Hello winter

Every year winter arrives and each year I have a- head-in-the-sand approach to the impending cold weather. I wait until it is really cold before packing away my summer clothes and taking out jerseys and stockings. Each year I bravely wear sandals and pretend my toes aren’t frozen, I wear dresses in drizzly weather and I pretend that winter isn’t going to happen. I get alot of odd looks and comments but it doesn’t stop me.

Of course it doesn’t stop the seasons from changing. So then I have to admit defeat, pack away the summer clothes and haul out the winter things. Put away the sandals (why are summer clothes and shoes SO much cuter than winter clothes and boots?) and find my scarves and thermal spencers.

Locate warm jim jams and the ancient pajama top I’ve got with the woolly sheep – very old (but is too comfy to throw out). The socks with owls on it. The fluffy winter gown. The grey cardigan that is so comfortable.

Winter means hot chocolate with marshmallows as a mid afternoon snack on a chilly afternoon.

It means layering up before working out and always feeling good afterwards because in winter it can feel like an effort going out in the cold after work. But I’m always glad I’ve done it afterwards and cannot wait to do it again.

It means reading for hours and not feeling like I should be out there making the most of the weather (as said weather is cold). For some reason reading indoors on a beautiful day is difficult for me!

Winter means hearty soups and comfort food. Tea tastes even better (if that is possible). It means quiet evenings under soft blankets on the couch.

It means pressing snooze in the mornings and relishing in those extra few minutes. Before the get-dressed-super-quick-frenzy.

It means putting the heater on in the mornings (before my laptop) and defrosting before the day starts at the office.

So while I always dread the change of weather I’m not going to spend all winter complaining that it is cold. I’m going to embrace the chilly season and make the most of it.

What about you? What is your favourite part about winter?

xx

Weekly gratitude

I was feeling quite optimistic for the week on Monday – hence my bubbly post at the start of the week full of positive energy!

But this week has been a seriously long one to be honest.

Both hubby and I are battling this flu. We obviously couldn’t gym and healthy eating seemed to fly out the window along with all my good intentions.

This week just seemed to bring many reasons to practice patience.  Which was difficult and being ill means I cannot get on the treadmill and sweat my stress out.  So in a nutshell this week is not going to go down as a massive favourite but you know what?  As long as it had some good parts and I can be grateful for those moments, I’m winning. 

Fridays mean linking up with Lindsay http://theflynnigans.com/ Charlotte http://mypixieblog.com/ and Beth http://coffeeuntilcocktailsblog.com/  with my list of what made me happy this week:

  • My parents are back home after my Dad’s 3 ops on his eyes.
  • Fun weekend in Hermanus.  Left work an hour early last week and drove through.  Had a great time away – nachos for dinner on Friday, and the next day drinks at Cocos and a braai.  Pleasant weather which was great (I’ve accepted winter is here!)  We came home on Sunday afternoon feeling so relaxed.
  • New lipstick
  • A good nights sleep last night.
  • Getting back into my reading groove.  I’m reading two books at once and both are filled with suspense – real page turners!

This weekend we are taking it easy at home and focusing on getting better.  I look forward to alot of reading and tea drinking while we keep warm and get rid of this horrendous flu. No plans, nobody we have to see and just two days offline sounds so good right now.

xx

Monday motivation

Picture source: https://www.pexels.com/

Why is it that we are so quick to moan about Mondays? My reasons are usually:

  • The weekend is behind us, it is back to work and back into our routines
  • Mondays always seem to have a longer to-do list than other days
  • It means grocery shopping and trying to think of something healthy for dinner
  • Errands and chores which don’t always fill one with excitement.  Laundry really is a never ending story!
  • An e-mail box that seems extra full
  • Friday seems very far away

Whatever your reasons are, I suggest looking at Monday from a different perspective.  It is the beginning of a new week which makes it a start of something new.  And fresh starts can be fun. 

