Monthly Archives: April 2016

Being Bored is… Boring

While walking Vivvy last week, I met a woman who told me with great relish that walking her dog was the most interesting part of her day and if she didn’t have her pooch her life would be so boring that she feared for her sanity. Yes, she actually used the word sanity. It shocked me, particularly because this woman seemed fairly intelligent, had all her faculties, appeared in good health and was very attractive, having taken care with her clothes, hair and make-up. Don’t get me wrong, I love walking my girl and it’s a very special part of my day. But is the rest of my day boring? No way.

Cambridge Dictionary Online defines bored as: feeling unhappy because something is not interesting or because you have nothing to do. Okay, maybe I’ve bordered on boredom, especially when I was at work and involved in achingly dull meetings, but I’ll use the time to think about something more stimulating, and for the writer in me that iusually means pondering over a story plot point, trying to figure out my latest characters, or what new marketing technique I could access that would make my latest release a bestseller (well, better to dream big than be bored, right 😉 )

I suppose what I’m trying to say is that I simply don’t understand the concept of being bored. Being bored is…well, boring.

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Dreaming of walkies, biscuits, and playing with my frisbee. Life’s too short to be bored.

There just isn’t enough hours in the day to explore, indulge and discover so many of life’s wonders – big and small. For me, there is too much to read for a start. I’ve got books on my shelves and on kindle, both fiction and non-fiction, that I fear I’ll never get around to reading because there is always a new book to add. There are projects around the home and garden that have been waiting for years to be tackled. Places to visit – near and far, histories to explore, cultures to discover, hobbies to try… I could go on forever.

Interestingly enough, the Guardian Online printed an article just last week asking “Why are we so bored?” According to this article, part of the problem is due to overstimulation. “The more entertained we are the more entertainment we need in order to feel satisfied . The more we fill our world with fast-moving, high-intensity, ever-changing stimulation, the more we get used to that and the less tolerant we become of lower levels.” Apparently, slower-paced activities tend to bore us because we are accustomed to these faster-paced amusements.

It’s an interesting article, but I still find myself with little patience for people who declare they are bored. Maybe I need to grow some tolerance. Guess I’ll just have to add it to the list of things to do 😉

April Treats!

April has been a mixed month for many of us but I have been very lucky and believe me I am not complacent. I have sent positive thoughts to all of you but thought I’d share some of my April treats with you in the hope they make you smile.

Technically, my April Treats began on 31st March but I claim poetic licence! My dear niece Rhiannon was 50 in January so I bought her a token for a two hours spa session in Bath. Her daughter Kerys, who is 21, came with us too so we made a merry inter-generational trio. Our adventure began at midday when we decided rather than shopping we would go for cocktails. A favourite bar of mine is All Bar One which serves food, coffee, and alcohol all day plus plays jazz or “good” music, my definition, in a lovely atmosphere. We were fascinated with the names of the cocktails and shakes, some of which had a teapot symbol beside them. Our helpful waiter, Alex, explained the teapots were suitable for two people. I expect Prohibition might have been similar but not as colourful. I wanted a change from my usual dacquiri or margaritta so was happily guided by the girls. Rhiannon and I had a teapot of Raspberry Berry Surprise, the base being gin, and Kerys had a “shake” which came in a small milk bottle, the base was vodka. image6They were delicious, especially with the homemade nachos to soak up the alcohol, but we decided not to have more than one as we had a long afternoon ahead! So a good start.

Next stop was the Thermae Spa in Bath, built over some of the old Roman Baths I think, on three floors. We excitedly got changed, donning our robes and slippers (provided) and headed up to the open air pool on the roof. The sun shone gloriously, as the water is a great temperature we floated gently admiring the views of the hills around Bath and the Abbey Courtyard below. On the next floor down are four aromatherapy steam rooms plus a treatment studio. We had previously decided to forgo the treatments and enjoyed the healthy cleansing of the steam rooms, I can’t remember all of them but the eucalyptus was potent! In between each room we had a shower in the mineral shower to refresh ourselves. In the basement is a beautiful pool full of minerals (apparently) and not many people. I gave the jacuzzi a miss and chose just to wallow and enjoy the relaxation. After two hours we showered and changed then on to the food treat.

We were treated by my brother to afternoon tea with prosecco in the Pump Rooms. Wonderful. Linen cloths, crystal chandeliers and classical music quartet playing softly, very civilised. The tea arrived and we were shocked image4as it was impossible to eat it all, we brought some home with us! Delicious doesn’t cover it. Our waitress picked up on birthday celebration so the quartet suddenly began playing Happy Birthday and a gorgeous chocolate muffin with a candle arrived while the staff sang and other customers applauded. Rhiannon didn’t know whether to laugh or cry and was overcome with emotion. She thought we had arranged it but waitress told her they try to do that for special occasions. The staff were professional but so helpful and friendly. A gentleman at the next table took a photo of us image2as a memento. A lady at another table came over to thank us as she had received some bad news so her husband brought her to tea from the hospital and we had made her smile. What a treat, hard to top but …

We came home where Peter, my husband, had another bottle of prosecco chilling and had booked a table in our local Italian Restaurant. We rested and sipped then off the four of us went – more food! It was excellent, usually is, and the waiters also picked up on birthday so sang! What a day. We came home unable to eat or drink another thing and fell into bed happy and content.

