Category Archives: health

Five on Friday – Best Foot Forward Spring/Summer 2014

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Holla! How are you on this fine day? (grey UK-side).

My mind is a bit of a muddle today, being up with Sweet Bea in the night has made my brain a bit fuzzy! That’s where blogging is brilliant.  I know that by the time I have these ideas down & out in the blogosphere I will feel better & be able to think a bit clearer.

If you don’t already write, I can tell you writing everything down is free therapy! You’re welcome.

Today FEET!  The part of the body I feel we easily neglect & yet we are on them all day & we put them through a lot.

Here are my 5 tips & product suggestions to help you put your best feet forward this Spring/Summer 2014!!!

O N E – GET A PEDICURE

Even if you only have time for one treatment this Spring/Summer go & get yourself a pedicure, your feet will seriously thank you.

Think an hour or more getting your feet painted is a little too luxurious?  Most salons offer mini Pedi’s which should take around 30 minutes & are a little cheaper.  That’s more than enough to set you up & perk up your tootsies for the warmer weather!

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T W O – WASH YOUR FEET

This is a tip for every day not just when your feet are out for all to see.  Even though this seems abit top level, I bet you forget regularly!

Next time you have a shower wash those feet! In between the toes too, no cheating! Dry them properly too, then move onto Step Three.

T H R E E – FOOT CREAM/FOOT BALM

My feet get so hot in the warmer weather & add walking/running around the house/garden a thousand times a day with the Sweet Kids  & they are d-i-r-t-y! Like proper and my ankles hurt too!

Washing your feet, spraying with a cooling spray & moisturising them will cool them down & take care of those tooties.  I love anything with a cooling element to it.

I’ve tried a few products over the years  but lately I’m loving Burt’s Bee’s range.  I was given a tube of Burt’s Bees Foot Balm as a gift .  One for the evening when you have a bit more time, it takes awhile to sink in, but it’s luxury in a tube.  The smell is heavenly, a mix of coconut & mint (although it states just coconut).  You can get this lovely foot balm at various outlets.

Now I’m sold on the range I need to decide between these two beauties when my little tube runs out!

bees bees2

Peppermint

Coconut

You can find the range at John Lewis, Boots, Debenhams or Amazon amongst others.

F O U R – REST YOUR FEET

Ever feel like the kids have gone to bed & you’re still rushing around like a loony trying to tidy up?

Take a break, put your feet up for 5 minutes, read a blog post or two. Have a cup of tea & then I recommend you  read this seriously funny post before tidying the kids toys away for the night.

playmobil flip flops

Photograph courtesy of Hurrah for Gin.

Katie at Hurrah for Gin  will get you into the swing of tidying with style, I promise it’ll set you up for the next day of free play with your Sweet Kids!

F I V E – TREAT YOUR FEET

Every year needs a new pair of sandals.

I’ve scoured Pinterest & the internet for you & fallen for these lovelies for 2014, what do you think? Strappy or strappy? Strappy it is! These are my favourite, the expensive ones of course!

Most likely you’ll find me at buying my next pair at River Island or Topshop although I wish I could afford the Tory Burch pair!

Thanks to my sweet hosts, April, Christina, Darci & Natasha.

Don’t forget to read their lovely posts.

Until the next time friends have a sweet day!

Lizzie XOXO

nb. This post is not sponsored & all thoughts & opinions are entirely my own, LS XO

 

Five on Friday – ‘Mama Needs a Break’ 5 Pamper Ideas Without Leaving the House

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Hey friends,

Linking up again with my lovely hosts over the pond. April, Christina, Darci & Nathasha. Clink their names to see their blogs & show them some love!

Let’s face it lovelies, unless the sweet kids are at School us Mama’s don’t often get a chance to relax sans kids. You’re either looking after children + housework, or out working + running the home.

The Easter holidays, although fun with both kiddos is not a break.  As a Mum that stays home it got me to thinking that actually none of the holidays are relaxing for us Mama’s, in fact they create more work & not less!

So I sat down & came up with ways to have some positive down time during the hectic without a hard hit on the wallet!

1// Take a Bubble Bath

bubble bath

This is actually my number one way to relax & it sounds so simple but if you’re going to have a bubble bath make it count & stay in it for A LONG TIME. Read a book or magazine, get those scented candles out.

You have no idea how often I forget to do this. Such a simple way to pamper yourself, without leaving the house or need of a babysitter!

Takes 20-30 mins, Costs –  Bubble Bath, Candle & Water.

2// Paint Your Nails

I’d love to have my nails painted regularly but it’s just not possible to go to the salon on a regular basis. So a home job in the evenings it is.

I made the mistake of trying to paint my nails while looking after the kids. Orange nail varnish now adorns the side of my sofa. Yep.

