I like Autumn. Like a lot of people.
But I also like Winter. And Summer. And actually, Spring.
They all kind of give you different things, which is nice. So I guess we're lucky that we get to wrap up, we get to strip off (within reason), we get to enjoy late evenings but equally need no excuse to stay indoors under the duvet.
But because Autumn is lurking around the corner (I told you, I saw it recently..), I'm telling you five things that I like about this season.
Five things that make me excited to pull out my scarf, and knitwear.

1. The feeling of contentment when you're closing your curtains, looking out the window at the dark night ahead and you feel the warmth of the radiator beneath you - And you know that you're tucked up for the evening.

2. Winter chocolates on the shelf, including Lindor's new tasty chocolate orange truffles. Melt in your mouth. Need I say anymore on this?

3. Scarves. And knitwear and big Winter coats. And for once, I have a practical coat. With a hood, and that'll keep me warm. Thrown together with my big blanket scarf, and I'm ready to face any temperature.. Well, kinda.

4. Hot chocolate. Stirred in with two sugars and some syrup. With a sprinkle of marshmallows on top, then adding some squirty cream to hide the already melting marshmallows, before finishing up with another helping of marshmallows. And grated chocolate if you're feeling more cold than usual.

5. Casserole dinners, chunky soup and mash potato. Proper Winter dinners, cooked every night, fresh from the oven. And piping hot to warm us up. Best eaten in pyjamas and bed socks.
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Sometimes, living alone can be tough.
And lonely.

It's funny when you have so many people around you, your diary is full, and your friends are always there on the other end of the phone, yet somehow you can still feel so incredibly alone.
And in a sense, my house feels lonely.
Empty.
Especially when Runkle decides to run away for a few days...

There are some days when I love living alone, when I can sit in nothing more than my knickers on the sofa, and lose hours choosing which Netflix show to watch, before deciding that actually, I want to cook some food.
Again.
I can invite people over at any hour of the day, I can have a fridge full of drink instead of vegetables (I still have lots of vegetables), and I can do exactly what I want.
At whatever time I want.
And that's nice. That's when it's fun.
But there are some days when I don't love living alone, when I wake up on a Sunday morning and want to make a tasty brunch for two, and be brought a cup of tea to bed. And sit and chat. About absolutely rubbish.
I like talking rubbish.
I miss coming home and having somewhere there, I miss having my bath run for me, and I miss having someone to talk to, to cry to and to vent to.
That's when it's not so fun.

Being a people person, it makes it a little hard. Harder than I expected, and realised. Like ever realised.
I'm trying to appreciate living alone, I really am, but sometimes I just can't seem to shake that lonely feeling away. And that's just me being honest.
Being truthful, that living alone can have it's perks. But equally lonely. And even when my friends tell me they don't know how they do it, or how they like a few hours peace but enjoy company, that's when I realise, that maybe, maybe I'm not so bad at this.
And that it's totally OK to feel lonely.
And that actually, I'm doing better than I think.
I just don't think I remember that enough.
That, the girl who didn't even know how to use a washing machine, had her meals cooked for her most evenings, wouldn't know where to begin to pay an electric bill and called her mama every five minutes asking how to defrost chicken, is not doing so badly living alone.
Paying my own bills.
Defrosting chicken without the call before (actually, I just learnt to buy cooked...!)
Fixing the washing machine.
And many other things, that even, I doubted myself could do.

So excuse me for a little while, if some days I'm not myself, I'm probably just sad that there wasn't anyone to bring me a cup of tea when I'm feeling poorly. But when I'm sitting in my knickers with a tub of ice cream to myself, that's when I forget about the loneliness, that I don't have to share either.
Just bare with me on this.
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I live with a people pleaser. The kind who will lie awake till the early hours of the morning worrying about those closest to them. The kind who fills up their diary making sure to see everyone, even if it means burning the candle at both ends. The kind who won’t say how they truthfully feel for fear of upsetting a loved one. The kind who doesn't want to show their weaknesses and make people feel less proud of them. The kind who spends time panicking that a stranger wont like them. The kind who walks on eggshells not to say the wrong thing at times. The kind who wants to be liked by everyone. And the kind who makes themselves sometimes unhappy in order to make others happier. But the kind who is, and always will, go above and beyond, offering nothing but love for those who are a big part of their lives.

