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15 MOTIVATIONAL MUST-READS; Bringing Together International Women’s Day & World Book Day with Inspirational Women Authors

March doesn’t get better than this, as it features 2 of my favourite days; World Book Day (Thursday 5th March 2020) and International Women’s Day (Sunday 8th March 2020). So what better way to celebrate, well other than throwing a party, but to recognise some wonderful women writers.

I’m part of the Assist Women’s Book Club, and in this group, we focus on inspirational/motivational books. Books that will help us personally or in our businesses. We read all kinds of books by both male and female authors, but with this post, I thought it would be a great idea to recognise my 2 favourite days by bringing together some of my favourite inspirational women authors. This list is not exhaustive, but if you’ve not read the books on topvpn.fun, I recommend that you do so. Each one gives a powerful message. After reading (or listening) to each of these books I felt so inspired and motivated. 

Remember, if you don’t have time to read (many of us struggle with work, kids and life …) audible is a great way to get through some books. You can listen whenever and wherever! Many of us from our book club listen to books rather than reading. 

If you’d like to join the Assist Book Club, we have recently set-up a Facebook group. So, maybe don’t have the time to join our meetings (we only meet every 3 months but we understand how life can throw a spanner in the works), or you don’t live in the North East of England, we welcome ladies from anywhere and everywhere! You can join our Facebook group and become involved. We’d love for you to be inspired and join us virtually if you can’t join us physically.

Let’s see what some of my favourite books by inspirational women are:

15 MUST-READS

1. The Secret by Rhona Byrne 

Credit: Amazon.com

If you’ve not read ‘The Secret’ by Rhona Byrne, I recommend you go out there and do so! This was the first book I read about the ‘Law of Attraction’. 

This book did actually change my life. It sounds corny, but it actually did, because it helped me to recognise thought patterns that were unhealthy. Rhona helps us understand how our thoughts create our world. If you’ve not heard of the Law of Attraction, again, read this book. 

The Law of Attraction, in basic terms, is what we believe to be true, is the truth. Our life is simply the universe reflecting back to us our thoughts. So if we have negative thoughts, we will have a negative life, and if we have positive thoughts we will have a positive life. Sounds far too simple? It is actually simple, however, there are certain exercises that will help you along the way. This book is a must-read to help you align with the Universe. 

Once you start recognising your thought patterns, you will see the adjustment in your mood, in your behaviour and this will soon be reflected in your life. This book and Rhonda’s other books are fascinating. Since I started on this journey, I qualified as a Law of Attraction Practitioner and focus my blog on such teachings.

Purchase The Secret and Rhonda’s Other Books

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

2. Get Rich, Lucky Bitch – Denise Duffield-Thomas

This has been one of those books that kept popping up in my life, urging me to read it, but admittedly, I was uncomfortable with the word ‘Bitch’! But, how pleased I am, that I got over myself, and listened to this book. 

I loved listening to Denise talk about her initial fears of being called a ‘Bitch’, to having the word ‘Bitch’ in her company name. After listening to her book, I couldn’t think of a better name!

Denise has a way of communicating to all women. I felt like she could have been a friend who had popped in for a coffee. She explains about past beliefs and blocks that may be stopping you from reaching your potential. 

I also love that Denise admits she is lazy and wants an easy life. Who doesn’t? Who wouldn’t love to spend every day doing what you love … and getting paid for it? Denise puts this in terms that will make you know it is possible for you. Definitely put this on your reading list, no matter what stage in your business or life you’re at.

Purchase Get Rich, Lucky Bitch Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

3. The Calling – Rha Goddess

How can you not be drawn to a book that is titled ‘The Calling’ authored by a woman with the name Goddess? Love it! I downloaded and listened to this book after seeing a recommendation from Gabrielle Bernstein (who actually has written the foreword).

This a new book, only released in January. I’m so pleased I found it. It starts straight in with an explanation from Rha about her past and experiences and that we all have ‘a calling’, this had me hooked, as I truly believe we do all have ‘a calling’. We all have different passions, some of us fulfil these passions, others just dream about them.

But Rha encourages throughout this book to seek out your calling … unputdownable … stories, tips, advice and exercises along the way. 

Purchase ‘The Calling’ Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

4. The Universe Has Your Back – Gabrielle Bernstein

I’ve read many of Gabby Bernstein books, but this was the first book I read of hers and it resonated with me so profoundly that I became hooked on her work.

This title of this book says it all. The Universe wants to help us and the Universe will deliver to us if we align our thoughts.

It was after reading this book that Gabby’s tour dates popped into my inbox … and imagine my excitement when I checked the dates to see she was speaking in London. It didn’t take me long to book a ticket. 

This book, like most others on this post will give you the confidence to know if you ask, you will receive because ‘The Universe Has Your Back’. I recommend all of Gabby’s books, she explains how easy it is to attract what you want.

Purchase The Universe Has Your Back Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

5. The Courage to be Creative – Doreen Virtue

For any creative souls out there, this is the book for you! It was definitely the writer in me that was drawn to this book. Being the spiritualist that I am, I’ve read many of Doreen Virtue’s books, but this one was definitely my favourite.

It explains how our passion (or ‘our calling as Rha Goddess puts it) is our reason for being. We have been giving these urges to create because that’s what we are meant to do, not just for ourselves, but for others too. This book definitely encouraged me to follow my writing passions. If you feel like you’re having a creative block, or you are not following your creative dreams, this is definitely the book for you.

