April 2020 was exuberantly weird. I was (and still remain) officially furloughed from work. I have been previously unemployed, during a large spell of my second year at university so I do know the drill. However, it is still odd waking up and knowing I can spend all day reading on my rooftop and drinking smoothies if I desire.
Due to furlough, I have tried to put my fingers into a range of different pies. From discovering new running routes not far from the flat, to embarking on a free Open University Course regarding the Ancient Olympics. I have baked a really bloody bad banana bread and super tasty cinnamon rolls. I have also perfected my signature vegan spaghetti carbonara, which is so gooood. Recipe coming to le blog soon!
I have fallen in love with barre and I am getting pretty good at re-arranging the mirrors in my flat, too. Interior designer? I still have not got my hands on an elusive Nintendo Switch and I am in the midst of watching Cold Feet, Normal People, Killing Eve and Modern Family. I have yet to finish a single series.
April has been both physically and mentally productive and I am proud. I have had really good days and also really bad days. But I have had my wonderful boyfriend and my mom to pick me back up. There has been tears and daytime naps – but always a smile on my face by the end of the day.
This month, I have bought a fair few things. Some have brought joy and endless entertainment. Others make my arse look good while simultaneously keeping me busy. Below are four of my favourite new things for April.
I have always preferred to peel my Monopoly properties off of a BBQ Chicken Legend and Large Fanta hold-the-ice combo. Sticking them to the paper board, which I lose instantaneously after disposing of my rubbish. McDonalds Monopoly thus poofs from my brain, leaving only a slight niggle of “could I have won that donut?” rearing between paydays. The pull of Monopoly has obviously always alluded me.
You can imagine then, my painted painful smile when Jordan suggests we purchase a Pokemon version of his favourite board game as an Easter Bank Holiday treat. Grit teeth. Punch in card details. Wait for the game of doom.
Fast-forward and I am utterly hooked. I want to purchase and bargain, auction and gamble every minute of every day. Easter Bank Holiday spawned a monster, and that monster is me. The Pokemon version adds that extra level of geekiness – you seriously do want to catch them all. Buy here for hours of squabbling over Electrabuzz and Ponyta.
And on the fifth day, God created Lululemon. On the sixth, he created the crazed cult hype which follows the brand like a creamy block of Derbyshire Stilton. In April, I caved after months of online basket flirting, and can announce I am a fully-fledged convert to the church of Lulu.
I bought the Align Pant 28” and when they are on, I feel like Mystique shapeshifting into Moira MacTaggert. I am focused, powerful and ready to fuck (up my ankle running). They do not slip, are super supportive and may now be the best bottoms in my wardrobe. They are super high-waisted (Grace Beverly would be proud) and beyond flattering. It is true love. Will you be my girlfriend, Lulu?
It is 10am. Your eyes are bleary, your limbs are shaking: last night’s Jägerbomb consumption is flooding back to you thick and fast. Welcome to the hangover club baby! The only way out? A spicy Bloody Mary. As an ode to my favourite brunch cocktail, I purchased a gorgeous Bloody Mary print from R Locke Design this month.
Rachel, who runs R Locke Design, is a Yorkshire-based ray of sunshine. She creates saccharine murals and sells prints bursting with bold colours and slabs of personality. I am a huge fan – I love everything she does. I really cannot wait to get this beauty framed and up in my kitchen!
Sure to put a smile on your face, R Locke Design can be found on Etsy, here.
Women’s Health Magazine Subscription
I used to be obsessed with subscription services when I was younger. I have had everything from Graze (click here for your first box free) to Roald Dahl scratch-and-sniff cards (working on this link). There is just something so exhilarating about a brown envelope being popped through your letterbox. Make that a brown envelope that is not a bill. Bills = not v. fun.
I recently subscribed to Women’s Health Magazine for 6 months at only £6! A bargain! Chock-filled with tasty food and raucous cocktail recipes as well as exercise tips and hacks, interviews, smoothies and a monthly Alice Liveing column. Women’s Health is simply brilliant.
Magazines are so great. You are contributing to the livelihood of journalists (most of them being freelancers like myself), educating yourself and maybe even finding your new favourite thing? I would really recommend getting involved. You can subscribe here.