16 September 2018

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



It seems like we are well on our way to being in autumn here now which, if I'm honest, I was dreading for the first time ever in my life! I really enjoyed the heat this summer and, both mentally and physically, I felt more alive; but now that I feel that slight chill arriving in the air, and see the leaves starting to thin and turn brown, I have that nostalgic feeling bubbling up inside of me again. It arrives as a feeling of adventures yet unknown and cosy evenings planning out dreams and future plans; the smell of the wood smoke in the air just magnify it more and once again I am ready for the new season (dark mornings aside... can't I keep bright ones all year?).

This week has been busy and I have felt all the emotions (again!); tired one minute, bouncing about like Tigger the next, but it has been a good one nonetheless, so let me jump right on in!

:: Now that the village isn't so over-crowded we have been on a few evening walks, with last nights being the best so far, as it was just as the sun was setting (and post-roast dinner!). There were just enough clouds in the sky to create the perfect backdrop and it was a stunning view to say the least. I never get bored of the views here or of any of the walks we take around the village; it is beautiful here. Whilst walking last night, we saw several gorgeous dogs too; I always love having a little chat with dogs on their walk! One group of people were walking seven dogs, including two adorable dalmatians. Several of the dogs were lagging behind, bumbling along like they would rather be anywhere else but on a walk; it seemed like the one at the very back was the eldest and he looked very put out when he finally caught up only to be turned around and walked back the way he came from! The look on his little face was '...but I could've just waited at the car!'.



:: I finally managed to do some more batch cooking this week to top up our freezer with some lovely meals for the week ahead. I cooked a delicious black bean chilli, which was so tasty! I also threw together some 'energy balls' too, based on about threee separate recipes I had seen online (look at me getting all adventurous!). They taste so yummy though and involved exactly no time in the oven (even better!).

:: I finished the book I mentioned in last weeks post too, 'My not so perfect life' by Sophie Kinsella. I thoroughly enjoyed it and loved that I could totally escape into fiction again! The messgae of the book is in the title, but it serves as a reminder that, regardless of what people show you on their social media feeds, that actually anything could be happening in real life! We all know this already but it is nice to have a little nudge every now and again. On that subject though, I recently did a bit of a cull of all the IG accounts that make me feel bad about myself and have felt a million times better ever since!



:: I found myself watching a couple of new things this week whilst painting some things for a client; one of which was something I have heard several people recommend, 'Bodyguard' (on BBC one). It's a six episode series on every Sunday evening (don't quote me on that!), so far four episodes have been on and I caught up with all of them back to back this week. I barely worked at all during the first one as I was glued to it! I kept hearing about the programme and imagined it to be some series around the Whitney Houston film and just couldn't wrap my head around it, but I was very off the mark with it because it is bloody fantastic (and certainly nothing like that film!). I also watched 'Bridget Jones' Baby' and laughed the whole way through. I am, once again, late to the party, but I enjoyed every minute of it!

:: Today we head off to The Healing Light Festival, a spiritual type fair thing (great description Lucy, really great!) which is something I saw advertised recently and immediately wanted to go! I know these things aren't everyones cup of tea, but they really are mine; I feel 'at home' mooching about tables full of oracle cards and crystals and could spend a fortune (if I had it!). I gave myself a budget and had in mind to get a large clear-quartz crystal, which is not what I left with at all! After being drawn to a beautiful light-blue crystal I just couldn't stop picking it up and wanting to look at it (apparently you are meant to go with the ones you are drawn to), I finally made the purchase as a bit of a treat. The crystal is Celestite and is truly stunning; we also got a Himalayen salt lamp too, which is gorgeous! Yes, I am a hippy... there, I said it!