Purchase Doreen Virtue’s Book Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

6. She Means Business – Carrie Green

Credit : depop

Carrie Green’s name was recommended by one of our lovely ladies from the Assist Book Club. I’d heard of Carrie before, but had not really seen her work. Well, what can I say, a huge thank you to Cara, from our book club for recommending Carrie.

Her down-to-earth, girlfriend approach, will make you realise we all have the potential to reach our dreams.

The thing I love about Carrie is her realism. She gives lots of advice about moving yourself forward, that yes, the Law of Attraction works, but so should you. She gives lots of examples from other successful women, which in turn will give you the motivation you need to take steps forward. 

She also doesn’t sugarcoat the difficulties. She makes it real about the ups and downs of owning a business.

I will most definitely be following Carrie’s work now, I most definitely recommend you do too!

Purchase She Means Business Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

7. You are a Badass – Jen Sincero

Credit: medium

Again, another recommended by Cara, from our Assist Book Club. Thank you Cara.

I love finding new inspiring women and Jen is most definitely someone I relate to. She has a no-BS approach to her writing and I absolutely love that. Plus, she’s very funny. You don’t usually get comedy with inspirational books, I’m not saying they are not out there, but few and far between.

So I definitely recommend this book to not only help you feel inspired but will also make you smile … win-win! 

Purchase Jen Sincero’s Badass Book Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

8. What I Know For Sure – Oprah Winfrey 

Who would not want to know, what Oprah Winfrey knows? I know I did! Oprah is one of the many inspirational women who has had to overcome so much adversity.

In this book, Oprah opens up about her childhood and different experiences that have made her the woman she is today. She shows how gratitude is one of the ultimate things that can change your life around. Being thankful is so powerful, the Universe will continue to give when you are grateful for what you have.

She talks about real-life experiences and this gives a true insight into how she has become the strong miraculous woman she is today. This is a powerful book that will definitely get you thinking.

Purchase What I Know For Sure:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

9. The Warrior Goddess Training Programme – HeatherAsh Amara

Credit: You Tube

HeatherAsh unapologetically explains how we should LOVE ourselves. I LOVE this! I couldn’t stop listening to this book.

She gives examples of how we can love ourselves and why we should love ourselves. Too many women shy away from their wonderfulness.

They are embarrassed if someone compliments them … this book will show you how to embrace you .. and no, before you ask, not in a ‘cocky – check me out’ kind of way, but in a loving wonderful way that will only spread to others.

Her spiritual approach was something I could relate to. If you are struggling with loving yourself this is the book for you! Become the powerful goddess that you are.

Purchase HeatherAsh Amara Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

10. Your 3 Best Superpowers – Sonia Choquette

When I came across Sonia Choquette, I listened to her books so quickly. I loved everything she stood for.

She blends the Law of Attraction with Spirituality effortlessly. She shows us how interlinked the 2 things are, without us even realising.

She gives us sound advice on using our own abilities to live a life of happiness.

I would recommend Sonia’s other books, but I just chose this one, because I love the title. It’s very powerful.

She has a soft but confident approach, and it had me hooked.

Purchase Sonia’s Choquette’s Book Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

11. Rising Strong as a Spiritual Practice – Brene Brown

Brene Brown was someone I came across a few years ago and was hooked with her ‘no-nonsense’ approach.

Brene has spent over 20 years researching courage, shame, vulnerability and empathy. I’ve read other books from Brene, however, this is my favourite, because it’s about spirituality!

Brene shares real-life stories, experiences and examples of how we believe and perceive ourselves, and often how we perceive others. This book looks at loving ourselves and connecting to something powerful within.

If you have issues with feeling guilty, shameful and vulnerable, Brene Brown is your lady … she is your go-to … she will lift you up so you are ‘rising strong’.

Purchase Brene Brown’s Book Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

12. The Ultimate Marianne Williamson Library

Credit: Amazon.co.uk

I was introduced to Marianne Williamson’s work many years ago by a friend, who I met when we were studying our MA’s in Creative Writing. My friend loved Marianne’s work and she would tell me, ‘One day I will meet her’ … now, if you read even one of these books, you’ll know what is coming next … ‘Yes, she met her!’ Better than that … she flew to the USA, stayed in Marianne Williamson’s house with a few other selected ladies, and completed a 2-day course!

Crazy! Or What?

Not really! It’s really NOT that CRAZY!

Once you read these books and once you become aligned every single day, you’ll realise, it’s not crazy. My friend set an intention, the Universe listened and made it happen. It sounds simple, I know, but it is actually THAT simple!

But, by the by, I loved listening to Marianne Williamson. I listened to this book, while on the ‘cross trainer’ in the gym and it was one of those books I wanted to shout out, ‘Hell Yeah!’.

This book had so many tips, advice, examples, experiences, you name it, Marianne Williamson gave it all in this book. If it made me want to shout out, in a crowded place, not that I did might I add, then how could I not recommend it? Give yourself a relax and take in Marianne Williamson’s amazing wisdom, she really is a true inspiration.

Purchase Marianne Williamson’s Library Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

13. Becoming – Michelle Obama

I loved this book … yes, this is a bit different from the other books I’ve recommended, because it’s a memoir. But Michelle Obama is extremely inspirational.

