Browsed by
Category: Lifestyle

What Not To Worry About #30

What Not To Worry About #30

Happy Monday my internet friends! How are we this Monday??? Feeling positive and ready to tackle the week ahead? It is so much easier to feel in charge and capable of great things when the sun is shining on us so I am savouring every second of vitamin D that I can get. In fact, I am feeling so ballsy that I actually signed up to run 5km in September and had my first training session this afternoon – a pretty great way to start the week if you ask me.

 

Running has never been my thing and I have been in awe of people who praise it’s benefits since every time I run I actually feel even more unhealthy. Of course having Cystic Fibrosis means that my wee lungs find running a bit tricky and getting my breathing in control can be a struggle (my airways can feel really tight like I’m breathing through a straw which is as unpleasant as it sounds). A few puffs of my inhaler can help a bit but the whole experience is usually a not-so-nice one and I’ve been put off trying for fear that I’ll always feel a little let down by own body.

 

89452d88-bc9b-4825-b91f-2ecd74173fe8.jpg

 

But by avoiding running or any intense cardio I was giving in to this fear which is something I’ve always tried to avoid. CF can take away many things and it can be difficult to ever feel in control of my own health but what I can do is move and keep on moving. I am lucky that I have a strong body able to withstand all the medication, hospital admissions and countless coughing fits. I shouldn’t feel let down because I am afraid.

 

Instead I am saying  “Fuck it!” and pushing this body as far as I know it can go. I won’t be judging or comparing myself to others but will be taking big gulps of air to the deepest parts of my lungs just knowing I am making them stronger. It doesn’t matter if it’s 1km, 5km or 26km, every step is a step I am grateful for. I might be wheezing by the end of it and I will definitely be coughing a lot but I will be proud of myself. It’s better than disappointment, right?

 

And here’s a few more worries that I’m shirking this week…

 

Rosé

Summer time suddenly means that drinking pure vinegar is acceptable and I am baffled. Unless there is some delicious rosé that I have missed out on? I’m not so sure.

 

People who talk when they run

Another reason why I avoided running for so long was because when I ever ran with anyone they friggin’ talked the entire time! Like I can talk when I’m running??!! I have no time for chit-chat when my entire brain is focusing on breathing alone, thank you very much so please save the natter for the end when I might be able to formulate words again.

 

Ballet pumps in the summer

You honestly don’t want to be within 5 feet of me when I come home and kick these bad boys off at the end of the day. Woo-eeee it ain’t pretty!!

 

Crap underwear

I always mean to invest in good quality underwear but I also end up buying multipacks from Primark that become discoloured and ill-fitted after a few washes. Any folks have any advice on where to get underwear that doesn’t have a classy diamanté on the front???

 

People who save their bath products

The same goes for people who save Easter eggs and Christmas presents. Use them!

 

Have a lovely week and fingers crossed for a bit more sun!

Is It Wrong To Be Selfish?

Is It Wrong To Be Selfish?

Last weekend I had a full weekend without any real plans. I woke up on Saturday with the sun filtering through the curtains, stretched my legs out and relished the thought of not having a whirlwind itinerary ahead of me. Living an hour away from my family and most of my friends means that my weekends often involve me rushing down the motorway in my car and trying to catch up with as many loved ones as I can. While it’s always lovely to see my favourite people, I am usually knackered by the end of it and recently I’ve been feeling deflated on a Sunday evening because the weekend had rushed by me in a series of hurried get-togethers.

 

I accepted long ago that I am an eternal people-pleaser however I realised recently that the reason I had been sacrificing my weekends mooching about my own home and lie-in’s in my own bed was because I felt guilty. I had imposed these obligations upon myself because I was afraid what others may think of me if I dedicated a whole weekend to myself and didn’t make the effort to see anyone down at ‘home’. I have this very real fear of appearing to be self-involved and this has led me to live a life that doesn’t always feel like my own.

