Categories
creative writing inspiration poetry community wellbeing

Christmas Bubbles (poem) and reflecting on last Christmas as we approach another one during a global pandemic!

Hello there you!

This time last year I wrote the following poem (was delighted when it was published on poetryandcovid.com) and it really shows how far we’ve come with vaccines, but also how we’re still in the thick of Covid with all these variants popping up; leaving humanity completely exhausted with it all. I wrote this when Government were sending out mixed messages in regards to Christmas household bubbles and how people had to cancel plans as lockdown was tightened last minute, leaving everyone upset, tired and confused.

It will be a similar Christmas this year, but one we hope we can enjoy a little better now we’re vaccinated; adding that protection against this awful virus.


Christmas Bubbles

A Covid Christmas beckons,
household Christmas Bubbles arranged.
I think, how daunting, outlandish
this situation is –

mixed messages thrown around,
pass the parcel as
Government dictates our festive period.
A solution mix of three bubbles.

A joyous festive time tarnished by
a silent venomous predator –
sweeping through global darkness,
yet sparks of light and hope arise
as a vaccine is born.

Mankind, they battle a respiratory war,
frontline staff gasping for air,
putting up a fight –
calamitous to humanity.

Christmas Bubbles. Will this cause further
cloud filled lockdowns, overwhelming
phenomenal, depleted health staff?
Inevitable.

Covid-19 prevails.
Christmas Bubbles like never before,
Twenty twenty –
I’ll be glad to close your opaque door.
I’ll be glad for the vaccine to soar.


How are “you” feeling about Christmas this year and if  vaccinated, do you feel that little bit more protected?

Have a beautiful day, thank you for stopping by and keep those spirits up. We are all in this together ❤

Categories
health and wellbeing managing stress motherhood personal development

Moving country, self-care and the simple things in life!

Hello there you!

When I first moved from Ireland to England in 2018 (and 15 weeks pregnant with our second child) we were so busy moving into a new home, registering with a maternity hospital, my husband starting work, running after a busy toddler and settling into our new surroundings (quite alot going on eh).. But being near my husbands parents really helped. Support is so important during times of “change”.

Self-care

When our second child arrived, the anxiety hit me like something else. Then the pandemic hit. I was overwhelmed during these unprecedented times (we all relate to this from lockdown don’t we!) and having had two children under two, while settling into a new country.

When you always try to be this “perfect” person and trying to do everything “right”, you ignore your internal feelings, while running on auto-pilot, therefore causing burnout. Ignoring “your” own needs. It’s not selfish prioritising your health. When doing so, you show up as the best person possible for your family and most importantly “yourself”.

Self-care is crucial for your overall physical and mental wellbeing. Should it be exercise, reading a book, a solo walk in nature with your own thoughts, being present and fully absorbing the moment with that hot cup of tea! It can be so simple but making all the difference!

Writing for me is cathartic and part of my self-care routine.  It’s an incredible way to process overwhelming feelings. Sometimes, it really is hard to get those words out, isn’t it? I had never written poetry before this pandemic: and oh my goodness how much you get from putting pen to paper and letting your thoughts flow and with such honesty.

I wrote the following poem last year, reminding myself on the importance of the “simple” little things in life.


The simple things

Now is a time to reflect and enjoy
the simple things that bring us much joy.
Lost in the moment, stay safe and be kind,
Dig deep from within, embrace what we find.

Pandemic is here, to stay for some time,
We learn to adapt, find comfort through rhyme
Laugh, joke, connect a bit more,
Stay safe as we pass through each other’s door.

A world we’re now asked to follow advice,
But never look back or ever think twice.
Simple things we learn to adore,
In a time we are still like never before.


Between moving country, settling into new surroundings and riding the choppy waves during these unprecedented times; writing is my therapy and part of my self-care ritual.

You realise how rich you really are when you practice gratitude and enjoy the simple things in life!!

Have you gone through changes/moved country recently?  What self-care routine do you enjoy?

Thank you for stopping by, enjoy the simple things and look after your body!

Have a beautiful day ❤

Categories
book reviews poetry poetry community Uncategorized

Poetry book reviews

Hello you!

So, with poetry being a “big” part of my life throughout this pandemic, I’ve bought many books: accumulating my fair share over the past year (to get a feel for the different styles and to learn more about the art)

So I’ve picked a few of my favourites; and all for very different reasons.



