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Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Cards, stone and numbers

This blog, which was started as a place to share my papercrafting projects in order to enter challenges, has changed into somewhere for me to share the many different aspects of my life.  A big part of my life now is Tarot Farm - the website I have set up for Tarot and Rune readings, and also Numerology profiles.  I also have a blog associated with it, Seek Guidance.

I have had an interest in divination for many years (I used to do Cartomancy readings - using playing cards - and Numerology, and had studied Tarot on a very casual basis), but then suddenly a few months ago Tarot came into my life again, and in many ways has taken over!  Runes also, for whatever reason, attracted me and I am now studying them too.



The global Tarot community is a friendly and inspiring place, and I am even involved in designing a card for a deck that will be sold for charity.

If I had perfect health, then my life would have taken a very different direction.  Tarot Farm is a great way for me to be involved in something that fascinates me, and I don't even have to leave the house!

If anyone is interested in having a reading or a Numerology profile, go and have a look at the website/blog or leave a comment on here.

Ali x

Sunday, 7 June 2015

Never Give Up

At one time I was a keen runner - aiming to do 10k's and trail running.  Then Fibromyalgia, Hyper Mobility Syndrome and Hip Bursitis stopped all that.  However, I still have one pair of running shoes - and for some reason I had a dream last night that I was dusting them down and going for a jog.  Then I saw the latest blog post from Running with Fibro, commented on his Facebook page and I found myself deciding to try a bit of jogging on my afternoon dog walk.

Here are the almost vintage-looking running shoes (10 years old now)!


(I didn't bother with proper socks and running tights - so please excuse the thermal socks and jeans!)

Twenty minutes later - with about 10% of that spent very slowly jogging - I arrived back home, feeling sore as usual (I had been struggling after a busy morning), but ok.  I will be trying again soon.

This is the truly awful road I chose for my route today (there are 4 roads to choose from - as well as our fields/tracks).  The worse thing about them all is the steep hills - so I actually have not got much suitable for beginner running.



I expect the sunshine helped me a lot, but I am glad I listened to my dream, and also glad that I was too stubborn to throw those running shoes away.

My health conditions have forced me to re-evaluate my life and how I live it, and now I take pleasure from even the smallest achievement.  A few steps of very slow jogging is fantastic when so many people with Fibromyalgia are sadly almost housebound.  It is important to be grateful for everything that is positive for us.

Whilst I have your attention, just a reminder that I am now doing Tarot and Rune readings, and Numerology profiles.  Go over to my website www.tarotfarm.co.uk or business blog www.seekguidance.co.uk for more details and contact forms.

Ali x

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Poetry

Sometimes words come into my mind.  Most of the time I forget these far too quickly, but today they merged into a poem.


It is not right.

I could say it is not fair, but life never is.

I should be out in the sunshine,

sharing the wind and the light.

I should be flying down a lane on 2 wheels,

or running across the mountain,

or urging my pony up a bridleway.

I am not though and it is not right.

There are people living a half life that comes

from laziness and lack of spirit.

I live a half life because of my damaged body.

My brain and spirit are mostly bright,

but my body fails me daily.

A fog of depression and sadness threatens to cover me,

and I fight it.

My spirit is strong and I search for my place in this world.

I am not who I want to be - frustration is not a big enough word.

Tears flow too often.

I keep getting up.

I keep trying to smile.

I keep moving my body and accepting the pain.

It is not right though.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Spring Clean

I really need to start writing down ideas for blog posts. Throughout the day I often think of a topic/question or whatever, and then literally within seconds it has gone out of my brain.

I am now sitting on the sofa with my laptop (it stopped working a few weeks ago and went off to be repaired), watching the F1 and catching up with the interviews/blog posts I have been planning for ages.

I intend to get more variety into this blog in the coming weeks/months. Yes, a lot of it will be related to Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain/Fatigue in some way, but I have other things in my life that need writing about.

I normally type blog posts directly into Blogger, but experimenting with using Wordpad (I am not willing to pay for full MS Office!) and then copying/pasting. A more relaxed way to write and hopefully I will get more posts drafted ready to schedule each week (never done scheduling before, so wish me luck!).

I have been doing some reading into Social Media and how I can use it more effectively
Social Media bookazine from Mollie Makes.  This is something that I am fascinated with - and wish I had picked up on its importance earlier. I do feel that I have been left behind slightly, but now is the time for me to learn more and fully use its many aspects. Therefore, you will be seeing changes in how I blog in the near future. I have had several positive comments about my blog layout, so want to keep it clear and simple - but it is getting rather 'tired' now. Time for a spring clean!

If anyone has any ideas for a blog post, a question they want answered etc, get in touch.

