Saturday, 31 January 2015

Monthly Favourites | January 2015

Hello my leaves :)

I'm back again!

Seriously beginning to feel like a yo yo with all these posts! :)

Once again we have reached the point in the month where I share a few things that have made me happy this month :)

1. uTalk


A recent discovery from a review from this app is fast becoming a go to when I can't sit in front of the TV any longer! I'm very slowly learning Dutch at present and its starting to come together. I can count to ten (almost) and am learning the key 'starter words' too :) If you want to explore the app then click the link here.

2. Blankets


Hehe, Chez is clearly going through hibernation at the moment ^^, It all started with adding a blanket to my bed set so that I didn't have to invest into a higher tog duvet for winter. It then became something that wrapped around me whilst getting ready for the day. Eventually it became something that didn't leave my side unless I left the house... I really do think that everyone should have a blanket :P this little number was £10 from a supermarket a few years ago and it still has lots of life! :)

3. My iPod


For those days when you just want to dance/get the cleaning done! My iPod has been my lifesaver. I think it's something I always overlook  but I don't know how I would go about my day sometimes without music in my hand! My phone doesn't have the capacity to hold the variety I like so this little purple device is perfect :)

4. Monster Jumper


Yep. This fleecy Jumper has been my go to every time I've felt the chill! I bought it a few years ago from REEF in Lancaster (I think this shop has since closed :( ) and I can honestly say that it lasts very well! Who says that growing old means growing up? :D

5.  Now TV

Can you guess the above show?
With all the time off and the dark, cold nights, I've been looking for something to distract me. Now TV has quite a selection of programmes to watch and it also covers a few Sky channels so I should be able to watch Game Of Thrones when it returns :) yay!

And that's a wrap! Let me know in the comments below what you have enjoyed this month :) 

Don't forget there's still time to win premium access to the language of your choice on uTalk too so get commenting :)

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

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Friday, 30 January 2015

Weekly Update | 30.01.2015

Helloooooooo

How has this week been for you all?

My work week has been stressful but my 'outside of work' week has been lovely :)

This week I attended my second belly dance class down south, it was much closer to what I'm used to and I got to learn a new move which is always exciting! I'm slowly starting to get to know everyone too so that's a perk on the 'being social' side of things :D 

My anxiety hasn't behaved one bit this week but I'm refusing to let it stop me and have been pushing through, no doubt I will snap at some point but I'm trying to find that point! Have you seen the new video by +JacksGap ? It's about Mental Health and it makes me happy to see people with louder voices help us to be heard!

I've also been amazed at your support once again! The comments you have been leaving have been like little warm fuzzies that give me tiny hugs, something I've been in need of this week! I'm glad you're enjoying my posts and that some of you are feeling a benefit from them :) I'm very slowly picking up a life on twitter and other networks and all those links should now be on the right *crosses fingers* for you :)

All that and I forgot to cross my fingers...

For those of you that missed Wednesday's post I have some very exciting news! I have a tool to help me learn Dutch! I reviewed uTalk on Wednesday and I have to be honest, I really enjoyed it :) It's as though you are learning languages whilst playing games and looking at pictures :) My mum also got involved and now I fear we will be fighting for time and which language to learn next xD There are over 100 languages for you to choose from AND the company (eurotalk) have kindly said that I can give codes to three lucky readers for the Premium package of their language choice. All you have to do is comment on this post or the Wednesday one and tell me which language you would like to learn and why :) Easy peasy lemon squeezee (is that right?)

Anyhoo, enjoy your weekend and stay safe!

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x


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Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Learning a New Language | Introducing... uTalk

My Leaves! I know I have been yammering away about learning a new language for a while now, but I have made a lovely discovery!



