Happy Jar 2018

So once again it’s time to go through the list – not actually a jar this year, but then saying Happy Envelope is slightly less fun sounding – and see what fab things happened last year and to show how much fab stuff happened that I would have forgotten.

I genuinely think that this helps me to focus more on the positive, I spend so much time stressing about tiny things that go wrong as opposed to just stepping back and seeing the bigger picture, I would definitely recommend this to everyone, even to try it just once, I think you’d be amazed at the things that get pushed away and replaced with bigger “more important” stuff!

So here we go……..

  • Baking my own bread
  • Claire is coming to Drag World with me!
  • Sitting on Maye’s balcony putting the world to rights
  • The man offering to walk me to work in the snow
  • more 5ks done
  • Molly @ drag world getting us backstage to meet Katya – arrrrrrrrggggggggg
  • face sparkles for day 2 at drag world
  • Light Up Poole – loving the pretty lights
  • Ed’s leaving drinks, love spending time with Amanda, she’s so funny
  • Working our way through Diablo 3 Hardcore – I may even manage to get 1 character through!
  • Watching the world cup – for once I sort of enjoyed it
  • Being called “Cute” by the ACTUAL Alaska
  • The surprise that Hans Enuf expressed when Claire asked for a pic “With me???”
  • Yummy baklava and wraps from the little shop near Drag World
  • Showing the man Stacey’s game collection – he was very jealous
  • RT’d be James O’Brien and liked over 100 times
  • Managed to get to work in the snow, may have taken much longer than normal but I did it
  • Angry Scots in the queue for Alaska giving me a glimpse of Sandra and bolstering my reserve.
  • Buying silly girl clothes and making the man laugh when I try to be feminine
  • Bringing in croissants for breakfast at work with Amy and Amanda
  • Lego Jurassic Park with S, so glad he puts up with my geekiness
  • Nice group of people at Slimming World
  • Confusing Katya by asking for a cuddle – who knew the American’s don’t use that word
  • Winning a tattoo for Drag world – I must learn to read competitions as I thought it was for an autograph!!
  • No negativity at drag world – everyone seemed to be comfortable and not judgy
  • Treating S to a breakfast in town before heading home for a games day – love our “weekends”
  • Sending out more letters and books
  • Super quick haircut – she may have cured me of my hairdresser fear
  • Raspberry pink hair dye, S still thinks I’m fit
  • Epic dog obviously not wanting to be taken for a walk at Hotel 65
  • Making new friends thanks to #PratchettPostal
  • Photo a day challenge done in Sept – I stuck to it!
  • Ordering more coffee and chili jams
  • sending a love box to Becky
  • passive aggressive graffiti in London
  • Tea at Claire’s, putting the world to rights and preparing for Drag world
  • Message from S while I was in London ” make memories to last a lifetime” – he is so sweet to me
  • Tesco’s macarons for dessert with fruit was a much better idea than the fat ones at the burger place we ate
  • Good to catch up with Andy – loved his reaction to seeing me “F*ck me mate, where’ve you gone?”
  • Chatting all the way up to London – so excited for this!
  • Buying NIN merch for S
  • being hungover and going to the George for fat Friday
  • Ben Murray bringing in sweet almond cake with caramel toffee sauce – epicness
  • long stressful week leading to a superb weekend
  • love the fact S now doesn’t work on Sundays
  • Gareth Southgate’s hug to the Columbian player who missed his penalty – top bloke
  • Nice breakkie in Hotel 65 – if only we’d have known about the queue we may not have loitered so long
  • watching the Architects review and holding S’s hand in case it was awful
  • Ankh Morpork bits from Sue – she got to go to the Emporium lucky thing!!
  • Being used as an example of a “good Pratchett fan” by the Emporium
  • Aiden Orange is such a lovely bloke, glad we met him
  • Having early morning laughs with Stacey at work
  • I love the feeling I have now I’m thinner, bit more comfortable as me
  • Seeing a massive car accident in Poole, glad everyone is safe
  • Lovely night with Claire and Charlie, always lovely to see them
  • Day on the 20’s nice to meet new drivers and to hear that he had retracted his resignation.
  • seeing Glemi in town, such a wonderful lady, miss her in my life
  • going door knocking for Poole Labour
  • getting more crafty bits, love making things, no matter how bad I am at it
  • waking the man up to cuddle and snuggle
  • blanket time on the sofa
  • introducing him to Drag Race
  • Dad’s birthday at full plate restaurant, more expensive but still great food
  • starting cross stitch for xmas gifts
  • sorting the filing cabinets at work – they will be more organised
  • 75 books so far sent for Pratchett Postal
  • finding a cute pic of Okto being bathed
  • Taking mum out for her birthday, love her so much
  • Dad has given me his other camera, I need to sort my skills and start focusing more
  • organising a food drive through work, so pleased so many people have got involved
  • White stuff dress with pockets from the doggy trust – like a quid!!
  • new table so we can board game, good business drive from mum – even getting us a discount
  • love it when he holds my hand
  • Alfie nearly making himself sick with quality street
  • Looking at flats together, our lives are moving on
  • Getting involved with Helping Hands in Bournemouth, great charity
  • Tiffany Snowflake necklace – love him so much
  • Pratchett Postal has also helped me, got some of the maps and some books that weren’t in my collection
  • Duelosaur Island received from Kickstarter
  • Issue with a missing card for Architects, fixed really quickly, am very impressed
  • getting chips down by the quay in the rain with S
  • Walking to Table Table for lunch in the summer
  • Buying lunch for 3 homeless in Poole, would hate to be in their shoes so always happy to help.
  • having a wonderful eve with my man
  • Claire and I possibly making it look like we were outing ourselves to Darienne Lake
  • Slimmer of the week!!
  • Going bowling with Amy, Amanda and her friends
  • Watching the “Nature of the Beast” documentary with mum
  • board game Sunday – love having him home for Sundays
  • getting involved and helping out with Defend Dorset NHS and Poole Labour
  • Helping out a new homeless person, Lee, seems lovely
  • Film day with S for my birthday
  • Valentines gaming – I am the champion
  • Claire saying she may come to Drag world, would be great to have a pal along
  • Roosters with mum – nice change from KFC
  • Sue and I talking parachute jumps
  • epic valentine’s day, massive bunch of roses, coffee, pizza tray and cacti
  • wonderful takeaway as a treat while imp on SW
  • Making bookmarks for the lovely Greebos lot
  • lovely working with Alison and Alan in cs
  • Meeting the tattooist at the con and being terrified of him until he found out who we were meeting and then he became really lovely!
  • Buying me flowers to make me smile
  • Seeing the beauties that are Emma and Rach, so pleased and confused as to why they still like me but so grateful they do!
  • Fun with the CS guys – who’d have thought it?
  • sprinkles cookie dough with pistachio ice cream
  • Angry Amanda buying me smellies for my birthday
  • doing some colouring in, very relaxing
  • new phone
  • Finding a good name for the Bonsai
  • Alfie asking for reports from June 2017 and when I sent them to him asking when they were for “June possibly?”
  • chicken pesto and moz panini – yum
  • Bringing in treats for my work colleagues
  • Okto likes to drink, and spit
  • more chili jams – i may have a problem
  • Amy getting a strike whilst bowling and being with 2 people doing Dry January!
  • The man winning Roll and an Ankh Morpork – possibly his best ever day
  • Looking after the man while his shoulder hurts
  • falling in the snow and seeing my homeless man who made me walk to work with him to make sure I’d be ok
  • dealing with the snow, learning to not be so afraid
  • being open with people about why imp so afraid of the snow
  • Charlie hides replied to me – shame we didn’t get to see her
  • mum meeting and scaring Alfie “ahhh the man of the buses”
  • signing up for yet another firewalk
  • buying silly games for S
  • New Pandemic purchased for us to work on!
  • wethers with S when we couldn’t go to see Charlie Hides
  • Slimming world stickers – best thing about it!
  • Seeing Drag Kings for the first time and getting new artist inspirations – Lolo Brow and Scarlett O’Hora
