Bumper Friday Favourites 10th - 23rd September 2016.
Oh goodness it feels like yonks since I last wrote one of these. Last week I did a mini series on university and student life so I missed out Friday Favourites for one week only to continue and not break that.
So instead I decided to do a bumper Friday Favourites as a little chatty catch up of what I've been doing the past fortnight (which seems like years tbf).
1. Cider Fest.
God this seems like a long time ago. On September 10th and 11th a local museum/castle/park/whatever you want to call it held it's annual food and drink festival and whilst I've been as a visitor before, this was the first year we were selling.
Quick background for you if you didn't already know, I live with Joss' family on their farm on which they have an orchard and from which they have a cider business. It's a family run business, we all pick and mulch and scrat and press and sell (I do the selling, I'm too weak) and it's all run from the mill and it's a really good business.
On the weekend in question I wasn't supposed to be working but I ended up there after a long and complicated story and it was a good job because we were a LOT busier than we expected. Away from the main festival we were there for demonstration purposes with a press and Joss' dad giving talks on how we make the cider and Joss, his sister and I were selling our ciders, bottles, apple juice and pulling pints. It was the nicest weekend for it, we saw a kingfisher, the sun brought the crowds out, my brother brought my niece down to see us and it was my favourite festival I've sold at yet.
2. One Of Us.
If you didn't watch this four part drama series on the Beeb you need to get it on iPlayer immediately. Honestly one of the best series I have watched in ages, every episode is an hour and every week I felt like I was watching a 2 hour film it was so jam packed. I won't spoil anything but it's about a couple who are killed and it's basically one big who dunnit but with lots of intertwining stories and a lot of drama and questioning. Everyone has secrets and me and my Dad were sure we worked it out about 20 times and then were shocked when it all fell into place.
3. Matalan Homeware.
Oh my sweet baby Jesus Matalan have done it again. The new collection of womenswear is beautiful enough but as always it's the homeware that has captured my heart. It's my birthday in October (17th FYI if you're wondering what date to send the pressie for) and 90% of my list is Matalan homeware, namely the Christmas range. I know I know, it's a bit early to be talking about the festive season but I really like asking for Christmas goodies every year on my birthday so I always have some new decorations when it comes to putting up the tree. This year I went for the mouse tree decorations, some of the charger plates and this glorious advent calendar that I'm going to fill with sweets and chocolates for me and Joss.
Last week or the week before my gorgeous Twitter pal Alisha emailed asking if I'd like to take part in a series she was running about the women behind blogs with a little insight into their lives and careers and obvs I jumped at it because I love the gal. She sent me a bunch of questions (which she had to cut because lol I know how to talk about myself) but when I came to read the post she'd edited it, added to it, phrased it like a chat and ad libbed her own observations and it reads SO WELL. It's not like your average interview and I loved it and am so happy she asked me to be a part of it because I am really enjoying reading everyone else's!
5. IOS 10.
Bit of a controversial one here because I know the newest update didn't please everyone but I actually really like IOS 10..... I like the new notifications, I like the pictures when you call someone, I like the feel, the look, the ability to delete all those crap apps we don't want any more #byebyestocks. I do appreciate the unlock can be super annoying but touch wood my fingerprint has held true and it hasn't changed how I use it. The only thing I haven't got used to and keep messing up is sliding left for the camera on the lock screen instead of up.....
6. Talking Tables.
Ooooh there have been so many secret blogger collabs and secrets I haven't been able to share with you over the last fortnight. Last week I got THE biggest box of blogger mail from Talking Tables who provided us with our decorations at #BloggerPitP and whilst you might have seen a BTS shoot on Snapchat I can't exactly reveal the items or the content just yet but it'll be coming your way this weekend and trust, it's worth waiting for.
7. Indian Summers.
Okay okay I know I was all ITS AUTUMN OMG on September 1st and whilst I am aching for an opportunity to bring the tartan scarves out, even I have to admit the sunshine the past fortnight was pretty special. I have a theory it's always sunny the first week the schools are back and I have yet to be proven wrong. I spent a lot of time outdoors, I walked a dog as a favour to someone three days last week, I went running, I took Joss' dogs out and fed the animals on the farm last weekend and I brought the cold shoulder tops out of hibernation for one last week.
8. Blogosphere Issue 10.
I wasn't going to order this issue right away, my local shops don't stock it so I have to order it online and I was waiting for a few more quid to justify the shipping but then Tina tweeted me asking if I'd seen I was in it and I ordered right away. Ok so it might be two of my tweets rather than a piece dedicated to how fabulous me and my blog are but hey, fame has to start somewhere right? In all seriousness I have had a quick flick through the mag and it looks as sassy and well put together as always and I am excited to have a proper read with a cuppa when I'm away in a fortnight.
9. The Study Room.
Oh just another cheeky collab I've been working on for a few weeks now, no biggie. Probably a month or so ago the gorgeous Lucie from The Study Room emailed me asking if I'd like to work together on an article and a set of printables for the launch of the website and all it's social media channels and how could I refuse. The Study Room is a community geared toward freelancers and small business owners and is right up my street so I did an article/interview and some designs which will be live on October 5th and lovely Lucie has written a guest post for me which will be live later in the month too so keep an eye out for the both of them!
10. Party Season.
I mean, kinda. I am not one for embracing the official party season of December and January, I am not a party kinda gal but yesterday I painted my nails matte black with a glitter overlay and holy moly it made me excitable for winter and when wearing sequins is acceptable again. So I probably should've gone for the burgundy or red or yellow nails but my sparkly little beauties are making me happy enough for now.
FYI I used Barry M Matte Black which is appaz out of stock and Barry M Classic Nail Paint in Diamonds.
11. Blog Squad.
Ohhhh my little chums. My squad. My pals. My loves.
Making the move from Twitter DMs to Whatsapp is a brave move for an online friendship group but after #BloggerPitP we felt committed enough to make the ultimate move and we haven't looked back. A little group chat between me, Nina, Sarah, Mel, Effi and Hannah, we could quite easily have not really bothered since the picnic was done but despite a brief slow period where ring leader Sarah went on hols, we chat all the bladdy time. Regularly I come home to 30812748365473 unread messages and whilst Whatsapp doesn't provide with our life line of GIFS, we make do with Nigel Thornberry photos and general hilarity. It's so important to have your blogging gang and these guys are invaluable. We talk rubbish, we talk life, we did a Q&A of favourite foods, colours etc that descended into chaos but we also talk collaborations, brands, Instagram, analytics and blog life and they're always there to answer a question or two. Bloody love them.
12. Escape Reality Cardiff.
The last secret collab I have been organising in the past fortnight and something I am hideously excited for. Tonight at 8pm I am doing my very first escape room in Escape Reality Cardiff and I am pooping it. We've booked the most difficult one which I think was a highly wise move having never done one before obvs and I'll be doing a proper review at the beginning of October but I had to include it because I have been BUZZING for it ever since it was booked. Keep an eye out on my Instagram and Snapchat tonight for some sneak peeks at how we get on!
Right that's where I'm going to love you and leave you because I think 12 favourites in about 14 days is plenty enough to be getting on with. Have a fabulous weekend dolls, have the most fun!