I’ve Been to the Library!

I’m back! Yes, last week was a false start. I could make all the apologies in the world (I’ve been ill, I’ve been visiting my parents, I’ve been working really hard, I haven’t been taking photos because of poor light, I’ve been to Disneyland) and they’d all be true, but essentially, I’m sorry. I love this blog and I hate that I’ve let it slip out of my hands recently. I’m reprioritizing, and should be bringing you exciting things everyday again soon!

On to the exciting news – I have been to the library (oh, what, you guessed that from the title?). I thought I’d ease myself back into blogging with a quick trip through what I’m looking forward to reading in the next couple of weeks!

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A Well-Deserved Bath!

So, Oxford has this horrible tradition of setting you exams four days after the start of term, to check you’ve been working over the holidays. So that’s why I’ve been a tiny bit quiet!

I finished my last exam on Saturday at lunchtime, and after grabbing a bite to eat, I leapt into the bath to unwind from all those hours at my desk…

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I resorted to my old favourite, Rose Jam bubble bar from Lush, for a really comforting scent, and whacked on some Catastrophe Cosmetic face mask in case my skin felt a bit stressed. Teamed with a cup of Twinings Rose Garden tea and the second book in the Temeraire series, Throne of Jade, I had a wonderfully relaxing hour completely free of all exam stress!

Just a short post today, but I have plenty coming up in the next few days, so don’t worry, I am back!

Asha x

 

An Amazing Hay-on-Wye Book Haul!

This weekend, I spent a lovely few days with my Mum in the little Welsh town of Hay-on-Wye. If you’re as much of a book-lover as we are, that name should be ringing some bells for you straight away: Hay-on-Wye is otherwise known as the Town of Books. Yep, it’s a town filled with second-hand and antique bookshops. Basically my dream town.

We stayed in the most beautiful B&B I’ve ever seen, The Bear. We’d actually stayed there the year before, and fell in love with the gorgeous building and the lovely owners, David and Andrew (not to mention the amazing breakfast!). The Bear is a gorgeous old labyrinthine building, with lots of little nooks and crannies, but decorated beautifully, with an amazing mix of the old and the modern:

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Mum and I stayed in the twin room, which is much bigger than this photo makes it look – it is beautiful, with a gorgeous en-suite, and the most comfortable beds! Also, look at those gorgeous tapestry blankets…

room2-2These two pictures are taken from The Bear’s website.

Anyway, once we managed to tear ourselves away from our stunning little base, we went off on a weekend-long rampage of the bookshops, and I thought I’d show you my finds!  Continue reading

Shopping My Stash #2!

Did you see last week’s post, where I explained the concept of stash shopping? Well, I like a bit of variety in my routines, so I’ll be switching up my beauty products every week from now on, and showing you what I’ll be using!

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Shopping My Stash

Like most of you I expect, I have a habit of acquiring must-have things and then forgetting to use them. And then buying more things. And forgetting to use them. Now don’t get me wrong, I love having a good variety of colours in makeup, or flavours of lip balms and things – I’m not doing this in order to whittle my stash down to one of each item. I just want to show some long-lost products some love!

I am fairly loyal to some things and don’t tend to hoard different varieties, so I haven’t wanted to switch up my cleanser and toner, for instance, and in other cases I’m in the middle of a big bottle of something, so I’m just going to persevere (like shower gel).BEAUTY shopping my stash

 

 

Top Row:

Chilli Pepper Eyeshadow Quad – this is a cute little neutral set that was my everyday eyeshadow hero in my first year at uni. Then came Urban Decay. I really like these, I just… stopped using them!

Nivea Express Hydration Primer – I absolutely HAD to have this when it came out, and then I realised it was less of a Porefessional, post-moisturiser primer, and more of a moisturiser in its own right. But I’ve recently finished my day cream, so it’s Primer’s time to shine!

Bottom Row:

Nip and Fab Dry Leg Fix – I got this in free with a magazine this summer, so it’s not been languishing too long, but I want to use my body lotions while I can enjoy them, before it gets wintry and I feel much more body buttery.

