Wednesday, 20 September 2017
Hello my lovelies ad welcome to another Wonderful Wednesday. Once again we are all change as I have moved back to university this week. We are now living in a flat and out of university halls. The few days before coming back to Plymouth is always weird. A frenzy of seeing everyone to say goodbye and packing. So this week seems to have gone past in a flash. The pace of life slows as I get back to university. This week is all about settling in and catching up before lectures start again on Monday. Enough with the life update and on to the things that have been making me smile this week.
1. Breakfast in bed. What way is there to start the day than a massive bowl of granola and fruit eaten leisurely in bed. I followed that up with a spot of yoga and felt all refreshed and ready for the day.
2. Beautiful skies. There's been some absolute stonkers of sunsets this week. I have realised that from the back of the flat you have a gorgeous view of the sun setting so most evenings you can find me sat on the fire escape stairs just staring at the sky. I have noticed how early it's getting dark though or is that just me?
3. Birthdays. As soon as we got back to university it was time to celebrate my flatmate's birthday. We had organised plenty of surprises for her and had a great night. I felt especially fabulous in a red dress that made me feel like the dancing lady emoji.
4. Ice breakers. Every time you meet groups of people there's the same icebreakers trotted out again and again. Mini interviews, finding out things we have in common and questions. This week though we used a few with people we already knew. Although it was hard to think of new facts about yourself it was great to get to know people even better and definitely brought out a few surprises!
5. Brownies. I think I go about chocolate brownies far too much! But the university put on a street food market every month and the brownies are the highlight. Gooey and chocolatey I can't resist. This time I chose a raspberry and white chocolate chip brownie, perfect for eating over catch ups.
6. Double bed. Finally having moved into our new flat I have a double bed. This is the first time in my life that I've had a double bed. I'm making the most of it by starfishing and generally getting such good sleep.
So that's a little round up of the week. It seems like everything starts with a B this week, but that's just Bloody Beautiful. Anyway enough alliteration and on with more wonderful: These lovely ladies also run down their weeks Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma, you join in on twitter or instagram with #wonderfulwednesday or comment the good things below.
P.s. I have just jumped on the bandwagon of instagram (a whole lot late I know), but I'll be sharing all the lovely moments all week long over there. I'm @appreciate_day if you're interested.
Wednesday, 13 September 2017
This week finds me just buzzing away. So many ideas and lot more sleep has got me all kinds of excited. I guess the impending return to university has got me excited as well. There's something about new beginnings that always makes me motivated. So let's see what other lovely things have got me excited this week...
1. Yoga. I don't know if it's because I've slept funny or what, but my shoulders and back have felt all kinds of tight and achey. This week I did a little yoga video designed to help out and cor blimey, I couldn't believe how good it felt. Not only did it relax all my muscles, t made me stop and just concentrate on one thing for 15 minutes and it's not often that happens. I felt blimming marvellous afterwards and I can't wait to get this into my routine.
2. Storm. I don't know about you but I love a storm. Obviously I'm not talking the fiercely dangerous ones that poor America is facing right now. I've talking the thunder and lightening that we experience. I just love watching the power of nature. It's just so awe inspiring. Plus on Monday night it cleared the air and gave way to the most beautiful golden sunset which made me think autumn was on its way.
3. Dreams. I think it's so important to talk about your dreams and hopes. To give them audible space in the world so that they are one step closer to reality. My friends and I spent an evening talking about dreams. Everything from travelling adventures to things we'd love to do and career goals. These are beautiful, brave, ambitious ladies and I'm so happy to call them my friends.
4. Belly Laughs. When you haven't seen your friend for months then the best activity is pancakes and belly laughs. We went to cute little cafe with its own resident pygmy goats and caught up with everything.
5. Educating Greater Manchester. I've really got into this program as I do with every single one of these series. The show is heartwarming and shows the true resilience and kindness of teenagers. A bit of a tearjerker, but great telly.
6. Family. Having spent most of my summer (and the year at university) away from my family it's mean lovely this week to spend some quality time with them and as it mostly involves eating too I'm really not complaining.
7. A new coat. I hate shopping with a vengeance, but this week I managed a productive trip and the crowning glory was a coat. This coat is a tailored grey long jacket. Honestly when I put it on I feel put together and powerful. I just think this is going to be a piece of clothing that I can put on and feel confident and that gets a big thumbs up from me.
That's another week gone then, they are certainly racing through. This time next week I will be persuading the new first years what an amazing sport cricket is and getting them to join. There's even more at these lovely ladies' blogs: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma and get in touch with yours by commenting or using the hashtag #wonderfulwednesday on twitter or instagram.
