Friday, 31 August 2012

Falling...for Fall

I really thought that this post might be a little premature, but I was delighted to find that there are loads of you in the blogosphere who are as excited about this as I am...Autumn!!

Now I know that being British I should refer to it as Autumn but I just like the word Fall. I think that it perfectly describes this gorgeous season. It is a time when the temperature starts to fall. The nights fall upon us quicker & become longer. The leaves on the trees turn & fill the world with beautiful shades of burnt orange, red & yellow before falling to the ground to feed the earth through the winter. It's the perfect word!

I love that this season contains some of my favourite holidays & celebrations: Halloween & Guy Fawkes. On Halloween we get to embrace our inner child: dress up, be silly & eat way too many sweets! Guy Fawkes (or Bonfire Night) means dressing up warm, usually in a faithful winter coat with a nice new scarf, getting together with friends, family & neighbours outside, around a roaring fire & filling the black night sky with colour - and there's sparklers, what's not to love?!

Then there is the food. Warm apple crumble or pumpkin pie with cream. Toffee apples; yummy vegetable soups (winter veg or potato & leek), we go back to having proper Sunday roasts with all the trimmings, in place of the Sunday barbecue.

What's not to love about breaking into your winter clothes? Freeing those jeans, scarves, gloves & hats & dusting them off - it's better than buying something new! Greeting that favourite, comfortable, old jumper with a smile, putting it on & realising: wearing it is like a hug from an old friend.


Mostly though Fall means lots of tea & crafting. All those projects I've been hoarding; put on hold because the weather was just too nice! They finally get their chance to become something, to be created. Fall is inspiration!

So I've had a good summer, I hope you have too? But I'm ready to pull on my boots & winter woolies, whip up a pot of soup & get busy making, baking & just creating! ;) Join me?


Monday, 27 August 2012

...and it all started with a Big Bang...

I recently finished this cross-stitch, in honour of one of my favourite TV shows: The Big Bang Theory. I love this show for many reasons but most of all: it is filling, perfectly, the hole that FRIENDS left in my life & I'm a huge geek! So they comic book/star wars/star trek references are by no means lost on me - I love it!

So many months ago I purchased the pattern for the aforementioned cross stitch from weelittlestitches on Etsy - a fabulous & very popular store, only to have the pattern laze around on my computer & do nothing. It was about a week ago that it popped right back into my head & that was it, I had the sewing box out & I was off. It took me around two hours to complete each character, so it was the perfect after work pick me up from what had been a stressful few weeks. By the end of the week I had a virus :( but I also had a finished design - you win some, you lose some.

Sadly my virus has kept me hauled up in bed doing not much more than sleeping & watching The Big Bang Theory box set, but I did get a chance to try out this tutorial from A Beautiful Mess before being bed-ridden. A quick & simple way to enhance a plain mug; from which to drink your tea. So I thought I'd give it a go. I stuck to my Big Bang theme & decorated my mugs with some classic Sheldon quotes, in bright colours.

All it takes is a plain coloured mug or cup (I picked up mine at the local supermarket for less than 50p!) & a Sharpie of your choice.

Draw your desgin/ write your quote onto the mug. Mistakes are easily removed with a damp cloth - be sure to dry the mug off before you re-attempt your design.

Then bake in the oven for 30 minutes & allow to cool.

Voila! A personalised mug.

Sadly once decorated these mugs can only be hand washed so no lazy-boneses here please!

*Note: I found that my designs had better staying power by baking them at 180C for fifteen minutes, then after cooling I went over the design again & baked for a further 30 minutes at 180C. This may vary depending on your oven or the material of your mugs.

I think they look really cute & would make a great gift, in fact some of mine are to be gifts...

I hope you all had a lovely Bank Holiday Weekend!


Tuesday, 14 August 2012

What's in my bag?

I have a confession to make: I love handbags! I really do. It's first thing I notice about another girl when I meet her is her bag: some people look at shoes, I prefer a bag. Today I indulged & bought a bag I have been lusting after for, quite literally, a year!

Isn't it pretty? I love it!

Now I have been carrying around a much larger bag for about six months (which I also love by the way.) but I decided it was time to down-grade; firstly because if I have a big bag I fill it with stuff I don't need & secondly because I decided to bite the bullet & get the one I have lusted after for a long time. Plus it gave me an opportunity to share one of my favourite types of posts with you. I did fear that this might be a little boring but was assured by my new blogging buddy Claire that it would not be, so here goes:


Purse - Now with no money in it since I bought this bag, haha!

iPhone - Essential! I use this for everything; texts, calls, photos, music, tweeting (it has a Cath Kidston case).