 

048a9eb7-6650-4a0a-8b3b-5e6f547f8acf.jpg

 

But what is truly wrong with being selfish? In a time where self-care is the new YOLO, it is becoming more and more apparent that selfishness is not a quality to be revered but in fact requires a lot of courage to embrace. Our generation might be regarded as the most self-aware but this self-awareness is a result of constant competition whether it be through social media, job insecurity or the sheer amount of options we have to choose from.  While having these options is a luxury our parents (or grandparents at least) fought for us to have, there comes with that the overwhelming feeling of never being enough. Am I working hard enough? Have I travelled enough? Am I good enough friend/partner/parent? Am I happy enough? The gap between the life we are expected to live and the life we are truly living seems to be widening which has resulted in more of us experiencing anxiety that is specific to the social changes our generation are facing.

 

My problem seems to be the need to keep others happy. By imposing these expectations upon myself to be the best version of myself that I can be, I have ended up losing touch with what truly makes me happy. I recently read an article by Raymond Nourmand who eloquently put that the less someone’s reaction affects you, the more selfless a place you are giving from therefore in order to be truly selfless we must be truly selfish. Who knew eh???

 

3ecc2deb-6fd0-42d3-a7e0-092288fd7bea.jpg

 

The next time you are feeling selfish for prioritising your own happiness, give yourself a good shake and instead congratulate yourself! By making the effort to fulfill your needs you are actually caring about yourself which is the ultimate step to being a better person. And this applies to me and my moments of guilt when I haven’t trekked home for the weekend. Taking the time to do something (or nothing) for myself will only make me a nicer person to be around and the time I will be spending with family and friends will be feel a lot more enjoyable.

 

If you identify with anything I have said and would like some ideas on how you can be a more selfish person, I’ve included some tips on when you should choose you over anything else.

 

When you’re too exhausted to meet a friend

Don’t force yourself no matter how long it might have been since you last saw them. They deserve the best version of you, not the too-tired-to-function version who will be ready to sleep after the first sip of wine. Good friends will always understand.

 

When you’re stressed in work

Taking annual leave during a stressful time in work can feel like you’re going against your instincts but this should only highlight how important it is that you need to take some time out. We are all entitled to these days off so you shouldn’t feel guilty in the slightest. By taking a few days off to unwind (and for the love of Jeebus do not check your work emails) you will feel so much more capable to handle the difficult tasks you had left behind (and they actually might not be as difficult now that you’re chilled!).

 

When you’re a parent

I was thinking that the parents amongst you might have chuckled to yourself when reading this post since you have the least amount of time to be selfish as anyone! I don’t have children so please forgive me for trying to give any advice on parenting but I do think that to be the kind of parent you had hoped to be (before the permanent exhaustion and reality hit you like a tonne of bricks), you have to put yourself first now and again. Most parents have a decent enough support system through friends/family/partners and so you should never feel guilty about using this. Make a point of scheduling some time on your own once a week – even just for an hour – like you would any other essential appointment. You are still you and you deserve to remind yourself of that as often as possible.

 

When you can’t say no

If you’re a people-pleaser like me this can be a tough one. I hate letting people down and will often find myself in difficult situations just because I can’t say no. The thing I have started to learn is that people won’t immediately dislike me if I can’t always do what they want me to do and will probably forget it fairly quickly (while I stress about it for days after). If you don’t want to do it, then don’t. Simples, right?

 

When you’re on holiday

Going on a trip with people can be the best way to share memories but there can sometimes be a clash in terms of expectations. Some people love to lie on their backs as close to the sun as possible and others like to cram in culture in to every minute. There’s no shame in either but there’s also no shame in parting ways for the day and doing the things you want to do. Travelling is the perfect opportunity to live the carefree life you don’t usually get to live at home so to avoid any disappointment don’t be afraid to speak up and do your own thing.

 

Have a lovely weekend folks!

What Not To Worry About #29

What Not To Worry About #29

How are we midway through July?! The summer is escaping me and I’m starting to panic that I haven’t ticked off any of my summer bucket list plans that I was so sure I would stick to this year! I have used the excuse that there have been too many grey weekends recently but on Saturday there were no excuses. The clouds had miraculously decided to part and the sun bore down for the first time in what felt like forever. We woke up to a bright room and I dragged Andrew out of the house as quick as I could!

 

The North Coast of Ireland is a spectacular place no matter the weather but during the summer when the sun is shining and the blue sky melts in to even bluer waters, there really is no better place to be. We packed up the car with beach supplies (I naively packed a bikini in case I decided to brave the sea which I ended up chickening out of, of course) and spent the day following the coastline, blasting music in the car and watching the afternoon sun dance across the sea. It is on days like this that remind me how lucky I am to call this island home, returning to the house with tired legs and salty skin.

