Sunday, 8 May 2016

Current guilty pleasures.

As I am sitting here relishing the lack of excessive layers I thought I'd do a little glance at some of my current obsessions & guilty pleasures that feature almost daily. The little things that are a tad indulgent (or seemingly not but feel as though they are) & can always give my day a bit of a boost where necessary.

So what are they at this moment in time?

Maui & Sons Dark Chocolate coated Coconut chips; these things are utterly divine, feel incredibly naughty & are something I am slowly but surely launching at the unsuspecting people in my life.

Good books & reading; whether it's wind down time before bed, or with a really good coffee taking 5 minutes (longer if the book sucks me in) somewhere in the sun I love reading & rarely don't have a book on the go. At the moment I have 3 properly on the go & 2 (French ones) that I'm dipping into.

Gin; this is a big love of mine & made all the more indulgent since one of my locals developed a 'secret' gin bar within it's premises for Friday & Saturday nights, so far they are up to 34 different gins I think & they are so good. Spring Black Pepper is very much a favourite at the moment.

Doodles & Mandalas; I have a bit of a chronic doodling habit. I doodle constantly it would seem, there are always started, or finished doodles littering notebooks, sketchbooks, scraps of paper, the edge of letters written to others, but especially with the symmetry for mandalas it's quite a good mindfulness, shutting everything else off moment. We don't have enough of those in life.

JalapeƱos; I cannot get enough of these fantastic little green beasts. Salads made will be covered in them, if a friend orders themselves nachos I will be stealing them, until they begin to notice that is.

Long walks with no end destination; I love walking & ultimately walk every day, some days more than others depending on mood, time frames & similar, but there is nothing I love more than the days you walk for absolute miles in the sun (or rain or cold, I don't mind) in the countryside with no timeframe planned or end location, you just walk, take a break somewhere & sit & read or similar & climb a tree before ultimately walking some more.

Matching undies; this is a long running obsession if I am entirely honest & one I think will long remain, but I adore matching lingerie, prettier the better & yes even if nobody but myself is going to see it or see me in it, I love knowing I always match. It's like the first thing you do, just for you, in the day. But it is almost compulsive in my tendency to buy items, you look for birthday gifts for others & somehow you have ordered another set of pretty, lace lingerie items.

Raw juices & smoothies; not exactly a pleasure or indulgence to find guilt within, but I love making or getting a good fresh, cold, raw juice or smoothie with any number of variations & differing contents especially if they have a bit of a kick behind them; think cayenne pepper & ginger. I also like to think it aids & undoes some of the damage of my coffee habit.

Braided or twisted crowns; I love twists & plaits/braids, there is something instantly feminine about them, that has never changed but I have definitely noticed that my tendency towards the crown style with twists or plaits has seen a massive surge. I think because it's surprisingly easy & keeps your hair very much out of the way it's become a bit of a go to, that & of course the always wearable topknot bun.

Flowers; or more naughty moments of indulging & buying them for myself & never exciting ones to be fair or huge bouquets, but cute bunches of gypsophila, or yellow tulips or (when I can find them) sunflowers. Give me 'happy' yellow blooms & cute fillers & I am a happy bunny.

Faux septum piercing; this one I love because it gives me the best of both worlds really, I have this theory that perhaps I am too old for another piercing, or more another piercing smack bang wallop in the middle of my face but I do love the septum piercings that are everywhere. Perhaps the everywhere is also why I am refusing to go through with it. But I love that with my faux septum cuffs I can literally have the best of both worlds, indulge in moments both with & without it depending upon mood, company, situation & more. There is something to be said for being able to dip your toes into both pools.

So there we are those are some of my current 'guilty' pleasures. There are others of course, but those are ones that are very much at the forefront of any indulgent moment. Do you ever have indulgences that verge on obsessions & become your pleasures for a chunk of time before perhaps being replaced? What are your current guilty pleasures?

Friday, 6 May 2016

ASOS Wish List.

Sometimes everyone needs a moment of wishing & of course wardrobe lusting. Friday is one such day of the week, so today it's a trip to ASOS & my regularly overstocked wish list! Granted it is in the hundreds so I am not going to share it all, but I will share a few pieces that I am greatly coveting.

ASOS Denim Premium Bow Jumpsuit;£50, ASOS Cami in Knitted Chiffon & Lace; £30, Vera Moda Printed Espadrille; £15.

Shae Red Textured Jumper; £58, Milk It Vintage Cropped Sweat with Ruffle Hem & Short Sleeves; £45, ASOS Festival Metal Cross Body Bag; £40, ASOS Chunky Boyfriend Cardigan in Wool Mix Yarn; £40.

