Sunday 31 January 2016

52 Snaps of Gratitude: Week 4

This week...I am so grateful for all the beautifully talented, creative people in this world. Yesterday I made the most of a cheery, sunny day, and set off on a little trip to the Vintage in the Shires Fair in Market Harborough. I was hoping to meet like minded souls who have a passion for all things vintage and handmade. The day did not disappoint! The hall was brimming with vintage treasures, lovingly crafted handmade wares, and quirky items for the keen collector. I met quite a few people whom I've been following on Instagram, and it was so lovely to finally be able to put names to faces! And, I came away with some treasure too! I absolute love the work of Suzi from Heartsnkisses. I have been following Suzi on Instagram for a while, and when I stumbled on her stall I immediately recognised her beautiful stitcheries! I came away with this charming embroidery. It is just perfect for this week's snap of gratitude! And it is a prayer of thanksgiving that I remember well from my childhood...Perfect!


Sunday 24 January 2016

Lemsip and a paint brush...

Hello lovelies! I hope you are all still enjoying what's left of the weekend, and that the early onset of the Monday blues aren't chomping at your heels just yet! My weekend has been a mixed bag...Most of it has been spent trying to shift a nasty cold which seems to have me in a vice grip. I suppose it's just the season we're in. Those who know me well, will know that I just can't sit still for too long. It has been particularly hard this weekend, as I had so much I wanted to get done, and all my body felt like doing was staying horizontal! But, as usual my overactive mind won, and willed me out of bed for long enough to tackle a little painting project I've been meaning to get round to.

I was given a beautiful old glass fronted cabinet in a dark wood a while back. It is a beautiful piece, but had some damage to the glass front of one of the doors. For a while I've toyed with the idea of painting it, or leaving it as is. On a whim, I decided to reach for the paint brush this weekend, after finally deciding on a purpose for this piece. It is going to be used as storage for sewing fabrics and pretties.


I used some leftover Annie Sloan chalk paint in Versailles, as I have painted some other pieces in the same colour. It is a beautiful, fresh green that offers the ideal back drop for some pastel pretties. Once the painting and waxing was done between sips of Lemsip, I papered the back with some favourite Tilda papers. I am so pleased with the end result!

As one of the glass panels is damaged, I decided to remove the doors until I can have it repaired. So for now, I have open shelves.

And now my beautiful old vintage Singer sewing machine has pride of place on top too! I know there will be a lot more faffing once I feel better, but the hard work is done!

Enjoy what's left of Sunday, and have a super week!


Saturday 23 January 2016

52 Snaps of Gratitude: Week 3

Please tell me I'm not the only one who gets the 'January Blues'...? I always struggle with motivation this time of year, as the long dark days, and the cold seem to tranquilise me with passivity. Hmmm...I think it's rather transparent as this blog post is a day late! That is why I absolutely adore the sight of daffodil, snow drop and hyacinth bulbs on the supermarket shelves. There are very few things that cheer me up more than the vibrant, cheerful nod from Tête-à-tête (mini daffodils) in a pretty tea cup! I always try to re-plant a few bulbs to dot around the house. There is something so very beautiful about the contrast of spring against the backdrop of a bitter cold winter!

This week's snap of gratitude encompasses just that...spring on a winter's day! Even though it's grey outside, I am thankful for the colour inside! I've planted some bulbs in a favourite 1950's Brentleigh Ware jug, and it sits in a happy corner among the Liberty bunting on the dresser. This week, I am deeply grateful for spring flowers in winter!


P.S. You can join in too! Share your snaps of gratitude on Facebook, Instagram or on your blog, using the tag #52snapsofgratitude, and tag me in it. It can be anything that you are thankful for! And you can post as often as you like. I would love to see your pictures!

Friday 15 January 2016

52 Snaps of Gratitude: Week 2

Blessing among the dirty spoons...

Friday...A word I've come to love! It means the weekend is here, and with it lazy mornings sandwiched in a duvet for that little bit longer, and cups of coffee savoured, not thrown back in a hurry in order to get out of the door on time. This week in particular has tested my resilience...January always does...The days are cold, dark, long...Demands on my time at home and work seemed to step it up a gear this week, and I have at times felt more than just a little overwhelmed by it all! It is so easy to throw oneself a little pity party, isn't it? Woe be me! But, having made a conscious decision to find the blessing in everything, I couldn't help but feel a little ashamed at myself for grumbling this week. You know what it's like when you walk into the kitchen, the same one you cleaned spotless the night before, only to find a mountain of dirty dishes accusing you of slothfulness just an hour later into a brand new day. And so you have to keep treading on that never ending mill of washing up and putting away! 

