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Monday, 29 September 2014

My Love of Books

I was recently asked to name my top 10 books and this was hard. It would be easier to name my top 100 or 200 to be honest. The following is the list I came up with.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
The Minotaur Takes A Cigarette Break by Steven Sherrill
Dracula by Bram Stoker
The Onion  Field by  Joseph Wanbuagh
Day Of the Triffids by John Wyndham
King Solomon's Carpet by Barbara Vine
A Walk In The Woods by Bill Bryson 
Armadillo by William Boyd
To Do List by Mike Gayle
Killing Floor by Lee Child


A strange and eclectic collection I know but as I read 70 plus books a year I need a range of genres to choose from. I mainly read fiction with the odd factual book thrown in. If I had to choose just one genre it would be thrillers, or maybe classic horror or even general modern fiction. Ahhh, too many to decide.

I am very anti electronic books. If you want to read them it is up to you but I love my proper books. Normal books have soul, fantastic covers and a comforting feel about them. I would say that the only use for electronic books is for huge factual volumes or out of print books. I still would personally prefer the real thing. 

If you love reading there are some fantastic reference  websites. Fantastic Fiction is amazing if you want to look up the other books an author has written and get suggestions for similar authors. Goodreads is a great place to track what you have read, follow and join in book related conversations, read quotes and find new authors to read. You can track what you have read on the Goodreads challenge. You set how many you want to read for the year and add them when you start them. At the end of the year you see what you have read and how many. It is very interesting to look back and see what you have read over the year.

Reading goes very well with my love of organistaion and Filofaxes. I do have 4 pocket size Filofaxes where I catalogue, alphabetically the books I have enjoyed. I am also hoping to start doing book reviews too, this is something I have been meaning to do for some time.

I read while eating breakfast, on the train, in my lunchbreak, in the evenings and weekends, so really anytime I have a spare five minutes. You can escape into a book and get lost in a world different from your own, you can learn new things and find the answer to endless questions. There is always another book to read, a new author to discover and different worlds to explore.

Monday, 22 September 2014

My weight and sugar........I have won the battle, now to win the war!



Weight loss has been a  massive issue with me for many years. Gone are the days when I just eat what I want and think nothing of it.  I was in my early twenties when I first realised I had a problem with food and it has been with me ever since. I have been fat, slim and been a normal weight. I have tried different diets and also had an eating disorder. I have attended specialist clinics and I have paid for hypnotism. I had my gallbladder  removed when I was 30  as my gallstones were so bad. ( I have since found out they are  hereditary on both sides of my family)
Eating problems and weight issues do seem to have an effect on those around you which is another reason to keep a healthy attitude to food and, especially, weight.

Last year I lost 20 pounds after being hypnotised at a private clinic in Guildford. This cost me £160 for the first two appointments but it was worth it. He seemed to get to the root of my eating problems and sorted my mind. Sadly, after 6 months of weight loss, healthy eating and  a positive mindset, I started the bad eating habits again. There were a few triggers and my mind just seemed to over ride what I had gained from the hypnotism.  Within 4 months I had gained 17 pounds back and was eating ridiculous amounts of cakes and chocolate until I felt ill. Sadly hypnotism did not work this time.

Three and a half weeks ago I was stuck in bed with a flu type bug and had no sugary food in the house. After 3 days without cakes, chocolate, biscuits, puddings etc, I decided to see if I could keep it up.    24 days later no treats  have passed my lips and I have lost 12 pounds in weight. From somewhere I have pulled in some will power, but I have absolutely no idea where from. I have also been using techniques that I learned when I was hypnotised and just trying to eat as healthily as possible. My appetite has shrunk and I feel so much healthier without the sugar.

I am eating quite a bit of fruit, which I know has natural sugar and have had jam on my toast a few times, but all the processed, sugary, fatty foods are gone. No bingeing on cake or biscuits, no buying multi packs of chocolate because they are cheaper and then eating it all and no nipping into Greggs after a bad day at work and buying buns. I am eating a diet rich in vegetables, fruit, whole grains and some meat. I have been eating healthy meals for years but my portion sizes are smaller and I am not hungry.
It is a great feeling not to feel bloated and heavy and being able to get back in to certain clothes is such a good feeling. The lack of sugar has given me more energy  so I am moving more and burning even more calories. I am hoping this is not temporary, I need to keep up the momentum.

