Monday, 31 December 2012

The 2013 Weekly Challenge


I have been completely lazy this year, it's a fact.  I haven't pushed myself enough or put myself out there and welcomed opportunities (not that I came across many, but they probably appeared when I had my glasses off or was looking in the direction of the tv - I've watched far too much tv this year).  True, I started exploring with my friend this winter, and I definitely want to continue that, but it's hardly a USEFUL hobby.

Luckily, Sarah (over at Sarah Rooftops) and I have been brainstorming a remedy to this.  We've come up with a sixty point challenge, with enough activities to keep us busy for an entire year.  The best part is we're picking a random one (or more!) every week, and not necessarily the same one as each other, so it should keep things interesting for us and you guys!

Check out the list below...
  • Photograph your favourite places.
  • Have a nostalgia trip (go somewhere you loved as a kid, watch a childhood cartoon, meet an old friend).
  • Have an early night with a good book.
  • Learn a dance.
  • Test a new drink (Elise is stuck in a Bud rut; Sarah's getting tipsy on wine).
  • Try a new restaurant.
  • Write a completely honest post about how you're feeling right now.
  • Try a new beauty/hair/skincare/anything-from-Boots product.
  • Have an internet-free weekend.
  • Write a letter to your past self.
  • Write a letter to your future self. Use http://www.futureme.org/ to send it.
  • Try a food you hated as a child.
  • Try a new ice cream flavour.
  • Watch a sport.
  • List the top 5 places you want to visit in the world. Start saving for one of them.
  • Spend a day in your pyjamas.
  • Leave a comment on every blog you read for a week.
  • Buy that practical thing you never get around to.
  • Spend the day/night watching only one channel. See what you learn.
  • Try something you think you're going to hate.
  • Rearrange some furniture.
  • Make a new friend/meet a blog friend.
  • Write a big, long list of things that make you happy.
  • Send an anonymous gift.
  • Have a picnic.
  • Do something nice for somebody you don't know or don't much like.
  • Read a newspaper.
  • Give up your biggest vice for a week.
  • Clear out under your bed/the junk drawer/your wardrobe/that bulging cupboard.
  • Tell someone you love them.
  • Turn a few different corners on a familiar path.
  • Go bowling.
  • Pick a book totally at random (from the library/charity shop/bookshop) and review it.
  • Send postcards just because.
  • Go to a local event.
  • Have a tea party.
  • Create something (anything!).
  • Do something on your own which makes you feel self-conscious.
  • Do something that scares you.
  • Get rid of five things you no longer love.
  • Visit a local interest spot.
  • Read a biography.
  • Have a movie day.
  • Give an abandoned hobby another go.
  • Try a new exercise.
  • Play a board game.
  • Discover new music.
  • Visit somewhere new.
  • Take the long walk home.
  • Photograph a stranger with their permission.
  • Make something outside your cooking/crafting comfort zone
  • Spend a day blitzing your to do list.
  • Buy yourself something frivolous.
  • Leave a good book for a stranger to find. 
  • Hang something new on the wall.
  • Take a friend/loved one on a mystery date.
  • Say thank you.
  • Teach somebody something.
  • Watch a classic film/read a classic book you've never got around to before.
  • Complete a personal challenge.

I'm so excited to start!  Feel free to join in with us and help mix things up, and be sure to check out Sarah's post on the subject.  If you followed her 'Why Don't You' series then I think you'll have fun with this...

:)

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Faff Favourites...

  Can you tell I've been exploring again?  This time we took Mhairi and John with us to the castle and Mhairi and I got mega lost at one point - we were walking around the woodland with Johns dog while the boys explored the castle basements, and we ended up in the old gardens in front of some collapsed greenhouses.  After finding a little gap in the wall and wandering through some woodland, we discovered we were inside the grounds!  With zero climbing involved!  (ahem, not that we usually climb in...)  And we even found another way out, although it did involve stomping through brambles, the dog was far from impressed, we didn't share that part with John ;)  As it turns out, the boys found another way in too, so we have plenty options for exploring now.

Here's your last bunch of links for the year, a bumper lot this time, enjoy!

A Taylor Swift style Tumblr?  Yes please!

