Hello, I'm Sarah, Blogger in the Lakes.
No I haven't gone mad...
After two blog-free months, I thought I should jog your memory and say hello.
(Imagine me waving a little too enthusiastically here.)
Since my last blog post, Virtual Life V Real Life, (a link just for you!) I have:
We're running on limited sleep, the laundry is climbing the wall, I had to spring clean the house because I could taste the months of dust and I can't even muster the energy to sing in my car.
Yes, we're that tired.
(To all my friends with babies - I apologise for my thoughtless comments.)
I like people, mostly, but my patience has been tested.
I've nearly been driven off the road several times by stressed drivers making bad decisions. I've been rammed with shopping trolleys. I've been barged off pavements. I've driven behind people doing 30 mph in 60 mph zones and, I, Simply Sarah, even resorted to flashing a driver who was doing 40 mph below the speed limit and causing a long tailback. No they didn't get the hint.
I've endured rude people, smelly people, attention seeking people and have been glad to go into work for the break!
We all needed to get somewhere, we all wanted to breathe in the fresh air and we all needed parsnips. Yet some people apparently had priority. I found myself breathing deeply on several occasions to avoid getting as stressed as everyone else!
(& gin, I found gin)
I know, amazing right? In the two months of bonkersdom (My own word) I've learned things!
Taking the hint from my very own blog post back in November, I focused on my real life. There was simply no way I could fit blogging into the Christmas mix and the world carried on, in fact no-one even noticed I wasn't around! (What a presence!)
I learned that Christmas isn't great for everyone. I love Christmas but as I watched my husband coughing, snotting and sleeping under a duvet on Christmas day it made me think. Our festive fun has been completely germ filled and actually, rarely fun, and in the grand scheme of things, it was just germs.
Speaking of germs, not only can you get two awful colds in the space of two months after a flu jab, (And apparently flu doesn't allow for Christmas - ask my husband!) But did you know a cold can cause toothache and jaw ache? I do now! I can honestly say there were times very recently when I wanted to chop my own head off to relieve the pain.
Thanks to a friend recommending sinus spray my pain started to disperse.
All around my face! My neck ached, my face ached, my ears ached and I felt, and heard, popping around my head! (Gruesome!) I never knew that sinuses could cause so much discomfort. I was pained and relieved this morning, when I blew my nose and one of my ears popped a squelchy and painful pop. Sorry, but ouch!
I have so much pressure in my head, I'm surprised it hasn't exploded on it's own accord.
So here we are! It's 2019 and as someone recently pointed out, a whole 20 years since we celebrated the millennium! Jeez Louise, where does the time go!
I'm not a believer in all that 'New Year New Me' stuff, it's the same regurgitated bumf every year and who actually sticks to New Years resolutions? I do believe in opportunities, experiences and having things to aim for though.
So as usual I've made my list of aims for this year:
So I'm back, for now and I 'm looking forward to a fresh year ahead .
If you're interested, leave a comment to let us know what exciting things you have planned for 2019. And if you can't be bothered, don't stress it, I get it!
Happy New Year!!
Eleven whole years I've been on Facebook,. Eleven. Whole. Years!
When I received my best wishes from Mr Zuckerberg, I was more shocked than appreciative! Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful for his love and always get giddy over his 'Happy Birthdays' and 'Friendversaries' but this one hit me.
I've been on Facebook half my daughter's life. Don't worry I put more effort into bringing her up than scrolling through my feed ;) but eleven years - wow!
I was first introduced to Facebook by a friend, she was impressed, excited and pretty insistent that I join. I told her I couldn't be bothered with that rubbish and carried on with my life...
Social Media Madness
As you guessed, I caved in.
Around six months later, my friend showed me her page, she then helped me to set up my own page and the rest is history!
After Facebook, I discovered Twitter, then Instagram and immediately felt the need to share my life with the world - what I had for dinner, what I was watching and how much sleep I'd had. You know, all the important stuff that the world simply needs to know...
Two years ago I began my blog, so I got a website, and another page for Twitter and Facebook and not forgetting Instagram! That's six, yes six social media pages to manage, to be honest, my personal pages are somewhat neglected and yet the world still revolves.
I entered the blogging world enthusiastically and nervously; enthusiastic to write yet nervous about etiquette, privacy and trust.
Social media gives so much information, some helpful and some not, just like the real world, and knowing who to connect with is hard, I mean how can you tell if a person is genuine without looking into their eyes?
I love blogging and I wanted to be good at it, I spent a lot of time drafting and scheduling blog posts, tweeting and posting regularly to get my stats up. I wanted lots of followers to make my blog successful and if I went a day without making myself known on social media, I'd worry that my blog would suffer.
I'll let you in on something, it does.
Yep, if I don't tweet, share a pic or publish a blog post my stats go down, it seems that the more active you are on social media, the more the cogs turn and show your posts opposed to other peoples.
So in short, to maintain my virtual life, I have to spend less time in my real life.
I refuse to do that because life is for living after all.
The Pressures of Social Media
Everything has it's pressures and we all know social media brings it's own.
I know social media can be both a help and a hindrance, and
I use it to communicate with friends and family. My blog also relies on it in many ways so it's useful to me.