:: On Thursday I woke up just a couple hours after going to bed with a horrible pain in my achilles tendon, something which I have had ever since I tore the ligament in my angle this year (it really hurts, especially at night). I got all fidgety and just couldn't go back to sleep so I got up and joined Gizmo downstairs on the sofa. As soon as I sat down with my cup of tea she dozily moved from the cushion to my lap and snuggled in. There we stayed until 6am, all cuddled up and warm together, watching the biggest load of crap on television I have ever seen! Although I got out of bed at just gone 1.30am and had not had any sleep, I really enjoyed having some time just sitting in silence (having muted the crap tv shows!) with the little bear; there is something about that time of the day which I adore (I just wish it didn't make me feel so hungover the next day!).

I hope you have had a wonderful week; sending you lots of love and good vibes for the week ahead too! Come back on Wednesday for another post! xx

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12 September 2018

TREMENHEERE SCULPTURE GARDENS



Driving home from an exciting trip to Boots and Marks and Spencers (!) a couple of weeks ago, I spotted a sign on the side of the road that read 'Plant Festival' and immediately told Joe we were going and wrote it in my diary, because I love plants, even though a) I can't actually afford to buy them and b) because we rent there is no point in buying lots of beautiful plants to put in the garden right now and also, the cottage garden is gorgeous anyway; but who doesn't love looking at nature! When I realised it was also at a sculpture garden, Tremenheere in Penzance, I was even more excited because nature and art together equal a happy Lucy!

When we arrived at the plant festival it was heaving; there were so many people wandering about, with amazing plants tucked in their bags for life and under their arms (you had to keep a watch on the spindly ones or you would certainly lose an eye!); we had a little scoot about the stalls, where I spent ages looking at all the beautiful succulents on offer, and then we decided we would head into the sculpture park itself; it was such a gorgeous day we couldn't miss the chance.

Rather than me trying to describe all the details I will let my (many) photos tell the story and just add a few thoughts along the way, but I will say this before we get into the pictures: if you are in the Penzance area, Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens are well worth the visit, they are so beautiful; you feel like you are in the middle of nowhere, with the sound of nature as your soundtrack, hundreds of variations of trees and plants plus works of art of all sizes and types standing majestically in their space, or discreetly tucked within the landscape as if they have been there for many years and you are seeing them unveiled for the first time; the 'Turrell Sky Space' piece is a must see and was easily our favourite piece (more on that below) and, if sculpture isn't your thing, the views from the top will be!


^^ Aren't succulents amazing? They have so many in their shop that it would be impossible to make a decision! ^^

^^ When sculptures weather, like this one, I think they compliment the landscape perfectly ^^

^^ You may know this, but I have 'a thing' for leaves! Look how gorgeous these are ^^
^^ There are a few 'look-outs' as you climb the path up to the top; the views the whole way are stunning too ^^

^^ Big old banana plant leaves are one of my favourites against a blue sky ^^

James Turrell's 'Skyspace' was my absolute favourite thing at Tremenheere; the pictures we took just doesn't do it justice, and my lack of ability to describe it to you sent me over to Tremenheere's website, to look for how they explain the artists vision:

A temple-like "Skyspace" has been created at the prominent site at the high point in the valley, entered from the base of the hill through an underground corridor. One is led along a rising passageway to an interior space, an elliptical chamber whose ceiling frames the sky. Discrete background illumination will under light the ceiling of the space and provides a telling contrast with the sky. The shifting balance between the interior and exterior light will provide a contemplative and hypnotic transition.

Once you are within the space it is silent and, for me, created a spiritual feeling of peace. Looking up you watch the clouds pass overhead and can get totally lost in that moment; is that not mindfulness at it's very best? There is a seating area built into the space which runs all the way around and I just couldn't resist laying down to watch the clouds. They have a few dusk-viewing opportunities but I could only think about being there at 2-3am, on a clear night, star-gazing... can you imagine!


^^ Look at that view over to St Michaels Mount ^^

We had such a lovely couple of hours at Tremenheere and will definitely be going back; it's one of those places that I want to see in every season (and also, their food looks great too, but we didn't stop for anything because it was plant-festival-crazy!). Honestly guys, I would highly recommend you checking it out if you are in Cornwall, it has worked its way straight into my top five places to visit, and we are fortunate that it is only ten minutes from home too!

