16 August 2018

WHEREVER YOU'RE AT, IT'S ENOUGH


^^ Taking a quick five minute break in the sun, because it had been raining all morning! ^^

I have been having a super busy week this week so yesterday, when I suddenly remembered that it was 'blog post-posting day' and I hadn't actually written anything at all, not one word, I got myself into a fluster. What do flusters equal? For me, getting flustered equals nothing creative can come out of my brain whatsoever. So, as I sit down to write said blog post, one day behind my usual schedule, I realise that I am still in a void of nothingness when it comes to content! Anyone who blogs, or just is a bit creative in general goes through this; the highs and lows of creativity, where one minute you cannot write/draw/paint fast enough for all the ideas to flow out, and the next you are staring out the window counting the birds go by, hoping that you will be struck by a moment of genius!

Thankfully for me, it is only ideas for written content that has jetted off on a holiday, not anything more, so I can at least paint without the restrictive brain, and monkey clapping symbols in my mind. I think that when we suddenly realise we aren't being our usual selves, creatively or otherwise, it is easy to beat ourselves over the head and get annoyed, frustrated and generally self-deprecating, but I also think it is important to remember that what we are managing to do is bloody fantastic actually.

Whilst chatting on the phone to my bestie Helena (a.k.a 'Lobby') last night, who owns a gorgeous bed and breakfast in Lynmouth (Devon) with her lovely husband Rich, we spoke about how being your own boss can be somewhat overwhelming at times. As wonderful as it is to have flexibility and so many other perks too, when you list all the things you are 'in charge' of getting done it can seem like one hell of a lot. For instance, with my business, Leaf Lane Studio, I have the social media accounts to keep active and make sure I share every bit of content across all platforms as well as remembering (which I often don't) to put my products on Pinterest too, then there is the interaction with wedding industry brands and magazines/blogs (sending samples and media packs) and trying to make sure I stay visible, there is the actual art work involved in creating a product line or wedding stationery collection from start to finish (I did a blog post on how I do this over on Leaf Lane Studio's blog if you are interested), there are hours upon hours spent designing the actual individual pieces of a collection and mock-printing them to check the over all aesthetics, then there is the printing itself and getting everything pulled together. After that there is photography and editing of the product photos, pulling together content for the website and designing brochures and marketing for all of that too. Whilst all this is happening there are commissions and brides getting in touch and many other little things that need to be seen to. For From Lucy with Love there is the social media, responding to comments, content creation/photography, planning ahead (not for this post clearly!) and reaching out to companies or bloggers for collaborations. There is website updates and amendments, responding to emails from lovely readers like you and much more too. Add into the mix general life 'stuff', such as the exercise regime, running a house and cooking and we have a party right? (Or a very exhausted Lucy who is in her PJ's as early as possible snoozing on the sofa... or wide awake and dreaming of peanut M&M's!).

What is my point? Well my point is that we are all doing a million and one things in our lives and, if something slips for a day or two (or a week or - gasp - a month!) it is okay. I am learning this more and more as I realise that, as one thing is running smoothly, generally speaking another is slightly lagging behind. I think as a rule we give ourselves such a hard time and we need to just stop doing that. We can often fall into the trap of comparison and, the truth is we just have zero idea of the context of someone elses life. With my list of things above as an example... yes, I am busy, but I am also learning one hell of a lot because it is my first year of business and I am scared and excited and loving every single second; I chose this path and it is my journey. We each have our own path in life and I honestly think we can look at anyone around us and think 'wow, you're awesome' and think totally opposite of ourselves, which has to change doesn't it?

So, I started this post as a little 'I'm a bit mentally full right now and can't write a post for you' and have ended up mind-dumping all of that, but I hope it is somewhat interesting and makes you feel a bit better on the days when you are feeling all the emotions and not really knowing what to do with it all.

Basically, what I am saying is: remember you are doing all the things you are meant to be doing right now, you are enough exactly how you are in this time and space and you are a human being who will feel weak and fearful but you are here and doing it anyway and, I think that is pretty bloody amazing, don't you?
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12 August 2018

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



This week has been a very 'all over the place' week for me, both physically and mentally speaking; do you guys ever get days/weeks where you just can't focus on anything 'big' on your to-do list for more than five minutes? When I get times like that I have to switch things up a bit and go over to doing something creative instead, that usually does the trick!

