A Change of Pace

A lot has been happening in my life lately and I thought it was time to update you all. 
First let me say that a lot of what I say in this post will be very vague, not because I intend to keep my life shrouded in secrecy, but because some of it is a sensitive nature and to be honest it’s not really anyone’s business and knowing (or not knowing) specific details will have no impact on anyone’s life. 
Second. A lot of what is going on is quite big to me. Whilst it may seem small and unimportant in the grand scheme of things or in comparison to your life, it is huge to me and is going to have a huge impact on my life, so I would regard it as important.
I have taken a new career path in life. It is an adult job with a career path which means I can progress within the company. While I will not be working in retail anymore my work will still be customer based but working in a customer service environment. Without saying too much the company has recently been acquired by another, making it a huge multinational company. While the company is still attempting to carry out it’s normal day to day functions, a lot of what they are doing is based around the migrations of various different arms of companies together under this larger companies name. That is where I come in. For the time being I am based in a separate office to the main office and am working on a project involving, what the company has called, Data Migration Cleansing. This basically just means moving data from one system to another and making sure it is correct in order to make the transition as smooth as possible. 
This job presents HUGE opportunities for me. It is a job with regular hours and a salary. Gone are the variable hours that retail often gave to me. I now know where I stand and can budget and plan accordingly. I also know how long my contract lasts for. This means that I can budget and allow for holidays and trips away and either learning to drive or moving out. Unfortunately I cannot do both but by the looks of things I will be looking into moving into a place in the city centre as that is where I will be based in a few months. I lived away from home about two years ago and moving home killed me. Nothing compares to having your own place and independence and I can’t wait to have that again.
I guess that is the message I would like you all to take from today’s blog post. Embrace new experiences and embrace change. Too long did I shy away and let experiences pass me by. I don’t regret it now but I do sometimes wonder if I would have been happier had I done things differently. I have decided to stop wondering and start doing and a lot of that involves embracing new things and putting myself out of my comfort zone.
I’d love to know any changes you guys have made and any times you have stepped outside of your comfort zone. How did stepping outside your comfort zone make you feel? Was it a positive or negative experience.
I also want to let you in on a little snack I just had and LOVED.
These bad boys.
I was just picking at a pack as I wrote my post and they are so tasty and filling. Handy to have as a little snack and as they are Tesco own brand stock they are super affordable. I need to find more snacks like this to have at my desk.
Have a good week.
Lynn Jo xox

PS. If you haven’t had a chance to look at my latest YouTube video please check it out here.

I Just Want to Buy it All Feat FOREVER 21

So it’s my birthday on Saturday and I bought a dress to wear out. There was a hole in the dress however and when I went to change it in store I bought a completely different outfit instead. I just couldn’t help myself, I wanted everything and I still do. I am literally PRAYING I get the job I am interviewing for later today just so I can go spend all my money there. The stuff is all so pretty and actually pretty affordable and I melt over it all every time I am in there.
The store in question? FOREVER 21!!
First lets take a look at my outfit for my birthday and then I will show some pieces I adored from the store, and hope I can find them online.
So even though I am turning the big 21 I am not doing much for my birthday. I am going to dinner with my family in our local GAA club, which is actually home to a very swanky restaurant, and then going to a gig and the club night that follows it. It may seem very simple or boring but it’s just the way I’d like things to be. Instead of getting really dressed up like I will be for graduation I decided to go for something semi casual that I will wear again. This is what I went for; 
I got the skirt in black and it is high waisted so there is very little space between the bottom of the top and the skirts waistband.

