Autumn in the air

•October 23, 2013 • Leave a Comment

As the Autumn nights draw in, it’s that time of year to snuggle up and make our homes into little havens of comfort. To stave off feeling gloomy there are a few things that always help me adjust to the darker days. One of my favourite things to do is buy in some sparklers and make the post tea-time dark fun; even if it’s just a quick ten minutes outside with the kids. There is just something magical about sparklers – from the first sizzle and spit of fire to the smokey smell when they finish – they really are ace.
My other favourite thing is making up a cosy fire. As our front room is currently out of action awaiting builders to come and make good the flood damage, this is something we can’t do just yet. So with no fire in the dining room, I really am missing my lovely wood-burner.
So the next best thing to work with to help cosy things up is mood lighting. I’m talking fairy-lights, dimmers, candles that smell Autumnal and spicy.
We made such a rushed job on decorating this room that we haven’t yet replaced the nasty old lighting fixtures (they are beyond gross). So I have even more reason to take the focus off the standard room light sources in there. I am loving the Cable & Cotton lights framing the window. They look so cosy against the black window frame and look amazing against the dark outside.
I bought a few new candles yesterday from our local florist @ The Willow Garden in Hebden Bridge. Cinnamon and mixed spice, and orange and ginger. So lovely you want to eat them!
To complete my Autumn celebration this week, Charlie and I made some festive jam. It’s called Dumpsy Dearie jam. With apples, pears and plums infused with ginger and cinnamon, it has Autumn sewn up and potted up! So it will be jam on toast with a warm brew to keep us warm and cosy until we get back to our wood-burner next month. Until then I’ll enjoy my fairy-lights and candles.

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Storage solutions

•October 14, 2013 • Leave a Comment

We don’t have a great deal of inbuilt storage in our house, so we have been slowly buying furniture and shelving as we go along.
These Ikea shelves have been in a few rooms already and have been used to store vinyl, books, toys in various locations.
They are now in our bedroom and I am amazed by how much stuff I’ve managed to fit in them! Everything from books to underwear, shoes and magazines.
If your budget is tight and storage is sorely needed in your space, I think these are one of the best storage options on the market. Plus they look good and fit into numerous decor styles. Versatile, easy on the eye and cheap to boot!

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Design for mobility

•October 10, 2013 • Leave a Comment

At the moment, we are going through a huge period of transition. Our life as a family is heading in a new and somewhat unknown direction.

My continuing poor health is a major factor in all of this, and with me leaving my job as a lecturer, my focus is on being as well as I can be so my time and energy are spent on family and home life.
I have nerve damage in my pelvic area as a result of surgery and this will be ongoing for the rest of my life, so pain, fatigue and limited mobility are my main hurdles.

We have made the decision to put our house up for sale next year. As much as I love the bones of this place, I can’t continue with the remodelling and decorating the house still needs. Also the steep stairs and access to the property are a struggle (not very glamorous climbing up stairs on all fours!). My dad suggested we move to a bungalow. Yes, this makes sense to most, but I just have this thing about bungalows…. They just don’t light my fire I’m afraid. Maybe in another forty years I’ll be ready for that!

The other thing that is a real niggle for me is just how unsexy mobility aids for the home are! We have some amazing designers creating all sorts of fabulous furniture, buildings, home accessories; but who out there designs with disabled users in mind? I don’t want to live somewhere that looks and feels like a hospital. I want any aids I need to fit naturally into my living space. If you have any ideas or suggestions let me know please. That would be fab.

Okay so that’s my moaning over and now on to the exciting bit (and yes it is more day dreaming, if money wasn’t tight type planning rather than ‘real’ planning, but hey, it keeps me occupied!)
Three beautiful words; open plan living. Oh yes, I want a one storey open plan home in a beautiful location with stunning views of trees. This home will NOT be called a bungalow…. EVER.

I’ve been looking at some amazing places this week. Pinterest is like porn for design fiends! So here are a few of my favourites. Enjoy 🙂

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The aftermath of our fourth flood in the last four years.

•August 28, 2013 • Leave a Comment

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Just when you think you could never have another flood in your home, well think again.

Two days ago we had a burst pipe in the bathroom and the front room ceiling came down with a bang. Luckily the kids had just gone outside or they would have been underneath it all. So no injuries thank goodness, but our beautiful room is in ruins and the rest of the house looks like it has been turned upside down.

We had only just had new oak floors throughout the ground floor in the last eight months or so and hadn’t yet decorated the dining room. Our super team of friends were called in to help rescue us and make a space we could live in. So 24 hours on we have an almost finished dining room and can close the door on the front room now until it is fixed up.

This has been an emotional and stressful bank holiday weekend for us. But having family and friends here to help us has made all the difference. We had three generations all pulling together and keeping our spirits up, turning our tears into laughter.

I’ll post a few before and after shots of the dining room shortly.

Plant life

•August 14, 2013 • Leave a Comment

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One of the best things you can do to lift a room, give it character and make it feel established as a space is to add plants. I love indoor plants and have found it interesting to rehouse my plants when we moved. Our old place was fairly small so most of the plants were in the downstairs living area because that was the best room for natural day light.

In our home now we have almost three times the space and every room has a huge window with lots of natural light pouring into each and every space. So I’ve had to play around with the plants a bit and see where it’s best to situate them.

There are two important things to consider here. One, what type of plant is it? Does it need lots of sunlight and need to be beside the window or does it prefer a little shade? And two, how does the plant sit in the room with all your other accessories and furniture? Does it look and feel right to you?

Sometimes all you need to do is change the plant pot. So choose a colour that you love that would work well in your space and watch how it transforms the look!

My personal favourites are cacti and succulents. They have so much character and are easy to look after, so if you aren’t into plants but want the look, these are the best plants to go for. Just watch yourself with the prickly bits!

All plant life images sourced on Pinterest.

Plant life

•August 14, 2013 • Leave a Comment

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Plant life

•August 14, 2013 • Leave a Comment

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