Stronger

Image made using the ‘A Beautiful Mess’ app & the ‘Color Story’ app.

I’m taking part in Ali Edwards ‘One Little Word’ again this year. I tried it last year for the first time and found it really interesting. I was surprised how much I took hold of the word and although I didn’t achieve everything I thought I would with it, I’m happy with the changes I’ve made and I plan to keep hold of that it while I take on this year’s word.

Last year’s word was ‘Stronger’ and I hoped to become stronger in lots of different ways. The most important thing I hoped to gain from ‘One Little Word’ was to become stronger mentally and comfortable staying in the house overnight on my own. It took some time but I finally got there and now I actually enjoy having the house to myself. This was a HUGE accomplishment for me. The second thing I wanted was to become physically stronger, fitter and healthier.  I have a long, long way to go on that but I’ve made some progress. I try to go swimming regularly and I still love chocolate and McDonalds when I’m hungover and drink waaaaay too much diet coke but I’m marginally better than I was.I’ve definitely become stronger as an individual person and I enjoy my own company more and I like the idea of being single and not worried about anyone else. I’d like to think I’m doing okay as a friend and I’m there for my friends as much as I can when they need me. I need to work more on the family bit, I could probably have more patience in that area. I suppose the people closet to us can end up on the wrong end of our bad moods. I think I’m definitely more positive than I was but I think that’s down to being happier in my life and doing more things that I enjoy.

I definitely didn’t build a stronger blog and kind of flaked on it completely. I also didn’t become better at my job.  These things needing more work have helped me to choose this year’s word. Stay tuned to find out what 2016’s word will be.  You can check out my post on 2015’s word here.

Have you tried ‘One Little Word’? How did your 2015 word go?

Yes Please

Amy Poehler is fricking hilarious. I lost count of how many times I laughed out loud whilst reading this book.

All I was expecting from this book was to read something over the Christmas that wasn’t heavy and was entertaining but I actually learned some very valuable lessons from it.

The lessons I learned from ‘Yes Please’:

  1. A good book should make you feel both happy and sad at different times. When a comedian writes a book that does this I’m more impressed because their default  is to make you laugh.
  2. It’s very important to write down the little details about your children, and it’s very important to do it regularly. The small details Amy writes about her children are so important but they’re also easily forgotten as time goes on and their personalities change. I don’t have children but if I ever do I’ve learned how important it is to find a way to record the little things. This goes for other important people in your life too.
  3. It’s never too late to apologise and mean it.
  4. Writing a book is not easy.
  5. You don’t have to stay in a job that you don’t enjoy or stay with a bad boyfriend.
  6. I rely on technology waaaay too much. I should do something about that but I probably won’t.

2015 was a great year and these were my highlights:

January:

1. My cousin Louise’s hen night and wedding 

2. Visiting some of my lovely family in Exeter, Devon

3. Visits from my godson Lorenzo from England

4. Galway for a night with the girls 

Jan 1

January 2015

May:

5. Inishbofin with the mammies and daughters

6. Our friend’s Richard & Jacqueline’s wedding

7. Harry Potter Studios in Leavesden

May 2015

May 2015

June:

8. Liverpool with the girls

9. A day trip to Belfast with Dad, Marian & Mark

June & July 2015

June & July 2015

July:

10. Paolo Nutini concert in Marlay Park

11. Ed Sheeran concert in Croke Park

 

August:

12. Calpe in Spain for our friend’s Bud & Suzanne’s wedding

13. Visiting the Choctaw monument in Cork

14.  Fethard-On-Sea for the dog’s holiday with some family & friends

August 2015

August 2015

August 2015

August 2015

September:

15. Electric Picnic

September 2015

September 2015

November:

16. Stephen’s graduation

17. Ireland  qualifying for the 2016 Euro’s versus Bosnia & Herzegovina in the Aviva Stadium 

November 2015

November 2015

December:

18. New York trip with friends

19. My friend Kiara returning from Australia after over a year 

20. The Riptide Movement gig in Whelan’s

21. 12 Pubs of Christmas in Dublin City (well, the second 6 pubs of Christmas)