  • Recieving a Mr Grippy Badge – I am part of one of the best groups out there
  • Matt and Beth both doing really well, so proud to still have them in my life
  • phone calls with Liam and Bird, miss them so much
  • lovely message from darienne lake after we met her
  • Passed my theory test
  • booked tickets to see Phill Jupitus
  • offering cake for autographs, who knew I only needed badges for a photo instead
  • “I win everything apart from Roll” S – cue him winning
  • S calls EVERYTHING – MasterChef, bake off, apprentice etc.
  • Front row and MG tickets booked for Charlie Hides
  • Getting introduced to All Stars – not my fave but still, it’s more drag
  • Cactus from my love – Is it cos i’m a bit of a prick?
  • codenames and worms – I am getting better
  • Finding old photos at work and having to explain what negatives were, and the whole experience
  • Buying a Pratchett for #PratchettPostal and realising it is signed – paid double the asking price and got myself a bargain
  • Nice to bump into Chris Kent again, and always nice to be given flowers!
  • organising the tat drawers
  • George fat Friday lunch with Amy and Amanda
  • Tea that tastes of biscuits?
  • Katya smelt AMAZING
  • Angel Wing picture – one I actually kind of like of me
  • Wandering through bits of London to find our hotel, really close and a lovely but tiny room – very cute and it had tea stuff sorted – ideal!
  • loving simply cook – it’s fun to make things together and then enjoy yummy new meals
  • ordering west wing stuff
  • helping CS – glad I don’t have to do it much more
  • Butch Queen – I really hope he showered at least cos the outfit was tiny
  • sizing in Primark making me happy and then sad all in about 3 seconds
  • new pretty wedges
  • book chat on Facebook
  • looking at Prague zoo extensions – cannot wait to go back
  • coffee and dice play date with Amanda, Amy and Claire
  • all characters now at level 70 in Diablo
  • love our weekends off together – well mid-week weekends are the best
  • watching alien documentaries together – he is a  believer
  • Seeing Annelies and family and having a F^ck it meal
  • we’ve been together 6 years – 6 whole years
  • love spending time at Charlie and Claire’s, gorgeous garden in the sunshine
  • deep fried mac n cheese
  • going to clubbercize with Rach, she’s so much fun
  • Discworld Sunday – I am the champion
  • always nice to drop in and see the Rose red family
  • Codenames is a new but rock hard game, we are both rubbish!
  • RT’d by DJ Yoda
  • new cute lunchbox – whale of a time!
  • proud of myself to be able to handle the snow
  • Epic boss letting me go home early so I didn’t get too scared of the snow
  • make mixtapes great again
  • remembering how fun snow can be – heading to the water’s edge and getting some nice shots
  • writing more feels very liberating
  • signing up to walk 31 miles in Jan and actually completing  75miles instead
  • great meet up with Emma and Claire, wish I lived closer as they are both so wonderful
  • sprinkles with school friends
  • new phone
  • Canvas summer bags from work – actually nice stuff
  • Helping Diana with GDPR
  • Mum has lost so much weight, proud of her but don’t want her to be too tiny
  • Communing with WAY too many dogs on my Poole Park wanders
  • Even in snow I managed 10,000 steps a day throughout March for Cancer Research
  • Badges galore
  • he actually seemed to like his Valentine’s day card
  • Schooling him on Roll – one day my luck will run out but not yet
  • planning and actually doing a night out with Heather
  • a night of possibly making new friends
  • my life rules
  • I can do the SW thing, I will do this
  • Burgers as a treat in London, it was that or keep walking for ages!!
  • people at work being so lovely to me about my weight loss
  • Alfie explaining the difference between a canoe and a kayak
  • SW recipe books giving me more inspiration
  • getting a new laptop – well a cheap laptop to write more
  • Filing, organizing and shredding at work, lots to do but nice getting organised
  • Looking forward to our week off together, most time we’ve spent together in ever!!
  • Adam “is it the same as last year cos that’s how I’ve done it” – ok, that’ll be the same then!
  • Despite my fear, S always seems to believe in me
  • Winning an Alaska Funko from Ems on twitter, buying another and giving her to Claire
  • Positive lessons
  • Completed Hard-core – now on to the next level!
  • Exploring Instagram properly, fun to have a new medium to play with
  • Power cut whilst at Claire’s – thankfully the kettle had just boiled!!
  • Seeing Mayes – I miss her face so much, it’s weird only seeing her ever few weeks
  • People being lovely at work during the bad weather, offering to walk me home or the like.
  • Badge swaps at the Jupitus gig, glad to have been involved and will keep my badges forever
  • Mum doing chocolate dipped fruit for a dessert and wanting my help as “she didn’t know how to do it”
  • Dinner at Banana Wharf with Amy, Amanda and Karen – Amanda’s pal – lovely Italian food
  • Small flurries of snow
  • Coming into work through the snow to do the TMF – I know the boss was grateful and lovely of Diana and her husband to wait while I did it so they could lock up.
  • Re-discovering old albums throughout the year – Forever Faithless, Gold Against the Soul, Original Pirate Material and Complete Madness
  • Nikki getting cookies for us when I was in CS – bribery is always positive!
  • Love the feeling of fitting in smaller clothes, feel prettier and happier
  • Having a sod it meal when we saw Annelies and family – cheese, wine, fried things, sauces, yumminess
  • Looking through old pics of Becky’s. Miss her so much.
  • So great to bump into Lacei at Drag world, and to meet her daughter – it has been far too long!
  • Rhianna Pratchett liking my tweet about Granny Weatherwax – She didn’t do good by them, she did right by them.
  • Customer counting on the yellows
  • Starting Pratchett Postal, would be nice to see if I meet nice people and can share my love of Pratchett with the world
  • making mum laugh by my stupidness, so pleased our relationship is good
  • Cheeseboard and chili jams
  • Cuddles with my honey
  • Bianca del Rio autograph for the gorgeous Pixie, I miss her so much
  • Blog posts actually being read, not sure why but I’ll take it!
  • Traveline meeting – actually understood more this time and felt less of an idiot
  • Spending nights in summer just talking and putting the world to rights with the man
  • Signing up for the Poole 5k
  • getting odd socks – best thing for laundry ever
  • Buying silly gifts for friends, sending love packages to Beth, Matt and Becky.
  • Lovely meal with S at Holes Bay, nice summer walk and lunch
  • The colour run – 10m faster than the last one
  • Hitting target at Slimming World – size 12!!!
  • Summer walks round the park with the man, love where we live
  • Making a new friend at the colour run, so glad that Steph was taking part too, she helped motivate me and is a lovely girl to have a laugh with
  • Actually winning at Colditz – escaping in the commander’s car!
  • SW isn’t as frightening as I thought, there were some really lovely friendly people there
  • Organising a Drag Bag for Claire and our weekend away!
  • Alfie moaning about the latest timetable art which is “false advertising as it’s got an E200 on the front and they don’t do that route”
  • Losing at Pandemic and being cooked a conciliation omelette by the KING of eggs
  • Restarting Minecraft
  • Nick bringing in epic trifle for before Xmas – even Alfie came back for it!
  • 5k at Poole done, 43.22 – not as fast as id have liked, feel like death but glad I did it, hopefully next year would be better
  • losing weight, so pleased things are moving and looking forward to being a bit thinner
  • Marc and Nick laughing when I said Pancentric lied to me and turning the screens towards each other to show the lie
  • Phill Jupitus eve with mum, epic night, lots of laughs and got a selfie too
  • Buying a new lunchbox and diary for SW – I will lose weight and will be healthier
  • Driving a day on the dual carriageways, it is getting easier – slowly and surely
  • Speaking with Sandra, suggesting I go and see her once she’s back in Competa, so pleased she’s getting better
  • Bumped into Kev when I was in Bournemouth, bought him lunch. Glad I managed to do this before he passed away, hate feeling like he was alone at the end.
  • Badges for my summer bag
  • Pretzel Dog lunches – a proper treat and a lovely couple in charge, hope they stay for a long time
  • Neil Gaiman liked my tweet!!!
  • Getting a gorgeous love box from Beth 🙂
  • Nick, Rachelle and the kids coming and seeing me at Winton Sally craft fair
