8 photos of happiness

It might seem a bit voyeuristic of me but I actually love tag-style articles as I find them to be a really good way to get to know the person behind the blog (and the little Gossip Girl inside me finds learning secrets extremely satisfying!).

Ariel of Ariel’s Little Corner of the Internet recently created the 8 photos of happiness tag and was kind enough to nominate me. Thanks Ariel!

And while I was busy deciding which pictures to include, the lovely Helena of Helena’s Teabreak, and the darling Amanda of Amanda Bootes tagged me as well! Thanks both!

The rules are very simple: it’s basically about sharing 8 pictures that make us happy and then sharing the love (and happiness) with other bloggers by inviting them to join into the tag!

So here are my 8 pictures!

8 photos of hapiness tag | Cake + WhiskyThis picture of me and my brother when we were kids is the cutest one I have and it gives me all the feelings.Cake + Whisky | FamilyThis picture of my sister & me, taken on Christmas Eve 😂😂As you might have guess, Christmas parties are a bit wild in my family! 😂

I love those pictures with my siblings as they remind me of how great a time we have when we are together. Being away from them is probably the most difficult thing about living abroad, but pictures like that always make me feel better. Cake + Whisky | 8 photos of happiness tagA fantastic trip, Polaroid cameras and my ever-so-wonderful boyfriend who’s getting far too good at dealing with even the craziest sides of me and would’t even think of eating a bite before I’ve taken 25 pictures of anything that’s on a table… This picture says it all! ❤Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake. Duh.

Cake + Whisky | London's best ice cream at GelupoIce cream. Basically like cake but frozen and much more appropriate in a heatwave. I’ll take 1 scoop of each please-and-thank-you-very-much!Cake + Whisky | Ile de Ré France beachOh, I like to be beside the seaside! Pictured is my absolute favourite place on Earth; Ile de Ré, on the French Atlantic coast.

Cake + Whisky | A walk around London | Sunny Days & Pretty DoorsLiving in London. Yes, it’s too expensive and there are too many people and it takes you ages to go anywhere, but I love it anywayCake + Whisky | 8 photos of happinessSlow mail. The sure-fire way to put a smile on my face. If you’re unable to provide cake, that is.

And now I’m going to sit tight and look forward to seing those lovelies’ happy pictures!

Izzy of Qthee

Bella of The Other F Word

Charity of My Life’s Miscellany

Susie of Sequins and Strawberries

Ophélie of Cross my Heart and Hope to Die

Want to join in the picture fun? Don’t forget to tag me in so I can go check out your happy pictures! 

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8 photos of happiness

Little indulgences | Yvonne & Guite’s canelés

You might not know this about me just yet but I love slow mail. Hand-written letters, postcards, surprise parcels, you name it, I send it.

But more often than not, my own mailbox seems to only bring me bills and useless ads for places I’ll never visit.

But last week was anything but that, because instead of all those things I immediately put in the (recycling) bin, I received a pretty little white patisserie box promising “Little Indulgences“…
Cake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewCake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewOnce I lifted the lid, familiar aromas of vanilla and rum perfumes the room. The accompagnying cards are delightfully retro but I can only focus on that sweet smell that brings back childhood memories. With trembling hands, I open the tissue paper standing between me and those “little indulgences”.Cake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewAnd here they are. Rows after rows of perfect canelés (both in the Regular and mini sizes).
Cake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewI first discovered those delightful Bordeaux specialities when I was just a kid travelling with my grandmother. I can’t even remember where it was or when, but this first bite into the caracteristic caramelized crust, followed by the chewiness of the soft interior is something I have never forgotten. The apparent simplicity of the canelé, and yet the complexity of flavour and texture fascinates me. It is around that time that I fall in love with desserts and start baking frantically. Cake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewCake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewThe first bite brings me back to this first taste I ever had of canelé. Yvonne & Guite prides itself on making canelés “as they should be” and I don’t think there’s a better way to put it.