The book starts with her childhood and takes us on a journey. I absolutely loved Michelle’s determination and commitment to staying true to herself. Even when she became First Lady, her own desires were just as important as ‘The President’s’.

She speaks truthfully on marriage, motherhood, work, the White House … the pressure of the rules and regulations Michelle had to follow when actually, I believe, she’s a bit of a free spirit … and, I love a free spirit. 

Personally, I fell in love with Michelle when she appeared on iCarly, on Nickelodeon, a few years back. Both my girls were watching the programme and I just loved her from then. It can be hard trying to balance work, children and trying to understand our inner-guidance … and Michelle, who was watched from every angle of the world pulled it off amazingly. I think you’ll agree, if you haven’t read this book, you must! 

Purchase Michelle Obama’s Book Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

14. Beautiful – Katie Piper

Credit: Depop

OMG! What a book! Katie Piper is amazing … and as I started this post, I did say that these books are not in order! I’ve simply put the 2 memoirs together. I cannot express how much my emotions were all over the place with this book. Sadness, frustration, anger, elation, happiness … yet, another book, I wanted to shout-out! ‘Go Katie!’

What an absolutely amazing woman. 

Katie is a true inspiration. She admits how her looks were so important to her, how she didn’t want to live when those looks were gone, to coming out the other side … her journey is incredible. As soon as I finished this, I downloaded her next book, which I’m yet to read, but I’m sure it will be just as amazing. 

Katie is a wonderful inspiration to all women and girls. Katie’s inside beauty has without a doubt resonated on the outside. She has been through so much, I didn’t realise how much until I read her book. The acid not only burnt her face but also inside her body; it burnt her insides! Yes, read that again! IT BURNT HER INSIDES! But she is still one of the most gorgeous women in the world, inside and out! A truly inspirational lady!

Purchase Katie Piper’s Book, Beautiful, Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

15. Women Who Run With Wolves – Clarissa Pinkola Estes

Credit: The Fullest

As I mentioned earlier, (several times), these books are in no order of my favourites, so please don’t think because Clarissa is placed at the bottom it’s my least favourite … far from it! 

I actually read about this book in one of my spiritual magazines, it was an ‘interviewee’s’ favourite book. Well, when someone says, ‘favourite book’, I’m there researching. Although I know we all have different tastes, I like to see if it’s something I would devour. It seems with this book I would have devoured for my starter, main and dessert! (And snacks actually!) 

This book is much more historical, statistical and, dare I say, maybe more serious, than any of the others I recommended, but for intuitive women out there, this is definitely a read for you! Someone made a review on Amazon that says it all, ‘If a wise grandmother became a book this would be it’.

This is such a powerful book that will make you realise why sometimes your soul is calling out to you, and your life is not reflective of this. For women who have a fight, a passion, an urge, a longing, a want, a need … this book describes historical beliefs and how society has moved forward (or not!). But Clarissa helps us move forward, take steps to change these beliefs. Once we grasp them, once we understand them, once we realise they are there, then we can change them. 

If you’ve got this far, thank you! All these women have powerful messages to share, messages that will no doubt help you on your journey. Often we feel alone in this world, as if we are the only ones feeling this incompleteness, but by connecting to these women and other women, you’ll know your feelings are your passion, urging you to move forward. Clarissa gives us an idea of why and how we have these feelings. I recommend you read her book, first, second or last … whichever, it is a must-read.

Purchase Women Who Run With Wolves Here:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

FREE INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES AND POSTER BELOW

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Inspiring Ideas for the Month of LOVE! Not just for a loved one but for yourself!

February is the month of LOVE! This isn’t just for those in a relationship, or those sending love to someone … this is about self-love. Remember this month is about loving yourself too!

Personally, I think every month should be the month of LOVE! There is something we say in our home, when there is a little bit of friction, that is, ‘Send the love’. If you are ever in a situation that makes you feel a little rattled etc. Simply say ‘Send the love’, if doesn’t work the first time, say it again, until it does. Truly feel it. When you realise that you can release so much positive energy and override any negative energy with this powerful feeling, it kind of becomes addictive.

But as we said earlier, this is the month of love … February 14th being the pinnacle day of LOVE!

Now remember, this isn’t just for those in a relationship, or those sending love to someone … this is about self-love. So if you look through these ideas, remember this month is about loving yourself too!

Make sure you not only treat any loved ones, you treat yourself too.

VALENTINE PRINTS

Downloadable love prints, you can put them up around your house, just as prints, put them in a frame (in your preferred size) or even make a collage. Whichever, this is wonderful gift to yourself and to a loved one. Give yourself some well-deserved love. These can be printed or sent as an email. They are a great way to inspire love.

SURROUND A ROOM WITH INSPIRING LOVE HEARTS

CREDIT: AMAZON

Here you could print your own and write a message on each one.

Or you could draw some love hearts on coloured paper, write a message & cut them out.

If you are pushed for time, then you can buy something similar. Amazon have these lovely origami rose pink hearts each one presenting a love quote.

Remember this can also be a treat for yourself.

 

VALENTINE VOUCHER / COUPONS

I love quirky gifts (and remember they could be a gift to yourself), a voucher entitling you to a nice warm bath, a movie night or a massage … you can make your own or download some printables, there’s plenty of free coupon /vouchers ideas on Pinterest.