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9 September 2018

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



Hey there my loves! How is your weekend going? Despite planning for horrendous weather here yesterday, it was actually really nice and today, well today has been warm and pretty blooming gorgeous! I am going to do a whole blog post on what we got up to this morning because it was so good! The best thing about today was that it wasn't planned to happen, so it was a pleasant surprise and really enjoyable, so stay tuned for that!

I am going to head right on in to today's 'Weekly Gratitude' list, because it has been a pretty busy week, so let's do this!

:: On Thursday I was incredibly lucky to be interviewed for the beautiful Gemma Sand's podcast 'Free to Flourish Radio'! The episode will be out soon and I will be letting you know all over social media I'm sure (once I've vetted it to make sure I don't sound like a moron... probably will!). I was incredibly nervous about it, even though Gemma and I have spoken so many times; but she made me feel super relaxed and I think that, after the first five minutes I found my flow! We had quite the comical end to the podcast though; after Gemma stopped recording she told me that her little greenhouse had blown across the garden and her poor little peppers were inside it, whilst she was telling me this I was watching Gizmo prancing about in the garden after some poor thing that was trying to get away from her. After a couple of seconds this poor creature got batted up into the air, and it was only when it reached full height and stretched out fully, that I realised it was a snake. I don't think I have ever hung up faster from a call in my life. All ended well, snake and cat are still in one piece (I'm not sure how Gemma's peppers are doing!). Make sure you all head to Free to Flourish Radio and subscribe so you here my waffle when it comes out!



:: This week I started a new little gym routine I wrote for myself and, so far, I am really into it! I wanted to up my workload a little by popping in some super-set exercises to really burn out the muscles I am working on that day and I am loving the higher heart rate throughout (am I mad? Yep, probably!). I highly recommend changing things up every now and then to keep you interested and to keep your body guessing a bit; challenging yourself is always a good thing (as long as you are doing it safely of course!).

:: Whilst on the subject of exercise; this week I have done two yoga sessions, with the beautiful Adriene of course, because there is no one else I want to yoga with I'm afraid (plus her dog is super cute and I love that he sleeps along side her!). I realised how much tension I am holding in my body and doing even one or two shorter sessions per week will help no end.



:: It has been a busy week for Leaf Lane Studio again (woo-hoo) and I have sent out some wedding stationery samples and am also hand-painting an A1 seating plan for a bride-to-be too. I also dragged out my old artist easel from under the bed, gave it a dust down and am in the middle of painting it white (literally as we speak... I came in for a break to type this!). I am so grateful that I have some things that I can up-cycle for the business and I intend to use the easel to showcase samples of table plans that come with my collections at wedding fairs next year.

:: If you have followed along with the sad story of Rachael Bland (Radio 5 Live presenter and blogger from 'Big C, Little Me') and her battle with cancer, which sadly ended this week, you may already have listened to her podcast 'You, Me and the Big C: Putting the Can in Cancer', which features two other inspirational woman, Deborah James and Lauren Mahon, as fellow presenters. Sadly I only started listening to this podcast right at the end of Rachaels fight against cancer, but I have since listened to so many episodes because it is really, really good. Yes, the girls are discussing difficult subject matters, such as death, pain and how friends handle being around a cancer sufferer, but my God, it is funny, inspirational and educational too. I can't put into words how pleased I am to have found it and how wonderful these ladies are. When the news broke that Rachael had died (if you have listened to the podcast episode about death you will know she would never want to hear 'passed away') I felt so very overwhelmed for a woman I had never met. If you are looking for something to really touch your heart and soul and truly make you want to hug your loved ones closer and be grateful for every single second you have on our planet, head on over and listen to the podcast right now, I promise you won't be disappointed.

