23:14

This evening I went to a Japanese restaurant with two friends who I have seen separately within the lock down period, but not together. It was lovely to finally be reunited as a trio! We took advantage of the current UK government Eat Out to Help Out scheme that many restaurants are taking part in and got 50% off our bill. We caught up, laughed, took photos, enjoyed some good food and each other’s company. We also went back to my friend’s flat and played a quiz game. Before the pandemic we would play board games together quite often, so it was heartwarming to enjoy that activity again.

The weather has taken a drastic turn. When we went out to dinner it was bright and sunny with no signs of thunderstorms on the way. We all wore skirts/dresses with no need for jackets! A lovely summer’s evening… or so we thought. On the way back home we started to hear the rumbling from the thunder, and began to see small flashes of lightning. As soon as my friend and I got to our respective houses, the torrential rain came down. Thunder, lightning, rain, humidity, the works. Definitely some of the brightest flashes of lightning that I’ve ever seen! I read in the news that it is a few months worth of rain coming down in one night… how crazy! Thankful to be out of the horrible weather and in a warm and cozy bed.

23:45

A small update from last week:

On Thursday I called the doctors surgery to ask about my blood test results. I had specifically been told to call and inquire if they didn’t contact me, despite the usual procedure of ‘if you didn’t hear back it means everything is normal.’ It turns out that everything is fine and all my blood tests came back normal. Thank God that there is nothing abnormal in this instance, however I will continue to monitor symptoms and keep track of anything unusual I notice.

My heart is calmer after hearing the results and I am grateful not to be in a position where my health is at risk. I look to carry on with my self care mentality in other aspects of my life, and hopefully move forward in my work or house front soon!

23:20

Amidst all the events from last week (as detailed in my previous post) I wanted to do something nice for my parents since I haven’t seen them in person since December.

Our family is not big on gift giving. Birthdays were spent with homemade cakes and loving gestures rather than mountains of presents. We always spent quality time together whether it be at home or at a restaurant with a celebratory meal. As both my brothers and I got older and moved out we have been separated from our parents much more for special occasions. Particularly this year with the current pandemic it has been difficult to see each other. My brother and I live in the same city but have only seen each other 3 times since March.

I researched online for a seafood delivery company and ordered a delivery for my parents. One thing that our family can agree on is our love for fresh seafood! The large Fedex box of live seafood on their doorstep surprised them, and I got a live view of their reactions via video call. So while I am not a big gift giver, it is a way of showing love where I cannot currently spend quality time with my parents.

On my birthday I thought about many things. One of my most prominent thoughts was to thank my parents for their years of care and love, which is where the surprise delivery idea came from. People wrongfully have the idea that their birthday is all about them – I was born on this day, everyone should be celebrating me! In the past I definitely thought the same way as it is natural to do so. As I get older I know that my parents are also getting older, and they are the reason I have lived to see my next birthday. On your next birthday, take a moment to thank your parents for bringing you up thus far – it will make their day, I’m sure of it!

22:34

Thank God for a smooth eventful week in July with better weather!

On Monday I had a restful last day as a twenty something – don’t worry I turned twenty something too, my blog name will remain the same for now! Been feeling a bit lazier recently due to not having any new places to explore, so sometimes I walk around the block a couple of times instead. Last Friday my group of friends and I decided it was my turn to lead the next quiz so I started preparing for the following Friday.

On Tuesday it was my birthday! Had a fairly early start to the day picking up my friend and driving to Craigie’s Farm for fruit picking. There’s something about picking your own produce that is super satisfying! Got lots of cherries, raspberries and strawberries and also picked a mini courgette. All really delicious and worth the money! I dropped off some fruit and shopping to my brother and my sister-in-law and then had lunch outside by Newhaven Harbour. Later on in the evening I took a walk up Blackford Hill to reflect on the day and the past year and was rewarded with beautiful, dramatic skies!

On Wednesday I went for a walk in my local area in the morning, did some more work on my quiz and played tennis after dinner. The evening air was much cooler compared to playing during the day, and we found it started to get darker quicker – summer is fading fast!

On Thursday I went for a cycle using the Just Eat cycles, a short walk around Edinburgh University Kings Building campus, cycled to meet my friend and played tennis. She let me try her hybrid bike and she tried the Just Eat one. She is an avid cyclist and wanted to see how different the city bikes were!

