Category Archives: Thoughts

Why I think that self care is important

Today I’m going to talk about Why I think that self care is important. I thought of this post for a while. I’ve seen many posts and comments where self-care was synonymous with SPA days, weekends away at expensive hotels, fancy meals in posh restaurants. I don’t think this is the case, I don’t think self care means a SPA day. You can relax at a SPA, of course, why not. But, if you can’t afford the SPA day, it only can mean two things, not going and feeling the added peer pressure because someone else from your group is going. The other thing is to spend the money on credit card, that leads to financial pressure, that is the opposite of self care. I love going to a massage, it’s relaxing, but I wouldn’t pay with the credit card for it.

Why I think that self care is important

For me, taking care of oneself means making a cup of tea/coffee/hot chocolate, cuddle up on the sofa with a good book. A hair mask and a Homemade coffee body scrub can make you feel amazing. Going to bed early at 8 or 9, reading a bit or doing a Sudoku, relaxing before sleeping. All these things mean self care.

Anther thing I think is very important is to eat healthy. Cake is amazing, chips are fab too, they are great to eat, but making a healthy and nutritious meal that is tasty too (even if not as tasty as the cake and chips are), means self care. If we can go past “treats” as in sugary and/or fatty, unhealthy pieces of food, we might discover a world of tasty dishes that are healthy too. Taking care of your body means, in my mind, eating good just as important as applying moisturizer in the mornings or brushing my teeth. Breaking away from the “norms” of sugary hot chocolates generously topped with whipped cream as self care can make a huge difference. A healthy smoothie can be just as exciting if you are thinking of it as something you are doing for yourself instead of something you “have” do to.

Taking the time to remove the makeup, to apply a moisturizer, a lip balm, a foot balm. All these things are easy to make and they don’t take a lot of time. Many times I hear from friends or just women I interact with on social media that they don’t have time to do that. I think making sure you follow a basic skincare regime that takes less than 5 minutes is much more important than spending 30 minutes on Instagram or twitter to catch-up.

Everything you do for you that is actually good too, will make you feel even better. Loving oneself brings more happiness and less stress. If you are a mother, you would like your children to take care of themselves, so, being a role model is a great way to do that. For me, self care is not selfish, is just the opposite.

I hope I have inspired you to do a bit more today for you, to take a few more minutes to do something good for you. Do you think of other things that mean self care without having to spend lots of money?

Questions about the past and the future

In this post I’m going to talk about Questions about the past and the future. This is part of the 365 Provoking questions I’m doing this year. I’ve started in February with 28 Provoking Questions and I might finish it by the end of the year. I looked through the remaining questions and I picked 30 about the past and 20 about the future. As they are so many in total, I’m going to keep the answers short.

Questions about the past and the future

30 Questions about the past

1. When you look back over the past month, what single moment stands out?
I’ve started volunteering at a local stately home, so that is pretty special.

2. What is your happiest memory?
There are so many that it’s hard to pick the one that is the happiest. When I’ve entered high school (I had to take a difficult exam to get in), when I was admitted to University (again, difficult exam-interview), when I’ve got married, when we got Festus, when we bought our home.

3. What is your saddest memory?
When someone close to me died.

4. What’s the best decision you’ve ever made?
I think moving to UK was the best decision.

5. What’s your favorite true story that you enjoy sharing with others?
I hope I don’t keep repeating the same story.

6. What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned in the last year?
Even in business people can take illogical emotional decisions, but I knew that from before.

7. What was your last major accomplishment?
Buying the house must be the last one.

8. Through all of life’s twists and turns who has been there for you?
My husband.

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Let’s talk about money

I went through the remaining questions from the 365 Thought Provoking Questions to Ask Yourself This Year and picked the ones related to money. Last month I did a 100 Questions in 10 words or less and I enjoyed the twist of answering like that. So now I will talk about money. It’s a subject I don’t like to talk about, it should be personal. Also, what I consider a bargain can be deemed overpriced for someone else, while what they consider a bargain can be overpriced for me. We can have different values and priorities and that influences the way we relate to money. Anyway, I answered these questions and I enjoyed writing the post.

