Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Lifestyle // Cheerz - Instagram Prints

Cheerz poster - from £11.95

Ever since we arrived back from our travels, I have wondered what to do with the hundreds of photos we took along the way. I’m not one for scrapbooking, and I knew I wanted them on display, but I have hundreds of Instagram ‘polaroid’ prints that now sit in a drawer. Since moving into our new home, I wanted to create something sleek that would fit with the rest of our interiors. Our home is very minimal with white walls, and dark wood flooring. Our furniture is modern and light, so I wanted something that would accompany this, and tie it all together. We already have a few pieces of artwork framed on the walls, and we have a large chest of drawers in our bedroom that has always looked quite lonely. So I got thinking of ways I could decorate this large white space, and how I could incorporate our memorable photos.

Initially I set about collecting together our most favourite snaps from throughout our trip – Australia, Japan and China. This was the most time consuming bit about the idea, but also the most fun. It was great to look back at all of our fantastic experiences, and reminisce on everything we’d accomplished.

I had seen many beautiful frames that I thought would make a great home for the photos, but all of the mounts weren’t too my taste. Being one for details, I knew I wanted all of the photographs to be printed at the same size, and to be neat and symmetrical within the frame. Most mounts that I came across were for the standard 4x6 photograph. None accommodated a nice square (Instagram) image. I was even considering buying a piece of board and carving my own squares into them, creating my own mount! Thankfully before I reached this point, a lovely lady called Katie contacted me from online brand Cheerz.

Beating The Winter Blues

Are you convinced that you're always happier when you've got a little bit of sunshine in your life? When we go on holiday, we often tell anyone who'll listen that we're feeling the brightest we've ever been. Sure, we could easily chalk that up to the break from the daily grind, fun with our friends and of course, the sun, sea and sand that often comes with the most popular resort destinations, but what if it's more than the physical escape from the dull and dreary UK which makes us feel that much better? The sunshine you experience in the likes of Spain and the Caribbean might actually be good for your mental health.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Recipes // Lamb Crumble

Sweet Monday recipes, Lamb Crumble

I was contacted by the lovely team at Talented Talkers last week who have been working with hotel chain Travelodge, who are looking to promote their coastal, seaside resorts. With a focus on Bournemouth in particular, I was called up on to put my culinary skills to the ultimate test, and create a Bournemouth-ian dish! See Travelodge's blog post on Bournemouth's rich food heritage here.

Having only visited Bournemouth many years ago when I was little, I had few memories of my visit, and especially the food. After a little research I found a couple of recipes that struck a cord with Bournemouth, and not just fish and chips or ice-cream! One that caught my attention was a lamb crumble dish. From the photo it looked like a Shepherd's Pie, but with a delicious cheese based crumble on top.

I have to say this is one of the tastiest meals I've ever created. The flavours were perfect. It felt very indulgent, and homely. The perfect Sunday lunch! Bournemouth I salute you. I will 100% be making this again. 

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Outfit // Tu Clothing striped basics

Tu Clothing
Top - Tu Clothing* // Skirt - New Look // Boots - Tu Clothing // Watch - Daniel Wellington

You may have seen my previous post about Tu Clothing's fantastic range. Well I'm back today to show you guys some other favourites. Sainsbury's clothing collection is great for basics, and although I have a million striped tops already, I've opted for another! In all fairness I don't have a long sleeve, navy and white one, so it's justified. Ha!

This outfit was taken last weekend, pre hair-cut. If you haven't seen my new hair, I posted a photo on Instagram. My whole life I've had long hair, and after months of considering it, I finally made the decision to go for the chop!

Thursday, 19 November 2015

Lifestyle // Sue Ryder Christmas Gifts

Sue Ryder
Christmas stocking £2.99 // Christmas bunting £12.99 // Christmas card pack £3.99

I’ve been looking forward to writing this post for a few reasons, the first being that the Sue Ryder charity is a charity that I hold close to my heart. If you’re unaware of Sue Ryder, they are a charity offering hospice and neurological care for people who face life changing illnesses. They not only offer an incredible level of care for their patients, but also for their loved ones as they face challenging, difficult times.

A few years ago my uncle was face with a terminal illness. He spent his last remaining months in the care of a Sue Ryder hospice. As a family, we have nothing but praise for the nurses that helped him and his family through that time. They were truly amazing!

Over the years since we have often donated money or raised money for Sue Ryder. Many charities both here and abroad require a lot of fund raising to do the remarkable jobs that they do. It can sometimes be hard to know who to give to, and I am often left feeling guilty when someone asks me on my lunch break for a few minutes of my time. It’s impossible to give to everyone, but in this case as Sue Ryder has affected my family personally, I always try to give when I can, and as much as I can.

Now how does this link to Christmas I hear you ask? Well, one thing I was unaware of is that Sue Ryder has an online shop where they sell a variety of furniture, home accessories, toys and crafts. It’s always fantastic if you can do two things at once, by purchasing something you need and at the same time give to charity! As this was recently brought to my attention, I immediately spent my lunch break having a browse. Their furniture selection is great, and ideal for my home, but alas we have no real room to put anything more in our flat. However, I then spotted their Christmas shop where I found an assortment of decorations, gift ideas, cards and advent calendars. It was here that I made my selections and came out with this bunch of goodies.

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