Monday Motivation

Due to an unexpectedly busy week last week, my blogging editorial calendar was a little up in the air with a few posts published a little bit later than originally planned (Wednesday’s gift guide went live yesterday instead) or in the case of my weekly Friday Favourites, didn’t get published at all.

I didn’t want to not publish a weekly round up so this week I’m bringing last week’s Friday Favourites in the form of a Monday Motivation post. Using the same concept of reflecting on all of the things that brought some joy to my life in the last week in order to increase feelings of positivity and gratitude, I’m hoping that it will motivate me to try and make this week as good as the last.

1.Victoria Square £100 Festive Outfit Challenge

You may have read my post earlier in the week about my collaboration with Victoria Square to put together a festive outfit in an hour within a £100 budget. If you have had a chance to read the post, you’ll know how much I enjoyed this whole experience. If you read my most recent Friday Favourites you’ll also have read how being invited to my first event as a blogger was a pretty proud moment for me, well as my first collaboration as a blogger, the Victoria Square challenge was another proud blogger moment for me. Not only that but it gave me a chance to meet some of the fab people in a similar industry to me. I’ve struggled to find a sense of a blogging community within Northern Ireland as other bloggers seem to have in the likes of Dublin or Cork so it was such a breath of fresh air to meet fellow fashion blogger Oh So Femme and chat all things social media, blogging and of course fashion with her.

If you missed the post you can catch up here to see the outfit that I put together and how the whole day went.

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2. Date night at Loteria @ Birdcage

After a stressful day of running around Dublin like a headless chicken it was nice to come home and head out for dinner at Loteria – formerly known as Birdcage on Stranmillis. It’s my second time there in the last few weeks. The first time I went I was rushing off to see my sister’s school play so it was nice to just sit and relax and enjoy the meal this time around. The decor of Lotteria is pretty cool and edgy with lots of neon lights and interesting art plastered around the walls. The menu consists of your usual burgers, ribs, chicken etc with a Mexican twist. They also have a killer cocktail menu and I was genuinely daydreaming about my Dark and Stormy cocktail for the rest of the evening. It’s always nice to go out on a date with your significant other regardless of how much you’ve seen each other that week and with Loteria just around the corner, there was no excuse not to.

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3. Advent Calendar Season Is Upon Us

It’s hard to believe that we’ve reached December already but I couldn’t be more excited about the fact that this means that Christmas is just around the corner. The countdown is officially on and the advent calendars are finally out. Since I don’t eat dairy or gluten, the prospect of an advent calendar this year wasn’t as exciting as it has been in previous years but in her usual way, Mum really pulled through and put together an advent calendar made up of loads of sweets and dairy free treats. Although as kids we turned our noses up at mum’s home made advent calendar that hung on the back of the kitchen door, right now I couldn’t be more grateful for it.

4. Bowel Cancer Carol Service at Stormont

Every year my mum and a few other sponsors put together a carol service to raise money for Bowel Cancer UK. It’s a charity that holds a close place in our heart as a family and within my extended family-friends circle after we lost our amazing Rosie to bowel cancer a few years ago.

For me personally, the event is always so bitter sweet. It’s a reminder of Rosie’s absence and as I look around me and see everyone there, it makes her absence feel all the more prominent. It breaks my heart that she isn’t with us anymore and with the atmosphere created by the beauty of the voices within Methodist College Chapel Choir, the first ten minutes of the service is usually spent with a lump in my throat, biting my lip as I try not to cry.

With that being said, it is an event that I look forward to every Christmas and it isn’t all sad. It’s a reminder of how closely knit our friendship group is and it’s always nice to come together at events like this. As a former Methody Chapel Choir girl I love being able to hear the choir sing. I may be a little biased but every year they seem to get better and better and the amount of talent within the choir never ceases to amaze me.

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5. Girls Date Day to the Aquarium

With a lot of my friends off at university and busy with final year, most of my friendship group is scattered all over the place so it can very quickly become complicated to make plans. That being said, when some of us do happen to be in the country at the same time we try to make the effort to fit in a catch up at some point and it’s always so lovely to see each other. This weekend was one of those lovely times when one of my friends who goes to university in Milan made a last minute decision to come home for a few days.

Admittedly, the aquarium was a random choice for a Sunday adventure but it was nice to do something different and venture out of Belfast to meet up. I spent a lot of my Sundays during my childhood in the Strangford area so the whole day felt very nostalgic of those days. We were in and out of the aquarium within half an hour, it seems it’s not as exciting once you get a bit older but we still had a good laugh together. Following our brief adventure across the water we headed back to mine, cosied up with hot chocolate and plenty of chit chat.

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All in all looking back on it last week was a good one so here’s hoping this week turns out to be just as good.

Hope you all had as good a week as I did.

Niamh ♥

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