Sunday 25th October 2020

I Want. 33/51 #LifeThisWeek. 66/2020.

I Want. 33/51 #LifeThisWeek. 66/2020.

Last week I wrote this post: Why Did I Start A Blog?

Today I conclude the ‘Why I Blog” series with ‘I Want’ because that is essentially the ‘why’ of blogging for me.

I want:

  1. to connect with readers who visit this blog
  2. to stay relevant as a blogger 
  3. to post topics of interest with a range of my expertise and interest
  4. to contribute to conversations about a range of topics
  5. to be able to learn from others who blog
  6. to know that I am a blogger who is inclusive
  7. to be a blogging friend to those who link up often
  8. to see that my posts on all topics have relevance to my audience
  9. to visit others’ blogs and connect via commenting and support
  10. to continue writing, posting, commenting and sharing my blog posts with others for as long as my work is of interest to others and I am not feeling stale nor bored

It’s been a very big learning curve to be a blogger.

I say that because, for me, it was quite foreign to my world of work in education. Yet, as  determined person who does not eschew hard work, I did my best to blog for what I had found was my way:

Conversational

Informational – based on experience

Photo-centred

Stories shared

Difficult Topics Which May Be Helpful

Creativity and Art

Health & Mindfulness

After a huge move (literally) in our lives, from Sydney to the Central Coast at the beginning of 2015 I set myself a goal. To keep me focussed on “doing this one thing EVERY day”…. I wrote a blog post Every.Single.Day. of 2015. No-one read the posts bar me, until, I re-visited the best way to connect more broadly and that was:

L I N K  U P S.

Hosted by fellow bloggers.

Yay for that. I linked up posts for some time on the Annoyed Thyroid’s link up each weekend , Kylie Purtell’s on a Tuesday and Kirsty Russell on a Monday. Great news! I was meeting up with old friends and new. Right into 2016 and I continued…slightly decreasing my posts and relieved to do so.

I found I needed a good refresher of how this blog looked and made contact with an old Sydney friend, Tanya, who enriched the look and settings of the blog already set by my techie guy and that meant 2016 was even better. I made a commitment to blog almost every day under these topics:

I was having a good time, connecting and meeting new bloggers. Lots had just started blogging, others had left and there was talk of a linky being retired and I asked if I could, perhaps, with permission take over the Mondays with Life This Week. I got a lovely approval from my friend and in September this LINK UP kicked off….and is now #202!

I was also delighted to know there were link ups happening here (co-hosted) on Wednesdays  (sadly for me, this one is finishing up soon) and here on Thursdays. Thank you for your link ups! They are great places of connection.

I Want: to write my memoir.

I had been postponing the idea of writing a memoir of my life until a friend and blogger encouraged me to try writing the chapters in blog-type posts. I did this. Here is the first one. I was not to know it would be a while before the next one!!

I Want: to share awareness of head and neck cancer.

Those who have been here since then and before will know that things changed very fast for my life and priorities when I got a head and neck cancer diagnosis in May 2017. I did think long and hard before pressing publish on this but the love and support which came back to me proved why I love to blog and love my community. The post is here.

I Want: to promote and encourage education- self and others always.

I also told the story of how I like to learn…this was because as a life-long educator I was placed in the role of student at an adult crochet class and because of how poorly my needs were understood I never went back!

I Want: to feel well within myself and portray that confidently.

As an anti-dote to cancer treatments and letting myself be positively impact each day, I began a daily routine some 4 months into my cancer and started to ‘dress with purpose’. This became a photo on instagram each day…and then over time one big boost to my self-confidence when I had no upper teeth and was still in cancer-treatment mode. Here’s what this was about. 

I Want: to have women share their stories of courage.

From May 2019 I introduced a series to the blog for women I invited (or who self-invited) to share their stories: answering 5 questions. This series, Women of Courage continues….I am so pleased this has been a success. Many women have told me what it meant to share.

I Want: to show my appreciation to you, my readers, bloggers and friends. Some even joined me for my 70th birthday morning tea late in 2019. Many of you I may never met but already feel you are good friends. This blogging business is a great way for me, a relatively isolated retiree, to connect.

I Want: to continue blogging. Writing a post up to 2 times a week is good for my health and for my connections. Over time, I expect with fewer Women of Courage stories, my Wednesday posts will be a way to make some changes of direction if that’s what I choose.