Umbrella - Because I live in Scotland & it rains...a lot.

Moleskin notebook & Parker pen - For reminder notes to myself & in case inspiration strikes - I have a terrible short-term memory.

Mini pot of Green Balm - a little miracle pot I use for lip balm & dry skin emergencies.

Keys - Self explanatory (I hope!).

Specs - To see & prevent migraines...ouch!

Gum - For after meals to keep my breath minty fresh :)

Other things that can be found in my bag are: receipts, foldaway hairbrush, nail file, head phones, mini deodorant & on occasion a book.

In case you haven't noticed I have a major minor Cath Kidston obsession.

What do you guys carry around everyday?

Thanks for reading!


Thursday, 9 August 2012


"Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it's a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it's a way of making contact with someone else's imagination after a day that's all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss." 

- Nora Ephron

Thursday, 26 July 2012

To-Do List

So the other day whilst having a moment of pondering I made a to-do list of things that I'd like to do between now and the end of the year so I thought I'd share it with you guys! Enjoy!

And check it out: I can cross number two off my list. My brand new stork embroidery scissors *CUTE*

Thursday, 12 July 2012

The Hunger Games

So I might be a little late on the bandwagon with this but I have just finished reading The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I read it for work, since I work in a library. I've been asked to hold a discussion about the book towards the end of the summer holidays with a group of high school students and I jumped at the chance - read a book for work? YEAH!

I had cheated a little and saw the film at the cinema when it was out earlier in the year so I knew what to expect but I didn't think that the film would be exactly like the book! Now when I say this, I don't mean it as a compliment (sorry Hunger Gamers!); maybe I've read too much Harry Potter in my life (is there such a thing??!!), but I expected the book to have more detail about this future world and about the characters. Now I hate comparing books to movies but it is inevitable, and the one thing I will say for the film is that, I felt, it was much more gracious to the character of Katniss than the book. In the film I found her character had the balance as a protective older sister, survivor and confused teenager. However in the book she comes across as whiny, moaning, paranoid and unforgiving; it is not often that I read a book and I really dislike the main character but in this case I did.

I have to say though there were times in the middle when I started to warm to Katniss as she seemed to be growing up a little but it was lost by the end - how can she not see that Peeta is completely besotted with her??? And that Gale loves her??? What is wrong with her?! She also doesn't appear to feel much guilt about breaking Peeta's heart, but then maybe that will come later in Catching Fire and Mockingjay (which I am now going to have to read purely because I know that it is a trilogy.).

I have spoken to lots of people about this book, before and after I read it and the reaction seems to have been the same: adults think that it is a fantastic concept for a book, but they agree that Katniss is a bit paranoid and self absorbed (but then aren't most sixteen year-olds?). Kids: love it! They can't gush about it enough but I worry; because they don't seem to be understanding the themes or seeing flaws in the characters, and is that not what reading is about? Escapism, yes; but also about finding truth and seeing yourself reflected in the characters? Like I said what sixteen year old isn't a bit selfish, but is it possible that they're not seeing this as a flaw? Maybe I'm reading too much into it, or maybe I'm secretly ninety-three years old: "Back in my day..." Ha ha!

Like I said though I will have to read the next two books, and I hope that Katniss grows up a bit and stops the moaning; and that Peeta realises that she's not all that great and moves on; but maybe that's just me. In the mean time I am moving on to something I know I am going to enjoy - A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin - Game of Thrones anyone?? :)


Tuesday, 10 July 2012

A Place For Everything

Well it's been a week and I am officially caught up with my to-do list. All of the little (and big) jobs that I have been putting off for far too long have all been caught up! Here's how it went:

Now I have to admit that most of my little jobs were pretty dull, an email here, a phone call there but once they were done I felt relief. Why I had been putting off making a five minute phone call I will never know! If you have been putting off anything small like a call or email - DO IT! You will feel a whole lot lighter once it's done.

My big to-dos were a bit more fun in that I could see the difference they made almost instantly, this is because they mostly revolved around tidying and organising. It took me almost two whole days to get my bedroom organised. I feel I should say here that I am a neat-freak. I freely admit that, I like when things have there own place and I can find them easily. My problem was that the things had there place but the things I used together were in opposite parts of the room (shoes in one place, socks in another at the other end of the room) - no wonder it takes me forever to get ready!! So I set about changing that, and in my bid to change my life (and believe me it is life changing- I am late for EVERYTHING!) I turned to my new organisation guru: Mrs Thrify! Wow! This woman is amazing! Her blog is brimmed full of ideas of things you can make, do and reuse to help your life run a little more smoothly and to give you back time to do the things that you really want to do. Her are some pictures of my new and organised life thanks to Mrs Thrify!!

