Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Wednesday Wish List

These are some of the fashion pieces I've been coveting this week...

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I'm in love with practically everything on the Hellbunny website at the moment, and I'm particularly enamoured with these ten dresses and skirts. The shapes and styles are perfect, and those prints are all to die for- especially the shell print of the Maya Bay! 

These are all plus size pieces which cater up to a 4X, but they also have straight size variations of each piece on the website.

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These gingham and peach motif bags from Skinny Dip are pretty darn cute. I love me some gingham and citrus motifs.

I also really love Skinny Dip's sweet red lobster cross body bag. It would be perfect for a day out on the coast or at the seaside.

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Lady Vintage's new Lily sweetheart dresses are all so beautiful, especially in the teal cupcake print. I still need something in that print in my wardrobe; it's scrumptious!

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I'm becoming a little obsessed with these amazing novelty bags from Betsey Johnson, which are currently available to preorder but not to purchase just yet. The Webmaster crossbody (#2) is my favourite, with the Pumpkin Spice Latte (#1) coming in a close second, although they're all fucking awesome! I need more Halloween-themed bags in my life.

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Vendula London's new sewing box wallets are so lovely. I love all the little details, and the fact that they're all made from vegan leather, so you can rest easy knowing they're cruelty free!

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These red rose print and embroidered pieces from Boohoo Plus are all so beautiful.

ASOS Curve Sushi Print PJ Set

How cute are these sushi print pyjamas from ASOS Curve?

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And last but not least, I'm smitten with these lovely fruit and bluebell brooches from I Am Acrylic.

If you'd like to see more of the fashion pieces on my wish list, check out my style wish list boards on Pinterest. You can also find all previous Wednesday Wish List posts here.

What's on your wish list this week?

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

50 Things I Would Love To Learn How To Do

Even though my school days are loooong behind me, there are still so many things I would love to learn how to do in life. I'm quite an ambitious person and call me a nerd, if you want, but I enjoy learning new skills, and have this urge to dip my toe in to all kinds of things before I die. I want to try a bit of everything.

There are life skills like learning how to drive and speaking another language that would sure come in handy, and then there are countless crafts, hobbies, and skills like crocheting and photography I would love to try or perfect just for fun.

In an effort to motivate myself in to learning one or two of them, I thought I'd share a list of 50 things I would love to learn how to do with you today. So, here they are...

I would like to learn how to...

1. Play the piano
2. Use all the manual settings on a camera properly so I can take really great photos.
3. Edit my photos properly, because it's one thing I really struggle with.
4. Crochet- particularly, how to crochet a granny square blanket.
5. Use a sewing machine.
6. Make my own dresses and skirts.
7. Make candles.
8. Needle-felt something cute.
9. Use water colours, oils, and acrylic paints properly.
10. Use soft pastels, oil pastels, and charcoal properly.
11. Ice / decorate cakes like a pro.
12. Play the violin.
13. Embroider all kinds of different stitches. My sewing skills are currently limited to cross stitch, back stitch, and french knots.
14. Make my own jewellery.
15. Make a notebook.
16. Book-bind.
17. Speak another language fluently.
18. Make awesome greeting cards.
19. Make a patchwork quilt.
20. Create quality images for my blog.
21. Decoupage something.
22. Fix a socket; it seems like one of those things I should really know how to do.
23. Surf some killer waves.
24. Write beautifully with calligraphy.
25. Drive a car.
26. Die-cut something.
27. Perfect winged eyeliner.
28. Bake / make home made dog treats for Rosie.
29. Knit a scarf.
30. Customise clothing.
31. Arrange flowers in to beautiful arrangements.
32. Keep plants alive.
33. Make a dream-catcher.
34. Create a pretty vivarium.
35. Linocut something.
36. Make my own ink stamps.
37. Make some pretty bunting to string up in the house.
38. Weave on a loom.
39. Upcycle a piece of furniture.
40. Applique something.
41. Make a mosaic.
42. Make something out of clay that doesn't look like it was made by a five year old.
43. Train Rosie to come when she's called, and to stop barking at every little noise. Nothing has worked so far.
44. Bake / make macarons and chocolate truffles.
45. Make soaps and bath bombs to enjoy.
46. Sew a Christmas stocking.
47. Play the guitar.
48. Use photoshop / photo editing programs and tools properly.
49. Create gorgeous flatlays.
50. Make something out of stained-glass.

