Thursday, 31 March 2016

Thank You, March

What's this... a new series on By Her Mirror?! Yes, party people, it was about time each month was given a proper sendoff round these parts and today that is precisely what we are doing.


March brought me bright tulips and rainy days, the perfect pomegranate and endless visa stress. My summer in the US is such a source of excitement, but I've nearly had a panic attack on three occasions thanks to the logistics of it all and as someone who has never excelled at organisation, it is safe to say I will relish this application being over.

This month wasn't without its highs, however; I've been more active on the video making front and your comments about my vlogs in particular were so welcome! Seeing the days gradually stretch to a respectable length and the return of beautiful spring light also brought a lift to my mood this month. I also deepened my adoration for Anna Jones recipes, evidence of which can again be found in the vlogs, and I was delighted when a beautiful package came from my lovely penpal Maria - snail mail is the coolest mail. At the time of writing I've yet to snap the beautiful cross stitch she sent me - I was blown away by her thoughtfulness!

Lastly, I took some time off social media for a little self-reflection and I am very glad I did. A chat with lovely Bridie highlighted how draining social media can be; I realised I was comparing myself a little too obsessively so logged out of everything for about a week. It's something I am keen to make my routine; maybe once every couple of months or so, with the odd weekend in between. We shall see.


I want to marry Adriene to thank her for the 30 Days of Yoga Camp playlist - it's been the greatest thing to do each morning
Rowan's vegan millionaire's shortbread looks straight up phenomenal 
Siobhan's Snapchat is my favourite... It was the only thing I sincerely missed during my week offline. Her username is blesstheweather and you will love following her day!
I was so proud of Holly for writing this brave post on body image; it's a struggle I think we all face, but so few of us speak up about it so brilliantly
Srsly podcast is most definitely my favourite at the moment; if you're a Call Your Girlfriend fan, you will love
Rebecca's post on fearlessness really spoke to me as a fellow worrier
And last but so, so, so not least, this excellently written post by Belphoebe sums up my discomfort with the internet's treatment of Kim Kardashian

A photo posted by Anna (@byhermirror) on


My Cookbook Collection How To Tackle A Spending Problem
A Gentle Weekly Vlog Five Blogs To Fall For
A Chatty Catchup Weekly Vlog II
Weekly Vlog III My Guide To Better Sleep
A Tour Round My iPhone Weekly Vlog IV

What do you think of this series? I had a blast writing this one I have to say! Feel free to let me know how your month was in the comments... I hope it was wonderful! 


Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Weekly Vlog IV

It is weekly vlog time again my friends... This week we go on a trip to London, I successfully make some tasty breakfasts but fail at bread making, and then stealth film a lovely night out...

I hope you enjoy watching... Thank you as always for your supportive comments about my vlogs, it means so very much! Have yourself a wonderful Tuesday...


Sunday, 27 March 2016

A Tour Around My iPhone...

It is Sunday and of course time for a new video for you! Tuck into your brekkie with this tour of my iPhone... These videos are always one of my favourite things to watch, so hopefully you enjoy!

Have a lovely day whatever you are up to and I will see you next week!


Thursday, 24 March 2016

My Guide To Better Sleep

As a child, falling asleep was never an issue for me. I slept in cars, on trains, at friends' sleepovers and (of course) my own little bed with problems. Even as babies, apparently my twin and I were surprisingly good at catching our forty winks...

But, like so many things, my sleep pattern altered throughout my teenage years. I am naturally a night owl; leave me to my own devices and I will gravitate towards increasingly late bedtimes, as my biggest bursts of energy and creativity tend to occur after sundown.

What's more, I have found that in serious bouts of stress my sleep is what goes first. My longest bout of insomnia occurred during my first year of uni, when over a period of a few weeks I rarely managed anything more than three hours a night.

I consider myself incredibly lucky that I never had to take medication for this issue, and while I cannot claim to be any kind of expert, being the world's lightest sleeper means I've had to become pretty disciplined about this part of my life... However, if your problems are persistent and affecting you on a long term basis, it might be worth considering professional guidance.

