Thursday, 21 November 2013

Escapism


My life can sometimes feel a little overwhelming. Up at 6.30 (okay...6.45) and out at 7, starting first clients at 9 after a commute filled with school children, chattering and smiling up until lunch when I get an hour (if I'm lucky) to find some nourishment and catch up with the girls. Back to work until 5 when I fall out of work, back onto some more public transport until I finally reach my house at 7pm. Tea, bath, bed, and it all starts again.

If only it was that simple - since deciding to 'Say Yes More at the beginning of the year, my days can be an awful lot busier than that. Drinks, dinners, sleepovers, cheese and wine, bonfires, BBQs... These all mean that, more often than not, I don't end up getting my happy 8 hours a night, and certainly not always in my own bed (not slutting about, you filthy minx, I stay with friends!). It can take it's toll, so when I finally do get back into my own room, it feels so much warmer than anywhere else.

My room is always the one place that can be totally peaceful. Yes, Audrey is always clattering about in her cage, and yes, I am right above the kitchen in my little home so I can always hear the hustle and bustle of family life right below me, but once I'm settled in, some relaxed music on and a candle lit, there's often no place I'd rather be.

Fancy a tour?



Every year, my sister and I make it our mission to buy the most offensive cards and presents we can find - whilst I'm winning with the card I got last year, this coaster's pretty special.
Rabbit night light: Urban Outfitters
Mug: Cath Kidston

Whilst I haven't traveled much (yet), I have some friends who have been to all manner of amazing places. My brother Shaun brought back this little copper tin from India containing water from the Ganges, and he also brought back the little brass pot which holds a candle.
The sugar skull tea light holder came from Dias De Los Muertos celebrations in LA. These sit in a bowl I brought back from a market in Tunisia next to my bed, and when I go to sleep I drop any jewellery left on in it, like this little anchor I was given at Anna's Invictus Fundraiser.

Back when we went to the Masked Ball, it was the first time I'd seen Check since before my birthday, and I known for quite some time that she'd bought me a pretty suspect birthday gift. All I knew was that I was going to absolutely love it, or think it was vile (and if it was the latter I was promised all my drinks for the night). Luckily for Check, it was the former, in the shape of this ridiculous smoking, drinking duckling taxidermy... 


I know everyone says this, but I wouldn't be half the person I am without my friends. They make me laugh constantly (thanks to a rather naughty, rude and crude ongoing Facebook chat thread) and are always there to pick me up when I need it most. The top photo hangs on my bed, and is of Check, Tamsin and myself, and in the gold frame below is Check, Tamsin, Anna, me and Rosie. The best group of girls I could ask for!
The bear frame contains me as a baby, which was always in my Grandad's house growing up, and the pink frame contains a card my sister and neice made for my birthday a few years ago. These all make me smile every day.

I think everyone in my house has, at some point, owned one of these clocks, that my father and brother have brought back from the Middle East on so man work trips. If you haven't seen one before, they're basically Islamic prayer clocks, and sing (rather loudly) the call to pray that they do in Mosques off the top towers. I remember my sister's going off every morning at 6.45 as a teenager and the entire rest of the house groaning at the sound every single day.



I've said it so many times but I'm not lying: my life is punctuated by stacks of books, magazines and newspapers. I've loved reading forever, and whilst I don't keep all of my books, I do keep my favourites (and sometimes an that I've acquired and not yet read end up here too). These are some stacks of old novels, art books, sketchbooks and diaries, all mixed up. Oh, and my pipe, which was a gift from Anna for my 18th birthday. I also got a top hat and a monocle.


As well as my love of cats, I love birds. I based a project in college around them and the sense of freedom they give, and since then have found myself picking up all kinds of bird-related things as I go through life. I have a couple of African birdcages, and also the birds on my wall in the top photo, but I absolutely love these handmade bird hooks I bought in Lanzarote in a market a couple of years ago.They always take me back to that holiday, and make a great place to store all my chunkier pieces of jewelerry.



More photos of friends throughout time, a reminder to live peacefully and a memory board of cards and festival wristbands and gifts I've been given this year. I like reminding myself of everyone I have and everything I've done - even the worst days seem better when you surround yourself by the best people.


Right, after all that I'm going to make a cup of tea and waste 20 hours on tumblr. See ya!

Monday, 18 November 2013

Blog Make-Over by Emily Stanbury

If you're reading this, and have read this blog before now, you'll notice I've had a make-over! The old layout was one thrown together quickly, and I really wanted something a bit different so I brought in reinforcements in the form of my beautiful friend Em, a brilliant children's illustrator, to give me a fresh look.

I pretty much gave her free reign over my new header, and I absolutely adore what she came up with - me wearing an outfit made of my favourite foods accompanied by my little pig Audrey. Could it be more perfect?!

She is literally one of the most talented people I know, and has a love of cats matched by no other - here's some of my other favourite bits of her work...








Aren't the literally the most charming pictures? Hopefully this will inspire me and give me a kick to start posting more...and eat a few more burgers!

Check out more of Emily's work here. 




Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Anna's Invictus Trust Garden Party!

The Invinctus Trust is a wonderful Cornish charity which raises money to support young people with mental health issues. It was set up in January 2010 and is dedicated to the memory of Ben Cowburn, a wonderfully vibrant young man whose struggle with mental health issues had tragic consequences. The charity is names after the poem that inspired Ben, written by Earnet Henley and used by Nelson Mandela as a source of strength during his sentence on Robben Island.

The charity is currently raising money to put towards the building of an adolescent mental health unit in Cornwall, to support 13-15 year olds who currently have to travel so far away out of the county to recieve the help they need. This is a cause close to so many young people's hearts, as I think we all know people who have struggled through mental health issues, and how difficult it can be for not only them but their families, friends, and everyone around them too.

When my good friend Anna told me she intended to have a charity event at her house for charity, and about The Invictus Trust, I knew it was going to be a brilliant night for a truly wonderful cause. They decorated her garden with bunting, had a bar complete with Skinners ale, pimms, and more wine than we could possibly ever drink, made a huge dinner complete with mini pavlovas, a massive chilli and all the 'slaw we could gobble down. There was an incredible charity auction which made us all laugh and a great atmosphere all night.

They managed to raise a whopping £2500 in the end, and we were all so proud. What a wonderful night for a wonderful cause!

Photo stolen from the Invictus Trust website. The rest taken by me.
Before the hoards arrived!

Kitty, the beautiful barmaid with mermaid hair!

The garden looked truly beautiful!




Tamsin enjoying the Pimms


Rosie and Becky

Anna's Dad made loads of hot coals to put around the seating to keep us warm which was divine because the evenings had just turned chilly!

Everywhere you looked, fairylights and candles twinkled in the twilight.
Rosie and I huddling under a rug after dinner.

The footpath back down the garden was studded with lanterns...I was sad to leave such a beautiful, wonderful evening with such lovely company!

The