Category Archives: One+ Four = Life

1+4 = Life – 18th October

Joining in with the ever-wonderful Isabel who has taken over from Pip to host the ‘1+4=Life’ link-up. The idea is to post four photos to describe one week (this week’s link-up is here). Here goes….

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The rain arrived – after five months of no rain whatsoever – and it’s very welcome. Not only is it so much easier to sleep at night but….

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The trees have responded beautifully! Instead of scorched grass and parched leaves hanging limply on the trees, they’ve all bounced back wonderfully. It’s a joy to walk in such greenness!

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Had to chuckle on my morning run the other day as I came face to face with this! I think it must be a Halloween decoration! (Love his little tongue peeking out too (a brown leaf)!)

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And, last but not least, it’s definitely – usually – the simple things that can bring great joy…we spent an age watching this little bee doing his thing, moving from flower to flower collecting pollen on his back legs. It was absolutely captivating.

It was also the week when I was:

Reading Maya’s Notebook from Isabelle Allende. I know a lot of people don’t like her work but I’ve always loved how she brings characters to life and how she manages to fill her stories with detail. It’s definitely a ‘rose-tinted glasses’ sort of approach to the story she tells but sometimes that’s all you can handle…

Captivated by Sacramento’s Mis Papelicos blog….love her style and sass!!

Pondering the message from this video…

Excited by this project that my friend Julie mentioned on her blog….the Lucky Dip Book Club…all details here…I’ve been making a scrapbook LO and can’t wait to see everyone’s responses!

– Enjoying rest and relaxation (my body seems to have taken over full control of my will power this week!)…I’ve watched several quietly powerful/moving films that have done me a world of good, including Jackie & Ryan (so gentle, such bare acting, I absolutely loved it and it’s stayed with me all week)

It was a quiet week of contemplation and planning.

I’m dedicating a lot more time to my writing and so think that I Will Bloom may suffer as a consequence. I kind of feel like I’m going round in circles on I Will Bloom, saying the ‘same old same old’ and that I don’t have much I can offer by way of ‘fresh’ posts at the moment. It somehow just feels tired and I need to not think about that for a while (if that makes sense)…

I’m going to commit to posting my FMF posts on Thursdays and to 1+4 on Sundays (and I will probably resurrect my Kindness Counts Fridays posts on Fridays) but I’m feeling the need to write (my book) and so I want to concentrate on that for the moment.

It feels like I just get this done (the book) and I’m putting all my energies in to that.

I will be taking part in NaNoWriMo again this year; I’m aiming to pull apart the writing I did this time last year and add to it with the new energy I’m putting in to my writing at the moment, with a view to having a workable draft before Christmas.

I just need to do this.

So I’m pulling out all the stops so that I can just do it.

I’ll head over to everyone’s blogs as usual (bear with me) so will keep in touch with you all (via your blogs or IG and will, as usual, reply to comments here…).

Wish me luck.

It’s proving to be an interesting journey.

Helen xxx

P.S. I want to take a selfie on top of a really high building! Imagine the thrill!

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1+4 = Life – 4th October

Joining in with the ever-wonderful Isabel who has taken over from Pip to host the ‘1+4=Life’ link-up. The idea is to post four photos to describe one week (this week’s link-up is here). Here goes….

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I looked down to find a beautiful fluffy white feather at my feet!

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We spent a lovely few hours by the river just near our house. The littles were very happy to catch some (tiny!) fish and tadpoles and I was very happy just watching them be happy! Wins all round!

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We found a banana plantation less than two minutes walk away from our home. Who knew?!

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Amazing what a five year old can do with some toilet roll insides, paint and scraps! [She spent an entire afternoon making a farm/zoo…so amazing to watch her create!]

And it was the week when I was….

– Bowled over by this BBC report about the people who make last wishes come true.

– Excited to hear about this conference that will be live-streamed: involving Brene Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert and others….

And I’ll leave it at that for now. It’s half term week here and we’re heading off to the zoo.

[I may take a little longer than usual to reply to comments/check out your blog posts this week (depending if I fall asleep when reading goodnight stories to the littles!)…].

