SWIG Hip Flask

You may think a hip flask is a strange thing for a girl to be blogging about, but I am a girly girl who loves going to watch her beloved football team Manchester United. Now unfortunately the football season doesn’t run through summer, it runs through winter and therefore it can get cold on those terraces. And I mean COLD. I have often taken a hip flask filled with some whisky during the winter months to warm up my tummy and it works a treat.

IMG_5501

SWIG is a company who takes a hip flask and makes it cool. The hip flask itself is a silver chrome flask with an easy, but secure twist off cap and each one has a unique ID number engraved on to it, but I will discuss more about that later. So you have your hip flask, which is a quality piece without feeling overly heavy, so how do SWIG take it to the next level? They let you choose a little case for it – this could be different leathers, tartans and other materials.

FullSizeRender

I chose the Red Harris Tweed check design, because I love tartan and I know quite a bit about Harris Tweed. For those of you who don’t, this little tweet pouch was handmade on the Isle of Skye using exclusive Harris Tweed sourced direct from the weavers and mills on the Isle of Lewis and Harris in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. Pretty cool to have something so unique huh?

FullSizeRender1

The hip flask snuggles down nicely into its pouch, and is a great size for trouser pockets, blazer or coat pockets and of course handbags, and so I fill it with a little of David Beckham’s Haig Club whisky and I know I will enjoy my half-time treat! If you are wanting to purchase a SWIG hip flask for a boyfriend, friend, father, grandfather etc, it arrives in a lovely presentation box, laid inside on a beautiful Paisley-designed cushion.

IMG_5504

The unique number that is engraved on to the hip flask is your SWIG Society number. What’s the SWIG Society? It is an added bonus when owning a flask that comes with perks such as an invitation to the SWIG annual party, monthly SWIG whisky refills, a SWIG Society pouch, and much more.

The SWIG Harris Tweed flask has an RRP of £69 but currently has £20 off, making it just £49 and you can check it out here.

Love,

Kathryn xxx

Philips Juicer and Juicing at Home with Joe Wicks

I was recently sent a Philips Juicer to try out, and was extremely excited as juicing is something I have wanted to try for such a long time but I have never invested in one as I thought they would be very messy and take a lot of time to make juice, when I could just pop to the shop and buy a bottle of juice.

IMG_5419

How wrong I was. I opened up the box, and took out the juicer which was already put together so no constructing which I thought was great. The juicer comes with quick and easy instructions, and I literally had to plug it in, pop in my fruit and out came a yummy and healthy large glass of juice. I experimented with full pieces of fruit and vegetables as well as chopping them up, and both ways worked perfectly – which meant even less time and hassle. The juicer also comes with a jug which has a special lid on it that you can pop under the spout of the juicer and so every last drop goes straight into the jug and then you can pour your concoction into a glass.

IMG_5420

When it came to cleaning my juicer, Philips have made it super easy, every part of the juicer comes apart and you can wash them all separately or together. In fact, even the left over parts of the fruit all go into one part of the juicer, and I could easily take a spoon and scoop it out into the bin. It has certainly changed my thoughts about juicing that is for sure.

IMG_5505

Philips have recently collaborated with The Body Coach, Joe Wicks and I was sent some amazing recipes to try out which he designed. The recipes Joe has come up with are low on sugar, and have many health benefits, compared to the ones on your supermarket shelves which are full of sugar and not a lot else.

Below, Joe has answered 7 questions to give you the Truth about Juice…

1: Juices are full of sugar and bad for your teeth – “There are, let’s face it, cheap concentrated juice drinks packed with sugar that have been sitting on supermarket shelves for months, in addition to high levels of sugars, during the bottling process heat, and other types of processing of fruit and vegetables can lead to 15-35% reduction in Vitamin C after treatment. By juicing at home you can avoid other ‘fruit’ juices on the market that have little or no health benefits, plus home juicing makes it easier to include more vegetables in your diet, which reduces the sugar content of the juice.”

