Category Archives: Pre2016

Recent Reads – October

I’ve taken to the idea of doing one summary post to look at what I’ve been reading rather than take up lots of posts by doing individual ones, so that is what I’m going to do. I’ve got my reading mojo back and feel like I am devouring books over the last couple of weeks, well at least compared to what I had been like.

Speaking in Bones


This was an audiobook and I struggled to get into it, but once I started listening regularly I was fine. I love this series and it’s nice to see the character development and relationship development as I read through. I liked this story it was interesting and kept me hooked. I also didn’t guess the ending, which I like, as sometimes its too easy to do so with crime books. I didn’t like the narrator though, so think I’ll stick to reading the next one myself.

The Assassins Blade


I have really enjoyed Sarah Maas’s books so far and it made sense to read the prequel book to understand the main character better. I also have the 4th book ready on my bookshelf, but feel I want to re-read the others first. I enjoyed this book and it gave me insight into where the character came from and how she ended up where we first meet he in Throne of Glass. I wouldn’t necessarily start with this book as I don’t think it matters if you’ve read a few of the main series first. Overall though I enjoyed it and it was face based and kept me glued to the pages.

Close Encounters of the Furred Kind


I’ve been waiting for this book for a while and it did not disappoint. I love reading about The Bear and his family. It makes me look at my cats and their character traits and imagine what they are thinking. I also hold conversations with them on a daily basis and it is nice to know other people do to. I also like that this breaks the ‘crazy-cat lady’ stereotype as this is about a guy and his four cats. yes he does have a girlfriend, but really it’s about Tom. If you like cats or like well written descriptions of places these books are great.

I also have re-read the first three Harry Potter books this last month. I needed something familiar and comforting while I was interviewing and wait to hear on my new job. These were exactly what I needed and stimulated my recent reading frenzy. So that six books in the last month!

I’ve currently got three books on the go:

  • Currently reading – Mindy Kaling’s Is everybody hanging out with me?
  • Currently listening to as bed time –  Death Masks by Jim Butcher
  • Currently listening to at work – The Rosie Effect

I also have a to-read shelf containing:

  • Court of Thorns and Roses
  • Percy Jackson’s Guide to the Greek Myths
  • Queen of Shadows
  • The Girl on the Train (borrowed from my friend Stacey)
  • Career of Evil (borrowing from my friend Ingrid)
  • Books 4 to 7 of Harry Potter to re-read too!

I love reading and books at the moment. I can’t wait to get to each and every single one of these books. It’s so nice to delve into different worlds and become the characters on the pages. For me it is an escape, but also time spent learning and growing and experiencing things I won’t get from my own life.



Currently – October 15 Edition

I love reading these kinds of posts. They are similar to the Coffee Date posts and they allow the reader to delve into the life of the blogger a little bit more. Maybe I’m just nosy, but I find them fascinating. So I decided to give them ago. This is based on the format Running With Spoons uses, but I’ve adapted slightly to fit my own life a bit better.

Current Book – The Assassin’s Blade

I treated some new books when I heard I got the job I really wanted internally at work, and this is the first one I’ve started to read. I’m enjoying learning the history of Celena as it is hinted in the other books and I feel I’m really getting to know the character better.

Current Music – The Script, The Energy Never Dies

I love The Script and there is always one song on each of their albums I play over and over and this is the current one.

Current Non-Guilty Pleasure – The X-Files

I bought myself the entire tv series on dvd as a treat for completing my Solent Swim last month and I am already on season three! A few times a week I pop a dvd in and have it on in the background as I potter around the house or working from home.

Current Beauty Product – Porefessional

I’m in the middle of reassessing my makeup routine as am struggling with breakouts. I want to scale it all back and focus on maintaining good skin and just focusing on my eyes, so my primer has been playing a vital role in combating my current blotchy skin as I scale back on the foundation.

Current Drink – Peanut Hottie

I love this as a evening or bedtime drink now the weather has turned colder. It is not as sweet as hot chocolate and fills my craving for peanut butter. I wasn’t sure I would like it, but now I want to try the chocolate version too as I very much enjoy it and we are heading into cosy nights in reading books covered in blankets on the sofa.

Current Food – Figs!

Figs are back in season I am having to limit myself to four a day. I just eat a whole pack and love them so much just as they are. I think I am buying the whole stock each time I go into the local shop. My mum has a fig tree, but we don’t really have the weather to ripen the fruit so there are always lots of green ones, but rarely any make it through. I would love a fig tree, but recently was given an apple tree so I’ll try with that one first.

Current Obsession – Colouring

I have fallen for the colouring craze and have both of Joanna Basford colouring books for adults and love them. I can’t wait for the next one even though I haven’t even finsihed the first one  yet!

Current Craving – Crusty Bread

All I want is bread at the moment. The  last couple of weekends I’ve been up the highstreet at the right time to get some lovely fresh crusty bread and ever since it is all I have been craving. Lovely fresh ham sandwiches – so good!

Current Need – Moisturiser

My skin is so dry and my current moisturiser is just not cutting it. I need to take a trip to Boots to go through the different ones available to find one that works for me.

Current Bane of My Existence – My office clutter

For whatever reason I have never been able to keep my office space at home tidy. It is the room where I let things pile up and I hate it. It also became the cats room for a while, but I have changed their litter trays and moved them to the bathroom so have my office back. SO now I need to sort it out and create or re-create the space I want for working and blogging.

Current Indulgence – Early bed times

Whenever I can I am having early bed times. I’m getting into my warm bed with my lavender melter on and enjoying reading a book or listening to a podcast or audiobook while relaxing and letting the day fall behind me. I really appreciate the times I can do this and go out of my way to make sure I can when I need to.

