For years i wanted a pen pal then all at once i had quite a few, from all over the world. I simply put a call out online and now here i am with new buddies from many interesting and exciting places. I’ve wanted a little something to give me joy and something which allows me to rediscover my love of writing and reading. I have always wanted to write, perhaps a book or write for newspapers but it is my anxiety and my dyslexia that gets in the way. My handwriting is questionable too. But despite my lack of skills in grammar and spelling i still love the allure of writing.
The thing i love about pen palling is learning about others, getting to know someone. Not through social media and through cryptic tweets and photos but threw someones heart, their souls they spill on to paper and send to you with complete confidence of your secret keeping. I have often spilled my life down on paper to a complete stranger turned friend. It is slightly like a therapy sessions at time. Whilst i often talk about emotions, the struggles of me and my mysterious writer i always like learning about their life. Its so interesting finding about what people like and dislike. It’s interesting finding about culture and food from other parts of the world.
The stationary usage is well worth it too. I love buying cute stationary but never have a reason to use it. I love receiving the pretty little notes from another person too. When i write back i always love putting effort into my little notes. I love being crafty and working on my little project. I often make little lists with books my pen pal would enjoy. I also put in some lists of songs/artists i like others will like. I put in mental health promoting cards and positive words and affirmations on sticky notes. I also send over some photos that make me happy and even put a poem in each letter. As well i like to put a little pick me up in the post too so they can enjoy a flavoured tea or coffee or even a sweet.
Life is to short to live behind computer screens. Write to new people, live in someone else’s life and escape reality while you are reading their letters. Talk about you, your life in the purest way. It gives me a short relief when i get too write to someone. I love waiting for and receiving the letters. I love buying bits for my pen pal letter and things to put inside. I love being able to be creative and not being judged for it. So do it! Find a pen pal, send them a letter and make a friend.
So before lockdown I started a journal. I’ve been told for years I should start one by many healthcare professionals after battling with my mental health. But I’ve always felt this sounds stupid and why should I do it? Nobody will ever read it so it’s a waste of complete time.
But after a paperchase sale near me a cute journal caught my eye and i couldn’t put it down. Sure I do the five minuite journal and self help journals but have I ever just unleashed myself in full? Let out my emotions I feel without saying the words and fearing judgement? No.
As a child I had one of those super cool diary’s you know the ones that had a electric lock and key and when you opened it there was a light and everything. Very swanky and perhaps the best Christmas present of my youth. Of course I wrote about pointless crap like how my day has been and how I hated my parents over something stupid like not letting me stay up late to watch ima celeb. But as I got older the beautiful book went and I was never to capture my love for writing again.
So coming back to it. At the start of lockdown I had nothing to do and I meant nothing. So I pulled out the beautiful bargain and started writing. At first I started documenting lockdown in some sort of justication that one day my diary may be read. Then I realised no this is private and I can go into my feelings. My real feelings. I wrote down things that upset me. Things people did that upset me. I wrote about my feelings and why I felt like that and shortly I’d written pages apon pages and didn’t realise. A small weight was lifted at the acknowledgment that I basically had somewhere to express and leave my darker emotions. There’s a reason why the mean girls called it a burn book I guess.
I kept my journal a place to write my emotions and my troubles. To express myself without a fear of judgement. I couldn’t judge myself as I will never read it again. I may even burn it when I’m done as therapy. But the release I felt. Obviously I wrote positives too but I have a lot of positivity journals I kind of keep this one as the feelings book and try not to feel I have to build myself up and I know it’s okay.
So you know what? I journal and I don’t care. Buy a pretty ass cactus covered or whatever you like journal and sit down for a bit and spill your feelings. Don’t read it again. Don’t hold back. Ask other members of your house not to read it or hide if you feel the need. But my god when they say it’s therapeutic they mean it.
The people over at hooray heroes kindly gifted me a book for Father’s Day to show my followers and readers what I think about it. I’ve been eyeing up their books after seeing many ads so I was very excited to be gifted one!
