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laurenolauren

These Are The Rules Podcast

These Are The Rules Podcast Episode One is here!!

December 25, 2018

Still working out the kinks of this very brand new podcasting life, that I am excited to embark on  bare with me as we figure this out together. I wanted to jump right into todays topic and give you a brief summary of my first episode.  If you watch my vlogs you would have already known, that I tend to rant a lot, yes I admit I’m a ranter. I use the term ranter loosely because I’m not just mindlessly cussing. Typically my rants have a moral and and can be a great lesson for anyone watching.  I have been blogging for years but I realize it was easier for my followers to digest information in a video format as no one really has the time to do much reading these days. That’s when the idea of a bi-weekly podcast came to me. When I mentioned it in a Vlog many of you agreed, my first podcast should have been released weeks ago but a few hiccups got in the way. Continue Reading

Girl Talk Inspiration

10 Ways To Save Money This Holiday Season & Beyond

November 25, 2018

In a world where most things in life aren’t free, it can be much harder to save money than it can to spend it. So if you’re saving for a holiday, a wedding or even to pay an upcoming bill, it’s handy to know a few ways that you can save money.

 

Try Switching Utility Companies

Whether it was one that was recommended by a friend or family member or a suggestion from the landlord, the utility company you are with might not be the best one for your bank account. Look at how much you’re spending each month and how much energy you are using up. Get in touch with other providers and see if what you’re currently paying can be reduced with them. Like the banks, utility companies are after their competitor’s customers so if they have an opportunity to take you away from them, and they are likely to offer a very attractive deal.

Get A Better Phone Deal

Mobile phone contracts tend to eat up a big chunk of your monthly wages so when your phone is next due up for renewal, try reducing the cost or if the phone you have currently is still in good working use, switch over to a SIM-only deal. These are much cheaper and better value for money than contracts are. Contracts will charge you interest so you can end up paying hundreds more over the actual value of the phone. I don’t have a contract phone I buy my phones cash and have a prepaid SIM, best decision ever made. Coming from Jamaica that’s what Im used to doing. The whole idea of the contract system to me seemed so unreasonable I’m surprised people still do it.

If you’re paying for a phone using a loan, transfer this debt onto your credit so you boost your credit rating and have all your debt in one place. It’s very beneficial and you can learn more about this topic here.

Save Money On Food

There’s a number of ways that you can save money on food as the weekly shop can get quite pricey. Here are a few suggestions to cut down on costs:

 

  • Try a food subscription service. You pay a set fee each week, and usually, you’ll get recipes to follow which are different each week. You’ll save more money and likely waste a lot less in terms of food.
  • Buy in bulk when items you regularly pick are reduced. Toothpaste, toilet roll, etc are all things you’re always going to need so if there’s a nice discount going, buy a few to save you some money in the long run.
  • Buy own branded food because it tends to be a lot cheaper than branded food and there’s very little difference in taste when you compare it.

 

 

Set A Budget Each Month For Socialising

It’s great to go out and spend time with friends but we normally do this in a bar or restaurant environment, which will all know is where we can end up spending a lot of money. It might be helpful, if you do have a very active social life, to set a budget each month and if you exceed that budget, then make alternative arrangements to either have dinner at one of your homes or go out to the park or do some sort of free activity. If that’s sometimes not possible, then restrict the amount you drink or eat and don’t get pulled into paying for a three-course meal. Splitting the bill straight down the middle when your friend has had more drinks than you is also unfair so stick to your guns and pay for just yourself.

Cancel Memberships

We very easily sign up or different things such as gym membership and loyalty cards, but they can end up sucking more money from our wallets. Over time we forget just how much it takes out of paycheck so access all of the memberships you have that are costing you money and check if they’re still worth paying for. If you don’t go to the gym every month, then you might want to opt to do pay as you go or at least freezing your membership every other month to save a bit of money. Food and drink subscriptions can be great for saving money, but if it’s not making a difference in the money you’re still spending outside of it, then it’s probably not doing you any favors.

Clear Out Your Clutter And Sell It

As we collect stuff over the years, a lot of it might not even be of any use anymore and is just taking up space in your home. When you next have a declutter, any clothes, home decor, books, CDs and tech gadgets can be sold on to make a small profit. Most sites will take anything, including eBay as one suggestion.

