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The Thirteenth Home of Noah Bradley Guest Post & Review | BLOG TOUR

Hi everyone, hope you're all keeping safe, and staying happy and healthy. Today is my stop on The Thirteenth Home of Noah Bradley blog tour; and as well as reviewing this fantastic read, I'm hosting a post from the author herself.

The Thirteenth Home of Noah Bradley focuses heavily on curses, so today Amber has written a post on the Curse of the Iceman. Find out more about this curse, and a review of Amber's new book below!

Motivational Greeting Cards | Mid-Week Motivate & Create

Hi everyone! You may have clicked on this post to find some motivation, to gain some ideas, or simply get stuck in, and start being creative. If you're here for any of those reasons - you've come to the right place! Being stuck indoors all day, without seeing friends or family, is incredibly difficult. So I thought I'd start a craft series to keep your hands, and mind busy during these uncertain times.

Everything I've used today (and for the rest of the series) is from the fabulous designbundles. I found just looking at this website alone was enough to ignite the creative spark in me again. I wanted to create things that were accessible to all; and fun for all. So the first product I'll be making in the craft series, is greeting cards!

There's probably a few people in your life right now that you'd like to make smile, and let them know you're thinking of them; so I used the Motivational Quotes Bundle, and 150 Hand-Drawn Floral Illustrations, to create the greeting cards I'm going to show you today - and I'll be sending them to all my loved ones who I'm missing so very much right now.

I used an editing software today, called PhotoFiltre. It's free, and available to download online - but you could even use something as simple as Paint; as the files themselves are so versatile, and easy to use. The measurements I'm using for this post are for A5 cards - but you can make them any size at all!

For A5 cards, you create a new page that's W: 1754 and H: 2480. Then I simply opened the PNG files, and explored them to my heart's content. For my example below, I chose a wreath from the floral bundle, and the saying "enjoy the little things" from the motivation bundle. I simply copied and pasted it onto the page I had created earlier; moved them around, and resized them until I was happy. I then created another new page (A4 this time), which is W: 3508 and H: 2480. I copied and pasted my finished design and made sure it was on the right hand side of the page (the left half being blank). That way when you print it, it folds the correct way, as a normal card would. (That is a mistake I learnt the hard way when first making cards!)

If you're struggling with the software side of things (I understand not all of us are great at navigating technology) - simply print the files you'd like to use out, and go wild with some good old fashioned scissors and glue!

I made several designs, and had a lot of fun doing so. There are so many options to choose from using just these two bundles, and once they're printed (I just used my standard printer), they're lovely to send messages to loved ones, or for children to decorate inside. Mine are sitting pretty on my bookcase at the moment, and they're lovely little words of encouragement to look up and see. I think we could all do with a bit of positivity right now; and this is the perfect way to spread it, whilst keeping yourselves (and little ones) occupied.

Join me again next Wednesday, for part two of Mid-Week Motivate & Create! And please send me anything you make. Stay safe. 
Zoe x



The darkness's reign had come to an end, and I stepped back into the life I once took for granted. I felt the gravel crunching beneath my feet as I took my first few steps; something I'd never taken notice of before. I looked around and inhaled my surroundings. Not a quick glance, but an appreciation of all the things that existed around me. The sun felt warmer. The grass looked fuller.  The flowers seemed brighter. The trees looked taller. The air felt clearer.

I tentatively raised my hand to a neighbour nearby. Being inside had made me long for human interaction that I wouldn't usually participate in. The world existed outside of my bubble, and these past few months had taught me that. They smiled and waved back, and I felt tears spring to my eyes, that the world may now be kinder.

I continued walking. A figure approached, and I resisted the urge to dart across the street; something that had become second nature to me over the previous weeks. I felt the breeze as they brushed past me on the pavement. No longer two metres apart; no longer in danger.

Rushing and impatience came hand in hand on a normal day; but not today. I listened to the sounds of children playing freely in the park. The sound of laughter from a couple nearby. The sound of a dog trying to get his owner's attention. The sound of birds overhead.

I could sit and listen to these sounds for hours. Something on a normal day I'd be desperate to get away from. Desperate to get home. But I've realised that home isn't just a house; it's the place where you live. It's the local market. The people you see driving to work in the mornings. The park opposite your house. The fish and chip shop at the end of your road. Those places all make up your home.

I walked for what seemed like hours, and drew in my last breath of fresh air before clicking the door shut behind me. I sat and thought; and one thought in particular struck me. While we'd been in hiding and looking after ourselves, the world had been healing too.


I remember the day the new symptoms started. Intense stomach cramps. Bloating. Diarrhoea. Just before entering the theatre to see Six the Musical for the first time. Classic, right? This was back in February. I assumed I had a sickness bug, popped some pills, and carried on with my day.

The months went by. I became more and more ill. More weight loss. I was going to the toilet 10 times a day. But there's a stigma around toileting; especially if you're a woman. So I told no one, and told myself it would go by itself. I then saw my PoTS consultant, who told me I needed to be seen urgently.