VALENTINE SWEETS

Credit: Personalised Gift Shop

There are companies that will design you a box of glorious sweets, or you could get creative and design your own. Again, for yourself or a loved one, there’s nothing wrong with showing yourself some appreciation with a treat to yourself. 

Whether it’s chocolate or candy, putting them together in a creative way is a great way to show the love.

I’ve seen some wonderful designs from people making their own poem with chocolate bars. You can see more ideas here.

A LOVE LETTER / GRATITUDE POSTER 

Expressing your feeling of love can be an awesome feeling, for yourself and for the person receiving them. So, if you were to write a letter of love to yourself … ‘win-win’ … but if you do have a special someone in your life, writing down all the things you love about them, is actually a therapy in itself.

If you don’t particularly like using words, creating a picture of your feelings can help. Look through the internet, print off photos or cut out some pictures from magazines.

If you have kids this is a great thing to do together. You can show them how much you appreciate them & vice versa. It’s a great exercise to show children love & gratitude.

COOK A MEAL / BAKE

Seems like such a simple idea, and you may be thinking, ‘but I cook most nights!’ But find a recipe that is different from your norm. If you are not the most confident cook, even cutting a pizza into a love-heart can be extremely romantic.

Get adventrous with some homemade heart cookies … if all else fails, then buy some.

Light some candles, decorate the table with love hearts and confetti … in less than a minute you can have a cosy restaurant setting.

GET CREATIVE

This can be as simple as designing your own card. Your own efforts can go a long way in showing how much you care. If you’re not the most crafty of people, there are plenty of sites that can help you create a personalised card, but my favourite has to be moonpig.

You could print out lots of photos and make a scrapbook. If you’re single, you could find your favourite photos of yourself, with family and friends and bring them together into a collage of memories.

PAMPER SESSION 

This could be as simple as having a bath with bubbles & candles. If you feel you could do with further pampering, book in for a massage (either on your own or as a couple), if you truly want to indulge (and why the hell not!), book a spa day! 

There are some great deals available, companies such as Groupon, do some fantastic spa deals.

GO FOR A WALK

This is an amazing way to clear the cobwebs! You can either go exploring in the hills, beach or villages. Explore where you live. Every place has hidden treasures, find them and visit them. This is a fantastic activity to do on your own, or with a loved one. 

It’s one of my favourite ‘things to do’; it refreshes, reboosts and reenergises. Perfect for self-love, friendship-love and couple-love.

 

GO FOR A DRIVE

Again, this is an amazing way to explore different places. Visit places you’ve not seen before. Set yourself the task of driving for an hour or so, but plan out your route and try to take a countryside scenic route. If this isn’t possible then appreciate the drive you can take … explore the houses, the buildings, the paths, the roads … there is beauty everywhere we look.

This is a great thing to do if you are feeling ‘out-of-sync’ with where you live … drive around your area, drive out of the area, focus on the positive parts of where you live. This has such a great ‘feel-good’ factor and is a fun activity to do.

Whatever you decide to do for yourself or a loved one, just ensure you have fun!

 

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How to Beat the January Blues

Have you been feeling the ‘January blues?’

A similar feeling to the ‘holiday blues’?

Oh yes! Those good old holiday blues; you’ve had an amazing holiday and then all of a sudden it’s over and you’re faced with the reality of work and your everyday routine. Often coming from the sun, sea and beach to a rainy, cloudy or windy scenario waiting for us back home.

‘Wiki’ explains why; ‘… after the person returns home, they realize how boring and unsatisfactory their normal lifestyle routine is when compared to the activities they did while on their holiday/vacation.’

These ‘blues’ are different to SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) which doctors believe relates to the body and its response to sunlight. The holiday blues usually hits us when we’ve experienced a very pleasurable holiday that puts our life into perspective. We come to realise how busy we are and that we want to change things in our lives.

Credit: 123dentist.com

This is what happens in January too. After the build-up of Christmas, the hustle and bustle, the spending, the recuperating, the resting, the eating, the drinking … then we approach the New Year with a new mindset. We go all out with our resolutions; diet, gym, dry january, stop smoking, find a new job, find love, etc. the list is endless.

We put so much pressure on ourselves to achieve it all. I am all things inspiring (read more of my blog posts) but I am realistic too. Often, we expect too much of ourselves, hence the reason statistics show that only 8% of people achieve their New Year resolutions. The remaining 92% find themselves struggling. This can set-off a rollercoaster of emotions, which in turn leads to the ‘January blues’!

So, firstly, as I always say ‘small steps count‘. Take one thing you want to change and work on that. This is the best way to achieve your goals. Even if you’ve fallen into the 92% of people, it’s never too late to start again. Instead of writing yourself a list of unobtainable dreams, take one of those dreams and work on that. Make it your goal to acheive that one thing. Do this for one month, then work on another goal. Break it down and make life easier for yourself.

Doing the above is a great way to beat the January blues, here’s a few other tips that can help pick you up:

GO OUTSIDE

This has to be one of my favourite things to do. I love walking. Research has proven that nature can improve our mental health. It reduces anxiety and depression. A walk in the hills or along the beach is a great way to shake off the Christmas Cobwebs.

MAKE AN EFFORT TO DO SOMETHING YOU ENJOY

We all have different hobbies; some people like crafts and arts, others like boxsets or reading. Whatever you enjoy doing, do it! Have a day of watching your favourite characters on TV. Read something by your favourite author, or read something inspiring (there are plenty of motivational books out there). Set yourself a project and ensure that you take time out to do it.

