Tag Archives: motivation

The Big Trip

Drumroll please….OUR TRIP TO AMERICA IS FINALLY HERE!!! Months and months of detailed planning, late nights spent reading Tripadvisor reviews, in depth analyses of guide books and expensive phone calls at impossible hours are all about pay off!!

I am excited beyond recognition! I have bought approximately fifteen items of clothing with various U.S. city names written on them, even though I will probably (who am I kidding… definitely!!!) end up buying all sort of souvenir stuff along the way. But there is nothing like the anticipation of a holiday to make you feel like a child again ūüôā
So I just allow myself the indulgences of

1. printing out my Broadway musical tickets for the third time
2. listening to Viva Las Vegas, California Dreaming, New York New York…because I have to “get in the mood”
3. watching Sleepless in Seattle, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Sunset Boulevard and Chicago on repeat
4. making endless Pinterest walls of “Best Photo Locations in San Francisco”, “Places to Eat in NYC”, “Best Outdoor Date Locations in Chicago”.. because it’s fun even if we don’t get to do all of them

So in the spirit of being excited, here is the itinerary of our Big USA Trip of 2015:












I’m sipping my coffee at Heathrow with a boarding pass in my hand, so it is definitely happening!! This summer may well be the last one I can call a ‘summer break’ having just finished my degree (well, hope so, not got the “official” results yet) in Comparative Literature (aka “I’ll be unemployed studies”). This summer is still about travel, ice creams, friends, family, wedding planning (whoop whoop!!) and long naps. Before we move into our lovely new home in Portbury (Bristol) and I end up becoming a suburban housewife/ ambitious career woman with a hundred children, I want to make sure that we have some killer memories to look back on!


updates to follow


The One With Portobello Market

shopping on a market is like going on a holiday… the colours of hand-painted textile and vintage upholstery, the smell of fresh fruit and homemade waffles, the people from all around the world looking for antique bargains and exclusive finds…it’s several¬†shops packed into one!! antiques, food, vintage clothing, arts and crafts supplies, jewellery and toys…what’s not to love??

I live 2 minutes from Portobello Market, and have a habit of spending more than I can admit on things that I absolutely do not need or have the storage space for.


whether you’re a foodie, a health freak or just plain hungry, you’ll find something to satisfy your taste-buds. best destination for fresh, exotic exotic ingredients, and mouth-watering hot food.

IMG_5065 IMG_5073most of the street’s fruit¬†stalls are family businesses with third or fourth generation traders who‚Äôve¬†spent their whole lives selling goods on the market. if you spend some time sweet-talking them, they will tell you things about oranges and mushrooms and fish that¬†you didn’t even¬†know existed.


The prices are almost always a cheaper than supermarkets, and many stalls exclusively sell organic, seasonal products.



Laura Stevens Ward, director of Buddhafly London

Meet Laura. Her collections were inspired by trips to India, where the colours and textures left a lasting mark on her designs. She also founded charity, Buddhafly, raising funds for a family she met while volunteering in India.

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Check out her Facebook page and website for more details on her collections and for information on how to donate to her charity.


Amongst the huge selection of vintage and antique traders there are plenty of contemporary designers to be found on Portobello Market.

Sefa Huyuk, a designer from Turkey has had a stall on the market for four years.

Sefa Huyuk, free-lance jewellery designer

Sefa Huyuk, free-lance jewellery designer

‘I source the¬†materials and¬†gems from India and Turkey. I like to accommodate the shape of the stone without cutting.’

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Sefa sells custom jewellery on Etsy, where he also takes personal request for specially designed pieces.


the proper flea market starts from the Northern side of the market where you’ll find¬†everything from retro knick-knacks¬†to mid-century¬†pottery and serious antiques…

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Brocant Antique is a moving shop of womders.

‘We scour the flea-markets and thrift shops of Europe to source the most original and inspiring articles, to grace your home and delight your heart. From retro German lavaware to Belgian art deco, from old medicine bottles to recycled coat hooks fashioned from antique silverware. Trust me: Your heart’s desire is out there, just waiting for Brocant to discover it!’

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They also organise coach trips of vintage markets around Europe. You can find out more about them here.


you can be sure of one advantage when it comes to market vs. high street: it is one of a kind. whether it’s clothing, furniture or jewellery, hand made contemporary or vintage,¬†you will never see it anyone¬†else.

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happy shopping for this weekend…, -timi


The One With The Reading Challenge

here is the thing to know about me and projects- I really love them, as far as plans, outlines and lists go. one of my favourite things to do in the world is making motivation and mood-boards, whether that be on Pinterest or the pin-board above my desk.¬†i am going to admit to a slight¬†obsession with cut out illustrations (because they are pretty and inspiring) magazine articles (because I will definitely need to know the five healthiest oils to cook with at some point in my life) and advertisements (because there is no end to my list of ‘if I win the lottery I am buying this..’)

