My new Handbag Essential – A pocket sized headache reliever

handbag essentials

My new handbag essential – A pocket sized headache reliever.

I don’t go anywhere without my new Migrastick.  It is tiny, but mighty and packed with natural Mint and Lavender – a perfect combination.

I started my fascination with essential oils some years ago and although I have a little collection by now there are a few bottles that I reach for time and time again.  One is lavender and another is peppermint.

I know I take far too many painkillers, and I also know that isn’t good for you.  So when I saw this I just had to try it.  An all natural solution with no baddies (like parabens, preservatives and colourings), Migrastick has definitely helped me through a stressful day or two.  And as a bonus comes in a tiny lipstick sized container that can fit in my teeny tiny handbag.  (I have a little addiiction to tiny handbags that I can wear over my body and keep my hands free)

There is something about essential oils that really works for me.  The cooling touch of the Migrastick applied to the temples immediately gave a burst of refreshing and uplifting peppermint overlayed with lavender.

I took a peek in my Armotherapy bible – to understand how these oils work together, and it all makes sense.  Peppermint oil helps treat nausea, headache and is helps with pain relief.  I have always found peppermint oil uplifting.  Lavender on the other hand relieves nervous tension is relaxing and works on eliminates pain too! A win win in my book.

I am always on the look out for products that make life a little easier, and this little one which is available at most pharmacies has found it’s place in my handbag.

My handbag essentials as pictured here are:

  1. My prescription specs (even in the winter for glare)
  2. My mobile – I honestly can’t be without my social media and emails
  3. My debit card and a little cash. I don’t carry much, really just for emergencies
  4. At least 2 lipsticks. I am trying to remind myself to top up during the day
  5. My Migrastick

Thanks for reading.  If you dare, tell me the 5 most important things in your handbag please?

Kerry xx

 

 

How to eat an elephant … dealing with big challenges

How to eat an elephant- (2)My very wise big sister shared this concept with me.  It was during a time when I had a lot on my plate – big mountains indeed.

She told me a story about her daughter.  As a little girl she was faced with a lot to do – homework, projects and more. My sister asked her young daughter and how she would eat an elephant.  The answer is simply – bite by bite.  I know that so many times in my life I have been faced with an enormous elephant sized challenge and sometimes I simply can’t figure out where to start.  Then I remember the elephant and break it down into bite-sized chunks.

I have recently started a new job and believe me, after a couple of days I realised I was facing an elephant.  So much to learn with so many different aspects to the job.  I am not quite finished eating this particular elephant, but I have broken the challenges down into smaller chunks and in many cases smaller tasks again.

The first split was to figure out what was urgent and had to be done.  Then look at those tasks that would make a real difference and then finally some of the tasks and marketing ideas that are great, but can wait.

Unpacking my house, dealing with my health and many other challenges are always easier bite sized.

Thank you Janet for teaching me this valuable lesson, which I use in so many parts of my life.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed this Wednesday’s quotation.

Kerry x

Writing my first book and how Words changed my life

W

 

Ever since I can remember I have wanted to write a book.  I was never quite sure what the book would be about, fiction or non-fiction, but I knew that I had a book in me.

I think perhaps we all have a book in us, and I am proud to say that I have finally started writing my first book and it is all about how words changed my life

Regular readers of this little blog will have read a few posts on balance and change.  These are two of the words that have changed my life.

Let me back-track a bit and tell you about my word of the year idea and how this has evolved into the start of my book.

A few years ago I was in a very dark place.  I simply felt that I had no choices anymore, no opportunities and that I was stuck in a situation that I couldn’t change.  I hit rock bottom and from this I had a germ of an idea.  I did a good bit of navel gazing trying to figure out why my life had got so out of sync and realised that my life was out of balance.  This can best be described by a post  I wrote about Balloons in a Box.

I decided that instead of a new year’s resolution I would simply choose a word.  This would be my Word of the Year.  I didn’t know how it was going to work, so I simply started by thinking about it.  Literally meditating on the word.  Slowly but surely over the year my life started to come into balance and I ended the year in a far better place. Take a sneak peak at how it panned out here.

