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MUSES - Occasional thoughts and experiences

My first words at the beginning of my - ‘Blog’!  I don’t like the word ‘Blog’. It sounds sticky!! I like the word ‘journal’ but that feels too prescriptive for here.  Maybe I need to have a ‘thunk’ about this – like Pooh Bear.

“When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.” -- Winnie the Pooh
www.great-inspirational-quotes.com/winnie-the-pooh-quotes.html

I've decided.... It's MUSES
Latest Muse...

Re-awakening Wednesday 28 June 2017
My website is now being looked after by a new business and has given me the opportunity to re-read.  more...

Kindness Thursday 15th March 2012
A recent study by the University of California, found that performing a selfless act of kindness triggers the release of the same feel good chemical in the brain, dopamine, as when we give ourselves a treat. more...

A walking meditation Friday 10th February 2012
When you walk, just walk. The natural ease of walking can be used as a direct and simple way to bring centredness and peace into our life. more...

An eating meditation Friday 10th February 2012
When you eat, just eat. Eating meditation is a way to learn to eat with respectful attention to your food and your body. more...

Unexpected Visitors – exciting and bemusing! Monday 16 January 2012
Well, what a day! Friends are lovely. more...

When God Was a Rabbit by Sarah Winman Wednesday 4 January 2012
How many 20th century children will be able to think back, remember and pass on stories to their children and grandchildren of how they learned about nature, exciting new things and how to survive?

Christmas and a room of one's own Friday 16 December 2011
All through the summer we have had builders in and out of our house.

To Walk
Tuesday 22 November 2011
“To move or travel on legs and feet, alternately putting one foot a comfortable distance in front of, or sometimes behind, the other and usually proceeding at a moderate pace.”


Blockages Thursday 29 September 2011
In my effort to speedily unblock our kitchen sink, I made the situation worse by blocking it solidly.

Patterns Friday 9 September 2011
We are having a lot of building work done to our house and have spent most of our
summer sorting, designing, finding, choosing, debating, buying – and feeling satisfied
about our decisions and the finished look.

Beginnings and Endings March 31st 2011
There will always be a beginning and to have a beginning there needs to be an ending.

Click here for older Muses


Re-awakening Wednesday 28 June 2017

My website is now being looked after by a new business and has given me the opportunity to re-read. My goodness - the word ‘stagnant’ comes into my mind! I have not made many muse entries or updated recently. Watch this space - creativity, thoughts and information will abound!


Kindness Thursday 15th March 2012

A recent study by the University of California, found that performing a selfless act of kindness triggers the release of the same feel good chemical in the brain, dopamine, as when we give ourselves a treat.

"The ventral striatum is typically active in response to simple rewards, such as chocolate, sex and money," says researcher Naomi Eisenberger.

"It now seems likely that some of the health benefits of social support actually come from the support we provide to others."

Michael J Chase, author of Am I Being Kind, believes in the Dailai Lama philosophy that, "world peace must develop out of inner peace" and says that being compassionate isn't as hard as you think, as you just need to identify the 'keys' to kindness.

Being Aware - become mindful of your thoughts, words and actions
Asking - ask yourself each day 'Am I Being Kind?'
Performing - perform spontaneous acts of kindness

To encompass the simple acts of kindness, you need to turn your 'to-do' attitude into 'to-be' by adopting the following kindness principles:
  • Kindness towards yourself
  • Self-kindness means nourishing your life with healthy food, exercise, laughter, a career you love and personal and spiritual growth. It also means making room in your schedule for activities that inspire you, spending some time alone in silence, and always choosing kind thoughts about yourself
  • Kindness towards others. You'll encounter dozens of opportunities each day to be kind to others.
  • Practice kindness toward your family, friends, co-workers, and even strangers.
  • Speak kind words about people, be a good listener, smile often and give sincere apologies.

The National Counselling Society 
March Newsletter 2012
Email: members@nationalcounsellingsociety.org


A walking meditation Friday 10th Ferurary 2012

When you walk, just walk.