Today I made the most of my free subscription to Just Eat Cycles for the last time and cycled to McEwan Hall. My legs are definitely not built for cycling – those hills are tough! I then walked into the city centre to do some shopping (with my mask firmly on) and picked up a few things for my upcoming nieces/nephews. Also bought two items from The Body Shop using my £5 birthday voucher as a little treat for myself. Ended up walking all the way home in the drizzly rain! After our church fellowship, I led my quiz (Powerpoint and everything) and had a catch up with my friends.

All in all, a really lovely week spent doing heart-warming things. Definitely thankful for these past twenty something years and excited for what is to come!

21:42

Just kind of dawning on me now that tomorrow is my birthday. The month of July came around so quickly (how is it 7 months into this year?!)

This weekend and last weekend I attended national and local online spiritual convocations organised by our church. I think this is probably why I didn’t realise we were already half way into July! Still haven’t heard anything from work regarding working from home again, or physically returning to the office… so still in limbo work-wise. Other July activities include baking carrot muffins, exploring Gore Glen Woodland Park, playing tennis again (now that the weather is better), and making use of the free Just Eat cycles!

I’ve never really been much of a birthday person and tend to not do anything to celebrate it. Last year I was at a friend’s wedding on my birthday and at the reception they brought out a cake for me which was thoughtful. The previous year my birthday fell on the day before my older brother got married so we had a cake amidst decoration chaos. The older I get, the less I worry about birthday celebrations and growing older. Whatever comes my way I know that God will guide, and I am thankful for everything that has led me up to this point!

22:24

My church has started a virtual choir where we record our own parts to hymns and an editor puts them all together to form a video/recording. Due to Covid-19 we aren’t able to gather together physically for choir so we have adapted our practices so we can still sing ‘together’.

Definitely a learning curve for me to study music and be able to replicate it with my voice, but thankfully the church music groups have been super helpful and have provided a lot of resources. I do not have a musical background but can read music and do basic sight reading. I can also play very basic piano (right hand only) so this really helped me to get my part embedded in my brain. Definitely super rusty with both piano playing and singing but I managed to record my alto part after 5 takes!

At first I was very aware of my own voice and it made me shaky and unsure of the lyrics and music. As I redid takes and went over certain bars I could feel my tensions start to release, and my voice sounded more natural. My last take was one which I told myself to enjoy rather than stress over how perfect it needed to be. I had gotten caught up in the technicalities and lost sight of why I was recording in the first place. I miss the unity of singing in a choir but thank God for this opportunity to take part in this different way of worship through difficult times.

22:29

In recent weeks I have noticed how quickly the days are going by. In my regular work week schedule I find myself baffled at the arrival of another Friday in seemingly quick successions. I don’t know fully if it’s because I’ve been busier in 2018 or if I’m making the most out of my time, or a mix of the two.

As we draw closer to the middle of February I can safely say that 2018 has been good to me. I go to bed each night with a tiredness in my body that signifies I worked and played hard, and also with a content feeling in my heart. I am so thankful for this year already and I strive to have this heart of thanksgiving for the rest of the year.

22:25

Just checking in for a quick life update:

  • I’ve been given more responsibilities at work so things are hectic now and again, but I am happy for a change in pace and for more challenging tasks.
  • Swimming has become something I really enjoy and it helps me unwind. This week I went swimming after work on 4/5 days and my body is feeling great!
  • Catch ups with friends (even if for only a short while) build back those happy feelings in my heart. Forever blessed to be surrounded by lovely, supportive people.

 

22:10

Exciting news!

I won Star of the Month at work for December! Happy days!

It is good to know that my hard work is recognised in some way. Although I did not find out till returning to work in January, it was a nice way to wrap up the previous working year.

With a few new challenges coming by way work-wise in 2016, I look forward to the responsibilities that they will bring. I am glad to be appreciated in my company and also rewarded (with a prize of my choosing).

The year is looking brighter already!

21:45

Slowly making progress in the workplace is a very heart-warming feeling. I am encouraged by my team leader to work hard and to strive for more, and am rewarded with new tasks and individual projects.

Within the past few weeks I have been asked to train up a new start to the firm and this came as quite a surprise for me. As I associate as a relatively new start myself, I had never expected to be asked to pass on the torch to another. The experience has brought challenges along the way but has also brought forth new learning experiences. I thank God for the opportunity to help and guide others, and also appreciate the support and encouragements from my team leader and manager.