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Posted in General

A Short Introduction

Hello Reader,

Hope you are doing well. Welcome to my blog. As an introduction, I do not know what to say. I love reading blog posts, whether it is reviews, lifestyle related, I love reading them. I thought to myself, hey, why don’t I try the blogging thing. I do have a YouTube channel that is dedicated to books.I have a lot to say about things, and sometimes I do not have the time to sit and make a video. With blogging though, I can sit down on an evening and let words flow onto the page, and upload instantly.

A little bit about me? I am a dispensing assistant, currently working on my first book, and have hypothyroidism. That is just a few interesting things about me. Throughout this blogging adventure, I may discuss these things further – especially the book I am working on. I have a lot to say about it without giving any spoilers away!

That is my short introduction. I do not have an upload schedule yet, but hopefully I will have content every week. Hopefully.

Until next time,

– Emily

Michael the Alpaca and I [Alpacaly Ever After]
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Posted in Life

Do You Hear The People Sing?

A trip to Manchester to watch Les Miserables

Hello Readers,

Back in 2018, it was announced that the hit musical Les Miserables was going on a UK Tour. As soon as it was announced, I knew I had to get tickets. Les Miserables is my favourite musical; I have seen it twice on the West End and was in a school production of it back in 2012 (that is a story for another time). It just so happened that my mother was turning the big 5-0 in December 2018. My sister and I got together and booked tickets for us to go see the musical on the 5th March 2019 (sorry Dad that we didn’t get you one too).

March 5th came around and I could not contain my excitement. Travel Lodge was booked, a table at Mr Sam’s Chop House was waiting, the theatre was calling. I had never been to Mr Sam’s Chop House, so I thought I would take the time to discuss it. If you are visiting Manchester, take a trip to the restaurant. Based in the artist Lowery’s favourite pub, the food was delicious. Lovely little place. I will admit, the Lowery statue at the bar did scare me at first, as I thought it was an actual person at first. Highly recommend it.

Now, I had a few questions before going into the musical. As I have seen the West End Production, I was curious as to how the stage would be adapted without the infamous turn table. How would the barricade scene work without it? What was Javert’s suicide going to be shown? The sewer scene! Many questions. These questions were answered, and I could not be happier with how it was adapted. I will not spoil it for those who are planning to see the production. Let me tell you though, Javert’s suicide is very clever.

I am struggling to find the words to describe how brilliant this production is. The scenery, the singing, the orchestra, everything was more than what I wanted. I was crying at the second bar of the opening song (it’s my favourite musical, it was bound to happen). This cast is amazing. Killian Donnelly’s rendition of Bring Him Home was just…heart wrenching. Performed extremely beautifully. My mum’s favourite was Nic Greenshields as Javert. She was nearly standing up after her performed Stars. Katie Hall as Fantine, Tegan Bannister’s Eponine, Will Richardson as Enjolras, new comer Harry Apps as Marius, Ruben Van Keer as Grantire, Bronwen Hanson as Cosette…I cannot list all the cast, as I would be going on for days! But rest assured, the cast was fantastic. Everyone’s voices blended so lovely. I want to give a huge, huge congratulations to the child that played Gavroche, I do not know who he was. But that kid made me sob more than Bring Him Home, Little Fall of Rain and One Day More!

My only criticism I have has nothing to do with the show. It is the etiquette in the audience. If the two people sat in the Grand Tier, Row J, Seat 35 and 36 just so happen to read this post, learn some manners. All these people did was say rude comments, such as ‘urgh, they can’t harmonise’ ‘urgh, that is all wrong, it should not be like that’ ‘urgh, that was the worse performance of one day more ever’ ‘urgh they should have done it this way.’ That was just in Act 1. In Act 2 all I heard was ‘urgh, why is she playing Eponine’ ‘urgh, the barricade is rubbish’ ‘urgh, this is not sad’ ‘urgh, if I don’t cry at Bring Him Home I’m walking out.’ Bitches, they cried at Bring Him Home and FINALLY shut up. Until the end, judging everyone giving a standing ovation. If you are not enjoying the performance, please leave it to the interval or the end of the show to voice your opinions. Not while there are people on stage giving their heart and soul into doing what they love. Or at least learn to whisper.

And just a tip for those with weak bladders, make sure you don’t bang the doors into the toilets. It can be very distracting.

Apart from the loud people behind me, Les Miserables was absolutely phenomenal! It was everything I wanted. I loved this production, and I would love to see it again. If you are lucky enough to have a ticket for this show, you are truly in for a great night. I am still not over it. Sigh, it was beautiful.

Anyway, until next time readers,

Emily

Posted in Television

To The Barricade!

Hello Readers,

Today, I want to discuss the BBC adaptation of Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo. This six part adaptation graced our screens in January, and I was immersed from the start.

Let’s back up just a bit. I love, and I mean love, the musical Les Miserables. I first saw Les Miserables back in 2010 when Nick Jonas was Marius, then in 2012 for my eighteenth birthday. When I was 17, I was in a ‘school production’ of the musical, and it is still a highlight of my teenage years. I have also read the book and loved it. Plus I am seeing the tour in March. Safe to say I love Les Miserables and will always love it. The story, the characters, the music. Everything.

Now, onto the BBC adaptation. This was highly anticipated by myself, and for me, it did not disappoint. As this adaptation was solely around the book and not the musical, I knew a few other little bits that I wanted to be included. For example, Epoine has a sister. Little parts like that. The whole feel around the show captured how miserable (pun intended) the story is. My boyfriend turned to me and said “is it going to be this miserable throughout.” Yes my love, yes it is.

