Tag Archives: life

The Minimalism Game

the minimalism game

I think I’m the last lifestyle blogger on earth who is yet to KonMari their life. It’s not that I don’t want to, it’s just that I don’t want to, yet.

Just like I swore I’d turn to Vegetarianism when I finished Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals, but still haven’t finished those last few chapters three years on.

I’m sure at some point this year I’ll buy The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying and revolutionise my life, but until then I’ve found another bandwagon to jump on.

How to play the Minimalism Game

Hannah from Hannah in the House is one of my favourite bloggers. Her love of all things
Scandinavian and minimalist really appeals to me even if my own home looks more like an eclectic mad house. So when I read about The Minimalism Game on her blog I thought it was a concept worth exploring.

The Minimalism Game is great for people like me as a) gamification b) accountability (#MinsGame) and c) it’s a gradual process.

The idea is simple: get rid of one thing in your home on the first day, two things on the second, three on the third and so forth.

Although I’ll be playing the Minimalism Game to get rid of stuff at home I love Hannah’s idea of also using it to tidy up an inbox and unsubscribe from spam. But one thing at a time, yeah?

London Life

Sunday was always going to be all about Wimbledon, whether I liked it or not. I’ve never been a huge tennis fan but give me an excuse to make a themed afternoon tea and I’m on board. The match was pretty entertaining plus I got to use my new cake stand, so we’re all winners in the end.

Here are a few photos of London life from the last week:

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Contemplating which delicious recipe to make first from the Nordic Bakery cookbook

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A bloggers cocktail masterclass at the Pullman Hotel

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Drinks in the reading room at Paradise By Way of Kensal Green

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Brunch with friends at Duck & Waffle

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Pimms and finger sandwiches for the Wimbledon Men’s Single final

London Life

Friends, family, a little wander and some new candles – what more could a girl want from a Bank Holiday weekend? It kicked off with a bang on Friday night, as I spent time with the lovely ladies I work with. Our resident expert baker treated us to a five-course meal, complete with champagne cocktails and the best homemade smoked salmon blinis I’ve ever had. 

  

Champagne and canapés 

Saturday involved a trip into the West End where we replenished our candle collection in Muji and I picked up my first bottle of Glow Tonic from Pixi which I’m already impressed with just two days in. Later on we headed back towards Mayfair for dinner and cocktails at Mamounia (review coming soon).

  
Surprisingly good cocktails (and unsurprisingly bad photography)

We woke up early on Sunday and headed to Colombia Road to pick up some flowers. Between the peonies and the candles our flat is smelling quite heavenly! Friends were coming over for lunch so we picked up beigels at the 24hr Beigel Bakery on Brick Lane. I think it’s the first time I’ve bought food there whilst completely sober…

   
Colombia Road Flower Market

 

What Instagram fan can resist snapping a classic car?! Seen near Colombia Road.

On Sunday evening I saw Pitch Perfect 2 which did not disappoint. It’s just as good as the first film and I can’t remember the last time I laughed so much at a film. Fingers crossed for a Pitch Perfect 3.

Today we went for another walk in Wanstead Park, followed by lunch at The Larder on Wanstead High Street again. It’s becoming an alarmingly frequent but most enjoyable routine…

Have a great week ahead!

P.S. A courgetti Pad Thai recipe I’m obsessed with

London Life

After two months of manic weekends we spent Saturday and Sunday exploring Wanstead and Snaresbrook in East London. We spent Saturday walking through the woods in Wanstead Park, an outpost of Epping Forest, before having friends over on Saturday night. On Sunday we turned our attention to Snaresbrook and I may have visited Stratford Westfield for the millionth time this month. I swear that place is both a convenient blessing and a consumerist curse.

bluebell field wanstead park londonCatching the bluebells in season at Wanstead Park

eagle pond snaresbrookViews across Eagle Pond towards Snaresbrook Crown Court

the larder wanstead high streetLunch at The Larder on Wanstead High Street

mini driveway library wansteadThe cutest mini library in a driveway in Wanstead

eagle pond snaresbrookEnjoying the view across Eagle Pond in Snaresbrook

London life in 2014

london lifeLondon life in 2014 wasn’t how I hoped it would be and I ticked nothing off my list of goals. I still don’t own a flat (London, I hate you), I never started ballet classes again and I haven’t written a single piece of fiction.