The phone app to teach and support you with learning your next language. I came across the app on 'bloggersrequired' and saw that I could provide the company with a review* and learn a language at the same time, personally I think I'm the one with more to gain from all this! As always opinions are my own, you may have a different opinion on the product but don't knock it until you've tried it! :)

~*~

The Basics

You have the option of three packs for each language (All languages are accessible regardless of the pack):


Basics: (1 topic - Completely FREE :D)

Essentials: (11 topics - £7.99)

Premium: (35 Topics - £12.99)

I had a play around on the Basics before upgrading and found it very useful for deciding which language I wanted to learn. This pack is fine if you don't know if you want to study but, you would need the additional topics if you wanted to progress. I reasoned with the cost being inexpensive compared to other methods and programmes available. When you consider the amount of work it must take to find native speakers and set everything up, you can understand the reason to charge.

The First Impression:


So much choice for languages! Currently 100+ available languages for you to try out and learn! I did a little test by thinking of an unusual (in my opinion) language and it was there! A shining example of this would be Tagalog! :D It has made me, who spent three years studying linguistics, a very happy person to see such a wide array and variety as opposed to sticking with the standard options. I know I have settled with learning Dutch for now but I could learn Haitian Creole or Wolof next!

The Games:


Practice - See all the phrases for the topic with their English translation. You can also hear the pronunciations of the words. Ideal for learning the pictures meaning prior to starting the other games.
Easy - matching what you hear to what you see
Speaking - listen to your lovely imitations and see how you compare to the native...
Hard - matching what you hear to what you see with more challenge
Memory - The images hide and you have to remember location and sound to match
Recall - Here's the picture and the English but 'what was the translation?' self assess your responses

The Pro's


Easy to use and get started (very visual)

Covers the areas and topics you would expect from a phrase book or Language 101 

Can practice some grammatical features such as adjectives and prepositions

Male and Female speakers so you can pick up the key parts of pronunciation

Achievements to unlock e.g. consistent high score, completing all areas of a topic etc.

Can easily return to previous activities and is handy to use for reference with the search function (Available on phone and tablet).



The Con's


No rating/marking on your pronunciation by the app although you do get to cringe at your poor imitations!

If this isn't your way of learning or you are new to learning languages you would need to use other tools too for learning other aspects such as word order, why some words have different endings for gender etc.

The Conclusion

Overall, for a language learning app, I'm in love! You can tell the app has had development time and that it isn't a start up businesses first venture (the company behind the app have been running since 1991!). This really comes across in the features and the vocabulary available. I'd say this a great starter app for anyone looking to learn a new language and it covers everything you would need to get by on holiday. Naturally there is a limit within the app but there are additional programmes available through the company from when you're ready to progress away from an app as your main source of learning.
I can't help but compare to Rosetta Stone as that's the method I have mentioned trying before now. The method of learning is the same (imagery and using your brain to make the connections), the uTalk is cheaper overall but perhaps doesn't have the range within the language as Rosetta. That being said, I feel the need to highlight that I compared an app to a computer programme so naturally there would be limitations!! 


The CHALLENGE for you:

Find a language on this app that you want to try or test (free or purchased) to see if it's right for you through this link here :)
Let me know which languages you enjoyed trying and have a chance to win a premium package in a little giveaway that the company are allowing me to do :)


Happy Learning! I shall be keeping you updated on my progress and experience with uTalk in the Monthly Updates :)

Make your own choices,

Toodlepip x

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* As I said at the beginning I was invited to review this app through bloggersrequired and was provided with the 'Premium' bundle without monetary purchase. All opinions are my own and I wouldn't publish a review on something I didn't enjoy. Or maybe I would, but I would still provide you with my honest, and often blunt, opinion :)


Sunday, 25 January 2015

January 2015 | Health and Self Development Update

Happy Sunday :)

I can't believe how fast this month is going!

As discussed in January's overview I will now be releasing a monthly update to catch you up on my personal development progress (A new sport, language and instrument) as well as the mental health side of things. So, here we go...