If you are looking to get your space more organised to make life a little easier I heartily recommend a trip over to A Thrifty Mrs' blog, all of her posts on organising, cleaning tips, things to make and a whole host of others can be found on her how-to page here. I also recommend following her on twitter - she has a fabulous sense of humour; and her Daily Housewifery Prompts are helping me to keep on top of things in the Bubbly Burrow.

Here is the truly miraculous thing, by Thursday I had nothing left to do. I had done everything on my anti-procrastination list: put things to ebay, tidy, organise, make calls, send emails, it was all done! My free time was my own again and I was free to enjoy, my favourite little nook...

My own little corner, where I can get back to doing the crafts I love and get a bit creative again, so when you're reading my blog - this is where I wrote it. I've got brightly coloured pencils for doodling and designing my own cross-stitch patterns; a cheerful little plant, books and magazines for inspiration, and as you can see I have already been making use of my extra free time! :) 


Sunday, 1 July 2012

The Procrastination Trap

"Starting tomorrow I will stop procrastinating"

How many of us have read that before? How many of us have then thought, "HaHa! that's funny...Oh, I really should: send that email/ phone that person/ make that appointment"? Any of this sound familiar? I'll bet!

Putting things off that we don't want to do is completely natural, and we all do it, there is absolutely no shame. The only problem is that when we don't do these things we have a dark cloud hanging over us until it's done, or we miss the opportunity; either way it's not a good way to live life. So I am intent on doing something about it! I am making this week: anti-procrastination week! Starting tomorrow I am aiming to do one thing each day that I have been putting off because "I don't have the time", "I'm too tired" or "I don't want too".

My motto this week: "What may be done at any time, will be done at no time."


Monday, 18 June 2012

Wonderful things, small packages

Scout and Cheeky

May I introduce the newest members of our family: Scout and Cheeky. I am now the proud mama of two beautiful baby boys; they are seven weeks old and have been a total gift over the last few days, which have been rather difficult.

I adopted them last week from a local petting zoo for rescued animals - their mother had been pregnant when she was rescued and had these guys (along with another brother and two sisters) a week after arriving.

Coming home

Exploring our new hutch


I'm so happy that they are settling in well and they keep doing cute things that I just gush about like a proud mother...sad, but true.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Running...and other stories

I have always had a love/hate relationship with running. I hate that it can be a struggle to get motivated to go out but I love it once I'm out in the fields and my thoughts are clearer; I hate the aches and pains after but I love the mental clarity I have after and I love relaxing in the bath afterwards (candles and a book make it even more blissful).

I am not a competitive runner by any means; I entered in the compulsory cross-country race every year while at school, and I have ran a couple of times in the Race For Life but nothing serious. However in the last couple of years I have fallen out of running completely: a bad flu, a bad relationship followed by a bad break-up meant that I'd stopped running completely. Years of working in retail and standing for most of the day also left me with hyper-extension of muscles in both legs, which I used as an excuse for not getting back into it. Now, though, I have decided enough excuses I need to get back into running because I did get a lot out of it - pain and joy.

So I started on Monday, good a place as any I thought, by taking it slow and going for a long walk. I went one of my old training routes - a little over four miles through the fields near to my house, up and down hills and everything - the boy came too and we were home in about an hour. I felt good after but by the end of the day I had achy legs. It will be a while before I am back to this:

But I am determined to keep going.

After my (all be it slow) start to running again yesterday I went with friends for our first snowboarding lessons at Xscape - a birthday present from my parents. We have all skied before but snowboarding is completely different, as I was about to find out... After the long walk on Monday and me not being at my fittest I managed to fall (a lot) and my leg started shaking uncontrollably and the pain was the worst I've felt, I thought I was going to be sick. My final fall, 25 minutes into the 90 minute lesson sealed my fate as a skier and not a snowboarder. I managed to tumble, do the splits, and whack the side of my knee on the empty boot grip of the board - here it is 14 hours later:

Needless to say I think I'll be sticking to running to build my fitness, get my butt to the gym to strengthen my weak legs and skiing as my winter sport!


Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Rules Of Civility

This book review has been a while in the making, life has been getting in the way of my blogging of late.

Rules Of Civility has been described as; "stylish"; "delicious"; "memorable" and "sparkling" and I'd have to say: I agree. This novel is set in New York City in 1938; with a soundtrack of jazz bands. It tells the story of three friends: Katey Kontent, Eve Ross and Tinker Grey who meet in a bar on New Year's Eve,1937 and this meeting changes the course of there lives forever. There's a love triangle, great characters, a spectacular setting and nods to society and politics of the time. I don't want to give too much away because it really is a great read, other reviews I have read have compared it with The Great Gatsby and needless to say that is now on my reading list. 