1. What can money not buy?
Not a lot of things. Money are important, from getting a place you are happy in to clothes, petrol and tickets for travels and sightseeing.
Loyalty, love, attention, these in theory can’t be bought. Showing love, appreciation is not easy without any money. You have to buy ingredients for a special homemade dinner, a card for an anniversary or a bunch of flowers. Some of these things might be only a few pence or a couple of pounds. Even if the gesture is more important than the value, but that still means money.

Let’s talk about money

2. What do you do with the majority of your money?
This is the sort of question I would avoid. So, my answer is: I buy things and services, can’t be more vague than that.

3. Other than money, what else have you gained from your current job?
Money are not the most important thing for me when it comes to jobs. Being able to be creative and loving what I do is more important than more money. I need a challenge and I have that too.

4. How much money per month is enough for you to live comfortably?
I think I live quite comfortably as it is, I have many things that make me happy. With more money I would pay my debts faster, get a newer car, I would do a bit more work to our house, buy lots and lots of crockery and kitchen tools&utensils. I might travel more. If I would get all those things, would I want to stop there or would I think I want another thing? I think it’s only human to strive for more and adjust the definition of what is comfortable to add a bit more.

5. If I gave you $1000 and told you that you had to spend it today, what would you buy?
I would book a weekend away with my husband and our dog. With the rest I might buy some kitchen stuff and shoes and maybe a dress and some makeup and a few books. Something for the dog and for my husband.

6. How would an extra $1000 a month change your life?
I would do a few of those items mentioned in question 4. The more important questions is what I would have to do to get those $1000 a month? If it means I should get a 2nd job, my life wouldn’t necessarily change for the better, as it would mean less time with my husband and less time doing other things that make me happy, like reading and cooking.

7. What things in life should always be free?
Why should anything be free? I think we appreciate more the things we work for and not those that come free.

8. What job would you never do no matter how much it paid?
I wouldn’t do a lot of jobs that would be against my values, too many to make a list.

15 Ways to feel at Home in a Foreign Country

I saw a similar post on a blog and I thought I should write my own guide which I named 15 Ways to Feel at Home in a Foreign Country. There are a few obvious things anybody who wants to move in another country has to do, like learning the language and a bit of geography, familiarizing with the law and customs. If moving to United Kingdom, refer to it as UK, don’t say England if you are referring to the whole country (only imagine what Nicola Sturgeon would say about that). Beside that, the only thing needed is a desire to integrate and keep an open mind. It’s that easy.
I enjoyed thinking of this topic.

1. Make you house your home.
I started with this because it’s one of the most important things regardless if the move is to a different flat/house, city or a country. I don’t think I should even start talking about the importance of having a nice and cosy home, everyone knows that. I know it’s more difficult when the house is rented, but it can be made homely with pictures, favourite books and vases, a cuddly toy and nice things bought from travels. I have in my living room a cuddly toy my husband bought for me in our honeymoon, a 500 years old piece of pottery I got from London last year. Little things can make a huge difference.

15 Ways to feel at Home in a Foreign Country

2. Local foods.
Try local foods. There are plenty of new and exciting things to try in a new country. Imagine if you really like the new food. Also, it doesn’t matter if you don’t like it, you don’t have to eat it again, but at least you’ve tried it. Also, if you are talking with someone about food, you will know what they are talking about.
It might sound obvious, but it’s not. I had a chat with an expat who had no idea what a Christmas pudding is, despite celebrating Christmas two times in UK. Maybe not everybody likes it, although I can’t understand why someone would not try a pud filled with dried fruits and booze. I can’t imagine now my Christmas day without a Christmas pudding. My husband doesn’t like raisins, so it’s not as keen on it.

3. Read books written by British authors.
I think reading a few books will make the culture of the new country easier to understand. I didn’t do that from the beginning, but I’ve read British authors since I was a teenager and I read novels in English 5-6 years before moving to the UK. This is what I would do if I would move to another country. I think it’s a really helpful way to learn a few things before moving.

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3 Funny things people have asked me

I am asked funny things sometimes and I wanted to share 3 of those questions. When I hear a question like this I’m lost for words. How can I reply?

1. You put your food & snacks on the plates only for taking pictures?

Hmmm… the obvious answer is no, I eat from plates like, hopefully, most of the civilized world. I don’t like eating out of a bag, so, if I can avoid it, I would toss the crisps/popcorn/puffs in a bowl and eat it from that.

