Blogger Spotlight | Bloggers I’ve Been Loving Recently

Quite a few months ago, Pooja from Life’s Fine Whine kindly nominated me for The Beautiful Blogger Award. I have wanted to share with you my favourite bloggers, and so combining the two means I have the perfect excuse to share all the blogs I love to read!

If I mention you in this post, please don’t feel the need to continue the award. However, it would be lovely if you could share support for your favourite content creators. It’s entirely up to you! 

Here are the rules:

1. Link to the blogger who has nominated you.

2. List 7 random facts about you.

3. Nominate 7 creative, beautiful bloggers and let them know about the nomination.

My Random Facts

  1. ‘Fluffy Towels’ is my favourite Yankee Candle scent.
  2. Non-fictions about climate change are possibly my favourite genre of book.
  3. Doctor Who is my favourite television series and I have been watching since I was a tiny toddler – but never found it scary! My favourite Doctor is David Tennant and I’m currently watching the 2005 Doctor Who spinoff – Torchwood. My dream is to one day feature in an episode of the programme.
  4. My cat’s name is Pikachu.
  5. I actually have a pet rabbit but I rarely share photos of her on here! She is called Tufty because in winter she grows a fluffy black ‘mane’ around her neck.
  6. My favourite colour is undeniably mustard yellow – but I used to hate it.
  7. My Spotify looks like this. Indie rock bands are my favourite although I do have a soft spot for One Direction because… well it’s 1D. After the release of folklore I started getting into Taylor Swift too, but I can’t say I enjoy her older albums that much :/

Zainab Chats

Zainab is a wonderful teen blogger from the UK who shares tips and advice directed towards an audience of teen girls. I think blogs like these are so valuable for young teens since they discuss a plethora of topics that are difficult to have conversations about. Besides her wonderful advice posts, Zainab enjoys posting book reviews and lifestyle posts. It’s the ultimate blog for any young teenager!

Simply, Ancine

Book blogs have always been a favourite of mine, many of you might remember my own book blog days! Francine is one of my favourite content creators and recently she moved away from lifestyle posts to post about her absolute passion: books. From recommendations to reviews, tags to teen fiction, Simply Ancine invites a community of book lovers to share their enjoyment of reading! The comment sections are like book club in itself. Couldn’t rave about it enough 🙂

Mind. Beauty. Simplicity.

Minimalism is an idea that I have been incorporating into my life since 2018, and the blogs I read around continually change my thoughts about the lifestyle. So many new ideas being brought to the table in every post! Mind. Beauty. Simplicity. takes these ideas and converts them into actionable steps. She talks about her own minimalist life, delivering comprehensive advice regularly. I love this blog so much and have recently been reading it more than ever!

Little World Of Rachel

Rachel is the most wonderful person, and kindly supports so much of my content! And her loving personality carries through into her writing, that is simultaneously chatty and informative. I love her unique takes on popular blog post ideas. Each post is refreshingly novel! While maintaining her amazing website, Rachel has the most beautiful Instagram too.

Real & Relatable 

Recently I’ve been *addicted* to Instagram Reels (a habit I probably need to break because I have been going to bed at midnight regularly…) but there are a few reasons why I absolutely love the content on Reels: informative, helpful, fun. Madeline delivers all of these in her own 15 second videos! I absolutely love her page on Instagram and how it interlinks with her blog content as well. So glad I found Madeline’s content because it’s incredibly well-written and unique. Click here for her blog… you will never regret it 😉

The Blog Girl

Where do I start? The Blog Girl is a beautiful blog run by Meg – a fellow UK based teen. She has such an adorable yet mature personality, and each post of her’s is a joy to read. I love the list posts from The Blog Girl, which are long yet not lacking in quality. Each point made is delivered with expertise and explanation. Although her blog is not completely centred around ‘advice’, I have learned so much from reading her content. As well as that, Meg is the best baker I have ever had the pleasure to know. She has a fab Instagram where she shares her own delicious creations! Getting to know Meg this year has been a pleasure I can’t wait to see how far she goes.