The natural ease of walking can be used as a direct and simple way to bring centredness and peace into our life. Walking becomes a meditation when we bring a careful and present attention to each step we take. Walking becomes a meditation when we feel ourselves fully here on the earth.

To learn walking meditation, select a place to walk back and forth at a leisurely rate, fifteen to thirty paces in length. Stand at the end of this “walking path”. Feel your feet on the floor, on the earth. Sense the environment around you. Be aware of your self and your surroundings until you feel quiet and composed. Then begin to walk. Focus your attention on your body, feeling each step as you lift your foot and place it back on the earth. As you sense each step, return your foot to the earth with care.

Walk upright in a relaxed and dignified fashion. When you get to the end of your path, pause briefly and then turn around. Stand and centre yourself then be aware of the first step as you begin again. You can walk at whatever speed keeps you most present.

Walk with careful attention to each step for fifteen or twenty minutes. Usually when we walk a many other things distract us. As you walk in meditation, try to let the thoughts and images that arise remain in the background. Even so, thoughts will regularly emerge. When this happens, simply stop walking and be aware of the thoughts. Then quietly re-centre yourself and take the next step. Keep coming back to your footsteps in this simple way. At times you may wish to do a period of walking meditation alone. On other days you might walk for ten to fifteen minutes before beginning a sitting meditation.

After some practice you can learn to use walking meditation to calm and collect yourself, to become truly present in your body. You can extend this walking practice in informal ways, when you go shopping, when you walk down the street or to and from your car. You can learn to enjoy walking for its own sake instead of combining it with the usual planning and thinking.

In this simple way you can move through life mindfully, with your whole body, heart and mind together in harmony.

‘Buddha’s Little Instruction Book’
Jack Kornfield (1994:p.131)
ISBN 0-553-37385-4

An eating meditation Friday 10th Ferurary 2012

When you eat, just eat.

Eating meditation is a way to learn to eat with respectful attention to your food and your body.

It is easiest to begin in silence, although with practice you can learn to eat mindfully in any circumstance.

To start the eating meditation, sit quietly with your food in front of you. Reflect on the source of the food and recite any simple prayer of gratitude or blessing that comes naturally. Then be still for a few moments. Look carefully at the food. Be aware of your body and especially of your own feelings of hunger. Notice how you feel about putting this particular food into your body at this moment.

When you feel fully present and connected with yourself, begin to eat slowly. In a relaxed way be aware of each aspect of eating. Be aware of lifting the food to your mouth, of chewing, of tasting, of swallowing. Notice if you feel hurried. Take your time, taste each bite carefully. Be aware of the flavours, the textures, the feelings that arise with each mouthful. Pause for a moment before the next bite. Continue your meal with this same mindful attention to everything you eat, until you come to the end.

Notice when you start to feel full. Your stomach may tell you its full first, even when your tongue or eyes want more. Your thoughts may tell you to finish everything on your plate, or that you are eating too much. If you can, don’t follow these habits but listen to your whole body. Let yourself be guided by this attention. Practice this eating meditation when you can during the week. Even one meal eaten this way is a wonderful reminder of a mindful life.

‘Buddha’s Little Instruction Book’
Jack Kornfield (1994:p.135)
ISBN 0-553-37385-4



Unexpected Visitors – exciting and bemusing! Monday 16 January 2012

Well, what a day! Friends are lovely.

Originally I had arranged meeting an old college friend to come over for coffee and
catch up on news. We had not seen each other properly to talk for a long time and I was
looking forward to seeing her and we were going to have lunch together.

The electricians phoned previously to arrange coming to the house to complete some
work they had begun before Christmas, so I knew they were expected but they would just
get on with their work.

So, my friend arrived and we showed her round the house, the work that had been
completed etc. and chatting about what we remembered of being teenagers together in the
old house – to the amusement of my son!

