Day 249 a mahoosive clear out of both house and mind 😇

Felt like I was up and down all night then switched the 7am alarm off and slept right through until 9! Had planned to walk the dogs before 9… change of plan. Craig walked the dogs!

So I’ve had a pretty good day for organising my stuff and I’m not gonna lie, I’ve been directed at almost every turn… that’s what I needed and it’s the only way it was going to get done.

Craig and I went through bags of Christmas stuff to see what we had for everyone. There are piles of presents in the office floor now just waiting to be wrapped. I can cope with presents lying around rather than bags of stuff.

I keep using that word… stuff…. but I’ve been overwhelmed by my belongings recently. Having been really successful in selling things last year, I was aware of the amount of money that I was sitting on. You can sell everything these days. However, I was never getting round to selling things and it would have been a huge job so I was stressing about being surrounded but never doing anything about it.

Yesterday morning I realised that it just had to go. I wasn’t going to get it sold anytime soon and getting it out of the house is half the battle.

So yesterday I made a pact with Claire next door that I would have a huge clear out this afternoon. If it didn’t fit me…. it went to charity. If it was done it got binned. End off.

So…. I did it. About 6 or 7 huge bags of clothes and a box for charity AND 4 large bags for the bin. I have been without Ruth 🤣🤣 (can’t think who used to say this for ruthless but it still makes me giggle!!) and it did get easier towards the end as things that I’d moved house with for years and years and years got cleared out.

I feel like a weight has been lifted and lovely Claire is going to take it all to charity for me. We filled her car when I had the bags ready.

I can’t ever thank her enough for this kind of support. She didn’t get anything out of it and it was all to help me out.

I am not gonna lie…. there is a chance that I might lob a brick through her car window overnight to take back some things that I’m freaking out about…. that’s the reason it’s in her car though 😬 if it was in here I’d have the bags half emptied by tomorrow.

I have never really been a hoarder but I am a weight fluctuator (that is not a word!!) so I have clothes for every size from 8-18. I only kept a very small amount of what I went through today and I’m sure there will be more to come. This time I may be able to take it to charity myself.

On a trip to her car I spotted this. The moon directly above the village christmas tree

So I feel good tonight. Calm. Clear headed. So truly grateful for that kind of support and strict rules to adhere to.

Trying not to think about what’s in her car…. still 😬🤣

Stay safe everyone 😬😬😬

Day 248 festive cheer in the village to brighten up the strangest year 🎄

I could rename this blog with Calaidh chewed my leather handbag strap but I won’t… I will focus on the positive and take the bag to Timpsons to have it stitched. Just like my Grandad would have done when he had his shoe shop.

Auntie Jac sent this, how cool?!

We were very lucky in the village this year when Holly who owns the pub decided to try and get a big Christmas tree die outside the memorial hall. She started asking some questions and next thing you know the Gateside Plant Centre had donated a 10ft tree and some neighbours Guy & Heather donated and fitted the lights. Such a lovely guesture.

For locals considering a real tree! 🎄

Claire and I went shopping within North Ayrshire this morning to pick up some lights for the windows of the hall. We wanted nets of lights but couldn’t get anything like that.

Home for a bite of lunch then Claire, Rachel and I decorated the hall.

The tree!!
The windows are really jazzy
It looks so pretty

It even cheered little old bah humbug me. I felt pretty low this morning but as the days gone on I have focussed on the tasks at hand and my head has been kept busy.

Not taking credit for the tree but be rude not to pose in front of it!
Maybe a bit too light still but Claire put her lights up and then helped me with ours! We’ve gone for coloured this year
This is view out of our window!! It looks like there’s a party bus across the road! The reindeer is from my friend Gayle’s shop.. the Little Gift Shop!

So let’s be clear here. I am not a particularly festive person these days. In fact almost the opposite. This year I might just about manage it. Maybe a teeny weeny little bit festive.

Those who know me will be shocked to know that I actually wrapped presents and wrote some cards today…… it’s November. 🤦🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️ I guess I needed the distraction and it’s working.

Something worth thinking of

Stay safe everyone 🎄🎄🎄

Day 247 a beautiful November day 🔆🔆🔆

What a stunningly beautiful day today. Crisp, clear and fresh. Yes you guessed it a lot of photos to come!

Sunrise over the village this morning

Despite this I’m still having to work to lift my mood a bit. I feel really sad and I guess it’s most like COVID-19 that’s causing it although for me it’s hard to separate out. When I woke up this morning my first thought was a sense of dread that I had another whole day with nothing to do. All the years I would have killed for this moment. Yet it’s more than just being bored…. it’s a confusion and stress that I can’t think where best to focus my efforts. It’s an exhaustion that doesn’t end.

Anyway enough of the negative…. here are some photos of the day!

Frisbee fun in the field!! (Bhru has the least ladylike pose!!)

We need 2 frisbees in our house. One for Calaidh and one between Bhruic & Freya. Guaranteed which ever one you first through for Calaidh will NOT be the one she spends the rest of the time with. She just will not let it go and is happy to walk about the field shaking it and growling with it!

Action with Calaidh standing with hers just to prove my point!!
Tongue out Saturday!!
Some stunning spooky trees

So back home with the dogs, shower, hair wash and up to the Little Coffee Caravan!

Had an oat latte and a caramel pie

Drove for a good wee while round some back roads to…. yip you guessed it… Largs!

Had to reverse again at one point as the grass verges were too soft to use as a passing place. I’m getting quite used to that now.

Isn’t this just beautiful. Barely a breath!
The sea is so clear
Breathtaking scenery

I have another million pictures of the sun glistening on the water. I was trying to get the different movements of it through the waves but the best ones are when it’s almost straight.

I had to walk down on to the beach to get more
Who knew there was a plane passing under the sun… I couldn’t see a thing!!
Thought this house and it’s trees were really unusual

There a clarity about the air today that’s sadly lacking inside my head. It was so beautiful. Truly magical. Ok you get that I liked it huh?!?!

The ferry pulling out of Largs
About to dock in Cumbrae
From the window in the van!
And this one! Taken from inside looking out

Drove home about 1ish and have done nothing much for the rest of the day. I’ve had a good nap on the new couch which is amazing for a nap. I lit the candles and the fire was already on.