Lost Ink Rally Grey Strappy Heeled Sandals; £42, ASOS Midi Skirt with Button Through in Self Stripe; £32, ASOS Jumper with Vintage Pointelle Look; £28.

See You Soon Top with Pockets in Brushed Check; £17, Rokoko Maxi Sheer Mesh Dress with Festival Floral Flocking; £40, ASOS Open Back Shirt in Pink Stripe; £36, Love Skater Dress in Tropical Print; £18. 

So these are a mere selection of the 600+ odd things I have dotted about all over my ASOS wish list, fairly varied mix, but I am fairly eclectic within myself. What would you be coveting from ASOS right now? 

Or coveting in general? I for one am coveting a bit of 'space' in my home again but also in regards in my head, maybe a holiday or just an escape for a few days & a good cuddle from proper man arms, those are always good especially as a way of welcoming in the weekend. 

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Reiki, raw juice & ducklings.

Something about 'caring for oneself' is often something that can be hard to do, or to justify finding time for but it is important, the reality is if you can't find the time to look after yourself how can
you expect to be able to have the full energy to give to others?

So today has been a good day for allowing myself a hint of the self care & mini indulgences prior to providing cover for a work shift.

So bar having utterly scrumptious 3 day old ducklings to cuddle & tend to (such fun for a giggle, as they are such clumsy little beings), then headed off to a wonderful, bohemian pixie I know to indulge in some reiki & aromatherapy massage.

For those who don't know what reiki is, it's a holistic treatment that is based on a Japanese technique for relaxing & can improve healing & is based on the concept of energy, energy flow & the power of energy transference with the use of touch. People react to it differently, on some levels that comes down to a persons own energy probably & how they are within themselves; I have a friend for instance who didn't react very well to it because of her own personal energy & empathy. Thankfully that was not the case for me.

And aromatherapy massage combines the powers of essential oils used in aromatherapy but combined with a carrier product (another oil, for instance apricot) becomes the massage oil in use. Now can I just say wow, it was the most incredible introduction into both for me, my 'pixie' in question combined the reiki with the aromatherapy massage & I literally cannot wait for my next session of longer length, which is in a weeks time.

For me a quiet brain or mind does not exist & is a highly elusive concept to me, one I can't manage to muster. Don't get me wrong I have tried & do try mindfulness when I can, but personally I think that in itself requires a degree of quiet, the key thing I battle with. So to have found I had the most eerily empty brain during this introduction was incredibly empowering, exciting & almost overwhelming uplighting, I left feeling invigorated & as though I finally got why making time for 'self care' was worthwhile, something to pursue & just 'be' in.

I really do think a bit of a mental boost can change things; I got a positive (hopefully) email . . . watch this space, I was motivated to study this evening, despite having had to cover a work shift unexpectedly & actually found studying was easier, BSL didn't seem as complicated & looking after myself didn't seem as frivolous, self indulgent or ridiculous. So I am all set for candles & a bath & the smoothie from my favourite raw cafe was very much enjoyed.

So the question today is, have you ever had holistic treatments? What do you do to take time for you & to apply 'self care' into your everyday life?

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Hump Day; Loves, Loathes & Lust.

I do love a good excuse for list making & taking 'stock' of the week that has passed. It's rather cathartic, especially when having a less then perky moment, it can help remind you of the good bits of the week.

So this past week, when I am not using paper to doodle, what has made it onto my lists?


