Korean Beauty Products

My love of Korean beauty products began with one hand cream because I was drawn to the cute packaging and now it looks like a teenage girl has begun to take over my dressing table. Cuteness aside I really like most of the products that I've tried.

I usually buy my products via Ebay but I've recently discovered the Kawaii Panda beauty box which sends only Korean beauty products. As far as I'm aware this is the only box of this kind available in the UK. The box includes five full size items and is priced at £18 plus £3.20 p+p. 

I thought I'd try it out and my September box arrived today. These are the items for this month.

CELRANICO Green Tea Seed Oil Balancing Essence

Tangle Jelly Mask

A'PIEU Sweet Tea Lip Balm


Fresh Cup Strawberry Smoothie Modeling Mask

SKINFOOD My Short Cake Setting Mascara

I'm pleased with the items that I received especially the smoothie modeling mask as I've been wanting to try this. I looked up the prices on Ebay for these items and while there is not a massive saving on the products like you can get with some beauty boxes I don't see that as a negative because it's something not readily available in UK high street shops, it is conveniently delivered to your door plus the import tax has already been paid.
As well as the beauty box, Kawaii Panda have recently began to sell individual items via their website.

So Excited

I can't contain my excitement this week as we have purchased some tickets to Grimmfest, a horror film festival. I know horror isn't everyone's cup of tea but it is our favourite film genre. Neither of us have been before because it was hard for us to find a sitter for Little L but that's all sorted for this year.

This year Grimmfest is taking place October 6th-9th at the ODEON Printworks in Manchester (that's not too far for us to travel). The festival has all categories of horror films covered ... the full line up can be found here. Ken Foree is one of the special guests with others being announced closer to the festival time. Tickets can be purchased for the full event, day passes and individual films.
I can't wait .. I don't even think I get this excited on the run up to Christmas.

A Day In Llandudno

To take advantage of the good weather we've been having so late in to Summer we spent this Sunday in Llandudno. It seemed lots of other people had the same idea as it was quite busy.

We headed to the pier first of all then walked up to Happy Valley gardens. On a previous visit we walked past the park but have never wandered in. 

The views of the sea are amazing due to the park being on a slope.
Dotted about the town are wooden carvings of Alice In Wonderland characters. This is because Llandudno has links to a girl named Alice who is thought to be the inspiration for the character. The carvings are numbered and you can follow a trail to find them all. We didn't do this but found some in the park.

The caterpillar,

white rabbit

and a table ready for the mad hatters tea party.

A brass band began to play and we noticed even the band stand was decorated with characters.
Little L was a bit disappointed that we didn't manage a paddle in the sea because we headed for home earlier than we normally would due to school the next day. 

As we were leaving Llandudno we spotted this old building and stopped to take some photos.

 At first we did think that it was derelict but after looking more closely noticed that the doors weren't too shabby and bins around the back looked pretty new. A man appeared and began tidying up some litter as I was taking photos so I asked about the building and was told it was still in use for music events three times a week. I'm glad it's still in use and not like so many old buildings that I've seen which have just left to rot away.

Mini Zoo Visit

Yesterday we paid a visit to a mini zoo which is located at Reaseheath college. It was a spur of the moment decision (it was either this or go bra shopping) but the zoo is only about a 30 minute drive away. The college offer animal management courses and due to the zoo being used for teaching purposes it is only open during certain school holidays. 

The weather wasn't great so some of the animals were watching us from undercover.

This meerkat on watch duty was the only one outside with all the others in their house staying warm and dry.

I didn't know what this little deer like creature was until I looked it up when we came home and found out that it is a Patagonian Mara, a large rodent which is closely related to the guinea pig.

The zoo houses over 180 species but Little L's favourite animals were the rabbits. All the rabbits here have been rescued and re homed at the zoo.
The admission price to the zoo is £5 for adults and £4 for children which I think is a great price. I know it is only a small zoo and you couldn't really spend a full day here but it also isn't overcrowded with people and not so large that children may begin to lose interest.

Hartley Homes

On our trip to Wycoller we noticed these house as we passed through Colne and stopped on our way back home to take some photos. I've never seen anything like them before but there maybe similar arrangements to these here and there around Britain.

The first thing we saw was the clock tower and thought we were approaching a church but instead it was this collection of quaint houses. There are 20 houses in all,10 either side of the clock tower.

