Summer Essentials

Happy Friday!

We are well and truly into summer now (supposedly!) so I wanted to share a couple of my ‘essentials’/ favourite things for this time of the year. If you enjoy these types of posts then definitely check out my Spring Essentials and Holiday Essentials to hear about a few other bits and pieces that have become essentials for me. Today’s post includes a bit of everything from body care to clothing so I hope you enjoy it, here they are:

  • Jewellery: Obviously you can get through summer without jewellery BUT it might not be as instagrammable! My FAVE piece of summer jewellery is anklets because I don’t really get to show off my ankles any other time of the year! Accessorize do really nice ones or if you’re feeling creative you can make some cute ones like friendship bracelets! Other pretty jewellery that I think gets to shine in the summer is necklaces, either a little dainty one with a bardot top or a statement necklace with a plain dress for the evenings! Summer is definitely the perfect time to get into jewellery!
  • Sandals: One of my favourite summer fashion items is the sandals, the couple of months a year where we can show of our perfect pedicures! I love a whole LOAD of sandals and mainly get mine from New Look because they have a large range and the pricing is usually pretty good. My favourite coloured sandals is probably tan because it isn’t as harsh as black ones against my pale skin and I think the brown ones go with any outfit.
  • Vaseline: You might be thinking this is a bit of an odd one… and you’d be right! BUT give it a chance. In the summer I use Vaseline on my eyelashes before I go to sleep because it really helps condition them and just improve their appearance. Obviously you can do this all year round but I mainly do this during summer because I can’t really bare mascara when it’s warm! I like to keep my lips moisturised too but use a lip balm for that- I think that these little things help me feel a little better about wearing less make-up in the summer… mainly because it sweats right off.
  • Body Mists: Smelling good should ALWAYS be a priority and even more so in summer. I’m currently using the PINK body mists and have been for a while because they are so difficult to finish! I use to love the Hollister ones but they discontinued my favourite scent… I am still a bit gutted about this. I LOVE a nice fruity, floral mist in the summer and these scents usually end up reminding you of summer memories, which I love!

Hopefully you’ve enjoyed reading this post and it has maybe reminded you of a couple of essentials you might have forgotten about this summer. I do use most of these products throughout the year but they definitely get used A LOT more throughout the warmer months.

Enjoy the sun,

Amy

Kindle Paperwhite: Is it worth it?

Happy Book Lovers day,

I thought it would be fitting for me to talk about my new Kindle Paperwhite, which I have had for about a month now. I was majorly torn about whether to purchase one because I love an actual book, like a physical sniff the pages book. SO I thought this little review/ chat would help anyone looking into buying a Kindle or who just love books and were looking for a couple of recommendations too! I’ve specifically tailored this post towards the Kindle Paperwhite because that’s the one I have but some of these points can be applied to other e-readers.

Advantages of a Kindle Paperwhite

  • It makes it really easy to read at night because it comes with a back light which has made reading in bed 100x easier! The brightness is always adjustable and has a wide range of options, so there really is nowhere that you can’t read it.
  • The best thing about the Kindle is that it can store LOADS of books but is SO tiny! I do have a case on mine which makes it slightly bulkier but generally it is pretty small and cute. It fits into all my bags and allows me to carry loads of books which would be almost impossible if I bought them all as physical paperbacks.
  • A real benefit of having a Kindle, for me, has been that it encourages me to read A LOT more. This is down to a few reasons like the portability of it, the cheapness of the books and the fact that you can’t see how thick the book is! There is also the minutes left in each chapter and the book in the bottom corner (which you can turn off!) so it makes books go really quick!
  • I love the recommendation tool on the Kindle too and without it I wouldn’t have read some of the books that I have! It takes books you’ve read and suggests a large range of similar books and there are so many different tools to help you find a new book.