* Sunny days & the promise it brings; today for instance has been one of those days, proper sunshine, warm enough to carry a jacket & wear a cardi but not have to wear both, hell I even had bare legs without leggings (up to a point when the chill got to much & I was forced to make a mad dash to Primark to grab a pair of capri leggings to go under my dress). I am very much a sun lover, happier with a good dose of Vitamin D in my love, less 'het up' & love the promise of summer, long nights, pub gardens, festivals, weddings & more that comes with a good dose of proper British Spring weather.
* Learning, reading, studying & more; this may sound weird but I have a perpetually active brain & I'm not very good at letting it lie idle, on top of which, I love learning & have numerous things I want to either try to learn or learn & at the moment I've been doing that a lot at the moment. I have been plunging my nose into some fantastic books; fiction & non-fiction, I'm attempting (not always well) to learn BSL & French, along with course related subjects & generally am loving how active my brain has been this week.
* Good company & catch ups; I do love good company & a chance to catch up with people & adore the important people in my life. This week has felt like I've had some awesome catch ups with some fantastic people, a fair few gins thrown in there for good measure, deep often philosophical chats, light hearted moments, random word games, a large number of giggles, cuddles & just reminders that I have some fantastic people.
* Ducklings; I am in part a 'country bumpkin', I grew up surrounded by animals in various forms & have just hatched one of my favourites - ducklings, they are so lovely, are a fantastic 'chill out' distracting tool, & have funny little characteristics , when they leave (with my mother) I can't deny I will miss them, but not the mess they make!
* Creating plans; for the summer, for health, for activities, for studies & my brain, for a rough guide for the year, for creative endeavours, for this space here. Just lately I've been formulating a lot of ideas (often out of nowhere & weirdly random), there are many a bit of paper with scribbles on them dotted around my house, room, handbag, but it is all good & boosting & like a fantastic motivator. This year is speeding past & I have things I want in it.
* More motivation; this is a bit like my creating plans point but also is more about me on the inside. I've definitely felt a bit of a shift in motivation within me for projects, for changes that may need to occur, for looking at the negatives & where they come from & how to rectify that, for being more of who I want to be, putting more of that out that & feeling able to live a fully congruent life & presentation of that life. Definitely feeling like a good place to be in part. I know the changes I want, now to put cogs in motion.
* Pastel mint nails; tragic but true, small things, but we all need them. I love pastels on nails & have found a new love (cheap/budget one, even better) for a stunning mint pastel green nail polish from Seventeen, fingers look slimmer & more tanned & that reminds me that summer is well on it's way.
* Gin; what's not to love? My favourite local now (for the last 5 weeks) has developed a 'secret' (in that it is only open on a Friday & Saturday night & hidden the rest of the time) gin bar & as a gin lover it is incredible. So far 34 different gins & ever expanding & I am collecting new favourites all too regularly. Sometimes nothing hits the spot with friends better then a cold G & T.


* Getting a blister on the bottom of your foot; I have NO idea how this occurred or why but I randomly 2 days ago managed to get a blister on the bottom of my left foot & it's an absolute nightmare, sore & alas it is not as simple as avoid the shoes with the straps that rub because ultimately it will always be in contact with shoes & the floor & my own body weight. Cannot wait for it to heal & bugger off.
* Confusions & irritations; especially a loathing factor when I am gaining a little more 'that's not what I want/who I want to be/...' internally. There are certain areas of life at the moment are confusing & often driving me mad, from people & their actions, intentions or more, to bitching & gossip that feels ludicrous & unnecessary, to blame games, or buck passing, or crossed wires or hearing things you don't need to hear. It just feels unnecessary & like such a waste of time & is yes frustrating.
* Odd mood moments; you know those days or random hours where you have gone from sky high to instantly having a face like thunder & finding you have to warn those around you to ultimately approach with caution. Or you go from smiles to being on the verge of tears. I am entirely blaming hormones at the moment but it's definitely weird to find you get thrown off kilter by wondering what the hell is going on with your mood from one hour to the next.
* Tetchy technology; from computers that decide to crash, or just glitch on you, to a ludicrously temperamental washing machine which I am currently battling, so the time that should be 3 loads of washing is currently 1 as there are extra rinses & similar. Technology fantastic lets be honest but sometimes . . . not so much.


* A proper girls holiday; who doesn't ever fancy a good sun break? I am itching to get away, if I was offered a holiday tomorrow (magically paid for) I would take it in a second & there are definitely a few people that would be top of my 'best girls holiday' company list. All different but yet so the same there would be nothing but the best time. Sun, activities, cocktails, giggles, aw bliss. Yes please. A friend & I briefly discussed that today actually. Anyone fancy putting me in their suitcase?
* For my parents to finally move out; So I turned 30 in November & moved house in September (sofa surfed until December) & then due to renovations & rebuilds on their house my mother, stepfather & various 4 legged beasties all moved in with me. 5 months later, nearing 6 months it's fair to say I'm over it & good for them to move out now. So I can go back to my own space, just 'being' & more being an adult again, because don't get me wrong I adore my family, all of them, but I miss space & oddly I miss that we (ma & I) no longer have 'girls nights' with a family friend, where we get together at a house or pub of choice, drink a few too many glasses of wine & giggle & behave badly & often share too much. We still do but not in the same way & let's be honest being 30 & living with your parents again makes the dating world a little more complex. Then I'll have 2 it weeks of space before I get housemates again.
* Time to go a little slower; where is this year going? My niece has just turned 1, I have no idea how that happened, where did my dinky little worm go to? I will be 31 in November & wanted to tick off certain things in between 30 & 31. It does feel like as you age time dashes out of the door & I don't mind if the next few weeks go rapidly (I want proper summer) but I want the summer to be long, ambling & not a blink.

