Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Let There Be Light

Contemplating light, as we near the end of January and the days are stretching out, the nights getting shorter. So with this in mind, here is my interpretation of natural light and artificial light.

Natural light

Artificial light

@urbancottageind and

My Book of the Month - Dead Lake by Darcy Coates

I have never read anything by Darcy Coates before, so when I chose Dead Lake, it was a bit of an unknown entity. Billed as a supernatural thriller,  I can honestly say I was not disappointed.

When Sam heads to her uncle's remote cabin by the lake, her intention being to paint some new material for her forthcoming show, she gets more inspiration than she could ever have imagined.

Isolated, exhausted and tired, Sam tries to find motivation to paint, but somehow the images she produces don't quite seem to be her own....

This is a spooky tale 100%. I was reading this on a windy dark night, and I made sure more than once to check the doors were locked. It was that tense, and that is a rare find!

Sam sets out to find out just what is happening, having been completely spooked when she sees a man on the dock. She wasn't expecting anyone to be around. What makes matters worse is when she hears on the radio of all the missing persons cases in the vicinity.

With no phone signal, when she then finds her car has also been tampered with, Sam decides to call for help - the nearby ranger station. Cue a desperate race between Sam and her pursuer, as she uncovers grisly discoveries and finally unravels the mystery.

This is quite a short read, but the pace is breathtaking and it doesn't let up on the tension and suspense. A good read, and I shall definitely be heading for more of Darcy's output in the near future.

I would rate this a good 7 out of 10. The tension and suspense were great, but I would have liked a little bit more background on the main character Sam, as it was hard to attach with her. I also would have liked to know more about the perpetrator. Granted that would have made it a longer read, but a little more would have just filled it out that bit more. Great short read, recommended.

National Days in January


  • 1st - National Hangover Day
  • 2nd - National Science Fiction Day
  • 3rd - National Drinking Straw Day
  • 4th - National Spaghetti Day
  • 5th - National Bird Day
  • 6th - National Cuddle Up Day
  • 7th - National Tempura Day

  • 8th - National Bubble Bath Day
  • 9th - National Apricot Day
  • 10th - National Cut Your Energy Costs Day
  • 11th - National Milk Day
  • 12th - National Curried Chicken Day
  • 13th - National Sticker Day
  • 14th - National Dress up Your Pet Day

  • 15th - National Hat Day
  • 16th - National Nothing Day
  • 17th - National Hot Buttered Rum Day
  • 18th - National Winnie the Pooh Day
  • 19th - National Popcorn Day
  • 20th - National Cheese Lover's Day
  • 21st - National Hugging Day

  • 22nd - National Blonde Brownie Day
  • 23rd - National Pie Day
  • 24th - National Compliment Day
  • 25th - National Irish Coffee Day
  • 26th - National Spouses Day
  • 27th - National Chocolate Cake Day
  • 28th - National Blueberry Pancake Day

  • 29th - National Puzzle Day
  • 30th - National Croissant Day
  • 31st - National Backward Day

Things to do in January

Things to do in January:

  • Make some resolutions
  • Have a wardrobe clear out
  • Save some pennies
  • Get outdoors - go for walks
  • Get some pampering - nails, hot baths, hot chocolate
  • Cuddle up - perfect weather for staying indoors
  • Watch TV - great new TV start in January
  • Get over Christmas - its gone
  • Put your wellies on and get muddy
  • Clean your car
  • Book a holiday
  • Clean the house top to bottom
  • Get your 5 a day - fruit and veg
  • Detox
  • Get some exercise - join the gym or do it at home
  • Grab a bargain - fab sales this month!
  • Take some photos and start a calendar
  • Listen to some new music
  • Find a new hobby
  • Go to the cinema
  • Plant some spring bulbs
  • Cut the garden back

