Wonderful Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday
Wonderful Wednesday

Life

Life
Life

Travel

Travel
Travel

CHAPTER 2016 | THE END

Hello you lovely lot, long time no...read?

I apologise for going a bit MIA on you all but December 2016 has been pretty awful. At the beginning of the month, my family said goodbye to my beautiful Nanny Shelagh, it was a complete shock to us all and it still doesn't seem real. I've never really experienced grief before and it has taken some 'getting used' to, for a while it felt like I was on a constant emotional rollercoaster and I think it will remain that way for a while. 

I had planned to talk about how awful this year has been but one of the reasons my Nan loved my blog was because she thought it was really positive. Therefore, I'm starting 2017 as I mean to go on and taking a positive outlook on the past year. Hopefully they have Facebook in heaven because I think you're going to like this one Nan!

Without further ado, I present to you my best bits of 2016...

UK Lifestyle Blog

Budapest

After hearing people rave about Budapest, myself and G finally ticked it off our travel bucket list. I absolutely loved Budapest, it's so beautiful and I would definitely recommend visiting!

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #11

Brrrrrrrr! Hasn't it got super chilly all of a sudden? Not that I'm really complaining, as I have mentioned time and time again, I am a winter baby through and through! Anyho, how are you are all? I hope you're having a lovely week so far. Shall we get on with all things woooonderful?... 

uk lifestyle blog blooming el

Pretty Scenes

I'm pretty sure I've mentioned some type of weather/landscape in every wonderful wednesday for the last three months. Autumn and Winter just create the most beautiful scenes. From the sun setting amongst the orange trees, offering a warm glow through my office window, to the cold frosty mornings with bright blue skies and white glistening grass accompanying me on my drive to work. There is so much wonderfulness outside and I'm glad I get to witness it all.

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #10

Happy Wednesday all! I managed to sneak past last Wednesday without anyone noticing I hadn't posted (until now, when I've just admitted it to you all). I was having a bit of a mare on Tuesday evening, trying to find a hotel to stay in Belfast that was 1. Not ridiculously expensive, 2. Not out in the sticks and 3. Not a complete hell hole. I think sometimes mine and G's (mainly G's) high standards really do get in the way. By the time I had given up and slammed the lid down on my laptop, I was in a bit of a mood and THEN I remembered that I should be scheduling a wonderful Wednesday post. I failed, miserably. However, I am back this week and raring to go with all things lovely!

wonderful wednesday post

New Life

So my *kind-of-practically-is-may-aswell-be-step-sister* gave birth to a beautiful little girl called Harriet on Thursday. I found out via the very modern form of Facebook that Rheya had a bit of a tough time in labour BUT I am sure herself and fiance James would do it all over again because Harriet looks like the most wonderful little reward. I am yet to squeeze those chubby arms and cheeks but I can't wait till I do. Congratulations again guys!

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #9

Happy wonderful wednesday to you all! I hope you are all well and have had a brilliant start to the week! I've just returned from a very indulgent indian with some of my favourite people. Wrapped up in the cosiest dressing gown, with a stomach full of chicken korma and naan bread, I am ready to share all things wonderful with you...

wonderful wednesday blog post

Bagging a Parking Space

On Saturday I braved the Tesco car park in town. I don't normally go out on Saturday's as they're far too busy for my liking. I much prefer chilling out on the sofa, leaving my errands and little outings to Sunday morning. However, having spent several hours on the sofa binge watching Bates Motel, I thought I should get out of the house for a little bit. I hopped in my car and headed in to town. The roads were super busy and Tesco car park was rammed BUT as soon as I entered the car park, I managed to bag a spot in my usual area. The parking angels were definitely on my side that afternoon. I did a little cheery dance in my car, as a woman drove past looking very peeved. Sorry but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do...

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #8

Happy wonderful wednesday to you all! I cannot believe that yesterday was the 1st of November. I'm panicking slightly at not being as prepared for Christmas as I thought I was. I feel like I should have already started my Christmas shopping and have half of it wrapped, stored safely in my secret hiding place. How is it possible that we'll be letting in a new year through the front door within a matter of weeks?! 

