2nd Wedding Anniversary – Looking for opinion and ideas


What do you get your Husband for your 2nd anniversary_

Today is exactly 8 weeks until my 2nd wedding anniversary. You may remember when I posted last year about us choosing to try and follow the traditional wedding anniversary gifts. Last year was paper. That was quite easy… easier than this year anyway!

This year, the gift should be cotton.

So, what makes a good cotton anniversary gift? Some ideas I’ve considered are:

  • A quality cotton shirt from somewhere a cut above where we’d normally shop
  • Beautiful cotton bedding set
  • A cushion with some romantic wording on it
  • Some form of a cotton print. There seems to be quite a few types of prints on cotton out there.
  • Or I could cheat and get him a ‘cotton’ scented candle.

That’s as far as I’ve got. If you have a good suggestions please let me know as it is getting closer and I’m just not sure!

Our anniversary is on a Monday and I’ve booked the day off work thinking it would be 2nd wedding anniversary cotton giftnice to plan something special, or do something nice for my Husband. He doesn’t have the day off work. I know I could cook a nice dinner, decorate the house with some candles and the such. But we may still be living with my sister at the time, so some ideas I would normally do, such as putting candles round the house, cooking dinner, running and bath and then retiring to the bedroom is very unlikely to happen.

And that leaves me a total loss as to what I could do. I know I’ve already asked for ideas, but if you’ve got any ideas for what I can I could plan to make our anniversary evening nice I’d be really pleased to have them.

Doing this post about my 2nd anniversary coming up soon reminds me, that I didn’t ever share with you what the Husband and I got each other for our 1st anniversary. The last post I published about my first anniversary was two weeks beforehand, when I had bought his gift but didn’t want to share what it was on the blog in case he saw.

Last year our anniversary was on a Sunday, but we didn’t do all that much. We swapped gifts in the morning then popped into town to have a walk around with a posh ice-cream. I had decided to buy Steven a photo album of photos from our whole relationship together. In our relationship to date we only have TWO photo albums, our wedding album and the album I made for him last year. My gift from him was a framed print with some of the music lines and lyrics from our first dance song which you can see on the wall behind us.

Even if I do say so myself, I think we did quite well with the gifts we got each other last year, and I’m hoping to be able to get him something really good this year too. But WHHATTT? 

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Career Highs & Motoring Lows


Making my way in my 20's

Career High

In April I started a new job doing what I have wanted to do for years!

In 2007 I went to Winchester University to study Primary Teaching, it was a 4 year course, and I would have come out with a BA Hons in Primary Education with QTS, however in the first semester of the third year I left. The reasons why could be a whole other post, so I won’t go into now, but if you are interested in why, let me know and I might do a post about it.

I love training, teaching and coaching people and it seems that any role I have taken on i have gravitated towards and somehow always been utilised for training and coaching colleagues. At my first office job, for a big mobile communications company, after just 6 months I became one of the people that would training new starters. Then when I worked in a sales office for a utility company I coached new starters and existing employees on their telephone manner and the sales cycle as well as coaching them on how to stay focused and motivated. My passion and abilities in training and leading people gave me a lot of opportunities at that company.

Then my role previous to now, was working as a Customer Account Manager for an LED lighting company. I was there 4.5 years, and from being there less than a year I was used to create training plans for all new starters into the Customer Service department and to deliver the four week training plan to each new starter. I also became the product trainer. It was during this time that I decided I no longer wanted training and teaching to be a PART of my job, but wanted to take the plunge into a full time training role.

So I took the plunge and I am incredibly glad I did. It feels utterly amazing to think I am now a ‘Training Consultant’! Especially when I consider how many training jobs I applied for without hearing back at all before I got my chance.

I work for a not for profit provider of apprenticeships delivering training and conducting progress reviews with the learners. Not only have this company taken me on as a trainer but they are putting me though some NVQs too so I have will appropriate qualifications for the job!

A GIF representing me after finding out I got the job

Motoring Low

However, this new new job means I have to drive a lot of miles in my own car. The company I now work for is a charitable organisation, so a company car was not included. I have to visit my learners in their workplaces to conduct progress reviews, and they can be as far away as a 2 hour drive. My 55 plate Civic was the first car I chose myself. I’ve had Rosie (my car) 5 1/2 years and Rosie has been a good car. Been being the operative word. She makes strange noises, seems to loose power, stalls regularly (irrelevant of who the driver is) and has broken down twice in the past 6 months.

