, books, books, books. They’re always a Number 1 excellent gift for me. Some beautiful ones I’d love to receive this year include Hold Your Own by Kate Tempest, a beautiful edition of Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud MontgomeryBad Feminist by Roxane GayHalf of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Swimming Lessons and Other Stories by Rohinton Mistry.
  2. A Daniel Wellington watch. Yes, this watch. I can’t decide whether I’d prefer the regular big one (with the beautiful minute markings) or else the smaller one (pictured), which would fit my wrist much better. Hmmm.
  3. A Feminism-related T-shirt for working out. My wonderful friend Anke bought me a “Feminist as Fuck” T-shirt for Christmas last year and I have worn it SO MUCH. I wear it almost every time I work out, and I practically live in it when I go to music festivals. I need more. MOOOOORE. Some of my favourites (not all SFW): “Females are strong as hell”. “Girls just wanna have fundamental human rights”. “Angry Liberal Feminist Killjoy”. “I don’t only have glitter in my veins”. “Feminist as Fuck”. (Again, of course.) (Or this one.)
  4. A Chicwish midi skirt. OH MY DEAR GOD. These are so beautiful! I want one I want one I want one so much. But I haven’t clicked ‘Order’ yet because I can’t justify spending my dwindling financial resources on a skirt which I don’t reeeeally need. But ARGH. So beautiful! This is my favourite one, but it seems to be sold out. The ones in the collage above are also gorgeous.
  5. NUTTY unicorn slippers from ASOS. My lovely friend Maxine gave me a perfect pair of slippers for my birthday a few years ago. And I seem to have worn them every single day since. And now they are getting a little… tattered. Too much love. SO. I clearly need some unicorn slippers to replace them. Yes. Although they seem to be sold out, which makes me ever so sad.

I could also (as always) use more mascara, a new portable (fun) umbrella, a clip-on hard plastic case for my MacBook Air (13″), a list of countries poster, my friends’ awesome game, and chocolate. Mmm, chocolate. (And wine.)

Have a great Christmastime! Someone pass the mince pies.

6 Books You Should Totally Give as Christmas Presents

Do you know that I’m fond of books? You probably do. Reading has always been one of my favourite things to do, and I think there’s nothing better than a great book as a gift. Here are my Christmas 2014 suggestions for your friends/family/other-people-you-have-to-buy-a-present-for:

  1. The Importance of Being Earnest – Oscar Wilde: Wilde’s plays are always an amusing read, and his wit is absolutely hilarious. These timeless plays are great for young and old alike, and The Importance of Being Earnest will prove to be a forever-favourite.
  2. Around the World in Eighty Days – Jules Verne: I read this when I was very young, and Verne immediately became one of my favourite authors. His stories are always magnificent, and if someone in your life hasn’t read this classic, go ahead and buy it for them to read on Christmas weekend.
  3. On Chesil Beach – Ian McEwan: I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but this is one of my absolute favourite books by Ian McEwan, and he’s my favourite author. It was the first one of his books that I had ever read (it was either this one or one of his short story collections…), and I fell in love instantly. It’s a very quick read, and a beautiful, sad story. I’ve actually already bought a copy to give to someone myself this year!
  4. Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead – Sheryl Sandberg: While reading this book (which is not without its irrelevant bits and not without its flaws – like any book, I guess), I kept nodding and thinking “YES.”, and sort of wanted everyone in my life to read it. It’s certainly not just for women, but it’s a fantastic book about leadership and having an effective work ethic. I also really want to read the Graduate edition, which will probably be a thousand times more relevant for me at the moment.
  5. The Clockwork Muse: A Practical Guide to Writing Theses, Dissertations & Books – Eviatar Zerubavel: This book was recommended to me by my wonderful + so beautiful Dutch friend, Eline, who mentioned it to me while I was struggling with my Doctor of Laws thesis. It really, really helped, and bits of it stuck in my mind, so much so that I think about it and its suggestions even when it comes to different types of writing, not just thesis-writing. Buy this for any aspiring novelist/writer in your life, or for the poor student who’s struggling to write that wretched thesis/dissertation.
  6. Kulħadd ħalla isem warajh – Clare Azzopardi: My Maltese pick for this Christmas – a beautiful book that became an immediate favourite by the time I was halfway through it. Its structure makes it very pleasant to read, and the characters are ones that will keep lingering in your mind forever. I kind of wish this book could go on forever.