This Is Why I Blog!

Thank you all. You have made a difference in my life.

Denyse.

Link Up #202

Life This Week. Link Up #202

You can link up something old or new, just come on in.

* Please add just ONE post each week! NOT a link-up series of posts, thank you.

* Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not.

* Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do!

* Check out what others are up to: Leave a comment on a few posts, because we all love our comments, right!

* Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere, or on your sidebar or let others know somewhere you are linking up to this blog’s Life This Week.

*Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog & the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. These may include promotions, advertorials and any that are overly religious or political or in any way offensive  in nature.

* THANK you for linking up today! Next week’s optional prompt: 34/51 Self-Care Stories. #5. 24.8.2020

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Self-Care Stories (#4) in COVID19 Times. 28/51 #LifeThisWeek. 56/2020.

Self-Care Stories (#4) in COVID19 Times.  28/51 #LifeThisWeek. 56/2020.

I went looking for my Self-Care Story #3 and found I did not write one! What?! No, it was because “I” decided to get another of my Telling My Story chapters published. So, even if I did not do #3, I am back to write what the latest is for me and self-care.

Self-Care: Regular Routines.

As many know, my routines post-head and neck cancer surgeries and treatments have been to help me re-connect with the world out there, socially and physically. This was something I began about 3 months post-operatively in 2017.

I was getting used to a different body. I had always hidden it as there was too much fat…my words. So, when anxiety and head and neck cancer helped me lose a lot of that fat, then I found C L O T H E S a very attractive way to spend my time…looking, trying on…and wearing.

It was a huge boost to my ego and generally to my health over all.

I coupled ‘getting dressed with purpose’ to going out for a daily coffee, where I would interact with others and despite no teeth on top for 14 months, I made friends where I went as I had conversations.

There is no way my reconstructed mouth was going to stop me talking!!

Then in 2020 Self-Care Got a Shock.

From around March, self-care the way I used to do this every day had to stop. The shock for me is that I wondered how I would deal with the restrictions that came with self-isolation, COVID-19 thank you not.

I was understanding cognitively what I had to do, like everyone else, and that was stay home most of the time and only go out for essentials. I remembered my shock as the first day of real change came because I went to my local shops for some groceries, and everything was being locked up, closed off, taped off….sad to see. Then I thought of all those people and their employment (sad) and of the people whose daily routine was to go to those shops and now they could not (sad again).

I also found, as time went on, that I needed to change my attitude and thinking about what was happening. Yes, we had a virus somewhere in the air that no-one could see or touch, and yes, it had to change the way we went about our daily lives. I recall that I got a shock/surprise at the restrictions placed upon us even to visit the chemist and the doctor. I needed time to process what was in fact, good safety measures.

Changing My Thinking During COVID19 Times Helps Self-Care.

So, over time, I built-in some new ways of integrating self-care for me with what we had and had not. These three quotes, source is in image, have probably best summed up how ‘life is now for me’.

 

Telling the Self-Care Stories in Images. March – June 2020.

How is your self-care these days?

Maybe you’d enjoy this 18 seconds…

Denyse.

Link Up #197.

Life This Week. Link Up #197.

You can link up something old or new, just come on in.

* Please add just ONE post each week! NOT a link-up series of posts, thank you.

* Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not.

* Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do!

* Check out what others are up to: Leave a comment on a few posts, because we all love our comments, right!

* Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere, or on your sidebar or let others know somewhere you are linking up to this blog’s Life This Week.

*Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog & the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. These may include promotions, advertorials and any that are overly religious or political or in any way offensive  in nature.

* THANK you for linking up today! Next week’s optional prompt 29/51 Your Choice. Mine is: World Head & Neck Cancer Day. 20.7.2020

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Taking Stock #4. 36/51 #LifeThisWeek. 93/2019.

Taking Stock #4. 36/51 #LifeThisWeek. 93/2019.

It’s a great idea to ‘take stock’ in life and so it is here in the world of blogging too. Many of those who follow my blog already have established ‘taking stock’ practices and we have Pip Lincoln to thank for this notion for her original taking stock here.

Every 9 weeks is the practice to keep me ‘accountable’ and it’s part of my optional prompt menu. Noting this will be the second last for 2019. Gosh, where has that time gone.

 

Making: time for myself to just ‘be’ is a goal at the moment. I have always been a ‘do’ person.

