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A Winter Cocktail

Life changing magic

Life changing magic
The Life Changing Magic

Dream Home: The Bedroom

I've been a bit distant recently as we found out that we've finally got a move date of the 30th. So after 8 months of waiting and waiting and wondering if it would even happen at all, we've exchanged contracts and I've been surrounding myself in boxes and bubblewrap and an air of panic! I'm not going to spend too much time going on and on about the buying process, I know it's dull and no-one wants to hear it, so lets get back to the important things, how we'll decorate the place!

The main bedroom in the house we're buying is huge compared to the house we're in now. Maybe twice the size so there will be so much we can do with the room, it even has an old fireplace in it, which I am very excited about (It also has loads of very 80's built in wardrobes that need ripping out which probably mean for the first few months we'll be setting up camp in the back bedroom, but hey, that's no hardship for an awesome room is it?)

The house isn't quite ours yet, but it's very exciting to start planning how we'll be filling the space. I love the dark grey of our bedroom at the moment, although I'm wondering if it'd be boring to carry that theme over to the new house? I'm wondering if I should keep it quite neutral with pops of colour in the accessories so it doesn't shock my poor eyes every morning or whether I should go bold bold bold. I've been thinking maybe something in blue, I mean, who wouldn't love a nautical bedroom? (Would a nautical bedroom AND bathroom be overkill?)

Here are a few of the images that have caught my eye on Pinterest - check out the beautiful fireplaces for one. And the monochrome. And the Compbolini unit. Swooooon.
Again, another stunning fireplace arrangement, and I love the neutrals, but doesn't that bright room stand out!
Here are a few more with a couple of pops of colour that I love. Even though I think neutral will be where I go, I love the turquoise room below too - and turquoise is totally a neutral colour, right?
What do you recommend for bedroom decorations?
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BEDM - A day in the life

Today, Friday 16th May,  I'll be updating this post as it goes on. Some entries will have pictures. Some won't.

5.45 am - I'm woken by Flash stirring. He's decided that sleeping by Jims knees isn't his thing anymore. He's come and snuggled his little body next to me. It's 5.45 so I should be mad but my god, it's just too cute!

6.30 am - my first alarm goes off. There's also a little paw in my face. It smells like biscuits. I like to wake up with a bit of twitter reading.

7.45 am - It's time to walk flash before he goes really crazy. We spend mornings in our local park chasing the ball. Yes that is a 'we' chasing the ball. He's a bit fickle at his ball chasing so half the time I have to go an retrieve it! 



8.30am - Walk to work time! Unlike Monday's documented walk, today it's super sunny. 


10.45am - The view from my office window helps make a morning of emails and meetings better! Although it's not bad when your meetings are about organising some great competitions!

12.30 pm - Time for lunch. I've been completely unorganised and had to buy lunch. Trying to be healthy I've gone to Nourish for a salad. 



3pm - We have a milkshake of the week in one of the bars at work. This week it was battenburg so I ordered a few for the office. Milkshake Fridays rock!



3.30pm - There was fun post today. A new Casetagram case. Anchors away!


5pm - Jim and Flash picked me up from work and we went to the pub for maybe too long. So long there was no dinner (not the best idea right). Cider with strawberries and lime rocks though. 


9.15pm - Home. Eating snacks and watching Hannibal on catch up!
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Light me up!

It feels like we've been trying to buy the new house since, well, forever (if forever was last November anyway!) Which to someone as impatient as me is hell. 
But it's meant that I've had since November to plan and plot what I'm going to do with the space, as I might have mentioned once or twice in my Dream Home posts. It's also meant that, dangerously, I have had 6 months to lust after and collect stunning pieces for the new house. There are pictures printed ready to be framed, there are cushions that I'm hoarding, shelving units in the shape of boats, clocks and shower curtains all packed up in boxes just waiting to move. 
And then there are pieces like this stunning lamp which are just too pretty to keep out of sight until we move! 
I'm a bit of a lamp fan, I really don't like 'big light' lights and love to fill our rooms with pretty lamps. I have had my eye on a tripod lamp for the longest time but I'd not found one that I'd really fallen in love with until I spotted this beauty from Litecraft on one of their Fab Friday Giveaway posts (If you don't follow them on Facebook you should). Unfortunately I didn't win, but the lovely people at Litecraft offered to send me one to review.
We have it in our dining room at the moment, but I already think it'll eventually be living in our new hallway. The grey shade will match the black, grey and white colour scheme that I have planned. I also have these dreams of having a Scandinavian inspired home and it's the perfect shade of wood for that! 
But until we move I just like having it out where we can see and use it, don't you just think it matches perfectly with our side board?  
It's nicely made, with pads on the lamp base to protect where you put it, it's well put together, and I love that it comes with a grey cord that matches the shade (it's the simple things). And well, it just looks lovely doesn't it. 

