I’m a hopefully soon-to-be first-time buyer and long-term interior design lover. Browsing home sections and looking for cosy living room and huge hallway inspiration on Pinterest are basically hobbies of mine. So when I happened across a homeware horoscope mid-social media scroll, I was intrigued by how it would summarise me as a Taurus.
This year I’ve enjoyed the motions of the festive period in a strange daze of disbelief. Christmas didn’t feel quite like Christmas, and new year didn’t feel entirely right either. I’m not really sure why I feel that way, but I do know that my diary now reads 2020. So happy new year I guess! Whether it’s passed me by in a bit of a blur or not, I love new years and its promise of a fresh start. I don’t tend to go overboard with resolutions, for fear of setting myself up for failure. This year though, I wanted to document some of my goals for 2020, to manifest them and hold myself accountable.
The beginning of 2019 cannot possibly have been a whole year ago. Yet here we are, somehow it was, and now we find ourselves almost at the beginning of a brand new decade.
An annual highlights post and a year in review is something which I started only last year but which I hope I can carry on for a very long time. When I wonder what on earth I did with all that time, it not only puts into perspective just how many good things have actually filled it, it’s also a brilliant exercise in gratitude. I’d truly recommend looking back on your highlights of 2019, even if you don’t choose to share them.
Firstly, I’d like to congratulate myself on exceeding my self-set Goodreads challenge for 2019. My original goal may have been a mere 12 books, but that’s only because I wanted to be realistic. I used to be able to read that many in a month, but over the last few years reading for pleasure has sadly taken a major backseat. Once I started consciously making time for it again, I realised how much I’d missed it.
Christmas is one of my favourite times of the year, despite how often I moan about the cold and how busy it is. I love that you can almost feel magic in the air. I love Christmas lights and festive drinks and precious time off with loved ones. Jamie and I often try to take festive trips in December, which aren’t complete without gingerbread lattes and marshmallow hot chocolates. If there’s one thing I dislike about the festivities though, it’s the notorious, and disposable, coffee shop red cup. With my Kambukka reusable mug, festive drinks on-the-go don’t secure me a place on the naughty list.
It is me, or are men notoriously difficult to buy for? When I compile gift guides for her, I find myself having to condense the list down, but almost didn’t even bother with a gift guide for him. Essentially, I just didn’t want to try to fill a post out by recommending average and uninspiring picks. That is until I asked Jamie to write me a Christmas list of things he’d like, and inspiration struck. Who better to give insight into what the men in our lives actually want for Christmas than another man?
It’s officially December, which means it’s time to decorate the house and start getting organised. Long gone are the days of circling Christmas gift wishes in an Argos catalogue, now there’s more choice than ever, which is great, but equally overwhelming. If you’re struggling to decide on gifts for your female loved ones, then look no further. I have suggestions for beauty, style and luxury lovers, bookworms, and women who deserve a pamper.
I was only recently speaking with some friends about how much Christmas gifting has changed. When I was a child most stocking filler items cost around £5, but money went a lot further then. Now, my household would categorise a stocking filler as under £20, so although there are vast differences in what people are happy to pay for gifts at Christmas, that’s the budget I’ve set for this guide. Bearing that in mind, here are my gift suggestions for good quality and thoughtful stocking fillers for her.
To some, the term ‘eco-friendly gifts’ is somewhat of an oxymoron. We have consumerist mindsets, trained to seek out shiny, new gifts, usually guarded by walls of unnecessary plastic. Sustainability isn’t an overly festive concept, but it’s desperately needed. We can do our bit by shopping locally and buying more eco-friendly gifts where possible. If you’re sceptical then I hope that this gift guide will show that sustainability doesn’t have to compromise on quality.