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A New Project… Chapterthirty

By 1 March 2015 General, Life, Lifestyle

It’s been a bit quiet over here at recently. That’s because I’ve been busy in the early stages of my new project, Chapterthirty.

This blog is very much a personal one, whereas Chapterthirty will be a magazine style blog inspired by the likes of The Everygirl and GenTwenty. I couldn’t find something similar that’s British and targets women hurtling towards their thirties so I decided to create my own.

We ( this is the theoretical ‘we’ at the moment!) will be writing about careers, homes, money and travel. I’m imagining each reader to be a bit like me really. Not really sure which career path is best for them – or if they do – how to get there, wishing they knew more about financial stuff, hoping to buy their own home sometime soon and also dreaming of using every bit of annual leave to its fullest.

I’ve found it hard to find this sort of information all in one place, packaged up in a way that I want to read it. Blogs tend to either be about travel, homes or careers, and finance blogs just seem to be a bit boring really. I want to bring all these things that matter to me together in one place as they form the cornerstone of the next chapter in my life. I’m hoping I’m not the only person interested in furthering their career, buying a house, making the most of their money and going on holiday, so these women with shared interests are who Chapterthirty is for.

The Chapterthirty mission statement:

Chapterthirty wants to inspire women in their mid to late twenties to turn their dreams into reality, whether that’s finding the perfect career, homeownership or a round the world trip. You can achieve anything you set your mind to.

Don’t be scared of the prospect of turning 30, it’s just the start of a new chapter.

I’m looking for contributors

Whether you have some practical advice or an inspirational story to tell, if you can relate to our mission statement, Chapterthirty needs you! Email (that’s me! :-D) if you’re interested.

At the moment, I’m at the stage of writing blog posts, ‘about’ pages, contributor guidelines, and so on. I’m also trying to decide on a theme. After spending weeks coming up with the name, the next hardest thing has to be choosing a WordPress theme. I have a shortlist at the moment and think there’s a favourite but I need to earn a few pennies first before buying the theme; it’ll be the biggest investment so far.

My aim is to run Chapterthirty like a business. There’ll be advertising space available, hopefully some brand collaborations, and one day I hope to be able to pay contributors. I’d love to be one of those full-time bloggers so that I can dedicate all my efforts to this project. At the moment it kind of feels like work is in the way!

To begin with it’s going to be a lot of hard graft and the only thing I can offer guest bloggers is an author bio with links to their own blog or website and social media profiles, and of course an outlet for their creativity. Perhaps you’re a beauty blogger who would like to write about travel but don’t want deviate from your main theme on your own blog? Chapterthirty can give you an outlet and perhaps we can share some visitors.

So don’t be concerned if I go ‘off radar’ for a while. I’m not really going anywhere just hiding out over on instead! If you visit before the site’s live, apologies for how it looks. I promise it’s going to look awesome. At least I bloody hope so!

Wish me luck and don’t forget to get in touch if you fancy writing for Chapterthirty.

Rachel x

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Hubby’s Birthday Weekend

By 3 February 2015 Eating Out, Food, General, Life, Lifestyle
Hubby's birthday weekend -

Last weekend was hubby’s birthday. He turned 29, so he’s caught up with me for a while! He likes to joke that I’m a cougar, but I don’t think it counts if you’re only three months older! Since his birthday was on the Friday I took the day off work so we could spend the day together.

As it turns out we didn’t really do too much. I had my last counselling session in the morning and then we popped over to his parents so he could blow the candles out on his cakes. I thought it would be a bit weird if we did that at home, just the two of us!

The cupcakes I baked were amazing. I followed a recipe for Cosmopolitan Cupcakes from Peggy Porschen’s Boutique Baking book. They were orange flavour with boozy cranberries and copious amounts of Cointreau. Not the manliest birthday cakes ever, but they went down very well.

In the evening, we joined my sister and our friends for a birthday meal at a new burger place that has recently opened in Folkestone. Big Boys Fine Burger Company has taken over a building in the Old High Street and it’s a good job we booked because it was packed!

Le Garcon Francais

Le Garcon Francais

This was my choice of burger, Le Garçon Français. It was a 6 oz beef patty with bacon, huge chunks of brie, lettuce and wholegrain mustard in a brioche bun. C’etait delicieux! Sis opted for El Chico Mexicano, which had guacamole, tortillas and chipotle ketchup in, one of our friends had the BBFC Mother Clucker, a burger with fried chicken in it too, and the three boys each chose the signature Fat Boy. Beef patty, pulled pork, bacon, cheese, lettuce and tomato.  Epic.