Monday, 11 September 2017
It has been absolutely ages since I wrote in this little spot. I felt like a broken record at the start of my last few Wonderful Wednesday posts. I was just exhausted and rushed off my feet. As I finally sit down to reflect on my summer I realise I have crammed so much in. I have worked, I've travelled round the country and I've spent some quality time with friends and family. I have so much to tell you all, but if I wrote in depth about it all it would be long enough to submit for my dissertation. And whilst none of you would sit through long enough to read it, the idea of me sitting down to write it fills me with dread. So here's the latest. The bite size version of the best bits of the summer:
Sunny Days. I spent a summer sat outside and running cricket festivals. My idea of a perfect summer. I did a bit of moaning though - long days and drizzle do that to a person - but on sunny days where I sat watching the cricket I realised how lucky I was to have a cool summer job that I enjoyed. I'd much much rather by there than inside or waiting tables. For one I'm far too clumsy for that!
Drunk chats with best friends. An hour and a half after I walked through the door from a summer of work I was back out and off on holiday. 4 days spent with my oldest closest friends who slip into familiar territory right away. But it was one night sat tipsy in the coolest bar where we chatted about everything. We were vulnerable, we laughed together and they reminded why I value them so highly.
Chasing dreams. Never before have I crossed the country to follow my feelings. Never before have I gone to meet someone I'd previously only met once. But I did. I acted and followed my heart for once. I lay myself vulnerable and made a friend for life.
The day my ears rung and my legs hurt. A trip to London with my mum where she recreated her youth through a Pink Floyd exhibition and we walked through the east end of London for hours getting more hungry and trying random local foods.
Stargazing. Never have I had such a magical evening as the one spent on the top of the Malvern hills watching a meteor shower. We took hot chips up and found a rock that encased us so I felt like I was laying back and watching the sky like it was a massive cinema screen. We watched the sun set and as the sky darkened the show began. The stars were phenomenal. I've never seen such a display. We chatted about life into the night and perked our selves up with emergency chocolate at work the next day.
Phone Calls into the night. When you're both so sleepy but you don't want to put the phone down because you want to keep hearing their voice. Yeah that.
Let me know the best bits of your summer
Thursday, 10 August 2017
I can't tell you how shattered I am. So shattered that I somehow didn't notice it was Wednesday all day. It took until I sat in the car on the drive home from work to think through the week and realise that I needed to write this little post. Thankfully this week has been full of little nuggets of awesomeness which have shone through the long days. Without further ado let's get stuck in.
1. A fixed shower. After a long day all I want is a really nice, warm shower. In my room at work I had the worst shower ever. Only 2 of the little holes worked and the water came out in such a jet that it was painful. It felt like you were in a tornado because the pressure had the shower curtain flying everywhere. So when my shower was fixed this week it was absolute bliss. The first shower after a long day
2. Smelling the roses. My goodness have I smelled some phenomenal roses this week. I think this rain n the air has really brought out their scents. My mum came to stay and we spent ages walking round smelling every rose in gardens, parks and the castle grounds we went to. There was one rose in particular that we had to stop and smell every single time we walked into town. It had such an amazing smell.
3. Beautiful moon. Walking back home as the sky just turns it's inky blue the moon was so full and bright. My mum and I sat on a bench overlooking cricket friends and chatted lit only my the brightness of the moon.
4. Cake. All of the cake, eaten all of the time. I'm fairly certain that's the main activity my mum and I do together.
5. Owls. The other night I fell asleep to the call of an owl. It was such a tiny moment, but one that stuck in my memory. Reminds me of the wildlife all around us even living in a town.
6. Naff jokes. This week I've had a group of umpires that have kept me entertained. The jokes are straight out of a cracker and pretty lame, but they put a smile on my face. These guys had me laughing all day and if that's not something to make you happy, I don't know what is.
7. Tapas. Mum and I found a little independent restaurant for dinner on Sunday. The place was pretty empty, but the tapas was amazing. We had pulled pork and patatas bravas with sweet potato fries as a side, because sweet potato fries are always a good idea. But the highlight was the halloumi. It was battered and deep fried and served with a spicy salsa. The batter was so light and crispy and the cheese was gooey. Heaven. Followed by the most flavoursome passionfruit parfait, it was a brilliant meal.
8. Little train. Around the field I run activities on there's a tiny train track and I've never seen anything on it until tonight. Someone was driving this tiny miniature steam train round the track and giving rides. It was lovely to see how this small thing brought so much joy.
9. Golden light. The deep evenings where the sunsets and bathes everything in a golden light.
So this is a late, but decent #wonderfulwednesday. There's even more at these lovely ladies' blogs: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma and get in touch with yours by commenting or using the hashtag #wonderfulwednesday on twitter or instagram.
Wednesday, 2 August 2017
You find me snuggled in bed with a mug of hot chocolate and a slice of rocky road. The above scenes of this weekend, of clear blue skies, are almost forgotten through the rain we keep having. As I drove over the hills this evening I couldn't even make out the houses in the foreground so thick was the cloud that immersed us. However, this week has been home to some wonderful moments that need to be captured so it's quickly on with the happy things.