25 Ridiculously Healthy Foods

The Best of 2012 Architecture and Interiors - I love them ALL

Has everyone seen the hilarious trailer for Warm Bodies?  You can now watch the first four minutes online! (really it just made me more desperate to see it...)

24 Statement Hairstyles for the Holiday Party Season

Aladdin and Titanic are basically the same movie...

I found Prismatic via Sarah Von - a more interesting news site than an actual news site

Just discovered an awesome fabric-painting-on-shoes DIY

Surefire Ways To Make Next Year Better from Sarah!

15 Small Ideas to Kickstart Big Change

Not sure why but I've been drawn towards these shoes...

I'm determined to master crocheting at some point (in the faraway future...) and Alycia's guide full of resources seems like a good place to start!

Every once in a while I rediscover Zen Habits - finally subscribed!  Some favourite posts -

The Short but Powerful Guide to Finding Your Passion


:)

Saturday, 29 December 2012

Looking back and forward...

Well we're right in the middle of the holiday season, and I'm having a blast.  I've been staying at my mums house since a few days before Christmas, which is good for many reasons (heat, comfy couch, unlimited internet, the ability to record tv) and I've just been loafing about, reading and knitting and watching utter rubbish on the movie channel.  Christmas was rather fabby - I got so many smellies and chocolates and books, and Mother got me a much needed new laptop, woohoo!  Then we all ate too much and watched Downton Abbey, which Mother pretended not to be interested in but she woke up pretty quickly when I started squealing near the end...

Today's plan was to go a run but it was pouring all morning and then I ate a huge breakfast, so right now I'm watching Modern Family and wondering what happened to B*Witched (nothing interesting apparently).  I've also been thinking more about my blog lately.  I didn't write as much in the last part of the year as I did at the beginning, because life got in the way and I didn't really feel like sharing much.  So I've decided to start 2013 with a mini challenge - to post every day in January.  I think it's time to get my brain in gear and my camera in hand, and go out there and create more.  Plus I'm hoping Lappy 2.0 will make the journey slightly easier...

I also have a few more challenges coming up, but more about that on Monday!

Hope everyone else had a great Christmas/holiday/week of eating!

:)

Friday, 28 December 2012

A year in outfits...

  I decided to do a review of this years outfit posts, because I feel like my style has changed somewhat in the past twelve months or so.  I seem to have went from pretty to practical, especially in the past few months when the weather started getting colder.  It's not exactly because I stopped caring about style, but because I had less reasons to 'dress up' - when you have to wear dark clothing for work and don't do a lot outside of working, getting dressed becomes more about what's suitable to wear for walking to the library or watching tv as opposed to going for drinks and hanging out with friends.  This is partly down to a dip in finances since my job was restructured in June, plus losing my car shortly after means I need to walk everywhere, and my heels and pretty dresses are not particularly suited to distance or extreme weather! (I live by the sea, the wind never calms...)  

  Obviously some things never change though - I still favour red, white and blue items, but now some black and orange has worked it's way in too...  Stripes and Converse will never go wrong.  Knitwear and tights are firm staples.  Some items didn't make it through the year - my red loafers and navy flats both bit the dust, and my favourite grey stripey jumper got some mysterious stains mere weeks ago that wouldn't budge.  The red cardigan became a bit too holey to keep mending, and my pretty green dress was so easily creased it got shoved in a charity bag months ago.  (shame, it was really versatile :/)  Inevitably a few items went the way of eBay, but all my favourites have survived multiple clearouts.
 What's your favourite item in my wardrobe?  And in yours?

:)

Thursday, 27 December 2012

A year in the life of Foof and Faff...


JANUARY
I made some resolutions, and my mum made me an awesome top.  I found some old family pics from a 70s holiday and the colourful 80s, styled up my favourite dress three different ways and shared my top movie picks of 2011.  Oh and I joined Scouts as an assistant Cub leader!

FEBRUARY
I shared lots of fun facts about myself, told you which movies from 2011 to avoid and found the Best Hoodie Ever.  I did a Book vs Movie review and put together one of my favourite posts, my guide to being a cheapskate.

MARCH
More family pics were revealed, this time with the magic of the 90s as the theme...  I yapped about music and took a random road trip and got a bit 'lost'.

APRIL
My friend and I started walking more, I found Cheetos, tiny Wispas and a lot of reading material, and the flashbacks hit the decade of the jeans, the noughties.  Nostalgia...


