H54F {edition 6}

In the same vein as some of my favourite bloggers, I'm going to stick with 5 things that have made me happy this week.

1. Sunshine. Seriously, this will never be off the list as long as it exists. Ireland has a distinct lack of Vitamin D throughout the too-long winter, so every time we have a nice day even if it's cold, there is reason to celebrate!

2. Hooray for a good night's sleep! We're getting a new bed frame and a sound machine! Let me just say thank goodness for Wayfair and their free shipping. With the arrival of Spring the bird have chosen the tree right outside our window for their 5:30am gossip session. As the days get longer (and once Daylight Savings hits this weekend) it will only get earlier. I'm a light sleeper, but it even wakes R up which is saying something!

So we're storing the creaky bed base furnished by our landlord that wakes me up every time even I turn over, and replacing it  with this budget friendly beauty from Wayfair UK, and I splurged and bought my favourite white noise machine. In the US you can get them for slightly cheaper (around $50) but it is totally worth it to have a UK plug, as my last one met it's untimely death at the hands of an adapter/converter that wasn't doing its job properly.

3. Internet Switch to clear the mind. I've been pretty annoyed at Bloglovin for quite a while now. I understand it's a free service for me to use and beggars can't be choosers but in reality, we can. Inspired by Stephanie's switch to Feedly;and the comments from other's on her post, I decided to do the same. I'm also simultaneously switching from Safari to Chrome as my main browser. I know it's silly, but something about the layout of the two and the process of weeding out blogs I've been chronically "marking as read" (whether bloglovin has chosen to recognise it or not) has really helped to clear my head. I read so many currently that when I'm done I'm just blogged-out (does that exist? let's make it exist) and feel like writing up a post, even if I have inspiration, is more of a chore. I'm hoping this change sparks some creative juices too and lends itself to more blog posts in the future. I understand this whole 'once a week' thing has got to stop.

4. My Ikea Saga. When we moved into our new apartment, among the minimal furnishings came two Billy bookshelves. The only problem was that with the exception of the permanent middle shelves and the top shelf on one of the bookcases, all shelving had been removed and stacked in the hallway and the fittings were nowhere to be found. Whether this was the work of the painter or previous tenants, we had no idea, but having to bookshelves that were essentially useless was a pain in the butt. So I took to the internet, using IKEA's handy missing parts form (found through the FAQs section) and ordered 28 new fittings.

When they got here, I realised that our model is actually older, and while the parts looked similar the new version didn't fit at all. So I emailed customer service, explaining the situation along with photos of what was sent to me and what we needed instead. The got back to me immediately telling me they understood, to keep the previous order and they would send the correct parts. About two weeks passed until I got the new order, to find out they sent me the exact same thing. So now I had 56 pieces of the wrong fitting and nowhere to store my books. I gave up.

Fast forward to our St. Paddy's Day trip to Dublin, where I realised that their IKEA was actually somewhat on our way home. I made poor, hungover R drive me there so I could look in the extra parts section myself. He searched through bins with me finding approximated 6 or so of the part we needed until an employee came over and told us we were actually not allowed in this section any more (I thought the fake trees somewhat blocking it were more for decoration. whatever.). So I took a number, and explained my situation to a sweet girl who oddly had no clue you could order extra parts online in the first place. She took me back over to the forbidden area and searched with me, and eventually came up empty handed. However, she did find some parts for another bookshelf that were similar in size and gave me a large handful hoping they worked. We got home an hour and half later than we should have and hallelujah, although they weren't perfect fits, they held the shelves up fine and I did a big happy dance while very much regretting I didn't get the girl's name so I could write IKEA about how great she was.

So then the next day I'm rearranging and cleaning under the kitchen sink because thats what temporary house-girlfriends do, and in the back corner I see a little bank change bag. Thinking I've stumbled onto a fortune, I pull it out to reveal not a forgotten bag of euros, but all the missing fittings I'd been searching for since December.

To sum up how I felt, here's a link to one of my favorite comics from The Oatmeal.

It may have been frustrating at the time, but I have actually laughed out loud at how much of my time and thoughts have been consumed by something so trivial to have them right under my nose (albeit in a very odd place) the whole time.

5. I'm now booked to take a very last minute trip home to Florida over Easter. I am beyond excited. The change of scenery is, I think, exactly what I need to get my butt back in gear after a couple months of monotony. I've been finding it hard to be productive lately as my days have consisted of nothing but job applications and binge watching various shows through Netflix, with a couple social events thrown in here and there.

