A Must Read Blog: AimeeRaindropWrites*

Hello lovelies and a very happy weekend to you all! Today I want to write about one of my favourite blogs, AimeeRaindropWrites.

If I cast my mind back to 2015, I think Aimee was one of the first bloggers who reached out to me. In fact she very kindly sent me a book. (Do you remember that Aimee?) Fast forward to present day and not only do I still speak to Aimee daily but I consider her a real friend too. That's one of the reasons I love blogging. It has introduced me to so many lovely and like minded people.

I love Aimee's posts because they're frequent and always of interest. There's nothing worse than following a blogger who hasn't posted for 69786 weeks. (Over exaggeration maybe but you get my point.) I get bored easily. Thankfully most of my fav bloggers post on a regular basis, Aimee included.

Some of my favourite posts have to be Aimee's book reviews. I'm a sucker for a good book so I make  a point of reading any and every review I come across. She's also honest enough to say when a book disappoints. I think most of my current 'TBR' list is down to her recommendations and fantastic reviews.

As well as writing content Aimee also offers blog services. So if you need an ad/blog button coding, links fixing or even Twitter scheduling then Aimee does all this at really reasonable rates. And if that wasn't enough, she also offers advertising in her side bar and works her backside off doing promo work.

Enough talking from me. Here is a little bit from the lady herself:

'Hi! My name's Aimee. I'm 26, a lifestyle and book blogger, and cat momma. Unicorns are my obsession and they've been cropping up a lot lately on my blog. I spend too much time watching Netflix, and am partial to a good cup of tea. So, what do I blog about? Well everything and anything really! You can expect to find haul posts, book reviews and lots of posts about (or at least featuring) my kitty. Come stop by and say hello!'

Please pop on over to AimeeRaindropWrites and see what you think. If you like what you read then why not give her a follow too? I'm sure she'd be grateful.

Here's wishing you all a lovely weekend. Hope you all make the most of this glorious sunshine while it lasts!

Until next time...

Justine xxx

All photos via AimeeRaindropWrites

*Although Aimee is in fact one of my monthly advertisers, I'd still 'big her up' anyway as she really does write great content and is of course as I've mentioned, a friend. :)

8 Productive 'Blog Related' Things I Do When I Can't Sleep

While you're all snuggled up in bed dreaming of nice things, I'm often lying awake writing posts like this one. I didn't always have problems sleeping but over the last few years I tend to wake up on an hourly basis and sometimes I just cannot get back to sleep for love nor money. But rather than lie there worrying about the days events or counting sheep - seriously did that ever work?! - I make use of my insomnia by being as productive as possible.

I know, I know. You're gonna tell me that I'm not exactly helping myself. That any form of blue light emitted from electronics will keep my brain active and be bad for my health. Still, if I'm lying awake anyway then I'd rather get stuff done.

So what exactly do I get up to in the dark of the night?

1. Schedule Tweets

I love scheduling. It has been a life saver seeing as I work full time. I personally use Hootsuite and so far I can't fault it. It's absolutely spiffing! The odd time a tweet will fail but as it's a free app I'm hardly going to complain.

2. Catch Up 

I scroll through Bloglovin catching up on posts, bookmarking my '#SundayBlogShare' and '#MondayBlogs' favourites as I go. I tend to share any of my favourite reads on Twitter on a daily basis but on Sunday and Mondays I like to make use of the two hashtags mentioned as it helps to get my tweets noticed by more people.

3. Search For Blog Opportunities 

On Twitter I'll search for any tweets featuring the hashtag '#bloggersrequired and #bloggerswanted.' On Facebook I'm part of the UK Blogger Opportunities group but I also again search for posts with relevant hashtags.

4. Organise Images

As I don't always get chance to take my own photos I do still use Pexels for images as and when required. I find it easier if I've got some saved to my phone already so I know exactly which image will be used for which planned post.

5. Comment Spree

Commenting on other blogs is a surefire way to encourage other bloggers to check out your own. And quite often they'll leave comments in return which is always nice. I like to do a commenting spree at least once a week. Just make sure if you do this that you write authentic comments rather than just 'great post,' otherwise it'll come across like you can't be bothered or that you haven't actually read anything.

6. Write A Post 

I often write a full draft post so all I need to do is edit and publish it the following day. Bonus!

7. Jot Down New Ideas

Weirdly I get some of my best ideas in the middle of the night. And let me tell you, don't do as I used to do and plan to make a note in the morning because nine times out of ten the idea will be forgotten in the cold light of day. I could kick myself for this. Needless to say I now always make a quick note.

8. Network

By networking I mean I go through Instagram liking photos and commenting on any I really like. I do the same with tweets too. Fast forward a few hours and when I check my notifications I usually have a high response from people returning likes, follows and comments.

And that's about it. I do sleep sometimes honest! :)

Do you have problems sleeping through the night? What do you do while you're lying awake?

Until next time...  Justine xxx

Image via Pexels

Fun Bit *Choice of word 'Spiffing' used in this post as challenged by Peter of FinalCheck. Do you have a word you want me to feature in a future post? Please drop me a line and let me know! :)

20 Beauty Blog Post Ideas

Today I thought I'd share twenty blog post ideas focused just on beauty. I see a lot of different makeup and skincare reviews but I'd love to see some of these ideas listed below. Feel free to use any and tag me if you do so I can make sure I read your post.

