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I have been a homeowner for for 20 plus years and have lived in our current home for around 14 years, yet my home is far from finished. I think every homeowner will tell you the same, styling your home and filling it with things you need and love takes time and is always an ongoing project, but I guess that's part of the fun.


Top three homeware purchases

We all have different styles and tastes when it comes to our homes and whether you own you're home or rent it, there are some things every home needs. In this post I will be sharing my top homeware purchases and why I love them.


This post contains some affiliate links 

Mattress 

I think we can all agree, a comfortable place to sleep has to up there with one of the top buys for any home, whether you are taking your first tentative steps into the world of home decor or are a seasoned pro we all need a decent spot to rest our weary head at the end of the day. Beds can be bought from a number of retailers for varying prices. Whether it be a frame or divan with or without storage the choices are endless, but in my opinion what really matters is the mattress you choose for your bed. To keep costs down choose a budget bed, and spend your money on a decent mattress, after all a good night's sleep is priceless. For us after much research and months of waking up with a bad back or a stiff neck we decided to invest in an Emma mattress and pillows and for us it was the best decision. The mattress arrives boxed and you simply put it on the bed and watch it pop into shape, you don't have to wait hours it does this in a few minutes and you can sleep on it that night. The Emma mattress is high quality foam that supports your body throughout the night, while being breathable using open poor airgocell foam that is climate controlled keeping you cool. We both sleep so much better and we have far less aches and pains now. The Emma mattress is by far the best we have ever had.
Although not cheap for us a worthwhile investment.


Vacuum Cleaner 

Since buying our Shark Vacuum* we regularly joke that it is the best thing we have ever bought. I am obsessed and it is now a joy to pop the hoover round. Before this we had a rather aging dyson and the shark knocks the socks off of it. Not only is it cordless making it a breeze to clean the whole house without the faff of plugging and unplugging and tripping over the cord. The performance knocks every other vacuum I've had out of the water. I have a dog and a cat plus I have long hair that molts like nobody's business and the Shark makes cleaning up effortless. In fact I actually quite like hoovering now!! 


Blinds

We all need window dressings in our homes and blinds have become a very popular choice. Depending on your style and the function of the room, you can now find reasonable priced made to measure options online. Whether your preference is a roman or roller blind or sleek wooden slatted blinds. I have loved using Make my blinds* in my home. I have white wooden slatted blinds in all three bedrooms, as I love the clean elegance they provide. The process is simple, just add your window measurements to your order and your blind will be made to perfectly fit your window. Full instructions are provided and even a video is available on the website as to how to fit correctly. My husband says they are easy to fit and we have been so pleased with the process along with the very reasonable price point for a made to measure product. We are already planning on buying more, when we can safely start our renovation plans.



*Affiliate links
*Click to follow on bloglovin 

My top three homeware purchases


I have been a homeowner for for 20 plus years and have lived in our current home for around 14 years, yet my home is far from finished. I think every homeowner will tell you the same, styling your home and filling it with things you need and love takes time and is always an ongoing project, but I guess that's part of the fun.


Top three homeware purchases

We all have different styles and tastes when it comes to our homes and whether you own you're home or rent it, there are some things every home needs. In this post I will be sharing my top homeware purchases and why I love them.


This post contains some affiliate links 

Mattress 

I think we can all agree, a comfortable place to sleep has to up there with one of the top buys for any home, whether you are taking your first tentative steps into the world of home decor or are a seasoned pro we all need a decent spot to rest our weary head at the end of the day. Beds can be bought from a number of retailers for varying prices. Whether it be a frame or divan with or without storage the choices are endless, but in my opinion what really matters is the mattress you choose for your bed. To keep costs down choose a budget bed, and spend your money on a decent mattress, after all a good night's sleep is priceless. For us after much research and months of waking up with a bad back or a stiff neck we decided to invest in an Emma mattress and pillows and for us it was the best decision. The mattress arrives boxed and you simply put it on the bed and watch it pop into shape, you don't have to wait hours it does this in a few minutes and you can sleep on it that night. The Emma mattress is high quality foam that supports your body throughout the night, while being breathable using open poor airgocell foam that is climate controlled keeping you cool. We both sleep so much better and we have far less aches and pains now. The Emma mattress is by far the best we have ever had.
Although not cheap for us a worthwhile investment.


