How Will 2018 End?

a bit of an odd question i know, but stick with me for a moment...

as the end of 2017 draws nearer, i have found myself thinking more and more about the new year ahead, and like most people, i'm already excited about the new challenges and the journey ahead of me. for me, there's something magical, but yet incredibly frustrating about the start of a new year - i already want to see the end of 2018!! i want a glimpse into how life will be exactly a year from now. will i be happy or sad? will i have achieved my goals or failed? will i still be in the same job? will i have been promoted, will i have left to work for a new company or will i be self employed? will we welcome a dog, a cat or a new family member into our home? will i still be driving the same car?

it might seem strange but these are very real questions, things that really can change in just one year and make the world of difference between your situation now and your situation then - in positive and negative ways. 

of course, no one plans for a negative end to a year that hasn't even begun yet, so this is why we plan. we set goals and we make resolutions so we can be sure the year will end on a happy note - so long as we keep to those goals and resolutions... so remind me, how many pounds are you going to lose again?

so i'm keeping things simple for 2018. i have some career, health and wealth goals which i'm going to take a little longer to think about before i share, if i share. but for 2018 i know one thing for certain - 

i'm going to take better care of myself.

i'm going to enjoy the minutes as they pass me by as opposed to worrying if i've made the most of them or not. i'm going to enjoy the company of friends and family more often. i'm going to take more time to spend with my boyfriend - this year has made me realise i value him more than i could ever have imagined. and this year i'm going to acknowledge that i already live a life of abundance - even though i've spent 2017 convincing myself that i don't! because i do. i have a beautiful home, i have food in the fridge, i have a regular pay cheque, i drive a nice car and i have friends and family around me. just because my house doesn't feature an indoor and outdoor pool, private hot tub on the master suite balcony or a kitchen shipped in from milan; just because i don't drive the latest sportscar or wear designer heels does not mean i do not live a life of abundance. because i think you'll find my version of "abundance" is much healthier than that.  

i think so long as i concentrate on looking after my mind, heart and soul; focus on my core goals and not other peoples perceptions of me, and just stay well clear of the peroxide - i can quite comfortably say i am going to end 2018 feeling happy, healthy, in love and strawberry blonde!!

so what are your goals for 2018?

How To Prepare A Moodboard For Your Christmas Decor

when i was growing up the christmas decor was the same almost every single year, until i was in my teens and then i think my mom went a bit crazy and decided to go all out on a black christmas tree (awful choice in hindsight) and decorations galore. to my horror at the time our loyal christmas tree, which had been with us for as long as i could remember, was shoved outside in the cold with all of the old baubles and tinsel which were deemed no longer worthy of the warm fireside spot in the living room. in the years since the loyal christmas tree has made it back into the house, the black christmas tree has been disposed of somewhere and normality has been restored.

as a homeowner myself now, and being wired the way i am in that interior design and decor is very important to me, i like to think i won't allow a terrible christmas tree/decor choice befall upon my home. and to avoid a christmas decor disaster it takes careful planning. and with planning comes a moodboard!

here's how you can create a mood-board to achieve swoon-worthy christmas decor this year.

1) Decide On A Colour Scheme

look to your existing decor to help you identify a colour scheme. if you have a monochrome colour palette generally then consider adding one or two pops of colour using baubles and gift wrap. if your colour scheme is already quite neutral and you use a pop of colour in your decor consider using the same colour in your christmas decor, or temporarily remove your existing pops of colour to add in a new one for a total refresh for the festive season!

2) Consider The Natural Elements

kind of inline with the above, when you're choosing your colours consider your choice of natural pieces. with christmas comes alot of greenery in trees and garlands. lots of browns in woods and cinnamon sticks. if you have a monochrome scheme, then perhaps a black or white christmas tree. otherwise a green christmas tree, fake or real, will work with most colour schemes anyway. 

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3) Look Beyond The Internet

it's easy to dive straight onto Pinterest when looking for inspiration, but a lot of ideas can be sourced elsewhere. look to shop windows, magazines, the outdoors and even think about the decor in friends and families homes - what did/didn't you like about their schemes and how could you incorporate your take on those things into your scheme?

4) Begin Collecting Images & Things

by all means jump onto the internet and source some inspiration, but don't forget to take photos on your phone and print them out whenever you see inspiration when you're out and about - even if it's something like a sprig of holly that suddenly sparks an idea within you! take a picture and note the idea for later - even better, take a cutting of the holly! cut out images from magazines and start to compile them. in addition to images compile items such as christmas candles in jars that will work within your scheme, pinecones, sprigs of holly and berries, items you already own that you can incorporate in a new way.

5) Lay Everything Out Together

once you've started collecting items and pictures you'll soon begin to see a common thread amongst the items. begin arranging the items and pictures onto a piece of a3 paper. place the items strategically, grouping them where you imagine they will work within your scheme. for example, a candlestick surrounded by garland, decorated with pine-cones will work as a table setting and should be placed in one corner. however, the pinecones will work on the tree and also in small groupings spread around the room, so save a couple and place them on the board elsewhere. attach a piece of tinsel, images of baubles you like and a snippet of the gift wrap you plan to use. 

6) Edit

keep coming back to your moodboard and have another look - don't drive yourself crazy, but this careful planning stage will help you keep focused on your christmas decor, help you avoid disastrous and impulsive purchases and may even save you some money too! 

it will become very obvious, very quickly exactly what doesn't work within the scheme and what you may need more of. the moodboard may even create new ideas and will help you to create a stronger, more unique scheme. 

7) Go Shopping

your moodboard will be too big to take with you while you're shopping, so take a good quality picture of it before you head off to the shops to purchase what you'll need. keep referring back to your moodboard and remind yourself of the purpose of creating this scheme. no doubt you'll come across items that you absolutely love, and may even consider changing your entire scheme for, but that will take you right back to square one. my rule of thumb is - if it doesn't work within you scheme, can it be painted? are you confident to paint it yourself? is it an item you've planned into your scheme? if you can answer yes to all three of those questions without hesitation then go ahead and buy it. if not, then don't. there may well be a perfect alternative in the next store!

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i hope you've found this quick christmas decor moodboard guide useful. i'd love to know what your scheme is this year - leave a comment below!

My Autumn Bucket List

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2017 has been a whirlwind of a year for me so far.. a lot has happened, good and bad - and i'm determined to see the year end on a good note. for me, that good note begins with ensuring myself, my friends and family have a fantastic autumn! autumn is my favourite season, i feel most inspired around this time of year and truthfully, it's when i begin looking forward to the next year ahead. i know that sounds crazy, given we've still got a few months left in the current year but for me spring and summer is when i work hard, the cooler autumn and winter months are when i relax and enjoy the benefits of my hard work - and that's starting from now!

so my bucket list for autumn 2017 looks like this:-

- decorate a pumpkin

- make a pumpkin pie

- go for a walk in the woods

- knit a scarf

- make some mulled wine

- read a new book

- discover a new soup recipe 

what's on your autumn bucket list this year?