 

bff4ea15-0a65-415a-934d-bc209c3da633.jpg

 

d1a7c814-9308-46b4-b454-c89f96f6a274.jpg

 

I will be writing a separate post about my favourite parts of the North Coast that I want to share with you, mainly because I was so snap-happy that there are too many photos to include in this one! I have been putting in a little more effort in to photography recently which is a bit scary because I feel more vulnerable when I begin to care about something, are you the same? There is just too much beauty at our feet here that I feel that the whole world should know what we have and yet I want to keep it from becoming to just another Insta-worthy destination.

 

Whatever way you spent it, I hope your day in the sun was exactly what you needed. Whether you were in your back garden weeding or on the beach with your toes in the sand, just as long as you were able to let go of your cares for just a few hours.

And here are a few of the worries I decided to cast in to the Irish sea last weekend…

 

Unexcitable Dogs

I get so excited when I see a dog. I put on this weird voice that is for dogs only and become embarrassingly unaware of myself. What hurts the most though is when the dog I am so excited to meet doesn’t give a crap that I’m there hopping on the spot like a complete eejit. They just look at me with this feline-like nonchalance and I am left incredibly hurt. I know I should really get a grip.

Getting Chilli Underneath my Fingernails

It burrrrrrns!! Especially when you go and forget about it every 5 minutes and spread the burn in to your eyes burning off a good layer of your cornea.

The Food Bin

I went to throw out our food in to our big compost bin a few days and and ran for my friggin’ life. I know this is a little rank and I really hope you’re not eating as you read this but OH MY GOD there were approximately one trillion maggots decorating the inside and of the bin. A whole ecosystem had grown in there and so naturally I have abandoned going out there since.

People Who Make Weak Tea

No thank you. Just leave the tea bag in.

Skin-tight Ripped Jeans. On Men. 

One of the most difficult part of watching Love Island (my new favourite thing in the world) is having to endure men in white jeans that look like they have been sprayed on. How is this a thing??? Lads there is no call for it so peel them off and slip in to a pair of bootcuts like any good Irish fella.

 

Have a great week!!

 

9446c09d-17b7-4dab-b282-9ea1f8d71b64.jpg

What Not To Worry About #28

What Not To Worry About #28

Happy Wednesday friends! Well, at least let’s try to keep happy when we’re faced with this too-Autumn-for-words weather which is showing no signs of feckin’ off anytime soon. In the face of endless grey clouds I am focusing on a few things that I have coming up in the next few weeks to keep my spirits up. Sometimes summer in Ireland means planning lots of fun things to distract ourselves from the fact that we barely get a summer at all (which I think I have mastered)!

 

Last weekend was a little more relaxed than I had planned with the rain on Saturday dampening my hopes of attending the outdoor festival in Belfast. I fear that I have lost the bravery of my youth because I just can’t summon the courage to don wellies and get amongst it despite the rain. Cosiness far outweighs shivering underneath a brolly! Instead I nursed a hangover from my work night out on Friday with plenty of sugar (there goes the diet I was supposed to start in July) and went to visit my little sister who was supposed to be staying with me at the weekend but is annoyingly back in for a stint in the hospital (she’s a trooper).

 

img_3583.jpg

 

It’s never easy when Shan has to go in because she is being constantly poked and prodded and never gets a break. Anyone who has either been a patient or has visited someone in hospital understands how frustrating this can be especially when you’re so exhausted that all you want is to be able to sleep the night through. What is nice is being able to see plenty of her and she has my house to escape to if she ever wants a bath or wants to eat something that doesn’t look like it was scooped from a compost bin.

