Monthly Archives: October 2018

An A-Z of self care

My mental health isn’t great at the moment (obviously that’s a bit of an understatement because those of us who suffer know we generally use daft terms like ‘not great’ to mean …’I feel like I’m driving that bus on the movie Speed right now ‘ but stay with me.

When your head is a bit of a whirlwind and you feel all out of control ,the only thing really left to do is be a bit kind to yourself. Be as kind to yourself as you would to a friend who was having a rough time.

Unfortunately poor mental health will often result in your brain telling you NOT to look after yourself . That you’re not worthy of care ,that you don’t deserve it . On this one I’m going to just have to say we over rule that horrid voice in our head and care for ourselves regardless.

I’ve spent a good few years teetering on the edge of sanity one foot either side and in this time I’ve picked up a few tips. Obviously we’re all different and what works for me may sound awful to you but you might pick up some new ideas so I’ll share anyway!!

Art

Any kind . Those new age colouring books , painting,sewing whatever helps you focus on the project in hand stopping that over thinking for just a little while will help. Small girl and I went pottery painting last week and we both commented how relaxing it was

Bath

Bubble baths are just luxury aren’t they. Take in a tea ? A book ? Bribe the kids with extra screen time so noone bursts in for a wee!! You’ll get out less stressed than you went in!

Children

Join in fully with them. Splashing in puddles , swinging on swings , feeding the ducks . If you do these activities with all the exuberance of a giddy toddler you’ll find yourself smiling!

Dance

For me this would take the shape of a Broadway number ….my All That Jazz is particularly good …but if a bit of a kitchen rave is more your thing go for it .

Emotions

Confront those tricky things. However you need to . If it’s a phonecall to your bestie talking over what you’re feeling or if like me you’ve got to write them down . I just always feel better once they’re no longer dominating my brain. They seem less powerful written down or said out loud than when they’re whizzing round your head gathering momentum with every passing minute!

Friends

The enemy of mental health wobbles.

The listeners , the people who remind you that your inner mean girl voice is just your brain playing tricks . The ones who’ll drag you out or join you under a duvet. They are a huge weapon in our arsenal against that voice telling you you are unloved and uncared for.

Guilt Free

If you’re eating choc for comfort or getting the kids a pizza for dinner or giving yourself 20 quiet minutes. You musn’t feel guilty and I know this is way easier said than done. Looking after yourself will make you nicer to be around though and make you a little more functional. Give guilt the middle finger

Heart to Heart

A good , honest talk to someone you trust about how particularly crappy you are feeling that day will just take the load off a little . Ease the burden if you can.

I Matter

This goes hand in hand with the guilt thing I guess , but you matter . You need to be well. You are worth care and consideration.

Junk Food

If your appetite has disappeared as mine tends to during a wobble then just eat something. If the only something you can even contemplate eating would give Jamie Oliver nightmares then so be it . One non nutritious meal isn’t going to break you. You can get back to healthy eating tomorrow when you feel a bit stronger.

Kickass playlist

I have a kickass playlist for when I have to do scary things. As someone who suffers from hypervigilance social anxiety and a load of other stuff well most things are scary to me . Having to deal with people , making a phone call , a noisy bird squawking in my ear. I’m familiar with feeling nervy and scared BUT once I’ve Taylor ,Beyonce and Pink in my earphones I can psyche myself up to what’s ahead.

Laugh

Put the episode of Friends you’ve seen a million times on , watch some stand up . Whatever has a chance at raising a giggle is going to make you feel better.

Music

Again much like the kickass playlist and the dancing music can be one of the most therapeutic tools at our disposal whether that’s belting out Whitney or having a weep to Adele . Music just makes you feel and I don’t know about you but during a wobble I can switch to numb mode and music helps tease me out.

Nookie

Orgasms = endorphins and who doesn’t love themselves some endorphins!!!

