31 Jan 2015

Wedding Dress Shopping: Mark 1

This is a bit of a throwback to November when I went on my first dress shopping trip, how can it have been that long ago!

I was feeling pretty nervous and excited, I went with my mum to a shop near where she lives to try and get an idea of what I wanted.
I'd done quite a lot of looking at dresses in advance and I thought I knew the style I wanted, but why not go crazy and try on everything the shop has to offer.

Which is exactly what I did, I think I ended up trying on about 7 dresses!
Being a size 6-8 in the UK and 5ft, I was pretty sceptical about how they were going to make a dress that's size 12-14 fit me in anyway.
A little later when I was clipped and pinned into a dress, I could see what a fantastic job they could do! However due to the amount of clips on the backs of the dresses, I can never get a proper idea of what that'll look like.

The style of dresses I thought I wanted was exactly right, I tried on some of the big poofy ones, but looked totally ridiculous being so small.

Overall it was good, I didn't get any sort of 'wow' feeling, but we did some ground work!

Keep an eye out for the next installment of my Wedding Dress Shopping!

30 Jan 2015

Wedding Dress Shopping: An Uphill Struggle

So would've thought that shopping for a Wedding dress would be SO STRESSFUL.
In my head it's all lovely, lunches out, floating into lovely shops where they give you glasses of fizz (or at least a cup of tea), coming out of the changing room to gasps of delight and swirling around in beautiful dresses.

The reality, lunches out cause me to eat too much and give me a tummy ache during the appointment, the shops all seem to run late and so you run out of time. I'm too small for all the dresses, so I have to be clipped, pegged and pinned into them, meaning I can't bend down to pick up the dress. And as I'm so short, the dresses are all far to long. Cue me tripping out of a changing room and stumbling into a block to make me look taller.

All in all, that makes it sound a lot worse than it is, it is very fun (as long as you don't mind standing in your underwear in front of a total stranger!)

What I'm running the real stress and struggle is finding the right dress, and then once I've found a dress to try on finding somewhere that stocks that dress!
I've been on 2 trips, spanning 2 months and I haven't found the dress, I haven't had the wow moment. I'm not even sure I'll have that moment.
Everyone had a bigger and better reaction (bridesmaids, my mum and the ladies in the shop) than me to all the dresses I tried on.
I feel like I'm striving to find some perfection that isn't there, to find a better dress that won't exist. Because how would I find the dress that has everything perfect and within a budget?

I currently have 4 different spreadsheets open, all with multiple tabs, I've sent nearly 30 emails to dress shops in the last day and a half about designers, dresses and appointments.

To try on the dresses I want to I'm going to have to travel miles to try on just one dress. Then miles to somewhere else to try on one more dress.
Should I give up on that and settle for one I've found?

And meanwhile I've got the wedding timeline in my mind - must buy dress by 8 months.
I'm at 10 months now, that only gives me another 2 months to get this in the bag!
But my bridesmaids aren't free for another month, the dress shops are booked up for a month and a half.

How do I do this?
Why is it such a difficult task?
Am I the only one that has so much trouble?

I'm feeling so confused, stressed and overwhelmed by this.
I just don't know what to do next.

Photo Friday #9

A sneak peak at the florist I've booked for my wedding!

28 Jan 2015

A John Lewis Filofax Adventure!

So on Sunday I happened to be in John Lewis with my wonderful fiance (we'll call him T), as T has seen a fantastic deal on a dishwasher the day before - £700 down to £250 for no apparent reason!
Long story short we bought the dishwasher (yay, no more washing up!) and my mum will have to store it for the next year, haha.

But whilst we were getting the sale in place I spotted the stationary section and a sign on the wall that said 'Filofax', I pointed it out to T (who rolled his eye, he has no understanding) and went over while he sorted out the money!
The section was only small, but it was like my own personal dreamland! I got to look at all the planner's I've looked at online, open them and touch them! I'm wondering now whether I should've smelt the Malden, but would I have looked just a bit weird.
To my delight they had Ochre Maldens, my dream, in most sizes, so I got to pick up, feel and look at both the personal and the A5. I can tell you I want both.
I also good to look at personal sized Originals and Finsburys, but the Malden still wins! They had some A5 dominos as well, which would definitely be my choice or work planner should I ever need one (please one day!).

