Monday, 29 June 2015

4 days!!!

Finally after the most stressful week EVER, we exchanged contracts on our house - YAY!

I haven't felt so stressed in a long time, not since Jeff's redundancy news a couple of years ago (it's an 'out of control' thing) but in 4 days time we move - eek!

So it's into full on packing mode now we have the green light to go!

I had scheduled in the children's rooms this weekend but boy I underestimated 'big time' how long it would take, how much stuff they had and how much de-cluttering and dusting there needed to be done. It was like the Forth Bridge, just think you're done and then there's more!!

So we are surrounded in the expected chaos of boxes, bags of stuff for the charity shops and recycling and when it rains and we can't eat outside, we clear any space available and perch lol! Come Friday it'll be done and we can sort ourselves out but for now the clock is ticking. 

Right, I'm away to pack more boxes - have a good week x

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

So Move Day round one!

So this morning after the school run it was all systems go!
All the big furniture and anything that's not used day to day, is going into storage until the new house renovations are complete. I've been taking boxes over nearly every day but today some muscly men moved all the big bits of furniture over to the storage unit.

They did a great job and now some space has been cleared, it's round two, more packing. Again, anything not used day to day will be taken over to store and anything we use day to day, will now be boxed up for the move a week on Friday!!!

All my efforts are being fuelled by copious amounts of coffee and a little chocolate (I'm only human!!)
I must just remember in times of stress and chaos, that in 10 days time we will be in our new home x

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Father's Day

Wishing all the Dad's out there a very Happy Father's Day.

Especially my Dad, Jeff's Dad and Jeff, a fabulous Father to Sophie and Sam.

Have a great day and hope you're spoilt rotten x

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Today, we are 7!

Today dots and spots celebrates it's 7th Birthday. A few collages created in my little studio here at the house, marked the start of a fabulous little business for me. I remember moving in here, spending time in my new studio, my little oasis of creativity, a place where I could immerse myself in 'playing with paper' and seeing what I could come up with. The house renovations were finished, the children were at school, I was teaching part time and on my days off I would escape the busyness of boarding school life and come here and create. 

Those of you who have followed my blog over the past 7 years, will have shared my journey with me. Two years ago now, we took the decision to slow the business down. It had got too busy, was a time eating machine and what started out as something to fit around the kids, had turned into something where the kids had to fit around 'it'. The life/work balance had combusted and it was either grow the business, take on staff and work all hours I could or slow it down, enjoy working flexible hours and spending quality time with the children, with some extra money from the business thrown in. We decided on the latter and dots and spots now ticks away nicely, giving me a little income to spend on fun family time together, without the stress of running a big business. 

I lost my creative mojo for a while, as deadlines and print runs and trade shows dictated what I did and when. Who knows this new house move might just inject a little creativity back into my life and once the house renovations are complete, I may start to 'play with paper' again! 

We would normally celebrate with a SALE but due to the imminent house move, we will have to delay it for a little while, sorry. I promise a SUPER SALE once a little normality returns.

That's me done!!

This is my last regular Friday weigh-in post (on a Saturday - sorry!!)! 
As yesterday I lost 1.5lbs and .......

.... got awarded my 4 and a half stone AWARD!

This is the last award I can get and I'm now at the bottom of my Target weight range and technically 'DONE'!! I can achieve no more, other than the hardest bit I feel, maintaining my weight at this point!

I have been on the most incredible journey this past 9 months. I have changed my life and the path it was taking. From an outwardly cheery but inwardly miserable human being, I am now a fit, healthy and extremely happy person who LOVES life! If I hadn't walked through those Slimming World doors last September, I would have been struggling on my own to shift the pounds and failing miserably. With fantastic friendship, support and a plan that works, I have achieved everything and more!

I will obviously be working hard to maintain my weight and I shall still weigh in each week at group to keep on the straight and narrow and to catch up with friends but I won't be posting my weekly results, maybe a monthly catch up.

Prepare yourselves to be inundated with house move and decor posts as I start my new project. 

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Race for Life!

So at last the day arrived - Race for Life - Bath 5K!
After a good Breakfast.....

...... I was raring to go!

I was running with a group of my Slimming World friends, 13 of us in all and it made the event even more special. These two lovely ladies have become really good friends and have lost an amazing 11+ stone between them. This time last year they wouldn't have even imagined being able to do this and both walked in over the finish line in less than an hour - so proud of them both x

I lined up with the runners at the front.....

and finished in a respectable 26:52 
Pretty chuffed with that as it was hot and there were a few hills.