We’ve watched a film and had oven fish and chips for tea that were way better than any chippy!

I just need to try and get to the bottom of what’s eating away at me just now. Is it because we can’t go anywhere? Though I think I quite like that. Is it because this new life is really strange? Maybe? Is it because I’m not fully working that I’m scared when anything goes “wrong” and my default position is to not be well again?!?

Not sure but I don’t like it and it needs to do one. Positive mental attitude please!!

A few more just because they make me smile

Stay safe everyone 🔆🔆🔆

Day 246 still quiet but trying to be more positive 😇

When I woke up at 7 after another dream free sleep, Craig was still out for the count. I did an initial mood assessment on a trip to the loo and surmised that I was calm but still pretty sad. And quiet. (Yes I know miracles will never cease!)

One good thing about having the Rambling Sloth Fb page is that the news feed is very similar to the kinds of things I write about. So I decided to start the day with a look through the Rambling Sloth news feed. it was a good idea….

Thank you 🙏🏻
I am grateful for my life 🌼
I seemed to have resigned from fun quite some time ago due to candles and napping!!
This is how I’ve felt the last few days
Now that is good and basically what I’m doing
What a lovely thought
Oh now stop the bus….. wow…. so you’ve met me??????!!!?!!?? Yes this is me.
I think this is very true for now. I’ve been saddened by a lot in the news this week
I found a page called Slothspirations!!!!!!!!!!!!

So a good start to the day thinking positively. It’s not even 7.30am yet. Don’t worry I’m not gonna write about every minute of my day!

I sat and read my book in Grans chair for an hour or so.

I keep forgetting to say that we have no heating just now. The thermostat is looking for heat and it’s not getting it. One of my FB friends had no heating last week and described it like walking out a door into the Arctic tundra! Made me laugh as the wall of cold is intense.

So I stoked up the stove and the fire to build up some heat for the day. Craig made breakfast when he got up and I went over to Largs to pick up my glasses from Specsavers.

Way back in the early days of my blog, the leg fell off my good glasses. Today about 240+ days later I have them back!

I didn’t even have the energy to wander today. The rain came on and I was there and gone within half an hour. Didn’t even get a coffee!!! Unheard of….

I’ve spent most of the afternoon moving “stuff” from room to room again while poor Craigie’s been dealing with Mighty Mouse in the shed! Much rather have my job than his. I’ve decided when we tackle the loft we need to start with clothes. Go through all our old stuff and get rid of it once and for all and make space.

We have a takeaway coming from the Gateside Inn tonight so I don’t have to cook. All good. I’m lying on the day bed with Freya drinking 0% Leffe which is lovely!

Me and my girl!

Hope you all have a good Friday night, in the house as there’s nothing else to do through COVID-19!

I think this is something I forget that we’re all in this together
If only we’d known the last time we all hugged that we would never take it for granted again

Stay safe everyone 🧡🧡🧡

Day 245 a quiet day (makes a change I hear you say!) 🤐

It’s a late one tonight and I’m actually quite lost for words today. Check me. I feel the need to be quiet…. bout time I know.

Again, I’m ok and don’t want anyone worrying, just writing about another day in the life….

Up early today to prepare the living room for the new couches!

Lovely and fresh and new!
Don’t even have a decent pic of this as there was stuff lying around

As Craig said… in 12 years this is our first new couch together!! Not a dog hair in sight!!!

Craig painted the fire place today too! This is the only pic I have and it wasn’t quite finished!

Decided to carry on hoovering (sharking!) the hallway and Calaidh came running as she hates the hoover. I thought she was behind a closed door. She knocked the shelves in the hall and mixed berries scented oil went all over the wall, new floor tiles, the wooden shelving unit, an antler that the dogs chew… so had all that to clean up.

Then found that the Furbo I’d sold on eBay wasn’t working properly…. the guy had just received it…. well I went into orbit at that. He said it was faulty and it had been used. It hasn’t been used at all, not touched but could be faulty because I hadn’t tested it… why wouldn’t I test it before I sent… why did I bother trying to sell it… why… why… why. Mood set for rest of day.

Good run in the fields this morning
How muddy?!? On day of new couches?!?!? Really?????

So I’m pleased to say the dogs have stayed off the couches for the most part. A bit of dog behavioural skill working in our house today.

I’ve pottered, tidied, cleaned but I’m sad and quiet. Bliss for some 🤣 I’ve read a couple of sad news’s stories on FB about border collies I follow and I guess when you’re a bit down you attract more down stuff.

I have no words better than my silence today

Stay safe everyone 🧡🧡🧡

Day 244 a lovely sunny and calm day 🌤 with pancakes 🥞

I’ve had a lovely day today, just calm and relaxed with no stress and no pressure.

I’d been having pretty nasty dreams where I was torturing myself for decisions I’ve made in the past, blaming myself for everything. Last night NOTHING. Just sleep. It’s such a relief and means you don’t wake up in a stressful mess in the morning. Thanks to kinesiology yesterday. Cannot thank Shelagh enough. 💜

I feel very quiet. Very calm and still pretty tired, but I will take the calm any day.

Haha some plot twist… dog walk next!!
A lovely dark and moody morning with some colour in the sky
Very spooky tree!
Managed to stop for a paw wash this morning as the burn went down a good bit over night.

A neighbour stopped me this morning to give me some hi vis stuff for the dogs. You can only see Bhru’s but how lovely.

I felt happy this morning, enjoyed the dog walk rather than finding it a trudge
Loved this. I see so much when I look at this sky

So this morning I was going with my neighbour Holly to the cash and carry them a wee trip for brunch to Gro Coffee in Irvine.

Pinched this from their website
The view across the road
I ordered the Elvis Pancake stack… peanut butter, raspberry jam, banana and maple syrup !!!!

Craig reckons this top of this had Donald Trump hair. 🤷🏻‍♀️ Think it was candy floss so I brought that top one home for him. I managed 2 and a quarter! I sound like my gran when I say “I mean it really didn’t have to be quite that big….” 🤦🏻‍♀️😆🤣

Holly had eggs benedict. Much more delicate!

Back home before 12 and have done all sorts today…. booked the boiler service for the Village Hall being the most significant. Another thing off the list!

