Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Happy New Year's Eve

image courtesy of Pixabay

Happy New Year's Eve!

So long 2019...thank you!

There have been highs and lows, but I'm here and I'm grateful.

Many blessings to everyone!

Monday, December 30, 2019

The End of the Decade

The last full moon of the decade - December 2019

This year is drawing to a close...2019 will be a memory in a couple of days. As I mentioned in a previous post, in a lot of ways I'll be glad to see the 2010s go. I've dealt with being quite unwell for chunks of the 2010s, so a reboot is welcomed.

Despite the rough patches, I'm reminding myself that there were wins in the 2010s too, most especially, I completed my bachelor's degree in 2013 after years of wanting to go back to university to complete this. There have been other highlights thrown in amongst the low points too. In the end, I'm so glad to be alive and well. That is a blessing and definitely a win!

I am looking forward to seeing what I can do in the new decade. I'm excited and intrigued!

I know that we can decide to refocus any day of the year and I have done this before, but I'm thinking there's nothing wrong with wanting to do better and if the prospect of a new decade can be a catalyst, then I'm all for it. Sometimes it just takes what it takes and this is personal to every person. I'm sort of explaining myself here even though I think that I shouldn't have to. However, a couple of days ago I saw a meme on social media that was poking fun at people wanting to do better in the new year. The person who shared it prefaced it by saying that they weren't trying to be snarky and then proceeded to add a caption that was positively dripping with snark and meanness. My take is...why belittle what people want to do in their own lives? Anyway,  let's just live y'all πŸ™‚ That's all I'll say about that.

I wish everyone well in what they decide to do or not do in the new decade and onward  :)

Thank you for all that you've taught me 2010s.

Thank you to everyone who has continued to visit me here at my blog. You are appreciated!

Here's to 2020 and beyond... πŸ₯‚

Love and light and good wishes to all.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Tips for Turning Healthy Activities into Everyday Habits

Please enjoy this guest post by Jennifer McGregor from PublicHealthLibrary.org .
All opinions are those of the writer of this article. This post is for informational purposes only. Please consult your physician for any medical advice or concerns.
Image courtesy of Pixabay

Adopting a healthier lifestyle doesn’t have to mean making sweeping changes, which is often unrealistic and unproductive. Smaller changes can be more effective and lasting, turning healthy activities into everyday habits. If you’re going to make health strategies part of your everyday routine, be sure these activities bring you joy and happiness. 
Make Destressing Fun
Destressing should be a personal matter. Emphasize things you look forward to, activities you find yourself daydreaming about at work. Meditation and sensory deprivation are well-known and widely practiced, but they may not be for everyone. If you relieve stress by brewing your own beer, practicing yoga, or doing yard work, find ways to work it into your routine. Don’t get upset if you can’t work it in every day; plan ahead for a Saturday afternoon pruning the hedges and planting flowers, so you’ll have something to look forward to. 

Exercise Your Way
Don’t worry if everyone seems to be joining aerobics classes, Pilates, or goat yoga. If you like exercising by mowing the lawn, trimming trees, or just shooting hoops in the driveway, do it as much as you can. What really matters is elevating your heart rate and working up a good sweat, which benefits the entire cardiovascular system and keeps excess weight off. You can even use a fitness tracker to monitor your heart rate, calories burned, and steps taken. The latest Apple smartwatches have an altimeter, can generate an ECG, and are water resistant. Or if you prefer a Fitbit, the Fitbit Flex 2 features sleep analysis and exercise reminders. 

Red Wine
Studies have found that drinking red wine in moderation has a number of positive health benefits. The antioxidants in red wine, for example, combat cancer, and moderate use also helps prevent heart disease, anxiety, and depression. Experts recommend that men should drink two glasses of red wine a day, whereas women should limit themselves to one. 

A Healthy Home

Don’t underestimate the impact of a healthy home. In order to improve the health of your home (and your own health), you can start by decluttering because a cluttered home can have a major impact on stress levels. You can improve air quality by regularly changing your air filters. Also, if you suspect your home has any major problems such as mold or a pest infestation, these issues could have a serious effect on your family’s health, so address these problems right away.  

Hit the Sack Earlier
A full night (seven to nine hours) of restful sleep is crucial for your mental and physical health. So, if you tend to be a night owl, try getting to bed at the same time every night, and maintain a quiet and soothing sleep environment to help you drift off. It’s an important investment in your long-term health, because sleep can help prevent heart disease, sharpen mental acuity, relieve stress, enhance mood, and fight off illness. 

