(Featured photo courtesy of themadorange.com)

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I was really delighted when I got a notification to see that Alana from alanathropology had nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award. I was then even more ecstatic when I saw Aoife nominate me too – it means so much to see such great support in this blogging community!

The Versatile Blogger Award allows people to discover new blogs that are most likely new and up-and-coming and have less than 1000 followers. When you receive a nomination, you write a little bit about yourself so those that are discovering you get to know you a little bit- which is great!

I have written out the rules below for you if you are one of lucky ones to be nominated:

Rules:

  1. Kindly thank the person who nominated you
  2. Share the award on a blog post
  3. Divulge 7 random facts about yourself
  4. Finally, tag 10 bloggers with less than 1000 followers and let them know they’ve been nominated!

 

7 Facts About Me:

  1. I started my blog on August 24th (just under 3 weeks ago) and I have been incredibly lucky to have already met such lovely people who support one another in the blogging community – hence why I think the Versatile Blogger Award is such a lovely idea to reward those who work hard. I honestly still smile and get excited every time someone likes, comments or follows my blog as I could never believe anybody would be interested in what lil old Ella has to say!
  2. Now for a funny one… When I was around 18 months old, my family moved house. As I was young, I stayed with a family friend during the day and (being the crazy cat lady that I am) I decided to imitate a cat and attempt to climb through the cat flap. Safe to say I got stuck and it has been a running joke for 20 years of my life. And you bet when that family friend changed the door, my mum kept that bloody cat flap!! I swear it’s haunting me.
  3. Shamefully so, I am obsessed with correcting people’s grammar, I am an English student though… come on! I even know that it is the most infuriating thing ever but I can’t stop myself. If my boyfriend sends me a really sweet text, the first thing glaring out at me is whether the right your, there etc is being used.
  4. I am absolutely horrific at painting nails and keeping them nice. Honestly, I will try my best to get them looking great and within a day they are chipped and horrible. I have tried top coats, different drying methods… everything(!!) but nothing works. I am doomed to have short, stubby, unpolished nails.
  5. I often find myself jealous of different family dynamics. I have been lucky to spend time with my boyfriend’s family, my ex’s family and friend’s families throughout my life and I often find myself very jealous of the relationships they have at home (I am currently psyching myself up to write a blog post on why this is the case) because mine is tumultuous to say the least.
  6. My cat, Bradley, means the world to me. Many people say that about their pets but I genuinely put my cat above everyone. Like I just said, my relationships at home are rocky so having my cat there my whole life has made it that bit easier. Who doesn’t feel better when they have a cat snuggled up on their lap, purring away?!
  7. Finally, my first love and my always love will be Daniel Radcliffe – enough said really!

Tag, You’re It!

  1. Samantha
  2. Emily
  3. Carol
  4. Amy
  5. Kaleigh
  6. Ashley
  7. Annalee
  8. Alice
  9. Gwawr
  10. Stephanie

 

All of these beautiful bloggers deserve you to go and check them out! They are all blogs I read daily and ones that I constantly look forward to new content from, so I hope you enjoy them as much as me.

Thank you again Alana and Aoife for tagging me in this award,

Ella x

INSTAGRAM  |  TWITTER  |  PINTEREST

(featured image courtesy of afashionfix.co.uk)

I love Instagram. It is probably one of my most adored apps. Conveniently enough for this post, I also love fashion and following fashion bloggers who are really on top of their game.

I do however often find it hard to source out good fashionistas on Instagram as the market is generally saturated by big bloggers with 300k followers who aren’t necessarily any different from the rest.

Therefore, I thought I would write this post to give you an idea of some Instagram users below 100k followers that really are great and deserve a follow.

Number One:

First on my list is Lottie Bown. She is a pro Instagrammer and blogger with 11k followers and often features brands such as QUIZ, Rare London, and Brand Attic. Alongside fashion posts, you can expect a lot of pictures and coffees and definitely feel jealous of her travels to NYC. She recently posted a baking tutorial that proves she capable of a lot more than a fantastic outfit.

