This is my monthly post on the little ways I have nourished my mind, body and soul over the past month. My nourish day was a day of simple pleasures this month, just a hairdressers appointment and a visit to a new café with a friend, activities which made me content and relaxed. This month Spring has been blossoming and many of my nourish moments embrace the new season.
- Light mornings for early morning running. My running in the winter is limited and fairly relaxed but now with the lighter mornings, I’m back to three mornings a week and a training plan.
- Lighter afternoons. Tonight the children played in the garden until 6.30pm, I love a lazy after school spent in the garden and it keeps my house tidier too 🙂
- Lunch out with my parents. My parents came down to visit on a school day, so I got to have lunch with them, its rare for only the three of us to go out together. It was a delicious meal and lovely to have the opportunity to just spend time with my parents.
- Spring vegetables. I like to eat seasonally and after the casseroles and soups of winter its been a time to start to enjoy lighter meals and salads, full of bright colours.
- Smoothies. We have a new health café in town and I’m currently working my way through their smoothie menu, all freshly made to order and delicious.
- Health Niggles. I finally went to the doctor about a little health niggle which was becoming more worrying. I had a thorough check up and have some medication to help with a plan of action for the future too. I feel much more reassured.
- Books. Until this month, my reading this year had been unusually slow and I hadn’t really found a great book. However this month, the titles I’ve read have been brilliant and I’ve often been cuddled up with a book in the evenings.
As this week has seen the last Thursday in February, it was my ‘nourish’ day. I decided at the start of the year, I would set aside one day a month, a day for me, to nourish my body, mind or spirit. Of course, life happens and this Thursday, I really needed to go to the local market town for a recall on my car, not ideal for a nourish day. However, I realised that Neal’s Yard Remedies, a shop I always pop into for a little browse, has therapy rooms so I booked a massage for the morning. It was utter bliss and so what I needed, after every massage I have I think I should do this more often and I really must, I felt so good, relaxed and recharged. I also popped into a couple of favourite shops whilst in the town and got a tunic in White Stuff I had on my wish list with a 20% discount. I love the design and pattern and can’t wait to wear it.
Other nourishing moments this week were
- Being a blood donor. It was my blood donation session this week, a little bit of discomfort is well worth the satisfaction of giving to our NHS in my little way.
- A new teapot. I fell in love with the design and colour of this Stump teapot when I had tea in a small indie café a few months ago. It was top of my Christmas list, but despite lots of searching by me and my parents who were buying it for me, it was out of stock. It is now in stock again and I finally have my Christmas present, I’m so pleased I waited, it is perfect. I also went to a loose tea emporium whilst in the market town so have a few varieties of tea to brew.
- Flowers. My work partner and I returned to work on Monday to be given bouquets of beautiful flowers by our colleagues as a little thank you for all we do in the department. Our priority is always the wellbeing of our staff and students so it was a delightful surprise to be treated ourselves. Our office had a lovely smell this week and they’ve lasted so well that I’ve brought mine home for the weekend, I’m going to eek every last moment of joy from them.
I’ve been looking through my blog and I realise that the #nourish posts are keeping me from writing other posts on my list. I’m still sticking with Nourish as my word of the year and theme, but going forward will only do a monthly round up.
One of the frustrations of writing an anonymous blog is the lack of opportunity to post photos of our family. Its been a terrific half term week, I feel rested and relaxed and we have enjoyed lots of special moments. My nourish list may be a little longer this week, but holidays give us the chance to get out and explore.
- Swimming at the Splash Centre. When I was growing up a trip to the Oasis swimming pool in Swindon was a big treat, the wave machines, slides etc.. We go to Butlins at least once a year so my children get to experience similar at their pool. However we found a pool with slides, disco and rainbow, a water play pool and large pool near my parents and enjoyed a morning there. My parents watched whilst the children and I had lots of fun in the water. My two both love the water and it relaxes and calms them.
