You were my cup of tea, but I drink champagne now

Quote Anon

Within this quote lies two of my favourite liquids, tea and champagne (not in the same vessel obviously). We are jumping through January with people taking on new challenges from eating vegan to folding things in a Kondo fashion.

When I turned thirty my friend told me something very wise. She said “when you’re thirty life is too short for buying tomatoes not on the vine” and although this might sound peculiar, as always it was good advice. In my house I like crystal glasses, as a result we drink out of them as our ‘everyday’ glasses, in my opinion everyday is our best day, why wait for an occasion? My tea is served in china cups, I dislike the thickness of a mug and of course my tomatoes are bought on the vine.

However, often people don’t upgrade the people they surround them self by. I’m not saying you need to cull the friends of years gone by, sometimes there are wonderful reasons why they are still in your world. Sometimes though, your neighbour is abrupt, a friend says cruel things, they don’t support you with goals and perhaps you stopped sharing visions and plans with them long a go. In this case, seize this quote with both hands and pour the tea down the drain, reaching instead for a tall and sleek (crystal) glass of fizzy delight. Make sure the people you surround yourself by have common goals, that they too are climbing to the top of the glass one bubble at a time, that they refresh you, quench your thirsty and leave you feeling a million dollars

*warning: even champagne friends will leave you with a headache if you spend too much time with them. Balance is the key.

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Words are free, it’s how you use them that costs you.

Quote by Anon

I may have spoken about this before but Pen from The Single Swan mentioned in a comment the other day that she picks a word for the year ahead, bizarrely that day the bestie and I were on the phone and mentioned that our common word for 2018 was ‘accomplished ‘ (sounds so joyful on the tongue). As a woman who loves to set intentions I thought I’d select a word for 2019. As I began to think about what I wanted from the year and searched through my bag of goals, ideas and plans I very quickly decided on a word and it scared me to my core.

Achieve.

As I type the word I feel a sense of burden, fear and that perhaps I’m taking on a word that’s out of my reach. However, through this blog I have learnt that nothing changes unless you are willing to step out of your comfort zone. I also don’t need every moment of every day to be an achievement and with small adjustments as the months roll I can take steps that suit my pace. That said, some of the goals I will achieve will need me to step way beyond my area of comfort. Upon reflection it’s a word suitable for success and the challenge that comes with achieving. Take for example my first challenge…the puppy I rescued. She is a ball of chew and needles from her teeth to her sharp claws. She has no boundaries (we are trying to teach her them day by day, she is teaching us that rules are made to be chewed) and although she’s also a bundle of cuteness, I know training her will be a challenge but also an achievement.

Next, I will be moving this blog away from WordPress and to my own site…any tips totally welcome as http and widgets brings me out in a cold sweat of confusion and doubt. However, by taking the leap will mean I can add a new aspect to the site which I really want to do…details to follow once I’ve worked out the ifs, but’s and all the words that come with achieving this mission.

Other things I’d like to achieve will help me to love my home a little more. It’s a nice house but as I’m not a fan of the word ‘nice’ this speaks volumes about my feelings to the building we call home.

2019 will also be my daughters 10th anniversary. It blows my brain to think of all the things she could of liked and become. We don’t celebrate her birthday or death but I’d like to mark her decade with a gathering or event…again, any ideas welcome as this will be another emotional challenge to our journey to achieving a positive life without her on earth.

Join me through my challenges and achievements via this corner of the internet and why not pick your own word…if like the quote suggests we pay a price, let it be life changing for the better.

Happy New Year.

You are not weak for needing time to sort through this

Quote from MHN

Currently I’m in a whirlwind of festive get togethers, chores and life’s demands. December brings joy but also preparation. As regular readers will know I also go HUGE on intentions and goals, as we step into 2019 my bucket list flows with plans, ideas and steps towards making my dreams come true.

The carousel of life, even in the most joyful times can sometimes need a pause. As a park ride, the carousel has always been a favourite of mine. Usually in the centre of the action, the glistening fairy lights and twinkling music draws my inner child in like a warm hug. However, I wouldn’t want to stay on a carousel for a long period of time. Life’s issue – even joyful moments are often served quick and unexpected. The joy is in a moment and a moment should never last a life time.

