31 December 2017

THE LAST GRATITUDE LIST OF 2017!



This is it lovely friends, the end of another year and this has really been the quickest year ever! I always remember my mum and dad saying to me that ever year you grow older, the faster time goes by (they still say it actually!) and they are very right. This year has felt like it has passed in a heartbeat and so much has happened, which I reflected on in my previous blog post about 'My Word for 2018' if you fancy a read!

Have you accomplished everything you hoped you would this year? If you have, then congratulations! If not, then just re-evaluate and keep on going. I have totally changed my perspective on reaching goals and have chosen to think that if something that isn't quite 'done' is not a failure, but simply something that I need to either take a good look at to see whether I really want to do it still, or sit with it for a bit and work out a new route to it.

I have been doing some real soul-searching recently and a lot of writing and planning out what I would like to achieve over the next twelve months. There are a lot of resources out there but I chose to combine a few questions and scribble down my thoughts in my bullet journal to see what came up. If you are interested in having a go at a bit of self-reflection, these are the questions I chose to ask myself...

1. What did I hope for this year and what did I accomplish?
2. How has this year affected me personally and professionally?
3. In what ways have I been surprised and encouraged this year?
4. Where do I feel like I have let myself down and what did I learn from it.
5. Have any of my values or beliefs shifted this year? How?
6. What fears have I overcome? Have I developed any new fears that I need to acknowledge?
7. How have I grown and what have I learned?

For me, those questions are enough to kick start a bit of a delve into what I am feeling for the new year. Let me know what you do or, if you have a go at those questions, how did you feel afterwards?




I kind of went off on a tangent there, sorry guys! Let's move on to this very last 'Weekly Gratitude' post of 2017!

:: This Christmas mum and dad travelled to Cornwall to spend a few days here for a change. My mum certainly knows how to bring a full Christmas experience with her; I don't think anything was left behind (apart from a couple of my dads bottles of red wine...oops!). It was a pretty relaxed one overall with lots of delicious food and my dad attempting to play games (always hilarious!). Thanks mum and dad for bringing Christmas to Cornwall and for the pressies too!

:: I was also super grateful to have Gizmo at home for Christmas because she has always had to go into a cattery for Christmas when we have been away. It was lovely to see my little bear sitting under the tree, chewing the branches, rather than not being around at all. She is one of the family so it feels right to have her there <3

:: As I mentioned in my little rant at the start of this post, I have been doing a ton of planning and reflecting over the last few weeks. One thing I have done, as part of that whole process, is put together a content planner for Leaf Lane Studio and From Lucy with Love. After attending a webinar by Janet Murray (from Soulful PR Podcast) I was able to sit down and plan almost a whole year of content ideas and I am currently working on expanding the first quarter of 2018 and get way ahead of myself. It feels so good to have set some time aside to do that!

:: My gorgeous friend, Helena, got me a beautiful feather ring for Christmas which I absolutely adore. That lady knows that my love for angels is huge and so bought me a ring to represent them and what they mean to me. Thank you Helena, love you lots xx

:: On Christmas Eve, in the Cornish 'mizzle', we ventured on a short walk around the village to look at all the Christmas lights. There were some pretty ones tucked away down some of the roads and it felt so festive walking past windows full of decorations, smelling wood-smoke or yummy food cooking away.


:: This morning I took a little wander around the garden to photograph some of the things I love about winter (the photos are in this post); the decaying plants and flowers as well as the ones that are thriving right now. It reminds me of the quote 'There is nothing in nature that blooms all year long. Don't expect yourself to either' which I love. I think we forget the importance of rest and recuperation sometimes, especially in the modern world as it is. For me, getting out in nature, even if it is just in the garden like this morning, it helps to slow my mind down.

:: Yesterday afternoon I was laying with Gizmo, recovering from a crappy migraine, when she rolled over on her back and let me touch her tummy for ages. I absolutely love moments like that, when she has all her little paws in the air and her eyes shut and just trusts me to stroke her tummy. Whenever I feel under the weather she is always there to help.

:: I should probably mention my new found gratitude for...(wait for it)...gin. Yep, gin. That is coming from Mrs 'I-don't-really-drink'. My dad poured me a gin and orange juice on Christmas Day and it was so delicious that my parents left the entire bottle behind just for me! I only really drink on special occasions and, as it is still the festive season, that amounts to a special occasion, so I shall be pouring myself a gin for New Years Eve, and I am sure I will sleep beautifully for it! For any of you that are gin and tonic drinkers, and are wondering 'why orange juice?!'... I don't like tonic. I think the gin and orange thing is quite old school these days but, hey, it tastes goooood!

:: I was super grateful that the gym I train at was open all over Christmas and, before you ask, yes, I was one of the 'nutters' who went on Christmas Day. It was actually super busy! I will also be there tomorrow, to ensure I hit 2018 as I mean to go on!

:: My last thing to add to the gratitude list for 2017 is a big 'thank you' to all of you guys for supporting my blog and my journey to setting up my business this year. All your comments, kind words of encouragement and emails really make the world of difference to me and I appreciate every single thing I receive from you. A few things have had to be sacrificed recently (vlogs for example) in order for other things to run smoothly but I am trying to get better at managing the things I have to do so, bear with me!

I wish all of you guys a wonderful New Year, if you are out on the town tonight then be super safe and if, like me, you will be curled up watching Harry Potter, trying to stay awake past 9pm (true story!) then just know that we have the best views of the fireworks on the TV and we will be all wrapped up warm in our jammies with a gin/cuppa! We win surely?! Rock 'n' roll forever!

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27 December 2017

MY WORD FOR 2018



As we fly towards the end of the year, I wanted to talk to you a little about my word of the year for 2018, but before I dig into what my new word is going to be, I thought I would very quickly unpick 2017's word, which has been 'BOLD'. 

Before the year started I chose my word which, for those who are new around here, was the very first year I have chosen to have a 'word of the year', and I just tried to keep on reminding myself of what I had set my intention to; being bold, being less fearful and taking more chances. I wrote my word in the beginning of my 2017 Bullet Journal and set about the year with it in my mind and, I am happy to report that I really think it made a difference.

I guess it is a manifestation kind of thing isn't it; if you continue to tell yourself something over and over again that eventually it will come into fruition (which is why negative thoughts are so powerful and therefore so damaging!). I told myself that I was not afraid, that I was bold enough to step into my decisions and try new (and scary) things. It actually works and, whatever your thoughts on it, I am pleased with how my year turned out overall and I am excited to step into 2018 with my new word! More on that later.

