Things I Love Thursday 21/5/2015

I’m feeling particularly grateful at the moment.  Last week one of my work colleagues had a stroke at her desk.  It happened so suddenly and it was very frightening.  This awful accident has given me pause for thought over the last week.  I know it sounds incredibly corny, but it’s scary how quickly life can change.  In a blink all that was can be no longer, and everything is different.  I’ve been making an extra effort to take stock of all that I have in my life in order to better appreciate the good that surrounds me.   I invite you to join me by leaving your own Things I Love Thursday list in the comments.

 

This week I love:

– The emergency services.  When I phoned the ambulance last week, every person in the chain was amazing. The woman I spoke to on the phone was calm and collected, the ambulance arrived quickly and the paramedics did an exceptional job.  I was able to remain calm because I knew that we were in good hands.

 

– My family.  I am so blessed to have two fantastic parents and a brilliant brother.  We are all close and get to see one another often, and I know that they always have my back. And for that I’m grateful.

 

– My job.  It’s taken me so long to find a job that is both enjoyable and challenging.  The fact that I now earn enough to make a comfortable living is an added bonus.

 

-My work mates and bosses.  I am very lucky to work in a place where everyone is very caring and understanding of one another. My bosses do a brilliant job of making sure that the office is a pleasant place to work and that we have everything we need.

 

– My friends.  I am often floored by the incredible people that I’ve met and befriended over the years.  They are such a mixed bunch, but every one of them is special in my eyes.

 

– My two special love birds, who bring so much joy and affection into my life.

DSCF7875

– My kitties, who are sweet and playful and make me feel unconditionally loved.

 

– My cute little flat, which has become my home.  I am so happy to have such a sweet space to return to each day.

 

And now some little bits and pieces:

– Salted caramel ice cream.

 

– Blush-coloured roses.

 

– Ryan Phillipe.

 

– Orange is the New Black.

 

– Spooning.

 

– Cards against Humanity.

 

What do you love this week?  Take a bit of time to find some things to be grateful for and share them with me in the comments.

5 Fandom Friday: Your most binge-worthy shows

I finally caved to popular demand and signed up for Netflix.  I’d been resisting it mainly because I had a feeling that I would wind up marathoning so many shows that my body would become fused to my laptop.  And while that hasn’t exactly happened, I will admit that I’ve been blasting through some shows at a rapid pace.  Here are five shows that I have watched in record time.

1. The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

I blew through this show in a couple of days.  It was hilariously quirky and I just couldn’t get enough of it.  It was the perfect way to pull myself out of a little slump I was having, not to mention the fact that the theme song is seriously addictive.

2. Brooklyn 99

Hoo-boy, this was one show that completely took me by surprise.  Normally I’m not a fan of Andy Samberg, so I didn’t expect to enjoy Brooklyn 99 but I was totally wrong.  This program is really clever and totally hilarious.  There are some great female characters and the head of the police force is a married gay man who busts so many stereotypes.  Seriously, watch it.

3. Orange is the New Black

OITNB is just so flippin’ more-ish.  The story is so gripping and tantalising that one episode is never enough.  I’m always eager to find out what else is going to happen in Litchfield Penitentiary.

4. Friends

An oldie but a goodie, Friends will always be one of my favourite TV shows.  Although I’ve watched it through countless times, I am still content to have regular Friends marathons when I’m feeling a bit sick or lazy.  I’ve also found that it’s the perfect show to watch while I’m crafting because I don’t have to focus on the action because I’ve seen every episode about a million times.

5. The Office.

I get so caught up in The Office each time I watch it.  Because the episodes are short, it’s easy to slam a couple in one sitting and still not feel like you’ve had enough.  I adore The Office because it’s got a really diverse cast of characters and the humour is fantastic.

 

What are your most bingeworthy shows?  I’d love some recommendations for future Netflix marathons.

Daily outfit 12/5/2015

Lately I’ve been making the most of the final few rays of sunshine before winter hits.  It’s been mighty chilly here, but every now and then we’re blessed with a day that’s warmer than the rest.  A day when it’s comfortable enough to rock short sleeves, but not so hot that you can’t wear a funky vest and a scarf as well.

I am wearing:

– Vintage scarf (gift from my grandmother)

– Hogwarts House Battle shirt from Threadless

– Black harem pants from Target

– Leopard print loafers from Rubi shoes

-Vintage hibiscus earrings (thrifted)

– Denim vest from Cotton On

I was very lucky to get a big bag filled with vintage scarves as a gift from my grandmother.  Some of them were from her own wardrobe while others came from the op-shop where she works (that’s right, my family has several generations of thrift-shoppers!).  This cute patchwork-print scarf was nestled in the tangle of scarves, and I was quickly drawn to the earthy colours.  I think it will make a great headscarf in summer, but for now it’s perfect to accessorise a more casual outfit.

