Sunday, 25 January 2015

This weeks pages - Frosty!

So back with decorating in advance! I just had to after last week. Talking of last week it was so so cold. On Friday it was -2C here. We keep getting forecast snow but nothing is materialising, still I do think the frost and ice is pretty so I decided to go with a frost theme this week. Knowing my luck we will probably have a heat wave lol!

Products Used
Planner: Filofax Personal Ochre Malden
Planner Inserts: My Grid Won2P
Embellishments: From a scrapbook paper line but I can't remember which one (sorry!)
Page Marker / Paper clip: Made by me from the same scrapbook paper.

Last weeks Decorated Planner Pages

I decorated as I went again last week. I started the week loving it and by then end of the week I hated it and wished that I had decorated in advance. Funny how it works out that some weeks decorating in advance really works for you and others it doesn't!  I love, love, love the minions and started the week really looking forward to using my minions week and now I am like...ugh! I know it sounds bad and lazy but I couldn't even be bothered to put the effort into photographing them. Bad innit! Anyways on to next week.

Products Used
Planner: Paperchase Dreamscape Planner
Planner Inserts: Paperchase Won2P
Stickers: Minion Stickers from The Idea Owl
Hole Reinforcers: Yellow Chevron from Annie's Paper Boutique
Tape: Blue tape unknown. Yellow stars from Cath Kidston and Heart tape from Just Keep Pinning.
Page Marker / Paper clip: from The Idea Owl


Friday, 23 January 2015

Set up / How I am using my Paperchase Dreamscape Planner

I have been asked LOADS to share how I have set up my Paperchase Dreamscape Planner so here I am showing you!

Now 'planner peace' for me is all about what is inside my planner and my system so most of it is the same as the tour I did a month or two ago now when I was in my Malden so not a lot has changed. If you missed that you can watch it below.

I hope that has answered all of your questions but if there is anything else you would like to know or see then please do not hesitate to ask :D

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Keeping a daily journal / My life isn't interesting enough!

I often get comments from you lovely folk that you would like to start journalling but just don't think that your life is interesting enough for daily journalling. I just wanted to go over that and share my two pennies worth! Who said that journalling had to be daily anyway? Just have fun with it is what I say and just journal when you feel like you want to. No pressure OK!

Monday, 19 January 2015

February Daily Instagram Challenege

In December I mentioned that I would most likely run another instagram daily photo challenge in February, well here I am with said challenge!

I have so loved seeing your photos in both my October and December challenges so I can't wait to see how you interpret the prompts in February. REMEMBER as with all of my daily photo challenges I have designed the prompts to be interpreted in a way that suits you, loosely based on the things that I love: Filofaxes, Stationery, Journals, Books, decorations, food, the season etc. You interpret them however you like but most importantly have fun with it. They are just prompts to help you, take them literally if you like or be imaginative. Share your life or share your planner. Anything goes! You don't have to enter to win the prize, you can just play along with the prompts for fun, entirely up to you, the more the merrier!

What is the prize? Well I am giving away a box full of stationery goodies worth at least £20. I am not telling you what is inside, that would spoil the surprise but if you would like to take a look at the sort of thing you could expect take a look at my Brimbles Boxes.

Please do make sure that you read all guidelines on how to enter and the rules below oh and if you want to be in with winning the prize you will need to register on the giveaway widget below too!

Please do feel free to share the above photo on instagram, Pinterest, your blog etc or print out to put into your planner or journal.

If you would like to print out the prompts I have created an insert for your planner that you can download and print out. To access the insert please click here. Please note you will need software to unzip the file. The inserts are supplied as A5, Personal & Pocket.

The Rules for the instagram challenge...