Songs for January

  • Elton John - January
  • David Gray - January Rain
  • Disclosure - January
  • Barbara Dickson - January, February
  • Bucks Fizz - January's Gone
  • Tori Amos - Black-Dove (January)
  • Goo goo Dolls - January Friend
  • Gilbert O'Sullivan - January Girl
  • Pilot - January
  • Bing Crosby - June in January

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

29 Weeks With

Week 29 - Adele
Someone Like You
Chasing Pavements
Send My Love
Make You Feel My Love
Set Fire to The Rain

Week 28 - Morrissey
Piccadilly Palare
How Soon is Now
Shoplifters of the World Unite
This Charming Man
The Boy With the Thorn in his Side

Week 27 - My Week with INXS
Never Tear Us Apart
Suicide Blonde
Need You Tonight
New Sensation
Devil Inside

Week 26 - My Week Goldfrapp
Black Cherry
A & E
Strict Machine
Ride a White Horse
Number 1
Ooh La La

Week 25 - My Week with The Kaiser Chiefs
I Predict A Riot
Coming Home
Little Shocks
Everyday I Love You Less and Less
Never Miss a Beat
Love's Not a Competition
The Kaiser Chiefs

Week 24 - My Week with The Killers
Mr Brightside
Read my Mind
Smile Like You Mean It
Somebody Told Me
The Killers

Week 23 - My Week with Paloma Faith
Only Love Can Hurt Like This
New York
Stone Cold Sober
Never Tear Us Apart
Just Be
Upside Down
Paloma Faith

Week 22 - My Week with Taylor Swift
Love Story
We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
Everything Has Changed
I Knew you were trouble
Shake it Off
Blank Space
Taylor Swift

Week 21 - My Week with Kate Bush
This Woman's Work
The Man with the Child in his Eyes
Hounds of Love
Don't Give Up
Running Up That Hill
Wuthering Heights
Kate Bush

Week 20 - My Week with Kylie
Spinning Around
Can't Get You Out of My Head
Where the Wild Roses Grow
All the Lovers
I Believe in You
Kylie Minogue

Week 19 - My Week with Amy Winehouse
Love is a Losing Game
Back to Black
Our Day Will Come
Tears Dry on Their Own
You Know I'm no Good
Amy Winehouse

Week 18 - My Week with Foo Fighters
My Hero
The Pretender
Learn to Fly
All My Life
Best of You
Foo Fighters

Week 17 - My Week with Justin Timberlake
Cry Me a River
Sexy Back
Holy Grail
Rock Your Body
Take Back the Night
4 minutes
Justin Timberlake

Week 16 - My Week with Calvin Harris
Feel So Close
Acceptable in the 80's
You Used to Hold Me
Sweet Nothing
Drinking from the Bottle
Calvin Harris

Week 15 - My Week with Madonna
Into the Groove
Hung Up
Like a Prayer
Beautiful Stranger

Week 14 - My Week with Arctic Monkeys
I Bet That You Look Good on the Dance Floor
Snap Out of It
Fluorescent Adolescent
Why'd You Only Call Me When You're High
Don't Sit Down Cause I've Moved Your Chair
One For The Road
Arctic Monkeys

Week 13 - My Week with REM
Everybody Hurts
Losing My Religion
The Great Beyond
The One I Love
Bad Day
Its the End of The World As We Know It

Week 12 - My Week with Coldplay
The Scientist
Fix You
A Sky Full of Stars
The Hardest Part

Week 11 - My Week with Britney
Hit Me Baby One More Time
Piece of Me
Scream and Shout
Oops I Did it Again
I'm A Slave for U
Britney Spears

Week 10 - My Week with the Rolling Stones
I Can't Get No (Satisfaction)
Jumpin' Jack Flash
Ruby Tuesday
Paint it Black
Start Me Up
She's A Rainbow
Gimme Shelter
The Rolling Stones

Week 9 - My Week with Rihanna
We Found Love
Love the Way you Lie
Russian Roulette

Week 8 - My Week with Robbie Williams
She's the One
Rock DJ
Come Undone
Robbie Williams

Week 7 - My Week with Kings of Leon
Wait for Me
Use Somebody
Molly's Chambers
Sex on Fire
Kings of Leon

Week 6 - Pink
Who Knew
Just Like a Pill
So What
Blow Me (One Last Kiss)
Raise Your Glass
All About Pink

Week 5 - My Week with Take That
Never Forget
Rule The World
The Flood
Greatest Day
Back for Good
Could it Be Magic
It's Take That!