Before I get into this weeks list I just want to say a huge thank you to those of you that either commented or sent me a message about Wednesdays post (catch up with it here). You guys are always so wonderful and it is lovely to chat about things we are all feeling and help each other, so thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Let's dive straight in to the good stuff!

:: The week started off amazingly well. I had a food mentoring session with one of my favourite humans, Peta (I can't possibly write a weekly gratitude without mentioning Peta can I!). I am definitely going to do a full post on just these sessions but I wanted to mention it today because, after just one session I feel different in my head. Peta is a genuine, kind and very caring human being and not only that, but she is super knowledgeable about food (and she has four, beautiful cats too). If you guys are totally done with 'diets' and want to find some inner peace around how you think about food, as well as many other magical things, please head over to Peta's page and have a look at how you can work with her because it is worth investing in yourself (stop paying diet companies and work on YOU, I promise it's so much better... it really is soul work guys). Peta also has some really fab free resources too, such as her 'New to free-from eating' and 'Un-boring salad' guides; if you want regular inspiration you will need to be signed up to her newsletter ('Letters from Peta') too as she provides constant value there as well as some really thought-provoking writing. #fangirl



:: The sunsets have been epic over this way all week; there have been huge clouds around too, making everything much more dramatic. Sunrise and sunset are my favourite time of the day for sure; unless I happen to be letting Gizmo out at 3am on a clear night, because those stars... wow!

:: After discussing food and my crazy mind with Peta on Monday, it seemed only right to celebrate that by going for cake with a lovely friend on Tuesday morning (oops!). I enjoyed every, single bite of it though and it was lovely to have a chin-wag too!

:: I finally put another one of my crazy amount of creative ideas into action this week and created an example of something I am now offering through Leaf Lane Studio, which are these cute botanical-illustrated initials. They will officially be on the site next week but you can still order from me in the mean time and here is how: just drop an email to hello@leaflanestudio.com telling me which letter you would like and I will get back to you confirming your order and provide you with an invoice. Prices are as follows: A6 (pictured) £10, A5 - £15 and A4 - £20. They are all painted to order so won't be dispatched immediately, but I will let you know when you contact me how long it will be! All standard orders will be created in the same shade as the letter below, which is a very deep 'midnight' blue/black and will have white illustrations. If you require something more bespoke please get in touch with me. I have already had several orders so please get your name on the list asap! I think these would make super little gifts! Don't forget I also offer other personalised paintings via Leaf Lane Studio too, all created to order and beautifully wrapped and I am open to commissions so just email for a chat!



:: Last night I cooked up a batch of the most yummy sweet potato and spinach 'burgers' ever (recipe recommended to me by... *drum-roll*.. Peta!). They couldn't have been any easier to put together: microwave a couple of large sweet potatoes (or several small ones!) until soft, scrape out the potato into a bowl and mash with a fork. Pour boiling water over a bag of spinach (approx 160g), I should probably point out that you need to put the spinach in a colander then pour the water over it, don't be a wally and literally pour it over the bag (this is why I don't do recipes!). Once the spinach wilts, run the cold tap over it to cool it down and then squeeze the water out and chop finely, pop in with the potato. Add one whisked egg, seasoning and some breadcrumbs (enough so that when you mix it all together with your hands it holds some shape, I found that about 60g was good, but it depends on the amount of potato you used). Use your hands to form balls from the mixture (these can be frozen). If you want to cook straight away you can use coconut oil or oil of your choice in a pan, flatten the ball with your hand and cook for a few minutes on each side, just to heat through. Simple and so tasty. I have some in the freezer and can't wait to dig into them! I also cooked up Peta's own recipe of Chocolate Oat Cookies (delicious!) and froze a batch of her Microwave Oat Brownies too!

