I won’t be posting my BEDN today as at 11 minutes past 11 today I was stuck in A&E. I’m still at hospital now in fact but at least on a ward. My partner came off his motorbike this morning and we still don’t know exactly if anything is wrong or if he’ll need to stay in overnight. We’re all okay though, so nothing to worry about. Hopefully back to normal tomorrow.
Today’s prompt for BEDN is Something Different. This is actually trickier than you think when you’re a lifestyle blog, since it sort of covers everything you do. However after discussing it with Chris, he suggested I write about computer games.
I’m not much of a computer gamer but I do play some games. I think before life became so hectic with romance and children, when I was younger at least, I was probably far more into computer games than I am now.
As a child I remember having an Amiga – not to mention hardly ever being off it. We had so many games for it, some of the most memorable being; Bubble Bobble, Rainbow Islands, New Zealand Story, Ironman Offroad, Iron Lord, Chaos Engine, Street Fighter, Lemmings – the list is endless really. Our family was also very early in getting a PC. I remember it was located in the lounge and my brother and I used to have to ask permission to use it, priority going to our parents. On this we would play Monkey Island, Indiana Jones and probably lots of other things which I can’t think of right now. When I was about 16 I had my own computer in my room, I was even allowed an internet connection. This was back in the days of dial-up, paying not only for the phone calls themselves, but also a monthly subscription. This was perhaps around the time my interest in games faded and social networking took over.
Now years and years on, I do still like to play but I often find that life sort of monopolises my time. One tiny evening each day to get everything done, from writing a blog, catching up with friends, tidying the house, watching tv and spending time with the ones you love. Where do computer games fall into that? Well for me they don’t really have a huge priority, but in this last year I have tried to find a little more time for them.
My main source of gaming is currently a platform called Steam.
Gone are the days of having to buy disks, with so many options to just download games these days. Steam is one of many platforms which allow you to download and store a variety of games, using a library of the ones you own and have installed. Despite the fact I don’t very often play games, I have still developed a medium sized library of games. I’m sad to say that I haven’t even played the majority of them yet either, but at least I know they’re there for when I fancy it.
On the left of this picture you can see all the games I have. The brighter white ones are the ones I currently have installed. Of this list I have probably only played 4-5 of them, but like I said, they are there for when you want them. The nice thing about Steam is that you can also create a Wish List of all the games you would like and then Steam will actually notify you if they become on sale. It also means that people you have on your friends list can see the things you are after and perhaps even give them to you as a gift.
My most recent game was actually a gift. Chris treated me to Chaos Engine, a game I actually mentioned in my list of Amiga games I used to play. Its not long been released and its pretty much exactly how it used to be when it was on the Amiga. Very retro. I have to admit that my heart lies with retro games really, again as you’ll see from my Steam Library, I have lots of old games such as Indiana Jones, The Dig, Commander Keen and so on.
That’s not to say I don’t like more modern games though. In fact I love games that used to be known as “Point and Click”, though these days are often just labelled as Adventure or RPG. My current favourites are a series made by Pendulo Studios. The first is Runaway: A Road Adventure. The second is Runaway: The Dream of the Turtle. The third is Runaway: A Twist of Fate. I’ve only recently started playing the first one, the second one I had played years ago before I had kids. The third is one I have been playing on my iPad but since the new iOS7 update, it hasn’t been working. Based on the fact I’ve enjoyed these three games though, I also downloaded The Next BIG Thing and Yesterday, both of which are games by the same Pendulo Studios, but completely new stories and unrelated to the characters. I haven’t played either yet mind you, but I know that I will.
Another great thing, that it just wouldn’t be write to post a blog about gaming without mentioning, is the Humble Bundle. This is an absolutely amazing site/company that offer a whole bundle of games, for as little as $1. The money goes to charity too, so its brilliant. There is not only a Humble Bundle every few weeks, but also a Humble Bundle Sale. You never quite know what you’re going to get but its good to keep an eye on because you never know what you might find. For example you may have spotted a lot of Worms games in my Steam Library. These game from last week’s Humble Bundle Sale. I paid $1 and got 6 games!