I know, so boring that there needs to be rules but there does so that everyone is clear on what they need to do and to keep it fair to everyone participating!
  • You must post all 28 photos on instagram using #mrsbrimblesFEBdaily
  • You need to be following me on instagram: @mrsbrimbles
  • The prompts are just that, prompts, interpret them as you will, or if you are stuck for inspiration just post a photo anyway! If it is easier you can do a different prompt on that day as long as by the end of the challenge you have done all 28.
  • You have until 7am GMT on 5th March 2015 to register for the giveaway on the widget below AND to complete the photo challenge on instagram.
  • If you haven't registered on the widget you won't be elligible to win the prize so you will just be doing the challenge for fun which is totally fine with me if it is with you.You can register at any time from 19th January 2015 but photo posting on instagram starts on 1st February 2015.
  • You DO NOT have to post everyday but you do have to post all 28 photos by 7am GMT on 5th March 2015. You DO NOT have to post in numerical order, you can post any prompt on any day and any number of photos on any day.
  • Once the competition has closed a winner will be drawn by random using the giveaway widget, and emailed. I will ask you to confirm / prove that you have posted all 28 photos in the time frame 1st February - 5th March 2015, if not another winner will be chosen. The winners name will appear on the giveaway widget once closed.
  • The winner will be emailed by me to arrange receipt of the prize. 

By submitting an entry to this giveaway you agree to the following Terms & Conditions:

  • Your email address will be added to my newsletter database - I will not sell this to anyone else nor will I constantly be spamming you and you can unsubscribe at any time! 
  • Open internationally
  • You must be over eighteen years of age or have parental / guardian permission.
  • The prizes stated above are the only prize(s) - no cash alternative.
  • One winner will be chosen at random and notified by email. Winner(s) will be announced on this page on the rafflecopter widget after the closing date.
  • If the winner(s) do not respond to my email within 48 hours a new winner(s) will be chosen.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Decorating as you thoughts...

Last week was a bit of a first for me...I decorated as I went rather than decorated before hand. The main reason for this is that the week before I was poorly and I really couldn't be bothered to decorate, plan or do anything in my planner. Then when I started to feel well again I realised that my pages were bare, empty and boring. It then occurred to me that I could do a little experiment and decorate as I went rather than decorate in advance. I have never done this before but seen that many people do and it looks quite nice.

The main reason that I don't do this is that I like to share my page decoration with you here on the blog and also on instagram. I share so much of my life already in vlogs and journals that I don't always feel comfortable sharing my planner pages with personal appointments in etc. Then it came to see I usually just use my camera phone for instagram photos, snap and upload. Boom! But I figured that I could decorate as I go and then take a photo and edit out the bits I don't want to share and then upload to instagram. I don't know why I didn't really think of that before.

I do like to see a nice clean page with just the decoration on but then it is also nice to see what people do with their pages as the week goes on. What do you prefer? I would be interested to know which you would prefer to see so that I know what to share with you :D

I am also a major scribbler! I don't mean to be but it is a habit of mine. I do rather love to scribble something out when it is done as sometimes I find that if it is just ticked off you can still see it. With a black line for it my brain doesn't see it. Weird huh! Again that is one of the reasons why I haven't shown my pages once the week is done as a lot of it has scrubs out on which is also another reason why I don't keep my inserts (until now. More of that to come!).

So let's get on to the pages shall we...

Products Used
Planner: Paperchase Dreamscape Planner
Planner Inserts: Paperchase Won2P
Stickers: Elephant stickers given to me in a RAK
Hole Reinforcers: Purple Chevron from Annie's Paper Boutique
Tape: Purple scotch impressions (dark purple). Other tape unknown.
Flower / Zigzag: Unknown collection from Nikki Sivils scrapbook

So I started the week with some writing on my pages and at the beginning of Monday I decided to use / add my hole reinforcers. This was the very first time I have used them and they were really great. I didn't line my chevrons up though, I wasn't that bothered but other people may like too. At the end of the day I then added an elephant sticker. At this point I was like "what the hell am I doing". It just felt so very wrong to me! My pages looked naff and I was very much wondering where I was going to put my decoration. I know get a grip huh! #plannerproblems but seriously I was just wondering how people do it. Where / how do they fit it in. I have always decorated first and then written around it not vice versa.

OK so let me fast forward you a couple of days...What you can see below is the second half of the week. I use to do lists as well as my daily pages. With to do lists I have a master / ongoing list of things I want to or need to do but are not day critical. I then move tasks either on to my daily pages or onto a to do list for that week or day. Below is a to do list that I used for a couple of days at the end of the week. See what I mean about being a scribbler!! At least I don't feel so bad when I ditch the to do list as it is just all sribbles!

