this is lemonade

A mindful, grateful, creative life: Life constantly hurls lemons at us. I’m on a mission to make lemonade as best I can, by God’s grace.

Getting to know you!

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Snickers More Nuts Limited Edition

I don’t really eat chocolate bars. I find them too sweet. I’m a dark chocolate girl, so generally speaking, the chocolate bar section in the supermarket doesn’t draw me in. But this week, I found myself vulnerable whilst grocery shopping.

I was hungry.

And the power aisle snickered at me, grabbing me with a limited edition chocolate bar. “£1 only” for a pack of four More Nuts or More Caramel? D’uh. If I wanted more caramel, I’d buy a Mars Bar and I never do that of my own free will. So something in the pit of my stomach made me raise my hand to the shelf and put a pack of the above in my shopping trolley.

It’s the end of the week. Time to let go a little, raise a glass of the bubbly stuff. I wanted to thank you all for your support and encouragement. The week has been more than manageable punctuated with some really thoughtful comments at the ends of my posts that have really lifted me.  And seeing as we’re friends now (I hope I’m not being presumptuous), I was wondering… are you nuts like me or more nice and sweet? :)


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Christmas Greetings

Dear lovely readers,

Thank you for your friendly, sparkly presence around this is lemonade this year. As we approach the end of 2012, I’d like to wish you all a wonderful Christmas. I hope that it will be a peaceful time for you and your loved ones in the midst of all the events that have been happening around the world this year, and all the changes that will bring new challenges in the new year. Thank you for the good times that you have brought to my year and let’s raise a bubbly glass to 2013.

I finally made an effort on Saturday and hung up some merry lights, they will stay up until spring now! For those of you who believe you deserve a present from Santa, here’s a little glimpse of his progress (click through to see the actual status)… it appears some of you already know whether you have been good girls and boys – enjoy your presents ;)

Santa Tracker

Take care and don’t stuff yourself with too much turkey. Enjoy the Queen’s first 3D Christmas message tomorrow. I do think her 3D glasses look a quite spiffy… what say you?

See you in 2013!


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Mulling it over

It was a bit of a rubbish week last week. Although I managed to finish my first scarf by Friday and am now wearing it. I ran out of wool to make the length I wanted for a scarf… but the wool is out of stock, so instead, I sewed it up and made a cowl :)

I guess I have to learn to do that more often. Be prepared to change course more readily. Take action to make things better even when they don’t turn out the way I would have hoped.

It’s all been coming to a head recently. Somehow things are a bit more intense and rubbish than usual. Although, let me get one thing straight right now… I’d not swap being me, for anything else. Some days I don’t even have the energy to feel depressed. But those moments bring me through to a clarity afterwards that I have to pounce on and get creative with!

I’ve been feeding off some of your incredible posts lately, and they are helping me to get some of my thoughts in order. Here’s a couple I found inspiring at just the right time – and by inspiring, I mean, they challenged me personally and helped me to take a step back and a deep breath:

Be happy in the moment, this moment is your life. The title says it all. I’m not going to get all self-help and “hippie” (quoting Sarah) on you here. I was simply reminded that now is my life. Not yesterday, not tomorrow. Right now. And I have to do something with now, or it’s going to leave me.

Morning walk on the Detmold countryside. Wendy took me on a beautiful walk through her lovely photos. It’s the kind of walk that I relish and haven’t been on for a while. She shared some of her own thoughts on life at this point in time. She ends with “Carry on…” Enough said. Life never stops, you’re either going backwards or forwards.  Sometimes it’s the former, sometimes the latter… either way, we carry on for as long as we have the strength to.

Apple, by Addia

Apple, by Addia

And. I have been meaning to feature this photo for some time now. It’s by the lovely Addia who was so sweet as to send me the original and allow me to feature it here. I feel happy every time I look at it. I just love the intense colour of the apple. But it’s so exposed, vulnerable, all open and half-eaten. I guess its fragility and intensity against the gritty grey surface that it is lying on is what makes it so beautiful for me.

I feel so alive when I see something so beautiful.