Have an absolutely fantastic – great – week everyone!

Helen xxx

1+4 = Life: 27th September

Joining in with the ever-wonderful Isabel who has taken over from Pip to host the ‘1+4=Life’ link-up. The idea is to post four photos to describe one week (this week’s link-up is here). Here goes….

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It was a week of illness (for me): a horrible virus that sent me to my bed from Monday evening onwards. I’m still feeling decidedly iffy but am able to move around now so I’m happier

So, not many photos, unfortunately….just a few I snapped on a walk I took on Monday and a brief excursion to the local shops yesterday (as food supplies had whittled themselves down to ‘unsettling’ levels!)…apologies to those of you who might already have seen them on Instagram….

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A beautiful patch of bamboo lit up by the morning sun. A welcome ‘Oh how wonderful’ moment in an up-to-that-point very drab day.

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A pair of orchid flowers. The orchid had eighteen – yes, eighteen! – buds. Can’t wait to see it when all of them come in to flower! [Hoping no-one steals it before that happens: unfortunately people see stealing orchids as a way of life here]

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A beautiful red flower. Species unknown (to me). Must find out what it is. The tree (little more than shrub height) was full of them. Amazing!

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And one of those sunsets when you think ‘Ah, everything just might be well with the world’…..

I’m not feeling well enough to sit and write my usual list of ‘The week when I’ve been….’ items, but wanted to let my readers know about the challenge that my friend Julie has set for herself…to leave 300 comments on blogs in 30 days.

Love the sentiment behind it (“Let’s show our appreciation of the bloggers we read and enjoy!”), love her post about it and have really loved visiting the blogs she’s been posting on her Pinterest board. Can’t wait to join in myself from October (although, as many of you know, my comments might be posted in bulk over the weekends, due to time limitations during the week!)

Wishing you all a lovely week,

Helen xxx

P.S. Don’t forget to look out for tonight’s super moon eclipse….find the time it’ll be viewable for you here…! My son is wishing away his day so he’ll get to see it quicker and I’m praying for clear skies….

P.P.S. This quote just alighted in my Inbox (courtesy of Paul Jarvis) and I thought you might like to hear it too…

Begin taking action now, while being neurotic or imperfect, or a procrastinator, or unhealthy, or lazy, or any other label by which you inaccurately describe yourself. Go ahead and be the best imperfect person you can be and get started on those things you want to accomplish before you die” – Shoma Mortia.

[An anthem for all of us stalled creatives]

1 + 4 = Life: 20th September

Joining in with the ever-wonderful Isabel who has taken over from Pip to host the ‘1+4=Life’ link-up. The idea is to post four photos to describe one week (this week’s link-up is here). Here goes….

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It was the week we got a new hamster (nothing has happened to Falcao, don’t worry – my daughter decided she wanted a hamster too…). She’s called Luz and is too cute! [She’s been missing since Friday night, following a ‘cage-break’ but I’m hopeful she will appear when she’s hungry, the little rascal!]

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It was also the week I fell completely head over heels in love with Instagram (I’m iwillbloom over there)…a whole world of amazing images at one’s fingertips? Yes please!

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It was also the week I decided I have to actively make time for myself to ensure that I’m feeling well and strong and able, so I can get on with things (such as my writing) that have been set on the back burner for too long. Cue lots of pampering, walks, resting during the day and general ‘stress-less’ living…

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And, finally, it was the week of the first homework from Big School! There was much excitement as she literally ran off the bus, trying to grab inside her school bag to get the homework out – and finish it – as quickly as possible!

It was also the week I was:

So proud of my son as he was voted Captain of his House at school [Proud Mum Moment Number 3456278 and counting]

Loving the fact that Ben Haenow won the X Factor UK 2014…..I cried literally almost all the way through and can’t wait to hear his album when it comes out! (I’m absolutely sure he was only using about 60% of his capabilities throughout the competition)…Here’s a little taster of his voice, ladies….Don’t ever accuse me of not providing decent eye candy on this blog 🙂 ….