You are not weak or selfish for needing time to sort through an issue that’s present in your life. Often as humans, much like a carousel we are presented with an issue, or view of the world, think we’ve dealt with it, only to see the pattern emerge in another aspect of our life.

I urge you to create time to reassess your journey. To jump off of the carousel and spend time sorting through the issue. Life is best with variation and the carousel isn’t going anywhere, so take a ride on the Big Dipper, you never know what you’re missing.

What you allow is what will continue

Quote from the wise but absent named ‘Anon’

This quote is accountable.

This quote reminds me that I am responsible for my own life, decisions, health and overall well being. For this reason, this quote gets stuck in my throat slightly. I honestly believed growing up that adults knew everything, had all the answers and had their lives all mapped out. Ummm… how wrong was I? Every day I am winging it, some days more than others, there are goals but how we arrive at our destination alters weekly, I lose track of intentions, frankly I often forget what I’m saying half way through a conversation. The adult world is tough and if I’m honest I feel like Barbie made it look so easy. Her and Ken used to get married weekly in my bedroom, often went on holidays, she wore big dresses to big parties, drove a sports car…Barbie never worried about the washing basket over flowing, never argued with Ken about council tax payments, she never doubted an outfit change, or worried how she would fit the school run in between her career as a ski instructor.

Perhaps we should be more Barbie. Enjoy the moment, live for the now. I think if Barbie could see this quote she would fully embrace it.

This weekend we watched Deadpool 2, in it are various super hero’s with crazy mutant powers and my favourite is Domino. Not just because her name reminds me of a popular pizza chain, but because her super power is luck. She has more self belief than a religious denomination, she is seriously cool. As I was watching her fly through the air and land on a giant inflatable panda…yup thats a real scene from the film, I was captured by her vocabulary. She was so kick ass confident and assertive I couldn’t help but notice that she had high standards and didn’t falter.

Aspects of our lives are often out of our control, but there are elements that we can do something about. Setting standards for how we will be treated and how we will let others treat us is a huge issue for many. Its probably worth grabbing a pen and paper at this point and writing down things you’re not happy with. Do you need to book something fabulous to do with a friend or partner because you never get to see them, do you need to set an hour aside with a giant box and clear that cluttered cupboard that frustrates you every time you attempt to open the draw and the contents cascade out. Do you need to speak to a work colleague or perhaps you need to reprioritise yourself on your ever growing ‘to do’ list.

Often in films the main characters are faced with huge challenges (with Marvel its always saving the world with some kind of time issue) but perhaps what we might miss is that they also take on those challenges and make sacrifices or changes to live happy ever after. Just because you allowed it last week, doesn’t mean you have to this week, just because its always been that way, doesn’t mean that has to continue. Life is often short, precious and wasted, seize this quote and make your life accountable you may just end up with a better quality of life, or at worst finally get that cupboard organised.

A key to success is to start before you’re ready

Quote by Marie Forleo

I’m not sure I really need to write any more than the quote already states, but then what would be the point in owning this domain?

For several years I ran a project for GCSE pupils at my school, they were at risk of not getting the grades the government desires. It was based on the seven principles of success, each fortnight I’d do a mini assembly based on one of the principles for them, set them a task and they would collect signatures in their booklets for completing the task – extra certificates etc along the way.

Guess what. It worked. Guess why? They didn’t over think the mountain in front of them…in small challenges, in small achievable time frames, they blossomed. I took the project over from one of my managers who left during the projects first year. Each pupil also had a mentor to cheer them on, plus me as head cheerleader.

I think if you look at a mountain it seems unachievable, I’m thinking of the mountain of washing permanently in my home but load by load, sock by sock it gets done.

However, this post isn’t about taking small steps – it about not thinking and taking ONE step. Anxiety is prevalent in our society, we are creating children that are even more anxious, lack resilience and have spent most of their life, if not all of it bubble wrapped – I totally get why but to succeed there has to be some action, motion and movement towards the end goal.

When I look back on the years gone by, I don’t want to not have tried to achieve my dreams. However, dreams (well mine anyway) are often huge task, big lifestyle changes and they feel so distant I often don’t know where to start, if I’m honest I’ll never be ready to take huge leaps but I can do something.