So while I sit here with the heater on full blast, trying to ignore another cold I’m not going to complain.  I’m going to list what I’m excited for right now:

  • Healthy dinners with lots of vegetables this week
  • Reading before bed and having early nights.
  • Working on articles to submit as a guest blogger (I’m super excited about this and have lots of ideas).
  • Wearing the new pink scarf I bought over the weekend. 
  • Using up vouchers I earned and stocking up on some random household stuff as well as a few treats for the weekend
  • Getting spreadsheets updated early so that is done and dusted until next month.
  • Watching “This is us” under a blanket on the couch with a cup of tea
  • Sorting out my gift drawer. In an attempt to be more organised I’ve got a designated gift drawer at home. Perfect for last minute gifts. Going to be honest here and admit I ate one of the presents last week. Moving on.
  • Downloading photos from the weekend. Weather was great in Hermanus.
  • Getting rid of this cold (finally!) and getting back to gym.  Treadmill withdrawal symptoms? YES.

Making a list of what you are looking forward to is so much more productive than moaning about a Monday.  And life is too short to only live for Fridays.

Here is to a great week.

xx

Gratitude list

Picture source: http://www.pexels.com

This has been quite a week and I must say I’m glad the weekend is one sleep away! Sometimes when things are stressful or life gets extra busy it is essential to take a step back and make a list of what we are grateful for. So before this afternoon gets away from me, here is my list at the moment:

  • The Dr is happy with my Dad’s eye. 3 ops in less than a week is quite something and my parents are glad to be on their way home today. I just hope and pray that my Dad’s eye heals quickly and that his recovery is smooth and as comfortable as possible. It is difficult when a loved one isn’t well. Even more so, when they live far away.
  • Planning my articles which I am going to submit as a guest blogger for CMIYC (Catch Me If You Can) which is an amazing running community for Women in South Africa. I’m so excited! More details to follow soon 🙂
  • Making my fitness goal this week. I timed my workouts perfectly because as of now I’m fighting a sore throat. Wave goodbye to flu: ✔ Greet sore throat: ✔
  • Switching summer and winter clothes. I have been putting this off. I’ve also been shivering in dresses and sandals so yesterday I organised our cupboards and now I feel ready for winter.
  • Putting a Woolies gift card to good use yesterday. Instead of buying another pair of shoes, I stocked up on some winter work clothes for hubby and I yesterday. Some shirts for hubby. A cardigan, slippers and some thermal goodies for me. Not exactly sexy but very sensible in the cold weather!

xx

May goals and mantras

As today is the first Monday of the month it means linking up with Lindsay http://theflynnigans.com/ Charlotte http://mypixieblog.com/ and Beth http://coffeeuntilcocktailsblog.com/ with monthly goals and mantras

First let me do a recap of my April goals:

  • Continue going to yoga
  • Complete meditation course I started last month. Missed the last 2 sessions thanks to the flu.
  • Make time for good friends
  • Go for some pampering at a spa. Nope – still sitting with a gift voucher.
  • Read 2 books
  • Update blog 10 times and continue doing link ups

May goals:

  • Get back into gym routine
  • Go for some spa pampering
  • Read 3 books
  • Update blog 8 times
  • Sort study cupboard
  • Do wardrobe switch – it is winter now and I’m still wearing sandals

Mantra for the month:

“Forgive quickly. Kiss slowly. Love truly. Laugh uncontrollably and never forget anything that made you smile” – Audrey Hepburn

May has been quite a month so far. My Dad is having another eye op this afternoon and I’m praying all goes smoothly. I keep saying this but having family live far away is difficult.

I got some exciting news last week. I applied to be a guest blogger for an online magazine for an amazing all women running community. I’ll talk more about this soon.

Here is to a great May.

xx

April recap – what is new with you? Link up

Anybody else wonder where April flew to? Well since today is the first Thursday of the month, lets do a recap while I link up with the lovely Kirsten from http://www.seeyouinaporridge.com/

A friend of mine organised a girls night one Saturday evening at a lovely restaurant with great food. We had a lot of laughs and the dessert was so good.

I had bad flu mid April and worked from home a few days so I didn’t infect everyone. Felt dreadful and had zero energy but was thankfully better by the long weekend.

Even though it is autumn we still had some amazing weather. Hubby and I celebrated Easter in Wilderness up the Garden Route and it was beautiful and warm. This pic is from Brenton-on-Sea. T-shirts and shorts weather – it was awesome.

We went to Hermanus at the end of April and had a relaxing weekend. Planned it quite spontaneously which is my favourite way to do a mini getaway.

We left work after lunch on the Friday and arrived to gorgeous weather.


