How My Blog Planning Has Changed Through The Years

It’s always October that I find myself thinking a lot about my blog and how much it’s changed. In just over two weeks this little space of mine will be 4 years old, and I will never stop being grateful for all that blogging has given me.I look back to the early years with a lot of fond memories. I wouldn’t like to call myself naive but I think that’s exactly what I was, but innocently so. Back then I wrote how I thought I should be writing, and when I look back I cringe over how the words don’t even sound like they’ve come from me, but back then, same as I do now, I wrote because I loved doing it.

Back in the day I had no idea how to schedule a blog post, and in fact there were a few days within my first years of blogging that I published about 6 posts in a day because I had no concept of the importance of staggering my content. In those days I didn’t even know how to check my blog stats, let alone worry over them, and I didn’t think I needed a Twitter account – cute right?

For the first year or so of my blog, I just wrote whenever I had the chance. There was no real pattern of much of a schedule, and pretty much everything was posted on the same day it was written without much of a thought. It was simple and I was happy doing that.

When 2015 came around, I wanted routine. I was still LottieDoesDisney back then and I still thought all I could write about was Disney, but came up with an ingenious blog plan and routine for the coming year. For each week I would honour a particular Disney movie, and represent said movie in various inspired posts through the week – I think Monday was an intro, Tuesday was fashion, Wednesday was DIY Thursday was food etc. I don’t even think that lasted two months.

The problem with this is I felt too restricted, and by this stage I was wanting to branch out and write about more topics, and this sort of schedule wasn’t allowing me the ability to do that. I quickly ditched that, although I never stopped writing about Disney, and change was creeping in, but it wasn’t long before I was introducing new schedules that were just as tight as the old ones.

2016 came and again I planned the year out carefully with a bunch of series that I was sure I’d see through, some weekly, some bi-weekly and others monthly. At the time I loved thinking that I was so damn organised, but if for any reason the posts couldn’t be written, I felt like I’d failed the system. Knowing I had to have a certain post written by a certain day of the week made everything feel forced, and I fell out of love with the writing, so I decided to let go.

I still plan, and I always aim to keep at least a week ahead of the game, but I’m far more relaxed with my blog schedule. I am, in fact, writing as many posts, if not more than I ever have done, but I don’t pressure myself and the words just flow much better that way. I try to have 3-4 posts for each week planned at the start of each month, and that allows me to fill the spaces with the spontaneous and off the cuff posts, which often tend to be the most popular.

I’ve always said it and I always will: I just enjoy writing and being a blogger, and what’s funnier still is I always say I’m grateful for what my blog has given me, but I guess really it’s what I’ve given myself.

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My Birthday Haul

Well that’s another birthday done with for the year! The day itself was fairly chilled – I had the day off work and just spent it hanging out at home, baking cakes and then had the family over for a Chinese takeaway for dinner. Nothing special, but just the way I like it.

But you didn’t come here to hear about my day, you wanted to see what I got, right?

The first presents I got to unwrap in the morning were from Matthew. He was pretty smug about what he’d got me, and even wanted me to open them early because he wanted to see my reaction, but I patiently waited until my actual birthday.

I was not disappointed. I opened what felt like the heaviest box of goodies all the way from Sephora – seven sheet masks, a cream highlighter palette and this whopper of an eyeshadow palette from the Sephora Pro collection. I’ve already searched every shade and fallen in love with it and I can’t wait to play with it some more!

Also tucked in my box of goodies, although not from Sephora, was a bottle of Pixi Glow Tonic, which is a product I’ve been dying to get my hands on for a long time now, so I’m excited to see if that lives up to all the hype.


How amazing are my parents?! I had absolutely no idea that I would be unwrapping this beautiful little bag from the Disney x Coach collection, but I’m so in love with it and I’m so grateful that they managed to find one as I thought the collection was no longer available. I did also get a cutting mat and rotary cutting tool from them but it doesn’t look as cute in photos!

The rest of my family just stuck to the usual tradition of money, and I’m planning on putting some of that towards a Lush shop, and the rest towards my upcoming Florida trip at the end of the month.

A huge thank you to everyone who wished me a happy birthday on here and on social media, it means so much to me!

Things I’ve Done Since 22

Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me, happy birthday to meeeeee, happy birthday to me!

I’m not really one for celebrating my own birthday too much; I actually share my birthday with my youngest cousin who’ll be 9 today, and I’m more about making sure she has a great birthday than caring about mine. For me a birthday just means another year older, and another year to fill with adventures and achievements, and this last year has been pretty great. Shall we reflect?