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Disadvantages of a Kindle 

  • The initial cost is probably it’s biggest disadvantage and one that is completely avoidable if you stick with books. The usual cost is £109.99 but I bought it on Amazon Prime Day for £79.99 which was not as bank breaking. It’s still a lot of money BUT the books are cheaper than buying them physically and the prices are generally always being reduced with many titles being just 99p.
  • The fact that they’re not physical books… which I won’t lie does get me sometimes. Just tapping to change the page is a bit weird and the fact that the covers aren’t in colour is a bit strange too but these little things I just have to try and look past. I do miss bookmarks as well! BUT, I am still going to buy some literal books.

Top 3 books I’ve read on my Kindle so far

  • The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr: I’ve already spoken about this in my July Favourites 2017 so I won’t go on BUT I really think is worth the hype! It’s such an interesting book that tackles topics that I’ve not really read about before. It is fast paced and has a nice balance between thrills, romance and character interaction.
  • Lying about Last Summer by Sue Wallman: This is a bit more of a thriller YA that follows a girl on summer camp for bereaved teens. It is definitely not as sweet as the other two books but I really enjoyed it- if you enjoyed ‘We Were Liars’ by E. Lockhart I’m pretty sure you will LOVE this.
  • 99 Days by Katie Cotugno: This is probably the most light-hearted out of these three books and is much more of a YA romance. The main character cheated on her boyfriend with his brother and now she has to deal with all the aftermath because her mum wrote a book about it all! It is definitely a chilled summer read that will be a good one for on holiday.

I hope that this post has been helpful or at least interesting about the Kindle and books in general! It’s completely up to you and your reading habits, but just remember having a Kindle doesn’t mean I’m never buying a book again. If you’re unsure like I was then I would suggest waiting until Amazon has some sales, like on Black Friday, to allow you to feel less guilty if the price is holding you back. So I would definitely say don’t rule it out, even though I did for a few years, now it has really helped me get back into reading.

If you have any YA or Chick-Lit suggestions please leave them below, I’m always looking for books to add to my TBR list!

Happy reading,

Amy💖

Basic Girls Guide to: Baking

Hello,

It’s been a while since I’ve written a lifestyle post, so what better topic to do one on than baking! I think that it is a lovely way to spend your time because it allows you to give to the people around you, whilst improving your own skills and dance around your kitchen. In the summer I tend to have a bit more time, so baking is a great hobby to take up as I spoke about in my Shake up your Summer post. So I’m just going to cover a few different things about baking like a couple of tips, a few products I like to use and a couple of my favourite recipes.

Baking Tips:

  • The first time you bake something REALLY follow the recipe, like exactly. Then once you’ve made it once you can begin adapting it to suit your tastes or your equipment. This will allow you to make your own recipes and develop your own flare, but with a recipe that is guaranteed to work first.
  • Don’t compare your final piece to the one on the blog, video or recipe book you’re following because most of the time it just won’t look the same. DON’T PANIC. They’ve perfected it and found the best lighting and angles… as long as it tastes good try not to get too stressed about presentation, at least at the beginning!
  • Get all the boring bits out the way first. Not every single step of baking is fun but once you get the small boring bits out the way it will definitely get better. I think the boring bits are measuring out the ingredients and lining the tray, so I do these straight away then the rest of the baking goes smoothly.
  • What ever baking disaster happens you can fix it! Honestly, I’m not great at baking I just really enjoy it but I’m CONSTANTLY making mistakes. If it burns then just eat it with ice-cream or cut those bits out, if you accidentally use too much of an ingredient add more of everything else and if you don’t have an ingredient but have already started just use something that looks similar. It won’t completely reverse the problems but if you just carry on you can usually try to cover it up… this a life tip too haha!

Favourite Baking Products:

  • Recipe Book: You can get really pretty books where you can store your own recipes which helps you build your own collection. I think it’s really lovely to develop your own little book of favourites that you can turn to again and again. It will be lovely to use when baking for your own children and to pass down favourites throughout your family.
  • Fancy Equipment: Obviously not a necessity BUT a lovely pastel ceramic baking bowl will make you want to bake. I got one from Dunelm in a baby pink and when I use it I feel like Mary Berry… one of my favourite ladies. Other things that I include under ‘fancy’ equipment are pink silicone utensils and pretty cupcake cases… just little cute things that make you feel professional.

