Tag Archives: work life balance

There’s no average day in the life of….

18 Oct

Do you have an average day? I don’t. They’re all a bit different. Often evolving as they progress, rarely planned anything more than by a vague outline, and quite often a little ‘out of the norm’ . Saying I’m not a nine to fiver is a bit of an understatement.

Want to know what my day is doing? Well it’s now 11am and I’m here..

Yep. I’m working whilst in the bath!

So today is like this. I woke up at 8:30 and though ‘i fancy a bath’ so I popped off to the bathroom but there was a spider in the bath and I didn’t want to disturb him so I hopped back into bed. Hubby, as is his wonderful habit, appeared with a cup of tea and we sat in bed catching up on FB and Twitter and discussed our separate ‘plans’ for the day.

We have b&b guests this coming weekend so for me it was ironing bedding. I see ironing as a bit of a waste of time so whilst steaming away I practiced a belly dance routine (and I haven’t even told you before that I go to dance classes.. another day another blog); and did some toe exercises as prescribed by Katie Holland as ‘guaranteed to improve your dancing’… Katie, I’m doubtful that anything will help but I’ll let you know.

Having built up a steam iron sweat I’m now in the bath (fortunately Bernard the Bath  Spider had buggered off) but to make better use of the time I’m both writing this for you lot and sorting out my art catalogue, making sure all my work to date is listed and titled. I have an exhibition pending and I need to make sure I know what’s  where and ensure I have enough pieces in the collection. Plus I’m having half a dozen or so images printed up as cards and my photographer friend and technical whizz needs to have the wording for the backs covers.

Alongside getting this done….

and I’ve added a face pack…may as well spruce up properly.

It’s now noon. Too late for breakfast, so a quick brunch and then off to get some groceries.

Marmite and mushrooms on toast yumyum

May as well pack up my old bras and take them to the bra bank at Tescos whilst I’m at it.

Donating my old bras

It’s a gorgeous day so hoping to get back in time to garden at home. Still have several plants that need to go in the ground before winter sets in.

….it’s now evening. Needless to say the gardening didn’t happen. I had about £60 in my hand from a swishing event I organised at the last-minute to clear out my wardrobe. A swish, for those who don’t know (I didn’t when invited to one last year), is a clothes swap. I’d cleared out my cupboards and had a car boot full of clothes and shoes to get rid of , friends could have them for a donation to a local charity. It raised £58 and I still managed to drop 2 large sacks of goodies at the local community charity shop.

So having done my shopping I went back into Aldi and spent the £58 with a view to dropping it at the local food bank. Sadly the charity was closed so that will involve another trip but look how much I got for my money!!!! Six full bags of none perishables! Aldi really is better value

Just about to head into the garden when I remember we have a fridge freezer to pick up from a friend (I need extra storage for the catering for my 50th).

And then the doorbell rings. The landlords of the flats I manage are here from Spain and I forgot they were popping in. Still they came armed with plenty of wine so I’m not complaining.

By which time it’s supper time. I cook a meal for me and Hubby. Bulk cook a bolognaise to add to the new freezer. Watch a movie. Then suddenly it’s midnight so off to bed.

Guess who’s back?

Bernard the Bath Spider

I wonder how he filled his day?

Lucy At Home

My Random Musings

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…After the crash..

23 Apr

So yesterday I literally did nothing. I managed to get up and feed my B&B guests complete with smiling and chatting . Then I went back to bed. I slept until nearly 2pm… Despite Hubby trying to wake me at noon. I stayed awake long enough to reheat a cup of tea in the microwave. Sat on the front doorstep in the sun and fell asleep. Woke briefly when Hubby popped home. Long enough to get a pillow and a deck chair. Then slept in the sun.

Stayed awake to eat supper, fell asleep in front of TV. Had an early night and slept right through.

This was me crashing… I refer to my blog from yesterday … Oh yes I did find a moment or two to articulate my crash in blog form.. but that really was the extent of yesterday’s activities.

So today I am already three gardening jobs behind, racked with guilt and stressed by my backlog.