:: The signs of autumn approaching have really started kicking in this week; there are leaves crunching under-foot now and that familiar smell of wood smoke in the air which I adore. Autumn reminds me of the cyclical nature of life, of everything really, and that is why I love it so much. It reminds us all that we can start over; shed our old selves and start a fresh.

:: After getting a stack of books to borrow for a while from Peta, when we saw one another last week, I have started a fiction book! This is exciting for me because I haven't read something to really escape into for a long time. The book I am reading right now is Sophie Kinsella's 'My Not So Perfect Life' and, so far, I'm really enjoying it! The opening description of everyone rushing to work on the London underground, with no care for anyone else but themselves, reminded me so much of the times I have visited London and just wanted to cry! I remember going to a wedding industry event with my best friend, Helena, and standing waiting to get on a very packed tube; I remember her saying to me 'we just need to get on' and I thought 'how? where?' as everyone was packed in the train like sardines! That memory came flooding back as I read the start of the book and it was like I was there all over again! Thankfully I think this story ends up in the Cotswold's, so there is hope for the poor character yet!



:: On my way home from the gym this week I heard a song on good old Pirate FM that I fell in love with on first listen and have been playing it all week because I just find it really lifts my spirits! The song is 'Hunger' by Florence and the Machine', check it out!

:: As the weather changes and gets a bit chillier, we have noticed that many of our birds have gone off to pastures new, but we are so happy to still have our 'Penguin' (rare white magpie!). There were two of them and I really don't want to think too much about where the other one is, but I am ever so happy that one of them has hung around and comes into the garden daily for a bite of the food and a sip of the water! He is ever so cute, but seemingly impossible to get a photograph of!

:: Last on my list of things this week is the fact that I finally got around to pulling every bit of clothing I own out of my wardrobe, hoovering, dusting and sorting like a woman possessed and vaccum-bagging my summer clothes away! I invested in a very un-sexy hanging shelving thingy (Argos special!) which Velcro's onto the rail in the cupboard, and allows me to be a lot more together and less 'chuck-everything-in-a-drawer-until-it-cannot-open'! I was ruthless in my clearing out of things too, as I don't believe in hanging onto something 'just in case' because, let's face it, nine times out of ten the occasion never arrives and the item you were saving never gets an outing! It felt good to clear everything out, but took me bloody ages!

There you have it my lovelies, my week, minus what we did this morning, but I have included a picture of some succulents below from today because they look so cute! I will try and get my photos from today up for Wednesday if I can! Have a wonderful week and please do come and say hello in the comments!

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5 September 2018

JUST SOME THOUGHTS ON LIFE RIGHT NOW


^^ This mug is from 'Cute Mugs and Things'... and sums up life very accurately right now! ^^

I feel the need to be real with you right now guys, really real, because life is a bit all over the place, not in a bad way, far from it in-fact, because I am a happy little bunny right now, but in the spirit of the interwebs containing everyone's 'best bits' I thought I would let you into the real world of Lucy as it is right now; here are some things that have been happening lately...

:: for the last couple of weeks I have been looking like I have got dressed in the dark; think rolled up jeans, huge fluffy socks which, nine times out of ten are unevenly distributed up my legs so that one side is pushed down, leaving a bit of ankle on display, and the other is mostly pulled up and more than likely over my trousers. It is a sexy look and probably explains why I don't do any 'outfit(s) of the day' on my Instagram like the cool kids do (also, I don't qualify as a 'kid' anymore!).

:: I have neglected anything in life which involves me looking human or sounding human, so that includes Instagram stories, vlogging or generally appearing in public places unless absolutely necessary.

:: My hair is either a frizzy mess because I haven't had time to condition it, or is fashioned into something resembling Princess Leah buns to keep it out my busy face all day; probably not the best look for someone racing toward 40 years old, but needs must!

:: Despite promising myself I would cook some different meals over the last two weeks, we have eaten practically the same things over and over because I just cannot find the energy to cook anything which involves any more thinking!

