{Life} My Week #16

Monday Another week....loving all this good weather in the UK, well London to be precise...It's still summer!! Officially not Autumn until another week or so I believe....All this talk of Autumn though makes me want to hibernate away and eat lots of stodgy foods...Salads and fruit don't have quite the same appeal to me in the colder weather...spent this evening on Pinterest looking at easy recipes for one! Anyone who only cooks for themselves knows how boring it can be..cooking for one. Sometimes it's just easier to open a packet of biscuits...that's just the truth! 

Tuesday  Bought myself some new walking shoes as my other not very attractive but effective ones have developed  holes in the big toe area (on both shoes)  similarly over night...damn my super strong big toes. I picked up the grey ones below in TK Maxx for £25.00. The choice was limited...I should say...and since I only use trainers to walk in.. I wasn't overly fussy....they were cheap and they fitted...sold! Please ignore the  fact I'm useless with  shoelaces hence the left trainer!
Wednesday Another busy day and night. Another meal out..I really need to start taking pictures..I have tried with my camera  but they just kept coming out really dark and fuzzy..I hear The camera I'm using at the moment is quite large and a little in discreet anyway to be pulling out willy nilly in a restaurant anyway regardless of the poor quality. I have seen pictures of bloggers standing on their chairs to get a good photograph of a plate of food...I don't really want to draw attention to myself like that!

Thursday A quiet night in for me...thinking of my figure and my purse...caught up with some Blog Lovin reads. My blogging rhythm has been a bit out the loop recently.  I've still been writing posts..I just haven't always felt in the mood to then *promote on Twitter or other social media to let peeps know I've written one!  I feel things have become a bit stale for me and I want to shake  things up a bit. I've been writing some idea's down about how and what I need to do. My little baby blog will be ONE next month..invites in the post guys ...so I guess now is as good a time as any.

Friday Ahh...Friday, how I love you! Not that I had anything exciting planned for the evening but it was just a relief in it's self that it was Friday! I bought a book titled *Instructions for happiness and success* I'm a little bit addicted to Self Help books, I seem to like buying them..although to be honest..Obviously I don't actually follow them to the letter...I kind of get half way through..then decide it's not really *Me* and then I see another book I like better...am I the only one that does this? Please say no!
Saturday Going to do a spot of shopping in Canary Wharf..haven't shopped here for a while..meeting up with a friend, so I'll be eating somewhere new as well. There's so much to see and do in London all year round...so I try to explore different parts rather than going straight to Central all the time. 


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{Life} 10 Blog Designers Via Etsy

Read all about it here!! Love Grows Design Blog contains lots of useful information

Hi Guys,  Last month I wrote a  piece on blogging tips. This month, my blogging tips  are to name and shame..no just name 10 designers via Esty with really cool layouts. I seriously do feel regardless of what your blog content is about/writing skills/photography etc ....it's your blog layout that  makes or breaks your blog...so without further ado..here are some I recommend ...I have highlighted all the links for you.  I should add my blog layout is far from ideal and I will be changing it very soon. FYI!

1/ This is a new find for me Discover The Coast If you're into black/white designs stop reading now!! This is for those pastel lovers among you....really interesting and clever designs without being in your face though...and VERY good value for money.....when I last looked there were 30 different designs...so good choice selection as well.

2/ Feeric Studios This is a good choice if you are looking for a quieter design. These all come in variations of soft greys...ideal for a beauty/fashion blog. There is something so very pretty and very calming about them...so they won't overtake or distract from your blog.

3/ This shop doesn't have a huge selection but I feel they are worth mentioning    Colour Crush Creative Most of her designs tend to have fixed bars above the header which I personally love. A bit different from the usual selections.

4/  The colour palette  from Pish & Posh Studios  designs are mainly black and white...so if you want to create a fashion blog..then these are a good choice.  They create for both wordpress and blogger ..they also do customer design work as well...also at a reasonable price.

5/  Carrie Loves Design has a choice of 30 blogger templates to choose from...the studio has been around for quite some time....so they are pro's as so too speak! All of the templates are really cute and gorgeous and frankly can be used for just about any time of blog really...if you stuck..this is a good place to start looking.

6/  If the above shop doesn't have enough templates to choose from then check this out Lisa Menagerie as she has over 60!! They retail about the £20.00 mark which I think is pretty good going..all the layouts are really cool. With so many on offer...how do you narrow it down to the one!