Week 4 - My Week with Beyonce
Beautiful Liar
If I Were a Boy
Love on Top
Single Ladies (put a ring on it)
Crazy in Love
R&B / pop icon - Beyonce!

Week 3 - My Week with Oasis
The Importance of Being Idle
Half the World Away
D'You Know What I mean
Go Let it Out
Some Might Say
Live Forever
Stop Crying Your Heart Out
Classic Rock & Roll Music - Oasis

Week 2 - My Week with the Stereophonics
It Means Nothing
Local Boy in a Photograph
Mr Writer
Maybe Tomorrow
Pick a Part That's New
the Bartender and the Thief
Classic Music - Stereophonics

Week 1 - My Week with Blondie
Blondie - Heart of Glass
Blondie - Call Me
Blondie - Atomic
Blondie - Sunday Girl
Blondie - Dreaming
Blondie - Hanging on the Telephone
Blondie - Rapture
Classic Music - Blondie

Learning Spanish - weather recap


Good weather:
  • Sun - sol
  • warm - calentar
  • Hot - caliente

Bad Weather:
  • Cloud - nube
  • Winter - invierno
  • Cold - frio
  • Rain - lluvia
  • Windy ventoso
  • Umbrella - paraguas
  • snow - nieve
  • thunder - trueno
  • storm - tormenta
  • strong - fuerte

329 Sleeps Until Christmas :)

I just thought to myself, I wonder how many days it is until its Christmas? Yes, I realise it is only January, but there are things to be planned ;) 

It is in fact therefore:
  • 329 sleeps until Christmas
  • 7876 hours until Christmas
  • 472615 minutes until Christmas
  • 328 days, 4 hours, 54 minutes, 50 seconds until Christmas :) 

Monday, 29 January 2018

A lion does not lose sleep over the opinion of sheep

I read this and thought hell yeah!! I have been so worried lately over what people think. Worried about letting people down, letting myself down, procrastinating everything and anything.

Then I read this and I thought - why am I worrying what other people think? I know who I am, and I am good at what I do. I don't need to keep doubting myself. I am a lion.

Lions roar. Lions rule their pride, and defend their own. They stand their ground. They don't have sleepless nights worrying what sheep think of them, or what sheep think, or even whether sheep even exist!!

So, from this point forward I am a lion. I just need to roar!! :)

Who shall I spend my next week with?

I find myself pondering who to choose next. Along the way, I have already chosen the Foo FightersINXSPink and Amy Winehouse. There's been Arctic MonkeysBeyonceJustin Timberlake and Goldfrapp.

I've listened to ColdplayKate BushBlondie and BritneyMadonnaKings of LeonOasis and REMRihannaTaylor SwiftThe Rolling Stones and Calvin Harris. I've chosen KyliePalomaRobbie Williams and StereophonicsTake ThatKaiser Chiefs and The Killers.

So who do I pick next? At this point, I am considering Adele, Katy Perry or maybe U2. Possibly The Spice Girls or Girls Aloud. Or I might go rock and think ACDC or Guns and Roses. I might go indie and choose Green Day or go classic old school with a bit of The Who or The Beatles.