A New Sport

As you will know from the previous posts I have decided to learn Karate and return to Belly dance. I know it has only been a few weeks but I am already starting to see and feel the benefits of Karate. I'm gradually improving my balance and picking up moves but, the thing I've noticed the most, is my improvement in flexibility. I've been doing some of the basic stretches a couple of times a week and I'm back at the point where I can put my hands flat on the floor when I touch my toes! This sounds like a small change to some but I really felt the loss of flexibility and I'm happy that it wasn't too far away! The stretches have also been helping to form a routine when I get home from work and they're really helping to calm my mind from the chatter at the office :). Dancing began last Thursday and I LOVED it! It's been a few years since I last danced around people but it felt like coming home. I shall stick out this course to brush up on technique of the basics and then see where it takes me :)

A New Instrument

Progress has been slower here, as expected. Not having the instrument does have it's drawbacks (lack of visual enticement) but I have been learning a few of the common rhythms and can now do a few of them without having to frown too much! I've also taken to trying to tap along to the rhythm of a few songs but that loses me in the variety of sounds and tempos!

A New Language

I'm almost definitely certain now that I want to learn Dutch. A colleague asked me, 'why not German?' as it is slightly more common but, I just love how dutch is less 'rough'? I've been going on to a few sites to see their methods but I think it's going to be +Rosetta Stone that I settle with :)


Mental Health

...the fun part!

This month has been a roller coaster. I've had several days where I've quite calmly thought about scary things and have struggled to shift out of the mood. Being back at work is helping me ten fold as it is giving me structure and routine! I still have periods of dark but I almost 'schedule' them in with my mind. I haven't heard any more from the doctors and therapists since the initial phone chat so goodness knows how long their waiting list is! I get quite frustrated that there is such a lack of support available and can't help but feel as though we are being let down just out of lack of acceptance/funding. 

I honestly don't know where I would be without my family and select friends. The majority understand that there are days where I just don't want to talk but a few have shown their, not so pleasant, true colours during this time too. At least by the end of this I will know my real friends and who I can trust!

Perhaps I shouldn't have ended this update with health as it's just resulted in me getting a bit riled up :/ body wise I have toned ever so slightly in a few areas of my body and I didn't have as much of a battle with my jeans waist band this morning ^^,

I hope you've all had a good first month of the year and that you're not alone, in whatever you are doing/achieving. We're all here for each other and I like that about my little community.

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

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Friday, 23 January 2015

Weekly Update | 23.01.2015

Hello Hello Hello :)

It's Friday thank *whichever deity existent or otherwise you choose to believe in*. This week has been EXHAUSTING!

I have completed two karate classes and... my first bellydance lesson daan saaf :)

Feeling very chuffed right now *puffs out chest with pride* (not too dissimilar to a kid with a sticker).

How has your week been? A lot of you seemed to enjoy Wednesday's post of my life 'to-do' list. It certainly brought around interesting conversation at home, including qualifications, purchases and well-being. How did you find it? Did you manage to avoid bringing your goals around other people?

I have been trying to find the inspiration to choose a photo for today's post and struggled so I decided instead to share one of our home projects with you. We have decided to take a photo of our garden, once a week, for a year. Then we can look at the changes we have made and also how nature changes the area around the year. Below is our first photo which was taking on a very dreary and drizzly day!



Have a lovely weekend :)

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

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Wednesday, 21 January 2015

January Journey | My life 'to do' list

Good Wednesday my beautiful Leaves,

How are you all today?

People always tell us to 'make the most of life' and that it 'only speeds up as we get older', this scares me. It got me to thinking that maybe I should make a "bucket list" of what I want to achieve in life. I'm not one to seek adventure and travel the world. I am fortunate to have been to several countries in my childhood but I have never had the 'travel bug' myself. That being said, I do find it fascinating to learn about different cultures and views. And I'm off on a tangent before the post even begins...



1. Make my own wedding dress

Or if not my own, then the bridal party members'. I'm not sure if I ever will marry but, if I do, I would want to make as much of it as possible. Two of my friends are planning very different weddings and I have to say I'm having slightly more enjoyment and fulfilment helping decoupage shoes than looking for someone who's already done it ^^. There is just something that appeals to me to know that every touch has been completely tailor made to suit us (bride/groom/three-headed llama, who knows?!). 

