Sunday 30 November 2014

Busy Bee!

What a busy few days - I'll be glad when this weekend is over.
Saturday was 'Christmas at the Barn' which is always lovely but time consuming, as I left the house at 7.30am and didn't get home until after 6pm. 

It is always a lovely Christmas fair with lots of hand picked Artisan Stalls - I always have to treat myself to something!!

We even had the company of a real 'live' Robin - that final festive flourish!

Today has been back to it with one huge BUMP! Black Friday saw a huge amount of orders 'ping' our way, so I was extremely grateful for some help this morning. Sophie worked extremely hard and between us, we got 70+ orders picked and packed in just under 3 hours this morning - a fab start.

I intend to take this evening off and get cracking again tomorrow - hope you've all had a good weekend.

Friday 28 November 2014

WOW! What a morning

WOW! What an unexpected morning - I lost 2lbs this week which was a nice surprise as this week has been so busy and I haven't been able to give everything my full focus. I only went and got 'Slimmer of the Week' too and ........

....... 'Slimmer of the Month'!!!

Feeling pretty chuffed - who knew my Friday morning's would be such fun!


My food this week has been generally good, although I did indulge at the weekend.
I have sort of planned my week, which is key but I have had the odd lunch time 'grab what I can' and sat and watched everyone eat Chip Shop, fish and chips last night and only picked a few!

For me it's now the clothes and how I feel. I think it's beginning to show that I've lost a bit of weight. The first pic is me 11 weeks ago when I started and the next pic is me today 1stone 12lbs lighter!

I'm aiming for another 2lb loss next week so I can collect my 2 Stone Award. I'd aimed to get there by Christmas, so I have a little room to manoeuvre if I don't succeed.

Wednesday 26 November 2014

November chill

So this week started with a frost - the first of the year.

I spotted this fab stripey leaf out on the deck.

This weather has got me turning all my fairy lights on from the minute I walk through the door at the end of the day. I finally got around to giving my fabulous LOVE letters a temporary home. They've been sat in a bag for two weeks whilst I tried to find them a space. I'd love them in the kitchen but there simply is no wall space left and you have to be able to reach them to turn them, on as each letter has a switch.

They've ended up in my studio, precariously perched on my blue pigeon holes. They'll be fine there for now but I need a bigger house as I'm running out of space!

Over in the dots and spots unit, I've been busy keeping up to date with all my orders and prepping my display for 'Christmas at the Barn' on Saturday. I managed to get everything priced and packed away, ready to load into the car on Friday - fingers crossed it stays dry. I always take far too much with me but never know what to leave behind!

Sunday 23 November 2014

What a busy weekend!

So the weekend has come and gone in a flash!
Saturday was a girlie treat day in Bristol for Sophie and I. We enjoyed a little shopping, a lovely lunch and then watched the fantastic performance of Top Hat at the Bristol Hippodrome.

It was F*A*N*T*A*S*T*I*C 
I always come out of live Musical Theatre in awe of the talent and energy of the performance - well worth every penny. We're so lucky to have the Bristol Hippodrome so close and the amazing shows it has to offer. WICKED in March is next on the list and I can't wait.

Then today, an impromptu day trip to Cornwall to visit my Granny. She unexpectantly ended up in hospital last week and it was the Summer when we last saw her, so I just felt the need to visit. It's a 6 hour round trip but well worth it, even for just a few hours. We even took her first 'selfie' at the grand age of 91. Family and time together is precious and I'm so pleased I made the effort to go. Saw Mum and Dad too when they popped in, so an added bonus. Tomorrow will be busy catching up on all my orders - we'll be at the 'Barn' too next weekend so a busy week ahead.

Friday 21 November 2014

Where did the week go?

Wow this week has come and gone in a flash and I fear that may well be the case for the next few weeks too! I like it to be busy but......

Thank you to all of you who supported our recent offer - you kept me out of mischief for a few days.

As promised Friday posts will now have a little Slimming World theme as it's weigh-in day for me.

First up, a non-scale victory. I spotted this jumper in New Look and thought it was quite a subtle take on the Festive Christmas jumper. Well, I used to always get an 18/20 depending on how baggy I wanted it to be. I'm beginning to try on an 18 now but there weren't any, so picked up a  size16 and hoped for the best. Well it was too big and the assistant made me try on a 14!!!!! Now it'll be a big 14, I know I'm not really that size yet but it made my day that I now have a size 14 top in my wardrobe and it looks okay on.