On the flip side, I know people who have had chats misinterpreted, people who have been bullied and people who feel the pressure of living a perfect life, because that's often what's portrayed on social media. It's so easy to tap out a status, send an angry message or pretend life is okay by posting a photo. Too easy sometimes.
When my daughter was younger, I let her join Facebook.
We chatted about how amazing it was and also how it had the potential to cause problems so I set some rules:
That was the deal. Some may consider it invasive, I considered it parenting.
When I scroll through social media for my blog work, I come across people begging for followers, I hear the worry of being un-followed and there's an obvious stress about not having the time to publish another blog post because they're too busy. There are so many ways for us to be controlled by social media if we allow it.
We all want to be successful but there are enough pressures in life without adding virtual issues to the mix. Sometimes we're busy and that's life!
The love, the tears and the laughter - that's life.
Technology is amazing and will always be a massive part of our future.
Those who disrespect it will undoubtedly cause oppression and negativity and we all know there's enough of that in the world. If we respect social media it can have a positive impact on our lives, as long as we differentiate between our virtual lives and reality.
The key? Why live of course!
Life is about balance and it's most certainly for living, use social media, be grateful when Mr Zuckerberg wishes you happy birthday but don't forget to switch off too. In the grand scheme of things, numbers of followers and viewing stats don't matter.
Get offline, seek simplicity and rest assured your social media accounts will still be there when you switch back on. Not only that but you may be surprised to see you haven't actually missed much!
Make the effort to live, not just live but love and laugh too.
Sure it may be a statement that's over used, but I like it and living, loving and laughing? that's real life right there.
Didn't I tell you the months would fly by?! November is here!
The month that brings Bonfire night, Christmas present buying and my birthday! (Woohoo!) It was a big one for me last year, so I may be wiser ( I said 'may') and technically older but, you know me, I'm hanging on to that youth!
Anyway, let's leave the babbling there and get back to October.
It's been autumn filled, children filled and food filled (As always)
Jam packed times with the littlies
We had such an amazing weekend with the Grandkiddies!
Every brew I made went cold, I had enthusiastic helpers for everything and the rest of the world was pretty much ignored.
What's not to like about snuggles and bedtime stories? instead of reading one, we often make one up by each giving a sentence in turn. Our stories usually involve, trumps, poo, and a gruesome death by either of those two things! Oh and lots of giggles, of course.
Our days began with the important job of choosing from the variety pack of cereals, serious stuff. I showed my support by relieving them of the cinnamon flavour 😉
We had a yummy lunch at The Angel Inn, ham and jam butties all round! (No not together!) it went down so well, we apparently HAVE to have lunch there every time they visit! We shopped and we enjoyed some Kimi's Gelato which is a sunshine tradition! They played in our new garden in the autumn sunshine and we baked a chocolate fudge cake, topped with pirates of course!
(It was soooo yummy!)
It was sad having to drop them back home. When we returned home, neither of us could be bothered to even think about tea so we went to Mela! (Convenient!)
We went to bed early that night not because we wanted to but because we couldn't keep our eyes open! 😆
That Christmassy smell!
Give me berry candles, cloves, cinnamon, and any other Christmas smell you can think of!
The house smelled absolutely delicious when I made make the Christmas cake!
The traditional weekly shot of brandy for the cake (and one for me) has commenced! Hic!
I love fruit cake and soaking it with brandy can only be better!
This year I've made 4! Yes 4! I bought so much brandy that my local store thinks I have a problem!
Halloween just wasn't a big thing when I was a kid. In fact simply donning a black bin bag and backcombing your hair meant you were pretty much Halloween ready! 😆
When our girls were little, they'd dress up, arm themselves with a gory trick to justify the treat and skip down the street ignoring the rain! My daughter's trick was a joke eyeball and she'd pretend it was hers falling out! She always got rewarded with a treat!
This year I bought treats and we actually ran out!
In our old place I stopped buying them because no-one knew we lived there, I'd just end up eating them myself (Shame) this year was exciting! Giddy kiddies putting on their best spooky faces (I simply went mascara free for a scary look ;) and 20 minutes in the treats had gone!
We felt so bad that my husband drove out to get more supplies! Guess what happened? Yep he came home with sweets galore and only two more kiddies knocked on! Luckily he'd bought peanut M&M's so I can help out there!
October - done!
This time last year I was approaching the big 40! I'm sure I can remember every month so far and now we're in November!
My Christmas gift crochet plans have been delayed a little because I've been so cold I made myself some fingerless gloves and I'm on with a matching cowl! Needs must!
Oh and I've even discovered base layers! (I'm like a Michelin Man!)
I'm that 'always cold' person and I've seen a hilarious crocheted all in one for adults...
Oh, October was also the month my husband first muttered the words 'get your feet off me!' this year! They say 'Cold hands, warm heart' but what nice quote have they got for 'Cold everything'?!
Anyway, I'm babbling, as always, goodbye October and hello November!
(Any birthday cake will be welcomed!)
Hi I'm Sarah!
Blogger in The Lakes
I live in the beautiful Lake District...
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