But I can’t afford to get a new car 😦 because the Husband and I are saving for a deposit on a house. We can’t buy a car outright, and even getting a car on finance or lease is not an option because the monthly payout will reduce the amount we are able to save each month. Plus it would reduce the amount a mortgage provider would lend us as it would impact our “affordability”.

So little Rosie will just have to carrying on limping through for a while yet. It’s just one of the many sacrifices that are being made in our bid to try and get on the property ladder.

Please tell me I’m not alone? Do you have a car that is barely hanging on?
Have you recently made a career change, or, are you like I was a few months ago, plugging away trying to get into a role you really want?

Life might be quite hard in some ways at the moment, but I feel optimistic and continue to look on the bright side whenever I can.

highs and lows of trying to make it through my 20's

My Ex Old Man and my Ex Best Girlfriend


Ex old MAN

‘My Ex Old Man and my Ex Best Girl Friend’, may be the name of a song by country singer Kristen Kelly, but is also the title of this blog post, because yesterday my ex Fiance married an ex Best Friend of mine. 

Emma was my best friend all the way through secondary school and into A Levels, although at some point around GCSE years Emma left the school we went to together and went to a different school designed for those who had been failed by the education system. Emma and I spent a lot of time together, usually at her house, watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S, playing video games and eating Chinese takeaways. Often Emma’s parents would go on Holiday, leaving her at home alone (her grandparents would keep an eye on her), and during these weeks I would spend a lot of time at her house. We would buy cigarettes and smoke them in her garden, and drink vodka neat out the bottle and end laughing because I managed to fall over in her tiny, under stairs toilet. It was with Emma that I smoked Cannabis with for the first time. We even kept a scrap book of our exploits, printing out pictures to stick in the scrap books and sticking in emails or little hand written messages to each other. I wish I knew what happened to that scrap book! We would have little fall outs, like teenage girls do, but never for too long.

When I was 16 I started a relationship with Adrian. We got rather serious quite quickly considering our age. My parents weren’t sure about him at first because he seemed to come from no where to them and because he was 3 years older than me. But I managed to convince my parent round, and over the years they bonded with him. We would spend as many weekends as we could together, because he lived an hours drive away we didn’t see each other Monday-Friday.

There was quite a few occasions when Emma, Adrian and I would all hang out together. One weekend Adrian and I stayed over at Emma’s house. We all got on well.

Then when Emma and I went to university we started to drift apart, and this time our friendship stayed broken. I regret that I let our friendship fall apart, because we always had such fun together, we always had each others back, and never judged each other. We could tell each other anything and know the other would stay true.

Adrian I stayed together for 6.5 years. We stuck it out together, even throughout our university years, which is often when couples break up. Just before my 19th birthday he proposed, then in 2010, when we had both finished university, we moved into our first rented place together, a little run down flat. And we were planning our wedding for 2012. We were mostly happy, but once we moved in together the cracks started to show. We were two rather different people. The arguments became more frequent, and I started to fall out of love with him. So after 6.5 years together, and 5 months before our wedding day, we broke up. Our break up was amicable, and we asked our friends and family to keep any negativity to themselves. I still liked him, and he still liked me, we just realised we didn’t want to marry each other, and we had become more friends than lovers.

We were still good friends, that after breaking up, we carried on living together for 7 months until our tenancy contract ended. But soon after I moved out, we came to thexoldmane conclusion that for both our sakes it was best if we broke all contact so that we could both move on in a healthy way.

Fast forward a couple of years and I’m happily in a relationship with someone else and engaged to be married. That person is my husband. 

Adrian, much to my own discomfort and great upset, stayed friends with my Sister and Brother-In-Law and continued to see the two of them as friends. Over the years following Emma and I falling out of friendship, I’m not sure exactly how, Emma and my Sister became friends. often my Sister held gatherings for friends at her house and Adrian and Emma would both be invited. And when Adrian and Emma were both single they got together. At the time, although we had drifted apart in ‘the real world’ I was still friends on Facebook with Emma, but when I saw her relationship status update, to show she was in a relationship with Adrian, I deleted her as a friend. The idea of them being in a relationship was just too weird for me! And I didn’t want to watch their relationship play out online.

Fast forward another couple of years and my husband and I got married in the October of 2016 and the very next month Adrian proposed to Emma. How do I know this? Because a mutual friend of Emma and I, an old school friend, told me. The old school friend was shocked about their engagement, and understood why I felt it was weird.