First though, these are my bold steps of 2017...

QUITTING MY LONG-TERM JOB & MOVING TO CORNWALL
As many of you will know, because I have been harping on about this for literally years on my blog, I have wanted to live in Cornwall since first visiting many, many years ago now. Sometimes in life there comes a point where you just have to think 'screw it' and jump, that meant quitting the job I'd been in for a long time and leaping into a whole new beginning. A pretty darn bold step if you ask me. Did I have fear? Hell yes, tons of it. Doing something like that, with an ongoing mental health issue, no job and no friends in a new place... terrifying! But, as you may know by now, I tend to push my limits big time, because I am not going to grow as a person otherwise!

STARTING A BUSINESS (finally!)
Launching Leaf Lane Studio on 1st September this year was one of the boldest steps I have taken. This year has been the year of risks and now that it has launched I am really proud of the work I have put in. I am onto a whole other chapter of it now though because, as anyone knows who has actually launched a business, you think the hardest part is launching... wrong! The next chapter is about letting people know you exist, which is the hard part, but oh so worth it! PS: you can still get your paws on my 'Keep Shining Bright' downloadable print for free! Haven't got yours? Just click right here to see how to get yours (its super quick and easy by the way!).


TACKLING ONGOING MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES
As I said above, doing the move to Cornwall, quitting my job and starting the business was super full on, and would be for anyone, but keeping level headed and trying to handle overwhelm was something I managed to keep a pretty good check on through it all. For me, sometimes it isn't until I stop being busy that it hits me how much has been happening. I had moments of feeling isolated and overwhelmed for sure, but I think it was just about doing the things that make you happy when you feel those feelings approaching. Having a lot more space and nature around helped and being able to walk to the beach in under three minutes has certainly been a good thing!

FINDING A NEW GYM
This may sound like a really small thing to most people, but for me, finding a space to workout and feel comfortable, was a huge deal. Before moving to Cornwall, I already knew the gym I wanted to join but I also knew that it would push me way out of my comfort zone as well as pushing me more towards my goals too! I have now been a member for almost a year and I am so pleased I took the bold step to join the gym of my dreams, over something that felt safe, because now it does feel safe and I have made such wonderful friends there too.

Overall this year has totally embodied my word and I am proud of myself for that. I have done so many big things all in the space of twelve months and, now that I have gone through a year like this, I certainly need more of it, because it has made me develop, learn and grow so much, and that feels absolutely amazing.

When I was thinking about what my word was going to be for 2018, I took a while to narrow down my options, because I am at a very transitional point in my life. I was throwing around words like 'brave', then I thought if I go with that, it implies that I am not brave... so I scrapped that. I then thought of 'courageous' but it just wasn't sitting right and then, the other morning, the word I have chosen sprung into my mind and I honestly feel like it encompasses everything I will need for this year, which I will explain about in a moment, but first, here is my word for the year 2018.



For me, T R U S T is a great word for me going forward; it is about just knowing that I am putting in the effort and the work required and trusting that the universe will be guiding me and that it will deliver what is meant for me, and steer me away from what is not meant for me. It is a word that embodies so many things relevant to me right now. Sometimes I struggle to trust people and know that what they say to me is genuine (that is something that comes from way back in my twenties) and I know I have to let that go, so it is also about me acknowledging and trusting that I need to work on that side of my own behaviour too. But mostly it is about trying to cut down on the worrying side of things and trust in what I am called to do and also what I have to say. I have spent a lot of my years not feeling like what I want to do or say is valid or significant in any way; now is about letting go of the over thinking, the over analysing and the destructive comparison game, and trusting I am on my path. 

What do you guys think? Do you have a word of the year? If you haven't done it before, why not give it a go? Once you have your word, journal on it, look up podcasts or videos on your word, keep inspired and keep reminding yourself of the reason you have chosen it! Go with whatever feels right for you! Let me know what you think of this whole idea in the comments!
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23 December 2017

100 THINGS THAT MAKE ME HAPPY



Merry Christmas lovely people! I guess most of us are winding down for a bit now, in order to eat way too many chocolates and make slightly drunken fools of ourselves playing some strange Christmas game or other! At this time of year (because I have always found Christmas a little difficult), I try and remind myself of things that have made the year a good one. Last night I sat down with my notebook and just started to write down anything that made me happy this year or, in-fact, anything that makes me happy full stop. I highly recommend you do this; remember to look past the obvious things too and acknowledge all the small things that you are grateful for and, once you are done, just focus on those things, rather than the things that haven't quite gone to plan this year or didn't work out the way you thought because, ultimately, things do happen for a reason and so, as painful as they may have been, may they just weren't meant for you.

Before I get all deep and philosophical, here is my unedited list of 'happy'...