El Chico Mexicano and The Fat Boy

For sides, hubby, sis and I shared ginormous onion rings, amazing smoked bacon beans and homemade coleslaw.

Big Boys sides

It was an awesome meal and I was so stuffed but determined to give one of their milkshakes a go. Having told everyone at work that I didn’t like milkshake (forgetting that I’d previously happily supped a KFC Crushem) I realised that actually I love milkshake! But only ones without fake flavours. This one was rather special. Behold, the Bakewell tart milkshake…



From this point I decided that all desserts should actually be liquidised. They’re so much easier to consume! We finished the night with a drink at Wetherspoon’s and were home in bed by 11 pm. It’s a crazy life we oldies lead!


On Saturday we drove over to Canterbury to visit The Beaney House of Art and Knowledge where they’ve just opened a new temporary exhibition about Enid Blyton. Celebrating her life and works, Mystery, Magic and Midnight Feasts is a wonderful gallery filled with transcripts, illustrations, diaries and even the author’s old typewriter.

I grew up with Enid Blyton, from watching and reading Noddy, to sharing the Famous Five’s adventures and wishing I went to boarding school so I could have midnight feasts and play lacrosse. The exhibition brought back lots of memories, and it was great to see that young children today are still enjoying her books. My only regret is that I’m too big to go down the slide and wear the dressing up outfits!

Unfortunately, there was no photography allowed inside the exhibition so I’ve borrowed the below picture from the Beaney’s Facebook page.

Thank you to Annabelle at Canterbury Museums and Galleries for inviting me along.

We’d booked a table at Pizza Express for lunch but had time to kill so found ourselves in Costa. I also did a little bit of shopping, purchasing a new lanyard for my work pass from Cath Kidston, and of course I had to pop into Lush and grab a unicorn horn bubble bar (because I’d seen them all over the internet and wanted one!) and some solid toothpaste tablet thingys because I thought they’d be handy for when I fly to France in the summer as I’m going hand luggage only. They’re rose flavour so that’ll be interesting!

Gold chocolate!

Gold chocolate!

Massive chai latte


Waiting for pizza

Waiting for pizza

The birthday boy!

The birthday boy!

Emilia pizza at Pizza Express

Emilia pizza at Pizza Express

Canterbury purchases

Canterbury purchases

Obligatory unicorn horn selfie!

Obligatory unicorn horn selfie!


A lazy day for me but hubby went to help his friend give his car a good scrub and polish up. They then both came back for dinner, which was just an easy all in one pan roast chicken pieces with vegetables.

We also watched the BluRay of The Equalizer that I bought hubby for his birthday, which was a pretty good film if a little gory in parts, before watching Top Gear. I made up for all the testosterone by watching Call the Midwife afterwards!

So that’s pretty much my weekend! Hubby had a good birthday now I need to decide what I want for my birthday (my 30th’s in October – eek!) and start dropping some not-so-subtle hints!

What would you want for your 30th birthday? Tell me in the comments below!

Rachel x

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Instagrammers I’m Loving Right Now

By 1 February 2015 General, Life, Lifestyle, Photography
Taking photos with an iPhone. Instagrammers I'm loving right now -

I’m quite a visual person, so naturally I do like Instagram. I’m always trying to find new people to follow so keep reading those ‘who to follow’ articles in the hope to stumbling across an Instagrammer I adore.

So to give a little back, and hopefully help you to find new Instagrammers to follow too, here’s whose photos I’m loving in my feed right now.

The Everygirl

For inspirational life photos follow The Everygirl

A photo posted by The Everygirl (@theeverygirl_) on

The Everygirl is an awesome website. My favourite is the home tour section, mostly because I’m nosy! This site is for young women and it’s full of inspiring career profiles, finance advice and the aforementioned home tours. If only my house looked anything like any of the featured women’s fabulous pads.


For the prettiest Instagram you’ve ever seen, have a gander at Becky’s. Her milkbubbletea blog is her life in white.

A photo posted by Becky ♡ (@milkbubbleteablog) on

I’m too messy to even consider taking photos around my house but her pictures are just so lovely. And her little sausage dog Oscar is adorable.


For Devonshire life and cute doggies, Michelleoutsidelondon doesn’t disappoint.

Expect country walks, cakes, cups of tea and plenty of cute spaniels!


For all the puppies it has to be furdeforce.

This is the dedicated Instagram account for Fleur and Mike de Force’s gorgeous pets; Piglet, Treacle, Squidge, Beaver and Growler. I personally could never see too many pictures of Piglet. I’d love a little sausage dog, I think they’re so cute!

