Posts in Charity
Give Back on Black Friday - #BrightFriday

Now this is something to shout about!

The world has gone crazy today for Black Friday deals but check out Bright Friday, an initiative from one of my favourite online stationery, party and gift stores Papermash, along with Chocolate Creative and Sian Zeng. 

They are pledging 15% of all sales to Doctors of the World as their way of giving back on Black Friday.

They say "Doctors of the World has over 300 projects in more than 70 countries. Whether it’s providing essential healthcare to Syrian refugees or vaccinating children in Mali, we meet the health needs of vulnerable people globally. We also strive to give a voice to marginalised people across the globe, reporting on violence, injustice and unmet health needs wherever we find them.

In the UK, we run a clinic and advocacy programme in east London staffed by volunteers who provide medical care and practical support to excluded people such as vulnerable migrants, sex workers and people with no fixed address."

Head to their stores to see what goodies you might be tempted with. Papermash is my go to store for Rifle Paper Co loveliness.




And if there's nothing you want or need you can still give back by texting DOCTOR to 70660 to pledge £3 for this worthy cause. 

CharityLucy HeathComment
Wear your heart on your feed • #capturingColour • paper and parcels

To celebrate the launch of the #AutumnTimeSurpriseProject we had a week of snapping and sharing paper and parcels, postcards and posters, ribbons and string, colourful gift wrap and beautiful books. 

I loved the #capturingcolour gallery this week, so full of happy mail and a glimpse into your home interiors, the art work you display and the cards you'd lovingly been sent. I can't believe there are over 200 people signed up already to join in the new surprise swap, if you haven't already filled in the sign up form head over here - don't miss out, it's only open until the end of September.

I adored all these images, the bright colours, the pretty pastels and the calming muted tones. Every week I scroll through the gallery to create a lovely grid of favourites join gin in with the weekly theme and it's not until I have bookmarked all 10 that I see which accounts have shared them. It's wonderful to see so many joining in for the first time and I love that the gallery has some very loyal followers who rise to the weekly challenge week after week - I love you!

So here are just a handful of favourites, I could have created 3 grids this week!

But I just had to give a shout out to Tanya who shared this wall of post it notes. How poignant, how beautifully written and a real snapshot of this world at this moment in time. Tanya is one of the most well respected bloggers in the parent community and beyond. She has travelled the world highlighting incredible campaigns and raised an astonishing amount of money for charity. She has kindness running through her.

Last night I shared my final post for the week of paper and parcels as a little thank you to all my followers, all 20,000 of you! Eeek! It's hard to explain to those outside the world of social media the impact an app can have on you. I couldn't imagine life without the support and encouragement of the Instagram community.

I bought an extra Rifle Paper Co 2016 planner when I was in New York and I am giving it away to one of my kind followers. To enter all you have to do is leave a comment on this photo and tell me why you love the platform too. What has made you fall in love with Instagram? I will pick a comment at random next Sunday at midnight GMT. The giveaway is open worldwide, so pop a comment and good luck!

I have found this summer a challenge, keeping my blog up to date (well, I failed miserably on that front!) juggling work commitments, holiday fun with the boys and making the most of every last second before Ollie started big school. And Instagram has been my saviour. A way I can share a mini blog every day. 

I was talking to some of my fellow bloggers at an event last week about how many photos they share each day. I am conscious that perhaps I share too much, that I should adopt the one a day unofficial rule like so many others but it would honestly pain me! Everyday I want to share my little world with you, what I am working on, where I've travelled to. I see moments all through the day, that although quite insignificant in the grand scale of life, are significant little moments to me. And I hope they make you smile. Jumping out of the car to snap a roadside flower stall, arranging them on the mantlepiece the next day as a cheery photo to start the day. I am determined to finally get round to printing my first year on Instagram, so I have a physical record of all my observations.

I am a person who appears to wear their heart on their feed.

I can scroll back and see how I felt on any one day. Bright, bouncy happy captures when I'm feeling on top of the world, muted grey backgrounds when I am feeling like life is getting on top of me. Pastels when my head is dreaming, frames so full they are bursting when I am bursting with energy and excitement for a new project and black and white when I need to clear my head of all distractions and focus.

This week's theme couldn't be closer to my heart. 

As many of you know, my cousin lost her little 5 year old boy Skye last year. They have tirelessly campaigned for awareness into the effects of the treatment of childhood brain tumours and have somehow found the strength to fight for the lives of future children by continuing Skye's work through his charity Blue Skye Thinking

September sees a worldwide campaign for Childhood Cancer Awareness and I would love to turn the #capturingcolour gallery gold this week and show our support. And if we all use the hashtag #honestlovesmax too, Jessica Alba's company Honest will donate $1 to the Max Love Project who, like Skye, encouraged the world to Loom for Cancer. 

