13   87
13   104
24   132
19   152
22   137
21   128
19   114
89   190

5 Ideas For A Digital Detox

Thanks to that iPhone feature, I am now painfully aware of how much time I spend on my phone each week. The results were oftentimes quite shocking, and I’d think to myself, what the heck do I do on social media for allll that time?! Do I really need to check these apps so frequently? So, as a little challenge (I always love a challenge) I wanted to make a conscious effort to spend less time reaching for my phone.

Of course, being a blogger, I wasn’t quite ready to switch off and disappear out of the digital world completely. I mean, the internet is awesome isn’t it, I’m gonna stick around. However, I did want to reduce my screen time, even if it was just taking small regular breaks from technology to do something else.

There are so many things available to us that don’t require WiFi, or a smart phone, or any kinda screen. We just gotta go back to basics. I discovered that the more time I spent ‘disconnected’, the calmer and more peaceful I was feeling. The online world is so fast-paced, ever-changing and attention grabbing; switching off meant that life slowed down, I was in control and I could be more creative with my time.

Write.

No matter how advanced technology gets, I will always love the simple pleasure of writing in a pretty notebook. My new favourite thing each evening is to journal. There is something so therapeutic about writing down thoughts and feelings to put everything in perspective. Whatever my worries, jotting them onto paper always makes me feel calmer, and recording all that is good and happy makes me feel positive.

Related post: 30 Creative Ways To Use A New Notebook 

Create.

Last week, I shared with you how I spent many hours of the Bank Holiday Weekend painting an abstract paint by numbers cat. It was super relaxing and was a welcome break from technology. Plus, I now have colourful cat painting to be proud of. There are so many ways to be creative without using your phone: cooking, colouring and crafting to name a few! Whatever your passion, switch off for a few hours and enjoy.

Related post: 5 Ways Creativity Improves Mental Health 

Exercise.

Exercise has tons and tons of benefits, you don’t need me to tell you that. It also means you can take a break from staring at the screen and get a change of scenery. You don’t really need an expensive gym membership or fancy yoga pants to reap the benefits either. Going for a walk each day is such a simple and effective way to keep fit and improve mental health (plus the summer is coming so even better!).

Read.

I used to tell myself I never had time to read books. But in reality, I never made time to read books. If I could spend hours scrolling social media, then why couldn’t I replace that time with reading a book. Now, each morning, instead of reaching for my phone, I pick up something motivational and read a chapter. As a result, I start my day feeling more positive and inspired instead of allowing Twitter to decide my mood.

I’ve recently read Shine: Rediscovering Your Energy, Happiness and Purpose which I would recommend. 

Home Spa.

Creating a home spa (or a luxury bubble bath) is such a blissful way to unwind and escape technology. In my opinion, we should all be visiting our DIY spa regularly, booking ourselves in for a few hours to relax and recharge. Why not treat yourself to a bubble bath, with a few candles, then pop on a face mask and your favourite chilled tunes and let the stress melt away. No phones allowed (unless it’s to listen to Spotify).

Related post: My Perfect Self-Care Evening

I hope this post has given you some ideas and inspired you to treat yourself to regular digital detoxes. Even if you just switch off for an hour each day and do something offline, we can still enjoy the many positive benefits. What is your favourite way to spend your time without technology? Let me know in the comments – I’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions! <3

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Not For Ponies: Quirky Homeware and Interiors

[AD – I was gifted products from Not For Ponies in exchange for an honest review]

Firstly, hello, hello, hello, it has been a while hasn’t it! But Bexa is backkkk with a selection of colourful and quirky lifestyle products to impress your eyeballs. This kooky collection is designed by Not For Ponies – a clothing, accessories and homeware shop which started life as a bohemian market stall that traveled festivals & arts fairs and grew into an independent lifestyle brand. It aims to add a sprinkle of fun to your day with rich vibrant colours, playful prints and fun statement pieces. Yayyy, bring on the colourfulness…!

Why not check out Not For Ponies on Twitter / Instagram / Facebook.

I was very kindly allowed to pick five items from their brand new range and honestly, I loved everything, it was such a tough decision. I wanted alllll the pretty colourful things so this is what I went for: Fab Cushion / Back To Mine Notebook / Gin Shopper Bag / Cuppa Tea Shopper Bag / Cuppa Tea Wall Hanging.