Meg also did a ‘Top 5 Favourite Bloggers of 2020’ post, similar to this one, so make sure to give that a read! Very kindly she included this blog in her top 5 which *ahhhhhdjhjdsjdkad* makes me so happy ❤

Hiddenzzz

Hiddenzzz blog is one of the most aesthetic places on the Internet. The content varies from book reviews, to positive affirmations. Hiddenzzz invites other creators to do collab style posts that are so novel and enjoyable to read! I absolutely love this blog because each post is a surprise – a good surprise – and so well-written. They also have a beautiful YouTube channel full of bullet journaling and (it wouldn’t be Hiddenzzz without it…) coffee! The vibes emulate my Pinterest dream board: light academia, bujos and hygge.

I really hope you enjoyed my little rundown of the blogs I am loving at the moment, along with 7 random facts about me. The Monday this post goes live is on the week I’m returning to school, which is scary more than anything. I am feeling anxious upon my return to the virtual learning world, where all the work you complete never feels like actual work because it only exists within the pixels of a screen. Perhaps with my New Year’s resolution of journaling (which I am keeping up with very well thank you XD) I might strike a good balance between work and relax time. But I am struggling to find that balance when there is uncertainty about how and when online exams will go ahead. Even the thought of it puts me off the idea of revising… I just- the education system does not support mental wellbeing of the students :’)

Leave a little random fact about yourself in the comments.

Happy new week!

Catherine x

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How To Create New Year’s Resolutions That Will Stick

No doubt you are all excited for 2021, and the fresh start it promises for all of us. The pandemic will not miraculously go away – but I am certainly wishing for a better year for the world. Along with any new year comes the exciting notion of resolutions! I will be setting a few myself. This is how I chose what goals to pursue. With the technique I am going to share in this post, hopefully you will find yourself more compelled to achieve your resolutions! Because, no matter how motivational, a Pinterest quote doesn’t solve everything…

The words: who, what, where, when, why, how will not be unfamiliar to you. In fact they might even bring back haunting memories of primary school English class (if you know, you know). Let’s take that academic connotation away and turn them into tools for success! (stick with me – this is going somewhere)

What

You must first determine your what. What do you want to achieve? From as small as baking a 3 tier cake, to creating a consistent meditation habit. Have in your mind what you want to achieve. Write it down if it helps! Don’t feel any of your goals are insignificant. Make a list of everything – big and small – you wish to do. We’ll narrow it down later.

You’ll be glad to see that I’m using a different candle in this post 😂

How

How will you complete your ‘what’? For each part of your ‘what’ list, write down a set of instructions or steps for success. My resolution is consistent journaling (very atypical). I will achieve it by opening my journal, picking up a pen and writing every day. 

It may be stupidly obvious! Yet breaking the task up will allow it to appeal to the brain more.

My January bullet journal set-up

Where

Might sounds a little ridiculous but it will help as the year goes along (also as the New Year’s buzz fades away). Where are you going to complete your goal? Again with my journaling example: I am going to journal in my bed. For exercising consistently – it might be a run around the canal every morning. Find your where. This is a bit like the previous step: it is breaking down your big goal into ‘digestible’ chunks. Also, the more boxes checked off the more accomplished you’ll feel!

‘No matter how motivational, a Pinterest quote doesn’t solve everything…’

When

I find the ‘when’ is the most useful (besides the why). Finding a when will allow the habit/goal to thread into your daily routine. Make time for your goals! Determining a ‘when’ means there will be less friction between you and achieving the goal. Throughout the year it will create consistency. If you’ve not heard it before (possibly one of the most important quotes of all time): consistency is key!

The mistletoe come twig doodle is starting to grow on me

Why

This is where we narrow down which goals are the most important to you. That list you created earlier? We need it again. For everything on your list think – or write down – a why. The ones you are most passionate about will have the most ‘why’. But don’t let this fool you! You can have perfectly valid goals that don’t need a why.

The process of writing the ‘why’ is very meditative. Between words your mind is getting more and more excited for the prospect of completing this final goal. The ‘why’ is also nice to read back on when you are losing motivation with your goal. At the start of the year you put a lot of thought into what you wanted to pursue.

