My Ultimate Wish

To be totally free my soul requires travel. I was born with wanderlust and the traits of a vagabond.  My ultimate goal in life is to travel as much as possible, and help in communities where they need support.

My visit real travel experience where I have felt truly connected to the place and its people is Siem Reap in Cambodia (Home of the stunning and magical Angkor Wat.

angkor wat.jpg

Image property of Blogizing – Angkor Wat sunrise

I left Siem Reap with a deep attachment to the actual place and its people, and it is of no surprise to me really as I have always been ‘drawn’ there, but for what reason, I did not know. The poverty is so apparent for you to see, there is corruption and exploitation, but through it all the people are so happy. Leaving Siem Reap for me what not the end, but actually just the beginning.

If you wish to help some children of Siem Reap please consider donating to this wonderful cause

If you wish to contact us you can do so at blogizing@gmail.com

 

My Grandma: The biggest impact

I walked into the room, heart pounding and mouth dry.  The bright lights hurting my eyes as I walked down the corridor.  I turned right down another long hallway.  Each step becoming harder than the one before.  My legs felt like jelly.  My head was buzzing and I felt dizzy and sick.  Eventually I saw Ward 9, I turned right and pulled open the heavy wooden door.  I squirted on some antibacterial hand gel and rubbed it into my hands whilst walking towards the nurses desk.  I cleared my throat and asked her where she was.  I was directed down towards the end of the ward into the last room.  There she lay in the bed, looking so tiny.  Much smaller than usual.  Her curly grey hair still looking perfect.  She knew someone was there but she did nt know who it was as her eyes were severely affected by cataracts. I walked over to the bed, took her hand and said “Hello Grandma”.  “Hello love” she managed. She knew who I was.  My grandma and I had a close relationship.  I sat next to her and stroked her hair.  I tried to speak to her without letting her know how upset I was.  The nurse came in and I asked her how she had been over night.  “She has been quite stable” she said.  “She looks much better today” I said, trying to be optimistic.  The nurse smiled at me but said nothing, and then carried about her business.  I kissed my grandma on the cheek and said “I will see you later grandma, I will be back later, I promise.”  “OK” she croaked whilst managing a smile and nodding slowly.

I walked out of the ward with the intention of going to the canteen for a cup of coffee.  I was tired.  I had not had much sleep as I had been worried about my grandma.  I reached a chair in one of the corridors and decided to sit down. I began thinking of all the things we had done together.  The holidays we had been on. The time in Ibiza when she sat on a wall with white trousers on and when she stood up they were red, she was covered in ants!

As a child I often stayed with her on a weekend.  I loved going. I loved walking her dog, Snowy, up and down the cobbled back street. The same street my uncle, (only 9 years older than me, he was the youngest of her children), had taught me to ride a bike on an adult full sized BMX when aged only 8 years old.  I could not even touch the floor and had to balance the bike against the wall to climb on!  In school holidays I remember being looked after by my grandma with my siblings and cousins.  My Grandma’s cooking was the best, macaroni cheese and homemade chips was my favourite.

I used to sit on the sofa in her living room and watch TV, all snuggled up with her woolen Scottish tartan blanket. One time I was laid on the floor in front of the hot fire watching my favourite TV program after school, my grandma downstairs cooking tea.  All of a sudden a little white mouse ran across the front of me from behind her glass cabinet which stored all her trinkets and ornaments bought for her over the years by her children and grandchildren. I remember thinking it was cute, but I screamed anyway. I remember grandma telling me not to be scared and to think how scared the poor little mouse was seeing me on the floor, as I was a lot bigger than the mouse! That made me laugh.

Every Christmas day was spent at grandma’s with all my aunts, uncles and cousins.  One year all 11 grandchildren lined up and we sang “Grandma we love you”.

A more recent memory of 5 or 6 years before floated back, when grandma has made me a royal blue and bottle green tartan pinafore dress.  I remember being stood in her front room whilst trying on my new dress.  Her laughing at me when I said I had ‘boobies’ telling me they were like ‘fried eggs’.  I was only 12, and my grandma was a 40DD bra size.  I can see now why she found it so funny.