The Impact of Dental Health
Medical science has established a close connection between oral health and other parts of the body, including your heart and gut. It’s perhaps less well-known, but just as important, that dental health is closely tied to our mental well-being. Depression, for instance, can lead to oral neglect, as people who suffer from mental health issues tend to ignore their appearance. Regular check-ups and dental treatment can get you back on track, as will maintaining a consistent oral health routine with regular brushing and flossing. 

Pay Attention to Your Skin
Good skin care is also important for maintaining an attractive appearance. Healthy skin makes you feel more confident and should be part of a well-balanced health routine. Consult with a dermatologist if you’re experiencing dermal problems and ask about the best skin care products. Remember that vitamin D, which the body gets from sunlight, is also important to healthy skin. You should also try to sleep on your back because side or stomach sleeping can worsen wrinkles.

Gradual Dietary Changes
If you’re trying to eat healthier, take an incremental approach instead of trying to remake your diet all at once. Incorporate a new change every week. Substitute skinless chicken for the kind that tastes so good deep-fried. Cook with olive oil, a naturally healthy substance, instead of butter or vegetable oil. Also, change your snack lineup by adding nuts, apple slices with peanut butter, Greek yogurt with fresh berries, and dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate.

Always be wary of fad diets that promise rapid weight loss but can actually be harmful to your overall health. Talk to your doctor about the best dietary changes for you and make changes based on healthy foods that taste good. Don’t bother eating rye crisps if you don’t like them.
Sometimes, a small change is best. If you’re trying to lead a healthier life, take it one step at a time. If you stick with an incremental approach, your chances of achieving positive long-term results will be greater, and you’ll feel great about what you’ve accomplished.

Sunday, December 08, 2019

Food Spotlight: Schwartz Cajun Seasoning

Disclosure: The is a sponsored post. I have received a sample for review. All opinions are my own.

I love to cook.  I thoroughly enjoy experimenting with adding new flavours to the dishes that I create. One of the components of trying something new can often involve finding just the right seasoning. I’ve found that adding a hint of lemon or one or two different spices can bring out just the right flavours in foods, which can make an everyday dish more exciting.

That’s why recently, when I was given the opportunity to try Schwartz Cajun Seasoning, I jumped at the chance. The Schwartz Cajun Seasoning contains a delicious blend of chilli powder, allspice and thyme. It’s a great addition to your favourite Cajun-inspired recipes or just to add a little something extra to your everyday dishes. 

I added the Schwartz Cajun Seasoning to chicken wings, and let me tell you, they turned out incredible! I already make great chicken wings if I do say so myself, but adding the Schwartz Cajun Seasoning gave them that extra bit of flavour and took them up a notch. 

I prepared my chicken wings as usual with a little bit of black pepper and salt and a bit of this and that to give them a nice flavour. I placed them into the oven as usual to get them cooked on the tops and the undersides of each wing. Next, I took them out of the oven and seasoned them with the Schwartz Cajun Seasoning. Then I placed them back into the oven for a while longer, until they were golden and beautiful. They smelled so delicious and voila…they were done!

They were delicious! I loved the added kick of flavour supplied by the addition of the Schwartz Cajun Seasoning. I love spicy food, so this seasoning is definitely a favourite. However, my husband is not a great fan of spicy food, but he loved the wings too. That’s the great thing about this seasoning, it has just enough of a kick without being too hot. It is the perfect blend of spices that can suit many palates. I will definitely be adding it to some of my other favourite dishes.

Sunday, December 01, 2019

December 2019

Well, it’s the last month of 2019 and the final month of the decade. Wishing everyone a good new month. Hug the ones you love. Time is fleeting and life is precious ❤

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Book Spotlight: From the Ashes by S. L Briden

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book for review. All opinions are mine. 

Recently I’ve had the opportunity to read From the Ashes– Shadows of a Phoenix Series – Book 1, by S. L Briden. This is the first novel of an epic medieval fantasy series set in the era of King Arthur. This is the fascinating story of two knights and a sorceress who fight against the armies of the Dark, in a battle foretold by prophecy. It is a classic tale of good versus evil.

Two knights, David and Andrew, are charged by their Grandmaster to protect the sorceress Arread, who is no wallflower and is strong-willed in her own right. David and Andrew initially believe that their protection assignment is beneath them, but they soon learn that this is not the case. They find themselves on a quest to fulfil an ancient prophecy in the battle between Light and Dark. There is romance in this tale as David becomes attracted to the thrilling Arread. However, he is torn between duty and his heart. There is a lot on the line in their quest.

This novel is a thrilling mixture of history, adventure, emotion, and romance. I found it to be a fantastic read, especially during this season of snuggling under a blanket with a good book. It’s a great autumn/winter read, but this imaginative story can be equally enjoyed when you’re at the beach or chilling by the pool. It's absolutely a novel where you can get lost within the pages.

