Friday, 2 February 2018

A Good Start

January, you have been kind.
In contrast to the beginning of the previous few years (which, quite truthfully, have been pretty rotten for me) this last month has been really quite lovely. Never usually a fan of cold, dark days anyway, I had also begun to dread the start of each year by dwelling on past events.
This time, as I've mentioned previously, I was determined it would be different and I am happy to say it has been.


In January I often feel dictated to by the weather, and yes, there have been some miserable, wet and windy days, but the sunny ones have been glorious. Even when it has been raining, when I would usually have dismissed the idea of going outside, I have put on my waterproofs and made an effort. I may have needed a bit of arm twisting now and again but have been thankful for it, returning home feeling all the better for a good walk and some fresh air. I am being mindful to eat well  and fit in more time to exercise and I am beginning to really notice a difference in how I feel. Going to bed early and reading my book, fresh flowers on the mantel, taking a bit of time for myself (still working on not feeling guilty about this one) and not quite putting myself first (Lily might have something to say about that one!) but somewhere 'up there' at least,  are all helping me to maintain a positive state of mind.
The lighter mornings and evenings, and seeing the signs of Spring all around are a gentle reminder that the dark days are starting to lessen, although, for once,  I'm in no hurry to see the back of them, instead I am still enjoying the cosy evenings at home. All in good time.



Last week we bunked off school! Not really, but it felt a little bit naughty. Poor Lily had been  unwell the previous day so rather than send her to spend the day in a stuffy classroom with the strong possibility of having to collect her early, I thought it would be better spent getting some fresh air followed by a proper rest. It was a beautiful day. Sunny and cold, but we wrapped up well and traipsed through the fields to the woods which we were delighted to find full of snowdrops. It felt a little indulgent, but I also felt a lot better myself, having had a restless night with little sleep. An unscheduled day of togetherness was also a treat.



On Sunday we went for a walk down by the sea. Something we've not done for a while. It was a dull, overcast day and everything just looked grey. The wind was bracing and, of course, I had left my gloves at home, so my hands were icy cold. But then not much beats the pleasure of returning home to a toasty warm house and a mug of steaming hot tea, and as the weather looks like it's going to be staying cold for a while longer I'm happy to keep making the most of it.
A good start to the year. Long may it last.
J. X

44 comments:

  1. Sounds like you are looking after yourself well. Whilst the beach may look overcast and dreary I still find them beautiful and the crashing waves soothing. Have a great weekend.

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    1. The beach has a very different feel to during the Summer months but you're right, it is beautiful in a different way. X

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  2. It's great that you are feeling positive about the year so far. It looks like you and Lily had a lovely time, there is nothing better than being outdoors, it awakens the mind. The days are drawing out slowly.

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    1. Thank you Tania. We've had quite a bit of sunshine recently, although it's still very cold. X

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  3. So lovely to read the year has started well and positive. It just shows the difference mindset can make to how things feel. Well done you. Self care, so easy to think it’s selfish, but it really isn’t. Hope Lily’s all better now xx

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    1. It's so important to look after ourselves isn't it? Otherwise how are we in a position to look after others. X

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  4. Well done with keep your head about the dull wintery weather - not always that easy :) I miss not having a bit of coastal air - lovely one of Lily's hair flipping around in the breeze.

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    1. That wild hair is usually flipping around somewhere. I wondered what she was doing but she was busy adding her initial to her name. X

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  5. I've enjoyed reading about your recent activities, it sounds like life is being kind to you. I hope Lily is fully receovered now and back to school - don't they have the heating on far too high so the germs spread between the little ones .. my granddaughter always comes out with her cardigan round her waist saying its too hot in school.

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    1. Lily still has the sniffles but she's not too bad, thank you. She was back at school again on the Monday morning. We've had colds on and off since October so I'll be glad when we're finally rid of all germs. The classroom is kept very warm. X

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  6. It looks and sounds like you've had much better weather there than I have down here - January has been one long dreary month of rain, hail, sleet. snow, wind, more rain and yet more rain. Yesterday and today were glorious though but unfortunately I've been too ill to enjoy it :( It's great that you bunked off school for a day and went out, that's just the sort of thing I would have done when my son was young :)

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    1. The weather has been hit and miss but the grey days haven't bothered me as much this year. What a shame you missed out on enjoying some glorious weather. I wouldn't have kept Lily away from school without good reason, but once we were in the fields she soon livened up! X

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  7. Winter is usually about getting through it, but we have had some lovely days with spring like temps. I also enjoyed a walk in the fresh snow with my grandchildren.

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    1. The Winter weather doesn't seem to have been as bad this year and the sunny days have been glorious. A walk in fresh snow is a treat, when it's for fun. X

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  8. I hope Lily is feeling much better now, fresh air is nicer than being too hot indoors. It was a beautiful day yesterday and very welcome after a miserable, very cold and very wet month here. It's lovely to see the snowdrops and the first signs of Spring. I'm glad this been a better start to the New Year for you.

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    1. She's much better, thank you Eileen and some fresh air always helps. I'll be glad to see the back of these persistent germs. X

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  9. I'm not a fan of winter but, so far, I don't think this one has been too bad and so I haven't been as down about things as I usually am either. I think it does you good to get out and about when you can and it's also a good idea to look after yourself, it's the little things, like the fresh flowers on the mantel, which can make all the difference. I hope Lily is feeling better now.

