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Happy Place

Posted on 3 min read
full striped 50s style skirt
Forever Amber | A Happy Place
summer outfit with full stripe skirt and wedge shoes
sailboat necklace

Last week, Terry and I were talking about how some people have a “happy place”. “Go to your happy place!” they’ll say, in moments of stress, and we’ll be all, “Huh? Whaddya mean, ya bunch of hippies?” (Well, OK, maybe not that last bit.)

Well, we got to talking about where our respective “happy places” would be (Er, I’m just realising as I write it that this sounds like a euphemism for something… I promise it’s not), and once Terry had admitted that he didn’t really have one “(I’m happy in EVERY place!” he said, the cheerful fecker…), and I’d made the predictable joke about my happy place being the Mall at Millenia, I realised that my ‘happy place’ isn’t a PLACE at all: it’s a collection of sounds and sights and scents, all of which add up to remind me of summer.*

It’s the sound of the pool filter gurgling on a hot summer’s day. The dappled light on the water. The feel of the hot sun on my skin. The sound of crickets, carried on the night air. It’s summer itself: both the summers of my adult life, spent in humid Florida afternoons, and the summers of childhood, lying on a sun-lounger in the back garden –  no pool filter to gurgle or crickets to chirp, but still the promise of long, lazy days, with nothing to do but whatever I want.

The thing is, because I grew up in Scotland, summer isn’t often warm enough (or even dry enough) for much lounging in the garden, so those childhood/teenage memories must be cobbled together from only a handful of times when that actually happened, but I guess I’m old enough now that the summers of my youth seem endless and filled with sunshine. It’s not like that now, of course. I don’t think you ever really recapture it, that feeling of walking out of school on the last day of terms, and seeing the whole summer stretch before you, just one long holiday, to do with as you will. Now we get the odd sunny day (and they are very, very odd, trust me), and the sun still feels warm on our skin, but we still have to sit at our desks and do our jobs, and later unload the dishwasher and put in a load of laundry. The most we can really hope for is a sun-filled weekend, and when that doesn’t happen, and the sun decides to come out on Wednesday afternoon instead, maybe a walk down a country road, under a bright blue sky.

These photos are from one of those Wednesdays, and it’s raining as I write this, but I wonder if one day I’ll look back and think summer was always like this. Or if I’ll just look back and think, “Geez, how many stripey skirts did one person need?!”

full stripe 50s style skirt

[Wearing: ♥  JOA striped skirt*  ♥ Dorothy Perkins top  ♥ Schuh gingham wedges (old)  ♥  Matalan sailboat necklace  ♥  Gucci sunglasses*]

[show_shopthepost_widget id=”106926″]

* The Mall at Millenia is good too, though.


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  • Claire
    June 16, 2014

    “The promise of long, lazy days, with nothing to do but whatever I want” – what a beautiful sentiment!

  • Maria
    June 16, 2014

    I love this outfit!! Did you have to have the waist taken in by any chance? I’m debating buying this one myself!

    • Amber
      June 16, 2014

      Nope, I haven’t had anything done to it!

      • Maria
        June 20, 2014

        Thank you for your quick reply! One of the reasons I’ve been enjoying your blog is that I have a very similar figure – it’s so useful to have a sense of how outfits might work on me before I splurge. (This is probably too much detail, but that’s actually how I found your blog a few weeks ago. I was looking through google images for an example of how the “Trashy Diva Honey dress” fit before I dropped some serious cash.)

        • Amber
          June 20, 2014

          You’re welcome! I find blogs really useful for that too – I always think you get a much better idea of what things really look like when you get to see them on a “real” person rather than a model!

  • char
    June 16, 2014

    Ooh, those wedges are fab!

  • Mana
    June 16, 2014

    I adore that skirt, it’s so perfect. And my happy place is a perfect October day. Like Halloween when it’s 60 degrees Fahrenheit, and the leaves are dry and crunchy. But not grown up Halloween, but the little kid feeling you get from Halloween.

    Fashion and Happy Things

  • Dana
    June 17, 2014

    I fell in love with this midi skirts last summer and can not have enough of them! Your striped skirt is amazing and wearing the striped skirt and checkered wedges are a great idea!
    You look so lovely in this outfit! 🙂
    Here in Germany we have no very hot temperatures like in Spain or Greece but I think we have more sunny and hot days in summer as you in Scotland. On some VERY hot days here I wishied I would be in Scotland.. believe me! 😉

    have a nice AND sunny day
    Dana 🙂

  • Roz Shimmen
    June 18, 2014

    Loved your feature on Snap Fashion

    Download the app to read the full article https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/snap-fashion/id548952615?ls=1&mt=8

AD | Time for a quick game of “Where’s Amber?”⁣
It’s another rainy Monday, so I’m throwing it back to our trip to @universalorlando ‘s amazing Volcano Bay water park last month. I’m a bit of a scaredy when it comes to water flumes, but this park had tons of stuff for pretty much everyone: plenty of rides for me, and an amazing splash pad for Max 👶In fact, I’d still be on The Fearless River right now if I possibly could be. Still, doing the laundry and turning the heating on will be just as good, right? Right?! 🌋 🏊‍♀️ .
#universalorlando #volcanobay #waterpark #lazyriver #vacay #floridavacay

AD | Time for a...