What a special event and for such a good cause. 
Thanks to any of you who did donate to my Just Giving Page 
 £241.00 raised 


So I'll be signing up again next year - 10K ???? 
Who knows!?!

LOVE this pic - captures exactly how I feel about my life at the moment!

and Daphne, you are still very much missed after all these years, forever in our hearts x

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Daphne x

Yesterday was a HUGE Non Scale Victory Day! Yesterday I could fit into my wedding dress again. 19 years ago I married my man, my best friend, my forever x It was the most wonderful day and I felt beautiful in my gorgeous dress and was the slimmest I'd ever been in my life. My mother-in-law 'Daphne' made my dress - we enjoyed many hours together shopping, planning, making sessions, fitting sessions for that dress and I felt beautiful and special on that fabulous day.

Well yesterday I managed to wriggle my way back into 'the dress' and all those memories of that wonderful day came flooding back. I felt a million dollars all over again. I never thought I would be slim enough, ever again, to wear that dress.

Not to be out done, Jeff came home and tried on his wedding day waistcoat to prove he could still fit into his wedding day 'tie' and waistcoat lol! He doesn't scrub up too badly after all these years.

It all seems to be timed to perfection because on this Sunday I am running the Race for Life - Bath 5k in memory of Daphne, Jeff's Mum, my wonderful Mother-in-Law and the maker of the that beautiful dress. She would have been genuinely so happy for me to have lost the weight and absolutely delighted that the wonderful dress, that holds the key to so many happy memories, can fit again. 

She was a wonderful lady, the life and soul, she would fill a room with her boundless energy and enthusiasm. She would be running beside me if she could or be one of the loudest cheerleaders from the sidelines, if she were still with us today. I won't be running in my dress but I will be running with all those happy memories associated with that dress, on Sunday. I will be running with her in mind x

I have set up a Just Giving Page should you wish to donate to Cancer Research UK.

Thank you and wish me luck!

Saturday, 6 June 2015

.....and relax!

Today has all been about regaining a little calm and clarity to my stressful week. I like to be in 'control' and when I'm not I get stressed. Moving house annoyingly is completely out of your control and it's so hard to plan and organise things when you are at the mercy of others doing their bit. Waiting for phone calls or emails or people to get back to you or waiting for quotes or drawings is completely out of my control and all down to others doing what they say they will, when they say they will do it!!

I have however quickly come to the realisation that people don't do what they say will and that over the next few weeks, I must lower my expectations of others because they are not like me and don't meet agreed deadlines as they promise. I shall just keep making 'to do' lists of what needs to happen, politely (with a fixed smile on my face) chase up people and try to keep the house move 'moving' along gracefully like a swan on the surface, whilst frantically sorting out everything else behind the scenes!!

Today I have not been able to do anything regarding the move, the weather has been a beautiful so I've made the most of it. I made myself go out for a run and I'm glad I did. I enjoyed a leisurely breakfast out in the garden and did a few chores before taking time out to enjoy the sunshine.

I really will miss this garden when we do go.

So I am to not get stressed about things out of my control - easier said than done for a control freak but I must try. A little 'me' time in amongst the chaos is a must and five minutes down at the bottom of the garden is where you'll find me taking time out to stay calm and in control, of not being in control lol!! 

Looking forward to another day of sunshine and some relaxation tomorrow x

Friday, 5 June 2015

Friday Weigh-in!

So half a pound off for me this week - quite pleased with that considering I've been doing a bit of stress related picking the last couple of days. Having not done that in so long, it was really quick to identify how I mindlessly pick when I'm stressed and I feel out of control!! Triggers noted, no more picking, back to writing everything down and staying within my syns. I have just one more pound to lose to get to the bottom of my target range, then it's maintaining all the way.

Have a good weekend and here's hoping it's a sunny one x

Thursday, 4 June 2015

And breathe....

It's proving to be a stressful week, just lots to do, lots out of my control with the move and I like to be in complete control !! So whilst sat in my studio on a damp Monday morning, it was a joy to see this little visitor going back and forth in front of me for over an hour, busy nest building I assume. I've not seen a real hedgehog since I was a child and certainly didn't expect to see one so close to the house in daylight - such a treat to see.

I'm enjoying the most welcome sunshine that arrived yesterday but am itching to get outside to enjoy it, rather than being inside packing, sorting and fielding emails and phone calls.

I've decided running is going to become my new stress buster. Once the headphones are on, for 30 minutes I can't do anything but run. Got a new personal best yesterday, 7 seconds faster than previously, so I must have lots of stress to charge me on lol! Here's hoping things 'move' in the right direction and keep on course in the weeks ahead x