So if you are looking to be swept away to another time, another world with interesting characters that are full of life and intrigue then you can't go wrong with Rules Of Civility!


Wednesday, 16 May 2012


Inspiration comes in many forms:

My nails this week, inspired by the cover of my favourite magazine...

I love it when a new hair cut comes together...

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Before I Go To Sleep

As some of you may know I was reading this as part of the Cold Water Book Club and I thought I'd do a little review.
"Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love - all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may only be telling you half the story. Welcome to Christine's life."
From this blurb you can probably tell that this is a story of an amnesiac. The story is told from the point of view of Christine Lucas, a forty-seven year old woman who wakes up each day not knowing who or where she is. In the first part of the book Christine is waking up on a typical day in her life and having her husband explain to her who she is and how she came to be this way, when he leaves for work things begin to unfold. She meets with a doctor whom she has been seeing, in secret, to help her with her condition, and he gives her a journal that she has been keeping to help her remember. This is where the second part of the book begins where the reader then follows Christine's journal. This is pretty much all I can say without giving the game away, needless to say it's a page turner.

I was surprised that I enjoyed this book as much as I did - I'm more of a fantasy or chick-lit kinda gal, but I really did. As a psychological thriller though it did kind of mess with my over active imagination a little and meant that I couldn't read it right before bed (yes I am a BIG kid!) however I still enjoyed it. There are little clues all the way through the book that lead up to the ending and if I was braver I'd read it again to catch them all. The only thing I can say against this book is that I was a little disappointed with was the ending. I'm a fan of the all-round, complete happy ending so if your like me you might be disappointed too but please don't let that stop you from reading the book - it's great! And does end happier than you'd expect.

Have any of you read Before I Go To Sleep?



Confession: I am a massive bookworm. I buy and borrow more books than I will ever have the time to read. Currently I have a pile of books about two feet high next to my bed that I am aiming to get through before my birthday in June (I didn't help myself by taking two more books out of the library last week...)

Confession 2: I have four pages in my notebook filled with the titles of books that I want to read...

So I am making my way though my little mountain of books but I have discovered I will just have to buy/borrow another one. My problem began with Twitter (as so many problems do), you see I am a massive fan of Dawn Porter. For those who don't know Dawn Porter is a broadcaster/ journalist who has made TV documentaries for BBC and Channel 4 and she has now started an on-line book club known as Cold Water Book Club, described like this on Twitter:

As far as I can see I'm a bit late to the party, as usual, because they have already read a few books since beginning in February, but I am determined to give it a go; because despite my love of books I have never been part of a book club and the super-geek in me is very excited at the prospect! So the new book I must add to my ever-growing pile is: Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson. Sadly it would appear that it is very popular and I can't get it from the library so I have ordered it from my absolute favourite book site: GreenMetropolis.

GreenMetropolis is an amazing on-line charity book shop, where users can buy and sell books all the while raising money for charity AND helping the environment! Amazing! If any of you out there love books as much as me or you have tons of books around that you're looking to get rid of I highly recommend this site. So here's hoping that my book will come in time for me to read it before the first discussion (the date has still to be released) I'm really looking forward to getting started and will keep you posted on my progress...


Five Things I'm Loving...

I thought I would share a short post of the top "Five Things I'm Loving..." at the moment.

1. This photo of me:

If you are anything like me you will forgive me this moment of narcissism. I hate having my photo taken, and finding a photo where I don't look a) drunk b) stupid or c) mentally challenged is a real feat. Which is why this photo is one I am loving.

2. Tea:

I love a good cuppa and since the weather has been pretty awful I've been curling up on the sofa with tea and a book - bliss!

3. Oreo's:

To have with the aforementioned tea.

4. Radio:

They seem to be playing all my favourite oldies everytime I turn it on!

5. Slippers:

I was badly in need of new slippers and when I saw these I was in love! I don't have my own puppy to snuggle at my feet so I've settled for puppy slippers.


Once Upon A Time...

Once Upon A Time, in a galaxy far, far away there lived a little girl who read a lot of books, watched a lot Disney movies, and talked more than she did either of the above. This little girl also like to ride her bike, run around, listen to the rain and eat Nutella right from the jar. She dreamed of being a princess.

This little girl is a little girl no more, she can't eat chocolate because it gives her dreadful headaches but she still loves to read, talk, and run. This is her blog.

P.S. She still watches a heck of a lot of Disney and yes, she still dreams of being a princess.