This is the Recipe Book I use to write my recipes in, from Paperchase for £10. I would definitely recommend it as it has a clear and cute layout, including pockets, page dividers and conversion tables.

Favourite Recipes:

I pretty much use Jane’s Patisserie website for new recipes, some of Tanya Burr’s baking videoes or just recipes I already know! Here are a couple of my favourites, they’re all pretty simple and, most importantly, delicious:

  • Malteaser Cake (BBC Good Food)
  • Milk and White Chocolate Cookies (Tanya Bakes)
  • Rolo Cookie Bars (Jane’s Patisserie)
  • Marble Cake with Chocolate icing
  • Scones

FullSizeRender.jpg-1Here is the malteaser cake recipe, that I got online a few years ago, it isn’t a typical ‘cake’ but me and my family LOVE it. It’s probably my ‘signature bake’ and was one of the first to be written into my recipe book.

I really hope you enjoyed this post! Feel free to comment any of your favourite recipes below and where you find your recipes, I’m always looking for more baking ideas!

Happy Baking,

Amy💖

YA Summer Reading Recommendations

Hello,

In my Shake up your Summer post I talked about reading as a hobby that you could consider taking up during the sunnier months. So following on from that I wanted to share a few of the books I enjoyed last Summer, that you should consider trying this year! I’m mainly into YA/ Chick-lit books, so if you’re into a similar genre then you are definitely going to find some gems in here. I’m kind of into fantasy too… well Hunger Games haha so sometimes I look for similar series but haven’t found anything to beat those books yet. Hopefully one of these 3 tickle your fancy:

  • The Sun is Also a Star, Nicola Yoon: I read this REALLY quickly last Autumn, which is unlike me because I can be pretty slow and easily side-tracked, so it MUST be good! The story follows Natasha and Daniel’s story from a variety of perspectives, but it is clear to follow and is such an innovative way of story-telling. ‘Everything Everything’ is one of my favourite books, Nicola’s debut novel, and I would DEFINITELY recommend giving both a go if you haven’t already. \
  • The Red Queen Series, Victoria Aveyard: These books are much more for the fantasy fans, it is very much Hunger Games-esque. There is some magic, romance and I thought the plot was very unpredictable! I’m looking forward to reading more of the series, I think there are 3 out at the moment.
  • The Potion Diaries Series, Amy Alward: I wasn’t sure if I was going to enjoy this book because I thought it might be a little bit young BUT I loved it! It is VERY magical, I would say it is more of a teenage fairytale with love. I’m really looking forward to the third one which is out this summer AND a majorly good thing about these books is the really pretty covers.

I think I’m going to leave it with these 3 different options for now because most of my other suggestions are a bit unoriginal! Basically, most of Zoella’s first book club in summer 2016 are worth a read and Giovanna Fletcher’s books are guaranteed to make you fall in love. Other places to look for books are on goodreads, Amazon or YouTube where you can look for a specific genre and look at books similar to your tastes. I’m looking for some new books for this year now, so let me know any of your recommendations below!

Happy reading,

Amy

Tips for Bedroom Decorating

Happy Monday!

