A small rant

What exactly is the point of a magazine?

I thought that a magazine was a way to learn about specific hobbies, like sewing or running, to keep up to date or read opinion pieces on interests like psychology today or new scientist.

Now I don’t read magazines often, but today I downloaded a copy of Red magazine, which I’ve only heard good things about and basically I’d have been better sitting watching adverts for an hour.

I have a handy little content breakdown here:

Pages in the magazine – 212

Pages in the magazine that were full page adverts – 87 (41%)

Pages in the magazine which were labelled ‘features’ but the only writing was an items maker and cost (separated from main adverts as the magazine had to create the content but still with intent to sell) – 36 (17%)

Pages in the magazine which had NO advertising at all <30

It was very hard finding a page without advertising, I mean if the page is an article with an author and they mention their new book, it’s an advert, but it is also an article which doesn’t exist for the SOLE purpose of selling. There’s value in it beyond the sale.

Once you start thinking about refusal to purchase you realise how many adverts you see. I always thought ‘5000 adverts a day’ was a total unrealistic claim unless you spent your day in Times Square, now I think all you need is a magazine to reach quota….

#30wears

If you haven’t spotted this hashtag floating around instagram already, it’s a campaign started by Livia Firth to ask yourself ‘will I wear this item 30+ times’ before buying. 

Will it last? Is it good quality? Does it ‘fit’ my style? 

30 wears doesn’t sound like a lot, but if you wear a pair of jeans once a week, 30 wears will take you 7 months. I’ve had jeans wear through in half that time.

I’m using an app called style book to minimise my wardrobe and keep an eye on cost per wear, it’s a paid app but totally worth the money. I’ve just reset my app so lost all previous wears but i think I’ll still get useful information starting now.

My project 333 attempt lasted about 2 weeks before I lost the plot so I might have another go next month.

It’s so much harder to have a minimal wardrobe in summer, at least in Scotland. May has had some beautiful weather, proper shorts and t shirt sunshine, but it’s also pissing down every other day, we had frost last week and 3 weeks ago it snowed! You have to cover every eventuality so I need my winter jumpers, but also shorts? Winter is much easier. It’s cold, dress for that!

Discardia – 9

Well, I finally had a productive weekend!

We gutted the only storage cupboard in the house ahead of the door being moved from my husband’s study to the downstairs bathroom so we intend it to be more of a utility cupboard now instead of a dumping ground/utility cupboard/extension of the study.

The way we (I) approached it was to pull everything out of the cupboard bar the shelves and put it in the playroom, then close the door so Tabi couldn’t get at it. Then we worked through it in pieces over the weekend, cleaned the cupboard, then replaced the things we were keeping in that cupboard.

Before(s) on the left.

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Unfortunately the befores don’t show the scale of crap we had, so heres what the playroom looked like!

IMG_0560

And here’s some of the stuff we got rid of. Plus a full box of donations and I just sold the big chest of drawers we were using in Tabi’s room.IMG_0578

A lot of stuff is now piled up in boxes because it’s to be kept in the study now but we can’t do anything with it until the building work is finished so I’m just going to have to live with a messy house for the next 2 months.

There are some things that I’m not sure we’ll use but want to wait until the we’ve finished downstairs and then discard, just in case. I’ve been trying to list a chair and a table lamp on gumtree with no takers for months but when this work is finished, I’ll have a perfect spot for them so they don’t need to go anymore. If I’d managed to sell them, I’d be scouting for replacements so I’d like to avoid that situation with other things, like picture frames and ornaments.

Hopefully this is all finished in 2 months. Every single room in the house finished/decorated and decluttered in 2 months!

Money ‘earned’ – £35*

 

*Edited as I sold a rocking chair just as I hit post!

Thirty-Three

I’m 33 today.

 

Overall, I’m very happy. I have a good house (it’s not an old doer-upper or brand new self built eco house, which would be my top picks but unlike those two, I can afford it!), happily married (we’ve been together 13 years next month), absolutely besotted with my gorgeous, bat shit crazy, tornado of a daughter and I have a good stable job with brilliant management and co workers.

HOWEVER!

I think I might start treating my birthdays like MOT’s. Just to see if there are any niggles that could be sorted out for the year(s) ahead. Kinda like New Year Resolutions, but made sober and not abandoned in February.

  • My life balance is out of whack. I’m not managing to juggle part time University study, part time work and spending quality time with my daughter, husband, friends, extended family… I have no hobbies, just an endless to-do list and something needs to give because I feel like I’m just bolting through tasks instead of enjoying my time. I’m pausing uni next year to chill out a bit and try to find a better balance before adding studying back on.
  • Health & fitness. I’m really unfit. And overweight but I’m less concerned about that. If I was given the choice of being able to run a 10k at my current size, or keeping my current fitness level but waking up a size 10, I’d rather run a 10k. I’m going to focus on my health in the next year with the aim of being able to do either Tough Mudder or a 10k at my next birthday. I’ve only got one body and I’m treating this one horribly.
  • Declutter – and finish it. Whole house, take no prisoners, decluttering. My husband has come around to the minimalist mindset which makes things much easier!
  • Counsellor/Therapist – Is there even a difference between these two things? My Mum died suddenly 18 months ago. I was 9 weeks away from giving birth so I just shut down and haven’t really dealt with it since and I’m now finding that I can’t stop tearing up when I’m on my own, mainly when I’m driving and that’s probably not normal, to be crying off and on all day. So I’ve been thinking about seeing someone. I don’t know if I’ll actually do it, some inherently British mindset about self care being self indulgent, but I’m considering it.
  • Take up a hobby. Not something which serves another purpose like running to get fit or studying to gain a qualification. Something which is its own end. I’m leaning towards learning the cello. I’ve never learned an instrument before, can’t read music. I just love the sound.

 

 

First step

Oh my god, I’m so unfit.

I mean, I knew I wasn’t as fit as I used to be, but I just about threw up/fainted in spin class.

I wasn’t even doing the suggested resistance, I just wanted to keep my legs moving. I had to sit in my car afterwards for 5 minutes because I was shaking too much to drive. I scoffed a little bag of skinny popcorn and some dark chocolate when I got home and feel better now, but jeez that was awful!

I just wanted to write this down so that a year from now when I’m training for tough mudder I remember how hard it was at the start.