She was how grandmas are supposed to be.  She made and repaired things, clothes etc, she cooked and she cleaned, she treated us to presents and fed us lots of biscuits and cakes.  My grandma was from Scotland but she was far from the stereotype of being stingy with money,  she was the exact opposite, and in fact the most generous person I knew.

Just then my mobile rang. It was my uncle asking me to go back to the ward as the doctor wanted to speak with me. When I arrived, I was lead into a side room and I sat down on one of the chairs.  My uncle was there, he looked at me and instead of talking he began to cry.  I had never seen my uncle cry before.  It was hard to see, a 6 ft 4 inch stocky man, eyes red from the tears, looking heart broken.  I looked at the floor and said “has she gone?” “No, but she is not well”. Managed my uncle, at that point he broke down again.  “We have tried to give her another blood transfusion but nothing is working for her any more.  I am sorry but it is only a matter of time now.”  I stared at the doctor as the words fell out of his mouth, like lead to the floor.  Each word washing over me, but it did not really sink in. All I could think was ‘that’s it, she is going.’  I dropped to my knees and I cried, harder than I had ever cried before. Even when my mum and dad divorced, I do not remember crying so hard. heart ached, I felt like my world was falling apart around me.  My grandma was like a second mum to me.  In fact I told my grandma things I could not speak to my mum about.  My grandma had looked after my first child, which I had when I was only 17.  My grandma never judged me, she did nothing but support me.  She took me and my son on trips with her Pensioners Club to the seaside.  My son adored her, he used to help her do the gardening and loved hanging the washing out on the line with her, she made it fun. She even played football with him in the garden, despite her having a double hip replacement only a couple of years previously.  She was one person that my son would do absolutely anything for.

I stopped crying and wiped away the tears. “I want to see her.” I said as I walked out of the side room and into hers.  My grandma was laid in bed asleep.  “Hi grandma” I said.  “Hello dear” she managed quietly.  A tear ran down my cheek.  “Are you ok?” I said.  She nodded and smiled.  I sat next to her, perched on the bed and held her hand. “I love you grandma” I said.  “I love you too.” She replied.  I stroked her hair and kissed her forehead and said “I’ll see you again soon grandma.” She looked in my direction, but I know she would nt have been able to see my face because of her cataracts, but she stared in my direction, smiled at me and said “yes”.  The doctor had n’t said anything to her, but I knew she could tell that this was the last time we were to see each other, in this life time.  I hugged her tight and kissed her again on the cheek and with that I let go of her hand, I turned and began to walk away.  Tears streaming down my face I turned to look at her one last time. She had closed her eyes and looked peaceful with a smile on her face.  I smiled back and whispered “love you grandma, I will see you again.” At that moment I thought in my head ‘Please angels take good care of her, she is so precious.’

I turned and walked down the corridor.  As I reached the door I heard the nurses rushing, I turned around and saw them heading towards the end room. I knew that was it, she was gone.  I walked out of the hospital and sat in my car. I held between my palms the little reindeer broach my grandma had given to me, just before she had gone into hospital. That was 6 years ago.  I still speak to her on a daily basis and keep that reindeer close.  To anyone else that reindeer is nt worth anything else, it is nt made from gold or any other precious metal, but it was my grandmother’s. I had bought it for her one Christmas when I was 11 years old with my pocket money from the local market.  She had kept it all those years, until I was 27.  That meant so much to me.  I will always have a bond with my grandma and even though physically she is not here, I know she is around.

My final tribute to grandma was the song I chose for her funeral. “Grandma we love you” by St Winifred’s Choir. That seemed like the only choice for me.

“One day grandma I will see you again, that day will be when the angels are also looking after me. But until then I will keep close to me the only thing I have left, our memories.”

