Archive of ‘Savour the moment’ category

Afternoon tea with Twinings

Being an eternal tea lover (the clue’s in the title) the super lovely and friendly guys at Twinings recently asked me if I would guest blog for them about creating the perfect afternoon tea at home. Anything that involves tea and cake is good with me, so writing about how I like to enjoy my afternoon tea was nothing short of a pleasure.

If, like me, you’re a big fan of endless tea in all kinds of varieties, and love a bit of homemade cake to go with it, then make sure you head on over to Twinings, arm yourself with a good brew, and find out more. There’s a couple of recipes on there too, which will hopefully inspire you to get baking and invite friends and family to simply savour the moment and enjoy some indulgent time with the people you love – because sometimes it really is the simplest of pleasures that mean the most.

 

 

 

Savour the moment… The weekend series | Part 14

//Title image 📸 c/o Fashion Me Now//

Well, I don’t know about you but thank goodness for a fresh new month. It certainly felt good when I turned the calendar over and saw the letters F E B R U A R Y staring back at me. I can finally press reset and start this year as I intended.

And, whilst spring does seem a million miles away (will this rain ever end?), it is nice to know that this short month will bring with it lighter evenings and lots of new beginnings (I even saw my first snowdrops this morning!).

So, whether you’re looking forward to an action-packed weekend or you’re planning on hibernating and taking things a little slower, make sure you take time for some weekend reading.


The fabulous Melissa, of Media Marmalade, has written a great post about how to get more active in our day-to-day lives. Exercise is an important part of my life, in-part because it helps me with my anxiety and has been vital in how I deal with it. However, I’m an all or nothing kinda gal and I’m either eating clean and training hard or I’m eating all the cheese and drinking all the wine (the latter seems to be how I’m spending most of my days at the moment).  And, as most of us are tied to our desks, driving between work and home, and spending many an hour in front of the TV binge-watching box sets, getting in those ‘active minutes’ can be a pretty tough task. But Melissa gives some great tips on how you can make a few simple changes to move your butt just that little more. 


If, like me, you’re keen to reset your year this month then perhaps you’re thinking about putting some goals or plans in place? And, whilst I’ve mentioned in previous posts about my loathe for resolutions, I did however like those mentioned in this blog by Fashion Me Now. In particular point 7 – Spend time with the happy makers. As my fellow anxiety sufferers will understand, this week has been one of ‘those’ weeks, and whilst my head wanted to stay firmly at home, in case my panic attacks got the better of me in public, I forced myself out the front door and into the world! Which meant I got to have a cuppa and a chat with the beautiful Monica, founder of The Elgin Avenue – one of my all-time favourite blogs , and someone who (up until this week) I was yet to have the pleasure of meeting.

Unfortunately for Monica, it was a pretty rubbish day for me and she got to meet me in all my anxiety-fuelled glory. But, being the kind and beautiful soul she is, encouraged me to go for a walk and a chat, and made me feel so much calmer. I certainly feel like I met a new ‘Happy Maker’, thanks, Monica! 


This week I’ve been trying to get some new business ideas (that have been taking up vast amounts of room in my head for far too long) down onto paper. And I’ve found that mind mapping has fast become the best way of getting what’s in there ⬆️, down onto there ⬇️. If you’re not entirely sure how mind mapping works, or why you may even feel the need to give it a go, then check out this post from the fab ladies at Career Girl Daily.


And finally, with our first book club meeting under our belt, we’ve now chosen our first book. If you’d like to join us, we’ll be meeting on the 1st Wednesday of each month at The King Alfred pub in Winchester. We’re starting with ‘My Sister Lives on my Mantelpiece’ by Annabel Pitcher and will meet at the start of March to discuss. There’s still plenty of ‘month’ left to grab a copy (or download for all you heathens out there) and catch up.

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend ahead and manage to take a little time for yourself.

Savour the moment… The weekend series | Part 13

The weekend is here and I couldn’t be more thankful that it’s the last of January. I don’t know about you, but I’ll be glad to see the back of what has felt like a cold, dreary, and very slow month. But I am happy that the evenings are seeming a bit lighter and February in all it’s short-month-glory, will bring us quickly to the start of spring.

So whilst in business I’ve been doing what I can to seize the moment and take some action, the weekends are a little more about savouring moments and this post is a chance to kick-back, relax, and catch up on lots of interesting reads.

