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Blog & Life 2015: Out With The Old.

6 Jan

I am now entering my 3rd year of blogging.

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My blog meets none of the blogging criteria of a successful blog.

But it’s my blog and a pleasure still to me as I never intended to become a ‘read blog’ nor still do I.
I have always used it as my personal muse to find the “good in everyday”.

In saying that I do however like the fact that others do pop, have a read and leave messages. This was a pleasure I never expected to have – so Thank You to those that do, despite my slack posts, poor spelling & grammar and somewhat dull wafflings.

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As mentioned ‘The Blogging Criteria’:

One of these blogging criteria recommendations is regular blog posts – fail one.

A second being combine blog with other social media – fail two.

I’ve had a huge gap in blog posts and twitter, Instead Ive been found over on IG. I’ve found IG just the right amount of social media to fit in with my schedule for the later part of 2014. But New Year – New Schedule.

I’ve organised and sorted many aspects of the HAF household over the past few months and one area that remains a shamble of miss matching posts and WIP is my blog. I feel I should give a little TLC to the poor thing which is serving me so well.

So first out with the old…

There are 3 topics which I have covered in posts over the past 2 years that have come to an end for me at least.

CPSH; Craft Photo Scavenger Hunt: I really enjoyed taking part in this. There are lots of monthly photo taking variations out there but I enjoyed the personal nature of this as it was a small group which I could actually enjoy everyone’s posts each month. Unfortunately I joined this at the end of its life really the original organiser had passed the torch on and lives got busy and the group naturally and amicably fizzled as far as I am aware.
So this topic is no longer a feature on my blog.

BHBC & CCC: ; Beaters Hut Bakers Club & Clandestine Cake Club: Again two things I tremendously enjoyed taking part in and pushing the grey baking cells and skills. But alas baking is not always easy for me as it requires a full good week as I have to shop & bake, then commit to a date a month in advance when I have no idea how I will feel, leaving me feeling pressured and letting people down. Which means I can not take part unfortunately.
But both local groups still continue successfully and with some very hard work of 2 lovely groups- much recommend.

Crafty Creatives #CC: I stopped my Crafty Creatives boxes as to be honest I was getting a little bored of the format and I didn’t have the inkling to either do the crafts or the time. As I stopped though the format changed and I was given the option to test the new format but I declined – stupidly. As I do quite like the look of the new boxes. This maybe something in future I choose to do again.
I have however in its place taken more day classes in crafts which I have greatly enjoyed too and there will continue to be blog posts about.

Things I’ve not quite finished, Blog WIP’s …

A-Z of Me: I started this with my blog essentially and haven’t got past ‘E’.
So *ahem* it is in my blog planner; oh yes my organiser has one [*Tick* one criteria of a successful blog – have a planner- I just have to use it haha], so 2015 will see more of The A-Z of Me.

WSW; Window Shopping Wednesday: I haven’t done a WSW for over a year.
My break was due to Window Shopping often turns into shopping and with the Wedding I had to resist temptation to house shop and concentrate on the Wedding.
Our Wedding didn’t actually involve that much shopping. I had a clear picture in my mind and found or made what I wanted with a little help from Family & Friends.
Instead of shopping a lot of pinning happened and you can still see all of our Blush, Gold & Navy themed wedding inspiration on my Pinterest boards [Serotiny_HAF].
One day I will share our amazing day on the blog.

I Quit Sugar; The ‘diet’/Life style of quitting sugar: Well I lasted the first 5 weeks of full detox then had my Bridal Shower & Hen Party.
A Bridal Shower Afternoon Tea Party & A Best Friend who is a cake goddess and ‘I didn’t quit sugar’. I slowly slipped down the slippery slope again.
In saying this we do not quiet have the same amount of sugar as before as I have never restocked some sugary condiments and such like. I have also continued to switch to no sugar brands of certain foods. My snacking is slightly different too I switched some snacks to things like rice cakes & nut butters and this was always the area which was a high sugar concern in my diet.
I hope in the new year to attempt this again as I did feel some benefits.

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So that’s a summery of the blog tidy & round up.

Blog Aims 2015

I aim to blog at least twice a week for now and increase my twitter communications again as I miss the interaction & knowledge to be found on twitter. I’ve found many a fab company or recommendation on twitter – not to mention twittering peeps becoming none virtual friends.

I aim to blog once a week on a positive good in the week for me, this could be snail mail, baking, a craft etc.

The second post I aim to do is continue to take part in Jocelyn at The Reading Residence, Word of the Week. I hope to make the link up most Fridays – Sundays.

The Reading Residence

My other occasional Blog Aim is to post about our Geocaching progress and have a bit of a catch up with this.

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From time to time I hope to increase posts with participating with other blog link ups as I have done in the past.

I think it’s all looking ship shape over here and ready for 2015 and a 3rd Blogging Year.

I look forward to seeing what the new year brings.

Sx

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A to Z of Me: E is For

4 Jan

A while ago when I first started my blog I thought to add some personal touches I would do an A-Z of Me.

Well I am going to continue with this as my intended posting twice a month on ‘things’ beginning with the letter of the moment, didn’t quiet happen; I seem to have got caught up in a lot of crafting last year.

