Current Themes – An Update

Time for an update, now its raining 😀

 

Health and Fitness: Not much going on here. I am maintaining fitness and weight rather than improving on it. I have been pretty active at the allotment hauling water which is like weight training but that is about it.

Sleepwise things are a little improves with me getting an average of 5to 6 hours sleep a night. A lot less when it has been very hot or its a Sunday night.

Hope to restart walking or the Couch to 5k soon but other things are taking my energy as I prep for some building work.

It is three years since breast cancer diagnosis. feels like a long time ago.

Making Money: I have been doing well with monitoring my spending plus money is starting to come back in that was loaned out. I am feeling a lot better about my overall finaces than I was last month.

I am still not doing surveys etc, got too much on still. There will be big outgoings in the next month as the kitchen remodel goes ahead. It is going to be money well spent.

Prepping: Prepping for the downstairs remodel continues.

In the UK we have a big event coming in March next year as we leave the EU. There is a lot of talk about deliveries being delayed and concern about food shortages; at least in the forums I am reading. We are actually ruunning down supplies as we clear the freezers and cupboards os will give this had thought about what we need for winter and beyond.

Decluttering and Minimising: In line with the above we are still decluttering very slowly, the heat and lack of sleep make a big all in one go effort virtually impossible for me.

In the last month a lot more stuff has been donated, given back or thrown away. DS and I sorted out his clothes mountain and most of it is now stored.

This week the builder has been and marked up where things are going to be. Time to finalise kitchen plans and declutter the kitchen.

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: 

In line with the above we are continuing to rehome stuff from all areas of the house.

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Current Themes – An Update

It’s been a while, just getting on with living life. Time for an update:

Health and Fitness: Not much to report here. Been away a lot, gone to parties, festivals, a wedding and working on the allotment. It’s too hot in the UK to do any excercise at the moment and I have been so all over the place the only thing I am doing consistently is going to work. Despite all the cake, I haven’t put any weight on ( not lost any either) so  am happy

I had a look at my fitbit my sleep pattern is terrible. I am managing on between three and six hours sleep most nights, especially because it is hot. In the last three weeks I have had two night of more than six hours. I am going to cut myself a bit of slack and wait for the temperature to drop and then start the excercise properly. In the mean time I am cutting down on the bad stuff foodwise and hope to lose a few pounds.

With it being so sunny I am taking care to drink a lot and keep in the shade (I am a burner; freckled and fair). I have sun cream and antihistamines on the allotment but also in my hand bag. I am also the most likely person to get bitten.

As you can imagine, with the lack of sleep and the heat I am having to practice the fine art of pacing. I do bit, rest a bit. It works for me and I get more done than if I did a big task and exhausted myself.

Making Money: Money has been leaving faster than I would like but now I have a had a holiday I am on the money diet. Spend only where necessary and no puds or alchohol when eating out should help.

I am doing ok with bank interest and odd bits of money coming my way. I am too busy for surveys etc at the moment, besides it’s too nice to be stuck on a computer when the sun is shining. Back to all that when the usual British weather returns.

I am owed a substantial amount of money by various people and I am going to work on getting it back. I don’t mind lending it out but get a bit annoyed when no effort is made to then repay.

Prepping: A different sort of prepping is going on in my house at the moment. We are having the downstairs remodelled a bit which means taking out the kitchen for a few months. We are going to use the dining room as our kitchen and eat out of the freezer and cook on the campstove. We have a microwave and a slow cooker too so should be fine.

Decluttering and Minimising: In line with the above we have started moving stuff around. It was going to happen anyway but now there is a bit of pressure on. It started with my sister taking a load of carboard boxes from the shed to move house with. I cleared out the shed which is dry and have now moved a load of fabric into it, neatly stacked in tough plastic boxes. These and a lot more stuff was stored in DS room, but he also had a load of stuff arrive which he was storing somewhere else, he needed the room.

Downstairs there has been a bit by bit decluttering going on to allow for the kitchen to be moved. That isn’t finished yet.