 

So we shall be looking at the positives this week despite our circumstances (and this crappy weather) and on that note, here are the things I am choosing not to worry about this week…

 

Drunk Alex

Drunk Alex can be a lot of fun. She loves to dance, loves to meet new people and usually buys some tasty food on the way home. But these are the things I highly dislike about Drunk Alex:

  • She uses all her cash to buy shots for all her new mates (that she will never meet again) and leaves none for the taxi home
  • In her hope to find coins she will destroy her handbag and leave the remnants everywhere on the step of the house
  • She never remembers to put a glass of water by the bed
  • She thinks it’s a good idea to buy a full Victorian sponge cake from the shop on the way home
  • She adds all her new mates on Facebook who she can never bring herself to delete

But all of these things are usually forgotten within 5 days because the scamp is too damn fun to keep away for too long.

Using cotton ear buds

I am always terrified of slipping and jamming the thing through my brain. It’s a realistic fear.

Killing my plants with too much love

I over-water because I care too much. I need to just chill and let my herb garden be!

People who talk in the cinema

I feel like such an old lady but I paid good money for the movie (I actually only go to the cinema on cheap Tuesdays so I don’t pay really good money) and I should be allowed to eat my popcorn (usually smuggled in) in goddamn peace.

Never using my glasses case

My glasses are scratched to pieces and I have all the good intentions of being an adult and using my case but instead I fire them in to my handbag with shrapnel and old inhalers. I will never not be that kind of adult.

 

That’s the round-up for this week folks – have a great one!

What Not To Worry About #27

What Not To Worry About #27

Well friends, I am writing this post from a sick bed struck down with some unbeknownst sickness surrounded by pillows and tissues like the bloody Queen of Sheba. Like most sane people on this Earth I hate being sick. I hate the self-pity that comes rolling in along with it and the guilt of having to call work like some sniffling criminal. Why must we stress so much when our bodies remind us that we need to rest?

 

So I have been forced to listen and sleep and drink tea and sleep some more. I have watched some terrible movies that would normally have me cringing to my core but today I am crying in to my tenth cup of tea wondering what has come over me. I tend to become overly sensitive when I am ill – am the only one? I need constant reassurance and berate myself for being so pathetic for needing cuddles on demand but I find that cuddles are the best medicine. And ice cold Lucozade.

 

276e5e6a-9137-4b06-95da-5125b89da408.jpg

All photos taken by the lovely Rebecca from A Clothes Horse

 

I also veer on the negative side when I’m poorly which is why this wee post came in hand this afternoon. It’s amazing (and a little bit disconcerting) how my mood can change like the wind as soon as I become vulnerable. One minute I am more Beyoncé than Beyoncé herself and the next I am the ultimate dependent woman. Taking the time out to have some perspective has definitely lifted this girl out of her wallowing ways.

 

So this week here are the few things I will choose to let go of instead of bringing me down…

 

Feeling weak

As mentioned above I don’t enjoy feeling weak but we have to accept that we can’t always be invincible. We need to rest, accept help when we need it and find some happiness in the moments when we can relish in being still.

People who steal parking spaces

Tescos carpark can be a real war-zone at around 6pm on a Monday. People become animals behind the steering wheel as they fight for the space closest to the door so their wee legs won’t buckle from the strain of pushing a trolley full of shopping. I’m the biggest culprit! I usually curse anyone that steals the spot I was gunning for but this week I will be happy for the extra few metres that I have to walk and count it towards the cardio I keep talking about needing more of.

Leaving voicemails

God help anyone who has to listen to one of my voicemails!! I am a mumbling wreck when I have to leave one – the pressure is too much! Even calling my pharmacy and listing my own name and number is enough to induce a moment of panic.

Roll on deodorant

This stuff actually makes me sweat making it a complete waste of time. I hate aerosol cans though because of my general love of the planet but roll on just doesn’t cut it.

Empty toilet rolls

People who don’t replace empty toilet rolls are just complete hallions in my eyes.

 

And that’s it for today. Wishing you a lovely week and here’s to hoping for some more of that sun that we love complaining about!!

What Not To Worry About #26

What Not To Worry About #26

Hello friends. How about this weather we’re having here on the emerald isle? It’s been such a treat to get a little sun-kissed on my lunch break and to feel my skin tingling as I retreat back inside. My favourite part has to be cooking with the backdoor open and allowing the warm air to fill the house with scents of summer. What’s not been so great though is the constant sneezing and eye-streaming that’s been gracing my face the last few weeks (making make-up absolutely pointless) and has turned me in to a sniffling wreck. All worth it though for a few moments of heat!