:: Little Gizmo was the cutest this week. She has been following me around like a little dog and was absolutely adamant she was going to sit out on the road whilst I chopped back a tree that had shot over the fence and was getting in the way of people wanting to park their cars. She kept hopping over the gate and scurrying around to where I was working which, in essence wasn't the end of the world, but it was the time of day where all the beach-goers were leaving and driving like maniacs up our road and I really didn't want anything bad to happen (I tricked her by putting biscuits in the lounge and shutting the door so she was safe in the end). She has also been loving the fact that the wind dislodged many palm tree leaves this week, meaning they were available for her favourite game... hunt the leaf! She loves chasing it around and pouncing on it! Better that than a mouse I think! PS: Check out that 'resting bitch face' in the picture below! She hates having the camera pointed at her!

:: I am still totally obsessed with Sara Faber's studio-vlogs. I have mentioned Sara before but it has been a while so... why not mention her again! She is a Berlin based illustrator/artist and her vlogs are just so aesthetically pleasing! I would love to live in a big, open apartment/house like that, with plants everywhere about and have the creativity to put together some of the work and gorgeous meals she does! I highly recommend you check her vlogs out, they are just so lovely!

That is all I have got for you this week guys, I hope you have a wonderful day and I will be back on Wednesday with another blog post! Please do get in touch if you would like me to create one of my 'initial' paintings for you, they would make lovely (dare I say) Christmas/birthday/anniversary/ wedding/'just because' presents and so be sure to place your orders early to ensure you have them in time for the occasion! x

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8 August 2018

THE TRUTH BEHIND THE PHOTOS



As we all know only too well, the internet is full of people living their 'best lives' and showing all the wonderful things that happen every single day on their feeds (hmm!). You guys know that I try my best to always be open, especially when it comes down to mental health and everything attached to it and, whilst I do like to keep my social media positive as much as I can, that clearly isn't the case every single day. My mental health means that I will get 'bad days' every once in a while, sometimes they last a few days, sometimes they seep into way too much of my time and I have to work harder to drag myself through to the other side of it.

It is rare for me to post when I am 'in' a crappy time, although I have once or twice, but I usually try to wait until the metaphorical fog has lifted, so I can actually find something useful to say about an event that has occurred. Honestly, suffering with any thing mental health related is torturous and when it comes out of nowhere it slaps you in the face like the darkest of clouds, filled with angry rain, but what is worse is when you are already feeling pretty bad and then something else comes along to trigger a huge downward spiral. That is what happened to me about two weeks ago and I am now just about recovered.



I recently had to take some pictures of me in this beautiful jumper for a lovely Cornish brand, and it was in the process of getting these shots that I totally lost my head. My biggest trigger for mental health is my appearance; I am self conscious beyond belief and carry my 'fat kid' taunts from school everywhere I go, along with many others. I can hear these things echoing around in my mind when I look at photos of myself and wonder how I am ever going to leave the house again. Looking through these pictures made me sob, and I mean properly, heart and lungs aching sob. In the moment directly after taking the photos I felt I couldn't stand living in my own body any more; years and years of feeling this way have warn down my brain and it becomes more and more fragile each time I go through another time like this. We can be very cruel to ourselves can't we?

To anyone who is reading this and thinking it is some self-indulgent 'fishing for compliments' type of post, you couldn't be further from the truth; what I am trying to highlight is a) how to get over things like this and b) that we all have our moments and that there is something within all of us that is a little bit broken (that doesn't mean it needs fixing either!).



Let's move on from the state of my poor old worn out mind and think about a few ways to deal with this suffocating issue (because that's how it feels in the moment, totally all consuming). Whilst this is always going to come up for me from time to time, I feel I do have a little bit of knowledge about how best to deal with the days where you just can't deal with yourself! Here are my thoughts...

T A L K
If, like me, you have one or two people you are close to, who you trust and who won't just think you are being totally silly (which you are not; your thoughts and emotions are valid and important) then it is vital that you be as vocal and open with them as you can. Sometimes, when we are in the middle of a crisis, it is so easy to not be able to think or see things logically. Having someone else listen to you and offer advice will help no end.

