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Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Collection Crush - Hawthorne Handmade



A little embroidery love for Collection Crush this week. This embroidery kits by Hawthorne Handmade are available through sewandso.co.uk.



I'm a little bit in love with all of them, although the Alpaca is my favourite - they look like a simple and relaxing make, so they're going on my 'to-do' list (which is crazy long at the moment...seriously).



If you'd like to try one of these kits you can find the whole range here.  All images from sewandso.

Happy Stitching!

xx

Monday, 19 June 2017

Thoughts on...Home



I've mentioned a few times that we were planning to sell our house...and then decided not to. It's been a strange old roller coaster from start to finish and it has made me take a step back and question why I was hoping to move to start with. It wasn't for any definite reason. I'd just decided I wanted a bigger garden...an extra bathroom...more space.

However - deciding not to move has taken a huge weight off my shoulders, and I've realised that I was looking for the right things, but in the wrong place.

I'm now feeling settled and content in our current house and have stopped focusing on what I need from my home..not a pointless list of things I want - and I've realised I have everything I need already. I thought I'd share what I've come to realise are the most important things to feel at home, wherever that may be...

1. Environment - Being surrounded by the right people, pets and plants - I'm a bit of an introvert at heart. My home will never be constantly filled by large groups of people (that would be enough to leave me running for the hills) but I adore my family, friends, pets and yep, even my plants, and love how they all fill the house with memories and life - definitely the most important part of my home

2. Rituals - Having little rituals at home - this is something I've been working on over the past few weeks. Sunday morning breakfast is now a bit of an event. So is making sure that we have some time each week curled up in our new snug chair, reading, and board game night. I'm already finding that this is helping me to create memories and a sense of being settled.

3. Nooks - Linked to our new snug chair above - I've recently created a bit of a nook in our conservatory and it has completely changed how I feel about the area, and the house. Having a super comfy little area to curl up in is now on my 'must have' for any home from now on - I can't believe I haven't had one before now. I've found myself sitting in our nook each morning while I gather my thoughts for the day, and definitely think it's helping my mindfulness.

4. Stuff - I think I have donated about 10 car loads of 'stuff' to charity in recent months...and I haven't missed a single thing I donated. But what I have been left with is some precious items of 'stuff' which mean the world to me and make me very happy. I love looking around my home and seeing things which have memories attached. Right now I'm say typing and looking at a little vintage cow milk jug my hubby bought for me one year. It makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside because it is so absolutely 'me'. I love the minimalist look but I don't think that will ever be my home because it doesn't represent me ... and my stuff

So there we go...that's home for me. We've got a little bit of re-decorating to do, but not much, and it's a lovely feeling to be settled.

What makes a home for you? I'd love to know.

Bye for now

xx

Friday, 16 June 2017

That Friday Feeling - Switched at Birth, Some Big Little Lies and Barbie

Hello lovely people. Another week has flown by!

This week I've been focusing on getting back to making healthier choices - drinking water instead of fizzy drinks (diet...but you know...aspartame and all that), walking instead of driving and using Headspace instead of playing on my phone (although there has been a little bit of playing on my phone, those Tsum Tsum aren't going to clear themselves).

I'm feeling much better for making some small changes so I'm going to try to take them forward into the weekend and next week. If you have some small changes you've made which have brought a positive impact then I'd love to hear about them.

Here are a few things that have brought some extra happiness this week...



What I've been watching: Switched at Birth

Oh god. I'm addicted to this programme. Like full on 'just one more episode' for hours on end. The basic premise is that it tells the story of Bay and Daphne - two teenage girls who suddenly discover they were switched at birth, and all the family drama that follows on from that discovery. However, Daphne lost her hearing at a young age and the show isn't afraid to have significant scenes told through sign language (with subtitles). I love watching people communicate, and the different ways we do that, and have been so moved by some of the scenes. Honestly - as much as I sometimes enjoy darker TV shows, I am at my happiest watching a good family drama - and this is absolutely that.

What I've been reading: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

I loved the TV show based on this book, but I'm about half way through the book, and I'm loving it even more. I had no idea the original book was set in Australia, and I love the bitchiness and cattiness between the parents so much more in the book. I think knowing the end is going to spoil it slightly, but it's still a very entertaining read, and perfect for summer lounging.

What I've been surprised by: Barbie Fashionistas

A little bit random for a Friday Feeling, but this warmed my heart a little during a visit to Toys R Us for some present shopping this week, so I thought I would pass it on.



While peering through the sea of pink in the Barbie isle, a doll that was far curvier than the standard Barbie shape caught my eye...and then a Barbie whose face shape seemed completely unlike the usual surgical knife perfection...then a Barbie that seemed taller than most. So I did a little bit of research and it turns out that Barbie has had a make over, to include three different body shapes - curvy, petite and tall, and lots of different skin shades. This is probably old news now, but I hadn't seen them before and feel like it's a step in the right direction in acknowledgement of the fact that kids should grow up understanding we're all different, all look different, and that is something to celebrate. It's been done before my other toy lines, but not one so prominent as Barbie. Oh..and this one is my favourite..I want her outfit...

Photo from Mattel

It looks like the sun is going to be shining in the UK this weekend so I'm looking forward to some good times. Whatever you're doing, I hope it brings some loveliness your way.

