Sunday, 31 August 2014

Taking a Moment For Mesothelioma

A few years ago I had the pleasure of having this lovely lady write a guest post on A Welcoming Hearth.

They have invited me to 'take a moment for Meso' by sharing some facts about this disease.

The Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance has dedicated a significant amount of time making the best resource for those who want to learn more about or are effected by mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to Asbestos, but what I didn't realise is the correlation it has with smoking. Smoking alone is not linked to mesothelioma, but smokers who are exposed to asbestos have a much higher chance of developing asbestos lung cancer (as much as fifty to ninety percent higher) and as much as double the risk of developing mesothelioma. 

As Heather has shown it is possible to survive. Her mission is to be a beacon of hope for those afflicted with mesothelioma by sharing her story of faith, love and courage. Her story is inspirational.


Sunday, 10 August 2014

All The Fun of The Ormeau Fair #MySundayPhoto

Our family spent a few hours at the Ormeau Fair this morning. 

Bethany flying high and having lots of fun.



Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Anxiety and Stress - 10 Ways To Help You Cope #IBOT

I suffer a lot with nerves, and at the moment my anxiety levels seem to be through the roof. I am having panic attacks and my nerves are shot.

Let’s face it. This world is a scary place to be sometimes. It is hard, tiring and a battle just to get through the day.

I seem to have all the theory on how to help myself feel better. I guess numerous doctors, psychologists and other health professionals have given me an arsenal of ways to cope. But I have trouble putting it into practice.

But I do need to keep these helpful ways in the forefront of my mind. So that I can dwell on them and remember them when I need them. So I will list them out here, and if it helps someone else to cope with feelings of anxiety then that is a very good thing.

  1. Break tasks, jobs, things to do, into smaller manageable chunks. Don’t look at the whole overwhelming picture, but at the smaller little steps that are needed to help you move forward even just a little bit. Make lists if it helps put some order in your day.
  2. Take time out to relax and breath. Do something that you enjoy. Whether that is reading, craft, a nice, warm, bubble bath, going to the gym, or watching a funny movie.
  3. Make sure that you are getting enough sleep. Our bodies heal when we sleep – mentally, physically, and emotionally.
  4. Try and take control of your thoughts. Don’t let that inner critic win. When that little voice inside tries to make you panic, be strong and tell it to go away. Think positively and don’t be too hard on yourself.
  5. Sometimes a journal or diary helps. Write done your thoughts and worries. Then close the book on them figuratively. Or on a more positive note write down your blessings. The good things that happened to you that day.
  6. Prioritise your day. Make sure that you manage your time effectively. Do things in order of importance. Work out the best way to accomplish tasks, before you begin. Have a plan.
  7. If there is something that you are dreading and is making you stressed. Then stop everything else and do it first. If you do the job that is the hardest or the most difficult for you to do, first, then really everything else is downhill from there.
  8. Of course, make sure that you are getting the right nutrients and good food into your body. To help it thrive. Also drink enough water. Dehydration causes tiredness and that makes coping with the daily stresses of life, so much harder.
  9. Talk about it with others. A problem shared is a problem halved.
  10. Don’t put unreachable standards on yourself. Being a perfectionist puts such a lot of pressure on you. Far too much. To have high standards is good, but learn your limits and learn when to say no.

Do you have some coping strategies to add? What helps you when you get anxious and stressed about life? I would love to hear your thoughts.

Linking up with Jess for #IBOT.


Thursday, 1 May 2014

Strike While the Iron Is Hot! (Philips PerfectCare Aqua Steam Iron Review}

There is one thing that I thought I would never do and that is extol the virtues of the humble iron. But not all irons are created equal. Simple and speedy are the two qualities that I like in an iron! Anything that allows you to spend less time ironing and more time doing the things that are really important – like being with my family.

The Philips PerfectCare Aqua Iron is designed to make a busy family life easier and less complicated and it certainly does that. They have thought of everything here. Some of its highlights are:

  • It is wonderfully lightweight. The iron itself weighs only 1 kg.
  • Auto Off (I so need this!).
  • The safe rest position is face down on its soleplate on the ironing board. It is always safe. This prevents wrist strain and repetitive movements caused by continuously placing an iron on its heel.
  • It has a pressurized steam generator with a 2.2 Litre extra extra large fully visible water tank.
  • The iron locks to the base for easy carrying.
  • Awesome descaling switch. It basically cleans itself.
  • Provides continuous steam up to 120 g/min and a steam boost of 220 g. It has up to 5 bars of steam pressure. Crease removal is fast and easy. Great for vertical steam if required.