I have a tiny calendar this month because I tend not to use the bigger ones

If you have been a reader of my blog for a while now, you will know of my fixation on writing to-do lists the night before. I think this is the best way for me personally because…

  1. The night before your mind is more alive, and it knows what is best for you. It knows what is needed to have a good following day. But say for example you wrote your list in the morning – your priorities wouldn’t be the same. You might be working for your own short-term comfort rather than long-term bliss.
  2. I believe this aligns with setting goals at the start of the year – but throughout the year losing motivation with them. Just because you are losing motivation with them doesn’t mean you should give up. Because past you (or ‘more awake’ you) probably knows what’s best. We do grow from our past – of course – but in this instance the past self is the more motivated self.
  3. But although it is important to remind yourself of why you initiated this goal in the first place, things do change. Don’t tie yourself down to a resolution if it isn’t benefiting you anymore.

I really hope this tips help you to consolidate what resolutions you wish to pursue and how you will get there. Hope to see you again on Friday where I will share my New Year’s Resolutions with you all. As a Slytherin, I have certainly been ambitious. But no doubt I will get there 🙂

What are your New Year’s resolutions/goals?

Thank you for reading and I wish you a very happy new year!

Catherine x 

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50 Things To Do In Winter | 2021 Prep, Getting Cosy, Being Present

Winter really excites me. The turn of a New Year is on the horizon and it marks a new chapter for us all. The weather doesn’t allow for socialising and the time spent alone can be isolating but, if used correctly, can be a time of self-improvement. I wanted to make a list 50 things you can do in Winter. Some of them are Christmas oriented, but the majority can be applicable for anyone no matter their religion! They’re all supposed to make you feel good, cosy, and confident.

This post is made in collaboration with my dear friend Meg, but you may know her as The Blog Girl or @baking.by.meg! We collaborated before, way back in summer. It was absolute pleasure working with Meg so we’ve decided to collaborate again, this time on a 50 things to do in winter post! Surprisingly, it wasn’t that hard to come up with so many ideas. But, if there isn’t something here that floats your boat, Meg has another 50 things on her blog. Click here to see the post! Please also follow Meg’s Instagram, she is the most wonderful baker and you will surely enjoy her content.

Let’s get into it!

  • Create a really extravagant, over-the-top hot chocolate
  • Have porridge for breakfast 
  • Make a Christmas Pinterest board
  • Read an entire book in a day
Photo by Any Lane on Pexels.com
  • Blankets
  • Make some wintery wallpaper for your phone, laptop etc
  • Bullet journal Christmas movies you want to watch
  • Write out your New Year’s Goals and how you will achieve them
  • On a frosty morning, brew a cuppa tea and drink it outside
Photo by Ivars on Pexels.com
  • Drink lots of hot water – but make sure you don’t burn yourself!
  • Go for an early morning walk
  • Cook up a big breakfast: hash browns, egg bread, beans – the lot!
  • Practise calligraphy so you can impress people with your Christmas cards
Photo by Anthony Shkraba on Pexels.com
  • Make a Pinterest board for your 2021 manifestations 
  • Do a series on your Instagram (12 Days Of Musicmas, Takeover Tuesday, What I Wore Wednesday)
  • Bake gingerbread 
Photo by Nicole Michalou on Pexels.com
  • Go for an afternoon walk to see the early sunset
  • Watch the sunrise 
  • Learn how to knit
  • Sort out your emails and unsubscribe from unnecessary mailing lists
  • Unfollow people who won’t bring your positive vibes in 2021
  • Plan content ahead of time!
  • Prioritise revision for end of term tests
  • Sort out your wardrobe 
  • Determine what gifts you’re getting for people for Christmas
  • Bake mince pies
  • Get a nice planner for 2021 or set up your bullet journal for the next year
Photo by Ivan Samkov on Pexels.com
  • Watch telly in your duvet on the sofa
  • Sort out your room thoroughly
  • Sell things you no longer want
  • Video call your friends
  • Do a Secret Santa
  • Change your bedding to something more seasonal
Photo by Jan Kopu0159iva on Pexels.com
  • Decorate your room
  • Go for a walk with your friend
  • List out everything 20 things you learned in 2020
  • Spend time with your family
  • Play board games
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com
  • Try some interesting new tea flavour
  • Bake something unusual
  • Listen to the birds
  • Whip out your colouring book and settle down for a cosy afternoon with a good film and get colouring 
  • Learn different zentangle patterns 
  • Set a Goodreads goal for next year
  • Make pom-pom room decor
  • Start a scrapbook
Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com
  • Read through old letters
  • Find a penpal to start writing to
  • Go through a recipe book and tab things you want to make
  • Sort though old photographs 

This list has a balance of looking forward to the New Year, and being grateful for the moment. Let me know if you try any of these! I’d love to see your pics on Instagram.

