My Favourite Things: Volume One

I realised that I called my blog ‘My Favourite Things’, but I have also since realised that I rarely talk about my favourite things: my favourite things to read, watch, listen to or even cook, wear and do. Introducing, my new, regular feature where I actually discuss the things that I have been loving from the previous couple of months. With the Coronavirus lockdown, I have had a lot of spare time to binge watch, read and listen to different things, to catch up with my writing and even discover a couple of new hobbies. So welcome to my first ‘lockdown’ instalment of ‘My Favourite Things’, that includes my favourites of everything since the start of April!

What have I been watching in lockdown?

New Girl landed on Netflix at some point in May and I was thrilled. I have subsequently whiled away my lockdown days (and evenings) watching the hilarious antics of Jess Day and her crazy flatmates. If you have never watched New Girl, it is definitely worth investing the time into: the characters are bold and genuine, the scenarios are hilarious and it is just simple, light hearted comedy. It does experience its ups and downs from time to time and Jess can get a little tiresome too, but I still find myself laughing every time.

I have recently ploughed through Locke and Key which was an incredibly enjoyable series, following three siblings who move with their mother to their father’s ancestral home after his death. There they discover magical keys that unlock powers and secrets! I was enthralled by this series from the very beginning and watched it in a matter of days. I felt pretty sad when it came to an end. Lucky enough, season two is on its way very soon (hopefully!). I have also just finished the first two seasons of Ozark. I think it started off quite slow and if I’m honest I wasn’t quite sure whether I wanted to continue with it or not, but I am glad that I persevered. With twists and turns a plenty, it makes for a gripping watch as you see Marty Byrde struggling to maintain the façade of domestic bliss while being well in over his head with a money laundering scheme. If you don’t watch it for anything else, the stunning scenery of the Ozarks makes it all worthwhile.

What have I been reading?

I spent the first couple of weeks of lockdown reading The Complete Mary Poppins collection. I have talked about this book a lot over the last couple of weeks on here, but it really is a superb read. It has been a source of light, helping me to escape the less favourable world outside of Number Seventeen Cherry Tree Lane i.e. the rather apocalyptic world just outside of my house.

Over the weekend, I finished reading How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran. It is a wonderfully hilarious and extremely imaginative read about a teenage girl wanting to metaphorically ‘kill’ herself. She subsequently creates a persona, that is everything she has ever wanted to be and more. But, what could go wrong when your new personality is based on a nineteenth century bisexual socialite?

Quite early on into the lock down, I struggled immensely with the turbulence of it all and I definitely let my emotions get to me. So, I’m glad I made the time (forced myself) to read The Anxiety Solution by Chloe Brotheridge which has been sitting in my bookcase for far too long. This book has been wonderful; it has really helped to calm my mind and I would go as far as to say improved my relationship with myself. I just need to remember to continue implementing her techniques into ‘everyday’/‘normal’ life to maintain my inner calm.

What have I been doing?

Lockdown has been an extremely unsettling time, where every inch of normality has been stripped away from us. So, finding activities to get me up every morning, keep me occupied and feeling half alive has been hard. Admittedly, I have spent a lot of time moping around the house, but I have spent an equal amount of time indulging in things that really have helped to keep me calm. I threw myself into reviving my blog, taking advantage of my one daily outdoor exercise and I have discovered the soothing qualities of jig saw puzzles. But, of course, the thing that has given me the most joy and calm would revolve around food. I haven’t stopped cooking and baking! I have loved having the time and freedom to indulge in new recipes, including pizza dough from scratch and I have rekindled my love of baking. I have baked everything from Angel Cake, to Swiss Rolls, chocolate Brownies and even savoury pies. I do feel a little cheated out of being able to go to the supermarket (one of my favourite things to do at the weekend) but having to make do with what we have in the cupboard, adapt and really think about cooking and food had been so lovely.

What have I been wearing?

I started work again on the 1st June, so my wardrobe has largely consisted of black office attire. On the bright side, this has made dressing up at the weekend (now I am allowed to meet Graeme at a safe distance) all the more exciting and a delightful change to the lounge wear of the previous couple of months. I will admit that I recently bought a couple of new dresses from Topshop after I found myself wanting to spend my emotions one Sunday afternoon. I have absolutely fallen in love with them. The first is a super cute gingham midi dress (pictured above) with a gorgeous cut out back (remember to wear sun cream, I forgot and burnt my back!). This dress was a delightful bargain at only £25 (it should have been £45) and has been perfect with converse for quiet afternoon strolling. The second this gorgeous rose print midi dress that feels super boho. It only cost me £20, but sadly, I haven’t had the occasion to wear it yet. I cannot wait to wear it with my Dr Martens when we are finally allowed to go to a restaurant.

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