Outdoors

I know sometimes in the grip on a mental health wobble you just want to put the duvet over your head and pretend the world doesn’t exist and if thats what you have to do to get through the day go for it ! I’m not going to come drag you out to do star jumps in the garden. For me though a walk somewhere pretty can make such a huge difference to my mood. It doesn’t have to be far ,but just fresh air and pretty surroundings are a joy .

Play

Play a game with the kids that takes up all your brain time so there’s no room for unwelcome thoughts .

Play an instrument.

Play a daft game on your phone .

Whatever distracts you for a little while.

Quiet

Another tricky one to achieve. Whenever I’m very anxious though sounds are so much louder . People talking feels like shouting and ordinary noises are unbearable. A lay in the quiet for 10 mins if at all possible helps me.

Read

Trashy mag if your concentration is screwed . Old fave comfort book that just makes you feel warm. A funny picture book to the kids . A self help book . Whatever makes you feel better.

Scribble

As I’ve said ,when my brain is too full of thoughts getting a notebook and pen and writing them all down is the best thing I can do to help myself. The instant relief it gives me to get thoughts from my head to paper is just immense . Also means I’ve dozens of notebooks that are the crazed ramblings of an anxious woman but hey it works !!

Theatre

I can’t go to the theatre and not thoroughly absorb myself in what I’m watching . So that gives the over thinking brain a few hours off duty at least.

Understanding

I think any of us who have suffered with our mental health will know how necessary having people around you who totally understand are. In this day and age even if that’s some quirky blogger who goes on a bit (*waves*) chatting on social media it still works as well.

Avoid ignorant “pull yourself together ” types.

Vocalise

This is something absolutely out of my comfort zone . However if you’re struggling in silence it’s so important to tell someone you’re struggling. Even if you believe noone can help you. Just tell one person , it will feel so much better.

Who

Doctor Who….my go to thing to watch for comfort or empowerment or even just a therapeutic sob (Face the Raven I’m looking at you !)

(E)xercise

Ah come I’ve done well to get here without getting dubious .

I hate to admit that all the smug exercise people are right about it helping but unfortunately they are. As much as I advocate blanket forts and crisps ,I’ve got to admit exercise does give that boost! Those endorphins again.

Yoga

Quiet , concentration , calm. All good for the anxious over thinking mind.

Zzzzzzzzz

Sleep. So so so important.

I know when your mind is a whirlwind sleep can seem like fantasy stuff but an early night can bring a better tomorrow. A power nap can be an instant boost. A tired mind is a vulnerable one for those mean voices ,let’s try and give it a head start with a bit of rest !

So they’re my self care go to ‘s would love to hear what yours are ??

My Facebook page is here if you fancy

BlogCrush week 89 – October 26th 2018

Hey you beautiful people…

Either congrats on surviving half term….or good luck for the upcoming one !!

Bbbrrr can’t we tell it’s clock change weekend,its gotten sooooo coollllddd .

I’ve got to confess I usually am one of those people who loves dark nights and snuggly cosy autumn …. but summer this year was so long and warm I’m already nostalgic for it !!

I loved the blogcrush linky waaaaayy before I was part of the team. I love the idea of sharing someone elses fab work as well as your own !!

If it’s your first time here WELCOME!!!!! Have a read through the rules then add your posts!!

#BlogCrush

The Rules

  • Join in with 2 posts:
    • 1 post from your blog (personal) – no linkies please
    • 1 post from someone else’s blog (your #BlogCrush)
  • When you add your BlogCrush (post written by someone else) to the InLinkz form, put “BC” at the beginning of their title
  • Tweet your BlogCrush (& us) to let them know you’ve added them to the linky and share their link (@lucy_at_home and @daydreamer_mum). Please tweet us your own BlogCrush posts too so we can share them for you.
  • Comment using the #BlogCrush hashtag on at least these 4 posts:
    • 1 post from Host 1 (personal or BC)
    • 1 post from Host 2 (personal or BC)
    • 2x personal posts from the rest of the link up

So that’s a minimum of 4 posts.

Don’t forget to add our lovely badge

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

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If you’re here because someone has chosen your post as their #BlogCrush then Congratulations to you!! Good job!!
Help yourself to our brilliant badge!!