So to refresh I am up to the letter E and as before I will try each time to include a little random get to know me fact, a quote, something that interests me or has caught my eye beginning with said letter and something good from the day of the post beginning with that letter.

A to Z of Me: E is For

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E is For: Eggs.

I like eggs in most forms but NEVER give me hard boiled eggs Yukk & Smelly!

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E is For: Envelopes.

I have over the past 8months or so joined various letter writing/snail mail groups.
I love creating letters for other people’s enjoyment when I can the more elaborate the better.

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A Quote For E:

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E is For: Engaged.

Mr S proposed on Thursday 29th August 2013.
In July 2014 we are to get married.
The next 6months are full of final wedding preparation & excitement for us.

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Something Good In Today E: Evening

Mr S, The Dog & I snuggled on the sofa this evening.

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Sx

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A – Z of Me: D is For

25 Apr

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D for Dorey. My nickname at University was Dorey.

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D is For Dog.
We have a 18month old Red Boxer who came to us as a re-homed dog as his previous owners could no longer look after him.
His been with us nearly 6months now and has settled. Touch wood his been a good boy less destructive than most of his breed, he just needs to learn to slow down as everything he does is at 100mph.
The Male Rabbit and him have a special bond, he kisses the dog and the dog returns this and In the last couple of months his formed a nice relationship with The Princess, our female cat, they nose kiss and play together. The female rabbit & The Parrot Cat, our male cat tolerate him. The Parrot Cat shows him whose boss and waltz brazenly up to the dogs food and takes it from him and thinks his tail is ok to play with.

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A Quote For D:

“It’s Discouraging to think how many people are shocked by honesty and how few by Deceit”

Noel Coward

D is for Dr Brian Cox & The Infinite Monkey Cage.
I can’t wait for or Dr Cox & The Infinite Monkey cage to be back in the Summer.
This BBC Radio Four Podcast on all sorts of science based matters with a comical twist.
It was recommended by L to me, If you haven’t already I recommend you give it a try.

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Something Good in Today D:

My Dad, My Grandad & My Duncle.

(Duncle: combination of a Dad & Uncle; definition an Uncle who gives Fatherly Advice etc).

I have over the last few days seen all of them and value so much their love, support & advice.

My 87year old Grandfather.

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S

A-Z of Me: C is For

4 Apr

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C is for Cat. We have 2 Cats, A tabby mackerel female & tabby cream male, this April they are no longer ‘kittens’ they will be a year old.
This is my random cat sketch I did when I couldn’t find a picture to use.
I mentioned the other day I like doodling.

C is for Cambridge.

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I’ve lived in and around Cambridge now for 10 Years.
Cambridge in my eyes is a city without being a city; it’s big enough to have a busy centre but small enough to still be personal. It has kept charm, architectural pose and an eccentric aura. It has weeks of intellectual entertainment through out the year such as Science Week in March and The Shakespeare Festival in July/August. It still has surrounding country side and villages.
We have a great Folk Festival And I could go on with bits and bobs all in all it’s a pretty rounded place to live in my view.

C is for Cath Kidston.

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Not only Cath Kidston wears, but the style and influence she has had to our nation and beyond.
This lady liked Florals & Vintage before they were ‘cool’ she has participated in making trends and making them ‘cool’.
It’s influenced my home and many of my friends, you may not own Cath Kidston the brand but you will have crossed paths with a replica or the style of.
Cath Kidston will be in history as a designer of influence in the 21st Century and of an style era.
English style is something rarely the world copies and is rarely desired these days but Cath Kidston has achieved that, many an international blog swoons over Cath Kidston.

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Sadly at the end of last month poor Stanley Cath’s family dog and well loved mascot for plentiful designs, passed away. As a pet lover I feel for her, this must be a very sad time for her whole family, I am sure they have many a happy memory of him.

(Guess who hasn’t been watching the Cath site closely enough 30% Sale on China – yes the China I loved and featured in a Window Shopping Wednesday, boohoo is now end of line and to add insult to injury sold out of the cup sets)

There is also a Cath Kidston store in Cambridge to link C’s in.

A Quote for C

“My policy on Cake is pro having it and pro eating it”

Boris Johnson

Something good in today for C

Today has been a hard day as those close to me will know. But C is for those Close to me who have helped me through it.
It’s also Chilly and for dinner I am doing a slow cooked beef in red wine concoction to warm us up tonight… And in it to illustrate my appreciation to Mr S for his support today, I’ve done heart shaped Carrots.

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C in the A-Z of Me

S

A-Z of Me: B is for

17 Mar

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B is for.
Well not quite for Scrabble, but it does have BB in it at least.
Scrabble is a fantastic game. My friends an I love playing it. I own numerous different types of scrabble boards and would love to own Super Scrabble but haven’t justified buying it yet.

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B is for Biomedical Science this was what I studied at University ~ Science & Medicine are my things, particularly I find most interesting Haematology, Immunology and Microbiology. The picture above shows white blood cell development and is in Barbara Bain’s A Beginner’s Guide to Blood Cells, a useful little study tool.