A Beautiful Mess

For brightly coloured, home and food inspiration it has to be A Beautiful Mess.

Their website inspires me to want to make loads of cool shit for my house. Why have a house that looks the same as everyone else’s when you can make it your own?

Do you have any recommendations for awesome Instagrammers to follow? Please leave me links in the comments!

Rachel x

p.s. Follow me on Instagram too if you like!

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Day Out in Brighton – Lomography Style

By 6 September 2014 General, Life, Lifestyle, Photography
Brighton beach from the pier

In the spring, I was lucky enough to be invited to Brighton by Pinterest. They’d arranged a workshop with Lomography UK. As hubby will attest, I love taking photographs. I get that from my Dad. I grew up in front of the camera, loving the attention until I was about fourteen.

Pinterest Pin

So I got the 6am train to get to Brighton on time. I only just made it! We were introduced to our cameras for the morning. The lovely La Sardina lomography camera. It’s a simple film camera based on a sardine can, hence the name. They come in a variety of designs, this was my loan camera:

La Sardina lomography camera

Two lovely ladies from Lomography UK explained how to use the cameras and helped us to load the film correctly. It had been a while! We were then sent on our way to capture Brighton in all its glory.

I attended the workshop alone as hubby was working. Luckily, I was adopted by a group of friends who invited me to tag alone. We spent our time along the beach and promenade, enjoying the sunny weather.

Carousel at Brighton beach

Smoke House Brighton beach

Brighton Rock

The pinnacle of the day was lunch at the Palm Court fish and chip restaurant on the Pier. The meal was on Pinterest (thanks guys!) and it was delicious! I had battered cod and chips with mushy peas.

Fish and chips

I’d never used a lomography camera, and to be honest I had to Google what lomography was. It’s basically a really simple point and shoot, manual camera with a fixed lens. I really had no idea how my pictures were turning out, which is something you get so used to with a digital camera. Only having 36 shots is a bit restricting but it makes you think about the composition more.  I only liked a few of the photographs taken with the lomography camera but I think it’s probably a case of practice makes perfect. Not sure I’ll get a lomo camera though as the La Sardina is one of the cheaper ones, and it costs £50!

Growing up, I would take two 24 exposure films with me on holiday. For two weeks! Nowadays, I can take over 100 shots a day. Its pretty crazy really. Perhaps during our holiday this month (yay!) I’ll try and think more about what pictures I’m taking and then perhaps they’ll be less editing to do once we get home.

The day was really enjoyable, of course I spent the afternoon shopping before taking the nearly three hour trip back home. There’s also a write up on the Pinterest blog. You might spot me in a couple of the pictures! I can only apologise that it’s taken me so long to write about this experience.

Have you tried lomography? What did you think?

Rachel x

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#BEDM – A Day in the Life of…Me!

By 16 May 2014 General, Life, Lifestyle
A Day in the Life Collage

So today’s topic is pretty safe explanatory: a day in the life. It was suggested that we take a photo on the hour, every hour but when busy at work that’s pretty impractical. However, I did take a few photos during the day, so here goes!

This is me before going out the door to work. I’m am not a morning person. How tired do I look?
Before work

This is my desk! Do you like my desktop wallpaper? I love mini pigs <3
My desk

At lunchtime I decided to pop out for a wander. I get really cold when I’m sitting still so getting some exercise really helps me to warm up.
Castle Hill Avenue

Popping out at lunchtime

I walked to The Leas where this is the lovely view over the beach and out to sea. When it’s a lovely day like it was today we could almost be on the Med!
Mermaid Beach, Folkestone

Lunchtime walk, The Leas, Folkestone

I decided to check out Folkestone’s newest cafe, Follies. It pretty cool in there. Not only do they do hot drinks and cakes but they have a lunch menu and most of the decor is for sale! I ordered a latte and it came in a glass, just like in Australia.
Cheeky coffee at Follies

After work I hung out in the office for a bit with my friends enjoying a cold beer, which I’m trying to teach myself to like.
Post work beer

Having made lamb burgers with halloumi and salad for dinner (sorry no pic – I was hungry!) I’m now sat on the sofa writing my blog. Hubby has just watched his programme, Marvel Agents of Shield.
About to get blogging

Tomorrow, we’re clearing the garden but hopefully that will involve some sitting in it enjoying the promised sunshine! Our garden’s a bit of a sun trap 🙂

How was your day?

Rachel x

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