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

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Us hosts are lucky enough to be able to pick a fave from the last week’s link up as our featured blog each week.

My featured post this week is This fab post by Picking up Toys. I found it very funny and very relatable

Lucy’s post was a lot more of an emotional post just here

The post I’ve linked up this week is an old post of mine about how grief can just pop up on you at any moment!!

Have an amazing weekend you fabulous people

Love Kelly xxx

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What a mini break from blogging taught me

Things have been tricky at Daydreams HQ of late (I love Daydreams HQ…going to start using it more often just sounds cooler than saying my brain!!)

I’d come to a point where I felt my blog and social media had been violated and my cosy blog space invaded and I just felt like laying off from all of it was the only option I had available to me.

Thing is it’s not even been a whole month but I need writing back. In such a short time going without my trusty old comfort blanket I’ve learnt a few things . About my blog , my motivation to blog and about me as a person.

This is the best hobby I’ve ever had

Even better than roller skating or birdwatching (my sister made me do that but if you ask her she’ll flat out deny her Bill Oddie obsession)

People talk of the blogging community , how friendly it is and how welcoming and this is the sole experience I’ve had with blogsville . I love the linkies I join in with and that I host (Fridays #blogcrush Twitter join us !) I like the regular bloggers I interact with from week to week. I love the freedom that comes from putting your thoughts out into the world and seeing what comes back at you from that.

I had some Twitter unpleasantness…see point 3. A few weeks back and my fellow bloggers (and Twitter folk as a whole actually…I must follow kind people) were very supportive , despite the fact in my whole blog/Twitter world I’ve probably only met half a dozen of them in ‘real life’

There’s a bit of a community vibe in blogging and I really like it.

My blog matters to me , as do what other people think of it

I always say that if no one ever read my blog ever again I’d continue to write it . I think this is true too , back at the start I could have blog posts published that not one person would read but just getting it written and out there was enough for me .

If I’m being honest I’m not sure that would be the case now. In fact if I wrote a post that went unread by anyone it’d probably end in me weeping in a corner. That’s not to say page views are king , bloody hell my blog is too small fry to get caught up in that it’s just I enjoy feedback these days. Even the slightly negative stuff if I’ve worded myself wrongly or gone at something too hard I’m willing to listen to that feedback.

Thankfully it’s majority positive and to know by banging a thousand words on a page you can I could have helped someone feel less alone , or made someone think or made someone laugh then I’d be lying if I said it didn’t make me feel good. If that makes me a needy egotist so be it !!

I won’t be silenced

I was , for a little while over these few weeks. I became wary of my blog , my writing , my social media.

When I began my blog it was solely to document life after abuse. It was sooooo anonymous as I said virtually no one read it and anyone who did I was no one to them. My idea of hell back then would have been the people involved in my life back then …people REALLY involved in that time finding my blog.

My blog is still pretty anonymous. I very rarely use the kids names if at all. I’m vague about where we live and schools and surnames and anything that’s too distinguishing. Yet that earlier scary thing of being found that would have floored me back at the start happened a few weeks back. Unpleasantness on Twitter occurred and a name I had taken care never to mention – primarily because this blog is my blog , my space , my thing . This blog was not about another person yet that name was plastered all over.

Back at the start I’d have shut down all my social media , I’d have deleted my blog . I’d have disappeared.

This is now though , and I’ll not be silenced and not dare use social media again. That’d be a huge mistake.

So here I am . Scribbling again. What’s that’s wise old quote “when the going gets tough – the tough get…… blogging?????” Something like that I’m sure of it !!!

Mission Mindfulness

The 5 blogs you need to be reading…

Whilst my blog (and this blogger ) are taking a semi holiday. I got to thinking about all the blogs I love reading. The ones where I see a new post and I can’t wait to read .

So as I’m not producing anything much myself at the moment I thought I could highlight some of my fave blogs ,that way rather than mourning my absence (yes you ARE!!!) you can read some great writing !