Lost in Instagram….enough said….loving so many accounts…like art.of.nature.photography and a couple of guys who are aiming to travel to every country…(living vicariously, me?!)…and how utterly amazing is it that you can follow the Dalai Lama as he goes about his travels…?? [I kind of feel a bit like a cross between a child in a sweetshop and how my Gran must have felt when she was completely flabbergasted realising it was possible to speak on a cordless phone!]

Excited by the fact that I’ve just won a big contract with a research institute here, to help them with their editing needs. [Please let’s click virtual champagne glasses! All pats on the back gracefully received!]

Watching Everest at the cinema with my son. My goodness. Do go and see it if you can. Incredible stuff and Southpaw at home on the settee [Jake Gyllenhaal obsessed, moi?!]

So happy watching this video:

If only everyone could walk around with this song playing in their heads every morning, the world would be a much more wonderful place.

Right, I’ll “love you and leave you” (as my Gran always used to say)…there’s some fishing rods waiting to be used and a river to explore!

Have a great week everyone!

Helen xxx

1+4 = Life: 13th September

Joining in with the ever-wonderful Isabel who has taken over from Pip to host the ‘1+4=Life’ link-up. The idea is to post four photos to describe one week (this week’s link-up is here). Here goes….

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Nutella ice-cream. Yep, you heard that right….Nutella….ice-cream….need I say more?! (You weren’t expecting to see a full pot were you??!!)

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A  1.34m high sunflower, grown from a seed Falcao (our hamster) must have left in the plant pot when he escaped and burrowed down in to the soil!

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Teaching my first ever scrapbooking class….I was very nervous but it went really well and I’m excited to do it again next Saturday. Lovely group of ladies, all eager to learn…I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

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Instagram…..my new love….(sorry Pinterest, I honestly don’t think it’s going to be a short torrid affair, I think it’s stolen my heart for good!)

It was also the week when I was….

Reading Neil Gaiman’s The Ocean at the end of the Lane….how have I never read any of his books before?

Listening to Radio 4 via the TuneIn Radio app…..oh my, I can listen to Woman’s Hour and The Archers every day….I think I must have died and gone to Heaven!

Enjoying the Humans of New York feed on Instagram….fantastic idea and so well executed. Love it.

Getting so much from the On Being a Writer discussion over at Kate Motaung’s blog. Can’t thank the organisers enough for helping me to organise my own thoughts about my writing.

Pondering this thought-provoking article about whether we’re taking too many photos….as the quite embarrassed owner of a selfie stick (which came free with a pack of Sharpies of all things), I’m thinking it might, actually, come in useful to enable me to get in the photo more often with my littles and I was pleasantly surprised to see this list of ’50 photos to take with your children’ when I did nip over to Pinterest this week (see, my old love, I haven’t forgotten you!)

Excited about the X-Factor UK 2014 final next weekend….don’t, please don’t, drop any hints about who might have won (yep, we are a whole year behind here)…I’m rooting for Ben…because he’s crazy talented and he reminds me of my brother [and I wish my brother would pluck up the courage to audition (singing bars in Sheff ain’t gonna cut it for much longer, babe: you’ve got to go for it…)]

…and that, my lovelies, was my week (in brief!)…

Here’s to a great week for everyone.

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1 + 4 = Life: 6th September

Joining in with the ever-wonderful Isabel who has taken over from Pip to host the ‘1+4=Life’ link-up. The idea is to post four photos to describe one week (this week’s link-up is here). Here goes….

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Waking up early (and actually taking time to see the sunrise: yay!). Early morning runs. Mid-morning errands on dirty streets in uncomfortable shoes….(yuck!)…

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Flowers galore.

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Admiring the graffiti at the local University (until I got home and realised that one of them says ‘Yankee Go Home’)

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And and and….Cadburys chocolate. Brought to me by a very kind British teacher who’s just started working at my son’s school [All three bars may already have disappeared for which I am delightfully unapologetic!]