We were having coffee and enjoying a relaxing conversation about old times, recent life
changes and what plans are being made for the future. About parents, families and friends
– when our front door bell went.

My niece and her 5 month-old baby decided to call in, unexpectedly, as she was feeling
lonely without her parents around (they were on a cruise). So we all had a cuddle and
play with baby D. It was lovely to see them – and my son experiencing holding a small
baby while mother fed her baby rice!

We were enjoying this family moment, which included my friend as she knew and was
connected to part of the family.

A few minutes later the front door bell rang again. This time it was another couple of
friends, again with vague connections to my friend. They had decided to drive over
(unexpectedly) and call in to see if we would like to come out for lunch with them.

By this time my friend, who had arranged to call with a day and time, said she would
leave and go to see her mother. We would catch up another time – and she left, which I
felt sad about.

So, my husband, son and I went to lunch with our friends, our niece and her baby. We
were sitting round the table chatting when the door opened and in walked another friend
who had called at our house and the electrician told her where we had gone. She called
in, unexpectedly, on her way home from work with a plant for me.

By the time everyone went we were left feeling bemused by all these people who had
suddenly decided to visit, on the same day around the same time. I began to wonder if
they knew something about my health that I wasn’t aware of and were coming to see me
off!


When God Was a Rabbit by Sarah Winman Wednesday 4 January 2012

‘Back then, childhood independence was given not stolen, and days spent inside were
a calamity cause by stormy weather rather than the desire for daytime television or the
consolation of a console. Imagination, seemingly balanced on the edge of a diving board,
was ever eager and ready to take flight and often propelled me down to the beach to
explore a rocky shoreline and those pooled worlds, magically revealed at the insistence
of the moon….. It was a time when pebbles were gems, and seaweed hair, and prawns
collected out by the Black Rock, became a feast for all.’

(The Inspiration for ‘When God Was a Rabbit’ p.334)

She explains more about the treasures and wonder of images that became stories and
storytelling, of experimenting and exploring freely with or without fear, of survival and
fun. Learning how to exist in our world.

In essence, a description of a wondrous and enviable childhood and bringing forth my
memories of summer holidays and being free to roam.

How many 20th century children will be able to think back, remember and pass on stories
to their children and grandchildren of how they learned about nature, exciting new things
and how to survive?

Christmas and a room of one's own Friday 16 December 2011

All through the summer we have had builders in and out of our house. They were
renovating an old part and including it back into our living area.

For many years I have wanted a room of my own to carry out my work and a few
years ago I was given a ‘Penguin Book’ mug with the title ‘A Room of One’s Own’ by
Virginia Woolf. I was ever hopeful!

This year my dream came true and the room evolved – five days before Christmas. We
quickly bought the Christmas tree and put up decorations and welcomed ‘the room’ into
our lives. It was a beautiful room and we spent many hours just sitting and talking there
in our new space.

I received a little Christmas present from our builder – it was the book by Virginia Woolf
and inside he had written “And about time”.

Our house lends itself well to Christmas and becomes a very special time of the year,
so when the decorations come down we have to get used to having our old house back
again. Christmas has come and gone in a blink of an eye.

This year we can continue to enjoy a new space, which keeps changing between and
workroom and our peaceful sitting area.

Completion of the building work will resume in a while so our enjoyment and excitement
will continue until then.

Virginia says at the beginning of the book, ‘A woman must have money and a room of
her own if she is to write fiction’ (p.2). My muses – are they fact or fiction?


Tuesday 22 November 2011

To walk:
“To move or travel on legs and feet, alternately putting one foot a comfortable distance in front of, or sometimes behind, the other and usually proceeding at a moderate pace.”

This is the dictionary definition of the movement that I have been able to do since I was probably one year old or thereabouts, I cannot remember. I have photographic evidence though of the beginning of this new and exciting stage of my young life.

So, it was something of a surprise to find that I had to learn how to do this action all over again at my mature age. My brain told me I knew, and internally I knew that I have had many experiences of carrying out this exercise. But my body – or in particular, my leg – was telling me that it had little knowledge of the movement after my hip replacement operation in November.