You know I always say I’m a bit of an all or nothing kind of a girl. I either love something to the point of obsession or I just aren’t bothered ? Same goes for the blogs I love . If you follow my Facebook page you’ll see I do share other blog posts on there a lot ,when I read a fab post I just want to share with everyone!!

So here’s my current fave 5 blogs

Popcorn for Lunch

Jemma is such a funny writer , I promise you read her stuff you will laugh. If you’ve ever had a few small humans running you ragged and are wondering how the hell this happened to your life then this is the hilarious blog for you . She’s even a bit of a blogging superstar too – award winning and everything as she wrote about here

I’d recommend her Instagram too….if Instagram makes you feel like the world’s biggest loser failure , Jemma’s is kinda like the anti -Instagram!!

Lucy at Home

My #blogcrush co-host and all round lovely lady Lucy writes a lot about gentle parenting. Although I don’t have little little kids anymore I often find her hints and advice are transferable to how I approach and deal with people in general.

She’s no one trick pony though , she covers a wide range of topics too from reviews through to mental health. Her writing is always thoughtful and considered . A recent piece of hers was about how children pick up on the little things we say without thinking, comparing situations with our grown up experiences and it was really effective! It’s here if you want a sample of her stuff.

Endastories

Enda is just a brilliant writer . His posts never quite feel like a blog post but have an almost poetic style.

A parenting blog that doesn’t feel like a parenting blog is how I’d describe it . His writing has a hypnotic quality to it I do look forward to a new post .

One of my faves of his was this piece in which you can feel the stress as you read and the subsequent comfort .

Reflections From Me

This is a blog written absolutely from the heart. It’s honest and beautifully written.

Covering a whole variety of subjects , a recent post about how to help someone going through a hard time (which you can read here ) and other recent posts about mental health I have really related to .

If you want a relatable , warm , honest blog I think you’ll find a post from this blogger that will do just that !!

Ellamental Mama

If you read my Facebook page you will see me fangirling all over this blog on a regular basis.

This is my absolute favourite single parent blog. Another searingly honest blog the posts are always thought provoking and touching and so well written they’re a treat to read. This blog’s Facebook page is also a really good resource for single parenting articles and think pieces that are shared on there too.

She wrote a fab response to the single mum bashing that London mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey had been pedalling just here . It’s great!

So there are just a little pick of my faves. There are so many great blogs out there though and what I love about a blog post is that they’re generally short enough to have the time to read ,but the good ones can really pack a punch and leave you thinking about them afterwards!!

Happy blog reading !!!!

Mission Mindfulness

BlogCrush week 88 – October 19th 2018

I have fixed the gremlins in my computer…..BlogCrush  is go!!!

How’s everyone’s week been? It isnow halfterm here. Today I have purchased Halloween party tickets for small girland I….now I just need to decide what to dress as…hmmmm..

I loved the blogcrush linky waaaaayy before I was part of the team. I love the idea of sharing someone elses fab work as well as your own !!

If it’s your first time here WELCOME!!!!! Have a read through the rules then add your posts!!

#BlogCrush

The Rules

  • Join in with 2 posts:
    • 1 post from your blog (personal) – no linkies please
    • 1 post from someone else’s blog (your #BlogCrush)
  • When you add your BlogCrush (post written by someone else) to the InLinkz form, put “BC” at the beginning of their title
  • Tweet your BlogCrush (& us) to let them know you’ve added them to the linky and share their link (@lucy_at_home and @daydreamer_mum). Please tweet us your own BlogCrush posts too so we can share them for you.
  • Comment using the #BlogCrush hashtag on at least these 4 posts:
    • 1 post from Host 1 (personal or BC)
    • 1 post from Host 2 (personal or BC)
    • 2x personal posts from the rest of the link up

So that’s a minimum of 4 posts.

Don’t forget to add our lovely badge

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

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If you’re here because someone has chosen your post as their #BlogCrush then Congratulations to you!! Good job!!
Help yourself to our brilliant badge!!