Which is not really surprising. Caroline, Yvonne & Guite‘s founder, started her company in September last year but just like I did, she fell over in the caldron of canelés in her childhood. She experienced in the family kitchen with her sister, began baking them on a regular basis after being gifted moulds by her mum, start developping her own recipes as she couldn’t find anything she was entirely happy with in books or on the Internet… 
Cake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewAfter failing to find the perfect canelés for a house party, Caroline makes it her mission to introduce London’s foodie to this traditional French wonder. The canelé revolution is on its way.yvonne-guite-12Made with all-natural ingredients, freshness truly is key when it comes to canelés. Since no artificial colouring or preservatives are used, they’re best if eaten within two-three days of their baking date. Challenge accepted!Cake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewYvonne & Guite’s canelés have the most perfect of textures: slightly crisp crust and soft, very moist interiors. Just how they should be. 
Cake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewCake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewCake + Whisky | Yvonne & Guite's canelés reviewCan we all please take a second to admire how cute the mini-canelés are? I must admit I liked the regular-sized one better (mostly because they fitted my childhood memory better though!), but those would make the best of gifts, wouldn’t they? #DefinitelyOnMyChristmasList

If you feel like you need a box of canelés in your life (trust me, you do!), you can order them by contacting Yvonne & Guite by phone at 0795 794 6984 or email at hello@yvonneguite.com.

Regular and mini-canelés are also distributed by Bonativo, who is taking London’s farmers and producers online in a bid to make food shopping more local and sustainable (click: Bakery | Cakes & Brownies).

*I was gifted this sample box by Yvonne & Guite but all over-excitement, opinions and pictures are definitely mine! 

Little indulgences | Yvonne & Guite’s canelés

Top 10 Summer Essentials

Summer, Summer, Summertiiiiiiiiiiiiiime!

If you ask me, there’s only one true way to now if summer is on its way. One very simple test. Do I want to wear pastel nailpolish or do I stick to my dear Rouge Noir?

We all have a favourite season. Some like Winter and the snow, some prefer Fall and its beautiful colours, or Spring with all its flowers. But Summer, with its barbecue parties and beac holiday plans has always been my personal favourite. I’m never happier than when I wear jean shorts, a white linen Tshirt and sandals, sit in the sun and sip on one too many cups of Pimm’s (oops!), so today, I wanted to share my absolute summer essentials.

Cake + Whisky | 10 summer essentials | shopping guide1. Jean shorts: I basically live in those from June to September and those H&M ones are definitely on my radar!

2. Stay Matte pressed powder, Rimmel: I love hot weather and all, but shiny skin, not so much. Luckily, this does the job perfectly and is cheap as chips! #WinWin

3. Glass bottle, BKR: I said it before, I said it again: those are the BEST! And it seems Selfridges is now stocking them, so you won’t have to deal with the whole “do I really want to pay that much in P&P?” issue!

4. Aloe Vera Gel, Banana Boat: My skin is just the worse: as soon as there is ANY kind of change in the weather, it starts drying out, cracking etc… So convenient when the weather changes about 12 times a day. So I’m trying everything I can possibly put my hands on to see what works best to keep things in control, and sofar, this seems to do the trick. I also love that it dries very quickly and doesn’t stick when you put clothes on afterwards. Not sure I’m a massive fan of the Shrek-like green colour though, so might try to find a “cleaner” alternative next time around.

5. Pore Refining Solution Instant Perfector, Clinique: Shine-free, Photoshoped-like skin anyone? This thing is basically magic in a bottle (and you can use it on top of your make-up too!).

6. Aqua Smoky Lash mascara, Make Up For Ever: When they say “waterproof”, they mean it. Go on, jump in that pool and have fun!

7. Maximillian Strasse nailpolish, Essie: Some people start wearing shorts and flip-flops the second the sun starts shining. Instead, I just switch my usual dark red polish for some sort of pastel mint. This one, by Essie, is one of my absolute faves.

8. Audrey Swimsuit, Princesse Tam Tam: 😍😍😍 (I think it says it all)

9. Mojito Ice Lollie, Ice Kitchen: Just what it says on the bag: Mojito. In a Lollie. Life is good!

10. Ultra Light Daily UV Defense, Kiehl’s: A no-brainer this one, really. When there’s sun, wear sunscreen, your skin will thank you.

What are your summer favourites? Anything I should check out? (Would take any excuse to go shopping, really! Please help!)

Top 10 Summer Essentials

Gift Guide | For your (London) visitors

Since I’ve been living in London, I’ve had loads of people coming over to spend a few days in the capital, tour all the sights and eat some world famous breakfast.

And if I enjoy creating little guides of things for my visitors to see and do, there’s absolutely nothing I love more than putting together little London gift bags to make them feel truly special upon arrival and remember the fun times once they’ve left.