Takes 30 mins, Costs – Nail varnish, Nail file Approx. £5-10

3// Face Pack

This doesn’t take as long or cost as much as you think. I like these packs, you can pick them up from any supermarket, just add it onto your shower (or bubble bath) in the evening.

face pack

They make your face feel fresh & rejuvenated & come in loads of different flavours, I love the chocolate one, I’m all over that.

Takes 15 mins, Cost £1

4// Get Weeding/Activity

Over the Easter weekend I set to weeding our boarder & around the apple tree we planted for Sweet Harry.  Hubby watched the kids. I could still hear them playing & having a great time together, but I wasn’t responsible for supervising them.

It took over an hour to weed my little patch but I was so pleased with the result & while I was doing it I was so focussed on it I didn’t think about anything else at all!

weeding

This is a win/win because my garden also looks great, which gives me pleasure every time I look at it.

Takes 1 hr, Costs – The price of a spade

5// Read

I just don’t plan in time to read even though I love it.  By evenings I’m pretty wacked.  This is where I need to remind myself to read during Sweet Bea’s nap time.  It seems like a luxury when there is always so much to do around the house.  I think it’s important to give your mind a break, a change from the norm.  You know what they say, a change is as good as a rest.

Takes – As long as you want, Costs – Dependant on your book or magazine of choice!

What do you like doing? Plan it in.

Plan in baths, face packs & painting nails in the evenings while the kids are asleep. For reading you may have to put a timer on it so you don’t get so into it you forget to do the laundry! For the weeding or activity you like doing you may need to rope in your partner, parents or a friends help to watch the kids.

Make sure you ask someone you love & trust, they may just love the opportunity to watch your sweet babe’s for an hour to bless you!! Maybe you could do it for a friend too! Share the love.

I hope you enjoyed my 5 this week & that they encourage you!

See you next time!

Lizzie XOXO

 

 

Chubby Legs

Hey friends,

My beautiful Sweet Bea just gets more stunning by the day. Since turning One a month ago she’s changed quite drastically.

One of the ways she’s changed is her pickle nature has been coming out more & more.

Pulling things down that should stay up, wriggling so hard you have to put her on the floor or you’d drop her, throwing her food on the floor for sport. The usual baby transition to toddlerhood really!

The other way is her chubby chubbyness! Those beautiful baby chub rolls on her legs especially. Those squishy cheeks, her big tummy, the fat on her arms, love, love, Iove it!!

Oh how I love Sweet Bea’s chubby thighs. I squeeze them until she giggles that beautiful & infectious deep throat laugh that invariably then comes out of her nose (plus some snot).

She wiggles & I have to put her down, then pick her up & do it all again. What a fun game!! I can’t resist the chubby legs, you see?!

As we were playing this innocent game the other day I said to her ‘I love your chubby legs’ she giggled & we did that over & over again.

A thought hit me, oh my goddess the very thing that I love about my daughter is probably the very thing she’ll loathe about herself when she’s older. Chubby legs? = a total nightmare for a girl, a teenager, a woman, or even very, very little girls.

When does that beautiful innocence go? Where we’re happy with our body just as it is. Where actually we don’t even think about our bodies at all. Where realising our fingers & toes are actually part of our bodies is like, wow wicked! Where pulling things down that should stay up is the most important thing & nothing else even comes into it.

I tried to wrack my little brain to remember when I realised the world is not as it could be. That we could see beautiful, stunning, amazing girls in love with themselves & who they are. Sadly I couldn’t remember, so I’m guessing it starts at a heartbreakingly young age.

I think it has to start at home with us, her parents & wider family, to validate how beautiful, amazing & loved she is. Remember Bridget Jones being so touched because Mark Darcy liked her ‘just as she is’? that’s powerful that.

Also I will teach my children healthy eating & running about like a loon is good for you, but to be a well rounded healthy child not just to look good by the world’s standards!

When the day comes that she asks me that question ‘Do I look fat in this Mum, are my thighs too big’? I’ll say ‘darling you look amazing you’re perfect as you are’, & then ruin it by saying ‘I love your chubby legs the most in the world’, possibly before dodging a hairbrush being thrown at me across the room!!

I might just have to keep that little gem in my heart instead friends! But I will be saying it in my head, because I really do love her chubby legs the most in the whole, wide world.

Sonnet 43 – How do I love thee? Let me count the ways XLIII

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints,—I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life!—and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Until the next time friends
Have a great day!

Lizzie XOXO

I may be mad but I’ve nominated myself (because sometimes the ship comes to you)! I would love it if you would nominate me if my blog has inspired or encouraged you, you like reading about my life with the sweet kiddos, for my home style or the very fact I’m a new blog with absolutely no bells & whistles (still green/learning). I’d be made up if you nominated me, but as with everything with me, no pressure no problem! LOVE LIZZIE XOXOXOXOXO

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An unintentional break

Hey friends, first apologies for neglecting you all, sickness has hit me yet again & I’m at long last admitting defeat & taking myself to the doctor.

