Autumn with Essence 2015

From April until June 2015, essence is welcoming the autumn season with its beautiful golden sunshine and rustling leaves with the trend edition “hello autumn”. The color scheme is fresh and color-intense, just like the beautiful colors of nature this time of year.


In this Trend Edition by Essence, you will find Eye shadow Palettes, Eye Pencils, a handy Brow Set, Lip Creams, Nail Polish, Blush Powder and Even hair tie accessories. Have a look at the whole collection and more detail by clicking here.

Prices range from R30 to R70 which means you can achieve the hottest Autumn looks for an affordable price. Follow Essence SA on Facebook and interact with the loving brand.

Claire

Helpful tips if you are looking to buy a house

Our one-year-as-house-owners anniversary is approaching this winter and I have done a lot of reflecting in regards to how lucky we got with our home. Things just fell into place so well and I wanted to share some tips should you need them.
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1. Speak to real estate agents. Myself and Malcolm were apprehensive about dealing with Estate Agents in the beginning of our house hunting journey. They seem to be sharks who only care about getting their cut from the deal. In many cases when phoning around, this was very apparent. As soon as they heard the budget we were working with, they immediately pushed us down their priority list. Determined to find our home, we kept calling agencies and found a really nice one who eventually led us to the house we bought. She handled all the paperwork and was the perfect middleman during the process. Once you find your agent, be clear from the beginning that they need to work their commission into the loan price (this is a general rule though). This will avoid any major costs popping up once the deal is done and you may have not been expecting to pay more.

2. All you need is 75%. Don't go out looking for the perfect place because chances are, that if you are on a budget, it wont exist for the amount you are willing to pay. That being said, I also have to add that you don't need to settle for rubbish either. When considering a property, make sure it meets at least 75% of your wants/needs/likes. If you find something like that, you are on your way to a good start. The other 25% can be made up over time.

3. Speak to those nosy neighbors who are peeping over the wall. We have an elderly neighbor who has lived next door for 35 years. This helped us a lot as he knew what repairs were done to the house in that time, if there were any crime incidents in the area and he also gossip about the other neighbors in the area (regarding noise levels etc). Surrounding houses need to be taken into consideration when house hunting as they may contribute on determining the resale on your house in 20 years time. If your neighbors don't seem to care about their property, it will be harder to sell a house that is right next to "those people" who's house looks like it's about to fall down.

4. Do research on the area's geological situation. When Malcolm and I were house hunting, we were very set on the area we wanted to stay in which was nice as we could do research on the area. We found that the ground movement in our area is pretty active as there are many lakes, dams and rivers nearby. We understood that our house would be prone to movement thus ending up with small cracks here and there and these would need to be fixed every few years. If you aren't aware of these types of issues, you cannot adequately prepare for future expenses and repairs.

5. The "Green Thumb" factor (which I totally just made up). If you are a gardening type of person or if you would like to have a nice landscape around your house, it will save you a lot of money if the house you are looking to purchase, has an existing or a well established garden with trees and some bushes. Unfortunately we didn't think of this when buying our house. One of the main reason we purchased our property was due to the huge garden and backyard, however it is very bare with only 3 trees and bone-dry, crunchy grass. After working out a 'garden budget' we realized that it would take another R30,000.00 just to get the landscaping and irrigation put in. This is something that we completely missed and now have to save up for. Not a biggy though, Malcolm and I are willing to do most of the work ourselves and will take time to enjoy working to put it all together. Who knows, it may be more rewarding that way.

These are 5 of many tips out there on the interwebs. I hope they help nonetheless.

Claire 

1D fan? Edgars has got you sorted!

There are about 20 million people in this world who like One Direction more than I do however, I still enjoy some of their songs. Ahead of their long awaited SA leg of the On The Road Again Tour, Edgars is an official exclusive 1D World partner in South Africa and fans can find clothing, d├ęcor, cosmetics and fragrances in store for all ages. 

Make sure that when you finally get to see Harry, Niall, Zayn, Liam and Louis in the flesh, you are rocking some 1D merch.


Something for the Kiddies.

Available in 85 Edgars stores nationwide, the range has been selling out fast since November 2014. Have fun at the concert this weekend, to whoever will be going. Sing your hearts out!

Claire

Life Update Via Instagram

The Wedding is over and Malcolm and I have had tome to get back into this reality thing. I have tried to use Instagram more often. I take a lot of photo's so why not share? I thought I would go through them in more detail here on the blog.

The Wedding

It was just as we wanted. Small, intimate and simple. My favourite thing about the wedding (besides marrying my best friend) was the fact that Malcolm and I got to spend a good 20 min chatting and spending time with each family member over a lovely dinner and there was no real program, we went with the flow. We did not have a photographer because we felt that R 8K for like 4 hours is just stupid. Our guests took photo's and shared them with us before they left the next morning. We will get some printed and put them around the house. A really good choice on our part. 


The Birthday

A family friend turned 21 in the beginning of March and she threw a 21st bash at Stonehaven on Vaal. It was a sweet "candy land" theme and it was great to catch up with family especially because they were not at the wedding two weeks prior. Spending time with my new hubby in public was a new experience especially everyone calling me Missus.

Adventure Dog

The in-laws are moving at the end of April so we drove 45min to their (current) house to help take unneeded items out of their way in an attempt to make packing easier. They have not moved in over 15 years so there is a much needed "spring cleaning" spree which is difficult when there is excess furniture in the way. Tensai, our doggie, came with to play with the other dogs. Tensai is currently an only child and needs to learn how to interact with other sniffing noses. She was patient in the car but needed love from Malcolm every now and then throughout the journey.

The Big Two Five

August is my birth month and this year I will be 25 years young. I'd like to do something on a big scale seeing as my last birthday party was back in 2011. Pink and Gold will be my theme and I am playing around with invitation designs already. Preparation is key right?

Easter

My absolute favourite Easter treats are Beacon's marshmallow eggs. YUMMM! I spotted these white chocolate versions and I gave them a try. Not as good as the original milk chocolate but I'm glad I got to experience something new. Now I need to gather strength not to devour too much chocolate this year.

Please follow me on Twitter and Instagram for more news and pictures.

Claire