I am the people pleaser.

And actually, it sometimes tiring. Really tiring.
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Last month, me and my gal pal, Jazzpad (I know, her name's Claire, but Jazzpad just seems so right...) booked a last minute get away to Spain.
Because we thought we earned it.
And we needed some sun and water and cocktails on tap.
Because why not.
So with some last minute packing and a frantic loss of euros (next time I WILL check my passport before I leave the house...), we headed for the airport with determination to unwind those busy brains of ours lately and an excitement for days spent by the pool in nothing more than bikinis.
Bliss.
Because an aeroplane photo is totally justified these days right? We thought so!
Those moments when you pull up on the coach, wondering if the next stop is your hotel. Luckily for us, we got this sweet deal feeling pretty pleased as punch (even if the corridors looked a little like a hospital unit..)
The best way to spend four days in the sun, minimal clothing, a cocktail in hand and a good funny read.
Because you can't go to the beach without picking up a cider in a can. Or two. And falling asleep is totally allowed.
A holiday is no holiday without a late night trip to KFC for some Popcorn rocks and a few hours spent on the beach with German tourists declaring that you don't eat meat. With said meat in your hand.
I don't think it's possible to ever get bored of views like this - blue skies and peaceful blue water.
A cheeky trip to the next town via a boat ride to top up our tan, take in all the beautiful views and tell ourselves we'd achieved something this holiday was right up our street.
So thank you Spain for a blissful four days in the sunshine, getting drunk on vodka and finishing the bar dry of Peach Schnapps (yeah, I'm one of THOSE girls!), reading a whole book, coming home with a tan and feeling utterly rested and motivated for the next few months ahead.
I think I like you Spain.
You did good.
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Since returning from Spain and finding it hard to relax on holiday, I've now gone full circle and finding it very hard to motivate myself. So this week after work has been spent refuelling ready for another busy few weeks with work... And actually, it's quite nice to get home at 5.30pm, pop on my pyjamas, cook warm dinners like chilli and catch up on trash TV (or just get straight into bed with Runky...).
I go through phases of cooking, some days I want to cook everything and anything and other days, I'm happy eating pasta and cheese (you can't go wrong), and on Saturday morning after a few cheeky drinks out the night before, I rustled up my new found favourite brunch - potato waffles, bacon, avocado and halloumi. Gluten free AND tasty. I'm still yet to cut an avocado right though...
Watches are always one of the only accessories that I like wearing (even if I'm useless at telling the time..) and when this beaurtiful Filippo Loreti* arrived through it kind of made my Olivia Burton watches take a back seat for the week. This watch made me feel really trendy, and cool, with my jeans turned up and my trainers to match. Classic and simple is always the best right?
At the weekend, my brother came home to visit and in between drinks and dinner with friends, and refuelling, my family and I headed for some Nepalese food on Saturday night. Of course before dinner Mama Mcfred and I couldn't help but treat ourselves to a cheeky glass of Pimms - it was a sunny evening and we were feeling happy, so it seemed the perfect opportunity. Like mama, like daughter!
I'm trying to read more because I'm a fidget and I have a short attention span. To put it bluntly. And after being recommended this book, I decided to order it and take it on holiday but me being me, it didn't turn up in time...! I am currently spending my spare evenings lost between the pages, and once my colleague has borrowed it, we're spending the night watching the film with Camembert. That sure motivated me to read it!
This little chap has had a fun week (after his not so fun week in the cattery!) and I decided to finally let him out of the flat after Papa told me to give it a try. He was straight out of the door, and only looked back at me with his "see ya later" face. I definitely felt like a mum at nursery wondering if he'll come back. And as suspected, he returned to me 40 minutes later.
Because he was hungry.
He's a cat after my own heart!

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When you awake to the sound of water trickling down your window pane,
You find yourself pulling the duvet up to you tighter and warmer,
You have to turn the light on in the morning again,
And hope that the heating has kicked in,
And you find yourself adding a jumper to your pyjamas as you get dressed,
Before reaching for your chunky knits and your ankle boots.
You spend your morning with a cup of tea attached to you for warmth,
And your lunchtimes are planned around soup and bread rather than salad.
And even the cat doesn't want to get out of bed in the morning.
Because it's dreary and dark outside still...

That's when you know that Autumn has kicked in.
I think I saw it this morning.
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