The Tranquil Beauty of Loch Fyne

On the shores of Loch Fyne is the lovely small town of Inverary. The town feels traditional, steeped in history and surrounded by a beautiful landscape. There’s a small selection of traditional pubs, restaurants and some very yummy fish and chips. Inverary Castle is a stand out building.

We were lucky enough to stay in a traditional fishing cottage on the shores of the loch. It was beautiful and a peaceful area to explore.

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The June Book Nook

I love a good book, whether it’s reading a paperback or listening to an audiobook. I usually have at least one paperback and one audiobook on the go. Here are some of my favourite reads over the last few months –

 

Ink and Bone (The Great Library, #1)

 

Knowledge is power. Power corrupts. Ink & Bone is the first book in a series. It’s classed as a young adult read. I really, really enjoyed this book. Based in a world where the ancient Great Library of Alexandria still exists but owning private books is a crime. The reader is introduced to a group of different young people who are competing for rolls within the library structure that becomes increasingly dangerous. As a lover of books, old libraries, different worlds and adventure, this book had it all for me. I have the second book in the series to read later in the year.

Rated – 

Elizabeth Is Missing

 

Maude is 82 yrs old and her memories of the past with her sister, have become confused with the present day and concerns for her friend, Elizabeth. I think this is a well written book that portrays life with dementia. This is a poignant read, sometimes sad, sometimes funny. I found myself hooked into the story, striving to understand and makes sense of Maude’s memories and the present reality. It gave me greater understanding of living with dementia.

Rated – Image result for 3  out of 5 Gold Stars

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Four Little Finds

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So I know I have missed loads of interesting posts from you all in Blogland in the last few months – sorry folks!

Here at Cultivating Time it’s share time. Here are some little finds that have grabbed my attention in the last few weeks –

There’s been a lot of political stuff in the press and on social media – please be assured this is election free and a respite from politics.

The 8th of June was a big day here in the UK as we had our election, It was also World Oceans Day 2017. Anyone who visits beaches will have seen evidence of the damage we are causing our oceans with plastic. This video is great at raising our awareness of the harms. I can’t seem to embed this video but I encourage you to click through to the link. Please, reduce, re-use and recycle –

See How It Feels to Be an Ocean Animal Stuck in a Plastic Bag

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Hello, Hello I missed you all

Hello all my lovely Blogland Friends

I know, I’m sorry I did another disappearing act from Blogland for a few months. I needed to take a break from a few things for a while. I’ve been taking some time out to re-evaluate my life. It’s that mid-life transition thing again!

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I have been busy though.

 

I have made some changes and additions to my Life List. Watch this space. I will be sharing with you all as I tick things off the list.

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I have been reflecting on my values and finding some new interests and passions.

I’ve written some new life goals, made an action plan and I am trying to commit to some new habits.

 

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I’ve been on a Woodland Retreat – this was sooooooo lovely.

Photos and more details of my retreat experience to follow.

 

 

 

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I am currently getting ready to go away on a course for a couple of weeks. I am really excited to be doing a Diploma in Plant Medicine.

This course is something I have been wanting to do for a few years but work always got in the way.

As part of the course I will also be spending a day on a Tree Bathing Course – it’s sounds blissful.

Fingers crossed for some nice weather!

 

I’ve been evaluating my life and making decisions about my career etc. I know it all sounds very organised and grown up. I now have some new directions in my life and have the time and space to get back to enjoying Blogland. I‘m really looking forward to catching up with you all.

How are you? What have you been up to? What have I missed? What’s been your favourite post from your blog in the last few months? Please share a link below so I can check it out. 

 

 

 

 

For the Love of Ladybirds

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As a child born in the mid 1970’s Ladybird books were an iconic part of my childhood. But by my time I had reached my 40’s they were no longer a part of my life and had been pretty much forgotten about. I had one or two favourites gathering dust in the attic but that was all.

Then I watched a BBC documentary The Ladybird Book Story late in 2013 and my old love was re-born. I was filled with nostalgia. The spark of my adult collecting of vintage ladybird books had been ignited.

