Browsing Tag

Blog Every Day in May

5 blogs to inspire twenty-something women

By 6 May 2015 Lifestyle

Today’s prompt for Blog Every Day in May is ‘share the blog love’ so I’m going to share with you some of the blogs that I visit the most. I love reading these blogs and feel inspired to either make things, cook, or just generally ready to get up and at ’em!

1 – A Beautiful Mess

Elsie and Emma are sisters living in America’s Midwest. A Beautiful Mess is much bigger than a blog, it’s a whole lifestyle company, but on the blog you can find home decor inspiration, recipes and crafts. I’ve never actually made anything that they’ve posted a DIY on but one day I will! I just have a feeling it won’t come out the same…

Fancy customising your shower curtain? Statement shower curtain DIY.

2 – The Everygirl

The Everygirl was the blog that inspired me to create Chapterthirty. It features interviews with awesome career girls, fabulous home tours and loads more. Its downside is that it’s US-centric, which is why I wanted to create a resource for British women. I haven’t been able to find anything similar to The Everygirl in the UK.

Check out this New York apartment home tour. Perhaps you can channel a bit of the ol’ Big Apple in your flat.

3 – The Travel Hack

The lovely Monica is living her dream. She’s a full time blogger who gets to travel the world plus she’s in the process of renovating a house and she’s a new mum to the gorgeous George. Basically, her life is pretty appealing to me.

Here’s a great post about how to travel the world with a 9-5 job.

4 – IHeart Organizing

I actually stumbled across Jen’s blog while researching an article about storage for work. I fell in love immediately. I’m such a messy person who would love to be organised, I’m just not really programmed that way. Jen has three boys and her home is so beautiful. I’d love to have a pantry just so I could organise it!

These DIY cereal box drawer dividers are such a brilliant way to organise your kitchen or desk drawers.

5 – Fleur de Force

Here’s another girl with an amazing life. Fleur and her gorgeous hubby Mike live in a wonderful house in the countryside with their cute puppies. I’m definitely having a cocker spaniel once I buy a house. She’s best known for her YouTube channels. My favourite is her vlog channel as I love the insight into her life that you get.

Here’s Fleur’s latest vlog where she has breakfast with Bobbi Brown.

Who are your favourite bloggers?

Come back tomorrow for ‘home sweet home’.

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Frozen churros for cheats

By 5 May 2015 Lifestyle, Money

This Cinco de Mayo celebrate with a tasty (and a little bit naughty!) treat that’s surprisingly cheap. The other week, Lidl were celebrating the tastes of Spain and had a great range of Iberian goodies available including these frozen churros.

If you’ve never had them, churros are like strings of donuts that are deep fried and tend to be eaten with coffee or hot chocolate for breakfast. You can also buy them from street food stalls to enjoy at any time.

The last time I had churros was at Broadstairs Food Festival, and the time before that was in Mallorca. I love them and was very excited to find them in the freezer section at Lidl.

Rather than having to make the dough and pipe it into the fryer, now all you need to do is grab however many you want out of the freezer and either deep or shallow fry them.

Lidl churros

Frozen churros from Lidl

Heat oil to cook churros

Shallow fry the churros

Churros with cinnamon sugar and chilli flakes

I prepared a simple cinnamon sugar to sprinkle over the churros and because it’s Cinco de Mayo I added a few dried chilli flakes.

Churros top view


What frozen gems have you found lately? Share your secret in the comments. I promise I won’t tell anyone….

This post forms part of the Blog Every Day in May challenge. Tomorrow’s prompt is ‘share the blog love’. Follow along with all my BEDM posts here.

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Say no to guilty pleasures

By 4 May 2015 Lifestyle

There are lots of things I enjoy doing but I don’t feel guilty about any of them. Life is too short to spend time beating yourself up about doing something that brings you pleasure. Whether it’s watching Eastenders or eating the remains of the raw cake batter left in the mixing bowl, do what you love. Stop worrying about what other people might think.


I love food and I know that I eat too much of the wrong things – such as scotch eggs. I love scotch eggs. Yes, I’d prefer to be slimmer and I know I need to eat more healthily but I think diets where you feel guilty for going off track once or twice are more harmful. If you feel guilty for eating that piece of chocolate cake I think you’re more likely to think, ‘sod it, I’ve failed at my diet so I might as well forget about it’ – think of it as a reward. There’s no harm in having that piece of cake – just don’t eat cake all day. ‘All in moderation’ should be your mantra.

Lay ins

I love a lay in. My perfect Sunday involves lying in bed watching Sunday Brunch. My husband usually wakes up early and if I’m lucky – which is most Sundays – he’ll bring me tea and toast around 10am – love him. Some people think that staying in bed half the day is a waste of the day and, yes, they may be right but after a week at work I think I deserve it.

Scouring the web for houses I can’t afford to buy

I’m pretty obsessed with browsing Rightmove and Zoopla for our future house. I realise that none of the houses will be available to buy in 3 years’ time when we can actually look properly but I like seeing what we can get for our money, which areas we could live in and what sort of houses I like.