:: I have had zero time to meditate and journal of late, which will be changing very soon, but I feel so bad about it and miss it as part of my routine so much.

The truth is that I am going through a massive learning curve within my life right now, specifically within my business, Leaf Lane Studio, which is now one year old and has just taken an influx of orders (hence I am a happy bunny!). The point of me telling you all this stuff is to remind you that we are all human and it is okay to fall of the wagon of your 'usual routine' once in a while. As a business owner I am learning (very fast) that I need to be constantly in a state of flow with my business and I am working so hard to not give myself a hard time when I don't do the things I know I 'should be doing' to help my business grow and develop. I have neglected some important areas over the last few weeks, including posts on this blog (well, I missed last Wednesday!) but it is all about balance and I will learn how to manage more and more as time goes on.

I feel grateful to have been busy recently as I have worked so hard to get to this point in my life and, whilst I definitively have a long way to go yet, I know that each of these stages is a new chapter in 'Lucy's Book of Learning to be a Business Owner', and it is really exciting. So, if this all means that I open the door to the postman looking like something out of a creepy horror film some days then so be it (the poor postman!); I am also falling asleep at random moments when I should probably be drafting content for posts or planning social media, seriously, I could nap for the Olympics if the need arises!

All of this comes back to the fact that we all need to accept that we cannot do 'all the things all the time' doesn't it? We may think we are super human, but we really aren't and our bodies will always remind us when we have gone a step too far by giving us a reason to relax for a while (like mine did yesterday, resulting in me spending most of the day in bed with a migraine). All of this said though, I am loving every single job I am working on for my beautiful brides-to-be right now and am full of gratitude that they chose to work with me. I am, however, so very glad they don't get to see me whilst I am covered in paint and look like a crazy person though because it could ruin the illusion! (Oops, may have done that through this very post huh?!).

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2 September 2018

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



Before I start telling you about all the things the last seven days have had to offer, I must say a huge sorry for a lack of post on Wednesday. I have had a funny old health week this week and just couldn't get my thoughts in order to post something that would be worth looking at! I feel a bit more together now (as together as my constantly buzzing little mind could be anyway!), so hopefully I will be able to get my content sorted out for you this Wednesday!

Onward we go into a weekly gratitude post!

This week really has been a good one, despite the dodgy health (hormones... meh!). Joe has been off this week and, apart from a couple of little adventures, he has been pretty much left to his own devices whilst I work on wedding bits and pieces for various brides to be. However, it hasn't all been work, work, work as you will see...

:: On Tuesday we took a drive over to Poldhu Cove for a walk and a hot chocolate in the little beach cafe. They do Reece's hot chocolates, which I am all about... peanut butter is always a winner for me! The coast path is so beautiful over that way and, whilst it is a half an hour drive or so to get there, it is always worth it. When you reach the top of the cliff it is completely silent, apart from the occasionally sea bird squawking. Nothing compares to standing in front of the ocean with total silence; it is beautiful and allows for a moment of reflection which I really enjoy.



:: This week I had the absolute pleasure of (finally) meeting one of my friends from the interwebs! Although I mention this wonderful soul every single week (if not twice a week), we have never actually met in real life (IRL as the kids say!)... can you guess who I am talking about? Why, it's Peta of course! Yay! I can confirm she is a real human being and everything, and just as lovely 'IRL' (!) as she is online. Peta is over in Cornwall visiting her lovely boyfriend and family and we finally managed to coordinate a meet up. It felt a little like a first date scenario as we have been talking for a while and video chatting too, but never made it to a face-to-face meeting. I had the same amount of nerves when I met up with my gorgeous bestie, Helena, for the first time because we met online and are now firm friends for life! Joe and I met up with Peta and Fraser at the Screech Owl Sanctuary, right in the middle for both of us and somewhere we all wanted to visit. It was amazing to meet up and spend a few hours wandering about the sanctuary, looking at the owls, alpacas, donkeys, raccoons and meerkats (I'm definitely missing some animals there but you get the jist!). The internet really is such a great place for meeting like-minded souls and, despite Frasers concern about 'stranger danger', I didn't offer any dodgy sweets and was on my best behaviour! We also did quite the impressive book exchange in the car park of the sanctuary which, upon reflection, may have looked like a mobile library, but hey, it is a bloody good idea I think! It was a fab day out and really made my week!