Chris Martin & Gwyneth Paltrow: Consciously Uncoupled

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/news/gwyneth-paltrow-and-chris-martin-to-split-after-more-than-10-years-of-marriage-9215633.html

After ten years of marriage, Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow have announced they are to bring their marriage to an end.  They have stated that over the past year they have been working hard to live some of it together and some of it apart.  They have now worked out that they are not to be together as a couple but they will remain as a family.  They go on to say that they still love each other and in some respects are closer than ever.

What do you think of this statement? I personally think if they do manage to get along and still spend time as a family with their children then this is admirable.  Many people may argue that if this arrangement was for the sake of their children then maybe they should have stayed together for the sake of them.  I disagree with this stance.  Children know when their parents are happy.  Children benefit much more from two happy parents than spending time in one miserable and unhappy home.

I hope this arrangement works out for them.  I would have given anything for things to have been amicable between my ex (father to my children) and I.  It was never a possibility for me as my ex did not even wish to communicate with me for the sake of my children, never mind spend time as a family.

Good luck to them, I say!  And for those that say ‘what a shame’ and ‘no one seems to last long these days’ I would respond with this: Ten years of marriage is admirable, it is a long time in anyone’s life, around one eighth or so.  To commit to a person for this amount of time is in itself an achievement.  Not much lasts forever, it is not the way of life, everything changes and evolves.  People also change, we are not immune to this.  If one changes and becomes so different to the other, it is unusual for them to break away and find a place they feel they fit, with another or others they feel at home with and where they belong.   Life is too short to be unhappy.  To be happy is not a selfish act.  To remain in a unhealthy relationship or situation is a tragedy and a waste of the life you have been given.

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Solving Storage Problems for Children: I’m Hooked!

http://www.fieldsofblue.co.uk/coloured-pencil-coat-hooks.html

I had a problem.  Every day when I collect the children from school and take them home, as soon as we walk through the door the same thing happens.  They take their shoes off in the hallway and place them on the shoe rack (good work kids) then on the way from the hallway to the lounge area they take their coats off (whilst still walking) and drop it on the floor at the point wherever the coat is off their arms.  (Aarrrgghhh!!!) This is not so great!  This same action every day grates on me.  One day feeling rather stressed out I said “Why every day do you do this?” My youngest daughter who was 5 at the time, looked at me with a blank look on her face and simply shrugged her shoulders.  She did not even get what I was talking about, it was a look of ‘who cares? What’s the big deal mum.’ My eldest daughter, aged 7, looked at me and said rather nonchalant “Because there is nowhere to put it.”

I had always asked them to take their coats upstairs to their bedroom, but when I actually thought about it, when returning from school the first thing they want is a drink and a snack.  As the kitchen is not on the way to their bedroom the likelihood of the coat arriving there before they arrive in the kitchen is zero.

I had to think of a resolution.  Obvious…right? I suddenly had a ‘tahdah’ moment – COAT HOOKS

Oh……coat hooks.  Simple resolution, right? No……

Because if you are anything like me, you wont be happy with the ordinary coat hooks that you can get in your local hardware store….

mottisfont-painted-6-hook-coat-rack---1

This particular example is £210, yeah it is solid wood (which is always a bonus with me) but where is the design, it is not attractive and the hooks are not always going to be covered by coats.  My thoughts were I would like something which is different, and attractive and could be made into a feature.  I also wanted something which my children would actually use, something they find to be a novelty.

After some searching I found the perfect solution.  A fabulous six coat hook rack which look like a set of pencils.  It looks like a great feature and you can even put in photographs of your children so they know who’s hook is who’s – so no more arguing! Win-win situation.

pencils

The rack costs just £119.00 (but if you are quick can get it on sale at a discounted price of £89.00) and can be purchased from http://www.fieldsofblue.co.uk/ But be quick as there is only one left in stock!