Of course I’m not really a gamer as such, since my only platforms are PC (and perhaps a little Wii) but I’m not completely against it too. Recently Chris bought me a Xbox controller with the hope I might actually play on his Xbox with him. Sadly it hasn’t worked as yet, but I have used my controller to play Chaos Engine! (one advantage of Xbox being Microsoft, it plug and plays with my laptop). Last night we had some friends round too and we all took to playing Scene It on the Xbox. This was a lot of fun and I’ve already ordered a more recent game, so we can play again soon with newer movie clips.
Finally the only other gaming I really do is on my iPad, as I briefly mentioned before. I don’t have a whole lot of games on it at the moment and in all honesty I barely use it to play anyway. However I do have the odd thing like Runaway, Bubble Bobble, Dizzy POYF and I’m almost a little embarrassed to add – Snow White. The kids really use it for gaming more than me anyway. In fact I just spent £4.99 on an app so Lily could play Minecraft.
The kids are far more gamers than I am – but perhaps that’s just the up and coming generation. Nothing keeps the kids quiet like Minecraft or Sims 3 on PC and Smurfs or Disney Universe on Wii. In fact we have about twenty games for the Wii, all of which gets played from time to time. Though we don’t use Chris’ Xbox often (I’m afraid to break it when he isn’t in the house), the kids also have several games for that too.
Perhaps some time in the future I’ll maybe to manage to branch out my blog to game reviews, but let’s not hold our breath. For now this was my “Something Different”, for BEDN!
Yesterday I deliberately skipped BEDN because the topic was “Day in the Life”. I had a pretty rubbish day at work on Thursday and although Friday wasn’t as bad, I really just wasn’t in the mood to write about my day. I know that’s not really the point of BEDN but I also felt there was no point in posting for the sake of it.
To be honest today’s prompt of “Blog Chat” is almost as off putting, since blogging is still something I’m very new to and certainly the promotion of my blog is something I don’t really do at all, however I’ll give it a try.
I’ve had one blog before this, but to be honest it was more like a journal or diary – like LiveJournal posts used to be. I think I only had 3 followers and they were all just friends I knew in person. I started this blog in January of this year and while I’d love to have millions of followers I can also appreciate that it isn’t the most exciting blog to read. I’m certainly not a fashion blogger so I don’t do Outfit of the Day posts, or blog about cosmetics and toiletries. I’m definitely more of a Lifestyle blogger but even then I have a very simple lifestyle with nothing much to tell others about. That said I do enjoy blogging and I’m very pleased to have the followers that I do have.
I read plenty of blogs and in all honesty most of my ideas for blog posts probably come from them. I think blogging is really a lot of give and take, that you can’t just be a blogger without actually reading other people’s blogs too. I’m terrible for commenting though as I often don’t really know what to say and don’t want to appear false either. Also due to the nature of blogger (and not getting notifications when people reply), I don’t tend to reply to the people who leave comments on my own blog. Its not that I don’t want to, but I never know if its worth it because the people might never check back to see if you reply anyway.
One day I would love to dedicate a lot more time to my blog than I do. I would like to find time to blog every day without needing the prompts and motivation that have come from BEDM and BEDN. However life is fairly hectic at the moment and I just don’t see that happening. That said whenever I’ve been sponsored or gifted something to blog about, I always make sure I find time. Those to me are important because people have put their trust in you to blog like you said you would.
In a couple of months time my blog will be 1 year old. I hope to have at least hit the 50 follower mark by then. I know its a lot less than some of the people who have one year old blogs, but at the same time I’m not good at getting onto Twitter and chatting to promote my blog, or even remembering to cross post to Twitter. I’ve also only just jointed one specific Facebook group to post my blog links, and I don’t feel like its worth getting my own FB page for my own blog. That said its all something I would like to aim for in the future. I have no plans to give up or ditch my blog as I think its a great creative outlet. I love to write and for now this is the only motivation I have.
