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26 May 2015

Cath Kidston beach huts on Bournemouth seafront

The beach huts between Southbourne and Bournemouth Pier never fail to put a smile on my face during a dog walk or a morning run, so when I heard that Cath Kidston had transformed five of them with their beautiful prints, I couldn't wait to go down and have a peek! We took a trip to Bournemouth Pier (the beach huts are numbered 2368 - 2372, just down from the Harry Ramsden's restaurant) on the day they were unveiled to take in the new addition to the seafront.

Brightly coloured beach huts are part of the geography - and charm - of Bournemouth seafront (and a lot of the East Dorset coastline), and I always feel that there's something quintessentially British about seeing families lounging on deckchairs outside of their beach huts, soaking up the sunshine and reading the newspaper or enjoying a picnic.  I've always thought of the Cath Kidston brand as very 'British' too - nostalgic, floral prints that bring cheer to the kitchen and all over the home (including wardrobes, pajama drawers, laundry rooms and all sorts!) Cath Kidston have a store in Bournemouth town centre, so it seems a perfect match that they've ventured further towards the seaside to deck out some of our beach huts in their wonderful prints.

Cath Kidston beach huts

The beach huts feature classic prints (Antique Rose and Button Spot) as well as key prints from the Spring/Summer collection - Clouds, River Fish and Paradise Fields.  I adore the River Fish print (and the fish are perfect for the aquatic placement!) - but the cloud beach hut definitely has my heart.  I have been lusting after the Gola x Cath Kidston cloud print trainers for some time so to see the print in beach hut format is very exciting!

Luckily the sun put his hat on for the unveiling of the new huts, and so Tom, Tamsin and I took a wander down to the seafront with the doggies to have a good look.  Max and Bodhi were very good and agreed to pose for a photo! I sometimes called Bodhi 'cloud-dog' as he looks like a fluffy cloud with legs, so it was very apt that he did some posing in front of that beach hut (though he didn't sit quite as well as Max!)

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Cath Kidston beach huts at Bournemouth beach
{last photo pinched from Tamsin!}

The beach huts will be there until September and are well worth a visit (you can even rent them for a day!).  They're part of a new campaign called #RandomActsofKidston where the brand are aiming to bring a bit of cheer to people's days with their iconic, bright prints.

I was so glad it was a sunny day, as it was the day after we arrived home from Bali, so I was worried I was going to have to be piling the jumpers on! It was nice to still be able to wear sunglasses and flip flops.  I bought this coral lace-y top from M&S before I left but didn't take it with me, so that's been rolled out this week and I've been wearing it at every opportunity.

M&S blouse outfit M&S blouse outfit post
// top : marks and spencer : £35 {instore, can't find online}
// jeans : asos £35
// flip flops : rip curl {bought in Bali}
// sunglasses : ray ban clubmasters £125

Make sure you make a trip to see the beach huts if you're down our neck of the woods before September - they definitely won't fail to put a smile on your face!

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25 May 2015

Loose kisses take trips

Happy Bank Holiday Monday UK chaps, and happy normal Monday everyone else! I am about to drag my bum out for a run and then meet up with a friend for lunch - it's so nice seeing all the people I've missed whilst we were off gallivanting around Bali.  Have to make an effort to see everyone before my tan fades so they can all be jealous - ha!

This was Saturday's outfit - we went to boxing class in the morning and then in the afternoon went to Wimborne to while away the afternoon in a beer garden.  Unfortunately our boxing teacher was also there and I felt slightly guilty about the bottle of wine and humongous fish and chips I was tucking into (seriously, this fish was as big as my arm).  But not guilty for too long, because wine.

It was so nice to be able to be outside in the sunshine - there's nothing worse than coming back from holiday and having to get your winter coat out! The jeans I took with me on holiday didn't get worn except for on the first and last day, and on the last day I discovered they were much, much tighter - turns out you can't eat pizza, cocktails and pancakes every day without your waistline increasing - who knew? So back to my old favourite skinny jeans whilst my daily food intake gets back to normal! 

Casual outfit Casual outfit Casual outfit Casual outfit
// jacket: vero moda {old}
// t-shirt: pull and bear {similar £7.99}
// jeans: topshop jamie - £42
// flip flops: rip curl {bought in bali}
// bag: mulberry {oversized alexa}

I bought the t-shirt whilst in Kuta in Bali; there was a giant mall there which had Pull and Bear, Bershka, Bath and Body Works, Mango and all sorts of other shops.  It was huge and very USA-esque (it even had a Cold Stone Creamery stand) - I only managed two shops before Tom started to have a meltdown though so I made sure I chose Pull and Bear - I'm a bit obsessed and forever making ASOS orders full of P&B items.  