2. Tailor my house

Or build it from scratch. Again with the wanting things to be completely suited, geez Chez anyone would think you have control issues... That said I would love to have a little den to retreat to or a 'messy cupboard' to hide those odd things and gifts that you bring out when the gifter visits xD

3. Financial Independence

Ah, the dream. I'm sure you have it too! I want to be in a situation where I don't have to rely on someone to help pay the bills or live the lifestyle that I want. I know it will take a lot of hard work but I guess it means a lot more knowing that you've done it?

4. Helping Others

I'm not completely self-centred and selfish (this is just my bucket list...), I want to do something that affects another persons life in a good way :) I don't want to go through life and realise that the only person I've looked out for is myself. This doesn't have to be a big act or even a solo act. I've done a few little things here and there that have made minuscule impacts, but that's in my own opinion. Perhaps I've helped them more? It's not something I'd give up and call a day on, that's for sure!

5. Be Happy

About 70% of my life. The 30% will remind me what happiness is and will give me something to be thankful for. 

6. See the Aurora Borealis

Those beautiful, beautiful lights. I get a lot of peace just from the photos so I can only imagine what it must be like to see the real thing! I would love to take a cruise to and around Norway/Sweden and witness this beautiful scene!


These are just a few things that I would like to achieve :) Without being morbid I realise that you don't always have the time you think but I don't want to rush the list either. Some of those things may never happen, or their importance to you may change, that's life. I think its important to recognise that although you may have been aspiring for something for years, it doesn't mean that you can't change your mind. 

So, go out there and make your list, re-evaluate next year and don't feel like something is unobtainable. In this world, there are few things that are.

And share some ideas below! You never know, your dream may inspire another's! :)

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

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Sunday, 18 January 2015

January Journey | Sticking to Resolutions

Good Sunday my leaves, how are we all today?

We've made it to the halfway point of January, yahoo! We started this month full of ambitions and dreams of all the amazing things we want to accomplish this year; be it diet change, focusing on what makes you happy, learning a new skill or just achieving something you would have thought impossible.

How's it going for you

If you're anything like me you've reached the point where finding the motivation to keep these new ideas going is becoming a challenge. It's dawning on you that actually starting the change was the easy part. You may have already paused, telling yourself you're allowed a treat day and you can start again tomorrow. 

Am I on the right lines?

Today, I'm hoping to help you find that spark again. Let's keep the fire burning and achieve what our 'New Years' self wanted!

Tip One

Make a list of everything you decided to achieve this year. Now, evaluate it. How is the progress going for each goal? Are you finding that your priorities have changed? Perhaps you don't have the time to go to the gym 5 days a week? 

That's fine! Instead of kicking yourself for having a day off, reduce the time but DON'T STOP. Remember, you can always increase it when you have time. Give yourself a schedule for the week. Commit to specific dates and times to accomplish your goal. This way, like when it's an appointment, you feel more committed and you know not to schedule things for then. You're less likely to get home and crawl into bed because you've already made the plans. It's much easier on you if you don't have to psych yourself up. It's already on the schedule, so go do it.

Tip Two

Motivation.
The word that eludes most minds. How can you motivate yourself to do something you're not used to doing? Create a board or object. If you want to gain muscle make a collage of images that inspire you. If you want to lose weight, buy a garment that is a size too small and hang it where you can see it. Stick a photo of it in the kitchen or in your purse as a reminder when you're stood in a fast food queue. Perhaps you're learning an instrument? Why not have a model you aspire to stuck up on the wall to remind you why you wanted to do this and what you want to gain out of it? I want to go on a cruise one day so, to help me save, I've got brochures to flick through as my incentive :)



Tip Three

Incentive. You've got your inspiration sorted but now you need incentive. It's not always about working and pushing your limits. By having a 'reward' at the end you're more likely to want to do something. Personally I reward myself in different ways. If I eat healthy and clean during the week, I can have a treat at the weekend. If I get all my tasks done, I can have a lazy, guilt free lie in. If I do all my sports training, I can choose my own routine and music another day, or I can have a nice hot bath! Find out what makes you motivated. Observe what you indulge in and make that the carrot that you aim for. Overall you will have the reward of accomplishing your goal but, it's nice to have little treats along the way. 