I probably keep my own motion going by breaking down larger goal into smaller tasks, so below I’ve listed a few small things that have worked for me.

  • Eat healthier – swap white to brown rice
  • Exercise more – find a five minute YouTube exercise class and just do it
  • Read more – swap the apps on my phone for a 15minute reading session
  • Bake more – add the ingredients to my next shop

What actions have you found have helped you climb your mountain?

Fight for the fairy tale, it does exist.

Quote by joy.F

I truly believe that we are all writing our own stories, chapter by chapter life is a series of new beginnings, challenges and climaxes…and of course the odd dark spell and baddy comes along and tries to jeopardise the heroine/ hero from achieving their purpose. I have chosen to live a life of happy ever after, but even with my most positive intentions, I often get thrown off course and have to realign myself.

Many people don’t come close to their purpose, to living aligned or anywhere near the fairy tale they desire. I think I know why, as yesterday I had an epiphany in the supermarket.

I was helping out with our school production and there was a large gap of time between the end of my working day and the show starting, so I decided to take myself to a local supermarket and purchase something for my dinner. It was a sunny and rare hot day in the UK and I really wanted a salad but also to indulge myself. Leaves don’t really cut it?

Solace in a supermarket can actually be rather therapeutic. So I wondered around the isles and placed a few of my favourite things in my basket. I looked down and found that my basket was unreservedly a middle class snobby delight. Who had I become? The content included:

  • Tyrell’s sea salt and black pepper crisps
  • a rainbow themed salad bowl (it was so pretty)
  • Sushi
  • Equinox Kombucha (some sort of fermented goodness in a glass bottle)

I giggled with shame…I went back to my office and enjoyed every bite. I felt good, knew what i’d chosen was the best – felt indulged and also rather healthy (if we excuse the crisps) but still I felt embarrassed. Until I saw this quote this morning. It was then that I realised that in that moment I had eaten and drunk exactly what I desired. As far as I’m aware Cinderella didn’t run off with the sleazy bloke at the bar (although we never really learn much about the prince in that particular story?), Snow white doesn’t marry the first forrest animal to come along and Pocahontas doesn’t hook up with the village idiot. So why shouldn’t my basket be full of what I want? Just like my life.

I’m buying it, I’m writing my own fairy tale… more importantly why am I judging my own basket? Forget social pressure and media corruption – perhaps (yup this is my epiphany) we don’t feel we are worth the fairy tale. Our own judgements block us from how we want to look, feel and in my case – the basket of food I purchase.

So listen up fellow fairy tale lovers, you ARE creating your own story. Sure, it’s likely to never have a Disney logo but just like my shopping basket it can be the best or at least what you want it to be. Don’t judge yourself – you’re totally worth it. Have your own back. If Mr Right hasn’t shown up, if Mrs Right now is lacking in basket delights…shop around. That’s why we have so many shops!

Be the fairy tale, but not Cinderella’s – be your own damsel and rescue yourself. Oh and never settle – fight for your happily ever after and never worry if anyone else agrees with it, they’re busy writing their own fairy tale…or haven’t had the wisdom to read this blog and have sad judgmental baskets of shopping.

She acts like summer and walks like rain

Lyrics by Train.

Sometimes a quote speaks to my soul. This is me at my very best.

My happy place. Light on my feet, smelling like sunshine (citrus and sun tan lotion spring to mind). Summer is carefree, adventurous and for me a vacation from the dark winter nights and long working days.

Sometimes summer can be ‘too’ hot and you can feel frazzled, sore and sweaty – rain can be torrential, devastating to flood plains and has horrendous qualities in abundance and drought. When I lose my sense of centre and get ‘scorched from the sun’ or when my work load is drowning me…. I go to this quote. It instantly makes me feel happy. It lifts my soul and this is why I find the power of reading and writing to be therapeutic. It can realign and invigorate me. So in case you thought this blog had all the answers, it’s simply a place where I remind myself of my inner summer. Keep shining, dance in the rain and find your centre spot because that’s winning and everything else is just a distraction.

Change can be sunshine if you let it in.

