Browsing Tag


#BEDM – Bank Holiday Weekend in the New Forest

By 29 May 2014 Life, Lifestyle, New Forest, Travel, United Kingdom
Foal getting up

So it turns out I couldn’t get any phone signal in the New Forest, so I couldn’t post over the weekend. The break over the weekend spoilt my Blog Every Day in May run and I’ve not got back into the swing of things at all.

Having said that, I think 23 days straight of writing a post every day is pretty good going. I know that posting every day isn’t going to work for me because I don’t have enough time to do the other things that go hand-in-hand with blogging, such as promoting the posts on social media and reading other people’s blogs. Plus, I think I’d rather spend longer on each post rather than rushing something out to meet a deadline.

So, back to the weekend…

Look at this cutie!
Cute foal in the New Forest
I must be daft or something but I seriously had no idea how many horses there are in the New Forest. I thought that there were small numbers that lived out in the wilds and you’d be lucky to see them. That idea very quickly went out the window as soon as we walked out of the cottage and up through the village. There were horses everywhere!

I don’t know if ponies have a ‘mating season’, either that or there’s something in the water, because they were a lot of foals around. And they are adorable. I love how their tails are fluffy.
Mother and baby heading towards me.
This lady looks ready to pop!
Very pregnant donkey
On Sunday, we drove to Burley, mainly because my sister wanted to visit the cider shop! The village centre is pretty and bustling. Happily, we stumbled across a food fair and I chose a particularly yummy scotch egg made with pork and chorizo. It was delicious. I’ve had a real thing for scotch eggs recently. I need to try making them some time.
Burley Stores, New Forest
In Burley, there’s a field just on the edge of the village that is not only used as a car park but is home to a herd of deer! We were going to go on a tractor-drawn trailer ride to spot deer but unfortunately, the tours aren’t running at the moment because a poacher shot one of the stags. But they didn’t kill the deer, instead it bolted, fell into the river and drowned. Sad as this is, I’m not sure how the two correlate.
Deer in the field - Burley, New Forest
Instead, we went on a shire horse wagon ride. This is one of the beautiful steeds, Digger.
Shire horse
All weekend I kept spotting gorgeous cottages that I’d love to live in. How about this lovely rose-covered cottage? Unfortunately, something like this would set you back a cool half a mil. Mmmm…only in my dreams!
Pretty rose covered cottage in the New Forest
In the delightful village of Beaulieu, whose main street is lined with gorgeous independent shops, there’s a garden centre. In this garden centre is a cafe where you can get a cream tea with the biggest scone ever! These pretty flowers adorned one of the tables in the cafe.
Lovely flowers in the garden centre cafe in Beaulieu

All in all, it was a lovely weekend. It’s a shame hubby was working so couldn’t come but it gave me the chance to catch up with my family. The cottage we stayed in was spacious and had a wonderful wood burner that smelled divine. I love the smell of wood smoke, it reminds me of camp fires. It also made me excited for our holiday later this year; the cottage we’ve booked in the Cairngorms has a wood burning stove.

If you haven’t been to the New Forest, I would recommend it. I had less than 3 days there so would definitely like to go back but not during the school holidays and not over a bank holiday! It was pretty hectic traffic-wise.

How was your bank holiday weekend?

Rachel x

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#BEDM – Off Topic

By 23 May 2014 Life, Lifestyle, Travel, United Kingdom
Tree stump. I'm off to the New Forest for the weekend!

Today’s prompt is ‘Date Night’ but I’m going off topic. Tomorrow I’m going to the New Forest for the weekend. My grandparents are renting a cottage with my auntie and cousin, and they invited us to go down.

Hubby’s working tomorrow so I’m going by myself. My sister’s going for the whole week, and my parents are coming over from France Sunday to Wednesday so it’s going to be proper little family reunion! I’ve not seen my parents since Christmas so I’m really looking forward to it, even if the weather’s going to be rubbish.

This evening I’ve had to pack and get ready for the weekend, which’ll start at 5am tomorrow because I have to get up for the 6am train! Because I can only go for the long weekend, I want to make the most of it. That train will get me to the New Forest at 9.30am, giving me the whole day with my family.

I don’t know what we’re going to be doing. I’ve packed for all eventualities. All in my 35l rucksack. I really don’t know how people take that size of rucksack backpacking long-term. Although, my walking boots do take up nearly half the pack and I wouldn’t take those backpacking.

My only trouble is I don’t know if I’m going to be able to take my laptop. So I’m going to have to try blogging from my phone. So apologies now if you don’t hear from me for a while!

Hope you all have a lovely bank holiday weekend. What are you up to?

Rachel x

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#BEDM – Out of the Comfort Zone – Festival OOTD

By 22 May 2014 Fashion, Lifestyle

Today, Rosalilium has challenged us to go out of our comfort zones as part of Blog Every Day in May. The timing was perfect because I’d just been contacted by New Look, asking if I would like to style some summer fashion items. So I’m posted my first (and possibly only!) OOTD!

Festival style summer look

OOTD - Denim shorts dungarees from New Look, t shirt from Primark, old mules from Next, sunglasses from Specsavers, flower headband from New Look worn as bracelet.

I’ve been craving a pair of dungarees for months! I think it’s because they remind me of my childhood. I had a pair of white denim dungarees back in about 1995. I knew the time would come that the clothes of my youth would come back into fashion but I didn’t think it would be so soon! I love these shorts dungarees because they’re perfect for summer and I’m planning on taking them to Blogstock 2014, the first blogging festival! Then I can just take a couple of t shirts and accessories to change up my look over the course of the weekend. The shorts do come up a little short for my liking. Weirdly, they looked longer on the model pictured online but then they’re a little tighter on me! I’m thinking of taking down the roll-ups and adding a broderie anglais trim to lengthen them a couple of inches.