So here we go again, I’m rooting for you to go out there and keep on keeping on too! Have a good week.


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Frivolity and friendship (4) …and finally, for now…

Thank you everyone, for being so enthusiastic about the award nominations thus far. It certainly has been fun writing these posts. It has also helped me to get back into the swing of things, especially since the past few weeks have been exhausting and not all that pleasant. I’ve definitely been feeling very under the yucky weather.

Having already taken a couple of days sick leave at the beginning of the week, I sat up in bed one morning towards the end of last week, and was almost knocked backwards with a horrible dizziness and nausea. Thinking that I was perhaps very hungry, I dragged myself woozily downstairs to make some breakfast and tried to eat it. Half-way through my muesli and not feeling any better, I tried to put my head on the table. That usually works on dizziness right? Nope. I felt so ill, and yet the nausea was not the kind to make me want to throw up. It was horrible. I lugged my body back upstairs and crawled back into bed. I stayed there for another age and finally got up gradually around four in the afternoon. Actually, this time of year, I think we call that evening over here.

I hear that my symptoms were down to a bug that’s going round. I haven’t apparently been the only one to be KO’d by this monster. It took me days to get over the feeling of dizziness. I didn’t dare drive or anything. Hopefully that bug’s defeated for the winter. Hope those of you falling towards winter out there are wrapping up warm and are not inhaling germs from people who indiscriminately sneeze into others’ faces. Ugh. So inconsiderate. And disgusting. Please icky people on the Underground, smother your germs.

Aaanyway public health announcement over and, without further ado, let’s get onto the final award. The first three nominations posts are herehere and here. And the first ever, almost five months ago, is here. So feel free to check these out too for some great weekend reading, if you haven’t already done so!

The supremely creative Matt Gajdoš of Mister G Kids, in his nomination spree, put me forward for the Kreativ Blogger award which I graciously accept with thanks. More about his blog here and here! And in the spirit of all things creative, here are my three nominations:

Kreativ Blogger Award

  • All About Ami – Stephanie is about as sweet as her delightfully cute amigurumi creations. If you love crocheted things, you will love this site. And there will be a long awaited first addition to the family this month, how exciting!
  • How About Orange - Jessica, a graphic and textile designer, has a bright and fresh blog  featuring craft projects, lots of inspiration for people who like to create and not a little bit of orange.
  • ziggyshortcrust – Last but definitively not least, the blog of my first blog friend ever. Ziggy is a friend of elves for a start, but there is so much more to discover than first meets the eye. For a start, she elfed my imaginary daughter for me. Just check this out to see what I’m talking about for yourself.

Thank you to everyone for taking your time to read and comment and like. Welcome to friends old and new! I do really appreciate your being here. Have a restful weekend.


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Frivolity and friendship (3) …with a facelift

As you may be able to see, if you are not viewing my page on a mobile device, I gave the blog layout a makeover this past week. Well, some WordPress contributor has given me a big hand really. It’s more my style than before. I hope that doesn’t disappoint. The pink-ness and ribbon-ness of the last dabble was not me at all. I’m not at all cute in real life. Just as cheesiness usually makes me cringe. I do love buttons though. But well, I love white and clean and crisp. So. This is more me. And more of me will probably emerge as time goes on…as I also get bored of me from time to time. We shall see.

There, that was a little peek into my mind. Now onto the important task of nominations to award number three of four. The first two nominations posts are here and here. And there was one way back here as well. I don’t want you to forget those others. And as I said, watch out for a new page – I’m working on it!

Thanks again to Matt Gajdoš of Mister G Kids who nominated me for the Versatile Blogger award. I featured him initially here and again here. Do not hesitate to take a look at his wonderful comics of the kids he teaches. Matt is super talented. I’ll forgive him just this once for initially thinking I was a man…seeing as he’s given me the opportunity to nominate some lovely bloggers as follows:

Versatile Blogger Award

  • Chez Chloe – Wendy’s delicious blog full of travels and great adventures in the kitchen.
  • hillsandhotchocolate – Roxy is a midwife who will not be kept indoors. Visit her blog for a wonderful breath of fresh air!
  • ANXIETY & BISCUITS – Need some sharp British humour? I found Chris when he was FP’d and couldn’t stop laughing clicking all the way backwards through his posts ;)

So there you have it. Another mini sample of the things I love in the vast blogosphere. Ugh what a word. Sorry. Just had to try using it. Bleugh. It leaves a horrible taste in my mouth. I won’t be using that again. I hope you enjoy the little stash of blogs I’ve collected, enjoy your weekend reading!