 

Last weekend was probably one of the best I’ve had all year as Andrew and I weaved our way across London celebrating his birthday. I booked the trip as his birthday present and even managed to keep it a secret until a few days before (a huge achievement for me!). We had 4 days to explore the big smoke which wreaked havoc with our feet and I definitely sweated from every pore of my body but we immersed ourselves in the city life, soaking in as much as we could.

 

a33f0f5a-c5dc-4d09-9971-7201f09c437c.jpg

 

It was a trip I think we both needed and we have come back home feeling more energised and motivated than we have been in the last month or two. It’s funny how only a few days away from the daily grind of work, chores and routine can wake us from a slumber we don’t fully realise we are in. Our relationships can be the silent victims in this gentle descent; we forget to really talk to each other, immersing ourselves in computer and phone screens in an attempt to destress.

 

This weekend we didn’t look at screens for most of the day (except to take photos of course, always have time for that) and instead we got lost in new streets, discovering parts of the city we had never been to while eating as much good food as we could manage. We had conversations that didn’t revolve around work or family but allowed our words to meander between random topics as we hopped from tube to tube. It was a wonderful few days and I won’t leave it too long until we get lost again.

 

d2eee8e7-a847-4e69-8134-4d4281c02de5.jpg

 

And here are a few worries I will be letting go of this week…

 

Always having to be the leader

I have realised over the last few years that I have this incessant need to be the leader on a holiday. I love to plan the itinerary, research the best places to eat and take control of the map when trying to find our bearings. I’ve slowly learned to relinquish this control but I have this weird joy for planning the BEST. TRIP. EVER and surely this isn’t the worse thing?

Having to wear a bra

Summertime is not a good season for under garments especially when you get those beautiful under-boob sweat patches that just scream summer chic. There truly is no better feeling than taking off your bra as soon as you come home and flinging it in the corner – let those ta-ta’s free!!

Being terrible at replying to messages

Apologies to all those who have ever messaged me. I do intend on replying but I have a mind like a sieve and also I am just crap at replying.

Finishing a TV series

I always get so sad when finishing a TV series and my most recent mourning is for The Handmaid’s Tale. Hole Moses if you haven’t seen it you have to!

Being a nag

Really trying not to nag Andrew when he decides to stay up late, sleep in or refuse to organise his clothes. I am not his mother. Repeat: I am not his mother.

 

And that’s it for this week. Enjoy these sunny days folks!!

 

What Not To Worry About #25

What Not To Worry About #25

I missed doing this post last week. It’s a post I look forward to writing because it’s the only time I allow myself to focus on the little things that I needlessly stress about and ask myself why I even give them the time of day. It’s easy to lose perspective when there are a million worries running through my brain:

Is it someone’s birthday soon?

Do we have enough milk for tea tonight?

Did I defrost the chicken?

When is my tax up on the car?

Is she annoyed at me for that thing I said?

Why do I get spots in my late twenties?

Am I making a difference?

Do I like where I am?

 

This madness can consume me if I allow it to but I think just being aware of my thoughts is one step closer to getting better control over them. Yes there are always going to be things to remember and yes I will have a random memory about one time when I was hammered in 2009 that will torment for the rest of my days BUT I can acknowledge the thought and then move on. I am usually a fairly laid back person but when one area of my life is suffering then the small things seem to become larger and more overwhelming.

 

7ff4706a-1143-4954-8875-5c3d93e108b0.jpg

 

The best thing for me to do in these cases is to remove myself from the chaos and find somewhere quiet to just be for a moment. I have spoken before about the importance of prioritising these moments of solitude because it’s my way of regaining a bit more stability and understanding that it’s all going to be OK. When things are going rough we can have a tendency to focus on the present and lack the foresight needed to understand that it’s not permanent. Instead of spending time worrying about things that are out of our control, wouldn’t it be much better to acknowledge them for a second and then brush them off? Wouldn’t be much better to give ourselves a break and a moment to appreciate all that we do? Yes, I think so too.

 

img_2982.jpg

All photos by the lovely Rebecca of A Clothes Horse

And with that in mind, here are a few of the worries I am letting go of this week.