A few musical lovers were left disappointed with the lack of bursting out into songs. For the first two episodes, it was hard not to burst out into ‘At the End of the Day’ and ‘Lovely Ladies.’ But the soundtrack that was composed fit the programme perfectly, that I can see if being in the musical, somehow. The urge to burst out into song did vanish, as the story progressed.

The casting was perfect. Dominic West captured both the book and musical versions of Jean Valjean and made his own. Lily Collins’s performance as Fantine deserves rewards. She played her perfectly. I was almost in tears when she had to start selling her beauty. Olivia Colman and Adeel Akhtar were brilliant as the Thenardiers. Personally, Marius (Josh O’Connor) and Cosette (Ellie Bamber) were the weakest throughout. That isn’t to say the actors did a bad job. They did a great job portraying these characters. I just find them a bit bland characters in general. In this, they were still quite bland. However, we get to see more of Marius’s background unlike the musical, and the 2012 adaptation which promised us his back story and…they did not deliver.

I could go on with how much I loved Gavroche, how Eponine was portrayed etc. But, for me, the star of the show was David Oyelowo portraying Javert. He completely owned Javert. His determination to bring down Jean Valjean shone through. Even during his turn around, realising everything Jean Valjean did for love, broke my heart. He did a fabulous job, and I could not ask for anyone else to play the role.

Overall, Les Miserables was everything I could ask for in a television adaptation of my favourite story. The story is very easy to follow, compared to the all-singing stage version. The sets were great, especially the barricade. It felt, and was, truly miserable.

That is everything I have for today’s post. Until next time

– Emily

Posted in Beauty

Let Love Grow – February Birchbox 2019 First Impression

Hello Readers,

Today’s post is discussing the contents that I received in this month’s Birchbox. Birchbox is a monthly subscription service where for £10 a month you receive 5 beauty products, from luxury, high end products, to items you can find on the High Street. I purchased my first box last month, and was very impressed that I am keeping the monthly subscription going.

This month’s box is in collaboration with Not On The High Street, and the theme is ‘Let Love Grow.’ It is not a surprise that the theme includes Love, as Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. I absolutely love the design of this box, with the black background and flowers in the foreground. I love how reusable these boxes are, and cannot wait to find a way to reuse this box.

Now, onto the products. I had a glance at some of the items that could be in the box, from a lipstick, to eyeliner, hair masks, a perfume sample, a lot was up for grabs. When I opened my box, I was slightly sad that I did not get the perfume sample, and the eyeliner (mostly because I am all out of eyeliner and need to get myself to Superdrug to purchase one). However, from looking further into the box, I am really happy with the items I got. I cannot wait to try these items out.

LOC Liquid Shimmer Shadow in Moonlight RRP £8

Eyeshadow is my favourite make-up item. When I got the email to choose a shade of the shimmer shadow, I was very excited and clicked the ‘surprise me’ option. I adore the shade I got, Moonlight. It’s a warm taupe shade that..shimmers. It is gorgeous. I am shocked with how small it is, 0.9 ml/0.03fl oz. It is tiny for a £8 eyeshadow. However, I cannot wait to try this on the eyes.

Anatomicals Shower Gel RRP £4

I love shower gel. I have a slight obsession with shower gels, especially ones that smell amazing! So I got pretty excited to see this in the box. A full size one too, 100ml/3.3 fl oz. I love the bottle design, but the back kind of crept me out with the cartoon of a man and woman kissing. It has a fresh scent to it, which I like. I do prefer fruity smelling shower gels, but I like a fresh scent. My only problem with shower gels is that I have sensitive skin, so it is give or take if a shower gel likes my skin. I have used shower gels that I love that give me really bad eczema. I am interested to see how this reacts to my skin.

Coco & Eve Like a Virgin Super Nourishing Coconut & Fig Hair Masque RRP £9

Another full size product! I love hair masques. My hair gets used to products quite quick, so I am always swapping out my shampoos and conditioners. My hair can get very dry so I am looking forward to this product. Another full size product that seems just a bit small, 38ml/1 fl oz. However, if this is intended to be used once a week, it should last quite a few washes. Plus, it is sulfate free, paraben free, phthalate free, gluten free, cruelty free and 100% vegan. I am trying to use a lot more cruelty free products so this is a step in that direction.

Luxie 205 Tapered Blending Dreamcatcher RRP £11

I am always losing my eyeshadow brushes, and use the same ones constantly. It is a pretty coloured brush. The bristles are very soft, which should be perfect for blending. I do not have much to say, except it is vegan, cruelty free and hypoallergenic. As someone who is allergic to fur, this had me giddy.

Sebamed Clear Face Anti-Pimple Gel RRP £4.39

It’s as though Birchbox knew I am having a major breakout. I have been a little bit stressed lately, with some personal things happening. I woke up one morning with three large acne spots on my chin. I have yet to find a product that works for my spots, so maybe this might be that product. On writing this, my spots have scabbed over and I do not know if will work on them. But once a pimple pops through, I will definitely be giving this a whirl.

So that is my Birchbox for February. I am shocked to receive 5 full size items, even if one is quite small. The total value for this box that I received is £36.39. This is not bad considering I paid £10 for this box. I will be doing a follow up post near the end of the month, discussing which products were hits and misses.

That is all for today’s post. I really hope you enjoyed reading. If you have used any of these products, let me know in the comments, and if you are also subscribed to Birchbox.

Until next time,

Emily