1. Holding hands with the one I love
2. Naps (especially post workout naps!)
3. Freshly washed sheets 
4. Feeling the sun on my skin when I feel tired
5. My lovely little gym family
6. Daffodils and scented narcissus
7. Cat videos
8. New sports wear
9. Tudor history
10. Painting
11. Seal spotting at Godrevy (or anywhere in-fact)
12. Bobble hats
13. Space documentaries 
14. Beautifully scented candles
15. Lazy baths listing to an audio-book or podcast
16. Stripy tops
17. Fresh berries
18. The gym (obviously!)
19. Star gazing late at night
20. The smell of woodsmoke
21. Watching Jeremy Kyle (I know, I know!)
22. Toast and butter
23. Angel cards/books
24. Coast path walks
25. Wild flowers
26. Romantic or philosophical quotes
27. The smell of pub food
28. Soaking my feet in warm water
29. Surprises
30. Watching something really funny and laughing until I cry!
31. Oversized jumpers and cosy clothes
32. Pinterest
33. The smell of Gizmos little paws
34. Guided meditations
35. Seeing the achievements of others
36. Watching Friends DVDs!
37. New notebooks and sketchbooks (art materials in general actually!)
38. Browsing around bookshops
39. Sunrises
40. Sunsets
41. Bring completely alone out in nature
42. Most Haunted
43. Cuddles
44. Podcasts
45. Animals
46. Talking to my lovely bestie Helena
47. Sitting in the lounge having a cup of tea in the early hours, when I can't sleep
48. Having my hair done
49. Seeing my work in magazines (still can't believe that has actually happened!)
50. Watching the sea (so calming and hypnotic)
51. National Trust properties
52. Fairy lights all year round
53. Getting a mini Christmas tree through the post
54. Listening to Bryan Adams (specifically my favourite song, 'Heaven')
55. Spotting dolphins playing in the bay
56. Finding my 'tribe' of friends on Instagram
57. The Eden Project
58. Having a few pounds to spend on make up
59. Visiting Lynmouth to see Helena and Rich in their B & B (so happy for you guys!)
60. Watching Gizmo run around the garden like a nutter
61. Watching the surfers (I must learn how to do that magic!)
62. Hearing the waves from the bedroom
63. Butterflies
64. Heavy sea mists rolling in out of nowhere
65. Smoothies
66. Mac lipsticks
67. The changing of the seasons
68. Seeing new shoots and leaves appearing
69. Bonfires
70. Kyle Gray books/videos/podcasts (he's an 'angel' guy for those who haven't heard of him!)
71. Watching 'The Notebook'
72. Bumbles bees
73. Kurt Jacksons gallery in St Just
74. Crystals
75. Malteasers and tea (but the malteasers MUST have been in the fridge first of course!)
76. Watching the birds in the garden (and feeding them too)
77. Cheesecake
78. Having my hair brushed
79. Having a day of no plans
80. Funny text messages from my friend CB
81. New pjamas
82. Green plants in the house
83. Seeing dogs playing on the beach
84. Victoria sponge
85. Loud, happy music
86. Walks around a garden centre
87. Mint ice cream
88. Planting bulbs in the garden
89. A glass of whisky
90. A good old browse in the WHSmiths magazine section
91. Doing 'high fives' with Gizmo
92. Watching a good conspiracy theory documentary
93. Fish n chips :-)
94. Having a super deep clean of the house
95. Browsing on Etsy at the amazing things by super talented people
96. Glittery nails
97. Paperchase
98. Old churches and cathedrals
99. Open fires
100. Road trips

There are so many things I could add to this but I literally wrote everything down as it came to me! If you do it let me know in the comments! :-)
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17 December 2017

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



Happy Sunday once again (boy, these posts come around so fast!). How are you guys all doing? I hope you have had a wonderful week. Before I get cracking on this weeks list I just wanted to say a big thank you to those of you that reached out to me following Wednesdays post (which you can find right here if you haven't read it yet). It is normal for me to get far more private messages for posts like that then comments under the actual post, which is totally understandable, so thank you if you did contact me. I think I am going to create some easier way of finding some of the categories of posts that I write as some of you liked the fact that I linked old posts at the end of Wednesdays one, so I will work on making it far easier for you to find certain things in the near future.

Right then, let's jump into to the lovely stuff from this week!

:: There have been some pretty spectacular skies this week due to the variety of temperatures and weather coming in. On Friday (I think it was Friday!) there was a beautiful yellow-pink-grey sky which was so breathtaking to look at. It was swiftly followed by a huge amount of rain and hail but soon cleared again. One of my favourite things of living near the sea is watching the weather make its way in.

:: Walking on the beach at this time of year, when there is no one about but you, is truly wonderful. I love feeling the sea breeze in my face and smelling the fresh air. Being all cosy and wrapped up in my jumper and bobble hat and walking in along the sand is something that is pretty hard to beat to be honest. 



:: I have crazy friends. I am just going to throw that out there because I really do... they are as mad as several boxes of mad frogs, but I love them and, more importantly, I obviously fit in with them completely! The reason for telling you that is because, on Friday there was a knock at the door and a sweet man was standing there with a huge black bag containing some sort of surprise. He came in, opened the bag, telling me this was a special delivery and had to be up the right way before I opened it. All sorts of things were running through my mind whilst the bag was being cut open... flowers? A plant? A fruit basket? A horses head?! As the bag got pulled away and I saw what was sitting on the kitchen table I just started laughing and laughing... it was a huge balloon, with a large stuffed elf inside and lots of chocolates! It was simply the most random but fun gift ever! Thank you Kat, you lovely nut job!

:: I think I mentioned this last month, but I was recently contacted about visiting the seal sanctuary in Gweek, not far from home, and this week I received my tickets! I am super excited to go and see all the beautiful little guys they have there. Seals are so gorgeous and I think they have penguins and other things too that are rescued and rehabilitated. I promise you all a blog post on my visit as soon as I go!



:: On Thursday I listened to a webinar with Janet Murray, who I have mentioned several times on here. She hosts a podcast I love called 'Soulful PR' and this webinar was the second one I have done of hers. She always has such valuable content and I come away with notes and action points, not just inspiration, but actual, functional things I can put into action for my business. I highly recommend you listen to The Soulful PR Podcast if you have your own business, it is so, so good and it doesn't matter what industry you are in. It would also be useful if you are a blogger too. This morning I listened to the episode about building your email list and it was so very helpful!

:: Yesterday morning, as I sat drinking a delicious mug of hot water with lemon and apple cider  vinegar (it actually tastes much better then it sounds!), I was watching the cutest little bird hopping merrily about in the lavender and couldn't work out what it was at all. It was super teeny tiny with a yellow stripe on its head and bright green feathers on its wings too. After trawling the interwebs I discovered what it was... a Goldcrest! I haven't ever seen one but look how gorgeous... (photo credit under the picture as he was moving way too fast for me to take his photo!).


^^ The gorgeous Goldcrest - Image sourced from Garden Bird as the little guy in the garden was way too speedy for me to photograph! ^^

:: The final thing I wanted to mention was not necessarily something I was super grateful for this week, but it is something that made me laugh (and also took up way too much time too). I opened the door to Gizmo on Friday night and, as usual, she came trotting in. It wasn't until she got past me that i thought 'hang on a second... she is walking in a very cocky manner!'. Following her into the lounge I soon realised why she was looking so happy with herself, she had a little mouse in her mouth (uninjured, very small and very bloody fast!). She dropped said mouse, which sprinted for its life behind my desk, and I put Giz back in the garden to start 'operation rescue'. After over an hour of trying to catch the Usain Bolt of the mouse world and losing sight of it, I assumed it had made a hasty retreat into the fire place, where it would find a tiny hole to push through back into 'the wild'! How wrong I was. Fast forward almost exactly 24 hours as I walk through the kitchen door into the office space in the back of the house; as I make my way towards the room I see a flash of brown and a tail and realise that my mate is in the other end of the house now. 'Operation rescue #2' begins. The long and the short of it is the little blighter gave me the run around for another hour, hurdling wires, plugs and computers and darting in and out of every single place it could find before I finally cornered him in a Tupperware box! (Can I get a mini Mexican wave here?!). Having been crawling about on the floor for an hour, banging my head on the desk and catching my hair in wires, I not only looked like a total moron, but also had aged about ten years through the worry of giving the mouse a heart attack whilst actually trying to save him! I plodded outside in the rain, wearing just socks on my feet, and returned him to the spot by the gate where the mice live. What a night. But at least the little guy is free again, poor thing!