Today’s prompt is literally just to list ten things. About anything. My first thought was to list ten things I hate about working… but I think that’s just a bad day speaking. Instead, retail therapy to make myself feel better – 10 things I’d really love for Christmas.
1. A stand mixer
I’m not entirely sure why I want one of these, if I need it, or even if I have room for it. I don’t have a particular brand, style or colour in mind but I still would love one. Originally I could only see them for £200 upwards but this particular one is £79.99 from Amazon.
2. Lush gift box
I genuinely don’t care which one, I just picked this particular one as its the most expensive! £129.95 worth of Lush, who wouldn’t want that? If I was given the time to pick and choose, I’d have whichever one had the most bubble bars in (they’re my favourite), plus bath bombs and definitely NO soap.
3. Disney Traditions Ornament
I picked this particular ornament because its one that I’ve been wanting since my birthday. It retails around £40 and I just love it. However I collect these ornaments so any one would do. I also love this, this and this!
Would you believe I’m struggling to get past 3? No wonder my eldest is difficult to buy for!
4. Boutiquee Coat and Scarf
I featured this coat on my “Focus On: Joe Browns” post, back in September. It costs £79.95 and I know I would never buy it for myself. Its just beautiful though and I’ve been lusting after it ever since I made the post!
5. Quirky Nibble Cake Pan with Tasting Cup
This was such a random find but ever since seeing it, I’ve been in love with it. Basically you make a cake and pour an extra bit into the small cup part. Once its baked you get to try the cake without breaking it. Completely pointless but genius! I found it for sale on Amazon and its only £19.33.
6. Cupcake Decorating Lab
Also on Amazon is this awesome looking cupcake decorating book. I’m not particularly adventurous when it comes to decorating cakes and cupcakes but I would definitely like to get better. This book looks like it has some really good (and quirky) designs in it and I’m sure they’d come in handy with all the parties that get thrown around here. Its £13.59 and so for now it will just have to sit on my Wish List.
7. Rainbow Roses Vase
This is such a random thing to want, especially for Christmas, but I just think they’re so pretty. Roses are absolutely my favourite flower and these are so unique that I just think they’re beautiful. I saw them just before my birthday and they’ve been sat on my Wish List ever since. Not sure why really as its not like I’d buy them for myself. The rainbow roses are from Interflora and are a steal at £44.99 (eek!) with free delivery (which you would expect at that price!).
8. Daryl Dixon Plush
A childish want this time, but a want nonetheless. A Daryl Dixon plush from Forbidden Planet! I can’t exactly explain why I want this, but I do. I absolutely love Daryl to pieces (he’s from Walking Dead if you didn’t guess) and although its not a crush thing, I just think he’s awesome. Plushies seem the way to go in this house too, mine and Chris’ room are full of them! I would also love an Iron Man plush, though it would be better if it was actually a RDJ plush! N.B. I already have Thor!
9. Gas Cooker
I have no specific cooker in mind, but I really want a new one! At my last house in Saxilby, the rented accommodation came with a cooker. It was a beautiful 4-5 hob electric hob, with heated plate space too. There were two ovens, one of which was a fan oven and a space underneath for pots and pans. Here I have a gas cooker that has a top grill and a bottom oven. I can barely fit anything in it and it makes cooking nice meals difficult. This year Christmas is at our house and I’m absolutely dreading keeping everything hot. I’m even tempted to get a new cooker on HP, just to make Christmas easier. If someone bought me one, they would be my hero!
10. Disney Print
This final one was pretty tricky as I’d definitely run out of things on my Wish List by here. However I would love a Disney print of some sort. This one above is from an Etsy store and also sells several others I like such as this and this. However I also love the Thomas Kinkade prints that you can get like this one, this one, this one and this one.
Though I would also love a trip to Florida, a trip to Paris, tickets to see Phantom of the Opera, never to have to work again… I also know they’re not realistic Christmas presents. Hell even the cooker is pushing my luck! However these are just some of the things that I would love to get. My list of 10 Christmas Present things.
