Back Home – A Catchup

I’m currently huddled under a blanket and thinking it’s nice to be back home. Topher and I had a great time at Disneyland Paris last week, despite the cold and him coming down with the flu. We took it easy and still got to do everything we wanted. Result.

I love being in a holiday bubble. It just feels so comforting and you don’t have to think about grown up things apart from making sure you feed yourself.  But I never mind having to come home as I like the change of pace. If that makes any sense? It feels like everything is reset.

However then that comes with having to adult again. Work, booking appointments and generally having to keep yourself alive. I’m getting there. The fridge is stocked with healthy food again as I’ve put on far too much weight over the last few months and i don’t feel like myself. Luckily, I’m craving fruit and veg.

I had a list of stuff to do this morning before I tackled work – find a garage to fix the cosmetic damage on my car, book a smear test (yuck) and throw some clothes in to wash.

But then the snow came. I remember how much snow used to delight me as a child. There were never snow days as I lived in Scotland and they are much better at handling it – but it did mean getting to spend break times building snowmen and having a great time.

Even my first year of freelancing I enjoyed the snow as I didn’t have to go anywhere. So now that I take Topher to work every morning, I have the same hatred for snow as a lot of working people do. Fuck the snow.

It would help if this country knew how to handle the snow. I don’t understand why everyone’s surprised every year when it arrives. It’s the same with summer – it comes every year, people. My estate never gets gritted so I’m used to having to drive on snow now. A word of advice to people who aren’t – your brakes don’t work! Please don’t drive normally and try to use them. They won’t work.

Can you see where this ramble is going?

I’d just dropped Topher off at school and I was waiting stationary at the edge of a non gritted road for a break in traffic so I could join the main road. All of a sudden, bang. Someone bumps into the back of me. I now have even more cosmetic damage on my car. Poor car. Luckily, as it wasn’t my fault it doesn’t affect my insurance and I don’t have to pay to get it fixed so that’s something.  But I am trying to sell this car so having more stuff to fix is frustrating. Ah well, such is life.

So yeah, I just felt like a moan. I promise the next post will be all about my Disney trip! For now, I’ll leave you with this. I fucking hate snow.

Which camp are you in? Snow lover or snow hater?

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I’m having a hard time at the moment

I’m having a hard time at the moment. There, I said it. I’m feeling far from my best. 2018 so far has been littered with lovely moments like going to the cinema with Topher, having dinner with friends, seeing my parents and all the little things in between. But overall, I haven’t been happy.

As soon as I’m left alone during the day that voice in my head starts creeping in. The one that makes me doubt my work. The one that says what’s the point? The one that says just stay in bed. And the one that says go on, just have one more snack.

I try to ignore it but it keeps coming back. Because to tell you the truth, I’m far from bossing it. My work life is making me miserable and it makes me feel like I did last time I was self employed. And the last time I worked in an office too. Then I make myself feel sad because I can’t seem to find my thing. I know there’s so many people out there who haven’t found their thing either but it seems like anything that isn’t my thing makes me feel down.

Every job I had, there’s been something wrong. Retail – I hated it. Office job 1 – bad company, boring job (though thanks to that, I have this blog.) Self employed stint 1 – barely made a penny and put a strain on my creativity, Office job 2 – loved the job, hated the company and the commute, Office job 3 – nice company, boring job and now I’m on self employed stint 2. Year one was great, year two I just felt myself sliding. I’ve made enough money to survive but only just. Thanks Topher for keeping us afloat.

Every job and every situation we’ve been in, we’ve just survived financially. We don’t have much disposable income at all. I just want to be able to replace something when it breaks without thinking about it and be able to go on holiday without breaking the bank.

Since office job 3 I’ve had ongoing health problems with my hands and arms. It’s due to repetitive strain which started in my right hand and it’s spread to both hands and arms. It makes admin work hard and that’s what I do. It makes me feel down because I need to find a career that isn’t so admin based but I don’t know what it is.

I haven’t even wanted to blog, which is unlike me. I can tell when I’m happy because I blog – if you see me disappear for a while, something’s usually wrong. I’ve been just blogging about stuff I need to – collabs and such.

It’s not all doom and gloom of course – I have a husband and family and friends who love me. I have the two sweetest cats you could ask for. And I have a roof over my head that isn’t going anywhere. But there’s something in my life that I need to fix.

I’m not sure how to fix this but I think I know where to start. I need structure. I need to take the pressure off.

Wish me luck.

Colour Walk Manchester - i heart mcr

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4 Ways You Can Get Happier Today!



How do we pursue happiness?