So, those are some of the things I would like to try. What do you want to learn how to do?

Monday, 24 July 2017

Cornish Adventures Part Two: Newquay Zoo

While we were on holiday in Cornwall last month, we didn't have any of our time planned out, but there were a few favourite places we all agreed we had to visit before the week was up- St. Ives, Perranporth, Padstow, Rick Stein's fish and chip shop, and Newquay Zoo.

On the Tuesday morning, we decided to check another place off the list, and headed out bright and early to visit the zoo, set on the outskirts of the popular seaside town of Newquay.

We arrived at the zoo just before opening time, but we were able to park up, and happily waited for it to open. When 10am came and went with no sign of the gates opening, my first thought was that they must had suffered some damage during the storm the night before. We'd had a full day and night of heavy rain and 100 MPH gale force winds on the Monday which felt borderline apocalyptic, so it seemed like the most plausible explanation.

When the gates finally opened twenty or thirty minutes late, my suspicions were confirmed. They'd had to close half of the zoo to the public because of damage from the storm, but they were offering half price admission, and free entry if we returned again with our tickets during the following seven days. Since we had all visited Newquay Zoo countless times before, we were happy with that, and decided to go in anyway, which only cost us about £7 each. Result! Cheap day out!

My sister and I have been visiting Newquay Zoo since we were kids, and have probably paid a visit to the place during every holiday we've ever taken to Cornwall (which is many), so we know the zoo well, and didn't mind that we couldn't see everything because we'd done it all before. They'd said about half of the zoo was cordoned off, but it was more like a third, and luckily turned out to be the area with few animals and more plant life, so we didn't miss out on too much.

We spent about two hours wandering around the zoo enjoying the sunshine that had finally put in an appearance, and of course, all of the animals that we saw- monkeys, macaques, lions, capybaras, penguins, lemurs, warty pigs, parrots, lizards, snakes, farmyard animals...  to name but a few. My favourites had to be the adorable slender loris in the nocturnal house, the armadillos, and the tapirs, which are one of my most favourite animals. What can I say? I like the weird ones! Did you know tapirs are closely related to rhinos, and that they can whistle? No? Well, you do now!

I was a little disappointed that we couldn't spot the lynx, and that the area with the otters was cordoned off, but we did get to see a peacock displaying his pretty feathers when we stopped for a drink at the kiosk. I would've liked to have got closer to him to take some better shots, but he wasn't a happy peacock, so it was safer to keep my distance, and make do with these crappy photos instead. (Sorry for the quality of these photos; I was using an old point and shoot because Rosie had broken my Canon with her teeth, and I couldn't afford to replace it).

Newquay Zoo doesn't have many large animals- lions, lynx, and tapirs are about it- but they have a wonderful menagerie of smaller animals, and enough variety to keep a visit interesting for people of all ages.

It's quite a small zoo- smaller than The Cotswold Wildlife Park and Twycross Zoo, to give you an idea- but it's a lovely little zoo, and beautifully designed with lots of trees, plants, and flowers everywhere, and even a small lake. It only takes a couple of hours to walk around the entire zoo to see everything, but it's the perfect amount of time for a day trip by the coast because it leaves you more time to spend at the beach afterwards! You could stretch it out to a full afternoon if you took your time watching all of the animals, stopped for a bite to eat, and took your kids to the playground, but it usually takes us no longer than three make it out the exit after an enjoyable visit.

You have to exit through the gift shop, so of course, we gave it a good browse before we left. I came away with a couple of small dream catchers- one for myself, and one to take home for my younger sister.

We all had such a great time at the zoo, and I don't think any of us felt our visit was spoilt just because a good chunk of it was inaccessible. We were more than satisfied with all the adorable animals we did see.

