Tag Archives: lifestyle

Happy Days

9 Sep

Bonjour mon amis, how is everyone? Do you ever feel wrapped up so tight in your little bubble you forget there is a world out there? I have certainly been in my own little world lately and ever so aware that i’ve my blog has been on the quiet side, so apologies for that!

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What’s happened in my world recently? Well I quit my full time job to go back to college, I wanted to study a HE Access to Art course for mature students which would bridge the gap between my last point of education and getting into university. However there is just NO help towards the cost of living if you’re a mature student doing a further education course. Cue major panic as there was not enough time left in the week to work and earn what I required to make ends meet.

I decided to try my luck and apply straight to university instead…simple right? WRONG! I sat my A Levels 7 years ago and although I was accepted into university when I was 18 the grade requirements have increased considerably since so I was nowhere near the entry level. So I waited for the clearance to open and started to enquire about a place, countless nerve racking phone calls later and after trying to send select portfolio pictures across by email I had a verbal offer!

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Literally could not believe it, I really thought I wouldn’t get into university and I had been offered a place only a few hours after enquiring about one. We should never underestimate ourselves! Then started the onslaught of filling out my UCAS application and trying to apply for my student loan. Thankfully because university is classed as higher education I qualify for a maintenance loan and grant so I can still afford to live!

There was still the issue of needing a part-time job however and I was being turned down right, left and centre as I am ‘over qualified’ for everything. This isn’t me blowing my own trumpet, this was the general theme of excuses I was getting when applying for bar work or waitressing. Lets face it i’m over 18 and you’d have to pay me minimum wage, that’s what the issue was.

So I sent my CV around to a few agencies with a cover letter and low and behold I got sent down the path of applying for Aldi’s head office. I secretly really wanted this job. It was 15 minutes in the car from where I live, it was Saturday and Sunday only and it was a massive cut above minimum wage. However I wasn’t holding out hope that i’d get it or anywhere near being offered it.

For this job I had to attend the agency to show I could spell, do simple mental arithmetic and use Microsoft Excell. If I completed all the above along with a short interview, i’d be sent to the assessment stage at Aldi. The assessment was a group of 8 of us and we had to complete several tests and activities. We could only be marked on how much we input as individuals but how well we interacted and communicated as a team. Eeeeeep.

This immediately put my out of my comfort zone, I am let’s face it a wallflower in some respects, I like to sit back and observe the lions fighting over the meat. Times like this though you have to push yourself and it paid off. Whether I got the job or not I survived the group assessment and felt that I had done better then I initially expected. The assessment consisted of; a scenario that needed to be discussed in a group, a listening exercise, an attribute test, a maths test (yes one question we had to divide 8 into 13453279 in our heads…), a spelling test, a priority test, a customer service role play with no prep time! and finally another group discussion.

I finally got offered the job after a further interview, so relieved!

Phew. Following that we got two new kittens! Awwwweh!! They’re little monkeys but so cute so they totally get away with murder. We named them Inca & Nala and they have settled in nicely.

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What else, what else let’s see… I guess also I felt like i’d lost my blogging mojo, if I ever even had it, but even if just one person reads and enjoys it then that is wonderful.

Looking forward to updating you all shortly as I start training for my new job and my first week at uni! So nervous but super excited!!!

Much Love x

 

A twist on ’50 Facts about me’

12 Jul

I have read so many ’50 facts about me’ posts lately, getting to know the blogger behind the ramblings is great so here is my contribution with a twist.

Everyone gets sentimental from time to time, people treasure memories and items for years and what looks like an old cinema stubb to you may have it’s own life story to someone else. Rather then share 50 random things about myself I wanted to open my keepsake box to you and share my sentimental stories.

Different I know and this won’t be to everyone’s taste but to me these are jigsaw pieces of my life’s puzzle.

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This box hides away in my home, full of unrealised treasures to the untrained eye, to me, all I need to do is sort through its contents to remind myself how I got to where I am now and all the smiles along the way.

