Christmas at Disney

Why hello there, if you follow me on Instagram you will know that when I’m not working, stitching or reading I am at Disneyland Paris. Last week I surprised my niece with a trip to the park for 4 days for her birthday (belated, but still).

Now I went to Disneyland Paris last Christmas, however the park was celebrating the 25th anniversary and this was the main focus point for the parks decorations. This year they went all out on Christmas at Disney, main street looked amazing – the characters were in their best Disney outfits and it actually snowed, REAL snow!!

We had the most amazing few days – it was cold but we packed and were prepared for the weather luckily, also there are so many shops / restaurants to dive into when it get a bit too nippy for children. I must say though, it was actually my boyfriend and I who were struggling with the cold more than my niece, who seemingly was immune to the cold the entire trip.

We managed to meet a huge amount of characters, go on almost every single ride (at least twice) and be at the front for the parades and fireworks. It was probably the quietest I’ve ever seen the park and I am so thankful as my niece managed to have the most magical trip and do everything she wanted too.

Here are some of my pictures from our 4 days – we stayed in the Hotel Cheyenne which was my first time there and I absolutely loved it! We were in a family ‘Woody’s Round-up room’.

I am tempted to write up a few blogs with tips and tricks at Disney, including one for if you’re bringing small children with you – let me know if this is something you’d like to read.

Are you going to Disneyland Paris soon, if so let me know what you’re most excited for in the comments below!

-Amy x

What’s in my crochet bag?

I really like the blog posts where people talk about what is in their handbags, however I thought I would do something similar but with a crafting twist and talk about what is in my crochet bag!

I am currently working on a blanket for my sister, which I will admit I have been working on for quite some time…but I will get it done before Christmas I swear!

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So currently in my crochet bag (which is a really cute tote bag I received for Christmas last year!) there is a huge stack of granny squares in different colours, I think it was around 8 of each. Half of the blanket which has already been crocheted together, a ball of white yarn and 3 crochet hooks in the size 4mm.

All of the yarn I’m using here is laced with glitter and it’s super soft (these are from the Baby Brilliance yarn collection from Hobbycraft and they are 3 for 2), I highly recommend using baby yarn for all of your blanket projects for ultimate comfort.

It’s quite a small crochet bag, but I like to keep one project in my bag at a time so I won’t stray and start working on more projects at once…although that doesn’t always work.

Do you crochet? What are you currently working on?

-Amy x

Kindle All New Paperwhite!

I had a 6 year old Kindle that was still in mint condition, however the fact I didn’t have a back-light was slowly getting to me – I like to read at night and I find that having a lamp on makes it harder to relax and read in bed. I also like to read in the bath lit up by candlelight, so unless I read on my phone there was no option there.

I was not tempted to upgrade my Kindle until I found out the All New Paperwhite was waterproof AND back-lit, so basically I can use it in the bath without worrying about the likeliness of me dropping it.

IMG_0544[1]My first Kindle that arrived was faulty – it had quite a dark yellow patch on the bottom left hand side of the screen, at first I thought maybe it was the LEDs but I soon realised it was actually faulty. Amazon were great and sorted me out a replacement for the next working day and have given me until December to send back my faulty one free of charge with their own postage stamp.

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I’m so happy with my Kindle, I love books and buy so many physical ones but over the years I’ve completely run out of space and try just to hang onto the books that mean something special to me. I also love reading laying down in bed and some hefty hardback books would take the joy out of being comfortable and reading. I’ve been using my Kindle for a week now and I love it, the backlight is very natural so it’s not as harsh on the eyes as looking at a mobile phone for instance – it’s also just a tiny bit heavier than my previous older Kindle, but it’s still very light considering.

It feels much quicker at touch responses than my older Kindle and has Audible built in for people who own bluetooth headphones (which I do luckily), so you can also listen to your audio books through your Kindle now too. I love this feature as I don’t like my Audio books taking up space on my phone and now I have everything in one place.

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As you can see below the Kindle is a variation of backlight modes, here is it with the light off, at 12 and then 24. I find that using it bed I only need the backlight on around 8 for it to be bright enough and not to harsh on my eyes!