Everyone suffers from stress at one point or another – though obviously some more than others. Luckily I don’t think I stress too much, though I suppose I do worry lots at times. Though I take most of life in my stride, I think the one thing that really stresses me out more than anything is money. Sure the kids stress me sometimes, so does my job, my partner, my family, friends and so forth – but ultimately the thing that brings me to tears and makes me feel stressed, is money.
It hasn’t always been that way, in fact its really only since being a single mother. Things are always so much harder than you think they’ll be – even when you think they’re going to be hard to begin with. Its the simple things like; how will I afford to keep a roof over our heads, how will I pay for clothes, how will I buy this weeks shopping, that all occur to you at first. But then there is more to it than that too; how do I get the kids everything they would like – without either a) spoiling them or b) making them feel like they have to go without because you’re a single parent.
Luckily my financial situation is on the up now. Ever since moving out of my own place in Saxilby and moving in with my partner, I’ve been able to concentrate on getting down some debt. However Christmas and my eldest daughter’s birthday are going to be rapidly upon me and I know I can definitely feel the strain of finances because of that.
I’m glad to say that other than money though, I don’t really suffer too much from stress. If you’d met me five years ago I’m pretty sure you’d have met an angrier, more stressed version of me – but age has definitely calmed that in me. Life really is just too short. And as cliché as it sounds, things are rarely as bad as they seem.
Today is 5th November and as such tonight is Bonfire Night. Even as I write this I can hear fireworks going off outside, as they have been doing pretty much all evening. This year I had no plans to attend any fireworks display, as it comes so close to Halloween that it all seems a bit too soon. However yesterday I was lucky enough to get invited around to my ex-parent-in-laws house (the kids grandparents) where they would be eating hot dogs and letting off some fireworks.
Monday is Daddy Day, the one day in the week where the kids see their father. Around Halloween he always picks the nearest Monday to carve pumpkins and near Bonfire night they do fireworks. Though I had no idea they had plans this year, I was last minute invited around to my ex-partner’s parents, to spend the evening with them and of course my children. I’ll admit it was lovely and kind of them to invite me and actually I enjoyed the evening very much.
It was only a small display, though saying that it apparently cost £50 for all the fireworks and sparklers. Lily and I tried to take pictures on my phone but they just didn’t come out all that great.
The kids had a great time and though they were both clearly a little weary at first, they definitely got braver throughout the display. I was definitely glad to have shared the moment with them and hopefully next year we might even make it to a proper Firework and Bonfire night.
I often write on my blog about going out for dinner or even recipes that I cook sometimes. I also work with food every day and of course feed myself and my kids daily. I wondered what exactly I could write for today’s topic, that was until I decided to work on my next murder mystery last night…
Today I bought, this:
Yep! Remember I mentioned how our next Murder Mystery is Hunger Games themed? Well last night I discovered this book and today I made the decision to buy it. I can’t tell you how incredibly excited I am to have a flick through it and decide what we might have for dinner at the murder mystery!
I also discovered this YouTube channel, which is called Hungry for Hunger Games. I ended up watching loads of them last night and I already have some ideas on what to do! There was also this website Fictional Food, which although isn’t solely Hunger Games related, it does have loads of Hunger Games themed food. A bonus to stumbling onto that site also meant I found a recipe for Minecraft cookies! Which means my 8 year old (turning 9) will be incredibly happy when her birthday rolls around in December.
Today’s BEDN topic is Light, inspired by the fact its Diwali today. However the topic is not to write about Diwali itself, just light. I thought about this for some of yesterday and I was coming up a bit blank – a slightly off-topic post about how the children are the “light of my life” perhaps? Instead I’ve decided to write about the Northern Lights, something I would one day love to go and see properly.
To me the Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis as it is officially called, is one of the most beautiful natural phenomenons there is. Though its something I have always wanted to see and known what it was, I honestly didn’t really know that much about it. As such, to do this post, I also did a little research.