ORGANISE / DECLUTTER YOUR HOUSE

Work through every room and discard of anything you don’t use. Be ruthless. If you’ve not used it in the last 6 months, let it go! Bag up old clothes, bin anything that resembles rubbish and give a lick of paint to any room that needs it. The art of decluttering is fantastic for your mental health.

TREAT / PAMPER YOURSELF

The stress of Christmas can leave us feeling a little frazzled. Booking a massage is a great way to start the year. If this is something you’d be interested in, a daily bubble bath is a wonderful way to end the day. You can either lay still and enjoy the quiet or read a book while you soak. Having a bath daily is a wonderful way to destress.

BE GRATEFUL 

The ‘blues’ can hit us because we feel we are ‘lacking’ something. This is a great time to write a list of the things you are grateful for. Think deep when it comes to gratitude; appreciation for the water you drink, the roof over your head, to the shoes on your feet. Build up from there and you’ll be surprised where your gratitude list can take you. Keep it with you, by your bed or in a place you will have access to it everyday. Every night reflect on your day, and add to your list something you are grateful for.

The above things can simply be integrated into your life. They are experiences that will enrich your wellbeing. So, stop being hard on yourself and make the decision today to do something that will move you forward.

If there is an area in your life that you would like to concentrate on see my A-Z of inspirational blogging. The posts include advice, tips, quotes and some include therapeutic writing exercises. Sendning you happiness and joy guys!

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5 Ways To Have A Happy Halloween

‘Happy Halloween’, I’ve always loved this quote, especially as children (and many adults) do their very best to scare the living daylights out of each other, how does that equate to happiness … but it actually does; from the dressing-up, the laughter and, of course, the treats!

A wonderfully decorated house in the USA.
Credit: Self.com

In the U.K, we do like to dress-up, go trick or treating and often throw a Halloween party. However, for those of you who are American, my hat goes off to you! A few years back, we visited Atlanta, in October and … all I can say is … OMG! The houses that were decorated ready for Halloween were amazing! They were so awe-inspiring! My girls loved it. 

And now with the Halloween holidays approaching us quickly (and, can I just say, can you believe we are in October, I think I blinked through 2019!), I decided to look at ways in which you can bring happiness to your Halloween. 

1. A PUMPKIN CARVING COMPETITION

There are some crazy, wacky and wonderful artistic designs on pumpkins, it would bring so much laughter to hold a fun competition between family and friends. Obviously kids who are too young to be using carving equipment, could pair with an adult. Not only a fun activity, but a great opportunity for bonding.

 

2. MAKE SOME FUN FOOD

There are lots of food ideas and it’s not just about the end product, but the excitement of making the food. See below some fab pictures and links to see how you can make a selection of scary, creepy and gross-looking foods.

See these simple but very effective recipes from

Taste of Home

Credit: Taste of Home

Check out this brain dip and other creative food ideas from

Country Living

Credit: Country Living

Clean and Scentsible

displayed these quirky pretzel broomsticks and

many other fun halloween recipe ideas

Credit: Clean and Scentsible

If you want to see more freaky and fun Halloween food ideas, you can see plenty here on Pinterest

3. MAKE YOUR HOUSE INVITING TO ‘TRICK OR TREATERS’ WITH AWESOME DECORATIONS

As I said earlier in my post, I love the Halloween decorated houses in America. They really do go to town for this holiday. So I’ve been looking through some wonderful photos to give you some inspiration to bring the scary to your home.

Check out the realtor website for some wacky and wonderful exterior Halloween ideas

Credit: Realtor

Love this … if you’re a fan of the walking dead you’ll see why!

See this website ‘explosion’ for more awesome Halloween house ideas 

Credit: Explosion

Halloween doorways to entice those trick or treaters!

Credit: Pinterest

See more ideas on pinterest here 

4. CRAFT IDEAS FOR KIDS

There’s a great variety of Halloween crafts for kids; from decorating your home with their creativity to letting them design and colour to their hearts content. See below some fun and freaky crafty ideas;

Crazy Little Projects is a fab website run by mum of 4, Amber Price. You can discover lots of different ideas on her site, including lessons on how to sew! Might come in handy if you want to create a wonderful and wacky Halloween costume. 

Credit: Crazy Little Projects

Another fab website for craft ideas is, One Little Project, see these Halloween Candy People … which child isn’t going to love these!

Credit: Red Book

Perfect way to keep the kids entertained is colouring some creative pictures. There’s plenty of places to download free colouring prints, but I was drawn to this site fun free halloween. They have lots of different designs to keep your kids entertained.

Credit: Fun Free Halloween

5. GAMES

Whether you are having a halloween party or simply having a few friends round, playing games is a great way to bring laughter into your home and the halloween holidays. Here’s a few ideas to get you started;

At Crayola, you can download some free bingo game cards, perfect way to start or end the night.

Credit: Crayola

Kids absolutely love the ‘toilet roll mummy game’ … wrapping a friend in toilet roll and racing against other friends to see who can make the best mummy. This game never fails to bring laughter to the home.

Credit: Jamie Saunders; scattered thoughts of a crafty mum

One of my favourite Halloween games is, ‘Guess what’s in the box!‘ I love the squriming and squealing when the kids put their hand inside the mystery box to feel brains, eyeballs or whatever else is gross enough for Halloween.

