Let’s get crafty…

Posted in Daily Jollop with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 21 September 2014 by misselisabethuk

Good morning all.

It was recently my birthday so I decided to treat myself to some paper crafting tools.

I bought a Cuttlebug embossing and die cutting machine, a stars embossing folder and a couple of Tattered Lace die sets (flower and butterfly).

To start with I found it a bit tricky but once I had consulted with the hints and tips sheet on the Tattered Lace website all was well:

http://www.tatteredlace.co.uk/

See below one of my works in progress for your viewing pleasure…

 

Tattered Lace die cut card

Where’s the cake when you need it…?

Posted in Weekly Wonderings with tags , , , , , , , on 14 September 2014 by misselisabethuk

I would love to do a complete blog on cake but this is not what this blog is about and after getting back to my running regime today it would seem frivolous to indulge in such things today, unfortunately.

This blog is actually about creative thoughts and ideas.   If you have read my blog before you will know that I’m part way through writing the first draft of a children’s book.  My first.  Needless to say a good book, with a great idea behind it.  But there comes a point when inspiration runs dry and you have to take a break to gather some new information and inspiration.

I think it’s a bit like solar power.

You have this reserve of ideas which at first you steam along using as much as you can as quickly as possible, all is going along merrily and then one day you use it all up.  It runs out.  And stop.  You sit at your laptop staring at the screen.  Nothing.  You go and make a cup of tea and sit back down at your laptop.  Still nothing.

You think ok, let’s be sensible and logical about this, like all things it will come to you, you need to be patient and relax.  The next week you open up your laptop and… nothing.  You go for a run.  Nothing.  You are at the point of giving up… again!  Then you remind yourself why you started the project in the first place, to try something new and have some fun.  Have some FUN dammit!

So here starts a period of having fun, the book can wait.  It’s not eating anything or harming anyone after all eh?  It’s time to get out, get some more inspiration, re-charge those imaginative/creative solar brain cells.

Hope you all have a day of re-charging and bags of fun too.

If in doubt, bake a cake…

Posted in Daily Jollop with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 5 September 2014 by misselisabethuk

I fancied something sweet this evening but couldn’t be bothered to go to the shops.  So there was only one thing for it… bake a cake.  And that is exactly what I did.  Banana cake – yum yum.  Washed down with some Camomile tea (courtesy of Fortnum and Mason).

tea and cake

Apologies for the lack of focus on some of these pics lol, too much cake was consumed in the making of this blog!!

How’s the book going?…

Posted in Weekly Wonderings with tags , , , , , , , , , on 4 September 2014 by misselisabethuk

Glad you asked.  So, I’m not as far forward on the book as I thought I would be at the start of my writing adventure but I think I have made a pretty good start for someone who has never written so much in one go before.

I am approximately 11,ooo words in and have realised that some sort of in chapter format would be helpful to arrange my thoughts and to give a reasonable start and end to each chapter.

I’m now back at work so my time has become limited again which means I need to set myself some more deadlines to keep this book train moving.

This weekend I will give it another good go and see where I end up.

I was initially trying to review as I went and soon realised to get continuity and flow, it would be better to get everything down in a first draft and then look at the whole.  This would also mean that I could pick the best chapters, discard the weakest ones and then review with a consistent tone and approach.   So the most important thing for me at this phase is to keep writing.

Also I have found that when you force yourself to write you lose a bit of the relaxed and funny side of your writing so I have been trying to avoid this as the book needs to b light-hearted and fun.

So that’s my current update and as soon as I have anymore to tell you on this matter I will blog again.  Until next time my friends, be good! lol

Taking a break from writing by blogging wtf?…

Posted in Weekly Wonderings with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 29 August 2014 by misselisabethuk

Evening one and all.

Hope you are having a lovely evening whatever you are doing on this slightly moist Friday night near London – England, possibly Saturday if you are in another time zone which is  ahead of London.