The photo's above are taken 7 weeks apart and a stone lighter in weight - I think the difference is beginning to show a little now.

 Just a little selection of this week's food.

I've been continuing to eat delicious, healthy, home cooked food. It still amazes me what you can eat and still lose weight. I even had a cheeky GBK (Gourmet Burger Kitchen) chicken burger and chips and still managed to lose 1.5lbs this week taking me to 24lbs or 1 stone 10lbs off in total.


I try, if I have enough time, to do one new recipe a week - this weeks recipe was Pizza Topped Chicken and it was delicious. Just click on the link for the full recipe. I reckon if I can keep the plan as varied as possible, I won't get bored or slip back into old bad habits. You are allowed to treat yourself, it has to be realistic but I know if I had a piece of toast with real butter, it would end up being 6 slices, or one slice of cake would end up being the whole lot. To be honest, I've not needed those things (yet) I haven't felt deprived, so whilst I'm feeling this way, I'm going to just keep going as I am.

Have a lovely weeked - Sophie and I are off to Bristol tomorrow to go and see Top Hat, then we're all off to Cornwall on Sunday for the day as my Granny has been in hospital poorly, so it's a busy weekend for me.

Monday 17 November 2014


So here it is, to celebrate my 44th Birthday we are offering you one last BIG discount code this side of Christmas.

44% OFF

The offer is up and running for the next 3 days, ending midnight on Wednesday the 19th of November. Just simply type in BIRTHDAY44 at the checkout when prompted to do so!


Sunday 16 November 2014


I have just spent the most enjoyable couple of hours doing up this old suitcase. I bought it in the summer and it's just sat there waiting to be given a little bit of love and attention. So with Jeff out at work today, orders picked and packed this morning and a free afternoon ahead of me, the time had come.

I'm going to use it to display my Christmas cards at 'Christmas at the Barn' in a few weeks time. The base is nice and deep and will fit 3 rows of card packs and the lid is now trimmed with ribbon so that cards can be pegged up for display - perfect.

I'm going to spend the next couple of days deciding what to take to the Barn and how to best display it all. These things have a habit of creeping up on you and I've a busy time ahead, so I'd rather get it done and be ready. There will be special prices at the show but if you can't make it, we have our last 'Money Off Discount Code' being announced tomorrow so make sure you remember to pop in and catch it.

Friday 14 November 2014


When I started this blog it was a diary really, a way to remember the journey of starting up a business with a young family, the good times and bad times. As different aspects of life become more important, so my posts would reflect that, be it the business, home, family, me! dots and spots was always the main focus in the beginning as it took over so much of everything that I did but as dots and spots has settled into more of a routine over the past 6 years, I guess more posts about me in general have come to the fore. This may not be of as much interest to you as the business was in the beginning but there are only so many posts you can now share about picking and packing orders. I must also remember that this blog was initially for me, and anyone who wanted to share my journey along the way was a happy bonus.


One aspect that is quite important to me is my battle with my pounds and I guess is quite a big part of 'me' at the moment. I find great inspiration from Pinterest and wonderful support from Instagram and the comments left on here when I do post about it. There have been comments about sharing the odd recipe etc over on Instagram as a result of some of the photo's I share and this would be the obvious place to do so, as you can write so much more. As Friday is my weigh in day, I thought I'd maybe post regularly on a Friday about my Slimming World journey, the odd recipe etc. If it's not your cup of tea, ignore my Friday post!

Today was fabulous, not only is it my Birthday, I lost 2.5lbs, achieved my 1 1/2 stone Award and got Slimmer of the Week! That's 22.5lbs off in 9 weeks - the best Birthday pressie ever. I could have done without the whole group singing Happy Birthday but hey, I came out feeling pretty chuffed. I'm not getting any younger and at 44! I guess you realise how important your health is as the years creep on. My aim is to reach the top end of my healthy BMI and by following this plan, I'm hopeful I might just do it this time.