It’s also the week I’ve been…

Saddened beyond a sadness I ever thought was possible about the Syrian refugee crisis. I have no words.

Horrified by the destruction of the Baalshamin Temple in Palmyra, Syria. Simply cannot get my head around this. However much I try. Still in tears whenever I think about this.

Pondering this video {about how children are losing their connection with Nature as a result of uncontrolled technology use} Shocking.

Fascinated by this story of the last woman alive who can spin sea silk. (I promise you will not regret clicking through; it’s such an amazing story in so many respects!)

Enjoying reading this post about Blair Edie, the blogger behind Atlantic-Pacific. She’s my absolute all-time favourite fashion blogger. [Have I always dreamed of travelling in a gondola in Venice dressed like this? Yes (often). Prancing around Capri dressed like this? Yes (often). Walking around new York dressed like this? (Oh my goodness yeeeeeesssss!!!!)]. It was particularly encouraging to hear, from this interview, how she manages to fit full-time blogging in with her packed full-time work schedule and, also, to hear that she’s almost given up on her blog many times too!)

Listening to this song, on repeat….my son can’t get enough of it (and I found myself singing it out loud as I was on my run the other morning!)…Labrinth’s Express Yourself…(love the video too!)….

Reading Neil Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane (just started it)….having just finished Paolo Coelho’s Adelph (HATED it; self-indulgent nonsense!)….

Loving this blog post from one of the Five Minute Friday ladies I enjoy reading….I think all Mums will relate! And my friend Sian’s scrapbook layouts here (they’re absolutely stunning! and I’m in awe of her creativity!)…

Thankful for wonderful blogging friends like Isabel (you know why!)…and Barbara (you also know why!)…and all my readers…..you make me smile every single day. Thank you!

Excited about the fact that I managed to open an Instagram account! Yay! I think you should be able to find me at @iwillbloom (or is the ‘@’ only used for Twitter…?!! I am clueless!). I was astounded to have one ‘like’ pop up on one of my photos as I was sat reading yesterday….(!)….and, having roamed around Instagram for a short while, I think it’s something I’m going to love….if you Instagram, let me know your username!! Any suggestions for ‘interesting Instagrammers’ are more than welcome!

….and finally……

Wishing I’d thought of this as an idea for a blog post (from here)…

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Have a lovely, great, wonderful week all of you!

Helen xxx

 

 

One + Four = Life – August 16th

Joining in with 1+4 = Life (although Pip seems to have stopped hosting the link-up?).

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It was a “marvelling at the thousands of blooms, finding a cute spiky cactus (and bringing it home with us), sorting out my wardrobe and reading about quests” kind of week…

It was a good one!

I was….

Listening to Joe Cocker’s You are so Beautiful….

[A comment on a different, live, version of the song said, “I dedicate it to the woman I’ve not yet met but I know she’s out there somewhere”….I’m rooting for him, hoping he’ll meet her some day. His comment just about broke my heart]

and Ben Haenow’s The Man in the Mirror [I’m a fan of talent shows, just love seeing the participants getting a shot at fulfilling their dream….and I’ve developed a definite soft spot for Ben (from the UK X-Factor 2014 – we’re still on the 2014 season where I am, so please please please don’t tell me who won! Watching the X-factor has become my few hours of pure ‘escapism’ every week…love how Ben sang this song and love his expression at the end!]

Reading Chris Guillebeau’s The Happiness of Pursuit. Enjoying day dreaming about one day being able to set off on my bike and just cycling awayRelying only on my own body and seeing what happens and where I end up. [Am I totally mad to dream of cycling around the world?! And why can’t I get the idea out of my head?!]

Savouring Ann Voskamp’s 1000 Gifts (a gift from my lovely friend Barbara). I find I’m stopping every few sentences to scribble down quotes and ideas it’s sparking. I’m very much enjoying the book and love her idea that we should give thanks for the things that are hard not just the ‘good’ moments (that idea has helped me quite a lot recently). [Thank you, Barbara xx]

Watching Eddie Murphy’s 1000 words…I’ve always loved Eddie Murphy (when he doesn’t swear and in a guilty pleasure sort of way) and there are some very funny bits in the film. It’s really corny but it’s a nice feel good film, perfect for a lazy Saturday evening!