Cooking: batch meals. Some for my husband (with a few for Dad). Always appreciated and oh so glad not have to answer the question “what’s for dinner” every night as a result.

Drinking: as I type, soda water. Feel the need to a refresh. Nice cold.

Reading: daily newspaper…which is no longer home delivered but I am happy to drive to our local friendly newsagent as she puts the paper away for us.

Wanting: MORE art supplies but not actually NEEDING them.

Looking: at so many art supply places on-line. I look for ‘free shipping’ but also notice, that is a bit of a furphy as the price of items is a bit higher than those where you pay for shipping.

Playing: mahjong on the ipad which I listen to Audible books

Wasting: not much at all

Wishing: for all of us who need better health or to stay well…get that wish

 

Enjoying: life

Waiting: for Monday….

Liking: this blogging community

Wondering: If what happens on Monday will work

Loving: my husband and my family. 

Meeting the youngest grandchild on her birthday in 2015.

Hoping: that we never have to wait so long again for another event like Monday’s

Marvelling: that I can ‘string’ out what is happening on Monday.

Needing: to tell you: we live in a rented house. It’s 4 years old. The dishwasher broke down 9 weeks ago and WE are waiting for MONDAY’S supposed repair of same.

Smelling: freshly made cupcakes which I need to ice now they are cool.

Wearing: the cute little slippers my friend sent me in 2017.

in 2017 I had bandages. Not anymore,

Following: the news of any relief from the drought in Australia

Noticing: that we are yet to see forecasts of much needed decent rainfall.

Knowing: soon there will be water restrictions here on the Central Coast as there should be.

Thinking: that unless everyone gets a greater appreciation of what the drought means for our country, then there will continue to be water wastage, especially when the government is prepared to “sell” the rivers’ water. Enough said.

Feeling: well.

Bookmarking: a real book. Trouble is, the bookmark falls out. Trying to finish “Never Say Die” by Chris O’Brien.

Opening: a new packet of art supplies. NB: I already had them, not ordered as I wrote the post!!

Smiling: at how much I love these pretty, bright and colourful items and getting to use them.

My art….

 

How are you at waiting for repairs?

This has tested us quite a bit as we would never have allowed (if we were landlords) this ridiculously LONG drawn-out process to occur. It was recommended by the first person who checked it …”replace” but…landlord thinks “no, I will source the part”. THAT has taken 6 weeks. THEN a repairer with the part still needs to turn up on Monday AND, if after putting part in machine, we sure hope it works…or….back to the hand-washing up. Over it!

UPDATE: the dishwasher is fixed. It was a broken switch. 9 weeks ago we reported it. The first serviceman said “electrical board” gone, replace machine recommended. Owners said no. Today: a simple fix. But this serviceman left the control panel unstable so…can be used …so will need a return visit. Sigh!

 

Right, now where was I?

Hope you enjoyed the Taking Stock…and understood my little add-on and the reason for it.

Thanks everyone!

Denyse.

You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today!

Next Week’s optional prompt is: 37/51 What Is Love? 16/9/19

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Taking Stock #2. 18/51#LifeThisWeek. 47/2019.

Taking Stock #2. 18/51#LifeThisWeek. 47/2019.

It’s that time again folks, which comes around every 9 weeks on the blog for #lifethisweek. Taking Stock originated with Pip here and I thank her for that. I have amended the list recently. I hope you enjoy what I’ve been up to. I look forward to reading your post, if you have also ‘taken stock.’

 

Making: so many little cakes. Maybe I am ‘fooling’ myself making them tiny but I look at it this way, I feel less guilt and small still has lots of icing!

Cooking: see above. And as well, quite a few meat meals in small serves for both me and my husband. I prefer a batch cook and freezing the meals. Recently it’s been sweet & sour chicken, slow cooked lamb shanks and sausages/bacon in tomato and gravy base. And pies.

Drinking: my daily double shot latte ( seen as a model for the meme for this post) 

 

Reading: I start so many books (non-fiction) and have yet to finish them. Megan Blandford’s book is one. Go Megan for sharing the story of your post-natal depression. 

 

Wanting: as I write, less pain in the parts of my upper mouth which are tight. So tight. However by the time you read this, it will likely be gone. 

