Hello 2017!

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Hello there stranger! It’s been such a long time since my last post!

I didn’t mean to stop blogging. I love my little blog and I love the community I have built up with it over the last 4 years. I’m made some amazing friends and I love looking back at old posts that have captured some wonderful memories. Somehow, life got in the way however, and we drifted apart a little. A lot of the faces have changed since we last caught up, and I’m sad to have lost touch with some of the amazing bloggers I got to know, but with the New Year I am looking forward to a new challenge and meeting some new faces.

2016 was an amazing year for me. I got to travel to San Francisco, Orlando and Seattle. I became an auntie, I changed jobs to become a Business Development Manager. I have thrown myself into voluntary work, including completing my 5th blood donation and spending my Christmas with an isolated elderly person in addition to my weekly volunteering with the Royal Voluntary Service. I also ran three 10k races for Macmillan Cancer Support. Oh, and I discovered a love for geocaching (but more on that later…)

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November 2015 Goals

November already! Is anyone else finding they blink and a whole month has gone? We’re getting scarily close to Christmas now! I hope you’ve all had a good few months – sorry I missed my monthly goals again in October! I was only getting round to updating my goals by the middle of the month so I decided to hold off a couple of weeks so that it lined up with the beginning of the month again! Hopefully things will get back on track now! Anyway, here is the summary of how I faired with my September goals, and the goals I am setting for the month of November. Enjoy!

September/October Outcomes:

Once Upon A Time Sampler – I had really hoped to get that banner in but I have been so off cross stitching recently…I think the Barcelona Sunset took it out of me! At the minute I am just about keeping up with the monthly designs (not that it was finished when I took the photo but it is now, I promise!) which isn’t too bad, if the banner has to be added as a late addition then so be it!

November Sampler

Cut Thru’ Caravan – I was really hoping to make serious progress on this over the last few months but since I lost my cross stitch mojo it’s just not got anywhere! Sadly I’ve accepted that it isn’t going to be ready in time for Christmas (it would have been a tight squeeze anyway!) so it has been put to one side for now while I focus on other Christmas gifts and I will complete it for Christmas 2016 instead! Continue reading

Fancy Paperie Stationery Review

Hello!

I was recently asked to review some products for a lovely little Etsy shop called Fancy Paperie. They specialise in really wonderful quality paper good such as letter sets, postcards and greetings cards as well as a wonderful range of seasonal items.

You can see my review in the video below – let me know what you think! Oh and make sure you watch all the way to the end to receive your discount code to spend at https://www.etsy.com/shop/fancypaperie7

September 2015 Goals

Blimey, where are the weeks going??? Once again, we are in the middle of the month before my goals are going up and it’s been four weeks since my last post again! Time seems to be galloping ahead without me at the moment but I’m desperately trying to rein it in and get posts up more frequently! But for the meantime, here are the outcomes of my August goals, and the goals I have set myself for September.

August Outcomes:

Once Upon a Time Sampler – In August my aim was to get the two remaining frames stitched in as well as the design for the month and I completed this so I was thrilled that it is almost up to date! I even managed to make a tiny start on the banner at the top…can you see it? Also, a sneak peek of the September design there too – this month is Black Beauty!

Sampler Edit

Cut Thru’ Caravan – I also managed to finish the page of the Caravan pattern that I was working on! It is coming together nicely but I am starting to realise that meeting my deadline of Christmas doesn’t look likely to happen – especially with all of the other presents I still need to make! Continue reading

May 2015 Incoming and Outgoing Mail

Hello!

A really really quick round up of my incoming and outgoing mail this month because I’ve not been as active as I should have been! At the beginning of the month I focused on getting my #Postcircl mail out, so my Postcrossing postcards fell by the wayside for a few weeks! I’ve caught up with everything now though so hopefully June will bring more happymail to my door!

Outgoing:

As I mentioned, the first outgoing mail that I sent was my #Postcircle bundle. The letters were only brief this time round but I did write to everyone in my group which is what I was aiming to do. I’d got so far behind in my replies that I had loads to reply to so I’m thrilled I’m finally back on track! Hopefully this means that going forward I can reply as soon as a letter falls through my door to ensure I can spend more time putting together a lovely little parcel like the ones I receive!

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My First #PaperHaul Box!

Hello!

As you all know, I love a good subscription box! And thanks to a post by Stephanie Pomfrett I was introduced to the #PaperHaul box. #PaperHaul is a box of paper goodies for paper lovers. Each box contains a whole host of goodies suited to that month’s theme, and my first box was a very groovy 70s themed box. Typically each box contains two greetings cards, three postcards, three gift tags, a roll of washi tape, a sheet of stickers, two sheets of double sided printed craft paper and mini notecards. Here is what I was lucky enough to receive in my first box:

PaperHaul 1

Look at all of these wonderful paper goodies! I couldn’t believe how much was in my box when I first opened it up – I didn’t know where to start! You can see a breakdown and close ups of all of the individual items below. Continue reading

Books that Inspire…

Hello! I hope you are all having a lovely bank holiday weekend!