- A quiet read. This week I devoured a book, Still Me by Jojo Moyes in a few days. For me there is nothing quite getting lost in a book and the joy of a great story. Following the book, I’ve been dreaming (and writing a bit of a plan ) of a visit to New York and vintage clothes.
- Grounded by Nature. This week has been a fantastic week weather wise for half term, bright sunshine and a little warmth. On Wednesday the four of us went to the local forestry commission and cycled for a few hours in the forest. Yes the uphills are hard but the joy of cycling down a hill, wind in your face and legs out is one of the best feelings.
- A sleepover. This week we held our first sleepover at our house, 2 girls stayed overnight whilst one just joined us for the daytime activities. I was a bit worried but it turned out really well, we started at the park, home to ‘hang out’, made homemade pizzas and ice cream sundaes for tea and then chilled with music and films. I was asleep at 12 to a quiet house.
- Old friends. None of the friends I was closest to at school live in our home town and we are scattered across the continent. I love my friends from school, they helped to define the person I became and whilst we stay in contact through email and cards and letters, its not quite the same as seeing them. At Christmas I wrote to a friend and said that if she was ever in England to let me know and we would try to meet up. She did respond to say she was visiting family this weekend, in a town 2 hours drive from me and by coincidence the same small town where one of my lovely aunts lives. As our boys are away at Grandads, Little Miss and I went on a little road trip. We met up with my aunt first, she has lived in the same house for the past 35 years so it was full of memories of growing up with my cousins, its quite a feeling to be transported back to your childhood. It was lovely to see my aunt and spend time with her, worth the trip in itself. We then met up with my friend who was accompanied by her eldest daughter who is a similar age to Little Miss, they hit it off so well and we had a brilliant time together. Whilst we might be older, greyer, we’re still those 14 year old girls.
- Time Out. With the sleepover on Friday and a road trip on Saturday, I knew today needed to be quiet. I planned our week so all my housework is done, the children’s homework, projects and all, were completed by Thursday, PE kits and school bags are packed and my Sunday ironing was done on Friday morning. I even popped into a M and S food shop yesterday for our lunch today (this is a big treat) Sometimes you need a day with nothing on the to do list.
So 5 little morsels of nourishment from my week …
1. A day out at the animal sanctuary. A day full of winter sunshine and lots of small and farm animals. My personal favourite, definitely the goats.
2. Valentine’s Day Treat. To try and quell the slight hysteria from Year 6, I suggested to Little Miss rather than choose one person to send a Valentine why not her whole class and to focus on everyone’s qualities. I bought mini packets of Love Hearts 💕 and I typed a label as she chose a special quality for each person. The comments weren’t romantic just nice, you make me smile, I like your style, you’re a great gymnast etc..
3. A new hair colour. To hide the grey I regularly have my hair dyed and a new colour makes me feel happier and more youthful. It’s also a great opportunity to catch up on all the news with my hairdresser.
4. Friday 2.30pm. The start of half term and the anticipation of a more relaxed week for me.
5. Macarons. We’re at my mum and dads this weekend with lots of treats. For tea on Saturday we had these delicate macarons. One day I’ll pop into Ladurée in Paris for the real delicacy but for the time being they were a lovely alternative.
In choosing my theme for the year, nourish, I wanted something which would embrace mind, body and spirit. Each week will have different elements, this week there is a social theme, which has nourished my spirit and heart.
- Cocktails and a cosy pub ….
This week, I’ve enjoyed two nights out (and one on a school night too!). On Saturday I was at a cocktail party, I don’t drink but was so impressed by the mocktails put on for us, not only delicious but beautifully presented. It was a lovely party, a great disco soundtrack, fantastic company and a wonderful excuse to dress up and sparkle. Tuesday night was more intimate with just three of us out, but we got to sit in front of the fire in the pub on big leather sofas and catch up. I really enjoy the company of these two women and feel inspired and relaxed with them.
