Cressing Temple Barns.

Cressing Temple Barns, Essex, blogger |
Cherry blossom in February |
Essex fashion blogger |
Cressing Temple Barns gif |
Essex Heritage Trust |
Blogger collar jumper layering |
Oasis fashion black skinny jeans Isabella |
Cressing Temple Barns exhibitions |
Water fountain gif |

JCrew jumper eBay |
Cressing Temple Barns garden scarecrow |
JCrew jumper |
Grow beauty in the garden of your mind quote |
UK fashion blogs |

Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans, said a dreamer that one time, and you're never really going to have much of a life if all you do is stick to small-town familiarity and keep on keeping on. In an effort to make the most of being near to most of my friends, I spent a lot of January working on making sure I managed to see everyone, meaning the impending Move Date creeped up on me. Among all the good stuff (read: pizza), I had the arduous task of heading to the doctor's in Braintree. Obviously no one enjoys a trip to the hospital (or if you do, enjoy getting that checked out), so I tend to bribe myself with a post-appointment trip to Freeport and buy everything in Hobbs. Unfortunately their tills weren't having any of it on this particular day, so without the adrenaline rush of bankruptcy we decided to get our thrills elsewhere and head to Cressing Temple for the first time.

In that awkward "oh god, country lanes" style of avoiding things, we'd never made the journey East of Braintree. Turns out, it's not as bad as we feared, and made it to Cressing (home to Jamie Oliver's dad, apparently #namedrop) in less than 10 minutes. And boy, weren't we glad we made it. I didn't expect much, but Cressing Temple Barns are beautiful. Two absolutely massive barns built in the 13th century seemingly plonked in the Essex countryside, and a walled garden to die for - who would've thought this was just a half hour drive from where we lived? Of course, a diversion isn't a day out without a trip to a Tiptree tea room, so we headed to The Barns for a couple of slices of toasted heaven.

It just goes without saying: take a little trip to somewhere new, 'cause you might just find a new favourite.

You showed me there was something more to us.

Catarzi asos fedora hat |
Brit-Stitch half pint satchel |
Writtle, Chelmsford, Essex |
Topshop winter floral dress |
Cherry blossom: Writtle, Chelmsford in Spring |
The Kooples leather jacket |
Duck gif |
Brit-Stitch half pint satchel |
Topshop floral dress, blogger outfit |

There are many, many shades of stubborn.

Generally considered to be a "bad" trait due to quite a lot of spoilt brat connotations, stubborn's got a bit of a bad rep. A good 75% of the time, it's well deserved, but that other 25% needs an apology. Several times over. Seeing as I'm doing this on my phone (why did I book an airbnb without wifi? Or why does an airbnb without wifi exist?) and need something wordy to fill my Sunday morning, let's try to create a magical scale of stubborn, which we may all refer back to in times or need/probably an argument.

0-25% - You're wrong, you know you're wrong, but like f you're going to admit it
Also called "when the penny drops". We've all be there, even Steven Hawking. Most commonly happens when in a state of severe stress/sleep deprivation/skim reading, or all three. It's tough, but maybe just admit at the time you know you're wrong, and take it out on them some other time ("oh, you've finished your drink? Sorry, I didn't notice when I bought this round").

26-50% - You're pretty sure this is the best idea of all time
Shout out to anyone who's ever found themselves trekking to town in the pouring rain as their friend's found the most amazing place for brunch, only for it to have stopped serving at 11.30. No, we don't care that it does the best compote this side of Brittany, or whether the place down the road's fry up is nearly as good, where is my stack of beautifully fluffy pancakes? I feel this may also apply to parents, god help you.

51-75% - You're doing this for their own good, you know
More often than not, this can be applied to some sadistic early alarm (no, I do NOT want to leave my bed today, hard as it is to believe), but is also relevant when people aim to help you face your fears in some ilk, or buy you running shoes cos they heard your new years resolution was to get fit. Very nice of you and all, but that was so January.

76%+ - You're right, you've got the facts to back you up, but nah
This is the adult equivalent of being patted on the head, and told to play with your toys. Bring it up to mid twenties, and it's when you're sat in a strategy meeting and you're pushing for something, but your line manager is being a mouthpiece for the execs; they know you're sense but "I'm big, you're small" and we WILL be doing this.