Good news! We took Max to hospital this morning, and saw two different surgeons, who agreed there was no need to go ahead with the surgery as his lip is healing really well on its own 😅  He’ll definitely have a scar, unfortunately, but that would’ve been the case whether he’d had the surgery or not, and if it turns out to be worse than anticipated, we’ll have the option to have it corrected under local anaesthetic when he’s older. ⁣
I’m still really upset that this happened in the first place, obviously, but so relieved that we don’t have to put him through a general anaesthetic, and just incredibly grateful that it wasn’t anything worse. I know some parents have to deal with much more serious stuff than this, and my heart goes out to you all: it’s been a rough couple of days, and I’m really grateful to everyone who took the time to comment on yesterday’s post - your stories were so comforting when I was panicking yesterday ❤️ ⁣
(Old photo, obviously: every time Max sees the selfie camera, he thinks it’s going to be one of those filters where you open your mouth and something happens 😂)⁣
#pbloggers #mummybloggers #mummybloggersuk #ukmumblog #mumblogsuk #mumblogs #mamablog #ukparentbloggers #parentbloggersuk #ukparentingblog #parentingbloggers #motherhoodblogger #motherhoodblog #ukblogger #ukofficialblogger #happyblogger #mummyblog #bloggerclubuk #instamum

Good news! We took Max...

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve just spent the morning in Accident & Emergency with Max, who fell on the path outside the house and split his lip open 😥 ⁣
They tried to stitch it up at A&E, but it was totally impossible with him awake, so they’ve booked him in to have it done under general anaesthetic tomorrow ... Max is absolutely fine: the bleeding stopped quickly, he doesn’t seem to be in pain, and is just his normal, happy little self. I, on the other hand, am a complete wreck: the plastic surgeon he saw today reckons if we don’t have it fixed, his lip will be crooked when it heals, but I’m absolutely *terrified* of the thought of my baby having to have a GA. ⁣
If you’re a long-time follower, you might know that I have a full-blown phobia of general anaesthetic (I literally had an elective c-section in order to eliminate the possibility of an emergency one, which might have had to be done under GA), so I just can’t get my head to accept that it’s safe and he’ll be fine 😥 ⁣
Positive stories and advice very welcome: I’m just so terrified, I can’t even imagine how to get through the next 24 hours 😥😥😥

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve...

#throwbackthursday to last week, when I needed a sunhat and SPF 50 to leave the house, rather than the current raincoat and wellies situation. Can you tell the post-holiday blues are still in full swing over here? 🌧 .
#whatiwear #30plusblogs #everydaystyle #realoutfitgram  #scottishbloggers #fashionblogger  #fashionblog #fashionstyle #whatimwearing #stylegram  #outfitoftheday #personalstyle #todayiamwearing #styleinspiration 
#stylediaries #styleblogger #over30style

#throwbackthursday to last week, when...

I posted this on Stories over the weekend, but he looked so cute in it I figured it deserved a spot on the grid, too! This is Max all ready for his friend Eleah’s 1st birthday party on Saturday: despite the jetlag and his continuing obsession with doors of all kinds (He had an entire soft play at his disposal, but he mostly just wanted to open and close the gate into it...) he had an absolute ball, and spent the whole drive home shouting, “HAPPY! HAPPY!” Thanks to @thestirlingstyle for a great party 🥳 🎈 🎉 . (Oh, and that’s his hairbrush in his hand - boy likes to look his best 😉)
#littlepiecesofchildhood #cameramama #chikdhoodeveryday #childofig #celebrate_childhood #babieswithstyle #ootdkids #fashionbaby #trendykids

I posted this on Stories...

We’re back home in not-so-sunny Scotland, but my feed is still stuck in Florida... New post is up on the blog (direct link in Stories..), talking about how we’ve been dealing with toddler jetlag, and why I always hate coming home after a trip...
#myunicornlife #lifecolorfully #liveauthentic  #ABMlifeissweet #ABMhappylife #ABMlifeiscolorful #howyouglow #makeyousmilestyle #thegoodlist #thecolorwallproject #colorsplash #colorworld #colorsplurge #lovecolors #jj_colorlove #gf_colour #huntgramcolor #jj_colorful #tv_colors #pocketcolors #sunnypicchallenge #colorhunters #colorgram #colorfulllife #colorinspiration #brightcolors #colormyworld #colorinspiration #womeninframe #ihavethisthingforwalls

We’re back home in not-so-sunny...

Casual Friday | ‘For Best’
Happy Place