Saturday, 30 January 2016

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water

I'm always wanting to try new products especially skincare. I have quite dry sensitive skin especially on my face so anything that's going to help I'm willing to give it a go.

I saw the Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water in Boots a few weeks ago and thought I'd give it a try but because my skin is quite sensitive I'm still weary of what I try to make sure I don't call any irritation.
With this being a cleansing water it doesn't have any chemicals or perfume so is perfect if like me you do have sensitive skin.

Before writing a review I always like to try a product for a couple of weeks to get a real feel of the product so I can give an honest opinion.

My first impression of the cleansing water was how light it feels when using it to remove make up and generally cleanse. You can actually feel the make up being removed and going onto the cotton pad. When finished my skin felt so soft and fresh I was really happy with it.

I've been using it morning and night and can tell a difference with my skin, it doesn't feel as dry anymore and that's something I'm really happy about as I can get quite embarrassed if I do have any dry patches.

It also removes eye make up and really well, even waterproof mascara! and because it's so easy to use, there's no excuse of not removing make up after a night out ;-)

I'd definitely recommend Garnier Cleansing Water, let me know in the comments if you do try it or if you already use it and love it as much as I do.

Maxine x
Don't forget to follow me on Twitter, Instagram and Bloglovin'
All opinions are my own. 

Friday, 29 January 2016

January Fitness Diary - Week Three

Week Three of My Fitness Plan and I'm slowly losing motivation already but it's really annoying me, I've been considering going back to the gym again and maybe starting to do classes in the morning before work. I did start a 10 minute HIT cardio programme which is fun but I feel like I need that extra push.

I'm really enjoying the 'Youfood' app, actually I'm becoming a bit addicted to browsing people's food diaries and looking for new recipe ideas! It's also clever because you really want to impress everyone with what you're eating so I haven't wanted to eat boring foods as I don't want to post a photo of that so I've been trying new things and making my food look yummy :-)

Monday 18th JanuaryI had the day off work so it's fair to say I didn't stick to any plan! In fact I pretty much ate anything in sight, as much as I'm embarrassed to admit.

Breakfast - Sausage sandwich with tomato sauce

Lunch - Not much of a lunch as I just snacked on everything!

Dinner - Pizza *Monkey covering eyes emoji*

Water - I am loving flavoured sparkling water at the moment and Morrison's do 5 bottles for £1.50 - bargain! So I had one bottle today.
Snacks - Everything!

Tuesday 19th January
Back on track!

Breakfast - Muller light strawberry yogurt with porridge oats and blueberries

Lunch - Mushroom rice with sweetcorn and peppers, Dairylea dunkers and a satsuma

Dinner - Two Slimming World sausages (from Iceland), veg and a Yorkshire pudding

Water - 1 bottle of flavoured sparkling water and 1 glass of water
Snacks - Banana, satsuma and grapes

Wednesday 20th January

Breakfast - Muller light Strawberry yogurt with porridge oats

Lunch - Cous Cous with sweetcorn, chickpeas, peppers, sultanas and seafood sticks

Dinner - Homemade lasagne with plum tomatoes

Water - 1 bottle of flavoured sparkling water
Snacks - 2 satsumas, banana and Dairylea dunkers

Thursday 21st January

Breakfast - Peanut butter on wholemeal bread

Lunch - Leftover homemade lasagne

Dinner - Italian chicken and tomato soup with a slice of wholemeal bread

Water - 2 glasses
Snacks - 2 satsumas, banana, grapes and a Muller corner banana chocolate flakes yogurt.

Friday 22nd January

Breakfast - Peanut butter on wholemeal bread

Lunch - Leftover Italian chicken and tomato soup

Dinner - Chicken burger with Supernoodles and extra light mayo

Water - 1 glass
Snacks - banana, satsuma. Carrot sticks with sweet chilli hummus.
2 glasses of wine (It's Friday!!)

Saturday 23rd January

Breakfast - Costa coffee - Caramel Cappuccino

Lunch - I won brunch and cocktails for 2 on Twitter at Revolucion De Cuba in Nottingham and it was amazing! I had a breakfast burrito which was stuffed with cheese, chorizo, jalapenos and mushrooms. The cocktails I chose was an Espresso Rumtini which was nice but couldn't have more than one, they're quite sickly.