  • Buying PretzelDog for the homeless I know, they are such a lovely couple in there, am happy to help out
  • Rhianna, Stephen, Disc Emporium all helping me to get PratchettPostal off the ground by RTing and spreading the word.
  • I actually feel like i’m making good friends online, even without meeting them
  • Hearing all about Denise’s holiday plans
  • Snowflake necklace from S for xmas, possibly the best xmas gift i’ve ever had – so beautiful
  • seeing the boy ROCKING his gold high heels on our way to Dragworld
  • Introducing the man to Drag Race, not sure if he’d like it then getting a text the next day asking to watch more – ONE OF US!
  • Got a takeaway with S and an early night as helping out in CS is going to be a nightmare!
  • Starting to look at flats – our lives are moving forwards
  • England had a brilliant world cup – even I got involved in the excitement
  • Buying new clothes – smaller sizes
  • Duvet down and lots of computer silly games
  • Going for walks in the summer once the sun has gone down a bit – less blisteringly hot
  • ice creams together in Poole Park
  • Meeting Rach in town for a coffee – we will plan on SW and clubbercize together
  • Worms champion!
  • First SW target (10%) hit on week 14
  • Baking bread, can feel my confidence growing
  • asking S if he wanted to come see the Queen film and getting a response of “let me get my tache and cape”
  • Message from Mrs Kasha Davis ❤
  • walking round complimenting so many people at DragWorld, they looked so beautiful
  • Finishing the X stitch for S for xmas
  • getting thud for xmas, fun but not sure we’ll ever be experts
  • Emma liking her Pampling T – Disney Princesses
  • Making my own bread, feels amazing but very bad for me – will need it to be an infrequent thing!
  • I love the fact the he is being more open with me, I want us to be stronger together
  • Peanut butter with no palm oil!
  • 7 day black and white challenge completed
  • Sitting in McDonalds and catching up with old friends
  • Nick telling everyone to read last year’s list – he’s always so lovely to me and supportive
  • Making soup to go with my bread – feel very house on the prairie
  • Going to Stabcon South and playing new games and also seeing a (sort of, very minor) gaming celeb.
  • Denise buying cakes for CS and popping one in to me – epic work mum!
  • Soup and sandwiches – we’re so rock and roll
  • Meal at the Shah with mum, dad and the man – last meal out before I start SW
  • Getting sent files for PratchettPostal by a lovely person on Twitter – now my background pic, really lovely touch making it look more professional
  • New games for us to play – Iberia is very fun
  • I’m so lucky I have such a great man, he is so wonderful to me
  • making a chicken bacon and leek pie, sharing a pic and being nagged to make one for work too
  • Genuinely enjoyed Phill Jupitus, a great show and very nice person
  • Chatting with Claire, miss seeing her everyday but so lucky we still keep in touch
  • RT’d by David Baddiel
  • Buying Colditz as a whim, never gonna win but hey, a new game……wait….how long are the games????
  • Gamster T for my Gamster
  • size 14 and getting my stone loss award  – exciting
  • Helping mum in the garden, not my favourite thing but love
  • helping the homeless is becoming a bit of an obsession
  • Love my work mates, watering Shiri whilst I was away
  • Started watching the Alienist
  • phew Childish Gambino is HAWT
  • Seeing Bohemian Rhapsody with Mum and S, a very fun time and a great film.
  • Possibly looking at a cheap sunny holiday, would be lovely to just chill out and enjoy the sun
  • Looking at a house together, it didn’t work out but looking forward to us having our lives move forward
  • Slow cooker fun with S – chicken curry, sausage casseroles and bolognaise – really looking forward to seeing what else we can create
  • Signing up for more runs, I will hit my target at some point!
  • getting a lovely response letter – with handmade seal from a Pratchett Postal recipient
  • so pleased people seem to be getting involved with the Pratchett Postal – 50 books sent so far
  • So many lovely people online
  • toasties are my new favourite thing
  • Claire buying me the “Dammit Janet” necklace
  • Being part of the AFP club, she speaks to me and it really resonates, glad to be helping her out at the same time
  • mail from Miz Cracker – little bit in love
  • Starting to back things on Kickstarter
  • Love it when he tells me he loves me
  • Seeing Kelly’s photos -shes such a wonderful model
  • RT’d by the book trust “what have childhood books taught you?” Pooh Bear was my inspiration
  • not being sure we’re going the right way until we got on the tube to see people wearing glitter, feathers and a lot of bling – we found our tribe
  • looking at possible summer holidays with S would love to go somewhere warm together
  • epic lunch at work, great team and we all seem to pull together well
  • Architects of West Kingdom arrived safely after 8 months
  • Meeting Nathan Law at Drag world
  • Charity shop bargain – finding Catan for 3 quid
  • Feeling more confident with my reports – glad to know I am helping at work and fitting into the team
  • Funky jewellery from Over the Rainbow
  • Vinyl arrived for S for his Xmas gift, ltd. edition NIN new album
  • Beanies coffee may be my new obsession
  • looking into doing a fire and ice walk
  • buying Pampling stuff for friends and loved ones
  • Amy and Amanda came and supported me at the colour run
  • mum and dad as always the ones who support me most
  • Homeless man with a laptop – mums epic classic lack of observation rises again as it was actually a BT engineer
  • getting organised with VOSA at work, glad to be taking more control over bits at work
  • Being bought Lin Manual Miranda’s book by a random stranger thanks to Pratchett Postal
  • RT’d by mama herself, Michelle Visage
  • Playing Newmarket with S mum and dad on Boxing day, lovely snacky food and nibbles and as always fun times
  • silent discos on a sat morning while the man is at work
  • Meeting young Thanos at Stabcon South
  • Trying a variety of the Cornish bake houses products simply to find something that holds the warmth
  • nagging the boss to go home after his hospital time, good that he eventually will listen to me
  • Making my own sushi – this could become completely obsessive!
  • Buying myself Ru’s signed book
  • Listening to Bianca Del Rios book, love how salty yet loving she is
  • starting doing cross stitch things with S, he’s so creative
  • waking up for cuddles on a Sunday
  • lessons seem to be going ok, getting more confident
  • Calling dad for bread advice
  • finding new games for S for Xmas, hope he likes them
  • filling my fridge with SW friendly foods – I will lose weight
  • Heading to Stabcon with S, looking forward to new games and meeting people
  • Great that Amy came to Stabcon, lovely to spend time with her and great she gets on so well with S, makes him more comfortable
  • meeting mayes for breakkie, within about 5 mins we’ve caught up on all news
  • Popping to Bos Vegas to see Andy, always nice to see the fella
  • Played Catan, Ticket to Ride, Tobago and Isle of Skye when at Soton
  • love the fact he holds my hand when we go out
  • Brave S coming into the office as he forgot his keys
  • Ginger Minj wearing trainers!
  • adopting Okto ❤
  • Really sweet text from S looking forward to us being somewhere new and together
  • meeting S for lunch and despite the rain he got out a carrier for us to sit on so we didn’t get wet bums
  • cleaning the flat and buying flowers, all to make it beautiful
  • clearing out the old cupboard, nice to lighten up the rubbish we have
  • taking mum for coffee in Poole
  • dad’s birthday at Full Plate, so pleased my parents and S all seem to get on
  • Love him for always saying yes when I ask him to do stuff, he does so much for me
  • Seagull vs the man whilst we had a mixed fillings sandwich – the seagull won
  • Cooking sausage casserole while we wandered round town and then back to play games
  • RT’d by RICHARD SCHIFF!!!!!
  • Finding the West Wing Weekly on Spotify!
  • getting Cougar town on boxset for like a quid
  • Over 100 books sent out for #PratchettPostal. Am blown away and looking forward to something equally as random in 2019!
  • Lots of people getting involved in Pratchett Postal
  • He’s so supportive of my photos – suggesting photo ideas for the future
  • RT’d by Pro Green
  • Getting to scratch off more of my 40 for 40 challenges.
  • He is just so lovely to me. Felt rubbish today at work and he gave me big hugs and totally catered to my whims