For those of you who would love something a little more shabby chic by style, there is a great alternative also available from Fields of Blue, at an exceptional value price of £19.95, and it still offers you the option of inserting photographs so as to avoid the arguments over who’s peg is who’s.  Alternatively, you could insert some of your favourite pictures of small paintings done by yourselves or your children.  Be creative 😉

hook

Since getting the hooks, the problem is solved, my children not only now put their shoes on the shoe rack, but they also remember to hang up their coats.  No more stressed mum upon return from school, and additionally, we always know where coats are in the morning on the way out of the door!

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My grandmother always told me: Tidy Home, Tidy Mind

http://zenhabits.net/what-is-truly-necessary-guide-to-living/

I am going through a transition period in my life, there have been rather quite a few difficulties thrown into my path which I have to stumble my way through.  Luckily, I can see the bigger picture as I know it is the universe’s way of clearing out the things or people not needed in my life.  Instead of trying to fight what is going on, I am doing my best to embrace it.  It is still very difficult at times, and to the point when I am wondering whether I am in fact managing at all, whether it is all in my head or whether I am just going slightly crazy.  However, most of the time I am coping rather well.

In embracing the changes and the good old ‘clear-out’ I have decided to clear out my home.  I have been inspired by the article above which I found on the Zen Habits blog, which I stumbled across whilst reading another blog about keeping true to yourself whilst writing for your blog.  Something I am trying very hard to do!  I am a believer things are put into your path for a reason.  I have been thinking my home is well over due a clear out and I even bought a book on Feng Shui the other day.  I feel like things are a little stagnant and need help moving along.  I have literally just found the article on Zen Habits minutes ago and I feel I have been led to it as a sign that my thoughts are correct.

tidy-up-doodleboard

My plan is to have a major clear out of all the things I no longer need or are not necessary in my life, and either donate to charity, take to the tip or sell.  I plan to use the money I make to put towards a holiday for my children and I in the Summer.  I feel we, as a family have culminated so much ‘stuff’ that our home feels full.  It is not a nice feeling and I always feel that in order to grow you need room! Besides, my grandma always told me “A tidy home, is a tidy mind!”

Are any of you having the same feelings and thoughts? I would love to hear about them, so that I do not feel like I am an isolated case (as when I mention this to my friends they look at me as if I have gone daft in the head!)

I will keep you updated on how this goes.  But I am determined to follow this through, and as I have a little time off work at the moment, I feel it is perfect timing.  As well as this, Spring is coming, and there is nothing more pleasing than a good old Spring clean!  Wish me luck! 🙂

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How wiser words can come from children than from some adults: Indigo Children?

I am beginning to think my youngest child is actually an angel from heaven, you know the type ‘cheeky’ angel with a bit of slight devilment which keeps everyone on their toes, but are actually truly amazing.  If you have heard of the term ‘indigo-child’ I think I am somewhere near.  From here on in, I will call her Indigo.

She has done two things since Sunday which make me incredible proud.  Sunday was her birthday, she was 6.  I treated her to a day trip out and of course lots of presents, including her nails done at the nail salon-she was adamant!! (Me: Are you sure darling, you are only 6. Indigo: But mummy I want my nails doing just like you) How could I say no?!  Anyway, as I tucked her up in bed on Sunday evening she threw her arms around my neck and said “Mummy this has been the best birthday ever, thank you so much for what you have done today!” She released my neck grabbed my cheeks with her tiny hands and planted a kiss on my lips, let go and gave me the biggest grin.  My heart melted.  It is not every day a ‘just gone’ 6 year old is able to show such gratitude.

The second thing came just last night, two days since her birthday.  She knows I have been having a bit of a tough time recently.  I treated her to homemade pancakes, it was Pancake Tuesday after all.. I let her smear on the nutella and rolling it up she said “mummy you are the best mummy in the world!” She then began to sing to me whilst eating her pancake “lean on me…..when you’re not strong, I’ll be your friend……I’ll help you carry on…”  We are know the song by Al Green I am sure, even if you did not know it was Al Green that sang it, you will know the song trust me…. I do not even know where she has learnt this song.  And when asked, she does not know either!