Frankly it’s spring in the UK and I’m freezing…I’ve got more knitwear on right now that Marks and Spencer’s.

They say change is as good as a break, I’d say that haven’t been to the right locations, but it is true that change gives you a renewed energy, it allows you to see new pathways and even if at first it’s a little daunting, in time it becomes second nature.

Currently my son is reading a book about the metamorphosis of butterflies. As you turn the pages the butterfly makes the alterations it goes through look effortless. So much so, that in my next life I may have a go at it myself. There’s the larva stage where it seems life is one giant all you can eat buffet, the Pupa stage where you sleep for weeks and then you emerge like you’re on a reality TV show with shimmer and delight. How amazing must the butterfly feel when it flies after being a large slime-less slug stuck to the floor? How blooming terrified must it be to wake up one morning and find you’ve sprouted wings?

Wings; to be free, to glide and to see the world through an entirely new perspective. Those changes make my ability to change the washing detergent I use look ridiculous.

Life is short and much like the quote suggests, sunshine can come with change. Just like night changes to day, seasons change…we change, sometimes for the better, sometimes with effort and always with a new perspective.

May your days be filled with sunshine.

Remind yourself that you cannot fail at being you.

Quote by Wayne Dyer.

As we approach the end of the first month of 2018, I felt this quote resonated with every human on the planet who had set a new goal, challenge or New Years resolution. Particularly those who have already hung up their gym pass, quit the diet or has found their soul drowned in another bowl of soup… it happens.

For goal setting targets I’ve written several posts Click here to read why it pays to be stubborn but at perhaps a time that you have ‘failed’ ‘given up’ or realised that dry January isn’t an excuse to drink gin for a month (*I was sad when I heard this too) I want to remind you that you are awesome just the way you are. Sounds sickly I know, but it’s true. You are good at being you. I promise that if you have kids they love our imperfections and all; although I wouldn’t directly ask them. This week I curled my hair and my son (four years old) told me I looked like Rapunzel. As a Disney fan I was blown away – until he corrected me that it was the witch he was thinking of.

I don’t want to bring my children up in a world where perfection is ‘plastic fantastic’ where desirable looks can only be accomplished by a thousand filters and the social media acceptance of an abundance of hearts, likes and comments. I don’t want humans to become robotic and only come in ‘one size fits all’, our imperfections create our beauty.

We all have talents that vary from scientist geniuses, medicinal wizards and international superstars… I make a fantastic roast, can occupy a toddler in a car for multiple hours and give good hugs (not all at the same time), I make a good friend, kind teacher and feel accomplished most days.

As we jump into February I urge you to take five minutes, pour a coffee and write a list of everything you like about yourself. I advise you to be kind to yourself; treat yourself to those new jeans, the shoes or that ‘thing’ that floats your boat. If I was a doctor I would prescribe you with a luxury treatment, a trip to the cinema, or a date night that’s overdue… if you have a new born then I’m adding a hot drink to that prescription. Allow February to be the month you made time for self love, for gratitude for all you do have. I promise it’s more than most.

You’re the best and being you. You’re already winning in 2018, you don’t need to change a thing.

I’m realistic, I expect miracles

Quote by Wayne Dyer

This quote totally sums me up. My head is in the clouds and my high heels are firmly on the ground.

At the beginning of a new year it’s naturally to look ahead, to book new adventures and reflect on the previous year. It’s an opportunity to readjust and redirect your journey.

I’m not particularly a fan of making drastic changes, I’ve worked too hard to love me as me. As a result a new year doesn’t need to be a new you either. But a new direction, motivation or goal is always a blessing.

As a Teacher I have two New Years; the school year and the calendar year. Back in September I set a goal to see more theatre and I’m excelling, this is something I hope to continue into 2018. I’m always appreciative of any recommendations.

Travel is always a goal for me. I can’t wait to see where my suitcase and passport will take us this year.

If you are setting goals, make sure you are also open to opportunities and experiencing an abundant lifestyle rather than just creating a list of all the things you are going to cut out. After all, magical things can only happen when you are open to receiving them.

As I jump into the pool of January 2018 I am totally realistic about how epic it will be. I also hope that miracles bless your year and look forward to the magic that lies ahead.