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Frivolity and friendship (2)

This is my second award nomination post in a series of four this season :) Here’s the first, and here’s one I did earlier

And here’s a little snippet of my life today: I stumbled across this song during the Paralympic Games. I was drafting a post with the lyrics in, but hey, just check them out yourself on the YT page. It’s a super duper cheesy song and I have some days when I like cheesy. this is lemonade is about giving things another try, one more time, and another time, and again…and again. Even after you have given up. Just one more time.

Forget what lies behind you
Heaven walks beside you
You got to give it one more try
One more time

So here’s another thank you to the lovely Laura Williams of North Highlands Art who nominated me for the One Lovely Blog award. One of the wonderful blogging friends out there, who inspire me! Go check out her blog and her wonderful talent that I mentioned here.

  • One Lovely Blog Awardyou and mie – I’ve a million things pinned that I want to make from Cherie’s crafty ideas!
  • Shared joy is a double joy - Addia’s heart-warming photo blog full of lovely snapshots from life in Sweden. And there’s more to see on her Pinterest boards too!
  • Carr party of five – Lis is one witty, bubbly, lady who writes quirky and cheering posts!

 

The one thing I love most about blogging is the people behind the blogs that I have “met”. All the bloggers I am mentioning in my awards nominations I have held conversations with in the comments, by email, twitter or even on Pinterest. I am going to be presumptuous and call them friends. Having just passed the sixth month mark of blogging, and having falling off the blog wagon for the month just gone, I can say that this friends-making is my biggest incentive for writing and writing again!

Hello friends! Thanks for reading, for sharing your inspiration and for your continuing support :D


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Rain, rain go away…

I’m sitting at a window, looking out at a blue sky with puffy clouds in it. For two days running, the weather forecast for London has been somewhat incorrect. The heavy rains they threatened yesterday did not materialise. Thankfully. There was a bit of drizzle. That’s all. Today, there were supposed to be white clouds with some sunny spells…it’s mostly been nice bright blue skies decorated with puffy clouds and sunshine.

Am I complaining? No. In some parts of the country, there has been enough surface water for some to take to jet-skiing. Not good. Summer is definitely over. For now. The sunshine does not bring warmth, and we’ve had chilly winds all week. Monday was absolutely freezing. The rain was like ice. Sort of.

Ode To Summer

So I just wanted to brighten things up a bit. Thoughts of summer are definitely in order. Just reminiscing about some of the colours of sunshine. And I’m hoping some of you who read this from up north are ok, in the midst of all the devastating flooding :(


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Frivolity and friendship (1)

I’m going to do my first award nomination post of the season. I was fortunate to have an excuse to do one way back here. Please check it out as I’m not going to renominate blogs that I’ve nominated before. But watch this space, for a new page coming up :)

I already answered some questions about myself in that post, so I won’t try to dig up any more “interesting” facts about myself (I already dug deep in that post). I’ll tell you however, that at the same time as writing this, I’m being distracted by this and this. LOL I’ve been meaning to update my wardrobe for probably close to a decade. But… I’m still slouching about in a pair of Topshop khakis that I’ve loved for over fifteen years today. Wow, to think that the company has come so far. Amazing how the landscape of British fashion has changed so much. We’re so hip and cool these days. Unbelievable! (“We” doesn’t include me by the way.)

So, onto some nominations. I was awarded this Thanks For Writing award by Matt Gajdoš of Mister G Kids. Thanks again Matt! I’m going to do three nominations per award. You’d think that would make life easier seeing as I have four to do, but it’s actually not at all easy to choose!