1. My 'Go To' Choice Of Makeup When I Need To Feel Good 

2. Lipsticks That Last The Day

3. Primers: Tried And Tested

4. How To Make Your Skin Glow Using Makeup Tricks

5. The Best Of The Best: Mascaras: Tried And Tested

6. How To Take A Better Photo Of Yourself  (Use of lighting, angle etc)

7. The Best Cruelty Free Brands

8. Top Ten Under Ten

9. My Desert Island Trio: Three Products I Can't Do Without

10. Soap Or Three Step? Does It Really Make A Difference (By three step I mean cleanse, tone and moisturise)

11. How To Make Your Pores Look Smaller

12. The Best Eyebrow Bars: Tried And Tested

13. HD Brows Or DIY?

14. Makeup Removal For Busy People (The most efficient and speedy products)

15. Did You Know? Makeup Expires Too (Or another 'Did You Know?')

16. Concealers: Tried And Tested

17. Foundations: One For Everyone (A post about various foundations for different skin types and different finishes. I don't know about you lot but I don't put makeup on to not look like I'm wearing any. I want my skin to look flawless otherwise what's the point? I'm yet to find a cheaper alternative to my Chanel that I can only afford to buy once in a blue moon)

18. The Best Of The Best: Products To Give The Perfect Base (Moisturiser, serums, primers etc)

19. Spot Treatments That Actually Work

20. Radical Beauty Treatments (A look at some of the crazy trends that celebrities swear by)

Until the next post...

Justine xxx

Photo via Pexels

Day Off Lenten Fasts: Chocolate Heaven

How many of you have given up something for Lent this year? Well I actually decided to give up chocolate this time around and let me tell you it has been driving me crazy. Other than my other vices such as wine, Gilmore Girls, Grey's Anatomy and a blooming good book, chocolate is my go to 'feel good' food of choice. Yes I am the ultimate chocoholic.

I'll bet you didn't know that today is St. Joseph's day, a feast day in the church?! And as such we all get a break from our Lenten fasts - whatever they might be. The same goes for this coming Saturday too as it's the Solemnity of the Annunciation. Which in a nutshell means I can go crazy with chocolate today and this weekend!! *Throws hands in the air to celebrate.

Yesterday I took a little drive up to my favourite chocolate shop in Kirkby Lonsdale, Chocolat. It is one of my favourite places in the world. As soon as I climbed the steps and pushed the door open, the heavenly smell sent my tastebuds into overdrive.

It's not the cheapest by any means but I guess that old saying applies, you get what you pay for. This is a place to visit when you want to splash out and treat yourself. I got a handful of chocolates and didn't get much change from a ten pound note but as I was celebrating a recent achievement I thought what the hek. After all, life is for living right?

I'm going to enjoy these with a brew in a bit. I'd love to know if any of you have been to Kirkby Lonsdale or indeed it's famous chocolate shop. If you haven't, make a note to take a road trip one day. You won't regret it.

Until next time...

Justine xxx

Bring Spring To Your Bedroom*

I don't know about you guys but I personally cannot wait for the sunnier weather to arrive. There's something about the Spring season that literally puts a bounce in my step. Obviously the sunshine does help, but it's not just that. I love that this season brings with it new challenges and the opportunity for fresh starts. It's not just the perfect excuse to spring clean my bedroom, but also to give it that much needed makeover.

My bedroom is my safe haven, my 'go to' place when I need to escape from life. When I'm not at work or out and about, you'll usually find me curled up on my bed either reading a good novel or writing blog posts. As I spend so much time in this one room, it's hugely important that I create the perfect environment for myself.

I can't afford to go splashing out on new wardrobes or furniture right now and I know many people reading this are in the same boat, but that doesn't mean you can't change things up a bit.
Who says it has to be expensive? Just by altering the colour scheme or the duvet and curtains, a room can appear much brighter. Aside from the other life essentials (inspirational wall quotes and a glass of wine) a cosy bedspread or duvet is an absolute must for maximum comfort.

When I saw the beautiful range of bedspreads at The Yorkshire Linen Store I just knew I had to have one. I've always been a real 'girly girl' and a fan of anything neutral coloured so I fell in love with this Opulent Jacquard Champagne Bedspread as soon as I saw it. There's also matching duvets, pillow cases and cushion covers. All I'll need to do is put down a nice new carpet, add a lick of paint and 'Bob's your uncle' as they say!

Wayfair also have many pretty designs to choose from and at reasonable prices too. I seem to have relatively luxurious taste so typically was drawn to the Luxury Duchess Bedspread in gold. Both of the bedspreads mentioned are machine-washable and tumble-dryer friendly, although if we get some warmer weather I'll definitely be hanging mine outside to dry!

Photo: Opulent Jacquard Champagne Bedspread

Why not bring Spring to your bedroom with a gorgeous bedspread? If neutral colour isn't for you then you'll find plenty of alternatives on offer. What's more, The Yorkshire Linen Store currently have a sale on! What are you waiting for?

Here's wishing you all a lovely Spring.

Until next time...

Justine xxx

P.S. If you like the look of the Yorkshire Linen range featured above then you may also like these which, FYI, are all half price! Bargain...

Anna Black Bedspread

   Ethnic Floral Patchwork Berry Bedspread/Throw

Shelbourne Duck Egg Bedspread

*Collaborated post
All photos taken from Yorkshire Linen website

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