My non-fiction faves

Sunday, 10 December 2017

I find nowadays I am drawn to non-fiction more so than fiction. I think it's more freeing and laidback than a traditional fiction book, and some non-fictions are similar to magazines in that you can dip in and out of them as many times as you like.

I've been struggling with reading for a while now; my attention span is non-existent (it's gotten worse over the years) so non-fiction allows me to pick and choose what I read and when without any pressure or guilt. I also find that in many non-fiction books the writing is cut up into nice easy-to-digest sections so it's easier for my wee brain to deal with.

So here are my five non-fiction favourites, all with links to purchase them online if one tickles you fancy. Enjoy!

1. Simple Matters by Erin Boyle

Erin (Reading My Tea Leaves) covers all you need to know about slow and sustainable living. A beautiful and insightful guide with personal essays, resources, advice, and photographs.

2. The Wes Anderson Collection by Matt Zoller Seitz

A playful look into the world of Wes Anderson. Includes lots of behind-the-scenes shots, artwork, doodles, set designs, and a book-long interview with Anderson himself.

More Christmas decorations & a festive visit to York

Friday, 8 December 2017


Hope you've had a good week. We finished putting the rest of the Christmas trimmings up a few days ago. The garland is up and adorned with lights and decorations, the wreaths are jingling nicely on the doors, and the Christmas tea towels are out in full force.

The house smells like oranges and cinnamon and there's always a bad Christmas movie on telly. It's bliss. Makes me even more excited to come home at the end of the day, which I didn't think was possible.

On Tuesday my family and I went to York to do some Christmas shopping. My mum managed to tick a few names off her Christmas shopping list, while I was pretty much there to spend money on whatever caught my eye, and my step-dad was there to take some snaps of the city with his fancy camera.

I got a few bits from Primark (nothing overly exciting), lots of very delicious chocolate from Hotel Chocolat (their caramel chocolate is life-changing, please try it if you haven't already) and a gift I spotted on Christmas market that would be perfect for my manager's little boy. This will be his first Christmas so I wanted to get him something special and fun.

We saw a fantastic band performing in St Helen's Square called Hyde Family Jam. Check them out on YouTube if you like punchy folk and blues music. They were so passionate and put their absolute heart and soul into the music. Give them a like on Facebook and/or buy their CDs. Really regretting not picking a CD up while I was in York but I'm adding both of them to my post-Christmas shopping list.

It was a lovely day - bitterly cold, but very lovely and festive. We were getting tired by 3:30pm so we left the centre and decided to wander around the Designer Outlet for an hour to see what bargains we could find (turns out not that many). We were truly pooped after that. My legs were gone and all I wanted in life was to stuff my face with caramel chocolate and snooze.

Hope you have a fantastic weekend.


Decking the halls & rummaging for vinyl

Sunday, 3 December 2017

The tree is up and decorated! It's been up and decorated for a while now but no-one really cares 'til December, do they? Usually our tree never goes up before my brother's birthday on the 29th of November but this year I sort of had to because I needed to take photos for a very special Christmas blog post.

So here it is! We haven't put much else up in the house so far - we've got a few festive plaques hung in the kitchen and a pretty reindeer light-up scene in the living room but that's about it. The mantel piece garland is still lying on the kitchen floor and we haven't broke out the Santa bath mat yet. Soon, very soon.

Other than putting up the tree, I've also been finishing up my Christmas shopping. I did most of mine in November but I still have a few more bits to pick up. I ordered my friend's present online at the beginning of November off Etsy but there's been no developments and no communication so it's not looking good. I'm a bit gutted, but hopefully it'll be resolved soon. If not, it's back to the drawing board.

Yesterday I nipped into town with my mum and step-dad and had a meander around the Saturday market. There are a few folks there who sell really nice quality vinyl, CDs and DVDs and we always have a good comb through, especially the vinyl. There's nothing I love more than cheap second-hand records. I got myself a few singles and an EP...

I got Mike Oldfield's Ommadawn, which includes one of the greatest festive tunes ever In Dulci Jublio; Start Me Up by The Rolling Stones; Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel (one of my favourite songs of all time); and Bow Wow Wow's I Want Candy with Elimination Dancing on the B-side.