L E T  I T  O U T
This could just be me, but I find that if I don't let my emotions out (i.e. cry for however long I need to!) then, regardless of any other things I do I won't quite feel fully better. Just allow yourself to feel, whatever that actually looks like for you. It's such a cleansing process. As a side note, for any mental health flare up I find that sleep helps more than anything!



S P A C E
Give yourself some space from whatever the thing is that has triggered you. For me, it would have been totally counter-productive to keep looking back at the pictures and getting totally overwhelmed by my feelings towards them. I gave myself the time I needed to find some logic, rather than torturing my tired head over and over again, pulling apart the pictures and pointing out all the things I felt I have wrong with my face and body.

S E L F - C A R E
Self-care is awesome at any time, as well as being so important for us all, but if you feel your mental health spiraling a little (or a lot) you need to take some time to do nice things. Make a list of all the things that make you happy, pin it to a notice board or keep it in a journal, and then pick a couple of things to do at the times you need to. Some of my favourite things to do, other than sleep (always my number one!) are to make a hot water bottle, climb into bed and listen to a guided meditation or read a book. Another one of mine is to have a bath; water always relaxes me. I will pop on a podcast and just lay there and try and take my focus away from anything that is causing stress or discomfort.

J O U R N A L
This is one that can be a little bit painful when you first sit down and start writing, but as you let things flood out of you, you can start to realise why you feel the way you do; just let everything settle in the pages of your journal, rather than in your head. This is a tool I would highly recommend to everyone, it really is so useful.

I know we all have our body issues (one of the reasons I am doing my Body Stories e-book - please contribute your story... just click here to find out more!) but, honestly, we do give ourselves so much stress that we needn't have. I felt horrible within myself for well over a week and I allowed my mental health to take me to the worst places it can go, the darkest corners of the illness that I fear so much. I felt like I had undone most of the hard work I had been doing surrounding body confidence, all because of a few photos, but now I think I am almost back to that more positive place again.

I don't think I will ever be 100% happy with myself but is anyone? That doesn't mean that I am not proud of my body when I am lifting weights in the gym, because I am; it holds its own and I can really push my limits! I don't wish my faded stretch marks away anymore because they are part of my journey and part of who I am, the same way the invisible scars in my head are. All these things make me who I am and, when I finally looked back at the pictures (I had to post something for crying out loud!) I wasn't jumping for joy, but I wasn't crying again either. The journey to self-acceptance will be a long one, but it is happening and I will not quit.

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5 August 2018

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



Hello my loves... Happy Sunday!

This post is much later going up then usual because I have spent 95% of today sat on a chair outside, reading my book! Sorry about that, but it was a much needed chill-out day today! The book I am currently devouring at a very fast pace is 'Chase the Rainbow' by Poorna Bell, and it is one of those books that is very sad and very beautiful in equal measures. I must have read about 160 pages today. I highly recommend it if you like a non-fiction read that really hits the heart strings.

Anyway, how has your week been? Mine has been fairly full on, leading to me sleeping on and off most of yesterday (I have been very anti-social this weekend!) but it was such a lovely relaxing weekend. Sometimes I just like being at home, away from the madness of the summer crowds and find a sense of calm in my own space you know?



Here are the things that have made this week a good one...

:: The skies this week have been so pretty! The picture at the top is one I took from my spot in the garden earlier today, as was the one above actually! I could lay back and watch the sky for hours, especially at night time :-)

:: On Friday I got to have a little Face Time chat with one of my faves, Peta! We officially titled it our 'Cat Mum-trepreneur' meeting (or words to that effect!) and had planned to chat about what we are up to business/blog wise, but actually ended up talking about the most random subjects including: why it is that we need to have just one leg out of bed to regulate our temperatures at night / various things to do with cats (obviously!) / the many topics we could talk about if we were to start a podcast, which we totally should and quite a few random things that I probably shouldn't mention for fear of the repercussions! I did have to apologise to her post-chat for waffling on and not talking about what we had set intentions towards, but I don't get to talk to too many humans!