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I love taking photographs. Simple things with so much value. I keep photographs of people i’ve loved and lost, old school friends, beloved pets, places I have traveled and the people I want to remember along the way.

The framed picture is myself and an old boyfriend, his photos remind me of the years we shared and his lust for life. He passed away from cancer nearly 3 and a 1/2 years ago but there isn’t a day goes by where I am not thankful for how he shaped my look on life. Old school friends and silly antics still make me smile, although most of these I am no longer in touch with these photos remind me of the only good years at high school I had. The photo at the back in the middle is of Ilfracombe in North Devon. I holidayed here most of my childhood and I have very fond memories of the place, this particular picture is bright and colourful which is how I remember most of my childhood holidays to be.

Myself at 17 and how skinny I was! Happy again on the beach in Devon, wearing a bikini top in England..shocking right? My first dog Putney, a cocker spaniel we rescued from the Bristol Dogs Home when I was 8, his fur was a similar colour to my hair when I was young so naturally at that age I was convinced we were related in some strange way.

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Tickets from various gigs I have been to, a signed Good Food Show ticket by Jamie Oliver. Cards from my grandparents on my baptism day. I was born into a Mormon family at went to church for many years, although it’s not for me a lot of my family still are active in the Mormon community, I am grateful for a lot of the morals and ideals I was raised with as a member of the church. The train ticket from the day I met Rob (framed photo), one of the days i’ll remember for the rest of my life.

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Reminding myself where i’ve been in life and where I want to go. My travel pack from Rome, this was my first time abroad and I loved visiting all the historic monuments I have read so much about. I bought rosary beads from outside the Vatican which I felt were a true souvenir from Italy.

My various jobs i’ve had over the years, I like to keep my name badges to remind myself of the work i’ve done and how it’s all helped me become the person I am today. A photo of my first boyfriend and I at our sixth form prom, his suit and tie were way too big and I felt so odd in a dress and heals but we still had a wonderful evening.

 

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All the random things i’ve collected over the years, some meaningful some just fun. An old card wallet belonging to my mum, still has a few of her bits and pieces in along with an old family photo and some keepsake cards. My first MP3 player with all its original tracks on, this was one of the first things I bought with my part time job wages. An old coin found by my grandad years ago, confetti from my 18th birthday, badges I used to collect and clearly I loved Blink 182 as I thought Tom Delonge was god.  My university student card, I didn’t last long at uni but I still keep this to remind myself of that short journey. I am born in the year of the Dragon and the characteristics sum me up to a T.

A pen from Portsmouth, it rained so hard the day I was there and I was wearing flip-flops, I had the worst blisters that day. Five pound coins, this holder was my grandad’s and he always insisted in keeping it in his pocket separate to his wallet. It’s one of the only things I have of his and it might seem trivial but it still means a lot. The postcard at the bottom, my grandma sent to me as the girl on the front reminded her of me when I was a baba.

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An old diary of the year 2004. Talking about being reunited with old friends, my first experience in having crushes and a boyfriend, the first ‘I Love You’s’ and many more memories. I laugh at my 16 year old self when I read this now. An old school book of my dad’s, his many doodles of ducks inside. My dad used to be quite artistic and had such a sense of humor. A fairy sketch I did, I always drew them fierce and empowering which was everything I was not!

Google in a nutshell, this was released when Google first materialised and I have kept it ever since.

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It’s good to remind myself of where i’ve come from, I look at old photos of myself and wonder did I ever imagine where I would be now back then. Some things I could have predicted, most I wouldn’t have foreseen in my wildest dreams. I thought i’d always live in Bristol and have the same friends, I thought I would never put on anymore weight or grow the curves I wanted, I thought that my first boyfriend and I would be together forever and I certainly didn’t think i’d drop out of university.

Life is is full of surprises.