I sat down this evening, knackered and aching from head to toe. As I berated myself for my pathetic state I announced to myself “for Christ’s sake woman you only did 3 hours work today, get a grip”…. Long pause as I’m now lying in bed. This was my day:

Woke 7:30. Got up and prepped breakfast for our 6 B&B guests

Placed an order with our stained glass suppliers

Did 3 hours heavy digging and weed clearing.

Drove the 20 miles to our nearest  supermarket. Did the weekly shop

Collected our son

Unpacked shopping

Spent an hour tidying in my own garden

Had a bath

Cleaned the bathroom

Made a roast dinner…

… So to be fair, considering my physical and mental state… In fact, irrespective of my physical and mental state, today was pretty full.

..And now I can add, ‘wrote a blog’, to my achievements for today.

On that note, I am going to turn of the light and zzzzzzzzzzzz

Its a perfect day, if only I had the energy…

22 Apr

20160508_153945[1]

…and rest

I’m writing this with one eye shut, hiding under a blanket in shame, hoping you won’t notice me. An irrational thread of worry that you will find me pathetic. A big dollop of feeling like a fraud.

I have this battle going on in my head ( imagine that image in movies with the saint and the devil on each shoulder whispering conflicting messages into your ears).

I’m knackered. Totally and utterly drained of energy. My head is trying to formulate action my body is in total all out protest fight.  I am not functioning.

Over the last week my body has ached more and more. My brain has fought against my body harder and harder. Today my body is on strike, a barrier has been built between my mind and muscles and my head hurts from bashing itself against it.

I’ve turned to mush. I managed to get up and serve my guests breakfast with all the energy, smiling and chatting that goes with that.  I had some breakfast and argued with my body to prepare for action. It’s the most glorious day. I have 5 outstanding gardening jobs to do. I’d rescheduled 2 for today and 3 for tomorrow.

The only thing my body would do was lay down. The only thing my mind would do was switch off. I lost my gorgeous sunny morning to sleep. Asked hubby to wake me around noon… It was an impossible task. I dragged myself downstairs at two. Microwaved the cup of tea he’d brought me two hours earlier.  I sat on the front door step hoping the gorgeous day would energise me…. I fell asleep with my head against the door frame.

I’m not ill. I shouldn’t be exhausted. Yes, I do a lot but I don’t really put in full days like I did when working for the man. I love my life and the closet of hats it comes with.

I do see a pattern. Note my post “life: mine:it’s full: .. Shortly after I get to the euphoric with life point;  the feeling of reaching a perfect balance. Shortly after exalting the joy and contentment I feel to my world, I run out of fuel and fall into decline.

Writing my last blog ( “life, mine..”) it was after our quiet season and into the growth and rebirth of the next. Spring had sprung. Guests were booking into our B&B; gardens needed tending; buds were forming on the trees and bushes; all those tender fluorescent green shoots dancing in warm breezes . Snowdrops, crocuses and daffodils; Camellia, forsythia and grape hyacinths splashed colour onto life’s canvas and everything, including me, felt so alive and vital.  And then there was overload.

The week that included Easter was beyond busy. So many hats to wear at the same time. They were too heavy. “But hey,” thought I, “Get through the week and then rest”. But the next week was even busier….. “I can do this”, I thought. Most of the demands were things I love to do: glass, cafe, guests, gardening. However there were what felt like a zillion other little things that needed to be done too. Tiny jobs: organise an electrician; message tenants; collect my new glasses; shop for food; make veggie sausages; meet up with friends; buy a birthday gift.

My body started to protest. Everything ached. Then it ached more. My brain failed to send messages to the right parts of my body. It took 40 minutes mid-week to persuade my body to get off a chair and walk back to the car to drive home. At the traffic lights I had to battle with my eyes not to close and just have a little cat nap.

Today I’ve just slept. I’m sure I feel worse for it. Not only are guilt and shame raging through me. Also totally embarrassment and a sense of patheticness. Then panic. I have so much to do. The weather is perfect to do it. I would really enjoy doing it too.  The customers would be so happy too, I love visiting these elderly ladies and chatting whilst gardening. But I’ve done nothing. Not even told the customers… I know this makes it worse but I just can’t, I’m just not there. The party I should be at tonight, I just can’t go. I know I can’t persuade my body to put on clothes and go out, it just will not cooperate. Hubby will have to phone, I’m too ashamed.