I’m more than hopeful I’ll feel better for my birthday on Friday!

So this week to show you a little bit of the joys I’ve enjoyed over the last couple of months I’m going to be posting some short blog posts over the week.

I hope you enjoy them!

Lizzie XOXO

Comparison Part Deux

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Hey friends,

I’ve been thinking a lot about this hot topic recently.  COMPARISON, it’s everywhere.

I posted the other day about comparison taking away ALL of our joy, but I must admit I’ve had a re-think! Mostly because I mis-quoted (sorry Theodore Roosevelt) but also because it’s just something that’s been stirring away in me for awhile.

We need to compare things, that just makes sense.  Say I have a pear in each hand, one is ripe & ready to eat, the other is bruised & looking a bit beyond it, which one would I choose to eat? I need to compare to make educated decisions.

I think my point was (& is) that when I get so wrapped up in what other people have or what they do then that robs me of my joy.

The reason it robs my joy is that the person I look up to (& put on a pedestal), the DREAM job/career person, the go-getter, the Type A personality in the stunning clothes, with perfect hair & perfect family. They don’t always show the hard work, the sacrifice of family time or the downright mundane of the job they do.  They makes it look so easy so I assume it is easy.

Who knows what that person had to go through to get that coveted job, work all the hours God sends? Maybe they’ve had to ‘fake it til you make it’ & are so fed up of the fake & just want to get away & take skiing lessons or go to Hawaii & surf & ‘find themselves’.  Maybe they look at someone like me & think ‘I’d love to stay home with my kids, that would be my dream job’!  Or maybe they were pushed so hard as a child they felt they HAD to get the top career or they’d be seen as a failure by their family. Or it might really be all it’s cracked up to be.

Whatever your situation is, sometimes the grass does look greener & maybe it is. Maybe one day I will have the dream career in writing/journalism/features. But if I don’t ever get that career, or go on that amazing trip or whatever it is for you, does that diminish who I am? Does it diminish who you are? I say NO WAY!

So compare away friends, because that’s natural & human.  But each time you start comparing with someone else’s life, think, does it advance you, or does it hold you back? I’m thinking that if it’s not a helpful comparison then acknowledge it, don’t judge it; then let it go & move on.

If it is helpful, then harness it & use it positively to learn & build a better version of yourself. But do it for YOU, not because you feel you HAVE to in order to look or feel successful for other people. That’s when you’ll be robbed of your joy.

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Be encouraged, you are enough just as you are. If you’re not happy, compare wisely, choose joy & make plans.

Thanks for stopping by to read my thoughts, I hope you’re having a great day!

Lizzie xoxoxo

Five on Friday – New Year’s Edition

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Hi friends,

Linking up once again with April, Christina, Darci & Natasha.  Thanks ladies!

I thought I would let you all in on my little resolutions & plans for 2014.

O N E – WORRY LESS, BE MORE MINDFUL

If you read my post you will know I have suffered with anxiety, at some points it was really hard going, especially mixed with a bit of Post Natal Anxiety.  I have to admit in those really hard times I have shut myself away from the world.

However, part of my resolve list in 2013 was to focus on my own well-being, being more positive & looking after my body & mind.  Since setting on that road I can honestly say I’ve never felt better.

I was recommended an app called Headspace which you can download for free on your iPhone.  It’s quite amazing how quickly it changed things for me.  I don’t feel the need to use it every day, but it’s there if I need it.

Read more about Headspace & whether it could help you here.

T W O –  GET ON THE FLOOR & PLAY

harry play on floor

What’s the point in being a SAHM if my whole day is spent doing the dishes, cooking, laundry, supermarket shopping & the mundane?

I need to remind myself daily why I stayed home, get down with the kids on the floor, & just have some FUN with them! E V E R Y  D A Y.

The days go by so quickly, & too many have passed without me just being with them, totally focused on just playing, or reading to them.  I need to do this intentionally before they decide not to bother trying anymore.

T H R E E – MOVE BLOG UP A NOTCH

blogging

Redesign, possibly sponsoring another blog, inviting other bloggers to guest post & hosting giveaways may be in this blog’s future!

I’ve been blown away by all the views & support I’ve had since I started blogging in August.

I’ve also got the domain name lizziesomerset.com, so watch out for the switch to self-hosted!

What can I say, it’s exciting stuff being planned in this Somerset ranch for 2014!

F O U R – AN ADVENTURE

adventure

I have no idea yet what this may be!

I’m one for planning our holidays/trips so I feel in control, but since I’ve started practicing Mindfulness/Headspace I’m more open to whatever adventure comes my way.

Maybe it will be a trip with girlfriends, or a blogging conference?! All I know is, when I get to the end of 2014, I will look back & know what that adventure was.

