Wednesday, 31 August 2016

WednesDIY: Twisted Headband

After my disastrous attempt at making the Retro Rabbit Ears headband, I was eager to try a different pattern. This is the one I settled on.

I love this pattern. It's super easy and fits perfectly. I'm so going to be making loads of these this fall.

If you have a favourite crochet headband/ear warmer pattern, share it and I'll give it a whirl.

Last Day for Submissions: It's All Trumped Up

Today is the last day to submit for this one:

It's All Trumped Up - An eBook

We are seeking speculative fiction that explores what four years of a Trump presidency would do to America and the world. Writers should submit stories ranging from depictions of his absurdity to the impact of his politics on the disenfranchised, our international friends, and world peace.

I submitted to this one. Even if I don't get in, though, I can't wait to read it.

You know I like my horror.

**Welcome Wednesday**

Cookie O’Gorman

Cookie O’Gorman writes stories filled with humor and heart for the nerd in all of us. Fiery first kisses, snappy dialogue, smart girls, swoon worthy boys, and unbreakable friendships are featured in each of her books.
Cookie is a hopeless romantic, a Harry Potter aficionado, and a supporter of all things dork. Chocolate, Chinese food, and Asian dramas are her kryptonite. Above all, she believes that real life has enough sorrow and despair—which is why she always tries to give her characters a happy ending. Adorkable is her debut novel.


Adorkable (ah-dor-kuh-bul): Descriptive term meaning to be equal parts dorky and adorable. For reference, see Sally Spitz.

Seventeen-year-old Sally Spitz is done with dating. Or at least, she's done with the horrible blind dates/hookups/sneak attacks her matchmaking bestie, Hooker, sets her up on. There's only so much one geek girl and Gryffindor supporter can take.

Her solution: she needs a fake boyfriend. And fast.

Enter Becks, soccer phenom, all-around-hottie, and Sally's best friend practically since birth. When Sally asks Becks to be her F.B.F. (fake boyfriend), Becks is only too happy to be used. He'd do anything for Sal--even if that means giving her PDA lessons in his bedroom, saying she's "more than pretty," and expertly kissing her at parties.

The problem: Sally's been in love with Becks all her life--and he's completely clueless.

This book features two best friends, one special edition Yoda snuggie, countless beneath-the-ear kisses and begs the question:

Who wants a real boyfriend when faking it is so much more fun?


Meeting his gaze, I forced out the words, "Ready to make it official?"
Becks grinned, and the sight of that familiar expression, the look in those eyes I'd loved forever, was enough to strengthen my resolve.
Reaching up, I gave myself no time to reconsider.
My lips were on his the next instant, meeting, feeling, rejoicing in this moment I'd never thought but always hoped would happen. I knew Becks was surprised, could feel it in the stiffness in his shoulders, the tight set to his mouth. But it didn't matter. I was kissing Becks, my best friend, my Han Solo, my one. This was the best moment of my life. I was certain it couldn't get any better.
But then Becks started kissing me back.
His arms wrapped around my waist, his lips guiding mine, as he went from passive passenger along for the ride to full-on conductor. I gasped as he bent me back over his arm, and felt him grin through the kiss. My toes just skimming the floor, supported almost entirely by Becks's strength, I was happy to let him lead. Becks wasn't just a great kisser. He was a master. Far as first kisses go, it was a showstopper.

Adorkable Playlist:

1. "Sweet Disposition" by The Temper Trap
2. "Can You Tell" by Ra Ra Riot
3. "The Way I Am" by Ingrid Michaelson
4. "July Flame" by Laura Veirs
5. "So Insane" by Discovery
6. "The Trial of the Century" by French Kicks
7. "Hysteric" by Yeah Yeah Yeahs
8. "Powerful Stuff" by Sean Hayes
9. "Call It Off" by Tegan and Sara
10. "Your Song" by Kate Walsh
11. "Nicest Thing" by Kate Nash
12. "Hyperballad" by Whitley
13. "Syrup & Honey" by Duffy
14. "Oh Boy" by Duffy
15. "She's Got You High" by Mumm-Ra
16. "Heart Skipped a Beat" by The XX
17. "Tessellate" by Tokyo Police Club
18. "I'm With You" by The Stills
19. "Crash Into Me" by Dave Matthews Band (Live at Folsom Field, Boulder Colorado)

You can buy it here:

You can review it here:


For more information and news about Cookie - visit her at:

Favourite School Memory #2

I promised I'd share my favourite school memories with you this week and here is another one:

The time we picked up a random stranger at an open house and climbed into his van.