I needed a new black skater skirt anyway. But this outfit is perfect as it is light and airy, but I will be comfortable in it and enjoy my night out wearing it. I am going to team it with my metallic pink Doc Martens and some chunky gold jewelry.
Forever 21 have started doing loads of cute sweaters with Minnie and Mickey and other faces on them but one I saw in store and loved was a white sweater with a picture from Finding Nemo on it. Unfortunately I couldn’t find it on the website to show you all but I thought it was absolutely brilliant! It reminded me so much of a tumblr I saw ages ago, but typically couldn’t find to show you all, where they just had loads of images photoshopped onto sweaters. They were very cool.
€13.75 comes in black, grey, blue and red
I saw this dress and thought I must pick one or two up. I got a dress like this recently and have been wearing it for all my interviews with a scarf, tights, and brown brogues. They are so flattering and easy to wear. Of course black always looks smart and professional too.
This is when I started to just browse the site and look for bits to add to my wish list. I didn’t get very far before I found something I would like. It was the first thing I saw as I browsed.
This boyfriend style blouse is absolutely divine. It seems light and airy and because it is a Love 21 item it runs a half size larger than standard. I would buy this in a size or two bigger and just wear it all the time with leggings or my trusty disco pants. I prefer this style of over sized shirt to the ones that were in fashion years ago. Remember them? We all wore them with leggings and a HUGE brown belt around the tummy. It was not a cute look.
Now I love both these pieces. They are variations of items I have already but wear constantly. I have a braided jumper quite like the one on the left but I went a bit overboard so it is a small bit TOO oversized and isn’t the best colour, so investing in a new one may be a possibility. If i went for the cream colour I would but a light black blouse underneath so the collar could be seen and vice versa. I am a big fan of the dolman cardigan too. I bought one years ago and loved it so much I bought it in a second colour. The two I own are shorter though and of a much thicker and heavier material. This one is nice because it is long and not so heavy. I love dolman cardigans because they can literally be thrown over everything. My favourite thing to wear them over is a tank top and jeans but they could be very cute over a blouse. I think blouses are slowly coming to be my newest love.
I just realised that all the items I have pointed out here are kind of things I have already, not new things. But I definitely feel they are staples every wardrobe should have, especially if you are in college or university. I’m going to wrap it up here but to finish I have mashed together photos of the pieces I did love on the site and would love to buy for myself. All the items can be found on the Forever 21 website. If there are any other stores you would like me to look at and pick my favourite pieces from do let me know.
I love you all so much!
All photos taken from www.forever21.com, all prices correct at time of publication.

Lush VIP Customer Night

So I just got home from a brilliant night out and I wanted to tell you all about it!
Now my mum and I have always been Lush addicts, ever since they donated some stuff for the UCD Fashion and Design Society goodie bags. Having always worked less than 5 minutes from a Lush store I was always running in and picking bits up for baths and stuff. As I would always be stuck for time I never really got to hang about and chat to the staff.
On Facebook about two weeks ago I saw an advertisement for a VIP night in the Lush store on Henry Street in Dublin City Centre. This is the store I always visit, and it was a free event offering free goodie bags so of course I was dying to pop along and check it out and maybe open myself up to some new products. 
My mum and I started off the night by treating ourselves to some Eddie Rockets before we ventured over to the store. 
We were a little bit early but at just after 7:30 we were allowed into the store. The trainee manager, Lisa, offered us all a drink and then introduced us to the staff members who would be taking care of us throughout the night. She gave us a quick run down of what would be happening, and details of a competition that would be open to us as attendees of the event. My mum and I kind of started to wander around when we were stopped by the bubbliest and most friendly staff member I have ever met. I go on about how deadly a sales assistant I am but Sinéad even put me to shame. She is the kinda person I can see myself being best friends with! She started off by devoting all her attention to my mum and bringing us over to the little station she was manning for the night. Here she gave my mum a good wash. Yeah you heard me right, a wash. She got her to delve her arms into a basin of water and washed them. She started off by using Rub, Rub, Rub on my mum. Now Jasmine seemed to be the scent of the night and Rub, Rub, Rub was the first of the Jasmine scented products we got to play with. It’s a shower scrub and you use it in the shower and it leaves your skin silky soft. When you wet your hands and rub the scrub onto your skin with them it produces quite a nice soapy mixture which is perfect for rubbing onto the skin. Obviously I got the same treatments done as my mum and what I loved about Rub, Rub, Rub was that it wasn’t too harsh. I absolutely hate the way a lot of body scrubs can literally feel like they are tearing chunks of your skin off, so the fact this exfoliated the skin quite gently, whilst doing the work of it’s harsher counterparts really appealed to me. Sinéad then patted our arms dry lightly, keeping a bit of moisture to them, before introducing us to Ro’s Argan. Ro’s Argan is a body conditioner. Now I have seen adverts on TV for body conditioners and I absolutely love the idea of them. You put them on after washing and basically when you get out of the shower you don’t have to moisturise because the conditioner has already done the work for you. I love this because I am quite lazy and when I shower it is either before bed when all I want to do is sleep, or when I am about to run out the door to go somewhere. I never seem to have the time or the patience to sit down and wait for moisturiser to dry in and as a result I only ever moisturise my face and hands. Ro’s Argan is rose scented and is not as soapy as Rub, Rub, Rub when applying it to your skin but you can feel how silky it is going on straight away. After drying off from our arm washing experience we were then treated to hand and arm massages using the Lush massage bars. Now my mum and I chose different bars here. My mum chose Wiccy Magic Muscles as it had a quite pepperminty/cinnamony scent which appealed to her, personally it made me feel a bit ill, but that may have been all the nachos I’d had a half hour before. I chose a bar called Therapy. Now the reason I chose this bar was simple. Sinéad took us through all the different massage bars giving us rundown of their properties and when it came to Therapy she told us it worked brilliant with scars and stretchmarks fading them and stuff. She explained how she had been in an accident a few years previously and had very scarred legs and that she had noticed a difference in the scarring since using the Therapy bar. Because I have a huge scar up my arm I decided that this was the bar for me as I wanted to see the effect it would have on the scar. I have never gotten a massage before but I have to say it was lovely, Sinéad even showed us a few techniques she learned which I can’t wait to try out on someone else some day. She then finished off the hand and arm massage with some perfume, I got Imogen Rose which had lovely floral tones to it and I’m not sure which one my mum got, I think it might have been Breath of God, it was blue and kind of spicy like the massage bar. We also got a sprinkling of body dust. I got Silky Underwear which again was Jasmine scented and was a nice finish to the massage. While I am talking about the hand and arm massage I want to share a great recommendation I got for a tan from Sinéad which is for the Black Stockings body tint, it gives a really natural sun kissed colour to the skin and when you put the dusting powder over it it leaves the skin with a lovely healthy glow!
Rub Rub Rub – Body Scrub

