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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Health Pointers To Help You Enjoy Winter

Winter time can be freezing cold and miserable on the surface, but there’s no reason to put your life on hold until spring swings around. This season can be just as enjoyable as any other time of the year if you put some effort into looking after yourself. Obviously, it’s understandable that you’ll feel a little blue this season; the short days mean you’re not seeing as much sunshine, and eating more to keep your body warm might make you slightly unhealthier. But you don’t need to develop bad habits in order to cope with the tough season. The following health pointers should help you to enjoy winter a little more this year.

Source

Retain a healthy sleeping pattern.

If you want to stay healthy over winter then you need to sleep properly to keep your energy levels up in the cold weather. Of course, it’s not enough to simply sleep for 7 to 9 hours every evening. Your body needs enough sleep but it also needs a quality sleep. When you go to bed, you’re giving your body the chance to recharge. If you’ve not got a supportive bed then your body won’t get the rest it needs, so you need a mattress that is firm and comfortable in order to avoid aches and pains. Additionally, you could look into goose feather pillows so that your head has a supportive yet soft place to rest. It’s very important to prioritise the comfort of your bed so that you’re really getting a good sleep.

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Eat and exercise well.

The best way to stay healthy and happy during winter is to make sure that you eat and exercise well. As mentioned in the introduction, you’re going to feel hungrier as the days get colder and your body craves energy but it’s important that you eat the right things. “Variety, balance, and moderation” is the tri-factor of a successful diet. You shouldn’t simply aim to cut out bad food and restrict your diet to nothing more than fruit and veg. You need to cut out junk but replace that junk with good food because your body still needs sustenance. Calcium, protein, iron, potassium, and other vitamins or nutrients make up a full diet. You might struggle to make healthy habits stick at first but you could even join slimming groups for support and advice to keep you going.

As for exercise, you don’t need to start working out mercilessly in order to be healthy; you simply need to find a way to stay active every day. A 10-minute run around the park could make all the difference to your health. It’s not just about reducing weight but reducing the risk of heart disease and mental issues. There are so many ways to adopt a healthy lifestyle but the most important thing is to simply find a routine that works for you. You don’t have to exercise excessively, for example, but regularly keeping your body active is crucial to keeping your heart and mind healthy. Exercise also boosts the immune system which is important when facing the risk of winter colds.

*This is a collaborative post

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Getting your Home Cozy for Winter with Direct Blinds

Whenever I thought of shutters in the past, what always came to mind was either rustic English cottages or the cobbled streets of small European towns lined with shuttered windows. If that’s what you thought too then read on, I’m about to change your mind.

When we bought and moved into our first house together back in March 2016, Topher and I were relieved to find that the previous owners had left blinds on all the windows in the house. One less job for us to deal with (and pay for) right away! Now that we’ve been in here almost two years however, the plain windows feel a little, well, plain! You definitely can’t describe them as cozy!

One way to get your house cozy is to invest in some window to floor curtains. Unfortunately for us that was never an option as our cats love to climb them! So what’s another way to make your windows help your home feel more cozy? Enter Direct Blinds and their wooden shutters.

Shutters -hampton_vivid_white_cafe

I never thought that shutters could look both contemporary and rustic at the same time but Direct Blinds have made it possible. The muted colours are ideal for fitting into any colour scheme, whether you’re a fan of all the colours or prefer a more neutral palette. They also come in both full height and cafe style if you want to let a little light in.

And they’re not just for winter – shutters are ideal for keeping the light out on those bright weekend mornings where you really don’t fancy being woken up at 5am. Or if you have kids and want them in bed at a decent time!

But back to winter (how cold is it by the way? I’m sitting in my dressing gown over my clothes as I write this!) – shutters allow you to forget that it’s dark outside at 4pm. And I’m all for that. If you find yourself getting a bit down about the lack of sunlight, creating a cozy haven in your home can be a great way to cheer yourself up.