Dinner - Italian Chicken and tomato soup with a portion of pasta.

Water - No water today just coffee and cocktails!
Snacks - still had my banana and satsuma :-)

Sunday 24th January

Breakfast - Sausage sandwich on wholemeal bread with tomato sauce

Lunch - I didn't have lunch, I was too busy being lazy on the settee watching American Idol :-)

Dinner - Coq Au Vin with Yorshire puddings

Snacks - scotch pancakes with maple syrup.

So that was my third week, typing this out is showing me that I'm already starting to slack, these diaries are a really good idea to keep yourself updated and show where you need to improve. Mine is that I need to do more exercising, especially if I want to reach my weight goal.

Thank you to all who are following my fitness plan.
If you'd like to see the photos of all my meals you can add me on Youfood, my username on there is MaxineFrancis89

Maxine x
Don't forget to follow me on Twitter, Instagram and Bloglovin'
Let's chat fitness -

Thursday, 21 January 2016

January Fitness Diary - Week Two

So, week two of my fitness diary. I lost 4lb last week which I was very impressed with, considering the lack of exercise.
Before I go on and show my meals, exercise etc I will say I didn't have a great week and didn't do any exercise :-( I'm really struggling to get my motivation back, I think it might be the cold evenings (even though I do my exercise at home!) there's just nothing more I want to do when I get home from work in the evening than put my PJ's on and snuggle up on the settee. If there's anything you use to get your motivation going which you think might help, please let me know!

Something I did forget to mention in my previous post is Slendertoxtea that I'm using along side my plan, you can see my post here of Slendertoxtea.

I've also started to use an app on my phone called 'You Food'. It's very similar to Instagram but is used as a food diary. You can follow other uses and like their photos, it's good for giving you ideas if you're stuck on what to have for dinners etc. I'd recommend this app to keep track of what you're eating so you can see if there's any improvements you can make but also help others. 

Monday 11th January 2016
Breakfast - 2 Weetabix with semi skimmed milk

Lunch - small tin of beans with sausages (best sausages ever in those tins) and a slice of wholemeal bread

Dinner - Italian Chicken and Tomato Soup with Pasta

Water - 1 glass
Snacks - 2 satsumas and a banana, carrot sticks and humus.

Tuesday 12th January 2016

Breakfast - 2 Weetabix with semi skimmed milk

Lunch - Mushroom cous cous mixed with tuna flakes.

Dinner - Steak with a fried egg, mushrooms, corn on the cob, new potatoes and tomatoes (ah-mazing!!)

Water - 1 glass
Snacks - Satsuma, banana, dairylea dunkers (5.5 syns for the dunkers for anyone following Slimming World)

Wednesday 13th January 2016

Breakfast - Strawberry Mullerlight yogurt with porridge oats and blueberries

Lunch - Mushroom rice (Tilda microwave) with sweetcorn and peppers.

Dinner - Wholeweat noodles with soy & ginger salmon

Water - 3 glasses (good day!)
Snacks - Satsuma, banana, grapes and dairylea dunkers. 

Thursday 14th January 2016
I had such a bad day at work :-( I didn't have any lunch and only ate a banana and tub of grapes after my breakfast until 7pm when I finally got home.

Breakfast - Strawberry Mullerlight yogurt with porridge oats and blueberries.

Lunch - Nothing :(

Dinner - Corned Beef and Tomato sandwich (on white bread!! ahh!!)

Water - 2 glasses
Snacks - Banana and tub of grapes

Friday 15th January 2016
I was at a meeting in the morning and then I had the afternoon off work and the start to a long weekend :) So I was slightly naughty from today until Monday! 

Breakfast - 2 slices of wholemeal bread with peanut butter
My obsession with peanut butter is ridiculous!

Lunch - Costa Coffee with a mushroom toastie (Yum!)

Dinner - Southern Fried Chicken burger with Supernoodles (ah I feel guilty just typing that!)

Water - 0 glasses
Snacks - No fruit today! Flapjack from Costa, Rolo yogurt (the best yogurts ever!!)