7/ I love this  Dinosaur Stew what a cool name! Good selection and choose...although I don't feel it's the best if you are doing fashion or beauty...more of a *studious blog template if that makes sense...despite the *fun studio name. They do a good selection for Wordpress and for add ons though.

8/ This is a very popular store and I have seen quite a few other bloggers with a  Shiny Magic template. Very fashion orientated they create designs with interesting headers. Another Wordpress friendly shop. I like the social media buttons they create for their templates.

9/  Dainty Moonbeam is a good choice if you are looking for a soft whimsical  pretty design. Not a huge selection but if you are looking for something slightly different but not way hey different...then there are some really lovely designs in this store.

10/  These guys are for those who are looking for something different and cool Fox & Arrow they only have about seven in totally but they are more high fashion than the other..so if you want to create a cutting edge vibe...then one of these is a pretty good bet. These are the most expensive..of the lot..around £30.00

There are quite a few shops on Esty, a  good idea is to spend an evening trawling through and making a note of shops that catch your eye, then go back and look over them again....the stores are always being updated...if you don't see anything on first inspection....then go back in a week or so...


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{Life} TK Maxx Notepad Buys

Hi Guys, I thought I write a quick post on a couple of new purchases I made via TK Maxx. For anyone who is unfamiliar with the store, TK  Maxx is basically a discount store that sells end of season/older line stock at a reduced price. You'll find well known brands nestled amongst the mostly over packed and sometimes scruffy rails! If you give yourself time, you will definitely uncover some real gems.

Over the past few months, I have been buying some of my beauty namely haircare products in this store (don't tell Boots!) due to the price and the size of the bottles. "Hello 1 litre sizes with your handy pumps!" I bought my Fudge stuff in this store, a brand I completely recommend.

One section, I don't tend to venture into is the *home area mainly because by the time I have looked around the beauty and the clothes, I've had enough and I want out!! But during my last visits to my local, I've been looking at things like plates and cups and getting quite excited by them. (Old age, creeping up on me!)  I didn't actually realise they sold notebooks before...these two above are my latest steals. They cost me £6.00 each but they are both lined, A5 and the paper is very good quality. There's nothing I hate more than flimsy poor quality paper where you can only write on one side of the paper and you can't use your neon high lighters!! I love the gold roughly painted around the edges of these notepads......I feel rather pleased with these and will most certainly be looking to add to my collection. TK Maxx doesn't guarantee stuff...so generally I advise..if you see something you like..buy it then and there..as you probably won't see it again! Damn, I should have four notepads not two!


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{Life} My Week #15

Monday I'd like to say I'd jumped out of bed full of beans..sadly this wasn't the case...and I needed some seriously strong tea to get me up and  functioning!! Later that day, I went to visit a friend who lives down Ally Pally way (Alexandra Palace) I took this picture amongst others as well. The houses seem so small and squashed which is a pretty accurate description of most of the houses in London! Ally Pally is kinda famous for it's ice rink, which I share many happy memories on...both skating and falling over!
Tuesday The weather is proving a little difficult to dress these days for me and I seem to be getting it constantly wrong! I'm either sweating profusely  (sorry) or freezing...I know it's all about the layering......but sometimes layering seems like a lot of hassle with all this co-ordinating business! Spent time after work looking through various fashion sites for inspiration, but it  most of the fashion bloggers I follow seem to live in much warmer climates...SincerelyJules and Karlas Closet..I'm looking at you guys! Anyone  follow any  fashion bloggers who live in colder climates?

Wednesday  Woke up very early for me and decided to make the most of it by going for a walk before work! I know, madness....but I knew if I went back to sleep...I would just sleep through my alarm..which has happened too many times to mention!  I did initially think, going for a walk before work, would make me feel tired but in actual fact..I feel as if I had more energy. Not sure if I would do this every morning..but I might start by taking  a 30 minute walk a few times in the week to ease myself in.  I read a really rather good interview in the Guardian about Victoria Beckham. Seems our Victoria apparently walks up at 6.00am every morning and has a 90 minute session with a personal trainer...if I had the money! The interview in case you're interested  is right Here well worth a read.

Thursday So today was a kinda lazy day for me. I had the day off work. I would like to tell you I spent it really productively but that wouldn't be truthful!! After my morning walk and a few hours running the usual errands, I  seem to be snowed under with on my days off, I used the slightly chilly weather to make myself some chunky vegetable soup, with crusty bread and a mug of tea. I then curled myself up and had an interesting afternoon/evening watching all of the films below..all different abut all worth it in their own unique way!