F I V E – READ MY DEVOTIONAL

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For me, nothing is possible without the love & grace of God. If I’m not inline with His plans  then things tend to go awry!

My SIL Deb got me this beautiful devotional called Jesus Calling by Sarah Young for Christmas, so I’m intending use this gift & spend time in His presence every day. (Please also note the beautiful new Filofax which will hopefully keep me more organised! I NEED IT!)

sweet bea 10 months

Finally, can I also just add it’s my Sweet Bea’s TENTH MOTHERSARY TODAY! Oh my goodness, seriously where did the time go!?  She’s just the most adorable, funniest, happiest baby girl in the world! She’s teething, trying to stand all the time & throws most of her food on the floor, but my goodness our life is so much richer for having her. Love you so much my little dink.

Until the next time friends.
Have a great day!

Lizzie xoxo

Much A Flu about Nothing

It’s the start of flu season, so I rang to get an appointment for us all to be vaccinated.

I was surprised when the Receptionist said she needed to check if I could have one as I didn’t fit the immediate criteria of over 65, children of a certain age & people with known breathing conditions like asthma.

I really thought I would be eligible, but the answer came back from the Doctor, it was a no. I’m not one to complain (ish) so I just shuffled off to Boots & paid for one.

However, I feel a flu jab should be offered to anyone who wants one, & here’s why.

In March 2012 I got flu. No big deal you might say, loads of people get the flu virus every year & survive. But here’s where my story goes on further.

My flu started much like anyone else’s, quickly! One minute I felt fine, the next I was laid up in bed with hubby called home from work to watch Harry.

A week later & there was no sign of it letting up. Then…..it got worse!

Sigh!!!

I started to become incoherent, just trailing off mid sentence & then looking at my Mum or hubby thinking ‘finish what you’re saying then’!

I was unsteady & during a bath my Mum had to sit on the loo seat & supervise me.

I just wasn’t right.

Jon & Mum got me to the surgery pronto!

I was referred straight to A&E, & after a lot of very worried looks & consultation with Jon I was admitted for observation. I ended up staying for 6 days!

I had to have a lumber puncture to determine what I had, it was not pleasant I was extremely distressed & very ill. They tested for all sorts of things but it came back with Post Influenza Encephalitis. Basically a brain virus caused by the flu infection.

I wasn’t a well girl at all.

But with the diagnosis came swift action & I was put on the right medication. Thank God!

The problems then came from the side effects of the lumber puncture. The worst headache you can imagine! The doctor described it as the worst hangover you could ever have. I’ve never had a hangover like that one!! I couldn’t lift my head without being sick.

The doctor prescribed coca cola for it as the sugar & caffeine really helped! The doctor endured a ribbing from the nurses as they’d never seen coke prescribed before!

Even when I was discharged on my birthday, I went home with the headache still raging.

In total I was unwell for a month. A month of not being able to look after my son. A month of my family having to drop everything & ferry Harry to & from nursery so Jon could work etc.

It was not a happy time for us.

Here’s where the good bit of the story comes in (& where I think God can make good out of every situation).

I was in a hospital ward of 6. The ones who stick in my mind are Nan & Olive. Elderly ladies, lovely.

It was through watching their care & my own treatment that I got an overview of the staff & how the hospital dept ran.

They did their best, of that I am sure!

I was next to a lady who passed away during my stay, I was able to pray quietly for her & her family.

I was able to pray for all the ladies, as needs became apparent. It was while in hospital in the pit of my own desperate situation that God revealed the pain in their situations too.

Goodness what an insular person I had become! This experience taught me such a valuable lesson in life. There really is always someone else worse off.

At least I had visitors. 26 in total over 6 days, & sooo many texts. I was so touched. Some of the other patients had 1, 2 or even no visitors at all.

I was also prayed for by the whole church. I felt loved in the midst of my desperation.

The nursery that sweet Harry went to gave him free childcare, for that week & for a bit of time afterwards so I could recover.

People cooked meals for Jon & sweet Harry.

People are so kind, when given the opportunity to be.

In regards to the NHS I think we have a way to go. The dept was over stretched & reactions not always as quick as they could have been. But all the doctors & nurses were so nice & really caring.

They do their best with the resources & time they have. At the end of the day I went in sick & came out better.

Yes I think everyone who wants one should have a flu jab for free on the NHS!

My illness mostly happens in old people & children, as per the vaccination criteria. I think we all know life isn’t that black & white!!

To finish though I am grateful to live in a country, that offers free health care, to the best of their ability & with sometimes limited or political restrictions.

If you’re eligible for a flu jab have one. If you’re not I’d advise you to pay for one.

Having flu is just not worth it.

Bless you all.
Until the next time friends.

Have a great day!
Lizzie xx