Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Perspective: small victories


An article in one of the Glamour S.A. magazines titled "11 accomplishments that are bigger than they may seem" had me thinking. Why is it that we (and by we I mean me) emphasize our minor failures so much but, hardly celebrate the small victories? Are we hardwired to focus on what we lack so much so that we neglect to recognize accomplishments if they are not colossal? I have always had this thing where I silently compare my own victories to those of others. It's not something that I do on purpose, it's just human nature I guess. I suppose this makes my accomplishments feel slightly less significant.


Celebrating small victories is good for the soul. At least that is what I think. With everyone on social media living their best lives (and making sure we know), its almost impossible not to feel like you constantly have to prove yourself. Like you have to keep up with everyone and everything. This is exactly why giving yourself a pat on the back is essential. The pandemic made me realize that any victory is in fact a very big one. While people were losing their incomes, family members and sanity, I became more grateful for not only the small pleasures but, also the small victories. Getting out of bed felt like a victory. Getting through a day without hearing bad news felt like a victory. Being able to have a meal everyday felt like a victory. The things that I believed to be small and mundane turned out to be the big things after all. 


Celebrating the many things I achieve every day (no matter how small) makes me feel less depressed overall. This is something I know very well. To cope with my depression I started making lists of the things I was doing right. While this is no instant cure for depression, it helped me to take a step back and look at my problems from a different perspective. When I did fail at something, it didn't feel so major anymore. Instead it became learning opportunities. 

Look I'm not saying a habitual optimistic attitude will instantly fix all my problems but, at this point, what have I got to lose. I dare you to be more intentional about celebrating these small victories. You never know, they might actually turn out to be the BIG ones. 

TILL LATER, LAUREN! 


*I do not take credit for the images in this post. 
 

Monday, September 6, 2021

New in: AVON edition


We have just started a new month and I am particularly excited to be adding new products to my beauty and skincare regime. This month the theme I had in mind was "luxury". Let's face it, the year had been more horrendous than anyone could have anticipated so a little luxury in my life was certainly welcome. I recently picked up two products from Avon and I thought I would do a quick review just to share my initial thoughts.


Let's start with this amazing shower cream. I really jumped at the chance to use this because I am obsessed with everything that is coconut scented. In addition to the coconut it also has Tiare Flower (This is the national flower of the islands of Tahiti and the name tiare is derived from the word tiara suggesting that the tiare flower is the queen of all flowers in French Polynesia). Apart from the fact that it made me feel like royalty (see what I did there) every time I used it, I could not get over the smell. There is something so calming about these two ingredients together that it feels like I just got back from a vacation after using it. I got it in the 720 ml and I am definitely going to repurchase. It retails for R 84.90


 The second product that caught my eye was this ageless protecting day cream with spf 30 and green tea extract. According to the packaging this day cream is packed with vitamins and antioxidants to help hydrate (thank you) and protect skin against signs of premature aging. I have to admit, I am pretty set in my ways when it comes to day cream and I insist on having a cream that hydrates. I'm also really happy that the cream contains spf30 because I don't always remember to put sunscreen on (yikes). Especially when the weather is cooler. While I drink green tea religiously, I had never considered incorporating it into my skin care routine. As an added bonus the green tea extract does not only diminish signs of aging it also calms irritation, evens out skin discoloration and protects the skin against UV radiation : to name  a few  a benefits. The cream is lightweight yet, super luxurious and, just like the shower cream, has a super calming smell. This 50ml retails for R209. 


I absolutely love when I am right about products and I was spot on with picking these two. With the seasons changing and the weather heating up I think it's the perfect time for you to also give these products a try. I know for sure they will be staying in my routine for the rest of the year.

If you are keen on trying Avon products you can also shop at my online store here or find an Avon representative near you.

TILL LATER, LAUREN!

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Saying NO and the price of peace.

 

Image from www.dreamstime.com

I have always been a people pleaser. I would go out of my way to make sure no one would ever accuse me of being inconsiderate. I think part of the reason I was always so accommodating no matter what was because I wanted to steer clear of conflict at all costs. But, I have come to realize something. While I was making sure everyone else was pleased, I was unhappy. And severely so. It never occurred to me that conflict was not only necessary at times but, also crucial to my inner peace and ultimately my happiness.