I got a belated birthday present the other day…. well I’ve had two recently (both from Craig!) but the first was a jigsaw of one of Hope Blamire’s paintings which I love!

I may be regretting this now?!?
Not even half way through sorting it out and this is just the sky and sea bits!!

I have stopped to write the blog as I was getting a it overwhelmed by it all…. 😆

This is the second… “drink coffee like a Norwegian” mugs!!

When Craig came home from work last night I had my noise cancelling headphones in and was singing along to Faurés Requiem!! For those of you who don’t know I was in the church choir when I was younger and this is one of the most significant pieces that I remember us doing and I know a lot of it off by heart.

It was a wonderful trip down memory lane as an alto part kicks in and I think of my Auntie Marion and Brigitte singing alto and think I can hear their voices (should not I am listening to a TOTALLY different choir!!!)

Such a special moment until I sensed Freya sensing something going on at the door. Craig was home! I got the giggles 🤭

He must come home and wonder which wife he’s getting most nights?!

In covid news yesterday was sadly the highest number of deaths since May.

We got note of new rules over Christmas.

I’m not sure what difference this will make as everyone will want different people in their bubbles. If I have mum and dad and Craigs mum and stepdad then the 4 of them can’t see anyone else. Mum & dad would want my brother and Craigs mum would want her other kids. Difficult.

These are really sad times. While I love the chance to be a home bird, I miss the chance to visit people like I used to.

Just have to take the good days when they come and be grateful for everyone we love.

Stay safe everyone 💜💜💜

Day 243 kinesiology to calm to storm 🧘🏻‍♀️💜

This was more for yesterday

Another early start and start out with the pups. It’s a miserable day again, it hardly even got light but I’m writing this on my day bed in the spare room… now my office… with candles, twinkly lights and my Freya shadow by my side.

She’s always with me when I’m up here.
Check how high the Powgree burn was this morning! No washing our paws in there today!!
Spooky tree could be washed away!
It was pretty fierce!
The girls had a good run around and were very muddy when we got home. Mumma had to get the hose out!!

Someone asked me how I could be so happy at that ridiculous time of day when I shouted “morning!”…. I said…. “it’s all put on…. I’m lying, I really mean ugh morning (grumpy voice!)” she laughed!!

Was back home for 9, quick coffee and back out for kinesiology. I can feel the tears burning in my eyes on the way there. I feel bad again today. Very sad, very tired, despite a deep but dream filled sleep and I woke with a thumper of a headache.

As usual Shelagh calms my whirling mind. The session always starts with a chat then a balance. I love a balance. I can literally feel my whittering mind emptying. I’ve said before I go in like a tornado and come out like a calm breeze.

This week we dealt with self blame and how I blame myself for everything in my life. Shelagh with me to clear that once and for all. That’s what I like about kinesiology. It clears all these fears and beliefs for good.

I am so much more calm when I leave 💜

I think you all know by now that I never shy away from the depth of my feeling. I’m like a peeled grape. You see it all.

I then popped in past my lovely 80 year old friend and got a lovely birthday present from her. I’m sorry to say I had 4 cards to drop off for her 80th in October and she was over the moon with them all. She thanked everyone again for their kindness.

She had bought me a cream cookie which is essentially a bit like a roll with cream inside it. It’s not sickly sweet, it was heaven on a roll. No photos. It was scoffed way too fast!!


So ending these days on a positive note. I’m still sad and tired but it’s coming from a place of calm, a place of healing.

This is a bloody tough journey at times. Wow that brought the tears, but it’s my journey and I’m fighting on every step of the way. I would like a rest and to not have to fight but it is what it is. That day will come. This too will pass.

For Target read lots of Scottish shops!!

Stay safe everyone 💜💜💜

Day 242 how to put yourself down in one easy lesson

Listen to me for a day…. 🥱🤐

Jeezo… not sure what’s hit me today but it’s another very sad and tired day in the life of…

It’s actually been a very productive day. By 10am and I had walked the dogs, poop scooped the garden, put the recycling in the bins, emptied and refilled the dishwasher, parcelled up some items I’d sold on eBay, taken them to the post office AND been to the co-op for a mini shop. (Breathe!!)

Lovely sunrise 🌅

Very productive. Yet I feel like a lead brick. Tired, exhausted and very sad. As soon as I tell someone I feel sad… the tears start and then they flow for a while.

I had 9 Pawsitive Solutions calls to make so sent them all emails to advise we are fully booked until January… that bought me a bit of time until I felt strong enough to talk to people.

It’s amazing how you can put yourself down so easily.

How will I ever manage the puppy jobs if I have a day I feel like this?

Why am I still feeling rotten after all this time, why can’t I just be “normal”? (Yeah I know…. what even is that?!)

My head spins with all sorts of negativity. I’m not good enough, how hard to I have to make it, I have so much that I want to do that it swirls round in my head yet I can’t be bothered doing any of it. But I will stress about not doing it and then add to it.

I have to say that I found this but honestly today wasn’t this negative. I’ve not had any backstabbers or people putting me down. I’m more than capable of that myself.

I tried to do a Suzanne Robichaud hypnotherapy session again. It’s to stop you reacting to triggers. I conked out. I remember breathing at the start of it then the phone ringing….. it’s Craig and he says “I’m home!!”…. he was standing at the bedroom door, saw me with headphones on and thought I’d be slightly less terrified if he called me rather than tried to wake me up. Took me a while to figure out who and where I was and why he was home. I’d slept for an hour.

I’ve mentioned naps a lot recently but this is the first time I’ve actually slept in the middle of the day. I am just tired of being tired.

We had soup and rolls for lunch and a wee chat about Craigs day then I came back up to follow up some calls. Now felt able to speak to people.

Also organised my van insurance since it’s been converted.

So all in all a successful day, albeit a bit miserable. I have kinesiology in the morning so I can’t wait for that to help me straighten out my head.

Need to practice this more often

Sorry for the moan today.

Stay safe everyone ❤️❤️❤️

Days 241 last day of holiday

Ok so I know I don’t exactly have the stressful working life that I used to have but it has been really nice to have a week off from the day-to-day.

I’m antsy today. My head is running at 100 miles an hour and despite attempts to calm it, I’ve not quite managed it through the day.

