Tuesday, 30 June 2015

30th June 2015

Love: I love the British attitude to the weather! Everything is always too much! At the moment it's too hot. Next week, when the temperature drops, it'll be too cold or too windy or too wet etc! Nothing is ever "just right"! But, yeah, it is too hot!
Life: one of the things I put on my Dream Board last week was an elephant, to remind me to be gentle and kind. I can't say I'm succeeding at the moment! I'm not really a tolerant person - especially not of intolerance! But David Cameron says we should be "intolerant of intolerance" so at least I know I'm pleasing someone! :/ (Unfortunately, I rather suspect he has Muslims in mind and is thus dressing prejudice in another coat) Today, I taught at Tomorrow's Women again. I always enjoy teaching there - when I have students to teach! - and today was no exception. I love seeing the creative ways people interpret the same brief! It's awesome! :)
Career: Things are afoot... and, no, I'm not talking about my new Doc Martens! ...or looking to work in a shoe shop! ...or become a mathematician! (Honestly, give people a yard and they take a mile!)

Monday, 29 June 2015

29th June 2015

Love: I love how generous people have been, donating money to Big Love Sista after my walk yesterday. For example, my dad emailed me today to say he'd donated £100! So by my reckoning, I'm now at about 3 times my original target! Awesome! :)
Life: Today I have had very stiff legs - and I had to walk to and from work too! The stiffness is slowly wearing off (apart from the back of my knee which is concerning me a bit) but for some reason my toe caught in my sock seam today, peeling some of the skin off - and then I went and kicked my boot getting into bed! Ow! I've also been learning how to facilitate a Circle today, which is interesting. I'm nervous about it all; not entirely convinced it's the best idea I've ever had but I'm liking it enough to at least give it a go! Who knows, maybe I'll be able to pass on some of the magic I've benefitted from this last year and a bit!
Career: after my usual shift this morning, I stayed on for my voluntary role. I decided to do a bit of research into successful marketing via Facebook. It was interesting stuff - not least because no one really seems to know how to be successful at it yet!

Sunday, 28 June 2015

28th June 2015

Love: I love being with my Sistas! I am so lucky to have discovered and be able to spend time with Big Love Sista every week! Sometimes several times a week! Love them! :)
Life: Today I did the Wirral Coastal Walk for the second year running. As Id been too lazy to do much 'training' I found it a lot more difficult this year and was struggling by the 10 mile mark! I still carried on to the end though cos I don't like being defeated! But my legs are proper aching now! :( Thankfully, I had Dave and Libby to keep me company this year. I don't think I would've been able to do it without their consideration and encouragement! Love them! :) This year I did the walk to raise funds for Big Love Sista. See above to see why! Or click here.
Career: I spent the day walking not working! Walking's much harder!

Saturday, 27 June 2015

27th June 2015

Love: Start at the beginning and try again!
Life: I was determined to have a lazy day today but I still did the washing, shopping and cycled to cinema (via Seacombe) and back! At the cinema I watched Mr Holmes which I enjoyed. I thought everyone in it was very good - especially the little lad who played Roger.
Career: Rethinking things. I've had an offer from an acquaintance and I'm giving it some thought. No money involved though.

Friday, 26 June 2015

26th June 2015

Love: Yesterday, I blogged about letting go. Tonight I've had to let go of something I've wanted for almost a year now. And, yes, it was painful letting go. And, yes, it did make me angry. But holding onto it was not doing me any good.
Life: Plans for a pleasant evening with Amanda at the cinema were cancelled. So I ended up watching Calvary. It was a good film and actually made me feel sorry for a priest! I wouldn't be at all surprised if the RC Church commissioned it! :D
Career: After my usual shift, I stayed on in the afternoon for my voluntary role. I had a look at our Facebook page and made some rough plans for our social media campaign leading up to Stoptober. It wasn't a bad way to spend an afternoon. :)