Tip Four

Tell people. Very simply, things are harder to stop when others ask how progress is going. You don't want to be the person that 'quits'. You may even find people with the same goals as you and you can lean on each other for support in the tough times :)


How are you feeling now? More energised? I know I am and I've just been typing! Sometimes thinking about what you really want and the reason you started everything is enough. For when it's not, try one of these tips, maybe it will help :)

Do you have any tips for the community? Feel free to add them in the comments!

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

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Friday, 16 January 2015

Weekly Update | 16.01.2015

Hey hey!

Weekly update time :) and its on time!

Sorry for the delay last week, I'm feeling much perkier now :)

I've tapped into my creative side quite a bit this week in a bid to improve my mood. I think I'd gotten to the point where I was getting fed up of waiting for the waiting list to reach me with regards to seeing someone about my head. After lots of doodling and dancing this week I feel a lot more rosy. Still slightly more pensive than I would like but that's probably influenced by my music choice ^^

Here's a little something that taught me to never try drawing wings, or people with their back to me, ever again xD





I know I'm no artist by any kind of standard but your competence level should never stop you from doing what you enjoy! 

This week I also discovered +Pinterest so you can now find my magpie (sparkly want want) interests on there too :) I have been spending far too much time on there lately but I'm enjoying it immensely! Do you have a profile I can follow? :)

I also got a real sense of community this week too, and for that, I thank YOU. So many of you have helped me this week, be it preventing everyone being spammed a gazillion times when I release anew post, to helping me figure out how I can eventually get a drum kit. You've all been great and I hope that there are people there for you too! I go onto communities when I can and, I'm here too :)

So, how has your week been? Do you have any plans for the weekend? I hope you're enjoying January Journey so far :)!

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

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Wednesday, 14 January 2015

January Journey | A New Language

Hello my lovely leaves, how are you today?

Welcome to the third and final instalment of how I'm going to improve myself this year :)

As the title suggests this post is on learning a new language. I love communication. I did a degree in linguistics where I spent my day looking at how people and animals communicate with other. I don't just mean vocally but also through images, signs and body language. It's just limitless and you can convey so much in the smallest gesture and... I'm going off on one so I shall stop and spare you :)



Suffice to say I have decided that it is time to learn a new language. I just haven't decided which just yet. Perhaps you can help? I studied French at school and did a year of German. Of the two I found german easier to grasp. I also studied sign language and used it for one of my jobs. As well as this I also love reading peoples body language so maybe I should focus on this? Ahh there are too many options available :(

I'm considering learning Dutch through Rosetta Stone as I like the method that they use, but I don't know when I would use it! Maybe to watch TV and films, or to read but I don't think I would travel to the Netherlands that often...

What do you think? At the end of the day the language learning is the experience I enjoy, it's not so much about usage and outcome. I don't particularly enjoy the 'night school' environment for learning but are there other methods to consider aside from Rosetta? Maybe you have tried Rosetta before, how did you find it?

Make your own choices. (I appreciate the irony of this today when I'm asking you for help ^^)

Toodlepip x


Sunday, 11 January 2015

January Journey | A New Instrument

Hello my lovely Leaves,

I hope Sunday is treating you nicely and that you are feeling nicely rested! Today will hopefully be nice and brief for you :) It's part two of my three part self development plan: learning a new instrument. The benefits of learning an instrument are endless. It's a fantastic exercise for the mind, it improves your own dexterity, encourages your creativity and it makes you feel good to name a few! :)

Now, I'm not as organised to begin this one completely yet but I wanted share what has happened so far :)

I have decided on an instrument, sort of.

I've been practicing, sort of.

Ok ok so I have been really enjoying drums...



I've always been fascinated (read obsessed) by them and found myself opting for drums whenever I used to play guitar hero/rock band with friends :) There's the obvious drawbacks however to deciding on this choice.