At this point I could have cried.  How I have managed to raise such an emotionally aware child I will never know!  She flashed me a big smile and said “Mummy I lean on you all the time don’t I?  You can lean on me today.”

I love this girl, I am proud she is my daughter, she is like my little shadow, she will follow me to the end of the earth if that is where I am going.  I wake up in a morning and there she is in bed next to me, after she has sneaked in, in the middle of the night.

No matter how hard life gets, there is one person who can always put a smile on your face.  For me it is my youngest daughter.  We have such a connection, that we do not even have to speak to each other and we know what we are thinking.  I believe she is a soul mate of mine (yes relatives, friends etc can be soul mates too…..)

Indigo, you are truly amazing and always an inspiration to me.  You never fail to amaze me with your wise words, too wise for such a young girl.  I love you xxxxx

Related:

http://www.sophiagubb.com/how-to-tell-if-you-are-indigo/

Weekly Writing Challenge: Object – My Grandma’s Reindeer

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/02/24/writing-challenge-

I walked into the room, heart pounding and mouth dry.  The bright lights hurting my eyes as I walked down the corridor.  I turned right down another long hallway.  Each step becoming harder than the one before.  My legs felt like jelly.  My head was buzzing and I felt dizzy and sick.  Eventually I saw Ward 9, I turned right and pulled open the heavy wooden door.  I squirted on some antibacterial hand gel and rubbed it into my hands whilst walking towards the nurses desk.  I cleared my throat and asked her where she was.  I was directed down towards the end of the ward into the last room.  There she lay in the bed, looking so tiny.  Much smaller than usual.  Her curly grey hair still looking perfect.  She knew someone was there but she did nt know who it was as her eyes were severely affected by cataracts. I walked over to the bed, took her hand and said “Hello Grandma”.  “Hello love” she managed. She knew who I was.  My grandma and I had a close relationship.  I sat next to her and stroked her hair.  I tried to speak to her without letting her know how upset I was.  The nurse came in and I asked her how she had been over night.  “She has been quite stable” she said.  “She looks much better today” I said, trying to be optimistic.  The nurse smiled at me but said nothing, and then carried about her business.  I kissed my grandma on the cheek and said “I will see you later grandma, I will be back later, I promise.”  “OK” she croaked whilst managing a smile and nodding slowly.

I walked out of the ward with the intention of going to the canteen for a cup of coffee.  I was tired.  I had not had much sleep as I had been worried about my grandma.  I reached a chair in one of the corridors and decided to sit down. I began thinking of all the things we had done together.  The holidays we had been on. The time in Ibiza when she sat on a wall with white trousers on and when she stood up they were red, she was covered in ants!

As a child I often stayed with her on a weekend.  I loved going. I loved walking her dog, Snowy, up and down the cobbled back street. The same street my uncle, (only 9 years older than me, he was the youngest of her children), had taught me to ride a bike on an adult full sized BMX when aged only 8 years old.  I could not even touch the floor and had to balance the bike against the wall to climb on!  In school holidays I remember being looked after by my grandma with my siblings and cousins.  My Grandma’s cooking was the best, macaroni cheese and homemade chips was my favourite.

I used to sit on the sofa in her living room and watch TV, all snuggled up with her woolen Scottish tartan blanket. One time I was laid on the floor in front of the hot fire watching my favourite TV program after school, my grandma downstairs cooking tea.  All of a sudden a little white mouse ran across the front of me from behind her glass cabinet which stored all her trinkets and ornaments bought for her over the years by her children and grandchildren. I remember thinking it was cute, but I screamed anyway. I remember grandma telling me not to be scared and to think how scared the poor little mouse was seeing me on the floor, as I was a lot bigger than the mouse! That made me laugh.

Every Christmas day was spent at grandma’s with all my aunts, uncles and cousins.  One year all 11 grandchildren lined up and we sang “Grandma we love you”.