I’ve struggled with this today

My head has a million things running round it. I dreamt very heavily, woke up with a headache and have been irritated for a lot of the day. I have so many things that I want to do that I’m spending time stressing about not doing them rather than accepting what will be done and what won’t be done.

I see stuff everywhere, everything is cluttered, surfaces covered, things out of place. Honestly nothing is even that bad, it’s my head that’s telling me it is.

I even struggled to talk without being breathless today as my head is running ahead of my mouth. Must be a bad day if my mouth can’t keep up. 🤦🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️😆

Craig went out to fix a drawer in the van than had collapsed a bit and when I went out he told me my hat was hanging over the near side mirror. Someone must have found it near the van. It was soaking so I left it there to dry……. no prizes for guessing what happened next?!?!? I pottered about and decided to go for a drive.

Heading out the village and I see something fly past the window behind me…. yip… Hat. Of course it was! Slams on brakes, u-turn, back for hat… still soaking…. u-turn… back on my way again.

Headed up to Barcraigs Reservoir.

The view from my first stop
Tidied up the back with my crochet blankets
Tried to find a better parking place

This was a pretty cool view but kind of in a passing place which wasn’t ideal.

Looks like a good place for dog walks

Decided to take a scenic route home. Just put gone into the sat nav and turned a few times against the quickest route.


You have to squint to see this but up ahead there’s a Council van filling potholes. They did not close the road and they refused to move. They were also slinging tar stuff in holes like they didn’t give a damn.

This was the view over to the reservoirs

So there I am with the mini in front of me stuck on a single track road with nowhere to go but backwards. The verges were too soft to turn in so I had to reverse all the way back down the hill until I found a turning point. Good old reverse camera and a bit of nifty reversing!

Went back to the reservoir on the way home and got more photos!

The sky was stunning

When I got back I blackened the floor of the van where the twin seats had been removed. Pottered some more, ate lots of pizza, crocheted but all the while there is an irritation. That antsyness that needs to go.

No it doesn’t!!
I read this and breathe a bit easier

Stay safe everyone 💕💕💕

Day 241 the day that dreams were made of 💕

Had a lovely wee early morning walk with Claire this morning!

How pretty does Gateside Primary look this morning. The poppies in the window were lovely!
A lovely morning over Hill o’Beith
Pups number 2 & 3 pose outside the Co-op with a Costa cup! That’s a first!
We popped into the wee community garden in Beith for a wander
They have free books!
Smiley girls

So I decided to have a wee day out to myself.

Here I am in Abbie the campervan in Largs, appreciating stillness. I’ve had a Little Coffee Caravan oat latte and a large bit of Victoria Sponge.

I have the heater on and I’m working on my crochet blanket that had sprung some holes. I’ve been meaning to do this for ages. Stressing about the holes growing bigger and not fixing them after I’d put all the work into crocheting it.

This is what my van was for. A chance to chill, a chance to relax and reflect. I have had the loveliest time. I’ve put stuff up for sale, I’ve taken a whole lot of photos. “No?!?!?” You say… “surely not….” 🤦🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️🤣🤣

Yes…. actual people in the sea?!?!?!?!??🥶🥶🥶
The Rambling Sloth wee day out
Save our oceans 🐢
View from the window!

I’m listening to Fearne Cotton’s Happy Place podcast and she’s interviewing Deepak Chopra. They are talking about how in the western world we don’t appreciate stillness.

Van life is pretty damn sweet when the sun shines ☀️🔆☀️🌤

We all spend so much of our time running around with work, clubs, deadlines etc that I don’t know that we ever really take the time just to stop and be still. I am loving every minute of this. A chance to do nothing but catch up on my crochet and watch the tide come in. I can’t bring myself to leave 😆

It’s funny…. the only slight negative today was that I had nothing to drink and I got thirsty. I had bottles of Diet Coke in the fridge with no bottle opener…. I had water but it wasn’t fresh enough to drink, only to boil and I couldn’t be bothered boiling it….. and yes there were shops, but I stayed in the van! It’s probably the thirst that drove me home. Gets home and finds can of juice in handbag. 🤷🏻‍♀️🤣 oh how I laughed!

So today I’ve taken some time to reflect, recharge, rest and relax. I’m home now with Craigie and the monster pups and the fire’s roaring and the candles are on

Time to coorie in on our camp beds!!

I’ve not seen any covid news today or any other news for that matter. just watched the sea do it’s thing and that’s good enough for me.

Stay safe everyone 🔥🔥🔥

Day 240 wee outdoor trip to the in-laws before they hit level 4 at 6pm

I was a little bit grumpy when I woke up this morning…. not entirely certain why. Last working day of our holidays and it feels like it’s over in a flash.

I was meant to be meeting the Gateside Hookers (the crochet ladies!) foe lunch today but we had to cancel because of the latest restrictions.

So this morning we headed back down to Tartan Campers so that Mr A could have a chat about the possibility of improving the storage in the back of the Jeep. Even got a wee coffee while we were there.

Came home and got the dogs out and then headed up to see the in-laws outdoors before they head into level 4 lockdown at 6pm tonight. It was a quick flying visit but I got a wee drive in Abbie, they got to see her and we all wore masks to be careful. Was so lovely to see them but we have to do the merry COVID-19 dance and try not to be too close… it’s all just a wee bit sad.

We also got a wee cuddle with Cookie which was lovely!! Cu-cu-cook-cook-cook-cook-cook-cook-cookie is what we both call her!! Give you a laugh, I said that out load just now just to make sure I got enough cook-cook’s in and Calaidh, Bhruic and Freya went nuts and jumped all over me while Bhru decided to lick my face….. yeuch!!! I’m gonna try it again for a laugh!!!

🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 only Bhru this time… the other 2 realised she’s not actually here 🤦🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️ it’s the simple things in life eh?!

Here’s one of the other pics I took, he’s funny eh?!?
My lovely in-laws in their outdoor sit-oot-ery

Yes Helen was wearing a Christmas jumper and we could see that the house was festooned with Chrissy decs from the window!!! 🎄🤶🏼🎅🏼. We left with shouts of see you in 3 weeks but I don’t know if this level change will be any different in 3 weeks. We need to wait and see.