Now for one of my random photos, as I don't want you to get bored reading my rambling!

Robbie the pony and Doris the donkey -
enjoying having another shed to relax in.
(As a spring calving herd, most of the cows have now calved
and the yard has been emptied.)
 

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

WOYWW 300

A milestone is reached today in the wonderful world of WOYWW.  How could I not join in?  Go on over to Julia's Stamping Ground for more details and a long list of fellow-'deskers'.

Not much crafting going on in my craft room today, so I have some of my latest stash acquisitions (ie internet shopping) on display.

I have been saying for a while that I must dust down my sewing machine, and when the latest Cross Patch show came on Create & Craft (apologies for all the links, but I know people will be asking me for details on these!), I found myself ordering some of the goodies.  The larger bag will be for me, the smaller one will be a Xmas pressie (deadline then!) and the door hanger is for our granddaughter.



I have done a fair bit of digital crafting this week, including starting on the path of learning another software, Serif DrawPlus, so I can design logos etc.

Thank you for all the lovely comments on my WOYWW post last week.  I hope to visit as many as possible in the next few days.

Ali x

ps  Huge thanks for those who have offered to make something for my new Etsy shop, raising funds for Fibromyalgia research, especially as we approach International Awareness Day on 12th May.  I will be setting up the shop next week and there is plenty of room for more items - I just ask for purple and butterflies to be included somewhere; any crafting is welcome. 

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

WOYWW 299

So much of my week has been taken up with social media - Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+ - helping to raise awareness of Fibromyalgia.  It is the International Awareness Day on 12th May and I am starting an Etsy shop to sell items made by Fibro sufferers and their supporters.  If anyone would like to contribute, get in touch.  Anything is welcome - as long as there is purple and butterflies somewhere on it.

Now I put my crafty blogging hat on and join in (very late) with the wonderful weekly tour around so many wonderful crafty workspaces.  If you want to join in, take a trip over to Julia's Stamping Ground.  As you can see from this blog title, we have very nearly reached the milestone of 300 weeks.  I have not been involved from the beginning!

I am showing off my latest finished needle felting project - the rabbit which you saw last week.  He (yes, he likes purple and pink!) has clothes now - and arms.  I am going to add some fluffy eyebrows, as I think that he would suit them.



In my craft room I am finishing off getting 20 cards ready for a NSPCC event - just need to sort out envies and poly bags. 

I will take a late tour around now. 

Happy WOYWW to everyone.

Ali x

Friday, 20 February 2015

My new purple friend

I have a new friend who spends nearly 24 hours a day with me.  This new friend is my purple Garmin vivofit wristband, which Rich bought me for Xmas.  I had been interested to have one, so that I could see exactly how active I am during the day and also track my sleep patterns.



There are plenty of general reviews about how comfortable it is, how easy it is to set up etc - but I will concentrate on the specific values to those with a chronic health condition.

It is very interesting to see how much deep sleep I have had each night - or how little deep sleep often in my case!  I can edit it in the morning to show my waking mood - and so far I have had the blue face (OK) for 83.3% of the nights and 16.7% for the red face (bad).  There are no green faces (great)!

As is normally the case with Fibromyalgia (if there is a normal ?!), there is no clear correlation (I did Statistics at O Level - back in 1987!) between how I sleep at night and my activity the day before, or how the next day is affected.  I have noticed that in the past week I seem to have gone back to my old habit of less sleep at night and waking early with increased pain (28.6% bad waking mood in the past week), and checking on my activity (which is the number of steps I take) I see that I am moving more.  I wonder whether this is because the days are getting longer - so I am spending more time outside on the yard and also walking the dogs.  

Week commencing 26th January - 81,903 steps.
2nd February - 84,972 steps.
9th February - 95,137 steps.
Already this week I have done over 70,000 steps.

Yes, I have Fibromyalgia - and I still move a lot!  With the ponies/donkey, dogs, big house and a generally active mind (that means I do not want to sit and watch Jeremy Kyle!), even with regular rests I am still  covering many miles each week (around 6 miles per day).

I complain all the time about winter and how it increases my pain/stiffness, but perhaps it is actually the time when I spend more time indoors and rest my body, and therefore I sleep better at night?  It is still winter, but the lighter evenings mean that I am enjoying being outside sorting out the animals and I will generally potter about finding jobs to do.  I don't always experience more pain/fatigue because of this, but it may affect my sleep patterns.

Who knows??!!



I will continue to monitor and assess whether there are any patterns.  However, my main aim is to get more and better quality sleep, so I will be turning off this laptop soon and getting to bed at a reasonable time.

If any of my readers have a wristband tracker-thingy, let me know how you are getting on with it - and whether you have seen any patterns between your activity and sleep.