Everything will be okayIt’s not exactly been the Spring that I had planned. In fact, so far from what I planned that it’s only now that things plateau out that I can reflect and take it all in. If you follow Hero on social media you will have seen that we moved premises to a much larger, more prominent shop on the high street and this process has quite literally swallowed me up (hence a mute blog!).

When I set the business up last September I could never have imagined that the next several months would take the course they have. Business, as in life, comes with huge highs and times when you just need to dig deep and trust your instincts. It can be tough. But I have come to realise that creating your own business comes with the responsibility of tough decisions, risks and ‘fly by the seat of your pants’ moments that culminate in sleepless nights, mental turmoil of whether what you’re doing is ever the right thing and hopefully in the end a deep sense of satisfaction and achievement. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

However, it all comes with compromises and sacrifices and as anyone with a business of their own and a young family would say, something has to give. You can’t be everything to everyone all of the time. So, after two years of being in this place with My Pollyanna I have had to admit defeat and decide that I can’t maintain the blog how I want to. It doesn’t represent who I am anymore.

It’s only fair now that I put all my energies into Hero and my family. It’s no exaggeration to say that writing this blog has changed my life. I have met some wonderful people whom I now call friends, experienced unimaginable things (photo shoots, press days and London Fashion Week with Jimmy Choo – crazy!). I’ve learned so much about myself and life and created my own business that I can safely say would not have happened had I not started writing the blog.

A huge thank you to everyone who has ever taken time out of their day to read My Pollyanna and please continue the journey with Hero.

Thank you…!

Laura xx

Here are some of my favourite moments…

{ a photoshoot with Donna Ida Denim in Belgravia }

Laura Turner My Pollyanna

{ London Fashion Week with Jimmy Choo }Jimmy Choo Choo townhouse

 { Meeting Ailie who worked with me at Hero for 9 months. Sadly Ailie and I aren’t working together any longer but I wish her all the luck in the world. Ailie is a very talented lady and has the world as her oyster now. }

Ailie Williams{ Meeting Jennie, Amanda and Jo – treasured friendships found through social media }

Jennie & Me Limewood

Amanda & Jo Limewood

{ photos for the blog taken by a four year old }

Oui Mon Cheri

{ discovering George Northwood hair salon }

George Northwood hair colour development

{ press days }

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{ appearing in a magazine }

My Pollyanna Essentials magazine

{ London trips with one of my favourite bloggers and friend, Amanda The Online Stylist }

The Online Stylist & Me at Donna Ida, Belgravia

{ learning photography skills with Emily Quinton }

My Pollyanna spring flowers

Good bye and thank you again xx

Alderney

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I’ve definitely got that Friday feeling today. Finally it feels like Spring is here (even if there is a little chill) and in the shop the sunshine playlist is in full swing! Hero has had a really exciting week hosting our first event – a calligraphy workshop with Betty Etiquette. Holding events was always part of the plan with Hero, a way of creating a lifestyle and not only selling clothes and accessories.

HEROxBettyEtiquetteHEROxBettyEtiquette

When we came across Becci from Betty Etiquette we knew straight away she was perfect for the Hero lifestyle. Living in such a digital age, which we are thriving off, it was a refreshing thought to take things back to basics.

We started out by inviting some our favourite bloggers Hattie West, Cider with Rosie, Oh No Rachio, Lapin Blu, Chocolate Cookies & Candies and Truffle Pig Saga to a workshop to be held at our favourite foodie hang out, Woodfire. We were delighted to share the day with these happy, fun folk and the day was a HIT! Ailie and I have more events ideas and we can’t wait to share these and hopefully get to meet more inspiring people.

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HEROxBettyEtiquette Becci getting the ink and nibs ready

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HEROxBettyEtiquette

HEROxBettyEtiquette

After an hour of excellent tuition from Becci we were all able to scribe a few words and patterns and the relaxation and therapeutic qualities of calligraphy should never be underestimated… no-one could believe how tranquil the atmosphere was and with the sunshine streaming there were happy vibes all round.

HEROxBettyEtiquette

Time to eat.

HEROxBettyEtiquette

It went by in a flash but I can safely say that it was a truly lovely way to spend a Wednesday morning and I can’t wait to start putting together more events just like this. Thank you to everyone who came along and to Becci for being a wonderful teacher.

Have a good weekend x

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Well it’s been quite a week. The sickness bug hit and threw most plans I had out the window which means this week will be spent attempting to catch up…never a good feeling. I’m back to health but struggling a bit to find energy. Florence (my youngest daughter) was hit the hardest with the bug but since it was her birthday on Friday she seemed to pull enough strength together to have her birthday party (what five year old wouldn’t?!).