Thank you for making it to the end of this post guys! If you enjoyed it please let me know in the comments! I love hearing from you! Have an amazing week everyone xx

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13 December 2017

LESSONS



Today I really want to talk about the lessons that life sometimes has in store for us... let's jump right on into it shall we?

I haven't written a mental health related post for a while (I will link to some of my others at the bottom of this post if you are interested in those) but I guess this one has a little to do with mental health in some ways. When I am in a severe state of anxiety or depression (or both, which is bloody terrifying for me), it is so easy to get lost; lost among your own thoughts, which really aren't your own thoughts if you dissect it. Everything seems against you and there sometimes feels like there really is no hope. Speaking of my own experience, when I am right in the midst of it all, I cannot see any positive signs sometimes, but something I am trying to work on, mostly after a really bad day or two, is what I have learnt from being in that state of mind. How did it come on? Was I triggered by something or someone? What did it feel like to feel those emotions? What fears came to the surface? What things or people kept me going? How did I react to those people? And, more importantly, what have I learnt that I can use next time something happens to me? 

I am starting to use this practice within in so many areas of my life now; working through things to see what I have learnt or to try and see what pattern is occurring within my life (I believe we all 'sign up' for certain lessons and, as soon as we learn them, we can move forward). I am trying to become a more conscious person when it comes to what I am seeing come my way over and over again. It is not easy some times but, when you are going through a tough patch, let's just say at work for example, and something goes horribly wrong with a project or piece of work you were meant to do, and you may say that it wasn't just your fault and try and shift the emphasis away to a colleague... maybe the lesson there would be that you need to take more ownership, learn to talk it through with a more honest perspective and work out a problem constructively. Being open and honest is so much harder in our heads, but so much easier to do then we imagine and usually has far more uplifting results than we think.

This year especially, I have learnt to just lay my cards on the table completely and, if people accept me for who and what I am, then they are the right people, my people! There were times I would try to be who I was 'meant to be' for whoever was in my life (work, relationships... whatever), now I just feel that I want to lay everything out, show my true self to the world and those who stick around, well, they are keepers!

I have learned to hit back against fear in a big way in 2017. My 'word of the year' was 'Bold' and I can honestly say that I have held myself to that. My biggest fear about starting my business (which is why it took practically three years to launch) was that I was too anxious/scared to talk to a printer about my work. The day I did it, not only did it feel huge relief and a massive weight lift off my shoulders, but I walked out of there with my little part time job too; you have to see the funny side of that! Sometimes I am such an idiot! But that was a huge life lesson. I waited, quite literally years, to make that particular connection to get my business moving, through fear of looking like I didn't know what I was doing... crazy! That fear was all built up in my own mind, I had no previous experience to back up my concerns, just my own stories of 'what could happen'. Did any of it actually happen? Nope, of course it didn't!

Smashing the printers issue has shifted so many other areas of my life. I feel like one of my big lessons in life was (because it is now a was, not an is) learning how to do things despite my own stories of what could happen. Since then I have just done so many other things that I would've talked myself out of; a good example of that is contacting wedding magazines to try and get my stationery featured. I achieved that three times so far since my launch and all I did was send an email. That process would've scared me, but the whole fear of what people may think thing has started to fade since talking to my printer and launching Leaf Lane Studio! It is truly crazy how one, seemingly small thing, can impact so many areas of your life and hold you back for years! 

I am no life coach that is for sure, but what I think is helpful is to take a quiet moment to jot down areas of your life that are difficult or that you are feeling scared about and see if you can identify a pattern of behaviour and work out what you need to do to climb up that life lesson and smash the sh*t out of it.

My advice to you guys... go for it. Decide on your goals, move forward... feel the fear and learn the lesson that was intended for you! 
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10 December 2017

WEEKLY GRATITUDE


^^ A very windy walk at Hells Mouth ^^

Today marks just two weeks until it will be Christmas Eve (what?!) and I keep thinking to myself 'where did 2017 go?' because, my lovely friends, this year has passed by the quickest ever. The house is looking super festive now, with pretty fairy lights in so many places, and Gizmo is doing her usual chewing of the tree branches at every given opportunity too; thank God it isn't a real tree or it'd be stripped of its needles already. As a new year approaches I have taken up the challenge of a deep 'yearly review' in my Bullet Journal; more to come on that in a later post though, and I have also decided against the traditional route of 'resolutions' too. I have been on a path, for the last year or so, of identifying areas for self improvement, and I am just going to continue on that path but not label it as anything 'new-yearsy' (totally not a word!).

Shall we leap into the reason this post exists... weekly gratitude?! Let's!

:: This week, a book I have had my eye on for a while, Kyle Gray's 'Raise Your Vibration', dropped in price on Amazon, so I finally got myself a copy! I adore Kyle Grays work (he is all about angels and spirituality) and I find the way he talks / writes about things really easy to absorb. The book is lots of mini lessons to help you develop within your spiritual practice and, so far I am loving it.

:: Gizmo has been super cute all week, following me around like a little lamb (do they follow people? Probably not). She is just everywhere I turn and I love her to bits.


^^ Look at that little face! ^^

:: This week I received some gorgeously scented narcissus through the post and they are filling the house with their beautiful scent. I love them so much <3

:: On Friday I was having a bit of a rubbish day so decided to take myself out for a wander among the Christmas decorations at a local shop. Sometimes a distraction is just what the doctor ordered and, I must admit, looking at all the festive bits and bobs, as well as the stationery too (of course), definitely helped lift the mood.

:: On yet another mission to clear my head, I took a walk over at Hell's Mouth this week too; if you want to see the pictures and didn't catch Wednesdays post, then click right here to see it! With so many stunning places on the doorstep, here in Cornwall, it is not difficult to find somewhere to go and clear the cobwebs!