An aurora is a natural light display in the sky particularly in the high latitude regions, caused by the collision of energetic charged particles with atoms in the high altitude atmosphere. In northern latitudes, the effect is known as the aurora borealis (or the northern lights). Auroras seen near the magnetic pole may be high overhead, but from farther away, they illuminate the northern horizon as a greenish glow or sometimes a faint red, as if the Sun were rising from an unusual direction. (Source Wikipedia)
According to a Guardian article that I found, there are many places to view the northern lights. Canada, Iceland, Sweden, Norway, Alaska, Finland, Greenland and even Scotland are all places people travel to in order to see the lights. Of course, seeing the actual lights is largely dependent on luck and often if you’ve traveled somewhere you are limited by time. I suppose this above all things is what puts me off booking a holiday specifically to see the lights, on the chance that you might spend all that money and not actually see what you came for.
However the lights usually work on an 11 year cycle, some phases being brighter than others. Perhaps one day I will plan a trip and take the risk. I imagine its one of the most breathtaking and magical things you can ever witness.
Today’ BEDN topic is “Something You Made” and since my jewellery and Christmas Market is a very current topic for me, I’m going to post about that.
I have previously mentioned about the Etsy store I have, called Jewellery Ever After. It’s not something I often push or even work on to be honest, it was a hobby that just sort of got left behind when I started to work part-time again in April.
However someone contacted me recently about a Cinderella necklace I had previously had listed and while I renewed the listing again for her to purchase, I relisted a few of my other items too. By sheer coincidence, a lady in Lincoln who was organising Christmas Market, stumbled across my Etsy store and asked if I would like to have a stall at Lincoln Christmas Market this year. I have never ever had a stall anywhere before. Not even a small few hour one. I’ve only ever sold on Etsy. However I knew I was dying to do it, though at the time it seemed like an impossible challenge.
Luckily I have some amazing friends who have offered to help me make jewellery, baby sit and man a stall for the full four days of Christmas Market. As such you will find me in Lincoln Bailgate, during December 5th to December 8th. I will be selling Fairytale, TV and Movie inspired jewellery and seriously I can’t wait! I will also be sharing a stall with the lovely Rhiannon from The Sparkly Panda so if you’re anywhere near by, drop in and say hi!
I’m super excited about all the jewellery pieces I have to try out this time. There are going to be some bracelet wraps with charms, necklaces and earrings. As well as the usual Disney themed ones, I’m hoping to make Harry Potter and Hunger Games too. No doubt I’ll post some pictures once I’m done but that will probably be early December rather than BEDN!
So this should have been yesterday’s post but I accidentally scheduled it for today instead of later yesterday…
Hello! I’m Belinda, though everyone calls me Bel. I am 34 years old, technically a single mum though I have had a partner for the last year and I have two beautiful daughters called Megan (who is almost 9) and Lily (who is 5). I really hate writing these intro things as I always find there is nothing much to say about myself!
I live in Lincolnshire, a county that despite being huge, a huge amount of people never really seem to know where it is. I used to live about 10 minutes outside of Lincoln itself, but now we live about 30 minutes away – hopefully in a temporary living situation while we do up the house we currently live in, in order to sell it.
I work as a Catering Assistant in a private school. The job is fairly straight forward as most of my life I’ve worked in hospitality and catering, however its the working hours that really sell the job to me – 9.30-2.30, Monday to Friday, only during school time. Also being a private school we often get a little more holiday time – plus I get paid pro rata which means its spread out over the holidays and I still get a set wage.
I’m pretty geeky and have a huge array of fandoms. I especially love collecting t-shirts with mash-up fandoms on them. In my spare time I love movies, music and of course the internet. I also make jewellery as a sort of hobby – though I have agreed to a Christmas Market stall this year which means some pretty hardcore jewellery making for me this coming month.
I love to organise and nearly every month I find a reason to get all my friends together for some sort of an event. Usually its a murder mystery party but we also have roleplay and board game evenings too. We literally just had a Halloween murder mystery last weekend and I’m currently planing a Hunger Games one for the end of November. I’m currently perusing Christmas ones too for the end of December.
That’s all I can think of for now, check again tomorrow for the next BEDN topic!!