Ro’s Argan- Body Conditioner
Sinéad then brought me over to the delectable Darragh (I hope I spelt that right, there are too many different ways to spell that name!) Now Darragh’s goal was to give me a quick skin consultation, something my mum didn’t really need but as I have been having some trouble with my skin lately I thought I would give it a go. Now I hate skin consultations because I always feel I describe my skin wrong but Darragh was lovely, not just recommending products for my skin type but all skin types, whilst pointing out the ones that would suit me best. We didn’t really get to test these products out as obviously that would have involved me having to wash my face, but we did get to sniff them and rub them into the backs of our hands and that. My skin at the moment is quite oily, I am not sure whether that is down to the products I am using to treat my acne or not, but no matter how oily it is it just looks dry when makeup gets in contact with my skin. I also have had trouble with breakouts on my chin, all which I explained to Darragh. He recommended  Herbalism, which is a face scrub to me. Now this scrub is for troubled skin specifically so it would tackle my breakouts. The one thing that didn’t appeal to me was the smell but as my mum said the worst smelling ones normally work best. There are nettles and rosemary in the Herbalism scrub which would exfoliate it and draw out the impurities which would suit me best. In terms of moisturiser he recommended Vanishing Cream to me. Now I put some of this cream on the back of my hand and I loved the way it rubbed in and absorbed super fast, my hand feels really soft now too. The Vanishing Cream has alot of the same ingredients as Herbalism so they compliment each other really well. He also told us a little bit about the different facemasks they offered and the different things they could offer my skin. Brazened Honey would definitely be the one I would go for. 
Herbalism- Fresh Facial Cleanser

Vanishing Cream – Facial Moisturiser
That was about where our journey ended, my mum went on a bit of a splurge getting about a million bath bombs, the Rub, Rub, Rub, and Ro’s Argan and a gift for a friend. I got a lip scrub because my poor lips are in a dire state, and mammy treated me to the Therapy bar. Our goodie bags had two little treats in them, Rock Star soap and a charity pot I was so glad of this as my charity pot had recently run out. I would have loved to buy the skincare items Darragh recommended (amongst everything else in the store) but money is tight at the mo and I’m using a medicated skin treatment at the moment, but they will definitely be future investments. I cannot commend the staff enough on how pleasant and helpful they were and for putting on such an informative night. I will definitely be going back to the store and chatting to them more about different products.

While I was in town I also bought a new foundation and concealer which I will be trying out over the weekend so look out for a post on that. 

I want to finish off by asking a huge favour of all of you. My friend Des Foley is in a competition to win help with starting a career in his dream job. Now I have known Des since I was about 16 and he is such a hard working bloke and definitely does not take the easy route in anything and I really would love to see him win this. If all of you voted for him and got one friend to do the same it would mean so much to him and of course me. To vote for him go to www.todaystheday.com click on the little picture of Des and then under his video click Vote Des, it will only take two seconds and it means he gets help starting his dream job as a videographer and get to stay close to his first love of motor sports. 
Talk to you all soon and thanks for reading my first REALLY long post 😀 x