2: Juicing is expensive for me to do at home – “This couldn’t be further from the truth. You just need to change some habits and instead of shopping for guilty snacks, make space in your kitchen for healthy food. You can also head down to your local market or greengrocers to pick up fresh, in season fruit and vegetables to save some extra pennies. At the end of the week, you can also use up leftovers that may be over ripe for eating, but ideal for juicing – lettuce is great for summer juices and carrots are perfect in winter.”

3: Juicing is good for a quick fix/rapid weight loss – “No, no, no! Ditch this now! People get bored, they give up, and any lost weight returns with a vengeance. For some with underlying health problems, such as diabetes, this approach can also be dangerous. Juicing has a part to play in our modern busy lifestyles, as it’s an easy way to give your body a lot of essential vitamins and minerals. Quick fixes and crash diets are pointless and totally unsustainable. For me it’s all about real food, real nutrients and plenty of good fuel for the body.”

4: Blending is better for you than juicing – “Juicing and blending both benefit the body in different ways. Juicing is simply a very efficient way for the body to take in nutrients quickly. Recent research from University College London actually recommends an ‘up to ten a day’ diet of fruit and veg. Now that’s a lot of veggies on your plate, so juicing makes this easier. Studies have also shown that those who have a greater variety of vegetables in their diet also tend to eat a greater quantity of vegetables and have overall better diet quality, so juicing is a great way to start getting greater variety in!”

5: Vegetable juice tastes terrible! – “Taste is personal, and everyone will have their own favourites. Those starting on their juicing adventure, and who aren’t so keen on veggies, can start off with ingredients such as apples, watermelons or carrots to add some initial sweetness.”

6: You lose vital nutrients from fruit and vegetables when you juice – “This is another myth, which needs debunking because it’s stopping people from getting healthy. The UK Department of Health recognises that juice counts towards the recommended Five A Day. That’s because juice retains all of the nutritional value of whole fruit or vegetables, with the exception of fibre. You can increase juice quality by using cold produce and juicing is a great way to add essential vitamins and minerals to your diet, so juice consistently and drink it fresh!”

7: Buying a juicer is expensive – “You don’t need to splash out on a really expensive juicer, there are plenty to choose from out there and Philips have some available from just £40. You’ll soon have your return on investment as home juicing is much cheaper than buying juices from juice bars and health food shops. You can’t put a price on good health!”

I had a go at making some of the recipes recommended by Joe, and my favourites were the Zesty Zinger, Carrot or the Stick, Cool as a Cucumber and Avocad-O-Mega. I am not a huge fruit and vegetables fan, but I really enjoyed these and it is a much easier and quicker way for me to get important nutrients rather than sitting and eating a plate of vegetables for my tea.

Here are some of the recipes by Joe that I made…

Zesty Zinger
1 pear
1/2 a fennel bulb
1/2 a lemon
1 orange

1

Carrot or the Stick
2 carrots
5 celery sticks
1 beetroot
1 pear

2

Cool as a Cucumber
1 cucumber
2 apples
1/2 a lime
5 mint leaves

3

Avocad-O-Mega
1 apple
5 celery sticks
1 avocado (blended)
1 tsp of flax seed

4

Each recipe gave me a tall glass full of juice and I think the quantities of ingredients are not as large as I would have imagined goes into juicing.

FullSizeRender

The Philips Viva Collection Juicer costs £99.99 and is available now.

Would you like to try juicing? Do you already have a juicer? Let me know in the comments below and if you try any of these recipes, please tweet about it using the hashtag #RealJuiceTruths

Happy Juicing!

Love,
Kathryn xxx

Why I have been M.I.A.

You may have realised I have been missing in action on my blog in the past couple of months and I wanted to sit down and explain to you all why that is. I have had a very bad year, it hasn’t been a happy one at all, and blogging is something which I love to do, but when I am not content in myself I find it hard to motivate myself and I didn’t want to post half-arsed blog posts as it would be unfair to my readers, to the brands I work with and to myself. I have had a few things go on at home which I don’t want to talk about on here, which have disabled me to blog, but I will discuss a few of the things I have been doing and starting to make me happy again.

braceI got my brace put back on a month ago, as gaps had started to appear!