MAY
I went camping for the first time and realised I HATE CAMPING.  I also went to a county show to prove I don't hate all outdoors stuff though.  And a Scouting activity day, where we all chased Bear Grylls!  Then wrote a more serious post about how I save money.  

JUNE
A plan for creating my Super Summer was made, even after hurting my hip and not being able to move for a week...  My friend and I met one of our favourite writers, I moved my bed and shared the totally essential  contents of my bag.  There was also a donkey party and some pretty wedding pictures.

JULY
I got free pizza, watched a lot of videos (as in VHS tapes!) and Sarah gave me a blog makeover.  It was awesome.

AUGUST


SEPTEMBER
I recommended some TV shows and movie trailers, moaned about jeans and decided (incorrectly) that fall had promise.  Super Summer came to an end, with mixed results...

OCTOBER
Apparently I did hardly anything in October, but I did get round to posting about my belated summer holiday to Wales.

NOVEMBER
I made up for lack of activity in October with lots going on this month - I posted about two castle visits, one in Wales and one in the wild abandoned countryside of Scotland, and a carpet factory visit (of the sneaking variety).  I created a very easy Halloween costume and a fabby knitted jumper, plus found some awesome baked goods.  And perhaps most importantly, met a fellow blogger!

DECEMBER
There was a Christmas party, a Christmas t-shirt and a Christmas crafting session.  It was a festive themed month, in case you missed that.

What were your favourite Foof & Faff posts this year?

:)

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Faff Favourites...

 I'm now off work til after Christmas, woohoo!  Last night I finished work at 6pm and got the train home, where my brother picked up me and Chinese food, and we stuffed ourselves while being forced to watch Strictly Come Dancing with Mother.  It was mostly fabby.  This morning I made Mic pjs for Christmas while he was still in bed, and my work was done!  Everything is bought/made and wrapped, so I'm filling up on home made shortbread and watching TV, bliss :)

  This week has been insanely productive - at work I put up a canopy sign for Home Alone in the hopes of attracting all the nostalgics in, at the shops Mother bought me some new Body Shop goodies to test, and at home I ate quite a few sweets.  So not unlike any other week really...  Except I've done way more cleaning and organising than usual!  And saw Pitch Perfect with my brother and his girlfriend - Mic liked it even more than we did I think, he had all the songs on the stereo on the way home and told me the next day he got the soundtrack haha!

  Here's some random links for your lazy Sunday, I hope everyone is done shopping and happily avoiding the crowds...

16 Films You Might Have Missed in 2012

Today I Learned Something New

Chinese Factory Workers and the Toys They Make - reminds me of reading this book...

Is 'The Great Gatsby' Movie Going To Suck Or What? (I just started the book cause I've watched the trailers a millions times and can't wait any more!  I love it so far, fingers crossed...)

50 Tiny and Adorable DIY Stocking Stuffers


Hope everyone has an awesome Christmas!

:)

Friday, 21 December 2012

This Week I...

wore...
Tshirt - Topshop
Thermal under top - M&S
Skirt - Topshop
Boots - Converse
   Comfort and warmth are the name of the wardrobe game this week - double tights and thermal layers are really doing the job well (and a giant festive tshirt doesn't hurt either...).

watched...
Sleepers - My boss and I were talking about Kevin Bacon and she said I had to watch this movie, which was luckily on ITV2 a few days later.  It was very good but very disturbing, Kevin Bacon is at his best playing the bad guy I reckon!
Walk The Line - It was on Film 4 the other night and I remember loving it on first viewing, so it deserved a rewatch.  Just as good as I remembered, although I'm not sure how entirely based on fact it is, some parts seemed a bit convenient...
The Mummy - This was the first DVD I ever owned haha!  I really just watched it for nostalgia value when I was sewing the other day, it's so cheesy and easy to digest :)
Thor - I took a notion for this last night, it's one of my favourite movies and I hadn't drooled over Chris Hemsworth in a few months, had to be done.