22. The girl’s Kris Kindle night as a 5 piece group (there was only 4 last year)

23. 2fm Xmas Ball concert in the 3Arena

24. Christmas Day drinks with extended family, followed by Christmas dinner with immediate family

25. Lots of  festive get-togethers with friends and family

26. New Years Eve with friends in Emma’s new house

December 2015

December 2015

December 2015

December 2015

Here’s to a great 2016…

2015

Last year I wrote a similar post about my December plans. It’s probably my favourite month of the year. I love Christmas and I feel that the Christmas cheer starts the minute December does. I don’t like to engage in it too much before December but the odd little bit sneaks in. I just started my shopping this past weekend and I’ve bought my first present. So my plans for December are:

  1. Wish my friend Emsy a happy birthday today. Second last of the group to turn 28.
  2. My mam’s birthday is the tomorrow & we’re planning on going to see the Hunger Games at some stage this week.
  3. Think of ideas for what I might like for Christmas. My family always appreciate ideas, as do I.
  4. Take a trip to New York with some of my friends for shopping, drinking & soaking up the Christmas spirit. I can’t wait. I’ve only been once before but I love New York.
  5. Welcome my lovely friend Kiara and her little family home from Australia on the 9th after over a year. I still can’t believe they’re coming home and CANNOT wait to see them.
  6. Go to see the Riptide Movement in Whelan’s on the 11th.
  7. Possibly take part in The 12 Pubs of Christmas on the 12th. I haven’t done it before so I’ll decide closer to the time.
  8. Plenty of Christmas shopping.
  9. Christmas nails…it’s ridiculous how much I look forward to them.
  10. Christmas dinner & drinks with my friends from work/college.
  11. Kris Kindle night with my girls. A few drinks in one of our houses swapping presents followed by a night out.
  12. Go to the 2FM concert on the 23rd in the 3 Arena. There are lots of different acts playing including Hozier, The Riptide Movement (again! Stalking much?) and Gavin James. I’m really excited to see Gavin James. I should have seen him twice this year already but keep missing him, so hopefully third times a charm.
  13. Wrapping my presents.
  14. Enjoy drinking, eating and generally being merry.
  15. Spending Christmas Day with my lovely family.

Anyone else planning out their December?

Dogs

Original…another dog photo. They’re just so damn cute though!

We don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in Ireland, obviously but I love the idea of sharing what you’re thankful for. So today I’m thankful for:

  • Amazing friends and family that always have my back.
  • The roof over my head
  • My warm bed
  • Food in the fridge
  • Two dogs who love to snuggle on the sofa on the cold nights. They’re amazing when I want company that doesn’t talk, which is often
  • Weekends off work to do what I like with
  • A lie in at the weekend
  • A job I enjoy (most of the time)
  • Waking up without a hangover
  • The ability to learn and people to learn from
  • My right to vote
  • An great year which was  filled with ups and downs, laughter, challenges and lots of fun!
Step 1

Step 1: Lay all of the items out exactly as you want them to look on a surface roughly the same size as the wall.

Step 2

Step 2: cover each item with a piece of paper of the same size

Step 3

Step 3: Add the pieces of paper to the wall based on where you want your frames etc, to go. Add your nail marks with a pen, Add your nails and…

Final step

There you have it….your new gallery wall.

I’ve wanted a gallery wall for so long but kept putting it off in case it went terribly wrong and looked ridiculous. you can’t undo holes in a wall you know?! I’ve been gathering frames and pictures and things for the last while so I decided to bite the bullet and get it done. I actually really enjoyed the process. It was really fun. I wouldn’t have known where to start without one of my favorite blogs – A Beautiful Mess. They wrote a blog post a couple of years ago about styling a corner gallery and I followed their lead. You can check their post out here

If you follow those steps, or even just base it on my photos above, it’s a pretty easy thing to do and it has completely brightened up my bedroom to have all of my favourite people (and pets) on my wall.

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imageReading… The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (a.k.a J.K. Rowling). It’s taking me an absolute lifetime to get through it because I seem to keep falling asleep after 3 pages.

Watching… 90210. I wanted something that was easy watching for a couple of weeks & now I’m kind of hooked.

Listening to… Some 90s cheese, The Beatles & The Riptide Movement.

