June

The middle of the year. The month when summer officially begins. My birthday month and the last year in my forties…

I know it is just another year, age doesn’t really bother me that much, but the last year of my forties, just when did that happen??

When I eventually move into my fifties next year, I know it will just be another birthday, I know trumpets will not sound, but it will feel like a shift, this I know. I look in the mirror these days and I know I am looking older. I want to see the skin of my twenties, tight, plump, but alas this is no longer what looks back at me. I don’t consider myself vain, but my heart sinks just a tiny little bit.

I hate to say it, but I get tired more quickly too. I am busy, but 20 years ago I could be this busy {more actually} and it wouldn’t bother me a jot! And I know, between then and now there has been a lot, a child, illness, death and oh so many good times {laugh lines to prove that!) so how could I {we} ever look the way I {we} did?

I know this post sounds melancholy, but that isn’t my intention. I actually intend, next year {every year} to celebrate life {being alive} with all its guts and glory. It’s thrown some shit at me, but I am still here, breathing and with so very much to be grateful for.

So, as I move into the last year of my forties, I salute you, I salute myself, I salute life because I am here living it when so many aren’t.

Happy June!

here & now

20a4b096-feae-4cf0-a2cc-996d0027d847The day has been a grey and quiet one.

My son and I have just enjoyed a lasagne, a somewhat made up recipe, but delicious all the same. I even made my own white sauce which did threaten to be lumpy, but I managed to pull it back. I don’t think I will buy white sauce ever again {my usual cheat} because it was pretty simple to make and tasted lots better : )

I am trying to fill the house with a sense that spring is not so far away.

Daffodils on the windowsill remind me of my mum. Monday will be the two year anniversary of her death. We have come a long way.

There is so much unrest in our world, but we all have to do what we can with what we have and hope that it will all come out in the wash {so to say}.

I have joined Instagram {very late to that party} and I have to say, I rather like it! You can find me here, should you so wish.

How is your here & now?

 

Sweetness

img_9665So, it’s the last day of Just Five Things, a beautiful offering from Michelle.

I haven’t been as present as I would have liked to have been, but I have been there, sometimes commenting, sometimes just reading. Every time I have visited over the last few weeks I have been touched by the warmth and the feeling of a place of safety. Michelle has a gift for creating such a place.

Even when I haven’t had time to make lists, just reading Michelle’s email every morning has been the sweetest thing. Reading the open and beautiful lists and words from those who have gathered is a delight.

On this last day I share some of my sweetness with you…

~ Hearing my son come in from college {all is right with the world}

~ Listening to him talk of the new friendships he is making with like-minded people {this fills my heart up}

~ Our dog’s sleepy face

~ A kind text from a friend

~ Witnessing and capturing the beautiful late afternoon light

Happy Friday and wishing you a sweet weekend xx

Delight

img_9517It is the second day of Just Five Things, a beautiful offering from Michelle and today we are looking at ‘delight’. Like Michelle, I feel that delight got lost somewhere between the end of my childhood and the beginning of my son’s. Not that things didn’t bring delight during those years, but I think, like the excitement for Christmas, there are a few years when it just isn’t the same.

I think delight got replaced with excitement during my teens and twenties, the excitement of new experiences, the excitement of falling in love, the excitement of striding out on my own.

Maybe delight is the domain of the child, maybe it’s the domain of maturity, I don’t know. But, what I do know is that I feel it. It’s a cup of tea in my favourite mug. It’s there as I listen to my son talk about his aspirations. It’s the greeting I get from our dog when I return home. It’s in the lighting of a candle. It’s in friendship.

Thank you Michelle, for really making me think today, about delight and about the stuff of life.

Just five things

img_9454Today is the first day of Michelle’s beautiful offering Just Five Things. Even though I am not an avid list-maker, I understand their power and I am looking forward very much to the coming days.

Today’s list-making has the word gratitude at it’s heart, which is such a great transition from participating in Gratitude Week over the past seven day.

Right now I am grateful for…

moving forward ~ candles ~ online community ~ friends ~ a warm home

Have a great Monday x

 

 

The rough with the smooth

img_9040As I lay in bed this morning reading Michelle’s letter in my inbox {which is such a delight}, it really struck a chord with me. The feeling of overwhelm that sometimes washes over us, not just the seemingly endless to-dos, but emotional overwhelm too, can be really hard to deal with…

Wind back to yesterday and I was in the middle of an emotional overwhelm meltdown. I am not sure where it came from, but it did. It was not a good day. There was shouting. There were things said. There were tears. There was silence…

Yesterday was the rough. But, with the rough comes the smooth. With the shouting comes the forgiveness and for this I am grateful. I am grateful that we don’t hold grudges. That we say sorry. That we still love through it all.

