I’ve realised lately that I spend about 50% of my day dreaming about our upcoming holiday to Mexico. I use the word ‘upcoming’ loosely as it’s not until December. But seriously, I am living for this holiday. I am quite literally wishing a whole 5 months of my life away, which is just terrible.
But what about when the holiday passes? Do we just book another holiday and count down to the next escape? Shouldn’t we be excited about just living in general? I’ve realised that living with a countdown isn’t a very happy way to live. Because even though, yes, 10 days of unlimited cocktails, wonderful food, sun, sea and tequila will be to die for, how much of our life do we spend wishing we were somewhere else?
So here’s an alphabetical list of things to remind me (and hopefully you) to be excited about plain old life itself. Things you can implement, enjoy and appreciate more often in your life, slightly less extravagant – and less expensive – than holidays…
A: Autumn – when the skies are still blue but there’s a gorgeous crispness in the air. The return of scarves and boots, seasonal coffees – like pumpkin and gingerbread! – soup (with chunky, buttery bread mmmm) and the premature creeping of Christmas excitement…
B: Beach trips – sun, sea and sand is a total winner for me. Even rainy beach visits hiding in arcades and getting fish and chips! Beach trips are the best – even writing about it is making me excited. I need to go to the beach more!!
C: Cinema – granted, it’s an expensive thing to do these days. But you can’t beat a big old bucket of popcorn, pic n mix and Tango Ice Blast can you?
D: Dinner parties – one of my favourite things in the world is cooking for friends and spending all evening grazing on good food, drinking too much wine and watching the conversation grow even more wacky and slurred.
E: Exploring new places – we went to Whitstable recently on a day trip and though it’s not too far from us, it felt like we’d gone on holiday for the day. There’s so many places to explore not far from your door step with new coffee shops/restaurants to try, shops to nose in and people to meet. Next time you have a free day and fancy an adventure, go on Google maps and find yourself a new town to explore!
F: Forest walks – perhaps one of the best things you can do to re-energise! There’s something about the cracking of twigs under your feet and sun rays shining through the leaves above that makes me feel incredibly lucky to be alive.
G: Garden stuff – Lately, sitting in the garden early in the morning and just watching life do its thing makes me really happy. I used to find the concept of people bird watching really weird and now I do it a lot! But just being in the garden in general brings me so much peace – whether it be watering the plants or having a BBQ, being outside in your own space can be a magical thing.
H: Halloween – any excuse 1) for fancy dress and 2) for baking cute, yummy snacks! My speciality is marshmallow/chocolate bats with Oreo wings! I’ll post the recipe nearer the time – last year I won my work’s Halloween Bake Off 😉
I: Ice creaaaam – Ice cream is always exciting. Jack thought I was mad when we first met and I suggested we go out just to get dessert – but literally ice cream/dessert dates are always a good idea.
J: Jumble sales – I bloody love a good bargain. There’s something magical about rooting through random boxes/rails and finding old gems for a couple quid. And there’s also something really cute about getting up early, heading to a boot sale, coffee in hand and having a rummage. Not forgetting the classic bacon butty van.
K: Kayaking – I loooove kayaking. Floating down a river, not thinking about anything other than putting one arm in front of the other. I always associate this with being on holiday – but I just searched ‘Kayaking in Kent’ and it turns out there’s a place not far from us that hires kayaks!
L: Live music – for me, one of the most life affirming things in the world! Whether it’s a tiny local pub or a huge show at the O2, seeing someone/a group of people make good music moves me like nothing else ever will!
M: Mornings – During the week, I HATE mornings. Every day I wish for a couple more hours sleep. But shouldn’t we look forward to – instead of dread – each morning? We’re given the gift of a new day but how many of us completely take that for granted? I absolutely do. Weekend mornings are the best. So how about we try to create amazing week day mornings too?
N: Netflix – with tonnes of tasty snacks and an amazing series to dive in to. Sometimes you just need to get lost in a different world and eat your weight in chocolate and Doritos. Series I seriously recommend: Stranger Things, Lost in Space, Safe. And if you haven’t seen Love Rosie – make it a priority!
O: October – There’s something about October that I just love. The leaves are falling and everything is golden/orange – it starts to get cold but not cold enough that you feel sad about it. Halloween looms – as do bonfires and firework parties! It’s a time to get people together, sit around garden fires and go to funfairs in beanies and ear muffs.
P: Picnics – whether it’s a sunny afternoon in the park with family or a romantic sunset with your other half. Good food + good company + bubbles, cider or vino (optional!) = a fabulous time
Q: Quazar – or laser quest. I don’t care how old you are, Quazar is the absolute nuts. Running around with sci-fi guns shooting strangers and pretending to be a space agent for 30 minutes is the best! If done in big groups it’s not too expensive either.
R: Reading – particularly on a dreary morning with unlimited coffee and the sound of rain! I can recommend so many amazing books if you’re looking for a new adventure.
S: Stargazing – one of my favourite things in the world, yet I only seem to do it on holiday. So we have a lot of light pollution here but what’s stopping us finding somewhere more secluded – a park, a field in the countryside? (The fear of getting murdered probably…)
T: Tea and biscuits! – one of life’s finest pleasures. Have a pal or family member round and go wild with the biscuit selection. Make a big pot of tea, get cosy and catch up. Beautiful.
U: Underwater – anything to do with water in general. One of my favourite things in the world is scuba diving – though I haven’t done it for years now. I can’t recommend doing the course enough. Get your qualification and explore a totally new world every time you go on holiday. (I got my qualification via a Groupon voucher – there’s a ton of deals here)
V: Vinyl – sitting with my precious records and having a good old listening sesh. Like literally just sitting and listening to the music – nothing else – is precious. Particularly amazing when this involves vinooo!
W: Winter – it’s really not all bad. Cold, frosty days spent in warm, cosy pubs with MULLED WINE or hot chocolate. Christmas films, soft pyjamas, the first sprinkling of snow (only exciting if on weekends…) and regular roast dinners – it kind of makes up for the dark mornings/evenings.
X: Xxxxx – kisses! Because who has a xylophone?
Y: Yoga you time – a rare enjoyment for me these days unfortunately, however, there’s nothing like a good yoga session to reconnect you with what’s important and make you excited just to be alive.
Z: Zoo trips – sure, it’s the only thing that starts with a Z…Butttt, going to the zoo is a gorgeous way to put life in to perspective. It reminds me that we’re really just small fish in a huge pond and our problems aren’t all that dramatic in the grand scheme of things.
I feel like just making this list was a really useful exercise to remind me of the little things that bring so much joy to my world! Why not make your own A – Z of things to get excited about? 🙂
Now I can check back on my list whenever I need a splash more excitement in my calendar – and when I find myself wishing I was in Mexico.
Love, Siân x
Ps. If you’re enjoying these posts, please subscribe to email updates ♥️ You can do so in the right-hand bar xx