Even if bad nights are a rarity, I still hope you'll find something in this post to help improve your quality of sleep.

Let's dive into it...


Eating early is something I swear by; digestion is a pretty intense thing for the body and we all know that feeling of lying in bed after a late dinner, waiting for our tums to calm down and just chill. I typically go to bed sometime between 10 and 11 but aim to have eaten by 8 at the latest.

I also love the German approach to mealtimes; there's an expression I adore that says, "Frühstücken wie ein Kaiser, Mittagessen wie ein König und Abendessen wie ein Bettler" - in English, eat breakfast like a Kaiser, lunch like a king and dinner like a pauper. Essentially it involves having your biggest meal portions at breakfast and your smallest as your evening supper. It takes some getting used to but makes total sense to me!


Confession time... My room always used to be a hot mess. "Hovel" is describing it somewhat kindly. Now it may not be Kinfolk-perfect, but it is a damn sight better than it used to be, let me tell you. Marie Kondo was the person who concisely explained why I found having a less chaotic space so much more relaxing, when I couldn't figure out the connection; she argues that our brains have less to be distracted and stress out by, letting us unwind more effectively. I couldn't agree more. Even a natural messy kid like myself will learn to love it, I swear.


For some people the best way to offload is a journal or diary; if you have been here a while, you might already know that I am a huge fan of meditation. Whatever your preference, I recommend choosing an activity and spending time letting your worries go just before sleep. I just discovered the Insight Timer app and I've been blown away by its quality, given that it is 100% free. If English isn't your native tongue, you may be happy to hear it offers guided meditations in a variety of languages, so you can pick what you prefer. I simply choose a guided meditation, hop into bed and drift off to sleep considerably quicker.


Even with all the blue light filter apps in the world, spending time on your phone or computer is still a sure fire way to mess with your body's natural melatonin release. What's more the act of being sat with a gadget that offers the potential of endless distraction, cleverly designed to keep you browsing, means you're likely to get lost in the depths of the internet. Aim to down electronic gadgets a good hour before bed and try reading instead; I'm also a fan of knitting as a wind-down activity too.

Take things a step further and never use your phone in bed. It's a rule that I've recently introduced and really recommend. In the mornings I end up scrolling and not getting up on time; the same goes for the evenings, where browsing through Instagram distracts me from falling asleep. I've also heard it said that if you are too tired to do anything but play on your phone, you are too tired for anything full stop. It's something I come back to a lot.

Put your phone on a surface you can't reach in bed and leave that guy alone. 


Sometimes we can't sleep simply because our bodies aren't physically tired enough. If you lead a pretty sedentary lifestyle like me, you'll know the need to factor activity into your day. I typically go for a little daily yoga first thing, with evening classes dotted into my week, which seems to work well. I do have to remember that dance parties before bed are fun but not conducive to sleep (something that is saddening to hear if you love dance parties like I do). A hefty work out wakes the body up just when you need to be taking it down a notch, so again, take it easy.

If you liked this post you may want to check out my guide to becoming a morning person and also my more mindful approach to technology post - both touch on things I've mentioned here and might be of interest!

In the meantime, what are your favourite tips for better sleep? I am always on the lookout for things to improve, so do let me know in the comments below...


Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Weekly Vlog III

Hello hello! I've had a sneaky week off around these parts... Truthfully I managed to burn myself out a little, so the healthiest thing seemed to be to take a step back and get my house in order. (Metaphorically speaking.)

I am easing myself back in today with a lil weekly vlog... Expect cat-yoga-cameos, somewhat questionable jokes about Anna Jones and a health food haul too. Plus all the cooking. Of course.

I just wanted to thank you for your patience after my week off blogging; the aim is to get things back to normal this week and get writing for you again.

In the meantime, have a lovely, lovely day and take care!


Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Weekly Vlog II

Guys am I on a roll or what? Anywho, I am back with another vlog for you and it features my new hurr, all the cooking and a beautiful bath too.