read...
The Earth Hums in B Flat by Mari Strachen - I really loved this book about a dreamy Welsh girl growing up in the 50s in a family full of secrets.  I seem to have read a lot of books set in Wales lately, maybe I should pay it another visit!
I've just started The Untied Kingdom which is terribly written (should have guessed that from the 'Romance' sticker on the front I suppose...) but I really liked the idea - a girl is thrown into an alternate UK where we are a third world country in the middle of a war - so I'm willing to ride it out to the end, it's easy to read after all ;)
created...
some crafty pressies and the above top!  This top had been sitting on my sewing pile waiting to be made for aaaages and I finally got it done.  It was a very quick make, less than two hours from start to finish, but I didn't make any adjustments to it, and it's only 3 pieces with some darts and ironing required.  The armholes are slightly small though, so next time I may make some changes to the pattern...

purchased...
the last of my Christmas presents - yay!  Mother had requested chocolate mint sticks ages ago and I finally found them in Tesco yesterday - who'd have thought they'd be so elusive?!  She also went a bit nuts over a mint chocolate selection box we saw in Thorntons, so I picked that up then discovered my brothers girlfriend also got her one, oops...  I also bought some face wash (St Ives is half price in Superdrug!) and mascara, super exciting.

ate...
Lidl multi-grain bread, Shreddies, Wheat Crunchies and a McDonald's Festive Chicken Burger (which I don't recommend btw, the Chicken Legend is ten times better!)

listened to...
Christmas songs!  And the usual Snow Patrol/Taylor Swift/The Script mega mix that takes over my iPod...

Has everyone had a good week?  My boss gave me Christmas eve off for the first time in years, I've been beside myself with excitement since Monday!

:)

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Christmas shopping for me...

Top - Topshop £18 (here)
Jumper - Topshop Tall £25 (here)
   Last week I went on a bit of a mission to Glasgow, armed with a strict list of items I needed and a rather early wake up alarm.  And here's the shocking part - I got everything I needed, no-one was rude to me and I didn't get sick of shopping after an hour.  Unheard of!  In fact in Long Tall Sally and Remnant Kings, the ladies helping me could not have been nicer.  Coming from years of working in customer service, I don't really care about the attitude of people serving me unless they are particularly unhelpful - we all know what a terrible job it is - so it was nice to experience real warmth for a change.

Anyway, my list - I need a dark jumper, gym trousers, a long sleeve pj top and some thermals, and a quick dash around Topshop, Long Tall Sally and M&S and the list was complete.  The only frivolous thing I bought was a top/nightshirt with Bert and Ernie on it from Topshop.  I almost never buy clothes I don't actually need these days but I couldn't put it down!  Plus it's long enough to wear with leggings and big enough to layer tops under, so I don't think it'll be worn for it's intended purpose of bed anytime soon...  The best part is I used a birthday voucher in Topshop so only 'paid' £3 for both items, woohoo!

PJ Top - M&S £9.50 (here)
Joggers - Long Tall Sally £30 (here)

Tights - M&S £6 (here)
Thermal top - M&S £14 (here)
  I wore the thermal top yesterday and must admit it does it's job very well!  As you might expect though, it runs a bit small, so if you're between sizes I'd go bigger.  I'm keeping an eye on this range going into the sale at Christmas - they also had leggings and short sleeve tops in every colour, so they make a good base for the really cold days.  I even got 20% off since my friend who works there gave me a discount voucher, so I had to stop myself going mad!

I should have no problem keeping toasty now - you'd think living in coastal Scotland I'd be better prepared for the cold but it takes me by surprise every year!  Has anyone else been shopping lately, or are we all waiting for the sales?

:)

Monday, 17 December 2012

Christmas Crafting...

 I've been getting my craft on this week!  I tried spray painting for the first time (with eh, mixed results...), knitted up some Christmas stockings and raided the 10p box at my favourite charity shop.  Then stuffed everything with sweets of course.  Above is a tea cup, old teapot and aeroplane toy I got for 10p each, then tried spray painting with a red paint, then a glitter top coat.  The red didn't take particularly well, especially to the plane, but once I put the glitter on it was passable ;)  I stuck the plane to a jam jar lid and voila!  A sweet jar!  The sweets are aniseed balls from Amazon grocery for my pal Moffat - I sneakily found out months ago they were his fave but hard to find in the shops, so I think they'll go down well. (plus he builds aeroplanes, so he can even take it to work!)
 The stockings I knit from a Jean Greenhowe Christmas book pattern, but there's a free smaller version on her site.  These are for my gal pals to go with our coffee shop dates.
   I bought everything from the discount shops since most of my budget went on Mother's Strictly tour tickets... ;)
  The cup is going to my boss and the teapot to our handyman, plus I made my brother a wee selection with his fave childhood sweets - the base is a glass M&S chocolate pudding container!  So if nothing else, you've learned some good recycling tips...

