Category Archives: Personal

Why I Cry (Or, Why I Learned to Shop Worrying and Weep All I Want)

26th May 2014

I was at lunch with two of my best blogging buddies the other week (Amy from Amy Loves and Emily from Pretty Please – both of their blogs are amazing!) when we got onto the topic of how often we cry. Now, I’m a prolific crier and we spent the next half an hour shrieking with laughter when we talked about all the silly things that have made us cry… or not cry, in Iron Amy’s case (although we did break her with Hannah Maggs’ Draw My Life video, don’t worry).

I decided to write a blog post sharing all of the things that have made me cry in the last seven days because, well, it makes me chuckle to look back and see what a sap I am. I swear, pretty much the only time I’m not crying is when I’m feeling totally neutral emotionally, any other time (happy or sad), I’m usually bawling.

I sometimes see people answer ‘about me’ surveys on their blogs and say they can’t remember the last time they cried. REALLY? Man, if I haven’t cried in a 24 hour period there’s usually something seriously the matter with me. I love a good cry. It’s cleansing. But I’m still convinced that’s why I have dry skin…

So anyway, these are the things that have made me shed a tear over the last seven days:

When I couldn’t do a wide grip pull down in the gym because my wrists were too weak (frustrated tears)
When my boyfriend suggested my portion of stew was too big (frustrated tears)
When my boyfriend suggested I might be able to squat a bit deeper (‘omfg why don’t you do it then?’ tears – sorry, Simon, I know you were just trying to help!)

(In case you couldn’t tell, I wasn’t good at taking fitness criticism this week)

When their parents turned up to their photo shoots in the America’s Next Top Model final (happy tears)
When Ping won Masterchef (happy tears)
When I read an article that showed photos of dogs in the car after leaving shelters (happy tears)
When I read a Game of Thrones spoiler on Twitter (RAGE tears)

I *think* that’s it for the last seven days.

So, um, any other serial criers out there? Anyone? Bueller?

Me, all the damn time

More Doggy Photos!

20th April 2014

So I know not everybody out there is a fan of dogs but, well, I am so prepare for another instalment of dog walk photos!

We had family visiting last weekend so after a huge Sunday roast we headed off on a family dog walk with our dog (Bertie), my mum’s dog (Ernie) and my uncle’s dog (Star). We had a lovely mooch through our village, across the fields and then down the canal to get home; it was a gorgeous day and it always makes me smile to see the three dogs playing together. Love those pooches!
Anyway, I took a few photos and I love some of them so much I wanted to share them with you. What do you think?

My Day Zero Challenge!

16th April 2014

I’ve decided to do the Day Zero project. I’ve actually been planning on it for ages but it’s only now I’ve finally organised myself enough to write my list. I was inspired by my dear friend Carole, who just finished hers and managed to complete everything – how amazing is that?

In case you haven’t heard of Day Zero there’s some info below, but basically it’s a challenge where you write a list of 101 goals you want to achieve in the next 1001 days (roughly 2.75 years). But here are the official guidelines from the Day Zero website:

Day Zero started out with the catchy challenge of completing 101 things in 1001 days. This has been enormously popular with tens of thousands of people getting involved and sharing their lists. We now offer many more types of challenges, but here are the original guidelines for the challenge:

The Challenge: 
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days. 

The Criteria: 
Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on your part).

Why 1001 Days? 
Many people have created lists in the past – frequently simple challenges such as New Year’s resolutions or a ‘Bucket List’. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organising and timing some tasks such as overseas trips, study semesters, or outdoor activities.

I’ve been working on my list for the last week or so and I’m ready to get going! I haven’t actually got a full list of 101 things, I’m only on 76 at the moment, but I’ve decided to add the rest as I think of them, otherwise I’ll just end up with some rubbishy things I added to try and bulk it out. That’s fair, right?

So anyway, without further waffle, here is my list of goals I’m hoping to achieve in the next 1001 days:

Every time I complete a goal I’m going to photograph it and document here on here for you all to see. I’m really, really excited about this challenge and I can’t wait to show you how I get on!

A Day in the Life: Productive vs. Unproductive

15th April 2014

I see these daily diary posts on blogs and I’m always shocked at how productive everybody seems to be. Man, in comparison I’m an absolute sloth! It got me thinking that my productivity really does depend on the day – some days I’m on fire and by the next day I can be all burned out and completely slack off.

