This week was one of those weeks that really tested my ability to practice gratitude and joyfulness. It has been a week of sticky weather, temper tantrums, foul moods, and not a lot of rest or relaxation. In fact, ‘frazzled’ is probably the word I’d use to describe how I feel at the end of it. Nevertheless, I am here with five of the things that made me happy this week because that’s the whole point of this here shindig… finding happiness even when you’re feeling like a completely negative Nancy.
1. A new restaurant:
For some reason, our office at work are terrible at organising team outings or social gatherings. So, at the beginning of September, we found ourselves having fallen behind on no less than four office birthdays. We knew it’d be hopeless and pointless to attempt four separate gatherings, so we decided to instead have one all-encompassing meal on Monday night. We went to an Eastern European restaurant called Hauze, which I hadn’t ever heard of before. It was one of those times where you have basically no expectations and then you’re totally bowled over. I had vegetable dumplings to start and then baked salmon and shrimps for the main. Both courses were absolutely DELICIOUS. We all picked off each others’ plates and tried the various starters and mains, so delighted were we that the food was so glorious. By the end of the night we were all thoroughly stuffed and there was not a leftover in sight. It was great to discover such a gem that I know I’d have never ordinarily visited!
As I mentioned, it has been a ridiculously busy and stressful week around here. I have a full time job which requires ten hours of commuting time per week and then there’s this blog and The Olive Fox to manage on top of all of that. None of this leaves a lot of time for relaxing! On Tuesday, I’d had a super difficult day at work (the kind of day where everything goes wrong) and by the end of it my head was absolutely pounding. I drove the hour home and then got to work on all of the blog jobs I needed to do, finally shutting my laptop at 10:30pm after leaving the house at 7:30am. However, within an hour of curling up in my pyjamas with a cuppa, on my beautiful couch with Greg and Juno, I felt all of the stress just melt away. I absolutely adore my home and it fills up my soul and refreshes me like nothing else can. By bedtime, I was completely calm and ready for what turned out to be another horrible day on Wednesday haha.
3. Making new online friends:
On Tuesday I hosted the first ever From The Fringe chat which turned out to be absolutely lovely. Honestly, I was slightly worried that nobody would come and that I’d just be left talking to myself, but thankfully there were quite a few darlings that came along. Phew! Twitter chats are one of my favourite things because you’re suddenly opened up to a new group of people who aren’t usually on your feed. They’re often like-minded if they’re taking part in the same chat as you so it’s a great opportunity to meet new friends and potential collaborators. So hosting a chat was an absolute joy! If you’d like to get involved, then make sure you’re around on the first Tuesday of every month, with the next chat being on Tuesday 4th October.
4. A community project:
My home town is a very deprived area with a lot of people who are vulnerable or in need. It often tops all of the charts that you don’t want to even feature in, let alone be champion of, and it gets a lot of bad press. However, there are still those people who have lived there for decades and who genuinely still care about the community, even if others around them don’t. This week I heard about the sweetest community project being run by a couple who decided to bring their neighbours together over a shared alleyway. They are all working together to build wild gardens for butterflies and bees, putting up bat boxes, and even growing strawberries and vegetables, all in the alleyway behind their homes. Then, when the work is complete, they plan to have community barbecues and fairs, and have already held a meeting where the residents sat in the alley, enjoying the sunshine, eating cake and drinking tea together. In a town where there is sometimes a lot of negativity, this beautiful project brought a huge smile to my face and I can’t wait to see it when it’s finished.
5. A short week:
Despite it having been a testing week, thankfully I didn’t have to endure a full five days at work. Which is probably just as well because there’s a high possibility that I may have just collapsed in a heap, never to rise again. As a treat that came at the most opportune of times, I had booked myself Thursday and Friday off because Greg and I had booked to see a show at the beautiful Hammersmith Apollo. The sun was shining, fish and chips were consumed…what more could you want?! We’re now back, snuggled up on the couch with a whole weekend still ahead of us. Huzzah!
So that’s my week, I do hope that you’ve fared better than I have! Drop me a comment with the things that have made you smile this week.
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