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

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My featured post this week was By the time you read this by Raisie Bay

Lucy’s was How to wear wide legged tie belt trousers by the ever glamorous Maria !!!

My own post this weeks is all about how I was a very dull teenager and I kind of regret it !!!

Have a great week all….and if it’s your half term too… May the odds be ever in your favour…..

BlogCrush week 87 – October 12th 2018

HAPPY FRIDAY BLOGCRUSHERS !!

Can I just start this weeks post with a huge THANK YOU to all you gorgeous people for the messages of love and support after my post last week. The online world gets a bad reputation but I’ve seen the lovliest side to it this week. You guys rock!! Ok enough of the slush…an on with the (blog) crush….see what I did there? Must be perking up!

I loved the blogcrush linky waaaaayy before I was part of the team. I love the idea of sharing someone elses fab work as well as your own !!

If it’s your first time here WELCOME!!!!! Have a read through the rules then add your posts!!

#BlogCrush

The Rules

  • Join in with 2 posts:
    • 1 post from your blog (personal) – no linkies please
    • 1 post from someone else’s blog (your #BlogCrush)
  • When you add your BlogCrush (post written by someone else) to the InLinkz form, put “BC” at the beginning of their title
  • Tweet your BlogCrush (& us) to let them know you’ve added them to the linky and share their link (@lucy_at_home and @daydreamer_mum). Please tweet us your own BlogCrush posts too so we can share them for you.
  • Comment using the #BlogCrush hashtag on at least these 4 posts:
    • 1 post from Host 1 (personal or BC)
    • 1 post from Host 2 (personal or BC)
    • 2x personal posts from the rest of the link up

So that’s a minimum of 4 posts.

Don’t forget to add our lovely badge

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

Lucy At Home

If you’re here because someone has chosen your post as their #BlogCrush then Congratulations to you!! Good job!!
Help yourself to our brilliant badge!!

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

Lucy At Home

My featured post this week that had me relating and giggling at the same time which is always a good combo
Play date etiquette by dad blog uk

Lucy’s choice was by A Day in the Life by Raisie Bay

My post this week is all about my life long love affair with the library on #nationallibrariesweek

Have a fab week everyone!!

A 35 year love affair with the library …

It’s National Library week.

I’m a library fan , but this past fortnight I realised that it’s way more than that.

I remember getting my first library card. My cousins took me to the library with them and there it was , my key to books. Loads of books . Any book I wanted I could pick up and take home for a while . I must have only been 3 or 4 but I remember getting that card , the stamp in the book.

As my sister and I got older family trips to the library were a Saturday morning staple. My parents ,my sister and I would head off to the library . We’d be in there ages. There was never any rush and pushing to pick quickly (like my kids have had from me plenty enough times) We’d all be in our separate sections of this quiet ,calm building filled with books. My dad looking for a clever spy novel , mum finding a gruesome horror , little sister finding something ghoulishly funny and me looking for the next author I could discover and binge ! Like a Netflix box set marathon , only with books !!

We’d go do a bit of family visiting then home and we’d all disperse and read . The concept seems quite funny to me now a household of 4 – no TV on , no games consoles just sat with our books and probably a cup of tea.

As years passed and that tradition of a Saturday of ours faded for one reason or another and I became a teenager the library was still a big part of my life (I wasn’t a cool teenager !!). My summer holidays were spent biking to library and back then just sitting on my bed and gorging on Paula Danziger and Judy Blume books . My mum would implore me to get outside for some ‘fresh air’ but I had all I needed. A pile of books ,my brain and my cosy bedroom.

When I had kids of my own the library becomes an exciting trip out – a free exciting trip out ! You can’t argue with that. Before small girl started school we used to go to the library so often we virtually had our own beanbag spot!!

So I’ve always loved the library ,it’s always been a staple in my life. I can almost document my life in books . I remember the books I would get out on a fortnightly basis because I loved them so much I had to read them over and over .

Then the recent dark days in my life happened . Not just a murky grey kind of time but as black as it can get. My mental health took such a crash for a couple of days I could barely speak , I couldn’t think straight certainly. I needed comfort but I didn’t want people. I definitely didn’t want people .