As a huge animal lover, I've always loved  a good day out at the zoo. I've even done work experience in a couple! I just love being around so many weird and wonderful animals. Whenever I take a trip somewhere and there's a zoo nearby, you can be sure I'll find time for a visit; even if I've already been there before, like I have Newquay Zoo.

When I was seventeen and planning to go to uni once I'd finished my National Diploma in animal care, I was actually all set to study a foundation degree in Newquay's Cornwall College very close to the zoo. The course would have actually involved some work with the zoo, and part of my interview involved doing a project there with a few others. I can't remember exactly what it was about, but I think we had to evaluate or come up with improvements for a habitat. I just remember that we chose the tropical house because it was February and fucking freezing outside! I ended up getting cold feet about moving away from home a month before I was due to start the course because I was so incredibly shy at the time, so I dropped out, and I still regret it all these years later, even though I know I wouldn't have coped. While we were at the zoo, I couldn't help thinking what could have been, and what my life could have been like now if I had gone through with it, but I guess I'll never know. I just know I would have loved it if it meant I got to work at Newquay Zoo now and then!

We did consider returning to the zoo again later in the week to do the sections we missed out on, but we never made it back in the end. We were too busy visiting lots of other awesome places. After our trip to the zoo, we headed back to the holiday park for a rest, and later Marie and I went in to Perranporth, browsed the seaside shops, and sat looking out over Perranporth beach with the most amazing Snickers ice cream from a local ice cream parlour. It was heavenly.

If you're an animal lover and you're ever in Cornwall, you need to pay Newquay Zoo a visit! I promise you'll love it as much as we do.

Look out for the next post from my Cornish adventures, which will be all about our visit to Padstow. Coming soon...

Do you enjoy a trip to the zoo? Which zoo is your favourite?

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Sunday, 23 July 2017

Sunday Favourites #285

It's that time of the week again...

I can't remember the last time I played a board game, but Lovely Indeed's DIY Chinese checkers game looks pretty fun.

Studio DIY's floating glitter clutch looks amazing!

These adorable photos of rats by Diane Ozdamar.

Kelly's rainbow swimsuit is everything! The DIY rainbow sunglasses are pretty damn cool also.

I love these Good Vibes greeting cards from Ban Do. They'd be perfect for pinning up above a desk for a little bit of inspiration and motivation.

How cool are these giant rainbow pinwheels from Oh Happy Day? I don't care if I'm in my thirties- I want one!

I also want to cover my house with their rainbow paper chain garlands. I'm just a big kid at heart!

Best Friends For Frosting's easiest sprinkle popcorn recipe would be the perfect treat for movie night.

These beautiful miniature paintings by artist Julia Las.

I love how Little Big Bell have styled this bar trolley, and the multi-coloured light box is to die for.

Vanessa Davis' make up artistry skills are incredible.

Kraken Kreations' anatomical embroidery designs are amazing, and were inspired by her extensive facial surgery.

I love these flamingo and pineapple wall prints from Ohh Deer.

And this panda tattoo by Martyna Popiel is quite possibly the cutest tattoo I've ever seen.

Lovely Links

♥ Good dog saves a baby deer from drowning. While the owner filmed the whole thing, and did nothing to help (though he did later)...

♥ Remembering Linkin Park's Chester Bennington in pictures. There aren't enough words to express how heartbroken I am by his death. Can't believe it, tbh. 41 is no age at all. I've been a big fan of Linkin Park since I was 15, and their music helped me through a lot of years of depression when I was younger, and even with my chronic illnesses in the first couple of years when I was still trying to get my head around it all, so it's one of those celebrity deaths that has really hit me. It's just really sad that he was suffering so much, and left six kids behind.

♥ A black woman who took her own life in prison wasn't given the mental health support she needed. This is so wrong! When are people going to start taking mental health seriously?!

♥ Really Ree shared a peek at the Jo Malone Christmas range for 2017 and OMG it all looks so beautiful! I want the Advent calendar!

If you'd like to see more content like this, check out my Pinterest and Tumblr. You can also find all previous Sunday Favourites posts here.

Thanks for reading!
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