What do you want to do this Winter?

Catherine x

Find me elsewhere on the Internet:

Instagram: @cathjaneblog

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Pinterest: @cathjaneblog

Email me! cathjaneblog@gmail.com

5 Easy Ways You Can Be An Organised Blogger

Welcome to blogmas day 15, today on the subject of productivity.

I am a student and blogger, and with those things come many responsibilities. Beside my side-hustle and studying, I am part of a GirlGuiding unit and I also take cello lessons. But most importantly of all – I’m human! You might be wondering how I juggle it all. Later on this week I will be sharing another installation of my Chats With Cath series. In that post I will be going into more detail about how I’ve pushed out 1 blog post a day, and the stress of December. At this time of the year I love to address the notion of self-care. It’s important all year round, of course, yet when things get the most hectic is when we need to be the most mindful about how we look after ourselves.

This post includes 5 ways I stay organised as a blogger. Hopefully you can use my tips to make you more time efficient, and therefore being able to carve out more time for yourself, friends and family.

Keeping a list of post ideas

Keeping a list of blog posts ideas you get on the go is really handy, especially when you come to the keyboard not knowing what to write. I have a list in my Notes that I add to every now and then. Once the ideas have formed, I add them into a calendar. My three content buckets are sustainability, wellness and lifestyle. I don’t like to clump posts of the same niche together. Seeing my posts a month at a glance allows me to spread out the different ‘type’ of posts – so that you come to my blog seeing a range of writing. It’s also refreshing for me to write in different styles!

Drafting Instagram posts

Thank you Instagram for this marvellous feature. I will right my captions in Notes first, then copy and paste into an Instagram draft so it’s all ready to go. Instagram drafts allow you to add the location, tag people and select the chosen photos all at once. When it comes to your posting time you just hit publish, paste the hashtags in the comments, then you’re all good to go! 

Google Calendar

I set reminders with the title of each blog post and when it goes live. This way I know what to write in the correlating Instagram post. But, most importantly, my calendar reminds me what to write and when for! When I’m doing IRL school, Google Calendar is helpful. Otherwise I get so lost in school work that I forget I have a blog… (I’m not joking)

Spending half and hour doing blog related admin everyday

30 minutes goes a long way! I shared in my Cosy Night Routine post (please read it here if you haven’t already) that I enjoy doing this in the evening. Depending on the day I’ll either respond to emails, reply to comments, read your posts or reply to DMs. Ideally I would get all of them done but I just leave it up to future me. 

Master to-do lists

Every weekend I make the most mammoth to-do list with every thing playing on my mind that I know I need to complete. From this long list, I can divide the tasks up depending on urgency. Then they will be allotted a certain day in the week for me to get it done. This way of weekly planning I find keeps me on track. If you have any time to spare, you may want to take a look at Holly Gabrielle’s video on weekly planning because I use the same method as her. It is much easier to explain through dialogue than typed words! I’ll link it here for those curious.


Hopefully you will find these tips applicable to your current blogging ‘routine’. Everyone is different so these tips may not work for you, but I hope you can mould and adapt them to fit your lifestyle. 

What apps do you use on a daily basis?

I’ve seen Notion flying around a bit lately! I’d love to know what apps you use regularly. You might see me try them out in a future post 😉 Please leave some suggestions so I can make that post happen for you.

Have a very happy Tuesday!

Catherine x

Instagram: @cathjaneblog

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Pinterest: @cathjaneblog

Email me! cathjaneblog@gmail.com

Cosy Winter Nighttime Routine | Hygge, Self-Care + Productivity

Hey everyone!

This is blogmas day 11. I’m super excited to bring you my Cosy Winter Nighttime Routine. If you’re from the southern hemisphere, no doubt you are fed up of me complaining about how it gets dark so early. 