2. The little things ..
On Friday we had Storm Eric and it really was wild. By the school run time, the rain was of biblical proportions and even though it’s the one night of the week when Little Miss walks home alone, I couldn’t let her do that so drove to school to pick her up. I remember the feeling when I was little and would look out of the classroom window and see my mum’s or my friend’s dad’s car and the relief and excitement of getting home quickly. Sometimes nourishing someone is about making people realise that they are the centre of our lives and we will show our love in whatever way we can.
3. The calm after the storm
Apart from storm Eric it’s been a pretty yucky week weather wise. However on Thursday (my day off) and today we’ve had some gorgeous blue sky winter days. We had a family day out on the bikes today and the crocuses, daffodils and snowdrops were all in bloom. They’ve shown the glimmer of the spring to come and have raised spirits with the anticipation of the new season.
4. A space (room) of one’s own
My bureau is my place in the house, it contains my diary, writing books, lots of stationery and everything that I might need. I added a couple of cacti this week for decoration. and replaced my used winter candle with a new spring aroma, lime, basil and mandarin. It’s these little things that nourish my soul.
For my theme of nourish, I decided that once a month I would have a ‘nourish’ day, set in my diary for my self care. Inspired by the book, Self Care Project by Jayne Hardy I realised that this didn’t need to be a day of massages and pampering but simple things to please me. I have some great ideas for the ‘nourish’ days in warmer weather but given the very hectic month, poor weather and the feeling of being overwhelmed, I designed a day I needed. I met a friend for coffee (and her gorgeous baby, what’s more nourishing than the wonder of a new life). I watched a film that’s been on my to watch list from the comfort of my cosy bed and completed the cub blanket I’ve been doing for my son, a little creativity in my day. It was just what I needed in January.
Other nourishing activities this week have been playing Lego with my son; our trip to a local attraction inspired some great builds. I also helped at cubs this week, I think volunteering is at the heart of a strong community.
We’ve also had a number of appointments this week. Whilst they’ll remain private, I felt comforted by attending them and addressing our worries.
Last night I read my new magazine and loved the quote below from the Simple Life magazine.
My weekly nourishment continued this week with a focus on putting down my Smartphone in the evening and ‘doing’ rather than the mindless distraction of scrolling, tapping and ‘liking.’ I’ll write more about this in a different post but it’s something that I intend to continue.
My nourishing moments this week include
An early morning Sunday trail run in the light. I run at 7am on a Sunday morning and for the past weeks it’s been dark and on the roads. No running fills my soul like a trail run through the local country park.
Whilst this week has been about the red moon, I’ve been wowed by the morning skies, the colours have been spectacular, the pinks and greys beautiful.
We’ve had our 6 monthly check up with the dentist and all was fine. I’ve switched recently to a bamboo brush and natural toothpaste with no noticeable difference.
Whilst I’m not watching Marie Kondo’s new tv programme, I have been revisiting her book which I read a few years ago. I tend to pick what I think I can do and one of the best pieces of advice was to organise your wardrobe in colours. I did it before and it worked well but of course without maintaining it weekly it all mixed together. This week I have rearranged my clothes into colours and it does help with choosing outfits for the day. I also donated some clothes to charity and threw away (recycled at the tip) a few loved but worn or damaged items. I love Kondo’s motto of only keeping things which spark joy.
Given the clothes sorting, I did some work on choosing clothes for the spring and summer, courtesy of a few magazines, the Next catalogue and a White Stuff mailing shot. I tried not to go online but to look for inspiration, jot down a few ideas, cut out a few pictures etc..
Finally, Mr S works some weekends so on those that he doesn’t we try and do something together as a family. Today a local attraction was offering half price entry for locals so we took advantage and spent our day looking at the animals, learning about the conservation work and just walking around in the fresh winter air. It did us all good and as we were well wrapped up, I love a hat, scarf and globves combo, it was a pleasant and enjoyable trip.