:: I listened to a two-part podcast this week which made me cry in the first ten minutes. It was recommended by...erm, Peta (we message a lot on Instagram recommending various things to one another most weeks!). The podcast was 'From the Heart: Conversations with Yoga Girl' and the episode was 'The Inner Critic'. It kind of speaks for its self but it was basically the hosts yoga-teacher-training class all sat around together discussing what their inner critic tells them (i.e. all the shitty things we say to ourselves) and then what the voice of their 'inner best friend' says to them. I would highly recommend it if you fancy feeling like part of a huge tribe of women who just need to show themselves a little more love!



:: This little bear has been all sorts of cute this week. She fell asleep in my arms like a baby one evening, busy snoring away, her little paws running after something in her dreams. I love her to bits, I really do.

:: After a while of pondering whether I should do the whole 'Body Stories' project or not (if you have no idea what I am waffling on about click right here and all shall become clear) I decided that I would go for it with all my might, so I created a page to guide people through the idea and started to message and email people who may be able to get the word out. I am hoping with all my might that it will gain some traction as I really think this little e-book of mine, containing your beautiful stories, could help so many human beans! Please check out my saved Instagram Stories, 'Body Stories' section, to grab some screen shots that you can share with your follows; just tag me in so they head my way!



:: It was Joes birthday this week, so yesterday I cooked him his favourite dinner, a roast chicken, with the works! I do like a good old roast dinner I must confess, it was definitely not a hardship to eat it!

:: Hands up if you have been watching 'Stath Lets Flats' on Channel Four? I know this programme won't be to everyones taste, but it certainly makes me die laughing; I honestly cannot stop watching it. The whole concept, for those who haven't seen it, is a family run letting agents (I'm sure you worked out the lettings part!) and Stath, who is the son of the owner, is basically useless, but you cannot help but adore him (and his sister too!). It is just so funny, please do check it out (and give it a moment before you judge it because the characters are so cute!). I'm praying for a second series!

:: Yesterday I actually took some time to sort out my gym playlist on my iPod; I have got so bored of it and keep meaning to sort it out. I deleted a load of tracks, threw some new ones on there and added a couple of older songs that I haven't had on there in a while. I know tomorrows workout will be all the better for it! I highly recommend it if you are feeling a little bit demotivated!

:: I am super chuffed to have had a little mention on two wedding magazine IG stories this week; You and Your Wedding and Wed Magazine! I sent out some media packs of my Fern collection and they kindly popped a picture up! PS: I have some really good offers all through August, so head to Leaf Lane Studio to check them out! (They include 50% off my wedding stationery sample packs!).

That is all for this week; I will be back on Wednesday with another post! Wednesday is also International Cat Day apparently... you're welcome!

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31 July 2018

LIVING LIFE WITH INTENTION


^^ I love sweetpea's so much, don't you? / Super cosy jumper from Celtic & Co (gorgeous Cornish brand) ^^

I am a huge day-dreamer. I lay in bed at night and imagine how I want things to be; business / blog opportunities, home environment, health, you name it; I think it's human nature that we allow ourselves to get swept up in a dream about how we want our lives to look isn't it? That is certainly how my brain works 99% of the time (definitely a piscean trait too!). As I have got older, my day-dreams are no longer about flashy cars I want to own and more about how I want to feel inside my skin, inside my life. Do I picture possessions? Yes, I do, but they are about feelings, not about status; you will find me dreaming about a new mug I saw in some random shop or some super cosy socks more than a designer handbag; in all honesty, I have never wanted one!

Before we moved to Cornwall in February 2017, I had spent years building up the life I dreamed of in my head; the house by the sea, how I would spend my mornings working out, then mindfully getting ready for the day ahead. I hoped (and hoped) to be in a position where I was the boss, that I could be the one calling the shots and I imagined how that would look and feel for me in so many different ways. I imagined being surrounded by space, a pretty cottage garden, maybe even a view to die for. I thought about Joe, Gizmo and I enjoying summer mornings outside, reading, sipping tea (not Gizmo obviously!) and peacefully spending time together. I wished for big, open skies that would show me all the stars on a clear night and maybe even a glimpse of the milky-way too.

When I started working with a coach (you all remember Gemma right, I may have mentioned her once or twice!), exploring my business dreams, I started using Pinterest to store away little thoughts about what I wanted life to feel like. Here are some of those snippets from my mind from back then...