I have closed my eyes, I have opened them and I am beginning again…thank you Michelle for this timely reminder x

Forgiveness says you are given another chance to make a new beginning ~ Desmond Tutu

Gratitude Week 2016

 

here & now

img_9032I am sat alone in the quiet with the swish of traffic outside and an every-now-and-then sigh from the dog. There is the promise of a bright October day slowly emerging through the grey.

There is a week off work sprawling before me like an unfamiliar and exciting landscape {do you like the drama I am creating there??}. The reality may not be quite so exciting, but I am going to make the most of it, not matter what.

Lately, I have been reflecting on how life changes, new habits and ways of being slip in, almost unnoticed. As my son gets older he wants more time on his own and while I totally get this I have still found it hard at times. Then, I remember the 16 nearly 17 year old me and I get it even more. He needs time alone, not because he doesn’t want to be with us, he needs time alone because that is healthy. So, I have decided that I am not going to worry I just need to let it be.

I have finished this book {eventually!}. A thoroughly enjoyable and unusual read that made me cry and had me fascinated, too. I have just started reading this and am enjoying it so far. The characters are interesting, both living and dead, and I look forward to reading more.

This weekend I am planning to make this. I made a golden syrup cake last weekend and it was delicious and like the recipe says, it really does improve with age.

How is your here & now, I would love to know?

here & now

005There is a dry, sunny afternoon which has been desperately longed for and is currently being enjoyed.

Life will hopefully be a little less hectic.

The garden has gone crazy with the rain and humidity, self-seeding plants popping up all over the place, many of them Nigella, which I adore.

My son has finished school, I felt like crying when I was ironing his uniform for the very last time. His school career has been a generally happy one and the next step is college. I am excited for all that life holds for him, and a little scared too.

Paperwork has been sorted…amazing how much it lifts a weight, don’t you think?

I have missed posting here for the past few weeks. What did I miss??

Wishing you a lovely day and all good things in your here & now.

here & now…

pink

…I am optimistic. I now know that the desperate pain of grief fades and is replaced with happy memories. I also know the longing to see my mum again will never go away, but I am okay with that.

This time of year reminds me so much of my mum. She was an avid gardener and loved the busyness and doing this season brings. Last year spring felt a little bittersweet, but this year, not in the midst of fresh grief, I can fondly remember my mum in her garden.

There are some things in life that we cannot change, we just have to learn to live with them {or without them}.

Here & now I want to thank you for visiting me and taking time to comment, for the connection. This space was somewhere I could ‘escape to’ last year when I couldn’t express myself in any other way. I will be ever grateful for that and for you.

Have a great week x

 

this week {words & pictures}

this week - friday 26 february 2016

Hello and how are you? Good week? I hope so.

First of all I cannot believe it is the last weekend of February. March is just around the corner and with it, hopefully, Spring…hooray! That said, the weather this week has been lovely, lots of sun, but very low temperatures. There was a good frost most morning this week, which I actually quite like. There is something about seeing my own breath that makes me feel like a child again.

I attended a friend’s mum’s funeral this week, it was a lovely and personal service, but incredibly sad all the same. I could put myself in my friend’s shoes just over a year ago and my heart went out to her. As with these things, we had a glass of wine and a lot of laughter afterwards, I think laughing is a kind of relief after a funeral.

My husband and I went to see my son in a music festival last night. It was the longest concert I have ever been to {I thought we might have to bed down for the night at one point} but the band my son is in sounded great and they came second in their category!

It is the last week of 28 Moments and I will be SO sad when it has ended, I have loved every minute…thank you, thank you, thank you Michelle. This week’s theme is home and I wrote this as response to a prompt, so I thought I would share it here too…

Home is where my heart is and where I hold the hearts of my loved ones close.
It is where I have laughed until I have cried.
It is where despair has descended bringing with it darkness, but where light has eventually penetrated.
It is where I nuzzled my son’s milky cheeks, laid him next to me and listened to his gurgling as the sun came up.
It is where we have shouted and silence has come as we thought of our cruel words and then realised how much love we have and the way our lives have been woven together over the years…and how lucky we are.
It is the place where friends come to eat and drink and laugh and be themselves.
It is where my mum was when I saw her last…she loved our home and that makes me so happy.
It is where I feel like me.
It is where a million memories have been made and are remembered, often.
It is the place I fall asleep and know all will be well.
It is HOME.
 …
 Wishing you a happy Friday and a good weekend x
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