Putting all panic aside, today is a day for happiness and celebrating the small things!

wonderful wednesday lifestyle blog

The Clocks going Back

I've been called weird on several occasions because of my love of the dark and all things cold and wintry. Some people are summer babies, I am a winter baby - through and through. I love driving home in the dark and whipping on my pj's as soon as I've set foot in the door. I love wrapping my dressing gown around me and settling down in front of the television. When the clocks went back on Sunday, I found myself out of bed and at the supermarket by half 10, which is pretty good going for someone who has a tendency to stay in bed till two in the afternoon. Some people think the clocks going back can be an absolute nightmare, I for one am absolutely loving it. 

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #7

Happy hump day to you all! This week, I'm coming at you from my dining room table (can it still be called a dining room table if *technically* you don't have a dining room?) ready to give you a happy dose of Wonderful Wednesdayness. I normally write blog posts on the sofa or whilst in bed but I find I write so much better (and feel super profesh) when writing at a table. Which is why I cannot wait for me and G to get our own little place, I will definitely be finding room for a little office space, no matter how much G protests against it. 

Shall we get straight to it?

wonderful wednesday posts

Jane the Virgin 

UH this show. I love love love it. I'm watching the second episode of the third series right now (multitasking at its best). It's hilarious, tragic, dramatic and just UH so damn great. I find it best viewed in bed on a Sunday morning, wrapped up in your duvet covers with a toasted muffin or a warm croissant. 

Pie 

Food and Wonderful Wednesday posts just go hand in hand, don't they? Like salt and pepper, sausages and yorkshire puddings, chips and curry sauce, mmm. This week, my food comes in the form of the most delicious chicken, ham and leek pie ever made. On Thursday, myself and G treated ourselves to dinner at The Chequers pub in our local town. I've had this pie on several occasions and it just keeps getting better. 

WHAT DO I WANT TO BE WHEN I AM OLDER? | AN HONEST ANSWER

When I was around five years old, I was asked by my Nan what I wanted to be when I grew up. Apparently, my dream career at that young age was to work in Tesco on the checkout. By age eight, I had swapped scanning groceries for teaching children and when I finally reached secondary school, I had conjured up a range of different answers for the same terrifying question. From dancer to photographer, script writer to flight attendant, it was clear that I didn't have a clue what I wanted to do when I left school. Now, aged 21, having completed my GCSE's and A Levels and been employed at three different companies, I still fail to give an honest answer. 


uk lifestyle blog blooming el

There is so much pressure in society to sort your life out at the age of 18. Why are we being forced to make such a life changing decision at such an early stage in our lives?

Over the past year, I've really been trying to find my calling in life. However, no matter how hard I try to come up with a plan or how many times I look on a job site, I'm still uninspired. 

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #6

Is it that time again already?! I know, I know. I've mentioned time again but seriously, it just goes so fast! So in true time fashion, let's just jump straight to it, shall we?

wonderful wednesday blog posts

Reading

I've really upped my game this year when it comes to reading. I'm picking up my books before work, on my lunch break, before I go to sleep, and on the weekends in an attempt to get through as many as possible before we see in the new year. On Saturday afternoon, I plonked myself on the sofa and delved deep in to the Goblet of Fire, drawing out tales of the wizarding world as the blue sky slowly faded to black. If I ever have children, I'd want them to take on my love of reading and be able to find peace in settling down with a good book. 

A Suited and Booted G 

This is a little bittersweet but I guess that's kind of what these Wonderful Wednesday's are all about? Being able to find the good in the not so good, the spectacular in the mundane. Yesterday, I acompanied G to his Grandad's funeral. It was the first time I had seen G in a suit, a proper suit. Jacket, tie, shirt, the works. When I first met G, he lived in jogging bottoms and this mariners baseball jersey thing, so it came as quite a shock to see how smart (and handsome) he could actually look. 

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #5

I can't believe it's Wednesday already! I know I say this a LOT but time seriously is just whizzing by me. I wake up on Monday morning, full of back to work blues, I blink and then suddenly it's the weekend again. Is this what growing old is all about?