This tee shirt has recently undergone some surgery.  I noticed that I wasn’t wearing this shirt much because the neckline was really tight and uncomfortable.  So I grabbed a pair of scissors and snip-snipped a scoop neckline that is much more comfortable and flattering.  Sometimes it pays to get creative with the clothes you don’t wear because they don’t fit well, because you might be able to give them new life with a few tiny adjustments.

What are you wearing in the in-between season?

Things I Love Thursday 30/4/2015

So, April’s nearly over.  I’m serious.  How did that even happen?  Ten seconds ago I was wearing shorts and toasting the new year and now I’m huddled in a jumper polishing off my Easter eggs.  Honestly, 2015, you just need to calm the eff down.

DSCF9139

This week I love:

– Going to the dawn ANZAC Day service.  This year was hard for my family because it’s the first year that we have observed ANZAC day without my grandfather.  My granddad served in Korea, and was proud of his efforts.  I was truly moved by this years service, and humbled when I considered the sacrifices made by those men and women to protect our country.

 

– Watching the sun rise over the lake.  Stunning.

 

– Heavy rain on the tin car port outside my bedroom window.

 

– Open-faced steak sandwiches.

 

– Wearing slippers with dinosaur faces on them.

 

– Brooklyn Nine-Nine.  I have never been a huge fan of Andy Samberg but he is killing it in this show.

 

-This video, for every lady out there who has struggled to make something look the way it does on Pinterest.

 

– Writing letters on paper, with an actual pen!

 

– Thick socks.

 

What do you love this week?  Don’t be shy, share!

Confessions of a craft fair virgin.

Last weekend I finally took the plunge and ticked something off my bucket list.  For ages I’ve wanted to run a stall at a craft fair.  While I love my Etsy store, I was keen to try selling at markets as well. Selling in person has some distinct advantages: you don’t have to worry about crazy shipping costs, potential customers have a chance to touch and try on your wares and you can joke and chat with your customers.

I was extremely nervous about running my own market stall.  I was very worried that my crafts weren’t good enough or that nobody would want to buy what I was selling.  I was concerned that my social anxiety would make it hard for me to interact with my customers without it seeming forced.  I also felt a bit overwhelmed by the amount of work that would be involved in running a stall.

So guess what… it was really hard.  I put in tonnes of work and preparation, I only made a single sale and I felt so nervous every time someone came to my stall.  But you know what else? It was totally worth it and I would definitely do it again.  Here are a few observations I took away from my first time as a craft-stall vendor.

There’s no one “right” way to run a stall.

I spent a ridiculous amount of time stressing over how I should set up my stall.  I looked at countless Pinterest boards for inspiration and ended up completely spinning myself out.  I was so unsure about how my stall should look, what type of displays I should use, how much stock to bring and so many other worries.  In the end, I went for a pretty minimalist look with a few displays and most of my stock spread out on the table.  And you know what?  It really seemed to work.  My colourful goodies really stood out from the crowd and loads of people were drawn to check out all the awesome colours and textures at my booth.

There were some really professional-looking displays at the market.  Some vendors had made their entire stall from scratch.  Others hired tables and used home-made or pre-purchased display racks.  But they all looked awesome and everyone was making sales.  When you’re trying to plan a stall, it’s best to stick with a few simple ideas that seem right to you, see what works and build from there.  Comparing yourself to other stalls will drain your energy and worth.

Talk to other vendors and learn from them.

I met some fantastic vendors at the craft fair.  There were some people who, like me, were relatively new to the game and others who were market veterans.  Everyone was really friendly and helpful, and I picked up some great tips to help me with my stall and my customers.  If you’re a newbie, these tidbits of info are so valuable.

And don’t forget, even if you don’t know that much about markets there might be some other areas that you have some flair in.  For example, the woman running the stall opposite mine has been thinking of starting an online store so I was able to give her some pointers based on what has worked for me in the past.  We swapped advice and it was a great learning experience.  It’s great when people are willing to help you out and learn as well as teach.  It’s the type of scenario that everyone benefits from!

DSCF9018

Bring business cards…and lollies.

Not every customer will be ready to buy on the day.  Markets can be quite overwhelming and some will be unsure of what they want to spend their money on with so many options on offer.  For that reason, it’s nice to have something that your potential customers can take away with them.  I made sure that each person I talked to took my card and a sweet treat.  If people wanted something I didn’t have, I highlighted the fact that I can make custom orders on request.  Offering people a card in a friendly way isn’t too pushy, and it gives them the opportunity to take a look at your shop when they have more time on their hands.

Pay attention to what your customers have to say.

