Monday, 15 October 2018

Stepping Out Challenge - Day 15 - 365 Days of Color





Welcome to today's post, I am taking part in a 31 day blog challenge where I post everyday in October.  I love creating challenges for myself and joining ones by others.  My challenge for the rest of the month is to reflect on some of the series I created for myself and inspiration that I have taken away.

Listen to the Podcast



Today I am going to be talking about a series on my 365 Days of Colour




I have always loved flowers, my mum started me off on my green finger journey when I was little and I saw how she took care of the house plants we had.  She brought the tropics into our home despite us living in a cold climate.  I saw her lovingly tend to these plants deadheading and taking off the leaves that were shriveled checking that the plants had enough water and nutrients, she loved her plants.  As I grew up I started to get plants of my own.  I carried on initially with house plants and as my spaces got bigger I carried the love to the out doors and in the garden.


Living in a colder climate you won't always see the rich and vibrant colours in the middle of the winter and so where ever I went I just started to take photographs.  It started out when I would go for my walks, the walks would take extra time cause I would be caught by the colours I passed on my route.  After exhausting my local community I would keep a look out for flowers in other gardens.  Some of my favorite places were parks and botanical gardens like Kew Gardens.  I was in my element, among the grounds, lost in the beauty and the scents.  I had never thought of doing something with the images.  Like most of my other challenges I created for myself they are not initially planned in advance.  I get up with an idea and then I am driven to put it in place.



There are many plants that I was able to grow in my Wembley garden and that was 13 years of physical, and financial investment over the years.  When I think about the garden I think about having another room that you can spend time in.  




When you are dealing with colder climates you might not get to enjoy sitting out there but the differences with a garden filled with the sun’s rays compared to a garden filled with snow is definitely a sight to see and has beauty to be seen and the first buds that come up in the spring and the autumn falling leaves all bring beauty in their own way.

Check out my Tropical Garden Series.  I will be sharing part two of the 365 Days of Colour tomorrow and I hope during this month you find some time to challenge, be creative and stretch yourself.


    Why not join me each day for the rest of October as we dive into to some exciting challenges and look at ways in which they can impact on your own life

    I look forward to seeing you tomorrow, it is never too late to start! The main thing is to take one step at a time and do something that you find interesting.

    Stay blessed and be a blessing.

    Ps:  If you are on a budget and would like to check out some supplies/books at a discounted price, check out one of the links below:



     Adorn it - bit.ly/AdorAT18 
    Dollar Tree - bit.ly/DolAT18 
    Blick - bit.ly/Blick18 
    Book Outlet - bit.ly/BOOKAT18 
    Stampington - bit.ly/STAAT18 
    C& T Publishing - bit.ly/CNTPAT18 
    Dover - bit.ly/DOVPAT18 
    Craftsy Kits - bit.ly/CrafAT18 
    Amazon Store - 

    Sunday, 14 October 2018

    Stepping Out Challenge - Day 14 - Healthy Lifestyle Part 2






    Welcome to today's post, I am taking part in a 31 day blog challenge where I post everyday in October.  I love creating challenges for myself and joining ones by others.  My challenge for the rest of the month is to reflect on some of the series I created for myself and inspiration that I have taken away.

    Listen to the Podcast



    Welcome to today's post. 


     There can be many times when you are taking part in a challenge when you want to throw in the towel, this can be the case if you have too many complex parts to complete and your not in the head space to handle all the different elements. 



     Rather than throw in the towel it is better to cut you list down to a few items that you are doing, if not just one thing that you will complete for the challenge period.

    It can be quite disheartening if you are always stopping mid way in a challenge and you have to give yourself the best start as possible and keep what you have to share down to a minimum. You don’t want to get lost in what needs editing or having to take photographs of your process.  Above all you need to keep it simple.


    There is also no 'right time' for starting a challenge.  In this challenge I started the middle of the month, rather than try and wait until the 1st of the month, any day is the right day to start a challenge.

    Living a healthy lifestyle is something that you need to keep reminding yourself that there isn't a final destination, but you need to see it as something that is for the rest of your life.


    When I did the challenge I chose share the smoothies that I was making daily and I would mention briefly how I got on with the other things, such as whether I was able to stick to the other things and some things that I wanted to add such as a creative activity as well.

    Over the period I made 30 different smoothies and I am really proud of getting them done. I used Almond and oat milks as my liquid of choice and blended a selection of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds together and over the 30 days changed up the combinations so that each one was unique. You use which ever liquid that you prefer.


    The aim was to make sure that I kept it simple so that I couldn’t find an excuse to stop and here are a few tips as a reminder to keep going: 


    • Take one day at a time; 
    • Follow through, remember that you are doing it for you!; 
    • If you have an off day don't just scrap the whole thing, but start again tomorrow; 
    • Don't be too hard on yourself, change takes time; 
    • Enjoy yourself! 
    What are some of your favorite smoothie recipes? let me know what other areas of your life are you hoping to make changes.



     you can check out the the start of the challenge HERE
    Try out one of the smoothies and let me know how you get on, which one is your favorite one?