Yesterday they got married. My Sister was a Bridesmaid, and my Brother-In-Law was an Usher.  I find this odd. To me, it seems that Adrian can’t/hasn’t moved on from when he was with me. Yes, my sister and bro-in-law are friends with them both, but if I was Emma, I would feel as though Adrian was using a friendship with them to cling onto me some how. Especially when you add in to this he still has my parents and other family members of mine as friends on Facebook. But it isn’t for me to pry into their relationship. If they are happy, then that is good. And we all look at things differently. But I wouldn’t want my husband to still have contact with his ex’s family, because it would make me feel like he can’t or hasn’t moved on.

I have no hard feelings over their relationship, and I think they probably do make a pretty good couple. Everyone deserves to be happy and I wish them all the luck for their future. If I see them, which is quite likely, seeing as they’ve stayed friends with family members of mine, and the four of us are all invited to my Brother-In-laws 30th Birthday bash later this year. If/When I see them I will smile and say hello. I won’t be rude, and I hope they give my Husband and I the same courtesy.

Thelongone

#BrideHour – A Twitter Chat Hour


#BrideHour

A few years ago when I first started participating in Twitter chat hours, #Bridehour was a very popular and busy chat, filled with tweets from wedding vendors and engaged couples alike. It was one of my favourite twitter chat hours, but sadly the chat died away. I’m not sure why, I can only presume because the person who hosted the chats stopped using twitter, which meant without a host the chat slowly got less and less popular.

Often it is the case that chat hours need someone who hosts the hours and tweets about the chat throughout the week to keep people interested in joining in and to serve as a reminder. If there is no one hosting and promoting the chat it is unlikely to keep going.

Well, a few weeks ago Bridal Bay decided to get the #BrideHour chat going again, and as soon as I found out they were trying to re-start #BrideHour I decided to join in with helping to promote the hour.

It will still be on the same day and at the same time it has always been; Every Thursday from 8pm to 9pm (UK time). #BrideHour long (1)

But don’t forget that there is also #weddingdaychat

Every Sunday 8pm-9pm too. 

In 2 Sunday’s Time it’ll be my 1st Anniversary


1st Anniversary Gift

So today is Sunday, albeit, Sunday rapidly drawing to a close. On Sunday 8th October 2017 I will have been married for 1 year.

Last time I posted about my anniversary coming up it was when I was in a quandary about what to get the Husband as a first anniversary gift. We decided to get each other paper gifts as per the traditional anniversary gift list.

Sounds pretty easy doesn’t it? And it is easy to find paper anniversary gifts. What is hard is narrowing down the ideas.

Some of the wonderful ideas I had and some that were suggested to me included: 

  • Having our wedding vows typed up in pretty fonts and colours and framed
  • Getting a personalised song written and produced for us and having the lyrics to the song printed off and framed
  • Crafting a map of the location where we got married into a rose
  • Someone tweeted me with the suggestion of a personalised toilet roll! 
  • Hand writing a love letter to my husband

All of those ideas are rather awesome, and some of those suggestions are near enough free, while others would cost quite a bit!

We currently are living with my sister as we save very hard to try and buy our own house in 12 months (or a little more) time. For this reason I didn’t really want to get anything that would take up space, nor anything that would cost too much.

What I decided to go with isn’t in the above list of ideas. And although I was very tempted to tell you now what I’ve bought for him, I think I’m going to wait to reveal that until after our anniversary.

What do you think I’ve bought him? I’d love to see your guesses in the comments below. Then if any of you are right I will let you know and try to tag you in my post telling all, after our anniversary.

A Daydream Idea for a new Budget Wedding Service


A few mornings ago whilst going about my normal getting ready routine I had a proper detailed day dream that I haven’t been able to stop thinking about.

direct budget wedding planning service idea

During my years writing this blog, I have met countless couples that feel completely lost in the maze of wedding planning. As soon as you’re engaged you start getting questions thrown at you – when is your date, what venue have you chosen, what colour scheme are you having…. and often you don’t know the answers to any of these questions.

What does a newly engaged person normally do? Go out and purchase some wonderful wedding magazines to peruse for inspiration. Wedding magazines are great, I personally love flicking through the glossy pages, but they’re not exactly well known for having products and services aimed at the small budget wedding.

Sadly, I’ve also spoken to couples who have ended up feel pushed by well meaning but over assertive relatives into having a certain venue, or into booking services and suppliers that they wouldn’t really have wanted to have if they’d been left to their own devices. And we’ve all heard of a couple who have ended up inviting people to their wedding they don’t even know because their parent/grandparent/aunt told them they have to.

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