so there we go – finally! I’m sure there’s little things i’ve forgotten but overall, I would say this is a pretty good list. Here’s to a brill 2019 and I hope for those who read this, they aren’t too confused or embarrassed!!

Why do I blog?

Ever since I started blogging, people have been asking me why do I blog. Even I ask myself the same questions, “Why do I blog?”, “Should I continue to blog?” day in and day out. I find myself constantly questioning myself, my worth and the point of it all……in thoughts such as these and many more!

I am not a good writer, why should I write?
There are so many great articles out there, why bother trying to reach that level?
There are so many people that are more knowledgeable than me, why try?
No one will read my blog, why should even write one – I talk to myself a lot anyway, why would anyone else want to read it?
I have never been a good writer, why should I try and inevitably fail …?
My content quality is shoddy…

This is a going to be written a fair while before I share it, the current 30 day subjects is scary – I’m stressing about writing every day. This isn’t easy and am tempted to go back to less blogs simply to give my brain a break haha!

But yes, why do I blog?

There are many things that I use this blog for, I wanted it to be about my crafting, my journey and the like but as time has gone by and i’ve done less of the actual work my cottage industry needs this blog has become more of a balance space for me. I do enjoy writing – fear about the daily challenges aside – and am genuinely baffled that some people actually seem to enjoy what I write, and am enjoying using this as more of a therapy tool for myself.

Sadness can be a drive:

I do have a very up/down mentality and I know that sometimes a tiny thing can have me feeling really down. I am trying to improve and be a better version of myself but know that it can be useful to vent on somewhere technically anonymous and then I don’t have to worry about the fallout when loved ones see that I am down. Does that make sense? I can vent, get all my feelings out and by the time I hit that publish button – often WEEKS after having the rant in the first place – I am totally done, whereas if I was to share on Facebook or Twitter my instant feelings I’d have people on me all the time checking on me and more to the point, stressing about me and I never want that.

To help me work through:

I write to keep me sane, to keep me calm and to keep me balanced. I am enjoying writing the day challenges as they often give me new things to think and talk about, it’s also a great way to ensure that I stand by my views, they make me think about things and I use the blog as a way for me to answer some of my own questions too. I know that there can be a fair few which duplicate but I am hoping to be more organised next year and maybe split the blog into different moods for different jobs…..cooking, books, craft work and general life. I’m not sure. I need to get more organised in so many ways!!

Why else would I blog?

To share my views:

I suppose in an ideal world, I’d like to write a blog which people enjoy spending time with. I’m never going to be able to do this full time – and to be fair, who would want me to be wittering away like that? – but I just enjoy when people comment or share and give me their thoughts. I love hearing what people think, or starting new conversations and I’m loving that on here, it is always a good way to help express myself and to aid me in finding my tribe.

Blogging has helped me (i’d like to think) that I do have an opinion, if I want to talk about something I should just throw myself into it and use this for me, for my platform, for my views.

I am genuinely really enjoying writing at the moment, I know I say that I stress – especially with a daily challenge when I don’t actually have much spare time and I would like to do it more and am hopeful that 2019 will be the year or crafting my work, however that decides to show itself – but I do really love writing, getting my thoughts on paper (or the computer) and being able to get them out!

What about yourselves? I’m assuming you are here for a purpose and if so, what is that? Have you changed the way you write in your time here or am I totally out of the loop?

Have a wonderful day, I love reading all the blogs I follow (and those I find randomly) and if anyone wants to suggest new things for me to read, please feel free!