I thoroughly enjoyed From the Ashes– Shadows of a Phoenix Series – Book 1 and I’d definitely recommend it to all of the book lovers out there!

Available through: all good bookshops and internet booksellers.

Genres: Fantasy, Arthurian, Sword & Sorcery, Epic, Myths & Legends

About the Author: S. L Briden is a freelance writer and business owner who is deeply interested in the Dark Ages history of the UK. Inspired by the age-old legends of King Arthur, she loves creating historic fantasy tales full of adventure and edge-of-your-seat suspense. When she was widowed in her 30s, S.L Briden focused on writing ‘Shadows of a Phoenix’ – an epic, historic fantasy series that she drafted with her husband before his untimely death. She hopes to inspire other young widows not to give up on their dreams, whatever they may be.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! πŸ¦ƒ 🍽

This is the holiday that I love most because it reminds me of home and it holds great memories for me.  I remember the delicious smells coming from the kitchen as my mother cooked a wonderful feast. She would be humming or listening to music as she cooked. Further back when I was little and my father was alive, I remember him saying grace before we ate. I remember my sisters and brothers being joyful that it was finally time to eat 😁 Through the years as everyone grew up, the traditions shifted from one house to another, but we were together and the love was there.

So as I have Thanksgiving dinner with my husband here in England, 4,200 miles away from home, I'll carry on the traditions that I learned from my parents and keep their memories alive as I do everyday. And through the wonders of technology I'll check in with my siblings today and have some laughs and it'll be like old times in a way πŸ™‚

Gratitude, family, friends and sharing food...the joys of life πŸ™‚πŸ’–

Happy Thanksgiving! πŸ¦ƒπŸ™‚

Monday, November 18, 2019

New Week

Here we are at the beginning of a new week again. 

I have made a bit of progress today with some things, so here's hoping that I can continue to do that. 

I hope that you have a good new week wherever you are!

Until next time...

Sunday, November 03, 2019

Last of the Summer Roses

I just wanted to share this pretty rose today. It is a surprise for sure since all of the other roses have long since stopped blooming. This beauty has the distinction of being the very last rose in the garden this season.

See  you again next summer lovely pink roses :-)

Saturday, November 02, 2019

The Forward Journey

Over the last several days, I’ve been thinking a lot about time or more specifically about this new decade that’s coming our way. It’s wild to think about the fact that as I’m typing this from this corner of Wiltshire, England, that there are only 59 full days left in this year…in this decade. I always get introspective as we move closer to the end of the year, but it usually doesn’t hit me until December. This time it’s entering my thoughts a bit earlier. Maybe it’s just where my mind needs to be at this point in my life. It’s exciting to think about the prospect of a new decade.

I’ve been thinking back over this decade that we’re finishing and to be perfectly frank, I’ll be glad to see the back of the 2010’s. I know that there isn’t a magic switch that will make the new decade of the 2020’s miraculous and worry-free, of course not. However, in my life, the 2010’s have worn me out and down quite a bit. To be perfectly frank, this decade has been incredibly hard in so many ways for me personally and I know it hasn’t been a piece of cake for the world either…far from it. Sure, there have been some bright spots for us all and I’m grateful, but I think that it’s getting to the time to hit the refresh button. Renewal is good.

On a personal level, I need to think of the new decade in terms of new energy and renewal. I know that we can get up each day and start anew, any day of the year, but from a mental point of view, I’m going to embrace this metaphorical line in the sand of time. It’s what I need.

I’m still going to be in the moment as much as I can and relish these next 59 days because tomorrow is never promised. However, I’m also going to think about what things I can do in my own life to start the Roaring 20’s off with a bit more purpose in my life. I want more from my life and there’s nothing wrong with taking stock to grow more into being even more of my true self. Here’s to the forward journey! 😊

Friday, November 01, 2019

Happy November

Happy November! Happy new month!!

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Reading and Reacquainting

Lately, I've been doing my best to get back into reading more. I used to read all the time, but in the last couple of years or so, I've not read much at all and I feel the lack of it in my life. I took the photo above on this past Sunday morning as I did a bit of reading while having a few grapes.

I've realized something in my quest to read more. I'm actually spending too much time scrolling through my phone, looking for nothing in particular. This takes up so much time...so no wonder I haven't got much reading done.

Therefore, I'm going to try to scroll less and read more. There's nothing wrong with dipping into my phone once in a while to see what's going on. I just simply need to balance my time a bit better and stop compulsively picking up my phone. Reacquainting myself with reading again is like rediscovering an old friend...who happens to be myself  :)

Here's to reclaiming my time.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Happy Saturday

Happy Saturday!

I'm feeling a bit under the weather today, but I'm getting some rest in the hope that I'll feel better sooner rather than later. I should be fine in a couple of days.