Looking: at the wonderful awards won by my favourite Aussie fiction writer at the recent publishers’ awards. Go Trent Dalton and Boy Swallows Universe.

Playing: a game I liked in 2017 and enjoying it again. Not strictly a game but an app called Elevate and it’s a brain-training one and I love me a personal challenge. Back at it. It’s a paid annual one but they had 40% off so snapped it up. 

Wasting: enough time – too much I mean – considering how much I have added weight to my body since I can eat….properly and well…..and being more kind to myself as I learn more about mindful eating vs mindless eating!

Wishing: that cancer was cured. Eradicated. Gone. Done. Two friends ( one on-line and one I have met) have died far, far too young in the past 2 weeks. 

I am so sorry @curlypops  and @t_to_the_racy your time here ended too soon.

Enjoying: some quality time with my husband as we have made it our practice to go out once a week somewhere different for morning tea. 

Waiting: for not much. That is a good thing!

Liking: the fact that we live in a very modern house, the lease has been extended till April 2020 and we are content with that.

Wondering: what this year will bring to our family and relationships. Nothing mysterious in this. Just wondering as when your kids are adults and some of  their kids are adults, you can get some news about all kinds of things. 

HB to SM! A while back but I will never forget the day this beautiful butterfly joined our family!

Loving: that relationships made with our grandchildren in their early and formative years, translate into memories made even if we do not see them frequently, they have our love embedded in them.

Hoping: that the rotten   federal election is over with a clear result one way or another. Please. 

Marvelling: at nature. Always. These flowers were in pots last May. I planted them in the very small garden out the back when they stopped flowering and now, it’s May and here they are! Again.

Needing: to remember self-compassion before self-blame and it’s getting better. It really is. I highly recommend as I have written before: Dr Kristen Neff’s work.

Smelling: coffee. It is aromatic. Love it.

Wearing: more tops with sleeves, so it must be getting cooler!

Following: my education tweeps and their schools and being so proud of what public education in N.S.W. is doing for ALL kids. 

Noticing: that I am far less reactive generally. Not always but better! And I always realise “oh” and think, that could have been a better way to respond.

Knowing: I am loved. Not much more needed is there?

Thinking: How fortunate I am to have been treated by the best every professional team when I was diagnosed with my Head and Neck Cancer almost 2 years ago.

Feeling: gratitude. And for the next few weeks on the blog, will be posting about Gratitude on Tuesdays and linking up here.

Bookmarking: so many of my real books. Sigh. I love getting them. I just need to actually read them as well.

Opening: a parcel from Ebay that I did not recognise then realising I knew exactly what was inside.

Smiling: at so much these days and with so many people because I CAN smile

I hope that your weeks have been wonderful.

I hope for sunshine and warmth and rain too….it’s needed!

Very soon, on this blog, I am starting a series called Women of Courage. Each Wednesday. It promises to be a very interesting series judging by those whose words I have already received. Thanks to all.

Have a great week.

Denyse.

Linking here on Mondays with Kell for Mummy Mondays.

You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today!

Next week’s optional prompt: 19/51 Contentment Is…13/5/19

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Optional Prompts for #LifeThisWeek. Updated! 34/2019.

Optional Prompts for #LifeThisWeek. Updated! 34/2019.

Some of my blogging friends like to plan ahead.

I am one of them too.

Some of my blogging friends like to join in when the optional prompt works for them.

I like that idea.

Some of my blogging friends take the ‘add a post, any post old or new, on or off prompt’ approach.

That is also a great plan.

Recently I had a look at “where the optional prompts” were up to and as we ease into April, the current ones are until early May.

With that in mind, I have added to the list. So, here they are! I hope you find some or all to your liking.

19/51 Contentment Is. 13/5/19

20/51 Share Your Snaps #4 20/5/19

21/51 Self-Care: Share Your Story #3 27/5/19

22/51 First Job. 3/6/19

23/51 My Best Birthday Cake. 10/6/19

24/51 Thank You to Me. 17/6/19

25/51 Share Your Snaps #5. 24/6/19

26/51 Worst Job. 1/7/19

27/51 Taking Stock.#3. 8/7/19

28/51 Self-Care: Share Your Story #4 15/7/19

29/51 Winter: Like/Loathe 22/7/19

30/51 Share Your Snaps #6. 29/7/19

 

Thanks for being part of the #LifeThisWeek community!