As a mother, putting your own needs last come effortlessly: second nature. And that is very well when it comes to your child or children, but what about everyone else? Should I really be putting everyone else’s needs before my own? There’s this myth that women should always be ready to sacrifice and I have witnessed this multiple times. We don’t always do what we want to; we do what we HAVE to. We have been fashioned to think that women should be willing and able to give easily, without any question and to any degree. And, if we don’t, we end up feeling guilt ridden.  “Identify a need or want, and you will probably find a woman willing to take responsibility for it.” (Vermeulen,S. 2011. ELLE). I say be a little selfish from time to time.  Say no to this favour or to that thing you have to do for your cousin’s friend. If it is not making you happy or making you feel even vaguely good, feel free to refuse.
It’s been a very difficult thing for me to do; saying no. People tend to treat you differently when you finally muster up the courage to say no and, as someone who suffers from depression, sudden changes in behavior towards me is very triggering. I have experienced this a ton especially when it comes to family and friends. I've noticed that the less I care about pleasing everyone, the more people have started to accuse me of being distant, unbothered or even a bad friend.   But, I can tell you it has been both liberating and eye opening at the same time. Now I am not saying you should suddenly run around saying no to everyone. You don't have to be reckless with people's feelings, just more mindful of your own. Just be aware that you do have the option to say no and to not feel any kind of shame for it. Real friends will stick around whether you are able to do things for them or not.  And the rest...well who needs the excess baggage? 
 TILL LATER, LAUREN!



Wednesday, July 28, 2021

#NiveaDelightYourSenses

I was thoroughly delighted when I received a cute little Nivea drop recently. Like I have mentioned in the past, I prefer oils over lotions simply because they seem to save me time. Needless to say the fact that this particular lotion contains oil intrigued me. I received the Orange Blossom & Avocado oil scent to try and I adore it.


Let's just say the scent puts you in a good mood and I could always use more of that. I promise you it is like happiness captured in a bottle. As you can imagine, the addition of oils add intense moisture, which has been a bonus for my skin. I seem to take a beating when it comes to winter time and dry skin. It is not a pretty sight. 


Another major factor for me when deciding on how to moisturise is the consistency of a product. I absolutely loathe spending more time than I need to rubbing in a product. Now you would expect a product this nourishing to be thick and impossible but, it is certainly not.  The formula is light and makes for an easy application. Consider me converted!

No doubt I will be repurchasing the lotion once I have finished this one. Perhaps I will even try another variant. How about you? Have you used any of the #NiveaDelightYourSenses lotions? I would love to hear from you.

TILL LATER, LAUREN! 

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Sartorial Corner: Jeans in winter


 I battle with getting dressed for winter. If you read my blog often you might have figured this out by now. The countless posts on how to wear the winter skirt, the winter beanie and the winter coat has simply been a way to help myself cope with dressing for winter.


Look, as much as I want to be trendy and stylish, my style is mostly dictated by the fact that I’m a mother. I need to be able to run after my son all the time. Needless to say I spend a lot of time in jeans and Converse (or boots). Yes, we can’t all be Victoria Beckham. The same goes for my style during the winter months. It needs to be cosy and comfortable; yet something I wouldn’t mind being seen in by the fashion police.  Jeans is always my item of choice but, it does not always guarantee warmth.
This post is dedicated to finding ways to accessorise old faithful so you can show the cold a thing or two. If you have any tips on making your wardrobe more winter appropriate, please share them with me. Goodness knows I need them. Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoy the pictures.  
A statement coat will make even the dullest of jeans look polished. 


You can wear jeans top to bottom and add your own pieces for comfort. 






Add a stunning pair of boots. 



Layer up! 

* I do not take credit for the images in this post.

TILL LATER, LAUREN! 

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Life lately :Instagram Round Up

It has been quite some time since I have done one of these Instagram round up posts. Let's just say life hasn't been very Instagram-able this year. Between mourning the loss of the year I thought it would have been and every one else seemingly returning back to normal: I was uninspired. And that's putting it mildly.

I'm not sure what I was expecting for 2021 but, it sure as hell was not this. I have been living in this limbo between preparing for the future and wondering exactly what that future would look like. To top it all off, my special birthday month (May) turned out to be bittersweet. More bitter that sweet I might add. However, it wasn't all bad. I have also been feeling a great sense of rebirth. You know when they demolish a building to put up a completely new one. That's the feeling. So in the spirit of that feeling I have decided to post about the moments that did in fact make it to Instagram. These tiny glimpses really made me smile these past few months. 


Lunch dates with my family will always make me happy.
 
An honest review on a product I adore. You can read it here

I love being a soccer mom and the kid is amazing at it. I'm ecstatic that he gets to play again.

I love impromptu beach dates and really like wearing this dress. It makes me feel sexy.

Going anywhere with this guy is fun and every now and then we remember to take a picture together.

The way to my heart :)


 I have been hesitant to do this post for a while with everything going on in the media but, having recently decided to ALWAYS put my mental health first (thank you Naomi Osaka), I felt like I needed this. I needed to be reminded to purposefully look for the little bits of magic in every day. I've dealt with depression for as long as I can remember and I can say for sure expressing myself helps a lot. With that being said, I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into my world. Please drop your Instagram handles in the comment section below and tell me what you think about this post. 