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: Since I last wrote I have been avoiding buying drinks in plastic and takeaway cups. I am re using everything I can. Each item that leaves the house is recycled or reused in some way. Easy things like bags of books and harder things like bags of clothes that are not good enough to be reworn – these are donated to the charity shop marked for rags. The CS makes about £4.50 per bag I am told.

Reducing food waste is relatively easy as we have a freezer and we are pretty creative and accepting what we eat. DD made onion soup today out of a load of reduced price onions, home grown garlic, carrot and spud plus leftover sweetcorn and peas from last nights tea. It was delicous too.

 

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Grenfell Fire Anniversary – 1 Year On

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Image from Google

It is a year today since the horrific fire which killed 72 people at Grenfell Tower in London, UK.

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Image: Evening Times

I for one will never forget the footage of the fire from afar on the TV. I cannot imagine how the surviving residents of the tower as well as the people who live in London, especially near the tower will ever be able to put it behind them. 

This is a wake up call for the penny pinchers. I hope they get all that is coming to them once the inquiry is over. 

In the meantime, I hope that all the survivors get what they need to find resolution, hope and for some, basic accomodation. 

Green is the colour that local school children, affected by the fire, to represent the tragedy and the community as does the green heart.

 

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Image: Eastern Eye

 

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Bucket List – Hay Festival

I have a long Bucket List. On it are a lot of things including sleeping under the stars to visiting a jungle.

Most people seem to think of it of a list of things to do before you die. Of course I get this but I don’t think of it like that. For me it is not a rush to see and do it all by death, but a focus to take pleasure in, to aim for more experiences things in life. I want to experience all that I can; the list is really so I don’t forget anything.

So one of the things on this bucket list was to go to the Hay Festival. This is a literature festival that takes place each year in the lovely town of Hay on Wye. It is situated on the Welsh side of the English/Welsh border in the county of Herefordshire.

http://www.hay-on-wye.co.uk/  Here is the town website.

Hay is famous for it’s bookshops of which there are over 20 situated in it’s small streets. It is also a very pleasant place to spend the day with all the other lovely shops, cafes and pubs. The famous Offa’s Dyke runs past the town. It is a 177 mile path which follows a Dyke built by King Offa along the whole Welsh border. I would like to walk it in the future but will have to wait until I retire if I want to do it in one go.

20180601_Hay sign

Image: Own photo.

The town started having a literature festival in 1988 and has since become one of the world’s top literary festivals. It has been on my list for a long time.

The festival runs for about 10 days but we went from Wednesday to Sunday last week. Instead of buying a ticket for a lot of money and trying to get into things the Festival organiser charge for each show. Tickets range from £6 up to over £20.00.

First night,we saw Dara O’Briain. He is doing  The Voice of Reason Tour. I laughed so much that at times I coudn’t breath.

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Image:google images

It was a good start but we hadn’t booked any other tickets. We leafed through the booklet with all the acts in and decided on Marcus du Sautoy, talking about measuring infinity and I opted to go to a session talking about resilience in the NHS.

Over the next few days we say Alice Roberts (anthropologist) and Chris Bonnington (Mountaineer). There was also a storyteller giving us a taste of his book ‘The Assembly of the Severed head’.

The whole event seemed to run very smoothly apart from the odd technical hiccough.

One of the best things was that once a session was over the writer would go to the festival bookshop and sign their book. Each hour or two you could walk in to the shop and see maybe JoJo Moyes or Jilly cooper. I was pleased to see Monty Don in the flesh.

The whole experience was great and I will be going back next year.

The whole festival is held undercover, including the walkways between marquees. Some of the other more pleasing things were the areas just to sit and think like this marquee complete with chairs:

20180601_Hay marquee at night

Image: my photo

Each even had a chalkboard outside which was hand drawn individually, here is the one for Alice Roberts and her 10 species that changd the world with the artist who’s name I think was James.