Wearing frilly socks

It turns out I’m actually 5 years old. I don’t remember ever having frilly socks when I was little so I’m making up for it now. Even if they’re not on show, I enjoy knowing that I’m wearing them. Is that weird?

I don’t think anyone should feel guilty about their pleasures. As long as what you’re doing isn’t hurting anyone and it’s not illegal then what’s there to feel guilty about?

Do you agree with my thoughts on guilty pleasures? Let me know in the comments below.

This post forms part of the Blog Every Day in May challenge. Tomorrow’s prompt is ‘Cinco de Mayo’. Follow along with all my BEDM posts here.

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Why getting enough sleep is important for your career

By 3 May 2015 Career, Lifestyle

Of all the things that you think could affect your career, getting enough sleep probably isn’t the first thing that pops into your head. But it turns out that sleep deprivation can not only be bad for your health but not so good for your job prospects either.

Sleep your way to a healthy life?

Not getting the right amount of sleep has been found to be bad for your health. The US-based National Sleep Federation has recently updated its sleep duration recommendations and The Guardian has reported that, “In making their recommendations, the experts [at the National Sleep Federation] took into account the health benefits, but also the risks, associated with sleep. Too little sleep over several nights leaves you tired, unable to concentrate, depressed, anxious and, eventually, if it continues, an increased risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity. Too much sleep is associated with much the same problems.”

Sleeping your way to the top 2.0

If you’re going to progress in your career you’ll want to be at the top of your game. This means being able to concentrate, stay calm under pressure and preferably not yawning during meetings. Travis Bradberry, writing for Forbes, believes that not getting enough sleep could be bad for your career. He lists some of the side effects from missing sleep as:

  • Decreased creativity
  • Irritability
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Increased stress
  • Memory lapse or loss
  • Impaired moral judgement
  • Symptoms similar to ADHD

None of these sound conducive to a successful day at the office, do they?

Don’t burn the candle at both ends

It’s easy to suggest making sure you get enough sleep, but what is the magic number? Most adults need 7 – 9 hours of sleep each night. To work out how much you need will probably be a case of trial and error. On a day when you don’t have work in the morning try going to bed when you’re sleepy, rather than fighting it, and don’t set an alarm. Work out how long you slept for and try it again the next night. If you need to get up for work, try setting an alarm just in case. It might take a while before you’ve got it down but eventually you’ll hopefully be able to work in tune with your own body clock and you can wave goodbye to mornings of being rudely awoken by your alarm.

Not fighting your tiredness is easier said than done. Hell, I’m doing it right now. You might think it’s more productive to stay up into the early hours to do more work but more often than not this is actually counterproductive. Make sure you get enough sleep so that you’re ready and raring to go in the morning. A company I really admire is Buffer. One of their values is live smarter, not harder; they want their team members to ‘value waking up fresh over working that extra hour’. Buffer understands the need for rest and relaxation.

It’s your responsibility to look after your health. If making sure you get sufficient shut-eye is going to help stop you from succumbing to diabetes, high blood pressure, etc, then what’s to lose?

Do you have any relaxation tips? What’s your favourite way to unwind and get ready for sleep? Tell us in the comments below.

Tomorrow’s prompt for the Blog Every Day in May challenge is ‘guilty pleasures’. Come back tomorrow to find out what mine are.

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Stop having a boring life, have an adventure

By 2 May 2015 Lifestyle

Doing the same thing day in, day out can get a little tedious. Nobody wants to have a staid life. What stories would you have to tell the grandchildren if you never do anything interesting? There’s a time and a place for playing it safe, but in general, life isn’t.

Life is an adventure

To prevent you from having a boring life, consider each day as a new adventure. What’s going to happen today that’s different from yesterday? If you feel yourself slipping into a monotonous routine, shake it up! Change something up and create an adventure.

It could be as simple as going to a walk during your lunch hour and trying a new cafe, or choosing something off the menu you’ve never eaten before. You barely need to edge an inch outside of your comfort zone for something to feel new and exciting.

On Thursday I went to London for a work seminar. Before getting the train home I visited the massive Primark on Oxford Street. I couldn’t face the crowded tube from Oxford Circus back to St Pancras so walked instead. 2 and a half miles through a part of London I’d not seen before. I love walking through the city and it’s something I hardly ever get to do nowadays. Seeing new sights is an adventure.

Take stock of how exciting your life actually is

All the things we can take for granted as grown ups are actually part of the greatest adventure of all – life. Changing jobs, moving to a new town, dating, getting married, buying a house, having a child. All of these are huge adventures. You don’t have to fly to New Zealand and jump out of a plane to be adventurous. In fact, the word adventure comes from the Latin adventurus ‘about to happen’.

Change your mindset and turn the mundane into the extraordinary. What’s about to happen in your life? It’s all part of the adventure.

This post forms part of the Blog Every Day in May challenge. Tomorrow’s prompt is ‘self care Sunday’. Follow along with all my BEDM posts here.

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