I’m still here!

So, I’ve been a bit rubbish about writing on here recently. It’s been quite an exciting few weeks in work and life, but I’m still here!

As some of you might have seen on Twitter, my editor at Miramus Katie Lee and her husband Alex Milway became parents for the first time to the gorgeous Cecily on Monday. They even managed to tweet through much of the labour!

So I’ve been learning quite a few of the ropes this week and Alex has taken over editorial duties for ParentDish whilst Katie enjoys her babymoon. Keep an eye on the site as I’m sure they’ll be a post from the new dad soon!

Here are some of my recent scribblings.

I’ve also just had confirmation that I’ll be doing a couple of posts a week for OolaMoola, a site dedicated to getting the best for less. More to come on that soon!

Aside from writing, I’ve been trying to go to some networking events and tweetups. Last month I met up with Judy, who I interned for at Wahanda, and some lovely London based tweeters for some cocktails. Really strong Manhattan cocktails. A great bunch of talented people and it’s nice to get to meet some tweeters in real life.

I also helped organise the Freelancers Christmas Party this week with @1mgoldstars, @penny_golightly, and @SianySianysiany. The party was partly an opportunity to provide freelancers with a Christmas party (the downside of not working in an office) and partly to raise money for GOSH. Thank you to everyone that came along and donated!

If you didn’t make it along, you missed out on meeting some of the wordy geniuses behind Young and Poor, Domestic Sluttery and Penny Golightly!

I’ll be back blogging again soon about a Bling Bus Secret Santa!

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Wedding worries: Crumble Bumble Bakery

Ever seen that TV show “Don’t tell the bride”? The basic concept centres on the groom making all the decisions for his upcoming wedding, whilst the (often scary Bridezilla) wife-to-be sits at home twiddling her thumbs.

My sister jokingly considered doing that this week.

You see, I’ve been helping her look at budgets and options for her wedding to her long term fiancee, and the sheer array of decisions to make and prices to pay is pretty overwhelming. They’re on a budget and are looking at where they can cut costs and where they need to splash out. Venues, wedding dresses and flowers are all considered to be high costs, but looking at all the different cake options can be a bit harsh on the pocket too. Some of them cost up to £900. For a cake!

Understandably you don’t want to buy a cake wreck for your wedding, but you shouldn’t have to pay through the nose either. Luckily for my sister, I discovered one of the girls I went to school with has recently launched her own cake business. Joanne launched Crumble Bumble Bakery to create wedding cakes and yummy cupcakes for a decent price, with the former starting at £150 and the latter at £1 per individual cupcake. Obviously she’s not the only person doing this, but if you’re in the Berkshire area it’s ideal as a lot of the big cake makers are based in London (and they’re quite a bit more expensive!)

Any other tips for cutting costs at a wedding (Gretna Green is not an option!)

60 Fun things and Dork Adore

Earlier this week I spotted a tweet from the lovely 1mgoldstars regarding a friend of hers who had worked out that after the usual holidays, family events and obligations, you have time for 60 fun things a year. 60! That sounded like a bit of a challenge to me, and I’m tempted to make this my new years resolution (I know, I know it’s still October!)

So, after a bit of brainstorming I came up with the following ideas.