The things our mothers didn't need to know. Lol.

We were at a friend's open house and met this guy called Jason. Does anyone remember his last name? Nope. I'm not sure any of us actually asked.

He was a hoot and a half. We hung out together and, when we said we had to get along to the next open house, he offered us a ride. Which we accepted.

Did I mention the back of the van had no seats?

Yeah... how we lived through that experience is beyond me. Great fun, though!

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Favourite School Memory #1

The whole back-to-school thing has had me thinking about some of my favourite moments from school. I'll share them with you, when I think of them. 

Here's the first one:

My senior year, I worked for a cinema that shall not be named. I worked the closing shift with one of my best friends quite often and - more often than strictly necessary - we would have a whole popper full of popcorn when the doors were locked. What did we do with all that yummy goodness, you ask?

Nothing like the entire band hanging out in the hallway, sharing a garbage bag full of popcorn. 

Hey, didn't want it to go to waste, right? 

The best part about this was when the band director came out of his office - not to tell us off, but to help himself to some 'corn. Win.

First Day of School Photos

Photographs commemorating the first day of school are uber popular right now on social media. There are so many brilliant ideas - almost makes me wish I had a kid to use them on.

(I said ''almost''.)

Seeing all these photos made me wonder if I had any of my old first day of school photos. 

I don't remember how many years my parents actually did it - they weren't really big on commemorating anything, you know - but I only managed to find one:

I bet you had one of those dressed in the Eighties. You did, didn't you? 

Couldn't tell you what year this is from but it has to be between kindergarten and third grade because I'm still blonde. If only my parents had used a chalkboard with my name, grade, and favourite foods on it, right?

Do you still have any of your old first day photos? Find out and be sure to share them!

Monday, 29 August 2016

Monday's Meme of the Week

Are you a fan of The Flash?

How about Flashdance?

Of course you are. You love cheesy Eighties movies. You love Barry.

You love this crossover meme:

When you stop laughing over this oh-so-perfectly-wrong meme, you can also check out The Fastest Board Alive on Pinterest for more Flashy goodness.

Seven Day Detox: Day Seven

I'm happy that this detox of ours is coming to and end. 

Dîd it help? Hmm. Well, I don't feel as bloated, so I guess so. But I don't feel all energetic and full of joy either, so maybe not.

The one thing it did do was reveal that I have a serious sugar addiction, which I'm going to need to work on.

Even though I felt like crap for three solid days, then had to get some pop to help manage the sugar withdrawal - and I had two chocolate bars and three jelly beans - I'm calling this a success. Mostly because I got to day seven without stabbing anyone. Gold star for me.

Sunday, 28 August 2016

A Song for Sunday: Duran Duran - (Reach Up For The) Sunrise

Thanks to Jay, I've had this song stuck in my head all freaking week.

I mean, OBVIOUSLY it was Jay's fault. I wouldn't listen to Dur-Ha Dur-Ha on my own, would I?

By the way... I'm always looking for something new to listen to and I'll listen to just about anything. Drop a link to a YouTube video and I'll give it a try.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Seven Day Detox: Day Six

This is the best I've felt all week. I guess it really was sugar withdrawal. Damn, that's sad.

Tomorrow is going to be interesting. We're all out of those expensive snack bars that taste like cardboard that you're suppose to eat when you're dieting. What will we snack on?

Jay hasn't been great at avoiding the crisps. I'm pretty sure he's had about twenty snack size bags in the last few days - and this whole thing was his idea!

Never mind...

It's almost over. I'm glad. I can't stop thinking about chocolate chip cookies.

25 Fall Date Night Ideas

Fall is the perfect time for snuggling. If you need any help thinking of reasons to cwtch up with your honey, here is a list of date night activities. Grab your coats, blankets, and/or cameras and...

