Category Archives: who am I?

The London Marathon


Amazing stories from The London Marathon here and here

Find your local Parkrun here

Song of the day. I didn’t realise it was 10 years old. It’s one of my favourite songs

So what did you do today? Sunday is known as a day of rest. Well I think I managed to do just that with only an hour worth of housework, as I had to do 3 loads of washing due to working late & long shifts this week.

I sat and watched the London Marathon from start to finish. I was blown away by the distance, the amount of people and the courage and bravery people had. It made em feel quite humble. At one point they showed a guy had collapsed towards the end and a fellow runner stopped and helped him to the finish line. The other thing I noticed, which I keep beating myself up about is sometimes people were having to stop and walk, including an elite athlete who got stomach cramps towards the end.

This week I managed to achieve some distances I didn’t think I would, realising I could do this using the area I live in, and making sure I do a mini dvd workout to warm up before hand, I’ve got further than I thought. However two late shifts and sleeping in and being late for work broke me. Hence why today I tried to be kind to myself and sit and watch TV.

So what have I learn’t? Well, for one, what I need to remember is to listen to my body not my head. I need to rest more and now when I’m out running and I’ve hit a hill I talk to myself, ‘lets get to the blue car’ ‘now the lampost’ and so on. I used to have an ipod to listen to a few years ago, I would only run to music. But when I restarted running last year, a lot heavier and sweatier I kept losing the earphones and eventually gave up. I now run without music and love it, instead I sing/talk to myself and I’m fully aware of my surroundings. I love it.

I’m really looking forward to the Great North Run and I’m wondering whether in 3 years when I am 40, I could try the London Marathon. I really want to get back to the fitness of when I did the 3 10ks in a year and I would love to do something so big for my 40th year. I might even find races to make the miles to 40 over the course of the year. Now there’s a challenge. Oh and there was a woman called Helen running with a dragon on her back, maybe a sign?


The shift work I’m doing is killing me. I’m sat watching the London marathon and dug out my £1 planner I got ages ago when out with Kirsty so have put it to good use. Nothing set in concrete as shifts are constantly changing.




I’ve been trying to sort myself out after a really tough week. I’ve just been given homemade ginger biscuits and told that my neighbours dad has prostrate cancer. I felt like a bit of an idiot when my issues are to do with me not coping well with stress and there’s someone who might lose a loved one. We all have different challenges. I just wish mine would sort itself out.

2017-04-17 09.01
One from last week


Something I’m not doing lately

Thank you for reading


Just Breathe


We’re 5 months away from the Great North Run and 48 days until my first 10k in just under a year. Yikes.

I’ve been going out on a morning and managing about a couple of miles walk/running and in the last week have gradually built it up to around 2 miles.

Last night I built a route on a website thinking it was a round 5k and it was just short.

However I ran majority of the way with two hills at seperate times defeating me. I nearly got knocked over by a cyclist turning the corner on a path near a pub and that’s where I ended up running down Dewsbury Road with a lovely woman having a chat about how far each of us run. Apparently she runs up and down Dewsbury road twice a week. She told me she has 3 kids and tries to get them to Junior Parkrun on a Sunday and through the week tries to run herself going up Dewsbury road then returning home. If she does that she’s happy.

This year I’ve not used headphones as they keep falling out of my ears, so I’ve got used tor running without music and it’s amazing. This morning I was singing to myself the tune of Elton John -I’m still standing. Then I was chatting away to myself as one point I forgot to breathe and a voice said in my head ‘remember your ankle!’. My ankle? I replied, ‘yes what’s on it!” ‘Oh yeah my tattoo – ‘Just breathe’. At that point I kept repeating, just breathe girl, just breathe and then that’s when I nearly collided with a cyclist and met the lovely woman running down the hill.

So after this morning I felt amazing. I had done a mini workout by Nell McAndrew in my house, before setting off on route. I’ve not warmed up like this before I think that maybe the issue in why I don’t get far, apart from the voice in my head telling me its too hard.

At Parkrun, which ever you go to you see people doing a lap before the actual run, and now I understand why. I normally to the Park Run but now I think I need to concentrate on warming them old muscles up.

I’ve also set myself a 30 day running challenge. I did a 30 day positivity photo challenge on Facebook and have decided to do a few different ones, one themed with running. So all I need to do now is up date my Fund-raising pages and away we go.

So if you have any hints or tips let me know. I just can’t believe I stopped running and really need to remember how much fun it is.

Thank you for reading



Fundraising in 2017

I’ve really given myself a challenge this year. And I get to meet up with family and enjoy the Great North Run with two of my cousins!

Hello from me to you

In 2011 I ran my first ever 10k. I did it with a friend for charity. Initially in that year I wanted to get fit and tried Zumba. It didn’t do anything for me. Then a friend suggested running. I always hated it at school and normally bailed out. However there was a plan this time. We would build up running by using a plan of combining walking and running building up to constant jog/run. a few weeks in my friend had signed us up to the York 10k with not much time left to train. We ended up finishing it in just over an hour. It was amazing.

