Since giving up my day job to take on blogging full time (and various other side hustles), I’ve had more time to not only pay attention to some of the new things I’ve discovered, but also to enjoy them.
Take my newfound healthier eating and exercise journey for example. Not only am I making more time for myself – and enjoying activities such as netball, walking and swimming, I’m also actively following a healthier eating regime.
In fact, since August I haven’t had any fizzy drinks and my snacking habits have done an about turn – from crisps and sweets to nuts and fruit, although I am allowing myself the odd treat here and there.
As a result, I’ve seen some positive changes and my confidence has soared. And because of this I’ve enjoyed taking the time to shop for clothes that I enjoy wearing. (H&M is GREAT for sporty loungwear which I love!)
So let’s take a look at what else I’ve been enjoying this month…
I’ve always wanted a sand timer (bear with me & I’ll tell you why) and I spotted a lovely one in TK Maxx the other week for £7.99
So, as I had some vouchers left over from my birthday, I decided to treat myself. I’ve been using the timer to challenge myself to complete tasks while I’m working.
I’ll set myself mini goals such as 6 minutes to tidy my desk, 3 minutes to plan next week’s blog posts, 15 minutes to get my pictures for the next blog post sourced, edited and uploaded etc…
And I find if I set myself mini goals, I respond much better to them, so it’s working well so far.
As we all know, TKMaxx sells some great one-off goodies, but I’ve found a stunning geometric shaped one on Amazon for just £11.99 – worth a look.
Lost and found
In the run up to Christmas (can you believe the shops have started featuring Crimbo gifts already!?), I’m planning on writing a couple of festive posts and I’ve been keeping an eye out for some inspiration.
Something I came across recently was this Smart Bluetooth Keyfinder which allows you to track down anything you attach it to – your keys, phone, gadgets etc…
You basically download the free app on your phone then link the beeper to your phone via Bluetooth. You can then connect several items and use the app to assign each of them a unique name and icon. As soon as a connected item goes out of range, you receive an alert on your smartphone. How clever!
And…if you end up losing something, the in-app map feature will show the last saved location for the item. Plus, if an item is marked as lost, the network will also inform you if another user establishes a connection with it.
It sounds great, but I wish this was something that would work with my son’s brain. I keep saying to VIP that if he finds a connection with it (and manages to get more than a sentence out of him) to record it as I want proof!
Reach your peak!
On the subject of fancy apps, I came across two fab ones recently that I’ve downloaded. The first is called Peak, which features more than 40 brain games to keep the brain ticking over.
I love thinking laterally and working out conundrums and this app has certainly challenged me a few times. If you fancy a different kind of game, this one is worth a try.
The second one is called Headspace and it’s what I’ve been working into my day-to-day routine. Headspace is a free meditation app, where you can choose to spend just 5 minutes a day creating your own calm.
I tend to use it shortly after waking to set myself up for the day and ensure that I introduce clarity and purpose to my day. It’s working well so far and I feel much more in control of my day ahead.
From time to time the whole family sits down to watch a programme together, and it’s lovely when we do. We don’t allow any gadgets (no mobiles or tablets in sight) and we all engage with each other.
Well, I say engage….my eldest makes the odd grunt every now and again which tells me he’s alive, but it’s better than nothing. And I love these times when we actually interact, debate, discuss and laugh together.
We tend to watch a lot of movies, but our go-to TV programmes include You’ve Been Framed and The Crystal Maze, although I find presenter Richard Ayoade’s delivery a bit strange. I can’t work out if he actually has a problem with people touching him (he shuns their ‘high five’ celebrations), or if it’s all for show.
Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that Rascals has issued a new Crystal Maze board game. It features a labyrinth of perplexing puzzles and tricky challenges and is ideal for kids aged 10 years and above.
Just like the real deal, there are games of mental, mystery, skill and physical skills. And bringing the fame right into the 21stcentury, Rascals has also developed an official smartphone app to accompany the game which features authentic music and sound effects, and can be used as a timer for games.
It’s available to purchase from places like John Lewis and Debenhams and costs £35.
Give me 10!
I recently came across a new online shop called 10 Store, which sells overstocked surplus from stores like M&S, Newlook and Bershka.
And if the name didn’t give it away, all clothing/accessories cost just £10 or less. I found this cute faux leather mini bowler bag for just £7 (from £22).
If I carry on with the fitness streak (and weight loss), this will no doubt become one of my go-to places to shop just because of the affordability and value for money.
Rabbit-themed tea towels!
I had the chance to visit the town of Lewes recently. If you haven’t been, I’d highly recommend it for a day trip – it’s a picturesque town near Brighton in East Sussex. I was that impressed with it myself that I’m already planning on a return visit soon.
While there I decided to browse in a few shops and I spotted that Laura Ashley had a 30% off sale, so had a look at what was in store.
I clocked these hare tea towels, which were originally £12 (for two), but with the 30% off sale, I bought them for £8.40.
And yes – I did need some new tea towels, otherwise I wouldn’t have bought them! (Trying to stick with buy what I need rather than what I want).
That about wraps up my favourite finds for October. I’ve already decluttered my wardrobe in preparation for the colder weather (watch the video where I sell my old clothes to get some cash) and I’ve dug out my cosy onesie, tights and wooly jumpers!
And what I’m really looking forward to over the next month is…finishing the second series of Ozark on Netflix, watching Celebrity Hunted (and the normal Hunted) and tackling my make up/beauty drawers organisation! (watch this space).
I’m back next month, no doubt chatting about the run up to Crimbo and what goodies I’ve found along the way.
Let me know what’s on your wish list for autumn – and what you’ve been recommending lately.
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