Vacuum Cleaner 

Since buying our Shark Vacuum* we regularly joke that it is the best thing we have ever bought. I am obsessed and it is now a joy to pop the hoover round. Before this we had a rather aging dyson and the shark knocks the socks off of it. Not only is it cordless making it a breeze to clean the whole house without the faff of plugging and unplugging and tripping over the cord. The performance knocks every other vacuum I've had out of the water. I have a dog and a cat plus I have long hair that molts like nobody's business and the Shark makes cleaning up effortless. In fact I actually quite like hoovering now!! 


Blinds

We all need window dressings in our homes and blinds have become a very popular choice. Depending on your style and the function of the room, you can now find reasonable priced made to measure options online. Whether your preference is a roman or roller blind or sleek wooden slatted blinds. I have loved using Make my blinds* in my home. I have white wooden slatted blinds in all three bedrooms, as I love the clean elegance they provide. The process is simple, just add your window measurements to your order and your blind will be made to perfectly fit your window. Full instructions are provided and even a video is available on the website as to how to fit correctly. My husband says they are easy to fit and we have been so pleased with the process along with the very reasonable price point for a made to measure product. We are already planning on buying more, when we can safely start our renovation plans.



*Affiliate links
*Click to follow on bloglovin 

A lot of things are difficult in lockdown, but getting into a book is easy and I find a great form of escapism. Whether you are a prolific reader or new to reading now is a great time to discover a great book, and while away a few hours.


What I read in April

So if you are looking for some reading ideas stick around.


Blood Orange - Harriet Tyce ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Alison appears to have it all, doting husband, cute kid and career that's on the up. She lands her first murder since becoming a barrister, at first her client admits she stabbed her husband and wants to plead guilty, but something just doesn't add up. Add that to Alison's complicated relationship with a colleague, her excessive drinking and marriage that's very much on the rocks, and you have a recipe for an exciting fast based thriller, with things not being as they seem in her work life or at home, and the end - wow I didn't see that coming!

100% recommend this book defo one of my fav books this year.

The Dry - Jane Harper ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

This is Jane Harper's debut novel, I will certainly be adding her other books to my tbr pile.

Set in small town Australia in the worst drought of a century, three members of the same family are found brutally murdered. Federal police officer Arran Folk reluctantly returns to his hometown for his childhood friends funeral, loath to face the townsfolk that drove him away twenty years earlier. But as questions mount into the investigation of the Hadler family's deaths, Falk is forced to probe further as Luke Hadler and Falk shared a secret. A secret that threatens to rise to the surface in this small town.

This could change everything - Jill Mansell ⭐⭐⭐⭐

If Essie hadn't written that letter that went viral, the one only her best friend was meant to off seen. Then she could still be living her grown up life with Paul in his cute cottage.

But than again if her true feelings hadn't accidentally became an internet sensation, she wouldn't of moved to the attic flat in the square, got a new job and met Connor and Lucas. And she wouldn't of found herself falling in love with someone she really shouldn't....

The subtle knife - Philip Pullman ⭐⭐⭐⭐

The subtle knife is the second book in the his dark materials trilogy.
Lyra finds herself in a new world lost until she finds a boy Will, a murdera and worthy ally. Lyra is looking for dust and its meaning and Will his father, but somehow it seems their lives are entangled and they must work together as their destinies lead them the same way.

I found the subtle knife for more enjoyable than the first book in the series as it has more pace, I am intrigued as to where the last book will lead.

Have you read any of these books?

*Affiliate links







*Click to follow on bloglovin

What I read in April


A lot of things are difficult in lockdown, but getting into a book is easy and I find a great form of escapism. Whether you are a prolific reader or new to reading now is a great time to discover a great book, and while away a few hours.


What I read in April

So if you are looking for some reading ideas stick around.