So many choices, I shall mull it over a little longer. :)

My Travels Around the World

  • Tunisia x 4 times (Sousse x2, Port El Kantoui x2)
  • Egypt x 5 times (Sharm El Sheikh x4 and Hurghada, Luxor and Cairo)
  • Canada - Banff, Jasper, Edmonton, Calgary, Lake Louise, The Rockies
  • New Zealand South Island - Queenstown, Milford Sound, Christchurch, Franz Josef
  • Fiji islands - South Pacific
  • Cyprus x 2 times
  • Gran Canaria x 4 times - San Augustin & Maspalomas, Melanores
  • Lanzarote x 3 times
  • Fuerteventura x 2 times
  • Mallorca x over 10 times!
  • Menorca x 2 times
  • Ibiza
  • Zante
  • Rhodes x 4 times
  • Crete x 3 times incl 2015 to Hersonissos
  • Jersey
  • France - Brittany & Calais
  • France - St Malo, Rennes, Nantes, 
  • France - Normandy, Mont St Michel
  • Northern Ireland - Belfast, Giants Causeway
  • Dublin x 3 times
  • Cork - Republic of Ireland
  • Mexico x 3 times - Puerto Vallarta, Xcaret, Cancun & Riviera Maya
  • USA - New York via QM2
  • USA - California, San Francisco, Grand Canyon, Big Sur, San Diego, Las Vegas, LA, Colorado, Santa Barbara
  • Marrakesh - Morocco
  • Belgium x 3 times
  • Spain - Almeria
  • Turkey x 2 times - Kusadasi & Marmaris 
  • Mexico - Moon Palace, Cancun
  • Spain - Barcelona

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Holidays in Fuerteventura IV

Blue skies, palm trees - perfection

Camel rides


Selfie :) 



Card games

Beach life 

Saturday, 27 January 2018

Holidays in Fuerteventura III

Inflatable pink flamingo drink holder - perfect for the beach :) 

Silly faces

Lots of fun

Love this girl


Palm trees and moonlight


Lots of hats! 

Great room

Great company

Laughing at misfortune - I couldn't help it!! Looking back!!

I did not want to go to the gym today. My legs were still sore and achy from Thursday's personal training session, I was tired, and I had a little bit of a sore head from having a couple of the old vino's yesterday evening.

So I forced myself to go, partner in tow, also a reluctant today. We ran, we rowed. He went off to do his weights, and I opted for the cross trainer. Directly in front of me, a couple were walking on the treadmills. Both wearing sweats and looking a bit too warm. She decided to take off her sweatshirt whilst still walking. 

The next thing I knew, she was on the floor behind the treadmill, flat on her back with the sweatshirt still over her head. I can only assume that trying to take it off had unbalanced her and she had been flung unceremoniously from the treadmill. I started to laugh, but tried to pull myself together as she was still fighting with the sweatshirt which was stuck on her head, and I wasn't sure if she was laughing or crying. 

Once she got the sweat off her head, I could see she was fine, but very embarrassed. By this point, it was me who was crying. I was absolutely helpless. I had to stop the cross trainer and go over to the other half, as it was totally inappropriate for me to be so close to her howling like a banshee with raucous hysterics. 

The other half had no clue what was up with me. I couldn't compose myself for a minute or two to explain, but once I did, I set him off too!! 

I finally managed to regain control of myself, and pulled myself together, continuing my workout. The problem was she had gamely continued her own workout, and I kept seeing her which kept setting me off again!!

I have to say, as a result, I totally enjoyed my workout today!! ;)

(originally posted in 2014) 

Holiday in Fuerteventura II

Bikini's at the ready - and breathe in... 

Good book, sunshine, cold beer and sunnies. 

Blue skies.

Family time. 

Waves and body boards. 

The obligatory sausage legs shot! 

My man. 

Happy times, fun in the sun :) 

Holidays in Fuerteventura

The Canary Islands are my favourite for a bit of sunshine. Last year it was Fuerteventura. 

Sunnies on. 

Cocktails at the ready. Rude not to. 

The obligatory selfies. 

Sand, waves, blue skies and sunshine.