    Tomorrow I will share the Clearing The Clutter Series.  I hope during this month you find some time to challenge, be creative and stretch yourself.


      Why not join me each day for the rest of October as we dive into to some exciting challenges and look at ways in which they can impact on your own life. 



      I look forward to seeing you tomorrow, it is never too late to start! The main thing is to take one step at a time and do something that you find interesting.



      Stay blessed and be a blessing.


      Ps:  If you are on a budget and would like to check out some supplies/books at a discounted price, check out one of the links below:

      Saturday, 13 October 2018

      Stepping Out Challenge - Day 13 - Healthy Lifestyle part 1





      Welcome to today's post, I am taking part in a 31 day blog challenge where I post everyday in October.  I love creating challenges for myself and joining ones by others.  My challenge for the rest of the month is to reflect on some of the series I created for myself and inspiration that I have taken away.

      Listen to the Podcast



      Today I am going to be talking about a series on my called 31 Days to a Healthier Lifestyle


      Welcome to today's session. We all want to lead a healthier lifestyle and be eating food that is not only nutritious but taste delicious as well.  We want to be able to slot a routine into our hectic day to day without any inconvenience without breaking a sweat  It doesn’t come on its own without any effort, it comes with a price and that is Time.

      I was generally fed up having aches and pains and just feeling sluggish and lethargic all the time - well most of the time, and I knew that my fitness routine (or lack of it) and eating foods that didn't nourish my body on a consistent basis wasn't doing me any good.

      The thing about a healthier lifestyle is that it needs to be a way of life and not something that you insert now and again. If you value the work that your mind and body can potentially do for you then you have to be giving it the right fuel to have enough energy to perform. For those car owners you take your car for a regular check-up you put petrol in the car so why not see how you can get the maximum benefit from putting good quality nutritious food into your body, exercising and looking after you emotional health. 

      What I realized I needed was a kick start.  They say it takes 21 days to form a habit and so I knew that if I created small actions around a healthier lifestyle then it would be something that I would stick to.

      As I was committing myself to a healthier lifestyle I needed to look at the whole package and here are some of the other things that I focused on: 


      Exercise - minimum half an hour 
      Drinking Water - Minimum 1 Litre 
      Having a Smoothie - Once a day 
      Pampering session - for encouragement - once a week 
      Cut down on sugar 
      Eat more fruit and vegetables 
      Not eating after 8pm 


      One of the biggest things for me was around food and not eating enough fruits and vegetables. I had wanted to make sure I was eating a lot more and drinking enough water but I wasn’t being consistent I would start for a few days and then get distracted only to try something else next time.  Making it into a challenge for me somehow helps me focus on consistency, setting a plan and schedule and think about the lifestyle and way of live rather than a forced activity.

      Before I started the challenge I had heard about the Nutri bullet and wanted to use it to make my own smoothies.  I love smoothies and this was an extra special treat for my body having a different smoothie every day.  It got me thinking about the ingredients and combinations that you could achieve. Where possible when making the smoothies - make it organic make sure you aim for quality all round, this is best for your body and you deserve it. I am now fortunate to be able to grow most of my own fruits and vegetables so I know exactly what is going into my food. With that in mind I knew I had to get the best possible that I could afford, when I wasn’t ‘growing my own’ I just had to make sure that I washed the fruits and vegetables carefully – you do what you can with what you have got at the time. 


      As with most challenges you need to have discipline.  Sometimes you don't feel like doing it, or you become overwhelmed especially when deciding to share.  As long as you are showing up every day for yourself don't worry about whether you share on time or not, that is not what the  challenge is about, and you need to also focus on enjoying the challenge.  

      You are making a difference and incorporating new ways of behavior into your day to day routine, so make it fun for you! Tomorrow we will look at some of the combinations of smoothies.



      Tomorrow I will share the second part from my 30 Days to a Healthier Lifestyle.  I hope during this month you find some time to challenge, be creative and stretch yourself.

        Why not join me each day for the rest of October as we dive into to some exciting challenges and look at ways in which they can impact on your own life. 



        I look forward to seeing you tomorrow, it is never too late to start! The main thing is to take one step at a time and do something that you find interesting.



        Stay blessed and be a blessing.

