It’s been a while since I shared a round up of all things Little Loves, having spent most of October focusing on our half term break to the Cote D’Azur and writing follow up blog posts. But I do enjoy this monthly outing of positivity and gratitude, so I’m happy to be back this month, and have a few lovely things to share. Not so many from this week, though, as I’ve been struck down with a cold and have found myself struggling with the sudden disappearance of light from the Caithness skyline. Thankfully, we did have a few beautiful, clear days and a week of glorious sunsets earlier in November – we need something to hark back to, after all.
As usual at this time of year (well, as usual at any time of year, really 😉 ) I’ve been doing lots of reading, and you can hear all about that in this post I wrote last week. I’ve now moved on to Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, which took a little getting into, but is now proving to be just as good as everyone promised it would be. It’s hard to believe it was written in the 1930’s, the narrative feels so fresh and timeless – proof that good writing never goes out of fashion. I don’t know how I got by all these years without hearing too many details of the story, but somehow I managed it, and that’s all adding to the intrigue.
The colder nights and generally poor weather in November meant that we also did a lot of watching this month. Rain? Wind? Hailstones? What better excuse to curl up on the sofa and watch some great TV and films. The whole family loved Let it Snow, a Netflix offering ideal for Christmas movie night with older kids (think Love Actually with teenagers). We’ve also been enjoying His Dark Materials on the BBC these past weeks – although I have to admit, the story has been moving a little slower than I’d hoped. My husband and I have been hooked on the latest series of The Crown, though – it really is top-notch British drama (I’m loving the addition of Outlander favourite Tobias Menzies as the Duke of Edinburgh). And we went to see Last Christmas at the cinema last weekend, which got us all in the (admittedly, early) Christmas mood. I was surprised to read so many bad reviews of the movie after watching it – I thought it was brilliant, and I loved hearing all the old Wham and George Michael songs. Forget the critics and make your own mind up I say – just don’t forget to take the tissues, and your sense of (festive) fun.
Our biggest viewing pleasure this month though, was the finale of Game of Thrones – only about six months after the rest of Planet Earth, obviously. My husband and I had watched the first six seasons, but had given up on it because I was finding the violence a bit too toe-curling. (And yes, I know what you’re thinking: It took you a whole six seasons to figure that bit out?)
We decided to finish what we started, though, and settled down to seasons seven and eight…only to find ourselves glued to the television during every adults-only hour we could muster in November. In the end, I loved it, and found myself struggling with that familiar sense of post box-set desolation when it finally came to its dramatic end. Thankfully, we’ve had plenty of other entertainment in the form of the above, and I anticipate lots more cosy evenings curled up in front of the television for the foreseeable. I can’t wait to pick up my festive copy of the Radio Times next week – always a sure sign that it’s really, truly Christmas. Highlighter pens at the ready, folks. Winter is coming (yes, I really had to say that). And I for one can’t wait.
Speaking of winter, my making highlight this month has probably been our seasonal bucket list. As you might have gathered, I do love winter….but the season of all things frosty doesn’t always love me quite as much. I struggle with the lack of light (cue: SAD lamp), and I’m prone to feeling both mentally and physically under par as soon as the days start shortening. Thankfully, I have lots of things in my wellbeing toolkit to help counteract that – including writing a daily journal, practising gratitude, and doing weekly Parkruns (if you want to read more about building up your wellbeing armoury, you’ll find some ideas and inspiration here).
One of the things we do as a family a few times a year is a bucket list of all the things we want to do, or aspire to over the coming season. This is our winter one (which started with us all putting the things we wanted to do on sticky notes, and me discovering that my eldest’s happiness mostly revolves around me making him things to eat). It’s now stuck onto our fridge, as a daily reminder that there is always something we can do to boost our spirits when we feel ourselves flagging. It’s our go-to winter happy list. I also think it looks quite pretty (which let’s face it, tends to help!)
Something else I made, way back at the start of November was a yummy soup, using the leftovers from our Halloween pumpkin. Now, I know that Halloween seems a world away right now but this might be a handy recipe to hang onto – for anytime in fact. Plus, I have to share a photo of my dog in his Halloween costume, as I didn’t get the chance to post it in October. What relevance does it have in the ‘made’ section, you might wonder? Well it made us (and all of our Halloween visitors) happy. That’s good enough for me 🙂 .
Something I really love about wintertime is the excuse to get wrapped up in cosy knits, hats and all things comfy. I’ve been wearing this Topshop coat out and about a lot lately and have had lots of compliments on it, which is always rather nice. Even better, I bought it on sale back in the Spring for £30, so it was also a genuine bargain. It’s rare for me to have something to say in the ‘wore’ section so that’s another bonus. Thankyou, eldest son, for taking this photo. And thankyou, lovely winter coat!
This month I absolutely LOVED listening to Dr Chatterjee talk to renowned ‘Mind Architect’ Peter Crone on his Feel Better, Live More podcast. If you read my posts regularly, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of this weekly podcast and I have to say, this was probably my favourite episode of all time. There was so much wisdom on making the best of life and the effect that our subconscious thoughts can have on our overall health and wellbeing. There are also huge messages that so many of us could benefit from – like the need to remove judgement about ourselves – and others – in order to be truly happy and content. The discussion reminded me of things like the Law of Attraction, so if that kind of mindset appeals to you you might enjoy it. Even if it doesn’t, have a listen anyway – it’s a truly game-changing, inspirational chat.
I’ll leave you with a quote from the episode, which really resonated with me:
The journey of true discovery lies not in finding new lands, but in looking through new eyes.
So here’s to looking through new eyes, whenever possible.
And enjoying all the mince pies, all the Christmas jumpers and all the festivities the month ahead has to offer us.
Have a great December, Little Loves friends!