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Watching the documentary filled me with so many lovely memories of the books I had read as a small child. I could even recollect some of the art work from some of my favourite books.

 

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January Reflections

January was a busy month for books. You can check out what I read and my ratings in my recent post The Book Nook.

So what else did I do in January?

What I watched –

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I finally got caught up with Planet Earth 2. Every episode was absolutely amazing. By far the best wildlife/nature series I have seen. I was enthralled by every episode. So many fascinating animals, so much amazing footage. Wonderful animals. Wonderful world.

Rated – 

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A series about a landmark 1970 workplace-equality lawsuit to tackle taken gender discrimination. It is based on a nonfiction book by Lynn Povich. The series is driven by it’s range of female characters and how they support each other in life and to take a stand. It doesn’t just cover the workplace oppression but gender roles in the home, marriage, sex, contraception, and the media portrayal of women. Sadly it does not look like there will be a second series. I would still recommend this series. I would really liked to have seen the story progress beyond the issuing of the complaint. I am cynical in the current economic climate about the reasons why a second series has not been commissioned.

Rated – 

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What I did I –

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I went on my first Group Walk. It was a really positive experience, an easy 6 miles and I met some lovely people.

The very steep climb with these steps at the end was quite hard going though. It felt like they were going on forever.

 

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I had a go at using my new spiralizer. I made seafood courgette.

I know it doesn’t look that appealing but it was actually really tasty. I will be making it again.

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My main focus for January was getting back into exercising. I have been regularly attending mindful yoga and hydrojog. I have also started a qi gong and  thi chi class. It’s more difficult than it looks but it’s very beneficial. Have you tried thi chi?

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Like a lot of public services, our local library is now depending on volunteers to keep the service open. Where the Library Assistant was a paid job, it is no longer being funded. I have started my training to support my local library and to become a Volunteer Library Assistant.

 

What I am looking forward to in February – 

I am hoping to do another Group Walk. I will hopefully take some more photos on future walks.

It’s Birthday month in our house. We usually go away for a little holiday but this year we might wait for March. I will need to think of something else nice to do instead. Any ideas?

I have quite a bit of training and e-learning to do for the library so that will keep me busy too.

What have been your highlights from January?

What are you looking forward to in February?

The Book Nook

January is generally my least favourite month. I’m not keen on the short, cold, dark days, while I wait for the coming of spring. So it’s an ideal time for reading and listening to audiobooks. I have been a busy book bee this month. I thought I would share my January reads. It’s been a mixed lot at my January Book Nook.

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I really enjoyed this feel good book. It was a really easy, fun read. Narrated by a charming and socially challenged genetics professor on an unusual quest: to find out if he is capable of true love. It made me reflect that we can have an idea of what we need or what we like but sometimes it’s only when we try something different that we discover what really would be best for us. I’m looking forward to reading The Rosie Effect later in the year.

Rated – 

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Four Little Finds

Here at Cultivating Time it’s share time. Here are some little finds that have grabbed my attention in January.

On the 18th of January it was Winnie The Pooh Day. A timeless, classic British children’s book series that is much loved across the world. Check out –

10+ Of The Best Winnie The Pooh Quotes To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day

Inspiring Winnie Pooh Quotes
This is one of my favourite Winnie the Pooh quotes

Also during January – there were a lot of red hearts circulating on Facebook. People were asking each other to post a heart on their Facebook wall to honor breast cancer awareness. Call me cynical but I don’t understand the point of this sort of thing. We all know about breast cancer. How does posting red love hearts actually help? One breast cancer survivor, Erin Smith Chieze, decided to help women fight breast cancer in a different way with Know Your Lemons. I thought it was a brilliant idea and definitely worth sharing. 
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January Changing Seasons

Here in the northern hemisphere, we are in the midst of the coldest season of the year. Although we have passed the shortest day, our days are still short and post the festive season, the darkness and the cold can feel pervading. However, we can still have bright and beautiful days. Nature is still at work. We also got a sprinkling of snow for a couple of days. Sharing some of my January seasonal images –

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One of my new bog challenges for 2017 is to participate in a monthly photo challenge –

The Changing Seasons by Cardinal Guzman