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Fresh Air, Couple Time and the Best Lemon Drizzle Cake {July’s Little Loves}

Poppit Sands

Despite every month consisting of roughly 30 days, the end always sneaks up on me; July was no exception. Where exactly did it go? Most of you will know that I like to spend some time reflecting on the month that has past, hence my regular ‘Little Loves’ feature.

I’m sure most of us can recall the bad bits without a problem but as my word for 2019 is Gratitude, I’m trying really hard to focus on the positive. I sometimes worry that people read my blog/observe me on social media and wrongly assume that my life is perfect. I want you to know that it most certainly isn’t. As a family we are enduring a long, difficult, arduous journey that doesn’t appear to be letting up anytime soon but I don’t feel comfortable sharing it because it’s just too personal. One day maybe I will but for now I’m working on trying to stay positive by focussing on the good things in life. Of which there are plenty.

So without further ado, here are my Little Loves for the month of July…

Read in July

The Man I Think I Know Mike Gayle

After a little shout out on Instagram, I’ve started a new book. I can’t remember who recommended The Man I Think I Know by Mike Gayle but I’ve always loved his books and the OH does too so this one will probably last him our entire holiday! I’ve not got too far through, for which I blame Love Island (I tend to only read in bed) but so far so good.

Any reading recommendations for August? We are going on a pool holiday so know that I will probably devour at least four books. What’s on your ‘must read’ list?

Watched in July

My whole month has been pretty much saturated by Love Island. I’ve enjoyed watching it with my teenage daughter – discussing the relationships, who will last and which bikini is the nicest. But I’ll be honest, I was quite relieved to see it come to an end. I keep seeing so much great TV advertised that I’ve missed out on so be prepared for a lengthy update next month!

We watched the last episode of Big Little Lies last night and although it wasn’t quite as good as the first series, it really was brilliant. I know others have said it wasn’t true to the book but the cast was so incredible; you couldn’t fail to be captivated.

Heard in July

Podcasts are where it’s at right now and I’m adding to my ‘subscribed’ list by the day. It would seem that anyone who is anyone has a podcast these days! Some of my favourites this month have been The High Low, Walking the Dog, How to Fail with Elizabeth Day and I’ve recently discovered Griefcast.

Some of the podcasts I listen to can get a bit heavy so I like to add in some frivolous music from time to time. This has been one of July’s favourites…

I was also thrilled to see that Amanda Cook has released a new album. She has a hauntingly beautiful voice and I particularly love this song…

Wore in July

Early in July I hosted a fun afternoon of fashion styling and colour analysis with the gorgeous Rebecca from Style Redressed. Interestingly, as an Autumn, the conclusion was that I shouldn’t wear white. As this is a relatively new purchase from New Look, I decided to rebel! Joking aside, white and black are okay as long as there’s some skin on display (this is a v-neck shirt) and a gold necklace helps to breaks it up a bit.

White Linen Shirt (New Look), Jeans (River Island), Shoes (Dune)

I’ve discovered some other colours that I probably wouldn’t have considered before. This is a kind of golden khaki colour and looks great with white jeans. It was in the River Island sale for a very reasonable £7 and I have it in a bright coral colour too – would be rude not to! The shoe-string straps have been perfect during the hotter weather.

White Jeans (River Island), Top (River Island), Denim Jacket (Hush – old)

Made in July

I’ve tried to get back into baking this month and have actually enjoyed it. My culinary delights included chocolate cupcakes, banana loaf cake and a lemon drizzle. The latter is a particular favourite of mine and I can highly recommend the linked recipe.

chocolate cupcakes

As a result, I’ve been eating a lot of sugary foods and very little fruit. Two weeks until we head to Portugal on holiday so I’m going to focus on being a little healthier. You heard it here first!

We also *made* a trip to Wales last weekend. It’s difficult to drag teenagers away from friends these days but family time is still important and seeing cousins remains a priority. We had a lovely break and the sun even shone – who knew?!

Poppit Sands Beach

And Finally…

Did I tell you that my middle one passed her driving test last week? Driving hasn’t come easy to her (I won’t miss those L plates, that’s for sure!) but she persevered and the hard work has paid off! We are so proud of her.

Consequently, the OH and I have had a lot more time to ourselves this past month. Our younger two kids are becoming increasingly self-sufficient and this couldn’t have come at a better time.  It often takes us by surprise but we’ve been out for drinks just the two of us, played golf and chilled out at home with a BBQ. It’s all about seizing the moments isn’t it?

Cocktails Sit and Sip Wokingham

As always thanking you for reading my ramblings and if you’d like to discover some more bloggers’ Little Loves then head over to Sincerely Anna.

Until next time…

Inside, Outside & Beyond

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4 COMMENTS

  • It sounds like plenty of positives for the month. Very well done to your daughter for passing her driving test! How lovely that you and your husband are getting to spend quality time together.
    I’ve read lots of good books lately. Never Greener by Ruth Jones and With or Without You by Shari Lapena would be good pool reads. If you want something heavier, The Lost Man by Jane Harper is one of the best books I’ve read this year.
    I hope you all have a lovely holiday. X

  • Rebecca Addis

    Hello! Another podcast for you – Fearne Cotton’s Happy Place is fab – she’s obviously had afew personal struggles and the podcast feels like her therapy – it’s great, Give it a go. Have a wonderful holiday when you get to it. xx

  • Gail

    I’ve sensed that things have been difficult for you lately Suzanne – I hope things get easier and I’m so glad you’ve had some positive things going on amidst it. The lemon drizzle cake sounds lovely, like you I’ve found myself eating more sugary treats this summer than I should! I’ve just finished the Lido which is a nice easy read and would probably be a great one for your holidays. Hope August is a good one for you – I’m having a Little Loves break until the summer hols here finish in a couple of weeks. xx

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