  1. Take a walk or go for a bike ride. Leave the phones at home and spend an hour or two alone, surrounded by the beauty of fall. Even a path that you've travelled a hundred times can look different when you're looking together.
  2. Check out your local farmer's market. Pick out fresh produce together. Maybe scope out some handmade items for your home.
  3. Grab a coffee while shopping for fall clothes. Hello, sweater season. Grab something toasty in to-go mugs and get your shop on. The hubs and I get pretty excited about fall fashion because, let's face it, we're not built for summer. 
  4. Watch the sunrise or sunset. No matter what time of the year it is, there's nothing more romantic than watching the day start or end together. 
  5. Attend a harvest celebration. Sometimes it's nice to get out and be part of the community. Join in with your neighbours as they celebrate the harvest. 
  6. Clear out your closet and donate unwanted clothes to charity. Not only is it great to help others; it's also a great way to get each other undressed. I mean... you have to try them on, right?
  7. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. Every now and then, you need a reminder of how lucky you are. Volunteering together can be a good reminder. 
  8. Have a fall photo shoot. Either have someone take photos of you and your partner playing together in the leaves or, grab your cameras and go hunting for the perfect autumn pics. 
  9. Visit a corn maze. If you can. Nothing like getting lost in a place that's both fun and a little spooky. 
  10. Enjoy a hayride. Again, if you have any available. Cuddle up, enjoy the scenery, and listen to the sounds of autumn. 
  11. Watch a football game. In person, if possible. Autumn is football. Cheer for your favourite team. Get riled up. Tailgate, if you can. If you can't get to a game in person, rustle up some snack foods and watch the game together at home.
  12. Go apple picking. This is one of our favourites. Wandering through an orchard is incredibly serene. You can make a game out of trying to nab the highest apples. Try different types of apples. Find out which is your favourite and talk about the experience.
  13. Have a bonfire. Get messy making s'mores over a crackling fire. Snuggle up close and let flames warm your cheeks. Just make sure you don't get too close! (To the fire. You can get as close to each other as you want.)
  14. Go camping. If that's your thing. It's not mine. I can see why so many people love getting away from it all for a couple of days, though. 
  15. Have a picnic. Ahh... now we're talking. This is definitely a favourite at Castle Vanian. There's a lovely park by a lake that we love to picnic at when the leaves start to change.
  16. Watch an autumn movie. When you've got jobs, and kids, and everything else going on, it's nice to curl up together and watch a movie. Check out my list of Best Movies for Autumn for suggested viewing. 
  17. Binge watch a show you've never seen. The new fall schedule is a pretty exciting time at Castle Vanian. What can I say? We're couch potatoes. Rather than waiting for each new episode to be released, why not binge watch a finished series together? 
  18. Take turns cooking fancy meals. It's time for what my husband calls ''stodgy food''. Thick, hot, and rich. The kind you avoid all summer because it makes you feel like a blimp. Yup, that. Never fails to bring on a serious cuddle session here.
  19. Make caramel apples together. It's playful, it's cheap, it's juicy and sticky - you know what I mean.
  20. Visit a pumpkin patch. Always a great bit of fun. And a great place for cute couple photos. Plus, there's always the chance that you'll stumble over a vine and fall into your companion's arms. (Or, have to save your chronically klutzy wife from breaking her neck when she trips over a vine.)
  21. Carve pumpkins. Obviously. I mean... you've got the pumpkins now. This is a tradition at Castle Vanian. We pick them out together, we carve them together. Always a laugh.
  22. Have a horror movie marathon. Fall is the best time for horror. And horror is always better when you've got someone to share it with. Or, you know, hide behind when things get too spooky.
  23. Go to a haunted house. A good scare gets your heart racing and makes you cling to one another for safety. Sounds like a good time to me.
  24. Celebrate Oktoberfest. Because beer. I'm not a beer person myself, but who can say no to drinking and dancing? 
  25. Create your own bucket list for winter. As a couple. Make plans together. Think about the future. Winter will be here before you know it. What do you want to do when it arrives?

Friday, 26 August 2016

Seven Day Detox: Day Five

I was chatting with @EyesLifted about how ill I've been through our week long detox and she did a little research about my symptoms. The verdict?

Sugar withdrawal.

''Hello. My name is Wondra and I'm an addict.''

I'm glad we decided to do the detox. Without it, I wouldn't have known that I have a problem. Don't worry, I'm still going to see a doctor, just to be safe.

But I've been having a couple glasses of Dr. Pepper through the day and I feel a whole lot better.

Other than that, I think we're doing well. Except that we're running out of healthy snacks. We both agree that, since starting the detox, we haven't really felt full. Just two more days to go.