I'm hoping to get back here to blog more regularly soon.

In the meantime, please enjoy this lovely view that I saw earlier πŸ™‚

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Rest in Peace Ms Diahann Carroll

I  am eight days late, but I wanted to make sure I shared a tribute to this incredible woman here on my blog. I've had to sit with my thoughts a while in order to think of what to say. I admired Ms. Carroll so much, for as long as I can remember. When I was a little girl, I wanted to grow into an elegant, sophisticated lady just like her. That didn't happen, but I'm grateful that she was here in the world while I was here. She inspired me...she still does and she always will. What an extraordinary life she lived! Well done Ms. Carroll.

I shared the paragraph below about her on my Instagram account...

She was the epitome of a legend...a ground-breaking performer. From Julia to Claudine to Dominique Devereaux and through so many roles, she gave us characters who made such a trailblazing impact in the world of entertainment. Her work still lights the way now. I loved her in the movies 'Carmen Jones', and 'Claudine' and 'Paris Blues'. She was a sophisticated, beautiful woman who gave so much as an entertainer. I will always admire her immense creativity and style ❤

Rest in Peace Ms. Carroll and thank you...

Tuesday, October 01, 2019

R.I.P. Ms Jessye Norman

R.I.P. Ms Jessye Norman πŸ‘‘πŸ™πŸΎπŸ’–

Her extraordinary voice always brought tears to my eyes because of its beauty. She shared her magnificent gifts with the world and our lives were all richer because of this πŸ’–

Sunday, September 29, 2019

The Last Sunday of September

I took this photo a year ago today. It doesn't look like this this year yet, because the leaves haven't changed this much, but I know it's coming. πŸπŸ‚

Happy Last Sunday of September!

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Monday, September 23, 2019

Happy Fall

Happy Fall! 
Happy Autumn!

This is one of my favorite seasons. I like all of the seasons because they each bring something unique.  However, I have a special love for spring and fall. Nature really turns things up a notch especially during these seasons and I relish all that Mother Nature shows us. The colors in both seasons are extraordinary!

I love tbe crispness of the air when fall comes. It's just enough...not too cold if we're lucky and we get to pull out the scarves  boots and all of the layered fashion choices. The best thing of all though is all of the color. The leaves look as if they've been painted by an artist. It's a glorious time of the year!

If you're in the northern hemisphere, happy autumn/fall !!! πŸπŸ‚πŸAnd if you're in the southern hemisphere,  happy spring!!! πŸŒΈπŸ’πŸŒ·

Monday, September 09, 2019

Sunday, September 01, 2019

Hello September 2019

Happy new month!

I like September. It's a month that always makes me think of getting back on track with things in my life after the more relaxed vibe of summer. Sometimes my summers aren't very eventful, but I enjoy the beautiful summer days as much as I can. Having lots of sunny days in England is usually a rarity, but this year the weather treated us well. My hubby and I did a lot more outdoor stuff this year and we were pleasantly surprised that the weather cooperated. So I've really enjoyed this summer. I know that Fall/Autumn is still about three weeks away, but I feel the shift towards that new season coming. Maybe it's because this is going back to school time, even though I've been out of school for a long while, but that feeling never leaves I guess. Whatever it is, I'm looking forward to reorganizing myself a bit in order to do a bit better with things in this last third of 2019 :)

It's a beautiful sunny day today and there's a bit of a breeze blowing outside. It's the perfect time for me to be inside scribbling away on my lists that I love to compile. This time, I'll be using my previously mentioned new planner to help me along with this. I do love notebooks, planners and things of that nature. They help me sketch out what's in my head.

Well, back to my planning and scribbling :)

I wish you well wherever you are and....Happy September!

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Product Spotlight - Nakin Skincare

Disclosure: I was gifted these products in return for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

For a little over three weeks, I’ve been trying out a couple of products from Nakin Skincare. Nakin sent them to me as a gift and below I will give my honest opinion of how the products worked for me.

Nakin Skincare offers a range of natural anti-ageing products, which are cruelty-free and made in England. The complete award-winning range offers innovation in holistic beauty, using the finest plant ingredients for stunning facial products that defend, enhance and rejuvenate. All formulated to be paraben free and without unnecessary ingredients like synthetic colours and fragrance. Nakin’s natural skincare products assist skin by protecting against damage and providing cellular recovery through active biological compounds.

This was my first time trying Nakin Skincare products and I must say that I was pleased. I have been using the Nakin Natural Anti-Ageing Advanced Cleansing Milk and the Nakin Natural Anti-Ageing Revitalising Face Oil. I have always been dedicated to making sure that I take care of my skin, so I’m always intrigued to come across products which I can add to my skincare routine.