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More random bits and pieces; my Mr Blobby t-shirt, my dad brought this home for me when I was young as I was really ill at the time but totally loved Mr Blobby. I still have this t-shirt, still filthy and aged 5 years. Angel cards, some things in my life that have happened have really made me question if there is something after we pass on. I wanted to find answers and comfort in them, although I still don’t know what is out there I do know I love the art work on these angel cards. My magic key for santa, a house with no chimney needs this key! How on earth will santa get in otherwise!! A childhood bracelet, one of the first pieces of jewellery I owned and I still have it today – a silver teddy bear bracelet.

A handmade ocarina from The Legend of Zelda. I loved this game and still do, so much so I made my own Ocarina of Time.

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There are lots more things in my box but I won’t bore you with them all. I hope you have enjoyed that little insight into my life and memories, if there is anything you want to ask about then please do.

Much Love x

 

Love the life you live, Live the life you love

20 Jun

Sometimes I find life can get so hectic, so stressful that I get completely wrapped up in the one thing that’s not going right at the time which makes me feel incredibly negative, but who isn’t in the same boat with me on this?!

That negativity is easily spread and sometimes I find it extremely hard to not let it taint the rest of my thoughts and mood that day. I think we all need a reminder of what good things we have in life, in what ways we are truly blessed and that luck, fate, destiny, god (whatever you want to call it) is really on our side.

If anyone was to ever ask my advice I would tell them that life is meant to test us. Bad things do happen to good people, but in bad situations good people better themselves in order to deal with it. Bad things happen to teach us life lessons and experiences, they help you appreciate what you have and make you learn to love it all the more.

You may feel pretty average, a home, a job, married with 2.4 kids maybe..you maybe be wondering what’s so great about all of that, you’re just the same as the majority of the world population. Some people would give their arm and a leg just to have that i’m sure. Some people don’t have a home, some people are discriminated against and can’t find work, some people spend their lives alone longing for a life companion and some people can never have kids. Just remember what riches you have in the things you take for granted day to day.

How would you feel if one day you woke up having lost everything? Life can give with one hand but take it with the next but instead of crying because it’s over, smile because it happened. Appreciate and love what you have for the time you have it because, sadly, nothing lasts forever.

I truly believe that life throws curve balls to people with the inner strength (perhaps undiscovered) to deal with it and throw it back with greater force.

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Food for thought x

Inspiration

19 Jun

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Inspiration – in·spi·ra·tion (noun)

1. Stimulation of the mind or emotions to a high level of feeling or activity.

2. The condition of being so stimulated.

3. An agency, such as a person or work of art, that moves the intellect or emotions or prompts action or invention.

4. Something, such as a sudden creative act or idea, that is inspired.

5. The quality of inspiring or exalting: a painting full of inspiration.

6. Divine guidance or influence exerted directly on the mind and soul of humankind.

 

in`spi•ra′tion•al, adj.

in`spi•ra′tion•al•ly, adv.

It is clearly defined what Inspiration means, but what it is to each of us is undefinable. What we draw inspiration from is different for every single person, whether it be words or a picture what is agreeable is it comes in many forms.

For me, it is not a resource I find easily accessible. I can be starved for days, weeks, even months without so much as a snifter and yet sometimes (rare times I must admit) I can be so inspired I do not know how to handle the fire.

I often find that I ponder the dilemma of how I can make my old friend Inspiration visit more often. Discovering new things or even rediscovering that what you already love is the easiest solution, but, when you find you’re struck with it unexpectedly and you have a real serendipity moment – that for me is the real icing on the cake.

A question I pose to all my readers, What inspires you? and how do you retain that feeling?

We all come different walks of life, we will have encountered lots of different people, lots of different things but in the case of Inspiration we have one common goal. For me..Inspiration comes from the beauty of nature. If ever you look for inspiration to create, look to the mother of all creators. Everything so intricate and delicate but fiercely beautiful. I never feel more at home then when I am at the beach, the serene water, freshness of the air and my toes buried in the sand is my little piece of heaven.

