Monday, 28 May 2012

Words to Live By #192

Image thanks to yvette

"We have the self... 
this great unwritten page." 
Joseph Campbell

Sunday, 27 May 2012

A Peek at the Week: And Breathe...

I'm so relaxed and contented here right now, I might never leave again. Mean it. This is mainly due to the weather, which has just been consistently spectacular! Sigh... (the good kind). I also have a strong belief that seaside air is good for the soul.

This week I've been back and forth to the beach and eaten chocolate ice creams - plural. AND I managed to get my hands on a swimsuit - wit-woo! Which of course meant a real, live dip! It was freezing, naturally, but glorious. Now, let's take a moment to be in awe of this beautiful scenery, mmkay?

What did you do this week? Was the weather lovely and did it involve you eating ice cream? I hope so!

Saturday, 26 May 2012

The Saturday Salute 26.05.12

This is an out-take from my Garden Glory shoot. Gosh-darn that pesky doggy!

So it is nearly the end of May... *$&%!? I guess that when you disappear for two months, the year starts to fly by pretty quick! Currently I'm enjoying some quality, soul-quenching, get-back-in-the-swing-of-things down time here in a very sunny West Wales. Real life watch out, because I'll be hitting you hard next week.

// 10 Quick Ways to Clean Up Your Blog. Stellar advice from Silly Grrl.

// A Life of Perfect Days asks us to Do The Work: How to Start Transforming Your Life.

// I love, love, love this Daisy-themed feature on The Cherry Blossom Girl. Swoon.

// Wow.

// Adoring these free worksheets from Life on Paper. Organisation never looked so beautiful!

I hope you're enjoying a weekend blessed with your own personal brand of bliss.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Eclectic Aesthetic: Garden Glory

If I had written a to-do list yesterday it might have read: photograph some pretty flowers, pick some of those flowers, take pictures of self with said flowers. Because that was pretty much my day. The shirt and shorts are both charity shop finds, so this outfit maybe cost £3.00 at most. The flowers were free. 

You can spot my doggy Molly in the background here, she wanted in on the action.

I hope the sun has been shining where you are!

Monday, 21 May 2012

Words to Live By #191

Image thanks to alessandro

"The mystery of life isn’t a problem to solve, but a reality to experience." 
Frank Herbert

A Peek at the Week: Life's a Beach

So much for sitting by the fire...! The weather in West Wales is being accommodatingly delicious this week, and the beach at Penbryn just blew me away. If only I'd brought my swimsuit, I'd be taking a dip!

Friday, 18 May 2012

Going into Retreat Mode

Image thanks to yvette

And so she landed back to earth with a bump

That’s right, my big trip is over, and as I imagined, real life has been a bit of a shock to the system.

Since being home to Bristol I’ve gone into what I call ‘cave-mode’; a kind of hibernation. I’ve left the house all of once to buy groceries which are quickly running out. I’ve lived mostly in my bed and watched rom-coms and fretted about my desperate need for a new job whilst only managing to apply for two. My room is still bare from having a sub-letter and I can’t summon the energy to make it pretty; I can’t summon the energy to do anything. A somewhat severe case of jet lag hasn’t helped.

New York City was 4am trains and trips to the Jersey shore and spotting Drew Barrymore outside an upper West Side Starbucks. It was writing my book in cafes and drinking chocolate shakes in diners at midnight. It was attending book launches and unbelievable vegetarian restaurants and kissing in central park in the late afternoon sun. It was avoiding all thought of the future apart from dreaming of South America and East Asia adventures. It was meeting new friends every day and having no concern other than what was the next fun thing to do. 

Now that I’m back I feel a sense of unrest; of cluelessness; of overwhelm. I need to make decisions, but I can’t. I feel disorientated, like I’ve just stepped off of a dizzying fairground ride.

And so, friends, I believe there is only one thing for it: to go into retreat-mode. In my inability to be productive, I can at least productively unwind. Leafy valleys of West Wales, here I come.