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Photo courtesy of lottiebown.blogspot.co.uk

Number Two:

Number two is Amelia Snape. Amelia is a Topshop personal shopper from Birmingham, UK and often showcases her looks on her Instagram account that I have followed for ages now. I mean if I’m not jealous of her wardrobe, I am jealous of her job! Amelia has often inspired me to be a bit more adventurous with my fashion choices and I admire her constant interaction with her 6k follower base and commitment to posting regularly.

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Photo courtesy of instaliga.com/ameliaalauren

 

Number Three: Chloe Hayward

I wouldn’t necessarily ‘label’ Chloe a fashion Instagrammer or blogger but she does deserve holding both of these titles. I have personally followed her for just over a year and I am always interested in what she is going to wear next. Chloe has a respectable 7.2k followers and there is something about her style that is very effortless and cool no matter what. At only 18, she is young but already proving that she has great charisma when it comes to her fashion choices.

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Photo courtesy of lifeandthreads.co.uk

Number Four: Liv Blankson

Liv’s Instagram is gorgeous! I often find myself  wandering through her photos (her theme is lit) gawking at her lifestyle and fashion choices. She also has an impressive 11.6k follower base that is truly deserved. What I enjoy about Liv’s fashion is her classic style. Neutrals, striped shirts and good denim are her chosen staples with splashes of colour and embroidery to keep things fresh. Liv also has a blog that I would definitely suggest checking out if you like her style. After I emailed Liv to let her know I was featuring her, she so kindly responded; proving that she has a great character and style.

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Photo courtesy of livinfashion.co.uk

Number Five: Emma Carr

Emma Carr is all round fantastic. She is a mum, wife, personal stylist and Instagram queen. With only 1.6k followers it is safe to say that Emma deserves a lot more for her amazing posts on Instagram. Like many of the other Instagram fashion idols that I have mentioned, Emma also has her own blog, thefashioncraver, where she gives fantastic style advice for both high street and high end trends.

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Photo courtesy of thefashioncraver.com

Number Six: Holly May Murphy

Holly has an impressive 2.1k followers on Instagram and I absolutely adore her posts. I can’t help but find myself regularly stalking her profile, loving everything from the marble monogrammed phone cases to the embroidered shirts from Zara – lush! Holly also has a blog where she showcases her great style and links up her Instagram posts to guide those with fake tan, sale shopping and more.

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Photo courtesy of statementundertones.blogspot.co.uk

Number Seven: Emma Hill

One of the bigger Instagram users on this list, Emma Hill, boasts an impressive 96k followers. This fashion icon seems to travel the world – her recent posts being from Vegas and Route 66 (goals in itself really!) and takes her impeccable style along with her. She often works with amazing brands like Juicy Couture and Wallis, constantly developing a professional image for herself. Of course, any good fashion Instagram queen has a blog to match, and Emma’s certainly doesn’t fail.

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Photo courtesy of ejstyle.co.uk

Number Eight: Hannah Crosskey

Hannah is another one of the big Instagram girls that I had to feature. She has a fantastic 76.3k followers and I always know when Hannah is posting because I forever notice her beautiful sunglasses. And guess what.. Hannah has an equally amazing blog that I would definitely suggest checking out. Her outfit posts feature high end accessories much like the adored blogger Gucci bag, yet effortlessly teams it with a classic piece from Topshop or Dorothy Perkins, making her a great inspiration for many.

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Photo courtesy of afashionfix.co.uk

 

Number Nine: Olivia

The best way to describe Olivia’s Instagram is ‘crisp’. All of her posts are beautifully crafted to the point where every one looks professionally arranged and taken. I love Olivia’s monochrome style and clearly her 8.8k followers agree. I discovered Olivia’s blog on her Twitter page where I almost squealed with excitement. Nude On Broad Street is as equally crisp and modern and her wish list is enough to make my bank account wince.

