Words

A Norn irish gift guide

December 3, 2016
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Put simply, here is my super special Northern Irish gift guide.

It is quite literally full to the brim with makers, locations, drinks, interiors and more to help you decide what gifts to buy this Christmas.

I have not been endorsed to do any of this by anyone, I am just an artist who is passionate about and happy to share the love and to support local. Continue Reading…

Words

A sustainable business – my strive for better

November 23, 2016
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Image credit Gather and Tides

I’m all for clearing out junk in the home. So much so I even made a post about minimalism here.

My husband views my ‘tendency’ for “gutting out” as a bit of an illness. This urge to clear out normally raises it’s ugly head on a weekend.

You know the kind- all is well and quiet in the world of family time, there are no work emails to distract the mind, a general state of untidiness has already descended the minute the lads come in from school and dump their School bags on the Friday.

So, with all of this in front of my very eyes, I take a head staggers and start to trail everything out. Literally.

“You have to crack an egg to make an omelette” my good friend once said.

Nothing will do except a good clear out from top to bottom of a drawer, a medicine cabinet,  the baby’s room, my shoe boxes, even the pots and pans can take a bashing.

Feeling overwhelmed by “stuff” is something I struggle with. It sits better with me knowing that someone somewhere else can use what I no longer will.

Looking around my house and feeling overwhelmed often is perhaps not the best trait for someone who is in the business of selling prints which in themselves can be viewed as “stuff”.

Perhaps it is to the detriment of my yearly income that I don’t like to harp on about sales over and over again, but if you meet me for more than five minutes you will learn that my driving force behind these long hours, juggling three kids (one aged six months) and keeping a large number of people happy on social media, e mail and face to face, is not to line my pockets. Continue Reading…

Wellbeing

Guest post- Dietician Mary Jane McCluggage

October 25, 2016
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Having professionals on the blog is so special. I love hearing about new products, learning techniques and gleaning information from those I am fortunate enough to meet through this little space in the blogosphere.

I had the pleasure of bumping into Mary Jane at the North coast over the Summer.  She talked with such passion and knowledge that she didn’t stand a chance of escaping my offer for her to feature on Darling Edna! (Sorry Mary Jane)

Before I hand it over to Mary Jane, I want you to know that I am SO excited for what she is going to bring to your table. Advice, gentle guidance and clear cut facts that you can take away today and live by.

Enjoy.

Mary Jane Continue Reading…

Wellbeing

Why the scales don’t count. {My postpartum conclusion}

October 16, 2016
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I can see the eye rolls as this post airs.

Finding itself disappearing into the plethora of “postpartum blogposts ” and “weight doesn’t matter” memoirs.

Nonetheless, I have my own audience and ultimately I am speaking to you my dear friend.

Women who have stuck with me through this journey of self discovery, who have engaged with me and sent e mails or texts about their own struggles.

Those of you who stop me in the shops to say you started a kettle bell class after seeing my video, or made the decision to commit to two instead of three nights a week pilates classes when you realised it’s just not possible to do it”all”.

I love being surrounded and inspired by women like you, in my repertoire, who consistently let go of the need for the “perfect body” as defined by our air brushed society.

Seeing self worth as a better guide than any scales or numbers on a machine – you my darling are who this is for. Continue Reading…

Wellbeing

Weekly wellbeing 12.10.2016

October 12, 2016
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Aly’s elephant print from the new abstract collection can be found and bought here. It is special edition and comes in two sizes.

Well this is a turn of events.

My weekend wellbeing turned into weekend winners to now not even airing on a Sunday, and is now called weekly wellbeing!

But that’s just how life is over here right now.

I have been thinking a bit about this blog and it’s purpose over the past while. Often reminding myself that business, as with most things in life is seasonal. So, my busy period with art will pass no doubt when I establish working with my assistant/ helper Stephanie in the studio. Non hurried Time in my kitchen will once again reappear and rest won’t take as much of a priority when the baby grows a little bigger (ok, it probably will never take less of a priority, but you know what I mean.). Continue Reading…

Wellbeing

Weekend Winners 02.10.2016

October 2, 2016
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We’re knee deep in golf viewing with the Ryder cup tonight. ‘Third Green’ Irish Open special edition print above is available here.