Thursday, 25 June 2015

25th June 2015

Love: I can't fight this feeling! :)
Life: This afternoon I was tempted to go for a cycle ride but was worried I would get sunburn and, besides, I had things to do at home and places to be, so I didn't. Maybe tomorrow? This evening I went to Gather The Women. The theme this month was 'Your Inner Voice'. It was interesting and by the end I was reflecting on the journey I'd made in recent years to be OK with my inner voice and accept it for what it is, rather than have an inner voice that brought me very very close to self-destruction. I've also been noticing in recent days how things seem to be adding up and making sense; that what previously seemed terrible I now see as potentially wonderful! :) All that is changed is my attitude. I've also been thinking about loss differently. There is no doubt that the lowest point in my life was John's death. But what it showed me is that nothing is forever. So there's no point trying to fight the inevitability of change and things coming to an end. On one hand, this is great! If I'm going through a really shitty time, then what I should bear in mind is that shitty time will come to an end and things will improve again. That was proven just this last month when May was a really difficult time for me but, looking back, what made it easier than previous times is the knowledge that May is always a difficult time for me (I don't fully understand why but it is!) and May is only but one month in 12! However, on the downside, is that when you really really want something to last forever - like being with John - it is incredibly painful when it comes to an end but, again, what made the loss easier, I think, is that a few days before he died I'd accepted defeat and that I was going to lose him. Certainly, I hate to think how much worse it would've been if I'd still been fighting the inevitable! So, yet again, I'm learning/realising that attitude plays a huge part in the life you have.
Career: Another morning at work: Nice chats with people. Nice work. Nice cups of tea. What's not to like? :)

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

24th June 2015

Love: I have made a wish for she to be mine. :)
Life: tonight I attended a dream board workshop at Big Love Sista studio. The result was somewhat surprising. I realised I wanted less not more - which will be great financially! :) Because Ian had been spraying weedkiller yesterday, I had to keep Mia indoors for most of the day and she wasn't thrilled with the idea! I fully expected to come home from work to find the place trashed and a dump on the carpet! But, no, she had been as good as gold! Bless her! And tonight she has decided to sleep at the top of the stairs as though she's guarding me from something. Maybe she knows something I don't! :k
Career: after my usual shift, I stayed on for my volunteering role. I looked into the Stoptober campaign. It's a mammoth task! I hope I'm not found wanting! :k

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

23rd June 2015

Love: I have been an idiot! The important thing, though, is that I recognise I've been an idiot and can maybe still put it right. Fingers crossed! "The course of true love never did run smooth", as Shakespeare once wrote!
Life: Today after work, I made a mad dash to put my returned footwear in the post, pick up a phone number for a handyman to do my awning, then into Birkenhead for boot laces, lunch, Dad's birthday pressie and a pin board. Then it was home to do a bit of weeding - why did no one tell me it's easier to pick weeds than hoe them?!! Before Ian from work turned up to help tidy the back yard up. Then it was tea - Gammon Omelette a la Claire - before departing for choir. Then, when I got back home, I've been finding images for my mood board tomorrow. I think I'm about ready for bed now!
Career: More of the same old, same old. Gosh, how I shall miss it come August! :(

Monday, 22 June 2015

22nd June 2015

Love: More cuddles with Mia this evening. Sometimes she is my only solace. She makes life worth living. <3
Life: Whilst at work I spotted a Healthwatch article about feedback on GRS services. And so it was that I gave them my experiences. I can only hope that this finally sees the GICs get their act together because the way they treat Trans people is disgraceful! When I got home, I awaited delivery of my Dr Martens boots. I intended to return one pair but as it happens the pair I'm returning isn't the pair I expected to return. It just shows you can never be sure when you're buying stuff off the internet - especially with my feet!
Career: after my usual shift this morning, I did my first voluntary shift as Media Assistant for our Smoking Cessation/Health & Wellbeing services. The great thing about volunteering is you can come and go as you want. So when I ran out of things to do this afternoon, I was able to call it a day rather than sit and twiddle my thumbs.