:: Yesterday was my one year anniversary as a business owner! Leaf Lane Studio has been up and running for twelve whole months and I am still alive (that is an achievement!). All joking aside, I cannot believe how fast the year has flown by and how much I have learned in the time since launching (let alone all the months before the launch). Those of you that were around last year may remember that on launch day our internet died a sad death and I had to try and launch leaflanestudio.com from my phone! It seems like only yesterday that I was in full blown panic mode and wondering how I was going to guide my mum through launching my website from her computer, five hours away! I will be popping up a post over on the Leaf Lane Studio blog page about what I have learnt in a year of business this week, so stay tuned over there if you are interested in that! I have so much planned for the business for the next year so if you want to know more and stay updated with all things stationery pop yourself on my mailing list (click here to do that right now!).

:: Speaking of the business being one year old; I received some gorgeous Bloom and Wild flowers from Joe to celebrate this week! They are super pretty and come so snugly wrapped up in their box that you think they will stay all flat forever, but give them and hour in water and they look stunning! He also treated me to a proper lamp for my art desk upstairs because I only had a tiny little Ikea one before which didn't cut it for working on paintings at night or on gloomy days. The new one is from Homebase and does a much better job! We also had a yummy M & S dine in too, it has been a lovely little celebration!



:: I have been trying to make my little work space upstairs look a bit nicer, whilst still being mindful that it is a spare bedroom, so whilst we were in Homebase I grabbed a couple of plants, because plants always make rooms look fresh and bright don't they. One was a pretty little fern, that featured as the main one in my new Fern wedding collection for Leaf Lane Studio; when I saw it I had to have it! The other was more of a sturdy, large leaf plant; it is really cute and has leaves that curl up at night time and open during the day! I do love plants so much and, given the chance would definitely buy more!

:: On Friday evening, we had a visit from my friend Claire, who I worked with before we moved, and her gorgeous dog Huxley! Somehow it has been a whole year since I have seen them, but that just shows how much time flies. We took Huxley for a little stroll along the coast path and through the village before they headed away again. It's so lovely to catch up with people you haven't seen for a while, although I did feel mighty antisocial because I was on day two of a migraine and felt like I was just coasting through the day! Sorry Claire, next time I will be more with it I promise!

That is about everything for this week! Before I go I wanted to share with you the oracle card I pulled today from my Archangel Michael set by Doreen Virtue. I sit and meditate for a short while at the start of each month to try and pull a card for that month, so here was what I got for September...

'Decide to be happy now'

The angels have heard you and are answering your prayers. Instead of making your happiness contingent upon future events, you can decide to be happy now. One way to do so is to focus on everything and everyone for whom you are grateful. What are your blessings and strengths? By allowing yourself to experience joy and pleasure now, you become empowered. Take control of your life, and prevent outside influences from determining how you feel.

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26 August 2018

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



It's the last Sunday of the month of August, can you believe it? This month has been the busiest month I have had since I started Leaf Lane Studio almost one whole year ago; it has been filled with lovely orders for paintings and wedding stationery and I have really enjoyed getting properly stuck in to it, long may it continue! 

Before I get all over emotional at having a business that is one year old on Saturday, let's just get started on this weeks gratitude list!