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photo courtesy of nudeonbroadstreet.com

 

Number Ten: Naomi Ross

Naomi’s Instagram is beautiful. Her use of colour and patterns inspires me to be more adventurous with my fashion choices. Her profile differs from several of those featured for that exact reason – she isn’t afraid to experiment. Naomi currently has 11k followers and you’ll be pleased to know that she does in fact have a website coming soon that I cannot wait for. Naomi has such a presence in the photos that are taken of her that you cannot deny she will have a fantastic career ahead in fashion.

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Photo courtesy of @rossio_style

 

I hope you all enjoyed this post and that you check out some of these amazing girls on Instagram or their blogs.

Ella x

INSTAGRAM  |  TWITTER  |  PINTEREST

christmas-blogger-gift-swap

Hey lovelies!

I have recently decided to get involved in a piece of viola‘s Christmas Blogger Gift Swap after she has been so successful the past two years.

I think a Christmas Gift Swap is a fantastic idea to bring the blogging community together and get to know people a little better. The whole process Viola has set up really allows you to try and buy presents (feel free to set a budget between you) that one another will enjoy and you never know – the relationship you build could be a lasting one! A blogging friend is a forever friend, eh?

What Do You Do?

  1. Fill in Viola’s Google form document found on the original post here.
  2. After she confirms a place, write a blog post (much like this) informing others of the Blogger Christmas Swap.
  3. On November 6th Viola will confirm your blogger pairing.
  4. Then you send and receive your pressies by December 17th yay!
  5. Write a blog post and include pictures of all your goodies for everyone to see.
  6. Enjoy the Christmas spirit!!

Feel free to use the hashtag #apovgiftswap on Twitter and Instagram when sharing your pressies and check out Viola’s twitter @violahelen_ to keep yourself updated on everything.

I really think Viola has come up with a lovely idea and I absolutely looove Christmas so I can’t wait to see all of you lovely people get involved and make new friends in the blogger community – I’m certainly excited to get to know more people!

Ella x

INSTAGRAM  |  TWITTER  |  PINTEREST

 

 

A good spaghetti bolognese
Waking up to see blue skies and a sunny day
Finding money in a jacket I haven’t worn for a while
When the song you’ve been singing comes on the radio
Hearing someone’s lawnmower – always makes me think of summer!

Getting the last size available in a pair of shoes or clothes
Homemade chocolate brownies
Discovering a great book, film or TV series
Finding a bargain online – like when something you’ve wanted for ages goes in the sale
Hearing the ice cream van – ahh childhood!

Decorating the Christmas tree
Any animal videos that have a happy ending
Hearing children laughing
Seeing someone upload a haul on YouTube
My cat Bradley (love)

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Bradley’s ickle beauty spot
Packing for a holiday
Buying something you have saved ages for
Someone loving a present you have got them
Seeing it snow for the first time in months

A good cocktail – Woo Woo for me!
Having family traditions
When new people enjoy your company
A good hot chocolate
Getting shiny new coins – £1 coins never looked so good

Fixing or making something yourself, without help
Waking up next to my boyfriend after a lay in
Scented candles
Good surprises – Adam brings me flowers when I’m sad
Harry Potter being on TV – best films ever

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Warming up after being out in the cold
Chocolate Fudge Cake being on the menu in a restaurant
Seeing someone after a long time of being apart – particulary my amazing boyfriend
Giving and receiving compliments
Relaxing in the bath

Good french fries
Writing in the first page of a new notebook
Having people love a new blog post
Finishing an essay after working on it for ages
Hearing someone speak French – damn it’s so elegant!

Finding a holy grail piece of makeup
Pretty scenery i.e. lots and lots of trees
Seeing Adam after a long day at work
Cuddles
Being successful – especially when you aren’t expecting it

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Having friends you know are always there for you
When someone confides in you – I really love being trusted
Overcoming a fear
New comfy pjs
Tattoos – especially planning new ones for myself!

Well there you go, 50 things that make me happy.
I hope you liked this guys, sometimes it is very important to remember what makes you happy and appreciate the little things in life.
I would love it if you did your own version of this and posted it below!

