What I Got For Christmas 2016

30 Dec 2016

Can you believe that Christmas has been and gone? It feels like only last month that I was wrapping presents for last Christmas! It's quite strange how quickly the day goes after so much a massive build up, but nevertheless, I had an absolutely wonderful day and I hope all of you did too. Now, I've never posted something like this before, but I am the nosiest person on the planet, so I love to read other people's "What I got for Christmas" posts. I know I don't have to do a disclaimer, but just in case, I'm only writing this post because I want to share what I received. It's not because I want to brag or anything like that, I just like reading other people's and want to do my own.

So first of all, I wanted to share the books that I was given. I never ever receive books, even when I ask for them, so I was really excited to receive five! In no particular order, there was The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins, which I saw the film for and wasn't impressed with, but I've heard the book is better; Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon, which I think is meant to be for teens, but I've wanted to read it for a very long time; The Humans by Matt Haig, an alien-type novel; The Ocean At The End Of The Lane by Neil Gaiman, which I've wanted to read for so so long, as I love a good fantasy; and The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey - I'm not too sure what to expect with this as I haven't seen the film and the blurb doesn't give too much away. This may be the first one that I read, but if any of you have recommendations for any that I should read first, do let me know!
My main present from J was a Fitbit Alta and I'm so pleased with it! I've been after a Fitbit for what feels like forever, and I'd been asking for the basic Fitbit Flex. So when I opened the Alta, I was so surprised and chuffed to bits! It's a little more advanced than the Flex, and can track steps, minutes of exercise and calories burned, as well as showing your texts and calls when linked with your phone. With the free app that you can download, you can also set yourself achievable goals, input your water consumption, track your sleep and more! It's such a nifty little gadget, and I've already had plenty of use out of it.
All those who know me know that I LOVE nail varnish - maybe not as much as I used to, as I used to do a lot of nail art, and while I don't go to those extremes anymore, I still have to have a colour on my nails. Clearly, my family know me very well as I managed to receive a ton of nail varnishes! The majority are from Barry M, with some of my favourites being the Boardwalk shade of the Coconut Infusion, Dark Side of the 'Shroom from the Sunset Infusion range, and the Black Cherry Gelly. The two that aren't from Barry M are The Body Shop polishes, and I can't recommend them enough! They dry so so quickly and leave a gorgeous shine. They're also vegan if you're looking for that sort of thing!
Something else that I absolutely love is fruit and herbal teas, so of course, I was inundated with tea related things! I'm in love with Whittards, so my sister got me a bauble filled with milk chocolate coated honeycomb, a beautifully decorated tin of cranberry and white chocolate cookies, and another beautiful tin of Christmas tea (which is absolutely phenomenal!) J also treated me to some bits from Whittards - the Dreamtime tea, which is an instant tea, so it isn't loose leaf or in a bag - it's crazy - and a long-handle infuser. Last, but certainly not least, my mum bought me a box of Wild Apple and Cinnamon tea by Pukka, which I'm super excited to try! After all of my Christmas baking posts, I'm sure you're all aware how much I love cinnamon.
Now for some beauty bits! I don't tend to ask for much beauty stuff, but I was really eager to get my hands on the Naked Ultimate Basics by Urban Decay, so I was super happy to find out that my grandad had bought it for me! I'm all about that matte eyeshadow, so I can't wait to get stuck into it. Keep your eyes peeled for a post! My grandad also kindly bought me the new Ghost perfume, Whitelight. I'm absolutely obsessed with Ghost and I think their bottles are bloomin' gorgeous, so I'm more than happy to add this to my collection. My mum kindly bought me the Beautifully Matte Light No7 foundation in Cool Vanilla, which I am extremely grateful for. We attended an event with No7 and got colour matched, and when the woman matching me asked my skin type, I replied with oily and she handed me the Instant Radiance, which is really not for oily skin at all. Hello, shiny face! I'd been mixing it with one of my best matte foundations so that I had the wear with a slight glow, but I'm so happy to now have a light to medium matte that matches me perfectly!
Of course, I received an absolute ton of baking stuff, so much so that I didn't dare take a picture of it all. Seriously, this post would have gone on forever! So I chose a few of my fave bits to show you all. There's the Sugar and Crumbs salted caramel flavoured icing sugar (I was also given the strawberry milkshake bag too - just imagine the buttercream I could make), three icing pens in pink, green and navy, mini loaf tins, which I was so pleased with because I have a need to make lemon drizzle cakes, and a packet of only the best vanilla pods in the world. Some of the other things I received was Bake Spray, a bundt tin, several spring form tins, baking beans, enough piping bags to last a lifetime and a bunch of piping nozzles, including some of those fancy Russian piping tips.
While we're on the subject of baking, let's talk about some of the books I received to fuel my addiction. My grandad bought me a gorgeous molskine recipe journal that I'm just head over heels for. It's amazing quality and the front has sweet, baking-related illustrations debossed into it. I'm going to get so much use out of this, and I've already got a blog-worth of recipes to write down! Next up is the GBBO (all hail) Perfect Cakes And Bakes To Make At Home book, which again, I'll get a ton of use out of. To go with my bundt tin, my mum bought me the Kiss My Bundt recipe book, which is full of delicious cakes that I can't wait to get stuck into!
I have always been a creative person, so an easy gift to give me is something that will continue to fuel my creativity. I used to be into cross-stitching quite heavily when I was younger, and I've recently started to pick it back up, so my mum added some threads that I needed to my stocking. As well as this, she bought me a brand new kit to start once I've finished my current project. Look at how cute it is! It's so satisfying to start something like that completely from scratch and see the final piece looking all lovely in a frame! There were a few other bits to go along with these cross-stitching things, like bobbins and a new sewing box, so I'm well stocked up! As I had expressed a lot of interest in taking up a new hobby in 2017, I also received a set of watercolour pencils with some watercolour paper to go with them. I've never tried watercolours before, so I would absolutely love to know some hints and tips for beginners!
Finally, my main present from my mum was a mini cruise to Amsterdam for J and I. If you've read my 2016 post, you'll know that J was granted British citizenship this year, which means he can get a British passport, giving him access to the whole world, pretty much. His last passport only allowed him access to the UK and South Africa, so he's never been abroad, which is why this is such a lovely present. We're both super excited about it, but as neither of us have been there before, we've got no idea what to do or where to go. So if you have any recommendations or suggestions, please do leave a comment!

As I mentioned earlier in the post, I did receive other bits, like acrylic Muji drawers, a Next voucher for some workwear for January, and a butt ton of socks, but I just didn't want the post to be super long. I could've rambled on forever about stocking fillers, but no one wants to see that. How many times can I say I love a pair of socks? But I was really spoiled rotten this Christmas and received so much more than I could've ever imagined. I feel so lucky and blessed to be surrounded by people that love me.

If you've got a What I got for Christmas post, please leave the link in the comments. I'd love to have a good old nosey!

Whould you like to comment?

  1. I know I’m a little late to this post but you got some lovely things!! The books really caught my eye as we have such similar taste. I’ve read The Girl on The Train, it was my first thriller and thought it was pretty good. I bought The Girl with all The Gifts second hand this week, and I’m so excited to get stuck in. The Humans by Matt Haig has been on my to buy list for ages now, let me know if you enjoy it!! :-) xx

    Helen | Helen’s Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle Blog

    1. I'm reading The Girl with all The Gifts at the minute! I'm finding a little difficult to get into, but I'm persisting :) Next on my list is The Diary of Anne Frank, and then I think I'll be heading on to The Girl on the Train. I've heard Matt Haig is great though, so I'm looking forward to reading! xx