Luckily, I've had some wonderful moments in the week to counteract those Monday blues. Let's get to it!

wonderful wednesday blog

Misty Mornings

Yesterday, I woke to find a thick grey sheet blocking the view outside my bedroom window. It was still there as I drove to work, trying desperately to keep the sun away from those sitting in traffic. There is something so comforting about misty mornings, it makes me feel all...snuggly. 

Roast Dinner 

It wouldn't be a #wonderfulwednesday without mentioning food now would it?! On Sunday, G and I went to The Red Lion in Welwyn for our monthly dinner date. As it was a Sunday, I opted for a Sunday roast (chicken, of course). Oh my goodness. It was amazing. The chicken was on the bone, which I don't really like because, well it's effort isn't it? Trying to dodge all the bones to find the best bits. However, I didn't really mind because it tasted delightful. The potatoes were crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside, the yorkshire pudding soaked up the gravy perfectly and the carrots, UH don't even get me started on the carrots. SCRUMPTIOUS. 

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #4

Happy Wednesday to you all! I hope you are well and are adjusting to the colder weather!

I have settled in very nicely to the new season, donning my pyjamas as quickly as possible when I come home from work, curling up in bed or on the sofa and indulging in a chocolate treat or two (okay twenty).

The past week has been a bit of a mixture - good, bad, sad and exciting - but in a bid to try and make myself feel a little better, I'm rounding up all the things that have been making my heart flutter, my lips curve and my eyes sparkle...

wonderful-wednesday-blog

Bubble Baths

On my way home last week, I stopped off at Sainsburys to get some new deodorant (oh the excitement) and amid the overpriced bottles of freshness, I spotted some bath soak on offer. I'd never seen nor heard of the brand before but the packaging was cute and it mentioned sea minerals so I popped a bottle in my basket!

That night, instead of jumping straight into bed, I had a bubble bath and read my book. It was sehr relaxing and I loved every minute of it. I think I'm going to attempt to have a bubble bath once a week. My shoulders, neck and throat have felt so tense and swollen lately, I have a feeling it's stress/worry/what am I doing with my life related so I'm hoping a bubble bath will help relax my muscles and relieve the tension.

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #3

I'm bringing you this Wonderful Wednesday from the comfort of my warm and cosy bed. G is next to me and we're having a little jam session. He bought a new phone this week and has free Deezer for three months, I'm enjoying his little playlist - well some of it, half of the songs I have never even heard of!

Anyway, shall we get down to it?

wonderful-wednesday-blog

Mutual Feelings

I had a little bit of an emotional evening on Saturday. Loneliness is not something people of my age should experience but unfortunately, we do. Well at least I do. I am guilty of not making enough effort with the friends I do have and I don't put myself in situations where I could potentially make new friends either (paranoia and lack of confidence really isn't a great friend magnet).

However, after finally arranging a breakfast date with one of my best pals Christine, I discovered that she too felt kinda the same way. It's always nice to feel like you're not the only one having certain thoughts or experiencing certain things.

This didn't give me those warm, fuzzy feelings but I did feel a little relieved, like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders.

IN 100 WORDS | THE AUBURN LOCK

Last Christmas, my Nan bought me an online creative writing course. I've always loved creative writing and English was one of my favourite subjects at school (until A Level Literature completely ruined me). 

One of my goals in life is to write a novel. A proper novel, front to back, beginning, middle and end - the real deal. However, I've always struggled when it comes to finishing a story and tend to waffle on throughout the middle of the plot, never reaching a conclusion. 

So, I'm setting myself a little challenge alongside my course. Once a month, I am going to write a piece of fiction and post it here on Blooming El. I've set myself a limit of 100 words and although it might not seem a lot, it puts pressure on me to find the right words and *hopefully* lowers my chances of waffling. 

These short pieces of fiction will allow my creative mindset to flourish, improve my writing ability and extend my vocabulary too. 

Without further ado, I present to you my first miniature piece of fiction... 

lifestyle-blog-fiction

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #2

Happy hump day all! Another week has flown by and it's time for my second installment of wonderfulness! 


The Moon

We've had a lot of full moons recently and oh my, aren't they just beautiful? I went to pick G up from work the other night and I was greeted at the end of my road by a glorious, glowing moon. It was such a pretty sight but unfortunately, as I was driving I couldn't capture it but at least it's safe in my little old memory bank! 