Billy Collin’s work is witty and bursting with imagery. His conversational style makes it so enjoyable to read. A poem could have you laughing your heart out and pulling at those heart strings at the same time. His poems take you on a journey full of surprises. I LOVE his work and it’s no surprise he was appointed Poet Laureate twice.
This gorgeous anthology is relatable in so many ways from such raw, honest, heartfelt and beautiful accounts on motherhood! I’m part of this beautiful writing group (the mum poem press) who published this collection and it’s a great community of mums sharing experiences and learning about different poetry forms.
Oh Seamus Heaney, what can I say about a  poet who has written beautifully about the landscapes of Ireland, his childhood, his children,  love and loss.  Being Irish, his work transports me right back to many of my own childhood memories, especially being from the country myself. This collection (selected by his family) is filled with his greatest poems and many I remember studying in secondary school.
Stunning poetry/prose collection! Full of soulful, heartfelt poems. Covering love, heartbreak and growth. Taking you on a journey of self discovery. I love this book and is also the poets first collection.
This little book of inspirational quotes from an amazing poet is full of reminders on love, strength and empowerment. Full of inspiration to dip in and out of.
I’m still working my way through this lovely collection ( a gift from my lovely sister in law) of poems from many great poets… Lovely to read a poem every day and to have by your bedside table!
Not a poetry book, but a stunning inspirational book on love, kindness, trust and friendship. Everyone should read this. And you could have it read within the hour.

I also enjoy reading work by Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson, Carol Ann Duffy, Mary Oliver and William Wordsworth.

So these are just a few from my poetry collection. I love discovering new poets, and also reading from the greats. However, at times it can be hard to get into a poem when you are first introduced to poetry; but taking your time and “feeling” those words just adds to the experience. I also enjoy reading inspirational books to empower you and keeping that cup half full!

Have you read any of these collections/poets? and who are your favourites?

Thank you for taking the time to stop by. Have a lovely day!

Categories
growth poetry poetry community Uncategorized

Poetry and growth

So over the past 18 months I’ve fallen in love with reading and writing poetry as a creative outlet. This pandemic has opened my soul up to new experiences and coming out of my comfort zone by sharing my written pieces and also blogging/writing with pure honesty.

I’m so thankful for this and it really has been beneficial to my wellbeing, growth and being more present.

I wrote the following poem in response to a writing prompt from the mum poem press “I choose poetry because” for national poetry day on 7/10/21. It certainly sums up my relationship with poetry.

I choose poetry because…

It reaches the depth of my soul

Pulls on every heart string –

Every avenue is beautiful,

Breathtaking, painful, invigorating

Still, raw and full of growth.

I choose poetry because I had to,

It just happened.

Sometimes words flow; I can’t help it

Sometimes words are harder to find –

I dig deeper

I will choose poetry ” always”

Bernie Egerton

Poetry handbook to learn more about the art

Great poetry handbook to learn more about the art and from Mary Oliver, who was a beautiful poet ❤

Have you discovered poetry during these times and how has your relationship with poetry been? Or what have you discovered as a new hobby?

Thank you for taking the time to read my posts and have a beautiful day ❤🙏

Categories
mindfulness poetry community relaxation wellbeing

Autumn. Those colours, the cosiness and a little piece of rhyming poetry

Ah hello there you!

Do you like Autumn? I do. It’s such a lovely time of year. Plus October is also my birth month. Watching those colours in abundance and the crispy leaves crunching as you walk along the streets, is such a beautiful mindful experience (ok, it can be annoying when they blanket your garden and you have to fill bags full of leaves)

I love wrapping the girls up, taking them to the park to run through those leaves while picking up the remaining conkers that are still lying around. I also enjoy Halloween and getting the girls all kitted out and carving that pumpkin – oh I loved a good Halloween costume party myself back in my going out days!!

Poetry and mindfulness

I wrote and posted the following poem as one of my first blog posts back in March and I’m sharing it again (being Autumn and all; I wrote it last Autumn) as I’ve been practicing mindfulness during this pandemic and it really helps to be present and to ease any overthinking/worrying… My goodness, the difference when you adopt a new exercise into your life and start to focus more on “yourself”. I’ve fallen so much in love with writing during this pandemic.