I think that at one time this stone arch would have been the main entrance to the complex but this was padlocked.

The wooden plaques on the arch give information about the properties.

I found more information about these houses here. After reading more about them I found that one of the renovations was an added bedroom as the interior up until 1960-63 had a bed-sit arrangement. I think they look tiny now so it must have been a bit of a tight squeeze before the extension. 

This aerial view of Hartley Homes taken in 1934. The building next to the houses was a hospital and when we were driving past only managed to catch a quick glimpse of the front but I don't know how much of that building remains or what it is used for as it was mainly hidden by trees.

These homes are for local elderly residents. I thought they may have been when we first came across them but I don't know who these houses were originally intended for. I would love to live here if I lasted to an old age and even told my husband to start saving his pennies (but they are rented properties plus we're not in the area). To live here it must have a wonderful sense of community spirit, lovely waking to see the lawns and plants and feeling of safety living in closed complex.

Lotta Clogs

Ever since I first spied a pair of sandal type clogs a few years ago I've had a strong hankering for a pair so with money given to me for my birthday I jumped online for a spot of clog shopping.
The first brand that popped up when searching was Swedish Hasbeens. Their clogs are lovely, I really liked the designs and colours but they're not cheap. As I usually live in boots and trainers I can't justify spending what is to me a silly amount of money on a pair of shoes that I may hardly wear. 

I managed to find a less expensive brand, Lotta from Stockholm. They stock many colours and styles plus also sell seconds on their web site. I opted for an aubergine shade as I think that I'd wear a darker colour more often. That's the same reason I chose a closed toe style rather than an open toe.

As I don't wear shoes very often I was a bit worried that my feet would complain as soon as I put them on or blister but after a couple of hours trotting around the house they seem fine. The leather is very soft so they don't rub at all. 

I know clogs are not everybodies cup of tea, Little L said they were horrible and my sister agreed and told me that I was looking 'very Dutch'. Oh well, it's not the first time I've worn something that others have thought was hideous.

A Day In Wycoller

Last Friday Anders and myself had the opportunity to have another day out and this time we went to Wycoller to see the hall ruins. I saw the hall featured on a TV programme about British villages a while ago and knew it was somewhere I'd like to visit one day. 

Before going to see the hall we stopped off at the Atom, one of the panopticons in Lancashire. 

The view was fantastic even if it was a bit of a dull drizzly day.

It was a shame to see graffiti in the Atom but I suppose in such an isolated spot it is bound to happen.
Travelling to Wycoller from the Atom only took about 10 minutes. The car park at Wycoller Country Park is not far from the village (I think that parking in the village is for residents only). Even though the weather wasn't brilliant that day there were plenty of ramblers about. (I did type walkers to begin with but the first thing that springs to mind then to me is TWD)

 Next to the hall is the visitor centre which is a barn that was built around 1630. Behind the barn is a picnic area and pond (be prepared to be ambushed by the ducks)

It doesn't look much from the outside but inside the beams are amazing. The hole in the side of the building near the roof is an owl hole.

Walking around the ruins was like trying to stay upright on an ice rink. The old stone flags were lethal after being wet from the rain.

I love all the stone work that has survived around the window and door frames.

 This must be the largest fireplace I have ever seen. I never found out what the key hole shape next to it was for. There was a mention of this feature in the visitor centre but no explanation. I wonder if any other buildings of this age have them?

How many people have been up and down these stairs for them to be this worn.

This is the floor plan of the hall

and the key which was about 8 inches long. I'm sure you wouldn't manage to accidentally lose a key that size and not notice.

The hall is situated next to Wycoller Beck which has various ancient bridges that cross it.

This 15th pack horse bridge has withstood traffic from man and horse for centuries. When I took the photos of the bridge I was only standing about 15ft from the nearest house in the village. It must be lovely to have this stream and the hall ruins as a view when you look out of your window.

Opposite the hall is a conservation area with willow sculptures and ponds.

The ponds were very clear for pools of still water. There were lots of information regarding the local wildlife. Wild plants were labeled, some with what their medicinal purposes would have been in the past.
It was a lovely day despite the not so great weather. I'm glad that we managed to fit this in to one of our child free days out as I think that the children's attention span would have lapsed after about 20 minutes.
The TV programme where I first saw Wycoller was on Penelope Keith's Hidden Villages. The programme is still available to view here, it was featured on series 1, episode 2, third segment.