^^ Images linked from top left: camper van print / desk / tattoo / shells / ripped jeans / flowers / 'sea & tea' / window-seat ^^

It really was all about the cosy, slower-paced life; I wanted a life that I was fully in control of, rather than one I felt was controlled purely by other people or how I thought I was 'meant' to be living my life. That little mood board of mine was a glimpse into my future, a look into the woman I wanted to be, tattoos included (sorry mum!). Little did I know that by dreaming, saving the images and journaling about it (constantly) that I would actually manifest the majority of what I had longed for.

Clearly it wasn't that simple, it is a work in progress, but you have to believe you can do it or you will never take the chances when they arise. Once the process of our move started I set myself some intentions and stuck to them as best I could: I made time in the mornings to practice self care, which for me looks like a training session or a walk, a nice shower and maybe some oracle cards and/or journaling. I set myself my business launch goal and worked towards that date with all my might. Joe and I made sure that we were stepping outside every single lunch time (we still do) to get some fresh air and drink a cup of tea. There are so many others but I won't bore you with them all.



Crafting the life you want to live really is about listening to who you really are, hearing your souls call in the midst of the craziness of the world we live in. It isn't easy, but when you start to tune it to you then the path becomes lit and intuition allows you to follow it. We are told that good things come to those who wait but I believe that there is no need to wait at all, we should replace the word 'wait' with the words 'get intentional'!

What can you do to set some intentions then? Start by writing. I swear by the 'perfect day' exercise that Gemma got me to do; sit and journal your perfect day, no matter what it is or how far fetched it seems and then see if you can break it down into some achievable goals. If the big picture of life is 'all good' for you then maybe just vow to set some intentions around your every day routine.

For some accountability here are some of the things I am working on right now...

:: My biggest thing right now is eating with intention. I will write more detail on that soon because it is quite entwined into my mental health, but this is quite a major step for me. I have vowed to step back from weighing myself and have decided that, for my own sanity, I need to re-think how I go about the food side of things.

:: Collaboration is a huge one for me, both with this space and Leaf Lane Studio too. When we moved here I wanted to work with local businesses and share them with my readers; this has become even more of a priority since I now run a small business and know how important it is to spread the word! It was actually a beautiful company, Celtic & Co, based in Cornwall, who kindly gifted me the gorgeous jumper I am wearing in my photos (I swear I will never take it off, it is the most luxurious piece of clothing I have ever owned!). You guys should check out their website because their pieces are truly wonderful and very (very) high quality.

:: Self-care is another huge thing for me at the moment; I guess this and the eating mindfully thing go hand in hand but for me, self-care looks like this: taking more naps when I need them (especially when my mental health is faltering), having a warm bath and listening to a podcast that lifts my soul, reading a book and turning off all distractions whilst I do or using a guided meditation to relax (I often fall asleep during them but I figure that is okay too!). What is self-care for you?

:: My last 'big thing' for the list is that I am setting intentions around organisation. I am most certainly not unorganised, but now that I work for myself and everything is 'on me', I am trying to ensure that I don't leave myself open to overwhelm, which can be easily done, particularly when you are working on many things at once (building a business, trying to reach out to collaborate with others on the blog and side projects, like my Body Stories e-book). I am trying to set specific days to work on certain things so that nothing gets left behind, but that is still a work in progress!

The big point I am making here is really that life can be so much more if you set your intentions for the day/week/month/year ahead; you become a lot more aware of what you are achieving and how you work as an individual too. It may take some time to get to know what process works best for you, but believe me, even starting with a little private Pinterest board of things you would like to manifest into your life can start to move you into a more positive mindset. Most of all it has to come from your soul, you have to come at your intentions with passion and enthusiasm to see some real steps forward.

Let me know what you think and what intentions you are going to set!

Thank you so much to Celtic & Co, who reached out to me to collaborate, I absolutely love working with local brands and/or small businesses so a huge thank you to them for gifting me the most amazing jumper ever! Please do check them out if you are looking to treat yourself or someone special, they do so many wonderful pieces. Some of my favourites are their: fine knit merino crew-neck (the one I'm wearing is 'navy gradient) / slouchy roll-neck / cosy slippers and this adorable little boot key-ring!