Trying… Meditation. I went to a class for the first time last week and loved it. I’ll be signing up for more in September.

Drinking… Diet Coke as usual but I’ve been trying infused water lately. Next up…berry.

Scrapping… Catching up with my Project Life album. I was WAY behind. I’m getting there though.

Enjoying… Having the summer off work, bright warm days & and peony season.

Hating… The dog hair. My dogs are shedding like crazy with the warmer weather.

Going to… See Ed Sheeran in concert on Friday.

Looking forward to… New York in December.

Savings Jar

Argh! I hate it when a plan doesn’t come together. I was starting to lose faith in whether the Create 52 project was even going to really get started, never mind get finished and then I thought…maybe I’m over thinking this! I went back to the drawing board and thought about what the purpose of Create 52 really was and the purpose was to encourage me to do creative things more often. Life is busy and that’s not an excuse but I still want to be creative. So sometimes my creative activities will be small things but I’m going to share them anyway. The best part of this whole project is that when I rushed to put the idea together, I didn’t set a time limit in writing, so obviously I had a year in my head because there’s 52 weeks in a year but realising that probably isn’t possible doesn’t mean I have to give up on the whole project.

Anyway, onwards and upwards. I’ve had a big old ugly plastic money box for about 6 years or more and it burst at the bottom a couple of weeks ago so I (with a lil help from my friends, okay family) counted the money and bagged it to lodge it into my bank account. Now I have to tell you, I was so grateful that ugly old money box was gone but then I had nowhere to save my money. BING! Light bulb moment! I’m sort of obsessed with jars (as in I can lose HOURS of my day checking Pinterest for cool jar ideas)  so I went to IKEA (duh!) and bought a big  jar. The I added some map alpha stickers that say ‘Adventure Fund’ and wallah….new savings jar. Because let’s face it, all anyone really wants to save for is to travel the world. My new rule is that every Friday any change that I have goes in the jar.

What do you save your coins in and what are you saving for?

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Picture1

The home department of Penneys (Primark) is on fire right now. I’m so happy with the things I managed to pick up this week. At the minute my bedroom is white with a bright yellow Billy bookcase from IKEA (which they no longer stock) and a turquoise bedside table (which you can find here) so I was delighted to find the photo frame with grey and turquoise in it. I plan to paint one of the white frames yellow so I’ll share it here when I do. The grey and white cushion with yellow writing matches perfectly too. Finally, I’m excited about the weekly planner and I cant wait to use it in my craft room. Lord knows I need to be more organised so I’m hoping a planner will help. I’m pretty excited about some of the stuff coming up from Penneys.

 

OLW

I know I’m a little late to the party considering I think Ali Edwards started the concept of One Little Word in 2006 but I’m going to attempt my first OLW this year. I have no idea yet how I’m going to document it. I already do Project Life so I’m not sure if I will try to incorporate it into my monthly spreads or document it in some other way. 

I have, however, decided on my word. I went back and forward over a few different words but I’ve finally settled on ‘Stronger’. I’m aiming for 2015 to be a stronger year for me in many different areas. I wanted to pick a word that could transfer from personal life to work life to how I think.

My aim this year is to:

  • become mentally stronger. I want to be able to stay at home on my own at night without feeling terrified. That seems like a huge challenge but I did say strongER. 
  • become physically stronger and fitter and healthier.
  • become stronger as an individual person. Be stronger as a ‘me’ instead of a ‘we’.  I enjoy my own company but I’m learning how to live my life as a single person again after 6 years. Learning to rely on myself if I need to (not that I have to very often, I have amazing family & friends) and become stronger as a real grown-up person.
  • build a stronger, more organised blog and hopefully build a stronger following too. 
  • become a stronger friend/family member. Sometimes I have to be in the mood for people and if I’m not and it doesn’t suit me, I can flake on things.
  • have a stronger attitude. I’m not pushing the ‘Positive Mental Attitude’ but I’m trying to be less negative and more thankful for what I have. 
  • Stronger at my job. more patient, better time keeping skills, better organised. 

Is anyone else taking part in the One Little Word challenge this year? I’d love for people to share how they plan to document it?

If any of you are interested in taking part, you can check all Ali Edwards has to say about OLW here.