Blood Orange - Harriet Tyce ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Alison appears to have it all, doting husband, cute kid and career that's on the up. She lands her first murder since becoming a barrister, at first her client admits she stabbed her husband and wants to plead guilty, but something just doesn't add up. Add that to Alison's complicated relationship with a colleague, her excessive drinking and marriage that's very much on the rocks, and you have a recipe for an exciting fast based thriller, with things not being as they seem in her work life or at home, and the end - wow I didn't see that coming!

100% recommend this book defo one of my fav books this year.

The Dry - Jane Harper ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

This is Jane Harper's debut novel, I will certainly be adding her other books to my tbr pile.

Set in small town Australia in the worst drought of a century, three members of the same family are found brutally murdered. Federal police officer Arran Folk reluctantly returns to his hometown for his childhood friends funeral, loath to face the townsfolk that drove him away twenty years earlier. But as questions mount into the investigation of the Hadler family's deaths, Falk is forced to probe further as Luke Hadler and Falk shared a secret. A secret that threatens to rise to the surface in this small town.

This could change everything - Jill Mansell ⭐⭐⭐⭐

If Essie hadn't written that letter that went viral, the one only her best friend was meant to off seen. Then she could still be living her grown up life with Paul in his cute cottage.

But than again if her true feelings hadn't accidentally became an internet sensation, she wouldn't of moved to the attic flat in the square, got a new job and met Connor and Lucas. And she wouldn't of found herself falling in love with someone she really shouldn't....

The subtle knife - Philip Pullman ⭐⭐⭐⭐

The subtle knife is the second book in the his dark materials trilogy.
Lyra finds herself in a new world lost until she finds a boy Will, a murdera and worthy ally. Lyra is looking for dust and its meaning and Will his father, but somehow it seems their lives are entangled and they must work together as their destinies lead them the same way.

I found the subtle knife for more enjoyable than the first book in the series as it has more pace, I am intrigued as to where the last book will lead.

Have you read any of these books?

*Affiliate links







*Click to follow on bloglovin
In collaboration with Moonpig let happiness bloom campaign 

Lockdown is hard, I mean really hard. We all Know the reasons why and we all Know it's for the best, but still not seeing our families and friends takes its toll. If we take just one thing from this, it has to be to appreciate what we have, to not take our loved ones for granted. To make time to visit or call our parents and grandparents, to check in on our friends, siblings, cousins. To enjoy spending time just hanging out with people we love.

Moonpig let happiness bloom 
This lockdown has made seeing people outside the home impossible but has highlighted all the ways we can keep in touch even when we cannot get out. Modern technology for a start has made chatting to friends wherever they live a breeze, from quiz nights on zoom to facetiming for a chat. But also more old fashioned practises are great for showing someone you care from afar, like writing a letter, sending a thoughtful card, a bouquet of flowers, a book you think they will like, a puzzle to keep them busy. It doesn't have to be a grand gesture just something to show you are thinking of them.

Moonpig let happiness bloom

Whether its a birthday or anniversary or just because, sending a gift is a lovely way to show someone you care and you are thinking of them. These days online retailers such as Moonpig mean you can order, a card, flowers or chocolates for a special person having them delivered to their door, all without having to leave your sofa.

So if you are missing someone you care about, pick up the phone, write them a letter or send them a gift, a little thought goes a long way, especially right now.

Moonpig are currently running their let happiness bloom campaign, which is all about spreading love through acts of kindness and have kindly given me a discount code to share with you. Just download the Moonpig app to get 25% off all flowers until the 25th Of May using code App25bloom and spread some happiness.

 Take care and be kind.

* Click to follow on bloglovin

ways to be kind from afar

In collaboration with Moonpig let happiness bloom campaign 

Lockdown is hard, I mean really hard. We all Know the reasons why and we all Know it's for the best, but still not seeing our families and friends takes its toll. If we take just one thing from this, it has to be to appreciate what we have, to not take our loved ones for granted. To make time to visit or call our parents and grandparents, to check in on our friends, siblings, cousins. To enjoy spending time just hanging out with people we love.

