Saturday, 31 December 2016

2017 GOALS //

As always, I'm using a New Year to make some big changes. 2016, for many, has been a pretty rough one, and although I've had far from a terrible year thankfully (read all about it here) - I have a far better feeling about next year.



Visit Australia.

This is on the cards for September time. We're looking into booking our trip this month, so it's all very exciting! Any travel blog suggestions or Aussie tips would be much appreciated.

Finish my course.


This has been a painstaking feat that has featured on my last two yearly 'resolutions' but finally, I'm going to put my all into it. I've got some plans to volunteer teaching with some classes for work experience and a solid, study plan for the first few months of 2017. Hopefully this time, I can stick to it!

Experience freelance working, whether this be dance or design related.


I've been feeling a little bit, well, negatively about my job this year at points. I'm hoping to either volunteer my design skills for a charity at some point which would be great or, I'd love to put the aforementioned course into action.

Live more eco-friendly


This encompasses an awful lot of things. From getting rid of a lot of clothes (to charity shops, upcycling, selling etc.) and replacing with a fairtrade wardrobe, to turning off my electrics when they're not in use. Although I think I'm quite good in certain ways at eco-friendly living, there's always so much more we can do to ensure we help the environment. I've recently become super aware of more tiny changes we can all make to help reduce our carbon footprint. Much more to come in the near future!

Cook healthy


Utilising food anti-supermarkets near me and local butchers/greengrocers, I really want to kick start some healthy eating this year. Not only will it make our food shops far more eco-friendly and help local businesses, it will mean we eat far better. I don't cook as much as I would like to, so I want to spend more time meal-prepping and using gluten-free ingredients to support my boyfriend's lifestyle.

Start a new hobby


I've already booked on to a pole dance course after pondering it for some time! Having already tried aerial hoop I want to increase my strength and flexibility (and step outside my comfort zone) by doing something a little bit different. I also really want to go to more ballet classes when I can fit them in!



It's going to be a busy year for me I feel, there's a lot of things about to change and I'm embracing it with open arms.

I hope you all have a wonderful New Year celebration, leave a comment and let me know what your 2017 goals are!

leanne

x

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

2016 NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS // REVISITED

A quick follow up of how many of last year's resolutions I managed to succeed with...

The Dress Diaries - Cosy blanket scarf from H&M and denim jacket from Topshop
scarf: h&m jacket: topshop


 Finish my ETM course


This has extended to my 2017 list too. I am 100% committed to it now and have plans in place to finish in the next few months!

See more of the world


As ambiguous as this may be, I feel I have definitely succeeding in seeing 'more'.

This year I've been fortunate enough to visit Dublin, Barcelona and Copenhagen as well as a variety of festivals and various weekend trips in the UK. From climbing Yorkshire peaks to days out at the coast, I think this has been well and truly completed and I plan to continue exploring next year too.

Earn money through freelancing


I've had a few blog opportunities this year which have been exciting and profitable, therefore I can tick this off the list. I've got more freelance plans for next year - read about it in my 2017 Resolutions post.

Build a capsule wardrobe


Failed. Miserably.

Decorate

We painted first thing after New Year and have since decorated our living room just how we want, more or less. We've put up shelves and painted our spare room and this year, have plans for the bedroom and bathrooms. Adulting is actually pretty cool.

Make the most of my time


I am extremely glad to be one of those people who takes photos of everything. After a quick look back through a year-s worth of Instagram posts, I've reflected on this one and have done an awful lot in 2016. From seeing more of friends, to spontaneous trips and nights out as well as my travels, it's been a great one.

Meet my Goodreads challenge goal


Nope.

Drive



I've driven far more this year and I don't feel completely terrified anymore, which is a huge help. Read about my experiences here


How have you done with last year's resolutions?

Will you be resolving any of the same this year?


leanne

x

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

KNIT YOURSELF WARM IN WINTER // #MerryKnitmas with Fenetic Wellbeing


#MerryKnitmas is exactly as it would sound - a Christmas campaign to promote the art of knitting.