Flossie's party

I love planning and organising these things (sometimes more than the event itself) and this year with lots of other things going on I wanted some of the pressures of a party taken away so I decided to go for a venue that would provide the food. Our local pizza and mezze restaurant in Stockbridge, Woodfire was perfect. A light, bright room big enough but cosy enough for 14 little ones.

Woodfire

This year the theme was FUN – bright, bold colours and as far away from anything Frozen as possible. I headed to Tiger for the decorations, with a little help from The Hambledon for the honeycomb characters and Happy Birthday gold glitter banner. Bright balloons and a couple of vases of multi coloured tulips and we were done.

Happy Birthday

Party bags

Tiger was also great for the party bags. Some colouring, a hawaiian necklace, rubber, stamp, cake and temporary tattoo filled the bags and fitted with the bright and colourful theme.

Crazy M

Entertainment was in the form of Crazy M. She was an absolute hit with the children and the adults and had us all in stitches.

Party table

Having the catering taken away made the party so much easier and to walk away at the end without clearing up…a huge bonus!

So with parties done and sickness gone (fingers crossed) focussing this week on Spring. I’m desperate to clear out my wardrobe and put away the winter knits and boots and bring out some colour. Let’s hope the weather plays ball.

Have a good week,

L x

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After the technical debacle of last week (I couldn’t even log in to my shiny new blog let along publish the post that had so patiently been waiting to go live!) I’m finally back up and running – but playing serious catch up. There is quite a lot going on at the shop at the moment with the start of a new season and deliveries appearing all the time. This inevitably means a change around, but Ailie and I seem to have mastered the art of furniture shifting whilst the shop is open and have it down to fine art now (that’s what we think anyway!). There’s also a small matter of a five year old’s party to organise for later on in the week!

With such a big gap since I’ve blogged properly, I thought I’d share what I’ve been up to over the past few months…

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James turned 40 and we took to the skies for a flying lesson. He loved it. I felt sick.

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Ailie and I went to Paris for a buying trip for Hero. It was freezing and mostly wet but we loved pacing the streets for inspiration and finding new, exciting brands to have at Hero.

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I got me a fringe! I needed a change and since I’d gone short last year (which I loved) I thought I’d give a fringe a go. I went back to see Lottie at George Northwood and although it took a few hours to get used to, I’ve loved it ever since. I’m back next week for the compulsory fringe trim but for time being, it’s definitely staying.

Swoon Mag

 Last month I was interviewed by the lovely Marlene from Chocolate Cookies and Candies blog about life as a mum and opening the shop. You can read the interview here.

Now to get back to the balloon blowing and party bag filling. Have a great week,

L x

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My PollyannaLife changes and evolves and what I’ve come to realise is that you never really do get things 100% sorted. In fact it’s much easier to accept a situation and just move on, go with the flow. It feels like most things I do now are stripped back and made as simple as possible, exactly for this purpose. I eat better (huge thanks to the Hemsley sisters for this!), I spend better quality time with my girls and I’m more productive in the time that I have*. It just took a little get used to!

Although the blog has been neglected for a few months, it’s always been in my mind and niggling away at me. The thought of not doing it again just didn’t sit well or really make sense. It just had to work for me and my new life with Hero.HeroSo I decided to wipe the slate clean and start afresh. And here it is – a new look blog. It’s feels much better to me, easier to breathe with much less going on. No adverts, no complicated menus and categories (or at least that’s the idea!) just simple blog posts that you can read without clicking through.

I’ll only be blogging once to twice a week but it means I get to share what’s going on at Hero and anything else that feels right at the time – which I think is what a blog is really about isn’t it?

I’m really pleased with the new look and I hope you like it too. Have a great week.

Laura

*it’s not as perfect as it sounds, but I can but try!

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So on the 3rd November I undertook the Whole 30, 30 day detox. I’ve felt like I’ve needed to do something drastic with my diet for a long time. I’d been surviving on way to much sugar and not at lot else. My week would be made up of healthy breakfasts of eggs and spinach and other days of marmalade on toast, finished off with a mug tea.

I’d then fill up in the morning with two cappuccinos and throw in a pastry for good measure. Skip lunch and gorge on sweet treats like biscuits, chocolate or those irresistible mini cake bites you buy in tubs. Pick at my girls’ tea (sometimes deliberately cooking more so that I could snack) then eat my own dinner later on. Always cooked from scratch and always including vegetables of some description but with a healthy portion of carbs too! The day would then be finished off with a satisfying amount of sweet things, as a treat you trust. I was never that heavy on the alcohol, apart from weekends.

Whole 30

This was pretty much my food diary for a good number of months. A constant cycle of “treating myself” where I believed I deserved it in some way, even if it was just because I was tired.