Best Films for Back-to-School

It's that time again. Let the parents rejoice for the kids are going back to school!

Isn't Autumn sweet?

Now that you've got some time for yourself, why not curl up on the sofa and enjoy one of these back-to-school treats?

Wondra's Top 10 Movies for Back-to-School

1. Kindergarten Cop
I must have seen this movie dozens of times - and I still laugh my ass off every time I watch it. You really have to have experience in the classroom to appreciate how hilarious it is. Plus, it's got danger and a bit of romance. Can't beat it.
2. 10 Things I Hate About You
I love, love, love this film. It definitely takes me back to my high school days. Angst, angst, angst. And, a young Heath Ledger? Yum. Also, the soundtrack rocks and the supporting actors/actresses are brilliant.
3. Clueless
From a Shakespeare adaption, to Austen. Emma, as told by the Nineties. The worst part of the Nineties. It's fabulous, and cringe-worthy, and very sweet.
4. Teen Wolf
We have another tie. I just couldn't choose between Teen Wolf and Sixteen Candles. They're both absolutely must-watches, for different reasons. Okay, so Teen Wolf is basically just a coming-of-age, learning-to-accept-yourself story, right? Sure... except for the werewolves. But the reason I love it is that Scott doesn't hide the wolf; that everyone is just like, ''Oh, hey, he's a werewolf. No biggie.'' I want to live in that world.
4. Sixteen Candles
This movie is outrageous. (And it won't be the only time you see Molly Ringwald on this list.) I still can't decide whether it was Geek or Dong that stole the show - but the love story was secondary to the comedy, which is nice. Sure, it's angsty - it's a John Hughes movie, after all - but the comic element keeps it from being overly so.
5. Lean on Me
Lean on Me is a favourite from way back - and one of Morgan Freeman's greatest performances. It gets next to no attention, though, which I don't understand. My husband would argue that this space should belong to To Sir, With Love. I guess it's a generational thing. They are similar, in a lot of ways, but Lean on Me hits harder, which is what appeals to me.
6. Easy A
Is there anyone who hasn't wanted to become exactly what their classmates accused them of being? Well... my classmates called me a witch, so I guess sometimes they get it right. Emma Stone is a brilliant actress anyway, but she brings a cheekiness to this role that can't be beaten. You're probably wondering where Mean Girls is, right? Nope. This one is much cleverer.
7. Election
You can't watch Election without saying, ''Oh, that's just wrong,'' at least once. Seriously. It's messed up. In so many ways. But it's like one of those car crashes you can't look away from. And I bet you knew at least one Tracy Flick. Bet you still hate them, too...
8. Breakfast Club
One of the most iconic school flicks ever. If you think of typical high school cliques, there's a pretty good chance you'll think of this movie. I do, anyway. The fact that Breakfast Club boils down the entire student body into five core stereotypes isn't what appeals to me, though. I love this movie because, let's face it, it's cool as fuck. We all wanted to rebel against the establishment, right? Of course, some of us would have had to actually serve our detentions to pull a Breakfast Club...
9. American Pie
It shouldn't surprise you to see American Pie on my list, even though I'm not a big fan of the gross-out movies. I mean... it came out my senior year. It celebrates that end-of-high-school feeling you get when you realise you might never see your classmates again. Trying to live it up while you can. Endings and beginnings. Of course, I don't like gross-out movies, which is why American Pie landed so low on my list. Thanks for the memories but EWW.
10. The Faculty
You can't have a back-to-school list without at least one horror movie. Personally, I loved school. I always preferred being there than being at home. For obvious reasons. But, I know that school is hell for plenty of students. The Faculty plays on that feeling that educators are monsters. It's horror lite, if you know what I mean, but it's good fun. Interestingly, it almost lost out to Teaching Mrs. Tingle, for the LOLs.

What are your favourite back-to-school movies? Be sure to share in the comments box.

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Seven Day Detox: Day Four

Yay for waking up in the morning and not feeling like crap. Whoot.

We had to make a fruit run today, since we were running out already. I guess that's a good sign.

I guess we cheated a little. Last night, we each had a chocolate bar when we had company and today, we shared two cans of Coke. Nothing big.

Do I feel all amazing, like I can climb mountains and shit? Nope. Is it doing me any damned good? Hard to tell yet. I'll let you know if I feel any differently tomorrow.

