Top 10 Thursday!

I have been spending most weekends at the beach and have decided that today’s Top 10 should be inspired by things I love about the beach or seaside!  As usual these are in no particular order

·         Sea salted air

·         Sand between my toes

·         The sound of the waves

·         Finding treasures like seashells, pebbles and sea glass

·         Ice-cream

·         Walks on the beach

·         Paddling

·         Watching the sunset

·         Reconnecting with nature

·         Fish and chips on the way home

Over the past month, my partner and I have been spending many of our weekends in Brean.  Our friends have a static caravan down there and we have been going down to spend time with them as well as to have some time away from the house.  We have been staying in Pontins, which, if you look on-line has quite a few bad reviews regarding cleanliness and other issues.  We haven’t had a bad experience there, and though the complex is dated (like something straight out of the 70’s or Hi-De-Hi!) it has been clean and tidy.  We don’t spend much time at the complex, its really just a place to sleep and have a quick shower in the morning as there are so many things to do in Brean itself.

Brean is a typical seaside town, with lots of gift shops selling holiday reminders such as magnets, postcards and sticks of rock, beach accessories like buckets, spades and inflatables,  several static caravan sites, pubs, restaurants and gaming arcades, not to mention a fairground and, of course, the beach itself.  There is also a market over the weekend with a lovely selection of stalls selling all manner of things.

Over the time we have been going to Brean we have spent days on the beach having bbq’s or going for walks, days in the arcades playing games, spent time at our friends van, having food in the restaurants or being out in the bars.  Every time we have been down we have had a completely different experience and a different kind of holiday which has kept each weekend feeling like a totally different holiday!

What have you all been up to?

Top 10 Ways to Wind Down in the Evenings

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Winding down in the evening is essential for our brains to disassociate from the day and prepare our mind and body for a good night’s rest in order to prepare ourselves for the following day and all that we have planned.  Today I am sharing my Top 10 ways to wind down in the evening.

  • Have a hot bath with lots of bubbles, not only are you mentally washing the day away but you are increasing your body temperature and soothing any aches and pains.
  • A warm drink, I love a cup of tea or hot chocolate which not only feels like a treat but has become part of my nightly routine and now acts as a trigger to mentally switch my brian into unwind mode.
  • A good book that you can get lost in, even if only for a few pages can help you to forget about all the troubles that have crossed your path in the day.
  • Watching a show on tv.
  • Mindfulness (I love the app Calm which has lots of really good meditation and mindfulness exercises)
  • Gentle stretching which helps to release any tensions built up in your muscles over the day
  • Journaling, whether it is good things that have happened in the day or something that has annoyed you, getting thoughts out of your mind and onto paper can help to stop you dwelling on them in the night
  • Preparing for the following day – getting your clothes, lunch and other things sorted can help avoid any morning stress
  • Calming music, I really love to listen to a cd of New Age Music called Stonehenge by Runestone
  • Aromatherapy oils, pillow spray or rollerball aromatherapy oils (such as these by Tisserand).  Scent plays such a big part in how we feel and lavender has been linked to making us feel calm and relaxed which is why it can be found in so many “relaxing” fragrances.  I find that applying the Sleep Better fragrance to my pulse points after a bath and before bed can really alter how I feel and help me to unwind and relax.
  • And, an extra to my Top 10, but only on a Friday or Saturday night 😉 , a small glass of wine and a bit of chocolate!

What are some of your favourite ways to unwind in the evenings?  I’d love to hear about any ways you unwind, so let me know in the comment!

Top 10 Thursday – 10 Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety

Everyone, at some time or other has experienced a bout of stress or anxiety of some kind, and in today’s culture of being constantly busy, switched on and contactable the number of cases of stress and anxiety are rising. I have stress and anxiety related mental health issues and have started to learn some of the triggers but even knowing what can start anxiety and stress doesn’t help to stop the feelings from coming. Today I am sharing my top 10 ways to relieve stress and anxiety when they do happen.

  1. Listen to a podcast
  2. Read a book
  3. Practice mindfulness (Calm is a fab app that I use regularly)
  4. Have a bath with essential oils (I find lavender and basil to both help relax me)
  5. Sleep
  6. Switch off all electronic devices even for half an hour
  7. Do a jigsaw
  8. Get out a colouring book or sketch pad and doodle
  9. Go for a walk
  10. Clean (I like to hoover the floors or even do some ironing)

What are some of your favourite ways to relieve stress and anxiety? I’d be really interested to hear so leave me a comment!

Top 10 Thursday – Favourite Mobile Phone Games

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Having a mobile phone is not just about being able to keep in touch with friends and family via calls or messaging. It’s about the apps you have, social media, news and weather streams and games.  My phone has so many different things on it to keep me entertained and I thought that today’s Top 10 should be about some of my favourite games.