Two other treats for me too, one I’ll tell you about next month – Painting the Modern Garden Monet to Matisse at the Royal Academy in London. Then the Choir Convention in St. George’s Chapel, Brandon Hill, Bristol. We sang our song to 600 other members of choirs from across the West Country. It was a blast!

I hope I’ve made you smile but most importantly I hope you all have a good month of May, perhaps with the odd treat!

www.allbarone.co.uk

www.thermaebathspa.com

www.romanbaths.co.uk/pump-room-restaurant

www.casa-restaurants.co.uk

www.stgeorgesbristol.co.uk

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Sassy’s Casserole

This recipe is from a very special friend and one of my favorites. 3 to 4 cups cooked chicken (2 pounds +) 12 oz package chicken stuffing 3 cans cream of chicken soup ½ cup milk 12 oz package of … Continue reading

Welcome, Baby Hazel

I missed my blog on the 8th, so I’ll talk here about what I meant to then. It’s been a worrisome time these past few months and now I can finally explain why.

First, I need to explain something. A few years ago, my sister was diagnosed with Factor V Leiden. This is a hereditary disorder that results in something called thrombophilia, or an increased tendency to form abnormal blood clots. Not good. Anyhow, for her, since she doesn’t have any mitigating factors, they’ll just keep an eye on it and it will be something they’ll have to take precautions with when having surgery.

I recently got tested and thankfully, was negative for this disorder. Three of my nieces were not so lucky. In fact, a couple of them have already had to deal with clots in the legs. Neither of them are even 35 years old yet, by the way.

So, now to talk about the 32 year old niece, who happily got pregnant with her second child. The pregnancy went great until the 7th month, when my niece had a major heart attack. Yep, that tendency to clot…did. It was a very scary time. The final two months of her pregnancy were micro-managed, as was her delivery. She had to give herself heparin shots twice a day and was on meds to manage the clotting factor. She had to be careful. Live life normally, but not over-exert.

And finally, on March 22nd, at a specialty hospital and with a whole lot of personnel in the room, my niece gave birth to our newest family member – Hazel Elyse. They induced and managed the delivery with minimal stress to my niece or to her daughter. And four days later, they were home and introducing Hazel to her four-year-old brother.

So all’s well that ends well, but we were saying a LOT of prayers for those two months. If you’d like to read more about Factor V Leiden, you can do so here. And to finish out on a positive note, here’s some pictures of baby Hazel, including a proud Great-Gramma (my Mom) and one with my brother, a proud, proud Grampa, and rightfully so. 🙂

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APRIL OR AUGUST??

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  Here we are with another 80 degree plus day.  Crazy!!  Jim got his greenhouse planted last week and everything was up very quickly.  We probably have enough cucumbers to feed the whole county.  Usually we don’t even plant our … Continue reading

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Sorry, I’m late!

Jillian here.  I spent the weekend pretty much in bed sick with a stupid spring cold of some sort. Mostly achy and sore throat but enough to make me too weak to drive or do much. I even skipped work … Continue reading

Forgive me…

For faithful friends and readers who are here looking for my blog, forgive me.  Life has become a bit extreme, and I am otherwise occupying my time.

I hope to return next month with something witty for your reading pleasure.

Until then, may your days be blessed with sunshine to warm you, the song of birds to entertain you, and family and friends to love you!!

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Oatman Arizona

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  We just got back from a two week road trip. We stayed over in Lake Havasu and the next morning headed for Vegas via Route 66 and Oatman. I’d been there in January of 2009 but the wild burros … Continue reading

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April – Where’s Spring?

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I know, I live in the Pacific North West and we usually won’t see spring until June, but this year I’ve become a little tired of rain. We did have a really nice week at the end of March, the … Continue reading

Wedding Report

I’m back from my trip to Texas for my cousin’s son’s wedding. It was a great time but I came home to two cases that caused me a lot of stress. Grr. It makes me mad that I can’t seem to have a minute without some crazy lawyer getting spun up and filing junk while I’m gone. It’s a conspiracy, I tell you!

The bride and groom are an awesome, fun-loving couple and we had so much fun, it should be illegal. LOL.  Now, don’t get me wrong- nothing against the law was done but their friends sure do party hard. A few times, I found myself wondering if these people were really almost 30. They were having a ball but I have no idea how they were going to feel the next day.

The rehearsal dinner was fab. It was at a place called Vincent’s in downtown Houston. It was Italian and I had to very best filet I’ve ever  had in my life. It was done to perfection and so very, very tender. *swoon*

The wedding was gorgeous. It took place at a renovated horse farm in Tomball, Texas. The ceremony was outside at a replica cantina and the reception was in the renovated barn. The bathroom area was made from some of the old stalls. Super cute.

During the ceremony, the bride’s veil came off and she called out, “Man down.” We all laughed as her mom and a bridesmaid fixed it. When she was set, she said, “Time in.” I love, love how she didn’t even hesitate and was so comfortable being herself in that environment.

The cutting of the groom’s cake was also amusing. The bride and groom pretended it was super difficult. So funny. They are going to have a wonderful marriage full of love and laughter, I know  it.

Here’s a few pictures: including the “man down” one. 465396400417436437440