Since returning from university for the Summer I have decided to change up my bedroom a little bit! I didn’t have loads of cash to splurge and my parents didn’t want to COMPLETELY re-decorate. So I made it my little project to make it a relaxing space that I can write, get ready and chill! Here are some of things I did to my room to help achieve that:

  • De-clutter: This first step takes the LONGEST, well it did for me because I find something interesting and am lost for hours. I would suggest going for a clockwise technique around the room to make sure you have done everything. Make clear piles for rubbish, charity and keep- then when you go through them you can see what you REALLY need.
  • Move furniture around: A bit obvious BUT worth it to make a real difference when you walk into your bedroom. Look at the different surfaces in your bedroom and decide if you’re making the best use of them. For example, I’ve changed the top of my chest of drawers into a dressing table by moving all my beauty bits off my desk onto that surface and adding a mirror. Also you need to find the balance between practical and pretty when it comes to shelves.. which is tricky! With bookcases I tend to go for books at the back and then maybe a photo frame or trinket in front to make it prettier.
  • Prints and photos: Adding a couple of pretty Pinterest quotes around your room instantly makes it more insta-worthy. You could make an art wall or just dot them around your room on shelves or your walls. Don’t forget to put up some of your own memories too which gives your room the personal touch and makes it more of a calming place.
  • Textures: Having different and contrasting textures around your room can really change the dynamic of it. Simply by adding a fluffy cushion to the bed or some wooden frames instead of plain white can help make things feel fresher! Try looking in Matalan or Dunelm as they have lots of cushions and blankets which can help transform your beds or chairs.

Top Bedroom Buys:

  • Quote prints Not on the High Street has LOTS of different options in a whole range of sizes, colours and for different prices.
  • IKEA photo frames are REALLY cheap, seriously my favourite ones start at £1.25! They are simple and look really chic on your walls, especially the white ones with a quote inside because it keeps the focus on the print not the frame. If you want some fancier frames Paperchase do some nice ones or H&M home.
  • Reed Diffusers this really can make your room feel a bit newer and fresher when it is feeling a bit boring! My favourites are from Zoella’s range with my favourite scent definitely being ‘Homemade Treats’ which is SO sweet. They tend to last a couple of months which is perfect because I like to change them to fit the seasons.

I love interior designs and searching ALL the Pinterest boards! Sometimes that can be a bit disheartening because my room never really looks like that but hopefully these tips will help us get closer to our PERFECT bedrooms!

Happy decorating,

Amy

Shake up your Summer

Happy Monday!

It’s a new week and today I want to share a few different things you can try this summer, to easily shake things up! These are small activities to try whether you’re lucky enough to have a long summer break or still have to work through the warmer months. I think summer is the perfect time to try some new things because the days are a little longer and generally I feel a bit more energetic… don’t get me wrong Netflix is still a summer essential haha! Here are just 5 things that will hopefully inspire you to give something new a try during this sunny season:

  • Learn a new language: I’ve started this recently using the app ‘Duo Lingo’ it’s simple to use and takes you through multiple quizzes to help you develop your new language skills. I’ve chosen to try Italian, which I’ve enjoyed a lot recently, and it is honestly never-ending! Also what I like about it is it doesn’t take up lots of time, so you can simply try it on your daily commute or just before bed- PERFECT!
  • Volunteer: Volunteering is a very broad topic but any kind of volunteering can be very rewarding for everyone involved! The best place to look for different opportunities is to look online for local volunteering jobs. It can be really simple things like supporting any local runs, a charity shop or helping at summer camps.
  • Scrapbook: I LOVE to scrapbook and have already done a blog post explaining my top tips- Scrapbooking: Tips and Tricks so I won’t go on! BUT it is a really nice activity to do outside in the sun and I find it the best way to save my photography. I prefer to have my photographs actually printed out and not just living digitally, they’re also very nostalgic to look back at!
  • Baking: A very simple thing to try but can be really fun, especially if you enjoy the goods you’ve made out on a picnic or after a BBQ! My favourites to try in summer are scones, fruity desserts and cookies. It’s nice to give them a go and give them out to family and friends too on a nice summer’s afternoon. My favourite place to look for recipes is Jane’s Patisserie blog or just looking in my Mum’s cook books.
  • Reading: Summer is when my love for reading really kicks in! I wish I would read as much throughout the year but I just definitely seem to enjoy it more when the weather improves. I would definitely just recommend to try reading more in general, summer is the perfect time to start! I’ll be putting some book recommendation posts up throughout the next couple of months so keep an eye out for some inspiration!

