40+ Useful Ideas for Self Care

Useful ideas for practicing self care

Things have been a little on the stressful side recently, and those who follow the blog regularly may notice that I haven’t posted much of my own content. With wedding planning, a biopsy followed by stitches (everything is fine and all-clear thank goodness, but it was a little worrying at the time), a truly horrific day of supply teaching (without being melodramatic, I think it was the worst day in over eleven years of working in schools that I’ve ever had) and the general daily tasks that needed completing there has been more than a few occasions where I have found myself a little overwhelmed.

In an attempt to try and overcome the anxiety and general cloudiness that fills me whenever I reach certain panic levels, I have actively indulged in self care – any voluntary activity that helps to maintain my mental, physical and emotional health. This isn’t just ‘hygge’ – they have involved numerous things that I enjoy simply because they make me feel better and I have taken the time to be mindful of them as I am doing it. Continue reading

That Time The Bloke DIDN’T Propose…

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Valentine’s Day has never really been a big deal for The Bloke and I. I’m not a particularly romantic person at heart and generally we spoil each other throughout the year, so aside from exchanging cards and the odd gift, February 14th is a day that is no different to any other.

Last year, however, I had been particularly looking forward to it. We’d had the usual discussion a few days before: Continue reading

How to Have a Hygge Day

Hygge

As with most things I am late to become aware of different trends, usually a year or two after they have become popular.

Hygge (pronounced ‘Hue-gah’) is a Danish term for finding pleasure and comfort in simple and everyday things, with an emphasis on comfort and coziness. I only discovered the term towards the end of last year, when The Bloke bought a Hygge book for his sister at Christmas and it was something that I immediately connected with.

After having a particularly stressful few days during the week and being low (partially due to the constant rain and dull weather we seem to have experienced over what seems like months), I decided to devote today to having a full Hygge experience. The Bloke was going to be out for most of the day as he was visiting his family, so it was the perfect chance for me and the cat to indulge in a relaxing day…

I prepared for it the day before by tidying up my living room – the place where I planned to spend the day – bought an unsliced crusty brown loaf of bread, French onion soup and prepped a sausage casserole (one of my favourite dishes) for my evening dinner. Continue reading

A TV Offer!

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I received a message via my Facebook page last week.

‘Have you got married yet.’

I didn’t recognise the name, so I simply responded with the fact that I hadn’t and that the wedding is in October. After a quick conversation it became apparent that the person messaging me worked for a TV production company that were creating a programme for a main channel here in the UK about different weddings. Turns out, she found out that I was getting married through my blog and we had a lovely chat about our current stages in our wedding planning, as she is getting married a few weeks before me. Continue reading

Meet Baby Squidge!

After a traumatic two-day labour, Baby Squidge arrived on Tuesday.

She and my sister were kept in hospital for a few days, but thankfully everyone, including my amazing brother-in-law (who was an absolute legend throughout the whole thing) are doing extremely well and now they are at home – happy, healthy and downright gorgeous!

My sis sent me this picture and gave me permission to share with everyone in all of her squidgy glory…

1, 2, 3… Awwwwwwwww!

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Things I Want My Newborn Niece to Know

Advice for my newborn baby niece

My youngest sister gave birth to a beautiful baby girl today. Perfectly formed and weighing 7lb 5oz after a 40 HOUR LABOUR, Baby Squidge (as she will be referred to from now on on the blog) is the first baby and grandchild in our small family of four. As my first and only niece, these are the things that, on the day of her birth, I want her to know.

You are loved and will never be alone. No matter where you are and what you are doing, you will always have a family that you can call on for anything.

Unfortunately, you may meet people that don’t like you. You will meet people who try to validate themselves by trying to tear you down. None of it matters. Love yourself and who you are – it will be one of the greatest lessons you’ll ever learn in life. What others think of you is none of your business.

Be nice to your parents. Say thank you.

Keep the confidence of others, but don’t tell anyone anything that you wouldn’t mind the whole world knowing, unless they prove themselves trustworthy. Continue reading

A Christmas Eve Message to You All…

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It’s been a lovely few days. The train journey was uneventful and quick, my mum met me at the station and we have spent most of yesterday and today talking nonsense, sleeping, eating snacky food and competing in a battle of wills over control of the television. Inevitably, Mum is in the lead and as I couldn’t face any more soap opera nonsense (really – the most depressing, soul destroying things ever) I went and had a long bath.

I’ve said it many times before, but I’m incredibly lucky… So many can’t say the same. Continue reading

Birthday Shopping, an Engagement and Blogmas!

It was my birthday the other day. The Bloke and my friends were at work and I had already been spoilt with lots of lovely presents and cards (personalised notebook, Mojito lollipops, money, lovely meal, the new Caitlin Moran book, voucher, TICKETS TO SEE RENT IN LONDON), so I decided that rather than attempting to organise a get-together, I would have a day to myself. I was in Birmingham city centre by 8am, munching my way through a McDonalds breakfast, armed with a voucher and birthday money and braced myself for the chaos that descends daily in the city around this time of year.

I had a plan to race round and finish off my Christmas shopping by 10.00am. I did quite well, managing most of it by 10.30am without being run over by a baby buggy or one of those really annoying wheeled suitcases (seriously, don’t even get me started on those…) and then got myself back home armed with lots of bags and bubble tea. I plonked myself under a warm duvet in front of the TV, where me and the cat (who was tired after running around, singing the songs of his people and attacking my face at 3am) caught up on some programmes we missed last week and had a snooze. Continue reading

A Lost Little Cat and a Ruined Birthday Surprise

imageI’m tired today.

I feel a little raw and bruised, mainly because of the trauma of yesterday. The atmosphere of the house is different, almost empty. Daisy’s brother, Poppy (yes, I know it’s a girl’s name – long story) settled down well last night until 4.00am, at which point I think he realised that she wasn’t there, and took it upon himself to investigate every room downstairs, crying as he went. It was quite heartbreaking to listen to – this was only the second night in eleven years that he had spent without her and he was clearly feeling lost.

He’s spent most of today being extremely quiet, fast asleep on my lap. It’s odd – normally he has a mad half-an-hour of running around, playing and making lots of noise after he’s been fed, but today he’s just… sad. Continue reading