Bye for now!

xx









Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Collection Crush - Arden Rose at Ohh Deer



I have to confess that I hadn't heard of the vlogger Arden Rose until I stumbled across her name through an Ohh Deer subscription box, but if her choice in stationery is anything to go by then I love her style already!

Here are a few favourite picks from the Arden Rose range (clockwise from top left)...

1. Thank you greeting card - I love this print so much I'm considering cutting up the card I already own of it to make things out of it, just so I can keep it forever!

2. Patch set - Because shit really does happen and sometimes it just needs a cute pink patch to put that into perspective

3. This lemon print notebook is so summery and beautiful - I'm in love with fruit prints at the moment, and this plain notebook looks perfect for sketching out creative ideas

4. Rose Planner - Another oh so pretty floral print - and this time it's a planner - perfect for keeping organised and being pretty all at the same time

Bye for now!

xxx

Monday, 12 June 2017

Thoughts on Kindness



I've recently been watching my way through The Kindness Diaries on Netflix. The programme is a travel documentary of sorts, but based on the premise that the 'traveller' - Leon Logothetis - has to rely entirely on the kindness of strangers to sleep, eat and for fuel for his amazingly retro yellow motorbike.

I've found it to be a really touching show which has really put some of my own concerns into perspective, and is a much needed televisual hug while the world seems to be going a little bit crazy. The most powerful message I've taken so far is that it seems to be the people with the least who give the most.

'Kind' is a word I've always held as part of my identity, who I am. It's a trait I value highly, and that's something I definitely learnt from my parents. However - watching The Kindness Diaries has made me reflect a little bit on what I do to show kindness to strangers - people who aren't actually part of my family/ friendship/ work circles. I think the answer is 'not much' and so that's something I'm aiming to change. Ultimately I want to donate time to supporting people through volunteering. However, there are some baby steps I want to take first, to try and make myself more conscious of the importance of kindness towards others, and I thought I'd share them today.

1. Donate items - this is an obvious one, and isn't new to me. I always donate to charity shops when I'm having a turn-out. However - I often see charities advertising for donations of handmade items (eg blankets for homeless people, crochet octopus for premature babies, jackets for rescued battery hens) and I'm going to try and donate some of my crafting time to making some items for these charities. More on that to come in future posts!

2. Stop Judging - I mentioned in my post last Monday that I have found myself judging strangers online in the past and intend to stop doing that, and that is something I plan to ensure is part of my every day life - on and off the internet. Judging others is a massive waste of time, and just adds more negativity to the bubbling pit of meanness that already exists in the world.

3. Be Kinder Behind the Wheel - Driving can sometimes bring out the worst in people it seems. Something I've already tried to start doing is letting people out of turnings more. I've already received a lot more smiles and friendly waves from other drivers, which makes me a less tense driver,  so it already seems like such a tiny action is having a positive impact.

4. In the blogging world - leave kind comments. Blogging and commenting don't seem to go hand in hand anymore - but I know that taking time to leave a comment can make someone feel happy when they've taken time to put something out there. This seems like a really lovely way to spread a bit of kindness

5. Be Kind to Myself - I think this is the foundation of all other kindness. I am the queen of beating myself up about things I can't change, or mistakes I've made. This then leads to a crappy mood, which then rubs off on those around me. So my first step is to be kind to myself. I have a sneaky suspicion this will be the most challenging change!

I'd love to hear about the steps you take to be more kind, and if you know of any crafted item donations please pass them on, I'd love to build a list!

Bye for now

xx

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Fathers Day Card Picks

Father's Day in the UK is fast approaching (18th June) so here's a little round up of some of my favourite Father's Day Card finds as I've been browsing the internet this week...
Flippin' Awesome at Ohh Deer

Uber Dad at Ohh Deer

Hanging Out at Ohh Deer

Big Adventure at Marks & Spencer
Vinyl at Marks and Spencer

Turtles at Paperchase





Bye for now!

xx

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Etsy Find - You Dirty Scrub


I thought I'd start sharing the odd little purchase I make on Etsy. I love shopping on Etsy and the fact it's a springboard for so many small businesses.

For this week my find is the Vegan Coffee Body Scrubs by 'You Dirty Scrub' (this post isn't sponsored and the thoughts are all my own).

I bought a packet of the Himalayan Rock Salt scrub in April, and have been using it weekly, and have loved it so much I'll definitely make a repeat purchase. The ingredients are lovely and natural (and the vegan aspect is a huge bonus) : Fairtrade Arabica Coffee, Raw Organic Cold Pressed Coconut Oil, FairTrade Brown Sugar, Dead Sea Salt, Himalayan Rock Salt, Ground Cinnamon, Ground Ginger, Vitamin E Oil. As you can see in the picture it comes in a seal-able packet and pretty much looks like coffee grounds. 

The instructions suggest you can dry brush this product onto the skin, but I've just been using it in the shower and it's made a real impact on my skin. I've just been taking a handful of the , applying it to damp skin - particularly on my arms and legs, rubbing it in circles and then washing off, and it has absolutely solved my dry skin which is amazing. 

It smells gorgeous - the coffee scent wakes me up in the morning but isn't overpowering. Although be warned - if you don't like the scent of coffee then this isn't the product for you!

I'm definitely a convert to coffee scrubs and think that You Dirty Scrub is going to be one of my go to places for body scrubs from now on.

If you're interested in finding out more you can check out the shop here.

Bye for now!

xx