Join me and my co-host for the week Anna @instannnnagram whose beautiful 2 year old niece Hattie is currently in Great Ormond Street battling Leukaemia. Come and share your beautiful captures for a wonderful cause, raise some money and awareness - let's go GOLD!

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Think golden sunlight, shiny sequins, glitter and sparkle, antique golds and anything else that sparks your imagination.

And don't forget to add #capturingcolour #honestlovesmax to raise your $1. That's for every post and tweet! 

#capturingcolour is a weekly theme on Instagram. Tag your colourful photos and post your GOLD images to be featured this week. I will share a round up next Monday :)

Loom to the Moon • Blue Skye Thinking

This Summer has been a Summer for family and blogging has firmly taken a back seat. 

I have hundreds of photos to share of our happy times but have run out of time each day to blog them! I have often been guilty of spending so much time recording the moment, rather than enjoying the moment, but was determined this year, to make the most of our holidays with family and adventures with friends before we move.

Of course we all want to share our fun times and there's a strange sense of achievement when you get a large number of "likes" for a photo but this Summer there's only one thing I want you to like. 

If you follow my blog on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook you may have seen me talking about Loom to the Moon, the vision of an incredible little boy.

Skye is 5 and slowly losing his courageous fight against a disease he developed following treatment for an aggressive brain tumour.

Exactly a year ago my sister and I spent a week at our family holiday home in Southbourne and on a sunny day as we sat on the deck of the beach hut we received a call we would never wish on anyone. That our cousin's little boy had cancer.

Sally and I have grown up like sisters and had our sons just months apart from each other. 4 healthy boys who have spent many happy times together and 2 that were due to start school. Except Skye never started school. His uniform was never collected and whilst we've watched with pride as Sammy conquered two milestones this Summer, learning to swim and riding a bicycle, my cousin has watched her darling boy deteriorate. 

We were so lucky that they were able to join us for a day at the beach hut this week, a precious day making memories that will need to last a lifetime.

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I am often teased in our family for endlessly taking photos. And I always say "You can't get these times back you know!" This has never been more true of this photo of 5 out of the 6 cousins. It breaks my heart to think we won't get the chance again to capture these beautiful children together. And when Sammy kissed Skye goodbye and told him he loved him, I felt like someone had shattered my heart into a thousand pieces.

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Skye Hall
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Skye encapsulates the word brave. He has exceeded all expectations by undergoing intensive radiotherapy without the need for a general anaesthetic, lying completely still during the frightening process, in a mask that covered his whole face and body like something out of a horror film, and displaying a determination to walk again after his surgical procedure.

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And it feels terribly and painfully unfair that after everything he has been through, he won't share all the happy times we have ahead in the future.

I want everyone to know how proud I am of Skye, what a remarkable son he is to Andrew and Sally and what an inspirational big brother he is to Jesse.

Most recently they have tried a hyperbaric chamber treatment, to try and halt the progression of the disease, and it was in the chamber which felt like a rocket, that Skye suggested they try and Loom to the Moon.

If any of you reading this have spent the last few months cursing these tiny rubber bands, hoovering them up when your children weren't looking, or popping a few ropy lengths in the bin then I need to ask you a favour! Please send them to Blue Skye Thinking, 59 Hendred Way, Abingdon, OX14 2AW, to help Skye achieve his dream of the world's longest loom band.

Over the Summer Sammy and Ollie have achieved some major childhood milestones. Sammy hopped on a friend's bike the other night and suddenly rode around the garden! Both of the boys have learnt to swim, Sammy blowing us away with 3 lengths of a 15m pool, back to back. Ollie decided this week to abandon his armbands and at just 3, is now confidently swimming a width of a 4m pool. We've had play dates with friends, including Sammy's sweetheart Katy. They are both convinced they will get married one day and this innocence is adorable.

Skye has a sweetheart and it's been heartbreaking thinking of all the things he won't have the chance to do in the future. So my cousin gave him a wedding, with his little beloved Ellie! I think these were the photos that stung the most. Seeing the stark difference in such a short time.

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If you haven't already please pop onto the Facebook page and like it and follow Blue Skye Thinking on Twitter.

You can also donate to Skye at his Just Giving page HERE

Now go and hug someone you love, life is precious.