Simple Living // Winter facial oils…

facial oils for winter skinI don’t know about you, but at this time of year my skin is in need of a little boost. What with the excesses of the festive season and the drying central heating and cold winds, my skin takes a battering.

I’ve recently started to use facial oils and have found them the perfect antidote to winter dry skin.  According to Sali Hughes’ book ‘Pretty Upfront’ I have typical dehydrated skin. Skin which looks plump and glowing after a shower, but soon turns grey and tired moments later.

After seeing my grey tired skin last winter, this year I am determined to glow!

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simple living // a comfortable bedroom for Rufus…

comfortable bedroom emma mattress

Rufus is 10 this year! Can you believe it?!  I can’t.  Over the past few months he has grown and changed, wanting to spend more time in his bedroom reading or drawing, enjoying his own private space.

I asked him, what he would like to have to make his room more comfortable, thinking he would say a book shelf, or a new duvet cover. But his answer ranged from a TV, a fridge!?, a PS4 and a new mattress as, in his words, his present one is ‘lumpy’.

Well, I can do a mattress kiddo, but TV and fridge will have to wait until you leave home!

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Recipe // LBJ Seville Orange  & Chamomile Marmalade…

seville marmaladeAt SISTERHOOD winter we were fortunate to have the brilliant Lillie O’Brien of the London Borough of Jam teach the sisters how to make quince jelly.  The smell of those fragrant quinces bubbling in the bright winter sunshine will always stay with me.  It was magical, pure witch craft for sure.  Seeing quince with hibiscus flowers turned intp gleaming jars of amber rose jelly.  One of my favourite workshops ever!

Since then I have been obsessed with preserving, especially the LBJ way.  Lillie loves to add unusual ingredients to classic recipes.  Vanilla, chamomile, greengage and rhubarb.

Lillie had kindly shared her seasonal marmalade recipe with us… Seville orange marmalade with chamomile…

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Colour hit // pinks and blues…

colours

On instagram today, I admitted I am a colourphobe.  Preferring the soft greys, natural woods, whites and texture. But did I flip this comment to quickly?  Yes I do prefer a muted palette at home, but actually I do like colour…. it makes me smile, lifts me and I feel a calm energy from it.

But, not all colour is the same.  NO.  I’m not a fan of brights, no.  No bright pink or yelow for me.  I am a pastel girl, I love colours that are soft, elegant and subtle.  The colour of rain on a leaf, a delicate hue of the inside of shell, dried seed heads of the honesty, chalk, velvet ribbon, pink walls of Marrakesh…

You get me….

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Simple Living // New year, new me with TK Maxx

tkmaxx new year new me

A brand new year, a blank page, a chance to try to achieve new goals.  January is a brilliant time to assess one’s life and make a few adjustments.  It doesn’t have to be dramatic and huge, but a few little changes can make all the difference.

For me, I like to look at the home, and change a few things up.  With this in mind, I headed to my local TK Maxx store to see what they had in that day to help me make my new year a better one.  With three key goals, I wanted to pamper myself, eat better and get fitter…. Easy right?

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Looking back… 2016

lou-archell-littlegreenshed-2016-22

This is me, Lou. I’m 45 years old, mother of two amazing boys, partner to one amazing guy. Blogger and photographer…. adventure seeker.

My path before I arrived here was wild, messy, sometimes lonely, but always crazy. Turmoil of emotions, depression, living abroad, substance abuse, terrible boyfriends, terrible friends…. But I am a firm believer that all things happen for a reason, that my unconventional path has led me to this point in life. To meet Dan, to write this blog, to embark on adventures through it…. it was all part of the bigger picture, wasn’t it?  Planned? No. Expected? Never. Surprised? Not really.

Hard work, perseverance, falling out with some ugly, unkind people and fighting to keep going – yes this has all led me to this point.  For most this past year has been tough, the world, in parts, has taken on a level of evil, and while this blog seems blinkered to that fact, it is never far from my mind.

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Travel / Planning a boating in Norfolk trip in 2017…

Norfolk broads boating holidays

With our thoughts turning to the new year, I am keen to get some exciting family adventures booked in. A chance for us to visit new cities, experience exciting new challenges and develop skills.  City breaks in Europe, skiing, climbing mountains, swimming in warm oceans and boating on the broads.

With a weekend in Wales and a week in France already booked – we are excitedly planning the remaining months, and pouring over maps, and seeking inspiration in books and on Pinterest.

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