Enjoying all of my friend Julie’s blog posts recently, but especially loving this one. Such a wonderful ‘little’ story (that’s really not so little at all). Also every post my friend Joy posts…(writer envy, moi?!)…..

Eating lots of green vegetables! And cake. Always lots of cake.

Desperately needing to go for a run! I haven’t done my daily runs for over six weeks now and I’m itching to start again….

Looking forward to the On Being a Writer online discussion group that Kate Montaug is hosting (from 17th August until 23rd September)

Watching in compulsive fashion (apart from the X Factor every Friday and Saturday at 8pm): Homeland. Wow. Gripping stuff! (Though my head is reeling as I’ve hit the middle of Season 2…so many plot twists, I’ve had to rewind and re-watch often to be able to understand what on Earth is happening…that’ll teach me to watch it whilst I’m painting or scrapping! But it does, at least, mean I get to ogle Saul a few extra times. “Sigh!”)

Lusting after clothes! So many clothes! This blouse (sigh!)…this skirt (oh my!)….this dress (so pretty!)…these earrings!these shoes!this lipstick (it’s the perfect colour!)…honestly, I’m the Chicest Lady in Fantasy Land!!

and that, my friends, was my week last week….

Here’s to a ggggrrrreeeeaaaat week this coming week!!

Helen xxx 

One + Four = Life (24th May)

Am back with 1+4 = Life, after a few weeks break….(I missed you, ladies!)….

It was a funny kind of week, busy and also full of tidying up, clearing spaces, feeling the need for fresh air and new. A week filled with many discussions about how ‘big school’ starts in just a few months (for my littlest little one), how my son will be nine in 13 days (yes, he does have a calendar on his wall, so he can count down the days!) and the week we started a piggy bank (all change dropped in to it every evening) for our home by the sea. [You’ve got to have a dream, people, got to have a dream!].

It was also the week when…

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Painting came back in to fashion in our household; my red flowering plant decided to delight me with hundreds of beautiful blooms!; I ventured back in to my office, having become bored of working there whilst finishing a huge project in there for what seemed like forever; and the week when I decided a new vision board was in order (how much fun can cutting up magazines be? My enthusiastic answer: lots!) [I realise the ‘Built for Blahniks’ is rather tacky/90s Sex and the City-ish but it makes me smile every time I see it! I am built for Blahniks and ain’t no-one ever again gonna tell me otherwise!]

And the week I’ve been….

Reading Charles Bukowski Post office“Wow” (is all I can think to respond with at the moment. It’s incredibly – mind-blowingly?! – good!)

Wanting to read Oliver Sacks On The Move. A remarkable man. Can’t wait to read it.

Loving Susan Middleton’s photos of marine invertebrates….life’s beauty knows no bounds! And this tribute to Oliver Sacks, from Lawrence Weschler…what a joy! (The May 1982/July 1983 entries have had me in fits of laughter/deep thought since I read the piece)

Eating chia seeds left overnight in milk and yoghurt. Oh my. Heaven!

Pondering the idea of The Moral Bucket List (and the idea of eulogy virtues) from David Brooks. Do check it out – you won’t regret clicking through…

Enjoying memories from seeing The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel at the cinema this week. It’s a delight! I found myself laughing, crying, singing along and wanting to get up and dance as I was watching it, and I’ve been smiling as I remember it ever since I left the cinema! Such a tender and beautiful film, such an amazing cast! I came out of the cinema feeling, more than anything, privileged to have been able to see them all together on screen. Loved it. 

Laughing at my daughter who comes out with the funniest things! Ones this week include, “Mama, I really want to be a mermaid” (with the cutest, most excruciatingly ‘I really wish I could’ face), to which I replied, “But, my darling, you’re a human…”. Her reply? “Yes, Mama, I know that, but it doesn’t stop me wanting to be a mermaid”. I can’t argue with that perfect 5-year old’s logic!