The next year, after some more soul searching I chose the word Change.  Now I can promise you that this was a dramatic word to choose.  In a few short months the changes had started happening and they continued to happen.  Big changes in my life that although traumatic resulted in a better me.

Choosing words to focus on became a way of life for me and I have spent a year with Discipline as my word, and now this year my words (I felt I needed two) are Create and Respect.

I am really honoured that quite a few people have decided to use this approach to ‘resolutions’ using words like brave, focus, grow and strength.

So the book is started and sneak peaks will continue to appear on the blog.  I really do value the feedback and comments, please keep them coming.

I have been through quite a few changes in the last few weeks myself, and have missed out on a few blog posts.  All up and running now with my brand new broadband connection so here is a promise to keep the posts more regular.

Thank you for reading.

Kerry x

 

The awkward subject of woman’s facial hair – Tinkle Razor review

A smooth cheek thanks Twinkle Twinkle (2)

Woman’s facial hair is something that we don;t talk about.  We sneek off for a lip wax or discreetly buy hair removal cream.

I am quite fair and facial hair only became a problem a few years ago.  Not sure if it was because of age, medication or the fact that I was taking Biotin as the hair on my head was falling out from Methotrexate.

I had this really fine, blond, but thickening – dare I say it – moustache!   I started waxing.  Ouch!  then I tried threading – double ouch.  The problem was I waxed it grew back.  I am sure nobody was aware of it as much as I was, but it made me really self conscious.

I started to have a close relationship with my tweezers as every time a witchy hair appeared on my chin I freaked out and plucked..

When I got brave enough to talk about this awkward subject I realised that many woman struggle with facial hair.

The final straw came when I realised that I had a fine peach fuzz along my cheek bones.  I started doing some research.  The celebrities have started shaving.  It appears that even Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor did it!.  Read all about the trend in the NY Times.

Shaving your face as a woman seems to have loads of advantages including exfoliation, younger looking skin and smoother application of make-up.

Well I could now imagine myself standing in front of the mirror like my Dad with a face full of foam pulling funny faces to stretch out my skin and get a close shave.  Shudder there must be a solution.

And then, one night on twitter i ‘met’ Tinkle Razor.  Would I dare try it?  The delightful Tinkle Razor challenged me and posted me a set of three little razors.  I was so excited the night they arrived I only stopped for a minute to take a photo of my peach fuzz cheek.

I have given it a month, so I know that the regrowth for me is very slow, and when it grows back it is soft and downy still.

I am converted.  I have smooth skin and am far less self conscious.  Pucker up and come close I am confident enough for a kiss.

It is really affordable and costs around a fiver for 3.  Take a peek here

Go on try it – I dare you.

Kerry

Making a gratitude list – and checking it twice …

gratitudeˈɡratɪtjuːd-nounthe quality of….. there are many people who have been very nice, and none that have been naughty.

I have a lot to be thankful for.  Over the last couple of months I have been through a bit. I have moved home twice, started a new job, said farewell to friends and hello to new friends.

Throughout it all, there has been one constant.  Gratitude.  I have so very much to be thankful for. My family and friends near and far have been there for me.

Sometimes it is the big things like a the gift of a holiday or a bed for a month that I am extremely grateful for, but then again there are those smaller things that simply come along at just the right time when you need them.

The day I moved to my new home I had so much help.  I simply could not have done it without the kindness of others.

I was moved in and was surrounded by boxes and memories, all the helpers had left and I must admit I was feeling a bit sorry for myself.  A little bit lonely to be honest.  The next thing I was greeted at my front door by a fellow South African I had ‘met’ on Facebook.  She had those moving day essentials, a bottle of wine and a cake!

I am no good at scrubbing and cleaning because it hurts my hands.  How blessed am I to have a friend who came and cleaned my bathrooms for me.  True friendship,

I have honestly been so humbled when I wrote my gratitude list.   It is something quite personal but very important.to remind us of the true meaning of gratitude.

This definition is very true.  It is not enough to simply be thankful.  We need to show appreciation and return kindness.It is also really important that amidst the hustle and bustle of life, it is important to make a call, send a text or even send a card to say thank you.

I challenge you to make a gratitude list.