TILL LATER, LAUREN!

Friday, April 2, 2021

Review : Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel

 I have been dying to post about this product from the moment I bought it but, I figured, in order for me to give an honest review, I needed to give it a little time to see whether it really makes a difference to my skin. I have to admit, the uncomplicated packaging really won me over but, I have been duped many a times by charming packaging. It's really important for me to spend my money on products that  make a difference in my life so I was definitely rooting for this water gel. 



According to Neutrogena, if you want hydrated skin and a healthy glow, this is the product for you. The lightweight formula contains Hyaluronic acid and also promises supple skin that lasts throughout the whole day. I have been using the water gel for about 5 weeks now, both morning and night and there are a few things that I like about the gel.
  • The texture- It is super lightweight and not greasy which makes it easy to wear under your foundation. It also absorbs super quickly so you don't spend your precious time rubbing your face.
  • The light blue pot with the white lid is , as I  have mentioned, quite a charming change for someone who normally prefers a pump bottle. I like that it looks pretty on my night stand.
  • It has a comforting smell that is not overwhelming. This is important to me especially since we cannot escape any smells while wearing our masks.
  • Even though the gel absorbs very quickly you immediately notice how it quenches your skin.  This probably stood out for me the most. While my skin is not particularly dry, the gel made a visible difference. I looked well rest and hydrated every time I used it.


I have to admit that I normally prefer a cream that has a thicker consistency, especially for night time, but this gel has really changed the way I look at gel formulas. So much so that I have recommended it to all my friends. There are a few other products in the Neutrogena Hydro Boost range and after my great experience with this gel, it goes without saying that I am eager to try some of them. You can find this product at most stores and it retails for just under R140.

Have you tried any of the Hydro Boost products? I would love to hear what you think about it.

TILL LATER, LAUREN! 

PS: Special shoutout to Xylon and Thando for helping me take these pictures.

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Denim and Stripes!

I don't like doing look posts. There are numerous reasons why but, the main one would probably be that I never feel like I look quite good enough to do a look post. I follow countless fashion bloggers and their look posts always set the bar so high that I often feel discouraged to do my own. 

Lately, I have had a change of heart however. Listen, I have realised that I will never be the bloggers that I idolise but, I need to give myself a little more credit. Sometimes I can actually look very put together. This particular outfit made me feel really feminine and sexy which is why I decided to share it. 

I don't wear jeans or shirts often because most of the time I am either in uniform or in sweatpants. I instantly fell in love with this shirt from Mr Price because I could literally think of a few ways to wear it. I decided to pair it with jeans (also from Mr Price) and these cute shoes from Woolies which I got on sale. The necklace is a gift and the glasses I stole from my person :) 




I look forward to seeing what other looks I can create with this shirt. Thank you for reading this post. What is your go to item at the moment? Let me know in the comment section. 
TILL LATER, LAUREN! 


 

Monday, January 4, 2021

Look post: Xylon Kenzo

The other day I did a quick little photo shoot with my favorite person in the world. Xylon is at the age now where he wants to pick out his own clothes and I am having so much fun seeing how his style is developing. I tend to not focus to much on where I buy his clothes but, rather on the quality. I also love matching sets because its really easy to throw on. Usually we would put a denim jacket over this set depending on the weather.

I really love how these turned out especially since I took them on my phone. The kid clearly enjoys being in front of the camera 





 


*Tracksuit- PEP stores
*Shoes- Nike

TILL LATER,LAUREN!

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Chapter 2: The magic formula


Disclaimer:Today has been a complete mess. It took me almost half an hour to connect to my WiFi and actually sit down and type this post. To be frank I was on the brink of giving up but, as they say, we move.

A few months ago I started reading a book that really helped me deal with worry. Given the current state of, well, everything, it was safe to say that I was not coping. I made a choice to blog about the book in order to regurgitate what I have been reading and somehow keep processing it. You can read my first post here .

In my previous post I have explained how living in "day tight compartments" can be beneficial in the sense that it gives you the opportunity to focus on the problem at hand rather than dwelling on the past or fearing the future. Chapter two focuses more on how you actually deal with said problem. The method used by William H Carrier "a brilliant engineer who launched the air conditioning industry"  has been working really well for me simply because it is so practical.

Step 1 requires you to analyze the situation honestly and figure out what is the worst that can actually happen. Can I die? Can I go to jail? You know, all the hectic stuff. This is probably the most difficult part because you truly have to be honest with yourself and this can easily increase your anxiety. On the bright side, you might find that you have been overreacting a bit and that the "worst" is really not that bad. This happens to me quite often at work. Whenever I make a mistake I imagine that the repercussions for that mistake will be gigantic. However, when I calmly sit and think about it I often find that I have blown everything out of proportion in my mind.