  • Thanks For Writing AwardTALKTODIANA – I challenge you not to be inspired and encouraged through Diana’s writing.
  • A Big Life – A blog exploring the notions of home, change, choice and love – Liv’s adventures and accompanying thoughts.
  • WONDERWIMP – Jane has such a wacky sense of humour, every post makes me laugh :)

All the above are lovely bloggers also because they like making conversation as well as writing interesting things. Go! Take yourself over there. I’d recommend a cup of tea and a cosy chair, because you’ll be reading for a little while.


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Phew…

I’m back! Well, I’m feeling a bit tentative, as I’m going to have to adjust my schedule a little again from Saturday. However, I want to be back, so I’m here!

I’ve actually climbed back into relative normality for almost two weeks now, since falling off the blog-wagon, but just could not bring myself to write. Instead, I took solace in catching up with the hundreds of posts that I’d missed over the month. It’s got to the point where I just could not wait to get back into writing – I’ve missed being a part of the community and making my contribution to the conversations.

It’s been too long. When I was in the middle of catching up with things, this cartoon stopped me in my tracks:

What’s your Question, Honey? By Matt Gajdoš

What’s your Question, Honey? By Matt Gajdoš – featured with permission

I’m sure this was actually a portrait of me, whilst faced with the prospect of blogging again. It’s from one of my favourite bloggers, Matt Gajdoš whose blog I featured here. It made me smile and feel that I wasn’t alone, even if it might mean my peers are the elementary school kids that Matt teaches. Hey, if they can do it, so can I right?

And then, talking about inspiration, there is Laura Williams, a super talented artist who draws the most beautiful portraits of horses and dogs (here‘s one of her latest that I love – it’s not even finished and it looks amazing already.) Note, she’s just started accepting orders for commissioned pet portraits for Christmas. Really, do take a look. I love how her portraits are so soulful and alive. I always feel as though I can reach through the screen to stroke the animals and they will respond! Not only is Laura very gifted, she’s also most generous. She nominated me for the One Lovely Blog Award whilst I was away doing nothing to my blog. I’m so thankful for your encouragement, Laura!

I have been owing an award post for a while now, since Matt of the above nominated me irrationally for a few at the same time. (I can’t believe that post was way back in June…uh…sorry for the delay Matt, and thank you again!) I’m sure there is some big award rule out there that says you can’t do that, but I’m not going to complain.

I thought writing about other blogs would be a great way to return to writing, because the community of lovely blogging people and the great stuff out there is what makes me want to keep on keeping on. So I’m going to start a real awards train – I’ll spend 5 posts nominating blogs I enjoy that for me, can be described by those awards, starting hopefully from next week (because if I don’t hit publish in the next five minutes, I will never get started again!) I’ll be breaking every rule in the book in the process as I don’t have anything exciting to write about me, and I’m not going to look up each award’s rules for how many people you’re allowed to nominate…I’m going to wing it!

Happy weekend! Thanks for having me back and for reading even though I’ve been so quiet. I truly truly appreciate it :)


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Untitled #5 (and long-awaited answers)

image

I haven’t done a photo for my Untitled series for a while. Then the other day I came home and pulled the above out of my bag…it looked so silly I had to take a picture and see if you could tell what it was…

And for those of you who haven’t lost interest and still wanted to know what the other ones were…(click on the images to take you to the original post).

Untitled #1

Untitled #1

Curved old radiator – well done VagueMemories!

Untitled #2

Untitled #2

An out of focus photo of a pile of booklets on my desk.
Although I liked Matt‘s suggestion that it was taffy!

Untitled #3

Untitled #3

The bottom of my tea cup, having lazily left it in my office overnight. I’d run out of milk that day, and had mixed up a nice paste with powdered milk. I came back to find the residue congealed and dried into something reminiscent of a beautiful oil painting at the bottom of my cup in the morning!
So there you go delightfullypeculiar, you were right!

Untitled #4

Untitled #4

The light pull switch thingy above my bed. Way back then, I think someone designed the room’s electrics with a lazy person in mind…
PhotoAddia you were very close! :)

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