I’m going to stop now before i go on about how much stronger, stable, capable everyone i know is; how much more everyone I admire does etc etc… I know its a short phase rest will resolve.  So, despite my guilt I’m going to search out a sun lounger and go and snooze in the garden.  Will battle the guilt later xxx

 

Life: Mine: It’s full: Very full

9 Apr

15016351_1247664865307784_3338542209251484497_oI’m a woman.  I’m self-employed.  I’m fairly ‘alternative’ and, am told, slightly ‘eccentric’.  I wear many hats.  Not all suit me…

Life gets confusing and chaotic……

Here’s perhaps why….

13912605_1298769933474183_1529318925936773135_n???????????????????????????????I’m an artist, I occasionally do pet portraits, I often do stained glass commissions. I do have an Etsy shop, which I manage in a very ad hoc way.  I promise to keep a stock of my designs but the artistic bit of me is really only interested in the bespoke commissions and one-off designs , so I struggle to find time to hold stock.  So I make my designs to order.

20170322_123236I teach stained glass.  It’s a new string to my bow.  I love it.  I find it immensely satisfying and it brings me huge amount of joy.

I run a B&B.  This involves being really nice to (mostly) lovely people, talking (a lot), keeping the place clean, ironing sheets (even though I’d never iron my own) and cooking really gorgeous breakfasts.  I do this with my hubby.  We love working together.  It works.  Coming to stay at Cerdyn Villa is like staying with friends (so we’re told) and that, my lovelies was the plan so things her are going well

breakfast

I manage our business website and various tourism pages on social media.  Some of these pages… “www.cerdynvilla.wales” is our lifestyle hub (ooo fancy!), it leads you off to “Pink Butterfly Art and Glass” – my Etsy shop; “Pink Butterfly at Cerdyn Villa” -our FB page combining our B&B and my art; http://www.cerdynvilla.co.uk – our B&B website; “rose-tinted Ramblings” – my blog; “Home of Bog Snorkelling” – the tourism FB page for our town; “@Berni_Benton” – my twitter account

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m a gardener – I look after six people’s gardens.  Mostly elderly ladies, some of whom like to garden with me and its as much about the company as the weeding and pruning.  I LOVE weeding (does that make me odd?  I don’t care, I LOVE IT!)

peanut butter cheesecakeI work shifts in the local cafe and cover for the owners if they go away.  Sometimes I even bake some cakes!

I blog.  For fun, but mainly to keep me sane and promote my work(s) (not necessarily at the same time). Its called Rose Tinted Rambling, but you know that because you are here now.  It’s mainly a brain dumping ground.  Most thoughts evolve whilst I’m either ironing or weeding and I can’t rest until they’re typed.  So there! I try to categorise to avoid you haven’t to read the ‘boring shit’  but I’d say there’s pretty much something for everyone here.

I  advocate for a local elderly lady and manage her finances. It’s my ‘pay-it-forward” – we should all have one.  It’s great to give back.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I volunteer, Working to help run the weird and wacky events in Llanwrtyd – I am the commentator at the World Bog Snorkelling and Man v Horse.  They gave me the job because, and I quote “if the PA system breaks I’d still be loud enough for everyone to hear”.  Hubby said he could hear me from the house last year and I was three-quarters  of a mile away….

… I hasten to add the mic was working that day.

I am responsible for keeping our household accounts.  Although hubby takes my figures and does the scary bit of filling in the returns and sending them off

I do all the food shopping, planning and feeding. Sometimes I do this well.  Other times we eat out!

I ‘manage’ a tenanted house with 5 flats.  Not for fun, at all, but because the landlords were neighbours but now live in Spain.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We keep hens, that means they have a house that needs cleaning

11182523_1594413547510404_4888338233642762611_oI’m a mum………

………………………………………….

……..in my spare time (!!)