 

Not having a dog

This is a fact that makes me sad sometimes but not having a dog also means that I don’t have to sit in work feeling guilty all day knowing that my wee furball is lonely. Also means that I don’t have to be dragged about in the rain to walk off energy. Still can’t wait though.

Always forgetting my bag for life

I feel like the worst environmentalist in the world when I pull up to the shop and realise that all of my bag-for-life-bags are in that wee hole in the kitchen where we stuff them all. I curse myself every time and buy another one to add to the collection.

Cop cars

Why do I feel like an instant criminal as soon as I see a cop car? I haven’t done a thing wrong but all of a sudden I have an urge to escape from them at the earliest chance. Creeps.

My love of bread

With the bikini season well and truly here I have given up on the idea of washboard abs and will not be saying goodbye to the carb-filled joy of my heart. Bring on the baguettes.

People who play it safe

You know those people who pull a ridiculous face when you suggest doing something out of the ordinary? Like when someone asks what you’re doing for the weekend and you say that you might go camping which induces a look of pure horror. “Sure it gives it to rain for a half an hour on Saturday!! Are ye mad? Oh no, you wouldn’t catch me at that now. Oh no, sure ye’d be drenched in thon rain! No, I will be sitting up in the house there and staying put so I will”. Arrgghh!!

 

And that’s it for this week! Anything you are choosing to let go of???

My Summer Soundtrack

My Summer Soundtrack

It’s funny how the music we listen to changes with the seasons. In the winter I find myself listening to slow folk and acoustic songs that make me feel cosy on the inside. But in the summer it’s all about dance, soul and R&B. The kind of music that has me moonwalking my way to the back garden with a cold beer in my hand despite the fact that it’s a rainy Monday evening.

 

When we were growing up my Mum would play music in the kitchen in the evenings especially in the summer when the back door would be thrown open and the music would filter in to the garden. She had a big influence on my taste in music and introduced me to artists I’m still in love with today; Prince, Marvin Gaye, Bill Withers, Aretha Franklin, Nina Simone, KC & the Sunshine Band. We listened to songs that taught us how to move and that allowed us to lose ourselves in the rhythm. Songs that taught us soul and about things we were too young to understand (singing along to Prince lyrics as an eight year old is a little disturbing looking back).

 

I thought I might share a few of my favourites that have become my summer anthems over the years. These are the tunes that I play loudly after a shitty day at work and are guaranteed to lift me up and remind me that it’s summer and there is no call for being sad. They are the summeriest of summer songs and you have my total permission to use them for your own summer soundtrack. I recommend being barefoot and having all the windows open. Just don’t blame me if the neighbours get at ya!!

 

img_2970.jpg


Michael Jackson – Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough

Say what you will about MJ but this song is a classic disco tune that will have you moonwalking your slippers.

Fleetwood Mac – Everywhere

Ugh, Fleetwood Mac and their friggin’ melodies get me everytime.

Van Morrisson – Into The Mystic

“Smell the sea and feel the sky; let your soul and spirit fly in to the mystic”. Lyrics that floored me as a teenager.

Beyoncé – Crazy in Love

Because you can’t have a summer party without Queen B.

Bob Marley – Three Little Birds

This song reminds me of a trip I took around SE Asia with two of my best friends. We got matching tattoos of three birds on our ribcage and every time this song comes on we have a knowing look between the three of us.

10cc – Dreadlock Holiday

The second this song is on I slow down and smile.

Toto – Africa

I love trying to sing along to this song, especially in my car when I know I terrify all other drivers.

Prince – Raspberry Beret

Probably his least filthy song so you can play it a family party.

Marvin Gaye – Got To Give It Up

Makes me want to have a glamorous poolside party in California.

Will Smith – Miami

Cheesy but so so good!!

Cornershop – Brimful of Asha (Norman Cook Remix)

An oldie but a goodie.

Len – Steal my Sunshine

Despite this being played on every day the sun shines in Ireland I still love it.

U2 – I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For

The guitars, the drums, the vocals. An Irish classic.

Angus & Julia Stone – Mango Tree

Brings the tempo down for sure but this brother/sister duo melts my summer hear.

LCD Soundsystem – Daft Punk Is Playing In My House

To be played loudly preferably with some couch dancing.

The Clash – Rock the Casbah

This was my ringtone in Uni I loved it that much.