But then, the epiphany on returning from work one day to a sink full of dirty dishes...Looking at those greasy plates begrudgingly, about to sweep them off the counter in a fit of exhaustion, the word 'perspective' suddenly dawned on me. What is it that I see when I look at the pile of washing up? I felt challenged in my own mind asking that question. I then realised that 'dirty dishes' mean I have a treasure trove of reasons to be grateful...It means that my family are blessed to have food on the table, yes, morning, noon and dinnertime...And me oh my, there are a lot of dishes, because I have a big family! But, this says that I am not alone. I count myself favoured to have four people in my life who give me more than dirty dishes. Above all they give hugs, laughs, love, and joy. It was at this moment I knew that the mental image my mind had snapped with such negativity as I walked into the kitchen, would be the snap I needed to capture for this week's '52 Snaps of Gratitude' post. So, no 'pretty pictures' here today, instead a little reality!

As I donned the Marigolds and set to work, my mood lifted and I found myself a little chirpier, content at the thought of finding the blessing among the dirty spoons...

Have a good weekend!


Friday 8 January 2016

52 Snaps of Gratitude

Happy new year everyone! Can you believe the first week of 2016 is nearly done and dusted? I am usually in a rather melancholy, reflective mood at the commencement of another year, but this time round I am feeling excited and quite optimistic! I am not big on resolutions. Full stop. I know that there are probably certain changes that I need to make to live a healthier life, but I am not about to jump on the January-gym-wagon! No doubt I will fall right off and injure myself! But I will move more! As for other things, such as my blog, well, sometimes I feel like I have just no clear direction with it, and whilst I am doing my 'new year re-evaluating', I think it might be a good idea to weed this little garden too! This has been a place for sharing creative pursuits, my little corner to record the things I enjoy and feel passionate about. That, I am sure, will continue. But, I will endeavour to commit to a regular weekly post, with a clear purpose in mind, as my posting had a been a little sporadic!

Over Christmas we had some friends over, and discussion soon turned to having an attitude of gratitude. Everyone was sharing how blessed they felt, and it got me thinking. A really good friend of mine wrote her own blog a few years ago, '365 Days of Gratitude'. Everyday she would share something that she was grateful for, blessings that come in all forms, on all kinds of days, whether the days were 'good or bad'. I always felt touched and inspired by her words. When you are committed to looking for the blessing in every day, you can't help but feel thankful. This can have a profound effect on your perspective, your joy and your sense of what matters in life. I have decided that I want to live a more mindful life this year, and so I will be introducing a new feature on here.

Those who know me, will know that I love a good picture...a snap at the end of the camera lens. I am rather fond of  Instagram, recording moments in my day to share with a community of like minded people. I have met some really lovely souls, and the daily glimpses into their lives have opened my eyes to a beautiful world, and beautiful lives beyond my own. So, I thought that I will attempt a weekly journal of sorts, a snap of gratitude to share on here at the end of my week. The idea would be to capture and share one image a week, and I will do this every Friday. And guess what? It's Friday!

This past week has certainly been a bit like walking through Willy Wonka's crazy world of pick-me-ups and push-me-downs! There has been celebrating, laughing, crying, getting back to work and facing daily challenges already. But, it has been good. The 1st of January kicked off with a giant Wonka bar of golden deliciousness so to speak...A family celebration spent around a gooey, cheesy fondue pot to see the new year on it's way. We spent time eating, laughing and playing Jenga. I think that it is so important for families to make the time to look each other in the eyes, to talk and share food together. I baked a special cake, a naked vanilla cake, decorated with meringue, honeycomb and candy floss. I think even Mr. Wonka's teeth would cringe at THAT amount of sugar, but it was good...Together we celebrated the end of a year, and the start of another. And so the first pick of gratitude snaps, is this one. I am so thankful for for being able to celebrate, even when there is no calender stipulation for it. May you too celebrate the every day, the seemingly simple things in life, for (quote), 'one day you will realize they were the big things'.

If you would like to join me in my 52 snaps of gratitude journey, it would tckle me pink! Share your own pictures on your blog if your write one, Instagram, or Facebook  using  the hashtag #52snapsofgratitude, and tag me in it. Your pictures can be anything that you are grateful for. Share away!