There are obviously SO many different things you can do this summer but these are a few that I am trying this summer and have done in the past. They’re at more manageable activities to add into your daily lives without breaking the bank or completely changing your routine. Hopefully these have inspired you, let me know what you would like to try this summer!

Enjoy the sunshine,

Amy💖

Uni: Unusual Essentials

Happy June!

Today’s post is about some of the less traditional essentials that I have found very useful during my first year of university. These are five things that are not the typical pots, pans etc. There are lots of other more official lists online and usually your chosen university will send a list that is specifically tailored to your accommodation. Here they are:

  • Loungewear: This is pretty much the uniform of uni life. You want something a little more socially acceptable than pyjamas but not quite everyday attire. There is A LOT of lounging around at uni with Netflix pretty much being part of the curriculum. I would look in New Look, Primark or on ASOS for baggy jumpers and then either joggers or leggings- then you are good to go!
  • Notecards and Stamps: If you’re into stationery then shopping for this step is dreamy. I loved picking up different writing sets and cards then I would write to people whilst I was at uni. Not only did it give me something to do but it kept me connected with friends at other uni’s too. Another thing to remember under this category is some wrapping paper, you never know when your new friends birthdays will be and sometimes it’s good to have some on-hand just in case they’re soon after you move in.
  • Door stop: I had to borrow one off another flatmate because other people already bought them- it broke the ice! They’re handy at the beginning to make you seem welcoming and inviting- even if you’re not don’t worry by October-ish you can start shutting the door again.
  • Medical supplies: In the weeks before you leave for uni think of the medicinal things you usually ask your mum for and then put them in a little bag! This is the best way of ensuring that you will not be stranded at uni feeling ill. We’re talking things like paracetamol, plasters, flu tablets and tissues etc. just all the little things! Even if you don’t need them its likely other people at uni would have forgotten, so then you can pass them on and break the ice.
  • Your own washer upper: I’m not entirely sure what they’re called but you need your own utensil for your washing up to maximise hygiene. You can share other stuff in the kitchen like washing up liquid but I think having your own ‘cleaning wand/brush’ or something just makes it easier and less gross.

Hopefully these helped you remember some things that you might of forgotten when packing for university! This time of the year you’re just starting to think about it, once exams are out of the way, so hopefully these posts will help get you thinking/ excited!

Best wishes,

Amy💖

Uni: Advice

Happy Tuesday,

This week I am going to be uploading a couple of posts addressing topics surrounding university. I have recently finished my first year and wanted to write about five things I have learnt or wish I had known before I started university. One thing I would add is that university is NOT everything and you will still have lots of opportunities if you choose to follow a different path, it is not to be a measurement of your entire life. Many people forget this, even myself, but if you go or not you are still intelligent and there is still a lot more to life than getting a degree. Despite saying this, here are a few things to keep in mind if you are already at uni or thinking about starting in September:

  • People at home will not forget you: One thing I struggled with massively was homesickness, which I will address more in another post. It definitely eased as the academic year progressed. The main root cause, I think, was this fear that everyone was going to forget you and just move on. Honestly, this is not the case and you will still get to come home as regularly as you wish. If anything it will give you more to talk about and people will want to see how you are getting on.
  • Stop comparing everything to home: This is a bit of an obvious one and probably linked to my homesickness. This mainly came into my mind when I compared uni friends to people at home, which you shouldn’t do because you’ve known people from school a lot longer and you didn’t have to live with them. Other things like the kitchen or bathrooms are an easy one to constantly compare to home because no ones parents are there to tidy up after them! Remember just because everything is different, it does not have to be worse than home.
  • Little things are a success: Especially at the beginning of uni you will realise you are doing so many independent things, you will feel SO proud. This is definitely a positive that I have found at uni because I was much more dependent on my family before I started. Cooking dinners, washing up, dry cleaning and even just finding the lecture theatres will all feel so satisfying- at the start, the thrill does wear off!
  • Don’t stress about having the ‘best years of your life’: I had heard a lot that my uni years would be the ‘making of me’ or were people’s ‘best years of their life’ BUT that is not always the case. Don’t get me wrong uni can be really fun, but usually you won’t realise that you are having the ‘best time’ until you look back on it. Social media makes everyone want to show they have no problems, but most of the time they are just papering over the cracks and no one wants to share the worse times. Don’t stress yourself out trying to show everyone that uni is ‘perfect’, looking back you’ll realise how great it really was.