So first of all you choose the book you want. Then you design your characters. This is the fun part! You can choose hair style, colour, freckles, skin tone, eye colour and more! You can put your names in as well so it makes it super personal to you. It’s really nice knowing that something your helping to create will be in a book. Especially if you have a hard to find name in a gift store this is the perfect personalised gift for you.
I love that you can also choose what stories go inside you can preview and select up to ten mini stories to go in the book too.
Once you’ve ordered it only takes a few days to come I think I waited five days and I was alerted when each step of the creation process was completed and a time my parcel would be delivered.
When it arrived it was in a nice cellophane wrapping to preven damage. The book is hardback and the quality is amazing. Each page is full of colour and keeps your child’s attention. This was a gift to the whole family really which was nice because we all get to share it.
It’s something that will last for years and we love all the stories, you can read as little or as much as you like!
We will defo keep them in mind for our next personalised book adventure!
With Father’s Day coming up now is the perfect time to get idea and this is the perfect book for lots of family’s!
One thing I struggle to do as a blogger is find new bloggers when I put out a call for other bloggers to be featured in a blog post so others could be featured they where all more than eager to join! So if your looking for new things to read I’ve got a bit of everything here!
Reading is so important and with so little resources readily available at the moment such as bookshops and libraries it’s hard to think of new ways to both entertain and educate your child. Elijah has always been interested in learning through play. He’s always loved stories and learning activities and without access to shops to find more we have had to adapt. We where very lucky when the people at reading eggs asked us to collaborate with them gifting us a chance to trial their reading app.
This app enables your child to not only learn to read, but also to write and puzzle solve. There are so many varied activities for many different ages from two upwards. Elijah loves that the app is interactive. He likes to be able to touch the screen on an app and also to be able to hear an activities noise too. The apps are super colourful and age appropriate.Elijah is enjoying identifying the alphabet that bit more better and learning about words. We are currently trying the handwriting app and he seems to be getting the hang of it. He doesn’t get bored of it like most apps trying to close it and move on but stays engaged and completes each activity before wanting to move on to the next. This is something that i’ve really enjoyed about this app because anything that can keep a child’s focus is amazing in my eyes.
My favourite thing about this app is that it talks your child through the activity as well as praising their good work. The app is available on many platforms and app stores but we love using it on the chromebook because of the bigger screen and not having to hold the tablet. We will certainly be using this app for years to come and it is a app that he will grow with. The app is also perfect for homeschooling too!
A few weeks ago I was sitting there thinking about how I can I use Elijahs tablet to enable him to learn while having fun. That’s when we where contacted by the people at osmo! We were very fortunate to be gifted a fantastic set from the lovely Osmo in exchange for a review. And what a treat it has been too recieve such amazing items.
First of all the packaging and design of their items is so sleek and also interesting for children at the same time. Elijah could somewhat tell what was inside and was thrilled to open it up! Inside the box sent to us was the stand to be able to use the osmo app, a Mickey Mouse super studio and our favourite the play mat with squiggle magic bits!
It was super easy to download all you do is follow the instructions and your ready to play. Elijah was very excited by something new and was to eager to help set up!
Elijah enjoyed playing with squiggle magic the most. This app teaches children to design with the use of the kit where it is reflected onto the screen where it picks up their designs and brings it to life. He enjoyed matching up the pieces (with a little bit of help) to the design on the pad. We also went rogue and he made his own designs to. He enjoyed the colours and loved listing them and talking about what was happening on the screen to. We also made numbers and letters with the squiggle pieces which is fantastic for learning! He may still be a little young to enjoy the full content of the games but he did absolutely love getting involved and just needed some help from mum. We also love how space saving it is and easy to clean away. It is so handy that the squiggle bits come in a nice little box for storage!
The next product we had to test was the Mickey Mouse super studio. This was a note pad which connects to the device again which gives you activity’s to do. You draw and it appears on the screen like magic. We worked together to complete some of the activities which he enjoyed. He is a little young for this one but he did enjoy all the characters as he’s obsessed with Mickey Mouse clubhouse now! we will be using this when he’s older a lot more and we love that it comes with its own branded items such as pen and wipe and it’s super easy to clean!