No7 Sheer Temptation lipstick in ‘Lovely’ – This was part of a gift with purchase somewhen in the mists of time. It’s a sort of dusky pink, but very shimmery, so it’s been abandoned for a while in favour of my brights. Time to see if I can make it work or if it’s one to ditch.

Mini Ghost perfume – I really like this! I had a set of mini perfumes given to me at Christmas several years ago, and from them discovered my favourite scent, Givenchy’s Ange ou Demon – but that meant I rather neglected the other minis, which is silly when I liked them so much! As the weather darkens, the richness of Ghost should be nice.

Toffee Apple flavoured owl lip balm – surely enough said? This is amazing. I just have way too many lipbalms!

Soap and Glory Glam-a-lot – I don’t really wear body spray that much, being such a perfume girl. This is nice enough with a lovely scent, but I’ve had it for years and really would rather focus on perfume.

And of course, beauty products aren’t the only thing I stash! My To Be Read pile is enormous (although slowly shrinking, only around 160 books now), so I’m going to make an effort to nominate some lingerers to be read in the next couple of weeks to shift them onto the Read shelves!

BOOKS shopping my stash

Black Trillium by Marion Bradley, Julian May and Andre Norton – this looks like a good old-fashioned high fantasy! Not sure why this one keeps slipping down the list, I’ve had it on the pile for a few years.

The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters by G.W. Dahlquist – I’m actually reading this at the moment, and it’s very entertaining, but quite a dense, slow read. I love the blurb quote – like Sherlock Holmes, with the production values of Buffy, rewritten by the Marquis de Sade. Fun stuff.

The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde – I’ve tried to read this before and gave up – I found it a bit too patronisingly knowing and sly, but I like his other work (Shades of Grey is great), so I’m going to give it another go.

Vanished Kingdoms by Norman Davies – This has only been on the pile since Christmas, but I’m worried that if I don’t get to it soon, all my non-fiction will be abandoned once the Classics kicks in for the final year in October… A history of now-defunct places in Europe, how exciting!

Do you have the same stashing habits as I do? What do you think of this stash-shopping idea?

Asha x

An Accidental Pay-Day Book Haul…

One of my favourite things about going on holiday is that trip to the bookshop a couple of weeks beforehand, to pick up lots of new, shiny books to read on the aeroplane, while lounging by the pool, on car journeys and ferry journeys and bus journeys, in bed when it’s too hot to sleep… Okay, I basically read all the time on holiday.

And yesterday was that bookshop trip. A good half hour spent in the local Oxfam bookshop furnished me with plenty of new reading material!

So, you could say I’ve fallen off the July spending ban wagon rather spectacularly. Or, if you were feeling generous, you might point out that while I did get some books yesterday, my very kind mother swooped in with her card as I was at the till.

You might also point out that I misremembered when my holiday was (10 days time, hurrah!) and thought I could pick up some books for that in early August after the ban was over…

But still. In the spirit of not acquiring any more books to add to the crazy TBR pile, I’ve failed quite badly. Care to take a look?

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Sorry for the low-light photo!

Not all of these are for my holiday – the Lindsey Davis is to add to my collection of Falco novels (only one to go now!), and the copy of Chocolat is to replace my current copy, which has ‘Free with Good Food magazine’ plastered across the back. I also probably won’t take Becoming Bindy MacKenzie on holiday, since no-one else will read it, but I loved Jaclyn Moriarty’s books when I was a teenager, and never read this one, so I had to grab it!

I’m also definitely not taking The Lore of the Land on holiday, just because I think it would take up all my weight allowance in my suitcase! This is a really gorgeous, luxurious book telling local legends from around Britain, and I can’t wait to get stuck into it and show you in more detail.

I also loved Sarra Manning as a teen, especially Guitar Girl, and I’m intrigued to try her adult fiction – even if it’s trashy, I like to read that sort of thing by the pool. I also picked up Peony in Love by Lisa See, a tragic romance novel set in 17th century China, and Nocturnes, a collection of short stories/novellas by Kazuo Ishiguro.

Think this little lot will last me a week?

Asha x