I hope these pieces of advice have either been helpful or relatable in some way. These can still be applied to different situations because when changing environments it is important to be open-minded.

Best wishes,

Amy💖

Scrapbooking: Tips and Tricks

Hello, lovelies!

I see scrapbooking as a fun, creative way to record my favourite memories and wanted to share my love for it! I’ve been doing it since 2015 and aim to fill one every year, so am starting my third at the moment. I didn’t think I would stick to it, but I love reminiscing and it’s a good way to be creative whilst being productive. There are no ‘wrong’ ways to scrapbook because they are completely personal, but there are so many different approaches it can be overwhelming. This is my basic approach to scrapbooking, because lets face it I do not have beautifully swirly calligraphy or the money to invest in a full scrapbooking regime. So instead I have created my own little techniques and styles over the years and these are a couple of tips/ products to help you start or develop your scrapbooks:

1. Choosing the scrapbook! This is a big choice- what size? page colour? Do you wanna decorate your own cover? Or already have a patterned one? Do you want pockets and page dividers? Usually when you see the one, you just know. All of mine have been from Paperchase because I really like the designs and they regularly bring out new ones. Also consider what colour scheme you want on the inside and if you want them to match the cover… sounds obsessive I know BUT I got a really brightly covered one then realised I wanted a pastel colour scheme so I took it back! Ugh, the drama haha!

2. How to make it look pretty: Well once you’ve got the actual scrapbook you can look into how you want to decorate the pages. Firstly, I would recommend the ‘Cropping Block’ paper packs from Paperchase which are essentially just pages of coloured paper- they’re only £2.50! These can be used to layer under photos to give them a frame, to write captions on or even create little envelopes to keep trinkets safe. Washi tape is another option for framing- I usually use a mixture of both! I love Washi tape, its basically just pretty tape but it lifts the pages and makes it look more ‘put together’. Again you can get different designs at Paperchase, John Lewis, Hobbycraft and lots of places, especially cute independent craft stores!

3. Photos: I find the best way to get my photos printed is using the app ‘Free Prints’ because you get 45 free every month. There are lots of different sites though and many have voucher codes or offers online. Usually, I accumulate the photos until it is worth paying to print out them in bulk which makes it cheaper when you have to pay for postage and packaging.

4. Using your phone: I find that my phone is one of the key things I need for my scrapbooking, and not just because I use it to take all my photos! I use the ‘Notes’ section to keep an ongoing list of the dates and activities I want to scrapbook so I don’t forget anything. Also creating an ongoing ‘scrapbooking’ photo album, so that you can just add a couple of photos on the way home from a day out, then when you come to print your photos you won’t have missed any. If you want to be super fancy you can edit pictures on your phone, I usually just use ‘Instagram’, even just to edit not just post, or the app VSCO. There are lots of options for editing, some more advanced than others, be careful not to over-do it though because you don’t want your images to become pixelated when printing!

5. Little extras: I use double-sided tape to stick in my photos because it gives the most seamless finish and secures them properly. Glue dots or Pritt Stick are good options too, the glue makes it a bit messier but is probably more cost effective. Also I like to invest in some pretty pens, usually metallic ones that fit my colour scheme! I tend not to write that much other than the title of each page (Date and Place) and maybe a caption or thought from the day. If you are more into the writing then maybe metallic isn’t the best option because it can be a bit smudgey/ difficult to read. Finally, the postcards from Paperchase really brighten pages and make it seem more ‘Pinterest’. They are about 70p and they have different phrases, jokes or pretty pictures on and they can help fill in gaps or are a cute way to illustrate holidays, like Christmas! Also postcards when you visit somewhere are lovely or little souvenirs such as parking tickets, food wrappers or leaflets add personal touches to your scrapbook!