What do you think of the tripod lamp? Do you love it as much as I do? What is your dream lamp? 

*This post is in collaboration with Litecraft. I wasn't paid for the post, but I did receive the lamp in return for the post. 
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BEDM - Walk to Work

My walk to work is just under 1.5 miles, it takes me between 15 and 25 minutes (depending how late/tired/laden down with bags I am) and burns a depressingly low number of calories I know this because I worked it out. One way is not even half a twix. How awful is that?

I walk in pretty much every day, unless I have a meeting at an out of town site walking just seems like the sensible option - driving costs me a fortune in parking and it's actually quicker to walk than get the bus! When I lived in Leeds city centre I'd walk to work, but for the last 5 years I've had to bus or car in to work, so now, even after 7 months, the novelty of being able to walk to work hasn't worn off. The route isn't pretty, it's mostly houses and concrete, and Monday mornings mean a stop at Waitrose for fruit for the office and dilute juice. Luckily, the stop coincided with a torrential downpour so it served as an excuse to get out of the rain!

But who ever picked this as walk to work week should've thought about it better and maybe planned it for July. Seriously, if this was my first day of walking it'd have put me off - I even had to dry my trainers under the hand dryer!
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Dream Home: In the Garden

Our house at the moment has a small, shared, concrete yard with planters on either side. It's not really big enough for more than 4 people to sit all squished into, our neighbours are the least friendly people on the planet so we try not to be outside when they are and there is no grass at all. Whilst the garden at the new house isn't ever going to be big, it has grass, and a patio style area too (and an outhouse - complete with toilet! But we'll ignore that!)

I'm getting very excited about the prospect of having our own grassy space for bbq's and parties and things, for Flash to play out and for just sitting in the sunshine in. But first, I have plans to make it beautiful. Bright and colourful;
A lot of the colour will come from the plants (hello bright and beautiful flowers), some might require me to bust out the paint and spray cans, and I'll probably have to call on my dad and the power tools to come visit, but here are some lovely bits that I've spotted;

1. Ikea Baggon Parasol, 2. B&Q Janero Chair, 3.Habitat Benny bean bag, 4. Pro Q Amigo Smoker, 5. Occa Home Rattan planter, 6. Toast lanterns.

What are you garden must haves?
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Dream Home: Cushiony love

It's no secret that I am a huge fan of accessories. I love them. I have jewellery boxes full of them, I have door frames adorned with too many scarves for one person to reasonably wear in a month, and I have  most certainly have far too many pairs of shoes. 
And the accessorizing isn't just confined to me, it's spilling out in the the home too, a lot of the time in the form of cushions. It would be fair to say that I might be a little obsessed with them. I really can't wait for us to move so that I know what our new sofa will look like, and can then start buying the perfect cushions to go with it. 
But for now I am window shopping, but look how awesome the window is; 
1. I am a little in love with everything from Mini Moderns and our new house runs the risk of being a little Whitby'd out, but who cares right? 2. My love for the Mountains is no secret, I don't even know where I'd keep it in the house, maybe I'd carry it round with me? 3. In my head I have the living room planned and this blue and grey beauty from Southwood Stores fits the bill perfectly. 4. I asked Jim his favourite of the biscuits that Nikki Williams makes into cushions and he said Bourbon, so bourbon it is! 5. I just love this cute Rarrr Dolls Archibold face - I think it'd be the perfect face to have in the craft room.
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A Snowboard Bench DIY!

My very first snowboard, A Burton A Deck, bought back in 1997 from a small shop in Livigno, Italy, has been waiting patiently since it was retired in 2000 to be turned into something useful. It’s most recently been a posing as a shelf in our cellar but, because it's got such pretty patterns on it, I have always thought it would make a fantastic bench.