:: Yesterday we had a turn around in the weather; it has been all Cornish mizzle this week and it felt like we had been living in a cloud. It was kind of humid and damp and uncomfortable, but yesterday we had the sun come out to play again and I made the most of it! I had a few odds and ends of work to do for a lovely bride, but after that I got well and truly stuck into the gardening. I had somewhat neglected it due to the fact that life got busy, but it was so nice to just lose myself in nature for a while. I find it so relaxing and it gives me time to reflect and mull over things in my head, something I don't always get to do if I am busy in the week. Gizmo followed me around being all kinds of 'helpful' (i.e. getting in the way at any given opportunity!) but I do love the fact that she is always keeping check on what is going on and sniffing about where I have been cutting back to 'check' everything meets her approval! She is such a cute little bear.



:: A week or so ago Peta messaged me with a picture of a t-shirt she thought I would like from Tesco's clothing collection, and she was quite right, I loved it and 'needed' it immediately of course. I actually was in the market for a couple of casual t-shirts, as most of mine have somehow managed to get holes in, so I was happy to check out a new one that just so happens to go very well with this very blog post. Anyone with a beady eye will see it in the background of the picture above, that's if you don't damage your eyes looking at the bright pink jumper I have on (which 'fell' into my basket in Tesco's!). I don't own anything pink at all, but I saw this jumper and fell in love with it. It is super over-sized and so soft (plus it was mega affordable). I wanted to treat myself because I am kind of proud of some things I have been doing and, all in, these two things came to under £25, so it didn't break the bank. I kept the jumper hung up on the outside of the wardrobe for just over a day because just looking at the colour made me so happy! Just in case you fancy checking it out, it also comes in grey and a bright mustard yellow too! :-)

:: I realise I am late to the party, but I watched the Christopher Robin full trailer this week and basically cried for the entire duration of it. I don't know what it is about Winnie the Pooh and friends, they make me sob like a baby! I really want to go and see the movie, but I daren't go to the cinema to watch it because, quite frankly, I will just embarrass myself! Have you seen it yet? What did you think?



:: We have noticed that Gizmo's 'Autumn routine' is starting to appear again and she has spent a few nights this week asleep on the foot of the bed (snoring her little head off!). She changes her routine with the seasons and it is so sweet to have her around inside again because most of the summer she has been out and about or asleep under a bush in the garden, only coming out at meal times! My only wish is that she didn't take up quite so much room on the bed because she really stretches herself out and I end up balled up and uncomfortable... the things we do to keep our pets happy!

:: Yesterday, post gardening, Joe wandered down to one of our local cafes and came home with some Victoria sponge for a treat; it is my absolute favourite cake and I really enjoyed it. I have been working really hard (during my food mentoring sessions with Peta) to see all food as just 'food' and not 'good or 'bad', trying to reduce the guilt and binge eating that can often occur with that kind of thing. I am really making progress but I know it will take a long time to undo patterns that have been around for years. On that note, I listened to a podcast episode from Kate Taylor's 'Practical Magic Podcast', called 'Intuitive Living / Connected Body', which I would highly recommend if, like me, you are looking to get past old fears and habits and truly realign with what it is your body needs once again. I also highly recommend you contact Peta too, as she is absolutely amazing to work with on this kind of thing.



:: One of my favourite illustrators on Instagram is Emma Block; she is so talented and I love everything she does. Last week her first book came out and I got a copy delivered the day after. I think you can never stop learning when it comes to anything in life and I always enjoy seeing how other artists work and how they structure a painting. This book is so pretty and incredible useful too. If you are a beginner and are not sure where to start, this book has 40 watercolour lessons in it that are so nice to follow along with. If you don't follow Emma already, you certainly should!

That is it for this week guys, sorry it is a short one, it's honestly just been me painting a pallet, painting pictures, wrapping pictures etc etc, and not much else at all! It should be easing off a little soon so I am hoping to have more time to get out and about again real soon!

I hope you enjoy your Bank Holiday Monday (if you are in the U.K) and have a wonderful week ahead! PS: Don't forget, if you or any one you know, are getting married, my Leaf Lane Studio August offers are still running! Head to Leaf Lane Studio to see what you can get!
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22 August 2018

WHAT WOULD AN ONLY CHILD DO?