Moonpig let happiness bloom 
This lockdown has made seeing people outside the home impossible but has highlighted all the ways we can keep in touch even when we cannot get out. Modern technology for a start has made chatting to friends wherever they live a breeze, from quiz nights on zoom to facetiming for a chat. But also more old fashioned practises are great for showing someone you care from afar, like writing a letter, sending a thoughtful card, a bouquet of flowers, a book you think they will like, a puzzle to keep them busy. It doesn't have to be a grand gesture just something to show you are thinking of them.

Moonpig let happiness bloom

Whether its a birthday or anniversary or just because, sending a gift is a lovely way to show someone you care and you are thinking of them. These days online retailers such as Moonpig mean you can order, a card, flowers or chocolates for a special person having them delivered to their door, all without having to leave your sofa.

So if you are missing someone you care about, pick up the phone, write them a letter or send them a gift, a little thought goes a long way, especially right now.

Moonpig are currently running their let happiness bloom campaign, which is all about spreading love through acts of kindness and have kindly given me a discount code to share with you. Just download the Moonpig app to get 25% off all flowers until the 25th Of May using code App25bloom and spread some happiness.

 Take care and be kind.

* Click to follow on bloglovin

Whether you are vegan, or have intolerances/allergies sweet treats can be hard to get your hands on, especially at the moment. I know we have had trouble sourcing biscuits/cookies that I can eat. Then I discovered this super easy recipe, and all my biscuit desires where fulfilled.
Vegan Chocolate chip cookies recipe

The recipe is really simple has no weird and wonderful ingredients, and importantly doesn't contain eggs, which are like gold dust right now. It uses the all one one method and takes just 12 minutes to bake, so really are perfect when the urge for sweet treats hits.  

Vegan chocolate chip cookies 

Ingredients

Makes 24 cookies

250g dairy free butter
225g caster sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbs golden syrup
300g plain flour with 1 tsp baking powder, or 300g SR flour
1/2 tsp salt
85g dark chocolate or your chocolate of choice

Method

  • Preheat oven to 180c, line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Put the dairy free butter, sugar, vanilla extract and golden syrup into a food processor and whizz to a cream. Or cream in a bowl if you don't have a processor.
  • Pour in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix everything together.
  • Chop the chocolate and and stir into the mixture.
  • Using a spoon create walnut sized pieces of mixture and spread out between the two trays. Squash the dough slightly, but not flat.
  • Bake for 12/14 minutes rotating halfway through cooking for an even bake. Remove from the oven when lightly golden at the edges.
  • Allow to cool and firm up on the trays for 5/10 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  
These are the easiest cookies I have ever made and they taste delicious.

Will you be baking these?

Let me know in the comments if you do.

Vegan Chocolate chip cookie recipe


*Click to follow on bloglovin

Vegan Chocolate chip cookie recipe


Whether you are vegan, or have intolerances/allergies sweet treats can be hard to get your hands on, especially at the moment. I know we have had trouble sourcing biscuits/cookies that I can eat. Then I discovered this super easy recipe, and all my biscuit desires where fulfilled.
Vegan Chocolate chip cookies recipe

The recipe is really simple has no weird and wonderful ingredients, and importantly doesn't contain eggs, which are like gold dust right now. It uses the all one one method and takes just 12 minutes to bake, so really are perfect when the urge for sweet treats hits.  

Vegan chocolate chip cookies 

Ingredients

Makes 24 cookies

250g dairy free butter
225g caster sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbs golden syrup
300g plain flour with 1 tsp baking powder, or 300g SR flour
1/2 tsp salt
85g dark chocolate or your chocolate of choice

Method

  • Preheat oven to 180c, line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Put the dairy free butter, sugar, vanilla extract and golden syrup into a food processor and whizz to a cream. Or cream in a bowl if you don't have a processor.
  • Pour in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix everything together.
  • Chop the chocolate and and stir into the mixture.
  • Using a spoon create walnut sized pieces of mixture and spread out between the two trays. Squash the dough slightly, but not flat.
  • Bake for 12/14 minutes rotating halfway through cooking for an even bake. Remove from the oven when lightly golden at the edges.
  • Allow to cool and firm up on the trays for 5/10 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  
These are the easiest cookies I have ever made and they taste delicious.