If I could bottle the willpower I have right now I would be a very rich woman. As I can’t I shall just keep boring everyone round me and hope that someone is motivated enough to find their inner will power too and hope I can keep motivating my self to continue at the same time. :-)

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Quotes

I do love quotes so here are two about relationships.

The first one is my own:  "Men are like fireworks, you should never go back to them."

The second one has been attributed to Charlie Sheen but I have no idea if  he actually said it:
 " The only way not to have your heart broken is to pretend you don't have one."

Friday, 19 September 2014

Magpies and a walk on the wild side

I have a walk to the station every morning to go to work and it is fairly quiet. Not too much traffic, not too many people, good thinking time. This morning was totally different; I thought I had walked on to the set of a remake of Dr Doolittle. I really was walking with the animals and muttering at them under my breath would definitely constitute talking to them. Let me explain that I like seeing the odd squirrel, bird, fox or cat on my way to work. They all have a place in this world of ours, but all of them in one half an hour walk, and not just singularly, that is a bit too much. As I came out of the estate I saw a fox across the road nearby, just minding his own business, no problem. As I went round the corner a little brown dog with his owner, which I see regularly, went passed, a little excitable but still no problem. Walking along I realised that there were rather more birds in the air than usual, reminding me of a certain Hitchcock film. Even though I was worried about being the recipient of their target practice, still no problem. Then I saw what had been recently causing me to develop a slight “obsession” ........ a single magpie. When I say a single magpie, I don’t mean the kind of magpie that needs a dating agency, I mean a lone magpie, a"one for sorrow" magpie. I instantly scan, trees and rooftops in the surrounding area to see if I can see one of his mates; but no, he is part of the conspiracy.
You see, what magpies do is fly around in gangs until they see a slightly stressed looking person and they send out one of their kind. While the cocky one struts up and down in my line of vision, the other malicious, feathery devils are hiding behind a bush, rolling around with laughter at the unsuspecting human who they are taunting. I am convinced I sometimes see a snippet of black and white tail bobbing about behind the bushes. There are mornings when I would  cheerfully grab the black and white joker around the throat and demand to know the whereabouts of his mates. As yet I have managed to control myself as I do not really want to be taken in and put under strict psychological scrutiny or, even worse, be subjected to hate mail from the Bill Oddie bird watching club.
Anyway, back to the morning in question. After the fox, the dog, the birds and, of course, the magpie ( singular) I was quickly sidestepping a thin, evil looking black cat who was giving me  a condescending look because  I was clearly in the way,  when I realised I was actually muttering away like a wee- soaked old bag lady.  Seconds later a squirrel, who I could only presume  was being pursued by the Hounds of Hell, shot past me so fast I almost spun a full  three hundred and sixty degree pirouette trying to get out of the way. ( Can I add that I never actually saw the hounds)
One more cat and numerous birds later I finally arrived at the station., happy to be among that most exotic of creatures....... the commuter. ( but that is another story)



Wednesday, 10 September 2014

My first quote is....

I have always loved quotes and find they can be insightful, witty, interesting or just say what you want in a few words. My first quote comes from my Dad and is very useful in one of my work roles, Health and Safety manager. "If in danger or in doubt, run in circles scream and shout."

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Introduction

Hi everyone. Welcome to orangecoffee69. This is where I am going to ramble on and chatter away about all the things that interest  me.
Anyone who knows me will be very aware of my love of Filofaxes and being organised. I have many Filofaxes and use them all so will be blogging about them quite often. I have to be organised, it is a way of life.
One of my other big passions is reading. There are never enough hours in the day to read and so many books to read. If I had to choose only one genre I would say thrillers, however I really don't want to choose one type of book when there  is an abundance of amazing books to dive into. I am  very anti electronic books and only love the real thing.
My weight, food, baking, architecture, salsa dancing and  fashion are other areas of interest for me which I will definitely be writing about.
I dislike shopping with a passion, cannot stand rude people and don't get me started on religion. Yes, there will most certainly be regular rants on here.
For as many years as I can remember I have been writing. Not necessarily  anything good, but it is something I like to do so will be looking at the notes of things I have written and may include some pieces on here.
I am a big fan of quotes so will be putting quotes on regularly. Some will be my own and some will be from other people.

I will upload some pictures and proper posts very soon.  Enjoy. :-)