Here's a list of the top 10 things I'm looking forward to (in no particular order)

+ // Seeing family and friends
+ // Getting a tan
+ // Going to Target
+ // $0.25 oyster Tuesdays
+ // Buying all the shirts from Old Navy and Ross
+ // Playing golf with my Mom
+ // Driving, although like last time I'm still nervous about switching my side of the road mentally
+ // Pedicures on the cheap
+ // Wearing my new swimsuit at the pool where no one can judge me because I'll be eating ALL the...
+ // EASTER CANDY. Peeps and Reeses Eggs for the win. That being said, there better be either a  Cadbury or Dairy Milk Chocolate Egg waiting on me when I get back.

What has made you happy this week?

Linking up this week with: Oh, Hey Friday!High Five for Friday!, and 5 On Friday

An Evening in Laytown

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog

I hope everyone had a magnificent St. Paddy's Day! Ours was full of parades, good food, and Guinness. I'd share photos, but not only did I forget to bring my actual camera to Dublin but honestly alcohol and the iPhone camera don't always mix! So instead, this post will be a picture dump from our walk along the beach last week. 

Along with being Ireland's capital city, Dublin is also a job mecca. Because of this, it is really expensive to live in the city and out of necessity quite a few "commuter towns" popped up along the coast both North and South of Dublin for those who preferred a cheaper and quieter life.

 Closest to us are Bettystown, Laytown, and Julianstown. Though they're not tourist hubs like Dingle, they're still gorgeous little towns in their own right. It's so nice for us to be able to pop in the car (or on the bikes once the weather gets a bit warmer) and ride along the coast on a whim! 

So without further adieu... onto the photos! 

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog
this is why I'm not a fashion blogger. the only photo where my hair isn't completely covering my face from the wind!

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog

Laytown, Ireland @ Give Me Cake Blog
that sunset though...

Do you have a favorite spot to go to relax?

H54F {edition 5}

1. Reading: Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn. I loved both Gone Girl and Dark Places, so I decided it was time to try her first book of the series. It's taking me a little while to get into it, but I'm not sure if that's the book's fault or my own (probably the latter). I've been assured that it is her best one, so I'm very excited to get into it.
yes that's my bike in the background. hooray for bike-able weather! 

2. Listening: (Other than the theme song to Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt pretty much on repeat in my head)

Last Monday I went to a singing session at a local pub. Despite everyone being a bit nervous at first, it turned into a really good night. Most people played guitar or ukulele and sang a few tunes. Since I have no instrumental abilities, I waited until I had a few pints in me and then forced others to let me tag along in their songs. It. Felt. Good. Although there isn't a singing session on this week because of St. Patrick's Day, I'd like to prepare something for next week. If anyone has some a cappella suggestions, let me know! For now I'm thinking maybe some First Aid Kit? We saw them live late last year and they were amazing. I admire those girls so much!

3. Watching: I've made my way through Parks & Recreation and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (loved both so much.) But this Buzzfeed post took me right back to my favourite show. Also, it made me realise that Parenthood's Amber and Arrested Development's Bland Egg Ann are one in the same. Mind blown.

 4. Planning: On this side of the pond, Mother's Day is on Sunday. It took us by surprise last year (mostly me because I had no idea they were on different days) but not this time! I've got a nice little gift planned for R's mom (from the boys, of course). He's one of five boys and rarely has she ever actually got a gift on Mother's Day so I feel it's time to change that, especially considering she generously allowed us to stay in her house for far too long over 4 months so we could stay in Belfast after the lease on our last apartment ended.

When it comes to gift giving, I don't think extravagance is necessary. However, I like giving more small gifts instead of one big thing. I heard a saying related to children's gifts and I think it's pretty much spot on for all gift giving.

Something they want, something they need
Something to wear, something to read

So how about a bottle of wine and some special mother's day cookies (want), a phone case (need), a gift certificate for a spa treatment of some sort-- pedi, mani, blow-dry? whatever they'll actually use (wear), and a book they've been wanting or even just a heartfelt message in a card (read). Then you're staying away from the cheesy 'mothers day' labelled things, and giving them a variety. How can you go wrong?

5. Feeling: Pretty excited that spring has sprung. Even on the rainy days we’ve had some sunshine. I’ve really needed that Vitamin D as of late, and the tennis rackets left for us by our landlord so we can make use of the courts here as well as weekend jaunts along the coast have made for a happy girl!

Linking up this week with: Oh, Hey Friday!High Five for Friday!, and 5 On Friday