I'm also living in flip flops at the moment - I got a shellac pedicure the day before I left (for about £7) and my feet have never looked so nice, so I am proudly exposing them to the world whilst they still look pretty - don't think I can afford to get it done regularly at home! 

Hope you've had a wonderful weekend wherever you are,

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23 May 2015

Feeling inspired and motivated - and plans for the coming months

I wrote in my last post that I often feel like a total mish-mash of wants and goals, and that I can never seem to make up my mind what direction I really want to go in.  Travel and adventure vs home and comfort is the one that I constantly seem to waver between, but never do I feel more drawn to one that when I've spent a long time in the other (I'm also a total 'grass is greener' person, I can't help it!)

So it makes sense that now, after spending four weeks away in Bali, and prior to that having almost no free time due to wedding planning, that my feet are firmly in the 'home' and 'comfort' and 'me time' camp. When we touched down at Heathrow on Wednesday I had this overwhelming feeling of happiness, and of being exactly where I needed to be.  Even though my dreams are filled with sunkissed skin, poolside cocktails, al fresco dinners and warm evenings, I can honestly say that Britain really does feel like home to me, and of all of the places I've travelled in the world, I do find the New Forest and living on the south coast of England to be pretty darned perfect.  I had the same feeling of relief and comfort when we walked through the front door of our house - the smell of the candles in my office, the plumped cushions on our sofa, our mugs in the kitchen, my duck down duvet and pillows in our bedroom, just made me feel so content.  As well as re-invigorating my love of home, I never seem to feel more motivated and inspired than when I've been away for a few weeks.  There's something about stepping out of a situation that gives me so much clarity and excitement to get back to it with a renewed sense of creativity and excitement.

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Because of this, I now have a humungous list of things I want to get stuck into over the coming months.  This list seems to grow by the second, and I've been waking up in the middle of the night thinking of new things I want to work on, and tiptoeing downstairs to get started on them! It's so nice to feel so inspired again.  Here is the list so far:

001. Work on our garden and grow yummy food, herbs and pretty things to look at {we've got a headstart on this as Tom's parents spent two days weeding, planting and generally doing loads of work on our garden whilst we were away!}

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002. Print more of my photos and do more in my Project Life scrapbook.

{img credit = artistic dreams}

003. Go through all of my new cookbooks and start trying more recipes and experimenting with cooking.

004. Get outstanding 35mm film developed and shoot more film.

{img credit = hitchcock blonde}

005.  Organise and edit photos I haven't been through yet - get all of my Trek America and honeymoon photos sorted and share them!

006.  Redo our bathroom (big job - we want to rip it out, get new fixtures and fittings and retile it all!)

007. Reconnect with books and practices I loved but tailed off with - re-read Spirit Junkie and The Desire Map.

008.  Read all of my outstanding articles on Pocket.

009. Start doing morning pages again.  Every day - keep to this morning ritual.

010. Gratitude journal.  EVERY DAY WITHOUT FAIL.

011.  More yoga - every day if possible, but at least once a week.  Go to more classes.

012. Frame our wedding photos and write all of our thank you cards.

013. Have the biggest de-clutter of my life.  Get rid of clothes and shoes not worn within the last six months and electronic equipment not used.  Clear out old papers and magazine.  Get rid of anything not used or loved.

014.  Take note of things that make me happy and do more of them.  Have fresh flowers in the house. Take time to listen to birdsong.  Go on evening walks.  Burn candles.  Take more baths.  Have more chill time.

015.  Catchup on my unread Bloglovin blog posts.  Note and share inspiring posts.  Take more time to comment.

016.  Read more, share mini book reviews on blog or YouTube.

017. On that note - make more YouTube videos.  Start a podcast.

018. Run in the mornings.  Go to more exercise classes.

019.  Catchup on the podcasts that inspire me.

020.  Blog, blog, blog.  Blog about wedding planning, book reviews, our honeymoon, my fitness journey, and all of the fun things I have lined up for the coming months.  Be more authentic on my blog and make more time for 'honest to blog' posts where I share what's been on my mind.

As you can see, the list keeps growing, and is getting pretty big!  I feel so excited to get started on all of these though.  Throughout the early part of the year I really felt like I lost what it was to be 'me', and lost my way a lot.  The stress of wedding planning and hitting 30 (and worrying that I had nothing figured out) really knocked me for six, and I seemed to have no motivation or inspiration, and no time for self-care.  I feel so happy that I'm now able to reconnect with all of the things that I know I love, and that make me feel good when I make time for them.  This list is pretty overwhelming though, and I wonder whether I should focus on maybe one or two things to really invest time in, rather than flitting around doing a little of everything.  What do you think? How do you make sure you don't get burned out when inspiration hits again?

{PS -Sorry for the phone photos - wanted to get a post up and have been so busy since we got back that I haven't managed to get my camera back out and take blog photos yet!)}

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