1. Visits. My lovely flatmate came to visit me on Sunday. It's the first day off I've had since I've been here. We explored the hills and ate picnics. It was lovely to have her around and I will miss her so much as next time I see her will be the middle of September back in Plymouth.
2. Absolute views. Blooming heck the views from the top of the hill were killer. We could see for absolutely miles. With the wind blowing we stood at the top of the hill and rushed to catch our breath as the wind took our voices away. We huddled together as we saw the weather change across the horizon. When one side of the hill had a beautiful sunshiney day and we saw the rain come in from the other side. We rushed back to the car just as the first spots came down, but had to stop to take in the amazing rainbow above.
3. A meal eaten slowly. On Saturday night we all had an evening off here and we went out for a lovely meal. It was good to take a bit of time to get to know each other away from working together. Also, pretty much every meal we eat is eaten at such pace. We have to wolf it down as we're off to set up pitches, get matches on or run evening activities. Therefore to savour and eat at your own pace feels like a luxury. Chatting over a meal just doesn't happen usually so it was nice to take our time.
4. Learning. That if you feel it in your gut that you should do something, you should jolly well get on and do it. That you should let your heart take over sometimes. That you must be true to your feelings.
5. Driving songs. Some days all you need is an absolute banger of a tune to come on the radio to set you up for the day. On a sluggish, drizzly Tuesday having a good dance in my car on the way to work was tonic for the soul.
6. Blackberries. This time of year always makes me think of walking the family dog and her racing us to eat all the blackberries off the brambles along the paths. She had such a delicate touch to pick them off with her mouth without getting any of the stalk. This week whilst walking I found some brambles and tasted the sharp sweetness again and it took me back.
Short and sweet this week, but plenty of wonderful. There's even more at these lovely ladies' blogs: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma and get in touch with yours by commenting or using the hashtag #wonderfulwednesday on twitter or instagram.
Wednesday, 26 July 2017
Hello, lovely people. After the sunshine of yesterday, I'm hiding inside from the rain. The week seems to have gone by in a flash. The days are sort of merging into one as they're long and pretty similar. Therefore I've felt that it's even more important to seek out the tiny moments that differentiate the days.
1. Views. This place that I'm living is just beautiful. Every morning I have a 10 minute drive over the Malvern hills and the view is just beautiful. You can see over the 3 counties and it opens out for miles.
2. Cricket wins. The excitement surrounding the women's world cup has been amazing. There's been some fantastic close games which have got everyone so enthusiastic about it. And an England win has been fantastic. We had a group of U13 girls who were just buzzing about it. What an inspiration.
3. Stories from umpires. A lot of my day is spent making cups of tea for umpires. This means I get all of their stories which are just hilarious.
4. Lovely comments. This week I finished running my first festival on my own. I feel rushed off my feet and more than needed a night off before I start the next one today, but I had some really lovely comments from coaches, parents and players which made it worthwhile. Knowing I had put a parent leaving their child for the first time at ease and made a coach's life a little easier is what I do it for.
5. Doughnut after a long day. My boss finished work last night and as she walked up to our rooms she brought me a doughnut. After a long day, that sugar rush and the fact that she'd thought of me really hit the spot.
6. A really good stretch. You know when you're just a bit achy and clicky. This week has definitely been one of those. I haven't done much exercise and I've needed to get moving. Therefore I've taken a little bit of time in the mornings to properly stretch my body and do a bit of yoga. Makes me feel so much better.
7. Deep breathes. When you're walking on your own to breakfast and the place is so still and quiet. Just taking the time to breathe and take in the fresh crisp air that shows we're going to have a scorcher of a day. The tiny droplets of dew collecting on the spider's webs as my feet create pathways. Yeah, those tiny moments.
That's it for this week. Now it's your turn to share the fab moments of the week and check out the rest of the gang: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma's blogs and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #WonderfulWednesday.
Wednesday, 19 July 2017
Morning, and how the devil are you?
I'm bright and breezy today as I've started my summer job on Sunday. I'm staying in beautiful surroundings and watching lots and lots of cricket. Pretty perfect. Let's just keep all our fingers crossed that it doesn't rain. This week has been lovely. A mix of catching up, packing and getting stuck into a new job. I really love new beginnings and it fills me with enthusiasm.
1. Watching England. This weekend I made the trip down to Bristol to stay with a friend. We are both equally as cricket obsessed and we spent Saturday watching England play. It was blimming cold and I thanked myself for bringing jeans to change into when it got way too cold for shorts! However, we did have a brilliant day and makes me even more excited as England have made it to the World Cup final on Saturday!!
2. Being cooked for. This is such a little pleasure. Where I'm working I get 3 cooked meals everyday. No cooking, no washing up and the food is lovely.