A more recent memory of 5 or 6 years before floated back, when grandma has made me a royal blue and bottle green tartan pinafore dress.  I remember being stood in her front room whilst trying on my new dress.  Her laughing at me when I said I had ‘boobies’ telling me they were like ‘fried eggs’.  I was only 12, and my grandma was a 40DD bra size.  I can see now why she found it so funny.

She was how grandmas are supposed to be.  She made and repaired things, clothes etc, she cooked and she cleaned, she treated us to presents and fed us lots of biscuits and cakes.  My grandma was from Scotland but she was far from the stereotype of being stingy with money,  she was the exact opposite, and in fact the most generous person I knew.

Just then my mobile rang. It was my uncle asking me to go back to the ward as the doctor wanted to speak with me. When I arrived, I was lead into a side room and I sat down on one of the chairs.  My uncle was there, he looked at me and instead of talking he began to cry.  I had never seen my uncle cry before.  It was hard to see, a 6 ft 4 inch stocky man, eyes red from the tears, looking heart broken.  I looked at the floor and said “has she gone?” “No, but she is not well”. Managed my uncle, at that point he broke down again.  “We have tried to give her another blood transfusion but nothing is working for her any more.  I am sorry but it is only a matter of time now.”  I stared at the doctor as the words fell out of his mouth, like lead to the floor.  Each word washing over me, but it did not really sink in. All I could think was ‘that’s it, she is going.’  I dropped to my knees and I cried, harder than I had ever cried before. Even when my mum and dad divorced, I do not remember crying so hard. heart ached, I felt like my world was falling apart around me.  My grandma was like a second mum to me.  In fact I told my grandma things I could not speak to my mum about.  My grandma had looked after my first child, which I had when I was only 17.  My grandma never judged me, she did nothing but support me.  She took me and my son on trips with her Pensioners Club to the seaside.  My son adored her, he used to help her do the gardening and loved hanging the washing out on the line with her, she made it fun. She even played football with him in the garden, despite her having a double hip replacement only a couple of years previously.  She was one person that my son would do absolutely anything for.

I stopped crying and wiped away the tears. “I want to see her.” I said as I walked out of the side room and into hers.  My grandma was laid in bed asleep.  “Hi grandma” I said.  “Hello dear” she managed quietly.  A tear ran down my cheek.  “Are you ok?” I said.  She nodded and smiled.  I sat next to her, perched on the bed and held her hand. “I love you grandma” I said.  “I love you too.” She replied.  I stroked her hair and kissed her forehead and said “I’ll see you again soon grandma.” She looked in my direction, but I know she would nt have been able to see my face because of her cataracts, but she stared in my direction, smiled at me and said “yes”.  The doctor had n’t said anything to her, but I knew she could tell that this was the last time we were to see each other, in this life time.  I hugged her tight and kissed her again on the cheek and with that I let go of her hand, I turned and began to walk away.  Tears streaming down my face I turned to look at her one last time. She had closed her eyes and looked peaceful with a smile on her face.  I smiled back and whispered “love you grandma, I will see you again.” At that moment I thought in my head ‘Please angels take good care of her, she is so precious.’

I turned and walked down the corridor.  As I reached the door I heard the nurses rushing, I turned around and saw them heading towards the end room. I knew that was it, she was gone.  I walked out of the hospital and sat in my car. I held between my palms the little reindeer broach my grandma had given to me, just before she had gone into hospital. That was 6 years ago.  I still speak to her on a daily basis and keep that reindeer close.  To anyone else that reindeer is nt worth anything else, it is nt made from gold or any other precious metal, but it was my grandmother’s. I had bought it for her one Christmas when I was 11 years old with my pocket money from the local market.  She had kept it all those years, until I was 27.  That meant so much to me.  I will always have a bond with my grandma and even though physically she is not here, I know she is around.

My final tribute to grandma was the song I chose for her funeral. “Grandma we love you” by St Winifred’s Choir. That seemed like the only choice for me.

“One day grandma I will see you again, that day will be when the angels are also looking after me. But until then I will keep close to me the only thing I have left, our little reindeer. And of course, our memories.”

grandmasreindeer

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