Hello! The sun is shining (well it was when I wrote this) and I only have one final exam left before I have finished university life forever! This does scare me a little bit (a lot) of course, but it also makes me feel very excited about the next chapter of my life.
Since I have been so busy over the past few months with assignments, dissertation, exams, etc., I have really let my ‘Monthly Inspirations’ tradition slip! This is such a massive shame because I love collecting all of the little things that have inspired me to be positive and creative and sharing them with you in a monthly post. However, have no fear! I’m going to do what I do best: make up my own rules.
So, here I bring you my inspirations from February, March, April, and May, all rolled into one! Aptly named, my ‘Spring Inspirations‘…
Trips to Milan and Manorbier
Somehow, amongst all of this final year madness, I managed to squeeze in two fantastic little trips this spring!
The first was my first ever visit to Milan, Italy. You might have seen my little Milan-themed ‘travel story’ entry, or my photos of the city’s beautiful cemetery, but I haven’t finished with Milan yet! There is so much to say about it, but I just haven’t had the time to dedicate more posts to it yet. Luckily, Sofia, the lovely travel editor over at The National Student, recently discovered my Instagram art account, and asked me if I would like to create an ‘Illustrated Guide to Milan’...would I ever!? This is such an exciting idea for me because there are so many beautiful parts of Milan that have inspired me to create various illustrations. I’ll share a few pics of the work in progress with you now, but keep your eyes peeled for the fully illustrated guide, which should appear on TNS and my blog in early June!
The second trip was my well-needed escape to Manorbier, on the stunning Pembrokeshire coast of South Wales. This has also given me inspiration for a lot of little creations (like painting my pebble collection with clear nail varnish so I could display them on my window sill…talk about procrastination!) and a couple of art-journal pages, all though I feel there is a lot more to come now that I have some more free time…
Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a bit obsessed with tea, and it seems that shows when I do these inspirations posts; English teas, blueberry muffin teas, tumeric teas, Christmas teas; I can’t seem to make one without mentioning a new tea I’m enjoying!
Over the past few months I have had a new tea obsession: Pukka teas ‘Herbal Collection’, I’ve already gone through three boxes, I can’t get enough! There’s just a tea for every mood in there really:
The ‘Elderberry & Echinacea’ has such a nice sweetness and I like to drink it on sunny days, the ‘Lemon, Ginger and Manuka Honey’ is warming and comforting, I drink it if I’m feeling under the weather, the ‘Night Time’ tea is perfect for making me feel sleepy before bed, the ‘Detox’ tea is so refreshing and I always have when I feel guilty after bingeing on something, it makes me feel so clean, and the ‘Three Mint’ tea is the crispest, mintiest, most delightful mint tea I’ve ever tried!
(also, I’m a sucker for pretty packaging and this box looks so spring-like and enticing)
La La Land, Languages Ball, and other festivities
Especially because I’ve been particularly enjoying getting dressed up for various glitzy and glamorous festivities over the past few months, like the Guild Awards, and the SPA Journalism Awards. But my favourite occasion was the Languages Ball, and I decided to let my love for La La Land inspire my outfit! Maybe it was a strange choice for a ball but I honestly loved my outfit so much and I felt like I was radiating happiness- I might have to start wearing bright yellow more often!
We recently got a voucher for money off a HelloFresh box, so we thought we would give it a try to see what it is about. We selected our meals for the week and when the box arrived I was so impressed! Absolutely all of the ingredients you need come readily measured so there is no waste, and the recipes are so quick and easy to follow. This made cooking so exciting! I was constantly looking forward to which meal we would make next, and everything was absolutely delicious! Not to mention the fact that it made eating proper meals so easy during such a difficult, busy time.
If you want to try it for yourself, you can use my code to get £25 off a box by clicking here: www.hellofresh.co.uk/?c=KIAMAR, that means you pay £9.99 for a 3 meal box that usually costs £34.99, and I get £25 discount for referring you- give £25, get £25: its a win-win!
(I was so anxious to gobble up all of the great food that I didn’t actually get time to take any photos of the meals we had, so here’s a photo of Basil the cat enjoying the recyclable lining/packaging that came with our box for now, and I will try to get photos next time.)
Parks and Recreation
I can’t stop watching this show! I’ve already watched it all the way through before but we’ve watched it all over again this Spring and oh what a journey it is. It’s so hilarious and I actually wish all of the characters were my real life best friends. We watched the finale last week, what will I do now its over!?
And finally, I know I can never shut up about being inspired by nature, but nature is the best!
In February the Spring daffodils started to bloom early and they always made me feel happy walking to and from uni (not to mention they are a perfect shade of La La Land yellow…) In March I started to notice beautiful white and pink blossom appearing all over Harborne and Edgbaston and it made everything look so pretty. In April the trees began to bud and all of the bare branches were transformed by lovely spring green leaves. And May has been such a great month for bluebells! I’ve never lived somewhere that has so many bluebells in bloom, they are springing up all over the place!
Every chance I get I have been using my breaks from study to take a walk to Harborne Park or Selly Oak Park, just strolling through nature makes me feel like I am relaxing and re-charging my batteries at the same time. On a particularly nice day recently we took a trip to Lickey Hills Country Park, we walked part of the ‘Bluebell trail’ and ‘Bunny trail’ and had such a great picnic. I never realised Lickey Hills was such a stunning place, I will definitely have to go back there very soon!
I’m thinking about maybe using my free time in June to explore the best parks/gardens in and around Birmingham and then writing an article about it, let me know what you think in the comments below!