*Deep Breath*

1) Attend more Salsa classes
2) Take up Yoga
3) Be a London tourist for the day
4) Visit Edinburgh
5) Visit Cardiff
6) Visit another country, even if just for a day.
7) Try sushi. Not just the cooked chicken or vegetable dishes
8) Join a tweetup
9) Take a cupcake decorating course
10) Take a course at the make lounge
11) Learn sign language
12) See Calender Girls on stage
13) See Sister Act on stage
14) See Wicked on stage
15) Watch the top 10 movies of all time.
16) Go bowling
17) Win at bowling
18) Overcome the fear and go to a Lucky Voice event
19) Go fancy dress
20) Organise a ‘come dine with me’ event with friends
21) See a few acts live
22) Buy this clutch!
23) Take a proper html/web building course
24) Wear red lipstick
25) Take up jogging
26) Give up jogging
27) Take a cocktail making class
28) Go to more Jongleurs events
29) Read more. Something that’s been relegated to the backbench since getting my netbook.
30) Learn how to sew. Properly. No more trouser hems falling down for me.
31) Write more letters. The pen and paper sort. Inspired by this
32) Paint my toenails bright pink, neon green, or gothic black.
33) Wear the gladiator sandals I bought a year ago and have never worn
34) Ditto the playsuit I bought 6 months ago
35) The high waisted jeans too. Fashion victim, moi?
36) Eat an olive, and like it.
37) Look at a lovely little place to buy with the boyfriend.
38) Learn a few basic savoury recipes off by heart
39) Watch Mad Men
40) Customise/Create an outfit
41) Find a one-off amazing clothing item in a charity shop. For a quid.
42) Try a new beauty treatment/exercise inspired by Wahanda each month
43) Go to a family wedding armed with witty retorts to “oooh haven’t you grown” and “Will it be you next? *nudge nudge*”
44) Buy more from independent designers on Folksy and Etsy then Primark.
45) Pull on some wellies and jump in some puddles.
46) Go to Glam Live
47) Watch 8 out of 10 cats live
48) Make a Giant Cupcake
49) Eat at the Fat Duck
50) Buy a lottery ticket. Frankly, half the stuff on this list will require me to win the lottery 🙂
51) Try indoor skydiving. Bit safer than actual skydiving (especially if you’ve been watching Hollyoaks recently…)
52) Take a drive in a desk, a bed and a double decker on the Worlds Wackiest Racers
52) Create something every month from crafter’s dream blog Crafty Crafty
53) Buy a decent camera
54) Take more photos. Not just tipsy facebook ones.
55) Write more for the blog paper
56) Get published in the blog paper
57) Go to MsMarmiteLove’s Underground Restaurant.
58) Nearer Christmas, try some of London’s amazing ice rinks in a knitted scarf and glove ensemble.
59) Follow up with a boozy hot chocolate and slice of carrot cake, at the window of a coffee shop overlooking all the Christmas shoppers.
60) Blog more! I’ll certainly have a lot to blog about if I do all of this….

Can you think of 60 fun things? What would yours be? Let me know if you do a post on this, I’d love to hear what sort of things you’d do in a year 🙂

On a side note, have you checked out Dork Adore yet?? It’s Katie Lee‘s project (one of the many project she deals with at Miramus) and I’ve been lucky enough to do quite a bit of writing for it. Basically it’s a website full of lovely things for geeks, and was launched this week. Let me know what you think!

I’m also freelance, so if you need any writing done on anything like fashion, news and general geek stuff, please feel free to e-mail me at emma.cossey@googlemail.com.You can see a few examples of my work at Parentdish, Shoewawa, Plus-size.me, and now Dork Adore!

Finally, keep an eye out next week on my jewellery blog Bling and Buy for a massive giveaway. So far we’ve got 7 designers donating for one big prize!

Image courtesy of Flickr user Markus Rödder

Sprinkles and Sparkles: Thanks Royal Mail :)

You know what I love about the postal strikes here in the UK? Today I had a whole batch of lovely post to play with! I’m pretty sure my postman think I have a crush on him, the amount I get excited by post. I thought I’d share some of the goodies I got with you!

   
(Sorry for the crappy quality, I’m having to resort to using my mobile!)

I got:

Yummy cupcake decorations from the Make a Wish Cakeshop. 
I’ve only put a few in this photo as I’m already using the snowflakes, gingerbread men, and red hearts. I have something exciting planned for the shamrocks (bottom right image) and the Xmas tree ones will come in use in a few months 🙂

Funky Junk Jewellery Review
I do a bit of reviewing for FJJ and I’m really excited about the newest item she sent me! I’ll be writing about it in a new blog I’m trying out: Bling and Buy
 
Benefit Goodies!
I have no idea who sent me these! A lovely surprise, especially as I’ve just run out of blusher. I got Benefit’s thrrrob blusher and a vampy ‘full-finish’ lipstick. So thank you whoever sent it!