I would like to head over to my mum and dads too but they are just that bit further away…. they’re heading up to level 2 on Tuesday but I can’t take my level 3 and drive through level 4 to get to their lovely rosey level 2!! Dad did say he thinks he can drink alcohol outside a pub now. That’s about all that level 2 gives.

I think I’m feeling a bit covid sad today. It’s been a lovely day but we can’t leave North Ayrshire now….. I guess I’m more aware of the restrictions given we now know people who are catching it.

It’s already 8pm so this is a wee short one tonight. I’m sitting on my camp bed as the couches have gone to the big dust bin in the ground. Oh I really struggled seeing them out in the rain this morning. But anyway, move on, get over it, only another 5 more nights in front of the tv on camp beds!!!

Here’s a last pic of princess Cookie sitting on her cushion…. she likes a cushion you know.

Stay safe everyone ❤️❤️❤️

Day 239 the manager in B&M Stores made me cry and other stories 🤦🏻‍♀️😥

Yeah so that happened today…… In all my years of anxiety and depression I had not quite managed to cry at a checkout in a store. First time for everything and sincerely hoping it’s the last.

Heaven forbid anyone try to exchange something without a receipt in B&M Stores.

I should first state that I absolutely understand that shops have returns policies. I know that having the receipt is ideal but given that any trip to B&M usually means you have a receipt the length of your arm, I guess that most people, like me, just bin them rather than leave them lying around? I don’t usually buy from B&M with any intention of returning. (For my friends across the pond, I guess B&M is kinda like a Walmart where you can pick up almost everything under one roof and it’s usually pretty cheap!)

I thought this was pretty simple. I’d bought a 13.5 tog Kingsize downie (duvet) for the van a good while back. Last night I figured that was far to heavy and big so went to exchange it for a 10.5tog double. Yes that would cost me less but since I always pick up loads in B&M, I knew I’d be spending more than I’d be returning anyway. It’s a standard product while they always sell.

So…. I enter the store with the 13.5 tog downie in a big IKEA bag. Wait for ages to catch someone’s attention as I don’t have the receipt… only to be told that it’s fine, carry it through the shop, pick up what I want and they know I don’t have a receipt. Should mention here that’s it’s still all bagged up like shop bought.

A good wander round the shop later and I joined a queue.

They needed to call the manager over to authorise the return. It turned into a bit of a comedy sketch (except not remotely funny) when the surly manager seems to want to score points for saying “no receipt” as many times as he possibly can in one conversation while tapping away on the till, moving his mask down everytime he spoke to me but not really looking at me. “Take it you bought it in this store?” Eh no sorry I didn’t, I got it up Alloa way a wee while back. “Hmmmm so longer than 30 days?” Yes I think so….. sorry.

I explained that I had kept it for my camper van and only got that the other day…. I apologised and said that I’d just bought the wrong one by mistake.

“Well you really should have kept the receipt so we know that you actually bought it…” to which I replied well I can assure you I never stole it if that’s what you’re implying??? He was so p*ssed off with the whole transaction. His body language said it all. He didn’t want to take it back.

So the new me (and I’m proud of this….) “can I just say I’m a bit unhappy with the way you are speaking to me right now, I’ve done nothing wrong….”

“Well sorry but if you’d had your receipt then we would know that you paid for it, you really need to show me your bank statement….” and so it went on. By this time the bottom lip is wobbling (THANK GOD FOR MASKS!)

He goes away to speak to someone else and the tears come. The lovely lady on the till does a there, there tap of her hand. I apologised to her and said that I suffered from anxiety so I was maybe over thinking the whole exchange.

He came back and then said he couldn’t necessarily give me the £29.99 as it might not be for sale at that price anymore… despite the fact it was labelled £29.99. We had a whole exchange there where I said if that was the case I would sell it privately….. and so it went on.

Turned out that was just another thing that didn’t need saying. When another woman came over to show him how to manage the exchange she said it was easy…. she hit a few keys… set up the exchange…. no need for a credit note that he’d kept going on about…… done. He walked off and left me to it.

I phoned Craig as soon as I came out and talked it through and felt so much better.

I realise I may overreact to stuff but that whole transaction could have been dealt with so differently. We are all going through tough times just now but it’s not like I was trying to return a giant Santa statue in the middle of March!!!!! Now I could understand them not wanting to take something like that but it was a Silentnight downie which sells all year round.

Anyway, I had a lovely rest of day.

I’ve done some Christmas shopping, been back to IKEA and stopped at the Little Coffee Caravan for an oat latte. Had a lovely chat with the girls there. They are always so lovely and chatty!

Then popped into Gayle’s shop! It is UH-MAZING!!!!!

The Little Gift shop with Gayle waving through the door! The gift bow on the front door is stunning!
Her window is so Christmassy!

Hence the mention of a giant Santa earlier on…. imagine buying this and coming back to Gayle in March without a receipt. You just wouldn’t would you?!

Had a good chat with Gayle then back up the road. Pottered in the van all afternoon trying to find places for things.

Bhru came to visit and lay down in the right place!
The view thru the front window of the pop top
The view out the side net
Was a lovely sunny day today

We went to our neighbours Colin and Joyce for a socially distanced drink around the chiminea! Was so hot to sit next to it and we had to move back. Lovely to have a catch up.

Very sadly I have had to say goodbye to the couches that have been a part of my life since 2002…. I feel very emotional. These were my first big purchase for my new flat after my divorce.

Ready for collection at 7am tomorrow. It breaks my heart….

This is the living room now!! We’re on camp beds until 26th when the new couches arrive…..

So in scary news we now know 4 people who have COVID-19. It feels very real where it hasn’t before now. Maybe a wake up call for us. At least 3 of the people we know have been VERY careful and yet have still caught it. I know we are all likely to get it at some point I guess but it’s still a bit real. Sending lots of love to you all.

I always end with “stay safe everyone” but tonight I want you to read it slowly and think about how much I mean it.

Stay safe everyone ❤️❤️❤️

Day 238 trip to IKEA before it goes into COVID-19 level 4 shutdown

Slept like a log after all of yesterday’s excitement. Was out for the count.

It’s still pretty horrific weather today. Really wet and pretty windy. Great weather for enjoying your campervan…. and yet I still have!

