Never ever did I think face masks would be an necessity accessory for Spring Summer 2020 when I was buying stock for the boutique last Summer.

But it is and although theres a debate on whether or not you should be wearing one I for sure will be wearing a mask when I’m back at work.  I feel its an added precaution for my customers and also for myself.

Over the weekend I searched online for some non surgical masks that suit my style.  From beautiful Liberty prints to animal prints there’s plenty to choose from. A lot of the companies were giving back too, you could choose to purchase masks to be sent on to frontline workers, make a donation, a few of the companies I bought from, a donation was made to the NHS. If I’m going to be wearing a mask 6 days a week, I will need a few.  The ones I have chosen below are either cotton, linen or silk and are all hand wash only.

The 1st one I purchased was from a company called Wolford, they are now stocked in Pampas Glasgow, they can be found on Instagram at pampasglasgow. This was the most expensive one at £30.  96233_8222

I found this one on Instagram, it was a sponsored Ad, the company is called Style Cheat  They were sold out of most styles but there was an option to add your email address to be notified when new stock came in.  I ordered the top cheetah print at £9.99IMG_3128_1800x1800

CottonpolisTrading on Etsy £7

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OlioOfOxney on Etsy £6.95

Mizgeorge on Etsy £13 – The one has an adjustable toggle on the back

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And finally another Esty seller EvieLaLuveLungerie £8.50

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I’m glad that companies have evolved to start making prettier masks, not just for vanity , wearing a face mask can be daunting. As I said at the beginning, this is just an added precaution I will still be washing and sanitising my hands as well as social distancing.  I will be wearing a mask when helping customers in the boutique, when I’m out shopping and if I need to go on public transport.

Are you / will you be wearing a mask?

Chat soon & take care

Marlene x

This morning I woke up to the sunshine, made a cup of tea and opened my phone “The Monday Blues”.  Now; virus aside this is common meme on a Monday morning and although I love a good meme, it’s not what I want to see at the start of a new week. I enjoy a Monday.  Its a chance to make a few changes.  Set yourself new tasks.

I suffered the dreaded blues too until I decided to make some changes.  I began researching websites to build my motivation for every day life.  It didn’t happen over night but I admit my positive pants are on almost every day.  I understand most of us are struggling during this time.  I’ve had my wobble and I’m sure there will be a lot more, god I had one the other day trying to source a sneeze screen for the front of my shop counter preparing for when we get the go ahead to return to work.

LISTS

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Make lists for everything, that way you’ll never forget any tasks .Starting with the week then break it down to days.  If I’m out and about when I remember to do something I add it to my notes in my phone before transferring it to my notebook when I get home.  I find it satisfying ticking of my list of things to do and when I look back on the week its good to see what’s been achieved.  I know it sounds a bit Monica Geller but it works.  Trust me!

PLAN

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Just like listing – plan your day, plan your work, plan your lifestyle, a fitness plan, plan your goals, 1 year goal plan and a 5 year goal plan.  Set goals that scare you to death.  The old say, if your goals don’t scare you they aint big enough.  I love planning my week and breaking down the days.  Now I’m not saying I work non stop every day.  I have my nights off, a Sunday off if thats the way I feel.  Chill time is also part of the plan.

DRESS WELL

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One of my favourites and will be for every fashion blogger / boutique owner.  I love to plan my outfits.  Have a rough idea of outfits for the next 7 days.  This is a game changer.  Take 20 mins just one night per week and have a look whats in your wardrobe and plan a few outfits that you can mix and match along with jewellery shoes and handbags.  This will stop you reaching for the same items every time and you will be wearing your wardrobe instead of finding that fab top you’ve never worn at the bottom of your drawer when your having a clear out.  A well executed outfit always has me jumping out of bed in the morning ready to head to the shop.

SLEEP WELL

I’m a grandma when it comes to my sleep pattern.  I’m usually in bed for 9pm, 10pm at the latest.  I can start my day at 4am which sounds a bit crazy, Alex say’s its because Im off the farmers haha but thats 7 hours sleep which is a recommended amount.  Whether your a night owl or an early riser sleep is so important for your motivation.  If I’ve had rough night, it’s game over for the rest of the day.

