I had a goal last month to hit a certain number of traffic, as you do, and I worked hard to reach that target.
But once I reached it, I had run out of steam and hit a brick wall. I got distracted and somehow lost focus. It happens. It’s fine!
I’ve juggled several freelance projects with tight deadlines (I LOVE working under that kind of pressure!) and balancing a new opportunity in a local charity shop, plus various other life things that I’ve enjoyed doing.
Something had to give this month and I decided that that would be my blog. As I remind myself that it’s all about quality, not quantity, I don’t want to push out any old shit on here, even when the brands try to add a bit of pressure on.
I always put my blog first but I thought it was about time I put MYSELF first, which is a bit of a running theme as far as my 2016 is going. I’m all about the self-care these days, I think it’s extremely important. As soon as I feel like something a bit "off", I take a couple of steps back before moving forward.
That’s basically my October in a nutshell.
But I do need a kick up the butt to get things back on track and I do need motivation to get words on
paper screen again.
I couldn’t think of a better way to catch up with you all than a good old photo diary to show you the highlight of my Autumn so far!
Photo Diary: Autumn
Let’s start off with two little creatures that have taken a big chunk of my time (and I’ve enjoyed every single second of it!). My parents went on holiday earlier this month, so the pets came to stay with me.
I have never looked after both pets on my own before, I’ve always had someone else to help out. It took a couple of days for them to settle in to their new environment.
Bonnie is a loving (read: needy) dog who likes the company of humans ALL. THE. TIME. I knew she would need extra attention and that’s exactly what she got. Whatever Princess Bonnie wants, Princess Bonnie gets!
Oscar got PLENTY of cuddles too!
I stuck to the pets meal time and exercise routine. I'm lucky that I can work around their schedule to ensure there was minimal interference to their cute little lives.
I took Bonnie out three times a day come rain or shine. It takes twice as long because she kept being stopped every 20 seconds by people who wanted to say hello to my pet alpaca/bear/dog.
I loved our walks when the weather held up. Having the dog gave me a good reason to go outside and be active. I wouldn't have bothered leaving the flat otherwise, which would've been a shame since it is a lovely time of year to enjoy some fresh air!
There’s nothing more beautiful than a crisp, sunny Autumn day! I temporarily become a morning person on days like these.
My sis moved to Lincoln for uni in September. We visited her recently to see how she was settling in. At first, she was incredibly homesick and had considered quitting before she made it through the first week! She was overwhelmed by all the grown up things she had to do as well as immersing herself in to her course and making new friends, etc etc. The usual.
By the time we got round to visiting her though, she had started to enjoy student life. She gave us the grand tour of Lincoln which is a lovely city. It's not as rowdy as the city where I was a student (Newcastle), but I don't think many places in the UK can rival Newcastle when it comes to that! Party town. 24/7.
When my parents returned from from Portugal, we went out for a meal. It was lovely to get together with family and it was quite the novelty to go out with them on a week day evening since they're usually at work.
This little guy sits on the window sill all year round but I only use it in October in the run up to Halloween. It's a ghost tea light holder from Yankee Candle and one of my favourite things ever! I should use it more often. Find out what other quirky items I've got around my flat.
Talking of Yankee Candle, this Halloween candle comes out of storage. It's an old one, you can't buy it anymore but I've had it for two or three years and I'm almost at the end of it now. It's called Ghostly Treats and it smells like gooey toasted marshmallows.
I went to The Range for the first time ever and I wanted to buy half of the shop. And it's pretty big shop!!! It's like Woolworth (RIP) but massive (and minus the pick and mix). I LOVE the homeware and home accessories in The Range, and they're all really great prices too. I bought a few things, which of course, can be used as photography props in my blog photos. I got three fake plants at around £5 each.
My Mum and I got to look after the little pumpkin for a few hours which gave my sister a chance to catch up with some errands. My niece, Edie is almost 7 months old - can't believe how fast time is going. She's been up on her feet for a couple of months too. I didn't realise how fast babies grow up, she's progressed so quickly that I forget she's only 6.5 months old.
Etsy sent me this mug by Old English Co. and isn't it just the best thing you've ever seen?
No, wait. THIS is the best thing you've ever seen. I took the kids to Toys R Us last week to pick out their Christmas pressies!
Obviously, just joking!!! These are not my children, lol. 🙃 It's my Mum and Dad who are both mid 50's having a whale of a time in Toys R Us. We took Edie to buy new toys but I think my parents had a better time than her!
For the past month, it has been all about fairy lights and candles most evenings. I find it comforting more than anything. I have loooooads of candles to go through so I may as well starting using them properly! I'm burning Blueberry Cheesecake from Kiss Air Candles at the mo!
I bought something from Lush for the second time this year! I got some bits and bobs for my birthday in February but nothing has caught my eye until now. I love their Autumn and Winter collection and couldn't resist buying a few bath bombs, so keep your eyes peeled for a Lush haul coming soon!
Also, a Primark haul is on the way too!
Here's Oscar being a helpful assistant. He makes THE ULTIMATE photo prop, haha!
I am going to be very busy this November. I'm probably going to be mega busy throughout December too but lets concentrate on November first! I have a backlog of work to get through and after dilly dally in October, I have no excuse but to get on with it.
This notebook from Rooi is going to help me stay organised! It's by a brand called ban.do (I'm sure fellow bloggers will already be familiar with them!). They're an amazing brand, I want to fill my entire life with things from ban.do!
Rooi stock a small selection of ban.do stationery so if you're a fan, check them out.
Finally, ending on something I've been working on.
I mentioned before that, lately, I keep applying for jobs I don't really want. I basically want something just to get me out of the flat but not something that would deter me away from my current work situation. Despite the mega failure of this month, I am still a full-time blogger and things are going well. But working from home when you live alone is getting to me now and I can't tell you how bloomin' lonely it is, so I need to do something where I can interact with people!
All of a sudden, I got a brainwave and I thought: why don't I volunteer at Oxfam?
All I need is to spare 4 hours per week, and I can choose the days that suit me. Luckily, I live near one of the biggest Oxfam stores in the country and they have an online suite upstairs. As well as the retail side, they are always looking for volunteers to take product photographs, add items to their online shop, and social media. And that's where I step in.
Apart from Facebook, their social media had been neglected so I was able to take the lead with this and build it from scratch. It's early days and I've only been doing this for 3 weeks but the pic above shows a snap shot of the content that I've produced. One of my main strategy is to use these platforms to change young people's perspective of charity shops as well as encouraging footfall.
All you need is an open mind and a bit of creativity to put pre-loved, second hand items in people's minds in a way they wouldn't have imagined! It's a great store and I've got so many ideas!
Oh, I love social media so much that I'm doing it for free! 😁
Looking up at the trees, wishing I lived in Stars Hollow because it's permanently Autumn there!
Follow me on Snapchat for more pics like these! My username on Snapchat is @tempsec