I did have an overall idea of what colours and products I was going to use for the week. When I first pulled my elephant stickers out I also pulled my tape out and I kept them together on my desk. After each day was over I added some embellishment / decoration in to my day. I managed to squeeze it in. You know I actually like the overall effect. I have far more decoration than I would normally have because I didn't have to worry about going minimalistic in case I had loads to write later in the week. Nope I could just write away and not worry about space. Kind of liberating in a way and not at all cluttered.

So I started the week thinking "what or why" and finished the week thinking "I am so going to do this next week". Crazy huh! Just goes to show you that you don't know unless you try. And I am going to give it a bit of a try. I am slightly out of my comfort zone giving you an insight into how my crazy mind unfolds through the week but I will get over it. Please just be prepared that some weeks might have loads of stuff blurred out if I am not happy to share. I am not saying I am going to adopt this way forever. I am going to take each week as it comes and see what happens.

As a side note, we didn't have much on this weekend so that was OK but I really hate inserts that have a smaller weekend space than week. Bug Bear of mine! I only used these inserts as I was poorly and didn't have the energy to print some of my own off. I think I will for next week though. The paper is nice just the layout / design of the inserts are not my thing!

Friday, 16 January 2015

Thinking of starting a blog? Blog Post & Video Planning & Scheduling

I often get emails from people who are looking to start up their own blog or YouTube cannel but haven't got a clue where to start. I try and help the best that I can but I am not a blogging guru, I just plod along and adapt as I go and just hope that I am doing the right thing. I just decided to start blogging one day, I picked a platfrom (blogger) and just started writing blog posts and my YouTube channel came some time after that (I did delete some of my first blog posts as they were just too cringey!). For me the blog and YouTube channel never was and still isn't about how many subscribers or readers I have. I started it from a place of passion about what I love and just wanted to share that. Basically what I am saying is that I have no idea whether what I am doing is right or wrong but it seems right for me. I can tell you about my experiences, what works for me and how I plan for posts but ultimately you need to find a way / system that works for you! There is lots of information out there and I find Pinterest particuarly good if you search for information on how to blog. There is a board I follow here which might help.

So today I am sharing with you how I plan for and schedule in my Blog posts and YouTube videos...

I also did a video on this last year but the way that I do this has now changed. I have a much better idea of how and why I do things now which is something that comes with experience and something that you will develop along your own blogging journey. I am also using a personal size planner as my daily go to rather than my A5 so that has also impacted on how I schedule. I no longer want that information in my daily diary section. Anyways check out my previous video if you have not already seen it as that will give you another way to plan and this way might work better for you than my new way. But ultimately as I said before you need to find the way that best works for you.

I have a download again for you this week that might help you get started, if nothing else it will help you whilst you establish how you want to plan things in. 

This week's download contains the pages as show in the video. The inserts are available to download as both personal size and A5. You will need software that can 'unzip' the folder to release the files as both pdf and jpeg.  To download the files please click here. Please note that the inserts that I am offering as freebies are different to the ones that I sell, so if you have already purchased a set of my inserts these are in addition for you. If you haven't purchased any of my inserts and would like to or just have a nose at them you can view them in my Etsy shop here. Please note: These inserts are entirely free and a gift from me and only the inserts provided are free, I say this because I know some people might prefer one of the other designs that I offer but it is only the ones in the freebie set on offer at this time. These inserts are for your own personal use only and are not for resale as either printables or hard copy. Thank you.

So was starting a blog or YouTube channel on your goal list for this year? I have thoroughly enjoyed my blogging journey and do reccommend it and I hope this has inspired you and given that little push for you to do so.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Supplier Spotlight - ItsAMumsThing

The first supplier spotlight of the year! As you know as and when I purchase new products, come accross something new or a supplier contacts me to do a review for them, I aim to share this with you in the form of a Wednesday Supplier Spotlight feature.

So today I am featuring Megan Stanbury who trades on Etsy under the name ItsAMumsThing. Megan approached me towards the end of last year and asked if I could review her dashboards and feature her on the blog. I will let Megan do the introductions in her own words:

I am a bubbly, coffee drinking, dog loving, sweet treat loving, red haired mum to a beautiful baby boy. I live at home with my fiance, dog and son. I spend most of my time crafting, creating, taking photos and spending time with the people I love. I spent the last 2 years at high school focusing on art and studied for a year and a half at college studying art and design so I have always loved art.
I have also loved organising and planking my life. I am always writing lists and then writing list of the lists I have just written. I never really knew how I could combine the both until I found the filofax community and starting making dashboards. I started ItsAMumsThing as a stay at home mum I needed to find something to fill my spare time while doing something I loved and this was a perfect fit.