3. Wall to wall cricket. My job is organising and watching cricket. So I'm going to spent my summer doing something I really love and that's definitely a winner. Being paid is just a bonus!
4. Lidl bakery section. During a long drive I like to take plenty of stops and it was on one of these that I found the delight that is the lidl bakery selection. It has such a selection of hot and cold items at cheap cheap prices. I had a veg pizza and a cinnamon bun all for just over a pound.
5. Meeting people. This one seems to feature loads, but I really enjoy meeting new people and finding out about their stories. This week it was my friend's family. Over a Chinese we discussed upcoming drives to Mongolia, camping and obviously cricket.
6. Time to read. This job gives me time and I have just picked up a book that I was midway through a year or so ago. It's an incredibly interesting read weighing up the notion of whether performance in sport or business comes through talent or practise. The book is Bounce by Matthew Syed if you are interested and I fully recommend it.
7. Tea and cake. As a little farewell before I left to work, my grandma, my aunt and I headed out for cake. Whilst they drank tea, I had a lovely glass of fresh apple juice to wash down the chocolate cookie and brownie that I shared. It was lovely to catch up and spent a bit of time with them.
That's it for this week. It's been a week of change, but exciting new things. Now it's your turn to hare the fab moments of the week and check out the rest of the gang: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma's blogs and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #WonderfulWednesday.
Wednesday, 12 July 2017
Well this has been one of the most lovely and tiring weeks. I have packed in so much as I'm only home for such a short space of time, but also made time for doing lovely things that make me happy. It's been such a lovely blend of socialising and time spent completely for me.
1. Spontaneous Adventures. I've already written about it here, but this week my university flatmate came to stay with me on the spur of the moment. We had a magical, amazing couple of days noticing the awesomeness of nature and even making friends with this little guy.
2. Coaching. Cricket coaching has taken a bit of a back seat whilst I've been at university so it was great to get stuck in this week. I have helped out at everything from school sessions to club sessions with the tiny people and loved every second. Makes me realise how much I miss it and how important cricket is in my life.
3. Breakfast in bed. On a lazy Friday morning I made myself a breakfast of warm croissants spread with nutella and a mountain of fresh cherries that our neighbour had brought around. He'd picked them the previous day off the tree in his garden. Yummy breakfast provided by the kindness of neighbours.
4. The best shower. You know when you have used such yummy smelling items and your hair feels all soft and damp. I put on a pair of new pj shorts with the faintest glittery thread through the stripe with my softest, big university tshirt on. I was so snug and comfy that I slept like a baby.
5. Cricket commentary. After a very hot morning of coaching, I spent the afternoon relaxing and listening to the cricket commentary. There's something so chilled about it that I may have even had a little nap.
6. Desert Island Discs. Enter Sue Perkins. I loved her already and now that has multiplied exponentially. She's so real and talks matter of factly about her life. I just can't describe how brilliant it was. You'll have to listen to it yourself - it's on iplayer now!
7. Drinks on painted benches. That drink happened to be an elderflower cordial and it was a lovely refresh. Drank outside under the canopy of a little theatre with 2 wonderful friends whilst we filled each other in with our lives. Then we strolled off in search of cake.
8. Meals. My friend cooked burgers with oozy cheese centres. I ate an amazing roasted squash and goats cheese tart. I had a stonking cricket tea complete with homemade brownie. I guess what I'm trying to say is the food this week has been a bit of alright!
9. Sharing photos. This week I had the chance to catch up with my Grandma and aunt. They've never been to Plymouth or met any of my friends down there. They also don't own computers so never see photos online. Therefore, it was lovely to flick through the memories of the year through photos with them.
10. The smell of rain. We have heat and then the storm comes to cool us. I can't fully describe the smell of summer rain, but it's fresh and grassy and cleanses the air. Plus it's such a super relaxing noise to fall asleep to with the window open a crack to let the freshness in.
11. First barley harvest. There's something very nostalgic about the first harvest. It really brings out the country bumpkin in me. Where the neighbours used to let me ride in the combine or help drive the tractors. That dusty, strawy smell that only comes from the combine.
Now I thought last week was going to be a bumper edition, but this has definitely pipped it to the post. Such a lovely week. This week I'm looking forward to a trip to Bristol to stay with a friend and watch some cricket and starting my summer job - also cricket based obviously! Now it's your turn to hare the fab moments of the week and check out the rest of the gang: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma's blogs and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #WonderfulWednesday.
Friday, 7 July 2017
Spontaneity means inviting your university flatmate to stay the next night and her just jumping in the car to see you. It means unplanned adventures and cramming as much into the day as possible. It means following the things that make you happy and sitting a while to ponder how amazing things are. Here's what happened when she made the journey on Wednesday.