:: Having put my calendar up for sale a couple of days ago, I am so happy to have sold a few. Yes, it is only a few but it is early days! It is nice to think that someone likes what you create enough to part with money for it! If you would like to have a look at it then head on over to Leaf Lane Studio!

:: Whilst we are on the subject of Leaf Lane Studio, it got a couple of little features in 'Your Devon & Cornwall Wedding' magazines new issue (see below!) and I got emailed the pages this week, which was really lovely to see! I am so grateful whenever I get a piece of my stationery featured!


:: I have fallen just a little in love with Ed Sheeran's new single 'Perfect'. Pretty much every Christmas there is one song that makes me a bit soppy and this years prize goes to Mr Sheeran!

:: I managed to set aside some time for painting this week, which felt really nice. I popped on the radio (BBC Radio Two is the only station that can be picked up from the room I work in!) and set about a couple of new ideas. I am in the process of getting a couple of physical prints in my shop (coming very soon) and want to add more stock regularly, so am trying to keep my creative juices flowing somewhat!

:: This week, whilst trying to find a Cornwall based wedding photographer I could feature on my business Instagram, I stumbled upon Sarah, from Salty Sea Photography, who takes the most stunning photographs, that are so poetic and romantic that I had to mention her immediately on my account. It wasn't until I started reading a bit more about Sarah, on her website, that I realised I had been following her personal blog for ages! What a small world it is. I think I remember reading somewhere that she is in the middle of redesigning the blog, but head over and check her out anyway, her blog is called The Salty Sea Blog and it is gorgeous!

Thank you so much for stopping by this week, I hope you have a wonderful week ahead and are feeling the festive spirit building up (almost time for a few indulgent days off!). Don't forget that, if you want to check out my brand new printable 2018 calendar, then just click the image below! Go on, I dare you!
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8 December 2017

ARE YOU 2018 READY?



This post is a little shameless promotion for my new 2018 printable calendar, I hope you guys don't mind, but I worked my little painting socks off on it and I am proud of it, so really want you guys to know it exists. Although I am a full on Bullet Journal girl, I do have a calendar on my desk every year as I like to have something bright and fun to look at, but I also like to be able to quickly glance at a date whilst I work, or when I am on the phone, and I still love paper products for that. I also use calendars to plan out social media content or blog posts... just a few ways that you could use yours!

For more information on the best way to print digital products, ways to display a printed calendar and where to buy yours (or buy as a gift for someone else!) keep on reading!

THE DETAILS
:: Each month has a unique, hand-painted, watercolour garland to help bring a little bit of something pretty to your office or wherever you decide to put it!
:: One of my aims was to make this a super happy feeling calendar, so I have included inspirational quotes and affirmations for each month!
:: Each month comes with a small amount of space each day, so you can write in all those important plans for world domination!
:: There are even sneaky spaces for extra notes too.
:: The calendar was designed as A4 (210mm x 297mm)
:: Please remember that, if you do purchase my calendar, it is only a digital item, nothing physical will be dropping through your letter box!


WHERE YOU CAN GET YOURS!
:: My calendar is available in two places, Leaf Lane Studio and in my Etsy shop and it costs just £5.00 of your hard earned money! Obviously my website, www.leaflanestudio.com, is where I would prefer people to purchase, as this is directly through me, but I love finding new artists and makers on Etsy, so I really don't mind if it is over there of course!

WHY BUY A PRINTABLE CALENDAR?
:: A huge bonus of buying something that you download and print yourself is that you can print as many copies as you like! This means that mistakes are easily sorted out (if you are anything like me and you hate having to cross things out, then this may be a blessing in disguise!), plus you can print off more than one copy for whatever you like; one for work, one for home!
:: You get something super unique for a more affordable price. Often, when artists and designers try to make products, it is so costly to get the quantities printed that is pushes the price right up for the customer and the profit right down for the maker. Printing your own means you can still get a beautifully crafted product, with no extra costs for delivery, right to your inbox.

THE BEST WAY TO PRINT YOUR CALENDAR
:: Where possible try to use a good quality printer paper or card stock, which often results in a richer colour print.
:: Depending on the printer you have you may be able to go to 'advanced settings' and set the print to 'high quality'; just remember that this will use more of your ink then a standard print.
:: If the print doesn't come out at A4, check your settings are on 'print actual size' as some printers resize automatically before printing, more often than not this happens with PDF files.
:: Finally, when the image prints out it may, depending on the paper, appear a little rippled; if this happens just leave it on a flat surface to fully dry and then, if required, you could place it under a stack of heavy books to flatten out before placing it in a frame.

CREATIVE WAYS TO DISPLAY YOUR CALENDAR
:: I love big old bulldog clips, attached to my noticeboard, to display things I have printed, but a clipboard works well too, just lean it up somewhere you can see it and Bobs your Uncle!
:: Use washi tape to display it on your wall (safe for the wall and pretty to look at!).
:: Hole punch the top and use some cute ribbon or string to tie it together. Then all you need to do it pin it to your notice board or hand it on a picture hook or nail!

If you are interested in checking out my calendar or want to buy it just click right here to go straight over to my website!

Thank you to anyone who has left comments on either of my Instagram accounts about the calendar, you guys are so kind and super supportive and I appreciate it so very much.

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6 December 2017

CREATING SPACE



There are some days when you can just drive yourself a little bit crazy with 'all the thoughts' and need to clear some space in your head to gain the ability to compartmentalise everything that is busily driving you insane. Today was a bit like that in my head. I struggle sometimes with seeing all the things I have to do as individual things and, rather than doing the typical Lucy thing and making a list to clear my head, I let things bundle themselves up into this huge, tangled ball of sh*t that I just want to run away from.

So, what is the best thing to do when being chased, Indiana Jones style, by this metaphorical ball of crap? Well, there are a few things I normally do, including making said list to mind-dump the nonsense onto a page and see it for what it really is; but other than that I usually find that a nice cup of tea and half an hour of either a podcast or a TV show helps, just to distract my mind for a while, or I sometimes sit with my angel cards for a bit and ask for some guidance, but on the days where nothing else will do... I get outside, whatever the weather, and stare at the beauty of our planet. Today's place of choice was just past Godrevy, at the slightly scary sounding, but stunningly beautiful, 'Hell's Mouth'.



There was really no one else around as I crossed the quiet, winding road, over to the coast path, so it was just me and the seagulls for a while. You only really get the scope of how high the cliffs are when you see the huge gulls looking like teeny dots against them. Being out in nature like this makes me feel so small in a really grounding way. There is nothing like feeling the wind, rain and sea spray against your skin to remind you that you are just a little human being, in this vessel we know as a body, experiencing life in this form, at this moment.