Current Procrastination – Hanging Up My Clothes

Am I the only one who washes their clothes and then ends up leaving the stuff in the dryer or in the basket clean? I am so bad. I’ve had to re-wash stuff as they have ended up so creased that things cannot be worn outside, and I don’t own an iron!

Current Confession – I get into my pyjamas straight after work

When I am not doing anything on an evening I get straight into my pyjamas and love it. The only time it feels awkward is when I neighbour comes round as they have taken in a parcel for me, but then I just try to throw on a hoodie. I live in pyjamas really.

Current Quote – this. 

Current Excitement – Harry Potter Halloween

Me and my friend Ingrid have been planning our Harry Potter Halloween for a while and I am so excited. We are going to watch lots of the movies and have booked to go to the Studio Tour on Halloween night! It’s going to be so much fun!

Current Mood – Determined

I feel great right now. I am excited about my job and my life and want to hit the ground running with all the changes happening.

Life Lately – Autumn Edition

I’ve been quiet on the blog for a while. I’ve sat down a few times to write something, but nothing felt right, so I let myself be quiet and focus on other things.

It has been busy though; so busy that it’s time to make sure I take a break. I’ve had the odd day here and there where I have hibernated away and not left the house. I’ve been dwelling on things too. Always things I don’t have any control over and therefore have no need to worry about, and yet I do.

I’ve been being super hard on myself and after what I was calling a ‘rubbish run’ last week, my friend Sonia said straight to my face; ‘STOP! Stop being so hard on yourself!’ It was exactly what I needed to hear. I was so happy someone said it to me. No one ever has really, at least not in those simple, straight, no-fuss words.

It really made me thinking. Sure it was focused on my attitude when thinking about running progress, but it applies to all aspects of my life. I am super hard on myself all the time. I put pressure and expectations on myself that are only coming from my own thoughts. If anyone else was saying these things to me I would tell them to ‘f*** off’, but I let myself treat myself this way. I’ve decided to focus on this and shift things to take the pressure off and that includes how I talk to myself inside my head.

There have been lots of good things happening and that is what I am going to focus on today!

New Job – I’ll be starting anew job at the beginning of November. I spent pretty much the whole of September in interview mode and it was exhausting. I had three interviews in three weeks and learnt a lot; so that by the time I got offered the job I really wanted I had some great practice. Now it is all about tidying up and finishing off my current work and leaving it in a great place for whoever takes my place.

Holidays – I’ve booked three holidays in the last few weeks. Firstly I’ve booked a skiing trip to Austria as celebration of my new job. A trip to Japan with my mum later next year, which will be the first big trip I’ve done in a while. Thirdly I’ve booked a walking trip around Mt Blanc for 2017! I’m so excited by these as they have been on my list for so long and I cannot wait. It also gives me something to look forward to over the next couple of years and to get fit for.

Swimming and Running – These are the things I’ve been struggling with a little bit, running especially. I feel like I’m starting again with both as I’ve hurt my shoulder during my big swim and running just plain hurts. This is where I really need to go easy on myself and do it because I enjoy it rather than force myself to because I think I should. So I’m changing my approach and taking the pressure off.

TV Obsessions – I’ve been watching The X-Files from the beginning and I love it. I can’t believe how creepy some of the episodes are and I remember watching them late at night when I was in secondary school!  Also Doctor Who has started again on TV and I love it. I am such a binge watcher of TV shows. I’m so impatient when it comes to having to wait for the next episode nowadays. I used to re-watch episodes of Buffy and Angel until the next episode aired, but now I just find something else to get hooked on!

Back to the books – I treated myself to some new books this month as I miss the feel of a good book and also going to a bookshop to buy them. So I also did that – actually went and wandered around a bookshop having a good browse before buying anything. I wish there was a bigger bookshop near me though so I could disappear into the stacks and spend a whole day there if I wanted.

Kitty Cats – my cats have been living it up with some sunny weather in the garden and also catching all the spiders that try to come into the house.  I’m also enjoying that they are becoming a bit more affectionate and Pippin now walks across my lap. Neither of them will sit on my lap without being held there, but I’ll train them to love it. I’m starting to look what I can get them for Christmas. I want something they can play with when I’m not there, but that won’t get pulled apart and then lost when I’m not there. I’m still looking for ping pong ball that they have made disappear!

Other Upcoming Excitements:

  • Visiting friends in Cardiff
  • Harry Potter Halloween
  • Brussels for the Christmas market

Overall life is great and focusing on what makes me happy and brings me joy is the way forward. We all have to deal with the crap times, but it’s how we overcome those times and our thoughts about them that matter. A lot of my negative thinking is learned and I was to teach myself new, better ways to think about things. I realised at the weekend when catching up with my parents that several things that I used to do and think do not sit right with me anymore and that is okay. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks as it’s none of my business, but it does matter what I think about myself.

Adventures in Coffee… Southsea Coffee

While in Portsmouth for my swim I explored the local area and with a search found an independent coffee shop in Southsea, who use Hasbean Coffee.


It was a busy Sunday morning but worth the wait for a flat white and a cinnamon bun in the sunshine. I didn’t realise they did brunch, otherwise I would have planned btter, but the coffee and cake were fabulous.

It got busier as time passed so I didn’t feel I could linger with my journal. I would love to go back during a quieter risk to really soak in the atmosphere and try a few more of their options.


I would recommend heading out of the main town area to find this coffee shop. I know I’ll be going back next time I’m in the area.