Here are a few of my favourites this week…


My daily Five-Minute Journal is all about gratitude and affirmations. It’s taking a bit of getting used to, and I’ve not completely stuck to it in all honesty, but I think I’m getting the hang of it. One of the things I’ve been finding quite tough is my daily affirmation, but this positive blog post from Rachel Gladiel has given me all kinds of affirmation inspiration. Have you ever used daily affirmations? Are they something that comes naturally or do you need a little help to create them? 


Since moving house, I’ve been slowly taking my time to get settled and make each room and space something that reflects me (I mean us) and my our personalities. However, my home office is my space, and I’m fortunate that it doesn’t blur into a spare room/living room/general space, it’s just for me and my crazy brain to work in. Which means I can decorate it to suit my taste. These workspaces have given me plenty of inspiration the past few weeks and I’m certainly getting there with organising my shelves for the perfect shelfie. 


I’m so happy that I stumbled across this post as it’s led me to a really great blog that I just know will be taking the time to read regularly. I love the idea of mindful eating, and taking your time to enjoy and savour your food. So often we’re all so busy that eating at our desks, in a rush, in front of the TV, means we never get a chance to actually stop and be mindful of a time that should actually ‘ignite all five senses’ and instead we tend to mindlessly eat. Whilst I do always eat my dinner at the table, I am terrible for eating my breakfast and lunch at my desk and paying zero attention – no wonder I’m forever feeling hungry! What about you? Would you class yourself as a ‘mindful eater’? 


And, if you’re local to Winchester and you’d like to savour more moments then make sure you join me at The King Alfred pub on Wednesday evening from 7pm for Book Club. You can find more details on my event over on Facebook and if you’d like to join then just drop me an email at hello@ciarasarkar.co.uk – Looking forward to meeting you!

I hope you have a wonderful weekend – stay warm!

Savour the moment … The weekend series | Part 12

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// Title image 📷 c/o Laura Aston //

I don’t know about you but right now it’s all about cosy nights in, from week day to weekend, I’m talking fire on, PJ’s, blankets, thick socks and plenty of sofa time. I really look forward to the dark evenings setting in, drawing the curtains and hunkering down to relish in unadulterated cosiness.

Which is why this week’s reading is tailored towards making the most of those indulgent evenings at home. 


No evening in would be complete without a decadent hot chocolate to keep you warm and toasty. If you’re leading a sugar-free life then look away now but this blog post from the guys over at Career Girl Daily will be all the comforting you need on those cold winter nights. And, if you’re after a more ‘PG rated’ form of comfort then check back later in the week when I’ll be posting my nice-but-not-so-naughty hot chocolate recipe.


If you’d like to add a little cake 🍰 to your hot chocolateness (and let’s be honest, what use is a cuppa without cake?) then check out this recipe by the beautiful Lucy over on Pinderpix. Her spiced fruit tea cake looks all kinds of yummy – and I can’t wait to give it a try. And, how lush is that copper mixing bowl by the way?


If the winter means more time indoors then surely that means more chance of curling up with a good book? If you were a fan of The Girl on the Train then check out these books suggested by Sheer Luxe. I can vouch for Second Life by SJ Watson and Good Girl by Mary Kubica as ideal for filling that girl-gone-rogue thriller void.


I’m seriously lusting after Lauren Aston’s big chunky blankets at the moment … and this post all about Hygge will certainly make you want to wrap yourself up and hibernate for a while. And I couldn’t agree more with what Laura says about finding the need to hide from the world – “On a day like today I find the outside world to be a little cold and scary (from both the news and weather, so rather than step out into that unpleasantness I choose to stay in and indulge in my little cosy, chunky knit haven”. Chunky knits, candles and hot chocolate are the makings of a little Hygge, right?


How do you stay cosy this season? I’d love to hear the little things you do to #Savourthemoment

I hope you’re having a lush weekend, whatever you’re up to.  And don’t forget to catch up on the rest of the blog

Ciara sign off

Savour the moment … The weekend series | Part 11

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// Title image by Tamara Magel //

This week has sped past, a little too fast for my liking and I barely feel as if I’ve had a chance to accomplish even half of what’s on my list (I live my life by lists… I even make lists for lists). And, as I sit in the Veg Shed, my workspace for this morning – which currently feels a world away from my cosy little office, with the rain lashing down outside and no internet connection or phone signal, it’s a nice respite from the never ending phone calls, emails and paperwork that seem to take over on a daily basis.

It’s all a little heavy in the life admin department at the moment what with so many changes going on in the Brimfield household, so I’ve dedicated this post to less of a ‘Savour the moment’ kind of reading and more ‘Seize the moment and get shit done’.