Crackerbreads

I always plan my lunches out week by week. Unfortunately, when you're on a budget you can't allow yourself to have spontaneous lunch trips to the local Costa and have to settle for packed lunches. My chicken rolls and packet of Quavers were just not tickling my taste buds, so when I did my weekly shop, I tried to look for something different. I picked up some Crackerbreads, some tuna and a cucumber. What a marvellous combination! Not only was it scrummy but I had fun putting them together on my lunch break! 

WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY #1

Ever since I first laid eyes on Sally's blog and read one of her #wonderfulwednesday posts, I knew she was on to something. Celebrating the small things and being grateful is something I am very fond of. Finding the good, the lovely, the wonderful in everyday life is an activity that everyone should take part in! 

Recently, a few other bloggers have teamed up with Sally and are documenting the lovely things that have been happening in their lives through a Wonderful Wednesday post, and I thought it was about time I joined in! 

Here are a few things that have been making my week extra lovely!

Blooming El Lifestyle Blog

My Own Bed

For those of you who follow me on Instagram and Twitter, you would have seen that last week I was in Fuerteventura. Now whilst being on holiday is absolutely fabulous, there is no better feeling than returning home after a long flight and sliding in to your own bed. The sheets welcoming you back in to their soft, comforting arms. The pillows embracing your weary head as you stretch out to find the perfect position. Ah, isn't that just the best feeling?

MY FIRST JAMES VILLAS EXPERIENCE

Myself and G love to explore a city or two. However, we thought it was time we had a holiday in the sun. No subway stations, no tour guides, just sun, sea, and sand! After browsing many holiday sites, we decided to have a look at James Villas. The idea of having our own pool and own space to cook really appealed to us.

I thought I'd share with you my thoughts on my first James Villas experience!

Villa Lara Corralejo James Villas

Booking 

The James Villas website is really easy to browse. We chose to filter our search by choosing a villa where a car wasn't essential. There's something about driving on the wrong side of the road that makes my skin crawl! We also filtered our search by private pool and location.

Once we had settled on Villa Lara in Corralejo, we phoned James Villas to confirm our dates and they booked it all for us. They did ask for our flight number but as we chose to book the villa before our flights, we gave them the dates we were flying out and who we were flying with instead. We also arranged for a James Villas rep to visit us on the second day of our holiday.

We received our booking confirmation by email and a few weeks before we were due to travel, we were sent an information pack via email too. This held all the details for getting to the villa, collecting the key, and what to do at the end of our holiday.

CHANNEL 4'S NAKED ATTRACTION | THE NITPICKY DATING SHOW

When I first saw the advert for Naked Attraction and heard the very familiar voice of Anna Richardson blast through my tv, I was excited. I'm a big fan of Anna and the previous television shows she has hosted - Supersize Vs. Superskinny and The Sex Education Show - so I couldn't wait to see what Naked Attraction had to offer. 

naked attraction on blooming el blog

Even though there was a little clue in the title, I had assumed that the programme would be a documentary style account of what people find attractive. Whether that be intelligence, a certain career type, a hobby or a quirk in their appearance. I thought we may see Anna on the streets of London stopping commuters and shoppers for a quick chat. Then maybe it would cut to someone in a lab coat who would give a more scientific perspective on the way our brains work and why we're attracted to certain things.

THE IMPORTANCE OF TAKING TIME OUT

Over the past year or so, I’ve begun to understand the importance of taking time out. Taking a step back from your situation, allowing yourself room to breathe, reflect and figure out your next move is an effective way of climbing out of a negative rut. 

I 'quit' blogging at the beginning of this year. I found myself in a negative rut with my blog and I didn't understand why. I lacked creativity, I lacked confidence, and I felt so under pressure to publish good content every week. 

uk-lifestyle-blog-blooming-elIn order to deal with these negative feelings, I took my blog offline and I made a promise to myself that I would focus more on reading, finding a new hobby or enrolling on a leisure course. 

I did read more and I started my online creative writing course. However, something was missing.
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