We all know that me time is important, but how much care have you give to your own self this past year? For me in 2018 when I look back this was seriously my weak point! I became ill with shingles at the start of the year, then had bouts of colds frequently and generally felt tired more often than not. I had too much on my plate and whilst I won’t be making resolutions in 2019, I will be consciously focusing on self-care far more than I ever have.
At times this year with the house renovation and two small kiddiwinks to care for, plus a day job and side job, it was easy to feel so overwhelmed with life, however there are a few simple things that have really helped me, specifically reading good fiction and listening to podcasts.
My greatest relaxant is reading! If you’re after some great reads this year then I’ve really enjoyed:
SNAP by Belinda Bauer. This fiction story opens with eleven year old Jack and his young sisters left alone in their Mother’s car on the side of the motorway, where she gets out to get help after the car breaks down. I’ll say no more than that!
What kind of mother are you? by Paula Daly. Set in Windermere this story is based on Lisa Kallisto, a busy wife and mother of three who with too many plates spinning forgot she was meant to be looking after her friend’s daughter. Then the daughter goes missing. An easy read and one that I finished quickly.
You Let Me In by Lucy Clarke. The story starts with a home owner, Elle returning to their isolated place by the sea after its been let via Air B&B. Entering the house and things feel different, cold and noticeably not the same. This was a really gripping read, cleverly written with plenty of twists.
I aim to read for a minimum of 30 minutes every night just before bed and currently I’m dipping in between My Thoughts Exactly by Lily Allen in hardback and everything I know about love on my kindle by Dolly Alderton.
With a daily drive to work I am now a frequent podcast listener, I swear by the following:
- Crime Junkie. A weekly US podcast hosted by Ashley and Britt, they share tales of missing people and murders, so great if you want to get a true crime fix. The storytelling is straight forward and the episodes are around 30 minutes long on average. If you want to start with an episode try the 8th October podcast relating to the mysterious disappearance of Maura Murray, it’s a fascinating story.
- Happy Place with Fearne Cotton. A down to earth listen, as if you are ear wigging to two mates catching up. Favourite episodes include thosw where Fearne talks to Kris Hallenga (Coppa Feel) and Poorna Bell.
- Casefile True Crime. A more established and well known true crime podcast, narrated by a smooth talking mystery Australian. These podcasts set out the facts and tell the story of many complex cases, largely from Australia. Longer in duration, they are perfect for long car journeys. I’d start with case 100, the infamous disappearance of the Beaumont Children (really terrifying).
- Katie Piper’s ‘Extraordinary People’. Each week Katie talks to different people who are all amazing for on reason or another, the two episodes I really enjoyed were hearing the stories of Tulsi Vagjiani and Jonny Benjamin.
For TV viewing I’m waiting with baited breath (and a glass of chilled white wine) for some new programmes coming out:
Baptiste, a spin off from the show that you might have watched earlier in the year, the Missing. The series is named after the the cool french detective, Julien Baptiste. It’s on BBC1 in early 2019.
Cleaning Up with Sheriden Smith – I can’t wait for this, the trailers look brilliant. Sheriden plays a cleaner whose job it is to clean a stock brokers office. The trailer shows her listening for tips whilst hiding in the office and then using her insider knowledge to gain financially – a brilliant idea for a show!
I have to admit I’ve never seen Luther but after coffee with my friend Clare today she has convinced me its one to watch, so I’ll be tuning in tonight to watch this (and binging on the episodes I’ve missed on catch up!).
So what are you watching ? What are the amazing podcasts or audio books you love? Do leave a comment below or say hello to me on Instagram @thedreamhomewebuilt.com