So as you can see Megan creates dashboards using her own art. I have four to show you today but you can see more over on Megan's Etsy Shop.

The first dashboard that Megan sent me has to be my favourite and you can see why....

Yes it is a bunny. Who would have guessed that I like bunnies! Her artwork is so sweet, I just love the expression on her face, very cute indeed and I love those eye lashes. Being owned by four girly bunnies I do love the eyelashes! I can't tell whether this is a reproduction of one of her artworks or the original but you can tell that it is hand created as you can see the pen marks so you know you are not buying something mass produced.

The next dashboard is a letter filigree in black and white. Very classic and chic, doesn't it look great in the nude original Filofax! This piece is very detailed, I don't know how she has the patience for it, I sure as heck don't, I am a smack paint down and move it around kind of girl so I really do appreciate the time taken to create this.  Very classy look to the front of your planner I think. Again you can see the pen marks so you know this has been hand created.

As you know when I review anything I always give you my honest opinion as that is only fair and square. Unfortunately the next two are not to my taste but that doesn't mean that there is anything wrong with the dashboards themselves, just that I am not drawn to this particular design but I can appreciate the work that has gone into it nonetheless.

So overall what do I think? Very nice dashboards of a quality that I would expect and is inline with others that I have purchased or seen elsewhere so I would be happy to purchase these and to reccommend them. I am not sure what the artwork was created on but you can see some ripples. This appears to be on the artwork itself and not a bubble. You can best see this on the two heart dashboards above.

If you would like to find out more about Megan or purchase any of her dashboards you can find her here:
Instagram @ItsAMumsThing

PLEASE NOTE: I was given this / these product(s) in exchange for my honest review and opinion, the fact that I was given these does not alter my opinion in anyway. This review is my own personal opionion on the product / company, given in good faith and has not be sponsored or endorsed. The photography unless otherwise stated / credited is also my own. None of the links are affiliate links

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Creating Daily

During the Christmas break I shared with you what I received for Christmas, well I thought I would give you a bit of an update on how I am using two of the things...

I was very kindly given a Paperchase bound diary from their Dreamscap collection. As you know I do love my ring bound planners for the flexibility of being able to move things around and in/out, Mr B also knows this but he bought it for me he said because he knew that I would like the cover design and thought that I could make use of it somehow. Oh how right he is! How could you not love the design? It is simply beautiful. The paper inside is a cream colour but so beautiful and smooth as well. I do love it.

oh by the way I am showing you photos of my messy artists desk too lol!

I also received a set of Spectrum Noir pencils. I knew they did markers but had no idea that they did pencils too. I have coveted the Prismacolor pencils for a while now but have never taken the plunge to buy them. I don't know why. I see people use them in videos etc all the time but I wonder if I would enjoy using them too. When I think of pencils I always think of the cheap kids ones that you have to really work at to get any colour at all. I know everyone raves about the Prismacolors I am just yet to try them for myself.

So what am I doing with these two things? Well I am putting them together and creating daily. I am working in my Fauxbonichi in the evenings when we finally sit down to watch some telly. After I have done with that I then pick up this book. I love love love my Fauxbonichi don't get me wrong and I do find it relaxing but I do have to think about what I have done that day to record it. Once I have done that I pick up this book and this set of pencils, nothing else and I let my mind wander off and draw whatever it needs or wants to. Whatever comes out of my head goes onto that paper. No carbon pencil and eraser, nope just straight down with coloured pencils. No thinking, no worry about mistakes, just creating and letting the mind go. I love it, not that any journal or creativity is particularly stressful, nor should it be, but there there is something about just letting your mind wander through the extension of your hand and a coloured pencil or two. I have even found a couple of characters that have come out on the page that I would like to develop and take further so that is great.