On my previous big shopping trip a week or two ago I picked up Stop The Cavalry by Jona Lewie and Spent The Day in Bed by Morrissey (on clear vinyl!) from Tallbird Records in Chesterfield.

Tallbird Records is my favourite record shop and has a huge selection of vinyl and CDs on offer. Just crates upon crates of pure musical goodness. If you're ever passing through, give it a visit. It's a dinky shop but is packed to the absolute brim. I've never left empty-handed.

So that's that, hope you guys have a lovely Sunday.


Lovely quotes / 11

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Lovely quotes 11 is here. Enjoy!

“People mistakenly expect to hit the bulls-eye on the first pass. Abandon the idea that your first draft should be anything but exploration.”
— Gregory Ciotti

“Night air, good conversation, and a sky full of stars can heal almost any wound.”
— Beau Taplin

“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.”
— Leo Tolstoy

“I am lonely. I walk on the open airy fields of my own mind. I draw back inside myself.”
— Anne Truitt, Turn: The Journal of an Artist

“Magic, indeed, is all around us, in stones, flowers, stars, the dawn wind and the sunset cloud; all we need is the ability to see and understand.”
— Doreen Valiente

“Child, to say the very thing you really mean, the whole of it, nothing more or less or other than what you really mean; that’s the whole art and joy of words.”
— C.S. Lewis, Till We Have Faces

“Outside the trees sighed in the wind. For a moment I believed I felt and saw the night outside deep within me. Wind and wetness, autumn, bitter smell of foliage, scattered leaves of the elm tree. Autumn! Autumn!”
— Hermann Hesse, The Complete Fairy Tales; A Dream Sequence

“In November, the earth is growing quiet. It is making its bed, a winter bed for flowers and small creatures. The bed is white and silent, and much life can hide beneath its blankets.”
— Cynthia Rylant, In November


Decorating the Christmas tree with Amara

Monday, 27 November 2017

Hi! I have a whopping good Christmas post for you today, so get comfy, sit back and enjoy!

This Christmas season, Amara are making it insanely easy and simple to shop for gifts, decorate  your tree, and host the big day by introducing a Christmas hub where you can find everything you could ever need and want in one handy place.

In this post I'll be showing you guys some of their wonderful tree decorations - but first, here are Amara's four key festive trends this year...

Scandi and Nordic influences with added botanical elements. Lots of natural fabrics and muted colours. Perfectly rustic and cosy.

Bright and bold with lots of candy hues and glitter. Quirky patterns and shapes galore, perfect for the unconventional.

Opulence, glamour, and moody tones. Very luxe, with lashings of gold, peacock feathers, and sequins.

Gorgeous dainty pinks and rose golds. Quite feminine and pretty, with hints of pearlescent shimmer and lace.

The decorations I chose are all from the Hideaway trend because the Nordic theme fits in so well with the decorations I already have. Browse Amara's entire selection of tree decorations here.

So let's get started...

Lovely Nordic inspired decorations, perfect for those who don't like garish Christmas colours and want to go for a more minimal, Scandi look. They're not heavy at all so they hang lovely on the tree, but they'd also be great as wall hangings because they're quite large and lay flat. Thinking about hanging these on the fireplace once our garland goes up.

Just a tad chilly...

Friday, 24 November 2017

I took these on my way to an important appointment yesterday afternoon. I was a little nervous (I'd never been to this specific place before) so I wandered through somewhere familiar beforehand. This is Worksop Priory - a very beautiful and underrated spot in town that looks its best in autumn, so I made sure to capture it.

The wind has been crazy recently. Combined with bitter cold temperatures, it certainly hasn't been ideal weather to be outside in. At all. I would've preferred to have stayed home today (considering I have a cold and I am incredibly snotty and tired) but alas, I had to go be an adult. Boo.

Today we're decorating the Christmas tree. I know, many of you may be glancing over at your calendar right now thinking 'it's still November, right?' yes, you are correct, but I have an actual legit reason for the tree to go up today that I cannot reveal for maybe another week. Sorry. Very fun and festive photos to come soon!

Have a fabulous weekend.

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