Denyse.

Joining with Blogging Friends here:

Midlife Share The Love on Wednesdays here.

Lovin’ Life Linky on Thursdays here.

Open Slather on Fridays here.

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Taking Stock. 9/51. #LifeThisWeek. 21/2019.

Taking Stock. 9/51. #LifeThisWeek. 21/2019.

Every ninth week (give or take) this is the optional prompt. A much-used post and often adapted by bloggers to suit their purpose. I chose to use Pip Lincoln’s list from her blog here. This year I have left some of the irrelevant words for me out. So, for the first time in 2019, I am taking stock!

Making: a new mandala and enjoying the restrictions I have added in terms of only using a limited colour palette. 

Cooking: little cakes. Always the little cakes. They are frozen and brought out when needed. I now have mini-cupcake trays and patty cake size too.

Drinking: a double shot small latte every day.

Reading: the newspaper every day. It is my breakfast companion and has been for decades. I do not finish it at breakfast so it lasts me all day.

Wanting: I still ‘think’ it’s an Apple Watch I want but I shall see when the 2 year anniversary of my cancer diagnosis comes around and check my ‘want’.

Looking: at the collage I put on Instagram marking my husband’s 70th birthday and thinking how fortunate I am to be married to him

Playing: a game on my Ipad called Bold Moves. It’s a challenge one and of course gets harder as you go on. But it’s a distraction too.

Wasting: not much at all these days as I tend to be more frugal in purchases of expendables and of what I think I need but actually don’t.

Wishing: that people do not get sick. Not cryptic but it is a nuisance in this thing we call life!

Enjoying: the spaces in between. I am getting better at not being busy all the time. 

Waiting: for Monday’s prosthodontist appointment to get his opinion on how well my gums are looking to him. Fingers crossed for good news.

Liking: that I can now help myself more to overcome any worries or stressors that seemed to get me down and now I recognise them and take action.

One of my favourite spots to ‘just be’.

Wondering: about people and why some of them are unkind, and break the law and how they think. I try not to wonder about this much though.

Loving: the family, of course. Seeing them grow up is a bitter-sweet time as we have many memories of these young people as babies to pre-schoolers.

Hoping: that the times we spent with them in those formative years leave a memory in them too.

Marvelling: at the transformation my professional surgical head and neck cancer team have made with my appearance. 

Two years apart.

Needing: to remember to slow myself down at times, and come back to the present. I am much better at this now. 

Smelling: coffee. It is a great aroma for me.

Wearing: comfy but flattering clothes to keep me accountable to me and my commitment to healthy living and enjoying the ranges of colours I own.

Following: the news. It is hard not to when I am both on-line and have the newspaper. However, I choose what NOT to follow as well for my health!

Noticing: that the sun is appearing later and setting earlier in coastal NSW even though we have about 5 weeks to go till daylight saving ends.

Looking west from our street.

Knowing: that I am helping others understand more about Head and Neck cancer as I know more about theirs too by attending my local group meeting.

Liesl Tesch MP for Gosford attended our meeting & we all got to hold her medals from Paralympics: 1992 onwards! She also taught our son in 1992!

Thinking: how great it was to live my teen years in close proximity to Manly Beach N.S.W. 

The walk from South Steyne via North Steyne to Queenscliff is iconic Manly Beach.

Feeling: that to blog is to connect

Bookmarking: Jane Caro’s Accidental Feminist because it speaks to this 69 year old. I am going to listen to Jane speak at Newcastle Writers Festival. Recommending Carly Findlay’s memoir called Say Hello. Carly is a writer and appearance activist who has been blogging for many years.

Opening: my twitter feed last week to see that a Director of Educational leadership say he was on his way to…our school from 1976-77 near the NSW Qld border and I asked him to take a photo. Wow. 

Weilmoringle P.S.

Smiling: at little kids and babies. Yes, I am that “old lady” but not in a creepy way! I had a wonderful conversation with a 10 month old recently!

There it is, in words and pictures.

Do you take stock on your blog and/or in life?

Denyse.

Joining here with Kell from All Mum Said on Mondays.

If Alicia has her linky up on Monday, hers is here.

Link ups are wonderful ways to get to know others who blog. Please consider linking up to the Australian-based ones I do. I always name them at the end of a blog post and always comment there too.

Comments are blogging currency!

You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today!

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