For your tech gadgets, they’ll also take anything that may be in bad condition or on some occasions broken. It’s better for the environment that they take it and pay you, rather than you chucking it out. So get hunting for all those mobile phones you have lying about the place.

Take Advantage Of Coupons and Discounts

There is a wealth of coupons and discounts available online and in magazines or newspapers so whenever you see them, cut them out and keep them in the kitchen or by the door. Even if some of them aren’t going to be used, you never know what you might need to go out and buy. Sign up to any companies newsletters that you buy from often to keep updated on any discount deals they do throughout the year. We can usually miss out on these if we don’t keep tabs on them. It does mean though that you’ll get a lot more emails…

Get Cashback For Shopping Online

You can now earn cashback on certain sites when shopping online. So if you are a regular for online shopping, this will be a great way of saving some cash on your purchases. Sites like Quidco are great for alerting you on a website that offers cashback so you can feel less guilty about spending, particularly over the festive season.

We can all save money somewhere in our spending so if you need to save then try out some of these tips. You may be surprised by how much you save.

 

xoxo Lauren 

Inspiration

How To Survive Thanksgiving If You Don’t Eat Meat!!

November 19, 2018

This Image is not mine. Please click image to take you to source.

This will be my second Thanksgiving not eating meat and I haven’t found it to be as horrible as the idea itself sounds.  As someone who doesn’t eat meat one the most annoying things can be. the questions that follow your declaration of being a non-meat eater.

“Oh my God what do you eat then”

“That’s crazy, I need meat I could not do without meat”

“So like how does It work when you’re at family get togethers,  or go out and stuff”

So many questions.  I understand of course that people are curious,  but we are light years passed when being vegetarian was new and full of wonder.  I thought It had lost its new kid appeal and by now more people should be versed on the subject.  Whenever I am met with the comment I need meat, I always say “that’s fine no one is stopping you from eating what you want”.

My husband still eats meat so when I prepare Thanksgiving and most times when I cook I prepare two meals.  It sounds tedious but it really hasn’t proven to be that much more work.  I make the same sides just meat for him and my non-meat substitute, so instead of looking at it as two meals. It’s like making a big dinner with a few different side options. The main focus on Thanksgiving is the turkey but other than that there are plenty of other dishes you can enjoy.  This year I bought several packs of Gardein Turkey slices with gravy, (if you follow me on youtube you know I am obsessed with this plant based meat company).  I made everything like normal, I even make a turkey because contrary to popular belief not all plant based eaters are trying to get the rest of humanity to conform to our way of life.

Don’t be afraid to bring a dish wherever you end up, I find that people enjoy vegetarian food if it’s done right. I like to call my food: meat eaters vegetarian, because I tailor it to a meat eaters preferences and that way everybody wins. I love seasoning, so I season my fake meats or tofu like I would meat.  The other traditional thanksgiving dishes are enough to fill you up, Sweet potato casserole,  I add a ripe banana to mine.  The Mash potatoes if they aren’t loaded with bacon, sauté veggies ( I like to make veggies, heavily seasoned with butter and the works).  The macaroni and cheese is a winner depending on whether you’re vegan or vegetarian, and lets not forget baked or grilled corn on the cob.

For a quick holiday dish you can prepare at home and take with you that even your aunt who hates everything will love. This is one of my personal favorites, Sautéd Veggies For People Who Hate Veggies.

The thing about Thanksgiving if you’re not having turkey is you really get to appreciate all the sides. Like no joke, turkey is great and all I mean if you like turkey but the sides have been under appreciated all these years.  I’ve seen some really amazing creative side dishes and I think it’s time we started appreciating them more. I have always personally preferred chicken and ham to turkey, however when you’re in Rome you do like the Romans. So I ate turkey but if I’m being honest it wasn’t on my top five.

Comment down below with some ways you have survived Thanksgiving, some new ideas you have and favorite foods, Meat and non-meat options.  Have a great holiday and remember we are going into the season of giving.

xoxo Lauren

(Images excluding the recipe featured do not belong to LaurenOLauren, they were found on Tumblr)
Inspiration

How To Choose The Perfect Engagement Ring

November 18, 2018

Men; we understand that you may not be into fashion and jewellery, but we do expect you to purchase the perfect engagement ring! After all, you do want us to wear it for the rest of our lives, don’t you?  2018 has been the year of engagements, so many people I know got engaged this year, including ME. Even though I’ve been married for a while my husband repurposed to me this past summer on our five year anniversary.  Buying an engagement ring can be tough, it’s a lot of pressure and though I am yet to meet anyone who personally hates her engagement ring. I still think this blog post is fitting for the times. Continue Reading

