There is nothing more glorious than the beach in Winter.
This Saturday we had something to collect in Swanage and so we set off early to catch the last of the light at the shore.
They humour my photos for a few minutes before setting to work on re-routing the beach river. Racing over to a waiting blanket at the prospect of hot chocolate, chattering all the while about their plans.
Scarcely an hour has passed before we’re heading back to the car in dusk and on to our destination. Yet an hour filled with the kind of joy that will last all week.
Monty has new moves…
A quick note to say that the Capturing Childhood Cyber Monday offer has a couple of hours left. £5 off everything on our site, classes, presets and even gift certificates automatically added at the checkout. Collect the Moments and Manual Overdrive January are open for registration, hope to see you in class xoxo
Practicing gratitude is shown to improve your satisfaction in life. I’ll be honest, I do not take the time each day and pause for reflection.
From time to time I remind myself to stop and breath it all in; life is good and we have an abundance to be thankful for. No matter what our worries we also have so much in life which fills our hearts and feeds our soul.
In recognition of Thanksgiving here are five things which are lighting my life today.
There is a chill in the air and this year for the first time ever I am feeling it. My slowly-growing collection of fair isle knits is keeping me snug. I love fair isle for its patterns and colours – joyful to wear.
Early Morning Bed Buddies
I may value sleep above all else but I love the gentle awakening of a child wriggling into bed beside you. And three bed buddies? Well it might be a little crowded but the half-conscious moments of tenderness are bliss.
At this time of year I often feel drawn to my childhood. To remembering the time before my father died. It may be melancholy at times but those memories are so precious and passing on his stories to my children is the way I keep his spirit alive.
An Evening Alone
You may have guessed that Mr Kat and I both work crazy hours. To give our family balance during the day we spend most evenings toiling at our respective computers. Last night we went out for a meal and a comedy show. It was nothing spectacular but so very needed. I am grateful that we can do this from time to time and that we have friends who kindly help us out.
When I talk about abundance my first thought is often of the rich and kind community online. I am so grateful for the wonderful people in our community who are generous, caring and hilarious in equal measure. I am so grateful that this space gives me a chance to connect with you, whether you comment, we chat on Twitter or you just visit to check in on us; I am so happy you are here.
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone for whom this is a special holiday.
With love, Kat xoxo
This article is a review of the Dyson DC35 Digital Slim which was sent to me by Argos. For more information about this kind of post please read my disclosure for readers page. Kat xoxo
When Argos got in touch with me to ask if I’d like to review an appliance I already knew what I wanted – the Dyson DC35 Digital Slim had been on my lust list for quite some time and I wasn’t about to miss this opportunity.
I first saw the cordless vacuum cleaner at my friend’s house. She casually plucked it from the wall, ran it over the mess our children had left after lunch and my mouth was hanging open. Dyson’s designers seem to have come up with the perfect model for busy family life and I was an instant fan.
Now, ordinarily when it comes to writing about appliances I’m hardly an enthusiast – aside from the KitchenAid (the best ever – current lust) I prefer my technology to have an internet connection or shutter. But I genuinely think the DC35 is near perfect – so much so that I’ve spent the last couple of months making clips of it in use for an alternative review video.
Here’s what you need to know:
- It clips to the wall – it is brilliant having an actual place for a cordless vacuum, they are so often allowed to go flat if left languishing in the bottom of a boot cupboard for their inconvenience.
- It automatically plugs in – not only does it clip to the wall but it actually connects to the plug at the same time. You can see this in action in my video below.
- It is a strong sucker – I’ve managed to vacuum everything I have pointed it at successfully.
- The motorised head – it’s brilliant, perfect for powering through daily messes and the odd pile of spilled flour. The joint at the bottom has great flexibility making changing direction a breeze.
- It has good battery usage – the battery lasts for up to 15 minutes, around 8 if you’re using the motorised head and max power button. The battery doesn’t flag as it runs down but continues to give full power until it runs out.
- Max Power – it has a boost button for when you need that little bit more welly.
- It has a long nose – The long wand (as they want to call it) makes it incredibly versatile with no tedious bending or dragging the big hoover around to blitz the cobwebs.
- It is really light – this is fantastic if you’re weakling like me, getting it out isn’t accompanied by a bunch of back pain afterwards.
- It’s fun – I defy you to have a go with one and not enjoy yourself. Seriously.
Some of the things which I’m not so keen on:
- Energy Usage - as it’s plugged in permanently there is a temptation to leave the plug on. Not great for saving energy.
- Emptying – while it pops open a treat it often needs a little help to ditch its contents.
- Stereotypes – the product images solely featured women. Sort it out Dyson! I only included myself in the video for gender balance, it’s Mr Kat who really wields the vacuum around here.
You know me well enough by now, housework is not my thing. I’m not going to get worked up about doing chores and I don’t think I have used our upright vacuum in the two years we’ve had it. The Dyson DC35 is totally my new BFF; I’m no longer moaning about having to sweep up after the children or battling into the spider-filled cupboard. I just grab it and buzz around after the children quickly.
And that has to be the biggest test doesn’t it? Keeping the avalanche of detritus from family life at bay. Despite having a cleaner our house is a constant mess so it couldn’t be a better place to really put a vacuum cleaner through its paces.
Can the Dyson handle muddy boots? Reach the cobwebs behind my fridge? Will it last against a car which hasn’t been cleaned in a year? Find out who comes out on top in Dyson Vs Life*…
The Dyson DC35 Digital Slim lived up to my hopes. It’s light, convenient and powerful. It’s a joy to use and I totally think it justifies the £220-30 price tag. I can’t tell you how long it will last but if it’s anything like our first Dyson it’s cost-per-use will be great value. Sure, it’s not even their newest model (imagine what they have come up with since!) but it’s a life-saver when living with messy people.
*I know there will be some who ask so the on-vacuum shots were all filmed with an iPhone 4S or 5 attached with a GorillaPod. The shots off vacuum are mostly my Canon 5D Mark II.