All the things that I can often see as monumental issues or really scary problems and worries can often get dwarfed by simply stepping outside. Within our own four walls it is easy to feel alone in the world; isolated from every other experience happening outside your front door, and this is when (if you are anything like me) you can loose sight of what matters. Seriously, try stepping outside, go to a local park, a woods, walk the dog (probably not the cat) and just breathe; take it all in and see what a difference it makes.

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3 December 2017

WEEKLY GRATITUDE


^^ Beautiful sunset happening outside as I write this post! ^^

Happy December lovely friends! I am currently in total denial that we are, in-fact, a matter of days until the Christmas holidays kick in; it doesn't feel like it has been long enough since the last festive period to me! I do love Christmas though and, yesterday I received something through the post that kicked my butt into feeling a little more festive, more on that below!

How has your week been? Have you got your decorations up yet? What kind of traditions do you have for the festive season (if any!), let me know in the comments. I must admit that I am enjoying my little Cadburys advent calendar (thanks mum!) and I also have the gorgeous calendar that I received from Peta (www.pe-ta.com) which is 24 tea bags, beautifully packaged into individual calendar days (I need zero encouragement to drink tea of course!).


^^ My gorgeous little Christmas tree, I love it so, so much! ^^

Right then, let's hop into todays post shall we?

:: The first thing on my list of things I am super grateful for this week is something I briefly mentioned above; a surprise delivery that arrived only yesterday! The box was from Bloom & Wild and came with the cutest little message from my beautiful, amazing friend, Helena (thank you so much lovely lady). If you guys know Bloom & Wild, then you will know that they specialise in flowers that can be put through the letterbox, so imagine my surprise when I opened the box to reveal a mini Christmas tree, baubles, lights, moss for the top of the soil, a canvas pot and a star! Now, that is a well packed box! Honestly, I cried happy tears because it is so very beautiful! If you guys are looking to send something to someone for a little pre-Christmas present, then I highly recommend the mini Christmas tree from Bloom & Wild because it is super sweet!

:: It seems that as winter is setting in, we have so many more birds in the garden again and they are really into the bird feeder too. There are blue-tits and sparrows feeding regularly again and so many gorgeous little robins too (I love robins!). I adore just sitting at the window and watching them squabble over who is next to the feeder!

:: As it is getting colder in the cottage, it has been necessary to enter full 'old lady' mode and take a hot water bottle to bed each night. I lay it in the bed whilst I go about my little pre-sleep routine, and then sit in bed with it on my feet whilst I write in my Bullet Journal. Because I always overheat in the night I usually find that, within an hour, I am throwing it onto the floor, but it serves its purpose! (Is the next step of 'old lady' mode and electric blanket? Does anyone know?!).



:: I have been working like a mad woman this week to try and complete my Leaf Lane Studio printable 2018 calendar and I am almost there, celebration dance! Having never created a calendar in my life, I have probably taken a bit too long about the process, but I wanted to get it as perfect as I could (we all know that perfection isn't achievable though don't we!). Thank you so much to all of you that have left me a comment on Instagram or my Facebook page about it, you guys are so very sweet. I will be putting it up for sale (as a download only) within the next few days so stay tuned to my Leaf Lane Studio Instagram for that!

:: This week I watched a great video, by Fran ('Frannerd') about hitting a bit of creative block, which I do very often! It is nice to hear what other creatives do to try and get out of the rut that can drive us all a bit crazy! If you want to see it, head over to Fran's YouTube channel, the video is called 'In search of inspiration and motivation' - I love Fran's videos in general and often re-watch them whilst I work because it is lovely to see someone talk so honestly, whilst being so consistently herself and share her thoughts and processes without being too precious about them. Fran is genuinely so helpful and so insightful into her business that it keeps me really motivated and inspired to keep going!

:: This week I took part in the hashtag 'Meet the maker week' over on my Leaf Lane Studio Instagram and it was so great to have a few conversations with other makers that I haven't chatted to before and hear their feedback on what I create and talk to them about what they are working on too. It is one of my favourite platforms for striking up conversations with people and making new on-line buddies!

:: Lastly... the garden is looking a lot more thinned out since winter hit, but the little narcissus are already open (see below). You guys, who have followed me for a while, will definitely know that daffodils and narcissus are my all time favourite flowers. They are super happy and bright and I just love them in the house and in the garden! I can't believe they are already open but, then again, we are in Cornwall now, so it is a lot more mild this time of year than I am used to! I just hope they don't get killed off by a really cold night.

Thank you, as always, for taking the time to read this weeks post, you guys are amazing and hearing from you during the week always makes me smile. You can obviously message me on my various social media platforms (linked on the right) but you can also email me on fromlucywithlove@outlook.com if you want to have a good old fashioned natter! I'd love to hear from you. See you on Wednesday!

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29 November 2017

WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN NO-ONE IS LOOKING?




Today I am talking about the things you do when you're in your own space, the door is locked and you can be completely and utterly you; but before your mind goes off on 'one of 'those' tangents, let's just keep it clean now people! I got thinking about this subject because as soon as I am left alone I generally will do one of a list of things. These things really make me content, restore my mood / energy or comfort me, so I wondered what other people do too!

Here is my list...

:: No matter what mood I am in, there is always room for a very loud blast of music! I love cheesy stuff that I can sing my lungs out too whilst I work or something that makes me want to dance about like a lunatic. These days I don't get much of a chance to throw on some loud music but, when I do, I love every, single second of it!

:: When it's been a long, tiring day, a cup of tea and a binge watch of Friends is the only cure! Friends always puts a smile on my face and leaves me floating in a bubble of happy for a while afterwards, you just can't beat it (although I also love Big Bang Theory and The Goldbergs too!).

:: This might be one of the strangest ones... and I have been doing this for years! Painting is always something I love to do when I get a free moment, nothing overly strange about that I hear you say, but it is more about what I watch when I paint... Most Haunted! Yep, there you have it! Do I think it is all real, no, does it keep me entertained, yes! Most of the series' (of which I think there are 19!) are available on YouTube, so I just stream them on my tablet whilst I create. Strangely, it keeps me calm, work that out!