I am still not sure about the pencils as to whether or not I like them. I don't know if it is just pencils in general that I am comparing to other media but they just don't seem to be as pigmented as I would have liked them to be. Maybe it is just me. Maybe I am expecting too much from a pencil I don't know. Blending wise I haven't yet worked out how to really do that. I know you can buy blending solution but I don't really know what that is and how you use it so I really must look into that. There doesn't seem to be that much information so I will keep digging around.

Anyways for now I am just enjoying my little doodle time at the end of the day!

Monday, 12 January 2015

Brimbles Box - Jan 2015 Reveal

I am pretty much certain now that everyone has received their January 2015 Brimbles Box so I can do a big reveal for you on the contents. You may have already seen unboxings and photos flying around social media but I wanted to hold off posting anything official until I was certain that all boxes had been received, after all I don't want to spoil the surprise for anyone!

I was so grateful to everyone who signed up for a subscription or purchased a one off box. Although it was a little bit stressful I thoroughly enjoyed the sourcing process and I just hope you liked your boxes as much as I enjoyed putting them together.

I was going to film an unboxing video for my channel but I had more of some products than others which meant that the 'complete box' did actually sell right out come 31st Jan. (Don't worry, if you purchase a single box or a subscription it will never 'sell out' what I mean is that all box orders for Jan were complete and I sold some of the surplus stock too so there wasn't enough for a complete box to do an unboxing).

So would you like to see what was inside? If you would prefer to watch an unboxing video you can see my two 'blogger of the month' unboxings below or carry on reading to see photos etc!

Are you a blogger? Check out the bottom of this post :D


So on with the photos and description etc... When you opened your box you were greeted with a postcard and on that postcard was...

Happy New Year!

Welcome not only to 2015 but also to the first Brimbles Box of the year. No wait, the first ever Brimbles Box!

So you see those stars up there? Yep those ones twinkling away above your head, yep those are the ones, they are all yours if only you will stand on your tippy toes and reach for them. Go on reach up high and grab them. No wait, why stop at the stars, let’s reach for the moon instead. That’s right folks, this months box is all about inspiring you for the fabulous year ahead of you. Your goodies in your box are to help and encourage you to get organized, get ahead, set goals, make plans. Remember this is your year to shine…The adventure is just beginning!

Have Fun!

Anna x

I only managed to get a quick instagram snap of the box as it was ready to ship out so please overlook the bad lighting in the above photo!

What was in the box?

All of the boxes regardless of which type you ordered received the following items. Please note this photo is merely representative, some people received different pencil cases, notebooks and washi tape. The images are NOT to scale!

1. Pack of 6 pencils with 'To Do' design
2. Pencil Case (various designs)
3. Pack of 6 hand signal paper clips
4. Notebook (various designs)
5. Pack of 'cute as a button' stickers
6. Washi Tape (various designs)

The Stationery only boxes had all of the above plus the below organisational pegs:

Instead of the pegs, the planner boxes had either an A5 or a 'personal' size Moon Gazing Bunny Dashboard as well as a planner charm with a silver moon and stars (not shown)

If you would like to see unboxing blog posts to get someone elses perspective you might want to check out:

A New Chapter:
Hey Charlie Blog:

I am really excited for Februarys box and am having tons of fun putting it all together!

If you are interested in purchasing a one off box or a subscription or just want more information please check out:

Are you a blogger?
We do like to spread the word and the love and we welcome applications from bloggers and YouTubers. We have a select few bloggers and YouTubers that we currently work with on a regular basis but we are also looking for ‘guest reviewers’ who we can send a free box to in exchange for a blog post / video review and unnoxing. If you would like to review one of our boxes please do get in touch. We would like to know who you are, what your blog / videos are all about, your blog / YouTube url and your average monthly views. Please do not get offended if we decline your offer at this time, it may be that we already have our posts filled by the time you read this and get in touch but please feel free to enquire again in the future as things are always changing. You can get in touch by emailing:

Friday, 9 January 2015

Shaping Your Year / Goal Setting

I am a massive believer in that we can do anything that we want to do in this life, we just have to work out what it is exactly that we want to do and then plan for it. Sometimes those dreams need saving for, sometimes they need a training schedule put into place. Everything is achievable if we set that goal / intention and work towards it.