On Wednesday night she drove down to mine and as soon as she was out of the car we were adventuring. We decided on an evening meal of pizzas and ventured to the nearby pub (The King's Head in Brockdish). This pub has a light airy feel mixed with traditional beams and features which makes it perfect for a summer's evening. The pizza is fabulous and we sat catching up.
After stuffing ourselves silly we walked my dog Ben as the sunset ready for an early night because we had quite the mission in the morning.
My alarm went off at half 3 in the morning and only the excitement of the day kept my from rolling over, but the day before we had decided we would go to the beach to watch the sunrise. So with the sky still dark we set off in the car. Glimmers of light started to edge the sky, but as we reached the coast the performance really started.
We sat and drank it in. The colours changing fast over the splashing waves. We at a picnic breakfast of fruit and croissants and talked. About the future and life and now. We sat there for 2 hours until the chill of the air had us back in the car for a warm up.
Then we walked. With no aim, but to see as much of the beach as we could. To shout 'dog' at every fluffy bundle of cuteness that came towards us and to marvel in people's early morning yoga and swim sessions. We fantasised about what it would be like to live this close to such a beautiful still beach. To be able to come to the beach in the morning before work and how that would kick start our days.
We found ourselves at the end of the pier when the weather changed. The clear skies faded as the clouds filled in. There was a strange pinkish glow just before we saw the first crack of lightening. The sky gave us another show as we huddled under the shelter of the pier. Held together as the thunder shook the wood beneath our feet.
Once the rain subsided we got back into the car and criss-crossed Suffolk. We stopped in Framlingham to see the castle on the hill and picnicked in the shadows of the windmill on the green. After a few more cuddles with Ben our time together was up. My flatmate had to drive back to work today, but we made so much out of the time we had. We marvelled in the nature around us and the spectacular views. Good food, packed days and good company.
It reminded me that days where I have no plans that I should get outside. Make something happen or see the world.
Wednesday, 5 July 2017
It's now been two weeks since the last Wonderful Wednesday post. I never intended to miss a week, but this time last week I was very sleep deprived and swamped by mountains of paperwork. On Friday I finished my placement and therefore my first year at university. The last couple of days were really intense, but now I'm back home and enjoying the summer. Sometimes you've just got to take a couple of days of intense work to get to the relaxing bit.
1. Balmy evenings. I just love summer evenings when it's warm enough to sit outside as the sunsets. I spent a Saturday evening as I did a whistle stop trip back home in the garden. I caught up with my brother, talking about anything and everything, as Ben wound himself round our feet. He was keen for cuddles and jumped up onto our laps.
2. Happiness. Whilst I was on placement we took the children on a trip to the beach. All the children had an amazing day, but one stuck in my head. This boy, who is usually so serious, was the happiest I had ever seen him on that beach. He worked so well with the others. The moment that will stick in my memory was when he danced around the sand pyramid he had just made. His face was full of joy. My new goal is to be as happy as he was that day.
3. Packed Lunches. Last weekend I attended another of my cricket course days. I woke ridiculously early having travelled the day before to find my Mum had made me a packed lunch. It was a little thing, but I was so appreciative. I felt like a child again when I went to eat it and found a note telling how much she loved me.
4. The kindness of friends. My university accommodation contract ran out a week before I finished placement and this week my friend took me in. I spent a week sleeping on a camping mattress on her living room floor.
5. Surprises. This Saturday I finally travelled back home for the summer. My two best friends came to pick me up from the train station, but only one knew. We carefully planned that the other wouldn't know until she saw me on the platform. It was such a lovely moment to see her face light up and we had a group hug. It has been several months since I've seen those girls. We spent the night eating fajitas and booking a girls holiday.
6. Lay ins. Much needed I can tell you. The last week of placement was intense and left very little time for sleep. It's lovely to be back in my own bed and having lazy mornings. Also big shout out to Come Dine With Me. I'd forgotten the restorative powers of watching ridiculous people eating mediocre food in a bid to host the best dinner party.
7. Being given flowers. How gorgeous is this bunch of flowers? Along with lots of very sweet cards from the children on placement, I was also given these beautiful blooms. It's nice to be appreciated for the work you do.
8. Glass of prosecco. My friend and I finished placement on Friday night and we could finally put the folders of paperwork down. Her boyfriend bought us a bottle of prosecco to celebrate and we munched on pizzas whilst putting the world to rights. It's was good to just relax for the first time that week.
9. Driving. I'm back and straight into the driving seat of my car. I'd forgotten how much I missed the time that's completely yours when you drive on your own. I think this is why I have had to seek out more moments of solitude whilst being at uni. Last night the weather was warm and I had a drive back home after coaching as the sun set. My windows were down, blowing my hair everywhere, and the music was turned up loud. I watched the colours of the sky change as I belted out the words to the songs on the radio.