I do a bit of yoga and belly dancing

a vision in red

I look after my own garden (sometimes I get dressed before I start)

11168862_1046829525379356_5330321855820313332_oI’m a member of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party (say hello to Lady Lily the Pink).  I even stood for the Welsh Assembly

I soak in a bubble bath

I enjoy a good live band

I read the occasional book.  mostly I read blogs  and watch TED talks

I snuggle on the sofa with my Hubby and watch Netflix

I play board games with my boy(s) – son and hubby

I eat out with friends

I eat in with friends

I drink out with friends

I drink in with friends

Sometimes I just drink…….

I love my life, but planning is difficult.  Impossible actually.  So it appears chaotic.  and sometimes it really is.  It also appears disorganised.  But actually it rarely is.  ….

….it just feels it

Logistically its a massive challenge.  It’s so far removed from the 9-5 life I used to lead.  I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

diaryofanimperfectmum

Our Lives our Novels….

3 Feb

scenic

If we are lucky life is a joyous adventure.  If we are lucky enough to be born into a loving family; if we are taught to grab opportunities; if our eyes are trained to see the good and the beauty and variety around us; if we learn to think for ourselves…. life will be a journey built from chapters which when read back thrill our senses.  They may contain some stress and sorry but should also contain some thrill, or joy , or achievement.

It is impossible in life to live every chapter without some loss; the break up of a relationship; the passing of a parent, pet, family member or friend.  It is impossible and impractical to go through life without some levels and times of stress; exams, job interviews, house moves, career choices.  It is also unlikely that we get from birth to death without unexpected challenges: ill-health, redundancy, financial crisis for example.

But with every loss comes the reminiscences of love and happy times.  With every stress comes a time of completion, achievement or opportunity. And with every challenge comes an opportunity to reassess, reevaluate and grow.

Life is not about the end goal because the end will certainly be that which comes to us all… the inevitable.  Our death.  Life is about the enjoyment and achievements of each chapter.

Childhood is not just about learning to walk and talk; read and write.  It’s also about fun and games, friendship and play, learning to share, be compassionate, communicate.  Teenage is not just about exams and future career planning.  It’s about relationships, growing independence, identifying your passions, and daring to dream.  Adulthood is not just about earning the most money, and working for your retirement.  We should enjoy our friendships; forge our relationships; make choices that make us happy; share our experiences. Retirement is not just about slowing down and worrying about our health.  We have the opportunities to travel, or play, or indulge in hobbies.  Of course amongst all the ‘living the dream’ we have to balance out responsibilities and deal with the unplanned, and, sometimes, undesired interruptions.  But I believe, that when we can, whatever our age, we should follow our hearts, and live our dreams.

For some that may be reaching the top of our chosen career ‘ladder’, earning big money, owning expensive things; for others that may mean travelling and playing; vocation, charity.  For most of us our plan will forever evolve as we learn new things; get presented with new opportunities; walk through new doors and make choices at each crossroads.  Where will we live?who shall we marry? shall we marry? do we want children? can we have children? etc etc etc.

We all end our lives with a sadness; our own final curtain.  With luck we will reach that at a ripe old age having written our adventure story with flare and chapters crammed full of happy memories and achievements; laughter and joy… things that will secure our ongoing existence in the stories and behaviours of our children and friends.

Isn’t it wonderful when you catch yourself remembering someone passed in an anecdote or family tradition or the way someone else smiles or gestures.  For me its the old photos, piggy walkers and dancing round lampposts…..

I’ve spent my life writing each chapter like a new genre of book.  I’ve not known from one chapter to the next where it will take me.  I follow a winding path with many side roads and I often like to detour down one.  I am lucky.  But I also know that we are also responsible to ourselves for creating some of that luck….. it’s about attitude.

Attitude: Have it, relish it, grasp it.

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely, in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather a skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up and loudly proclaiming, “Wow! What a ride!”” – Hunter S Thompson

This blog is dedicated to two great men: my father-in-law, Brian Crompton and my uncle, Ray Benton… both gone but far from forgotten.  They will live on and on and on and on.

Life is a Minestrone – 10CC