Friday 11 January 2013

Hello, hello and Happy New Year! Just popping on here briefly to let you know about a great blogger giveaway I have over on my site to win a fab FitBit device and some scales. Great if you are starting a health kick this January like I am!

Do have a look here.


Sian x

Sunday 10 June 2012

Ok, so it was expensive, but we just saved ourselves £500 by buying through Comet who are doing an online sale and also via Quidco (cashback). I am so pleased as this gives us £500 that we can spend elsewhere, perhaps replastering a room or some new carpets.

We opted for the Rangemaster range cooker with the induction hob. We don't have gas here and induction hobs are supposed to be amazingly energy efficient. You have similar temperature control as you do with gas, but the heat is directed at the pan more so less energy loss. We are both absolutely sick of our current ceramic hob, which is either on inferno or off! Not so great for making jam, porridge or anything that requires any kind of temperature control.

What do you think?

They do the cooker in a number of different colours, but we opted for black as it's more timeless and matches everything.

Friday 08 June 2012

Look what Tim bought - this gorgeous Emma Bridgewater Jubilee teapot. Isn't she a beaut!? :-)

Wednesday 30 May 2012

For a recipe for my super easy and delicious salad, pop over to my health and fitness blog -

Wednesday 23 May 2012

Sorry for the lack of posts on my blog. My house is in a transition phase at the moment as we are poised for the whole inside of the house to be ripped out and re-done. 

That means no buying of anything until we look at what we have and what will an won't stay - I anticipate that I will be getting rid of a lot of stuff though so watch this space as I may well do a little open house sale at some stage later in the year.

Anyway, we have chosen the kitchen. I wanted a wooden one as if we get bored with the colour, I wanted to be able to change it. We would love to get a bespoke kitchen, but the reality is that we don't have that kind of money floating about so we have opted for the next best thing - painted wooden door fronts and wooden worktop from Howdens. It's called Haworth White. Even the layout (without the island) in the photos is similar. I also love the blue walls and the white tiles by the cooker.

You have to imagine this with slate floors. :-)

What do you think? I posted the plans on an earlier post here.

Tuesday 22 May 2012

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Wednesday 16 May 2012

If you're wondering what I've been up to lately hop on over to Dashing Divas for my review of Cybher 2012.

Monday 07 May 2012

At the moment I am sitting by the fire as our heating has busted (don't worry - we're getting it fixed and will get quotes done at the same time!), but when I'm not doing that I'm over at Pop on over if you're interested in joining our Yoga Run club or if you need a running buddy. I have a list of running events that anyone is welcome to join in on if they need a bit of moral support or someone to share in the pain. ;-)

I've also posted a few videos on my YouTube channel if you fancy a nose at what I've been up to.

Hope you've all had a wonderful bank holiday weekend (those of you in the UK anyway!).


Sunday 29 April 2012

If you're wondering where I've been of late - I've been marathon running, setting up my own business, working like a crazy person and over on my other fitness blog.

Here at Tinyholder HQ major changes are on the horizon. We love our little cottage, but things are going to change around here. We are no longer happy with the major draughts, dark and dingy kitchen, hideous oven, copious amounts of artex and the disgusting peach bathroom (what kind of colour is peach anyway, bleurg!?). So work on knocking through walls and re-doing the house will commence in May! :-) We have been talking about all of this for 3 years, but finally it's all happening and I am beyond excited about it.

Do you want to see what plans we have in store?

This post will just be about the downstairs plans, upstairs for another time otherwise this post will turn into a novel.

Downstairs (see current floor plan on left):

So the downstairs at the back of the house is made up of a few rooms - a smallish kitchen, a utility/porch area and a good-sized dining room. The dining rooms is nice and bright, but it's really dark in the kitchen and there isn't much space at all so we have decided to knock through into one big room and move doors around and add in a big window over looking the garden.

Kitchen through to Utility room (just through that window)

Through to dining room.

Not only are we knocking through, but we're also adding on a hard wood conservatory to the dining room.

So here are the new plans:

kitchen diner and conservatory.

 3D picture of the kitchen units and the oven in the chimney breast.

Butler sink under the large new window overlooking the back garden.
Here is my inspiration board and the look we are going for:

Top left and top middle, Fired Earth - I love the clean and simple shaker style kitchens. Top right, colour slate tiles from Marble Mosaic. Middle left, hand painted chicken murals from Chantecler Tiles. Middle - our chosen oven from Rangemaster from John Lewis. Middle right, Old Creamery Furniture. Bottom left, Gap Interiors. Bottom middle, Fired Earth splash back tiles. Bottom right, Cheverelle painted kitchens.