In my excitement I took no photos of this wonderful Filofax oasis, but I can tell you, it's made me want a Malden even more. And wish I had a job where I could justify a planner.

Oh to dream!

26 Jan 2015

Blink and you'll miss it...my Pocket Finsbury

I was VERY naughty and on an impulse purchased a pocket Finsbury in Raspberry from Staples last Tuesday.
In my defence it was a bargain and I did go on about my hankering for a new Filo!

I need a new purse, my old one is rather worn and maybe too chunky for my bag.
I really want the Malden Large Zipped Purse, as it looks perfect and would give me my very own slice of the Ochre Malden pie! But it'd probably still be too chucky...and it's £53.00 I can't spend.
So when this Finsbury popped up I figured that I should take the plunge. It arrived on Wednesday, what service?!

I was thrilled, I unboxed it and it's truely beautiful, I love it, the colour, how soft it is. But last night I sat down to look at a purse set up, and realised that it just would never work for me.
And that I had no other need for it, as I've now set up my old Paperchase planner with some wedding info (more on that soon). It felt like a waste, and the money guilt set it.

So now it's up for sale.
I'm wanting around £25-30 for it, so if you're interested, let me know.

Here are some pictures of the beauty, I'll be sad to see her go. But I can't keep her just for the sake of it.

24 Jan 2015

Planning with Moleskine

Once I ditched my filofax/Paperchase planner I realised that I was still  no good at planning electronically, I still needed something paper to write things down. The physical act of writing something seems to help me to remember it much better.

I delved into my shelves at home and found a Moleskine Weekly Notebook diary that I got for the bargain price of £3 in 2013 during the Amazon Black Friday deals.
I'd started using it then, but I didn't have the best pens and lasted for the grand total of about 4 weeks...which was mainly me writing in what days I had off over Christmas (priorities!).
I picked it up again in the last week of October and used it solidly throughout the rest of the year. I've even number all the unused pages and made it into a notebook/list book that I can carry around. It was super helpful at Christmas with lists of To Dos and recipes.

I bought myself a Dodo Pad for 2015 in the hope that I would be happy to plan in it, to be a little messy and get everything done for the Wedding and flat move. I started putting in things through December, but when it came to finally using it in January I just wasn't happy. I missed my moleskine.
It didn't feel so professional, it didn't have a ribbon page marker, the notes pages weren't lined, there was no back pocket and no elastic closure, it just didn't measure up.
After umming and ahhing for a few days and looking at the price of getting a new Molkeskine for the year (£13.99!) I found exactly what I was looking for at Ryman's for half price!
Without thinking I grabbed it and ran for the till.

I'm now the proud owner of a 2014-15 black, soft cover, weekly notebook diary. Perfect, as I love the extra pages at the beginning for notes and lists. I also love the notes pages to write down my To Dos.
For now I've reached planner peace.

23 Jan 2015

Down Day

So I'm having a bit of a down day today...I think I'm feeling down and a bit stressed for a few reasons.
I'm hoping by writing it down I can sort things out in my head a bit and feel a little better!

1) Money
I'm feeling quite stressed about money, we're saving for the wedding at the moment, as well as everything for the new flat. Both things will be very expensive, and whilst the wedding has been budgetted for and I know what I have to save, the falt is currently a total unknown.
To add to this I bought a Pocket Finsbury Filofax the other day, and whilst I onl'y sent £14.99 on it (bargain!), I've realised I won't use it and I'm feeling stressed as I've spent money on it. I'm looking to sell it and hopefully make a little bit of money, so that might make me feel a bit better.
The problem is that at the moment, to save what I need to for the wedding I'll have about £20 spare every month, for anything else I need/want, including presents, clothes, travel, meals out etc. And I'm feeling that it's not really enough and I'm just going to have a sad year stuck at home doing nothing.
Resolution: Sell the Filofax, try not to stress. The end of this year will be a fantastic one for me with my wedding and moving into the first place that we own.