Along with most people in the World, I like to start the New Year with setting myself goals to work towards that you and I also like to look a bit at the wider picture and set myself some areas to work towards in years to come too. I am very fortunate to say that one of my 'longer term' goals that I set for myself a few years ago came true at the end of 2014 and that was to be on a creative design team. To some it may seem trivial, to me it means the everything.

We are all unique individuals and our hopes, dreams, aspirations and goals reflect that too. Never let anyone tell you that your dream is stupid or that you will never do it, you just don't need that sort of negativity and discouragement in your life! No matter what your situation or what walk of life you have come from, you can achieve what you want to do. So you've always dreamed of going to Disney Land, well let's work towards that. "I can't / will never be able to afford it" you say, well that is just a negative block that is standing in your way. Save for it! Plan to save for it! You will get there, even if you just put £1 a week in a savings jar, it will add up and you will be working towards your dream.

If we are looking at wider, longer term goals or goals that may seem to big like saving for Disney Land try to chunk them down into bitesize pieces to help you stay on track and motivated. Don't think I need to save £5K for a two week holiday for Florida, think I am going to save £20 this month. It makes it a lot easier and you start to feel great about your accomplishment which makes you work harder to complete your goal. You will probably find that you de-clutter the house looking for things to put on ebay or you stop buying that coffee on the way to work, that £1 lottery ticket that you never get a return will be found from somewhere!

This time last year I talked about goal setting so you might want to go and check that post out. There are free inserts that coincide with that and I talked quite a bit about chunking your goals down into manageable pieces so you might find that just as useful or more useful than todays post. It all depends on you and how you like to work, remember everyone is different and you just have to find what works best for you. Only You!

Of course we don't just have to set goals for ourselves at New Year. We can set goals whenever we like but most people like the idea of a New Fresh Faced Year to kick them up the butt but remember every Monday marks a fresh new week. What I am trying to say is if you feel like you have fallen off the wagon just pick yourself up, dust yourself off and catch a lift on the next wagon that comes through the village on Monday! Never feel guilty as that can lead to a downward spiral. So you had that chocolate bar which took you off of your healthy eating plan, so what it is not the end of the World, don't eat another one with the mentality of "well that was the diet ruined I might as well have another". Don't do that to yourself, just mark it off as a treat and carry on. From years of experience with dieting it is always full of guilt and deprivation and it is not mentally healthy - it's all in moderation thrown in with some exercise.

So let's take a look at my approach for this year and my intentions...

I don't normally set a 'word for the year' but I have seen so many people do this and it is also a recurring theme in many online art and journal courses, I know it is in Life Book 2015 which I am taking again this year. This word setting seems to help a lot of people so I thought that I would give it a go too. The word that I have come up with for myself for 2015 is CONFIDENT. I also decided to set myself a motivational quote for the year and the quote I have chosen is: "If not now then when?"

You may be wondering why I have come up with both of those, well the word of the year I go into more depth about in my video and the quote is actually targeted at an area of my life that I am not comfortable in sharing, I still have some issues to over come in that area. I will probably share one day when I am ready as it will probably help others but for now it is just for me. I decided to create an insert for journalling about the meaning behind the word and quote so that it all ties together and has more weight and meaning. I am hoping that having the meaning to look back on will help me to remember why I set myself that in the first place and further motivate me to succeed.

So why do I set goals for myself? Well quite simply because I find that if I don't, the World could quite happily go on around me and before I know it we are counting down to midnight on the cusp of 2016. We all have lives that we are chugging away at and it is very easy to get caught up in the cycle of getting up, going to work, coming home and cooking, watching TV, bed, getting up, going to work...see what I mean? We can get stuck in that cycle. Obviously we need that to some extent to make a living but we can also break that and get out there and do things and that is what I intend to do. I want to work out what it is I want to do this year, what do I want to accomplish and give myself a pat on the back for come next New Years Eve? Where do I want to go this year? What do I want to do? I want to set these intentions and plan for them so that I actually DO THEM!

So coupled with that I have my list of what I am going to do so that I can all tie it in and work it into my life.

I hope that has helped you to see how I am doing it this year and to know what my intentions are. If you haven't watched the video please do so as it is more indepth and detailed than this post.