10. Stalls on the side of the road. This is something you don't find in the centre of town: stalls on the side of the road selling everything from eggs to veg. The one I found this week had bunches of the most brilliant blue cornflowers for just 30p. There was no way I could drive past emptyhanded so I came back with gifts for my mum.
11. A win. This weekend I have played my first game back with my club team. It was an opportunity to catch up with all the ladies that I haven't seen whilst I've been at uni. Although I ached considerably afterwards (blaming the month I didn't do exercise), I had a great time and we bagged a win too.
Well you've got yourself a bumper edition this week. So much happy-making lurking in between some exhausting days. Now it's over to you... tell me what's made your week special and check out the rest of the gang: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma's blogs and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #WonderfulWednesday.
Wednesday, 21 June 2017
Well isn't it blooming boiling? Not complaining, it's gorgeous, but I have no idea how to dress to main professionalism whilst not turning into a sweaty mess. As it is I'm failing. If anyone has any ideas please send them my way. Despite the hot weather frying my brain, I'm actually buzzing. I've met some exciting people this week who have really enthused me. Their zest for life has got me ready to explore and follow lots of interests.
1. Honeysuckle. Walking through the dusk air and coming across a massive trail of honeysuckle. I smelled it first. The heady aroma which reminds me of summer evenings and the bush that winds it's way around the cherry blossom tree at home.
2. The young blind lad explaining how he uses his stick to the older blind ice cream seller. It was just a lovely moment of intergenerational community seen on the streets of Plymouth. Nuff said.
3. Watching the sun set. I bang on about sunsets all of the time, but there's something magical about the whole sky turning a range of beautiful colours. It makes me calm. One better, watching the sun set over the sea. Pure bliss
4. Ice cream in the freezer. Did I mention it was warm? Well as I walk in the door after a long day at placement all I've been craving is something cool. Thankfully past me thought of this and stocked the freezer with ice creams. So my evening routine is now completed with magnum in hand.
5. Cold showers. Some days nothing will cool you down like a dunk in a cold shower and all day I've spent waiting for the moment I can jump in. It also means I can have wet hair for the next hour (let's be honest, it's probably even less due to the incredible drying powers of the weather) which keeps me cooler too.
6. The comfort of a sports bra. My friend and I headed out for a drink and a gossip on Sunday and I tried to dress for the heat. Having moseyed around the flat in pjs for the morning to keep cool I really didn't want to be wearing anything uncomfy. Enter the sports bra. I've been wearing them everyday and, without wires, they are so much more pleasant.
7. Strawberry and Elderflower wine. A revelation for summery evenings, this wine is all fruity and light. I've been serving it ice cold and it's a perfect refreshing drink.
8. Meeting interesting people. Cos blimey oh Riley, people are interesting. If you take the time to find out their story then you'll never guess all the amazing passions and experiences that they have. Talking to people is always time well spent and inspires me to pursue as many things in life as possible.
That's all from a very early morning list maker. Even at half 6 I'm feeling warm, but looking forward to another day in the sun. Now over to you... tell me what's made your week special and check out the rest of the gang: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma's blogs and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #WonderfulWednesday.
Sunday, 18 June 2017
The university year is coming to an end.
We've meandered along, knowing that time was passing, but not realising the quickness of its progress. With days rolling into one another, I felt I would always be here. But summer has come and with it the end of the year.
The end became clear as my friends started to leave. They all have homes to go to over the summer. Some a mere hour away from Plymouth, but like me, others are further afield. Train journeys with time for naps and even planes to negotiate.
As people left we became reflective. Seeking out the moments that would stay with us from the past year. Mulling over them as if sharing them would ingrain the memory onto our brain, where we could keep it forever. The sharing of moments highlighted the amazing year we had and made everyone want to cling on tighter. To stay a few more days. But the days kept powering on and before long I was giving last goodbyes. Eating last meals together and hugging for that second longer than I would usually.
The trickle of leavers started, but it wasn't until I found myself with only one more night until I was alone in the flat that it came into sharp focus.
My last flatmate and one night left.
With that night we were spontaneous. We walked and chatted. We ate a large portion of chips, whilst sitting watching the many boats out to sea. The sun scorched, reminding us of the imminence of summer. As we were suitably full and the sea breeze started to chill, we wandered into a bar.
We admired the beautiful people, who were dressed up ready for a night out. Dressed to impress. The happy, laughing atmosphere reflective of our year. The year hadn't all been smiles, but the end of the year was a cause for celebration. I had met so many amazing people and experienced lots of new and exciting things.
With a cocktail in hand, we started wondering and making up stories for the people around us. The two ladies, who were very well turned out, sharing a bottle of champers from an ice bucket. The guy sat waiting for his date. His knee involuntarily tapping, showing his nervousness. The cackling group of ladies in the corner. Displays of happiness and closeness clearly visible. And the guy who persisted on his mission to throw a ball of paper into a glass the other end of the group table and finally ran a lap of the bar in honour of his success.