Lost in the moment of life and it’s art

A Flock of wild birds
they fly in chilled air
I walk, embracing
the earths open heart.
A seagull it sweeps,
alone with no care
lost in the moment
of life and its art.
The ring of church bells,
white tracks,
a blue sky,
children,
they giggle
dog walkers pass by.
Bare trees that stand tall
with nests where birds grew,
leaves lying crumpled
and soggy from dew.
Clear beads as they rest
on blades of green grass,
autumn alive,
soft clouds as they pass.
A squirrel,
It dances,
I watch, he’s aware,
Its bushy long tail,
he captures my stare.
This vision absorbed,
the rush is no more,
nature alive
unlocking my core.
Connections so strong
I open my heart,
lost in the moment
of life and its art

Bernie Egerton


Thank you for stopping by to read my post. Don’t forget to look out for all those colours changing when out and about: absorbing that beauty and feeling those leaves crunching beneath your feet as the leaves fall!

What is your favourite thing about Autumn?

Have a beautiful day!

 

Categories
growth health and wellbeing self esteem, personal development, motivation, acceptance

People pleasing. How learning to say “no” helped me to reduce stress and to grow more as a person.

Hello there you!

Oh I could write so much about this topic.

You see, the thing is, I was a big people pleaser, and when I look back to who I was 5 years ago: I cringe to the point where my face resembles a tomato (now that’s red)

The beauty about writing this post, is acknowledging the fact of how far I’ve come. Back in my people pleasing days and not being able to say no; low self-esteem was definitely a contributing factor to my people pleasing tendencies, therefore causing me stress. Do you relate to this? Exhausting isn’t it?

Overcoming people pleasing

So how did I learn to say no more, am I now the master of saying no? Absolutely not, and you can’t say no all the time, it’s all about finding that balance and what suits “you”. But if I listen to my gut and know it doesn’t feel right, then I will say no in a diplomatic manner.

Saying no

At the start of finally plucking up the courage of saying no; I would wait for this dragon to turn around and blow that God damn fire straight into my face after I uttered those words (it never happens by the way). All you get is something like “ok that’s fine” then conversation continues to next topic. All that worrying, stress and overthinking for nothing. It doesn’t have to be as abrupt as no full stop, but something along the lines of “it doesn’t suit me this time”.

You see, the thing with me was “fear” of an awful argument happening (I also hate confrontation and would always build up how I really felt inside: the worst thing you can do) and would rather go ahead, stress the hell out of myself and plough along with appointments, get togethers, and making other people happy.

I remember a time where I was utterly exhausted (with working full-time and studying for a degree part time too) arranged to drive an hour after work to meet a friend to watch a show she was in, and all I wanted to do was sleep. Oh I went to that show and looking back, this lovely, lovely friend would have been ok If I said no (it was all down to my fear again of that dragon appearing)

The one person who needs your approval most is “yourself”. Start building on that relationship

-connectwithpoetry.com

Learning to say no

So how do you say no without feeling terribly guilty and stressed to the hilt? Start to work on yourself first, listen to your gut and baby steps.

Meditate, practice mindfulness to connect with your inner self ( whatever mindful practice helps you) I’ve been doing so much of this and that awareness helps you to tap into your “true” inner self.

Yes, learning to say no is hard, but the more you say it, the easier it gets over time and the less stressed you will become.

When I look back on a time when I was a big people pleaser, I just wasn’t aware I was doing it, and thought it was normal practice to get people to like you; seeking approval.

Remember to look out for “you” first

People pleasing is a trait many people have, for others saying no is like second nature (not second nature to me and what about you?)

Write a list from high priority to low and if it doesn’t suit, then say so. Remember to work with yourself through mindful practices, breathing exercises, writing your thoughts, whatever suits you.

Deep breaths are a great tool too. Take a step back and focus on how you are feeling.

The more you work on yourself, learning to say no and not pleasing others all the time will become easier. It’s all about finding that “balance”. Heck, I’m a Libra myself, and I’m working with those bloody scales every day. Growing, learning, self awareness and building myself to find that right balance.

You never stop learning/progressing/growing. Take your time.

Do you find it hard to say no? And do you feel you are pleasing others and putting their needs before your own?

Thank you for stopping by and reading my post!

It really is ok to say no. Be kind to yourself, and take your time ❤

Categories
motivation personal development wellbeing

So, 6 months blogging and grateful for this wonderful community…

Hello you!

So I’m blogging 6 months now and have to say I’m so grateful ( wish I did it sooner, but hey ho here I am blogging)

Now, when I started out blogging, I was posting poetry I had saved from months earlier, would hit submit and off I went on my merry way. I never commented or visited other blogs (took me a while to thaw out really; confidence issues with my writing skills obviously). Then the comments started. I slowly started to get more confident, replying with a word or 2 ( now it’s all about crawling before walking isn’t it?) and then proper commenting on other blogs.