Saturday we travelled down to London as we stayed over and went to the O2 so it definitely wasn't part of the fitness plan, a McDonald's may have been involved! ;-) and maybe a Starbucks too and a Chiquitos later :-D
Sunday we had buffet breakfast at the hotel which included pancakes with maple syrup ;-) and then we had a lovely Roast Dinner at the in-laws.

It's always good to remember that yes it's great for you to be healthy and make sure you're eating the right foods and correct portions but having a 'naughty' day every now and then isn't going to hurt anyone, you can't restrict yourself too much or you'll get to the point where it either becomes an obsession or you just start to hate dieting because it seems more of a chore.

This is one of the reasons I enjoy the Slimming World plan because you really don't feel like you're on a diet, there are no serious restrictions it's just all about meal planning and making sure you are eating the right amount of fruit and veg.

If you're doing a diet/fitness plan let me know how you're getting on!
or tweet me @chatterboxmax

Maxine x


Saturday, 16 January 2016

Slendertox Tea | Detox and Cleansing Tea

Last month I took part in my first Bloggers Hangout chat and it was brilliant! I've always said one of the reasons I started blogging was to get to meet and chat to new people and I've already got to know so many lovely bloggers, can't wait for my first meet up!
Anyway, part of this chat were a few lovely brands and one of those brands was Slendertoxtea. I'd heard about Detox Tea's and always wanted to try them so when I received the Day and Night Tea Tox I was very excited!

Slendertoxtea are a health supplements company who provide natural healthy products to assist you in a healthy balanced lifestyle. Their Slendertoxtea is 100% herbal and organic.  

I'm already a fan of green tea and fruity teas so I had a slight idea of what they may taste like, they have quite an 'earthy' taste to them which is obviously the natural ingredients and flavours very much like green tea.

The Daytox Tea is designed to give you that extra boost for the day so you have this first thing in the morning with your breakfast.
Where as the Sleeptox Tea is to help you relax by bedtime and also assist to prevent bloating.
I can suffer from bloating like a lot of people and after using this for a few days I have started to notice a difference which I'm delighted about, as for those who do suffer from bloating know it can be quite embarrassing and something we obviously don't want!

I still have a week left of the tea's to finish the course but I am confident to say I would purchase another set of Daytox and Sleeptox.
It's something I'd like to continue using as part of my fitness plan.
Although the tea's are designed to help your system and promote healthy change it is suggested to use them with a detox plan or with your fitness/diet plan to really get the full benefits.

Slendertoxtea also provide a range of shakes, coffee's and powders. I'd like to try the coffee range as I do love a cup of coffee in the morning!

My overall opinion is that I'd recommend anyone to try the Slendertoxtea and give it a go to see if it can assist you with your fitness or healthy eating plan.

To purchase any of the Slendertoxtea range visit the website here.
They ship worldwide so everyone can order :-)

You can also follow Slendertoxtea on Twitter to keep up to date with their products - @Slendertoxtea

Let me know in the comments below if you do purchase anything from the Slendertoxtea range.

Maxine x
All opinions are my own and I always give an honest review of products.
Slendertoxtea very kindly gifted me the product.
Don't forget to keep up to date with all my posts over on Bloglovin'

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Adult Therapeutic Colouring Books - Do They Really Work?


There was nothing more I loved when I was younger than getting a jumbo colouring book and new colouring pencils. I could spend hours colouring in all of the pictures and always felt accomplished when completing the whole book!

So when I saw these 'Adult Therapeutic Colouring Books' I was quite excited but also intrigued. Are they going to just be another 'trend' where everyone buys them because they're everywhere or do they actually help you to relax? Because obviously when you're a child and using colouring books you're not using them to relax it was just fun. 

I was given one of the colouring books to me as a gift which I was really pleased about as I had thought about purchasing one a few times, I ordered some new colouring pencils (cue the big kid) and was quite excited when they arrived! So I sat with a cup of tea, feet up on the settee in my pyjamas and chose a design to colour. I have a Winter Wonderland themed book and the pictures are beautiful.
I chose one of the more intricate designs and away I went, carefully selecting which colour I wanted to use for each part, concentrating so I don't go out the lines(!)
Now at this point you may be thinking, but it's just a colouring book?! It's for children!
But...I was so relaxed and felt chilled out which is amazing considering it is seen as something you'd just do as a child. 
I'd highly recommend anyone getting one of these and just spending half an hour where ever you can with a cup of tea or coffee on the settee or in bed! It really does make you feel more relaxed.