It’s been a fab week for post really, with a postcard arriving from Dream Sequins and tickets to take my sister to the Wedding Show on Sunday arriving from This Little Lady Went To London (who has a fab fundraiser coming up for Breast Cancer Awareness Month)

A few more exciting things will hopefully be arriving in the next few days too, including a fairtrade goody bag from make up queen Cosmetic Candy! Go check out her blog, especially if you’re about to go splash out on make up and want an honest opinion.


Jewellery must haves

One of the benefits of Twitter is that you get to discover some great clothing, home furnishing and jewellery designers you may not have have seen before. For a while now, I’ve been following and buying from a few fantastic jewellery designers, and wanted to share them with you! They’re all lovely tweeters too, and they don’t just talk about jewellery 🙂

Love Hearts and Crosses

I bought these Lightening Bolt earrings for £7 from LHC a little while ago and I love them! They’re a little bit 80’s and they’re really lightweight. Have a look round the rest of the website and you’ll see some chic ‘I love Paris’ range and ‘Alice in Wonderland‘ products too, amongst others.

You can also follow LHC on Twitter and Facebook.

Temporary Secretary

I recently bought the green version of these mitten brooches, and I love it! It was only £6 and makes me feel excited about Christmas and the potential for snow. Temp Sec has some really lovely products which are really individual. I love these cutesy earrings and this rose ring

Find TS on Twitter and Facebook here.

Kitsch-tique
This is the online store you need to visit for your bright and colourful bling. The Miss Kitty Apple Pie necklace on the left is one of a kind, so it’s limited edition as well as incredibly cute! It’s £10 and makes me a little bit hungry…

Check out the rest of the site for bright button earrings, cupcake charm bracelets, and my little pony necklaces.

Kitsch-tique has a Twitter and a Facebook too, go follow her!

Funky Junk Jewellery

I’ve blogged about Funky Junk before as I’m lucky enough to get sneak previews of some of her range. I’m due to get another sneak peak soon and hopefully will be able to share it with you!

In the meantime, have a drool over the ‘Tea with one spoon please’ earrings on the right, and this rose teapot necklace.

FJJ is on Twitter too.

YellowGoat
YellowGoat has a gorgeous Etsy store full of really unique designs, like the Cloud 9 Headband on the left here. I love these Rainy Days Sunny Days earrings too. They’re slightly out of my price range at the moment, however she is running a competition to win a $50 cash coupon for her store.

You can follow YellowGoat on Twitter here.

Bombay Duck

Have you been on Bombay Duck recently? They have an amazing range of boutique style products. I’ve pretty much fallen in love with this mirror. It’s the prettiest mirror I’ve ever seen. I actually feel prettier just looking at it, which is a good enough reason for me to buy it! It’s £58.72.

These Vintage Rose Ceramic Knobs are also going on the wishlist. I don’t think I’ve ever been so interested in a door knob…

These Christmas flower xmas hanging balls are in the sale for £2.24. It’s nearly Christmas so that’s an investment, right? Plus anything has to be better than the Poundland variety pack I’ve currently got stored in the loft….

Potty about Prints


The shops seem to be full of really lovely stuff at the moment. Especially wonderful and witty prints. The print on the right is from Hunkydoryhome and reflects nicely how I feel about MY kitchen. It’s £18 and part of a range of prints including “Tea revives you” and “An apple a day”

I liked this print on the left at first glance for its vintage look, but fell in love when I looked closer and noticed the wording around the centre of the heart: “Life would be rubbish without you”. How sweet is that? It’s from Rockett St George and will set you back £40.

The print on the right is possibly my new life motto. I’m anyone’s for a store card! It’s from Etsy seller linocutboy, who also offers the deeply attractive slogan “Let’s get it on: I’ll just brush my teeth”. Linocutboy is a London based artist, and offers his design prints for $14.

See this print? This is the print I should have bought at the start of September, instead of embarking on the #septemberstone diet. Would have saved myself a lot of time and cupcake based guilt. It’s another Etsy find, this time from seller frameablequotes, and you can give it pride of place on your fridge for $17.99.