Fenetic Wellbeing are a local company who are encouraging people to knit, in order to make sure everyone can stay warm in the cold, Winter months.

My grandma has knitted for years and every December, manages to knit tons of Christmas tree decorations for charity as well as tiny, tiny hats for the premature baby unit in Leeds. This campaign is a great opportunity for me to learn (although my grandma has tried teaching me before... and failed) and master the craft and be able to knit for myself.

The elderly can be particularly vulnerable at this time of year so it's vital that we ensure they stay warm, either by knitting them some accessories or helping them to knit their own.



If you fancy having a go at knitting yourself, Fenetic Wellbeing have a video that could help you make your own, super cute, festive stocking.


Although I am lusting after a little stocking to put on my window pane - I don't have a fireplace or mantelpiece - I'm tackling something a little easier for my first time. I was sent a beginner's kit, including several balls of yarn and a beautiful set of knitting needles were provided to create a colourful Winter accessory.

Using the Cath Kidston 'The Knitting Book', I've started creating my own stripy scarf and although it is a absolutely painstaking long task, I'm finally getting the hang of it! My boyfriend already called dibs on wearing the masterpiece when it is complete, however, he might be waiting a while...

I'd love to keep this up as a hobby and follow my own family's tradition of creating knitted pieces for those who need it.



It's becoming easier by the day and I'm already planning my next creation - it'll be a much, much shorter one!

If you've any crafty, knitting tips for me, please comment below or tweet me!




This post is written in collaboration with Fenetic Wellbeing, who are heading up the #MerryKnitmas campaign. Big thanks to Zeal for hooking a girl up. D'ya get it? Knitting?! Yep.

leanne

x

Monday, 19 December 2016

COPENHAGEN AT CHRISTMAS //

Copenhagen Christmas Market - festive tree decoration


My last holiday of 2016 was spent in the beautiful city of Copenhagen.


It's not been on my travel list very long but when we decided to visit somewhere well known for their Christmas markets, this place came up an awful lot. Turns out, that's for a very good reason. The instant we arrived we were greeted with a festive feeling, from lights on every corner to the trees dotted around every shop, station and cafe.

If you've never visited Copenhagen before and you love Christmas then please, please bear this place in mind for future December trips. Tivoli Gardens were absolutely beautiful and as if I'd stepped into an actual Winter wonderland.

We were spoilt for choice when it came to Christmas markets, there's pretty much one around every corner in the city centre so there's certainly not a lack of things to see and do. I'll be writing a more in-depth post about my trip and where to visit in the city but for now, please enjoy a few festive snaps from my weekend!

Copenhagen Christmas Market - stalls and blurry shot

Copenhagen at Christmas - Tivoli Gardens

Copenhagen at Christmas - Tivoli Gardens

Copenhagen at Christmas - Tivoli Gardens

Copenhagen at Christmas - Tivoli Gardens

Copenhagen at Christmas - Festive brunch

Copenhagen at Christmas - Gluhwein Bar

Copenhagen at Christmas - Tivoli

leanne

x

Friday, 16 December 2016

MAKING CHRISTMAS WARMER // with Cotton Traders


With only ONE working week left till Christmas, it's safe to say that we're all counting down these final days until we can stuff our face with as many Quality Streets as we can muster. The final slog can be a tough one but Cotton Traders are helping to make things a little easier in these last few stressful days.

We received a very exciting surprise at our office door on Monday in the form of a parcel box complete with ribbon. Once I explained to the team that I was certain it was something they would LOVE, they were intrigued to find out why...




As part of their 'Making Christmas Warmer' campaign, Cotton Traders sent us a wonderful, festive-filled package to bring some holiday joy to our office. From tasty Green & Black's chocolate and amazing Whittard's hot chocolate, to festive photo props and a whole lot of Christmas music - it's safe to say we were spoilt.