This week's download contains the pages as show in the video. The inserts are available to download as both personal size and A5. You will need software that can 'unzip' the folder to release the files as both pdf and jpeg.  To download the files please click here. Remember to check out last year here. Please note that the inserts that I am offering as freebies are different to the ones that I sell, so if you have already purchased a set of my inserts these are in addition for you. If you haven't purchased any of my inserts and would like to or just have a nose at them you can view them in my Etsy shop here. Please note: These inserts are entirely free and a gift from me and only the inserts provided are free, I say this because I know some people might prefer one of the other designs that I offer but it is only the ones in the freebie set on offer at this time. These inserts are for your own personal use only and are not for resale as either printables or hard copy. Thank you.

Remember your planner will only work for you and help keep you organised and on track if you actually use it - review regularly!

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Book Review: Bitten by Kelley Armstrong

Bitten: Number 1 in series (Otherworld)

Author: Kelley Armstrong
Publisher: Orbit (6 May 2010)
ISBN: 978-1841499185

From the back:

I've been fighting it all night. I'm going to lose ... Nature wins out. It always does.'

Elena Michaels didn't know that her lover Clay was a werewolf until he bit her, changing her life forever. Betrayed and furious, she cannot accept her transformation, and wants nothing to do with her Pack - a charismatic group of fellow werewolves who say they want to help.

When a series of brutal murders threatens the Pack - and Clay - Elena is forced to make an impossible choice. Abandon the only people who truly understand her new nature, or help them to save the lover who ruined her life, and who still wants her back at any cost.

My Review:

My friend gave me this book along with a pile of others she no longer wanted. I have to admit that I put this to the bottom of the pile thinking that I wouldn't be interested in it. I have no idea why, just that I didn't think it would float my boat as it were.

I have never been that fascinated with warewolves, vampires yes, warewolves no. I don't know why either, I guess that haven't been romanticised quite as much as vampires have I suppose. I always think it is wrong to enter into a book with negative thoughts, you know the "I'm not sure if this is my thing but I will give it a try anyway" yet I still do and obviously this is why it was lurking on my shelf for a while. I am making a determined effort to read what I have before I buy any more books and wanting something to read I picked this up. At the time I started reading this, I was daily vlogging and also posted a couple of photos of the book on instagram to be met with comments from many people saying that they loved the book and thoroughly enjoy Kelley Armstrong's work. The more I saw these comments, the more I wanted to press on with the book.

So what did I think. Well I have to say I did thoroughly enjoy it. It wasn't super gripping but enough to make me want to keep on reading to find out what happened, even though I kinda new what the end result was going to be. I liked the take on the warewolves not actually being 'bad guys' and I really liked the relationship development between the pack. I am not a massive feminist but I did really like the concept of the World's only female warewolf. This is something that I had never thought of before but I did like the way that this was woven into the story and that she was just as much needed as the male brothers. I sometimes think that this can be overworked into a plot but I think that the balance of female empowerment in a mans World was just right and added to the story rather than taken away. Other elements of the book that I really enjoyed are Elena's battle with does she let the warwolf side of her take over or does she try and focus more on her human side, can the two sides of her co-exist? There are some nicely woven in issues surrounding identity, denial and self acceptance and again this was very well handled.

I didn't realise that this was the first in a series, the way it is written to me it could quite happily be a stand alone book. I did really enjoy this book and now that I know it is a series I have put the 2nd on my wish list but I am not in a desperate hurry to go and read it. Should I be? Please let me know if you have read it and think that I should prioritise this read.

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

December Fauxbonichi Flip Through

Wowza! Where did December go? I don't know about you but for me December went by in such a blurr. I had a blast but it was also very busy and towards the end I was so grateful for the Christmas break and vegging out.

So here I am with my monthly flip through of my Fauxbonichi journal. As you can see the busier I got the more tired I became in the evenings which led me to less art and more sticking things in which is fine because I really enjoyed doing that and my journal is supposed to be a place where I can have fun and enjoy myself.

Here are some of my favourite pages from the month...

As I said I just love sticking things down and I really enjoyed just randomly sticking down stickers without a care in the World!

 I also used more washi tape and other embellishments like this Father Christmas die cut.

I love to draw Paddington, he is just so easy to draw and lots of fun too. He pops up at least once in one of my journals!

I also experimented with printing out a photo to add to my page.

And then towards the end of the month back to doodles the same way as I started.