Let me know if you have any other Christmas (book) present suggestions! I might just buy them for myself…

Christmas Wishlist 2014

Christmas Wishlist 2014

 

I’m probably only going to write a couple of Christmas gift guides this year, and this is the one with All Of The Things, whereas the next one will be about All Of The Books. This year, I’m trying to move the focus away from thing-things (since I’m moving to another country and can’t carry over too many things), but for my Christmas wishlist here, I’m going to list a few things which could be very useful wherever I am.

  1. Escentric Molecules (Molecule 1) – I’ve wanted this fragrance forEVER, and I haven’t been able to buy it myself because most websites don’t ship perfumes, and I’ve never seen it in an airport or in Malta (or anywhere when I’ve been abroad recently). Maybe I’ll find it when I’m in Luxembourg, or maybe I’ll be given it at Christmas (I WOULD DIE <3).
  2. The Wet Brush – this is one of the latest crazes in hair brushes, but promises to be good for my wild curly/wavy mane. It’s not expensive, but I’ve never committed to buying one myself, so it would be a lovely gift.
  3. RMS Living Luminizer – this seems like a perfect highlighter, and I’m always looking for a great one, especially after my beautiful theBalm Mary Lou Manizer shattered *sad-face*
  4. Fancy Pure Vanilla Extract – OK, I probably wouldn’t take this with me to Luxembourg if someone gave this to me this Christmas, but I have ALWAYS wanted to own a bottle of realfancy vanilla extract, for extra-delicious baked treats.
  5. A T-Shirt relating to Feminism – I want most of the T-shirts on this website. What can I say? I’m passionate. An excellent gift for the feminist in your life (AKA anyone in your life, I should hope).
  6. A really fancy candle – again, I don’t know if I’d trawl this over with me to Luxembourg, but I’ve always wanted a ridiculously amazing fat candle that fills up a space with the most beautiful scent, especially if it’s chilly outside. Or maybe I would totally take this with me. It’s a clear necessity.
  7. A GoPro – UGHHHH I WANT ONE SO BADLY. That is all.
  8. A handy, stylish, practical Kanken backpack – whenever I need a backpack (at festivals, for example), I’m always at a loss. This is why I need Swedish design in my life and on my back, especially if I’m going to be cycling it up in Luxembourg.

I hope that gave you a few ideas. Have fun Christmas shopping for your nearest and dearest (and Secret Santa victims). :)

Christmas Gift Guide 2013: Miscellaneous

It’s the final Christmas 2013 Gift Guide today! This one is all about the miscellany and the randomness. They’re extra options in case you’re still stuck for a gift.

Pretty prints – These are lovely gifts for people who have walls to fill in their home or office. Etsy has some great ones, but you can find ones all over the place. They can be cheap or really exclusive (or both).

A great book series – Yup, books again. These make fantastic Christmas presents, because they look good and they’re delicious to get into during the holidays and the whole of the new year.

Awesome mugs – Everyone has simultaneously too many and too few mugs in their lives. They’re always a lovely gift, especially when they have Quentin Blake illustrations on them.

A hedgehog table brush – That’s it. I’ve decided. Everyone needs one of these in their lives. So wonderfully posh yet cute at the same time. Whip this out in between courses at a dinner party and you’re basically the coolest person ever.

A big bunch of fresh flowers – When all else fails, this is a pretty great present, especially if you’re just bringing a gift to a party host, and they’re not partial to wine, for example.

Address stamps – Perfect for people with new addresses, new titles, or newly-formed couples, or anyone, really. They’re so elegant and great to just pop on your return address at the back of envelopes or on the top of letters. Snail mail is lovely.

A grippy pad – I only found out about this a few days ago and isn’t it COOL? I really think it could be great for people who have smartphones and other things that they’d like to stick onto places (especially dashboards). I want it, personally.

A magazine subscription – A few years ago I gave my best friend a year’s subscription to Empire, and she adored it. It’s quite a great ‘gift that keeps on giving’, every month or every few months. Find the person’s niche or hobby and get them a gift in their letter box every so often throughout the whole of the following year. Ideally, buy the December or end-of-year issue and attach the gift receipt for the following year’s subscription, so they can start reading as soon as you give the gift. Lucky Peach looks soooo promising. Other personal success stories include National Geographic (for my boyfriend’s brother) and Intelligent Life (for my boyfriend).