It has no temperature setting dial! This amazingly clever little iron can go from linen to cashmere to silk, in any order, without changing anything. It uses OptimalTemp which means that it maintains a balance of steam and heat to iron anything that is iron-able without adjusting any settings.

For the first time you use it you fill up the water tank, plug it in, wait about 2 minutes for the water to heat up, and iron. Simple as that!

It thrives on tap water. Only use demineralised if your water is very hard. To clean your iron you don't use decalcifying stuff or vinegar, just fill with water, and flick the descaling switch. How lovely it that?

It is such a clever thing. It is priced at $429.95. But it is I believe at the very top of its class, and if you dislike ironing or spend a lot of time slaving in front of an ironing board, then using this beautiful iron is very cool indeed.


Monday, 21 April 2014

Getting Back Into the Swing of Things

Some thought provoking quotes that have struck a chord and helped me get through this past week.

As we begin another school term, and get back into a routine, I shall endeavour to set small goals that are positive, personal and possible and give myself a small reward when I accomplish tasks. We will see how that goes!

I like the routine of school days, but miss my children during the day. My kids are quiet, gentle, considerate souls in a world were so many aren't, and it tugs at my heart to leave them there. Are you happy when the school holidays end? 

I am still here (amazingly enough), still fighting, still antidepressant free. But still coffee and I are not friends. 

I hope your week is a pleasant and productive one. Remember if someone shows you kindness, pay it forward.


Monday, 14 April 2014

Chin Up Butter Cup or This Too Shall Pass

I have been to a dark, dark place. I have been there so many times before. It doesn’t get any nicer or more welcoming. It is the pits. It is a place that no matter how hard you try you can’t see tomorrow. So you close your eyes and somehow time keeps moving on.

I lost interest in eating and drinking and coffee. Coffee! Who on earth would believe that of me? Coffee has turned on me and snarled, arched its back and walked away and left me wondering why? We have gone our separate ways.

I am not sleeping. I stare at the blackness until about 2 or 3 am. The nights are so incredibly long and stretch on and on and on. I lie there having in depth dialogues with myself about everything and anything. Sometimes I get up, just can’t bear to lie there anymore.

Sharing is something that is hard for me. Letting people in behind the towering wall I have built up over the years is virtually impossible. Letting people see the real me, what goes on behind my eyes and inside my head, is scary. And I have a blog, so how silly is that?

I am a people pleaser. I hate saying no. I try to please everybody all the time, and it gets tiring for me. I don’t want people to dislike me, so I am whatever you want or expect me to be. I adapt my personality to suit yours, but I have done it for so long, I think that I have lost myself somewhere along the way.

Some people stress me out so much that I find it hard to be around them. Some people who assume because I am quiet that I am stupid or na├»ve. But really if you pass over me as not worth the time or effort, then that is fine, really. I prefer it that way. I hate standing out. I don’t rock the boat, I don’t even make any ripples as I go about my life. I know I won’t make any ripples when it is time for me to go.

At the moment I am free falling as it were. After 24 years I am anti-depressant free. Not really through choice but because the medication the doctor changed me too has made me feel so ill that I had to stop. I can’t say that I am feeling happy or better BUT I am feeling, probably for the first time in decades I am feeling and at the moment that is ok. The rawness and intensity of life feels like a splash of icy water in my face.

Anyway, thanks I think in part to some chocolate pancakes, which it appears have the ability to heal and stick together broken bits, of which I have plenty, I am functioning again. My blog is back on track. Although this time I am not accepting and saying yes to everyone and everything that comes along. I will be trying to be more honest and open and that super scary word ‘share’ more of myself with my long-suffering readers. I am learning how to say no, which is something that I am not familiar with so please bear with me here.

Ok, so onwards and upwards. Battle scared, weary and bruised but forever fighting.

Look after yourself and your loved ones.


Let go of what’s gone, be grateful for what remains and look forward to what is coming.

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