We had a lazy morning before deciding on a trip to IKEA to look at storage options for the van.

IKEA have an automated entry system that talks to you when it’s ok to go in. We only had to wait with one person in front of us and for less than a minute.

Straight into the market place. The hot news is that WE DID NOT buy any candles or tea lights which is unheard of for a trip to IKEA.

Here is the lovely new entrance mat for Abbie the camper van.

So I did pick up a whole lot of storage bags for the van! You can never have too many storage bags… there’s a bag for the duvet, smaller bags for toiletries, bags for other stuff and other bags for other stuff!! You get the gist. 💼 🛍

Other than that it’s been a really quiet day. I made a cuppa in the van this afternoon with the JetBoil. It took me bloody ages but now that I’ve done it the second time will be way faster!!

I feel a bit flat today. I was overwhelmed by the love yesterday but I did need a day just to chill and breathe and play with my new toys! 🤭😆

Among loads of other things, Craig got me the most amazing noise cancelling headphones so I can make calls and listen to my podcasts in peace. got them charged overnight and paired them up this morning. Perfect for chilling!

We are having a lovely wee evening out in the van. Crochet, alcohol free Rosé Bees Knees (fizz!) and snack. Craig has wine don’t panic!!

Yes….. honestly….. 🦥 do not laugh!!
🦙 🧡❤️

Stay safe everyone ❤️🧡💜

Day 237 lockdown birthday and Abbie the Campervan comes home! 🎉🎊🥳🎁🎂🚐

I have honestly had THE loveliest day!

Loved this from Andrina! 🦥💕

The day started with a slobbery kiss from all the gorgeous pups!

Of course Calaidh brings me a ball!
Bhru posing when she just been trying to cover me with kisses!

Freya didn’t sit still long enough to let me get a photo!!

Craig made croissants with raspberry jam, coffee and alcohol free Buck’s Fizz for breakfast! Nosecco with fresh orange…. I may have had some more Nosecco before we went out!

Craig is soooo good at birthdays. Since we’ve been together I’ve got over the shock at how much he spends and chose to roll with it.

I’ve had the loveliest presents from the loveliest people. Had lots of chats and a FaceTime with mum and dad! I feel very loved.

A lovely birthday card from Claire!

Off we got to Tartan Campers to pick up Abbie the newly converted camper van!!

So here I go…. I’m about to see the renovations for the first time!!
Honestly love what they have done!!
With the pop top up!
Checking out the seats!
One happy girl about to drive off!

I did almost drive off. I couldn’t adjust the seat height and had to ask the guys to show me how…. the radio was blaring out “I need a hero” (honestly you couldn’t make this up!) then I waved and boom stalled!!!!! And started the van and boom stalled again. Honestly talk about cringeworthy!!!! I’m so used to the high biting point of the Citroeney thing I’d forgotten how to drive my own van!!?!?? 🤦🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️. By the time I got out of Tartan Campers yard I was hysterically laughing and bright red!

We went to Gro Coffee in Irvine for lunch.

I had a mac’n’cheese toastie with Arran chilli cheddar, jalapeños and gherkin. Craig has ham, black pudding, Arran Smokey cheese with onion and chutney. No need for dinner tonight… we also both had the most amazing Oat Lattes.

Cake anyone?!??
Brought these home for “dinner”!!

I realise there were big announcements today where the Avery side of the family move to COVID-19 level 4 from Friday which means more like a lockdown, we stay at level 3 and my mum and dad move to level 2 on Tuesday next week. They must be good over in Midlothian!

We live in North Ayrshire and will stay at level 3 where all around us East and South Ayrshire move up to level 4.

I’m sure there’s so much more I could write but I’ve not stopped all day and I’m gonna spend the evening with Craig, eating lots of cake and drinking Nosecco.

Alcohol free cheers everyone!! These are mini bottles of Nosecco…. perfect for the fridge in the van. huge bottles of Thatchers Zero which I can’t wait to try.

I would like to thank everyone for their amazing support in my journey so far. The birthday wishes are out of this world and I promise I will get to the personal messages one by one. Writing this blog has become a way of life for me. I hope it helps one or two of you as much as it helps me to write it.

Stay safe everyone ❤️❤️❤️

Day 236 a wee bit of shopping (poor Craig!) and more glimpses of camper refurb!!

Didn’t have the best nights sleep…. too much information but between sore ear and stomach cramp I tossed and turned a bit!

We’ve been having bother with our heating control and it was a full whacking 20degC in the middle of the night which did not help!!

So I dragged poor Craigie to the shops today! Nothing special just a wee wander around Dunelm Mill (that place I cannot say!) B&Q and Morrison’s. Just to get out! We both agree that the whole, shopping with a mask is hard work. I know how important it is and that loads of people have to wear them for a full time job but it’s taken my already increasing body temperature, due to my excess weight and increasing age and just lumped on top! Who needs a jacket when you have inner central heating?!?

Hmmmm thought provoking…..

So I ended up having some work to do today as someone forgot I was on holiday. Would never have seen them stuck but realise that I need a break as well. All done now, one client booked and the rest to be sent to someone else to manage.

Then I get the message that I’ve been waiting for…. Abbie the van is almost finished and Abbie the camper van will be ready to be collected by about 10am tomorrow morning!!!!! I am over the moon. It’s my birthday tomorrow and I thought we might get it late on or early Wednesday so I’m really chuffed they pulled out all the stops to have it ready.

Top of pop top view!

Cannot wait to see her with my own eyes. This looks like someone else’s van. Mine was an empty shell and this looks like a tardis.

Looks like we’re getting her just in time for North Ayrshire heading into COVID-19 level 4 which brings a whole new level of lockdown. We’ll just leave that till it comes and try and enjoy her as much as we can just now.

I did…. and now I’m not… I’m making a life. Love this 💜

One more sleep until I’m older. Not gonna get to see anyone which is sad but will make the most of a great day with my boy and the pups!!

Stay safe everyone 💜💜💜

Day 235 a lovely 2nd day of holiday!

Well it was an unusual start to the day at 6.30am soon after I woke up. I got a WhatsApp from Claire next door asking if her Carbon Monoxide detector woke me…… in my sleepy state I think how the hell does she know I’m awake? Im kinda looking around in the dark! As soon as I ask the question I realise I just liked a photo she posted on Instagram…. of course I’m awake.