Journals and notebooks – Always useful, great gifts. That’s it.

And that really is it. Secret: I could probably churn out a few more of these gift guides, but maybe I should save a few ideas for next year. Thanks for reading, and hope you found a few fantastic (+ successful) ideas! :)

Christmas Gift Guide 2013: Home

Christmas Gift Guide 2013 (Home) 

This Christmas Gift Guide falls under the ‘Home’ category, sort of. It’s got candles and fluffy cushions and a nice big bottle of good wine. Everyone enjoys these gifts, and they’re particularly great for the “odd” gift recipients such as people you don’t really know, relatives you’re not really close with, and teachers/party hosts/parents. And also people you really, really know and love, because decadent candles and pretty measuring cups are mind-blowingly amazing gifts. 

(I even numbered them and everything this time – someone’s learning about the increased options of Polyvore…)

1. CANDLESCANDLESCANDLES – These would make anyone smile – who doesn’t like having a luxury candle burning in the background during wintertime? (Maybe someone who hates a particular scent or has a very sensitive nose… but let’s forget about those people for a second…) They are all a little expensive and high-end (these aren’t good old Yankee Candle prices), but I have a feeling they would be oh-so-worth-it. The little pack of five Diptyque candles looks particularly enticing, and a ‘safer’ present since there are lots of scents to please.

2. Cushions – This might be a strange suggestion, but a great graphic cushion is always welcome and can be used in a variety of places around the house. The link I’ve included is to an H&M page, but you can find a tonne of options at lots of local places (I’m sure M&S have a nice selection, for example).

3. Perfume or room spray – More stuff from Diptyque. But seriously, this a dream brand for me, and I’ve never tried anything from them, and all I want is to slather myself in all their scents and everything. Perfumes (or something more ‘homely’, like a room spray) would be luxurious gifts which are personal yet promising.

4. A fantastic bottle of wine – If you’re not sure about a person’s preference (white/red/sparkling/rosé/etc), give more than one, or ask someone who knows. These make fantastic host gifts (obviously), and are very special presents when they’re a little more expensive and/or hard to procure (or how about a yummy bottle of port!). I gave one of my best friends a bottle of pink sparkling wine for her birthday (among other things), and it was quite a success (particularly since she shared it with me a few weeks later…) :D

5. Measuring spoons/cups – Aren’t these ridiculously cute and cheerful and useful? Whenever recipes have ‘cups’ and ‘spoons’ in them, I get a little confused and impatient. Yes, it’s usually smarter to go by weight in certain recipes, but in most you can get away with a generic ‘cup’ here and there – and with these, you can be as precise as possible!

6. A candle snuffer – Again with the candle-related things! But I’ve wanted one of these for a while, since they’re useful in maintaining the scent of a candle after you blow it out (instead of having to endure a smoky smell). This one by Diptyque is ridiculously expensive, but I’m sure there are cheaper options which are equally as elegant and suitable as gifts to candle-lovers.

7. A cactus or a succulent plant – When my Spanish housemate had given me a little cactus, it felt like it was the actual best gift ever. This isn’t a gift of responsibility, but it’s a gift of something pretty, stylish, and alive for your home or office. Succulents have been particularly appealing to me lately, and I kind of want one for my desk at home. They come in all shapes and sizes too.

I’m going to keep churning out gift guides until I’m blue in the face, it seems. My initial “Christmas Wish List” text document has sprouted into lists and lists of tangential items, which I am now blogging about, alongside Polyvore collages. I hope you have found them useful, or at least amusing or nice to look at/read. I’m thinking about compiling one final ‘Miscellaneous’ gift guide, which should round up the series nicely for this year, and should be particularly useful for more ‘odd’, and more ‘last-minute’ gifts.

Medley of Miscellany

(Where the hell is this – someone take me there – now please – thnx.)

Blueberry and Lemon Breakfast Muffins – can someone deliver these (all fresh and warm) for me every morning? Yes? Thanks.

I kind of want everything in this stocking filler gift guide.

Ten questions you should ask on a first date (or any time, I feel) – including: what’s the best birthday cake you’ve ever eaten?

I’ve been enjoying using this product recently, although I haven’t seen any mind-blowing results yet.

Christmas themed clothes! I’d like to be wearing all of these on Christmas day.

Also, don’t forget to check out my Christmas Gift Guide series for ideas for loved ones, Secret Santas, and yourself(!)