This time of year is often used to spend time with family, giving gifts to friends and enjoying a couple of days at home without any work worries. It's important not to forget to bring some of the holiday spirit into the workplace too, even if some of us (ahem*I*) have to work throughout the whole Christmas period!



This week we've spent some time away from our desks; decorating the office with cast-off lights, taking well deserved chocolate breaks and chatting about our festive plans. And do you know what? It made the long hours (as it's our busiest time of year!) that bit easier. Plus, blasting Mariah Carey's 'All I Want for Christmas' never fails to cheer anyone up.

Huge thanks to Beth and the Cotton Traders team for spreading the warmth this Christmas.

And thanks to my colleagues, for being wonderfully Christmas spirited and getting me through these final days of 2016!


leanne

x

Friday, 2 December 2016

NETFLIX AND THRILL //

I have been seriously into Netflix this year (probably helped by the fact I scrounge it from my boyfriend's parents) and have clocked up quite few hours spent curled up in a duvet, binge-eating biscuits and drinking copious amount of tea.

Here are some of my favourites (and a not-so-fave) for you to watch if you haven't already.

The Crown


Controversially, I think the monarchy is one of the best things about our country and they are something for us to be proud of having in comparison to other countries in the world. Something I love more than the Royal Family? Matt Smith and Claire Foy portraying members of the Royal Family.

This is an easy watch on Netflix. Think Downton Abbey and Mr Selfridge, except with far less soap drama storylines. As far as I know, the timeline is historically accurate but embellished with character portrayals, so I've also found it pretty educational. Will definitely be a love/hate programme for some.


Jessica Jones (contains spoilers, sort of)


David Tennant's character absolutely scares me to my core. Anybody who watches this and doesn't feel the same - HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE? He kills people, by getting them to kill themselves in the most gruesome ways possible. Horrific.

On a more positive note, this had me absolutely hooked. Every episode I found myself on the edge of my seat. It has a sinister thriller feel to it with some good humour thrown in, similar to Gotham or Daredevil.

Give it a go, it definitely isn't your average superhero series.

Haters Back Off (again, maybe, sort of spoilers)


This was a must-watch for me, I love Colleen Ballinger and her character Miranda Sings. I was hugely intrigued to see the transition of a comedy YouTube channel to a TV series, particularly one that Netflix have signed up to add to their repertoire.

Although I found the first couple of episodes a bit difficult to get into, I am so glad I stuck it out and watched the characters and storyline develop. As an existing Miranda fan, I obviously had an advantage and probably understood some of the references much more than a newbie. I'd be interested to know if you were brand new to the series, did you enjoy it?

Oh and WARNING: THE LAST EPISODE WILL MAKE YOU CRY.

Gilmore Girls


On Twitter a couple of weeks back I mentioned I didn't really get the hype of GG and I never really watched it. I got bored not long after, flicked the pilot episode on Netflix and boom, all nostalgia hit me like a slap in the face. I'm a series in and I am embracing it until I get to the new episodes - I'm still holding out hope despite the numerous spoilers I've seen online (thanks, Twitter.)

If you're out on the road, feeling lonely and so cold...

Stranger Things


Do you remember when Making a Murderer came out on Netflix? There was CHAOS on the internet and then, when you finally watched the first episode, you became hooked and questioned how you were going to look at your life the same way ever again and became emotionally invested. Yeah? Well, this didn't happen with Stranger Things.

Don't get me wrong, I am glad I took the time to watch it and the ending was pretty entertaining, but overall it wasn't my cup of tea. I found it slow to begin with and the whole 'Goonies' style portrayal didn't make it for me, despite loving that film. What I will say however, is that I think the cast were superb. Millie Bobby Brown as Eleven is brilliant.

It's definitely coming at it from a good angle and a lot of fans have raved about the first season but sadly, not for me.


What have you been watching on Netflix recently?
Let me know what I should next add to my list...

leanne

x