I felt utterly horrid. I am lucky with my genes and don’t put on weight too easily so this lulled me into a completely false sense of security. If I could get away with it then why not keep treating myself?! But I just knew I wasn’t healthy and was nowhere near performing my best everyday.

Then one day, one of my best friends Penny told me that she was about to embark on a 30 detox, the Whole 30. I was interested. I wanted a lifestyle change and the thought of detoxing my body sounded perfect. It also sounded hardcore. No sugar, no dairy, no beans, no alcohol, no grains…pretty much nil by mouth.

So after two days of positive thoughts of how good this was going to be and staying to the strict guidelines, I was feeling amazing. A constant level of energy all day – who knew that all those health gurus had been right all along?!! The high levels of sugar in my diet before was giving me huge highs then leaving me really, really hungry.

It Starts with Food

A breakfast of bacon, avocado and egg, replacing my tea with hot water and fresh lemon, followed by two cups of black coffee. Lunch of mackerel salad and some sultanas to snack on during the after noon and a dinner made up of meat and vegetables and I was flying. In some ways I hate to admit their right but I loved that I never felt hungry (my worst fear), my energy levels stayed constant and I knew that what was going into my body was healthy.

Ten whole days I did this for and then I folded. No one likes to think of themselves as a quitter but I had begun to really resent the program. Boundaries are great, being healthy is amazing but I missed all these wonderful indulgences. I had a measly slice of toast on Wednesday and yesterday I had a slice of pizza. There it is, failure.

But actually, I enjoyed it. It gave me immense pleasure and it realigned my thinking on the detox. I know I won’t get the full effect of the Whole 30 but it has given me boundaries and proven that I can change my ways. So, I’m going to stick to it and allow myself one treat a day – whether that’s a frothy, milky cappuccino or a slice of cake or glass of wine. Balance. That’s what we’re all after anyway isn’t it?!

 

Hero Stockbridge

Today we’re adding our Christmas section to the Hero website that’ll be full of gift ideas and of-course tweeting and instagramming. But most importantly I’ll also be deciding what my treat will be for the day…

Would you consider the 30 day detox?

Have a great weekend.

L x

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Life has got pretty hectic the last few months and the blog has most definitely taken a back seat. I read an article in the Summer about blogging with tips on how to be better and there was one quote that really stuck. Elsie Larson, founder of uber blog, A Beautiful Mess said that

“It was never about not having enough time, but just not planning well enough”. She’s definitely right.

All the other elements in my life have been completely overwhelming the past few weeks and months that most of the time I’ve felt that I haven’t had any more capacity to think about something else. Because having my own business and two children is a whole new lifestyle change for me, I’ve also spent time getting used to how this is all going to work.

It has been an incredible experience and I wouldn’t change one tiny bit of it but there are times when I feel like I’m keeping several different plates spinning. Some of the time they’re all spinning but there are times when one will fall or have a wobble and I can just about get it back it again and other times when I feel like half of them have fallen off the stick. But that’s life I suppose, everyone’s busy and everyone has their own priorities.

It’s not my intention to make this post one long excuse but it’s probably more a cathartic exercise to get some focus back on the blog and feel like I can still do it! It seem easy for me to lose confidence in what I’m doing if I don’t do it for a while. But the blog is where it all started and it’s an amazing world to be a part of.

Hero

 

As for Hero, it has been amazing. So much more, so much better than I could ever have anticipated. But it would be great to make time for blogging again. I’ve learned so much about my own style since starting Hero that it seems right to get back to the blog. So this this my first step to doing it!

In other news, although it pains me to say it, I’ve also been feeling so much healthier after undertaking a detox. Details coming later in the week….

Any tips on how to juggle work/life would be gratefully received!

L x

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My Pollyanna

I have dreams, I have aspirations and I want to realise them. I don’t want to get to sixty-five and feel that I didn’t fulfil my potential. Do I even have potential? I’ll never find out if I don’t give it a try. It’s not about living life to it’s fullest but more about satisfying an inner curiosity of how far I can go and what I can achieve.

Albert Einstein

I love to feel inspired but I’m fed up of reading about other inspirational people and their achievements. I want my own achievements. I come from a regular family where my parents were ambitious and successful but they worked hard. They always strived for more – and still do. Not because they want or need more but because they thrive off it.

I’ve always felt that this entrepreneurial spirit is in me somewhere and so Hero is the beginning of my own journey.If not now, then when

There’s so much I need to do to be a better mother but this is one way I’m trying to do it. To be a female role model for my girls. To show them I can think for myself, that I can set goals and work for them. To show them how to be the best they can be.