So although usually there are more things on my coveting list (aren't there always) & shopping wish lists, this feels waffling & long.

What would you have on your hump day lists this week?

Pictures used are mine, please don't take them without contacting me first & crediting me in what you use them for.

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Dangers of The Green Eyed Monster.

Human nature means that as a species we are a little flawed & sometimes for no reason things can piss you off or upset you with very little warning, but I often think that one of the worst traits & at times most dangerous is our fantastic abilities for jealousy. 

I have no doubts it has potential to in some occasions provide positives; fuel things, add motivation & perhaps even at times add clarity but it can also do anything but & be fantastically destructive & that is what I have randomly been thinking about lately. 

With the fantastic world of technology & social media we do live quite a transparent life & with that it is definitely easier to lust after things & find that your morning ritual of coffee, cigarette & Instagram scrolling has led to your day beginning with just a hint of the green. Let's be honest who didn't see Coachella pictures & find they were wishing they were part of it, or seen figures that they are envious of (I know I'd regularly like some extra inches in height) but what about closer to home? The people who you actually know, have contact with & are, in one way, shape or form, part of your daily life? Where does the green fit in there & potentially impact?

I know that I personally very much am guilty of at times finding jealousy & weird pangs of longing crop up into my life & if not careful I cannot deny that I have at times resented certain people for their seemingly idyllic lives & how everything appears 'gifted' to them. This is probably far from the reality but don't we all have those moments & I think it's dangerous, or has the potential to be. 

What good can come from allowing resentment & with it a weird complacency for your own life into your energy? 

Yes another engagement has occurred, you have weddings to attend when your invite included no plus one option, people have better skin, or jobs, get the kisses at bedtime or laugh more freely - in your perspective. There is another baby scan picture somewhere on one of your social media based connections & oh how lovely, someones new boyfriend has surprised them with yet more flowers & suddenly your brain is pissed at them, or deeply saddened, or you don't see the point. I'm just not sure that can be all that healthy. I get lusting after fantastic dress sense, an incredibly ability with make up, holidays that look just fantastic & I am all for having a hint of the green in your life for the incredible talents people have, as long as you can still appreciate their talents & hard work within what they do. 

It's the risk of utter despondency that I think the green monster can lead to that worries me, what do you do with it? How do you prevent it from being the dangerous thing it has the potential to be? 

I have a theory, my own mind you, purely in relation to my life, my longings if you will, the things I know I covet in a harmless way & the things I let eat me. Basically it comes down to one thing, changing the resentment or weird heartbreak for what others have & making a conscious effort to go from complacency to motivation. That's it. 

I'm 30, which in itself has been known (since it occurred) to make me slightly panic & find myself wondering what the hell am I doing, or not doing as the case may be & I said that in whatever way 30 would be a good age year, for lessons to learn or similar & I do think bits of my brain have shifted. I definitely find myself asking "do I resent them just because I am jealous?" or "do I resent them because of who they are?" That last sentence I have been asking myself a lot & I find lately it's because I'm more aware of the negatives I've allowed in & of being taken for a ride or almost as a useful commodity, useful when they want me that is, but otherwise not. But the concept of the negatives in our lives, or in mine, is for an entirely different post. 

With questions like that aside I very much have little desire to become a breeding ground for vibes that attract more of the same & less of the good, that includes jealousy & my approach to it. I'm not magically never going to be jealous or at times have yearnings & resentments but I can do something with it, that is in my power. So instead of complacency then damn well do something with it. If you want to have more adventures, maybe start small, do things that scare you, or save up & go to that random festival in Europe. Apply for jobs you want but might not get, get hobbies, become more of the person that you eventually want to be, in whatever way you can in this point begin to do it.

I have a friend who is a firm believer in putting vibes of what you want out into the world & the cosmos & in some way or another the world can return things, if they are the right things & so perhaps she may have a little bit of a good idea with that; so why just absorb & allow the negative sides of jealousy to come in & swamp you? Maybe just maybe be cautious, be mindful & use it to ask yourself the question of why? 

So under the heading of dive in balls deep I have a list of negatives to address, changes to make & that is very much spurred on by frequent visits from that little green eyed monster we have all come to know. 

How do you deal with jealousy & envy? Do you experience it? Not just from the lust worthy pictures on Instagram or similar, but the 'real' people in your every day.