:: Housework is a big stress reliever for me and I will clean the entire house within an inch of its life when I am left alone and in the mood to do so. The problem with this is that I go 'all in', cleaning skirting boards, doors, windows and everything in-between! I just feel so clear headed afterwards and that feeling cannot be beaten! I may even go all out rock n roll and throw on some loud music too!

:: One of my favourite relaxing routines is to have a bath, listen to a spirituality podcast, my favourite is Stepping Into The Light by Julia Treat, and then sit on the bed, with the fairy lights on and journal or do some angel cards. I love doing this sort of stuff when the house is totally empty because I know I won't be distracted at all. I am easily side-tracked by another sound in the background, so time alone is perfect for me to get a really good reading or journaling session done.

:: Alongside the practice I mentioned above I also like to try a short meditation. I usually find myself falling asleep, but the thought is there! I subscribe to the Hay House Meditation podcast, which is super varied and free!

:: Since moving to Cornwall and living in such a beautiful place, with a gorgeous garden, I adore sitting out on the edge of the big wooden table outside, with a hot cup of tea and just looking out to sea. I feel an instant calm wash over me and get totally lost in the sound of the waves and the birds every time. I think, for me anyway, this is a form of meditation (and I am less likely to fall asleep!).

:: I also spend a lot of time listening to podcasts or watching videos on conspiracy theories and really enjoy having them on when I am relaxing. I usually grab a notebook and sketch out business ideas whilst listening to them. I am pretty sure that it's a bit strange that I watch Most Haunted whilst painting and listen to conspiracy theories whilst brainstorming business things but, hey, each to their own huh?

So, over to you guys! What slightly random stuff do you like to do when you are home alone? Do you watch strange things when you work or are you totally normal and listen to background music?! Let me know in the comments!
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26 November 2017

WEEKLY GRATITUDE



It's the very last Sunday of November, can you believe it and, not only that, but in less than a month it will be Christmas. Is anyone not feeling very festive yet? I am just not there this year. I get my moments when I get a little tingle of the Christmas vibe hit me but, on the most part, I am just not feeling the festive feels yet, despite having a big tub of chocolates given to me by my mum; I put them in the boot of the car on the way home in case I was tempted to 'get into the Christmas spirit' whilst driving for five hours! Any suggestions for how to get me feeling more festive are welcome; FYI I have watched some Christmas movies, listened to some Christmas music... nothing happening. I need your ideas!

Anyway, this week had been a bit different to the rest as I had mum staying from Sunday to Wednesday and then I drove us both back (to my parents house in Surrey) and I stayed with them until Saturday morning. My main aim for going over there was to make sure that I could attend the Christmas market that I used to organise at the school I worked at before. I wanted to show support, and so specifically arranged my visit to coincide with the event! It was lovely to catch up with everyone and here how they are all doing.

On to the gratitude/happy things/stuff I like list; although it is still officially titled 'Weekly Gratitude', you get the jist!

:: Having mum to stay meant that we had a couple of really nice lunches out. Tuesday was the best by far and involved a rather delicious vanilla and white chocolate cheesecake that was the best cheesecake I have had!

:: I think my poor mum was feeling a bit sorry for me... she knows I am scraping around all the odds and ends of make up products and so treated me to a new mascara to replace my very old one, which was all dry and gross (celebration dance!), and to a new 'base coat' (my mums description of foundation!). I wanted something with some skincare benefits and something that was a bit illuminating, so went with the L'Oreal BB cream, which is all kinds of magic! As I am now officially just a few years away from forty (seems less if I type the whole word instead of putting the actual numbers in!) I am finding that my skin really needs perking up on some days and is having phases of being dry and tired looking. To be honest, due to the non-money situation, I have had to let my normal skincare routine slip, and I am really noticing it. But hey, I will get there again soon! Small sacrifices for the bigger end goal.


^^ My little business, Leaf Lane Studio, features in the December issue of Wedding Ideas Magazine ^^

:: If you follow me on Instagram then you would have seen that Leaf Lane Studio got featured in the December issue of Wedding Ideas Magazine. I had an email on Wednesday and I was so excited! When I started the business I was so convinced that I would never have anything featured and, the fact that it has happened twice in two months, is super amazing! Thank you Wedding Ideas peeps! You guys... if you or anyone you know is getting married then you should send them over to the website as I still have my 10% off your order offer plus my 30% off hand-lettering service too.

:: Big thanks (again) to my mum for buying me a very festive poinsettia when we popped out the other day. The kitchen suddenly looks a little more Christmasy, even if I haven't caught it up yet!

:: When I returned from my travels, I was greeted with a very sleep bear, who didn't move for hours and hours... but look how cute!! She was so content, all snuggled up on my jumper and looked so so sweet!



:: I have gone back to having lemon juice in warm water in the mornings now. I find it is a really refreshing thing to drink before the gym, although not too much fun post toothpaste, especially if I have apple cider vinegar in it as well! I am pretty sure that, within four or five weeks, I will be looking like a totally new woman!

:: This last couple of weeks I have been planning my December bullet journal spread. I wanted it to be something that was really helpful in terms of reflecting on the year gone by and also had space for me to map out the things I want to achieve in the New Year too. I think I will get it up as a YouTube video this week so stay tuned for that. I still can't believe I have kept to a journalling system for a whole year!

:: With the winter weather setting in, we have had the most gorgeous sunsets around here of late. They are always stunning but, let's face it, there must be something about the colder air up there that makes them even more breathtaking, because the clouds have been looking epic and the colours are out of this world.

:: Today I finally started creating my hand-made Christmas cards. I am so late at starting them but have just had so many different things going on that I felt like I had ages! I wouldn't mind but a couple of them have a journey ahead of them so I am worried they may not make it! 

That is all for this weeks post guys. I hope you have had a wonderful weekend and let's all hit next week hard! I am planning a few bits and pieces I want to achieve next week in my Bullet Journal; a few business goals, but I am also switching up my gym training programme to be a bit more intense on the run up to Christmas too so, if what I type this Wednesday makes no sense, then you know I am exhausted and crumbled in a heap of misery on the floor, or else I am napping!

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22 November 2017

THE THINGS I STILL WANT TO ACHIEVE IN 2017



Although I don't really make New Years Resolutions these days, I always try and set myself goals and this year, one of my goals, starting a Bullet Journal, has helped me achieve some of my other goals (you keeping up?!). Through my endless lists, plans and goal setting in my Bullet Journal, I am proud to have achieved the biggest thing I had set in my mind for this year, even though it was a few months later than I had planned! Leaf Lane Studio is now 'a thing' and I couldn't be happier about that really, but there are still a few little personal goals I have that I would like to work on a bit more before the clock strikes twelve on December 31st!