As a freelance writer my days vary wildly and it’s quite an unstructured lifestyle. Luckily I love working from home and I work well as my own boss but while I’m getting things up and running I don’t have work to do every day, which is where the particularly unproductive days come in!
I did a comparison of two daily diaries: one ‘productive’ day and one ‘unproductive’ day. I haven’t edited my activities at all – this is an honest look at exactly how I spent a couple of weekdays, eek.
                Productive                                                            Unproductive
07:10 – Got out of bed and had breakfast                       08:30 – Got out of bed
07:45 – Took my boyfriend to the station                        09:00 – Took the dog out
08:00 – Walked the dog                                                  09:30 – Sat on Facebook and Twitter 
08:45 – Did stretches, two sets of squats and a cycle      11:00 – Watched a Catfish marathon and spent
09:30 – Sat down to work                                                          most of it smdh
10:00 – Cleared out my email inbox                                13:30 – Went on Pinterest and felt depressed
10:30 – Wrote 1500 words                                                          about my lack of crafting skills
12:30 – Had a break for lunch                                         14:00 – Made a chicken and camembert
13.15 – Wrote 2000 words                                                           sandwich for lunch. Contemplated
16:00 – Scheduled blog posts for the following day                     making another one. Didn’t
17:00 – Picked my boyfriend up from the station             14:20 – Felt guilty about not doing any work
17:20 – Prepared dinner                                                             on my novel. Distracted myself by
18:00 – Sat down for dinner                                                       watching South Park
19:00 – Chilled/watched TV/read a book                        16:00 – Decided to become a yoga guru. Hurt
22:00 – Took the dog out for the last time                                   my hamstrings doing downward
22:30 – Bed time!                                                                       facing dog. Raged
                                                                                      17:00 – Picked my boyfriend up
                                                                                      17:20 – Debated the pros and cons of getting a 
                                                                                                  Chinese for dinner. Eventually went
                                                                                                  to Sainsburys and bought burrito
                                                                                       19:30 – Sat down to eat burritos/watch TV
                                                                                       21:00 – Raged when my favourites didn’t go                                                                                                                                               through on Masterchef
                                                                                       22:30 – Got into bed and watched Family Guy
                                                                                       23:10 – Went to sleep
So there you have it! Some days I’m a writing machine, other days it’s just a big of pile of fail. But hey, at least next time you have an off day you know I’ll be there in spirit, eating camembert sandwiches and Pinning crafts I’ll probably never make.

Life Lately

7th April 2014

So, things have been a little quiet around here lately, haven’t they? Since I finished my job three weeks ago I’ve been making lots of plans, working on a bunch of projects and finding my feet as a full-time self-employed writer!

It’s a lot of work to set yourself up as a freelancer and there’s a *lot* of waiting around – but the positives are amazing and being able to pursue something I love makes it clear that I made the best decision I could have when I decided to go for it. It’s still a bit scary while I waiting for the money side of things to become more regular – but I’m waiting for a couple of contracts to come in and I should be able to relax and just enjoy things soon. I have to keep reminding myself I’ve only been doing this for three weeks – it definitely takes most businesses a hell of a lot longer to become established, so I’m pretty proud of how far I’ve come already!
Anyway, that’s all the boring work stuff out of the way. So, what have I been doing with my time when I haven’t been writing and following up leads? Well, cooking mostly! I’ve always been a big lover of cooking but it’s only in the last year I’ve really started experimenting with flavours and creating my own recipes. I’ve cooked so many yummy treats lately and I think my Instagram is quickly becoming dominated by food pictures rather than make up and beauty!
Some of my favourite new recipes are the chocolate nutter butter bars I posted up the other day (still addicted to this!), as well as healthy home made KFC-style chicken tenders, Mexican shredded chicken and the most amazing potato, chive and bacon frittata. Yum, yum, yum. ALL the food! So, yes, cooking has been occupying most of my free time and my boyfriend has been my chief taste tester…lucky for him, I think.
I’ve made some progress on my novel that I’m really pleased about; I’m approaching the 20k mark and, although I wish I was writing faster, I’m proud of what I’m creating. There’s no better feeling in the world than pouring your heart into something and it turning out even stronger than you hoped.
So, that’s life lately. Cooking, writing, business-developing. It’s all go-go-go and I’m loving it.
Home-made KFC // Perfect cream tea // Cheeky half in the pub // FotD