Friday, 31 July 2015

Life // A family post


^^Nope, not my family...


Corfu view while on the boat to the Greek mainland.



^^Spot Wally, eh, I meant dad.




If you are an avid reader of this blog or follow me on Instagram, then you must have seen that me and Steven travelled to Greece this summer to get ourselves some sunshine, delicious seafood and meet my family. I also wrote a post on introducing your boyfriend to the parents and all about that day. It was an amazing experience as I go to see my family after six months, they got to meet Steven and Steven got the chance to see all of us in action (have you ever seen My Big Greek Fat Wedding movie?If so you are close to guesses...).
Even though its been more than a month since then and I forgot about these pictures I thought they deserve a place on the blog so here are a few snaps of that day, hope you like them...


Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Fashion // How to dress a guy on his first Tinder date

How many times have you caught yourself listening to the mumbling of an unsuccessful dating story of a male friend?

In most cases the story was like this; male friend goes on a first date wearing his 12 years old jumper and ends up talking about beers and football, leaving the girl unimpressed for so many different reasons (Go figure!).

Well, this is exactly what happens at the moment with these guys and it would be a shame not getting my hands on with some fashion advice as part of the House of Fraser latest styling competition to help them find the one and only love! 

Meet Melvin, a cool and funny guy that I would possibly date based on his Tinder description (ahem, I hope a particular person is not reading this). Melvin is so cute but I wouldn't want to see him wearing a multi-coloured outfit or this particular jumper on a first date. He reminds me of my younger cousin when he was wearing my grandma's hand-knitted jumpers-let's just say he wasn't that keen on them!

All Star Converse£44.99 // Dockers chino-£33.75 // Tommy Hilfiger shirt-£37.50 // Polo Ralph Lauren underwear-£32 // Ray-Ban sunglasses-£170 // Howick belt-£19.60 // Fossil watch-£125
*all products used are from the House of Fraser menswear section.

As much as I would like to see Melvin looking hot in a suit & tie, it is nearly impossible to make a guy who loves travelling and adventures wear this on a first date. So, I stepped back a bit from day-dreaming and decided to give Melvin the look that would make him comfortable and hence be himself on a date. 

I pictured him wearing something casual enough to cycle his bike (remember he is from Copenhagen), but with a few sexy notes that would be unmissable under the trained eye of every fashion lover girl. 

A classic shirt with rolled sleeves on, informal chinos and all time favourite Converse shoes get him show his easy going personality. The colours of this look are quite simple but match greatly with his eyes and hair colour, plus make him look in his natural environment when in the pub.
Despite that this is a great outfit as it is, there are a few details that I would add to make this effortless outfit look more suitable for the occasion (plus impress any lucky girl). What would these be? I would add a pair of sexy gladiator sunglasses (Tom Cruise on Top Gun, anyone?), a leather belt and this outstanding watch that will help Melvin be on time. Of course if everything goes as predicted, Melvin will get the girl with his jokes and sense of humour so just in case the night goes well a seductive underwear will be the final straw. 

I can't think Melvin not looking more handsome and robust than ever into this outfit, leaving the girls thinking how lucky they are to be on a date with him.

Melvin, if you read this, wear my outfit and thank me later ;)

How do you find Melvin's outfit?

Life // On introducing the boyfriend to your parents

A bit of an over-share today on the blog with this personal post, but I am sure many of you girls have been through the same situation so I wanted to share my thoughts and feelings on this.

My parents knew from the early days of dating Steven that I met a wonderful guy and decided to give it a go after ending up my last serious relationship almost three years ago. My mum, sister and I have a very close relationship where we discuss about everything and anything so hiding my excitement and first dates silly questions-is this dress okay or am I showing too much?-was quite impossible.

My sister can understand in what psychological mood I am at any given time based on a simple text message coming from me is the least I can say about her unspeakable ability to read my mind. So when I booked my tickets for Corfu last Christmas, her first question was "is Steven coming?" thinking that it would be out of the question for me to travel home without inviting my boyfriend along.

Soon after I gave her my positive answer, mum texted me asking if what my sister told her was true or another witless joke of hers. The minutes that followed our conversation I got a bit worried how to introduce them to each other/where this could take place/what our possible conversations would be and how my sister could facilitate the whole situation and make me at ease.

Being utterly grateful that my parents and sister can speak fluent English I focused on my holidays more rather than getting stressed for things that might have never happened (and would always be a creation of my mind).

The day came and Steven and I got the boat from Corfu to Igoumenitsa city where my family was patiently waiting for us (after a 3 hours road drive) to meet and greet Steven. Sadly we lost the first boat so both sides had to wait for the next boat in each harbour for 1.5 hours.

Long story make it short, the moment to get together finally came and as soon as I saw my mum smiling and waving us at the corner of the harbour I knew it was really happening.

My sister quickly started an ice-breaking conversation with Steven welcoming him in Greece and making a joke about the melting temperatures, followed by a hug from my mum, a firm hand shake by my dad and a rather loudly "welcome Steven, nice to meet you". We jumped in the car and dad drove us in the nearest picturesque village, Sivota where we had our first family meal.