Throwback Thursday

I still haven't gotten to grips with the amazing amount of success I've had recently. After a lifetime of writing, I'm finally getting to the point I hoped to be at.

It's very exciting.

I got to thinking about everything that led me here: Writer's Club, Rally of Writers, NaNoWriMo, Twmbarlwm Writer's Guild, freelancing, etc. etc. I've been lucky to have so much support over the years.

With that in mind, I decided that I ought to have a writing themed TBT photo. I dug around a little bit and came up with this one, from a NaNoWriMo kick off party, back in 2007:

Sometimes, looking at photos like this makes me sad, because you can't keep the relationships you once had forever. Some people grow, some don't. Some move on, some lose touch. Even so, I'm very lucky that two of these women are still my writing buddies. I take comfort in that.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Seven Day Detox: Day Three

Well, I'm feeling a little better today, but the day didn't start out that way.

I woke up feeling unwell, with a headache. Again. I'm pretty sure this detox thing is supposed to make you feel better, not worse. Right?

Around lunch time, I decided to have a Coke, to see if the sugar helped pick me up a bit. It did. After a can of Coke, my headache was nearly gone and I didn't feel like slush. I guess that's not a good sign.

The hubs is worried because my sister is hypoglycemic and my dad was borderline diabetic. Anyway, he's making me see a doctor for tests next week.

I'm still sticking with this horrid detox - but if I start feeling uber crappy again, I can't promise not to crack.

WednesDIY: The Ugly Hat

I found my crafting mojo again! *happydance*

Check out THE UGLY HAT:

Yes, I knew I was making an ugly hat when I started. I had a bunch of scraps left over from a blanket I'm making and I wanted to get them out of the way. 

I'm not a hat person but I am a cold person, so there. 

This pattern is super easy to follow and the hat crochets up in no time at all. If you want to make your own not-so-ugly version, the link to the pattern is here

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Seven Day Detox: Day Two

Which circle of Hell is this?

As you might be able to guess, the detox is not going well. I've been deathly ill since we started, with no energy and a pounding headache.

It got so bad that the hubs insisted I eat a chocolate bar to bring my sugar levels up. It helped - but only a little.

It's going to be a long, long week.

If this freaking detox crap doesn't kill me first.

My Favourite Things About the Fall

Fall is definitely my favourite time of the year. I'm sure I've said it before, but I'll say it again: I only really feel alive during the fall.

I'm totally an autumn baby.

It's hard to put into words exactly why fall seems to wake me up from the funk of spring and summer. What I'll do instead is give you a few of my favourite things about the fall.

Wondra's Favourite Things About the Fall:

1. The light changes. It becomes clearer, sharper, and golden. I hate hazy summer days that make me squint and give me headaches. Autumn sunlight is much kinder.

2. The hoodies come out. Since hoodies make up about 75% of my wardrobe, this is a good thing. 

3. Back-to-school. Even though I'm not in school or working for a school anymore, I still get a rush of excitement when fall comes around. I start to think about learning new things. I read more. Plus, back-to-school sales on stationary! An exciting time for writers, indeed!

4. The leaves change. It really is a ritual for me, checking the trees I pass during the fall. Will they change the time I see them? What will they look like in a week? It's an exercise in transformation.

5. Halloween. Or should I say "Birthdayoween"? This THE best thing about autumn - and I'm not just saying that because it's my birthday. Oh, the spooky fun!

I'd love to hear what your favourite things about the fall are. Drop a message in the comments box and share your favs!

Seven Day Detox: Day One

The hubs and I decided that, after a summer full of junk food and laziness, it was time to cleanse our systems. Okay... JAY decided - but, since he does the cooking and buys the groceries, I kind of had to go along. 

No chocolate, no pop, no junk food. For seven whole days. 

Am I happy about this? 


Are you kidding? Hell no.

I could seriously cut a fucker for a can of Coke right now. Plus, I've had a headache all day long and generally feel like crap. 

But no one is dead. 

I'm hanging on to that. No one is dead. Yet. We'll check the body count again tomorrow...

Monday, 22 August 2016

Monday's Meme of the Week

This week's battle for Monday's Meme of the Week ended in a tie between two similar memes:

I don't know if you've seen any of these memes yet but there are a buttload - and most of them are pretty awesome. I think this one is probably my favourite:

Sunday, 21 August 2016

A Song for Sunday: Rocky Horror Picture Show - Sword Of Damocles

I was watching The Simpsons earlier today and Mr. Burns mentioned the sword of Damocles - so, naturally, I've had this song stuck in my head all afternoon.