Sunday, 21 June 2015

21st June 2015

Love: Today I've done something I don't think I've ever been able to do in my life before - lie down in the sun and sunbathe. I love the fact that I felt so at ease with the world that I was able to relax and do nothing. :)
Life: That being said, I still struggle with compliments... This afternoon was another at Africa Oyé. After roast lunch at Keith's Restaurant on Lark Lane, which was pretty good, I met up with Clare, Sandra, Rach, Patricia, Shirley and Amanda. As said, I relaxed in the sun... and Sandra took photos. Well, just before bed, Alison complimented me for my appearance and Clare and Patricia joined in. I'm afraid I don't share their opinion that I'm a "stunner". I feel anything but! If I was, then why is there no end to singledom even remotely in sight?!! It's the same as when Clare said I had "great legs" this afternoon - my legs are bent and deformed for heaven sake! Let's not kid ourselves otherwise! I'm sorry, but let's just face facts: I am what I am and I'm not going to find myself an 'admirer' any time soon!
Career: Sunday is a day of rest. I'm glad I managed it for a change. :)

Saturday, 20 June 2015

20th June 2015

Love: When I fell in love with John, love swiped me sideways and knocked me off my feet. I've never felt that feeling since - the absolute rightness of being with someone. One day, I hope I will have that feeling again. And I hope it's mutual.
Life: today I went to Africa Oyé. But first I went to Amanda's flat and was treated to freshly made sushi. It was yummy! :) Then we headed to Sefton Park and met up with others from Big Love Sista and 'made camp' for the festival. I rather enjoyed it, seeing all the different things and listening to the music but, as the afternoon drew on, the clouds departed and I began to feel the effects of too much sunshine. Having been through that last year, I decided I really didn't want to go through it again! So I made my excuses and left. I made it as far as Milo Lounge on Lark Lane before I really had to stop for refreshments/tea. I had the tapas and then continued on my way home. Overall, it was a really nice day though! I'm already looking forward to Day 2, tomorrow! :)
Career: me work on a weekend? No fear!

Friday, 19 June 2015

19th June 2015

Love: I'm not dead. Every day I give myself another chance at finding true love for a second time. That's fabulous news isn't it! :)
Life: Today was Mia's monthly flea treatment. As usual, I let her come and sit on my lap and then squirted the stuff on. And, as usual, she gave me a wild look and scampered off but she was soon back cuddling up with me again. The adorable creature! :)
Career: More of the same and most enjoyable it was too. :)

Thursday, 18 June 2015

17th June 2015

Love: tonight I went to see Dan Deacon live (as opposed to dead!) with Pauline in Salford. We went to see him the last time he was in the UK about 3 years ago and it was a very memorable concert. Sadly, lightning didn't strike twice and although he was very good it wasn't really up to the standard of last time. My ears are also still ringing!
Life: Today I went to pick up the flea treatment for Mia only to find the vet has changed the policy of the health plan and I can no longer get Advantage included. :( which means I will probably now cancel the health plan. Then I stopped off at Renes Restaurant for dinner and had a very nice ham sandwich. :) then it was back home, a change of clothes and off to Manchester.
Career: The usual - which is very good - at work today plus I also discussed with Ali plans for what I'm going to do when I swap to being a volunteer again. I'm quite excited, I have to say! It sounds well good! :)

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

16th June 2015

Love: I love singing. I pretty much always have - except for when people teased me for my inability.  After almost a year going to choir, I would say my competency tends to waver. Sometimes I'm good and sometimes, like tonight, I'm awful. But no one teases me any more - I only get words of encouragement - and that's the important thing. :)
Life: other than choir, today was pretty uneventful.
Career: One less day until I'm 'retired'.

Monday, 15 June 2015

15th June 2015

Love: more cuddling with Mia today. She even spent half an hour precariously balanced on my crossed legs until my foot started to go to sleep and I had to move her. She then spent the rest of the evening asleep at my feet. :)
Life: I popped into Birkenhead today because I had an idea for a pressie I want to make for a friend's birthday. Unfortunately, I couldn't find what I wanted so I've decided I'm making the materials myself. I just hope they appreciate all the effort I'll have gone to by the time I'm finished! :)
Career: today I decided that I'd much prefer it if people didn't do things if they don't know what they're doing! There is so much rubbish on the internet created by people who clearly didn't have a clue! Plus today I got an NHS Word document that clearly hadn't been formatted properly which was meant for public dissemination! These people should be ashamed of themselves! It's as bad as when I worked for the newspapers - the amount of journalists who clearly couldn't be bothered to use a word checker before forwarding me their articles was a regular source of annoyance! :(