Overall we love this product and it’s something we keep getting out and playing. We will explore more and more the older he gets and it’s the perfect toy to grow up and learn with. We also have lots of friends and family with children of all ages which I know will love coming round to play with it! Thankyou osmo we love it!
Good morning everyone and i hope you are having a lovely weekend so far! This week i have had a package from the lovely people at poooli print. They very kindly gifted me this printer for a review and lots of refills to use. Anyone who knows me knows that i love taking photos and also keeping them. So when they offered to gift me a product i leaped at the chance. So here is my HONEST review on the product and the paper with it.
First of all the look of the product is super cute. It looks a big like a bird with a magnetic beak you can keep on if you want it on. The light on the device looks like a wing and shows you that the product is on. The on button looks like a happy eye which is how you turn it on, off and connect to your phone. The box is super simple to open and the instructions inside are super easy to follow i was connected and printing within a minute. Charging the device is really quick too so it doesn’t mean waiting around all day for you to print that quick shot. The battery life is fantastic also i have printed 30 photos and the battery still isn’t low yet. The paper rolls are very pretty and you can choose sticky back or any pattern you like i went for normal as i’m using them for craft and to put on a peg line at some point for home decor. It’s super easy to change them and i still haven’t gone through a full roll. The device does come with a free one! The papers good quality and doesn’t rip easily or transfer ink.
Connecting to your phone is really easy you download the app, follow the instructions and your ready to print. You can print WHATEVER you want, make a mini list, photos from your phone or even type something down and you can print it. It also gives you an option to edit the photos too and add filters extra.
I like that i am able to simply press print on any photo on my camera roll and its printed in seconds. The photo quality is high and you can see the details in the photo. The only quarrel i may have is that the photos aren’t in colour, they are in black and white. But once the first photo came out i was in love with the quality and liked that it made the photos feel aged and different from anything else i could create. I enjoyed the fact that after printing you can rip a single photo or instead a long line of photos by continuously printing like in a photo booth!
I really love this photo printer and i’m going to print some photos out to send to other family members in lock down who may be missing our faces and the memories we’ve made. I made a collage of family photos for Elijah to be able to identify his family members which he absolutely loved and i’m even going to use this for lots of craft sessions and of course journaling.
So i did a little poll on my Instagram to see if people wanted to see more of my book reviews and what i have been reading each month. Surprisingly a lot of people asked me to do it so here i am. So welcome to my first book club! I will be doing a read along to The Rumour by Lesley Kara if you want to grab a copy and read along with me… So far i’m at chapter two if you’re reading this and want to chat about it going through the book together. But for now here’s some Kindle books I’ve brought on deal for a pound or so in a quick sale (always keep your eyes peeled for deals on the kindle store! This month i haven’t read to many books but here’s some of my favourites i have read recently.
The man who didn’t call by Rosie Walsh. Currently 1:99 on the kindle store.This book is about a woman (Sarah) who falls in love in a short amount of time and she thinks shes found the one after recently splitting from her husband of many years . Then the next day he disappears of the face of the earth. Voicemails left and no response…. It’s interesting to see peoples developments in the book and learn about the characters in depth. It does leave you wondering what has happened and where is Eddie? The first half takes a lot to get through, it is a bit all over the place and goes on for too long but the second half is when you get into the book so to say. I’d rate this 3 stars i am unsure whether i liked it or not. It was in some places boring but other points quite gripping.
The Lido by Libby Page. Currently 4:99 on the kindle store. Well what can i say about this book? Other then it’s one of the greatest books i have ever read! I really had low expectations of this book as it really isn’t my normal read but i saw someone was reading it so i thought i’d try it too and it was on deal at the time. The book follows several characters and their relationship to the lido that is at threat of being closed down by the council to build new flats. I fell in love with every character and getting to know them as if they where old friends or even me. The history of Rosemary who is one of the oldest users of the pool in her 80’s going swimming everyday since she was tiny and even in the war. I also love learning about Kate who is desperately lonely and depressed and how she comes out of her shell making friends with rosemary. You get to know how places can form attachments because of the memories that happen there. Beautifully written and at sometimes heartbreaking it is the ultimate feel good book i couldn’t put down. A must read and 5 stars for sure!