I am blogging tonight, funnily enough to have a break from writing a book I tasked myself with, and to write it in a week.  I had no idea when I set myself this challenge (at 4am one morning after waking with a ‘bolt out of the blue’ idea for a book) whether this was even possible.  It sounded relatively easy in my head but I soon realised that on my week off there were other things I wanted to do and didn’t want to just sit at a computer tapping away.  Something I do in my day job, which I was supposed to be taking a break from.

However, the challenge was set.  So I decided I should find out how many words I needed to write to fill this book I was going to write.  I didn’t go to university so have never written a dissertation, the job roles I have had have been mainly maths based so I have never had to write a  report or anything more than a set of minutes for a meeting.  So when I found out I needed to write between 20,000 and 35,000 words I almost decided to give up.

I haven’t given up but I also know now that it will be almost impossible for me to complete the challenge I set myself in the time given.  I will give it my best shot obviously at getting a first draft together and then see what extra time I need to review and pull it all together.

The learnings from this experience so far for me have been:

- it is right to challenge yourself to do new things or push yourself further in a familiar field but be prepared to adjust your thinking as new information becomes available,

- if doing something for fun, do not push yourself so hard that the thing you were doing for pleasure becomes ‘an elephant in the room’,

- and lastly, ideas that come to you at ‘silly o clock’ in the morning really can be a gift, go with it.  You never know where it might lead you.

That’s me signing out and going back to the book writing.  Have a great evening.  Peace!

Running for my life….

Posted in Weekly Wonderings with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 25 August 2014 by misselisabethuk

I recently looked back at some of my previous posts and realised that I have been bleating on about getting fit since August 2013:

It’s the start of my ‘Get a six-pack plan’…

So I thought an update was in order.  I have to admit there is still no six-pack…. yet!

In April this year (2014) I actually embarked on my most serious attempt to get fit in the last few years and started running.

Now that some time has passed and I have managed to maintain at least 1 reasonable run a week for a while, I have some data to work with to see whether the training is working and whether I am benefitting at all from this increased physical activity.

When I decided to start running I was very excited and eager to get going, and to do well.  At that point I did not know what my ability for running was, if I had any at all.  Nevertheless I was keen to give it a go and had the support of a friend who was proficient in running already, which helped greatly.  I uploaded an App (as you do nowadays) put on my trainers and headed for the local park.

I ran just under 1.5km that first time and realised I was capable of doing more than that.   So the next time I went out I aimed for 3kms which I managed and ran in just over 23 minutes.  Not bad I thought and got the running bug.

Now addicted I went out and bought some running trousers which would also hold my iPhone whilst I was running.  I prefer not to hold anything in my hands when I am running.  I found a pair of Hind long leg running trousers which are really comfortable.  After using them for a while though the position of the pocket in the back where I put my iPhone was causing me back pain.  I think because the phone was knocking against my back whilst running, so I needed another solution for my phone.  I then bought a light waterproof running jacket, which promised a pocket where I could put my phone but on receipt it did not have the pocket as advertised so I was back to square one.

Unfortunately I got a foot injury about a month in to my running and I had to give running a rest for a couple of months until it had properly healed but in that first month (April/May) I had clocked up 45.3kms, which wasn’t bad at all.  On my last run before resting up the longest run I had accomplished was 5.63kms and I had reduced my running time for 3kms from just over 23 minutes to just over 21 minutes.

I started back running in July and clocked up 30kms running and 12km on the cross trainer (to vary my exercising regime) that month, with my longest run increased to 6.5kms and I had improved my 3kms running time to just over 20 minutes.

So far this August I have clocked up 41.2kms running, with my longest run now 9km with my 3kms running time around 18 minutes.  My fastest 1km coming in at 5:44 minutes, which I am really pleased with.

Looking at my starting stats and my stats now, I am running 4kms in virtually the same time as I was running 3kms when I started, which I feel is excellent progress.

Taking up running was one of the best decisions I have made and I suspect most runners would say the same.  If you can, I would encourage you to give it a go.  Get some trainers on and get running, it’s free after all.  Good luck!

Esio Trot….

Posted in Daily Jollop with tags , , on 25 August 2014 by misselisabethuk

There once was a small tortoise…  but now he is a big tortoise…

tortoise image

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