Cuppa Tea Shopper Bag: A cup of tea can make everything better, right? This is a fun and practical tote bag which is perfect for brightening up any shopping trip. It’s made from 100% organic cotton, it’s cheerful, colourful and ideal for tea lovers. It’s a unique design and great quality or should I say qualitea (pun alert).

Back To Mine Notebook: YASSS IT’S A NOTEBOOK. Be still my stationery-loving-heart. Here we have the A5 bright blue vinyl record design with lined pages. It’s an awesome gift for music lovers, notebook lovers or people who are fond of the colour blue. Also available as a cushion to add a splash of colour to your home.

Gin Shopper Bag: Stressful shopping trip? Not For Ponies have got you covered with this vibrant pink gin tote bag. Sometimes we need something a little stronger than a cup of tea to tackle those bigger shopping trips and thankfully this gin canvas bag is here for you. Plus it’s bright pink so extra cool points there.

Fab Cushion: The fabulous fab cushion is a sure way to brighten up any home. It features big, bold lettering and a cheerful yellow pom-pom trim. It stands out, looks awesome and is a fab addition to any room. This would look pretty funky teamed up with the Bright Side Cushion, Cuppa Tea Cushion and Gin Cushion.

Cuppa Tea Wall Hanging: Another perfect accessory for tea lovers to match the tote bag, notebook and cushion. These wall hangings are great for adding some colour to walls or (genius idea coming up…) if you are an enamel pin fanatic like me, this could be an awesome & unique way to display your collection.

A big thank you to Not For Ponies for gifting me all these wonderfully quirky creations, colourful things always make me happy and my home is looking much more bright & cheerful right now. Yayyy! =)

Which item is your favourite? Let me know in the comments – I’d love to hear from you!

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Cattitude Box

[AD – I was gifted a Cattitude Subscription Box in exchange for an honest review]

You know sometimes you stumble across a product and think: this is 100% me. Well, this happened recently when I discovered that Cattitude Boxes (a gift box for cat ladies and their cats) were a thing. Crazy cat lady? Tick. Subscription box lover? Tick. It sounded purrr-fect (be prepared, there’s more) so feline excited, I said yes paw-lease and the box was here be-fur we knew it. It’s claw-some. Okay, I’m done, here’s the box…

A Cattitude Box is full of unique cat gifts and lifestyle/home accessories – every month there are treats for the furry ones and new ways for you to parade your crazy cat lady status! It is such a cool delivery (the box alone is brilliant enough) and now Simba, Zazu and Aladdin understand exactly why mummy cat blogs.

In the box: Vet’s Kitchen Little Hearts Treats, CatStronauts backpack, Lily’s Kitchen Organic Fish Dinner, Puss In Pearl Stud Earrings, Super Cute Adjustable Kitty Ring, Cat Slogan Necklace and Crazy Cat Lady Badge.

CatStronauts backpack: I mean, space is pretty awesome right, but a space-cat is off the awesomeness scale. No, your eyes are not deceiving you, you are really witnessing a CatStronaut on a backpack. I challenge you to find a cooler bag, in the meantime I’m taking this little beauty to my next yoga class =)

Lily’s Kitchen Organic Fish: Simba and Zazu are the world’s most fussiest eaters and insist I only buy cat food in gravy. Aladdin (who isn’t technically my cat but has adopted me, especially around dinner time) will eat anything. No surprises who would be reviewing this then. Aladdin ate it all in 3.5 seconds, looked at me for more, then lay on his back for the rest of the afternoon and napped. Happy cat right there, five stars.

Vet’s Kitchen Little Hearts: All three volunteered themselves for treat tasting, no cat would ever turn down the finest salmon and trout. It’s good for digestive health and contains omega 3 & 6 for a healthy glossy coat (I’ve just told the cats this and they are now outside showing off to the lady cats down the road).

Cat Postcard: I’m such a postcard lover and have a fair few on my walls, but this one wins without a doubt for the most cute and adorable. “I want to meow with you forever” oh my heart.

Cat Necklace: I love that this box is not just for cats (sorry cats, you can’t have all the fun) but it’s also designed for their crazy humans too. This necklace is really cute and I adore the message behind it. Strut your independence you’re are purrfect just the way you are. Yesss! So adorably sweet and sassy!

Puss in pearl studs: Not only is there a pretty necklace, Cattitude have included a pair of cat-style pearl earrings. I never knew there was so much cat themed jewellery out there in the world and if I did, I would most certainly own it all. These are really cute especially as each stud has little cat ears on!