I have six weeks to try and 'up my game' in a few areas of my life, so I thought I would try and get them out in the open for a little accountability! Feel free to comment about what you would like to do before the year is out; it could be anything at all! Also, tell me in the comments what you have already achieved too, let's give each other a boost to push us towards the end of the year!

H E A L T H 
:: start the day with hot water with lemon 
:: have two glasses of apple cider vinegar (in water!) throughout the day
:: increase general water intake
:: have a mini-cut before Christmas (lower my carb intake and increase my cardio)
:: get a bit more sleep
:: get out for a walk in the late afternoon

The main focus for me going forward is to try and keep my body hydrated and to reduce the dreaded hormonal side-effects I suffer with, such as headaches and bloating etc (don't you just love hormones?!).

B U S I N E S S
:: scheduling marketing campaigns for Christmas and New Year
:: get a better content creation routine for the business blog/social media
:: create, create, create!

I wrote a business based blog post last week, if you fancy having a read just click here!

B L O G
:: spend my time more efficiently to create content notes in advance as ideas come along
:: work on some ideas for promoting the blog in 2018 
:: replace the pictures that were lost in the whole 'Photobucket' debacle (I still have several blog posts to sort out to bring the blog back to where it should be post Photobucket taking down everyones photos a few months ago... grrr!)

P E R S O N A L
:: work on my procrastination...well, not actually on it, because I am already achieving highly at it! I need to be more efficient in several areas of life really and stop sitting and thinking about everything all the time and just get on with the task in hand! (Hands up if this is you too!)
:: find a part time job. This may not happen in the next few weeks but I am starting to look at this now the business has launched and I am able to take on something else. If anyone is currently working as a Virtual Assistant and has any 'top tips' please get in touch as I am considering this particular path right now as it will fit in with all the other things I do currently
:: keep thinking positively! I have worked super hard this year at seeing the positive in everything, in order to help my mental health and to keep my motivation up for everything else I want to achieve. I am trying to notice the things in life that dip my mood and get rid of them as fast as I can

Having written that all down it all seems like a lot but I think I can definitely do well at the majority of it, so watch this space. I mentioned at the start of this post that my Bullet Journal has been so helpful at making me see what I need to get done and actually achieve it. For December I am really delving into an 'end of year review' to help me plan for 2018 and see clearly what needs to be done. I will do another Bullet Journal video for you guys very soon, as it will be nice to have a look back at what worked and also what I am planning for the New Year, but if you want to see my set up for my very first journal then the video is below for you!

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19 November 2017

WEEKLY GRATITUDE


^^ Perranuthnoe ^^

I can't believe I am just putting this post up after 9pm on a Sunday (sorry guys!). My mum arrived in Cornwall earlier today so time has somewhat run away with us. Better late than never is something I have used a few too many times on the blog this year... forgive me! Let's jump right in shall we?

:: On Friday morning, as I stepped outside the front door for the gym at about 6.30am, I realised that the sky was super clear and, although the sun was just starting to come up, it was dark enough to have a little gaze at the stars, which were so beautiful and so bright. I admit, I was absolutely freezing cold, but it was totally worth it! The sunrises and sunsets have been stunning lately too.

:: I've had a couple of 'dodgy days' this week, where I just couldn't sleep or get my brain together enough to human! On Wednesday it reached a bit of a peak and so I succumbed to a sick day and laid on the bed, sketching out some products ideas (so I did do some work!) and popped one of my all time favourite films on Netflix, The Notebook. Gizmo and I snuggled up and enjoy the film together; I adore the story of that film so very much. I idea that the two characters were just meant to be together and finally reunited has me all sorts of emotional! 


^^ My sick day buddy ^^

:: One of the things I love about living here in Cornwall is how fast the weather can roll in and roll out again. This afternoon, as I waited in Penzance car park for my mums train to come in, I watched the darkest grey clouds I have seen in a while rolling in from the sea, but what made it even more gorgeous to watch was that there was a single ray of sunshine casting a bright beam of light on St Michael's Mount. It looked so intentional and so magical, I wish I could have got a photo of it but I just wasn't in the right place to snap it. There are just so many things that I see on a daily basis that make me so grateful to live here.

:: I forgot to mention in last weeks post how much I am loving Blue Planet II on BBC one right now. I don't often watch any animal related programmes because, for some strange reason, it can set off my mental health into a downward spin occasionally (if there is too much sad stuff for example). But I am really enjoying this latest series and am totally stunned by all the things that live in our oceans; what an amazing planet we live on (I just wish we looked after it a bit better).

:: On Friday I had the most wonderful parcel in the post from the gorgeous Peta (www.pe-ta.com) who had sent me a little advent calendar of teabags to enjoy throughout December. It is beautifully hand made and I adore it so much! Thank you lovely lady, you are the sweetest! <3



:: The radio stations have started playing their Christmas playlists now and I must confess to having quite a sing song to Whams 'Last Christmas' on the way home from the gym earlier this week! Heart Xmas Extra is also tuned in on the car radio too, although I am not quite 'there' yet!

:: I am really enjoying the peace and quiet of our little village at the moment. Sometimes I can step outside the door, into the garden, and just hear nothing but the waves and a few birds chirping away. It is heaven on a stick to have such calm right where you live, all the time. The amount of robins in the garden has really gone up too and, having them hopping about is so wonderful, I am still astounded at how they can stand up on their little legs!

:: On Friday I listened to a podcast episode from One Girl Band (one of my faves for motivation) titled 'What to do if you feel stuck' and it was a really good one! Only a short episode so, if you are interested then its one you can listen to in a hurry, but it really gave me a little kick because, over the last couple of weeks, I have just been feeling a little bit tired and somewhat stagnant with a few areas of my business and blog. I highly recommend you give the podcast a go if you fancy something new!

That is all for this week guys, I hope you all have a great week! I am heading back to mum and dads on Wednesday and, whilst I will do my utmost to get a post up for Wednesday, if I struggle, please forgive me! Mum is staying and I have a lot to get done before I travel back with her for a few days. I am super excited to see my dad and to catch up with a few people I haven't seen for a while too, plus I am going to pop into the Christmas market that I used to organise at my old work; it will be so nice to attend an event as a visitor, rather than a stressed out organiser!!

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