December 2015 Favourites

It's a new month (and a new year!), so that means a new favourites post. As expected the month has been dominated by Christmas, but most of this month's favourites are things that I still love even outside the festive season. So here's what I've been loving in December...


Favourite item of clothing: Cath Kidston star print dress
I bought this last year to wear on Christmas Day with Nick's family, but this month I've rediscovered it and worn it to work, as well as for a girls' lunch for my nanna's birthday (more on that in tomorrow's festive fashion post). I love Cath Kidston dresses for their gorgeous quirky prints but they're also really comfortable and flattering to wear, particularly in this skater style, and work for loads of different occasions. I tend to wear this one with my beloved brown riding boots and tights (though it would also work with black ballet pumps). Its one downside is it's a little thin, but you could always layer it under a navy or red cardigan or a cosy jumper.

Favourite beauty product: NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Mysterious Red
I was given this in a secret Santa as part of a beauty forum I'm on (yes I know, I'm spoilt) and it feels like I haven't taken it off since. It's a bit of a darker red than I would normally wear, but for me that works quite well at this time of year. Plus it wears really well; even through several lunches and drinks sessions it stayed on for around six hours. And when you need to do your make-up on the go or add something in to go from daytime to evening, the pencil formula makes it so easy to whip out and whack on. My only complaint is it's a little drying so make sure your lips are in good condition before you use it.


Favourite music: Maddie & Tae - Start Here
Regular readers will know I am a big country music fan and, as Country 2 Country gets closer I'm gearing up by listening to the albums from the various acts appearing. This month's pick is duo Maddie & Tae, whose debut album Start Here runs the gamut from introspective ballads like 'Fly' and 'After The Storm Blows Through' to the wistful yet optimistic 'Waitin' On A Plane' and the emotional 'Smoke'. But they're at their best on cheeky come-uppance tracks like 'Girl in a Country Song' (with its brilliant video that turns the 'bro-country' trend on its head), 'Sierra' and the ridiculously catchy 'Shut Up and Fish'. I can't wait to see them in March and sing along to every word.

Favourite TV programme: My Kitchen Rules
Specifically series four of the Aussie version. For those who don't know, MKR is a cooking competition where teams of two compete to be declared the best amateur cooks in the country. I got slightly addicted to the show when we were backpacking but we left the country halfway through the series, so when I was bored and browsing for a new TV show to watch I decided to find out how it all ended. Cue binge-watching half the series in a week. What I really like is that in an odd way you develop relationships with the teams (Tassie boys Mick & Matt are my favourites but I also like Queenslanders Dan & Steph). Plus if you're into your food there are some amazing recipes on there that I'm already wondering how I can recreate...

Favourite book: Mystery in White by J Jefferson Farjeon
I'm really getting into my mysteries at the moment and always like to read books set at Christmas over the festive period, so when my sister recommended this I decided to give it a go. The plot follows a motley crew of travellers who, when their train gets stuck in the snow on Christmas Eve, decide to find an alternative route and end up stumbling upon a mysterious house. It moves along at a cracking pace and there are plenty of twists and turns to keep you hooked throughout, even though it's quite a quick read. Some of the characters are a bit thinly drawn but they're engaging enough and help you stay with the plot even as it gets to the slightly obvious ending. Worth a read if you like something different on a cold winter's night.

Favourite thing to do: New Year's Eve
Usually I love Christmas but this year I didn't feel as excited as I normally do, so have gone for New Year's Eve. It's an excuse to get together with old university friends as now we're all scattered in different parts of the country we don't see each other much any more, and as we're all at the stages where several of us are settling down there might not be many more of them. This year we were the hosts and celebrated with cocktails (Nick has invented the 'Rosanna' as the house drink), eating our own body weight in Tesco party food, playing board games, watching the fireworks on the telly with a glass of fizz and then playing video games until we all fell asleep. It was brilliant and so good to catch up with old friends. I'm already looking forward to next year!

What were your favourite things in December?

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