Saturday, 29 November 2014

Weekend Words

I love pinning quotes on Pinterest, I have a board devoted to them and they are my go-to when I'm needing some inspiration or a pick me up. Each Saturday I will be sharing one from my ever growing selection! Please feel free to check out my 'Quotes Board'.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Weekend Plans

This is exactly how I will be spending tomorrow morning - a lie in, breakfast and a cup of tea brought back to bed, possibly an episode or two of Nashville, then scheduling some posts for next week and making 'to-do' lists for Christmas. Well that's how I want it to go anyway, whether it does or not depends on a twelve year old and the cat!
I'm not sure about you but this gloomy, cold weather has not made me want to get out of bed in the mornings and after the daughter's unexpected dental surgery this week and ending up with a kidney infection, a weekend of hibernation is exactly what I'm looking forward to! 
Megan is counting down to Monday when she can open the first door of her advent calendar and although she has started doing some Christmas crafts (oh how she is loving her new hot glue gun!), I am holding off on decorating for another week or so. No such thing happens in this house before December! However, today I'm going to start preparing by having a clean through the house, washing the winter sofa throws and blankets and getting out the fluffy socks - heck we may even start the weekend off by watching 'Elf' tonight with home made pizzas and a Yankee Christmas candle!
What are your plans this weekend? Will you be starting to trim up ready for December 1st?
Have a good one!
Linking up with H54F

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Giving Thanks

Although we don't technically celebrate Thanksgiving in the UK, with family and some very close friends in America it's always been something that we've acknowledged. This year I'm a little sad not to be enjoying my American bestie's Thanksgiving dinner. He lived in the UK for four years and this time last year I was very ill but tucking into his delicious turkey dinner along with friends in his apartment in Cardiff Bay. I still can't get my head around having turkey in November though, turkey's for Christmas y'all, let alone not having it for Christmas dinner (well in NC anyway, once again, turkey's for Christmas y'all!) but Thanksgiving has become a new tradition for us and I've been talking about how I'm going to miss it.
So I decided that we won't. Today is my gorgeous nephew's sixth birthday so this evening will be spent with him, however on Sunday I've decided to cook us a lovely Thanksgiving dinner and an apple and coconut crunch for dessert. It's an excuse to get our sparkly pumpkins back out (bought in Target on our last trip to the USA of course) and sit down together and be reminded of the things we have been blessed with.
This year has not been the greatest, from start to finish, so I am especially thankful for the special people in my life who have stood by me and supported me through it all. Also for my daughter's ASD support worker who has given me some light at the end of the tunnel. The people who have invested their time, money and faith in my business venture, my beautiful family, the man who gives me my strength and for waking up every single morning.
We have some very big decisions to make in the coming weeks and months and although they are playing heavily on my mind I am mindful that many people don't have the opportunities or prospects that we are privileged to be considering and extremely thankful for this.
Sending out prayers to those who are not as fortunate as us and wishing you a very happy and safe Thanksgiving!


Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Cosy Days

My poor girl had to have some emergency dental surgery this morning. Her baby tooth was obstructing the adult tooth coming through and with nowhere to go it cracked her baby tooth yesterday leaving her in lots of pain. Five injections and one extraction later she is cwtched up on the sofa with her duvet and the cheesy Christmas Movie channel on TV.

She's yet again amazed me with her bravery - there were tears when she didn't know what was going to happen (ASD means she suffers with heightened anxiety) but once the dentist explained the procedure she was calm and didn't even flinch during any of the injections. I would have been crying like a baby! It was her first experience with anaesthetic and made her giggle for an hour afterwards much to her own and everyone else's amusement. She's so groggy now though and a soft food diet was the perfect excuse for some 'Lovely Welsh Soup' and bread ( with lots of butter! ), my perfect winter comfort food. Christmas movies also meant opening my gift set of Yankee Christmas candles - today we chose 'Christmas Treats' - it smells divine and although I'm not completely in the Christmas spirit yet, it has certainly helped me along the way!

What is your favourite comfort food? I'm always up for trying something new. When does the Christmas spirit hit you? Are you like me and a late arriver to the holiday season?

linking up with Esssentially Jess and Because Shanna Said So

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

We Shall Not Forget

At the moment I spend my days preparing for and teaching children and community groups about World War 1, as a social historian concentrating more on people's stories, experiences and the impact that events had on communities rather than the military strategies and statistics. I've studied the stories of soldiers, their families, read diaries, letters and watched countless documentaries of veterans emotionally reliving their experiences in the trenches. I've been privileged enough to take oral histories from men and women who experienced the Second World War first hand, trying to remain professional whilst struggling to hold back tears as I've listened to the horrors that they've experienced or witnessed, the pain of their memories etched on their faces and still evident in their eyes. I spend hours deliberating the best and most respectful way to honour those who have fallen and those who are left behind, both in the workshops I hold and the exhibitions I curate.

Still though, nothing prepares you for when the loss becomes personal. To see the face of someone you know, have lived amongst and cared for appear on the television without warning or on the front page of the newspapers with the headline 'Heroes Killed in Action' is something you never forget. To wake up suddenly as your husband has nightmares of the horrors he saw in Iraq and watch him crumble and lash out at sudden noises and flashbacks, without being able to do a thing as he tries to explain the scars he now bares. To know that you will never be able to understand and what you hear is only the tip of the iceberg. Yet, as painful as these experiences are we are the lucky ones. We are the ones who have so much to be thankful for and proud of and the ones who continue to sleep safely at night.

So to all those men and women who bravely gave their all for our freedom and security. Those who continue to serve our Queen and Country, those who may still be here but whose scars live with them, visible or invisible.

To Dale, Kyle, Kevin & Mac, may you forever Rest in Peace -

No, We Shall Not Forget.


*I was sent this image, I cannot find the original source to credit it.

Linking up with Essentially Jess, Because Shanna Said So