Sunday, 14 June 2015

14th June 2015

Love: Mia showed her sweet side this evening when she cuddled up on my lap for a good half hour. I love cuddling up with her. It's one of my favourite things in the whole world! :)
Life: I had a quiet day in today - which actually is quite remarkable because a year ago I hated my own company! But these days I can cope with it and my mind isn't as overactive as it once was. However, I did get a reminder of my poor memory when a hotel in London phoned to ask if I was booking in with them today or not. It was because my appointment with Charing Cross tomorrow got cancelled and I'd forgot to cancel the hotel as well! Thankfully, they were very understanding and cancelled it without charging me anything! I also got called inspirational again today. It's not something I really understand or appreciate - I'm just me doing my thing. But if me doing my thing inspires others that's a very nice bonus! So I shall keep on doing it! :)
Career: I'm not a vicar or a shop assistant or anybody else that works Sundays, thank goodness!

Saturday, 13 June 2015

13th June 2015

Love: today I cycled to Meols via New Brighton along the Wirral Circular Trail. I really enjoyed it. The track wasn't too taxing but it was mostly off-road so it was quite a thrill without really being dangerous. I intend to do it again sometime and maybe a different bit of it too.
Life: I hope Clare won't mind me divulging this but back in March we met and I told her about the dark thoughts that plague me - how I'm rubbish and not worth anyone's time. Her response surprised me, because she asked what would be the objective of those thoughts if I listened to them. Well, as I accept more and more that I'm taking 'early retirement' in July, I'm beginning to see that at least some of them were trying to get me to slow down and not push so hard. It's a fact that my very first morning of widowhood, I threw open the bedroom curtains (which had never been opened in all the time I lived there) and went for a walk in the sunshine. Then add to that the fact I moved house 6 months later, I think I can conclude that I didn't want to dwell on what being a widow means. This sounds slightly insane considering what I've been through emotionally these last 2 years but, in fact, I'm not sure I really have taken stock of my life and begun to get my head around my new reality. I've just got on with living but now I find myself exhausted. So now would seem the ideal time to take a breather and take stock - even if that does mean letting the misery and darkness, that I've tried so hard to keep out, back in. Someone keep a light on for me!
Career: It's a Saturday. Plus see the above.

Friday, 12 June 2015

12th June 2015

Love: The 3rd series of Orange Is The New Black (OITNB) was released today. If you don't have Netflix, it's unlikely you'll have seen a single episode of OITNB and thus have realised what an excellent series it is. Personally, along with other Netflix exclusives House of Cards and Daredevil, I think OITNB fully justifies the £5.99 per month subscription fee to Netflix!
Life: I took my car back for repairs and MOT retest this afternoon. I was hoping to take my bike with me and have a quick ride whilst they were doing the work but, no matter which way I tried, I could not fit my bike inside my car so I had to abandon that idea. After getting my MOT certificate, I did the weekly shopping and came home for tea and started watching OITNB. I watched just the three episodes tonight but no doubt I'll have watched the rest of the series by Monday morning! <SPOILER>However, I think there should be a ban on storylines involving bedbugs because now I itch all over and every black speck I see is a bug! And when you own a black and white cat, there are plenty of black specks around! Which you fear may be a dreaded flea! (I'll be surprised if I get through the summer without them to be honest).
Career: Just the usual morning at work today. I enjoy the work though and the people I work with so I have no complaints (other than my contract coming to an end!).