Day 26: What holds you back?

01. You keep waiting and waiting and waiting for the right time.

02. Your planning and focus are in disarray.

03. You change nothing and expect different results.

04. You close your mind to new ideas and perspectives.

05. You refuse to accept necessary risks.

06. You let a few negative people fill your mind with garbage.

07. You avoid the truth.

08. You make the rejections of yesterday the focal point of today.

09. You aren’t taking small steps every day.

14. You want things to be perfect.

To be honest, I KNOW what holds me back but wanted to see what the world of the internet said. I think some of the above ring very true and others not so much, I get that these are considered the “main” reasons someone would be holding themselves back but I think that these may differ from person to person.

I know that the main thing which holds me back is me, my mind, my perceptions and my views. I am quite self conscious and doubtful of my own talents. I have a huge fear or failure – which is weird because i’ve succeeded in every challenge i’ve had so far but despite that, every challenge I face I face with fear and wanting to not let people down. I have low self esteem (which is getting better slowly but is still quite prevalent) and I know that this can stop me making plans and sticking to them. I find that it is easier to hide and give in often before something serious could happen. There are few exceptions to this but most often in my life, I need someone else pushing me to do things. I’d love to be strong and independent, and dont get me wrong. I can be. Just not that often.

I spent a long time when I was younger waiting for the right time, I genuinely thought life went 1 -2 -3 4 etc. and needed to learn that there never really is a right moment, so waiting around for one is pretty much a waste of my time. I’ve written before about my ability to procrastinate and waste my time and it is something I’d like to turn away from. There’s so many crafty/arty things i’d like to do and I’m hoping some of my 2019 resolutions will help there.

Some of the articles I’ve been reading recently have offered ways to help yourself be more forward, less likely to hold back and to aid you in moving forward to the place you want to be, I’ve written some of these down and am going to implement them more next year. Keep checking up to see how it’s going!!

  • Learn to let go – I’ll be honest, I try and practise this already as I used to hold on to stuff for YEARS and the problem with me stressing/thinking about/worrying over something is that it’s my life and time that it’s taking. If I have an argument with someone and spend the next week worrying, that’s just wasted my week, the other person probably doesn’t even care.
  • Start Small – there’s no point in setting yourself major goals (see the world from space – handily forgetting to become an astronaut first: extra cool points for whoever reads and know who said that!) and failing at the first step, take little steps and each one will help you along the road you’re travelling.
  • Keep your happy thoughts at the forefront of your mind – I do this by using my Happy Jar, happy thoughts are kept in there to remind me and this helps me keep positivity at the forefront and try to ignore more of the negativity. Or at least, to try and focus more on the good as opposed to just getting bogged down with the bad.
  • Try and schedule more – I am definitely going to do this next year, even if it’s just Saturday mornings before I meet up with my mum that I get up earlier, sling some music on and make some things, be it sewing, writing, jewellery making or cooking, it’ll hopefully help me actually do more and feel more positive.
  • Take responsibility – this tends to be easier said than done, I’m often stuck between wanting to be me, but also taking responsibility to try and be better. I know it winds up some of my friends when I say  “I am who I am, take it or leave it” but that is how I feel, I don’t want to change myself for other people, I like me and the person I am but can see why some people feel that that statement is a really negative thing. I suppose I mean it one way, but it can be interpreted as many others. I am trying to spend less time being horrible for no reason, I used to spend a fair amount of time on Twitter watching and getting involved in arguments and often would just say things I knew would be hurtful and now I look back, I realise I probably shouldn’t have acted like that so in a way, I suppose I am now taking some responsibility, which I’m hoping shows growth and an improvement of the person I am.
  • Think more about others – I’m happy to say that I generally do think of others as opposed to myself. I’ve really channeled that this year with #PratchettPostal and am thrilled it got such a positive response. I’ve been making payments every month to a food back locally – sadly I know this doesn’t help everyone so am hoping to change next year to a homeless charity and am trying to be as kind to people as I can, be that giving more compliments, sending random little gifts and cards to friends or even just smiling and spending time with people, every little helps I feel.

This actually turned out longer than I expected – which is nice! I’d love to hear other people’s suggestions as to their own self care/forward planning and I will keep updating you as to my progress towards being an overall more positive person.

 

 

 

Day 23: What are your worst habits

I drink, I smoke, I dont eat healthy enough, I dont take enough exercise, I doubt myself, I have been known to just veg and procrastinate when actual useful things could have been done. I doubt everything. I feel self conscious talking and expecting people to listen. I try to do things well but often fail miserably.

So, as above, a fair few bad habits there really. Nothing like, gross but I know that things like when my mum says she’s doing nothing, what she actually means is she’ll be doing laundry, cleaning, gardening bits, cooking, making things, knitting and watching or listening to stuff whereas when I say i’m doing nothing, I am mostly wrapped up on the sofa, cuppa tea waiting and trash tv on the box. I genuinely can do nothing, which shows how lazy I am!

I know that the fact that I smoke and drink is a bad thing but I genuinely think that my smoking helps keep me calm and less likely to commit murder. Drinking is the same really, I know that diet wise it is not good – empty calories and all that – but I do very much enjoy the odd jack or two. It’s been a while since I went out for cocktails, simply because they tend to be really bad for me but they do help me have fun when out and about hehehehe.

I am really bad at procrastination, I would love to do so much in my life but I spend so long thinking about what to do that I run out of time to do at least 50% of the things i’d like to do. I was saying to the man yesterday that I need to have a jewellery making time, just to try and cut down on the amount of beads etc I have around the flat. I know we don’t have a huge amount of room so tend to stack things on top of others ad infinitum but I am looking forward to when we move to be able to have more of a crafty/art room where these things can be stored and there is space and light to use and appreciate them completely.

People keep telling me that I need to sort my sleep patterns as they are really not healthy, I go through periods that are sleeping heavily and others where for days I will have the bare minimum. I don’t have much of a problem with this as it’s been like this for years but it is always the first thing my doctor told me when I went to ask for help – years ago – was that a better sleep pattern would help. As it was, I was working 5am – 2pm more or less so going to bed early wasn’t an issue, it was that I was still trying to have a full day and then sleeping from say 9pm, apparently I should have been aiming to go to bed about 7pm, which to me was mind boggling! Anyway, I digress, now I am working mocu more normal 9 – 5 but my partner works very early so we tend to have a couple of late nights and then a few ridiculously early ones……when that happens I tend to listen to an audiobook or two until I pass out. I genuinely do not know how to amend my sleep pattern, I think it’s too ground in! If anyone has tips, feel free to pass them on 🙂

I think the above shows a good variety of my bad habits, there are soooooo many more I’m sure (cue my friends dropping in to let me know all those things i’ve missed) but I’d like to think that although I do have bad habits, I am not a bad person. I suppose only time will tell.

Day 21: What makes you happy?