  • I quit retail – after 4 years in the same job, last year I finally said goodbye to my B&Q orange apron and traded it in for an office job, hello change!
  • I’ve been on bunch of incredible holidays with my favourite people – Walt Disney World, Disneyland, a Disney Cruise and Disneyland Paris, plus some mini adventures in between
  • I went on my first solo venture to Disneyland Paris – while I did see some friends while I was out there, my DLP trip back in January was the first time I’ve fully done DLP by myself and I had such a lovely time.
  • I got to work with the Disney Store – I know it was months ago now and I keep going on about it, but it was an absolute dream blog collaboration for me and I had the best time doing it!
  • Another 3 half marathons – that’s another 39.3 miles, not to three 10Ks and any training runs in between
  • I’ve become more comfortable in my own skin – my body confidence has been up and down for as long as I can remember, but I’m finally accepting and learning to like how I look, and I have even been confident enough to post photos on social media of me in a bikini on holiday which is something I never would have done a year ago.
  • I launched yet another small business – after umming and ahhing for ages, I finally opened LottieBounds, where I sell my Disney inspired creations and I’ve been so happy with it!
  • Our first anniversary – not only did I reach my first one year anniversary ever, but I did it with the most perfect guy
  • Matthew moved in – sure, we haven’t got to the stage of moving out just yet, but we’re finally living together and we have our own little space to be together in after so much time apart

A few of these may seem small to some, but for me they are the defining moments of the last year, and I’m excited to see what I’ll do before I’m 24..

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When I Grow Up..

Next week I’ll be turning 23. I’ll be another year older, and maybe wiser, but I’m still just as unsure about the rest of my life as I’ll ever be.

Remember when you were little, and you were so sure what you’d be when you grew up? Sure, you’d probably change your mind every couple of years, but at the time it seemed like anything was possible, and you’d probably be excelling in your field by the time you were 25. Childhood innocence meant you weren’t thinking about what degree you’d need to get, or how you’d pay off astronomical student loans, and your main concern when it came to housing was whether your house would have a bouncy castle room or a room made of chocolate. You were free to dream.

Over the years, I’ve wanted to do and be a number of things, and as another birthday approaches, I’ve been reminiscing a little..

‘I want to be a vet’

This was the first job I remember wanting. I was animal obsessed as a kid (some things never change) and to me being a vet meant playing with animals every day. Apparently I specifically wanted to be a vet for cute animals such as cats, dogs and hamsters, and refused to work with snakes or anything else that I deemed yucky or not cute.

I can’t remember at what stage I stopped wanting to be a vet, but I think it came along with the realisation that its not all playing with cute fluffy animals, and that I’d probably be traumatised the first time I was faced with having to put someone else’s pet down.

‘I want to be a fashion designer’

I think I was around about 9-10 when I started drawing clothes. I’d always loved being crafty and attempting to ‘customise’ stuff, and I got a sketchbook and started to create my first ‘portfolio’. This wasn’t a career I was overly vocal about, and I think the only person that I actually told this to was my sister, who I seem to recall told me it was stupid.

While the ambition faded fairly quickly, my love for designing and creating apparel never did, and today I’m selling my creations on Etsy, not to mention frequently wearing them myself.

‘I want to be in a girl band’

Toward the end of my primary school days, me and my two best friends at the time formed a band. I created the music on some PC software I had on my computer, and we’d sing along over and over and dream about performing in front of audiences.

The band probably lasted all of a few sleepovers, but I continued to write songs and perform until I was about 15-16, but I knew nothing would ever come of it. My confidence was knocked by some goings on in my personal life, and now I save my singing for solo car journeys and being home alone.

‘I want to be a photographer’

I’m fairly certain this one fizzled out as quickly as it came on, but I have always loved taking photos. I remember creating a website and some crappy little business cards, but at the time the only photos I ever took were probably on my dad’s little digital camera.

Photography is still a huge part of my life. Its a huge part of my blog and its something that I genuinely love doing, so while I won’t be making any big bucks out of it, me and my camera are always going to be firm friends.

‘I want to be a forensic scientist’

This was probably my most serious career aspiration. Inspired by my love of detective type TV shoes and my love of chemistry at school, I had really thought that this was going to be my career.

It stuck with me through my GCSEs, but during my first year of A-Levels I was starting to discover that university wasn’t the only path I could take after sixth form, and I was itching to be out of education and in the real world, and forensics just became another pipe dream that I was now over.

As for where I really am today, I’m just coming up to a year of being in my first proper salaried job, albeit still in customer service. I don’t love my job, but there’s a lot of change coming up in my life and I know that my time will come.

One day.

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August Achievements

Do not ask me where August has gone because I genuinely have no idea, but I thought rather than wrapping up the month with my usual ‘favourites’ post, I’d go for something a little different and finish the month in a more positive way by talking about some of the things I have achieved this month!