The Knack – My Sharona

I defy you not to dance to this song!!

Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes – 40 Day Dream

The happiest of summer songs that has me stamping my little hooves with sheer glee.

All Saints – Pure Shores

No one can do 90’s beach chic like All Saints

Jurassic 5 – Work It Out

This is my summer bath tune. Yes that is a thing.

Fatboy Slim – Praise You

A song that will never go out of style. Never.

 

a43f1a82-5141-4f2b-81b3-1a6af4ee3944.jpg

What Not To Worry About #24

What Not To Worry About #24

Morning all! My weekly post is a little late this week. I think the long weekend tricked me in to thinking I was on holidays for a wee second and now I feel like I’m still catching up! I hope you enjoyed the extra bit of weekend even though we had a major rainfest here. Not to worry though – I got treated to lunch by my Granny and dinner by my Dad so no room to complain! Diet schmiet!

 

Although the rain was a little deflating, it was comforting to spend some time with family after a pretty horrendous week. With more attacks in the UK, Syria, Afghanistan and the Philippines (to name a few), it seems that we are inundated with horrific images from the media on a daily basis. Although atrocities closer to home can ignite a stronger sense of shock across our society, it should not be ignored that ceaseless attacks by all sides are occurring globally and children are too often the victims of the crossfire. It’s a scary time. We don’t feel safe with the politicians we have on offer, the environment is in peril (with Trump on the brink of pulling the US out of the Paris climate deal as I write this) and Justin Bieber is showing no signs of fecking off.

 

In these moments it’s entirely natural to want to crawl under the covers, hug our knees to our chest and wonder what the point of it all is. Until we choose to look up again and be reminded of just how lovely this Earth can be. Like when we see on the news of how the homeless men went to the aid of the injured during the attacks in Manchester. Or when your Granny sends you a letter in the post. Or a conversation with a stranger that completely blind sides you so much that you smile like an eejit for the next hour. Or when your loved one drives you to pretty gardens just so you can take some photos (even though they having a stinking hangover).

 

There is so much kindness in this world. Kindness that obliterates the bad and the evil. And almost all of us have this capacity for joy so it’s more important than ever to emit it out in the world and let it touch all those around you. Make it a priority in your life because you will surely feel a little better about getting up in the mornings just knowing that you alone can create your own happiness.

 

And with that in mind, here’s a few things I am not going to worry about this week…

 

The new £1 coin

Where can I use it? Will vending machines swallow it up? Can I pay my parking with it?? Too many worries for one coin.

Slow Cashiers

I used to work a till so I understand that it ain’t the most fun job but for the love of Jaysus could you put the crap in the bag a little faster please? I have one item in my hand and I’m watching the two of yas jabbering on about the weather, “Sure isn’t it great to see”, ” Ach it is aye”, “Did you see the rain though?” “Ach I did surely, it was a complete washout. Sure I left me washin’ out on the line and everything! Had to wash it all over again!!” OMGGGGGGGG.

Children With No Manners

Not to sound like Granny Nora here but this really gripes me. We had a big group of kids visit our offices during the week and I was helping them out on team building exercises which was like trying to control a bunch of banana-crazed monkeys. When I asked the kids to help clean up afterwards, this one fella (about 10 I’d say) just paraded up to the to empty egg carton and booted it across the room and continued to boot everything else he came in to contact with. I didn’t tell him off (his teachers were next to him and didn’t bat an eyelid) but I gave him a quare look that stopped him in his tracks. It was at this moment that I realised I was truly an adult.

‘Strong and stable’ Puns

Enough with the Theresa May jokes – PLEASE! If I hear one more person refer to something as ‘strong and stable’ in a meeting I’m going to feckin’ scream!

Brawling Cats

Now that we’re in the summer and are subjected to the humidity of Louisiana, we have started sleeping with the window open. But this now means that we can hear the neighbourhood cats going mental at all hours. It’s like a mixture of a banshee wailing and a baby wailing which is probably the scariest wailing combination ever. A sound sleep this does not make.

