This week's Wonderful Woman hails from beautiful North Wales and is one of my desert island friends... Those people that, if I were stranded or had the money to fly them all together, I would have there with me to enjoy it. Lynsey Hackett is an outstandingly fabulous friend, a wonderful inspiration and help to people all around her and one of the most generous people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. She lights up any room with her effervescent personality and to be in her presence is to be in the presence of happiness - I'm convinced she passed this on as her fairy godmother gift to our second daughter Lucy!
I met Lynsey seven years ago when we moved to North Wales to be close to some of my family before starting our own. I needed somebody to help me in designing business cards and a website for my first interior design venture and she fit the bill perfectly. I instantly loved her and even after the first drafts weren't quite as I expected, she persisted until it was perfect. We formed a friendship, got our husbands together who hit it off just as well and before we knew it they'd become part of our lives. We did feel that we weren't anywhere near cool enough for them, but for some reason they loved us anyway! (Perhaps it was because we were one of the only other young couples in the area without kids at the time.) During my first pregnancy - in the middle of dark, cold Welsh winter - they popped round one evening without warning bearing wine and ice cream. I panicked, ran upstairs and told Simon to tell whoever it was that I was unwell, because I was already in my pjs and dressing gown at 8pm... They wouldn't take no for an answer, accepted me just the way I was and it was from that moment onwards I knew we'd be lifelong friends!
Lynsey saw me through both pregnancies and was a complete blessing as a friend. During my first we formed the Sunday Club, taking it in turns to have dinner at each other's houses every week - it was her & Paul who got me eating red meat when my midwife instructed it and Paul's legendary burgers that I'm convinced finally kicked me into labour after being 13 days overdue! Armed with numerous gifts and pink champagne, they were amongst the first people to see both of our daughters within hours of them each being born. Little Lucy arrived unexpectedly early on the day Lynsey was going to take maternity photos of me, so it ended up being a newborn shoot instead.
We are wildly different women but I guess sometimes it is true what they say, opposites attract! Whilst we are at opposite ends of the spectrum on some things, we are also very alike on a human level, sharing the same values, morals, sense of humour and love of good fun & friendship.
Dear Dear Lynsey, my life wouldn't be nearly as sweet without you in it. Thank you for the years worth of love, for a fabulous friendship, for great times and for fond fond memories... We will love you always! x
Now over to you:
1. What does Lovelyness mean to you?
Lovelyness is anything that you experience, see, feel, hear or taste that leaves a positive memory, warm fuzzy feeling and makes an improvement to your life.
2. When are you happiest? What brings you joy?
My family bring me so much joy. Daily, my son Dexter (two and a half) and my daughter Coco (15 months) fill my heart with joy. You could have had the worst news ever or be ill in bed but with these two in my life it is impossible not to smile and laugh daily and for that I am so grateful.
My husband Paul makes my heart fill with joy when I see him playing with our children, rolling around on the floor with them or reading stories to them with interesting voices for the characters in the books.
I am happiest when my creative cravings are being satisfied and they are satisfied in many ways...
Going to festivals and listening to live music, reading a good book, visiting galleries, going for a walk to the beach and soaking up the view, dressing up for a night out, a new pair of shoes, riding horses, eating a fabulous homemade meal, designing brand identities for new businesses, photographing family and friends. I could go on...
3. What are you most grateful for in your life?
Apart from the obvious answer of being grateful for my family and friends, I am so grateful for my health and high level of energy. We all take our health for granted at times and it only takes a bad cold or a nasty stomach bug to make you realise, how being healthy makes life so much better.
4. What would you list as your top 3 priorities in life?
- As a Jehovah’s Witness it is important for me to read the Bible daily and to follow the example Jesus made on the earth by being the best person I can be, to love my neighbour and to show my gratitude in prayer to Jehovah every day.
- That I am trying my hardest to be the best wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend and person I can be and to be happy.
- To do something that satisfies my creative need every day.
5. Who’s your current role model and why?
I don’t have one role model but rather take inspiration from many different people who come into my life, whether that be through the media, business or everyday life.