Ella x

INSTAGRAM  |  TWITTER  |  PINTEREST

I recently had the absolute delight to stay in a tree house from the 2nd-5th September at Center Parcs, Longleat, with my boyfriend and his family.

I was so excited as last year was only the first time I had ever been to Center Parcs and the idea of staying in a tree house was amazing as I’m not normally able to afford such luxury!

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What Do You Get?

It was a long ass journey but when we arrived we were greeted by a lovely member of staff who showed us around our home for the weekend. Prior to the visit they asked the ages of the people arriving (two of the children going received teddies with their names on tags), any recent birthdays (we received birthday cake, balloons and banners) and what paper you would prefer to be delivered.

Amazingly, they had stocked the fridge in the games room with complimentary drinks and snacks, as well as having full access to an Xbox and games without a deposit – which we hadn’t experienced in the Games Lodge the year before. The games room, that I just mentioned, was just over a little walkway from the balcony where there was also a pool table and other games provided for you. The entrance is actually the featured photo that I have used for this post.

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The stairs to the master bedroom

The tree house had four bedrooms, three doubles and one twin, to which all had an en-suite and a private balcony. Now I have to mention the showers! They were honestly amazing. It had what seemed like a million different settings, a waterfall style shower head above you and four water jets that you controlled from a single panel.

We also had a private hot tub on the balcony and an infrared room (basically gets hot like a steam room/sauna and has a lot of health benefits) to use at our own leisure which was great. The only problem was that the weather in Longleat was miserable so once you got in the hot tub, you never wanted to get out!

I will admit that if you are not very ‘tech-friendly’ it is a bit of a faff. The shower, the TVs, the Xbox, the remotes and even the cooker are quite complicated to use but luckily they do provide a manual that helps explain things really well.

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What We Did

Adam and I decided that this year we would do as much as we could, even if money was restricting. I feel like Center Parcs is hard to enjoy without having saved half your life beforehand – having to remortgage your home to go bowling and sign off your first-born to the Center Parcs devil for a bike isn’t my kind of fun.

Despite this, Adam and I did a lot and really loved our weekend! Our bikes were a small fortune at £29 for the weekend (and as discovered was probably a waste of money as Longleat is hilly af) making me wince slightly as I entered my pin on my poor, overused card.

However, there are things to do in Center Parcs that aren’t a lot of money. We went to the Adventure Golf which had been newly renovated and had a medieval theme that was pretty amazing! On one of the last holes there was a dragon that ‘breathed fire’ and growled and I am proud to admit that I did in fact get a hole-in-one wooo!

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We also booked a badminton court for one hour which was just over £8 but admittedly you got brand new equipment and we got to keep the shuttlecocks which wasn’t too bad. We were so knackered after 40 minutes that I have to admit I got my moneys worth!

On Sunday we went for breakfast at The Pancake House and I got ruined by a stack of American pancakes with rolos, whipped cream, chocolate sauce and more goodies.

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The pancakes were quite expensive and the place was so popular that I would recommend only going the once – there are only so many pancakes you can take in a weekend!

We also went bowling which is also fun. The weekend prices are often more expensive than the rest of the week, so 45 minutes of bowling was £26. Ouch. However, because we decided to just go together, we got in about 4 games and (quoting the prices of a place near me) it’s generally £4.50 per person, per game, (£9 together x 4 games = £36) meaning we got a better deal!

Luckily we got a slot midday but generally you had to book well in advance to even get one lane. I learnt early on that booking before you go is often a good idea and avoids indecisiveness on the day! They have a really useful app that I used constantly to check the availability and prices of activities and restaurants which is a great idea if you’re going yourself.

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Overall, I had such a great time away with Adam and his family and I am so excited to go again soon. I feel so lucky that I had this opportunity to stay in a tree house and I am grateful to Adam’s family for providing me with this experience.

Ella x

INSTAGRAM  |  TWITTER  |  PINTEREST

If you wanted to read another review, I found a Daily Mail article that I really enjoyed about the experience:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-2593497/Hot-tubs-games-room-endless-luxury-Center-Parcs-treehouse-all.html