I would love for you to share with me anything that inspires you, whether it be a link a photo a motto…anything.

Thank you x

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Time for change

10 Jun

Despite what people say, we all to a certain degree worry about what others think of you, worry what they’ll say or even do. I do believe however the worst critic you’ll ever face is yourself.

My inner monologue is a bitch.

It’s really hard to branch out of your comfort zone, you’ve built your walls high, you’ve built them strong and inside is your happy space. That’s absolutely fine.

Sometimes it’s healthy to push yourself outside of your fortress to embrace the new. New opportunities and experiences won’t come knocking or anywhere near you unless you’re out there working for them, but this can leave you feeling exposed.

Most mornings I try to push myself to do something different, I talk myself into wearing a red lip to work for example – the minute I put that lipstick on my inner monologue says “Don’t be stupid, you look ridiculous. Other people will think you look ridiculous Take it off…NOW” 

Before I realise it’s already half smeared down my face in my attempt to forget i’d even tried it.

For years I have plodded along with no confidence, always feeling that I look like crap, which in turn makes me feel like crap, my inner monologue running the show. No more…

Learning to love yourself can be hard, but pointing out one good thing about yourself a day is a decent start. Instead of the first thought being oh god my skin looks terrible, such big bags under my eyes, what is that on my face….. holy crap no amount of concealer will fix that mess. 

Try and think how lucky you are… I have luscious thick hair, legs to die for, an ample chest…whatever you like about yourself make sure you say it louder then your inner monologue whining about one small imperfection.

There is a much bigger picture to look at then focusing on one tiny detail, open your eyes because you’ll soon see that whatever you think is wrong with you chances are someone wishes they had it…didn’t think about that did ya.

So try that red lip, if it doesn’t work for you it’s not the end of the world, you were brave enough to try it and that deserves a pat on the back. If you don’t try it, you’ll never know and you’ll never move forward.

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Survival 101 – Living with the other half…

6 Jun

Ok, so lets see a show of hands…

Who else has issues with commitment? It’s a scary thing… for me at least. Now doubt in my mind that I won’t be alone in this.

So lets set the scene. You’re enjoying the journey of your relationship, working with the perfect balance of boyfriend, friends and ME time – until that nesting instinct kicks in. Suddenly you’re thrown into hormonal turmoil and you find yourself pondering the what if’s of setting up shop with the fella.

Perfectly normal let me tell you, also perfectly normal to then stress about all the little consequences of your to be living situation.

First of all, lets accept he’s going to see you in the glorious state you wake up in on a morning….fantastic (ugh!) – time to embrace the neanderthal look ladies, I bet he’s no Prince Charming on the toll of the AM alarm either. 

Aside from seeing you with no makeup and before the grooming ritual he’s also going to be; invading your personal space, trying to cut into your TV time with the sports, leaving last weeks boxers on the floor (maybe in a pile, if you’re lucky) and filling the whole house with sounds of zombie splatter from his precious Xbo360. Believe me all the little annoying quirks will frustrate you tenfold.

Don’t let me put you off by the way, despite being an Xbox/PC widow myself he’s turned into a real hunter-gatherer type and loves catching and cooking dinner (when I say catching I mean from the fridge/freezer). My own Jamie Oliver in training – i’ve lucked out!

I am rather pleased to admit, that it’s not as bad as I anticipated. Despite the rich tapestry of worry I wove for months it’s working out rather nicely. Our space is still our own but with all the bonus of time together, Sky + is the saving grace between our taste in TV and as for washing on the floor..who doesn’t join the floordrobe trend now and again?

I’d encourage anyone who is in a fluster over the possibilities to just take the plunge, you’ll naturally adapt and soon find you’re enjoying cohabiting. Embrace the change, what’s to lose?

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Much Love x