I walked to the library. I don’t really remember the walk for the swirling, crashing ,jumbling of thoughts going on in my head . I just felt drawn to it .

I walked in , collapsed at one of the desks and just felt calmer . I don’t know if it’s the still quiet of the library (I know you are allowed to talk now but people dont really) or if it was being surrounded by books the one thing I’ve been able to turn to given any mood . Something about sitting there though , in that building , with the smell of books and the quiet whirr of a computer printer and the chairs that have seen better days . Something grounded me a bit , calmed me a little . The whirling in my head slowed to a gentle cycle .

The library is my calm place. Any library , any building filled like that with books and people wanting to read them is good for my soul.

I’m aware that libraries are being shut , and downsized and having their opening hours cut and this angers me and upsets me but that’s a rant for another day.

I’ll just leave you with a quote I read on Twitter by the author Matt Haig

Libraries are and always have been magical to me. A gateway to creativity that doesn’t care how old you are , what race you are ,how rich you are .They just sit there full of all those glorious words , waiting for us to go and discover them.

As the young ‘uns may say . Cool af !!

DIY Daddy

BlogCrush week 86 – October 5th 2018

Welcome to the weekend!!!

How are we all doing ?? Cosying in for winter or still wistfully daydreaming about our long hot summer. There’s certainly no escaping pumpkins and falling leaves…autumn is most certainly here.

I loved the blogcrush linky waaaaayy before I was part of the team. I love the idea of sharing someone elses fab work as well as your own !!

If it’s your first time here WELCOME!!!!! Have a read through the rules then add your posts!!

#BlogCrush

The Rules

  • Join in with 2 posts:
    • 1 post from your blog (personal) – no linkies please
    • 1 post from someone else’s blog (your #BlogCrush)
  • When you add your BlogCrush (post written by someone else) to the InLinkz form, put “BC” at the beginning of their title
  • Tweet your BlogCrush (& us) to let them know you’ve added them to the linky and share their link (@lucy_at_home and @daydreamer_mum). Please tweet us your own BlogCrush posts too so we can share them for you.
  • Comment using the #BlogCrush hashtag on at least these 4 posts:
    • 1 post from Host 1 (personal or BC)
    • 1 post from Host 2 (personal or BC)
    • 2x personal posts from the rest of the link up

So that’s a minimum of 4 posts.

Don’t forget to add our lovely badge

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

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If you’re here because someone has chosen your post as their #BlogCrush then Congratulations to you!! Good job!!
Help yourself to our brilliant badge!!

Lucy At Home Blogcrush Week 68

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My Favourite and featured post this week is the ever popular Enda Stories with Confessions of a serial shouter

Lucy’s featured post is Kindness – Something I Miss

The post I’m adding this week is just a brief note to you fine people . Things are tricky here currently and just wanted to quickly explain.

Looking forwards to another wonderful week of #BlogCrush

Have a great week everyone!

To my lovely #BlogCrush crew

To my BlogCrush folk in particular , I’m so sorry for ducking out on you last week. I’ve been reading all your stuff and I’m back today with this teeny post . I’m your co-host here! can’t be leaving Lucy in the lurch at the drop of the hat!!

However *takes a million deep breaths*

My blog , I hope if nothing else is one where I cover lows and highs . People have commented reading my blog is a chatty experience like a cuppa with a pal and I love that. Makes me feel like long term readers know my story , newer ones relate.

Readers *another huge breath* as far as life and mental health currently go , we are at some kind of rock bottom situation. I hope you’ll forgive me for not expanding…..at somepoint soon I likely will but today isn’t that day .

I just wanted to say I’ll still be doing #blogcrush with Lucy. I think something to aim for every week will do me the power of good and I know you guys will understand that I’m not able to really write so well currently and might be sharing old (yet new to #BlogCrush ) content for a little while

Sooooo looking forward to distracting myself with awesome blogs…

Love , Kelly xxx