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

10th June 2015

Love: the weather has been lovely and sunny again today. I rather enjoyed having a short walk through Eastham in the sunshine this afternoon. :)
Life: I took my car in for an MOT this afternoon. It failed. So I'm taking it in for a new tyre and bulb on Friday. Total cost: £79, which is considerably better than the £500 I used to expect to shell out every year to get previous cars through their MOT! I also plucked up the courage to email Local Solutions about providing board for a homeless young person. So watch this space. Things might get interesting!
Career: Another pretty ordinary morning at work. :)

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

9th June 2015

Love: did I mention I love Liverpool? Oh, OK, I shan't mention it again then. Well, not until the next time anyway! :D
Life: this afternoon I rode to Liverpool (with a little help from the train) again. I had tea at Bakchich (chicken wrap, fries and a pomegranate lemonade) and then went to Big Love Sista studio for an all over body massage with Antonia. It was fabulous! I hadn't had one for 2-3 years so this was well overdue! It really did the trick! I then went from the massage straight into choir and I don't know whether it was because I was so loosened up from the massage but I seemed to be more in tune than normal this evening. :) After choir, I cycled home again before heading straight to bed: tired, sweaty and a little bloody (I smacked my knee on the pedal!).
Career: another morning at work. I spent three hours doing the funding bulletin which didn't leave much time for anything else. I'm sure I'll catch-up timorrow.

Monday, 8 June 2015

8th June 2015

Love: I tried a new restaurant on Bold Street today. It's called Mowgli and serves Indian street food. Not really being that familiar with the menu, I chose the Indian School Tiffin which was 4 tiers of "pot luck" veggie food chosen by "mama". The food was fresh and delicious and the ambience and presentation was inventive. I really liked it and can see why it's always busy! I aim to go back for "seconds"! :)
Life: I was in Liverpool this afternoon on, with the exception of Mowgli, what turned out to be a wasted trip. Then, this evening, I watched Call The Midwife and House on Netflix. I don't want to spoil anything for anyone but in one of the episodes of Call The Midwife that I watched, a Jewish lady gives a newly bereaved woman the following advice when her boyfriend dies: "you just keep living until you are alive again", which I thought summed up widowhood beautifully. I don't believe there is any 'getting over it' but life does go on and in my experience, if you can stick with it, happiness will begin to fill your days again. There is not a day I don't think about John or miss him but I also recognise that I am much happier than I used to be and I'm coping far better than I ever thought I would. 
Career: I have to admit my impending "early retirement" does scare me a little bit. I read somewhere that if the path you've chosen makes you feel scared then you know it's the right path. I don't know how they figure that out! You'd hardly tell someone to walk past a tiger would you! However, there is a part of me that feels calm about it. It does feel right somehow to say 20 years (off and on) as a wage earner is long enough. I can only afford to do this because I collect John's pension of course but I don't believe that, if he could communicate to me, he'd be saying "you have to work". Rather, I believe he'd be somewhat approving and say "Well, I didn't get it. So you may as well make the most of it and enjoy your life". Actually, the other day I had another way of thinking about my situation: I was like a juggler trying to keep too many balls in the air and, eventually, I got worn out and found I couldn't cope with the pressure so I ended up dropping them all. But there is nothing stopping me picking each ball up again - or as many as I want to (and I might even swap some, or all, of the balls for batons!) - when I feel able to.

Sunday, 7 June 2015

7th June 2015

Love: I know I may sound like a stuck record but I genuinely love Liverpool! I know it may not have the most pleasant of histories and there are still great inequalities and injustices here but I truly believe I made a fantastic choice in moving next door to the city of Liverpool! :)
Life: Yesterday (you did notice I didn't blog yesterday, didn't you?) I took my bike out for a proper ride. I met up with Rach and we cycled around Sefton Park. I only managed to fall off twice and proper banged my knee but at least my bike's seen proper action now! After being treated to a cup of tea, we caught the train to Waterloo for InTrust. After the meeting the two of us caught the train back into the city before separating at Central station and I headed off to Birkenhead Park for a cycle around it and then I continued on home. My legs were proper aching by the time I got back! So I obviously need to do it more often to build my muscles up!
This morning, I went back into the city to join the Brouhaha group to don my carnival costume and join in with their 'homecoming parade'. I loved every minute of it! It was awesome! :) So I've emailed them tonight to ask about getting involved properly. :) After the parade, I met Amanda and we wandered around taking in the sights of the Festival. The sun was shining and it was such a blissful afternoon! I truly love Liverpool and the fact I can get involved in such amazing stuff so easily! It seems like pleasure is served up on a plate to me here sometimes! :)
Career: I don't work weekends and I never want to ever again!

