I am naturally a very busy person- I can’t sit still for that long, and I am very happy to potter about all day. The idea of a duvet day fills me with dread- I can’t imagine sitting around all day. However, I do know that I do need to take some time out every now and then- forced relaxation if you will!
I love reading (and always read before I go to sleep) but will rarely sit in the garden or living room and read, because there will always be something that distracts me (hanging up washing, tidying up or de-cluttering somewhere, doing some baking…). I think this is reason why I like running, because once I am out running that’s all I can do, and I can listen to a podcast and chill out in a way that I don’t at home. I’ve tried the whole fitness DVD or you-tube workout, but I just get distracted by things that need doing- I need to be out!
In the first week of the holidays I’d arranged a few things (catching up with friends and so on) which I loved, but I purposely left the second week more empty.
Activity-wise the week went like this:
Sunday- 10 mile run. Pottering in the garden, a walk in the afternoon to get my free drink.
Monday- A walk and some yoga first thing, then an attempt to change my name at another bank (unsuccessful but should be sorted soon)- long walk to town and back.
Tuesday- 9 mile run to see the bluebells at Panshanger park (incidentally Panshanger was featured on Countryfile this week- looks like they are getting some long-horned cattle). I worked out how to use the timer (I had always looked at the bottom and accidentally did time lapse things before). A walk in the afternoon with Andy.
Wednesday- 5.5 mile run first thing, needed to collect an order in town to Andy dropped me off on his way to an afternoon meeting, and I walked home.
Thursday- 4 mile run first thing, French toast for breakfast, then a walk into town later to get my hair cut.
We then headed off as we had a long weekend in Wales so I’ll save that for another post.
Jobs I’ve completed and ticked off my list (or added to my list and then ticked off, because the ticking is important):
Cleared old leaves and weeded in the front garden
Weeded the back garden and moved some plants about
Made some date and peanut butter snacks (fill each date with peanut butter, then melt a little dark chocolate and pour over the top to seal in the chocolate)
Changed my name on our life insurance policy and with my mobile phone contract, and a few online shopping places (why is my name in so many places??)
Made some Easter fudge
Sanded and cleaned the tiles in the kitchen ready for painting them
Put the green tape everywhere in the kitchen (more decorating prep)
(Andy painted it on Monday and I am so pleased with how it has turned out- you can see the old tiles in the top right picture- they were a weird beige pink orange colour, and the grey just makes it look so much fresher)
Sorted out the bathroom cabinets, Marie Kondo style (this has made me so happy- I could never even find a plaster because I couldn’t remember where they were, so now the drawers are all sorted with one drawer for medical things, one for holiday items like suncream and bug bite cream etc)
Sorted out the kitchen cupboards and cutlery drawer
I also had to get a few bits from the shops (a plant for my mum’s birthday, Easter eggs for nieces and nephew, more green tape, tile paint and roller), popped over to see my dad and drop off my mum’s birthday presents….
But in between I did manage some forced relaxation. Walks are always good, and I had loads of those- I can listen to a podcast and just wander about and chill. The best way for me though is to go to a cafe and bring a magazine or book with me- if I’m at home I won’t just sit down, but if I am out somewhere I have to take that time to relax. There’s a lovely cafe in town and so after trying to change my name (online said I could go to a branch, but the branch said I needed to phone up, and when I phoned up they said I needed a form which they are now sending to me- might it be quicker if the form was available online?) I went and had a toasted teacake and a chai latte, and read a good half of the magazine.
After my haircut I went and got my free drink and sat outside in the sunshine, again with a magazine.
Andy told me off for wearing a Christmas t-shirt, but I maintain that penguins live a long way from the North Pole and are not way affiliated with Christmas…
If Andy has been around we’ve have been making a pot of tea in the afternoon (well, 5pm ish) and watching some TV together- something we won’t manage in term time. We’ve watched relaxing shows like Escape to the Chateau/ Ugly House to Lovely House/ Tiny House Hunters/ Queer Eye (Oh how I love the new series). If I sit in the big armchair I can see all the bird feeders in the garden so seeing all the little blue tits and sparrows is also very relaxing- who needs pets?
I do love a yoga class to properly relax at the end, but they are term time only (and I’ve done a few yoga sequences at home but they are not the same as a class), and a massage is always pretty relaxing but again funds only allow this to happen around once a month.
We’ve been working out way through some TV series in the evening too- the latest series of Trapped (set in beautiful Iceland), Borderland (which are lots of mini-series about crime in a town in Finland close to the Russian border), Follow the Money (about a Danish fraud squad)- subtitles can be rather fatal for me if I’m tired so we’ve been making the most of the holidays to get through some of these good series. We also watched The Dawn Wall (after watching Free Solo) which was so interesting and inspiring (and I am in no way ever tempted to rock climb – I don’t even like walking up steep paths in case I fall off!). Just for the scenery alone (it’s mainly in Yosemite) it’s worth a watch.
How do you relax?
Which TV series are you enjoying? (And please don’t tell me to start GOT- Andy watches it but fantasy/dragons/too much politics really isn’t my thing).
Penguins aren’t just for Christmas, right?