Considering my responses to these three simple questions (from Trent at The Simple Dollar). Such a powerful exercise.

Looking forward to seeing Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller in Frankenstein at the National Theatre…it’s only at the cinema, unfortunately, but I can’t wait to see it! And on my birthday too! What a treat!! [I’m actively refusing to let my yearnings for London theatre shows dampen my joy]

And “that’s that”(as they say)…my week last week…

Here’s to a great and lovely week for everyone this week….!

Helen xxx

One + Four = Life (3rd May)

Joining in with Pip’s 1+ 4 = Life…..love her blog, Meet Me At Mikes

A lovely kind of week this week. Lots of work. Lots of play. Lots of ‘I’m feeling great. Wow! It’s nice to feel like this’ sort of moments…..

The week when…

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– We decided to have a ‘closet clear out’ which turned in to a ‘Mama, try all your dresses on’ afternoon, which turned in to a ‘Mama, look at me!’ sort of afternoon, as she tried all my shoes/jewellery/hats on, modelling them worryingly well. She’s definitely an exhibitionist, my littlest little one!

– My son gifted me a rose. We were walking past some flower stalls at the side of the rose, he disappeared for a minute and appeared with a rose….”for you, Mama”, the biggest smile on his face….I don’t know how he managed to convince the stall holder to give it to him, but it was most welcome. It’s sat on the kitchen shelf and makes me smile every time I see it. 

– The Rainbow Loom reappeared with a vengeance. It’s amazing to see him, learning so, so quickly and creating incredible things from youtube tutorials….what did we do before youtube?

– My son wanted to go to the zoo so he could take photos. I’m all for encouraging this hobby, so off we went. Picnic lunch, camera in hand and a keen eye for a good shot…..love this photo he took of the model shark….

And the week when I’ve been…..

Loving Maurice Sendak’s illustrations of Grimms Fairy Tales. Such exquisite details!

Lusting after new clothes…this shirt from J. Crew (oh my!); this dress from Michael Kors (swoon!); this dress from Anthropologie (have never before seen such a perfect dress!); this skirt, this skirt and this skirt (love ‘weird print’ clothing!)….and am on a search for a perfect pencil-shaped denim skirt….like this – love the one here and this 70s style one here….[Tell me I’m not the only one who stores ‘Clothes they’d love to buy if only they had the money’ on Pinterest?!!]

Reading (again) One Simple Act: Discovering the Power of Generosity by Debbie Macomber. Love it. Love the idea that one simple act of generosity can convert in to a multitude of unforeseen miracles.

Watching The Magic of Belle Isle and 10 Items or Less (both so sweet!). I never knew how wonderful Morgan Freeman is and I’ve been marathon-watching his films…late at night….with hot chocolate and salty popcorn…..so life-giving!

Listening to Ruben Gonzalez Mandinga…..“Wow”…!

Laughing at Laurel and Hardy….I challenge you not to be in fits of laughter by the end of the video!!!

Wanting to blog more often! Missing it! I need to schedule time to get my posts bulk-written and scheduled for the week ahead again…here’s to finding some time tonight for that….!

Wishing you all a wonderful week!

Helen xxxx

P.S. I had forgotten — erhhmm, overlooked the fact – that I had offered a prize on my first 1+4=Life post here (which was my 200th blog post)….to a randomly-selected winner, chosen from amongst the people who had left a comment on that post…Britney Lee, Barbara, Isabel, JenJo, Lizelle, Carrie Ann, Julie, Heather and Alexa all left comments…….and the winner is……Heather….chosen, again, by Falcao, our hamster…

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One + Four = Life (26th April)

1+ 4 = Life for this week (thanks Pip, for the idea, and for creating this amazing community!)

It was the week with a Veritable Mountain of Work (hence no blogging or visiting blogs; I’m slowly making my rounds, ladies!)…I’m so thankful to be able to work properly again (Yay for having time to work! Yay for all my wonderful clients who’ve stuck by me through thick and thin these last two years! Yay for being able to pay my bills properly next month!)….and the week when….