Blog blog blogging

Over the last few months, my blog has taken a little bit of a hit as a result of other commitments, but I really feel like I’ve gotten back into the swing of things and I’m super happy that my stats are reflecting that too! I was absolutely blown away with the response to ‘A Bloody Shame‘, which is definitely the most controversial and personal post I think I’ve ever written, but the number of people who agreed with the points raised in the post just proved to me that putting myself out there and sharing my experience was absolutely worth it.

Work work working

Over the last few months I have put in so much overtime at work, and I’ve finally completed all my pledged hours – yay! While I’ve probably done nothing but moan about it while I was actually doing it, the money I’ve made from giving up days off and weekends has meant I’ve been able to pay of my Walt Disney World trip in November and finally have enough money to book the flights, so definitely worth it!

What I’ve made

I’ve been busy at the sewing machine getting outfits ready for upcoming Disney trips, and this month I’ve made the cutest coral polka dot skater skirt, which will feature in one of my Disney Cruise Disneybounds, as well as accessorising some items with my new patch designs which you can buy on my Etsy!

Bikini body confidence

Despite saying that I wasn’t going to buy any more swimwear this year, I slipped while on Asos and bought two bikinis, and not only do I love them, I actually like the way I look in them. It may take a little push to wear them in public, but baby steps, right? Plus, I stepped out of my comfort zone last week and actually posted a photo of myself in a swimsuit on Twitter!

Milestones

This month I finally cracked the 1.7K follower mark on Instagram – yippee! While I doubt I’ll be hitting my goal for the year, just hitting the next milestone seems like such a mission on Insta at the moment so I’m pretty happy. I also pipped the 2.4K on Twitter and 750 on Bloglovin, and am now creeping up to 800!

What have you been up to in August?

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Moving In

Despite talking yesterday about Matthew and my plans to move out, today’s post is pretty much the opposite – let me give you some backstory.

Following on from all the long distance, back in July Matthew finally completed his pilot training, and just over a week ago was offered a position to start with easyJet. Its safe to say we’re both thrilled; I’m so proud of all the hard work he put into his training and its such a relief that its all paid off and he’s got a job lined up. The catch? He probably won’t be starting the job until February/March, and until he starts, we don’t know where he’ll be based, aka where we’ll be moving to.

The thing is, after over a year of him being here, there and everywhere, and me being stuck firmly in Bournemouth, we’re kinda done with the whole being apart thing, so we’re moving in together. Well, he’s moving to Bournemouth, and I’m upgrading from my bedroom to the loft in my parent’s house, turning it into our own sorta studio apartment.

Its going to be a bit of a working progress – while our loft has already been converted into a habitable room, its since become a bit of a dumping ground, and there’s some work for us to do before we can officially move into it. We’ve spent the weekend clearing out some of the accumulated junk – deciding what’s being donated to charity or sold and then we still have some old furniture that’s destined for the tip – then we’ve started the process of cleaning and repainting to freshen the place back up so we can start to move our furniture in and make it our own.

So in the time between now and whenever Matthew starts with easyJet, we’ll both be Bournemouth based. He’s got a job at the same place that I work so that in the meantime we can both get saving for when we do eventually fly the nest, and of course we’ll get our first taste of what living together permanently will actually be like – the DIY is already proving a good test of our relationship strength, haha!

Wish us luck!

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Introducing Ozzy and Ronnie

Hey gang, I thought I’d brighten up everyone’s Mondays by introducing you to our family’s fuzziest new additions.


Meet Ozzy and Ronnie! They are 8 weeks old and we brought them home on Friday, so they’re just starting to adapt to our mad house and find their tiny ways around.

They came from a litter of four which were found abandoned in a shed and were rescued by the Cats Protection League, and their mother was nowhere to be found – they were only 4 weeks old when they were rescued.

Ozzy is the fluffy one in the back of the photo, and he was the largest of the litter, but also the most shy, and he’s taking a little bit of time adapting to home life, spending most of his time hiding under the sideboard in our living room, but he’s slowly finding his paws.

Ronnie was the smallest of the bunch, but makes up for such with his big personality aka he’s a total nutter. He goes from sweet and snuggly to moving at 100mph with only a seconds notice.

Like I mentioned earlier, they have only been with us since Friday and they’ve still got a lot of acclimatising to do, but we’re already very much in love with them both. We’ve also never had our own cats so this is quite the learning experience for us too! 

As for the names, any classic rock fans might recognise them as two members of Black Sabbath, and you can thank my dad for that. He had one job..

Keep an eye out on here and my social media for kitty updates!