  • BlockDoku – a game where you make lines and squares using given shapes.  This game is a really simple concept (similar to Tetris but instead of falling shapes that you have to try to make fall in the right place, you have a series of shapes that you place yourself)
  • Block! Triangle Puzzle! – a puzzle game where you have to fit the given shapes into a larger shape to fill it.
  • Candy Crush – a game where you switch different candies to gain points, special boosters and “save” ingredients.
  • Animal Crossing Pocket Camp – this is a game where you have to help other animals, make friends and create your own camp site.
  • ReDecor – An interior design game where you are set a brief and have to decorate the room accordingly (probably my number 1 game!)
  • Merge Magic – there are levels to complete by merging items, creating orbs and finishin in a certain timeframe and another part of the game where you can play in “the garden” and clear cursed land, create creatures and collect items.
  • Design Home – Anotehr interior design game where you choose furniture and other room items and decorate according to a brief or specified style or item range.
  • WordStacks – a word finding game where you have stacks of letters that make words associated with the “theme” of the level.
  • Words With Friends – play against other players in a game of scrabble.
  • Sand Balls – this game entails moving balls from one point to another by creating a path through sand, avoiding any obstructions and collecting other balls or keys along the way.

What are some of your favourite games to play on your phone?  I’m always on the look out for something new to play so let me know in the comments of any recommendations you have!!!!

Top 10 Thursday – My Favourite Podcasts

Top 10 Thursday

I’m still having issues with my internet and general phone signal and connectivity so apologies for the missed post yesterday and the lateness of today’s post…

If you have been reading my blog for any length of time you will have read about my love of podcasts and that I am a frequent listener.  Today I thought I would share my favourite Top 10 podcasts with you.  In no particular order, here they are

If you haven’t heard of any of these then I highly recommend you checking them out!  Do you have any favourite podcasts that you listen to?  I’m always looking for new things to listen to so feel free to leave me your suggestions in the comments!

Blogmas – Top 10 Things I Love About December

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Its the 5th day of Blogmas and unfortunately I couldn’t think of a snazzy name for my “Top 10” series so we are stuck with it just being called Top 10.  Today’s Top 10 is a list of all the things I love about December!

  • Frosty mornings
  • Hot chocolate with marshmallows and whipped cream
  • Christmas films
  • Crunchy leaves
  • Twinkling lights
  • Buying and making gifts
  • Fluffy socks
  • Christmas decorations
  • Clear, star scattered night sky
  • The promise of snow

What are some of your favourite things about December?  Let me know in the comments!

Top 10 Programs I have Watched this Year

Today’s Top 10 Thursday is a list of programs I have watched that I have really enjoyed this year.  I really like to look back and see what sort of things I was watching over the years so I thought that sharing them would be a way to record these for the future.

  • Good Girls
  • The Society
  • Umbrella Academy
  • The Good Place
  • The Great Interior Design Challenge
  • Interior Design Masters
  • Mystery Diners
  • Kirstie’s Handmade Christmas
  • 13 Reasons Why
  • Gossip Girl

And 2 bonus ones…. Pretty Little Liars and Gilmour Girls

What have been some of your favorite programs this year?

Top 10 Things I’m Loving Right Now

Today’s Top 10 post is a list of things that I am loving right now! I really like doing lists like these, especially in this season where there is so much that can make us feel a bit down, like the weather being damp and cold or the days being dark and gloomy. It is a nice way to remind yourself that there are some things that are positive in this season.

  • Fluffy, warm jumpers
  • Cozy nights in
  • The colours of the trees as the leaves change
  • Winter duvet on the bed
  • Dark nights with clear sky’s – perfect for star spotting
  • Crisp, sunny mornings
  • Hot chocolate with marshmallows
  • Snuggling under blankets and watching films
  • Comfort food
  • Listening to the rain falling down

Top 10 Books I have Read This Year

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Today’s Top 10 is a list of books that I have enjoyed reading this year, some are fiction, others are more text book based a in no particular order…

  • Frozen Grave – Lee Weeks
  • Me Being Me is Exactly as Insane as You Being You – Todd Hasak-Lowy
  • The One That I Want – Giovanna Fletcher
  • Jenny Sparrow Knows the Future – Melissa Pimentel
  • Five Years From Now – Paige Toon
  • Two-Faced – Mandasue Heller
  • Brand Identity – Catharine Slade-Brooking
  • Symbol – The Reference Guide – Angus Hyland/Steven Bateman
  • The Girls – Lisa Jewell
  • Logo Design – Taschen

What have been your Top 10 books so far this year?  I’d love to know so leave me a comment!