1. Cost
I'm not in a position where I can afford one yet

2. Volume
Yeah, I think that says enough

3. Space
Even if I could afford the kit I don't have enough floor space for it's footprint :/

So, does this mean that I have given up and chosen a different instrument?

NEVER!

The beauty of our time is that we have the internet, with the internet we have YouTube :) I have taken to stalking the Drumeo and DrumChannel channels to see what they can offer. I suppose with drums, when you're starting out, you don't necessarily need the kit at once. I've started learning the basic rhythms and am having a blast! I've also been looking into electronic kits in the hope of eliminating some of the sound; they're also a bit smaller so maybe I will find one to fit? :)

As promised, I'm not going to continue dragging you away from your weekend so I'm going to wrap up quickly with a quick question! What do you think? :P Do you have any ideas on where else I can study and ways I can practice? 

Make your own choices!

Toodlepip x

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Weekly Update | 09.01.2015

Hello my leaves,

I realise that it is no longer Friday as I type this. Yesterday was one of those days where you just want to curl up under a duvet and escape for a while, so that's what I did. Today's update won't be too long as I'm still in the 'hibernating' mindset but I will shake it off for the next post :)

My week was very busy at work and I feel like I've accomplished nothing and still have a lot to catch up on after the holidays! We have had a few new people join us too; so I have done a whole lot of training. Its something I really enjoy doing, especially when they ask questions! I just like seeing that moment when it clicks in their head and you know that they understand.

Outside of work I had my first proper karate lesson which stretched my body A LOT! Flexibility is definitely something I need to work on and I have been doing lots of stretching since Monday to try and improve :) I've found its a great way to wind down after work so I've been coupling it with my dance exercises too! Friday night was the more meditative lesson and I left on a cloud of peace, it was truly the most relaxed, yet overwhelmed that I've been in some time, shame it was only for an hour but I have tips to take away with me now.

Do you have a routine that you follow when you finish work or school? 

Sorry for the short post! Tomorrow's is much better, I promise!

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

January Journey | A New Sport (& other exercise)

Happy Wednesday my Leaves,

How has you first full week of the new year been treating you? I'm back at work and I'm shattered! My body doesn't want to stay asleep for fear of missing my alarm so decides that 4am is appropriate instead of 7! :( I'm sure it will sort out, if not then I'll have to have words!

Anyway, today is the day I introduce you to my new sport. As you will know, from reading Sunday's post, I am undertaking the challenge of learning a new sport, instrument and language this year. This will improve my personal development and will also, hopefully, give me the boost that is very much needed right now! I'm also quite keen to shift a few pounds and tone up so if I can enjoy myself at the same time I'm more likely to stick to it :)

The Sport:

I have enrolled at my local 'Dojo' for karate classes once a week and also 'meditational movement' on Fridays. Now, these karate classes are currently 1 to 1 which I know isn't the preferred method for learning karate BUT, right now, its about what I can handle and it reduces my anxiety significantly to not have other learners present. Meditational Movement will start this Friday and I'm slightly apprehensive as there will be other learners present in this class. I'm hoping that with it being a class on calming and body awareness I should be able to cope. Here's hoping!

So that's my new sport. I don't know how far I will progress or if I will even do the grading. Right now it is providing me with a reason to leave the house, exercise and get used to being outside of my comfort zone. I haven't done anything like this before so I'm curious to see how it goes!

Future activities:

If I can manage these sessions with other learners then I am going to begin my bellydance again too. The course doesn't begin for another couple of weeks yet so I have time to decide! :)

Keeping track of the activities:

I made an elaborate purchase over the Christmas holidays which will help me keep my exercising on track. A FitBit Flex! I purchased it in a sale (~£40) (of which pink was, for some reason, cheaper) and can purchase different coloured bands at a later date if I wish!


