Meet ups and Hauls

Feeling Boxed in and a cheeky Paperchase visit!

It’s been a while since I visited Manchester City Centre. My Sister came over from Liverpool and I decided to meet her instead of her travelling back out to South Manchester. I got a few goodies from Paperchase, which I will show soon but firstly I want to talk about something I realised that day.

It’s off topic but I wanted to discuss it anyway as I want to see if other people can relate. It’ll be a little wordy but I’ll make up for it with pictures at the end, promise! So I decided to go into the City, my choice. As soon as I got there, I felt it, the fear and over awareness of my surroundings. This isn’t the first time, it’s happened a few times. For some reason I forget and think it’ll be ok next time.

I met Shani, my Sister, in Piccadilly train station. I waited for her by the arrival and departure screens and I felt like every nerve ending was on high alert. So many people! I’ll also add that I had Scarlett with me in a bulky pushchair. Luckily she still faces me, I’m not sure I’d have coped if she faced outwards!

Everyone gets so close to you and I felt like I was in a spotlight. I waited, probably only about for about five minutes for Shani but it felt like twenty. Scarlett was asleep so I decided to look at my phone, whilst gripping the pram with white knuckles and checking on her every few seconds.

Once Shani met me, I felt myself relax a bit but was still so aware of people. Even walking down to the shops and through the streets, people, people, PEOPLE everywhere! A few Children here and there, I expected more as it was half-term. Not many pushchairs.

We didn’t visit many shops. In fact we only went to Paperchase and Wilko’s! We did stop off for food at The Botanist. It was nice to finally sit down and really catch up. The Bonanist itself is a lovely place. The food is presented in little baskets or wooden boards to give it the rustic feel that the name suggests. Our waitress’ service was very good but the Hostess was appalling! Cold, no real care when showing us to the table, no offer for a high chair and wasn’t happy to get us one when asked. I appreciate not all restaurants are family friendly but if you have high chairs (which they did), know the procedure when a little one comes in. Other than that the place was nice, pricey for lunch but still worth a visit even for a drink.

After our catch up, we said Our Goodbye’s, Shani got the train and I hopped onto the tram. It was busy at first. I had to listen to a very noisy Recruitment Consultant! However, it soon emptied out, all of a sudden I realised how tired I was. All day Scarlett had been as good as gold, so that helped a lot but my whole body was tired. I think I must have been holding myself rigid for most of it. I felt myself breathe deeper and my muscles relax. When I walked home, I noticed that everything was quieter, so much quieter.

The town had a few people milling about and I managed to count five Dogs being walked in the space of about three minutes! Little things like that mean a lot to me, the space to be able to walk a Dog in Suburbia, the fact that you see Dogs in Suburbia! To be fair I did see one dog in the city, a Scottie Dog being carried in a Doggy bag through Piccadilly! This is the sort of thing I notice!

I honestly think if I hadn’t been with Shani I would have struggled more. What’s bizarre is I used to live in the heart of the City, I wouldn’t say I was one hundred percent comfortable but I got by. It’s definitely gotten worse over the years and it does affect social events. However when I’m determined, I get there. I wanted to see Shani and I did!

So the shiny bit! Paperchase! The Manchester store is huge and it’s laid out in such a lovely way. It makes you want to buy things. Downstairs holds Stationery, Scrap-booking, Gift Wrap, Cards, Planners and other knick-knacks. Upstairs holds art supplies. My visited consisted of ground level shopping! I did eye up the Filofax in Pillarbox Red but I held off, it’s one for another day.

As I was setting up my Spring/Easter planner at the time, I was on the hunt for this gold Bunny pen. I’ve seen it for a few months and adore it. There were a few versions on the shop floor, Zebra, Crown etc. I had to ask if there were any in the back for the Bunny and luckily there was. I love the way it looks, it’s so slim and the Bunny itself is really striking. It’s the best design of the gold pens in my opinion. It’s quite heavy and has taken a bit of getting used to for writing but I’m getting there.

IMG_8314.jpgI then found this notebook. It’s around A6 size, I love the spring-like colours, the glitter, the detail on the pages and I even love the zip-pouch at the back. Do I have a purpose for it yet? Noooooo but Stationery addicts and notebooks, they go together. I thought about perhaps using it as a list journal, as in somewhere to write prompts and list from them. Or it could be a bullet journal. I’m still thinking!

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Lastly I purchased some stickers. The fox ones caught my eye as I’m collecting fox and Autumnal themes and putting them to one side for later in the year. The recent Lollipop box, ‘Hey Foxy’ really helped this theme. This might sound like a madly in advance plan but Autumn is my favourite time of year. Having lots of decoration for journaling and planning will definitely make me happy when late September/October rolls round.

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I then spotted some Spring themed stickers, flower button designs and Birds with Bird Houses.

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The flower buttons are very bright and cute whereas the Birds have a bit more of a Vintage feel. I’m looking forward to using both in very different ways. Some will go into my planner, I imagine a lot will be used in my journal.

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Lastly, unplanned but I saw some unusual stickers. They had a ‘Kawaii’ feel, they’re really quirky, fun and bright. I’m drawn to anything Kawaii so naturally I was going to pick them up and after some debating, decided to get them. Also, I used to live in the Northern Quarter of Manchester, which is a creative/arty area of the City. These stickers really remind me of that and the feel that you get being around there.

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All stickers have a raised, plastic feel to them. I’m really pleased with the quality of them.

I think it’s safe to say I relaxed in Paperchase! A safe haven for anxious Stationery addicts! Unfortunately as soon as I stood outside, the noise and the craziness of the City came back.

Can anyone else relate to this? I knew I was ok but like I said, I was holding myself tight inside and only relaxed when I was back on an every day stomping ground. It frustrates me, as I want to be able to go into the city whenever I like but I avoid it instead!

I’ll leave that with you, thanks for stopping by.

Kelly x

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