With Christmas 🎄 fast approaching it feels like a good time to cleanse the house of clutter, junk and try a little KonMarie in the house. I know I’ve talked about Marie Kondo in previous blog posts but we (Ross and I) are really trying to get rid of anything that doesn’t ‘spark joy’. It’s not as easy as I thought it would be and I’ve found myself being more sentimental than normal. I’m usually fighting hard with the hoarder inside my husband but this time it’s me who’s clinging onto things. So I’m trying to be really strict with myself… and not procrastinate by reading through all my cards and letters from the past three decades. If you’re not sure what on earth I’m talking about then read the blog post above and all will be revealed!


With only two of us (and the two kitties) I often wonder how my friends with children manage to stay on top of their housework/laundry and chores, especially if they’re out at work most of the day. I guess the saying ‘if you want something done, ask a busy person’ is never more true than in these homes. Cupcakes and Cashmere has published a great blog this week about keeping on top of housework. I particularly like the ‘whoever cooks also cleans’. Ross is renowned for using every pot and pan when cooking dinner and, whilst I’m really grateful that I have a husband who likes to cook as much as I do, I think that this rule will definitely have to be implemented.


I start work with a new client on Monday and I’ve been trying to get organised with how I manage my time for clients and the work I need to do each day. Editorial calendars are essential and I have the very handy life planner 📝 from Lollipop to help me keep on track. I’m also just getting to grips with Toggl – a great little app for tracking time. It makes invoicing and admin so much easier at the end of each month, as I know exactly where I have put my time.


I’m an absolute sucker for stationery and as well as spending most of my life on my laptop, iPad or phone, I also opt for an old fashioned diary and plenty of notebooks. This time of year is the time to buy your 2017 diary and I’m certainly fussy when picking mine. I like being able to make notes and keep a track of what I’m doing – joined-up handwriting and all! Check out my Pinterest board and see what stationery I’m swooning over at the moment.


I’d love to hear your tips for keeping up with life admin, getting your shit together and being organised. Do you use any apps? Have you got any top tips for staying on top of all that essential ‘adulting’ we all seem so consumed with?

I hope you have a great weekend and savour seize the moment ‘

Have a happy and productive weekend,

Ciara sign off

Savour the moment… The weekend series | Part ten

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// Title image by Decordots //

Just in case you hadn’t guessed, from my incessant Instagram/Facebook snapping of foliage, leaf crunching and all things warm and cosy,🍁 autumn is my favourite season. AND, with this Sunday being #NationalLieInDay (with an extra hour in bed), it seemed like the perfect time to kick-back into some weekend reading.

Almost a whole season has been and gone since I shared some weekend reading with you, but I hope you’re ready to sink back into bed, armed with a cuppa and breakfast-in-bed (if you’re lucky enough) and make the most of your Sunday* – that’s exactly how I plan to use my extra hour this morning. What about you?

*Apologies in advance to all those reading this who have been up an extra hour earlier with little ones demanding Peppa Pig on repeat.


My lovely friend Jenna (of The Country Girl Bible) , her sister from another mister, Lucy (of Pinderpix) and I were all due to hang out last week at the Gather with Gill event at River Cottage Canteen Winchester, for the launch of Gill’s book. Unfortunately, I was poorly so I wasn’t able to make it but Jenna and Lucy looked like they had a fab time. If you’re a lover of good food, local produce and fancy getting your hands on a tasty new cook book then read both Jenna and Lucy’s blogs – autumnal indulgence at its finest.


One of my favourite bloggers, Monica of The Elgin Avenue, has posted a blog about her top newsletters that she values AND opens. I’m already subscribed to most of these and can agree that they are packed full of great news, lots of lovely content and I also get pretty excited when it lands in my inbox. Make sure you also sign up to Monica’s emails too – her croissant reading is one of my favourites.


With autumn being the perfect time to #Savourthemoment, a little Hygge *pronounced hoo-ga* can go a long way. Not yet discovered the Danish concept of Hygge? Then read on here and find out why you need to curl up with a good book more, give in to that bottle of wine or indulge in that oversized bowl of pasta.


A new season is a great time to take stock, especially at this time of year as, dare I say it, Christmas is approaching and 2017 is just over there 👉🏼 . As a business owner myself, I will be taking the great advice from over at Elle and Company on getting back to basics. Evaluating, game-planning and working out my priorities.


And, I couldn’t end this week’s Savour the moment without a little decadence. Whether you’re planning breakfast in bed or just fancy a treat, then make sure try this french toast recipe

Hope you have a great weekend, whatever you’re up to.

Ciara sign off