The Day After Christmas

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Hi guys!

Sorry the post is late. I had scheduled it to post sooner but I’d forgotten to press the schedule button. :/

How are we all? I hope you all had a great Christmas.

I spent Christmas with my Nan, husband and our dog, Patch watching old re – runs of top of the pops featuring Christmas songs, Morcambe and Wise Christmas Specials and Only Fools and Horses. Christmas Dinner consisted of a turkey crown, stuffing,  mashed potato, mixed veg and parsnip.

Yum!

We were joined by my siblings for tea and more present opening. My husband and I had bought them a mug each. My sister, who is eight is a big fan of everything Frozen and my brother who is nine (turning ten in January) is big on anything to do with Spiderman and Despicable Me. We’d then bought them stickers and stationary along with a homemade colouring book.

Now that Christmas has been and gone (almost) I’m thinking ahead to next year, setting goals and what I’d like to achieve. I’m starting a new journal as I start one every year along with a gratitude journal to combat my depression and a scrapbook for a pick me up when I’m struggling.

What are your goals as we head into 2016?

I’m not making resolutions. Instead I’m going to work on what I can improve. Resolutions never stick, anyway.

Thank you for all of your likes, comments and follows this year. I hope you have a great new year and I’ll be here to greet you on the 2nd of January. :).

See you then,

Blaze

With thanks to Rebecca Johnston for the image via Unsplash.com.

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Living With a Mental Illness at Christmas

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Hi guys!

Just under a week to go until Christmas!

For many, it’s a joyful time of the year.  For some, like myself, it’s one of the toughest times that a few don’t survive the New Year.

Personally I’ve always struggled with being happy and cheerful at Christmas. This started to happen when I was fourteen when someone who I loved dearly emigrated and after I reported sexual abuse that saw my mum turn against me. It’s because of this that I find Christmas unbearable and wish for the New Year to start.

If you were to ask anybody what Christmas is about they’d more than likely say family. The answer is different for everybody, of course but to some family is the core meaning for celebrating Christmas.

Being without a family at Christmas is difficult for anyone but when you live with a mental illness it’s just as devastating.  Seeing adverts of happy families in the TV sitting down to Christmas dinner with people gathered around the table leaves me feeling deflated and often alone. Christmas songs can send my mood plummeting within seconds of playing along with general chatter as well.

It’s not just a lack of family that adds to the Christmas blues. Having depression and anxiety sucks every ounce of happiness from my body and soul on the days that have little significance. Being surrounded by cheer and joy has a different effect on different people. Some take solace from it where others feel smothered.

When you’re sad and miserable at such a time it can prove to be difficult. There is pressure to be happy,  to act happy and to revel in the festivities. To not do so, to some, seems pessimistic.  I’ve been told many times to suck it up and smile. This is not to say that I don’t enjoy it because I do. I don’t find it easy being happy all the month through. It’s a personal struggle for me. 

Christmas, for me is about compassion. Remembering to be kind and helpful to those around me. That gives me a sense of purpose and helps me through. As does writing and music.

Although I am saddened by the lack of family and find the days hard because of my mental illness I am so grateful for what I do have. A loving husband and two siblings who make me smile every day.

If you know anyone that is struggling because of mental illness or otherwise, please be a friend to them. There’s nothing more heartwarming to a person who is struggling than a friendly face. 

Wishing you a very Happy Christmas.

With warmth and kindest wishes,

Blaze

With thanks to Luke  Pamer for the image via Unsplash.com

Snow Day in December

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Hi guys!

Sorry for the delay in the post. It’s been really hectic so far today.

It’s not very often we have snow in December but it’s been one of those days that I wish it would have waited. It started to snow at ten to twelve this afternoon and only just stopped an hour or so ago. There’s around six inches of snow on the ground right now and the sky is a bright white colour. Some of the roads were inpassable due to how bad they were and due to the absence of gritters. A bus caught fire on another route and it was a close call for the buses to stop running altogether.

At least my siblings will enjoy the snow. 🙂

This week I’ve been interviewing characters for my newest project in January for JanuWriMo. JanuWriMo is a bit like NaNoWriMo, but it takes place in January instead (hence the name).

I’ve got my MO for the crimes that take place and I have to say I’m looking forward to writing it.

I know I said that I was going to be a panster but I don’t think that’s going to be possible for such a genre that I’m new to. I’m going to be a bit of both. I’ll do a loose outline and character profiles and worry about the scenes when I write. 

Hope your Saturday has been a good one.

Until next time,

Blaze

Storm Desmond

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Hi guys!

My apologies for the post being a day late.

Here in the UK, especially in the North East, we’ve just been subjected to a beast of a storm by the name of Desmond. Hence the title. Two days and nights of full force gale winds, heavy rain and disruption.

Bad weather is hardly rare where I live but it’s very rare to be in a position where you can’t access the Internet because the network has been affected by it. 

It’s done a fair bit of damage. Our shed is now lying sideways at the bottom of our garden, bricks have been falling from buildings and trees are toppled over.

Are we enjoying our break from NaNoWriMo?  I’ve had a couple of days respite from writing after finishing with 72,000 words. I’m now plotting away for JanuWriMo, a writing event with a writing group. I’m attempting to dip my toes in crime writing. Although, after reading Val McDermid’s The Wire In The Blood I’m feeling dubious of how that’s going to go but I’m up for a challenge!

To make it even more harder I’m going be a Panster – writing without an outline. With NaNoWriMo’s outline leaving me in a tizz half of the time I’m going to approach it differently.

I’m also entering my first short story competition too. Exciting but nervous times!

Hope you are all well,

Blaze

With thanks to Clem Onojeghuo for the image via Unsplash.com.