Saturday, 9 March 2019

Heading into spring

Word of the Month: FOCUS

The word of the month came quite easily to me this month, so I'm paying a bit more attention to what's going on around me ('focus', right?!). 💪😀

It's edging slowly into spring here. The temperatures were in the high teens last week, but have settled back to a more seasonal level - cooler days, cool evenings, and rain on and off (it's England). 


I love driving my new car! Two months in and I'm finally comfortable with (most) bits of it and don't turn everything on when I'm just trying to find the turn signal. Shortly after I bought it, I went to turn and had the wipers going, the lights on dual beams, both indicators going... None of that nonsense now! Most importantly, I feel safe in it - so solid. 

Last Friday, one of the bulbs in the headlights blew and I wasn't overly concerned because it's light enough (more or less) to not need them now, although I always drive with my lights on as a habit I picked up in the Yukon. I have a three-month warranty on the car (expires 2 April) and wondered whether that was covered (it seems very little actually is). There are options, though, including watching a video on how to do it yourself. It was in Croatian, but I followed it easily enough. But before I went into full-on DIY mode, I stopped at the garage where I bought the car to clarify if it was something that was covered or not. It's not; HOWEVER, they did it for me anyway. For FREE (!).

Goodwill is sorely lacking these days, and I'm so happy that they did this for me. My experience with them has been 5* and I would happily buy another car from them. They don't have to do little things like this - particularly as they're just a small, family-run business - but it's literally little things like this that can make such difference in the experience you have.


Pretty much the same. 

The weather has kept me inside at lunch for most of the past week and I'm missing my walks. I've found a route that takes me about 40 mins (-/+ 2 miles) and that's just enough for me to feel like I've accomplished something and still gives me time to eat my lunch when I get back.

But, work...yeah. The trouble is that I don't want to necessarily do anything until the Brexit-mess has been sorted out (T-minus 20 days). Leaping impulsively into something that may or may not be more stable at this point isn't really worth it. 

I have to say, I've been less stressed out this year (so far) although more tetchy at the beginning. A lot of revolves around martyr syndrome, helplessness, fear/dislike of change, etc. And not on my part. Does it make me a martyr to stay somewhere because I'm more worried about disrupting the current situation than moving onto something that is a better/happier fit where I have a chance to advance, use my brain and like? Hm. Possibly.

Anyway. Focus.


I'm doing 'no' sugar for Lent, along with a colleague who's given up chocolate and biscuits (but is allowing herself the odd piece of cake). I did that no-sugar programme before and have heaps of recipes from it, so I've started with that this week - but already have spent double my weekly grocery budget on it! So, based on that (and that I now have £60 for the rest of the month), I have to modify it severely. I want to keep the quantity of veg that the programme promotes, but need a way to make it stretch much, much farther (doubling recipes and having them for four meals rather than just two would be easiest).

Trying to walk, if not every day, at least regularly and for a minimum half an hour.

I'm doing 'no' sugar in that I'm going to focus on good food, but keep my tea as is: milk and 1/2 tsp of sugar (with a goal to reduce that over the next few weeks). I'm happier with this scenario.

I had an ultrasound on my kidneys a couple of weeks ago and the sonographer found nothing of note. Said it all looked normal (yay), so unsure now if my doctor will be following up. I haven't heard anything, so may call to follow-up next week. 

I have a follow-up appointment next Tuesday at the General hospital with the doctor who did my last procedure last year. He wants to see if the prescription he gave me has done what it's supposed to, so I'm 'girding my loins' so to speak, as he mentioned taking a sample in clinic. Not sure it's going to happen, but...okay... 😣

Anyhoo, the appointment is mid-afternoon so I've taken the day as a holiday instead of fussing with driving to work, leaving work, taking the train, blah blah blah. But now I've got a morning shift at the cafe, so have to make sure I'm out of there by noon or I won't make my train.

My dental cleaning is at the end of the month, and I've got the funds for that all ready to go (hurrah!) due to a little extra income the past couple of months. 


Lots of reading continues - I'm now down to 20 books remaining to review! Hurrah! I'm almost ready to be finished, and I can't believe I just said that...Just really makes a difference when you're reading because you want to and reading because you have to.

The conversation started about my Mum with my brother and sister has dropped off. Both my sister and I said more or less the same thing, and all of a sudden we have radio silence. We're not chasing, so nothing can/will move ahead until we hear back.

We've had a damp specialist by the flat to have a look at the mould/damp issues, but are still in the dark about it only because the report will obviously go to the owner. We've also broached the 'what's going on in June' query, as that's when our lease is up. If I was the owner, I would see the lease to the end then take care of these damp/mould issues. That makes sense to me and would help make the decision for us, although I'm already keeping my eyes on flats in Ringwood as, ideally, I want to walk to work. Hopefully, we'll know more by the end of the month. I can only (barely) afford one move, so it really has to count.

I spent some time clearing out my dry goods a couple of weeks ago. I know they last a bit longer than other stuff, but I'm talking about stuff that was up to almost five years old that I've just been dragging around with me. Nope. Time to go. Cleaning out feels good!

I found £2 in the parking lot when I arrived at work on Thursday! It was sitting on the ground by the rear tire. Thanks! :D

I took a couple of holiday days last month as my boss was away those days and I'd be quieter than usual. It just made sense. It was okay - I didn't get up to much, just puttered really, but I felt strangely restless and unsettled the whole time. It was very odd.

I've been focussing a bit more on my writing too, and have managed to produce some reasonable words on pages the past couple of months! I sneak it at work (naughty!) and try to concentrate more on weekends. I'm determined to have a veryveryveryveryvery rough but complete book by the end of the year. My writing group are supportive, helpful and make great suggestions and they're keeping me going. I'm so grateful to them! I also think that the fact I'm not getting distracted by FB is part of this.

But is it a murder mystery or a romance? Or both?

Hope you're all having a great weekend!


T'Pol said...

Nice to hear from you!Seems like you are doing well by focusing on what matters the most: You! Spring is right around the corner and I am sure that will help our moods and focus.

Northern Living Allowance said...

Hi T'Pol! Thank you. Yes, sometimes you forget how nice it is to not think about anything else except YOU once in a while. I agree - spring makes everyone feel brighter, doesn't it? I'm looking forward to my lunchtime walks in warmer weather (i.e., without a coat!). Sounds like you're enjoying yourself thoroughly. As it should be! :D xx

Treaders said...

I think focus is a good word. I might use that one myself. I really haven't had time to do much of anything with flitting back and forth to the UK when my brother died and then off on a (pre-planned) holiday and son getting married on Saturday. After that I really have to FOCUS as there is so much I want to do and so little seems to be getting done right now!

Northern Living Allowance said...

Hi Treaders! Lovely to hear from you. You're very welcome to use my word - it's quite good and seems to bubble in the background of everything I do at the moment. Enjoy your holiday first, and get the big stuff out of the way before you take a minute to process and FOCUS. I'm now focussing on the month ahead (and already have my new word), but not too hard. xx