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…my daughter’s art quite literally threatened to take over the whole house. I came out of the kitchen one afternoon to find art work everywhere and to find her (and her tiny 5-year old frame) standing on a high chair, singing out loud and dancing, sticking her artwork to the wall…aside from the other two walls that are dedicated to her art gallery we’ve therefore added another wall to display her art. I’m all for anything that promotes her creativity…keep ’em coming, girl, keep ’em coming…

It was also the week for my ‘desert rose’ plant to decide to flower. It’s basically a stick that flowers every six months or so; about thirty buds come out overnight, the flowers last about a day and then they’re gone….teaching many lessons about the frailty of life and the need to mindfully appreciate beauty whenever it appears before you!

It was also the week for catching tadpoles and fish at the local park….and bringing them home and letting them escape so I woke up to find snail trails all over the house on Wednesday! (I know now how my Mum used to feel when I’d be the one responsible for it! LOL!)

And, finally, the week for amazing skyscapes. Literally every time I got up from my desk to stretch my legs and get some fresh air from our balcony, the sky was doing amazing things. I felt so blessed!

It was also the week I was….

In awe of the ‘Love after love’ poem by Derek Walcott, discussed, and read, here – do go check it out…I’ve never read anything before that so succinctly manages to convey the fundamental importance and need for self-love, as a basis for any form of love. I’ll definitely be looking for opportunities to read more Walcott (and this makes me want to explore the work of all Nobel Prize winners….I was horrified as I digested the poem…what delights I must have been missing out on by not specifically seeking out and reading the work of Nobel Prize winners…)

Laughing at Jerry Lewis dancing to Count Basie Orchestra! I’d totally forgotten just how much I used to enjoy Jerry Lewis as a girl and we’ve had a brilliant week, me and the littles, watching snippets of his films on Youtube…

Eating homemade baked beans. After a bit of a meltdown, because he wanted to see his ‘Granmamma’ (my Mum, as he calls her), it was decided that the only possible course of action to put all of his maladies right again was to eat baked beans on toast with a fried egg and grated cheese….only problem? No baked beans. What’s a Mama supposed to do? Hope and pray she can somehow recreate Heinz baked beans. And you know? I think I did a pretty good job! They weren’t exactly Heinz standard – perhaps supermarket own brand, maybe?! – but they did the trick. His tears were gone and there was a smile on his face within a few mouthfuls. Oh, the power of a Mama. May it long last!

Listening to Sara Bareilles Brave (love the video!)

(Trying to) dance to King Africa’s Bomba – such a silly song but somehow so addictive! The littles have had endless bouts of laughter at me trying to dance to it!!

Reading A Thousand Splendid Suns from Khaled Hosseini. Loving it but not finding it totally satisfying, somehow. [I finished A Prayer for Owen Meany – thanks to everyone who told me to stick with it. “Wow! What a book!” is about all I can muster at the moment, as I’m still swooning under it’s influence!]

Thinking about when we’ll be able to return to England and how I’m going to eat my way through a whole mountain of cheddar cheese and Branston pickle sandwiches with Walkers cheese and onion crisps, swigged down with elderflower cordial (with sparkling water),  followed by Angel delight, M&S chocolate eclairs and cake, lots of cake…healthy, moi??!!

(Trying to) make matching mermaid tails for my daughter and her American Girl doll (don’t ask!). I’m using this pattern – daughter-sized – and trying to scale it down for the American Girl so it’ll end up looking something like this…..hopefully one of next week’s 1+4=Life photos will be of said tails….as I don’t think I can take another moment of frustration trying to sew them! I finish them today or they’re not finished at all (do you ever get that when you’re crafting? You just need to finish and be done or else?!!)

Enjoying free moments after I’ve finished work. Oh my goodness, it feels sooooo, sooooooo good to be able to be working properly again.

And that, ladies, was my week…

Hoping you all have a great one….

Can’t promise I’ll be able to blog much this week but am hoping to manage to blog at least once!

I’ll be back with a vengeance from next week onwards. Promise!

Helen xxxx