Friday Wow, so pleased that Friday turned out to be a bit of a scorcher ( well almost)  After ploughing through the day, myself and some colleagues went to the pub for a quick drink after work. My weapon of choice is Vodka (obviously) and diet coke. Actually that's the only drink I really like...well that and Whiskey..although never neat!! I ended up having chips and a veggie burger as well not sure how that happened? Oh well.....

 Saturday Early start for me! I got up at 7.00am..so I could fit in my morning walk and get it out the way! Since I have been walking with ankle weights, I have lost three inches from each thigh! I have a 25 inch waist but my thighs were 24inches each before?? Can you imagine that?? I was shocked as I didn't realise....I seem to carry plenty of junk in ma trunk! ...I've tried using various equipment in the gym but walking seems to be the only activity that has noticeably streamlined my legs for the better. Are any of your guys regularly walkers??


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{Beauty} Keeping Healthy Eating On Tracks

Hi Guys,  I've been following a healthy eating/exercise regime for the past three weeks...I'm not a naturally athletic person...walking is my main and only source of cardio...so in an attempt to tone up all my bits and pieces...I've  been following a toning plan I found via Pinterest...isn't Pinterest marvelous, what did we do before?? Anyway here are some tips, I've been following for the past few weeks. 

Keep A Food Diary Whether you write it down on  paper, on your i-phone, Macbook..which ever is easier and convenient for you...I  really feel this is one of the best things I've ever done... I wasn't really aware of how much food I use to eat. It's  easy to slip an extra biscuit in here and there...and then you've forgotten you've eaten it (well, that was my excuse!)  Did you have a big slice of cake at work because it was someones birthday?  Did you have a packet of crisps on your journey home from work??..It's surprising once you start noting down everything...you realise you're eating a lot  more than you think you actually are...If you are struggling to lose weight and you can't think why..for one week..write down EVERYTHING you eat..and you may see a pattern emerge.

Water Is Your Friend I know everyone bleats on about the health benefits of water...and so am I! Most of the the time when you think you are hungry you are in actually fact dehydrated. 2 litres is what they (health bigwigs) recommend as a general rule (I know some people will need more..depending on various factors) but as a rule of thumb. If you feel hungry have a glass of water and then wait ten minutes..If you still feel hungry then eat something healthy not a large chocolate bar of cream doughnut!

Don't Binge And Start Afresh We've all been there...I know I have...I start a diet on a Monday..get bored by the Thursday..eat a couple of biscuits...then get annoyed with myself...and think,  I've ruined the diet...I might as well have a blow out (eat a packet of biscuits) and then start afresh tomorrow...only tomorrow never comes  because something else will  happen and I'd repeat the same pattern again...for the next couple of days..and then when  Monday arrives, I start the whole routine all over again...this is/was my bad habit..and I am retraining...myself...if I slip up and have a couple of biscuits...that's fine...BUT I try not to use it as an excuse to beat myself up and then finish the packet...that's naughty...I find myself eating more when I'm annoyed or angry..so since I have identified key triggers, I am working at  overcoming these issues.

Positive Role Model/Mantra I have a (private) Pinterest board that inspires me..full of quotes that make me feel positive and pictures of people who motivate me. If you have Pinterest create a private board and fill it with images/words, anything that means something to you.....ideally pick a role model who has a similar build to you..if you are choosing one for physical goals....rather than someone who has a completely different body shape..although it's your board at the end of the day..but think inspiration. Look at this Pinboard first thing in the morning and the last thing at night...

Visualise The End Results Now  I will personally admit, I do have a hard time visualising anything...but apparently if you are able to visualise, you are more likely to reach your end goal.  See yourself as fit and healthy and the weight you want to be. Believe that you can change and you are more likely to gather results. Tips on this subject would be useful. 

Treat Yourself I know from my own experience, I always say to  myself, I will do this and wear this and go there but only when I weigh x amount...and of course....six months later...I'm still the same weight , life is ticking along..you're getting older and nothing has changed...so set aside time to treat yourself whether it's a relaxing bath with some new bubbles...or visit a museum....preferable something that doesn't include food though...and don't use you weight as an excuse to not living your life! Think of yourself as a kid..when you always wanted to do something NOW!


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