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29 July 2018

WEEKLY GRATITUDE


^^ Doesn't Mousehole look pretty! ^^

Wow, what a week! It's been a busy old seven days since I last did a gratitude list and I am happy to say that, mostly, it has been a truly wonderful week. I did some more work in Penzance this week for the printers, and really enjoyed parking up in the sunshine and walking along the narrow streets into town; well, I didn't enjoy being stared at by a random elderly man whilst I parked the car along his road on Friday, but other than that it was okay! I don't think he trusted that I wouldn't just drive into his car or something, but hey, a girl has to park and this girl can park without crashing!

Onto this weeks little list of gratitude, yummy food and other rambles...

:: We definitely haven't had the hottest weather in the U.K this week, I think we have been about ten degrees lower in Cornwall than you poor melting lot a little further 'oop country, but that doesn't mean I wasn't grateful when the rain appeared on Friday night. I like a little rain for a few reasons a) it clears up the humidity b) it smells amazing c) it sounds wonderful when you are all wrapped up in bed, and d) (probably the most 'old lady' reason) it's good for the garden isn't it! That said though, I am not ready for the sun to go at all, so a little rain only here and there please!

:: Yesterday we popped into Mousehole for a wander; we had been in Penzance very early in the morning to run a few errands, so it seemed to make perfect sense to nip around the coast a little further to this pretty place. It is so busy everywhere right now, as you can imagine, but it was lovely to have a walk about. We stopped at the cafe right on the harbour side, '2 Fore Street', which we had always thought looked nice but never been in to. We had tea and shared a slice of their freshly made chocolate cake which was, hands down, the best chocolate cake I have ever had (sorry mum!). It had melted milk chocolate on the top and a white chocolate/vanilla buttercream icing on the inside and was delicious! I don't think I said one word the whole time we ate... other than 'why are we sharing this' - i.e. why can't I have my own massive slice!



:: I spent some time sat up in the spare bedroom, otherwise known as 'my art room' this week, slowly wrapping up samples of my new Fern wedding stationery collection, ready to go off to the magazines who I usually send to. It officially launches tomorrow, and there will be some really fab offers to go with it, so make sure you are following my Leaf Lane Studio Instagram account for all the juicy details!

:: These days I rarely treat myself to anything new, but I was in desperate need of another short sleeved top for the heat (!) and I have really wanted to get myself a little rucksack too; I have one I take to the gym, but wanted something less sporty and more... sleek and pretty for when I am working in town and need to carry a few bits. My bad back/shoulders/collar bone issues (shoot me now!) mean that I struggle carrying something on one shoulder, so a backpack is more comfortable and generally practical! I had a 20% Newlook voucher so decided to treat myself! I ended up getting this top, which looks sweet with my high-waisted shorts and jeans, and a bag similar to this one (mine isn't on the website for some reason!) and I am so pleased with them (yep, nice and summery black!).

:: This week I have been listening to Mel Wells 'Goddess Vibes' playlist on Spotify and finding it really uplifting! Peta mentioned it to me, so of course I was straight over there to listen as Mel Wells is one of my all time favourite humans right now!



:: Going outside to drink tea at any time of the day is always a great thing but this week, the smell of the sea has been really making its way over to our garden and, as soon as I get a little whiff of it I get filled with nostalgia; it's just 'one of those' smells isn't it! It seems to lift my spirit every single time.

:: We've been living in the cottage for about a year and a half now and, whilst we have most of the place as we want it (as far as we can considering we rent it anyway), there are still a few odds and ends I would like to sort out. We are making it our mission to tie up a few loose ends and this week we finally sorted out something that has been bugging me for a while! It isn't a big deal at all, but I had absolutely no where to store my make up and brushes, so they were kind of all over the bedroom which really annoys me because they gather dust, get in the way and generally look pretty messy. So, last night, poor old Joe was dragged off to the shop down the road whilst I tried to find something to sort out the mess! We left with a set of two cute wooden boxes and a little mason jar for my brushes to live in and now, with everything washed and tidied away, our room looks a little better and I am a happy bunny! It's the small things that make a difference sometimes isn't it! Mission two: more plants!

