Speaking of taking photos, I'm pleased to say I ticked off last month's goal of using my instagram more! I've been playing around with filters and am really happy with the warm cohesive feel I've managed to get on my feed. I took my profile off private (go and follow me... @lornaliterally!) and I also upped my target from posting two pictures a week to four. I had the last week of October off work so I've been snapping away on my travels to make sure I've got plenty of content in the bank and think this is a far more manageable way of me maintaining things. I feel like people don't really talk instagram tips (besides the general "how I edit my photos" type thing) and it's actually something I'm keen to learn more on. During the working week it's rare that I do anything out of the ordinary/feel inspired to take photos and I'd love to know how people with full-time jobs outside of blogging juggle that with posting regularly.
Let's talk more about that week off. To start I caught up with Lizzie and had a lovely day seeing what Farnham's finest secondhand bookshops had to offer. I nabbed four books for £8 (three of which were on my 'want to buy' list!) and it's made me think I should shop around a bit more when there's a book I'd like to read. I spend far more than I'd care to admit in Waterstones so could do with balancing things out more in the future by switching between buying secondhand books, downloading books on my kindle or visiting the library. Nothing beats the satisfaction of a shiny new book from a *proper* bookshop, but I'm all for mixing things up to save some money.
On the Tuesday we had a trip up to the Sky Garden. It was a nice thing to do but not my favourite activity in London. It made for some good photos though and even though the clouds dampened the view I appreciated the de-saturated vibes it gave my pictures! A trip to Honest Burger followed (the Bank branch is a new favourite) before we hit Selfridges for the Christmas shop. It's become an annual tradition that we do this during the October half term and it's something I really look forward to. And yes, I did buy another new decoration for our tree!
To finish off the week, my besties and I dusted off our gladrags and hit the town. It's true what they say, you do become a hermit as you get older, and we wanted to relive our youth with a retro night out. It happened to coincide with Halloween so we also decided to dress up; we went with a Day of the Dead-inspired look and considering how little effort we put into our costumes (compared to most!) I really like how it turned out! We couldn't have asked for better music, with songs from our college days when we first started going out playing, and all in all it was an awesome night. And the clocks going back meant I was home and in bed by 1am...yep, we're that cool.
// MONTHLY GOALS
Last month I wanted to read more widely and regularly, and I've definitely achieved that by getting through ten books which included an autobiography, a Jane Austen, a murder mystery and a couple of Penguin Modern Classics. For November I just want that momentum to continue. I'd also like to start reading one of my Little Black Classics each month so will be doing that, too.
My second goal for October was making time to blog and doing so in advance which, as I mentioned above, I didn't do so well at. I think this will be ongoing (there were a couple of things eating up my weekend time this month which put me out of schedule!) and I'm optimistic that I can get back on track this month.
The Autumn Shake Up challenge needs a mention here, too. I failed. Although all of the challenges were achievable, and I did manage to tick a fair few off the list, it was really hard finding the time to do some of them. I think I'm going to extend the challenge and do it over the course of a season (so the next couple of months) so it doesn't feel like such a rush and something I *have* to fit in at the end of each day. I certainly enjoyed the activities I did manage and it would be a shame to leave it unfinished. Did any of you join in?
In a bid to not bankrupt myself over the coming months, my spending habits are something I really want to work on in November. I've been tracking this in my bullet journal and aim to have more 'no spend' days throughout the month. I've also set myself the challenge of buying no clothes or cosmetics (I know, I shouldn't be buying clothes anyway with my capsule wardrobe but will discuss this at the end of this current cycle!) which I'm really planning to be strict on and achieve. So often when I say I'm not buying clothes I transfer this and spend my money on make up instead (or vice versa) so I want to work hard and break this habit.
Is there anything you'd like to achieve in November?