Maybe I should be telling myself off but I’m not. Instead I’ll carry those goals into 2015 and be thankful for the year that has passed. I broke my leg but it made me realise just how wonderful my friends and family are. I haven’t written but I’ve been so busy living that I’ve had more fun than ever. I don’t own a home but in hindsight, is that the type of goal I should be setting?

I haven’t done half of what I hoped I would with this blog either, but at the same time London is for Living feels more like my little space of the Internet than ever before. So a big thank you for reading, for commenting and for all your suggestions of books to read and places to visit. Thanks for making blogging fun and for helping me learn new things. See you in 2015!

pret-a-portea berkeley hotel

January
I visited Tate Britain and marvelled at THAT staircase. And a few bits of art… I also visited the Thames Barrier for my Spooks fix and had a Blair Waldorf fashion moment.

I also had a lovely afternoon at the Pret-a-Portea afternoon tea with friends, which I finally got round to posting about a few months later in April.

February
I broke my leg. It was a nasty break and I was off work for four months. Working from home is lonely so I went a little stir crazy and let out my frustration, worry and fear at never walking properly again in a few blog posts. Thanks (again) for indulging me and for all your nice comments.

10 months on I’m walking almost as fast as usual. I can’t run yet and my pliés are poor but I’m not going to let that stop me finally taking those ballet classes in 2015.

girls themed screening party

March
It was a quiet month spent mostly in the house so I threw a Girls themed screening party at home. There were emoji invites, games and a whole lot of laughs.

April
I started to get to grips with the whole working from home with no remote access to my files or emails thing, so blogged about what I’d learnt. I shared a recipe for Passover sweet potato burgers and also rambled on about how much I’d love a porch.

tiny book store rye

May
Friday night cocktails became a thing. I shared a rosé sangria recipe and my personal favourite, a blueberry and gin cocktail recipe.

A few tears were shed as I finally discovered the Humans of New York blog and reminded myself how much I love short stories.

May was also the month I started a new series of guest posts with A Day in the Life of a London Civil Servant and a A Day in the Life of a London Banker.

glastonbury festival

June
I had to give up my Glastonbury ticket this year as I knew I wouldn’t be able to cope with my broken leg. I wrote a couple of blogs about it, including this list of ten things I love about Glastonbury festival.

The Day in the Life series continued with A Day in the Life of a London Lawyer, and I also introduced my first Tech Tuesday post (the inaugural entry was about live chat on websites).

I discovered a new love for bourbon, and shared a ginger ale float recipe and a bourbon iced tea recipe. There was also a guest post about A Day in the Life of a London Writer and did you manage to solve Einstein’s riddle?

July
Summer finally arrived and I was addicted to this chicken avocado salad recipe. I also spied these New Yorker magazine beach towels that I should have put on my Christmas wish list…

visit bruges

August
I shared five reasons why you should visit Bruges after discovering the city myself. It was awesome and so much better than I’d expected. I also dressed up as Hercule Poirot at work but the less said about that the better.

September
The best weekend of the year, Open House London, was upon us. It was amazing as ever and if you’ve never done it before please save the date and participate in 2015. I shared a little London love and raved about A Thousand Splendid Suns. My first beauty blog appeared too, as I gushed about my new perfume.

October
I finally made it to California after having to reschedule my trip. It was totally brilliant and I shared Sunday Selections for Los Angeles, Las Vegas and San Francisco.

November
This was a quiet month as I had plenty to catch up on back at work. I did find time to perfect my apple pie cocktail recipe (which tastes much nicer than the photo suggests).

meryl streep

December
I spoke a bit about Christmas Eve rituals, gushed about Meryl Streep and was quoted in the Financial Times!

Next year
Inspired by Not Quite Enough I’m going to visit one new place in London each month. That’s the great thing about London; there’s always somewhere new opening or a place in the deepest darkest depths of London suburbia you have yet to discover.

What are your plans for the next year? If you’ve blogged about them please leave a link to the post in the comments so I can take a peek :)

London

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I used to spend my days walking through London. For hours on end I’d wander down familiar roads, returning time after time to my favourite places.