I’m going to take a stack of books and sit by the fire and write poems to myself. I’m going to take long baths and do yoga and go on evening walks with my dog. I’m going to ask myself what I want from life and then cosmic order it for myself.

Since graduating last year I’ve been tying myself up in knots trying to find the path between being practical and supporting myself, and being a creative crusader and illustrating my ideal life. I’ve done both to extremes so far this year: working a 9-5 desk job with absolutely no connection to my passions, and dropping everything to fly across an ocean and walk in forests and write stories.

So where to now? 

There is no easy answer. I know I won’t find it in one week of copious tea-drinking and long chats with my mother. But I’ll be damned if I’m not going to try. 

What do you need to retreat from? What questions are plaguing you? Have you got a way of stepping back from everything and giving yourself some recuperation time?

Monday, 14 May 2012

Words to Live By #190

Image thanks to martina

"There was nowhere to go but everywhere..."
Jack Kerouac

A Peek at the Week: Leaving My Heart in NYC

New York, you've been good to me. I'll be seeing you again soon ♥

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Words to Live By #189

Image thanks to lucia

"Go be that starving Artist you’re afraid to be. Open up that journal and get poetic finally. Volunteer. Suck it up and travel. You were not born here to work and pay taxes. You were put here to be part of a vast organism to explore and create. Stop putting it off. The world has much more to offer than what’s on 15 televisions at TGI Fridays. Take pictures. Scare people. Shake up the scene. Be the change you want to see in the world. You’ll thank yourself for it." 
Jason Mraz

Saturday, 5 May 2012

The Saturday Salute 05.05.2012

Image thanks to ianĂ´hara

Hello lovelies, how's life? My New York adventure is mostly being defined by my absolute lack of cash now - and this is not a city to be broke in, believe me! But I'm still managing to keep myself entertained. I'm back home in less than two weeks, unbelievable! In my poverty, these rather wonderful links have provided budget entertainment...

// Ellen went to Spain and it was beautiful.

// Justine Musk hits one outta'the park again with you begin to radiate.

"In that gap between trying and failing to be your ideal, you find yourself."

// Lyzi of Being Little gets honest about mental health issues in her post on real life.

// How to Do a Two Minute Beehive from Rookie Mag.

// In Praise of "who the hell do you think you are?" from Your Courageous Life is genius.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Why Style Fluidity = Style Salvation...

Image thanks to kevin

It has been a long-standing obsession of mine to uniform dress; to find a style identity I can stick to. I have rabidly admired the looks of Sandra and Nubby for their consistent commitment to their individual style statement. 

Then, whilst wandering amongst the rails of the Urban Outfitters that is literally five doors down from my NYC pad, I picked up a top. 

“That’s not me” my mind said. 

I turned to carry on rummaging... and then stopped. Turned back. Picked up the top again. 

I liked it. It would fit me. I could afford it. Why wasn’t it me

I had a revelation: something isn’t me only when I say it isn’t me. 

I don’t need to have just one style – I’ve only decided that as the ideal. 

I don’t need to make a consistent statement with what I wear – I’ve only decided that I should. 

Surely, I can just dress up, for fun, in whatever I fancy, whenever I fancy? That is what clothes are for after all: superfluous decoration. Costume. Creativity. Masquerade.

All of these items should be 'me' if I want them to be... Product information here.

And I think that, in this sartorial liberation, I am more likely to find the real essence of what I want to wear; what works for my lifestyle, makes me feel great, and implores those around me to pay attention to my cause whatever it may be that day. 

If your style has got stuck in your endeavour to stick to a self-prescribed ‘identity’, you might just find that letting yourself be whoever you want to be, with each new day, each new moment - even, wakes up the slumbering style statement that was in you all along and is just waiting for its chance to come out...

Words to Live By #188

Image thanks to martina

"Look and think before opening the shutter. The heart and mind are the true lens of the camera."
Yousuf Karsh