The Walker Bay Extreme was taking place (this is a sports adventure festival) and we sat in one of our favourite pub restaurants watching participants.

We were so fortunate with the weather and it was like the last bit of summer.

Enjoyed an amazing braai on the Friday and Saturday evening and felt so chilled out.

We ate way too many hot cross buns and cheese. As you can see hubby likes his extra toasty.

I missed the last 2 sessions of the meditation course I signed up for due to being ill. I did more yoga (before being flattened with the flu). As always the yoga relaxed and centered me.

Had a fun games night with my in-laws one evening after work. We had cake and tea and a ton of laughs.

Hubby did some work in our upstairs bathroom. Sanding and repainting the ceiling and then re-sealing the shower.

The month ended on a stressful note. At the very end of April my parents traveled to George and my Dad had an emergency eye op. They did a biopsy and the results are not in yet. I heard that my Dad has to have another op tomorrow afternoon and it is so hard when family aren’t 5 minutes away. I just hope and pray that my Dad’s Dr can sort out his eye and that healing can begin. He has been through so much since he had a cataract op last year. Usually my parents don’t want to worry me with health issues because they know I stress out but they have kept me in the loop with my Dad’s eye issues and these ops. I’m grateful for technology which has made the distance seem a bit less the past few days.

Now we wait to see if the second op is a success.

What was your April like?

xx

For the love of lists

Each Monday I plan my week.  I take a few minutes while e-mails are downloading to give some thought to the 7 days ahead and what I’d like to achieve.  Some of it is work deadlines.  Some of it is housework that I’d like to stay on top of.  I schedule which days we are going grocery shopping and any after hours appointments or get togethers.  I also plan our gym workouts, see when I can fit in a yoga session and anything else that we need to do during the week goes into my diary.

Then I finish my tea and get on with the morning, the day and eventually the week.  I love ticking things off each day.  I’m a list maker and have been ever since I discovered my love of stationery and pretty pens.

But last week when hit with the flu I had to take a step back.  I couldn’t go to gym.  I couldn’t go to yoga.  I had to cancel my meditation session on Wednesday.  I battled to stay on top of the laundry.  I barely had the energy to do anything other that switch my laptop on and work from home.  I felt like I got nothing done and my diary looked so empty!

They say we are human beings and not human doings but why do we find it so difficult to take a step back and put that list down?  As much as I enjoy my list making, it does add a sense of pressure.  If I have a week where I don’t leave a massive amounts of ticks and completed notes why do I feel that I haven’t had a productive week?  I felt super meh about not being able to gym last week (and again this week) but the truth is you can do damage if you work out when sick.  Sometimes ticking something off a list simply isn’t worth it.

So this week while I recover and take it slow I need to remind myself that list or no list, it is still a good week.  Our evenings have been pretty quiet and unrushed.  Last night instead of doing the grocery shopping we got take aways and had a lovely evening on the couch just catching up on our favourite shows. 

And just because my planner isn’t filled with ticks and everything isn’t completed doesn’t mean a week hasn’t been good. 

And I need to remember that.

xx

Easter weekend recap

Last week seemed to just go on for ages.  I was off ill on Monday with this horrible flu.  I thought it was an allergy then gave in and admitted it was a cold and then it went and had the audacity to get worse and turn into the awful flu (seriously – how rude!) 

I couldn’t stop coughing and on Tuesday I worked from home.  Came in on Wednesday and then worked from home on Thursday.  Hoped I could get rid of this by the long weekend as we had planned a trip to Wilderness up the Garden Route.  I felt better by Friday morning but packed in my various flu remedies just in case.  We left around 5:00am for our long awaited Easter weekend and arrived to stunning weather (sunny, warm with zero wind) in Wilderness.  Had breakfast at Flava and then drove to Brenton-on-Sea. 

It didn’t feel like autumn at all and we were walking around in shorts and t-shirts.  Drove back and checked into our favourite B&B Mont Fleur (it is always such a treat staying here and we always feel so welcome). 

We walked down to Cocomo which is a super relaxed restaurant with live music each evening.  Had a chilled afternoon and enjoyed some jalapeno poppers (they taste SO good) with our drinks.  Then made our way to Pomodoro which is over the road and has the best pizza I’ve ever had.  We always go to this restaurant when we are in Wilderness – the food is outstanding.