I hope you've got it stuck in your head now!

Friday, 19 August 2016

Best Films for the Autumn

Having trouble getting in the mood for autumn? This should help!

You'll notice that there's a tie for number six. I narrowed it down to Autumn in New York and Stepmom but you can't ask me to choose between Richard Gere and Julia Roberts. Also, they were similar enough to make picking a favourite impossible.

Let's do this...

Wondra's Top 10 Movies for Autumn

1. Dead Poets Society
This is one of my favourite films, period. It also appears on almost everyone's list of favourite movies for the fall. Why? Because it's about learning, because it's about friendship, because it's about finding yourself, because the actors are amazing and the story is heartbreaking, that's why.
2. Good Will Hunting
Autumn is a magical time because it's about beginnings and endings at the same time. A new school year is starting, while all the plants are dying. Good Will Hunting captures that feeling perfectly. There's a sense of loss, balanced against the hope of brighter things to come.
3. Practical Magic
Autumn is a very witchy time. You can almost see the magic in the air. Practical Magic does a brilliant job of visualising that magic for everyone to see. It also explores the relationship between family, love, friendship, community, and identity.
4. Needful Things
If you want to know what autumn on the East Coast looks like, watch a Stephen King film. Needful Things does this - but it also plays on the darker side of autumn: the decay, the uncertainty, the growing darkness. It peels away the sense of community that we show outsiders to reveal the seething hatred lurking beneath.
5. Scent of a Woman
Scent of a Woman isn't just the typical school days, young-person-finding-themselves kind of movie that you expect to find on these kinds of lists. It's about a man in the autumn of his life (see what I did there?) finding himself again. Also... Al Pacino is amazing, right? In this film, he goes from raging asshat, to absolutely outrageous, to a heartbreaking old man. It's a powerful performance.
6. Autumn in New York
A tragic love story, set against the striking backdrop of - you guessed it - autumn in New York. You've got that guy-in-the-autumn-of-his-life thing going on with Gere and the start of a new relationship with Ryder. Young and old, dying and learning to live again. A great pick for snuggling under the blankets with your partner.
6. Stepmom Stepmom is another one that'll kick you in the feels. It has more humour and angst, though, which made it almost beat Autumn in New York. The ending was maybe not as good because it got a little too saccharine. Even though it's sad, I'd still consider this a great family movie for autumn.
7. The Others
The Others is one of those movies that captures the stark feeling of autumn as it draws to a close. The nights creep ever closer; the trees are bare; there's an oppressive air of worse things to come. The darkness, the isolation, and the suspense of The Others make it a perfect film for a late autumn frightfest.
8. You've Got Mail
Most people name When Harry Met Sally when you ask them for a favourite fall movie but I really didn't care for it much. And hardly any of it takes place in autumn. I thought You've Got Mail was a much, much better love story. The imagery was fantastic and, hey, how autumnal are books? Autumn is definitely a time for reading!
9. Children of the Corn
Ah... autumn... time of the harvest - and freaky little kids killing all their parents. Yup, I'm talking about Children of the Corn. One of my favourite things about Michigan in the autumn is the sun rising over rows and rows of corn. It's a very autumnal image for me. And, if you don't think cornfields can be scary, you've never lived next to one.
10. October Sky
This is one of those movies I was certain I wouldn't like and fell in love with. October Sky is a back-to-school movie about discovery and finding your own path. It doesn't have the bold autumn imagery that some of these movies do, though, which is why it ended up at the bottom of the list.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Farewell to Summer

Yesterday, the hubs and I made our yearly visit to the coast to say farewell to summer.

August 1st, Lughnasadh, marks the first harvest of the year and the start of fall. It's a transitional month, with some days that make you long for the beach and others that send you to the back of your closet where all the hoodies have been hiding for months. Today was one of the former.

It's been a scorching few days, which is not exactly happy time for Wondras. I have heat and light sensitive migraines and burn ridiculously easily in the sun. And that's not even mentioning the way humidity makes me resemble a poodle.

Jay's not much better - understandable, since he's about 25% shag pile.