The content of my gift bags usually varies depending on what I stumbble upon while shopping, but here are a few of my absolute favourites!

Cake + Whisky | Gift Guide for your London visitors1. This Gin & Tonic Lip Balm is just genius. I mean, it’s basically a cocktail that keeps your lips soft. What more could you possibly ask for?

2. I’m such a kid at heart! I LOVE Legos and this Big Ben Nanoblocks make for the perfect alternative to tacky snowglobes!

3. Tea is obviously a must and I like to get a small tea caddy from Fortnum & Mason for the added wow-effect. I tend to get classic blends such as Earl Grey or the Royal Blend but their Peach Balck Tea and Elderflower Green Tea are also cracking!

4. I have a stock of Cath Kidson purses at home, so if you ever visit me, it’s very likely you’ll be handed one as soon as you pass the door. I’m absolutely obsessed with purses so it’s near impossible to resist buying them and my friends have loved being gifted some as it’s so convenient to keep everything together, keep currencies separate, not lose your Oyster card at the bottom of your bag…  Win-win then?

5. Burt’s Bees lip balm was one of the first things I ever bought when I first lived in London, so this one has quite a sentimental value to me. Plus they’re absolutely ace, entirely natural and now come in so many flavours!

6. Don’t we all need something sweet in our lives? I believe we do, so I always try to include some treats in my little London boxes, be it Jelly beans or a bar of Green & Black Chocolate!

Do you put together gift bags for your visitors? What do/would you include in them?

Gift Guide | For your (London) visitors

New-ins April 2015

Not that many new things to report this month but the few things I got, I’m absolutely in love with! Maybe because they all have that little “Spring feeling” about them… 🌸🌱🌳🌷
Cake + Whisky | April New-ins1- I’ll never say it enough (and I’ll come back on the topic in details in a future “Objective Capsule Wardrobe” post): there is hardly any point buying good clothes if you don’t buy good underwear. I started buying mine from the French brand Princesse Tamtam 5 years ago and I’ve never looked back. (also, they swimsuit collection is just 👌 Very tempted to buy this one)!

2- I tested Rimmel’s Color Burst this month but I’m still not sure what to think. The colour is kind of nice but I’m not a massive fan of the texture as it feels fairly dry on the lips…

3- I FINALLY got myself some GAP black jeans! Yay! (I absolutely love GAP for jeans! They have many different cuts, inc. one that fits me perfectly! But can someone please explain to me how it makes sense to switch from number-sizes to letter-sizes?Why?)

4- Finally, what’s probably my favourite purchase this month: this lovely nude Silk Cami from J Crew. It’s so pretty and soft and I never want to wear anything but silk ever #Spoiled

What have you bought this month? I’m always looking for shopping inspiration!

New-ins April 2015

Spring Wish-List

Every year, it’s just the same: after 2-3 days of sunny warm-ish weather, I forget all about my winter wish-list and build an entirely new one. Most of the time, my spring wish-lists include pastel nailpolish, ballerinas and tones of home stuff.

However this year, it seems I have slightly different ideas. It might be because I already have 25 shades of mint nailpolish, or that I already bought the ballerinas of my dream, or that I don’t want to scare anyone with my home wish-list… Or it might be that I’m finally making some progress on this whole capsule wardrobe thing, and accepted that basics will always be the new black to me!

Cake + Whisky | Spring Wish-List | GAP, Vero Moda, Petit Bateau, Pure, Clinique

1. Vero Moda Parka Coat: I’ve been looking for a mid-season coat for quite a while (as in, I can’t remember when was the last time I ever owned one of those…) and it was love at first when I spotted this beauty in Oliver Bonas’ window!

2. Petit Bateau Basic White V neck Tshirt: I love love LOVE Petit Bateau, all their stuff is incredibly good quality and the cuts are amazing! Not sure if I’ll get the cotton or the linen version, but I’m pretty sure where I’ll head to quench my thirst for white-v-neck-tshirts!

3. GAP 1969 Legging Jeans: Mine died. I need new ones. As simple as that!

4. Pure Grace perfume: It smells like soap and laundry. Do I really need to say more? #SoReadyForSpring

5. Clinique Chubby Stick: I haven’t quite decided which colour I want to get it in, but I’m working on it!!

Spring Wish-List

What you don’t see / Last week in my life #5

LWIML#5

What you don’t see / Last week in my life #5