I had to learn again how to walk at a slow pace, how to stand, take my weight, move one foot in front of the other, sit down, stand up, get out of bed, get into bed – and very carefully use the toilet!

This time round, I had the use of crutches either side of me rather than my parent’s hands. And this time round, I had the verbal knowledge to ask for help rather than my parent’s instinctive support.

I received a ‘get well soon’ card that suggested that I take notice of the tortoise’s way of life – at a slow pace! This made me realise how frantic life had become. Racing here and there, getting things done as quickly as possible. Now I had to slow down and take life one-step at a time, literally.

Asking for help was another interesting learning – asking help to get dressed and undressed, or to reach for something. Maybe I have learned that it is OK to ask for help and include others in my life.

I have also learned about my patience and impatience levels. When to keep my mouth shut. When a comment can seem like a criticism because something is being done differently to how I do it!

Most of all I have learned that I am surrounded by a lot of loving and lovely people – family and friends who are there to support me come what may.

They have all got me back on my feet again and walking without pain.

To all of you – Thank you X



Thursday 29 September 2011

Blockages

In my effort to speedily unblock our kitchen sink, I made the situation worse by blocking
it solidly.

I poured caustic soda down the plughole, which then solidified and when adding boiling
water to it gives off noxious fumes!

It crossed my mind that I wonder if this analogy can be used when trying to help ‘fix’
problems. Sometimes we can try to do too much too quickly and cause more problems.

In the counselling world we are trained to LISTEN and not RESCUE. We have two ears
and one mouth for this reason maybe!

In order to allow the ‘flow’ to run smoothly, sometimes we need to sit with the blockage,
however uncomfortable, and wait to find the right solution – if there is one.

These are words I say often when I am at work:

‘Lord, Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.’

A plumber sorted out our problem!

The same day, our poor cat had an abscess on his face that had swelled up. He had to
have it lanced and drained plus an injection and antibiotics. What a brave boy!

The vet solved his problem!

Friday 9 September 2011

Patterns

We are having a lot of building work done to our house and have spent most of our
summer sorting, designing, finding, choosing, debating, buying – and feeling satisfied
about our decisions and the finished look.

Our most difficult decision to make was choosing tiles for the new bathroom. We knew
what we didn’t want, but didn’t know what we really wanted.

On walking into a tile shop we saw some tiles that attracted us both and took some
samples home to give us a better idea what they looked like in situ.

Having spent a weekend seeing them in different lights and from different angles, then
imagining what a wall full would look like – we decided to buy them. They were far and
best above others we had seen.

Now they are on the wall, grouted and sealed and our new bath, basin and toilet nestled
against them, they are even better than we imagined.

Each of these tiles has a subtle and different pattern, as they come from natural stone.
When seen together on the wall it doesn’t matter that none of the patterns match, they are
as nature intended and have been enhanced.

Some people may see these patterns as defects and would not choose to have them on
their bathroom walls.

I say – enjoy and celebrate your patterns and defects, subtle or otherwise. Each of us is
different and we muddle on together as Mother Nature intended. What a sad place Earth
would be if we were all glazed and the same size and shape.

March 31st 2011

Beginnings and Endings

There will always be a beginning and to have a beginning there needs to be an ending.

Experiencing endings can be happy or painful. My son once said when he was a little boy
at Primary School “Goodbyes aren’t always good are they?” – wise words from a little
chap.

But each day has a beginning and ending – each month, each year. Each year has a
season that changes.

We all have birthdays, which can signify the passing of another year if looked at in that
way – AND all the things we have accomplished in that year can be celebrated, need to
be celebrated.

All the transitions that we experience in our lives – leaving babyhood when we learn
to walk and talk; going to school and leaving school; passing through adolescence into
adulthood – all leave their memories and marks to learn from.