I will still¬†stand by my¬†half-completed scrapbooks and lists of lists because guess what…they actually work!

having said that, of course I am not suggesting that I get everything done, but¬†I helps me keep up with the things that inspire me, the many things I once hope to¬†learn and try… and believe it or not, things do get ticked off of the list.
THE LIST¬†can be located¬†in my yearly planner, it enjoys the highest security clearance as it contains future xmas and birthday gift ideas (yes,¬†i am talking xmas 2014), concert and musical titles¬†waiting to be watched, scrapbook supplies to be bought and short courses to be taken.¬†i give it a read every week and even though¬†i add items way faster than¬†i cross them off, but that crossing off! it’s a moment of perfection! the i-have-worked-for-this or the more appropriate student dictionary phrase i-have-eaten-tesco-sandwiches-for-this-out-of-my-student-loan fills you with such satisfaction, that motivation to take up another sharpie and perform a deadly crossing off never dies!!

one of many summer projects (another post on that to follow) has been to set up a reading challenge to motivate myself getting through my enormous ‘to read’ list.¬†my enthusiasm resulted – as per usual – in¬†many unrealistic options, like ‘100-books-in-100-days’ or ‘365-books-in-a-year’ because…well they sound good. they sound like something I would¬†be proud of having accomplished. however – and you have no idea how hard it is to admit this – I cannot do everything I want in one lifetime, so my new thing is: hold on to my lists, be selective, and do the things that make me happy, that inspire me and help me grow.

I have now incorporated my final year university reading list into the newest edition of books-to-be-read-til-the-end-of-the-year¬†list, which unfortunately resulted in many titles being – yet again – pushed back to the end, but priorities must be made.¬†I am aware of the ambitious scale of the project, but I do trust in my long (and very soon to come!!)¬†holiday in Spain, because there is not many things that are as inseparable as sunbathing and reading a good book. maybe throw in a pina colada… there. you have heaven on earth.

without further ado, I present to you: books-to-be-read-til-the-end-of-the-year

Author Title
1 Sadie Jones Fallout
2 Knausgaard Boyhood Island
3 JKRowling Silkworm
4 JKRowling The Cuckoo’s Calling
5 Making Handmade Books
6 Dickens huckleberry finn
7 Ildiko Boldizsar Fairy Tale Therapy
8 Sylvia Plath The Bell Jar
9 J. M. Coetzee Disgrace
10 J. G. Ballard Crash
11 Michel Houellebecq Atomised
12 Don de Lillo Players
13 Alan Hollinghurst The Line of Beauty
14 Kathy Acker Blood and Gruts in High School
15 Milan Kundera The Unbearable Lightness of Being
16 David Shields Reality Hunger: A manifesto
17 Miguel de Cervantes Don Quixote Part 1
18 Daniel Defoe Moll Flanders
19 Denis Diderot Jacques the Fatalist
20 Jane Austen Persuasion
21 Honore Balzac Pere Goriot
22 Huxley Doors of Perception
23 Gustave Flaubert Madame Bovary
24 Sebastian Faulks Birdsong
25 Stephen King It
26 C S Lewis The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
27 George Eliot Middlemarch
28 Tolstoy Anna Karenina
29 Henry James The Spoils of Poynton
30 Virginia Woolf To the Lighthouse
31 Alain Robbe-Grillet Jealousy
32 Toni Morrison Beloved
33 Apuleius The Tale of Cupid and Psyche’ in The Golden Ass
34 ed. Maria Tatar (Norton Critical) The Classic Fairy Tales
35 ed. W. G. Waters Straparola, The Facetious Nights of Straparol
36 tr. Nancy Canepa Basile, The Tale of Tales
37 tr. Robert L. Mack (Oxfrod World Classics) Selected tales from Arabian nights
38 Charles Perrault Perrault’s Fairy Tales
39 Madame d’Aulnoy (University Pres of the Pacific, 2003) The Fairy Tales of Madame d’Aulnoy
40 Madame de Villeneuve Beauty and the Beast
41 Madame d’Aulnoy (tr. Jack Zipes) Beauty and the Beast, in Beauties, Beasts and Enchantments: Classic French Fairy Tales
42 Grimm tr. Joyce Crick (Oxford Classics) Selected Tales
43 Andersen tr. Tiina Nunally (Penguin) Fairy Tales
44 ed. Marina Balina & Mark Lipovetsky (Northwestern University Press) Pavel Bazhov’s The Malachite Casket and Valentin Kakaev’s The Flower of Seven Colours, in Politizing Magic: An Anthology of Russian and Soviet Fairy Tales
45 Angela Carter The Bloody Chamber
46 Russian Fairy Tales

alas, do not be fooled, you ain’t seen nothing’ yet. the list goes on and on. but as I said…small steps for now.

A Blank Page

And as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen
Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing
A local habitation and a name.

/A Midsummer Night’s Dream/

So¬†it begins. I can’t wait to fill this space and document all the fabulous things I get to experience. I have heard that blogs are better than social media for many reasons and I will attempt to find out for myself! I love reading other bloggers, they inspire me so much in many ways! It seems like the perfect medium to combine my many creative channels, and in the months to come I will aspire to fill these pages with love, laughter, thought, happiness¬†and creativity! Stay tuned!

loving my flowers, – timi


…some flowers I got from my love…just to set the mood…