ME TIME

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Just as important as sizing the day taking time to recoup and relax.  I really enjoy walking especially in the countryside or a days driving through the highlands.  I love a pamper day too whether it’s a day at your local spa as a treat or a spa day at home with a good body scrub and a face mask.

Sending you lots of positive vibes! Chat soon.

Marlene x

Pinch Punch it’s the 1st of the month!

May already, can you believe it. My dress is last season H and M. My trainers are Dune and on sale here 

(I wasn’t going to post this photo because I look shattered.  I am worrying like everyone else, its just showing on my face!!)

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How are you doing? Really?  April was a bit of a roller-coaster for me not going to lie.  The first week or so I was super productive, working, regular social media posts, exercise, stripped the bedroom wall paper then BOOM I Crashed.   I was crying a lot, my motivation went straight out the window and my sleeping pattern went to pot.  It was a low 2 weeks I’m not going to lie.  Everyone is coping different but most of our worries are the same.  Concerned about older family, missing my family & my best friend, money, work  & don’t get me started on how we are going to return to our new normality BUT as cheesy & repetitive as it sounds, we really are all in this together.  Things have massively changed but I always ( well apart from those 2 weeks) look for the good in amongst the bad.  I loved seeing photographs of the canals in Venice being crystal clear, the Himalayan mountains are in sight due to the drop in pollution. We live on the flight path and its so quiet. The sea and the rivers all around the world are thriving, the wildlife have got their life back.  The world does not revolve round us.  Mother nature was here long before us & I hope when routine starts again for us we remember that. I’m not turning all Greta Thunberg or joining Greenpeace but I do love nature & as the world slowly heels, it’s showing how much we destroy it.

Right I’m off to put my David Attenborough cap back in the wardrobe.

Chat soon

Marlene x

On Saturday 21st March 2020 at 5pm I closed the doors of the shop not knowing when one of my lovely customers would walk through it again.  I had planned to reduce the days I was working but on Monday morning after not sleeping the past 3 nights, Alex & I had a chat at 6am & we decided to close the shop.  The First Minister took that decision out all of our hands the next day & closed all non essential shops in Scotland and (politics aside) I was grateful for that.

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The sky that morning walking the dogs

We are lockdown for a minimum of 3 weeks – here, my little space of the internet, I’m going to document my day (s).  Its going to be a mixture of life just now, outfit posts, how Im keeping my business afloat and how I pass the day.

Tuesday 24th March 2020

I was in the shop for 7.30am armed with boxes and suitcases, packing up what I could to do some style photo’s and videos at home.  I packed all my cleaning products and toilet rolls, when this becomes history in years to come, my vision of a history teacher explaining to the wee kiddies of the 2020 pandemic and having to explain the loo roll panic buy makes me cringe.  Is this what we’ve become??!

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packing what I can, hoping to keep the business going from home.

Alex phoned to say he was being sent home from the site, relief to have him home safe and also a bit of panic, we’re both self employed and like the rest of the nation have bills to pay.  The government is going to help with grants etc so money-wise we just need to sit tight and this time will pass.  Right now all everyone cares about is the health of friends, neighbours and our loved ones.

I locked up the shop and quietly told it we will come back better than ever and I believe as a nation we will.   Im a positive person and grateful for a lot but the gratitude I have for people on the front line, the key workers putting themselves at risk everyday.  We will never be able to thank these people enough.  Yes its there job, “they chose that career” {that comment stuck in my throat last week!} but I don’t ever imagine they signed up for this & they must be terrified dealing with a deadly virus every day.

I nipped next door to the bakers for rolls and cakes to take to mums farm, they woke to the surprise of spring lambs so the scramble was on for them to arrange pens, bottles for feeding, bedding etc.  In amongst that, the company my step dad was contracted to was closing due to the government announcement was phoning to ask all plant and tools to be removed off site whilst he was delivering lambs.  It was all systems go !!

 

I eventually got home, unpacked the car,  took the dogs round the field,  Alex came around an hour later.

That was it, we’re officially in lockdown.

Take care, stay indoors.

Chat soon.

Marlene x

 

 

 

Hi hope you’ve had a great weekend.  We’re nearly at the end of January and I’ve saw a few bloggers share their dream year post.  Its a post I like to read so I thought I would share mine.  You write your goals for the year and come December you look back and see what you achieved.  I love goals, Im a planner.  I love a checklist.  I write a list of what Ive to do every single day.  It keeps me productive & stops me forgetting things. So lets get started, grab a cuppa, this could be a long one.

