Aaaaand, we're back! Happy New Year everyone and welcome to the first 2017 edition of The Loop - our round up of cool stuff we've seen on the internet we think you might like.
Every year, January chit-chat inevitably turns to health, wellbeing, self care and blues-busting, doesn't it? This dinky piece of wearable tech just might be the thing to help us keep the January blues at bay and stay motivated for the new year! Meet Doppel. Based on research that shows mother and baby heartbeats synchronising when in close proximity, Doppel, paired with an accompanying smart phone app, sends rhythmic vibrations similar to a heartbeat to your body via a wearable wristband. Choose a slow pulse to help you feel calmer or choose a faster pulse to feel energised and focussed. Pretty neat. Find out more here.
What's your favourite colour? Your kids can probably answer this question without too much thought, but when was the last time you thought about it? Now's the time. Purveyors of all things paper, G.F Smith, are on a mission to find out the world's favourite colour and invite you to use their snazzy interactive colour finder to submit yours. Who says January has to be blue? It can be anything you like! The world's favourite colour will be announced later in the year at the launch of Paper City, Hull as part of the Hull 2017 City of Culture celebrations.
Submit your favourite here and you just might be lucky enough to have your colour submission made into a special Colorplan paper right in front of your eyes at the G.F Smith paper mill in Hull. The paper will be named after you and made into a set of personalised stationery. Stationery swoon!
If you're looking to get out and about this month, you might want explore The Magical Lantern Festival. Taking place at Chiswick House & Garden in celebration of the end of Chinese New Year and the arrival of the Year of The Rooster, the festival features 50 light installations and illuminations, an ice rink, a pop-up ice bar (that's really made of ice) and tonnes of street food stalls. The festival starts on 19th January and runs until 26th February. For more info and tickets, visit the Magic Lantern Festival website.
And this week, in the name of getting organised for the year ahead, we leave you with Five Minutes of...Bullet Journal.
Now, as busy parents with tonnes of life stuff to juggle, spending quiet time writing in your journal probably isn't super high on your list of priorities but, with the continued rise of the Bullet Journal system, that might be about to change.
Developed by Brooklyn based product designer Ryder Carroll, Bullet Journal (BuJo for short) is designed to help you make the most of your time, stay organised and keep track of tasks, goals, habits and priorities by 'rapid logging'.
Just a quick Pinterest search for 'bullet journal' throws up all sorts of lists and trackers - from weekly shopping lists and domestic chore timetables to daily mood/habits/fitness logs... There are no set rules. Some journals are crazy-decorative with the feel of 'keepsake' diaries, some are plain, simple, matter-of-fact life maps; the beauty being YOU decide how best to use it!
[Examples below by Instagram users @boho.berry, @natnatattacks, @bluelahe, @passioncarnets and @heartistic.jess via this helpful Bullet Journal article]
And they're not just for grown-ups either. Kids might track the chores they do each week, the healthy foods they eat, books they read and what they thought of them, the days they felt happiest and the things they're most grateful for... Ideas are endless. So we'll shut up now and let you explore the possibilities for yourself!
All you need to get started is a notebook and a pen. Find out more here.