20180601_Hay sign writer

Image: my photo

The whole site was clean and tidy at all times. No piles of plates and cups all over the place. hay festival is the first all reusable cup festival in the world (they say) All the cups were plastic and they were all collected for recycling:

cups at hay

Image: my photo

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Current Themes – An Update

 

Its Sunny June and time for an update.

Health and Fitness:  I have been having a rest since doing the moonwalk. One; to recover whole body fitness but also because of some ongoing foot pain I have. I have my sights set on the Couch to 5K still but I need to make sure I don’t injure myself first.

What I have found is that my fitness has definitely improved. I can work longer and harder on the allotment. The only thing slowing me down is tiredness and heat. It has been very warm in the UK over the last few weeks and I am feeling it.

Making Money: Still spending but have managed to earn a bit extra. Nothing amazing though.

Prepping: Nothing new here.

Decluttering and Minimising: I have been away or busy a lot in the last few weeks but have managed to turf out another 2 bags of books and knick knacks. DD is away for the week so I have an opportunity to get rid of some stuff out of her room.

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: Talking to a colleague today about cotton, washable sanitary towels. She is the first person who has said anything about them to me although I have had conversations with other women about them. Lots of Pintrest patterns available.

Went to Hay festival and they had all the beverage sellers using the same plastic cups which were collected for recycling. It shows that where there is a will there is a way.

cups at hay

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Cancer Update: Oncology Review

It is two years since I went back to work and life is looking good. Apart from the obvious stuff like side effects of drugs and less stamina I am lucky to be able to get on with life.

I had a review with the oncologist in the week. She has started me on Anastrazole, and aromatase inhibitor which stops the production of oestrogen in women. They are generally used in post menopausal women because they can’t stop the ovaries still producing oestrogen.

Here is simple but good explanation of the ins and outs of the drug:

http://www.breastcancer.org/treatment/hormonal/aromatase_inhibitors

There will hopefully be less side effects and I will be able to drop my us of Venlafaxine, which has been brilliant although I still get hot flushes.

I may have more joint pain, nothing I haven’t had already, and develop osteoporosis. That means that I will be having a bone density scan in the next few months.

I will have to keep an eye on my heart as well as it can affect your ticker. I have a family history of heart disease so am especially aware anyway.

While there I took the opportunity to ask about recostruction surgery. I am not that body concious to be fair but can’t get on with the image I see in the mirror when I have no prosthetic on. It is worth investigating. Anyway she has referred me to the Breast Care Nurse specialists and I will see them in due course. I will update when I know more.

I am very lucky living in the UK. Recosntruction is free as part of the treatment pathway for breast cancer.

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Current Themes – An Update

Its mid May and time for an update.

Health and Fitness:  Well I did it. i completed the Moonwalk, 26.2 miles, overnight in 10 hours. Had I thought about doing this a few years ago I would have just laughed and said ‘No Chance’. Here I am today saying I have done it, what is the next challenge!

It wasn’t easy. At 5 miles I was saying to myself that I was a fool. My feet and ankle hurt even before I stasrted. At Mile 8 I told my friends to go on without me as I was so slow. I then just plodded on. chatting to people, listening to music, just saying ‘I can do another five minutes’, ‘ A mile is only 20 minutes, I can do that’. So I am happy.

I will be doing it again next year, a load of people from work want to do it with me. In the meantime the next challenge will be the Couch to 5K again which I will start in a few weeks when I have recovered.

Making Money: Still spending but have managed to earn a bit extra. Nothing amazing though.

Prepping: Nothing new here.

Decluttering and Minimising: Now the walk is over I have started to clean and clear again. Son No 3 decided he wanted to replace his drawers with a wardrobe. This meant we had to clear out his room, redecorate and at the same time he sorted through all his clothes. Books have gone by the bag load and other clutter. I am about to give a bag of stuff to my MiL for a tabletop sale at her church.

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: Working still on getting everything in glass or loose rather than plastic. Reuse of the week is lollipop sticks for the allotment as the weather has warmed up.

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