Will you be baking these?

Let me know in the comments if you do.

Vegan Chocolate chip cookie recipe


*Click to follow on bloglovin

My blog has rather took a back seat, during these unprecedented times. I just haven't really had much to say, but today I thought I would share what I have been reading lately, as I'm sure many of us have time on our hands or just need escapism of the kind you can only get from being absorbed in a good story.

What I read in March

So here's what I read in March

In the Dark - Cara Hunter ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

If you read February's what I read post, you will know that I am obsessed with Cara Hunter's DCI fawley series. If you love detective crime thrillers you have to read these books. Cara just immerses the reader right into the investigation. 

Do you know what they are hiding in the house next door?

A woman and child are found locked in a basement room, barely alive. No one knows who they are - the woman can't speak, and there a no missing persons reports that match their profile.

This book has so many twists and turns, things are not what they seem, it just sucks you in and you have to find out more.

Feminists don't wear pink ( and other lies ) - Scarlett Curtis ⭐⭐⭐

My first non fiction book of the year, I bought the kindle edition of this when it was on offer for 99p, as I felt like it was something that as a woman I should read. The book is a series of essays written by women from across the world, on their take on feminism and why it's important to women everywhere from every background.

I found this book informative and I learnt a lot about causes I hadn't realised existed, and how they impact on lives across the world.

The Sisters of Auschwitz - Roxane Van Iperen ⭐⭐⭐⭐

As the title indicates this is not an easy read, and certainly not light hearted escapism, but if you are interested in historical novels, especially those written about the atrocities of WW2 you will find this an interesting read.

This is the story of real life sisters, of the Brilleslijper family, a Jewish family from Amsterdam, who go into hiding to avoid the rounding up of Jews from across Europe. They work for the resistance in a bid to help other Jews in Holland, forging papers, and even hiding whole families. The seem to be one step of Nazi's, well for a while at least.  

Million love songs - Carole Matthews ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Now if you are looking for escapism in the form of good old fashioned chick lit, this could be the book for you.

Ruby Brown is newly single after divorcing her cheating ex, she moves house and changes jobs. She's looking for a fresh start and a bit of fun, her best friend Charlie is obsessed with Take That and tries to convince Ruby she doesn't need a man, that admiring Gary from afar is enough, but it's not for Ruby. 

After no action for a while like buses two men arrive in Ruby's life at once, both unsuitable in very different ways. Mason "shagger" Soames her playboy boss who is attempting to seduce Ruby, and despite his reputation Ruby is drawn to him. And Joe Edwards her hot diving teacher, with a complicated family set up, and seemingly no time for love.  

Pure escapism for chick lit lovers. 

All these books were downloaded from Amazon's kindle store, when on offer, you can sometimes get some great books for under a pound.


* Affiliate links




I hope I have inspired you to pick up a new book, and you are keeping well. Take care xxx


What I read in March


My blog has rather took a back seat, during these unprecedented times. I just haven't really had much to say, but today I thought I would share what I have been reading lately, as I'm sure many of us have time on our hands or just need escapism of the kind you can only get from being absorbed in a good story.

What I read in March

So here's what I read in March

In the Dark - Cara Hunter ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

If you read February's what I read post, you will know that I am obsessed with Cara Hunter's DCI fawley series. If you love detective crime thrillers you have to read these books. Cara just immerses the reader right into the investigation. 

Do you know what they are hiding in the house next door?

A woman and child are found locked in a basement room, barely alive. No one knows who they are - the woman can't speak, and there a no missing persons reports that match their profile.

This book has so many twists and turns, things are not what they seem, it just sucks you in and you have to find out more.

Feminists don't wear pink ( and other lies ) - Scarlett Curtis ⭐⭐⭐

My first non fiction book of the year, I bought the kindle edition of this when it was on offer for 99p, as I felt like it was something that as a woman I should read. The book is a series of essays written by women from across the world, on their take on feminism and why it's important to women everywhere from every background.

I found this book informative and I learnt a lot about causes I hadn't realised existed, and how they impact on lives across the world.