Rather than continue that negative attitide towards darkness, let’s appreciate what we already have and make it cosy!

When it’s dark outside and you’re all wrapped up warm and safe inside, it feels hygge. This nighttime routine – hygge inspired – helps me embrace the darkness outside and not get too mad about it!

My nighttime routine begins at 6pm, when I completely stop work. I make a promise to myself not to work past 6pm, because – well – I deserve it! Online learning has given me a lot more flexibility in terms of schedule. On a normal, in-person school day I could be working until 8pm with the endless homework and assessments. Everyone is different so please don’t compare your habits to mine! I am about to share them with you but just because you do things differently doesn’t make you any better or worse than I am.

6pm

At the moment I’m watching Downton Abbey. While I watch it I’ll either make some scrunchies for my little biz, knit, do some colouring… I love doing this to break up my day. It always stretches my creative muscles 🙂 Oh, and you can buy a scrunchie from me right here! All the profits go to a service trip to Kenya where I’ll be facilitating school sessions for less priviliged children.

While I do my crafting, I light a candle. I’m burning a gingerbread one at the minute that adds a sweet, festive aroma to my room. Lighting candles brings out the ‘hygge’ in me and singles it’s time to wind down. And nothing beats the cosy vibes it emulates. 

7pm

Around 7 I like to tie up some loose ends. I’ll do blog admin: reply to DMs, comments, read your posts, sort through my emails. It’s the only time of day I get to spend on my blog! But a little goes a long way.

This will be the last time I go on social media until the morning. When I do carry on scrolling late into the night, it defintely has knock-on effects the following day (making me feel sluggish and less positive). I don’t know why it does because my feed is the most wonderful place! It might just be do with constantly being updated with other people’s lives.

7.30pm

I head back to the computer and start writing a blog post. Getting down initial thoughts will help me the following day when I need to finish the post. I don’t write the best in the evening, but you can always edit a bad page.You can’t edit a blank one! Blogmas is really exciting and writing so much doesn’t burn me out creatively, but it sure does take a lot of work.

8pm

This is the time I get ready for bed. I’ll hop into my pajamas, wash my face or maybe have a shower! Treating the end of the day as if it is something makes it worth something. Because it is dark and gloomy you can (I catch myself doing this) get ahead of yourself and start wishing about the next day rather than appreciating the one you’re in! But a nice little pamper, whether that be a nice shower or skincare routine, sets you up nicely for the evening ahead.

8.30pm

Towards the end of the day I do a quick power-clean and tidy up my room, getting set up for the following day. There might be a pile of papers I need to sort through, or clothes I need to put away. Small tasks can build up but 8.30 is when I just clear off as many from the to-do list as possible!

8.45pm

Speaking of to-do lists, anytime before 9 I’ll check in my bullet journal to see what I have done, what I need to complete, plans for the following day etc. While I have my bullet journal out I like to sit in bed and write down what I’m grateful for. By the time I’ve done a bit of journaling I’m normally really tired!

9-10pm

Often I’ll go to bed at 9 which is considered quite early. Although I’m ashamed of being a granny when it comes to bedtime! I listen to my body, and 9pm is shut off time. Sometimes I’ll fit in a bit of reading before bed but it honestly depends on the day. Since it’s Christmastime, I have my colourful lights strung around my room and these add a magical touch to the end of the day.

I hope this post inspires you to create your own nighttime routine if you don’t already have one. Routines can be boring but adding flexibility (like this one) makes it easier to stick to. A good routine sets you up for success! I personally find that without routine I’m a bit hopeless. If a ‘How To Create A Good Routine’ post is one you want to see, then do let me know. After a few years of using a structured morning and night routine there are a few tips and tricks I have under my belt that can help you!

What do you do every night, to set the next day up for success?

And please don’t feel guilty if you don’t have a good routine at the moment. Covid-19 sucks and it’s thrown us all off our axis. It’s okay to feel overwhelmed, stressed or anxious about what lies ahead. Just remeber that everything is temporary. If you need to speak to someone, I’m always here for you.

Find me elsewhere on the Internet:

Instagram: @cathjaneblog

Goodreads: @cathjaneblog

Pinterest: @cathjaneblog

Email me! cathjaneblog@gmail.com