During the time my head was upon fire from various questions coming from all sides, half in Greek, half in English, asking me about me, my life and to translate this and that and how Steven feels and if he enjoyed Corfu so far etc etc etc.

Dad as per usual ordered way TOO much food and the conversation was about how we met (which they already knew), how's life in Scotland (which again they already knew), how Steven found the Greek experience so far and other random funny moments we had in Corfu the past week. Both Steven and my dad engaged into political conversations over ouzo, while me and the girls tucked into the delicious seafood. We ended our day with coffee and desserts at a nearby cafe place while watching the sea and sky changing colours as it was getting close to the sunset.

By the time we had to say our goodbyes we all felt more comfortable and that our day came to an end earlier than we had hoped. We all hugged each other and promised to come back soon...

Overall, it was a very exciting, blood-adrenaline-rising experience that I would live again if I had to, just for the sake of seeing my family and tasting delicious seafood, oh and watching Steven's facial expression when the three of us spoke Greek and he went blank.

Meeting the "rents" is not terrifying as in movies because in reality both parts are concerned and want to make the best possible impression to each other.

Personally, I was a bit worried about the language barrier but hey ho, I am always stressed and over-thinking, over-analysing things that never happen in reality. Not being native speakers could be a problem if my family could not speak English but even if they couldn't a hug, a kiss and a gesture of affection can be spoken by people from all over the world, so in reality there was never a barrier at first place. What the parents ultimately wanted to see is that I am a happy person next to my boyfriend and that he is the best I could have ever chosen...and noticeably they did!

Have you ever introduced your boyfriend to your family, how did it go?


Monday, 27 July 2015

Weekends // In the great outdoors

 As a virgo, I am not a big fan of outdoor adventures-or so I though until I met Steven, THE KING of sports. Yesterday we visited his parents house where my bike had been hanging for ages and he asked me if I would like to go on a 7 mile cycling hoop, until the dinner would be ready.
I agreed and we jumped on the bucolic, green streets.
It was a fun-day Sunday so clearly no make up was involved...
We went through some hills and bridges and at some point I was worried because Steven thought he was the superman!
Thankfully he didn't attempt to fly so no harm. 
By the time I was getting warmed up and was thinking that wearing the wind-breaker jacket wasn't a great idea we reached the end...
...and guess who was waiting for us on the doorstep...
the deafest cat of them all, Zara!

How was your Sunday?


Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Fitness // How to get motivated to workout

Getting a gym membership is an easy task, however, how many times are you going to us it?
Staying focused on your goals and being motivated is not usually the easiest case while having a stressful and competitive lifestyle, but when there is a will there is a way!
Growing up I came to realise that having a fit body and working out is a choice and you have to find the motivation and make time to do it. Scrolling down Instagram and Pinterest will not help you be on track, it is YOU and only you that can make lifestyle changes and become the role model in your life.

So where to start?

Firstly and most importantly, clothes and sports gear. Invest in more workout clothes! Working out in your old t-shirts is not going to drive your desire to attend the spin classes, but new (and in my case colourful) clothes certainly give me some extra push. Fat Face offers a great range of women's activewear that I give thumbs up. Both the crop top and top are made of a breathable, stretch material that keeps me comfortable during workouts. They are also so soft and lightweight that have become my favourite sports gear from the first time I tried them on :)

Follow a cross fit programme like the Kayla Itsines 12 weeks workouts. I have posted about my 12 weeks workouts experience before (HERE in case you've missed it) and this week I got back on train giving it another go. Even though they are tough and it takes lots of personal commitment not to fall off the wagon, I do like the fact that I see results on my body after only a few weeks. A tip that I see works for me is personal goals and rewards. Give yourself a real reward everytime you reach a weekly goal. The true reward is the fact that you are working out and giving all this rush of  hormones in your body, but to trick your mind occasionally buy yourself your favourite flavour of icecream and have a cheat day. Worth the pain!

Have a fitness buddy, and make it be a serious deal, like you have a contract or something. Currently I have two fitness buddies and we regularly give updates to each other about or workouts and progress. Knowing that there is someone out there doing the same thing as you do and going through your struggles it has been proven to be quite stimulating during the whole process.

Do fun activities during the weekends. Too busy to work out during the week, well how about going on a mountain climbing or trekking activity every Sunday. Couple this with a 5k running session every Saturday and you are set. Also, something that I have learned very recently, moving to a house far away your job is not always a bad idea. I used to live right next the office for the past years and last week I moved to a lovely house on the opposite site of the city,meaning I have to walk an hour forth and back per day (I pretend there are no bus routes regulating). Turn your commute into a workout, is my new motto and it certainly works for me.

Many times after an intense workout I am so tired (or breathless) to have the patience for stretching, resulting me into not being able to walk/work next day due to hilarious muscles pain. I tend to do mistakes over and over again until I get the lesson,so after months of mistakes I have to say that stretching is as important as working out.  Do take the time and make a conscious effort to stretch these muscles and relax, they really need this after working so hard.

Well that's all for one, I hope you liked my tips and if you need daily inspiration then follow me on Instagram here or find me as @natbeesfashion
I am about to leave the house and do my commute/workout, what will be your workout today?