2) Food
I've posted before that I was losing weight and on a healthy eating plan. I've not passed my target and have lost around 4 stone! In terms of weight loss and my body I'm as happy as I've ever been and I love being smaller (and at 5ft the size I should be!) and having more energy.
But I'm still struggling with food and getting on the scales...I still want to eat all the food in the world, especially unhealthy things, but I'm ruled by guilt and so if I do eat too much or what I want I feel terrible.
I also feel awful if I get on the scales and they've gone up. I'm not sure what I'd think if I went above 7 stone. And I feel really good and happy if the number goes down, even though at 6st 9lbs I was technically underweight. I want to be back to that.
I can't eat a full sized chocolate bar, I haven't eaten one for over a year, 16 months...and I still can't bring myself to do it. When I started losing weight a Snicker's bar was a yard stick. In my new diet it was more calories than my breakfast, more than my lunch, maybe more than them combined. The same as having a pint of beer.
The thing is now, I will happily accept a pint of beer, but I can't get my head around a chocolate bar. I bought one the other day when I was only having a 290cal sandwich for dinner, but I was too scared to eat it.
Yesterday I ate too much, I was at a work thing where lunch was provided and I ate too many big and bready sandwiches, not to mention had 2 mini pastries for breakfast and a free glass of wine at the end of the day. Today I feel awful and guilty and I don't want to eat.
I'm panicking cause tomorrow I'm going wedding dress shopping with my mum and bridesmaids. We're meant to be going out for lunch, and in today's mindset I'm not sure if I can eat anything that's unhealthy. But if I fuss over what I eat my mum will pick up on it and make it a big thing. I'm scared.
I'm worried that if I carry on like this, panicking about what I eat, scared of putting on any weight that things might get worse...I don't want this to turn into an eating disorder.
Resolution: Again, try to worry less. As long as I'm not piling ont he pounds my weight can fluctuate a bit. I am also allowed to enjoy having treats every so often, as long as I balance them with heathier meals.

3) My Daddy
Very sadly my wonderful Daddy, who I was so close to and loved so much passed away last year.
I was at a Graduation Ceremony with work yesterday and it made me think of my own graduation, how proud he was of me. And I found it really hard. I was stood there looking at the students and their parents trying not to cry.
I've been finding it difficult lately, I don't think I've dealt with the loss completely yet, and I'm not sure how to.
Resolution: I don't know.

I can say that after writing that down and having a think, I do feel a bit better. The problems aren't magically sorted, but I feel ok.

20 Jan 2015

Blog Changes

Lately I've been reading lots of other people's blogs and nosing into people's instagrams, it's made me wish that I had my own outlet where I can post what I like and generally waffle about my liv.
Which is silly, because of course I have that outlet....I have this blog.
Now I don't post often, not many people see it, not many people comment...but does that really matter? If I want somewhere to write down my thoughts, then what does it matter if someone reads them, I'm not particularly trying to get my thoughts heard.

So I'm not going to try and use this blog for what I intended originally, whether it was cooking or planning or my Filofax...it's just going to be somewhere for me to share what's going on in my life and it will hopefully cover all of the above and much more.

The next few years should be interesting anyway...we've got a Wedding to plan for this December, a flat furnish, decorate and move into in December/January. Plus after that there'll surely be a baby on the cards, job updates, job moves, more house moves and who else knows what?!

19 Jan 2015

Hankering for a planner

And so that feelings come around again...I got stuck on what to do recently in regards to Wedding planning and how I was finding my personal Filos too bulky to carry around. Well nothing's changed, my planning need has stayed the same, my bag size has stayed the same.
What's changed is that I'm spending more time browsing other people's planners on facebook groups. The influx of pictures of Kikki K's and Webster's Colour Crush planners has left me wanting...
Wanting a lovely summery, light coloured beautiful planner that I can care for and write nicely in.
But I still also want an Ochre Malden, as well as a zipped compact and a Pillarbox Red Original.
And an A5...

But my situation hasn't changed, I don't need and won't use any of the above. And let's not get started on how I can't even think about affording anything under after the Wedding.
I just want one because it looks pretty.