Happiness is without definition because it means something different to everybody. You will take the actions to be the best you that you can be simply because you are happy and exhume positive energy which will attract the same energy to you! You doing what makes you happy is a great example to set!

Honestly, in life, so many things make me happy. I have spent a long time being sad and a few years ago made a conscious decision to try and see the positives, the good things, the little things that often I would not appreciate because they were wiped away too quickly by a negative.

Some of the things that make me happy are standard, like the relationship I have with my man. He makes me so happy, we’re not what I would call “Big Gesture” people but when he cuddles me when I come home from work, or makes me laugh when I’m stressed or even when we have a lay in on a Sunday and he gets up to make me a cup of tea, he’s just amazing. I really hope I make him as happy as he makes me and will happily do everything I can to make sure he knows how special he is to me.

My family are amazing, and have always tried to make me happy. My parents both worked so hard to make sure my brother and I had holidays, and treats and great Christmas time, and they have been amazing in my times of need. When I am down, I hate hurting my family with that but I appreciate how strong, especially my mum was during my worst times. I’m sure I hurt her and I do regret that, no one likes to hurt people they love but I really am lucky that mum really tried to understand how I was feeling and supported me despite not really knowing what the best thing to do was.

Letters and random gifts – to and from me are more things that make me smile, I got a great present from a friend in Greece the other day and look at the amazing little bits and bobs she sent me! I am so lucky that I have friends who do such things, we all try to make each other happy and to make other people smile.

bethy gift.JPG

I’m also a fan of silly things to make me smile, like cake. Cake is ALWAYS a good way to make me smile – well, ok, food in general does that job haha!

I love where I live at the moment, I’m very calmed by the sea and by watching waves so being so close to beaches and water in general really pleases me. I spend a lot of time looking at waves, watching the world go by and am hoping that next year my photography will improve and I can start sharing the local beauty with everyone out there in the ether!

Travel and seeing new things makes me happy, I like exploring and finding new treasures. Whilst we were in Prague we went to a museum with not much planned and saw some really wonderful art and some unexpected things – like a room where you could try and make your own art – including things the man had done as part of his art education so it was nice to be taught something new.

In fact thinking about it, learning is something else I enjoy doing. I try to do many things, I tend to not do them well but I feel that’s a lack of talent as opposed to a lack of practise. I enjoy doing these things as they bring me joy, to be fair, I tend to avoid the end results as they can be truly awful – seriously, I suggested going to a paint clay cafe last year, seriously regretted that as my artist skills are dire!! It was a good day with some friends though so all in all, worth it – even worth the abuse over the shoddy things I produced at the end of it 😀

I think people who know me would understand that books are really important to me and vital to my happiness. I’d hate to be without books and sometimes I just pick up a book i’ve read a million times just to sort my thoughts out. I can be reading and another part of my brain can be settling down, sorting arguments, decided what to do etc. It’s the ultimate chill for me.

I know i’ve banged on about my Happy Jar a fair bit but it certainly is something which for me has helped me be more positive, to focus on the good and try to rebalance my brain. I’d heartily recommend it and would love to see other people’s lists at the end of the year. I didn’t actually do a jar this year, I’m keeping the list of things at work in an A3 envelope so that as soon as something occurs to me, I can scribble it down and then at the end of the year – or probably first couple of weeks of 2019, I will read them all, write them down and share the list, then you’ll see everything from 2018 which has made me happy.

 

 

Day 17 – Thoughts on Education

To be honest, i’m not sure how someone can be negative about education……I mean, who actually doesn’t want to be educated and aware of how the world works and why?

I had interesting times at school. I would say overall I enjoyed it, the places, the learning – not necessarily the people and the lack of confidence in myself or the stress I put myself under at the time for something which really, isn’t that big of a deal.

I’d like to share some fun stories from my school times throughout my life, about teachers who have inspired me and things which have shaped my views and behaviours! I have already spoken about let’s say, less than positive points in my learning, not being very confident, being bullied and the like but for this, I’d like to share snippets of stories which have had a positive influence on my life and the person I am. I hope that this shows my thoughts on Education and that also not all education is book learning based.

England – Tower Rd Primary School – Mr Pike – such a great teacher, who I don’t actually think was MY teacher at any point but he was definitely a massive influence and someone who made me question the world, and have a thirst for knowledge of how things worked and their places in the world overall. I’m lucky enough to have now found Mr Pike on social media and despite the fact he and I differ on a lot of views and opinions, I cannot thank him enough for being that first teacher who made me feel open to the world.

There are other great teachers that I had at Tower Rd but I cannot remember them all, there was the teacher who put up with myself a best friend acting out scenes from Monty Python, the art teacher who tried again and again to make me an artist, the piano teacher who couldn’t actually play piano, the teacher who let me take the school rabbit home for the holidays and even the English teacher who helped me with my squint and the stupid glasses/patches I had to wear. These people have all made me the person I began my life as (well, the first 11 years lets say) and that gave me a good base to work from.

I passed my 11+ (for younger readers, ask your parents) and went to the local girls grammar school, this was a strange few years for me as it was stressful at home, a bit disjointed with family life and a very sad time in our home and family. I found myself being bullied by some really awful human beings and thankfully the school librarian Miss Gallagher seemed to understand so she encouraged me, let me go in during the holidays to help out, made me feel comfortable and always willing to give new ideas/suggestions for someone who wanted to read everything. She genuinely got me interested in so many random things, plus was one of the first people I knew who was veggie/vegan leaning and I got a lot of info about things which interested her. I liked that she always treated me like an equal, as opposed to a student.

Mr and Mrs Ross were an epic teaching couple, he taught English and she taught Science (I cannot for the life of me remember which specific one) and in the years I was back in the High school after Spain were year heads. I was certain that they hated me – ok this is a bit dramatic, i’m pretty sure they didn’t hate me but I felt like they tolerated me, the fact I had come back off my own back and not gone through the standard system made me feel very out there and an oddity – but in the end of my time back in the sixth form I found them both to be really lovely supportive and made me Miss smiles in the U6 – how the heck that happened i have no idea!! Even she said when giving me the award that other people had brought up how positive as a person I was……I still to this day think they might have confused me with someone else!!

Moving to Spain when I was 14 was stressful and to begin with, I genuinely cannot remember anything about my teachers that I liked, there were ones who most definitely treated me differently due to the fact I was English. My language was not good enough in that first year and some issues did happen but as i’m trying to be positive I’m just going to focus on the fun teachers.

My favourite teacher, and actually someone who even then I considered more of a friend than a teacher was Vicente, my art teacher for the last year or so of Spanish school. He made us watch films and do creative projects and was always open to just learn about people. He and I shared a very similar music taste which as I was very singular whilst there, really helped me feel less weird. I can remember when a favourite band of both of ours brought out a new album, we knew there would be 1 copy in the music store in Malaga and both had plans to get it before the other. Running through a mall to beat a middle aged man to a quality album is a memory that will stay with me forever.