Now I realise this isn’t the most accessible of DIY projects as you might not have a spare snowboard lying about, but if you do, well, then maybe it’ll be perfect for you. Whilst I did have a spare snowboard, I didn't have the tools that I needed to drill through said snowboard so here I had to enlist the help of my dad and his fancy smancy power tools to complete this DIY.
So, on to how to make a snowboard bench. 
What you’ll need; 
  • An old snowboard
  • Four legs – I chose these B&Q hairpin legs
  • A drill, with countersink bit if you’re feeling fancy
  • Screws
  • Someone to help hold things whilst you (or your dad, in my case) drills. 
  • Screwdriver and Hammer maybe. 
What you need to do;
Decide where you are positioning the legs. I wanted to use the holes left by the bindings, but my dad thought it would be a bit unstable to have them so close together, and he’s got a physics PHD so I listened to him. We positioned them equal distances from the tip and tail, and clamped the legs in place two at a time. 

Find a drill-bit small enough to go through the holes in your legs, if like me you are using metal legs with holes. 
We drilled through the holes from the top down, so that any mess would be underneath the snowboard and not on show. The legs came with 6 holes in them but we only drilled 4 as 2 would have been very close to the metal edges of the snowboard. 
Once all the holes had been drilled we changed to the countersink bit and made little indents for the screw tops to sit in. This is where I let my dad get back to playing with Flash, as I needed to go and buy the screws to attach the legs with! 
Once home and with shiny screws, I set about attaching the legs to my bench properly. I really picked the easy bit to do as all it required from me was to screw the screws through the holes (it was snug fit but smaller screws would have popped right through), pop the legs on, and tighten a nut underneath. A couple of the screws had gone through at an angle so they needed a bash of the hammer to straighten them up, but it was easy!
All in all it took about an hour to complete (if you ignore the fact the snowboard has been waiting 14 years to do this). I love that we have a super cute snowboard bench in our current little yard, but I can’t wait to transport it to an actual garden.

So, what do you think? Will you be turning your spare snowboards into a bench? Or have you got some other creative way to put them to good use?
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BEDM - Local History


One of my favourite local historical spaces is somewhere I've written about before, the General Cemetery in Sheffield and whilst it might sound crazy to have a cemetery as one of your favourite spaces, it's just so pretty that I can't help loving the place. It's also, being a cemetery, full of history, which for me is just wonderful. 

There are so many interesting graves, beautiful monuments and every time I go I discover something new. Plus the light in there is amazing, as are the blackberries in September! 


The cemetery was closed in the late 70's as it was full, and since I started walking Flash there the chapel that stands at the entrance we tend to go in through has been derelict, but in the last few months there has been work started on restoring it which makes me happy, not because I am religious, but because it's a stunning building that deserves to be restored. I just hope that they get the funding to do the Mausoleum next.


I also love that there is a trust that looks after the place. We often see people working at the weekend on the wilderness that seems to try and reclaim the cemetery, on the first Sunday of the month there is a historical tour (I'd recommend the remembrance day one) I also love that there is an interactive map on the website so that you can take a tour yourself and see where the interesting graves are. 


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BEDM - Gadgets

Oh gadgets. I love them. I really do. And my life is full of them. Chocka block full of them. In day to day life there is my phone, laptop, my SLR and my point and shoot, my Fitbit, Ipod, Kindle.....the list goes on. And then there are the other gadgets that grace our lives randomly and make everything more fun, like my Cricut, and sewing machine and the Kitchen Aid. And don't get me started on the vast amount of kitchen gadgets that Jim seems to be collecting......

I'd love to say I could live without my gadgets but I think that I might be lying to myself, (I'm the girl who went to the lengths last summer of buying 4 extra phone batteries so that I'd have juice all the way through Glastonbury and Wilderness). I'd have to walk to work without my music, and wouldn't be able to check twitter at any given moment, and how would I take a picture of and Instagram Flash's latest exploits, or watch an entire series of Gossip Girl back to back? See gadgets make it all better (especially the back to back GG watching). 

But I think my mobile might be my most needed gadget, especially since I got my new S5, as the camera is amazing and I've got 4gb data which means even more Instagram and Twitter! 
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BEDM - Passion Projects

Today's prompt is 'Passion Projects' and what you'd like to make money from. 
It's a tough one for me because I actually really love my day job, it's different each day, it's fun and it's doing something I love. And when I go home that's when I do my Passion Projects. And what I love about these passion projects is that they are so different from one another and in a lot of cases force me to learn a new skill each time I attempt something so I'm just not sure that I've honed one skill enough to contemplate ever making any money from them. 

I did get inspired by one of my besties last summer and set up Box Partie - my little party in a box shop, and I've sold a couple of boxes which is wonderful for me as it's not something that I'd ever think I'd make money from. 