My husband recently left his work place after 42 years of single boy and married man
and father. It was a huge decision to make for him and for me an interesting process to
observe. He made a start on a new beginning before he had ended and his actual ending
on the day at work, maybe became less painful and a bit more exciting as he knew he had
plans to look forward to.

In the therapeutic process we tend to say ‘you need to experience the loss and not stay in
denial’ however I saw that my husband’s healthy denial was his way of leaving his work
safely. He had a wonderful presentation and we celebrated the fact that he had enjoyed
his work very much. As a surprise many old friends and family turned up to help him
celebrate.

It is a sad fact that not many young people will be able to say they worked in the same
profession for 42 years.

Read the Daily Echo story HERE


Thursday 17 March 2011

Awake my soul

“How fickle my heart and how woozy my eyes
I struggle to find any truth in your lies
And now my heart stumbles on things I don't know
This weakness I feel I must finally show

Lend me your hand and we'll conquer them all
But lend me your heart and I'll just let you fall
Lend me your eyes I can change what you see
But your soul you must keep, totally fr ee”

For more lyrics click HERE

Thursday 17 March 2011

Wise words when life seems so black

“Life is sweet.

Beyond the pain, life continues to be sweet.

The basics are still there - Beauty, food, friendship, reservoirs of love and understanding.
Later, possibly not yet, you are going to need others who will encourage you to make
new beginnings.

Welcome them.

They will help you to move on, to cherish happy memories and confront the painful ones
with more than bitterness and anger.”

‘Winter Solstice’ (Page 293)
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton 2000



Sunday 6 Feb 2011

Toilet Mist

This term generally describes the unseen spray of water that comes out of the toilet after
flushing. It contains urine and faeces and can spread to a great area.

When you think about your bathroom, what is near to your toilet? I would imagine your
flannels, towels and toothbrushes on which this fine mist can settle – just before you
brush your teeth. I rest my case!!

I heard about this on the radio, just before I went away for a few days on the American
owned ship, ‘The Independence of the Seas’. The toilets on this ship were all designed
that you had to close the lid before flushing as the button was situated just above the seat.

This reminded me about the ancient Chinese Feng Shui:

“Feng Shui bathroom tip for wealth: A full-length mirror on the outside of the bathroom
door. Consider keeping a bowl of pebbles on the shelf above the toilet or on the cistern
itself. A black or red coloured rug at the base of the pedestal could also be used as a
protective device.

Explanation: A mirror on the bath room door helps to deflect the Chi so it won't
be drained away. Keeping sink and shower drains closed when not in use, and the
toilet lid down when not in use would also prevent the Chi flowing down the drain.
The concentrated form of Earth energy will help to control water and will counteract
financial opportunities being flushed away.”

I think the Chinese were actually being hygienic!
To read more visit:

http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/1839


Wednesday 24 Nov 2010

Doors

‘What is a monastery without a heavy, thick, wooden door?

Doors invite a rite of passage, but walking through a heavy wooden door is like walking
through the looking glass or finding the entrance to a cave that opens into a hidden world,
the mystery of entering into a portal.

Life is filled with such doors, some real and some metaphorical. Some are like thresholds
of the soul, while others are astonishingly improbable.’

Thomas Moore ‘Meditations’ 1994


Sunday 17 Oct 2010

Stillness

We need at times to take ourselves to a place of quiet to enable us to hear ourselves.

I visited Lacock Abbey a while ago and whilst walking around the grounds I became
acutely aware of the peace, calm and stillness, which seemed to exude from the stone-
walls, inviting silence.

Even though there were many people walking in the quadrangle, some noisy and some
quiet, I had a sense of how the nuns must have found solitude and comfort within these
ancient walls of contemplation and reflection.

Thomas Moore, a former monk and now an author, poet, psychotherapist and artist,
writes that ‘monks are experts at doing nothing and tending the culture of that emptiness.’
(1994:1)

Our modern lives are full of noise and imagery. Our heads full of information constantly
being given to us through radio, television, MP3 players, mobile phones and other people
as well as our own ‘chatter’.