Do you know something? It’s been brilliant. Nobody is going to tear you apart with comments (unless you’re into heated debates) and the kindness and support on this wonderful journey makes it even that more enjoyable.

Enjoy it and remember: we are all on a “constant” journey of growth.

We are making sense of this world (especially during these times) and sharing your ideas, thoughts and advice helps to make sense a little bit more.

So what are the 3 things I’ve learned since starting to blog?

1. Blogging can be fun – stick with it, comment on other blogs, even just a little comment or like for that extra bit of encouragement and support for others.

2. Read up on blogging tips/advice: it helps. If like me it’s a hobby and a way to connect with fellow bloggers/writers, then don’t be putting too much pressure on yourself for having loads of followers. Just enjoy it and it’s great for brushing up on your writing skills too.

3. Use the tagging option in post settings, so your post can reach the bloggers you want to reach, and to share your stories/poetry/inspiration – whatever your niche is. Don’t focus too much on niche at the start, that will come and enjoy the process.

Blogging is full of encouragement, like minded and real people (non of this perfect social media portrayed life) when you read the material that suits ‘you’ that is.

Yes, there are times when it can feel overwhelming, and when it does, then take a little step back, recharge those batteries as your blog will “always” be there. Read up on blogging tips and remember “you have to crawl before you walk”. Something I’ve been learning more about lately. Try not to be too hard on yourself and take each step bit by bit.

So what tips do you have when starting out blogging and how has your blogging experience been so far?

Thank you for stopping by, happy blogging and be kind to yourself and others.

Have a lovely day ❤🙏

Categories
journaling, gratitude

Journaling, gratitude and 5 tips to help you practice daily…

During Covid, so many of us have had time to reflect on life (I’ve been doing lots of soul searching) and to appreciate the simple things.

Practicing gratitude is something I’ve introduced into my life daily. However, some days it can be difficult to practice when you’re not in the mood, or life just becomes too busy  and you have to dig that little bit deeper.

I also started writing a mood journal during Covid and I finish each entry with a gratitude list: finding it helpful to be more present and focussed.

5 Tips to help incorporate mood journaling and gratitude into your life.

1. Write, write, write… I find just putting pen to paper and writing in free flow helps to process any overwhelming thoughts and it’s good to let it out. Get yourself a good journal.

2. Try not to get too focussed on having to write everyday, but try to write as much as possible into your journal and always have the journal in a place where you can see it everyday (as a little reminder to write).

3. Write a list of 3-5 things you’re grateful for each day – or even thinking about it as you wake up in the morning or before going to sleep at night.  It can be the simple little things and can make such a big difference.  The more you practice, the more habitual it should become and part of your thought process…

4. Write in the same place each time you journal, so it becomes a habit over time. I write at the table and have my journal and pen in a little basket on that table, so I’m not trying to find where I left it (cuts out the stress of looking for it)

5. Date each entry into your journal and write down whatever mood you are feeling that day. If you are looking back over your journal, you can pinpoint what triggers certain moods. 


Journaling is good for your wellbeing – a great way to process your thoughts and to also document the ups and downs in your life. We all have those ups and downs – we’re only human after all.

Writing for me is cathartic.

Practicing gratitude each day is a great way to appreciate the little things – when you stop, listen to yourself and become more aware and present.

Do you journal and practice gratitude? And what works for you? 

I hope this post has been helpful to you and helps to incorporate journaling and gratitude into your life ❤🙏

Thank you for taking the time to read and happy journaling 😊

Categories
health, inspiration motivation wellbeing

Atlantic Coast of Ireland, fresh air and soaking up the outdoors…

I was brought up in Donegal;  surrounded by fields, stunning beaches, mountains, sheep and cows. Breathtaking views…

Now, If you asked me about the Atlantic Coast when I was a teen (dying to move away from the place) I would have described it differently… Something along the lines of ‘it’s so boring and I really can’t wait to move to the BIG city’. Oh yes I loved moving to the big city at 18, for college, work, meeting new people, the nightlife and all that jazz. I had a great time (the mountains, beaches, sheep – not a second thought was given)

The importance of the outdoors and appreciating the ‘simple things’

Here I am writing a blog post about the Atlantic Coast of Ireland, older and wiser (ok, that might be debatable) as I’m visiting my family for a few weeks and it’s been over a year since I was last home (Covid wouldn’t allow and I now live in England)

Seriously though, I look out at the mountains every morning, I walk the beach every single day with my hubbie and girls (you can always wrap up) and I breathe in that fresh air.

