When the Negative Voices Strike

[dropcap]A[/dropcap]t 46½ I am officially feeling old. Of course I continue blithely scouring Top Shop for the latest fashion trends and watching Gilmore Girls on repeat, but we all know the truth: I’m much nearer 50 than 40 and the dreaded ‘M’ word is creeping ever closer. You’ve heard ad infinitum about my midlife crisis; more specifically, whether I’m ‘too old for…

Motherhood: A Thankless Task?

[dropcap]I[/dropcap] made some pastry the other day. I realise that’s not exactly a news-worthy headline but how to make good pastry (and a victoria sandwich for that matter) is something that my mum taught me from an early age. She saw it as part of her role as a mother, to pass down those skills. For that I will always…

Is Being Selfish Always Wrong?

[dropcap]B[/dropcap]uying a Red magazine before I go on holiday has become somewhat of a ritual over recent years. Ever since I cancelled my monthly subscription due to too many editions being left to gather dust, I have reserved it for treat time only. Just looking at that brightly coloured, glossy front page signals ‘down time’ for me. I now ensure…

Learning to Enjoy the Ride

[dropcap]H[/dropcap]ave you ever thought that you don’t have much to offer the world? I know that I have. As a child and throughout my teenage years, I was always a little envious of people who had that one obvious talent – something they shone at. I think part of me longed for that kind of clarity, I would know what…

Finding Balance in 2018

[dropcap]B[/dropcap]efore you say it, I am well aware of my tardiness in putting finger to keyboard on this one but sometimes a little pondering does us good. Over the last few weeks, I’ve enjoyed reflecting on 2017 and it has led me to consider what I would like to change in 2018. I’ve started putting a few things into practice…

2017: The Year I Learned to Let Go

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he guests have gone, the decorations are down, it’s time to contemplate 2017. For the last five years, I’ve been kicking a new year off with the help of a workbook called Unravel Your Year by Susannah Conway. For someone who likes to reflect and plan, it’s an excellent tool that I would highly recommend. Before considering the new year…

There’s Always Hope…

[dropcap]O[/dropcap]n 5th September 1997, whilst the rest of the British public was mourning the loss of Princess Diana, we were saying ‘I do’. Yes people, today is our 20th wedding anniversary. Twenty years! I remember celebrating my parent’s silver wedding anniversary as though it was yesterday. Strange to think that we are now nipping at the heels of that great milestone. What…

Why Playing Small Does not Serve the World

[dropcap]D[/dropcap]o you ever feel embarrassed when someone pays you a compliment? Perhaps the response “Oh no I’m not *that* good (insert name of talented friend) is much better than me” trips all too readily off the tongue. Or maybe your in-built modesty forces you to reply with “Well I’ve got a long way to go but I’m trying”. I’m not sure whether it’s…

Coming of Age {The Best Things About Turning 40}

At 15 years of age, you think you know everything. Remember that phase? The fact is, whatever stage of life we’re in, we do know more than we did in the last. Even the defiant, opinionated 15 year old has a point – she (for argument’s sake) certainly knows more than a 5 year old and a decade of experience…