6. Who do you see as being lovely and why? (Famous or not)
Without a doubt the sweetest, most caring, genuine and thoughtful person I have ever met is Holly Potter. I remember meeting Holly for the first time and being so impressed by her friendliness. She was so happy and positive and was full of excitement with her future plans. I found her company refreshing and it inspired me to want to be a better friend and thoughtful person. I can genuinely say that I am a more thoughtful person as a result of meeting Holly and having her in my life. For this I thank you Holly. xx
(Lovely Lynsey, I thank you!!! X)
7. What's your favourite type of food?
I love food! And drink for that matter. To pick a favourite is difficult for me but if I was to be pushed for an answer I would have to say Thai.
8. What are your favourite pastimes?
- I love spending time with my two children and hearing them giggle and smile with every inch of their bodies.
- I love going to concerts with my husband and jumping around in the mosh pit like we are teenagers.
- I love to watch a good film or to be captivated in a great book.
- I love to go horse riding, although I don’t get to go that often these days.
- I love to cook for friends and family.
- I love to go camping with friends and to sit around a campfire drinking red wine and looking up at the stars.
9. Do you have a favourite quote?
10. Where’s your favourite place?
North Wales will always hold the key to my heart.
11. Which is your favourite season and why?
Autumn is by far my favourite season. I love the colours of autumn and find walking in my wellies through the fallen leaves of the trees breath taking.
12. Do you have a signature style?
I’m not sure how to describe my style, perhaps a mix of quirky, gothic and arty.
13. Who was your biggest inspiration growing up and how have they shaped who you are today?
Both my parents worked hard to provide for us children when we where growing up and I am very grateful for that. I was brought up on a hill farm in North Wales and am very grateful for the work ethic and resourcefulness that has been instilled in me as a result.
14. Which qualities do you value most from those closest to you?
Genuineness, loyalty and to be fun loving.
15. What are your best attributes? What are your worst?
I like to consider myself to be a thoughtful person and like I mentioned above have been inspired to be thoughtful in many different ways by the lovely Holly Potter. I have found that having children has opened up so many more opportunities to be thoughtful. I love to create hand printed cards and paintings with the children as thank you cards etc which are very well received.
"There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving” Acts 20 v 35
I am very hard working but can be a bit of a workaholic. Having a family certainly has helped me be a more balanced person when it comes to work, and I am grateful for that. The only thing in school that I always got grade A’s for was art and design. Creativity comes so naturally to me. I feel very blessed to have creativity as one of my attributes and just love the way creativity is knitted into everyday aspects of my life.
Now for the dark side ;-)
I do at times find myself being impatient, although I am also a very patient person in some situations. I am very patient when it comes to work and never lose my temper when it comes to being stuck in traffic etc but I do find myself feeling very impatient when I feel that my husband Paul isn’t moving fast enough on a task or not quick enough to respond when I call for assistance with the kids etc. Poor Paul really does get the worst of me sometimes and for that I am very sorry.
I don’t suffer fools gladly... There are times in life when you meet the odd person that comes across as a bit of an idiot and unfortunately I find that I can’t hide my annoyance from my face.
16. How would you most like your friends to describe you?
Fun to be with, positive, creative and reliable.
17. If you could pick any place in the world to live, where would it be and why?
Considering myself not to be as well travelled as I would one day like to be, I'm not sure how to answer this question. For the moment I am very happy living in North Wales even if it does rain a lot.
18. What are your aspirations for the future?
It’s amazing how having a family really changes what’s important to you in life. If you had asked me this question 5 years ago you would have got a very different answer. My aspirations for the future are to be the best role model, support and mother I can be for my children.
19. Can you recommend: a lovely song, a lovely movie, a lovely book?
- Book: "The Slight Edge" - Jeff Olson. This inspirational book shows that how making the best choices in life daily will lead to a successful, more fulfilled future you desire.
- Movie: "The Book Thief" - This film is a wonderful tail of loyalty, friendship and love. "500 days of Summer" - I love this film so much. It’s funny, realistic and not what you would expect from a romantic comedy. And it has a fantastic soundtrack too.
- Song: "Great Expectations" - ELBOW. This Manchester based band ELBOW are by far my favourite band. I have seen them in concert so many times over the years I have actually lost count. But this song ‘Great Expectations’ never fails to give me goose bumps each time I listen to it. Guy Garvey really is a wordsmith.
20. Any Lovely Last Words?
At the beginning of each day ask yourself... "What can I do today that will get me closer to my goals?"
Thank you for reading my answers.