I’ve been a stay at home mum for six years and I know how that feels. I’ve played with them, I’ve shouted at them and I’ve spent days ironing, making beds and endlessly picking up toys from the floor. But life is different now, it’s the beginning of a new era. They are both at school full-time so it’s time to find my identity again.

The girls

Without question, writing this blog has been a stepping stone to where I am now. It’s been amazing to connect with so many people and find a passion I never truly realised I had.

I know it’s not going to be easy. I will feel stretched (I already do) but above all I already feel like I’m a better person. I’m thriving on being my own boss, having independence and having purpose to my day. I’m surviving on around five hours sleep a night and copious amounts of tea and coffee – but who isn’t?!

So in some ways, Hero is completely selfish and all about me. But perhaps sometimes, for the greater good, it’s good to be selfish.

Have a great weekend and don’t forget you can keep up with the countdown to opening of Hero on Twitter and Instagram!

L x

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Alderney

Firstly, Hello! It feels like ages and what a Summer! Hope everyone managed to get some form of fun in the sun one way or another.  I have to say, this Summer had to go as one of the best. The girls have reached a great age and the insanely indulgent three weeks in the Channel Islands was incredible – plenty of sun, beach fun accompanied by copious a healthy amount of bread, cheese and wine and lots of time with family.

To top it off, I then got to spend a few days in the scorching heat on the Costa Del Sol with one of my best friends, Louise (from Lolly & Boo). No husbands, no children just a pool, rose wine and dish after dish of gambas pil-pil. It was amazing.

 

But these past few days have probably been one of my most significant – ever. It was back to school and that meant my youngest daughter, Flossie starting full-time. From one pragmatic mother to utter sadness. She drives me mad, she’s a total handful but going to school marks the end of an era. I’m no longer the mother that needs to be at home to look after her children. She’s happy and excited and that’s most important thing.

New starts

So what now? Luckily I have that covered. Yesterday, I collected the keys to my very own shop. A real bricks and mortar shop in Stockbridge (Hampshire), to sell my curation of casual fashion wares. You’ll find luxury denim, cashmere, boots, tees and more.

And it gets better. I have the pleasure of working with someone who I have become friends with and who I respect tremendously for her impeccable taste, her tenacity and her achievements at such a young age (which should not define her but is hard to ignore!). I will be starting this new chapter with Ailie Williams (previously of the online store Bramble & Bracken) and I could not be happier about it.

Ailie Williams

Ailie will bring her eagle eye for gorgeous homewares and accessories. So, without further ado we introduce

HERO LIFE + STYLEHero Stockbridge
We’ll be online too so if you can’t make it to Stockbridge everything will be available on the website.

There’s a lot still to do but we’d love for you to follow the journey and help out with all the tricky decisions like which hangers to choose and where to put the flowers!

We’re on Instagram and Twitter so come and join us. You can also follow the hashtag #shopathero – we’d love to see you over there!

My Pollyanna will still be going and I’m really excited about what I have coming up on the blog this month – a whole week of Winter coats, London Fashion Week and birthdays galore!

Here’s to new chapters!

L x

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Christy towels

Taking a break on this cloudy Thursday morning in Alderney to do a little blogging. The sun is having a rest today so the perfect excuse to spend a little time with My Pollyanna. We’ve spent the last five days getting to know the island, walking through the beautiful, colourful Georgian streets of the town and getting sandy and sunned on the empty beaches.

 

Longis beach, Alderney

But back to the blog…this post is a review. A review of the softness, fluffiest, bury your face in, groan worthy towels I’ve ever had the pleasure of using. Now that’s a statement. But don’t take it lightly. I can assure you that if this was not the case, I wouldn’t be saying it.

Christy towels

Last week I took ownership of an enormous pile of Christy Supreme Supima towels. Not that exciting I hear you say…but let me tell you that these towels are the ultimate in spa-like softness.

Christy towels

Perfection and knowing that I have the best I possibly can is the ultimate in satisfaction as far as I am concerned. Whenever I’m hunting down something new, I want the best. If it turns out I can’t afford it then I’ll gracefully accept and move down a notch or two but I’ll always aim high.

When I was asked to review the Christy Supreme towels of-course I accepted but I did not expect to find towel perfection. Thick, plush and all round gorgeousness – that kind of softness that comes from 100% supima cotton of 500gsm (grammes per metre square!) these towels made me feel like I have found the best.

Christy towels Christy towels

 

And did I mention being they have also supplied towels to the sporting elite at Wimbledon with the famous purple and green towels for over 25 years? Quite an endorsement.

Christy towels

They have accompanied me on my trip to Alderney to be put to be ultimate test. Sand and sea everyday and multiple washes…I’ll have to report back on their hardiness at the end of three weeks! You can buy directly from Christy Towels.

Have a great weekend,

L x

 

 

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