As the music got louder and the singing started we took our leave. Out into the still, warm air just as the sky was turning a deep, blush pink. We picked our way across rocks and down to the water's edge. We sat, curled in our togetherness, watching the sun as it set. The colours caressing the barely perseptable waves so that the sea was gilded with the sun's last light. Everything was still as we looked out to sea. Both of us quiet, drinking in the moment.
That moment will forever be the end of first year. The sun setting, the full stop to the year. The happiness and bustle of the bar in complete contrast to the calm of looking out to sea, but both reminiscent of the experiences I have had at university.
Wednesday, 14 June 2017
This sign, that I saw on the wall on my walk to the supermarket, pretty much sums up the week. Love really is greater than hate. Life's pretty short and it's so important to share love and let those you love know how much they mean to you. Living at uni is a funny thing. You spend half of your year miles away from family and friends, but just when it's time to go home and see them, you have to wrench yourself away from the friends you've made there. So it's a time for hugs, for kind words and for love always. To be honest that's what the whole world needs too.
1. Enchiladas. On the last dinner before my friend went come for the summer she cooked a massive dish of enchiladas. A spicy, warming meal after a rainy, long day on placement was just perfect. I'm going to miss her loads over the summer so it was important we said a proper goodbye.
2. Doughnuts. Friday morning I was flagging big time. Placement does make you tired so I was so thankful when a lovely teaching assistant brought around a bag of doughnuts. The sugary hit was exactly what I needed to speed through the rest of the day.
3. Light mornings. My 6.30am wake up call doesn't feel such a struggle when I have sun streaming through the window. On Tuesday I woke up to blue skies through my skylight and it made a world of difference. It was lovely to see the skip in everyone's step and the cheery 'Morning's that greeted me.
4. Pencil skirts. Because coordinating my outfit for placement makes me feel like I can take on the world. My placement wardrobe consists of pencil skirts, tailored trousers and buttoned up shirts, which all make me feel so put together. The more put together I feel, the more confident so that's got to be up there!
5. Dog Spotting. To be honest this is a daily occurrence in my life, but going to new places means new opportunities to make friends with hounds. The morning walk through the woods gives plenty of opportunities and just this morning I had a cuddle with some adorable Labradors. Made my morning brighter.
6. Milkshakes. More importantly, milkshakes of the chocolate orange variety sipped slowly whilst catching up with flatmates. When they are so thick and creamy that you need a spoon to shovel in the remnants between giggles and possibly the best/ weirdest turtle impression. You never knew I had such extraordinary talents!
7. Motivating messages. I woke up on Monday morning to a message from my friend. It was just lovely about how she knew I could be an amazing teacher and detailing lots of lovely things she thought about me. It was the perfect motivation I needed to propel me out of bed and skipping along ready to be observed.
So that's my week and what's made me smile. Now over to you... tell me what's made your week special and check out the rest of the gang: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma's blogs and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #Wonderfulwednesday.
Sunday, 11 June 2017
Every part of my body tells a story.
That scar on right elbow, a mark of when I tried to handstand in a park. On the concrete path that was sloping away from me and fell forward straight onto my elbow. But the memory of trying to do gymnastics with lovely flatmates and the giggles we had lives on with the scar. And taking the skin off it because I ran and jumped headlong onto a crash mat and won the challenge to see who could slide on it the furthest.
My lips that still need a ton of moisturising lip balm on them after a summer two years ago when I sunburnt them so much that they turned purple. But the hot weather of that summer brings memories of coaching cricket every single day for 3 months and the happy, proud moments that those days brought.
The scars on my legs that my best friend in high school told everyone happened when I was bitten by a shark. She told the story to protect me, so I didn't have explain to everyone. They actually mark a 3 year old's incredible survival from meningitis. A horrible disease that I'm incredibly lucky only marked me with scars.
The freckles that exist all year round, but multiply with even a sniff of sunshine. They link me to my mum. The same dapple over our nose connecting us both and making it obvious that I am her daughter.
The long straight scar that bisects my right foot. The cut made by a surgeon to realign my ankle and help a child walk again. The little girl that was in wheelchair and learnt to walk gradually with the help of a zimmer frame.
The arms with muscles. The right hand arm more defined from every cricket ball I have thrown or bowled. They show the afternoons spent playing the game I love. With teammates and colleagues who have shaped the way I am as a person. I am proud of the strength I have and my body's ability to play sport.
My body is so much more than it's appearance because behind every part of it is meaning and the story of my experience.
Wednesday, 7 June 2017
This week I'm tired. I'm tired of all the hurt in the world. The attack on Saturday night felt like a physical punch to the stomach. I worried about all my loved ones. I worried for all those innocent people. I worried.
I'm also mega tired as I have started placement. Maybe that's what has made me that bit more emotional, but being on and working with children all day is exhausting. So this week we need a dose of appreciating the good things more than most...
