Motivation For Monday – 31st March 14

During this career change project of mine, I sometimes find Mondays a little strange.  In my previous life in the Corporate world, I suffered badly from The Sunday Night Blues – which often started as early as breakfast on a Sunday,  I rarely managed to get to sleep on a Sunday night and when I did finally drift off it was a restless series of duvet-thrashing naps.  Lists running through my head of all the things I hadn’t managed to get done over the weekend, and the overwhelming feeling that yet another long, miserable week was just beginning.

In my new life, the impending arrival of Monday is less traumatic, but also less significant.   I have chosen Monday to be one of my freelance work days, but I want to avoid Monday becoming just another work day.  I have found some great blogs recently and have been inspired by Workerbeefree’s inspiring Friday Fess-up reflecting on her week as a Career Pioneer, and also by the lovely 3childrenandit’s Friday Favourites,  so I am choosing Monday to be my Motivation Day – the day that I reflect on the highlights of the previous week, to spur me on to keep trying new things and meeting new people.

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Girls Night 2 – Five Go Mad at The Rivington

Nothing like a tube strike to test your metal.  We had arranged our night weeks before the announcement that London would be paralysed, but it will take more than lack of transport to stop the Fabulous Five meeting up!  We don sturdy walking shoes and meet up regardless.

We are not the easiest table to sit next to as our topics are wide-reaching and our opinions strong and loud.  Last night we covered a particularly broad spectrum — other peoples marriages, the pros and cons of circumcision and (after eating) some in depth medical discussions about parts of our body that we didn’t know existed 20 years ago and pre-childbirth! Continue Reading →

Christmas Cake

OK, so it falls short of sky-diving or bungee-jumping, but as I am trying new things I decided it was high time I baked my first Christmas cake.  Considering I spend as much time shopping for food and preparing it as I do sleeping, it’s odd that I haven’t made one before.  My 5 year old son wanted to help and dragged his little step ladder over to the kitchen island to ‘help’.  As he is getting to grips with his maths these days, the digital scales could have been educational, except he decided that all measurements needed to be done to the gram, so the weighing took a while!  Chopping the glace cherries was a thankless task as he ate them as quickly as I could chop them, but we got there in the end.  He helped me mix it all up and best of all the three tablespoons of brandy in the recipe made him turn his nose up at the leftover cake mixture – a bit of a treat for me as I don’t normally get near the bowl.

Top tip I had been given was to tie brown paper folded four times around the outside of the cake tin to stop the cake burning.  Hadn’t heard of that before but it worked a treat!  Pretty pleased with the results.

Picture of Christmas Cake
If you fancy having a go, this is the recipe I used for a 9 inch cake:

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Mince Pies…and Cardboard Boxes

      Enough procrastination, and on to the first phase of my career change project.  I quickly realised that voluntary work was going to be a way to sharpen up any ‘real world’ skills I might have, to have fun and to widen my network.  What I didn’t realise was that working for free is a very competitive marketplace and I would be the oldest intern in town!  My CV was so dull that I was forced to delete the phrase ‘transferable skills’ as it slowly dawned on me that these seemed a little sparse.  I knew it was important to feel inspired by the project or cause if I was going to be a useful volunteer, and after a few weeks of trawling through Escape The City, Enternships, and CharityJob I found the ideal project: The Mince Pie Project 2013. Continue Reading →

‘Girls’ Night Out – The Cowshed & Les Trois Garcons

Cows eating grass

The Girls Night Out has meant a variety of things over the years.  Our lives have evolved, and what used to be long drawn out drinking sessions and a stagger to a club, have also evolved.  The Girls Night Out has become a small window of time where we get to be ourselves and unwind.  Yesterday was a real treat.  I have not been splashing out since I stopped work, so felt I had earned a little indulgence.  We kicked off at the Cowshed Shoreditch for a selection of manicures, facials and massages and a few bottles of Prosecco.  2013 is the year of me trying new things and so I came to have my first ever pedicure.
There are two reasons for me never having had a pedicure, firstly i am ticklish beyond belief, but secondly I have a foot phobia and the very thought of my feet being touched by someone else makes me feel a bit …eeeuw.  I don’t touch feet …ever and I try to avoid even looking at feet at all as they make me feel a little light headed and woozy – especially if they are sporting a flip flop. I decided to be brave. Continue Reading →