As you all know, I’m a book lover. I always have been since I was a child (a long time before I was old enough to read them!) and right now my house is crammed full of bookcases as well as boxes of books that I can’t fit on them!

What I do love more than anything though are the books that really inspire you, and I was lucky enough to find two of them on a recent trip to Salts Mill with my parents while James was away.

What inspires me most about these books is that they are completely unique – I have never encountered books like them before. They have stunning graphics  that really speak for themselves, so prepare yourself for a photo heavy post. Because of this, I’m only going to  give them the briefest of introductions, then let the pictures get you inspired too!

The first book that I bought was Snail Mail: Celebrating the Art of Handwritten Correspondence which is simply an essential for anyone who, like me, loves snail mailing. It is a stunning hardback volume with over 200 pages crammed full of inspiring stories, tips and crafts for avid snail mailers. The author is truly passionate about the art of snail mail and really presents it as an art form through the beautiful photographs. Mackintosh shares the origins of her love of snail mail from her Dad’s romantic telegram messages to her mother, and walks you through the etiquette of the hobby. The most inspiring thing about this book however, is the wonderful abundance of ideas that this book invokes – everything from font styles to handmade envelopes and gifts, to stamps and decoration, which really urge you to dig out you stationary straight away and get started! See if you can make it through the next twenty photographs without rummaging around for a pen and the address book!

Snail Mail 1 Continue reading

New Year Pen Pal Boxes

About a year ago I signed up to #Postcircle. As many of you know, I am an avid snail-mailer and love writing and receiving letters. When I first signed up to #Postcircle, the group I was in wasn’t very active and I only ever received one letter. Over time I forgot about it, but a newsletter popped up in my inbox last year and it inspired me to get started again. As my first group hadn’t really taken off, I requested to join a new group instead. This time round I was lucky enough to be placed in a group with 5 lovely ladies who are all as snail-mail mad as I am! I have received mail from everyone in the group, and with some participants we exchange letters/parcels almost every month! I’m absolutely thrilled to be involved in such an active group this time round and I am loving getting to know the fellow members of my group.

Last year was such a chaotic year for me though, and although I always replied to my letters quickly, I felt that I didn’t have enough time to make the parcels as special as I would like. I really wanted to have the time to choose the perfect little gifts in my parcels for each recipient, or, even better, I wanted to be able to make things to exchange. At the close of 2014 I felt a little guilty that I was receiving such wonderful things in the mail that the ladies had put so much time and effort into, so I wanted to do something special to mark the new year, and a year that would give me more time to dedicate to my hobbies such as snail-mail.

I decided to send each of the participants in my group, and my US penpal from another blog, a box of wishes for the new year. After my chaotic and stressful year last year, I realised that it would be really useful  to have a box of necessities to go to if I was ever in need. But the things that I needed weren’t necessarily physical things, they were things like friendship, health and happiness. While I knew that I couldn’t send these things in the post, I decided to do the best that I could by sending something to symbolize what it was that might be needed. I picked 6 things to send; love, friendship, memories, prosperity, health and happiness, and packed them up in a box like this:

Box outside

And when you open the box, you see this little card:

Box inside

I wanted to create a vintage look for the box, so I chose the cover image and the tag template from Pinterest. I added the text to the card that read ‘Dear ***, Wishing you a Happy New Year and sending you best wishes for 2015. I hope your year is everything that you want it to be, but if you ever find that you are having a bad day. I hope you will find what you need in this box. Remember, sometimes it only takes a little thing to make the big problems better. Love, Hannah xx’

And inside the box? I chose the following items to represent the wishes I had picked. Continue reading

A New Friend from Across the Pond

In December last year I noticed someone had signed up to The White Peach Blog’s penpal scheme and shared it to Facebook. I spotted it on my newsfeed and was instantly intrigued! Mary of  The White Peach Blog has set up the mammoth scheme where penpals are randomly assigned for 2014, and then the aim is to write to your penpal once each month throughout the year, and to enclose a small gift for them. I loved the idea and signed up instantly! I have had a bit of a break from snail-mailing recently, but I loved the idea of getting to know someone across the space of a year, something which most swapping sites don’t allow you to do, as you only do one off swaps. I also felt that the commitment of one letter a month was reasonable and not too expensive. I didn’t have to think twice about signing up!

I was partnered with Stef from the US, and we have now exchanged our first letters. Mine was put together pretty hastily, as her birthday was 6th January, and I wanted to get my parcel to her as close to her birthday as I could…I was only a few days late! This is what I sent her:

Friend Across Pond 2

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