Thomas suggests, ‘ Withdrawal from the world is something we can, and perhaps should,
do every day. It completes the movement of which entering fully into life is only one
part. Just as a loaf needs air in order to rise, everything we do needs an empty place
in its interior. I especially enjoy such ordinary retreats from the active life as shaving,
showering, reading, doing nothing, walking, listening to the radio, driving in a car. All of
these activities can turn one’s attention inward toward contemplation.’ (p.4)

‘Meditations’ by Thomas Moore, 1994, Hodder & Stoughton

Friday 23 July 2010

Trivia IS important

At ending the term today, my son (who is 21!) suggested excitedly that we sit down and make a list of what we want to do during the summer holidays.

We spent some time pondering what this list is called and he came up with – ‘Our Fun List’.

Over a very adult cup of coffee we began thinking a of what we wanted to do -
A trip to London on the Greyhound bus
Buy an up to date ‘Trivial Pursuit’
Visit ‘Pecksniff’s’ in Brighton Lanes
Have a party in the garden with our friends with lights in the trees
Paint his bedroom
Walk to the beach

We will extend this list to husband / father for him to add his ideas – but one item has already been fulfilled – the new ‘Trivial Pursuit’ game had been obtained and we are looking forward to many challenges between us.



Wednesday 21 July 2010

Receiving gifts

Receiving gifts from clients I know this topic that will divide many therapists from different disciplines and schools of thought.

My training in Humanistic counselling leads me to believe that my clients and I work in a relationship – an ethical, therapeutic and professional relationship and different from most other relationships we experience during our lives. However, the space in which we work is a special space that is safe and secure for them to explore. It is a respectful and sacred space to talk about anything and anyone, knowing that their words will be heard and left - not reacted to.

Therefore, as a school counsellor, at this time of year, I occasionally receive a present from clients. This year I have had two gifts that have been received with warmth because our work together has been a tough journey. We have ended in appreciation of that journey we have made together – and for me to refuse their thoughts and gifts would have undone all the meaningful and hard emotional work they have accomplished.

I thank them for their thoughts.



Monday 5 April 2010

Magical words from Nanny McPhee

For me these words are very apt  for counselling children and young people.

“There is something you should understand about the way I work.
When you need me but do not want me, then I must stay.
When you want me but no longer need me, then I have to go.
It's rather sad, really, but there it is.”

Nanny McPhee



Tuesday 30 March 2010

Invictus

Meaningful words that inspired me in my dissertation and with my case study:

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley


Scroll down for more...


Wednesday 9 September 2009

Synchronicity
 
My husband and I were organising where we were going to sleep on the day we arrived for our few days away in Scotland during the summer. Looking through bed and breakfast websites I noticed a house called ‘Anam Cara’.

I have a book called ‘Anam Cara – Spiritual Wisdom from the Celtic World’ by John O’Donohue, which I like to ‘dip into’ sometimes to enter a world of words that instills peace and calm.

So, drawn to the house name we booked a room for our first night after flying to Edinburgh.
Knocking at the door we were met by an extremely friendly and welcoming lady who invited us in for a cup of tea with her husband, daughter and baby grandson. Through gentle conversation and humour, we heard that she was a therapist herself. We had much in common.

Margaret Mc Cathie has trained as a laughter therapist with Dr. Patch Adams and has written the following piece in an article, “Patch Adams is a wonderful doctor who believes that the combination of laughter and love are the best medicine. Patch has proved time and again in his work as a doctor, that laughter is a cure. He has made such an impact that millions have now seen the film “Patch Adams” based on his life and work. He even travels to war zones to bring laughter and joy, sometimes taking 40 clowns with him. They consist of doctors, nurses, therapists and lay people whose only qualification is a desire to serve in a loving and caring way. They dress as clowns so as to not be threatening to anyone of any age group. It is not the type of clown that would splash a pie in your face, but a caring clown, bringing fun and laughter to hospitals, prisons, old peoples homes and orphanages.”
Margaret’s bed and breakfast provided a caring and comfortable stay for us, made more impactful by her hospitality.