The Sisters of Auschwitz - Roxane Van Iperen ⭐⭐⭐⭐

As the title indicates this is not an easy read, and certainly not light hearted escapism, but if you are interested in historical novels, especially those written about the atrocities of WW2 you will find this an interesting read.

This is the story of real life sisters, of the Brilleslijper family, a Jewish family from Amsterdam, who go into hiding to avoid the rounding up of Jews from across Europe. They work for the resistance in a bid to help other Jews in Holland, forging papers, and even hiding whole families. The seem to be one step of Nazi's, well for a while at least.  

Million love songs - Carole Matthews ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Now if you are looking for escapism in the form of good old fashioned chick lit, this could be the book for you.

Ruby Brown is newly single after divorcing her cheating ex, she moves house and changes jobs. She's looking for a fresh start and a bit of fun, her best friend Charlie is obsessed with Take That and tries to convince Ruby she doesn't need a man, that admiring Gary from afar is enough, but it's not for Ruby. 

After no action for a while like buses two men arrive in Ruby's life at once, both unsuitable in very different ways. Mason "shagger" Soames her playboy boss who is attempting to seduce Ruby, and despite his reputation Ruby is drawn to him. And Joe Edwards her hot diving teacher, with a complicated family set up, and seemingly no time for love.  

Pure escapism for chick lit lovers. 

All these books were downloaded from Amazon's kindle store, when on offer, you can sometimes get some great books for under a pound.


* Affiliate links




I hope I have inspired you to pick up a new book, and you are keeping well. Take care xxx



We, I have been dreaming of renovations to our house for years, but actively planning for months, we are hoping to do some pretty major jobs in the house this year/next year depending on finances. But one job that will be going ahead in the next few months is our family bathroom. The room is soooo dated, we still have the original suite that was fitted when the house was built in the 90's, and let me tell you it's long over do a renovation job. Being a fairly new build house the rooms are not particularly spacious and the bathroom has shall we say petite proportions, nevertheless I have big plans for the space.


Family bathroom mood board

I'm planning a nature inspired scheme, with the green floral blind, and muted green towels, along with a neutral backdrop of dulux Egyption cotton on the walls. The suite and the tiles will be a crisp white, along with a white mirrored door unit, for storage and to help give the illusion of space. I plan on adding black and wood accessories to stop the space becoming to wishy washy.

I cannot wait to get started on this project and will keep you up to date once we get going.


*Affiliate links

Are you planning any home projects this year?

*Click to follow on bloglovin

Family bathroom mood board


We, I have been dreaming of renovations to our house for years, but actively planning for months, we are hoping to do some pretty major jobs in the house this year/next year depending on finances. But one job that will be going ahead in the next few months is our family bathroom. The room is soooo dated, we still have the original suite that was fitted when the house was built in the 90's, and let me tell you it's long over do a renovation job. Being a fairly new build house the rooms are not particularly spacious and the bathroom has shall we say petite proportions, nevertheless I have big plans for the space.


Family bathroom mood board

I'm planning a nature inspired scheme, with the green floral blind, and muted green towels, along with a neutral backdrop of dulux Egyption cotton on the walls. The suite and the tiles will be a crisp white, along with a white mirrored door unit, for storage and to help give the illusion of space. I plan on adding black and wood accessories to stop the space becoming to wishy washy.

I cannot wait to get started on this project and will keep you up to date once we get going.


*Affiliate links

Are you planning any home projects this year?

*Click to follow on bloglovin
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contact me

contact me
I'm Kate, Lover of clothes, skincare, makeup and chocolate biscuits, reader, not necessarily in that order Want to work with me email at k8te1976@gmail.com

favourite books

Kate's books

Before the Broken Star
The Beekeeper's Promise
Days of Blood & Starlight
The Foyles Bookshop Girls
The Light Keeper
Daughter of Smoke & Bone
The Priory of the Orange Tree
The Chocolate Lovers' Diet
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
Beautiful Broken Things
Nobody's Girl
The Flatshare
The Mitford Murders
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
It Felt Like a Kiss
The Muse
The Humans
Call Me By Your Name
Believe Me


Kate Mitchell's favorite books »
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