^^ Oh just look at that angelic face ^^

I was chatting to someone recently about being an only child and they said they thought I 'didn't have the characteristics of one', but I honestly think that, for my generation anyway, many kids without siblings were bought up the same way as me, fiercely independent! That image of an only child snatching toys and sweets from other kids is probably less realistic than we think really, although I can't imagine what it is like these days, so I won't try and talk about that! 

After the conversation I had about how I 'handled' being alone a lot as a kid, I reflected a bit on some of the things I got up to when I was left to my own devices. Firstly, us 'only's' can be very creative with games, and it is surprising how many parts we can play during a very intense solo 'Game of Life' session! We can take on many characters and act them all like a pro, for instance, as a kid I used to love playing 'schools', mostly because I liked to write out a register and then pretend to call out the names, questioning where the kid was who didn't respond and promptly popping an 'X' in the box next to their name. I was both teacher and student and I was not lenient on myself! I even gave myself lines to do for being 'naughty in class' once! I mean, at 37 years old that fact seems equally tragic and kind of cute all at the same time; the image of me sitting there, writing out lines of 'I will not be rude to my teacher' over and over summons up quite the picture doesn't it! 

My parents remind me of how much of a tomboy I was on a regular basis, with the most common story being my love of the woodlice that ran around the garden/house. Now, if you are picturing me gathering them up in a little bucket, giving them names and having them as pets, you are very much mistaken; I did that with many things, but the poor old woodlice suffered a tragic end as they were stuffed in my mouth and eaten (even typing that makes me feel ill!). What a prime candidate I was for 'I'm a Celebrity Get Me Outta Here!' when I was young; these days I rescue everything that moves because I hate harm coming to nature (perhaps it's karma!). My goodness, I was a gross child.

When I think back to some of the other things I used to do as a kid I have to laugh because I am sure I have used up my nine-lives on more than one occasion. I was such a tomboy and just loved getting outside and doing random things: I climbed trees (falling out many times), rode my bike like a nutter (and knocked a tooth or two out...oops), scooted along on skateboards (straight into a gate...oops again), lifted my wendy-house above my head and ran like a lunatic around the garden (right into the rose bush... can I keep saying 'oops'?), I did 'amazing' cartwheels in the lounge (and crashed my legs into the radiator guard, definitely denting it and definitely not saying it was because of a cartwheel!), I fell 'legs-akimbo' on a brick wall and ended up with severe grazing all up my inner thighs on both legs (ouch!), I ran into the lounge on a weekly basis, launched myself at my beanbag but missed it completely and knocked myself out, I once had a very bad fall of a bike that I was trying to do a trick on and ended up with bloody everywhere and a huge 'egg' on my head... all this doesn't cover it, but you get the gist, I wasn't careful! (Unfortunately I am still the same but with a few less skateboards!).

See, it isn't boring being an only child at all, we know no different anyway, so it really is kind of okay! There is only one downside, one which I hated so much, and that is this: you can't blame anyone else for anything. For example, when your dad brings home a giant bar of Cadbury Chocolate to be 'saved' for Christmas and you open it up and start to demolish it over way too short a time, get questioned about it and say 'it wasn't me'... chances are you will not be believed, just saying! Damn! These days I just blame my dad for eating things! (sorry dad... I needed those seven biscuits last time I visited and mum had to know where they went... okay, so I am joking about the biscuits... it was actually eight!).

Childhood is a funny old time isn't it; it shapes us in so many ways but it also is a miracle we come out the other side sometimes (especially when you clearly think you are some kind of movie stunt woman in my case!). I would love to hear some of your memories and silly things you have done; I am sure I have missed many 'events' from my childhood and I am also sure my mum will remind me, but in the mean time pop some of yours in the comments!
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