The Advanced Cleansing Milk is formulated with an advanced active blend of oils, hyaluronic acid, pomegranate and seaweed extract to even out skin tone and assist cell renewal. It has a light, creamy texture and didn’t feel sticky or anything. I love the consistency. It glided onto my skin nicely and made my face feel soft and clean. It was refreshing and not drying at all. Using the Advanced Cleansing Milk is easy…you simply apply it to your face and neck in circular motions and I found it easy to wipe away with cotton pads. I felt as if I got a good, deep cleansing without feeling like I was being harsh to my skin. I really liked the Advanced Cleansing Milk and I will be adding this to my regular routine going forward. It is reasonably priced at £15. You can learn more about this product here.

The Anti-Ageing Revitalising Face Oil contains peach kernel oil, baobab oil, argan kernel oil and jojoba oil which soothes and renews skin as it moisturises. Even though it’s an oil, I didn’t find it to be greasy or heavy. I found that it left my skin feeling very soft and hydrated. My skin tends to get really dry during the winter months, so I will definitely be relying on this fantastic product to help keep my skin looking and feeling good. It sells for £22 and is worth every penny I think, as it goes a long way. You can learn more about the face oil here.

I have really enjoyed experiencing both products. Both the cleansing milk and the face oil performed way above my expectations. They are both reasonably priced, natural and give great results. I will definitely be trying the other products in this line in the near future, as I am intrigued by Nakin Skincare now.

If you’d like to try the products for yourself, you can find out about the whole line at their website here.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Mal Paper Daily Goal Setter Planner Review

Disclosure: I was gifted a planner in return for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Recently, the lovely people at MΓ₯l Paper sent me their Daily Goal Setter Planner and invited me to share my thoughts on it. I was excited to do so because I love stationery and I love planners. I’m forever making lists or writing things down, so this was right up my alley!

The word MΓ₯l, pronounced 'mo-l', means goal in Swedish. This is a very appropriate name because this wonderfully designed planner gives you tools to point you towards your goals. I love that the planner is undated, which puts the power into your hands. The world is your oyster!

The other features that I love are:

• Information on how to set goals, become more productive and practice gratitude

• Space to write down affirmations and to express my gratitude

• An area to write down my long-term, medium-term and short-term goals

• Daily, weekly, monthly views to create my to do lists

• And last, but not least, it’s lovely to look at and it feels good in my hands…it’s substantial and durable

Some other details:

PU Faux Leather Softback Cover

142x205mm - 5.6x8.25"

256 pages

Lasts for 6 months

100 gsm ivory paper

2 Ribbon dividers

Document holder

Elastic fastening

The Daily Goal Setter Planner is one of my new favourite things. I especially love the gratitude section, because it helps me focus on the things that matter in my life. I love that this is at the top of the page where I can set the tone for my day by thinking of what I’m grateful for. This is a good grounding practice as it gets me in the right frame of mind as I go forward with my day.

To purchase your own Daily Goal Setter Planner, please visit MΓ₯l Paper.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Late Summer Spring Cleaning

I took the photo above a couple of months ago and I've shared it here at that time, but it fits well in partially describing what the weather was like today. It's been very windy...very windy and rainy...and there's even been some sunshine as the evening set in. It's been varied. Still, I've enjoyed the day. 

I've done a bit of sorting through my pile of books on the floor and the spot has now been cleared, so I feel accomplished. Things are in their rightful place. For a few weeks I've stepped around this pile of books and I've told myself that I'll tidy it up over the weekend and yet it seems to never get done. Today I finally attacked it and I must say that it felt good. This was only a small spot on the bedroom floor, but it dramatically shifted the energy immediately! Now I'm ready to tackle more. I know that I don't have the luxury of a lot of time to declutter the house from top to bottom in a weekend, but I'm going to take it bit by bit over the next few weeks. Our house isn't a mess, filled with wall-to-wall clutter at all. It's just that I feel the need to clear the energy I guess. It's like a spring cleaning that I didn't get around to so it's happening in the late summer :) 

Tuesday, August 06, 2019

Rest in Peace Ms. Toni Morrison

I never had the pleasure of meeting this amazing woman, but I will be forever grateful for having been on Earth while she was here. Her books have had such a profound effect upon my life. She was a TRUE WRITER and a TRUTH-TELLER. She gave voice to the Black American experience, especially that of Black women, in a way that was so authentic. She was definitely given a Divine assignment while she was here. Her words...in her books and as she spoke in that elegantly-toned voice of hers, were from somewhere special and so was she. Her words always rang with a clarity that just cut through all of the crap of life. I have admired her for as long as I can remember, as a writer and as a woman. I will miss knowing that she is somewhere in this world, but I take comfort in knowing that she is now with the ancestors and has most definitely taken her rightful place as an ancestor. She has left her words and wisdom here for us to learn from and to cherish for all time. Thank you Ms. Morrison for giving us more than I could ever describe in words. Farewell...