I’m actually really happy as Vicente and I are still friends, he keeps popping up in my life and I love seeing his gallery shows and the way his life has taken him. Am pleased he still accepts me for me though, he’s still incredibly encouraging – despite my general inability to do anything arty!!

The last teacher I will talk about is one who was a good teacher to me but a great show of how people power can have an effect, probably the first time I’ve ever seen that work in person.

The spanish teaching system is generally based on 1 year contracts, every new teaching student will be sent from school to school to hone their skills and our Music and religion teacher was actually brilliant and when we heard that he had been moved onto his next school we all felt like we would be detrimentally affected by this so the decision was made to have a student strike. We superglued all the doors and main school gates for a few days to no avail so then decided to actually have a sit out, we would refuse to go to classes until he was brought back.

To be honest, this was (and still sort of is) totally odd to me, I fully expected to be out there for say 20 mins before the teachers would just barrel out and order us inside with our tails between our legs……so 4 hours later I was getting cold and more importantly bored. I went home, deciding it would be better to at least do some homework or the like. Cue walking into the house to tell mum why I was home earlier……she totally didn’t believe me so (with my dad – for extra punishment if I was trying it on) frogmarched me down to my school gates to find out what I was on about…….EVERYONE was gone. I’ve never been so nervous in my life, bloody typical, I decided i’d had enough and went home, then the teachers had finally snapped and got everyone inside. I was cacking myself!!

Thankfully upon going inside the school I saw the school secretary who seemed surprised I was there, I explained why I was and her response to my parents at least made them see I was telling the truth. Scary but fun nonetheless.

We never did get that teacher back I don’t think but it certainly made me more likely to revolt in future about things I saw an issue with. Sometimes, lessons like that are invaluable.

I hope over the course of these little stories have given my opinion clearly, I loved learning – I still do – and I honestly feel it’s people like this who gave me this feeling and inspired me to always try more and learn more and see more.

I should also point out that there were a multitude of teachers I haven’t talked about, all good in their own way and therefore should not be ignored. I am immensely proud of my schooling and the person I have turned out to be, and I can only hope they feel the same way!

 

 

 

Day 16 – What’s your favourite movie?

I’m not much of a film person anymore, I’m not sure I’ve got the patience for this right now as my attention span is a lot shorter than it used to be.

There are however, some films I will happily watch and re watch time and time again, like Some Like It Hot, Young Frankenstein, Finding Nemo, Tank Girl and i’m also a pretty big fan of shockingly awful films – generally with massive sharks/crocs or the inevitable end of the world happening so our new introduction to the Sharknado set of films has been a) eventful and b) bloody brilliant!!

I used to really love films but after a couple of operations and being pretty much housebound for a few months I found that I would be able to handle 30m or so but then i’d be way to bored. Or i’d lose my thread and couldn’t pick it up again. I do still try to do watch films but find that unless it’s one i’ve seen before, or REALLY absorbing, I cannot handle or even remember it the next day (true – last time the man and I watched a film we were talking about it the next day and I could remember about half of the plot and even the “twist” were a bit dimmed to me. One day, hopefully that may change but as it stands, I need to find new films which I can actually get into. If anyone has any suggestions, please, contact me and give me your thoughts, am always willing to try something new.

I’ve written about movies I enjoy previously (read it here) so I need to make sure that the film(s) I write about today are not on the same list. This doesn’t mean that these films mean any less to me but that I know they are different to the previous article.

The first film I have chosen is Jaws.

jaws

“When a young woman is killed by a shark while skinny-dipping near the New England tourist town of Amity Island, police chief Martin Brody (Roy Scheider) wants to close the beaches, but mayor Larry Vaughn (Murray Hamilton) overrules him, fearing that the loss of tourist revenue will cripple the town. Ichthyologist Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) and grizzled ship captain Quint (Robert Shaw) offer to help Brody capture the killer beast, and the trio engage in an epic battle of man vs. nature.”

Whilst I do genuinely love this film, the book and all it’s options, I’ve watched it so often that it’s become a classic as opposed to a great film! I very much enjoy the over acting, the dodgy effects and was really lucky a few years ago to be able to see it out in the open air cinema next to Bournemouth beach.

I went with a couple of friends, took many snack and really relished listening to the real life sea lapping and seagulls crying as we watched the gore and overall superbness of the film.

I think it’s difficult to discuss a film which is one of my faves without giving away too much detail or for that matter story. I know that most people would have seen this but I would definitely recommend the book too, well worth a read over a couple of days 🙂

Another good film which I do re-watch and then promptly forget about is Miss Congeniality.

congeniality

“When a terrorist threatens to bomb the Miss United States pageant, the FBI rushes to find a female agent to go undercover as a contestant. Unfortunately, Gracie is the only female FBI agent who can “look the part” despite her complete lack of refinement and femininity. She prides herself in being “just one of the boys” and is horrified at the idea of becoming a girly girl.”

I know, I know, from one extreme to the other so far on this list but bear with me.

I first saw this film years ago when I was going through a bubblegum phase, not looking for deep and meaningful but more, fun and a bit of cheese and this has this in spades. I’ve always been a sucker for Sandra Bullock films too so that most definitely helped this become a fave of mine!

I’ve always been very tomboy ish and although this takes that to the extreme, there is a huge part of me that would love a glam team, to make me lady – like, beautiful and more comfortable as myself – a lottery win is probably needed for this but still, it’s a 90 minute, glittery fun romp through beauty pageants and a film I can watch again and again and will happily recommend this to anyone wanting a girly film which isn’t just the average sugary sweet romantic offering!

Lastly today I think i’ll write about one of my favourite Disney films – I haven’t seen many of them to be honest and I know that appalls one of my friends as she is a Disney Princess but in real life (honestly, if she doesn’t have livestock coming and doing her chores; then there is something really unfair about the world!

Anyway, the Disney film I do tend to go back to every so often to reattach to my more childish side is Aladdin.

aladin

“When street rat Aladdin frees a genie from a lamp, he finds his wishes granted. However, he soon finds that the evil has other plans for the lamp — and for Princess Jasmine. But can Aladdin save Princess Jasmine and his love for her after she sees that he isn’t quite what he appears to be?”

I can remember watching this at my aunt’s one night we were there when I was a kid, I’d always been a huge fan of Robin Williams and this made this film perfect for me. Ok, so it has a lot of romance, which I don’t care about in any film but the humour and songs are actually brilliant. I hadn’t seen the film for well over 10 years and a friend of mine stuck it on in the background and I was astounded at the amount of songs I could still remember!

It’s corny, it’s funny, it’s colourful – weirdly useful for when you’re in a real funk i’ve found, colourful films are just amazing for that!

Ok, that’s enough for now I think. I’m running out of other things to say so will no doubt expand more, or talk about more at some point in the future of my writing!!

 

Day 15 – Write about your favourite childhood books.

