Category Archives: Blog

What’s Your Relaxing Day?

I took my partner to a spa for their birthday yesterday – the first time they’d been to one! We went multicoloured-swimming (the pool was lit, which incidentally ended up with the feeling we were swimming in radioactive water when the lights went a particular shade of greenish-yellow) and had a massage and generally chilled out. It also led to the very surreal moment of sitting in a very smart hotel restaurant in swimsuits and a bathrobe. I mean, it was fine, and they’re obviously used to it, but… it was very odd.

But it got us both thinking. What’s everyone’s perfect day out?

new park manor spa and poolI actually don’t like spas that much; they’re ok for a short amount of time (we just did a couple of hours) but then I get bored, as there’s only so much time I can be away from my laptop – ok, I’m mostly joking! There’s only so much time I can a) not be doing anything productive, and b) be submerged in water. Once those two conditions are up, I get antsy – even if I have a book! Sitting by a pool and sunbathing/reading/swimming – an entire day of that sounds like my worst nightmare.

So my perfect day? A comfy chair first thing with a laptop and tea (to slowly wake up and to catch up on admin); a nice breakfast; a walk somewhere; a board game or two with friends or my partner; and a chance to chill out for a bit with a book. Add in a nap and some cake, and I’m set.

(My partner’s was pretty much the same, except with more naps and reading time.)

So my conclusion is – I have to be able to have productive time, and if you want me to chill out, give me something to do. A walk. Yes, ok, swimming. A board game. Something I can focus on that means I don’t think about everything else – and something to let my brain just wind down from whatever it’s been worrying about.

That said, swimming in radioactive water isn’t something you do every day, so that was quite cool.

What’s your ideal day?

NaNoReMo – Novel Reading Month – the end

So, how have I done in my quest to read as many books off my TBR as possible in a month?

In a word: terribly. I read half a book.



(I mean, that’s excluding the ones at work where I read about twenty so it’s not like I’m NOT reading, but…)

I shall now sing a happy little song, which is called “Where Has All My Motivation Gone?”

A Very Unhappy cat

I just couldn’t get the concentration. I seem to have time in five-minute bursts, and I just ended up skimming pages, then putting the book down again. I was playing games a lot (they’re easier for me to not-focus on, I think?) and mooching around the internet, and generally not being productive,


I want to read, that’s the thing! I want to get into the stories. I just keep finding that I drift off or get antsy or just… dunno. It’s indicative of my general bouncing mood at the moment, though; I’m definitely unsettled.

I’ve got a few days holiday now though, so I’m taking some books with me. Whether they’ll just sit and look pretty or whether I’ll actually read them is another story…

5 Happy Things: November 2019

Happy things for November…

1.It’s nearly Christmas!

A lake where a playing field used to be...

Biscuits! Presents! Cold weather! Flooded Oxford! Food!

I don’t know why I’m quite so excited this year (possibly the drugs have something to do with it) but I’m really looking forward to Christmas. (The flooding part isn’t so great, but we live on a hill and own wellies, so meh. The birds seem to be enjoying it anyhow.)

Also, it’s time off to sleep and read – and eat biscuits.

2.Advent Calendar!

As my partner has now seen this (and helped me put the fairy lights up), I can talk about it! I made an advent calendar – it’s 24 envelopes with craft tape, all pinned to the fairy lights. I’m not going to say what’s in each envelope as I know my partner reads this (hey, you) but it’s cute, and exciting, and I really hope they like it.

They liked the calendar when it went up, anyhow, so that’s a good sign 🙂 and the lights make the room really cosy!

3.Seeing people

Portal board game boxExcellent dinner at GBK and a Beethoven & Stravinsky concert in Birmingham, catching up with Sam and playing the Portal board game,  dinner at the George Street Social with an old friend,  lunch at the Ashmoleon with my family… it’s been a busy month (and next month is due to be even busier, ARGH) but I’m coping.

Portal was ok, by the way – but we decided that you needed to play with  more than two people, and they had to be people who don’t mind being mean to each other. It’s definitely a backstab-and-steal-your-cake game.

4.Pills pills pills

Well, it’s sort of a good thing. They’re definitely helping lift my mood, but they’re also doing an absolute number on me in terms of tiredness and picking up bugs; I fell asleep on both journeys to/from Birmingham, have been going out like a light as soon as my head hits the pillow and waking up tired every morning, and spent some of this week lying in bed with a stupid bug that made me exhausted, sick and generally incapable of any thought. I’m really hoping the effects wear off soon!

But overall – they’ve been really good! I had two points last week where I could feel myself reaching the end of my energy, but I was ok: I coped, and could still function. I did have one bad anxiety attack (set off by a crowded pub) but that was ok. So yay for drugs!

5.Ridiculous games

I got Donut County, which looks like silly amounts of fun (and so far, after 5 minutes play, is silly amounts of fun!)

Donut County is a story-based physics puzzle game where you play as an ever-growing hole in the ground. Meet cute characters, steal their trash, and throw them in a hole.

See? Ridiculous! Also, it involves a trash panda, so that’s definitely win.