Credit: Sunflower Story Time

Imaginations are stretched when the feeling slimy pasta represents ‘guts’. There are so many ideas, here’s a few links to help you create the perfect mystery Halloween box. 

The Spruce Crafts

Happy Mom Hacks

Momma Braga

So as you can see there we have lots of ideas to help you have a Happy Halloween

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Fun & Quirky Gifts & Printables for Wine Lovers

Can you believe Christmas is coming … I don’t even want to count the weeks, days etc. time just seems to be escaping. 

The kids have only gone back to school, and I’m not quite sure where the summer holidays went and now we have to think about Christmas!

This is one of the reasons, I love writing my blog! When we think about how fast time is passing us by, it’s a reminder to stop and take a breath. Enjoying each day is what matters. 

With this in mind … enjoying each day with a glass of wine is how some people like to roll! Not that I’m encouraging this behaviour, but as a wine-lover, (yes we can still be spiritual etc. and enjoy the flavours of alcohol-fuelled grapes), there’s something fun about receiving a wine-related gift.

So do you have a family member or friend who would relish, or find it fun, to recieve a quirky wine-related gift?

Here’s some fab ideas!

A BATH CADDY

How perfect is this for wine lovers, book lovers and bath lovers?

A fab all-in-one pressie.

A Homiu 100% natural bamboo bath caddy from DealBerry (was £44.50) OR redeem towards another available deal

Check it out on wowcher

WINE FOOD BOOK

For those friends who not only love wine, but who also enjoying cooking. This great book has many ideas to accompany the finest wines.

WINE STARTER KIT

Many wine lovers have their favourite wines, but many are up for exploring different tastes. This is a great pressie for wine-lovers to experiment making their own wine.

Starter Wine Making Set - Solomon Grundy Gold Cabernet Sauvignon 6 Bottle Size Red Wine Kit With Equipment - Home Made Homemade Wine

Click here to purchase this fun wine making kit

WINE CHILLER STICK

I love this! We’ve all seen the wine bottle coolers, but sometimes they are just not convenient! How perfect is this? Not only does it keep it cool but it is a wine stopper too! Perfect for those friends who simply like a glass of wine, rather than the bottle!!

Check it out this chiller here

FUNKY WINE HOLDERS

I love a quirky wine holder! I love the shoe design holders, but if that’s not your thing, check out the link below for more funky designs.

SEE MORE FUNKY, QUIRKY WINE HOLDERS

FUNKY PERSONALISED ACCESSORIES

How cute are these? Perfect for those friends who love to snuggle with a glass of wine. Personalising them gives that extra special touch. 

Wine Socks Funny Socks Women's Personalized Socks image 0
SEE HERE HOW YOU CAN PERSONALISE THESE GORGEOUS SOCKS

PERSONALISED WINE BOTTLE

Tell me a wine-lover who wouldn’t want to see their name branded on a bottle of wine! Perfect, fun and quirky keepsake gift.

Personalised "Always Be My Partner in Wine" Couples’ Wine

See here how you can personalise a bottle for your loved one

WINE COLOURING BOOK

Not only is this a fun pressie, but it is perfect for mindfulness. A glass of wine and a relaxing evening colouring … perfect!

You can purchase the snarky wine colouring book here

WINE SOAP

A fun gift that is great for wine lovers who love their baths.

See more about this wine soap here

PORTABLE & FOLDABLE WINE & PICNIC TABLE

I have no words for this … it’s perfect! Not only to use in the park or on the beach, but also in the garden when entertaining friends! You could buy this for a wine loving friend, or buy it for yourself! This defintiely something I’ll be adding to my kitchen attire.

WINE CANDLE

What a perfect way to spend a relaxing evening: a beautiful scented candle giving off the aroma of your favourite wine. Lovely gift for wine lovers.

See this pinot grigio wine candle here

LAST BUT NOT LEAST,

MY OWN FUNKY WINE PRINTABLES!

Download the Vinyl Cutting Machine Guide, print and frame! Simple! A cheap but fun gift for wine-lovers.

This is a bundle of wine prints for under £5: you receive 10 prints in 4 different sizes (4×6, 5×7, 8×10, 11×14)

You can even use them as scrolls … tie a piece of red ribbon around the scroll & it’s already looking like christmas!

See below the prints you will receive, all print off in black and white:

See here the above black and white prints, available on my online shop. 

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INSPIRE YOUR CHILDREN THIS SUMMER

UNFORTUNATELY, THIS FREEBIE HAS ENDED. YOU CAN PURCHASE THE PRINTABLES ON MY ONLINE SHOP.

HOWEVER … I am all about inspiring people, especially children to believe in themsleves. If you send me an email, vicky@victoria-brown.com, I’d be more than happy to send you the full package for free!

Your very own FREE downloadable summer activity printables for children, PLUS, some wonderful inspiring messages for them to colour in to help them believe in themselves.

THIS FREEBIE IS AVAILABLE UNTIL THE END OF AUGUST! 

DOWNLOAD NOW

8 INDIVIDUAL INSPIRING PRINTS

& 14 PAGE ACTIVITY BOOKLET

See below what you’ll receive, then simply fill in your details at the bottom of this post, check your emails (check your spam if you can’t see it! And if it’s not there at all, drop me an email on vicky@victoria-brown.com).