Thank you for reading

Kerry xx

Pushing beyond your limits

Push beyond your limits (2)We all have limits.  I know I have reached mine when I am ‘crying tired’.  It was my mom who first used that phrase.  It really is so descriptive.

Yesterday I reached crying tired.  I have been putting my all into learning my new job, where I have literally hit the ground running.   Throw in horrific traffic problems where it is taking me up to an hour and a half in stop start traffic to travel a normal 20 minute journey. And then for a final flourish add in packing up my home.

In addition to this I had reached the end of my ‘battery life’.  Let me explain, I have pernicious anaemia.  As I cannot absorb B12 through my tummy – and B12 is what oxygenates your blood – I have to have it injected on a regular basis.  I compare myself to a battery operated toy.  Twenty-four hours after receiving my injection I am at full battery capacity.  The couple of days before it is due and I am really run down and tired.

I am not looking for sympathy here, just explaining how I came to reach my limits.

The only problem is that when you do reach your limits sometimes you have no option but to push through them.  I had to get up early this morning to travel to work, put my brave face on and handle the job in front of me.  I had to think up some solutions to my move which is was becoming a logistical nightmare and simply push on.  Giving up isn’t an option.

Today as I am reading the post I am calm.  I pushed beyond my limits – not quite sure how, but I found that extra 10 percent needed to keep going.  I had a great day and am now fully ‘charged’.

Next time I get crying tired, I need to remember to keep pushing beyond my limits.

Thanks for reading my belated Wednesday quotation.  Please feel free to share.

Kerry xx

 

The happiness and horrors of house hunting

My new front door (2)

Our home is so important to our happiness.  When I started house hunting six weeks ago I was honestly dreading it.  I put on my brave face and logged onto Daft.ie.

Where would I find a house that was going to be my home?

There were moments when I laughed and moments when I was ready to cry, but some stories just have to be shared …..

There was the house which was a converted B&B.  On arriving I wasn’t sure as I would be sharing a home that had been divided.  I am a free spirit and I like my privacy, but considering the lack of housing in Galway I had to keep an open mind (I just didn’t realise how open it needed to be).

He showed me around the house which wasn’t too bad.  Two bedrooms, both en suite, a little sitting room and a tiny kitchen.  I was clean and I was thinking that perhaps I could make it work.  Then I saw that the dividing door between the two houses was glass!  I had a vision of myself nipping into the kitchen wrapped in my bath towel to make a cuppa, as I often do this!  I commented on the glass door and the gentleman honestly seemed shocked that it would be a problem.  I was still pondering where I would do my arty crafty stuff.  There was one door next to the kitchen that hadn’t been revealed.  I asked about it and he promptly replied that it was his bathroom, in my potential house!  I must have looked terribly shocked.  ‘I am very discreet’ he said. ‘I won’t use the bathroom until you have gone to work.’  I didn’t really know what to say.  He was asking premium money to rent a house in which he would be doing his bathroom business.

Being I positive person, I ventured back onto Daft.  Ooh look a new property!  Five minutes from work and it looked gorgeous and more to the point was within my budget.  I was buzzing this was going to be it.  It was small but really well fitted out.  A gorgeous curved red sofa and some sparkling mosaic in the bathroom.  I showed it to a friend and she recognised the development straight away.

Off  I went at lunch time.  I arrived and was greeted by a staircase with a carpet that was unravelling.  The smell of mould and damp greeted my nostrils.  I was told that the house was available as it stood (in other words no upgrades).  A broken single bed occupied the main bedroom, black mould on the bathroom walls and no red sofa. The sofa that was in place had seen plenty of action, that I really didn’t want to think about. There was also no mosaic in the bathroom.  When I questioned the landlady she was quite indignant. ‘ I need to know if I should add you to the list before 5pm,’ she said. This was not the same apartment in the photos!  With a heavy heard and a small bit of frustration I returned to looking.

Happily I do have a new home to move into.  It came through a thoughtful colleague from my previous job.  He has heard me bemoaning the house hunting task.  ‘Call this lady, and use my name’ he said.  I am delighted with my new house in the little town of Athenry in County Galway.  I move in next week.

Thanks for listening to me rant about house hunting.