I make sure I instill the importance of the outdoors and it’s beauty to my little girls as they grow. They absolutely love the outdoors (I love watching them skip through the fields like little lambs) There is nothing like a walk in nature to blow away those cobwebs. How I took it all for granted when I was younger…

Muckish Mountain ❤
Girls enjoying the hens, ducks and geese at my cousins farm
Happy out at the beach 💖💖
Muckish is always there ❤
Moo
I love walking the beach at sunset…
Stunning 💫
Tory Island in the background and still surfing/paddling at 9 pm
My other half soaking it all up ❤💛


Take yourself outside and soak it all up… It’s the simple things in life and nature is always there. It really is good for the soul.

Haiku

Fresh air clears the mind

Warming the soul, the outdoors

Soaking up those views


Thank you for reading my post – have a beautiful day and fill up those lungs with plenty of fresh air. Go on, get that jacket on and go for a good brisk walk ❤

Categories
the eighties, nostalgia

Nostalgia. Eighties music, fashion, movies, sweets, fancy paper and those cereal bike reflectors!

I was born in 1980, so technically speaking, the nineties were my going out years. I loved the nineties music, but there was something special about the eighties – and it’s my favourite era for music. I always have the eighties station on: Blasting from the kitchen while cooking and having a little boogie with the kids…

To me; I think it was listening to it on the radio as I was growing up. Oh, can those tunes hit you like nothing else and touch your soul – and that keyboard sound… When Foreigner comes on, A-ha, Africa by Toto, True by Spandau Ballet, The Police, Phil Collins, Madonna, Womack Womack, Kate Bush, (she was amazing, certainly had me running up that hill when listening to her) so so many to mention and it takes you to that place emotionally (like alot of good music does)

Tapes and walkmans:

Do you remember recording songs off the radio by tape? Trying to stop it just before the bloody djs voice butted in? Oh the memories. I loved my little walkman, and carefully fixing those tapes with a pencil.

Fashion:

I loved the fashion, the crazy hair styles, watching aerobics on morning breakfast shows while the instructor wore neon shiny shell suits, while rocking a curly mop of hair (I had a neon pink and blue one when I was 9 and thought I was the best thing ever since sliced bread when I wore it). And let’s not forget those puffy shoulder pads (the puffier the better and my mum used to rock that look with her permed hair). If I could go back to being a teenager then, I absolutely would. I would go all out and have the biggest hair style ever and puffiest shoulder padded blazer imaginable!

Years ago I held an eighties house party and went all out – it was brilliant shopping for everything eighties related and I was in my element…

Movies and t.v shows:

The movie I couldn’t get enough of as a child was The Goonies, I must’ve watched it hundreds of times with my brothers. It was like every little childs dream to go on such an adventure and to end up on that pirate ship, rocking a pirate hat with treasure at the end. E.T was also the first movie I seen at the cinema and I loved it.

Worzel Gummidge (the Scarecrow and Aunt Sally), A-team (was the only girl with 2 brothers, so I had to watch) and Knight Rider were some of the shows I enjoyed.


Love this movie… Such a classic!

Sweets and collecting that fancy paper:

Remember the penny sweets, that would nearly take your teeth out? the sherbet that blew your head off with sourness and the chewy bars that would nearly clamp your mouth shut when eating. Oh I did love penny sweets…

As a girl in primary school we collected fancy paper, fancy rubbers and would swap with others (you’ll know well what I mean if you were a child of the eighties) The collection of fancy goods you had was ridiculous and you never used the papers or rubbers (they would sit there looking so pretty in a jar) . The boys would have the football sticker albums and the swapping was endless.

Cereals and bike reflectors:

There was nothing like that feeling when you would sit with a box of kelloggs cereal in the morning and shake the life out it until that spoke reflector fell out into your bowl. My bike was full of those gleaming little bad boys!

Google image

The Eighties were so special:

Between the music with that keyboard sound, puffy shoulder pads, Charlies Angels hairstyles, walkmans, fancy paper, the retro sweets and The Goonies; It really was such a special time growing up in the eighties. I loved shaking that cereal box to see what hidden treasure was inside. The bmx with scopes covered in reflectors was just the business. I would’ve loved to be a teenager back then so I could experience the cheesy ‘disco’ scene.

Memories you will always have and back in the day before we all had our heads stuck in a phone and social media. They were good times.

Were you a fan of the eighties and were you an eighties child, and what sticks out most for you?

Thank you so much for reading my nostalgic post and “hey you guys” hope you have a great day.