To download the above for your kids, simply fill in the details below, open your emails, download, print, have fun and inspire your little ones …

DON’T FORGET TO SEND THEM TO ME: vicky@victoria-brown.com – I’d love to see them and put them on my website … kids inspiring kids!

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TATTOO INSPIRED PRINTABLES

I’m a huge fan of tattoos, especially quote tattoos. The trend is actually increasing, as more and more people decorate their bodies with something that means something to them.

As we step into June and the weather becomes warmer, bodies are bared and body art is revealed. If you’re a lover of tattoos, like me, you’ll love looking at other people’s designs.

Many people can take years to decide which design they would like, others design their own, and yes, there are the odd few who have had a drunken moment and ended up marking their skin, with, shall we say, not the most dashing of designs.

Just for laughs, you can see an article on buzz feed here, of 28 drunk tattoos.

So for the month of June, I decided to put some printables together that were inspired by tattoos, (don’t worry there are no drunken-inspired pictures that you definitely wouldn’t hang around your home).

You can see below the instant downloadable prints that are available on my shop. This is a package of 4 prints that come in 4 different sizes.

The star-inspired printable …

I love the star tattoo in this picture & how awesome is the love between the two women. There are other tattoos on the women, but it was the star that inspired me to create the printable ‘without the dark, we’d never see the stars’.

CREDIT: Image by Ben Kerckx from Pixabay

credit: Image by Kevin Fields from Pixabay

You can purchase the above prints in a package

of 4 prints in 4 different sizes

The winged tattoo …

I love this picture. To me, it speaks power and courage. Although the tattoos are intricate, and actually remind me of a dream catcher, it was the context behind the picture that got me thinking … and the quote, ‘take those broken wings & learn how to fly’ came to mind.

Credit: Image by 2234701 from Pixabay

You can purchase the above prints in a package

of 4 prints in 4 different sizes

Inspiring tattoos …

I love this simple but powerful message. I think this is a sexy elegant tattoo that can be shown at the owner’s will. Loving all things inspiring, it was this tattoo that inspired the printable, ‘believe in yourself’.

Credit: Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

You can purchase the above prints in a package

of 4 prints in 4 different sizes

How cute is this? Any tattoo that is family related, I love. I have both my daughters names on my foot. Personally, I think it signifies love. This got me thinking about family, and the quote, ‘Family, where love never ends’ felt perfect to place on a print that can be placed in anyone’s home.

credit: Image by Ritinha Corain Ritinha from Pixabay

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WORLD LAUGHTER DAY! Surround yourself with fun & quirky quotes to help keep you laughing!

Yes, there is such a thing as World Laughter Day. It is celebrated worldwide on the first Sunday of May every year. It was created by Dr. Madan Kataria in 1998 in Mumbai, India.

Dr.Madam Kataria founded the Yoga Laughter Movement. The idea to bring positivity, peace and unity across the globe, to connect with each other through laughter. Did you realise there are thousands of laughter clubs across 105 countries?

Credit: Slideshare

How awesome is this guy? Creating such an awesome day and spreading the love of laughter to so many people.

There’s so much sadness in the world, so to focus on laughter can bring so much joy to us. Laughing your way through problems can be the easiest way to overcome them. Joining others on their laughter mission could be just what you need. Yes, this can be easier said than done, but Dr. Madan Kataria has created tools you can use that will help.

In my research, of this awesome day, I found his online laughter university … I encourage you to take a look.

Imagine being surrounded by people who are happy. I understand that laughter or a smile doesn’t always mean happiness, but even faking it can make you feel better. Faking it until you feel it within. You will eventually feel that happiness and joy.

You can read my previous post on Laughter, participate in the therapeutic writing exercise and task. Find something to laugh about and spread this love to everyone.

This month I’ve added 10 downloadable funny and quirky quotes to my online shop. You can spread the joy throughout your home or workplace; a little reminder that laughter is so important.

The following prints come in a package for £9.99, which is less than £1 per print. You can print, frame for your home or as gifts for friends.

Visit my shop to purchase or look at more prints

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IT’S SPRINGTIME: Tips for those who don’t get a buzz out of cleaning!

Credit: Spot on Solutions

So it’s spring and that seems to come along with a term called ‘cleaning’ …

Yes, the time of year for, apparently, de-cluttering … 

Here’s the thing with cleaning at any time of the year, I know it’s good for the soul, I know it feels amazing AFTER, but I’m one of those women who doesn’t actually enjoy the ‘actual cleaning’.

I love this quote by Nancy Mitford:

“I think housework is far more tiring and frightening than hunting is, no comparison, and yet after hunting, we had eggs for tea and were made to rest for hours, but after housework people expect one to go on just as if nothing special had happened.”

Housework is one of those things I want the whole family to notice. I have friends who get such joy from cleaning … I wish I was like them … but I don’t think anything could ever make me LOVE cleaning! It’s something that HAS to be done.

Plus, when you have children it’s one of those things that never seems to end! I like to work on projects and tick them off my list knowing I’ve met a deadline. Cleaning doesn’t work like that when you have children …

You can spend a full day cleaning and the next day the house looks as if it’s been burgled. I’m a believer that life is precious and time is of the essence. However, all that aside, cleaning is kind of a must, unless you’re happy to wallow around in dust and dirt … 

On a serious note though, research shows that cleaning can make us happy! I’m going with the after-effect of cleaning can make us happy, because I do not clean my toilets and feel happiness.