"If you surrendered to the air, you could ride it."

"If there is a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet,
 you must be the one to write it."

"Love is or it ain't. Thin love ain't love at all."

- Toni Morrison

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Letting Go and Light

Last week was a trying week in so many ways.

There was a lot on my plate and some of those things are still piled high on my plate, but I'm really trying to get into the frame of mind to just dump that plate and start fresh. Spinning my wheels has gotten me nowhere.

Quite often, life hands us things which are completely out of our control, so the thing that we have left is how we react. I know that life can be very complicated and very unfair, but sometimes you just have to let go for your own sanity.

In this new week ahead, I'm just going to do my best to roll with things and trust that things will work out. I'm gonna let the sunshine into the shadowy places wherever I can and do the best I can.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Checking In

It's been two weeks since I've written here. It's mostly because I haven't been well and also work has kept me very busy. I've been spending time close to bed for the last couple of days as I've been recuperating. I hate not feeling well, but actually it's a blessing in disguise because it's given me a couple of days at home and a bit of time to center myself. 

I just wanted to check in to say hi, so if anyone is out there...HELLO :)

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Thursday Night Check-In

I thought that I'd just stop by for a quick hello post since it's been ten days since I've written here. It's after 11pm. I need to be in bed, because I have to get up early for work tomorrow morning, but I'm in need of something to break the monotony of every week day. Taking a moment to check in with something I love will sustain me as I go about my workday tomorrow. The plus is that tomorrow is Friday and that's one of my favorites since it leads into the weekend...and I'm sure that I'm not the only one :) Also by the way, I was born on a Friday, so I'm partial to Fridays.

I've posted the photo above before, but I like to use it as a tool for peacefulness. When I look at this photo, I can easily imagine that I'm sitting right there :) 

Well, enough of my rambling...I guess that I'll head to bed. 

Wherever you are, I hope that you have a lovely weekend!

Monday, July 01, 2019

Hello July

One of the beautiful peonies
that I bought recently in town

It's a new month...a new beginning...a fresh start...a time of new opportunities. It's also the second half of 2019 and that always inspires me to take stock for a moment, as I move forward into the second half of each year.

Today is also the first weekday of my vacation from work and I am truly overjoyed about that! I'm grateful to have a job, but we all need a break every once in a while. It's been a tough time at work lately, so I'm long overdue for a break in order to get myself together again. I'm truly grateful for this break.

I hope that whomever is reading this...if anyone is anymore πŸ™‚, that July brings good things into your life. Here's to a fresh now month!

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Tips To Keep Those Money Worries At Bay

*collaborative post

It’s not unusual to worry about money. It’s something that a lot of us rely on to live our lives, and we want to live our life ideally as comfortable as possible. So with that in mind, here are some tips to keep those money worries at bay.

Make The Most Of Your Income

Your income is what gets you by each month, and so it’s important to make the most of your income where possible. When it comes to your bill providers, try to find cheaper alternatives, and cut down on any subscriptions or bills that aren’t necessary. It can help to note these expenditures so that if times get tough, you know you’ve got elements of your lifestyle that you can cut out if needed. Paying taxes is a part of life, but you can always look at H&R Block online if you’re self-employed and want to save more money on your taxes through expenses.

Take Your Mind Off The Stress

You can stress about money even if it’s not really causing any problems at the moment. There can often be this fear of running out of money, but you can let this fear, stress you out constantly. If you find yourself thinking about money or stressing yourself out, try taking your mind off it. Do something to distract yourself whether that’s spending some quality time with the household or watching your favourite television show. Stress is an emotion that can put a lot of pressure on your body if it’s something that’s happening a lot, and your well-being should always be focused on. Find things that help you distract your thoughts.

Be Realistic With Your Budgeting

Budgeting is certainly handy to do throughout your life, and the better you become at budgeting, the more you can save in regards to your household income. However, it’s also good to be realistic with your budgeting because it will hinder your efforts if you’re not calculating them right. You know from previous months gone by, what you spend your money on. So when it comes to budgeting, be realistic, and give yourself a bit of wiggle room with every aspect of the budget. Each month is never the same, and you may end up spending a lot more during the summer than you do during the winter, or vice versa.

Don’t Feel Guilty When Indulging

Money worries tend to crop up a lot when you’re indulging and actually spending your hard earned money on yourself or others you love. Money is a material thing, and it’ll always be available, so don’t feel guilty when giving yourself a treat every now and then. If you do feel guilty, tell yourself immediately that you deserve it. You don’t want to get yourself into a habit where you hate going shopping because you make yourself feel bad. If it’s something you want and will make you happy, then treat yourself!