Although it can be daunting to put your crafts out for display and potential criticism, it can also be a valuable learning experience.  I gained so much insight into the kinds of things my customers are looking for, which will be very helpful.  For example, I was able to take note of the items that were most popular, and which things people asked for which I didn’t have.  I noticed that there were a lot of children at the market shopping with pocket money, and that most of my items were out of their price range.  So next time I plan to have some small cheap items, such as headbands or crocheted brooches, which can be bought with small change.  I will make sure to have some of the sought-after items that people seemed to be looking for.  And I will put those more popular items in a prominent place so they catch the eye.  Even though I only made one sale this time, I feel more equipped for my next market.

Have you ever run a craft market stall?  What did you learn from the experience?

Five Fandom Friday: games I love to play.

Wellity, wellity, wellity!  It has been a while since I’ve done a FFF post, hasn’t it?  Well it’s time to shake off the cobwebs and settle in to talk about one of my favourite geeky subjects: games!

 

This week’s prompt is “games I love to play” and it’s a topic that’s dear to my heart.  I adore games of all kinds, and although I love to win I like to think that I’m a pretty good sport.  Here are five games that are super fund and usually get played whenever I have friends over.

 

1. Cards Against Humanity

Although it’s definitely the least politically correct game that I own, Cards Against Humanity has to be at the top of my list.  I have shared countless rounds of this hilarious card game with friends and some long-running jokes have been born from such occasions.  It’s dirty, crude and highly offensive, but it’s also a great way to spend an evening with friends.

 

2. Trivial Pursuit.

I’m a nut for trivia and I enjoy any kind of question-and-answer game. I actually own four different versions of Trivial Pursuit: the classic edition, the pop culture edition, the 90’s edition and The Disney edition.  I’m super psyched because I’ve heard rumours of a Harry Potter edition, which would be amazing.  When I was at uni I used to catch up with several mates every Sunday night for a post-weekend trivia match complete with ice cream sundaes and lots of laughs.

DSCF7276

3.  Ankh Morpork

This is probably my favourite strategy game in my collection.  Not only does it really work your brain but it features loads of references to the Disworld book series.  But you don’t have to be a Terry Pratchett fan to enjoy this fantastic game.  Play it with your craftiest friends as a great alternative to Monopoly (which, incidentally, is my least favourite game of all time).

 

4. Mario Kart

Although I’m not much of a console gamer, I do love a spin around the track in Mario Kart.  Although the Nintendo 64 version will always be a favourite for nostalgic reasons, I do love the Wii edition of the game.  I always play as Yoshi and I’m deadly with a red shell.  Take me on and you’ll see…

 

5. Tsuro

Tsuro is a relatively recent addition to my games cupboard.  It’s an extremely simple game that requires you to think on your feet to come out on top.  While there is some skill involved, it is mostly a game of chance.  I love puzzle-type games and this one is brilliant.

 

What are your favourite games?  I’d love to hear some  recommendations so that I can give them a shot.

Things I love Thursday

Heeeere’s Thursday!  I’m feeling so ready to leap into this week’s installment of Things I Love Thursday, so let’s just get right down to it.

This week I love:

– The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmit.  I started watching this adorable program on Netflix and I’m addicted.  Kimmy is so wonderful and I wish I had a roommate like Tituss.  I’ve been humming the theme tune to myself ever since I started watching it.

– Surprise visits from my Mum and her dog.

– My new Doctor Frank N Furter tee shirt.  So fierce.

– Taking a sick day.  I feel so guilty whenever I take a day off work, even if I’m on death’s door.  But after one hour at my computer on Monday my head was throbbing and my sinuses were fit to explode.  So I decided to be a grown up and just take the day off.  I had a great rest and came back to the office on Tuesday with a clear head.

-Treating myself to pretty underthings.  I was in dire need of some new undies so I splashed out and bought some gorgeous handmade ones from Cherry Lingerie London.  I am so happy with them.  Not only are these knickers super cute, but they are gorgeous quality and so comfortable.

I chose a mixture of sexy and cute designs, and they are all outstanding. I will definitely be buying more from Cherry.

– Slippers at the end of a long day of work.

– Making time for blogging again.

– Home made spaghetti bolognaise.

– Getting a surprise parcel from my grandmother filled with vintage scarves.  There are some stunners among them and this Malta scarf is one of my favourites.  My ex-boyfriend’s grandmother was Maltese and she was one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met.  She passed away years ago and I confess that I still miss her sometimes.  So it’s nice to have this scarf to wear in her honour when I’m missing her.

– Lighting the heater.

– Walking to work in the morning air, which is pleasantly chilly but not yet frightfully cold.

– Bidding a fond farewell to one of my most special friends, who is heading off for a year in the UK.  I’m going to miss his goofy face, but I’m so proud of him for leaping into this great adventure.

What do you love this week?