Never heard their alarm and am now more worried about that than anything else….. but it all good as it’s just the batteries.

I then reply to my friend Tracey in Canada and have a chat with her about what really woke me, my sore ear. She recommended olive oil and I said “way aheada you there, already using that!”

Made me smile that I’d had two lovely conversations while Craig was still snoring like a train, sorry, sweetly beside me!

After putting some more drops in my ear and deafening myself, I feel asleep to the sound of my breathing and awake again at 9am as I felt the need to set an alarm for the weekends?!? Why??

Coffee, Christmas present online shopping with the hubby and then out for a lovely walk in the rain.

Spiers grounds again
Dark and moody Calaidh photo. She waits in the field. She hopes for frisbee. I do not have one. So she just waits.
The Powgree burn is pretty full again
“Oh no we’re gonna get wet paws” Freya tells Calaidh!
I was the only one who got wet feet!!
More puddle reflections
There were some really strange white wispy clouds in the distance

I was listening to the Happy Place podcast again and just really enjoyed my walk today. The fresh air did me good. When I got back I did a quick poo pick and took all the recycling and rubbish down to the bins. I like to do all that when I’m outside and already soaked otherwise I’d never do it. Brought wood in for the fires too. Craig had blitzed the kitchen so that was lovely to come home to.

I then “sharked” the kitchen and sunroom and out the dog beds in the machine to wash.

Feeling motivated but chilled and it’s a lovely way to be.

Decided to put some stuff up for sale today! Craigs MacBook, my AirPods, a Furbo dog camera and flip flops…. who wouldn’t want flip flops in November?! already sold the AirPods to a lovely girl I know!

So the pic below is me now. Feet up on my desk, the candles lit, the wee sparkly lights up temporarily. I brought up the electric fire from our bedroom so that’s on and Freya and I are chilling. She doesn’t have to think of blog content but she’s always there with me while I do.

I love my little space. Craig was up for a bit too. He is allowed in for those of you who are worried!!

Heading down now, we did say earlier we might have a games night tonight. Now anyone who knows me will know that I HATE board games but I am actually that bored(board!) with lockdown evenings that I’ve decided it would be an acceptable way to spend the evening.

A funny that Maw-in-law. This is so true!!!

Stay safe everyone ❤️❤️❤️

Day 234 first lazy day of holidays with an alcohol free🥤pub lunch! 🍱 🥘 🍲

I didn’t get out of bed until about 9.30am today. Slept until 8 and then read for a hour and a half!!! Craig kept the dogs away and I just enjoyed some me time.

How cute is this wee sloth guy 🦥

Got up and had a lovely coffee then started on the spare room again!! Needed a bit of a rearrange and a sort out as it wasn’t quite working for me. I was pottering and enjoying it. Got a Pawsitive Solutions call and ended up almost being late for our lunch booking at the pub next door at 12.30.

Holly’s steak pie is amazing!!

Our neighbours Jim and Fiona had a table right next to us. Our neighbours Kenny and Louise were serving (Holly was obviously cooking!) and Harry from round the corner was at a wee table in the corner all by himself. All COVID-19 driven. No one is allowed to drink alcohol at the moment so I love it as we all had juice and I didn’t feel left out. We all ate and finished and went home. Normally we would have sat about for the afternoon as everyone got into rounds so I do see a difference and understand why alcohol is banned at the moment.

It was so lovely to see everyone and eat Steak Pie 🥧 obviously! May have had a Caramel Apple Pie too and I really didn’t need that but it had to be done.

Mask selfie on the way home with Jim and Fiona walking away in the background!
I missed World Kindness Day yesterday so sharing it today 💕💜💕
This is so true and I love that I’m living through this
Isn’t this lovely 💕

I’m listening to Fearne Cotton’s Happy Place podcast just now and a few of the interviews have really made me think about where I’ve come from and where I’m going.

I’ve also just cleared through the laptop bag I brought home when I had to empty my office at end end of January this year. It’s the first time I’ve looked at everything and it’s like it’s all from another world.

I used to be a senior manager with a team of staff. I used to manage Customers and know everything there was to know about them. I used to be the expert on one of our largest customers. I thrived on that at one time. I’ve found work polo shirts from training days. I remember the amazing feeling of being someone and being involved in major decisions.

Until it broke me.

I will never be that person again and that is the best decision for me. It does still hurt at times. I guess it’s just emptying the bag was like opening up a can of worms.

I’m not going to let it fester. It was what it was and it now is what it is and I wouldn’t be where I am now without it. I guess I’m grateful for the learning curve.

I’m so grateful that I am where I am now. It’s tough. Some days are worse than others but I’m more alive than I ever was.

And this has been my saviour too
Well I am shifting as much as I possibly can… including the furniture!!

I’m lying on the day bed writing this while Freya, my new shadow, cooried in. (In an effort to change cookies to cooried I just dropped the phone on her back!!!! Oops!)

It’s been a lovely day. Calm, quiet with lovely food and good friends.

Nap now?!?

Stay safe everyone 💕💕💕

Day 233 Friday 13th 2020 what could possibly go wrong?!?

Read this devastating news first thing this morning. Not good.

So today has been a day of lists and ticking boxes which actually feels quite good though I think I feel a bit meh today… neither up nor down.

So first things first dogs out and home by 9am! I remembered my hat…. but only wore a hoodie…… it rained. Of course it did 🤣

Found some last remaining colour down in the woods today…. cue the song 🎵 🎶
Bhru decided that this little stick which is used for path definition, would be hers!! She tried to pick up the big bit to her right….. eh naw?!
Keeping tabs on sloth mumma 🦥 😂
Thought I’d take some close up of the Dawn Redwood planted in 1953 for the Queen’s Coronation. 👑 the colours were stunning in the rain. love the wee door at the bottom too!
Loved this leaf 🍁 smack bang in the Quod Verum Tatum sign which was the Spiers school motto
Saw this tree on the way out where the Ivy is falling away from it! Got too heavy and the tree said shove off?! We could all learn from nature.

I came home and headed out in the wee Citroeney thing to drop clothes at the charity shop and then up to the Little Coffee Caravan (yes again!) for an oat latte and a raspberry and white chocolate muffin!