Travel & Reviews

A Luxurious Timepiece Made Entirely of Wood

November 16, 2018


A Luxurious Timepiece Made Entirely of Wood

I said Made entirely of wood but if I’m being accurate it’s more 90% wood for those of us who want to be technical. I have seen Jord (pronounced Yode) watches in my instagram feed before, hmmm this is cool I thought. The more I saw it the cooler it became and I’m excited to say it’s even cooler in person. If you’ve been following me for a while you know I’m a “packaging” type of person, and Jord did not disappoint. From the shipping box, to the beautiful humidor wood box that clasps magnetically to hold this beautiful watch, I was impressed by all of the small details that they did not ignore. My watch came with the collector’s edition humidor cedar watch box, cleaning cloth and Jord preserve custom-formulated wood treatment gel. The box even has a little drawer you can store your gel or small jewelry, just about anything your heart desires as long as it fits.

There are so many different designs to choose from there is a watch for everyone. I have always been a watch girl and love wearing watches, I will not leave the house without one. These days I can always be seen wearing my apple watch, however I do like a nice watch when It’s time for special occasions, as my bulky apple watch doesn’t seem to always fit in with my fancier dresses. The watch I’m wearing is the Frankie Zebrawood and Navy (Put link to watch here) . The Zebrawood is a native of West Africa and as you can see its natural multi-tone has something to do with its name. It has a natural coarse texture and open pores, with grains that are wavy or interlocked. It is considered a luxury hard wood and is not very common.

I wore this watch everywhere for more than a week, I even wore it to the gym once just to see how I felt about it. Though I would not recommend wearing it to the gym, because it is made of wood, being continuously exposed to water or excessive sweat can damage the exterior of the watch. After all it is made of wood. The first thing I noticed was how light the watch was, so light that I forgot I was wearing it, typically when I wear my metal watches a little loose they annoy me with gravity pulling it down my wrist and me in return constantly shaking it back up to a desired position further along my wrist. It had not occurred to me how much the system annoyed me until I wore my Jord watch and realized that life did not have to be so heavy all the time, lol. I love the blue watch face against the wood and the large round face, It looks so good, my husband has even said how much he likes it and would wear it to work since it’s such a light watch. The watch is unisex and can be worn by men and women, they have men,men, women and unisex watches. I like a bigger face on a watch even though I have very small wrists.

Am I happy with my watch? I am beyond happy, would I recommend this watch 100%, do I think it’s worth it. I am a woman who I am sure by now you all know appreciates quality and I do believe that you get what you pay for with Jord. Every single detail is meticulously thought through, from how easy their website is to navigate, to the shipping and packaging all the way down to the watch itself. Jord has impressed me, I think this would make a beautiful gift to yourself or to someone else. I will be updating you later on as I wear this watch and it ages over time. I think in about two months I should be able to say more, but for now all I can say is I am in love with this beautiful wooden watch.

If you want a Jord Wooden Watches of your own, enter my giveaway here for the chance to winner a $100 discount code! Everyone who enters will receive 10% off automatically!

Xoxox Lauren

(This Blog Post is a collaboration with Jord Watches)

Travel & Reviews

Why You Should Visit Indonesia (And Not Just Bali)

November 16, 2018

If you’re a frequent traveller, Indonesia may have been on your list for some time. If it hasn’t, it definitely will be after reading this post, as I’m going to show you some of it’s secret gems (so keep it to yourself!). With the ever-growing trends of visiting countries like Thailand, people overlook the beauty of this paradise-like country, which extends Continue Reading

OOTD

A Jumpsuit For Work?? Yup And A Blazer

November 8, 2018


Am I the only one who gets excited about dressing up for work, I like to find new ways to rework my wardobe. Without buying too much work related pieces because that can get really boring. This jumpsuit I bought in Urban Outfitters over the summer was a piece I was very excited about, it’s easy to wear and the boho vibe of it was just perfect with my overall aesthetic. I decided to wear it to work too with a blazer on top. You would be surprised what a blazer can do to an outfit. It can make you instantly look more put together. I listed some similar items down below as I could not find the exact same pieces. Have a great Thursday everyone it’s almost Friday.