Now on first impressions, I wasn't impressed. It took me the best part of 15 minutes to attach the bracelet first time round, to then discover I had to take it off to sync it first! After that initial faff though I'm quite happy, so far. I have also re-downloaded 'My Fitness Pal' (free) which syncs to the FitBit data on my account. The Flex will be monitoring my sleep and exercise whereas MFP will be keeping track of my calorie intake. The fact that they work together is making a massive difference. I don't have to switch between multiple apps and can just log into the dashboard on FitBit and see everything! They also have communities and forums which I will probably investigate at another time. For now though it's day 5 of usage, I shall keep you updated in my monthly update :)

Wow, this has turned into a mammoth post!

I shall let you get back to your life now :) but  first, let me know if you've taken up a sport/exercise and how you're finding it so far!

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

Sunday, 4 January 2015

January Journey | The Overview

Hello my leaves!

How is your Sunday? Welcome to the first post for January Journey!

I wanted to give you an overview of what to expect this month as it may appear to be very random without a little explanation!



I decided in November that I was going to work on myself and my self-confidence to help my body and mind. With the crash in Mental Health that followed it became much more challenging to 'begin'. My anxiety was preventing me from wanting to leave the house for any classes and my motivation when at home was non-existent, it took the majority of my motivation to look after myself and continue blogging!

I decided that I wasn't going to let this get the better of me though so, on my 'high' days, I began to plan what I wanted to do. This led me to the idea of doing/learning a sport, an instrument and a language.  By doing one of each I would be exercising/testing my mind and doing something I enjoy. The 'whats' and the 'whens' will be revealed in my following posts. Naturally, this isn't something that I can do in a week and then say 'all done' so I will be releasing a post prior to Monthly Favourites which will be titled 'Health Update'. This will cover my progression resolving my illness and also my progress with these three tasks. 

For sanity's sake I won't be beginning all three at once, I will be more likely to give up if I do! I'm hoping that by blogging this I will be more motivated to stick to it, fingers crossed! 

As well as these beginning steps of the journey, this month I will also be sharing with you my life 'to-do' list (following on from November's 'Dream Big'), and will be showing some of things I do to help me stick to resolutions (this will hopefully help you too when you reach 'that' point)!

So, what do you think about this approach of a sport, an instrument and a language for self development? Do you have any suggestions or recommendations for me?

Have a lovely Sunday!

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x

Friday, 2 January 2015

Weekly Update | 02.01.2015

Ooft it was slightly strange to type '2015'!

Hello my leaves and welcome to the first weekly update of 2015!

The first 'selfie' of 2015 ^^,
How were your final few days of 2014? Did you do anything special to welcome in the new year? Have you broken any resolutions, you may have made, yet?

This week, in one word, has been brutal. Not the word you were expecting?

I have been on a scary roller coaster with my mood for the past seven days which has led me to really consider what I am doing to myself. I have shouted at my family, opened up to my friends, made a video, been quite seriously low, felt on top of the world and cleaned my room, all in the space of a week!

Suffice to say that I am now very tired and in need of sleep but I'm trying to get my body back into my work routine so I don't feel it as much next week! I said last week that it (this week) would be a struggle but I hadn't quite thought it would be this intense!

It is always better to look forward however, so here is what I am looking forward to in 2015:

1. Making more videos 

My Mental Health Selfie for Mind

2. Being best (wo)man at my close friends' wedding.
It's in September and I still need to begin the speech writing, what does it need to include? Help!

3. Getting healthier! 
(Not super-gym-nut-who-drinks-spinach-smoothies healthy but to the point 
where I feel better in my appearance and level of fitness)

4. Making friends! 
(it's about time I made more of an effort down here)

5. Regaining control of my life!
(kicking anxiety and depression for good/a really long time)

Of course my blog is included in my list but I thought it was a given :) I ended the year with:

Number of Posts: 82
Followers on Google +: 121
Profile views on Google +: 122,763
Blog views total: 4,824 of which 3,198 were from November and December!

I will compare these with 2015 end figures next year and we will be able to see how much our little community has grown :D

What are you looking forward to this year?

Keep looking forward,

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x