The entire floor through to the conservatory will be beautiful mixed slate. We'll have a nice new range cooker, double butler sink, lots of storage, light Mistral or wood (undecided on that) worktops, grey/biscuit painted shaker cabinet and white walls, and our gorgeous large dresser will finally be used properly for kitchen storage. I am really looking forward to an understated light and bright room.

So what do you think?

Sunday 08 April 2012

Still got a few things to sort out, like a screen and a laser printer, but here is a sneak peak at my office.

Today I need to make this (my current craft room):

Look more like this (an office):

As this will be where I'll run my new business Skylark Medical Education
The cross trainer will go and instead I'l be getting a treadmill. It's all very exciting indeed! There's absolutely no point in decorating it yet as building work will commence on the entire house soon and we will be having the floors and walls re-done. I'd like a nice clean and bright white office with black and white photos on the wall. Kind of more like a studio. 

Saturday 07 April 2012

If you want to know how I got into running and getting fit, pop on over to my new fitness blog.

Happy Easter! x

Friday 06 April 2012

Congratulations to The Krafty Cupcake for winning the John Frieda goodies for correctly guessing that styling using straighteners/hairdryer was what they were 'doing' in the teaser video.

I have to blow dry my hair every day to get my fringe to sit in position so I'm an avid fan of frizz ease myself!

John Frieda's new Full Repair range is designed for women who colour, blow-dry and straighten their hair on a regular basis and I am looking forward to trying it out myself!

Check out their Facebook page for news and competitions here

Saturday 31 March 2012

I've set up a new fitness blog with a few buddies of mine. I didn't want to post too much about fitness on here and bore the living daylights out of those of you who are not interested. Ths blog will then continue to be my general rumblings about everyday things and decorating (when the building work kicks off).

Anyway, if you're interested go check it out here:

Saturday 24 March 2012

I know I have to do it every day or my fringe would go haywire, but can you guess what they are doing in this teaser video to win some John Frieda goodies?

All you have to do to enter is to:

  • Leave a comment on here with the correct answer and your contact email
and for an additional entry:
The winner will be drawn at random on Saturday March 31st at 1pm UK time.

Best of luck everyone. All will be revealed soon. xx

Friday 23 March 2012

I've had rather an amazing start to this year and without even trying I seem to have ticked off a few of my 40 things before I'm 40 list. Some very exciting things are happening over at Tinyholder HQ. I've grown a pair of balls and decided to set up my own consultancy business to allow me to have more free time to do all the things I love - charity work, yoga, running and blogging, and at the same time reduce my outgoings (train fare, petrol, peak time gym membership etc).
Green=completed, pink=booked/in the diary:

  1. Run a marathon - Entered Brighton Marathon 
  2. Learn to speak French - I was always really good at it at school, but I need to refresh my memory
  3. Train to become a personal trainer - Started
  4. Climb Mont Blanc (4810 metres) - booked for September 2012
  5. Complete a triathlon 
  6. Wear a bikini - Bought one and it fits!
  7. Go to Venice - booked for July 2012
  8. Get a six pack (stomach not beers!)
  9. Have a photo shoot done - I'd love to actually have some nice professional pictures of me for once
  10. Buy a pair of Christian Louboutins 
  11. Set up my own business - done! I officially have my own limited consultancy company!
  12. Climb Mount Elbrus, Russia (5642 metres)
  13. Trek in the Simian mountains in Ethiopia (4543 metres)
  14. Go on safari
  15. Climb the North Col of Mount Everest (7020 metres) - on the list for 2014
  16. Learn to rock climb properly - planned for this summer with a good friend who is training to be an instructor
  17. Finish doing up my house - we are applying for planning permission and having pictures drawn up to get the entire house done up this year!
  18. Cycle around Sussex with Tim
  19. Walk the length of the South Downs Way (100 miles)
  20. Climb Aconcagua, Argentina (6962) - Planned for next year
  21. Visit Italy - booked for July
  22. Get into a size 8 - I'd say I'm about a size 9 now so this goal isn't that far off!
  23. Take a creative photography course
  24. Learn to love myself more
  25. Go back to Kilimanjaro (5895 metres) and complete that beast!
  26. Go free diving
  27. Get my pilot's license
  28. Have a picnic in the Ashdown forest
  29. Run a 5k in 25 minutes or under - I'm on 26.50 minutes now
  30. Read one book a week
  31. Visit Yosemite National Park - on the list for next year
  32. Visit the Fat Duck
  33. Go to a fancy dress party
  34. Visit Sheffield Park Gardens
  35. Go paragliding
  36. Give a presentation without having a panic attack beforehand
  37. Realise that if I can even think about doing 4, 12, 15 and 25 then giving a presentation is easy! 
  38. Make more friends, especially those who like me for who I am
  39. Learn to play tennis
  40. Write a book

What's on your list?