Overall I’m very pleased with it, it performs lovely, it’s lightweight and very easy to use. I’m glad I finally took the plunge to upgrade to a newer model – oh and I bought it with the pay monthly scheme from Amazon where you pay a small amount for 5 months! Super handy if you fancy a treat but cannot afford to buy it outright.

Do you use a Kindle to read? Let me know your thoughts on yours! Or if you have any specific questions about the All New Kindle Paperwhite leave me a comment below.

-Amy x

 

*I use amazon affiliate links on my website, so if you purchase through them I gain a little bit of income to improve my site 🙂

What I thought – Books in October

I thought I would summarise the books I read in October and share my favourites with you. I even came up with a swanky rating system, but if you’d rather read my actual scores then check out my Goodreads.

In October I managed to read a graphic novel volume and a few books – I tried to stick to a spoopy theme however I was lucky to receive an early copy of Muse of Nightmares.

Muse of Nightmares

(Must read)

This book, this incredible book! I loved Strange the Dreamer (it was actually the first book to make me ugly cry in public) so I waited in anticipation for this next installment, and I was not let down. It follows on straight after the previous book, and continues to expand on the lost city of Weep and it’s incredibly powerful inhabitants.

Without giving away too much of the plot, this book captivated me even more than the first and I believe this was due to the emotional attachment you build with the characters. You really feel something for Lazlo, Sarai and especially Eril-Fane in this book – you can feel the intense emotion throughout each individual person, their love, pain and anger. If you enjoyed Strange the Dreamer you will love this, it opens up more lore into the universe and finally gives you some clarity to the backstory of the Gods and Godslayers.

This wasn’t a horror themed book but Minya did an excellent job of giving me actual shivers up my spine, obviously I cannot wait for the third installment!

Hex

(Buy on sale)

Hex was a difficult one for me because the first 80 pages or so felt like a mish-mash of tones and writing styles. I really struggled and almost gave up but then around 100 pages in it suddenly clicked and I began really enjoying it – until the ending that was…

Set in a town haunted by the ghost of a ‘witch’ who was previously murdered by the townsfolk for resurrecting her son – the book opens in a surprisingly comical way, the townsfolk speak about her so lightheartedly you’d think she was a relative. The books concept and ideas were great and a few of the scenes mid-way through the book really were hard-hitting, however the tone just felt so wrong at times. After reading up on the author however I realised this was a book translated from Dutch, the location it was set was completely changed and some of the scenes were taken out / rewritten – so maybe it was lost in translation with me?

Personally I wouldn’t recommend this book to someone unless they could pick it up real cheap!

The Last Days of Jack Sparks

(Read immediately)

I was sent this by my friend Kelsey, and I was not sure if it would by my cup of tea but I really, really enjoyed this. I read it in 2 sittings because I was hooked!

A book within a book, this was written in a documentary style and the internal author was Jack Sparks, who could be deemed the Louis Theroux of the book world. He has spent his career writing books on the darker sides of life and his latest book was to debunk the idea of ghosts and possession. The book opens with an excorism that Jack witnesses and it then spirals out of control, seeing what happens after you burst out laughing in-front of a possessed little girl.

Honestly this was one of the first books in a very long time that gave me the creeps. I actually had a couple of mini nightmares off the back of this book, this has literally never happened with any book I’ve read in the past. You really feel what Jack is going through, he isn’t the most likable character to begin with but following his journey you warm to him. I absolutely loved it.

It did what a horror book should do, scared the shit out of me.

Sex Criminals : Volume 5

Not quite Halloweeny, but volume 5 of Sex Criminals came out this month!

Volume 4 was a bit of a let-down for me and I was really hoping it would redeem itself, it did just that. The humor felt on-point and the story feels like it’s progressing and finally back on track to how strong it was with volumes 1-3.

I can’t really talk about this too much especially if you haven’t read the other volumes. But if you are looking for something which isn’t about Superheroes, has a very adult theme and some pretty dark humor, then this might be for you!

I hope this gave you an insight into my reading habits…

See you next month!