Hopefully these have given you some ideas for your own scrapbook! One of the best things about scrapbooking is that it should never be a chore, it’s just a hobby and if I don’t feel like doing it then that’s okay too. Once you start though the sense of nostalgia when looking back is really rewarding. Also don’t compare your scrapbook to these ‘perfect’ ones you see on YouTube or Pinterest- which is so difficult! Mine is so far from perfect and there have been times when I’ve ripped out pages because I thought my handwriting looks childish or the pictures aren’t stuck in straight. These little quirks are what makes your scrapbook yours, the happiness within the photos, souvenirs and words are what makes it ‘perfect’. Let me know any of your scrapbooking tips, I’d love to develop mine for 2017.

Happy scrapbooking,

Amy💖

 

Spreading Kindness

Happy Monday!

I wanted to kickstart the week with a post on kindness. The concept of kindness can get lost in the business of everyday life, but it is such a positive characteristic to possess and share with others. Before this turns into the cheesiest post EVER, I have complied a list of cute random acts of kindness to try:

  1. Write letters: Taking the time to write someone a notecard is so simple. If you never have stamps (like me!) you could try apps like ‘Touch Note’ or going on Moonpig.com to send personalised messages directly from your phone! You could sent these to friends, family or sometimes there are special appeals, especially at Christmastime to send to ill children or various people who need support/ friendship. This is the perfect excuse to buy ALL the pretty and funny postcards,  notecards and letter writing sets from Paperchase!
  2. Reminding people you are thinking of them: This is so simple and it’s free- win win! Something as simple as tagging a friend in a meme on Facebook that reminds you of them or sending them a funny tweet to cheer them up can really make someones day. Simply texting someone and saying ‘Miss you’ can mean the world, trust me at uni these really make your day because sometimes it is so easy to feel forgotten! Another idea is sending uplifting tweets to people who are having a bad day or congratulating/ complimenting them on something and although it might seem weird to respond to a stranger you never know how much they might have needed it.
  3. Spontaneous presents: Clearly this could be an expensive suggestion, but it doesn’t need to be done regularly or with luxurious gifts! One example is when I visit my grandparents I sometimes pick them up Scones for £2 as I pass a shop on my way- this is cheap way to brighten their day, or better still bake them yourself! Also my sister, who lives far away, recently received a bad haircut (I know the pain!) so to cheer her up I sent a special Pancake mix from notonthehighstreet.com directly to her address with a gift receipt too- perfect!
  4. Give to charity: This doesn’t necessarily have to be financial giving but if you can then a direct debit is a good way of doing this, because otherwise it is so easy to forget! Also it can be very small amounts, even just a £1, would make a difference especially to local charities. Other ways to give include taking old clothes or toys to a charity shop, retweeting/ sharing charities posts help raise awareness of campaigns or looking for online ways to volunteer your time at various charities- some charities like Make A Wish have online volunteering schemes where you don’t even have to leave your sofa!
  5. Be kind to yourself: In some ways this should be top the list because if you are kind to yourself then you can help others. This really could be anything, but it is so easily forgotten! Let yourself watch an extra episode of your favourite TV show, eat ALL the chocolate, have a bath until your fingers go all shrivelled, laugh at your favourite film, sing at the top of your voice, lounge around in your pyjamas every once in a while and forget all your responsibilities! I understand this is easier said than done, but be happy, you deserve it.

I hope these inspire you to spread some kindness to others and yourself. There are also lots more ideas on Pinterest! Let me of know any other easy examples of random acts because it is always important to find new ways of spreading kindness.

Amy💖