I was a London expert. Everyone asked me for recommendations and directions. I knew the streets and I knew my place in the city. Drop me in the middle and I’d find my way home.

I’m so pleased I had the freedom to explore a city. That before fear and paranoia kicked in I learnt to find safety in the streets and protection from the throng of people.

It might not have been far from home but I had a chance to travel on my own. I’ll always treasure the time I gave myself to explore this city alone.

Love what you do

Instead of, “do what you love,” perhaps the more effective mantra for the entrepreneur, the linchpin and maker of change might be, “love what you do.”

If we can fall in love with serving people, creating value, solving problems, building valuable connections and doing work that matters, it makes it far more likely we’re going to do important work.

Seth Godin

Life in London

I’ve had a great week in London. It ended on a high with a fantastic day at work on Friday followed by celebratory drinks, a Saturday afternoon catching up with good friends in London, a quiet Saturday night playing cards at home and a Sunday spent south of the river in Bermondsey (really regretting not visiting Pizarro again now!).

It feels so good to get out and about in the city again, just in time for summer. I may have overdone it a little this week as my leg really aches, but I couldn’t help myself. I have so much to catch up on. I’ll take it easy this week but when I was sofa-bound I promised myself that I’ll say yes to every opportunity that comes my way – and I’m not forgetting that promise in a hurry.

Here are a few photos from my week:

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Loving my five year journal – I’ve been filling it in religiously on a daily basis; tackling the make-up drawer and having a good clear out. The first eyeshadow I ever bought? Bye bye.

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Can you miss a station? Because I really missed Blackfriars and the view from the Northbank entrance; the cutest bag for Father’s Day.

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Lazy afternoon drinking Pimms with friends; tackling an epic list of stuff to do at work and drinking far too much coffee from my favourite mug (although it’s impossible to keep calm when you’re a Spurs fan).

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Playing Kalooki on Saturday night (this hand even produced my first ever Kalooki!); getting up to no good in a gallery on Sunday.

Have a great week, Carla

A day in the life of a London Banker

My work day begins before I go to bed the night before. I check the weather forecast, pack a shirt and arrange a cycling outfit dependent on the weather. The alarm wakes me up at 6am. I generally roll out and stretch before making a cup of coffee and a bowl of cereal, taking a look at the headlines on the FT website and listening to the start of Today.

I leave the flat around 6:45. Why? I cycle to work. I always used to cycle to school from 16 on the roads and stopped on starting my previous job. The olympics changed all that – I thought I’d give it a go for a few weeks and see how it went. My route involves getting down on the A41 and that 6:45 start means I have the bus lane all the way to Swiss Cottage through to 7am.

a day in the life of a London banker

People see cycling as risky but it gives me a unique sense of freedom and the ability to observe the whole city. I go through Regents Park and its a fantastic way of noting the seasons change as I peddle past the zoo with few cars behind me and the sounds of the occasional animal if I listen carefully. London Roads are fast with little segregation; without a doubt the hardest aspect of the journey is the Euston Road up to Kings Cross – you see everything and have to be careful of cars, lorries and passengers lugging suitcases to the Eurostar.

By the time I get to work about 25 minutes later, I can have a shower and change. I keep spare suits and smart trousers at work to save on weight. We are lucky to have a dry cleaning service, a drying room and an interior cycle park. About 10/11 hours later, I’m ready to leave – the days can be intense with short lunch breaks.

Generally, I head straight home but I always take a different route back which is mostly longer. This tends to involve a steep climb through Highgate as climbing is also part of my training for Ride London in August this year.

By the time I’m back, I can relax a bit. Sometimes I’ll go out locally as West Hampstead has a great social scene. I’m also lucky in that I can visit my Mother for a surprise as she is only in Harrow. Most times I’ll read a book or watch some TV.

On days I am out outside NW6, I won’t have cycled and will tube it. London has such a great variety of stuff to do – I generally go to the theatre, cinema or the odd exhibition. It’s just easy to meet friends and find something to do. There is the occasional work/friends drink or dinner and I also do some committee work for the Friends of Fortune Green.

A day in the life of a banker video

Eugene is fundraising for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research in Ride London. Donations to his JustGiving page will be gladly received.

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