But having a complete clear-out can be very soothing for the soul. That’s why spring cleaning has become a tradition. It’s a chance to clear out the winter clothes etc. It’s a time to get ready for brighter weather, clearer nights and longer days … it’s thought we become a lot more active when the sunnier weather arrives. 

So, I’ve admitted defeat and I have spring cleaned … I know … I was hoping the fairies would do it, but it didn’t happen, I got stuck in … lots of things went to the tip, lots of things went to charity and lots of things went in cupboards (because you just don’t know when they’ll be needed).

For those like me, who don’t find joy in the actual cleaning process, but LOVE the feeling after, I’ve put together a few tips for you …

  • THINK LONG-TERM

Think of cleaning as a job, a project … it will come to an end and you will feel empowered after. You will experience a kind of peace with yourself. Focus on this calming and peaceful feeling. Even if it lasts for a day!

  • PUT MUSIC OR AN AUDIOBOOK ON

This is a must for me; headphones in and listening to my latest book. I use audible from Amazon, which is fab. But if you’re a music lover, stick on your favourite tunes and dance your way around the dust.

  • ONE ROOM AT A TIME

I always think if you start from the top first and work your way down through the house. By eliminating rooms as you go, you’ll feel like you’re achieving something rather than flitting between different rooms and feeling like you’re not getting anywhere. Once you can close the door to one room, it will encourage you to keep going.

  • TAKE YOUR TIME

I love deadlines. I like things to be complete within a certain timeframe so I can move onto the next thing. That’s just the way I work, it helps me achieve important tasks. However, if you rush the cleaning process, you may not feel at peace when you finished. To do a thorough spring-clean could take a few days, a week or longer, (Try not to make the process too long, because you’ll be a full year in and back to spring cleaning again, plus the aim is to feel fresh and finished). However, life can’t stop because we are de-cluttering, so there will still be work commitments, school-runs, family duties etc. But don’t give up. Set yourself a realistic target and aim towards that.

  • REWARD YOURSELF

Ooohhhh …. my favourite tip! I’m a believer in rewarding my children for good behaviour, but I also believe this should extend to adults. If we’ve achieved a goal we should reward ourselves. It makes life lots more interesting. Your reward could be a glass of fizz or a new outfit (to fill up the space you’ve emptied in your clear-out!) Whatever you decide, indulge yourself … remember this reward as you work through each room.

Hopefully, the above tips will help. Admittedly it does feel lovely after the cleaning process is complete … until my girls decide to start on a creative project and the mess starts AGAIN!

This is the month to celebrate spring-time … so going with our printables theme this year, I’ve created some prints that will hopefully give you a spring in your step, or bring fun to your home.

You can see both sets of print packages below and as always purchase, download and print for your own home from my online shop.

PACKAGE ONE – FUN QUIRKY SPRING CLEANING QUOTES

ABOUT NOT CLEANING

PACKAGE TWO – BRING SOME FRESHNESS

INTO YOUR HOME WITH THESE

AWESOME SPRING QUOTES

YOU CAN FIND MORE FUN AND QUIRKY DOWNLOADABLE PRINTABLES

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Celebrating International Women’s Day: QUOTES FROM EMPOWERING AND INSPIRATIONAL WOMEN

We celebrate International Women’s Day on the 8th March.

This historical day began in the early 1900s when it was a great time for radical changes. It all began when 15,000 women came together and marched through the streets of New York demanding better hours, better pay and voting rights

You’ll have read about the suffragette movement, and how founder Emmeline Pankhurst was jailed at least ten times for speaking out about women’s rights. This movement caused women to not only be jailed but killed.

Some will say we still have a way to go, and I haven’t written this post to get into any political debate. I have written it though to express gratitude to all women. Yes, all women.

I love this quote by Angela Anagnost-Repke (Writer)

Dear Daughter, I hope that you are happy for other women’s victories and not jealous, are never afraid to be alone, don’t care about the size of the ring on your finger, can inhale a cheeseburger on the first date and always pull another woman up when she’s down.’

There have been some amazing women who have given everything to push for equality. They have overcome dire challenges, they have fought, they have continued to pursue their dream and goals. Women who strive forward with such passion, conviction and belief in themselves. Such women have paved the way for other women.

It’s our duty as women, to encourage, support and celebrate other women.

On this note, this month’s downloadable printables include quotes from many amazing women.

On my online shop you can purchase a variety of quotes: 

20 printable quotes from empowering inspiring women

10 quotes from Audrey Hepburn

10 quotes from JK Rowling

10 quotes from Mother Teresa

10 quotes from Gabrielle Bernstein

There’s an overview below of the prints that are available from the above women. See if any of these packages would inspire you if they were in your home or office. Or even print and frame for a loved one, who may need support and encouragement.

20 printable quotes from empowering inspiring women

YOU CAN DOWNLOAD ALL THE ABOVE FROM MY ONLINE SHOP

FOR LESS THAN £9.99 (ALL COME IN 4 DIFFERENT SIZES: 11×14, 8×10, 5×7, 4×6)

You can surround yourself with awesome quotes from empowering inspirational women, you can also pass to your female friends.

Spread the love.

10 quotes from Audrey Hepburn

10 quotes from JK Rowling

10 quotes from Mother Teresa

10 quotes from Gabrielle Bernstein

All of the above are available on my online shop, with any other printables, please feel free to check them out and any special offers.

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