It’s an honest question. In today’s increasingly fast paced and impersonal society, I’d argue that we’ve lost sight of the things that matter. We’ve been conditioned to attribute happiness to the attainment of career goals, the acquisition of money and the accumulation of lots and lots and lots of stuff. These aspirational targets may help to grease the wheels of a consumer capitalist society, but how effective are they at delivering on actual, meaningful happiness. We’re trained to believe that happiness is just a promotion, a purchase or a pay rise away, and while the odd shopping binge can give us a fleeting high, the acquisition of possessions rarely brings us lasting happiness. Indeed, it can often feel like the things we own wind up owning us. There must be a reason why so many lottery winners and successful entrepreneurs wind up miserable. Indeed Jim Carrey famously once said “I think everyone should get rich and famous and have everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer”. While there’s no secret formula for happiness, there are a few little things that you can do to help yourself today, right now


Get out of your routine

What do you plan to do after work today? Drive home, make dinner, watch TV, sleep? Becoming embroiled in these routines can easily sap our enjoyment of our lives. Do something different. Go for a long walk. Sit in a cafe and read a book. Go to the cinema. Deviate from the old routine until it stops becoming a routine.



Meditation may be outside of your comfort zone and you may even have some derisive opinions of it, or doubt its efficacy, but it is nonetheless scientifically proven to promote happiness. Meditation not only helps you to gain perspective on the minutia of our day to day lives, it also actually shrinks the amygdala; the part of the brain responsible for anxiety and fear. It also lowers the production of the stress hormone cortisol not only improving your happiness but helping you to lose weight too!  


Have a nap

Far too few of us get enough sleep, and this can be detrimental to our quality of life in numerous ways. Sleep allows us to repair our bodies, rest our minds, release waste matter from our brains and get the nutrients to our skin to keep mit looking young, clear plump and firm. Yet, too many of us see sleep as a waste of time to be gotten out of the way. If you spend too many nights watching films instead of sleeping you may need to get a new mattress. Check out this Eve mattress review. You’d be astonished at how much more rested and happy you can be after a great night’s sleep.


Purge your stuff

If something brings you joy, then keep it. If you find value in something, keep it. But if you find your home cluttered by stuff that has ceased to have any meaning for you, it’s time for a purge. Collect it all together and take it to the nearest charity shop. The lack of clutter and knowledge that you’re doing some good is bound to brighten your day.

*This is a collaborative post

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My Week – Getting Back On Track 8.1.18 – 19.1.18

*Me and Paul Jagger *My finished Asian garlic bread

*Pickles being clingy *Getting some colouring in

This week’s My Week is more like my fortnight. 

I decided not to do a my week post last week because let’s face it – nothing happened! I was still recovering from my flu. But I’m up and about now and feeling much better for it, despite the odd coughing fit or snuffly nose.

So what did I get up to? The coolest thing I did was go to a baking class with Bake With A Legend to learn how to bake bread with GBBO 2015’s Paul Jagger. I’ll be doing a full post on that tomorrow. Despite not being a good baker, I managed to come away with some delicious goodies that I made myself. So proud!

On the work front, I’ve thankfully been given a fair bit of work to do with clients so I’ve been busy during the day. I’ve also updated Begin.Create to include my Virtual Assisting services so if you know someone in need, get in touch!

When I haven’t been working, I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts – one in particular. Gilmore Guys. It’s been finished for awhile but I only discovered it a couple of months ago so I’ve been catching up. It’s about two guys going through every episode of Gilmore Girls and it’s really funny. One of them is a big fan and the other is watching for the first time. I’m currently on season 5 and can’t wait to see what they think of the Netflix revival. It’s so weird to think that at the beginning of the show, there was no revival on the horizon. If you like Gilmore Girls then I definitely recommend it but give it a bit to get good as the first season or so is a bit clunky.

In other news our wedding was featured on Rock n Roll Bride! I had such a fangirl moment as I’ve been a fan of the site for years.

And finally, I put up the cacti fairy lights I got for Christmas in the bedroom and they make the room look super magical. I think Pickles is just confused by them!

my week - fairy lights

my week - pickles

How was your week?


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20 Things To Do When You’re Feeling Down

I’ve been feeling down a lot lately and being down is getting me down. Bleh.

I figured it would be a good idea to compile a list of things to cheer myself up so I have something to refer back to whenever I’m feeling down. So this is kind of a note to myself but I thought you might find it helpful too.

  1. Have a Shower or a bath – these always make me feel more human again
  2. Make a happy playlist and turn it up loud
  3. Go for a walk
  4. Call a friend or family member
  5. Listen to a funny podcast
  6. Make a gratitude list – I made one here
  7. Make a list of things that trigger your down moods
  8. Organise an imaginary holiday (I do these all the time!) – look up places to see, stay and eat in your dream destination
  9. Make your to do list short and sweet – being able to tick everything off gives me a feeling of achievement
  10. If you have a pet – give it a big cuddle
  11. Watch some stand up comedy – if you have Netflix then this is super easy
  12. Start a new creative project
  13. Clean something in your house – especially if the place is a tip. It doesn’t matter how small the area is or even if you’re just scrubbing down the worktops in your kitchen, every little bit helps and it makes me feel accomplished
  14. Make a fort in your living room and watch a film – because why the fuck not
  15. Bake something
  16. Have a social media detox
  17. Read a book
  18. Change your bedding and put on fresh pjs – Bliss!
  19. Do something nice for someone else – their smile is always a great mood lifter
  20. Try not to make yourself feel guilty for being down – sometimes you just are and you need to just be for a bit

Obviously not all a quick fix but still it’s something and that’s all that matters.

What do you do when you’re feeling down?

feeling down

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