So the following year we did all three, York, Hull and Leeds. Leeds was the toughest as it was hot and Hull was fantastic as it just poured it down and I ended up with my favourite photo of all time.

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So this is why I run, then

StripeyAnne's Blog

YSPApril17 Arty running at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

‘Are you the lady who runs?’ the caller asked. Lady? <Snigger>. Runs? <Double snigger>. It was Radio Leeds who wanted to do an interview about running to music, I don’t run to music, I need to be completely aware of my surroundings, I could trip up at any time, but it was nice to be asked.

It’s not a bad title to have, because I do run, dammit (let’s not talk about being a lady). So why do I run, then? It’s always hard, I’m not a natural. I don’t get awards and I never win races, I’m more likely to come last than first, but I do love it.

For a start,  I’m in the great outdoors, whatever the weather, there’s always something to enjoy, the sights, the smells, the splashings. I’m not a keen road runner, I prefer the trails, but if I have to pound the pavements I…

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A Netgalley book review: How to Be Happy by David Burton

How to Be Happy: A Memoir of Love, Sex and Teenage Confusion

by David Burton
About the book:

25674284‘Delivers some devastating truth bombs. Sexuality is hard. Identity is hard. Love is hard. School is hard…This book shines a much-needed light back through the tunnel. It is a call-out to teenagers still struggling to find their way.’—Books + Publishing

A funny, sad and serious memoir, this is David Burton’s story of his turbulent life at high school and beyond. Feeling out of place and convinced he’s not normal, David has a rocky start. He longs to have a girlfriend, but his first ‘date’ is a disaster. The same debilitating anxiety cripples his encounters with boys.

He carefully constructs an outgoing identity—an extroverted, adventurous character, for whom everything is fine. But everything is not fine. At the center of it all, trying desperately to work it all out, is the real David.

How to Be Happy tackles depression, friendship, sexual identity, suicide, academic pressure, love and adolescent confusion. It’s a brave and honest account of one young man’s search for a happy, true and meaningful life.

David Burton is a writer from Brisbane, now based in Sydney, best known for his theatre work. A speaker and presenter in school across Queensland, David is passionate about finding ways to open dialogue about the challenges faced by teens including sexual identity, depression and family life.

My Review

I have to say I actually wasn’t sure what this book was about, I thought it was a guide to how to be happy and actually got something entirely different. It was someone’s journey through life and a reminder of what goes on in our own head can been quite a minefield in itself. How we are led to believe there is only one what we should be, how we should act etc. What it points out is, that growing up we aren’t always taught these things, it’s simply just expected.

This book is quite a roller-coaster of emotions.  From growing up and not knowing who he was or should be, to his friends, some of which were troubled, to his parents and their problems, David had quite a lot to deal with while growing up. And as with any child, school was one of the biggest problems.

‘There are a lot of ideas out there what a man should be, ‘Dad wrote, ‘and most of them are bullsh#*t. What counts is character. And by God you’ve got a lot of that.’

Like other reviewers, there have been parts in the book difficult to read, but I think that’s what is so brilliant about this book. It doesn’t shy away from anything and digs deep into the emotions of a troubled teenager, showing the high’s and low’s and that in life it’s not always a bed of roses. I believe so much more should be taught to our youngsters on how to cope with feelings and how to ask for help. As adults we learn to cope with things, but as teenagers we have so much going on, not just in our bodies with hormones etc, but our young minds need to be able to find a way fo coping to all the changes to. Especially the cross over from school/university to adulthood. This book is a must read for everyone.

‘I realised I had grossly underestimated the kindness of the people around me, and their interest in my wellbeing. The world was a nicer place than I made it out to be.’

And I leave you on this note, it appears everything with in self help always points back to one thing…..

‘You see young padawan, true happiness is only ever found within yourself. Yuck.Lame But True.’