You can buy loads of different themes of colouring books, I have my eye on the Harry Potter one! Amazon is a great place to check out.

Keep an eye on my Instagram where I'll be posting a picture of my 'master piece' once I've finished it.

Let me know if you have one of these books or will be purchasing one.

Maxine x

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

January Fitness Diary - Week One

Following on from my previous post I'm going to be doing a weekly fitness diary throughout January (depending how it goes I might carry it on throughout February until I reach my goal, but let's not get too ahead of ourselves!)
As mentioned in my Fitness Plan post I am following the Slimming World programme and also the Insanity Workout to help me reach my fitness goals. 

In the diaries I'll be showing you what I've eaten throughout the day and also what exercise if any I have done. I hope by doing this I can help inspire you to join in and kick start the motivation! 

Monday 4th January 2016
Now Mondays can be a bit wobbly as it's food shopping day so it might be that we haven't got much 'healthy' food in the cupboards and also this was day one of the plan and the first shopping trip after Christmas which meant all we had was pretty much chocolate and rubbish! 
But I didn't do too bad....considering.

Breakfast - a bowl of golden nuggets cereal with semi skimmed milk

Lunch - Cheese and tomato sandwich with a banana (not too bad)

Dinner - King Prawn stir fry with basmati rice

Water - 1 glass
Snacks - 2 Satsumas
Exercise - None :-( 

Tuesday 5th January 2016

Breakfast - Strawberry Muller light yogurt with porridge oats and blueberries

Lunch - Mexican rice with tuna and crab sticks

Dinner - Ham and Mushroom Omelette

Water - 1 glass (need to improve on this) 
Snacks - Banana and 2 Satsumas
Exercise - Cardio Circuit Insanity Workout

Wednesday 6th January 2016

Breakfast - Same as Tuesday

Lunch - Mushroom rice with sweet corn and peppers

Dinner - Italian Chicken and Tomato soup Slimming World recipe (you can find it here)

Water - 2 glasses (getting better!)
Snacks - Same as Tuesday plus carrot sticks and sweet chilli homous from Morrison's) 
Exercise - None because I pulled every muscle in my body including those I didn't know existed from yesterday! 

Thursday 7th January 2016

Breakfast - Same and Tuesday and Wednesday (I get into a routine) 

Lunch - Leftover Italian Chicken and Tomato soup (always make extra!) with 2 slices of whole meal bread. 

Dinner - Breaded Chicken with chow mein flavour Super Noodles. 
Not the healthiest option but had a rubbish and long day at work! 

Water - 1 glass (slacking again)
Snacks - Same as Wednesday
Exercise - Still injured = none! 

Friday 8th January 2016

Breakfast - 2 Weetabix with semi skimmed milk

Lunch - King prawn, basil and Tomato pasta salad from M&S - best pasta salad ever! 

Dinner - BBQ shredded duck with noodles 

Water - 2 glasses (back on it)
Snacks - Same as above
Exercise - it's Friday!!  

Saturday 9th January 2016

Breakfast - Porridge with Honey (from Costa!)

Lunch - Italian Chicken and tomato soup (Made another batch!)

Dinner - Thai Food - Egg Noodles. Very similar to a Chow Mein but not greasy, it's cooked with fish oil so a lot healthier.

Water - None (oops)
Snacks - Banana, Grapes
Exercise - None

Also had a few diet cokes with vodka with the meal.

Sunday 10th January 2016

Breakfast - Weetabix with semi skimmed milk

Lunch - More Italian Chicken and tomato soup (I'm afraid I may turn into an Italian chicken soon! haha)

Dinner - Now it's a lazy Sunday as always and we were suppose to have steak but ended up just having Nacho's (Face covering monkey emoji)

Water - One Glass
Snacks - Didn't really have snacks today
Exercise - None

You may notice my food can be a bit repetitive but I'm one of those people who end up in a routine and find it a little easier just have the same type of meals - I'm not very creative when it comes to cooking!
Making these food diaries is also great for me to look at and see what I can improve, at the moment I definitely need to get my arse in to gear, do more exercise and drink more water.
If your diet is something you think needs looking at it's definitely worth keeping a food diary so you can see where to improve and maybe change a few things.