Have a great weekend - I'm taking the weekend off and am going to Bath tomorrow, making a start on the Christmas shopping - there will be a BIRTHDAY DISCOUNT CODE coming next week, the last big one before Christmas, so look out for that at the beginning of next week

Wednesday 12 November 2014


I've been a bit naughty and been treating myself.
I went to Street yesterday to drop off a delivery and just popped into Clarks Village and might of just popped out with these lovely LOVE letters - now to find them a home.
Well it is my Birthday on Friday and Christmas is just around the corner!

I also might have treated myself to this top from GAP in a MEDIUM!! Yes, a medium - this is a first for me, was always an XL before so a nice surprise non-scale victory!

And this morning I may have just bought 2 tickets to see Take That in May 2015!
Those that know me, know that I'm a big fan so I'm looking forward to May!
I was lucky enough to see them in June 2011 - I used them as my weight loss motivation, vowing to be 'thin by Take That' and failed miserably but hopefully I will be 'thin by Take That' this time round, hopefully even at target- so something else to look forward to!

Monday 10 November 2014

Bit of business

We are now entering the 'busy bit' of the year! Orders are picking up apace, lots of prep needs doing, we will be at the wonderful 'Christmas at the Barn' in a few weeks and of course there is the normal family stuff to do too - present buying, Christmas card writing and festive food and gatherings to plan for.

It's been 2 years since we were at 'The Barn' in Mells, Rebecca the organiser took a year off last year but it's back by popular demand. We will be selling a selection of items from our range at *Special Show Prices*. We will also be handing out a special discount code to use on our website during the build up to Christmas.

The event lasts for two days, although we will only be there on the Saturday, as Sunday will no doubt be busy catching up with orders. There are 20 British Artisan sellers each day selling their wares. It's open from 10am - 5pm both days, so the perfect time to start that Christmas shopping with style.

Just thought I'd also mention that my 'celebrate' wrap has been used in the first few seconds of the Great Little Trading Company 'Behind the Scenes' Christmas video. They used the wrap last year as part of their Christmas catalogue and I've spotted it in this year's campaign too - feeling quite chuffed!

Friday 7 November 2014


Friday mornings have become a little weekly highlight for me - it's 'weigh-in day' and rather than feel anxious or worried about what the scales might say, I actually look forward to it. I know I've stayed 'on plan' and hope that the scales show a loss each week. Well this week I've lost another 2lbs taking my total to 20 pounds off in 8 weeks, just 1lb away from a stone and a half!

I also received my Club 10 Award today - I have lost 10% of my starting body weight!

I must say, I have surprised myself - the plan is great and makes complete sense. This pic just shows you a selection of the fab food I have been eating over the past few weeks. You have to be prepared to cook from scratch but it is so worth it.

I even made my own fish and chips when everyone enjoyed 'chip shop chips' from the takeaway. 

I'm keeping up my daily walks around the park and walking generally whenever I can.


I think this pic is a good reminder of what I have achieved over the past 3 years.
The photo on the left is me March 2012 3stone heavier than I am today.
I lost 3 stone on my own back in 2012 then gradually put half of it back on, I've now lost the weight I put back on, with Slimming World in the past 8 weeks, so am starting the new phase of my weight loss journey. I still want to lose another 2 - 2 1/2stone as that will put me into the top end of my healthy BMI . It's still quite a way to go but with the Slimming World Plan and support, I think I might get there this time.

Monday 3 November 2014

Farewell October - Hello November

Well what a fabulous month October turned out to be - still hard to believe that it is now November. I guess it's due to the wonderful weather we've had, it'll be hard to feel it cold again.

November is the Birthday month for Sophie and I - she turns 15!!! (how did that happen?) on Tuesday and me a young 44 next Friday! Sophie's main present was a joint Christmas and Birthday Laptop, lucky girl. We decided to give it to her a couple of days early on Sunday so she had a chance to get it all up and running, with Jeff around on standby if there were any problems. 

Thank you hugs all round!
She is a good girl and works hard and deserves her pressie.

So with November starting it means that half term has come to an end - school runs resume and we have a 7 week slog ahead of us until the Christmas break. I LOVE Christmas and especially the lead up to the big day but it always goes crazy busy for me now, from here until the end of the January Sales.

I've been doing a few bits over at the unit during half term but it's now time to knuckle down and get those orders out, as quickly as they come in!