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B is also for B.S.L ~ British Sign Language. I took a course in Sign Language and have passed the Level 1 Qualification. I have dabbled at the intermediate level hopefully one day I will continue further with it.

A Quote for B:

“Before you act, listen.
Before you react, think.
Before you spend, earn.
Before you criticize, wait.
Before you pray, forgive.
Before you quit, try.”

Ernest Hemingway

A B that interests me would have to be BOOKS.
I love books and reading. My favourite fiction books are mostly Crime. I have read all of the Ian Rankin Rebus books and have started on Kathy Reichs collection, as I’m a lover of the TV series Bones. I also love travel books and books that I can learn from.

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This is just a sample of our book shelves. A mixture of Mr S’s and my books.

Something Good From Today with B:
Best Friend, Mr S is my ultimate best friend in fact he is my world.
I’m so lucky to have found him for so many reasons, from how he works so hard for us, to all the thoughtful things he does, how we know each other and how we compliment each other as a team, the list is endless. I’m trying to name just one thing that I could say to summarise and it’s so hard I don’t want to just name one thing about him. But from the Very Beginning he has been my everything. When I meet Mr S, I was having a tough time but I never told him any of it or let on. Late one night we had been sitting watching tv and it was time for him to leave and he just knew that I needed support that night and I needed him without me saying a word he knew, so he stayed a while longer and just held me not asking for an explanation he was just there for me, even though he was tired and it was so late. He would travel half and hour just to see me for 5minutes in between my lectures and leave again – just to see me.
He said the first time I walked towards him he knew I was the girl he would marry.
I also knew he was the man I wanted to marry the first time I walked towards him.

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Also good in today;

Baking!
More Baking has been going on today… This time Gluten Free Coffee & Walnut Cake.
Baking is always a good thing in any day.

Gluten Free Coffee & Walnut Cake

2 tablespoons Instant Coffee Granules
2 tablespoons Boiling Water
6oz (175g) Unsalted Butter
6oz (175g) Light Muscovado Sugar
3 eggs
6oz (175g) Gluten Free Self Raising Flour.
4oz (100g) Chopped Walnuts
A ‘Glug’ of Milk

Icing

2 tablespoons Instant Coffee Granules
2 tablespoons Boiling Water
6oz (175g) Unsalted Butter
12oz (350g) Icing Sugar
Walnut Halves for decoration.

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B in the A-Z of Me.

S

The A-Z of Me

3 Mar

Day 3 – sick sick sick.

I did however manage to tidy the house a bit as I was becoming anxious about how untidy it was getting despite Mr S’s help.

Also I sorted my current projects into separate bags as things were getting muddled where I had just put them all in one bag for ease while ill.

After a combined effort cooking dinner; we had chicken stroganoff this evening nice and simple, I made another birdie template increasing the size and making it a bit more shapely. I’ve cut the pieces it’s just a case of sewing now
I’ve managed one wing and an eye tonight.

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Fingers crossed this one will be a bit more portly and curvaceous when finished.

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The tester birdie has been greatly appreciated by The Princess though, she loved playing with it.

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A-Z of Me
This evening I thought about how to introduce myself more. This blog was started as a personally quest of documenting something good in every day and saying it out loud.
But I realise lists of my chores that don’t even rivet me defiantly won’t be interesting reading for people who stop by and it would be nice if like minded people felt occasionally they would like to stop in with a hot beverage and share in my good in everyday and contemplate there own.

So this evening I thought to add some personal touches I would do an A-Z of Me. I will alphabetically work my way through posting twice a month on ‘things’ beginning with the letter of the moment. I will try each time to include a little random get to know me fact, a quote, something that interests me or has caught my eye beginning with said letter and something good from the day of the post beginning with that letter.

So if your interested in joining me then please scroll down to the post below for the first …

S

A is for

3 Mar

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A is for Annie Apple, not something from my childhood but something that I remember was introduced when my brother was learning. It’s founder Lyn Weldon developed it in the mid 80’s as a childhood phonics learning tool.

A little something about me.
One of my oldest friends names begins with the letter A.

A Quote.

An Apple A Day Keeps The Doctor Away

~ perhaps I should take note of this with my recent illness.

A for ART

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My tastes in all areas are eclectic and ART is no different. The above painting is by an American lady called Natasha Tayles.
And this specific painting, done in acrylics draws me into it, the colours have a warm soothing effect on me and I want it in our house. I could look at it for hours.

A, something good in today.
A is for Animals. Everyday my animals are there for me, loving me, soothing the inner me and keeping my blood pressure low haha. I love being surrounded by not only my animals but all animals, whether this be wild or domestic. I grew up wildlife spotting and always went on walking holidays which included seeing lots of beautiful sights. On my list of to sees at the moment are Otters; I missed them despite looking and everyone else seeing them! When I was on a remote Scottish island last, I did see Pine Martins though. Puffins; we couldn’t find the boat trip when we went to Anglesey and had limited time, and an Eagle; again every time I’m in Scotland I keep my eyes peeled!

A on the A-Z of Me.

S

BloominBootiful

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