A bit of cozy inspiration for you:

shutters inspiration

Sources

Top Row: 1, 2

Middle Row: 3, 4, 5

Bottom Row: 6, 7

Other ways to get your house cozy for winter:

  • Fairy lights (a bloggers best friend)
  • All of the throws and blankets
  • Light a fire if you have one
  • If you don’t have a fire, light some candles instead (and be safe!)
  • Bake something or make mulled wine on the stove – the heat and smells will make everything better.

Having a look at Direct Blinds‘ website has really changed my mind about shutters. How about you?

Post in collaboration with Direct Blinds. All words and opinions are my own.

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The Ultimate Winter Survival Guide

Photo Credit

As much as you may want to deny it, winter is here. For many people, this means a long, depressing wait until spring finally starts to show its face once again. But there are plenty of ways that you can make the colder months that little bit more bearable, and these are the things we are going to be talking about in this article. So, here they are, the best ways to keep yourself sane during winter!

 

Turn Your Home into a Den

Dean Martin had it right – even if the weather outside is frightful, the fire is so delightful! So, you should make sure that your home is as cosy as possible. Now is the time to get your boiler serviced and maybe even install a smart thermostat if you don’t have one already. Stock up on pillow and blankets, and check out these home interior design trends for winter. Your home should be a haven where you can relax and hibernate until the warm weather returns!

 

Stay Active

Even though your home may be an inviting den, that doesn’t mean that you should stop exercising for the season. In fact, this is one of the only things that is going to keep you sane! And if the weather conditions are terrible outside, you can still do plenty from the comfort of your own home. This is the perfect time to set up your own home gym, so you can exercise without having to leave your comfortable den.

 

Avoid Dry Eyes and Skin

There is no doubt about it; winter hates your face! Your skin and eyes are two of the things that will suffer the most, so these are what you need to take really good care of. Cover them up as much as possible with a hat, scarf and sunglasses. Use a good moisturiser and a humidifier if you think the house feels a little dry. This should also help out with those annoying static electric shocks!

 

Keep Yourself Healthy

Continuing with the healthy theme, you need to take extra steps during the winter months to ensure that you keep your well being in tip-top condition. Make sure that you get plenty of sleep and take on a lot of fluids. Wash your hands on a regular basis, and make sure you don’t go out of the house with wet hair.

 

Plan a Getaway

Photo Credit

Of course, the most obvious way to survive the colder months is by getting away from them entirely! There are plenty of great winter destinations that you could visit to soak up a bit of sunshine. Even if you can’t get away this season, it can keep you sane just to plan your next holiday for the spring or summer ahead.

So, hopefully after reading through these five pieces of advice, you feel a little more prepared to take on the winter and everything it has to throw at you.

Never fear, spring will be here before you know it!       

*This is a collaborative post

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My Week #36 – Workshops and Off Scale Victories

*Breakfast at the Marriott (post to come next week) *WeBlogMcr workshop

*Dress I now fit comfortably in *Pickles and Luna

 

What a week! After getting my stone and a half award last week, I decided to try on a dress that when I got last year didn’t really fit me. I did an outfit post with it but let’s just say its a tight squeeze!  Well this time I could breathe! It fits great now which made me feel awesome.

However I did put on half a pound this week. It’s not the end of the world but I am disappointed in myself. It was totally deserved though so all I can do is draw a line under it and move on. I have one meal out this weekend but apart from that it’s all go! Here’s to getting back on track next week!

Last weekend I attended the first WeBlogMcr workshop of 2017 and my first one ever. It was amazing and the three speakers that came really knew their stuff. Let’s just say that I have a to do list for my blog as long as my arm now! It was also nice to meet some fellow Manchester bloggers and have an event that was all about celebrating the North (woop!). Really looking forward to the next one and the drinks meetup next month.

In other news, is it Spring yet? I am seriously not enjoying the cold. I’m definitely a summer child. The whole house just feels dark all the time and it just makes me feel like not doing anything. Which definitely doesn’t bode well for me since I work from home. Girl’s gotta hustle! On the bright side, the only way is up with the dark evenings so hopefully I’ll find my mojo soon.

How was your week?

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