1. A drive over the moors. Sunday saw a 4 hour round trip drive through the most beautiful Dartmoor roads. They wound and bent. Up the steepest of slopes to reach the top and look over valleys. We were surrounded by green. And to get to a cricket ground with a sea view. Where I could walk a couple of metres from the boundary rope onto the beach. A pretty perfect location.
2. Late night chats. When sat sipping water to alleviate tomorrow's inevitable headache. With my best friend, slumped on her bed. Words tangled and stumbled over.
3. Flippy dresses. Those ones with floaty skirts worn to awards evenings set right next to the marina. With my teammates all dressed up celebrating an amazing year of playing cricket together. There was possibly an award for yours truly chucked in for good measure.
4. Pizza just when you need it. When you have a thumping headache and stomach cramps and you just about manage to crawl into bed at the end of the day. Then your flatmate walks in with pizza and sweet potato chips, you know you've got a keeper!
5. Music in the park. Just strolling through town and happening upon a little community music festival. We whiled away a couple of hours listening to local bands and having a go at flamenco dancing.
6. Wild Garlic. My walk from the bus to placement takes me through a little wood. This week we've had so many rain showers, but the smell after them is so pungent. It's the smell of greenness and growing mixed with the wild garlic in the woods.
7. Long Hugs. Because I won't see people for the next few months or even longer. People are graduating, moving on. We are all dispersing across the country for summer. Those hugs will be the last moments of holding together until we see each other again.
That's it for this week. For more from the gang head to: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma's blogs and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #Wonderfulwednesday.
Wednesday, 31 May 2017
Well I almost feel like I'm on holiday right now. I've had a week and a half off and am in full relaxation mode. Probably not for the best as I start placement on Monday, but for now I'm making the most of it. I say this snuggled in bed with the sun streaming through the window and the comfiest big tshirt and new paisley pj shorts on. We've had a swelter of a week which may or may not have caused a little bit of burn, but has meant I've been outside at every opportunity.
1. Best cake ever. I'm talking layers of brownie, butter cream and salted caramel. We took it away to sit overlooking the sea when we realised we had no idea how to eat the thing without a fork. Needless to say we managed after a quick scurry through bags for tissues.
2. Beach BBQs. The hottest day of the year and one of my flatmate's last night in Plymouth was spent eating a bbq overlooking the sea. We stuffed rolls with burgers and bacon and ate the ultimate bbq food of potato salad. Then after a little rest needed after maybe one burger too many, we played cricket with cans for wickets and much hilarity.
3. Golf. Trying something new is always a bit scary. There's that trepidation that you're going to be absolutely rubbish it at and a physical skill seems to be worse somehow. With this in mind me and a friend decided to have a go at pitch and putt golf and had such a good time. Yes we were a bit rubbish, but we laughed along together, gave each other hints and improved loads. It was so nice to something out of our comfort zones and have a go.
4. Party Tea. Just to celebrate Friday and because I can, on Friday I made myself what my mum used to describe as party tea. Cutting my sandwiches up into little triangles and then having little bits on the plate - tomatoes, salad, potato salad and crisps. All arranged symmetrically on the plate.
5. Lightening. We had the most awesome storm on Friday night. The air had been heavy and ready for a storm all day and when the rain came it cleared the air. But following the downpour came the lightening. Lightening that lit the sky up every few seconds with absolutely no thunder. I stood outside and just drunk it in because nature is pretty phenomenal.
6. Mooching round Totnes and more good cake. I am truly honoured that this little blog and #wonderfulwednesday has brought so many lovely ladies into my life. Michelle from Life Outside London is no exception. In fact a mooch around Totnes with her whilst talking about anything and everything gave me all the warm and fuzzies. If you aren't following her, you need to. She's a babe and knows the best places for cake!
7. Just the right temperature. For lazing in the park with my book in shorts and a tshirt without worrying about burning. Burning has been a real issue for me this week. I have been peak ginger by burning whilst smothered in sun cream so a little dip in heat was pleasant. Also it was a perfect dog watching spot.
8. Last game with my uni girls. 5 hours of laughter and trying our absolute best. I have a little thing that grinds my gears in cricket and it's when players turn up to play and then get no involvement in the match. Luckily I play in a team that makes sure everyone gets an even chance, so we all made awesome contributions. Also special mention for an absolutely stonking cricket tea which meant running was infinitely harder afterwards, but totally worth it.
Wow, that's been a lovely list of things that have made me happy. Writing them all down makes me relive all those wonderful memories and never fails to bring a smile to my face. For more lovely moments head over to the rest of the gang: Sally, Jo, Helen, Michelle, Sarah, Cat, Sam, El , Kerri, Mimmi, Martina , Peta, Kelly and Emma and use the hashtag on twitter and instagram - #Wonderfulwednesday.