:: I sent out my second letter to my subscribers this week; this week it was all about what I am trying to accept in my life. I want to make the content of these emails about things I am currently dealing with or thinking about and really start a conversation between me and you guys that is more in-depth and meaningful, so please make sure you click here and subscribe to the letters if you haven't already (check your junk box if you think you haven't heard from me as some providers file it there right away!).

Thank you for stopping by this week, I hope you are having a wonderful day... leave me a comment below and tell me what the best part of the past week has been for you. See you next week!

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25 July 2018

FRIENDSHIPS


^^ Image source: Pinterest ^^



I've been wanting to write a little post about female friendships for a long time, but haven't been too sure where to begin; they have been notoriously tricky for me, in my adult life anyway. That isn't to say that I haven't had successful friendships, that is not it at all, but I guess what I am saying here is that, as I have got older, I have found 'my tribe' and I bloody love those girls (don't tell them how much!). 

What the most amusing thing about the lovely ladies in question is that I actually haven't met them, apart from one, my lobster Helena (Friends fans reading this... you get it!), and she and I met through my blog. My lobby is like my sister; when we first started messaging each other, on the back of a blog post I wrote, we realised we had more and more in common and that our lives had, somewhat spookily, run in parallel to one another. Our first meeting was at a pub for dome yummy food, and I was so bloomin' nervous, I felt like I was on a first date! Now Helena and her husband Rich have moved to Devon (checkout out their beautiful bed and breakfast in Lynmouth), so she is further away than ever, but her friendship means the world to me (wherever she is); despite all the things she may be dealing with, and the poor little chicken has been through a lot, she is always there and always supports my ventures and encourages me when I am having a blip!

What I adore about my current small group of pals is that we all just 'get' each other, but it's more than that, it's about being proud of one another and supporting the other one through everything. Take yesterday as an example, the  wonderful soul that is Peta, is busy working away on a new project (actually it isn't new to her as she has been working on it for a while, but it will be a new offering to you guys!). Yesterday we were messaging each other about a few bits and bobs, including her new venture and she trusted me to look over a web-page she is designing for it (I will do a whole post on it soon, as it is bloody fantastic). When I had finished reading it I couldn't stop smiling... I had a happy tear too; I was bursting with pride for what she is doing and the person she is and I just stopped and thought to myself 'this is what friendship is about', it is about support, love, kindness, pride and all the things that come with watching your buddy grow and develop their dreams. It's not about envy, jealousy or trying to say things to knock them back; that isn't friendship at all. As an added extra to my conversation with Peta yesterday, I can also confirm that friendship is also about discussing whether or not you should throw away all your current plans to be a female wrestler! 

When we have been to stay with Helena (and Rich) at the B & B, I watch her with her customers or frantically running about doing all the things she needs to do, and I just look at her and think 'I love you girly, look at you go!'. Feeling proud of your friends is such a wonderful thing and feeling that they are proud back is so good too!

Another soul I adore is the beautiful Gemma; who started as my coach and is now a wonderful friend too, the poor girl cannot get rid of me. Again, we have never met, but she has done so much for me and I will never be able to thank her enough. She is one of those special people who just make everything in the world feel good, just like those ladies mentioned above. Chatting to Gemma is always something I look forward to doing, although I am not certain she needs to hear more of my strange stories (there is always something!).

I have other lovely ladies I am friends with too and I am certainly equally as proud of them and grateful for their friendships in 'real life' or on message apps/email (one of those on-line friendships will soon be real life, as we are overdue our 'cake date', yep... that is a real thing!). 

At the grand old age of 37 I feel like I have finally managed to look around me and realise that all my friendships feel equal; that is something that certainly hasn't been a thing until recently I think. Maybe it is also the fact that I am finally creating the life I have always wanted and learning so much  more about who I am and simply not giving myself away to things that drain me; that has been such an important lesson. True friendships should fill you with light and joy and feel like support in good and bad times and, if you find your tribe, for goodness sake, love 'em hard!
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