Ultimate Black Friday Shopping Guide: My Top Picks

Hey Owlets,

I will freely admit, I'm not usually Black Friday obsessed despite being on the internet for the last four years to witness the hype. Having said that, something about being at home for almost the entirety of this year has resulted in somewhat of an addiction to online shopping so this year I am completely sold! I've been planning Christmas gifts since August out of sheer boredom, so I have a list of things ready to buy (both for myself and my family) so I can fully take advantage of the best deals. I've already done way too much research on this for myself so I thought I could justify the time I spent scrolling by sharing the best Black Friday deals with you. I imagine this blog post is going to be quite a long one so I've split them into categories, and I've tried to include something for every budget from high street to high end; if you're looking for the perfect present for yourself or your family then I've absolutely got you covered with this list!

Heads up: This post contains affiliate links and some paid-for content, but my opinions are my own as always!

Review: JR Decals

JR Decal Christmas Picture Frame Review

Hey Owlets,

In case you’ve not been following my new home journey, I rented my first home over the summer and it’s fair to say I’ve been taking the slow route with decorating. When I first moved in we were lucky enough to have been given a lot of our furniture, I got some second hand on Facebook or eBay and the rest I got in sales. To be honest, after getting all of our furniture sorted there wasn’t a lot of room in the budget for decorations and finishing touches so that’s been much more of a slow burn, and just as we were getting there with day to day decorations Christmas has arrived and we need to find decorations for that too.

I’ve written a post before about decorating for Christmas when I lived with my parents. I loved getting ready for Christmas in my family home because it felt so special - they have a fireplace and every year I tape fairy lights around it and layer handmade felt icicles on top so it looks like they’re glowing. It’s so cosy and I honestly didn’t know how I was going to top that, so I’ve gone with a slightly different theme. Our new home is quite modern so while I want it to be really festive, I’ve gone down the route of small festive touches and swapping out the artwork to add more subtle hints of Christmas. I’ll show you my full Christmas decorations in another post, but for now I wanted to share my thoughts about one of the companies I’ve ordered from - JR Decal.

How to Make Chores Easier

Hey Owlets,

Having your own home is great - you can decorate however you like and you have the space to do whatever you want. The only downside is that you’re the only person there which means you can’t share chores. There’s no time to clean and tidy during the week and after 5 days of stress the last thing you want to do is spend your weekend sorting out your home. With that in mind here’s a few ways to make you chores feel a little less daunting.

Why I Buy Antique Jewellery


Hey Owlets,

Having been on the internet for 4 years now, it’s fair to say I’ve done some growing as a person. When I first started my blog I was a university student and money was a little hard to come by. I remember writing posts about shopping the sales or tweeting to ask if anyone knew a discount code every time I went to buy something. In a way I haven’t changed - if there’s something I want to buy I will still wait until it’s either low in stock, there’s a promotion on the website or the item goes into the sale. I still enjoy finding ways to save money because you don’t always need to pay more for things and if you don’t need to then you shouldn’t have to.

My Dad would always talk about buying “cheap” items (cheap meaning inexpensive but poor quality in this sense of the word) being a false economy, meaning that you might save a little money now but it’ll cost more in the long run when you have to replace it sooner. I didn’t really understand what he meant until a few years ago, but as I’ve gotten older something has just clicked in me. Higher quality pieces are normally more pricey, but instead of viewing it as a lot of money to spend I view it as an investment. If you buy a coat from a fast fashion site they’re most likely made with lower quality materials and sewn with less care because the workers have higher targets, so it’s never going to last as long as a good quality woollen coat that’s been put together with care and attention to detail. That same logic applies to jewellery, and it’s one of the many reasons that I choose to buy vintage jewellery.

A Foodie Guide to County Cork

County Cork Ireland Food Tour Guide
Contains Sponsored Content

Hey Owlets,

When asked to name a few of my favourite trips over the past few years one of the first things to come up is my cruise to County Cork. It wasn’t just the cruise itself, but the areas of the county that we visited, the brilliant independent retailers, the kindness and willingness of complete strangers to make sure we enjoyed our trip, and the food of course. County Cork is known for being a very foodie place to visit and it didn’t disappoint! We went for the cruise and stayed for the food! Fair warning, I hadn’t yet gone gluten free when we took this trip, so be prepared to hate me when I talk about the farmers market sandwich we had, because I’m jealous of my past self too.

Travel Mishaps: Everything that Happened

Plus size travel blogger The Owlet walking through a vineyard

Hey Owlets,

It’s fair to say that over the last few years I’ve come a long way from being a totally clueless 20-year-old. I’ve been fortunate enough to clock up a lot of miles travelled over the last few years, and during this time I’ve also learnt a lot. Having said that, it took a lot of trying my best and in all honesty a lot of stupid situations and me putting my foot in my mouth! I feel like we all need a bit of a laugh right now, so here’s some of the stupid things that have made me laugh, made me want the floor to swallow me up, or just stuck in my mind over the past few years.

How Coronavirus Might Change Travel

Promenade deck on board Cruise and Maritime Voyages Columbus on a sea day

Hey Owlets,

There’s no doubting that Coronavirus flipped the world upside down overnight and bulldozed everything we thought we knew about life. For most people it’s been a huge adjustment, but for anyone working in the travel industry it’s been the most horrific and stressful 6 months. In my personal experience I somehow found lockdown easier to navigate than this weird in between phase. Things feel almost normal and you start to relax, but then something reminds you that the world is still weird and you’re suddenly jolted back to being on edge again. With the world starting to return to open up again I wanted to chat to you about what I expect the future of travel to look like. This is a combination of my personal experiences and educated guesses from reading government advice and articles, so please take everything I say with a pinch of salt and form your own opinions.

Follow Me To: A Devon & Cornwall Road Trip

Plymouth Hoe at sunset with a girl posing in front of the lighthouse

Hey Owlets,

I feel like I'm back in 2017 as I write these words but it's time for a good old-fashioned "Follow Me To" post. If you're a fairly recent member of The Owlet family you probably have no idea what this is, but my entire blogging career started with me writing travel diaries and sharing where I've been. In all honesty I phased them out a few years ago because I was told that people only read blogs for advice; well as much as I enjoy writing tips posts, I do miss my diary-style posts and having spoken to you on Twitter and Instagram it turns out you do too! Given that we're all in need of a bit of escapism right now I thought this would be the perfect time to bring them back. So, let's chat about what I got up to on our recent trip to Plymouth.