And then there's the one where there's the dress from topshop you've been after for months, reduced to £15, but definitely a size too small. You get it after Cheese-mas and you actually look like a roll of camembert, but wear it anyway. I'd gauge this around the 47% mark.

Brb, off to wander the cheese section of Booths (look but don't touch).

Why I decided to move to Manchester.

Moving to Manchester, blogger |
Missguided pyjamas |
Miki Moko glasses |

Whoops, I did it again. Long time readers of this lil blog might know I've got a rather annoying particular habit of tending to up sticks every once in a while, and this is a perfect example of me having itchy feet and thinking "I know exactly what will fix this". So, here I am, roughly 230 miles away from home, making a new start in a new city, and doesn't it feel great?

Why change is good

I'm not the kind of person that takes kindly to being tied down (I can hear my good friends howling at that comment as I type it, they know). An overpaid psychologist would probably put it down to my home breaking up when my parents divorced a while ago leaving me with no real base on which I can manifest nostalgia, or I can work it out for free and say that was something of a wake up call. Shortly after, I moved schools, went to uni, moved house, moved abroad, networked, interned all over the place and worked my arse off to wind up in what I've had people tell me was a "dream job". As someone determined to make the most of things to stop life being a bit crappy, falling into a job that required using Greater Anglia every day (insert sicky emoji a thousand times) seemed a bit... lame. The insane amount of train delays gave me some rare time to wonder what the hell I was doing - when I wasn't working on my phone, of course. The real turning point for me was when I was out for dinner with three friends in similar jobs, and I just... crumbled. It may have been over dessert, but there's no pun intended. It had reached the point where I was working so much I'd made myself ill, and it was the combination of incessant work and not being able to afford to live in London which had driven me to that point. So, instead of whining about it, I decided to give myself a kick up the arse and use LinkedIn for something other than seeing what my old schoolfriends were up to. I found out about the job I'm currently at when it was retweeted onto the work account's timeline - it'd seem I'm so good at my job I see everything, what lark!

Why Manchester was 'the one'

"But... Manchester? Really? That seems a bit extreme" said every southerner ever. It's really easy to fall into the mindset that London is the be all and end all of the world when it captures so much of the media's focus, it's a busy ball of amazingness and generally it is bloody fantastic. But, and this is a big but for people who've never stepped north of Watford, that doesn't mean the rest of the UK is a grey landscape to be Avoided At All Costs.

When I was feeling a bit out of odds at the beginning of university, I decided to (surprise, surprise) go somewhere else. I'd spend pretty much every weekend in a new city, trying out Sheffield, York, Cambridge and, you guessed it, Manchester. But, when I got into things in London, it honestly felt like I'd have to put up with it forever, because the job I did simply didn't exist outside of the M25. What a pickle. So when I saw that tweet come up, I sent an email that very evening, arranged an interview the next day, had two trips to Manchester (even I'm amazed I managed that one in peak trade) and in the new year I had a job offer. I do love proving myself wrong, it's very satisfying.

Preparing to move

I've treated moving to Manchester exactly the same as I treated moving to Munich, just minus the 4am alarm. I've booked myself into an airbnb for the meantime, and am viewing flats with a view to rent for the immediate future. I've been asked a fair few times if I'm intending to buy while I'm here as houses are considerably cheaper than their southern counterparts. There is that possibility (because whatever it may look like on instagram, I don't actually spend all my money on crap, just a little bit of it), but I'm going to stick it out for a bit and see how I get on with this city before making such a massive investment. And a pretty permanent commitment, at that.

Living in Manchester

In a slightly different attitude to Munich, I'm taking things a bit more slowly this time round. Rather than throwing myself into nights out and discovering every bit of town, there's definitely a much more chilled vibe (that, or I'm getting old). Getting used to a new company and their way of working is always going to take a little time to adjust, but I can already tell that this was a good move - and I'm not saying that just because they bought pizza for us on Friday (but maybe a little bit). I've found myself a great place to stay in a really convenient location, and things are looking up on the new flat front too - keep those fingers crossed for me! I'm not sure whether Manchester will be my forever place, but I'm not ruling it out completely...

Have you ever moved cities? I'd love to know if you've got any tips for me in the comments below, or you can just say I'm cray like 95% of my friends, but I've definitely heard that one before.
Hello, I'm Rebecca: social media exec, new-ish coffee drinker and loafer-wearer.
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