        Ps:  If you are on a budget and would like to check out some of the supplies/books at a discounted price, click one of the links below:


        Adorn it - bit.ly/AdorAT18 
        Dollar Tree - bit.ly/DolAT18 
        Blick - bit.ly/Blick18 
        Book Outlet - bit.ly/BOOKAT18 
        Stampington - bit.ly/STAAT18 
        C&T Publishing - bit.ly/CNTPAT18 
        Dover - bit.ly/DOVPAT18 
        Craftsy Kits - bit.ly/CrafAT18 
        Amazon Store - 


        Friday, 12 October 2018

        Stepping Out Challenge - Day 12 - Tips for Carers 2





        Welcome to today's post, I am taking part in a 31 day blog challenge where I post everyday in October.  I love creating challenges for myself and joining ones by others.  My challenge for the rest of the month is to reflect on some of the series I created for myself and inspiration that I have taken away.

        Listen to the Podcast


        Today I am going to conclude with the Tips for Carers  



        Working with the Social Workers

        Quite out of the blue after attending a few of the carers meetings I was asked to do a workshop for social workers at a training institute.  Oddly enough these social workers were doing a course where they had increased powers and could make the decision to have individuals sectioned.  It was interesting to hear things from their perspective about life, and the struggles they had in their day to day, feeling overwhelmed, stressed and the issues they had in their own lives. 



        Within all this I shared with them the Carers Perspective especially when they have to make decisions about the Carer and those being cared for to think about how much their own baggage they bring to the table.  We looked at the perceptions that they arrive at the carers home with, the ones that the carer has and how the one being cared for might be feeling when the social worker arrives.   

        It was an amazing opportunity which led to regular training sessions looking at the carers’ perspective as well as what the social worker brings into the situation.  The social workers who attended were attentive and shared their own experience and it made for an enriched session and it all came about from taking a step to share my own experience.

        The more I spent time working on presentations about being a carer,  I realized that there were some things that I was doing that I needed to share, and along came another A-Z challenge which prompted me to share some of the things along the way that I had found helped me get on with what I needed to do.



        Self-care is the overriding thread that you need to address and put strategies in place so that you make sure that you get some respite on a regular basis.  The first thing that often suffers for carers is caring for ourselves.  We are consumed with caring for another person and all the other things with such as family, job or other dependents and possibly a million other activities for someone else.

        In writing the tips I wanted to offer practical things that I found useful when helping mum - from looking at your support network, getting out of the house and getting fresh air, finding others to talk to and ways to share your story.  The main thing that it was to try and be flexible with the time that you have and the resources you have available to you and look at the kind of support that you have around you. 
         “It takes a community to care for the elderly with Dementia”.



        Dementia doesn’t discriminate and everyone is effected not just the individual and their carer.  I’ve spoken to some people who put their parents in a home and they have chosen not to visit them saying that they don’t ‘recognize me anyway’. That person doesn’t realize that there are emotional repercussions that come from choosing to abandon a loved one in that way when they cannot care for themselves.  Communication is not just about knowing your name, it is also touch, the sound and tone of your voice and your personality that the person can relate to.

        Whilst they are in a home it is useful to set up a schedule of care - who will visit your loved and continue to interact with them when you are not able to.  Having the continued interaction helps in their health and well-being.  We all know the difference we can feel when we are sitting on our own or sitting with another person.

        However you feel you are coping it won’t hurt to get some more help, even if it is just to give you a break for an hour or two.  When you bury your head in the sand about the situation you miss important things that could have been put in place ahead of time, but become crisis if left.  Putting plans into place makes the journey a bit easier.  The tips for carers was a way for me to start to share with others not only my own experience but a way to help as well.

        The tips are not an exhaustive list and depending on the person, needs tweaking but it’s a place to start.  When mum started to go to the day care center I later got involved and started offering Art sessions.  I got an even deeper understanding of the different ways in which dementia affects individuals and I also grew as an Artist, daughter, and mother.  Over a 4 year period I had an amazing time working with the men and women who attended the day care center putting on exhibitions for them and getting them out of their comfort zone as artist.  This informs the knowledge that I have gained over the years.

        What are your tips for care what words works for you and your loved one?  In what ways can you get involved with their care?

        You can find additional tips HERE


        Tomorrow I will share the challenge that I did called '30 Days to a Healthier Lifestyle'.  I hope during this month you find some time to challenge, be creative and stretch yourself.

          Why not join me each day for the rest of October as we dive into to some exciting challenges and look at ways in which they can impact on your own life. 

          I look forward to seeing you tomorrow, it is never too late to start! The main thing is to take one step at a time and do something that you find interesting.

          Stay blessed and be a blessing.

          Ps:  If you would like to check out supplies/books at a discounted price, check out one of the links below:

          Adorn it - bit.ly/AdorAT18 
          Dollar Tree - bit.ly/DolAT18 
          Blick - bit.ly/Blick18 
          Book Outlet - bit.ly/BOOKAT18 
          Stampington - bit.ly/STAAT18 
          C& T Publishing - bit.ly/CNTPAT18 
          Dover - bit.ly/DOVPAT18 
          Craftsy Kits - bit.ly/CrafAT18 
          Amazon Store - 



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