I can honestly say that April was one of the hardest months of my life. A devastating earthquake hit the city where my husband’s family live and dealing with the aftermath has dominated our April. We were incredibly lucky that no members of the family were hurt or killed. There were around 270 people killed and thousands of people have lost their homes. The events of this month has hammered home to me how precious life is. Homes can be rebuilt and possessions replaced but it’s the people that you love that really matter.
We were overwhelmed by the support we have received from friends and family and even from people that we don’t know. We have had so many messages of support, cards and flowers. We set up a just giving page to collect donations for Rolando’s family. It has now raised nearly £1000 (our initial target was £200 and it has 15 more days to go). It has already made such a difference to Rolando’s family helping them get through the immediate aftermath (buying food and clean water) and will help them more long term as they put their lives back together. I can’t find any words to fully express how thankful and humbled I am by the kindness people have shown our family.
Amid all the stress of April there were some good things too.
Changing my working hours
I made a change to my working hours switching from working two evenings per week to working Wednesday mornings. I’m really appreciating having my evenings free again to relax, spend time with Rolando and work on my blog.
Watching the film Joy staring Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Nero. I really loved this inspiring film. It has a lot of the same cast as The Silver Linings Playbook and is easily just as good. It is based on the true story of a woman called Joy who goes from financial struggle to success despite lots of set backs. It has lots of twists along the way and it really celebrates the power of determination.
Started using the 123 magic system with my kids
This is an American system for handling challenging behaviour in children age 2 to 12. I will do a full blog post about this and how it works soon. We have just stared to put this technique into practice but the early results are quite promising.
I’m continuing to work on de cluttering my house using the Kon Mari system (from the book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying). So far I’ve tackled clothes, books, toys, bedding, toiletries and paperwork. I’ve donated, recycled and thrown away a massive amount of stuff. The room I’m most pleased about is the bathroom which is more organised than it has ever been and so much quicker and easier to clean.
Things we didn’t get to do – we didn’t get a chance to start using our new reward system with the kids and we still need to finish decorating our new bedroom and have a date night.
Goals for May
Barring any more family crisis here is my bucket list for May.
This month I am going to take part in the Month of Positivity – this is a fab idea from Laura at Laura’s Lovely Things and Rachel at The Melton House. The idea is to find ways each day in May to do something positive for other people and yourself. I feel after we have had so much support and kindness in April that it would be great to pay some of that forward. I also want to find ways to take care of myself too. These are the ideas that I’ve had so far:
- Mastering my Nutri Bullet (which I’m sad to say has been gathering dust a little bit)
- Mindfulness meditation – I tried to start a meditation habit at the end of last year but have totally fallen off the wagon with this. I’m going to try again to make this habit stick.
- Gratitude journal and photos – I will make an extra effort to keep my gratitude journal up to date, I thought taking photos might be a good extra way to capture things that I’m thankful for.
- No complaining days – I’ve done this once before and it was incredible but really hard to do.
- Writing letters – there are a few people that I’ve been meaning to drop a line for ages, including some thank you letters.
- Find little ways to spread kindness – I’m a bit hazy on what form this is going to take but I’m going to figure it out along the way.
I’m planning to do a post at the end of each week in May to give a round up of how my month of positivity is going.
Death on the Nile
There is an exhibition of Egyptian artefacts at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge. I’ve been meaning to take Sofia since it opened months ago. It only has two weeks left to run so I need to get my ass in gear and go before it is too late.
Picking up on the things I didn’t get to in April
I’m going to follow up some of the things that I didn’t get to last month
- Continuing the declutter my house – I’m aiming to complete my Kon Mari mission before the summer holidays so that we are as organised as possible before the schools out chaos hits!
- Date night – we will, will, will have a date night!
- Get the kids reward system up and running.
Hope you have a great May and the sun shines on you whatever you are planning to do.