-Amy x

*I use amazon affiliate links on my website, so if you purchase through them I gain a little bit of income to improve my site 🙂

Halloween at Disney

I recently got back from a trip to Disneyland Paris with a group of friends, we went specifically for the Halloween season and we were not disappointed!

I took hundreds of photos but also vlogged the trip too, it’s only my second vlog so please be gentle! You can click the image below to view the video on YouTube.

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Here are some of my favourite pictures from the trip:

I highly recommend going to Disneyland during a season, I’ve now been for Halloween, Christmas and the 25th anniversary – all of them were spectacular. The details in the park when it’s themed for a season are outstanding and they really do go all out! If you’re wanting to see Disney villains specifically I would recommend Halloween as many more are out and available for meet and greets.

And to top this amazing trip off – I am heading back for Christmas in 5 weeks, surprising my 8 year old niece with her first ever trip!

-Amy x

Not a stitch!

So this is going to be a completely unrelated post to stitching, but my friend Kelsey inspired me to write a bookish blog post. You can check out her blog here, her blog is fabulous and full of books and cats!

I thought I would do a August book haul as I bought A LOT – and I’ve already read through 4 of them…I am part of a group where we live and breath books, we also enable each other a tremendous amount so quite a lot of my money goes on buying books that the ladies tell me too.

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I had a bit of a physical and digital book haul in August, however I am trying to buy more books digitally as I’m running low on space…

On Kindle I picked up;

  • Human Acts – I bought this because the blurb sounded very interesting and I fell in love with Han Kangs writing after recently reading The Vegetarian. This book is based on true events of the Gwangju Uprising in South Korea in 1980, it’s very moving and it took a few days for me to recover after reading it – it also made me go and do a tonne of research into the Uprising.
  • The White Book – This is also written by Han Kang and I bought this soon after finishing Human Acts. The blurb suggests its a book which is about the spirit of life, dealing with mourning and rebirth – I cannot wait to read it!
  • The Alchemist – This was recommended to me by several people so I went in blind and I’m going to also read it completely blind, I am not going to read much into it and I’ll let you know my thoughts when I’m done.
  • Grotesque – I really love dark and messed up books (if you check out my goodreads read list you’ll see…), this has been coming up on my recommendations list for about a year so I thought it was time to pick it up.
  • Out – This was the other book which was recommended me to me alongside Grotesque, it’s the same author Natsuo Kirino and this one intrigues me because the blurb suggests it’s about a group of women who band together to leave their mundane lifestyles, and in doing this they do some pretty bad stuff…
  • Friend Request – This was suggested to me by a few friends so I thought I’d pick it up, but after reading the reviews I’m not sure I’m as hyped for it as I was originally. Who knows though, I may follow up with a blog post about this one.
  • Hex – This is going to be my first Halloween read in October (I put out a tweet asking for your favourite horror books and picked this up straight away), so many of my friends have read this, and the book group I’m part of always talk about how good and scary this is.

Physically I picked up;

  • Strange Weather in Tokyo – I’ve wanted to read this for a long time and recently I’ve found a new love of Japanese slice of life translated books. I thought I’d pick this up because it has such good reviews, and of course the ladies in my book group have been RAVING about this for months. So it’s only natural I join the hype train!
  • Kitchen (currently reading) – I picked this up because of Kelsey (who I linked above) and the cover alone had me sold, then I read the blurb on the back and it confirmed that I NEEDED to read this book.  The blurb is “Kitchen juxtaposes two tales about mothers, transsexuality, bereavement, kitchens, love and tragedy in contemporary Japan. It is a startlingly original first work by Japan’s brightest young literary star and is now a cult film”.
  • The Chalk Man & Snap – I’ve grouped these together because the only reason I picked them up is because they have been advertised on the tubes in London for months, yes, I am one of those people where advertising really does work!

If you’re wondering what I rate my books you can check out my Goodreads here.

So that is the end of my book haul, if you liked this please let me know and I’ll consider doing more in the future!

-Amy x

 

*Please note that I use affiliate links to Amazon purchases, if you use this link to buy the item I earn a small portion of the sale – which essentially goes back into my obsession.