  Is anyone else doing handmade gifts?  Only one week to go!

:)


Sunday, 16 December 2012

Faff Favourites...

  Happy Sunday!  Despite being at work and crazy tired, I'm in a great mood that seems to have held up all week - I've got loads done and not faffed too much, which makes a change!  I did some shopping and got everything I needed without fuss, and since I was in Glasgow I had a KFC snack box for lunch and went to see It's a Wonderful Life at the old cinema.  Despite having to go to the subtitled show and a girl sitting RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME in an almost empty theatre, it was so good and I left feeling even more Christmas cheer!  Also this week, as you can see from the pics, I bought an amazing top from Topshop, had fun opening my Wreck It Ralph advent calendar (we got a bunch to give away at work, not that I was first in the queue or anything ;)), ate leftover chocolates from a crafty spree (check tomorrows post!) and found Nerds in Morrisons, which made me do a wee dance of glee and pay £1 to get them in my mouth...

On to the links!

Ideas for Small Space Living 

An interview with Sarah Von on her minimalist wardrobe - I wish I could just grit my teeth and do this!

26 of the Best Ideas Ever - once again BuzzFeed makes my day

An interesting look at 5 Year Commitments

If you want to knit a Rudolph, it should be this one - puffy noses!

Or a Wonder Woman jumper - how have I just seen this?!

A super retro Pinterest for the 80s child in all of us

I may stop moaning about being 5 feet 10 now... I Am Tall


How goes everyones week?  Are you all feeling festive and eating lots of mince pies?  Or not so much?

:)

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

A Christmas outfit...

Top - Red Herring @ Debenhams (here)
Skirt - charity shop
Shoes - Debenhams
  Sunday was our Christmas night out at work.  We were at the same venue as last year, but the food was surprisingly better and the music unsurprisingly worse.  I somehow didn't get drunk, so didn't come home looking too worse for wear...  Good thing, since I decided to take a pic of my outfit for you!  I slightly loved this look, I may repeat it again for New Years ;)  I found this 80s Jaegar skirt in a charity shop aaaages ago, and while it started off too small, a quick shuffle of the zip on my sewing machine made it wearable, yay!  I also wore a petticoat under it, for an added twirl factor of course.
  I'm still not sure how my hair stayed up...  I pleated one side, pulled it round the back then worked a pleat down the other side, then twisted it round and used those spin pins to keep it in place.  If that makes sense.  I made the clip out of a Christmassy bow tie last year, think I'm gonna wear it as much as possible this month!
  Here's some of the highlights of the night, taken by Leanne (top left).  We had a lot of fun with a plastic moustache we found in a cracker, then danced a lot to random retro songs and Gangnam Style... well only one of did, but she won a prize for it!  Roll on next year...

:)

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Faff Favourites...


  This is what my weekend looks like so far - Friday my bro picked me up and we came home, accompanied by an amazing pink sunset, Saturday I dragged myself a quick walk to Asda then came home, bathed, got into my pjs and spent the rest of the day on eBay/fighting with lappy, and today I'm going exploring again!  I'm totally not dressed or anything yet but at least it occurred to me to borrow Mother's wellies this time.  I'll be layering up too - I can somehow tell by looking out the window that it's gonna be freezing out!

On to some links, for all those sensible enough to be inside this afternoon...

Alex and Kate Gabrielle both posted fab gift guides this week...

...and Meredith showed us how to wrap them!  My fave so far is the pompom holly

I just found this article about how too much choice can be a bad thing - I've been saying that for ages

33 Adorable and Creative DIY Ornaments - if I put up Christmas decorations I'd definitely have plastic dinosaurs and cardboard igloos on my tree...

Things that people do on tv but not in life - the ones in the comments are great too!

13 New Ways to Use Old Electronics - never have I wanted a fish tank or a walkman so badly

:)

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