But the inspiration for the launch of the website was my wonderful friend Lizzy, who has taken her Passion project and turned it into a successful little business - Stitches and Lace. I know that I've mentioned her loads before here but I am just so very proud of her and what she's achieved with the business in so little time. 

What are you Passion Projects? 
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BEDM - Our Weekend Morning Routine


Our normal weekend morning routine is pretty lazy. It consists of me getting up early (for most people at the weekends) and catching up on some blogs, and watching some of the stuff I love but Jim doesn't watch (at the moment it's Nashville and Hart of Dixie).

Flash and I cuddle for a while, and then he goes crazy for a while until he gets his breakfast and then he gets back in bed with Jim and leaves me in peace.

After some 'me' time, at say 9-9.30am I retrieve the pooch from his lazy position under the duvet and drag him out for a walk. He protests to start with and then realises he's going to get the chance to run about and chase sticks and other dogs and is excited! We love going to the cemetery for an hr or so so he can run about and as it's pretty hilly I get some exercise too, which helps with the next part of the weekend morning.
Once he's been walked, rolled in some fox poo and run through some stinky streams we head home, more often than not via our favourite bakery for almond croissants and some bread for the weekend. Jim will be just about getting up which is good, so that I don't feel guilty eating said croissant alone and that's kind of the morning done.

This weekend though, our morning is slightly different as Flash has his 6 monthly vets check up at 9.15 so the poor little monster is going to be prodded and poked and given his booster injections. I am not looking forwards to the moodiness that follows this experience! 
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BEDM - My 5 Favourite Posts

Today's post for Blog Everyday in May the prompt is 'My 5 favourite Posts'. I really enjoyed looking back through my blog to figure out my 5 favourites. I can't believe how much my life has changed, and how much I have changed since I started this blog. It's wonderful to have that record for myself and to know that one day when I'm doolally, I'll have a record of what I did from my late 20's!
But it was so hard and even now I'm not sure that this is the final cut.


I loved putting this post together as it meant I got an extra excuse to wander about the neighbourhood and map out some of my favourites. 
Oddly, they are mostly food and drink places. Strange that!





This is one of my favourite recent DIY's. I made it for my trip to Wilderness Festival's masquerade ball. It was so easy to do, didn't really take me very long but had awesome results!
And it was a great chance to use up pretty much every type of crafting supply in my stash!
There are some more DIY posts here.


There are so many posts from when this little hunk joined our family, but this one is my favourite because not only does he look adorable sitting in the scales, but it's such a wonderful reminder of how he was at 11 weeks old. 
I miss that little domed head and the fact he couldn't run in a straight line! I also miss the fact his bark wasn't ear piercing. 
You can see some more Flash posts here.




I love this stuff. It's uber easy to make, so easy that I worried posting would be dumb (it's just popcorn and chocolate. Easy!) but it's so so so tasty that every time I make it, it gets snapped up! 
There are some more recipe posts here.






I love love loved this post, mostly because I had so much fun putting the boxes together and I just knew that they would go down really well with the people I was sending them to!Which they did. 
They even prompted me to pop them in a little online shop too!




*And it should be noted that these are just some my favourites - not the most popular!
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An April round up and May's goals


I'm not going to lie, I am kind of glad that April is over. It was a pretty shitty month all in all. But in between all the crap, there were some lovely moments that I'll focus on so that this doesn't turn into the most depressing post ever! I made the decision to not pay for my Glasto ticket so that I could spend the money on paint and furniture and cocktail bar equipment and important stuff like that. There was a surprise party for friends off travelling. We had an awesome craft WI meeting. There were many many fun and long walks with el poocharino. I treated myself to Liberty pretties. I started packing the house up only to be told that the move was being put back again (it was March, then May, now June! Gah) I had a visit from a lovely friend over Easter and then the very next week I got to go back to London to see her again! I finally swapped my olllllllld phone for a shiny new one that has an awesome camera! And I had a great review at work which means my plans to buy a cute bike are go go go. 

And now on to May. I'm hoping that the sun arrives and with the I'm hoping the old me will come back, so I've put together a few goals with her in mind! 


As you can see by May's goals, I'm taking part in Blog Every Day in May again, and whilst the last couple of times I haven't made  it quite to posting every day I've given it a good shot. 
Today's prompt was what is your blog about. And my blog is about me, unfortunately for you lot. Its's about the stuff I do every day, it's about Flash (a lot), it's about the stuff I make (or don't at the moment, as I packed all my crafting stuff up thinking we were moving), it's about the stuff I love, and sometimes about the recipes that I try my hand at.  
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