Once you have figured out the worst case scenario you can now move on to step 2 which is making peace with the worst and relaxing so you can start to work on Step 3: Calmly thinking of ways to improve on the worst. See, when you are busy worrying, you are not able to think rationally  or come up with practical solutions. 


Over the last few months I have found many things to worry about. Some of them were brought on by the uncertainty of the future and what it would look like because of Covid 19 but, this book has given me something else to focus on and for that I am grateful. Listen, I am not saying that all your worry will magically disappear when you read this book. No not at all. Some of us have lost jobs and loved ones this year without much warning so the world is in a pretty dismal state. What I'm saying is that it is ok to have hope. Hope gives us something to hang on to. Something to look forward to. So perhaps give this method a try and see how you feel about worry. Who knows? Maybe shifting your perspective will inject a little hope into you.


I would love to hear from you.


TILL LATER,LAUREN!

Saturday, November 14, 2020

Payot: Masque Charbon

 Hi everyone! 

I know it's been a while since I have posted but, to be honest, this pandemic just sucked  the life out of me. I was uninspired and unmotivated and really not in the mood to blog about anything . However, with life returning to somewhat normal, I have a few beauty, fashion and lifestyle posts lined up. Let's dive in to the first product I am beyond excited to share with you! 



Now I'll be the first to admit that I am the queen of beauty on a budget but, this mask is definitely worth your coins. The mask is ultra absorbent and aids in deep cleansing and exfoliating combination to oily skin. It also rids the skin of toxins,excess sebum and impurities thanks to the charcoal and kaolin it contains.  The french brand was created in 1920 by Dr. Nadia Payot and if I'm being completely frank, it seemed a bit out of my range purely because its a bit pricey. So needless to say when I got a good deal on the mask, I jumped at the chance to use it. 

What I adored about this mask was how amazing it smelled to begin with.  You know how most charcoal masks dry to an impossibly hard cast, this one does the exact opposite. Also you don't have to scrub half of your face of to get it all of. I've seen a major change in the few weeks I've been using it. The first week however, a few pimples appeared but, I figured it was just the charcoal pulling the impurities to the surface.

Lets just say if I can, I will repurchase this mask without a doubt. I look forward to the next few weeks if masking. Do you mask? What is you favourite one at the moment? I look forward to hearing from you  


TILL LATER, LAUREN  


Friday, June 12, 2020

Chapter 1: Day tight compartments

If worrying was an Olympic sport my name would have been known all around the world. That's how great at it I am. And I'm not talking just regular worries I mean borderline paranoia. Always expecting something to go wrong. Especially when I am happy. It's crippling sometimes and it can make even the most basic task seem colossal. As you can imagine, with the world being attacked by the virus formally known as Covid-19, my worries seemed to have increased beyond recognition. I am not coping at all.


Recently I started reading a book (How to stop worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie ) that really affected me in a way I never could have imagined and while I want to ramble and tell you about the whole book at once; it would be of no use. So I decided to blog about the book chapter by chapter. Whether this is a good idea, I'm not sure but I need to somehow regurgitate what I have read and process it again. This is a journey for me too and I really needed to feel a sense of hope again . The first chapter speaks about living in day tight compartments.

Basically this means not worrying about yesterday or tomorrow: only about the present day. This was an especially touchy subject for me because when I fret; it's usually not just about today but more often than not I've progressed that worry to years from now in my mind. It gets so out of hand that I end up worrying about things that may never happen. Back to the subject at hand though, I can see how only worrying about today can have its benefits.

For starters, if you are only focusing on the immediate problem you might have a better chance of either fixing it quicker or realizing that in fact you have little to actually worry about. I have been applying the same principle in my life for the last few weeks especially when I think about the Covid-19 virus. Yes, I have never been this scared in my life but,I have decided to take it one day at a time, Mostly because I don't want my son to be paralyzed by fear as well.

My daily routine includes sanitizing religiously, social distancing, reading something that makes me happy and hopeful, getting a few minutes of exercise in (albeit indoors), hydrating and taking immune boosters. It makes me feel somewhat in control of the situation.

So this is my plea to you as well. Lets live in day tight compartments and focus on the things we can do right today. Tomorrow will have to worry about itself in the meantime.

Stay at home!
Lauren

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Black Friday

Just a little throwback look post to what I wore on Black Friday. Yes, I was working so I didn't spend much time looking for bargains. Nevertheless,  I guess  I still saved money either way.



*Bodysuit, jacket, skirt and glasses : Mr Price
*Stockings : gifted
*Shoes: Legit

TILL LATER, LAUREN!