Friday, 5 June 2015

5th June 2015

Love: The sun got off to a slow start but we still had plenty of it. In fact, it's still shining now and it's almost 9:30pm. I feel summer is definitely here now! :)
Life: I haven't done much today except work, play Angry Birds and watch House. I have found it relaxing though and that's always useful. :)
Career: I worked overtime today. Still didn't finish the project though.

Thursday, 4 June 2015

4th June 2015

Love: life always feels infinitely better when the sun is shining. Think I managed to just avoid sunburn this afternoon but I definitely feel a bit 'tender'.
Life: This afternoon the sun was shining so I went for a walk and bought a bike for about twice as much as I wanted to spend. However, I'll soon have made my money back in unbought petrol once I've done about 800 miles on it! The next step is to see if I can go totally car less and thus see no need not to sell my car.
Career: just the morning today but doing overtime tomorrow.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

3rd June 2015

Love: I've loved spending time with Mia today but she's been odd again. Sits on my lap one minute and wanders off and doesn't want to know me the next! Contrary madam! :D
Life: This afternoon/evening has been pretty inspirational. First I was introduced to Amanda Palmer and watched her talk, The Art Of Asking, on TED. It is something I've experienced myself - it is something I've been criticised for myself - but I was always brought up with the notion that "if you don't ask, you don't get". Then I saw a request on Facebook from Brouhaha for people to join their carnival procession, wearing one of their costumes. So now another of my desires shall be coming true and they get what they want too - just by asking. It's something I think perhaps we forget - asking for what we want isn't automatically a selfish act. We can make someone else happy too. Then this evening I watched, Sa som i Himmelen, which is a film about a choir and it was an incredibly powerful film - especially the ending! Hollywood it is not! And all the better for it! :) It reminded me of a point made in yesterday's memorial service for Marcie - never disregard the impact you have on another person's life. It is too easy to think we don't matter but, actually, as I have found, we matter hugely! Please don't deny somebody else the chance of feeling your influence.
Career: I've had some more help with realising my calling today. The organisation I need to contact are MAP. This is so gonna get real! :)

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

2nd June 2015

Love: I love a girl. I don't think she loves me but it's hard to tell whether we're misfiring or I'm misreading the situation. But, either way, my life feels infinitely better for having her in it. :)
Life: today has been a very special day. It started with a memorial service for Marcie at Tomorrow's Women that Clare organised. It was so beautiful and amazing and, at the end, I just wanted to sob my eyes out but I made a swift exit instead. I went to Birkenhead centre and bought a new iPad cover, some cake (it's not for me, honest!) and had lunch in a superb little cafe - all in the market, which I love! :) The day ended with choir practice which was fabulous as always. It's such a joy to be a part of even if I disgrace everyone else with my singing!
Career: I'm really touched by all the help people have offered me helping me achieve my purpose. It's fabulous to be so highly thought of! :)

Monday, 1 June 2015

1st June 2015

Love: I have discovered a new love - open mic night at the Egg Cafe, Liverpool. It was an awesome couple of hours entertainment all for free! Can't wait to go again next month and next time I might perform too! :)
Life: considering today is 1st June, the weather has been shit! Where is the sunshine?!! I also did overtime at work today. Then I met Amanda for a lovely meal at a Lebanese place and then we went to the open mic night. I then caught bus home and walked in through the front door to the stench of poo! Mia doesn't have a litter tray! So I then had to play Hunt The Poo! And found a steaming pile of it on the computer room carpet! Rest assured, I have now reinstated litter tray!
Career: I did overtime today and will be taking it off as TOIL tomorrow morning for a memorial service.
Poem: Walking between The Egg to the bus at Queens Square, I thunk up this poem inspired by Paul McCartney's 'home coming' concert last week and tonight's events...

Oi! McCartney! Nay!
I ain't gonna pay
To see an artist in decay
For your music of Yesterday
I'd rather get a boot fall of rain
Heading back from the Egg Cafe
Having seen an awesome display
Of the talent of today!