Maxine x 

Friday, 8 January 2016

My Fitness Plan

It's fair to say the most common thing people think about when entering a New Year is Fitness. There's always the thought of wanting to lose weight ready for that bikini on the beach or just improving your fitness in general.

Losing weight is all down to what you're eating and exercise. There are so many things out there to help you along your journey from exercise DVD's to waist trainers (I'd love to try one of these!). Different plans suit different people, what others find really helpful some people may find they don't work for them so you really need to make it about yourself and not just follow something because it's trend or your mates are doing it, you could be wasting your time and money.

I'm definitely one of those people who wants to lose weight and improve my fitness and I'm also one of those people who say this every January! I do enjoy setting goals for myself and working to achieve them so I'm actually looking forward to this fitness journey.

I thought I'd share the tools I'm going to be using for my fitness plan especially for those who are maybe new at this and not sure where to start, also if there are any questions you'd like to ask about any of the tools I'm using I'll leave details below of where you can contact me and I'd love to help if I can!

So as I mentioned above one of the main things to losing weight/improving fitness is what you're eating and not eating will not work! Actually if you eat the right foods, the more you eat the more weight you'll lose (I know!!)
To do this I follow the Slimming World plan and personally I find it amazing. Again this is one of those things where it may not suit everyone so it's a trial and error thing, if you haven't followed a diet plan like this it may be best if you try a few out like Weight Watchers and find out which you prefer.
Just a quick overview of Slimming World, they work on 'Syns'. You can have 5-15 syns daily but not everything has Syns, for example Fruit, Vegetables, Meat, Fish are all free so you can eat them until your hearts content but a chocolate bar could be anywhere from 6-9 syns!
If you're interested in Slimming World visit their website, there are loads of tips and also recipes.

Second main thing to lose weight/improving fitness is exercise, this is the part where a lot of people, including myself, need that motivation! So this is the best part to set a goal for yourself, maybe join a gym, go to a few classes a week, start going swimming, join a running club, join a dance class...there are endless things to do and it can be really fun...honest!
Now obviously I haven't done a lot of exercise so far as I've just started my plan but I am back on the Insanity workout, you may of heard of this or seen it advertise, it is literally insane!
When I see these exercise DVD's advertise and those really enthusiastic people appear ripped abs, flat stomachs, toned arms and they want you to join them...I think ok I really don't think you are looking like that because of this DVD...however that was before I started Insanity (I'm starting to sound like one those people!) I can't recommend Insanity enough, it's so worth the money and if you follow the calendar plan that comes with it you will notice the difference in 60 days! It's definitely the most effective at-home exercise regime I've done (and trust me when I say I have done so many of the exercise DVD's!)
I'm also hoping to get back into running but at the moment I'm still in hibernation and I'm definitely not one of those people who go out in the cold and dark to run!

Just a few other things I'd recommend;

Pinterest - brilliant for workout ideas and recipes etc
Instagram - #slimmingworld is great as people post their meals and progress, you can also join in and help others gain motivation
Twitter - search for the fitness pages even if it's those who post motivational quotes, it all helps.
Slendertoxtea - I've recently been sent this and will be using with my fitness plan, I've always wanted to try the detoxes so I'm looking forward to seeing how it works, there'll be a separate post for this :)

So there you have it, my fitness plan. I hope this inspires you enough to get your motivation started and maybe join in with any of the above.
I'll be posting weekly updates through January (every Sunday) with my food diary and what exercises I have done that week so make sure you follow me on Bloglovin and Twitter!

If you'd like to be crazy like me and start Insanity you can purchase it here.

Let's chat fitness! Let me know your goals and keep me updated on your journey.
Email -
Twitter - @Chatterboxmax

Maxine x
Don't miss a post, follow me on Bloglovin'!


All opinions are my own.

Friday, 1 January 2016

Happy New Year! 2015 Thoughts and 2016 Resolutions..

Happy New Year!