I use props for taking food pictures, but those are obvious. I don’t think anybody eats their cookies with jars of flour on the table, sprinkled raisins and whatever props appear in the photo.

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2. If you are vegetarian, you can’t have turkey, what do you eat at Christmas?

I was amazed to be asked something like this. I have an accent and it’s obvious for a Brit I’m not born in the UK. Besides UK and the English-speaking countries (US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) which started as colonies, the rest of the world has different customs for Christmas. I never had turkey for Christmas, not even when I wasn’t vegetarian, it’s not something people eat in Romania.

Funnily enough, there are more vegetarian or easy to make vegetarian options in the British Christmas dinner comparing to the Romanian one. Brussels sprouts can be vegan or vegetarian, the same can do done with roasted root vegetables. Onion gravy is delicious too, that too can be vegetarian.

3. Can you read in English? After a 5 minutes chat, the second question: When was the English Civil War?

The first question wouldn’t exactly be funny unless paired with the second one. I really can’t imagine how you get from: “can you read?” to a question about a 9 years time frame in the British history from the 17th century. This happened at a house transformed in a museum, in a small village up north.

I said 1648 and I got it wrong, but not by much. The Civil War started in 1642 and the second one started in 1648, as I said, when Charles I was captured and was executed the following year. That was what I knew, the year when Charles I’s was in captivity. I also knew the Civil War finished in 1651.

The lady who asked the question said she is not sure and this is why she asked me. First of all, I can’t understand why somebody who works in a historical museum has no idea when the English Civil War was, it’s not like knowing all the kings and queens from 1066 and up to date. Britain has only one civil war and it was the only time when there weren’t any kings on the throne. Although, considering that Oliver Cromwell was buried as a king and his son followed him, it’s not exactly a huge difference.
I had a look online to learn a bit more about that time and on 29th May 1660 the English monarchy was restored with King Charles II.

100 Questions in 10 words or less

This is the newest post in the series: 365 Thought Provoking Questions to Ask Yourself This Year I mentioned in my first post. I was excited about it and I still love some of the questions, but some of them are daft. So, to make things a little harder, this month I will answer 100 questions in 10 words or less. I love this challenge and I hope you’ll enjoy reading my answers. It was hard to answer using only 10 words. I skipped one because I wanted to talk more about it, so that is in the next update.

100

1. Do you ever celebrate the green lights?
Not really. This is what I meant on daft questions.

2. What personal prisons have you built out of fears?
None, the notion of prison is too harsh.

3. What one thing have you not done that you really want to do?
Go on a very long hike.

4. Why are you, you?
I’m me due to past experiences and born characteristics.

5. If you haven’t achieved it yet what do you have to lose?
What I achieved so far.

Continue reading 100 Questions in 10 words or less

Which is worse, failing or never trying?

Last month I answered to 28 Provoking Questions from the list of 365. As this month has 31 days, I’ll answer to 31 more questions. I hope you don’t find the post too long, there are a lot of questions.

01. When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done?
I hope I would have said as much as it was necessary and also I hope I would have done as much as it was necessary.

02. If you had the opportunity to get a message across to a large group of people, what would your message be?
Eat your veggies! Just joking, I don’t know, why is there a large group of people, maybe they are gathered to talk about something else and me mentioning veggies would be strange.

03. If the average human lifespan was 40 years, how would you live your life differently?
I can’t answer this question. I chose to live my life considering my lifespan is 70-80, so my choices reflected that. The whole world would have been different with a lifespan of 40, like it was a couple of hundred years ago.

04. What do we all have in common besides our genes that makes us human?
We have so many things in common, even when we don’t agree, the “why” behind our actions can be the same.

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05. Which is worse, failing or never trying?
Those Facebook memes aren’t always right. It depends on why someone would like to try or should try and, of course, the thing they are thinking of trying. Never trying sky diving is better than failing at it, isn’t it?
Although trying to hand feed the wild geese is a great idea, do try it.

06. If you could choose one book as a mandatory read for all high school students, which book would you choose?
I asked my husband his opinion, what I would say and he said exactly the book that I would choose. I prefer not to say which one because it’s not a novel and the reason to pick that one isn’t exactly to promote it.

Continue reading Which is worse, failing or never trying?