But today was a bit cooler and we thought we could just about manage being outside for more than a few minutes so we grabbed some sunscreen (SPF 50, of course.) and went to the beach.

The beach was way too crowded for Anxiety Girl so we sat a bit away, feeding the birds and watching the surfers. Then, we headed up to the fayre.

It was busy at the fayre. Busier than I've ever seen it. Even the fact that it occasionally sprinkled (this is Wales, after all) didn't lessen the crowd.

Jay and I got ice cream cones and sat on the edge of the beach. Can you tell why we didn't get any closer?

Yeah... I stay a good distance from anything that can kill me. From as far away as we were, all those horses and donkeys made my chest tight. No stretch of sand is worth dying for.

After we had our ice cream, we wandered through the fayre. Wednesdays are cheap days - rides are just a pound each - so most of the rides were busy. I love all the colors and lights and noises of the fayre.

We played in the arcades for awhile then, which was great fun. Jay took on the claw machines again but they totally kicked his butt. There was a weird Pac-Man themed tipping point machine that we played for ages because it amused us. We won several pounds on that one. Unfortunately, we lost it all again because we were having so much fun.

On our way out, Jay suggested stopping for ice cream again and I couldn't think of a single reason to say no. So, we stopped to enjoy another ice cream cone.

We normally stop at a local chip shop after we visit the fayre but, this time, we made a detour to go to Jay's favorite takeaway from when he was a kid. They do the only curry sauce that I like. Nom.

I really adore the seaside. It helps sooth my anxiety and the sound of the waves drown out my tinnitus. I wish that it wasn't nearly an hour's drive away so we could spend more time there.

Autumn Blog Post Ideas

As August starts to fade into September, it's time to start thinking about what we're going to be blogging over the next few months. My mental illness makes it difficult for me to focus and/or remember things sometimes so I'm making this list as much for me as for you.

I hope we all find it useful.

Autumn Blog Post Ideas: 
  • explore fall through the 5 senses
  • your favourite memory of fall 
  • write an autumn poem
  • leaf photography
  • pumpkin photography
  • apple photography
  • your favourite things about autumn
  • fall date night activities
  • fall crafts
  • leaf art
  • a playlist for autumn
  • your favourite autumn books
  • best autumn movies
  • drinks for fall
  • best autumn snacks
  • fall recipes
  • a pumpkin recipe
  • a soup recipe
  • an apple recipe
  • decorating for fall
  • fall fashion
  • scarves/socks/hats/coats/sweaters
  • best back-to-school movies
  • favourite memory of school
  • old photos from first days of school
  • best football movies
  • your favourite things about football
  • football crafts
  • write about your favourite football team
  • best Halloween movies
  • your favourite things about Halloween
  • the history of Halloween
  • Halloween crafts
  • Halloween decorations
  • Halloween costumes
  • your best ever Halloween costume
  • couples costumes
  • favourite memory of Halloween
  • write a scary story
  • what scares you most
  • best Thanksgiving movies
  • your favourite things about Thanksgiving
  • the history of Thanksgiving
  • Thanksgiving crafts
  • favourite Thanksgiving memory
  • most cringe-worthy Thanksgiving family moment
  • conversation starters for awkward family dinners
  • list what you are thankful for
  • share your Thanksgiving menu
  • a turkey recipe

If you think of anything I missed, be sure to let me know!

Wednesday, 17 August 2016


I haven't been able to interest myself in crafting lately - just one of those fun Depression/Anxiety things, ruining the things you enjoy - so I'm going to share an old one with you today.

I picked this Tree of Life pendant because the combination of black wire and orange carnelian chips made me think of Halloween. I am super ready for it to be Halloween.

Hopefully, I can get back into crafting again soon and have something interesting - and new - to share.

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

The Next Step

Yesterday was one of those OMG-I-can't-believe-this-is-happening days. 

I had an appointment with a lawyer to sign and notarise a contract for my first published book. Through traditional publishing, which was important to me. 

There's no way to describe the amazing feeling I got when I signed those papers. Amazing. Like, life changing.

I still can't believe this is happening.

So, the question is this: what's next? 

I don't have a clue - but I can't wait to find out.

Repost: Autumn Pinboards

I spend a lot of time on Pinterest. (Who doesn't, these days?) I love Autumn. Those two facts, combined, mean that I have a bunch of Autumn themed pinboards for you to peruse and enjoy. Check them out: