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Monday, 28 July 2014

How to have a blog, but keep a personal life
 it possible?

Before you start to read this post, please don't expect an answer to my question. I'm afraid I don't know the answer.
This is a subject which has bothered me for some time now, but really hit home yesterday. I'll go on to explain. How can you keep a blog which is personal and about your every day life and feelings, but still keep a personal life? Is it possible? Maybe not. I guess you could argue if you choose you be so public, then you can't expect any privacy. Such as a celebrity. How often have you thought, well they choose to lead this life, so they can't expect privacy? 
Everyone has some one they wouldn't really want reading their blog. It could be an ex, a partners ex, colleagues at work or just someone that they don't like, how do you stop them prying into your personal life? 
We all have our own reasons for starting a blog. For me, started as a way of promoting my on line store, but then I really got involved in the blogging community and found that I loved talking about fashion, well I guess taking in general! For many it's a diary, which really helps them to get through everything that is going on in life. What happens when some one tries to use this personal information against you.
You may wonder how this topic has come up. To be honest, it has been on my mind for a long time. I am always conscious that there is that one person reading the blog who is going to use the information against me. Not that I have anything that interesting going on in my life, nor doing anything that exciting that they should really be bothered, but people can be nasty. I can only think there is not enough going on in their own lives that they have to be bothered about what is going on in others.
This subject really same to light yesterday when I found out that my boss had been reading my work e-mails. He is entitled to do so, they are just for work, but after being at the company for 7 years and having good sales year on year, I was quite upset that he had done this. I felt betrayed and very offended. To cut a long story short, it all came down to my blogging. He wanted to see how much time I spent on it. I confronted him. After a long discussion, the comment was made, "I cannot see how you possibility have time to blog, have a family and do your job effectively". Gob smacked is not the word. This has all come from the fact I have had a few months of bad sales. Not due to my neglect, but outside factors totally out if my control, but my blogging seems to used as a reason!
I feel totally deflated. Part of me thinks that I should give up the store and the blogging, but then I am giving in to these bullies. 

I work so hard in my job. If I had a choice I would dedicate so much more time to my "hobbies", but as it is I only get to post 1-2 per week. 
So, I guess I am putting the question out there. How can you keep your blog personal, your own, but keep un wanted busy bodies out? I would love to hear, because I sure as hell don't know.
For those of you how enjoy prying into others life, my only suggest is GO AND GET ONE!!!

Friday, 25 July 2014

My lottie dress

Sorry for the lack of posts, I was working in Portugal all of last week (I know, terrible eh) and then this week has been a nightmare at work. I have actually written  post about my experiences at work, but I'm not sure if I should publish it. You know when you're annoyed and you write a post in temper and you aren't quite sure if you publish if there will be an epic backlash, well I kind of have that at the moment...I think I will post it this weekend, I may just have another re read! I hate it when you have to worry about what you what you write, freedom of speech and all that! Oh well, I feel like I have done nothing but moan all week, so it's Friday evening, the weather is ammmmmmaaazzzinnggg, so I have put on my Lottie maxi dress which I bought for my holiday and decided to take a few snaps in the garden as it was just to nice of a day to miss the chance.

I am in love with this dress. It is quite dressy, so great for a party or some kind of outdoor event, but it is nice and cool and free flowing. I have already posted with this dress in France, but I thought it was worthy of a few more pics while the weather is hot.
I am going to sit with a nice glass of chilled white wine and finally enjoy some of this weather that has been teasing me all week through the window of my stuffy office.

Saturday, 12 July 2014

My World Cup survival kit

For World Cup widows...

When I was asked to review this girls survival kit, I clearly jumped at the chance. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind a bit of football. I was more than happy to watch England, in fact I love to cheer on our team, but if you blinked you would have missed our poor performance, so as far as I was concerned the World Cup was over. I really couldn't care who wins. So when I was offered this fab little pamper pack, I reserved the night and tucked in!

I was sent this beautifully presented kit with a hand written note from Natasha and the Ladbrokes team. Inside was a hot chocolate kit, mud pack, skinny popcorn, Simple bath soak, Nivea lip butter and some ear plugs!

The hot chocolate I have to admit I just devoured as a big chocolate lump! I have an epic sweet tooth. 
I put Scarlett to bed, ran the bath with bubbles and applied my mud pack.

Thanks for my kit, World Cup final in on count down...

Thursday, 10 July 2014

What makes a good blog?

This is a question every blogger thinks. What makes a good blog? How can I make my blog more appealing?
I am by far no expert. I don’t have the highest viewings and I don’t have a massive following. We all have our own reasons for writing a blog, each one personal, but at the end of the day we write it for someone to read it. So how can we make it more readable?

When I started my blog a year ago I sent hours and hours researching subjects. I tried to get facts and figures and give a very detailed post. I was surprised when these posts weren’t not that popular and it left me feeling deflated as though I had wasted my time. So what do people want to see? Based on my 1 year of experience, these are my thoughts…

·        Good photography

Everybody loves eye candy. Good clear images are vital to make a good blog. I could never have imaged how important images are. In fact I would even say, it is the most important aspect to a "popular" blog. People like to SEE what you're talking about and something that is attractive to the eye is more attractive in general.

Make it readable and relevant

You need to ask yourself, "if I was the reader, would I want to read this? Or, "if I were in a shop, looking for a magazine, which headlines would stand out to me?". It has to be something people can relate to. It might not appeal to everyone, but if you find it interesting you can be sure others will. A good example if weight loss. Many women can relate to it and on the whole women are interested in any new "miracle diets which will help shed the pounds. When I first started my blog I went to great lengths to have facts and figures about topics and realised that no one was really that interested. I thought about it and thought, yeah I've done my research, but would I really be that interested in reading it and the answer was no.

Give your blog personality

Blogs are personal. Each one different with a unique style. Generally readers want to know who is writing it. You want to feel like you know the person who is writing it. Of course it should be well written, but don't stress about making it sound like a piece from the Daily Telegraph, it's a blog, not your doctorate dissertation, you will not be marked down!

Make it interactive

Keep your blog interactive with the audience as if you are chatting to the reader, asking questions and try and start a dialogue. People like to have their opinions heard and if you have an open blog that invites conversation, people will want to join in.

Don't turn your blog into an advert

OK a great plus point of blogging are the freebies. Whether you admit to it or not, of course it's great when you are invited to review something. However, if everyone of your posts is an advert for something in which you gush about product after product, how can your reader believe what your saying after a while? Reviewing products is great, but review things that you have bought and you genuinely have an un tainted opinion about.

Don't over blog

This is just my opinion, but unless you have all the time in the world on your hands and your head is constantly filled with imaginative, creative, interesting topics it cannot be possible to write post after post. Sure, there will be some days where you are spinning with ideas and just want to write, but there will undoubtedly be periods where you can't think of anything. My advice, have a little break. Wait until you have something interesting to share, don't just post for the sake of it. Remember, unless you are a professional blogger, it is just a hobby and like every hobby you do it for enjoyment, it shouldn't turn into a chore. Once it does, your posts will become dull.

Be social

Interact with other bloggers. Mention them on your blog, they will generally do the same in return and your audience will grow, Blogging is a great, friendly community. If you enjoy some else's blog, talk about it on yours! If will increase your readers and make you more friends.

Well, You may totally disagree with everything that I have said and I may be completley wrong, but these are the points that I have seen during my short time as a blogger. Like everyone, I am always looking to improve, so if you have any comments, or anything to add, I would love to hear it!

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Salut les mecs

My final post from our lovely week in the south of France. The weather has been hit and miss, today we were caught out by rain storms, which was a shame for Scarlett as she wanted to spend her last few hours in the swimming pool. We took a trip to a local medieval town to watch the France v Germany game. To be honest, I was very much indifferent as to who won. I am happy to say that I am not one of these small minded Brits who hate the Germans and want them to lose, I very much embrace being European and I have close friends in both France and Germany. Although I have spent more time in France, I studied German and spent much time there as a teenager. However, as we were in rural France, watching France with the locals, I decided to support France. Allez la France.

I swear Scarlett's look was not intentional, but she did support the locals in her very French attire. I thought she just looked damn cute!

I do enjoy the French way of life. Don't get me wrong, there are things that drive me crazy, such as their socialist attitude, the constant strikes and the un-willingness to look and think outside the box. However, I do think there are things us Brits can take from the French. The quality time they spend with their family, their love for food and their general more relaxed way of life and their passion for quality of life.

French fashion is another thing that does annoy me. The French are supposedly famous for their fantastic sense of style and fashion. I'm sorry to be rude, but where is this taking place? This is not something I have ever come across and I have spent alot of time in France! The Brits get alot of grief for not being as stylish as the French, but I do not think that is true at all. In fact quite the opposite. I think us British girls could teach the French a thing or two! They play it too safe and stick to dark, dull clothes. It is almost as if they are scared of standing out and just want to blend into the back ground. Come on girls! Put a bit of personality into your wardrobe.For my day out I opted for one of my summer favourites this Doris Dress by Sugarhill It is a real comfortable fit, nice length, cool and girly and very pretty:-)

bye France, until next year!

Thursday, 3 July 2014

A snapshot of our day at Cahors

Today we were fooled into thinking that the weather was poor and it was a good day to visit the local town of Cahors. How wrong we were! The sun came out a little later than normal, but when it did, it shone bright and it was hot, hot, hot!  A little too warm to wander around a town with a two year old! 
We made the best of it and made sure that there were plenty of rest stops for water and ice-cream.


I wore this Zig-Zag multi coloured dress . I feel super girly in this  Mexican inspired zig-zag pattern dress. It's so cheerful with an explosion of colours; burnt orange, blue, red, cream and burgundy. It is  fitted on top with a skater style skirt which is just perfect in the hot sunshine. The cut out back is great for that extra bit of air conditioning!

Cahors is a small city with the traditional old town as most french towns. Before I married I spent a year living in the old town of Nice. It was an amazing time in my life, working and living in Nice, partying like a crazy person and endless sunny days on the beach. So wandering around the rustic old town brought back happy memories.  It didn't quite have the "je ne sais quoi" of Nice, which is a hub for tourists, poets, artists with a sprinkling of the very wealthy, Cahors was much more traditional. 

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

La vie est belle

After a busy few months we headed  off for a family holiday to the south of France. We stayed in the same place as last year as it was just so relaxing. The villa is in the middle of nowhere, and living in the country you'd think that we'd head somewhere with a bit of life, but no, we wanted total peace and quiet. You certainly get that at "la cressonniere" . Apart from the angry cockerel that woke us last year, there is little to disturb. It's been a rough few weeks at work, so we wanted to put the thoughts of work as far to the back of our mind as possible.

I realised that I started my blog exactly 1 year ago this week. Happy birthday to me! In hindsight I should have organised a give away, but in the usual dis-organised melee I never got around to it, I promise one to come!

A Maxi dress are a must on holiday! I hate feeling un-comfortable in restrictive clothing, so this just out Lottie maxi dress is just lovely. It is quite fitted on top, with a loose fitting skirt with double slits up the side to add a little sexiness. 

I adore French life. I have lived in France and I feel really at home with the culture, the people and the lifestyle. They seem to enjoy life more than we do in the UK. I know that we jest about the short working weeks in France and the strikes, but they do have something right and that is life is more important than work. 
I love bread, cheese and wine, I think I must be part French.

This dress is amazing. I feel like such a girl with a long flowing skirt, yet sexy side slits. The apricot and black colours are beautiful and not your usual combination. 

Pass the vino, it's wine o'clock for me 

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