These tips will hopefully keep you feeling more positive when it comes to your finances.

Saturday, June 15, 2019


I took the photo above through the window of the car while we were out doing Saturday errands this morning. No need to worry. I wasn't driving :) This photo is indicative of how the weather has been nearly every day for the past two weeks or so....constantly rainy and cool. I know that some rain is needed, but it's become absolutely water-logged out there. I did like catching this image of the two trees against the grey sky through the raindrops on the car window. It looks like a black and white picture but it was actually taken in color, as you can see from the red in the bottom left hand corner.

Besides wanting a bit of sunshine from a practical-needing-to-dry-out-a-bit stance, it would also help my mood a bit. The lack of vitamin D is real :) Things have been a bit challenging lately on many fronts, but as I try to remind myself regularly, physically and figuratively...it can't rain forever. That is what I hold onto.

Take care wherever you are...blessings.

Friday, June 07, 2019

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Weekend Pursuits

I hope that you're having a wonderful weekend wherever you are!

I like weekends like this. It's a three day weekend here and back home...the bank holiday weekend here and Memorial Day weekend back home, so no work on Monday. Yay! :)

I've been out doing a bit of gardening earlier today. I re-potted my two ferns that had totally outgrown their pots. I have a standard fern and then a maidenhair fern which I've mentioned here.  They both have come back from the dead almost and now they're thriving. So today my ferns got their own new "apartments" aka new pots :) Once they've settled in I'll have to share photos.

The photo above is one of the beautiful pink roses that grows in our back yard. I took this a year or so ago, but I thought that I'd share it again because it's so beautiful and it reminds me that summer is right around the corner.

Happy weekend!

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Finding My Way

I found this photo above yesterday...it's from my early days of blogging. It's well over a decade old. It's a bit blurry, but there's something about it for me personally. I didn't go looking for this photo specifically, but I stumbled across it and it spoke to me. It reminds me of seemingly "simpler times"...or maybe not that simple, but it was taken during a time when I felt a bit more at peace. I love this photo because it prominently features nature...especially the beauty of a spring day. That bench looks so inviting. I remember the day when I took this. It's a visual representation of where I go in my mind or at least try to when things get tough. 

Here's to finding my way back to this bench in my mind's eye more and more. I'm working on it. Today was better than yesterday :)

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Rest in Peace Doris Day

As many already know, yesterday, Doris Day passed away at the age of 97. I was a big fan of her work as many were. She lived a long life and left behind such a glorious body of work.

I became a fan when I was a little girl. As I've mentioned here before, I used to spend many Saturday and Sunday afternoons especially, watching classic movies from Hollywood's golden era. I loved musicals especially and Doris Day's beautiful voice was front and center in so much that I loved.

I liked all of her films, but my favorite is Young at Heart, which also starred Frank Sinatra. It was beautifully shot and I love to catch it every time it's on television. If you'd like, please check out this clip from the end of the film here. It features Doris Day and Frank Sinatra singing together. It's a lovely end to a wonderful film.

Rest in peace to both of them...they left great contributions to film and to music behind for us to enjoy always.

Sunday, May 05, 2019


Happy Sunday!

The photo above features my beautiful maidenhair fern. She's a bit of a resurrection and renewal story for real. Half of her had gone all brown and yellow only a couple of months ago. She was in a sad state. I'm not as green thumbed as my mother was, but I'm working on becoming a better gardener. I love the peace that it brings.

I realized that I was overwatering her and perhaps the bone-chilling ongoing cold of our Wiltshire weather was not helping. Before, I tried to think of what my mom would do and then after thinking it through, I realized that I was overwatering my fern. I thought that I was doing what was right, but I realized that I was suffocating her...drowning her...so I took a step back. And guess what? She's been flourishing :) It's been a lesson for me to relax a bit more in growing as a gardener, but also in my life. The lessons are there and I'm listening.

Have a good Sunday wherever you are :)

Saturday, May 04, 2019

Early Morning, Late Night Rambling

It's 2am-ish on Saturday morning and I'm still up.Well, I did fall asleep earlier in the evening and then woke up again at about twenty minutes to midnight. So I guess this is understandable :) I'll probably fall asleep again in a bit, but I thought that I'd come here and check in. I'm trying to get back to regularly blogging because I miss it and I need to get back to regularly writing. I need to get some momentum going. I've been really off in so many areas of my life lately, so this is me trying to pull the figurative car back on the road of life again. So excuse me if I ramble a bit.