How was your weekend?

We had a great one spending time as a family achieving very little. Myself and the three boys watched the movie ‘Brave’ yesterday after we walked and scooted to the local park. Four of the five of us then ventured to the local TK Maxx (!) and my eldest who knew it was a rarity for his Mum to clothes shop was quite vocal about the experience saying “This is pretty boring, who does this Mummy?”.

Shopping has always been viewed as more of a chore than a pleasure in my mind, and we were only in for trainers. So despite my rummaging through the rails ( that’s what TK Maxx is there for, right?) I got a pair of Reeboks and a pair of yoga leggings (what a surprise!) then scampered out of there. Oh yeh and the baby got a coat for the colder mornings on the School run.

A large food shop excites me more!

In case you don’t follow my various social media sites; twitter, Facebook and Instagram which is shown below and in your sidebar, you may have missed the excitement that my artwork features in this Season of The Fall. A BBC thriller which stars Jamie Dornan. Continue Reading…

Words

“Seeing” dead people.

September 28, 2016
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I spoke to my husband about how I *really* wanted to use this title even though it has perfect associations with the weird horror film ‘The sixth sense’ where a wee lad actually sees dead people.

It goes something like this…

“How often do you see them?
Cole Sear: “All the time. They’re everywhere. ”

What a skill set, eh?

Or like Mel Gibson in the movie ‘What women want’ where he hears what women think ALL THE TIME.  Sure you’d make a fortune.

I digress.

My point being that with a title like “Seeing dead people” you’d be forgiven for thinking I had paranormal abilities.

But I do not.

If you’re looking for ouija boards (a guy I fancied at the holiday camp site when I was 10 said he tried ouija board. Said he and his sister lifted off the floor. He also told me that he owned his own motorbike and had snogged twenty girls that Summer, so it’s fair to say he might be a liar), karma instincts and/or a deep rooted sense of ghosts you will, sadly, not find that here.

I am a complete scaredy cat if truth be told.

I grew up in the countryside and when I locked my pony’s “stable” (which was the old cattle pen within a big shed) I would sprint the one hundred metres across the yard to make sure I was clear of the dark, the leprechaun my uncle told me resided behind the big shed, or any kind of “bad men”.

This post is more about “seeing” my deceased Dad in the bodies and brains of my three children, my brother, and I guess, myself. Continue Reading…

Wellbeing

Weekend winners 25.09.16

September 25, 2016
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This week has been a blur of wonder and chaos.

I had wholesale orders, met with friends visiting from London, sold originals like hot cakes, and finally set up times for my assistant to come work. Progress guys, progress!

Sometimes I can’t see the wood for the trees with all the cool things that are happening yetI  would be the first to tell someone that “the first year of a baby’s life is the trickiest”, so I’m remembering that. The wee man needs me and in many ways all I want is to be with him so opportunities for walks are taken and cuddles stop me in my tracks.

I am really excited about this weekend’s wellbeing links for you just because I had time to read the cool and/ or funny links and enjoyed them so much. Continue Reading…

Featured, Wellbeing

Weekend wellbeing 18.09.2016

September 18, 2016
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My special edition Golden gate bridge is now LIVE on the shop, click here.

I am pretty behind on making this post for you as it is 5pm on Sunday evening but I had an AMAZING week and fun weekend that it is worth being a little off track for.

I hope you have had a good one.

Last week somehow I managed to be organised which for me (our family) is by no means the norm. Work and play were on high demand for every one of us (my kids have a better social life than me sometimes!) so I had no choice but to knuckle down and apply myself! Continue Reading…

Words

A photo walk how to |Insta meet Belfast

September 13, 2016
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When we think of a photo walk there can be an association with senior citizens in hiking shoes, binoculars, an old tripod and maybe some walking sticks. 

Or, at times I imagine my husband with his geography classes on a field trip in Newcastle county down and maybe a wee stick that has a rotating circle on the end that detects every metre you walk!

But that is not what a photo walk is.

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A photo walk is unique to the group who attend, it is an opportunity to meet like minded people, spot some cool areas or objects, point your camera at them, edit in camera or at home, then talk about and share what you have after the event.

Mel and I are doing just that in Belfast on Saturday as part of World insta meet day. Details in the image above. Continue Reading…