Wednesday, 20 May 2020

Loving Your Home During the Lockdown*

Looking back to the beginning of the lockdown, compared to now, I have to say that I do have a greater appreciation for my immediate surroundings. Where you would normally not take much notice of the small details in your kitchen, such as having a utensil pot or how brilliantly white your bathroom is after you have given it a good clean; now I relish in it.

I know, I am sad, only just over 30 and enjoying the joys of a clean and tidy home. Since discovering my love for a clean home again and jumping on the Mrs Hinch bandwagon I have found that it does really help with anxiety and relieving stress. Re-directing those feelings into getting something spotless is so much better than dwelling on it. Being in an organized and clean home is so much better for your mental health, it generally keeps you happy with your surroundings and helps you get up and go. 

That being said, where I am currently moving in with my partner and we have little to no storage solutions - such as drawers and shelves. We are living in a fairly disorganized state, which again in a small space has inevitably caused some friction. 

Normally I would love to go and buy some furniture, after into storage solutions, but currently in this lockdown situation that is not always possible. It's the little things that make a house a home, such as a bedside table to allow one person to sit up and read by the lamp. This situation has prompted me to find ways to create storage, look for options that would be beneficial to both of us. 

Thankfully, I found some box shelves which allowed for a simple, yet versatile look in the room. Coupled with storage boxes and brand new duvet covers, it made the bedroom more homely. These simple shelves also added a little extra space, to get free from the clutter, which in turn helps to ease some of that tension. 

Simple solutions generally are the best, if I was able too, I would certainly tackle the curtains which are currently up. At present-giving off a care home vibe, especially within the new office area, I would opt for something a little more modern. 

My best home improvement inspirations come from research, blog posts, and mostly Pinterest. That's how I discovered vacuum bags, which are weirdly satisfying to use. Filling the bag and watching it shrink down to beyond 60% of its original size is amazing. You then find you have a lot more space for the items you use every day, without having to sift through winter clothes in winter or having nowhere to put the dogs Christmas jumpers. 

Many people keep to the home improvements within the home itself. Forgetting about the exterior, giving your front door a new lick of paint or replacement sash windows will almost certainly make your house look completely different. Although such a major change isn't always required, it may be a change of pace. 

How has the lockdown affected your relationship with your home? 

* This is a sponsored post. Please see my Disclaimer for more information.

Always be kind, you never know what personal battle people are fighting.


Friday, 8 May 2020

Relationships During Covid-19*

Who the hell knew this pandemic would get this bad, ha ha, well I guess the smart ones, the ones that stockpiled loo roll. Joking aside, here in the UK where we have been told to stay at home and given restrictions in our movements; which has obviously forced a lot of couples, families, and housemates to spend an inordinate amount of time together. Something we have never had to do before.

This in itself is daunting, with completely natural concerns on whether you can actually stand to be around these people 24/7? With the restrictions, I am sure everyone was thinking the same thing.. what on earth are we going to do with all this time????

Initially, I was worried, having lived on my own for so long and being stuck in my ways.. were we actually going to survive the time together? We had never officially lived together and spent half of our relationship apart I choose to take it as a kind of blessing. Not only to finally get lost time together but to see whether we could actually live together. Us both being homebodies, I cannot say that much has really changed, but what I can say is I have honestly enjoyed this time.

Whilst there are some couples out there like us, who have found a new appreciation for one another, there are obviously still a lot of singles, ones that were ready to meet people before all this lockdown happened. Maybe some people had arranged to meet or were contemplating it until the news struck that we weren't to go out unless it was for specific reasons. This lockdown will have inevitably caused some tension, where we as humans beings are not able to get the physical contact that we generally need.

That being said for those still looking for a no strings attached good time, there are sites such as Cornwall sex site and that, if used cautiously within the COVID-19 guidelines may be able to help a specific market.

The issue we have is not being able to go and physically meet anyone until the tests have reached us all and we know for certain we are all safe from contracting or passing on the virus. I do hope that individuals are respecting the guidelines and try their best to stop the spread as much as possible. Now more than ever we have started to realize the capabilities of technology, which allows us to see those we can't currently get close to.

I know my brother has not let this pandemic get in the way of his love life, whilst he has not met his date in person as of yet, he has made sure to speak to her, using facetime and other social platforms. In all honesty, this will set most relationships up for the better, communication is key and once you have that down you can pretty much overcome anything.

* This is a sponsored post. Please see my Disclaimer for more information.

Always be kind, you never know what personal battle people are fighting.


Monday, 4 May 2020

Mental Health Check In | Covid-19

Originally I set out to raise awareness around the whole social media thing with Caroline Flack and everyone going insane and posting shit like “Don’t be silent, talk to me” “You’re not alone” blah blah blah. I think you may remember. But now we have this whole pandemic going on that we are focusing on that, we are very fickle creatures by nature and to be quite honest when this ends we will go back to our old ways and forget all that we have learned in this time, to be kind, to care, to generally not take for granted the small things.

I have asked my very close friend Christie from Christie's Lifestyle to collab with me on this, as this is something that is very close to my heart and hers because of where I was a few years ago. Again her contribution was written before the major outbreak of COVID-19, however, I feel still drives home the point to this post.

“In a world where you can be anything, be kind”. This is a phrase that has been shared a lot recently and after recent events surrounding a celebrity suicide, it also brings about many people sharing quotes on social media which brings the question, do they really mean it? Social media is full of vultures ready to use death for their own gain. They use it as a chance to look good, and share posts that offer support to anyone in need. Admittedly I too am one of those people sharing posts offering my support for those who need it, but the harsh reality is the people that need help do not reach out.

A couple of years ago, Kim came to me and opened up about how she was feeling. A bit of backstory – myself and Kim have been friends since high school and I thought I knew her like the back of my hand. Surely if something was up, I would notice. I knew she was suffering from feeling low, but when I spoke to her about it, she reassured me everything was OK, and just like that I believed her. Little did I know things were a lot worse than she led on, and it had gotten to the point where she had contemplated suicide and even planned it out. I was genuinely shocked when she told me what she had thought about, as I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. When people are suffering from mental health issues, they do their best to cover it up. They will portray a happy life to the outside world but won’t openly admit how they are really feeling.

Thankfully Kim did reach out, open up, and got help. I do kick myself sometimes for not noticing more, as the Kim back then is a completely different Kim to the one now, the happy bubbly Kim that I had slowly forgotten existed. So next time you share a post offering support to those to reach out to you who need it, just think maybe it should be you reaching out instead and checking in on your friends/loved ones." - Christie 

Now more than ever we need to remember to keep in touch with those we know to be indifferent, the ones who have started to act a little distant. I will be honest and tell you it is not always easy to tell who is feeling lonely, who is ready to step over the edge. Some of us have learned for years how to hide behind the perfect smile and a flawlessly timed laugh, you know the only place you can never hide, is the eyes. Which, I guess right now is fairly ironic because at least here in the UK you cannot get close enough to see that. 

The only advice I would give to anyone right now, in the conditions we are in, use what you have to talk to one another. Send a little note in the post, let the ones that need it know they are loved and thought of. If we can, we should remember to continue this treatment of kindness well past this pandemic and then hopefully break this cycle of madness in the world. All it takes is one person.  

Always be kind, you never know what personal battle people are fighting.

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