While we are here, do you like having videos shared to the blog, or no? I'm always of two minds as to whether they are of interest to everyone, so any feedback is super welcomed, trust me.

Now to the vlog:

Have a lovely Tuesday my friends!


Sunday, 13 March 2016

A Chatty Catchup

It's been a while since we just chatted about life so today's video is just to fill you in on my exciting adventures this summer, how the veggie life is progressing and of course my true love, yoga...

What are you up to this beautiful Sunday? I'm going to see a bestie for a birthday dinner and do all the paperwork... Whatever you are up to I hope it is a lovely day!


Thursday, 10 March 2016

Five Blogs To Fall For

After sharing my favourite YouTube channels with you recently, it only seemed fair to recommend the blogs that I've been obsessing over too! Previously I spoke to some of my favourite bloggers in this (woefully shot) post, so if you want to hear about even more babes after this post then I recommend reading that piece.

These lovely sites have all been sources of inspiration to me lately, in such varied ways. I cannot wait to dive into this post!


The first thing that drew me to Krissy is her amazing eye for visuals... If my memory serves me rightly, I stumbled across her beautiful Instagram first and immediately fell for her photography. Finding out she had a blog was the icing on the cake; each post feels so welcoming and friendly, like a catchup chat over a cuppa. All The Details is a stunning lifestyle blog, complete with recipes and travel posts... AKA all of my favourite things.
Posts you'll love: On Baking Biscotti & Holiday Magic, For Love Day, Would You Like Tea Or Coffee
Follow her on: Bloglovin', Instagram, Pinterest


The name of Coline's blog says it all; Conflicted Beauty was born out of her love-hate relationship with the cosmetic industry and I love how she chooses to view it with an intelligent and critical gaze. Her writing is simply excellent, covering some subjects that are sorely underrepresented online; everything from bras, periods to stretch marks are thoroughly explored in her posts. She also has a cracking sense of humour to boot... I'm a firm fan.
Posts you'll love: For You I Tried Period Underwear, Dear Stretch Marks, Makeup Tips For Acing A Job Interview
Follow her on: Bloglovin', YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook


I recently found Eva's blog House of Smilla thanks to fellow internet babe Siobhan, and an instant obsession was born. Eva explores some of my favourite subjects, with her posts focusing on minimalism and zero waste living amongst much more. Her photos are so beautiful too, all of them making me want to pack up and just move to Germany already. She is momma to her adorable little girl Smilla, so perfect for you new mums out there.
Posts you will love: Introduction to Minimalism, Homemade Maple Granola Recipe, That's Darling
Follow her on: Bloglovin', Instagram, PinterestFacebook, Snapchat: houseofsmilla


If you are as into self-development as I am, Life Goals Mag is a site to add to your reading list for sure. They cover such a wonderful array of topics, focusing on living well in the modern world. I've been so impressed by the quality of their posts, with so many of them being ideal reading material for dazed and confused 20-somethings such as myself!
Posts you'll love: How To Find A Healthy Relationship In The Modern Age, Why Change Within Yourself Is Good, 25+ Tips For Using The Bullet Journal System
Follow them on: Bloglovin', Twitter, Pinterest


It's safe to say I'm slightly in love with Erin. She's an incredible writer and minimalist, living with a young family in NYC, who makes sustainable living feel so damn cool. Reading My Tea Leaves offers not only my favourite blog name to date, but also seemingly endless advice on greener lifestyle choices and all round wellness. If you watched my vlog last week you will also know that I bought her gorgeous book Simple Matters and it's set to further this love affair even more I am sure.
Posts you will love: Habit Shift: Favourite Documentaries, Make Your Own Hazelnut Milk, Natural Beauty: Cheek Colour
Follow her on: Bloglovin', Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest

And there we have it folks... What do you think about me making this a (semi) regular thing? I think it's definitely something I have in mind! Lastly, whose blogs are you loving at the moment? I need those sweet sweet recs...