Career

Last year I was lucky enough to get a business coach.  It was the best thing I ever did, Kirsty is a wonderful person and has taught me so much. It isn’t all about spreadsheets and number crunching, its all about getting on in life, making life easier and how to enjoy your business.  What we did was plan, I learnt how to plan, (this is my list making started) how to make achievable goals and complete them.  I now have  a 1, 3 and 5 year plan for myself and one for the business.  Im not sharing them all just now but here are some of the changes I will be making this year.

My business really means the world to me.  I love my boutique and I feel I have found my feet.  Its now time to grow.  I have some new brands due arrive for Spring 2020 and I know your going to love them.  I try to always find something a wee bit different and I love when customers comment on that. I want to do a small refurb too.  Nothing major but I a few tweks here and there.

This blog, Im getting right into the swing of this, I love to read and write, it was my favourite subject at school.   My plans are to write a lot more fashion and skincare posts.  I have the posts just no photographs so my aim is to meet with my photographer at least once a month to get some good content as well as the photographs I take myself.

Youtube – I have watched youtube for over 4 years now and this year I will have my own channel.  Im learning to edit and then it will be full steam ahead with fashion hauls, vlogs and I hope to share some boutique life on there too.

 

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My first photoshoot with Francesca, we just clicked!

 

Home Life

Spending more time with loved ones –  Making sure a Sunday is mine, whither its going somewhere with Alex & the dogs or spending time at home with a blanket and a good book.  Visiting my grandpa, I’m making sure Sunday is not spent doing house chores, food shop or work.  Small changes at night during the week will give me a Sunday free. I said this last year but I mean it.  1 day switching off a week is a must.

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My grandpa has vascular dementia and we weren’t sure if he would be at home with us this Christmas & he was & we had a great day.

Health / Wellbeing

Look after myself Be the best version of me, this year Im going for it. Im 43 this year and Im going to look after myself.  As well as loosing the Xmas pounds and getting a bit fitter,  Im trying to sort out my hormones.  I know my age has a lot to do with it but the moods and cramps are unbearable sometimes so Im trying a few different vitamins to see if they can help.  I will do a separate blog post on this later on.

Pilates and walking; my favourite exercises. I don’t have the time for a class at the moment so home DVDs it will have to be.  Im not walking much just now with the dark nights but Ive been craving to get outside on a crisp day and get a right good walk.  Its great for the mindset and I always feel amazing and totally refreshed after a good walk so Im looking forward to that.

Travel 

I wasn’t going to feature this as we don’t go abroad anymore but we do a fair bit of exploring Scotland, its really beautiful so I will be sharing where we go.  We won’t leave the dogs, Alex isn’t to keen on flying and I have terrible earache when landing that it’s put us off.  I wont fly to London for buying trips anymore because of it and I really enjoy the train journey now. I was lucky enough when I was younger to have relatives in Africa and America so I’ve seen a good part of the world as well as the Caribbean and we’ve done the usual European holiday spots. So I’ve seen enough. Last year Alex converted his new van to a camper, Ive only stayed in it twice.  We done the NC500 on our 10th wedding anniversary and I done an over night in Glencoe.  Over the past 10 years we’ve toured around Scotland, it really is a beautiful part of the country,  we usually rent cottages or log cabins (my fav!) but this year we’re planning on going to the outer hebrides so Im really looking forward to that.

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Dress Down Day !!!

A few places I would like to visit this year –

  1. Outer Hebrides (Harris and Lewis)
  2. Arran
  3. NC500 again
  4. The Kelpies
  5. Inveraray Castle
  6. Wallace Monument (its been years since Ive been)
  7. Edinburgh
  8. Back to my favourite place in the world – Foyers 
  9. Culzean Castle – we walk the dogs in the grounds all the time but never been in inside.
  10. Explore more of the Cairngorms

I really wish you all the best for the coming year, a new decade bring the opportunity for a fresh start.  Time to start smashing our way through those goals.  I’m excited to share this journey with you.

Life is for living.

Chat soon

Marlene x