I am always excited and humbled when synchronistic moments happen like this. It feels to me like messages are being subtly given, which may have been missed if by a click of a mouse we had chosen somewhere else to rest our heads.


Sunday 19 July 2009

A Smelly Washing Machine and Itchy Nipples!

I was aware of my washing machine becoming smelly when I went to take the washing out. Sometimes it was so bad I rewashed the items. I read that due to the cold or low heat powders, the machines aren’t being cleaned adequately inside so advised that once a month to put bleach in the drum, turn the heat to the hottest setting and allow a full wash time to clean the inside.

Then after suffering from an itchy right nipple I looked on a medical website to gain some sanity as I was beginning to frighten myself with horrible fears. A doctor had written in answer to a woman experiencing the same thing, to check if she had used a different washing powder or creams and then advised to wash underwear in a hot wash to get rid of bacteria.

When I was studying Human Biology, Physiology and Hygiene as a GCSE many years ago, I learnt that a way to keep bacteria (the only thing I have in common with the Queen!) under control was by using hot soapy water and dry items in the sunshine and fresh air.

My muses about this are:
Bacteria may rule the world one day because they are clever little things and know how to survive!
Washing powders we have now may be used in a cold wash in the machine to save global warming and the universe, but doesn’t always kill bacteria.
Some young people we know do not hang washing on the line outside, but dry their clothes inside, which can cause mould to grow on the walls becoming another health hazard. The fear of security and leaving windows open in case of theft also does not allow the house to ‘breathe’. (Don’t get me started on that one!)
In the fast world we live in today with all the appliances we use, I think that hands aren’t washed so much as when washing up was done after every meal in the sink, for example with hot water and lots of bubbles!
Teachers now aren’t able to take children to the toilet and check they wash their hands afterwards. I can remember being taken as a class during ‘toilet time’ and the teacher would stay and check that (a.) we didn’t mess around flooding the cloakroom (as if!) and (b.) everyone washed their hands after using the toilet.

So my thoughts turned to becoming a ‘Mary Muse’!!
In the fear of the ‘Swine Flu’ pandemic and being advised to keep our hands clean, to cover our mouths when we cough and sneeze, to look out for others if they are ill - that maybe we need to go back to the ‘good old ways’ of taking care of ourselves and keeping clean.

Oh yes – my washing machine now does not smell since using hotter water and my nipple no longer itches!



Sunday 19 July 2009

Routine!

I keep thinking I have to go to work tomorrow – and I don’t. Yeah!

The good thing about work routine, in my mind, is that it is comfortable; you know what you are doing and tasks are a usual pattern. But routine can be boring and repetitive, if allowed. I am fortunate that my work is different every day and can never be called boring. However, what happens when I step outside the comfort zone of going to work?
I get a little buzz of excitement when I realise my day is mine. I can do something different, I can do something for me, I can do something with my family, I can meet up with my friends, I can have a day out with my son – and I can do NOTHING! The choice is mine. That’s the good thing about not having a routine. Freedom.

I also realise that I feel like this because I work and things would be totally different if I was in the position of having no job. These are purely my musings!


Saturday 18 July 2009

Beginnings and Endings!

I have ended my work in schools until September and said ‘goodbye’ to all the students who have begun their transition from Primary onto Secondary School; and also to all the older students who have ended their Secondary education and moving onto College, Sixth Form or training.

To attend to endings in this situation is an important issue, as some people have not experienced good goodbyes before. It is also important to end our relationship correctly as these young people have trusted me with a lot of personal information, about which I feel privileged. So the ending between us needs careful attention. All relationships deserve respect.

Considering endings and thoughtful beginnings.

Now - I am looking forward to beginning the summer holidays!






Don't push the river