Thank you for reading


Book Review: The Girl in the Photograph by Kirsty Ferry

The Girl in the Photograph by Kirsty Ferry

About the book
What if the past was trying to teach you a lesson?
Staying alone in the shadow of an abandoned manor house in Yorkshire would be madness to some, but art enthusiast Lissy de Luca can’t wait. Lissy has her reasons for seeking isolation, and she wants to study the Staithes Group – an artists’ commune active at the turn of the twentieth century.
Lissy is fascinated by the imposing Sea Scarr Hall – but the deeper she delves, the stranger things get. A lonely figure patrols the cove at night, whilst a hidden painting leads to a chilling realisation. And then there’s the photograph of the girl; so beautiful she could be a mermaid … and so familiar.
As Lissy further immerses herself, she comes to an eerie conclusion: The occupants of Sea Scarr Hall are long gone, but they have a message for her – and they’re going to make sure she gets it.
About the Author
Kirsty is from the North East of England and won the English Heritage/Belsay Hall National Creative Writing competition in 2009. She has had articles and short stories published in various magazines, newspapers and anthologies and was also a judge in the Paws ‘n’ Claws ‘Wild and Free’ Children’s Story competition in 2011 and in 2013. ‘The Memory of Snow’, her first novel, was commended in the Northern Writer’s Awards, shortlisted to the top five of Wyvern’s novel competition in 2011 and longlisted in the Red Telephone Novel Competition in 2012. You can find out more about Kirsty and her work at
Other Books By Kirsty, Book 3 in The Rossetti Mysteries, Book 1 – Some Veil Did Fall. Book 2 – The Girl in the Photograph
My review
Where to begin, when I started this novel I wasn’t sure what to expect. What I got was an amazing story of someone’s struggle to believe in love again and to follow her on that journey. Some have classed this as a time-slip story as the modern-day is intertwined with a love story from 1905.  Not only that it held one of my greatest passions – photography. I loved the use of the arts and the photography in both eras and how they were used to not only capture a moment but tell a story and complete a puzzle to help Lizzy realise what she should do and also solving a mystery at the same time.
Kirsty’s writing keeps you intrigued and nothing is lost when jumping between time-lines. The flow of the book sucks you into the lives of the characters and makes you feel part of their worlds. Understanding the relationships, how others see what’s best for us when we don’t, the emotions and the differences we all have and how they make us who we are.
This book has a mix of everything, history, myths, romance – forbidden love, the sea and most of all a hunky hero or two. I highly recommend this book and others by Kirsty. Pick one up and be absorbed into another world.
Thank you for reading

Gratitude Jars

New Beginnings

We love doing this. Sometimes we can get so lost in bad things that happen we lose sight of the good stuff. We love opening the jar at the end of the year and looking at fun days out, achievements and the little things. We try and put at least one thing in the jar every day even if just something small to be grateful for.
Today was my (Kirsty) first day back at work and I managed to get through all 115 emails. That’s my note for today -nothing huge but a positive doesn’t have to be.

Our picture may say January but gratitude jars can be started whenever you need them.
I’ve seen some beautifully decorated jars on the web. Have a go and feel free to post yours in the comments box xxx


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Chakra Journal Challenge: Week 2 – Base Chakra

Cauldrons and Cupcakes

“The ache for home lives in all of us. The safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.”
~ Maya Angelou

Hello, and welcome to Week Two of our Chakra Journal Challenge!

Every Tuesday in March and April I will post a Journal Challenge for you, based upon a journey through the main chakras. You don’t need to know anything about journalling, chakras, crystals, oracle cards or energy work. I’ll explain everything that you need to do each week. Then you’ll have a week to complete the simple activities I share.

If you’re only just joining us please go back and read my Orientation Post first. It will also list all other posts in this challenge that precede this one.

About the Base Chakra

The Base Chakra connects our Soul into the power of our physical body, helping us remain in the ‘now’ or present moment.


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Chakra Journal Challenge: Orientation

Cauldrons and Cupcakes

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi

Hello, and welcome to Week One of our Chakra Journal Challenge!

This week is an orientation week. Today I’ll be taking you through each of the steps that we’ll be using during the Challenge.

Every Tuesday in March and April I will post a Journal Challenge for you, based upon a journey through the main chakras. You don’t need to know anything about journalling, chakras, crystals, oracle cards or energy work. I’ll explain everything that you need to do each week. Then you’ll have a week to complete the simple activities I share.

If you’re only just joining us you’ll need to source the following:

  • A new journal. Choose one that feels right for you. Make sure there are enough pages to get you through nine activities.
  • Some pens and pencils.

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R.I.P my boy, you were my hero

Last week on my flying visit to Mum’s I found out my boy, our Milo had sadly passed away. He was 16 years old.

It broke my heart to hear this, but he had lived a fantastic life. I just wish I had seen him one last time. He was such a character.

When I left home in 1999, we still had our Keegan, Our first dog. Who was also quite a character. I felt safe with him around, we could go play football in the field and he would be around, and then come out of no where to charge at the ball. Then on one of my trips home, I was told he had got ill and had passed away. The house was so quiet.

I went back off to college and a few months later (I think) the family introduced our Milo.      I wasn’t keen at first after losing Keegan in such a way and I think Milo knew this. I wasn’t ready to get attached again, and I think Milo knew this. He then won my heart. And I glad he did.

Ever since then we had a bond which I loved. He never saw me that often but when he did we had an amazing bond. On a morning he would want to go straight out for a walk without me having breakfast, he would demand cuddles. Best bit was when I was staying with the boyfriend at the time and we shared a hug, Milo didn’t like that and sat in between us. I couldn’t help laughing.

For a little dog, he had a big heart and a big character and he helped our family so much. I just can’t thank him enough.

So Milo, if you’re watching, I love you and miss you,and Thank you for being our little sodpot. Oh and look after our Keegan for us.

Love you loads.



Thank you for reading