Half a world away by Mike Gayle. Currently 4:99 on the kindle store. If you want a book that’s going to take your heart throw it against the floor and stomp on it and cause a full on ugly cry this book is for you! A brother and sister separated by adoption and the foster care system find each other again after many years later. The book follows Kerry a single mum struggling to make ends meet or searches for her brother to reconnect after missing him and searching for years. Noah who is a very well off and happily adopted finds his sister after she tracks him down and leaves him questioning who he really is. The book really shows how different classes do not matter when family is involved. I won’t say much more as there is some BIG BIG twists and turns in this book which will leave you sobbing your heart out and falling in love, 6 stars out of five wouldn’t be enough..
The tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris. Currently 2:85 on the kindle store. This story follows Lale a Jewish man who is forced to work at Auschwitz. It shows his story and is based on true events that happened in Auschwitz. The book shows the horrible treatment of the Jewish people by the SS and the barbaric living conditions. It’s a truly heartbreaking read one that made me truly grateful for the life i live and thankful. If you’re into history and war related thing like me this is as close to the truth of what happened as you can get while relating to a character and his struggle. This is based on a true story. I won’t divulge to much but this a must read it’s a five star from me.I have the sequel Cilkas journey in my library to read soon!
The chain by Adrian McKinty . Currently 0.99 on Kindle store. The book is about children that are kidnapped and their parents have to choose whether to kidnap someone else’s child to save their child or their child will be murdered if they break the chain. Really thrilling and gets you hooked from the start. Peoples decisions will surprise you! 4 out of five stars!
So there you have my kindle reads for march look out for my April book club coming at the end of April! Stay safe, keep reading!
Since getting my new kindle it’s been no secret I’ve been reading a lot more ebooks than I normally would. However since buying my kindle I still read paper copy’s too. There’s something about a new book that excites me to no end. But one thing I don’t really do is read outside of my comfort zone. I don’t experiment and read something random I have to really want a book to spend money on it. But I have felt this has hindered my chance to read good books as I have so heavily limited myself in the past.
This was until I decided to give kindle unlimited a try. Kindle unlimited is a very large ever growing collection of ebooks you can read and then return to read different ones. You don’t have to buy each individual book and you don’t have to have a ever growing collection. Instead you just pay a set price a month which doesn’t exactly break the bank and is only really the cost of one new book a month.
Since purchasing kindle unlimited i have read lots of new books I would not normally of read. I have read different genres and haven’t just stuck to what is popular and in the shop window with a pretty little front cover. I’ve took the time to read the blurb and decided there and then if I’m interested to read it. My favourite thing is not that I get to read different things but that I get to return them so I don’t take up loads of space in either my kindle or my ever growing bookshelf/magazine holders/ spaces on the floor/any stack of books on a surface collections. I also love that I can read the books anywhere so if I forget my kindle I can read on my phone or anything that has the app and my amazon log In.
I’m excited to read more and find more books that I wouldn’t normally read and get lost in the adventure that is reading.
A book I’ve seen a few times in the book stores but always forgot to buy is The boy, the mole, the fox and the horse. This is a beautifully illustrated and written book for all ages. For people going through a rough patch, for children learning that they are enough and they’re feelings are valid this simple little book may just be one of the best books I’ve read. It’s short and sweet and only takes about ten minutes to read so perfect for children too. I brought this book in the mindset of reading it to my little boy as he gets older and when he is older giving it to his children. It’s so simple and perfect and really is a beautiful read and really made me feel happier reading it.
I resonated with the book a lot and a few of the quotes I will keep in mind for the future when I have certain feelings experienced in the book. I want my son to be raised in a world knowing that feelings mater and are normal and that he is enough and he cannot base his feelings on others or rush through life without living in the slow lane. So get the book, borrow the book, download the book and read it. Read it to yourself, to your children or to your family or friends. The perfect mental health booster and feel good book.