I cannot describe just how good this muffin was…. honestly out of this world. Soft, moist and loads of flavour. Wow. (I hate the word moist!)

Back home at the very large desk to make some Pawsitive Solutions calls and then I took part in a Market Research call! 1.5 hours of questions on buying furniture for £50. This was recommended to me by a friend and I really enjoyed it. The call was run by two guys in Spain 🇪🇸 and it was obviously driven by IKEA.

I had no idea that 60% of the products they sell are sustainable and they aim to be at 100% by 2020. Who knew that air purifying curtains were a thing???!

I found it fascinating. We have a new couch to be delivered next week and sustainability did not come into our purchase choice at all. I have huge concerns about the disposal of our old couch and that it will be destined for landfill. That horrifies me. However it did not factor into our new purchase at all. Lots of food for thought there.

As soon as I was off that it was time to get the lovely wee Citroen back to Green Motion car hire!!! The Jeep is still running and Craig is one happy boy.

He said this morning….. “you do realise you are nearly 3 years older than me again….?!”

Oh how I love the period in our lives between November to July where he throws this at me on a regular basis. He’s one lucky toy boy I reckon….. on some days he may disagree 🤣🤣

I see a lot of motivational stuff during the day while I’m looking for content for the blog and I also see a lot of negative which I try to stay away from.

I prefer to deal with my motivation in a positive way. Rather than stay away from negative people…. chose to be with positive people. I don’t know if that makes sense or where I’m even going with this but it struck me today that there are things I don’t post on here because the focus on the negative and not the positive. I have had a life time of negative. No more.

So Craig and I are now off for a weeks’ holiday!! Out of the office… doesn’t feel the same for me as it used to but I guess I need to remember I’m only part-part-time at the moment. Craig needs a rest and time to chill. Who knows what the next week will bring but I’m looking forward to a change in my wee routine. Just to mix up this COVID-19 tier 3 malarkey.

So happy Friday night and enjoy your weekend.

Stay safe everyone ❤️❤️❤️

Day 232 Jeepey McJeepface came home!!!!! 🤯

Well I slept like a log last night. That day of anxiety has taken its toll but actually in a good way. I love that feeling of not being able to wake up.

I did however dream like a crazy person last night. Wow. It was so fast and surreal that I couldn’t even begin to explain it. Don’t have a clue what it means but that’s fine too as I slept!

So off out with the dogs and forgot my hat! It’s chilly today. It was the wrong day to forget. I had to put my hoody up and tie it under my neck….. there will be no photo of that coming next…. 🤦🏻‍♀️

Off to Spiers school grounds today
Not the prettiest of photos as they are knackered from running and want to do more but hey….. 🌺

Forgot to mention Remembrance Day yesterday, we usually do a post with the pups with their poppies on. I had a 2 mins silence in Home Bargains yesterday which is really strange to me as I always had the silence at work. as if the world isn’t strange enough right now, we’re wearing masks, trying to stay out of each other’s way and we all stop where we are on the shop and don’t move for 2 mins. It was actually really special. There was, of course, the obligatory family who thought it was a two minute stand still but keep talking about the make up on the shelf…. other than them it was a lovely moment to share with strangers.

I was actually a little sad this morning at the lack of leaves on the trees. Everything looked a little bare.

I just need to find new things to look at!!
Just this 💜
She was loving a paddle! I see it as feet washing so we don’t have to get the hose out!!
Desperate for me to do….. something…. anything!!!
Dark, watery sun today

In shock news that we almost can’t actually believe… the Jeep is fixed!!! I mean like wow. We can take the hire car back tomorrow finally. £500+ for the pleasure. Makes you truly appreciate what you have.

Here he is checking it at the garage.
The view from our front window!

I’ve spent the afternoon clearing out my wardrobe which is a task that I love the outcome of but hate the being in the middle of it!! I know have a bad for charity, a bag to go upstairs and a bag for the bin. A clear closet is a clear mind somebody once said. I think it will be when I get over the stress of where to put everything that came out of it!!

More good news in that Abbie’s transformation is coming along really well! She has rear windows and curtains and her floor and furniture are all in!

Exciting news

So after all that excitement I’m tired now. I have a wheels tonight while Craigs working and yet I’ve decided on a coorie up with Freya while I write the blog and maybe have a wee nap. It’s been a while. Freya seems to love my new room as much as I do. She’s here whenever I am. Never pesters me just sleeps while I work. It’s precious.

Added a wee funny that will appeal to Craig at the end!!

Stay safe everyone ❤️❤️❤️

Day 231 much better phew!! 😁😁😁

So the anxious maniac from yesterday had gone replaced by a happy go lucky, it is what it is kinda gal…. so grateful.

I’ve had the loveliest day today just pottering around. It started with a dog walk with the puppers and their Auntie Claire!

This is life behind the camera!
🤣 is not often I have photos in my dog walking gear! Is it possible the bobble is as big as my head?!?!?
Calaidh balancing on a stone again! Different burn…. it’s becoming her thing!
Gnasher is determined to get the stone! She came out muddier than she went in!!!
Freya’s telling the other two that Auntie Claire’s taking the photos now?!

As Craig had a job cancel….. I HAD A CAR!!!! So I drove up to Linwood and hit Home Bargains, B&M Stores, TK Maxx, Matalan & Cancer Research. Last of the big spenders me eh?!! Wandered around for about 2.5 hours until the whole hat, mask and glasses got a bit overwhelming. I got really tired all of a sudden.

Back down the road to the Little Coffee Caravan for an Oat Latte. Had a lovely chat with the guys there. They are always so friendly and lovely. Always brightens my day to chat to them.

Then onto the Co-op and then to Vivs Nails to get, yip you guessed it… my nails done!!

I took a picture…. yeah you don’t need to see them. They are lovely but nothing makes a toe pic look great?!?

So we have a La Dolce Vita pizza delivery tonight, very much looking forward to that. It will be here in precisely….. one hour and 45 mins approximately. Yes I’m aware that precisely and approximately contradict each other.

It’s only 4.15pm and the rain is torrential so the candles and twinkly lights will be on. Celebrate the darkness rather than dread it.

Stay safe everyone 💜💜💜