 

And on that note, have a delightful week! xx

My Irish Summer Bucket List

My Irish Summer Bucket List

I think most of us have a romanticised view of the summers of our childhood. The days were always warmer, longer and filled with adventure from the moment we woke up. The days stretched out before us in a haze of languid afternoons spent hiding amongst the fields, chasing the sun as it refused to go down. Being sent to bed was the worst punishment as the stubborn daylight continued to haunt us as we lay yearning to be amongst the laughter we could still hear outside.

 

As adults, the punishment now isn’t being sent to bed. It’s being sent to an office where we are forced to stay in and attempt to work while the stubborn daylight haunts us all over again. We are jailed by social responsibilities but are set free for the weekend and in order to make the most of the precious hours, we must think of as many fun things to do to save us from the guilt on a Sunday evening.

 

503b8282-1979-415b-be75-6604a0a12cb8.jpg

 

Irish people can be a cynical bunch and many smirk at the mention of summer since the weather here is as reliable as our government. That sense of adventure has waned with age but Ireland has so much to offer and we can relive those childhood days, even if it’s just for the weekend.

 

I’ve rounded up a few things I want to tick off this summer in the hope that it might allow me to feel excited about the weekends and less flustered about feeling the need to fill every hour. Having these wee goals helps me look forward to the weekend and appreciate just how much this island has to offer – even when the rain tries to dampen my spirits!

 

7fe25394-1cea-4e02-8b97-d9cfb0eb72b7.jpg

 

Go to a GAA Match

I’m an Armagh woman and the county football team was at it’s peak when I was a teenager. This meant that a lot of Sundays in the summer were spent on the side of a pitch, wearing the immutable orange jersey while screaming “Go wan Armagh!!” about a million times. I haven’t been to a game in forever and I miss the buzz of the crowd, the embarrassing insults the poor ref always endured and the terrible homemade sandwiches that were snacked on. This year I’ll make sure to don the jersey again and who knows, maybe Armagh might be within a chance of winning the Sam again.

Sleep Under the Stars

Falling asleep listening to the lullabies of leaves rustling or waves crashing might just be the tonic of the summer. I am a keen camper but I don’t make it enough of a priority to just pack up the car and get away for a night. But a night under the stars is always worth the hassle – even just for the melted marshmallows alone.

Run 5km

Running seems to be the trendy thing to do these days and for that reason I am severely unfashionable. I am not a runner and even though I have a good excuse not to be (the old CF lungs are easy to blame), I still really want to be able to run a decent distance. I have an aim to be able to run 5km in one session by the end of the summer so the practice will be starting this week. Just don’t expect me to to talk while I’m running – those freaks can stay well away from me.

Solo Picnic

I love a good picnic and Andrew and I will find time for one on weekends that will allow us to eat outside without being frozen. But this summer I want to take advantage of a little time to myself. Time to chill out, read a book or just listen to my own thoughts bumbling inside my noggin.

Island Hop

Although we live on on an island, there are still lots of little satellite islands that adorn our lovely coast and so I want to explore a few of them this summer. Last summer we visited Rathlin Island which was a blast and my first time seeing puffins up close (ish). This year I hope to visit an island or two off the west coast and get a good dose of that Atlantic air in to my lungs.

Surf

I learned to surf while living in Australia but only really stood up a few times. My lovely Aussie friends bought me a foam board as a birthday present and it has been shamefully lying in our box room gathering dust and no doubt feeling very depressed. This year the board will get wet and I will brace the ice-cold water that will surely have me wanting to dart back to dry land in an instant. I will be brave and I will try and stand up again even for just a second.

Attend the Fleadh

The Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann is an annual music festival that displays the best of Irish traditional music. I’ve never been but every year I promise myself that I will go. This year is no different but I hope to actual make it this time!

See a Play

I live in Belfast but it’s embarrassing how little I appreciate living in a city with a thriving culture scene. There are plays and musicals every week to take advantage of and so I will be sure to get my thespian head on this summer!

Host an Outdoor Cinema

We have a projector that has been lying lonely alongside my dusty surfboard which will be of much better use when hosting our own backyard cinema. I hope to string up on an old bed sheet, throw a load of cushions on the grass and gather some good mates for an old classic or two. Let’s just hope the weather plays ball!!

 

If I manage to get even half of these ticked off then I feel like I’m in for a fun summer!

Have you your own summer bucketlist? Is there anything you’re hoping to tick off this summer??