Sunday 11 March 2012

Hi all,

This morning I went through my massive fabric stash and I have 2 crate loads of fabric (and some) for sale. It's a mixture of vintage, Laura Ashley (vintage and new), Cath Kidston (enough for lots of small projects), Louise Loves, polycotton gingham in green, red, pink and yellow, lining fabric, upholstery fabric etc. I don't have the time to go through and measure and sort it all - it's not metres and metres of each design, 1 metre each tops as I tend to make small projects. There's even a bit of felt and ripstop for kids projects, and some fat quarters and quilting squares for quilters.

If you are interested and able to collect from mid sussex then please email me: I'll take £30 for the lot (from the first person who responds and can collect), which I think is an absolute bargain! I'm afraid it's as seen in the photo simply because I am out of the house over 12 hours a day and much as I'd love to I don't have time to show you exactly what fabric is there, but I assure you it's all lovely stuff. :-)

Please pass on this message to anyone you know in the area who you think would be interested!

Sian x

Saturday 10 March 2012

Well, 6 months ago I honestly nearly died running 6 miles and I never ever thought I'd run 13.1 mile in my life, let alone run that distance twice over 2 weeks.

Driving rain at the start.
Brighton half marathon I found a breeze, but I have to say the Eastbourne half marathon on Sunday I didn't feel quite as good (running goes like that sometimes). The weather was horrific - side ways driving rain, cold and grey. I went off well, at mile 2 there was a hideous hill that went on for a mile, everyone was stopping and starting but I decided to carry on (albeit so slow that a granny could overtake me walking!). 'What comes up must come down, what comes up must come down' I told myself and sure enough down hill we went for another mile or so. I took full advantage of this and raced down at 7 minute/mile pace to try and claw back some of the time I'd lost. Then it was the flat for the remainder of the race. However, by mile 6 my knee was twisting and between miles 6 and 8 I had to slow it right down to 11 minute/mile pace as my knee and hips were in agony. I refused to stop though and thought better for my body to run slow and steady rather than stopping and starting. At mile 10 I managed to ignore the pain and pick up the pace again knowing that I only had less than 30 minutes of running left and 3 miles to go. I was at least 4 minutes behind my Brighton half marathon pace, but the conditions for Brighton were much better so I wasn't too hard on myself. 
Me at mile 13 just before the finish line.
I have to say, Eastbourne half marathon takes a lovely route - it's stunning along the beach and the promenade and Sovereign harbour is lovely. It's actually much nicer than the Brighton half marathon. I will probably do it again next year. :-) I finished it with a time of 2 h and 16 minutes. Not as good as my time for the Brighton half (2 h 10 minutes), but I'm still pleased with myself.

After the race I immediately sought the advice of a physio and had a gait analysis done at Runners Need (highly recommend doing that before you start upping the mileage). I have been overpronating (essentially running with too much of my left foot touching the ground) so I've had to get some new trainers that provide maximum support.

My lovely new Nike Flywires.
Looking at my old minimalist trainers I can visibly see the inside of my sole has rubbed away! Of course because my foot has been twisting in my knee has followed suit so I've strained my medial lateral ligament (sounds worse than it is though). The physio has checked out my knee and hip and is not remotely concerned - I have been given the all clear to continue running and training for the Brighton Marathon.

So, off I trot tomorrow to Brighton to try and squeeze in a 15 miler.

In other news, I am climbing Mont Blanc in September. I am so excited! :-)

Saturday 03 March 2012

Today's super thrifty saving - £130 for Tim doing the oil change service on my car (total cost £40). Bargain!

What have you saved your money on this week?

Wednesday 29 February 2012

Just a quick note to say that Sarah of Kittyeden fame is trying to get funds, through Enterprise Nation who help small start-up businesses, to build a garden shed to be used as her workshop. If you could just take less than 30 seconds out of your day to vote for her it would mean a lot!

You can vote here.

Thanks so much!


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