Kerry xx

 

Take time to simply be …

Take time to simply be (2)We really do live at a hectic pace.  From when we get up in the morning it is go go go.  We try to keep as productive as possible and pack as much as we can into the 24 hours that make up a day. If you know me you know I also subscribe to the philosophy of you only live once, and that can make me very tired.

However sometimes we simply have to stop and be.  Perhaps take an early night and go to bed with a good book, or even better get up early and simply sit with a cup of tea and be.

Meditation comes in different forms for different people, and I am not suggesting that you sit down cross-legged and chant (although that can work too).  Just simply take a minute, or preferably ten, to just be at one with yourself.  Try and empty your mind and get yourself to a place of rest.  Breathe and just be.

I always start my quiet times with thanks.  I run through my day, or couple of days and think of the things I am thankful for.  My sister and niece for a roof over my head.  The lovely welcome I have received at my new job. My little holiday in London coming up.  Somehow the stresses of the day, the mad traffic and the worry recede when I simply take time to be.

I hope you enjoyed today’s quote post.  Too excited to think that my next post will be from London.

Thanks so much for reading.

Kerry x

My sofa is an important part of my life

3-seater-grey-fabric-sofa-waldorf

When I watch Gogglebox on Channel 4,  I realise that for many of us it isn’t TV that is the centre of the home, but rather the sofa.  Best friends, husbands and wives, families or all shapes and sizes congregate on the sofa night after night.  Yes, it is our seat in front of the TV but it is so much more than that.

It is that comfy squishy sofa that we sink into at the end of a long day.

So how exciting is it that sofas are now part of my life?  Today I started my new job as Marketing Manager for EZ Living Furniture.

My sofa is sometimes my desk with my laptop, papers strewn and a cup of tea by my side as I write blog posts.  Sometimes it is a haven for confidences as my best friend and I sit side by side pouring our hearts out.  My sofa is the place that my son first found out that he had received first class honours for his first year at university.

We were also sitting together when he received a skype message to say that his video game  Boxman Begins had been greenlit on Steam (for the non-gamers, this is the biggest online gaming portal for PC games).  It is also where I Skype my family in South Africa

I share my sofa with my memories, and many friends and family, but writing this blog post I realise I also share it with myself.  I am happy in my own company and have had many contented hours sitting in my spot (shades of Sheldon from the Big Bang here as I always sit in the same place) simply enjoying a nice cup of tea and a scone, and maybe indulging in some Netflix.

So the question is – who do you share your sofa with?  Or perhaps even who would you like to share your sofa with?  For Patrick Dempsey I might even move out of my spot.

I would love to hear your comments.

Kerry xx

Trying to take one day at a time

quote taking one day at a time.

 

You know when you get a point where you could either laugh or cry? Well I was at that point yesterday.  As crying will give me panda eyes, I think I will just have to laugh.

I love this quote which I heard years ago – I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several attack me at once.  No matter how organised or controlled you get, and no matter how many lists you make, sometimes thing get simply overwhelming.

For me it is a combination of finishing up a job that has been a huge part of my life for two and half years, packing up my home, trying to find a new home, and of course saying goodbye to my friends in Westport and to the town itself, a really special town that deserves the title of the best place to live in Ireland.

I know I am not going far, but it is still quite a thing.  Twenty plus boxes packed (so far …), and I am tripping over the empty boxes in the hall.  My lists are out of control as I remember something else and dash to add it to the list only to find out that I have packed the kitchen pens.

The paintbrushes and paint are packed but not the gleaming white canvasses which are sending out a siren call for colour.

The bedroom looks like a clothes cannon has gone off as I pack into piles.  One for the charity shop, one for my London holiday, one for the new job.  And I must remember to leave out clothes to wear for the next few days.

My work desk is still chaotic, but it tidier than it was a week ago and the drawers are empty so that is good.  Imagine by tomorrow, this desk will be clear of clutter and awaiting a new owner.

Daft.ie and Rent.ie are my new go to places for web news.  House hunting is fun – for some people, but not for me!

Now, I realise that this post is not a how to, or motivational, or particularly positive.  That is because some days you just have to accept that several days are attacking you at once.

Thanks for reading and feel free to share the quote with others that are being attacked.  I think it happens to all of us.

 

Kerry x

 

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