I was obsessed with reading as a kid, I mean, pretty much all of my life as a younger person I was safe when I was surrounded by books. My brother and I were really lucky as kids but once he left home, I felt a lot lonelier and retreated more into the safety of books, this was only compounded by being the weirdo, the loner, the one who just generally was not liked by kids – that’s not 100% true, my friends were always and always have been amazing – but there were a lot of bullies who found me an ideal target to harass.

My mum says that even as a kid, she knew reading was a big thing for me because i’d read the back of packets, the papers, even when we went shopping, she knew I would take myself off to the paper/books area and just perch myself down and read. I got through countless books in this style which i’m sure the supermarket was thrilled about!

I had an excellent little book set as a child of the entirety of Beatrix Potter’s tales, all mini hardback with gorgeous artwork and they were kept in a special box, this was something that until very recently I have always had with me. I’ve never even dreamed of having kids so i’ve never really known what to do with them but you know when you have something childish yet wonderful that you can’t imagine being without? I think I gave them back to my mum and asked her to sell it, or at least find a home for them where hopefully they will bring as much joy to someone else as they did to me.

I was obsessed with Enid Blyton as a child, The Tales of the Faraway Tree made me wish for excitement, and new friends, and talking trees – ok, the last of those may have been less possible that the first two – and made me see magic in the oddest of places. She made me look at things differently and I’m sure that seeing creatures, clouds and trees and beginning to apply anthropomorphic characteristics to them comes from her.  Plus another joy of a group of friends who stuck together through everything, through thick and thin was appealing to me, I know I had a small group of friends at that point of my life and we used to do similar escapades when we could – going on bike rides, building forts, just playing and imagining what our lives were going to be.

I included Jennings and Derbyshire in this list as although they were not specifically favourites of mine, they have a very special place in my heart as mum used to read them to me when I was in the bath as a kid. I used to love them and for a long time kind wanted to live in that jolly hockey sticks, ginger beer kind of world. I think maybe my obsession with Mallory Towers and the Twins at St Clair’s also started around this time and made me consider that that kind of life was an option – which at no point was it but I always remained hopeful!!

jennings

Reading back the previous list this is all sounding a bit 50s housewife dream kind of style of reading, I swear I read other things too! Like Point Horror – which I’ve no idea are still in existence or if you are younger than me and now asking yourself “what the fudge is a point horror?” but before I started reading lets say, more adult horror stories like Stephen King and Shaun Hutson (if you’ve not read his stuff and like some gore and mental horror then he’s a good person to investigate); I was a bit obsessed with a sort of horror light. It was a series of books which tended to be passed around my group of friends and mostly they were mild frights but for some reason I can remember one book (weirdly my brain has scrubbed over most of the details – including the name) which really terrified me! Well worth it to be scared in the middle of the day with all the lights on….I’m too much of a coward nowadays to read books like that anymore!

We moved to Spain when I was 14 and thankfully I got a lot of books as leaving gifts from people, these became my closest friends when I arrived as I spent so long stressing about not being able to hold even the most basic of conversations without massive pauses and a dictionary so the joy of just being able to open a book and not have to worry was a joy. This is where my love of Pratchett came from. I’d read some beforehand but they really took hold of my imagination at that point. As I said, I really relished having books I could read without having to worry about not being clever enough – which is how I always felt when speaking to people.

I know I’ve banged on about Pratchett in many of my blogs and #PratchettPostal is actually going really well (i’m buying up second hand copies or cheapish bundles from fleabay, advertising them on twitter and then sending them out to fellow fans/new readers. He was such an influence and support to me that I would love to pass that on. If you’ve never read Pratchett you’re missing out but if you are on twitter, come find me at @polmoose83 and maybe come get yourselves a new book – or just come and say hey anyway, I love to have many people around to talk to!

So there we have it, once again, no real specifics but many different options. I would love to be more of a book reviewer in specifics and have read a few good book blogs which have inspired me but currently I’m not sure i’m good enough at specifics and writing my views. We shall see what 2019 has to offer in the way of challenges.

Day 13 – 3 healthy habits

Erm, this is not really me as I’m not what you’d call a gym type of person.

I mean, I’d like to be but every time I have done healthy stuff, there has been a specific reason, be it a diet or prep for a race, there’s never been a life long shift that I have made (I still smoke, I still drink, I eat bad foods sometimes, I do not get enough exercise or sleep for that matter but I think overall i’m ok) and although I’ve seen friends manage this (and i’m very proud of their commitment) as of yet, nothing like that has hit me. I don’t expect to wake up one morning and just decided to be a gym bunny or whatnot but maybe one day? Who knows!

1) I started following the Slimming world diet earlier this year, it did help me and those of you who know me can attest to the fact that I am now thinner than I was. I’ll be honest though, for me, this wasn’t perfect. There’s a lot of things that I was unsure about and unfortunately my consultant was not the most helpful – I asked her something at the beginning of my second week there…..I was there for 16 weeks and have been off since August but at no point have I had an answer.

Anyway, I agree, that by monitoring and being strict on my diet and avoiding lots of            bad fatty foods, yes it is possible to lose weight. I’ll be honest though, as soon as I was            at my target, I stopped and had a really fun couple of weeks where I ate whatever the          hell I wanted! It was DIVINE!!

I get that a good diet is considered a good and healthy thing, but for me, personally, I want to be more balanced, not completely strict. I’m not sure as a person I could handle it if I had to be strict forever – plus, I’m the main cook in our home and if I left it up to the man, although I love him like no-one else, I’d probably starve or simply survive on toasties!

2) As a non driver, I do walk a lot, but I know that everyone can improve themselves so one of my challenges for this year has been to up my steps. I’m aiming next year to (as one of my challenges) be walking 10,000 per day. We shall see anyway.

I can’t wait to start my challenge. I don’t have a fitbit or something which will nag me to walk more but i’m hoping that i’ll be able to overall get healthier. I was hoping to complete a marathon before I hit 40 but due to my knee issues, I worry that i’m pushing it so maybe the walking will have to do for now. If anyone reading this has become a longer distance runner, please feel free to pass on any hints and tips, I mean, help a girl out over here!

3) Lastly the most important and for me, the easiest one. I wanted to drink more water and made the point especially when I started at slimming world. I’ve never been a real fan of water, I always preferred squash or fizzy drinks (or tea, I’m obsessed with all teas!!) but I can remember being force fed water when I was younger –  I never really drank anything – and was promptly sick, which just shows, when I don’t want something, my body will do everything it can to avoid it!

But deciding that SW was the way forward, I started to challenge myself to a pint of very weak squash and then a pint of water, alternating throughout the day. This was going ok but thankfully by the time the heatwave happened here, I was drinking between 10 and 12 pints of water a day. I think if nothing else I’ve grown up, I use water as a first resort – if i’m hungry/tired etc, it tends to actually be that i’m dehydrated so that has certainly helped me.

Well there you go. 3 healthy habits that I will use and improve upon over my lifetime. I didn’t think that would be possible but I am now tempted to do a blog on my unhealthy habits…..that list would be ridiculous!!