It was getting chilly when we left and walked back (grateful I packed in a warm top).  We showered and then ate chocolate and fell into bed exhausted after an early start.

Saturday the weather was a bit cooler but still beautiful.  Hubby went to take some photos at Brenton-on-Sea and I stayed in bed with a cup of tea and a book!  We had breakfast at the guesthouse and then went to the market in Sedgefield.  I bought another pretty mosaic tortoise for the garden – they actually sell the kits to decorate your own but I went with the ready-made one!  Will post a pic soon.

We had a relaxed afternoon much like on Friday and it was great.  Took a slow walk to Cocomos and had a great table next to the fireplace while we had some drinks.  Dinner at Pomodoro afterwards – like I said you cannot beat their pizza 🙂

It poured with rain after we got to our cottage while we were having tea and more chocolate.  Great timing as we would have been soaked if we were walking back.  Sunday we had a lovely lie in and then breakfast before checking out.

Made our way back to Cape Town and had take away nachos for dinner.  This weekend was about lots of good food and chocolate and next week will be about getting back to gym haha!

Monday was a quiet day.  Did some shopping in the morning, caught up on laundry and then watched movies and ate hot cross buns and chocolate most of the day!  Bliss.

It is back to work today and I’m still in weekend mode! 

What about you?  How was your Easter weekend?

xx

Humpday confessions

Tea and book

Today is almost like a Thursday 🙂

Still, I love a good confessions post so lets see what I have this week:

#1 This allergy/cold/flu (it got worse with each day since Sunday) has been so energy draining.  I got to work yesterday, packed up my laptop and went home.  Worked from home and it was great because I could sit in my gown, under blankets and still answer e-mails and keep on top of things.  The downside is not being able to switch off and I was still checking my inbox after 8:00pm.  All about balance I guess.

#2  I am back in the office today and didn’t put a lot of thought into my outfit.  I look like I’ve fallen out of bed and am wearing a once smart cardigan that shrunk in the wash over the years.  What seemed like a good idea when the alarm went off this morning looks completely awful in the mirror in the ladies toilets.

#3  Because of the above, I might just not leave my desk today.  Tea and coffee plus loo breaks are highly overrated.

#4  I thought about doing an Easter post about how I spent Easters growing up vs now.  But I feel I came across as quite snarky sounding and rather anti-social.  I’m glad hubby and I celebrate just the two of us because frankly Easters surrounded by family is just stressful for me.

#5  As ill as I’ve been feeling I still managed to devour a lot of Lindt chocolate on Monday night.  Even with a blocked nose and sore throat it still tasted awesome.  Roll on weekend!

Okay, nothing too awful there.  What about you?  Any humpday confessions?

xx

Hello Friday!

We made it!  Friday is here and hooray for that!

New pic

Fridays mean linking up with Lindsay http://theflynnigans.com/ Charlotte http://mypixieblog.com/ and Beth http://coffeeuntilcocktailsblog.com/  with my list of what made me happy this week:

  • Great weekend.  Nachos, a lovely drive, yoga, gym and some pottering around at home.  Productive but still relaxing.
  • Reading an amazing book about eating for your blood type – so interesting!
  • After a long Monday we had a delicious dinner and chilled evening and it was a good start to a busy week.
  • Yoga at lunchtime on Tuesday at work.  A colleague who has qualified as a yoga teacher gave us a session.  Felt so relaxed and calm when I got back to my desk.
  • Going to gym and pushing myself on the treadmill after work on Tuesday and Wednesday.  Did a decent run and felt great afterwards.
  • Having a turning point regarding being mindful.  Taking a step back and then putting things into perspective really makes a difference.
  • Also realizing that overthinking solves nothing and is a huge waste of time.  Took 36 years to learn this but better late than never.
  • Meditation lesson on Wednesday evening and I was able to completely relax.  I actually got into the Yoga Nidra state for the first time.
  • Coffee on days when tea just doesn’t cut it!
  • Doing a few link ups this week and enjoying getting to know bloggers from around the world.  Such a special community we have here and I’m always filled with gratitude.

I’m posting this super early today as we have a short day at work.  Going out for an office lunch and then it is weekend time afterwards!  Tomorrow I’ve got yoga and a girls night in the evening.  Sunday we are planning on going for a drive – we’ll see what the weather is up to.

xx