Super cute adjustable kitty ring: To complete the set there is a ring for all those glamorous cat mummies. More ears = more cuteness. I’m glad the only three pieces of jewellery I now own are all cat related.

Crazy Cat Lady Badge: This is me summed up perfectly in a badge. I love it =)

I hope you enjoyed checking out all the cat themed goodies in this month’s Cattitude box! You can sign up here for monthly or bi-monthly boxes or you can even surprise the crazy cat ladies in your life with their own unfurrgettable gift box. Are you a crazy cat lady? Would you and your feline friends enjoy this box?

Let me know in the comments – I’d love to hear from you!

Keep feeding your crazy cat obsession by following @cattitudebox on Instagram.

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Love Heart Cupcakes

It’s Valentine’s Day! Despite being very single (and very okay about that) I decided to get creative in the kitchen this week and make some love heart themed cupcakes! Because, everyone deserves cake, right? In this episode of Baking With Bexa, my old trusty friend Betty Crocker is lending a hand. She can take care of the practicalities and getting all the measurements right, whilst I can have fun with the decorating and making it all colourful. Here is how to add a pink-lovey-dovey twist to a regular Vanilla Cupcake Mix.

You will need:

Betty Crocker Vanilla Cupcake Mix

Dr. Oetker Pretty Pink Cupcake Icing

Cake Angels Blush Sprinkles

Love Hearts

Colour Cups Cupcake Cases

2 x large eggs, 3 tbsp olive oil

The only man in my kitchen this Valentines Day is Dr. Oetker… whoever he is.

These cakes are super simple and can be easily modified to suit your style. If you want Chocolate Cupcake Icing or Vanilla Cupcake Icing, Dr. Oetker has got you covered. Or what about a Rainbow Mega Mix of Sprinkles? Maybe Pastel Cupcake Cases are more your thing. You can let your creative side run wild. 

As with previous baking posts, I am never far from a baking kit. This year, I have already made Unicorn Confetti Cupcakes and Rainbow Cake Pops (yay for colourful cooking!) I find a kit takes the stress and mess out of baking and just leaves you to do the fun and pretty decorating bit.

For the cakes, all you need to do is add Betty’s cake mix, 2 large eggs, 3 tbsp of oil and 3 tbsp of water to a mixing bowl. Mix well, pop into cases and bake for 15-17 minutes at 180 degrees. It really is that simple!

I picked up these cute polka dot cupcake cases from Hobbycraft by Colour Cups. I got 36 in a pack and only used 8, so expect to see these again on the blog in the future.  It was a tough choice between these and a pack of Dots And Stripes Cupcake cases. But multicoloured polka dots won for today.

Betty C says the kit makes 9 cupcakes. I just had enough for 8, I’m assuming I’m either way more generous with my portions or I have larger cases. However, no complaints here – I’m fully supporting bigger cakes!  

Betty Crocker never lets you down, her cupcakes always come out looking perfect!

For the icing, you need to select one of Dr. Oetker’s nozzles. There are four, and I picked the wrong one first – the icing was very flat, unphotogenic and generally disappointing. So I went for his largest nozzle which seemed to do a satisfactory job. There are way too many innuendo’s here… Must. Stop. Typing.

Unfortunately we lost two cupcakes, one due to the poor icing attempt and the other the icing ran out before it even got a chance. Don’t worry – they were still very edible even if they didn’t make it through to the sprinkle stage. As I only had six left so there was no room for decoration errors…

Thankfully, it was all straight forward from here: just sprinkle the sprinkles and pop in a love heart!

I didn’t realize but some of the Love Heart sweets are totally cringe. Nobody wants a soppy cupcake. The one’s I picked where Love, Dream On, Stay Cool, Bestie, Sweet Heart and one with a sunglasses emoji, as sunglasses are cool, yo. ‘Sugar Lips’, ‘Cheeky Boy’ and ‘Love Bug’ were not going to make the cut.

Stay cool and eat cupcakes. 

So there ya go! Cupcakes are ready! I hope you enjoyed reading about my afternoon baking adventures with Betty Crocker, Dr. Oetker’s nozzles and cringe Love Heart sweets. I hope you all have a lovely Valentine’s Day, single or in a relationship, it doesn’t matter just make sure it involves cake! <3

Have you used a Betty Crocker kit before? What are your favourite cupcakes? Let me know in the comments – I’d love to hear from you!

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