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    1. I'm sure the weather hasn't been as bad as previous Winters Jo, which can only help with feeling brighter. Looking after ourselves is so important but often overlooked, and it makes such a difference. I'll be making more of an effort in future. X

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  10. Since we finished decorating the bedroom last month I have had pink roses in there. They are long lasting, and I got a bunch yellow stickered too, so the total outlay has been just over £5. I love seeing them when I go in there. I hope Lily is fully recovered now.

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    1. Thank you Scarlet, Lily is feeling much better now. The flowers on the mantel have just been replaced with some white roses. X

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  11. Oh Jules...those blue skies look divine...it would have to be a very hardened heart not to be lifted by such natural beauty x

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    1. It was a really beautiful day when they were taken Jackie, but don't be deceived, it was very cold. X

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  12. Just shows how a bit of positivity can change things. January would have been much as previous January's but you were determined that this year would be better ....... and it was!

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    1. Thank you Eloise. With my health issues dealt with it has made a huge difference. X

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  13. I hope Lily is fully recovered now. I love the fact that you kept her home another day and you were both able to enjoy a day spent together. I enjoyed seeing your pictures and to read how you went out for walks even if the weather was not the best. This is very inspiring to me: "If Jules can go walking when it is cold and raining, I can manage a walk when it is sunny and 84F". :)

    I hope February turns out to be another lovely month for you. :)

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    1. She's feeling much better, thank you Bless. The extra day and some fresh air definitely made a difference. Walking is good whatever the weather, but the walks are always much shorter when it's raining! X

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  14. What a lovely post Jules, sounds like you are in a good place at present :-) Very sensible to keep Lily at home for the day, not 'bunking off' at all! You're so right about it feeling very hard to put yourself first . . .

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    1. Thank you Jayne. I am very sensible ;-) X

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  15. Hi Jules, it is hard not to dwell on past events, but I am so pleased you have had a good start to the year, long may it continue. xx

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    1. Thanks Marlene. I do hope it continues. X

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  16. Jules, it makes me feel so happy on your behalf to read you've enjoyed January. Time is precious and if we can stop ourselves wishing it away because we're reminded of past events then surely that must be good for our general wellbeing. I'm glad you are putting yourself 'up there'. I'm not sure any wife or mother ever makes the number 1 position but at least being on the list helps :) Little treats are good and reinforce to ourselves we are worth thinking about.

    Glad to hear Lily is better. I don't know when fresh air and rest stopped being prescribed but I wish it would make a come back. There's a lot to be said for convalescence rather than rushing back to school or work. xx

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    1. Thank you Suzanne. Yes, I doubt I'll ever be number one again but somewhere near the top is fine by me. And it seems so trivial, but those little treats really do make a difference - fresh white roses on the mantel today.
      Thankfully Lily is feeling much better now, but it would appear she has passed the germs on to me! There was no way I was going to rush her back to school though. X

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  17. Just found your blog, Jules, and have been enjoying reading it. Yes, into February now, lighter evenings and although it's cold, spring will soon be here. I also had early nights and read in bed in January. I'm very much light-led and when it gets dark I just want to curl up and go to sleep like animals do! Love your photos!
    Margaret P
    www.margaretpowling.com

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    1. Thank you Margaret, it's good to see you here. X

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  18. How very peaceful this post feels. Well done on your thoughtful (and mindful) approach to a month which can feel difficult. I am enjoying the lengthening days, closing the curtains a little later each day now. I'm glad Lily is feeling better now, how sensible to keep her away from school and let her rest and recover. x

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    1. Without realising, peaceful was possibly what I needed Mrs T. Much as I am still enjoying the Winter days, I am still looking forward to the arrival of Spring, some warm sunshine and longer days. I am just not in as much of a hurry this year. X

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  19. I'm glad you had a good month, Jules. Hope Lily is all well now.

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    1. She's much better now, thank you Nil. X

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  20. its nice to have a bit of me time :)

    I bet a day off school did Lily the world of good :)

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    1. Lily was much better for an extra day off school. X

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  21. I am so glad that you have found January to be not so much of a trial Jules.

    What a precious day for you and Lily. My two used to have the odd sneaky day off school when they had not been well and my daughter often says now that they are some of her most precious memories of childhood. It's surprising what they remember.
    Hugs-x-

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    1. I'm relieved that it was an enjoyable month Sheila. I'm really learning to appreciate the here and now, and it's making such a difference.
      I definitely did the right thing in keeping Lily off school for an extra day. I'm not sure she'll remember it, but I will :) X

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  22. Glad Lily is feeling better and I hope you shake off the germs soon too. My 2 teens both had 2 days off school and college last week, full of colds and headache, not nice. January, not a popular month for anyone it seems. Too cold, wet and gloomy. I hope February brings more cheerful weather for you, it certainly looks more pleasant behind the glass, sunny and warm. Have a good week, Cathy x

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    1. Thanks Cathy. She's much better now and I'm almost there. It's just that time of year for germs, isn't it. I hope the teens are much better now. X

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