I took the photo above today on the way home from work as I rode along on the bus. The sky looked so ominous and yet it was dramatic and beautiful. It was my favorite shade of blue :) If you've been here before, you know that I LOVE BLUE!

This has been a bit of an odd week. I'm going through some challenges. I'm at that point when you begin to realize that there's nothing to be done in a situation, so you have to just wait it out. It's a pain in the backside, but it is what it is. Both situations could be easily fixed really, but I'm sadly at the mercy of bureaucracy with a side portion of ridiculousness thrown in, so I'm in waiting mode. (sigh) Oh well. Things will work out eventually.

Back to my photo...nature is beautiful, even when it's about to throw down :)

Anyway, I guess that I'd better try to get some sleep. This tiny bit of rambling has helped me.

Good night or good morning....

Wednesday, April 24, 2019


Today has been a tough day, but I take comfort in the quote below. I love a good quote :)

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Monday, April 22, 2019

Nostalgic Cartoons That Will Remind You Of Your Childhood

*collaborative post

It is always precious to look back on your childhood - those moments of innocence and pure bliss. Childhood represents a period of no worry and absolute enjoyment. It is always nice to reminisce about these days and even share part of them with your own children.

One part of your childhood you can let your children experience is cartoons. After all the cartoons may have changed, but there is no denying that as a whole, cartoons as a concept are still extremely enjoyable and popular amongst children. What cartoons did you watch as a child? Read on to discover the top eight cartoons likely to provide you with some nostalgia.

1.    Scooby Doo

Scooby Doo is a cartoon that has been entertaining children for many, many years. You can download video from website options online. It is likely that you watched this programme whilst growing up and that your children probably watch it now as well. Scooby Doo was originally produced in 1969 and it featured on CBS for seven years. Now you will find Scooby Doo most commonly on Cartoon Network. Your child won’t ever run out of Scooby Doo programmes to watch as there are a colossal 424 available.

2.    Tom and Jerry

Just like Scooby Doo, Tom and Jerry has acquired an almost timeless quality. So much so that there has been a wealth of Tom and Jerry games, films, and toys produced. Tom and Jerry first came on the scene in 1940 in the form of shorts. Still, it was not until 1965 that Tom and Jerry cartoons surfaced on television in a form similar to today.

3.    Dexter’s Laboratory

Dexter’s Laboratory is likely to be nostalgic for all of the young moms and dads around today. The show was first broadcasted in 1995 and whilst the original run ended in 2003, it is a programme that is very much featured on television today.

4.    Ed, Edd n Eddy

Ed, Edd n Eddy may not be a replication of your childhood. However, what the show is based on will very much be. The animated comedy has been designed in order to be a resemblance of the classic cartoons that were featured between 1940 and 1970. Consequently, you may see cartoons from then represented in this popular show.

5.     Star Wars

Star Wars to parents represents the iconic films that have graced the big screen for many years. In fact, the very first film was released in 1977. Do you remember it? There have been eight Star Wars films ever since. The second last film released was ‘The Clone Wars’ and this has been turned into an animated series for children today.

6.    The Powerpuff Girls

You may be shocked to learn that The Powerpuff Girls first existed as ‘Whoopass Stew!’ This is a cartoon short from 1992. The name change commenced and The Powerpuff Girls as we know them today first featured in 1995. The final episode of The Powerpuff Girls aired in 2005. Nevertheless, as is the case for all of the cartoons mentioned in this article, you will be able to find the popular show still on television today. The Powerpuff Girls is definitely a favourite amongst many girls at present.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Thursday Sunset

I took the picture above on Thursday evening.

The sunset was so beautiful.

It made me feel like I was gazing at something special.

I was.

The words 'divine' and 'sublime' kept coming to my mind.

What a beautiful planet and what a spectacular view of the sun we have!

Be well πŸ™‚

Tuesday, April 09, 2019

Revisiting - The Guy They Call Sir!

I haven't had the chance to write here lately, because either one thing or another has gotten in the way. I hate when that happens. They say that's life, but I don't know if I believe that fully anymore. I think that at least in my case that it's a case of being in a bit of a whirlwind and not being able to get my bearings fully. As always, time is flying. I feel like a dog trying to catch its own tail sometimes. I've got to reclaim my time and get back to my blog and writing in general. That is where some of my peace lies.

Since I've been missing my blog, I thought that I'd go way, way back into the history of this site and pull out a post from 2008, the year that I began blogging. It sounds clichΓ©, but it was all so simple then. (smile) Or so it seems through the lens of nostalgia. Oh well, anyway, please come along and time travel with me back to the very early days of From a Yellow House...on this very day eleven years ago. You can read the original post entitled 'The Guy They Call Sir!' here. Enjoy!