First up, I have began going to the gym every week, to help me lose weight, get fitter and to boost those endorphins and I have started a weekly counselling session which helps me look at things that have happened and to try and understand how to process my thoughts in a more positive way. I haven’t had a job since January but last week I found out that I was lucky enough to get a job in my local town for three days a week, which will be perfect for me at the moment, and will enable me to carry on my gym sessions and counselling. I have been spending lots of time with my family and friends, building up those important relationships, which I had shied away from when I was first suffering with my anxiety and depression earlier in the year. The football season has started too and so I have been going to watch Manchester United which is something I love and have loved since I was 8 years old. Another huge thing that has kept me crazy busy is organising the Hull Bloggers Meet with Alex and Jenny, which takes place on 30th August – we have over 100 brands collaborating with us which has been way beyond our expectations! On a smaller scale, I am also working with the York branch of Kiehls to put on a festive blogger shindig before Christmas, so if you are a beauty blogger and would love the chance to be involved, please drop me a line.

kelsie cake
M
y cousin turned 3 in July and so we celebrated and had a Frozen cake.

me and willow girafge
M
y Goddaughter Willow and I tried out burgers and mocktails at Giraffe at Xscape.

nanna
I
 visited my Nanna and Grandad in Northampton and we had more cocktails at Coast to Coast.

Old trafford
I
 went to Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur for the first game of the season.

red devil
A
nd had a red devil painted on my face!

cole
I
 saw Andy Cole, United Legend last weekend at Old Trafford.

emma cocktail
I
 went to an Independence Day USA themed evening with my friend Emma, who told me she was pregnant – so that is a mocktail and I am looking forward to meeting her new baby boy or girl!

james kelsie
M
y Uncle, Aunty and Cousin came to visit.

sno cone
W
illow and I had Sno-Cones at a local summer fair!

theo
I
 got to spend time with my cousin Theo who has Autism but who amazes me every single time. This visit he told me his alphabet and sang me songs.

willow baloon
I
 bought Willow this huge Unicorn balloon – partly because I wanted it too!

willow charlie emma
M
y friend Emma and I, took her son Charlie and Willow out for nature walks.

willow mini garden
W
e also visited the local garden centre and made miniature gardens.

Now that I am ‘back’ blogging and much happier in myself, I have lots of great blog posts lined up, and have the pleasure of working with some amazing brands. Now I am not saying I won’t get sad again, or things won’t happen in my private life that will put my blogging on hold, but I appreciate your support and comments and for sticking with me. I am looking forward to starting working again, and of course to the Hull Bloggers event, and so I will keep you up to date on my journey and how everything goes at the Meet.

millie
M
y beautiful kitten Millie turns One this month!

kiehls
I
 am so looking forward to co-hosting a Kiehls blogger event!

willow foot
I
 am hoping the sunshine stays out so Willow and I can make more friendship anklets and glitter tattoos.

willow train
A
s well as taking more trips out with my special girl.

me

Lots of love,

Kathryn xxx

Father’s Day Gift Guide

This coming Sunday 21st June is Father’s Day here in the UK and so I have compiled a gift guide on some …

Blogger Event: Kiehls

Recently I was invited to the Kiehls Blogger Event held in their store in York which I was super excited about as …

Summer Style with Superdrug

I was recently sent a rather large bag of new releases from Superdrug, all of which are perfect for Summer, when it …

Birchbox May Edition

Okay, so as I was telling you all in my previous post, I found some great offers on Which Beauty Box UK …

Latest in Beauty Heart Box

During Bank Holiday Weekend, I was browsing Jaina from Which Beauty Box UK’s blog page, which I always check out as it …

Brand New Vans from Skate Hut

I think there is nothing better than a brand new white pair of trainers – especially in summer as they make my …

Caribou Make-Up Brushes

I go through eye make-up brushes like there is no tomorrow and so I was super excited when fairly new brand Caribou …