I’m also wearing a bargain t shirt from Primark. I love their £3 t shirt table! This one says ‘I left my heart in this city’ on the front, which I think is really fitting for someone who loves travel, like me. It has twisted slightly in the wash but for the price I’m not complaining!

The mules / sandals, whatever you call them, are old and from Next.

Flower headband from New Look worn as bracelet.

To complete my festival style outfit I chose a flower headband. Unfortunately, I think it looks a little bit silly on my head, so I wrapped it around my wrist to wear as a cute bracelet. What do you think?

Wearing shorts dungarees at Leeds Castle

I didn’t just wear this outfit to have my photo taken in the garden, oh no! I wore it all day at Leeds Castle. Apart from the sandals, because they’re not very comfy to walk in. I swapped them for my trusty and holey Converse.

Lillies in the garden

I couldn’t resist adding in a pic of my lovely lillies growing in my garden. 🙂 They’re so pretty!

Shop this look

Blue denim shorts dungarees
Flower headband

If you’re going to a festival this summer, take a look at New Look’s festival shop.

If you’re a blogger, you should really consider coming to Blogstock! I promise I’ve not been paid to say this, but I think it’s going to be epic! The tickets are very reasonably priced, cheaper than many one day blogger conferences, and it’s a two day festival in a country park in Hertfordshire. I’m going on my own so it would be great to find some fellow solo attendees to camp near so I’m not such a billy no mates.

Rachel x

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#BEDM – Workspace

By 21 May 2014 Life, Lifestyle
My desk

This is my desk at work! It’s the only place I’m tidy. I like to keep my workspace as free from clutter as possible as I read that it serves as a distraction.

It’s actually tidier now than in this photo because we had a move around at work this week so I’m now on a different desk, but the moving process has seen the folder going in my drawers with the bits and pieces on the artificial grass sample.

Do you like my mug? I’ve been a Hello Kitty lover for about 15 years. It’s frustrating that it has now become so mainstream. When my two year old cousin has a Hello Kitty tracksuit I look a bit daft with my ‘matching’ umbrella!


The Chinese cat went in the bin! It’s never worked so it’s been a little bit depressing to look at. The cuddly Android is still there!

At home, my workspace is the sofa! I’m lounging here right now writing this post. The picture below is from a portable office blog post I did to enter a Curry’s competition.

My portable office - I work on my laptop on my lap #portableoffice

One day I hope to have a home office. I’ve been thinking about renovating a vintage caravan to use for holidays but hubby refuses to be one of those people towing at 40mph that you have to follow down the road getting increasingly frustrated. So my idea now is to convert a caravan into my own girly haven that I can use as an office. To get this, we’d have to have somewhere to keep it so this dream won’t become reality until we have our own house. But for now I have Pinterest!

Rachel x

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#BEDM – Being Adventurous

By 20 May 2014 Life, Lifestyle, Outdoors
My tent - ready for adventure

This year I’m planning on doing lots of adventurous things. I love a challenge and testing myself.

Last year I took part in the National Lottery Anniversary Run, which gave me the unique opportunity of running on the track inside the Olympic stadium, and then I completed a 5k run around Howletts Zoo.  I didn’t ‘run’ either of them properly because I’m not fit enough! I managed to jog/walk my way round. This year I’m forgetting about the running and embracing my walking boots!

Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge

Coast to coast path near Keld, Yorkshire Dales National Park

This is my first adventure of the year and it’s part of my company’s efforts to raise £10,000 for the charity Combat Stress. Combat Stress provides free medical and rehabilitation services to British forces veterans suffering with mental illnesses such as PTSD, and anxiety. I’ve taken on the responsibility of organising the trip and 11 of us are travelling up to the Yorkshire Dales after work on a Friday at the end of July ready to start walking early Saturday morning. It’s a 25 mile walk that takes in the three peaks of the National Park: Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen-y-Ghent. The aim is to complete the trek within 12 hours. We’re getting some practice in beforehand. A couple of weeks ago we completed a 9 mile walk in the local area, which was pretty knackering! I’ve never walked 25 miles before, it’s going to be tough. But then, that is the idea! If you feel inclined, you can sponsor me on my Just Giving page 🙂

Camping holiday in the Lake District

This year’s holiday is taking us to the Lake District for a week, followed by a week in the Scottish Highlands. We’re camping, not in the wilds but at a Haven park! We’ll be sleeping under canvas in our own tent, which is quite an adventure for hubby as he’s not as keen on camping as me. Last time we went camping the tent fell down in the middle of the night! It wasn’t the tent’s fault; the soil was very sandy and it was too windy. The pegs that come with tents are not designed for these conditions! This year I’ll be investing in some decent V shaped pegs that are more secure.

Neither of us have been to the Lake District before so we’ll be doing lots of exploring. I definitely want to visit Windermere, and perhaps Beatrix Potter’s house. We also might hire mountain bikes in Grizedale Forest.

The Cairngorms National Park

To make up for the week camping, we’re spending the next week in a cosy cottage in the Cairngorms. The only way I could get hubby in the tent was to promise him a hot tub for the following week! The cottage is in the middle of nowhere and looks so cute. I’m so looking forward to it. While up in Scotland we’ll be doing lots of walking, maybe visiting a herd of reindeer and tasting some whisky!


What are you doing that’s adventurous this year?

Rachel x

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