I hope that hangover isn't too bad! Surprisingly I haven't woken up feeling too bad, don't get me wrong I don't feel as fresh as a daisy but nothing a strong coffee can't fix!
We had a lovely evening, we went to the local pub where they serve Thai food, which is amazing! Had a few drinks with the in-laws and was home for about 8.30pm with some music on and a few (a lot) more drinks to see in the New Year.
It's 2016, can you believe it?! It only feels like 5 minutes since we celebrated the Millennium, the years fly by it's scary.
This is going to be more of a chatty post which I'm enjoying writing already as I usually do reviews etc. I quite like reading other bloggers posts where it's more of a chat, I think you can get more of a feel of personality. I'll try not to blab on too much!
So 2015 was a year of up's and down's. We didn't go on a holiday as we bought our first home in 2014 so we had a cheapish year but we did have a few weekends away, including a camping weekend which was brilliant. (I can see you scrunching your face at this! haha) The site we went to had proper power showers and hot water which is enough for me! I don't think I could do 'proper' camping.
We celebrated one year in our house in August, fastest year ever! We then celebrated our 10th anniversary in December, again crazy times.
There were a few bumps in the year with family members in hospital but touch wood everything is ok now.
Proudest moment of 2015 definitely has to be my sister's graduation, seeing her in the cap and gown was rather emotional. Also the fact she got a First was more amazing. I'll leave a link below to her blog :-)
We're now in a new year with new opportunities and of course resolutions.
Now I'm not one of these 'New Year, New Me' sorta people, I believe if you want to make a change it shouldn't just be for the New Year. However there are always a few things you think of that you'd like to do which maybe you didn't the year before. One of the things people need to consider when making resolutions is how realistic they are, there's not much point making a resolution such as 'I'd like to travel the world' when you know it isn't possible for whatever reason, also when it comes to the end of the year it just makes you feel rubbish because you didn't achieve it. My New Year's resolutions may not sound very exciting but if I can achieve them it'll be a great 2016 :-)
1. Book our wedding and Disneymoon for 2017
This is possibly the most exciting of my resolutions, if we're able to do this it'll be one of the best years ever!
2.Give Blood
I've considered this for quite a while and helping out charities and causes is something I'd like to do more of this year. Not just donating money but really getting involved and helping to make a difference. There are two reasons I haven't donated blood yet and they are because I am petrified of needles and as silly as it sounds i'm scared i'll faint! But I have taken the first step and signed up to be a donor I just now need to actually give the blood! I believe the next one I can sign up for is in March, once I have donated i'll be posting a blog of how I got on!
3. See more of the UK.
Most people like to travel and will be saying they'd like to see more of different countries but there are so many cities and towns i'd like to visit in the UK. There are quite a few cities I haven't actually been to like Liverpool and Newcastle, these are two places I really want to go to. I'd also like to visit Brighton I've always wanted to spend a weekend there, preferably when the weather is a little better!
4. Do more for charities
This is part of my second resolution above, rather than just donating money i'd like to get involved with charities, I've always wanted to help out in a soup kitchen for the homeless or help spread the word to make a difference.
I recently did a post for Coppafeel! Which I really enjoyed just to think someone will read that post and do the necessary checks which they wouldn't necessarily do, it could quite literally change someone's life.
6. Improve my blog
I've only been blogging since November so i'm still a newbie but I really want 2016 to be the year for my blog, I'll be looking to improve my blogs by improving the photos I include and to do this I hope to invest in a good camera! I'd also like to attend bloggers events and meet new people, this is one of the reasons I wanted to start blogging. 

7. FitnessThis is one of the most common resolutions, the gyms are packed in January because of people wanting to lose their Christmas weight, adverts on the TV are all slimming products and products you can buy to help tone!
Leading up to Christmas I was following the Slimming World program and actually really enjoyed it, so I'll be going back to this but also doing the Insanity workout - if you haven't done this but want to try something new I'd highly recommend it, it's brilliant!
I'll be doing weekly blogs of my progress and food/exercise diaries for you to follow along with me on my 'Fitness Journey'.
I don't have a huge list of resolutions but if I can achieve all of them by the end of 2016, I'll be very happy!
Let me know what your New Year's resolutions are and if you have posted a list on your blog leave the link below so I can check them out!
My Coppafeel! post - click here
My Sister's blog - Ellie Kathleen
Maxine x
Don't forget to follow me on Bloglovin'