A couple of weeks back (in November!) I turned 29. To celebrate becoming officially old I spent a rather over-the-top week having dinner with my family, drinks with my friends and taking a mini break to Paris. If you can’t over-indulge on your birthday, when can you?
Since then I have been non-stop busy with work, Christmas lunches, Christmas parties and life in general, so I haven’t had a lot of time to dedicate to blogging. I didn’t want the year to pass without me documenting my birthday in some way though, so today I thought I’d share with you some of the gifts I received on the big day.
One of my New Years Resolutions for this year was to spend more time in the garden, now that we actually have a proper one, complete with real grass and everything.
Our garden back in Brentwood was very, very small – a tiny pen filled with rocks. Even so, I would still sit out on the step, and I still planted bulbs in what little dirt we had. The garden is the thing I appreciate having the most in SNO – and I definitely spent a lot of time in it this year. Now that it’s Autumn it looks even more beautiful than it did back in the summer, thanks to the riot of colour and all of the local wildlife flocking back.
Today I thought I would share some images and updates.
The weeks are really whizzing past – how are we already ten days in to November?!
You may have noticed that I gave up the Blogtober challenge at day 23. This wasn’t the easiest decision for me to have made but I did so for my own mental health (and quality of blog content.) Whilst I really did enjoy October it was not without its struggles.
Mentally, the past few months have been really tough for me. It’s not always easy to sit down and write something so positive and upbeat about your day – especially when there were bits of it that were so far removed from positive and upbeat that it almost feels like fraud to leave them out. Predominantly this blog is for me – it’s the place I come to spill out my thoughts, capture my memories and upload all my photographs (of which there are far too many.) But I’m not stupid enough to think that no one pays it any attention (because my stats show me otherwise.) And it’s because of that that I sometimes feel a pressure to keep things lighthearted and free from the drama of real life. Long story short, Blogtober flopped because I wasn’t feeling great – sorry guys!
Today I thought I’d share a few highlights from October (despite the wobbles I had) as I’m temporarily in the right headspace to do so (yay for mood swings!)
Halloween is a little over a week away and the witching hour is almost upon us. What better way to celebrate the season than with a spot of spooky shopping? For todays Blogtober I’ve compiled a short but sweet list of goodies you may want to trick or treat yo’ self to.
October is nearly over, and with it another year of Autumnal memories made. It flew by in a haze of woodland walks, pumpkin picking, bubble baths and bedtime reading. Despite my sadness at how this month and last just whizzed by, I’m really excited for the last couple of weeks and November – I still have a few fun Autumnal events planned and things to cross off my seasonal bucket list!
For todays Blogtober post I thought I’d share a few things I’m looking forward to.
Whilst most of us are still firmly in the Autumn mindset, planning for the spooky-season ahead and all the fun Halloween parties and events we’ll be attending, Lush is, as always, thinking ahead to Christmas. The full Christmas 2018 range dropped just a week or so after the Halloween range which I must admit does feel a little early!
The range this year is absolutely huge with loads of new and innovative products just crying out to be added to Christmas wish-lists. Despite all the newness I was really sad to see my old favourite, Magic of Christmas bubble bar wand knocked off the line-up. At this point in time I’ve tried quite a few of the new products but as the range is so extensive there’s still so many more baths to be had!
Here’s what I’ve picked up so far…
Autumn months are for living slowly; for taking your time over a hot drink and a great book, for watching films in the dark, snuggled up under a blanket whilst candles flicker in the background. There’s no sunshine and sweltering hot days to make you feel uncomfortable and guilty for staying in doors, no urgent or societal need to get out and enjoy some crammed beach or sweat over a BBQ. September through to November you’ll find me cosy and content, enjoying the little things.
For todays Blogtober post I thought I’d share with you a few of the Autumn activities I enjoy most of all.
October crept in slowly, darkness claiming the mornings and nights again; one whole year in St Neots.
Today we found ourselves with a rare Friday off from work and decided to celebrate the occasion with a walk in the woods. The Lodge is the RSPB Headquarters and it’s situated in Sandy – one town over from SNO. We put Sandy the pug’s harness on and hopped in the car.
During the Autumn months there’s nothing I like more than a hot drink, and my drink of choice is always a Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks. There’s something about the delicious spices and whipped cream that epitomise the season for me; if I wasn’t on a diet I could easily drink one every day.
Sadly I am on a diet and as such, I can’t drink one every day. I follow Slimming World so spend a lot of time coming up with ingenious hacks to lower the saturated fat content and ‘syns’ in everything I eat. The other day I came up with a really simple recipe for a Slimming World-friendly pumpkin spiced-coffee and it was actually really tasty. Today I thought I would share the recipe with you. It’s great if, like me, you’re following the Slimming World plan but want a tasty and low-syn treat to curb your coffee cravings or even if you’re just trying to save a few extra pounds – those Starbucks PSLs are expensive after all!
Now that Autumn is in full-swing and the leaves are beginning to fall, my neighbourhood is looking really lovely. I took a walk with Sandy (the pug puppy we’re dog-sitting for the week) this afternoon and decided to snap a few photos to capture how everything looks right now. After all, there’s no better way to explore and see your own neighbourhood through fresh eyes than with an excited puppy!
For todays Blogtober I thought I’d share some of these Autumnal photos.
In my house it’s perpetually Autumn. I take a lot of decor inspiration from the great outdoors and as a fan of British wildlife, have a lot squirrel, fox, pheasant and deer-printed cushions and knick-knacks scattered about. The colour-palette of my living room is very warm featuring shades of brown, rust orange, green and copper.
Each year I like to add a few new pieces to the living room to keep it feeling fresh and interesting. I also dig out last years candles and put away my Spring/Summer scents. Today I thought I’d share a really small (but perfectly formed) Autumn homeware haul and explain how I personally like to decorate for the season.
If you follow me over on Instagram, you’ll know Gareth and I recently took our first venture in to hatching and raising button quail chicks. (And if you don’t follow me, do so and please make sure to say hi so I know to follow you back! I’m @yasminedaisy)
I have never hatched a bird in an incubator before, although as I keep a large quantity of birds I have experience of my own birds hatching out chicks. For the most part though, you just leave them to it – asides from providing them a nest, some material and maybe some egg crumb, they’ll do the rest.
Anyway, we have a very broody button quail (Sugarpuff) – her and her partner (Popcorn) were adamant on having chicks. Sugarpuff was so dedicated to the cause that she sat on a nest for months. Alas she was only ever able to hatch one chick and it died soon after birth. So we thought we’d step in and give hatching chicks a go ourselves. Here’s how we did it and what we discovered along the way…
There’s something about October that makes me want to bake. I’m not quite sure if it’s the need to come up with new, fresh content for Blogtober or all of the Bake Off I’ve been watching but, the drive is there.
Yesterday we spent the day at a pumpkin patch – and I came away positively inspired. I recently discovered that the ‘Pumpkin Spice’ mix that I so adore rarely has any pumpkin in it whatsoever – and is actually just a blend of spices. I wanted to try this spice mix out to see if I could make the flavour I love so much. Putting two and two together I decided to bake some pumpkin spice biscuits! Here’s the recipe…
Every year we visit the pumpkin patch – it has become an Autumn tradition of sorts. In previous years we have visited Foxes Farm for our pumpkins (you can read about those trips here and here! ) but as we’re no longer living in Essex, this year we’d thought we would try a new one closer to home.