Is putting things off a good or bad idea? I suspect delaying things can be both depending on the situation involved. The Best Boot Forward questions this week are all about such matters so I will answer them as best I can.

Delaying Things

1.What are you putting off?

I am putting less things off to be honest partly because I faced up to the fact that I was doing so when I wrote these questions last week. Paperwork of various sorts was getting on top of me and I worked out if it was stressing me out so much I would probably feel way better for tackling it.

In my life, I have put off looking after my mental and physical wellbeing. That has changed in recent years and although there is more work to do on the physical side of things, I am taking action and feeling better for that. Never neglect your wellbeing – it is not good for you but also terrible for those around you.

The other area I put off was looking after my relationship. Who knew? They take work and hard work at that. Like many mums, I put the children first which is great but can mean you neglect who you are and also who the “us” that  made the children in the first place is/was. At the start of the year I reflected that my marriage was stale. Somehow again the magic of acknowledging that has made things improve. We are going out more, communicating better and perhaps learning to adapt to a new chapter in our lives. I am still not 100 per cent happy with the relationship but the friendship that got us together in the first place is back and that’s a good foundation for future progress.

2.How does putting it off make you feel?

Putting things off like paperwork and work tasks ends up making me feel very stressed. In fact last week it resulted in tears which is most unusual these days. I knew that was a warning sign and took action.

Putting off looking after my wellbeing resulted in 10 years of depression and mental health difficulties. The only good to come of that is that I can hopefully act as a warning to others and also that I really value my happiness nowadays.

Putting off the work on my relationship made me seriously question  whether I wanted to stay in it. It also led to boredom on both sides. We had different strategies for dealing with that but we could have kept the spark if we had watched our partnership with a little more vigilance along the way.

3.What would happen if you took action instead of procrastinating?

It appears that taking action even if baby steps does work wonders but also makes me feel empowered. I have really recognised that the tiniest step taken should be celebrated and that suddenly a momentum builds up and things can change radically for the better.

4.How risky is the gamble you are taking by putting something off?

They say life is too short. My brother died young last year but he lived in a full-on way whilst he was on the planet despite health issues from a very early age. That gave me great comfort during the grieving journey. I hope when I die my children can say that I lived!

Some things can be put off positively I think. I don’t need to write that novel. I don’t need to be a perfect mum or educator. I should make my own choices and they may be new ones.

Well those are my thoughts on delaying things in life for what they are worth.

Organic fruit and veg has outlived being merely yet another food trend and has, instead, engrained itself into the mainstream. This speaks volumes about the health benefits it can provide. Add to that the fact that it is also kinder to the environment and the only question left to answer is how do I go about growing my own?

Healthy Eating and Health Food Trends

We have become somewhat obsessed with the idea of healthy eating. Ever since the government introduced the 5-a-day campaign, back in 1994, we have seen health food trends come and sometimes go – veganism is the current hot gastro topic, for example.

Eating organic fruit and veg, however, seems to have transcended all other health food trends and whether you are vegetarian, vegan or an out and out carnivore, few would dispute the benefits.

The Benefits of Eating Organic Produce

The primary benefits from eating organic fruit and veg are that they contain far higher amounts of antioxidants than regular fruit and veg. A study conducted by Newcastle University in 2014 found that organic fruit and veg contained up to 69% more antioxidants and therefore is much more likely to help prevent diseases like heart disease and cancer.

Organic fruit and veg also tastes better and the reason for this is that they are not treated with pesticides and they don’t contain preservatives.

Better health is not the only reason to consider going organic. Organic farming methods use up less energy, less water and help to enrich soil.

How to Grow Your Own

Whether growing your own organic fruit and veg in pots, a patch in the garden or a polytunnel, the number one rule is to use organic soil and mulch. The second rule that will help you grow healthy and abundant crops is to weed regularly and to keep the soil clean, making sure things like fallen leaves aren’t lying on the surface – doing this will help prevent disease from spreading and leave your plants with all the nutrients they need to flourish.

The way in which you water your crops is also important and done properly will help prevent disease and maintain healthy plants. The best method is to use a water soaker that will deliver moisture straight to the roots of the plants.

Follow these simple guidelines and you be eating your own organic fruit and veg in no time at all.

The BeneFits Of Eating Organic Produce And How To Grow Your Own

Looking after your hair and making sure it is in the best possible condition is an all year-round process. The warm weather in summer throws up certain challenges as do the colder months of the year. Here is some handy advice on how to keep your hair in great shape through the winter months.

Eat Your Way to Healthy Hair

A healthy and well-balanced diet can make all the difference when it comes to the condition of your hair and scalp. Try to make sure that you are eating protein rich foods such as eggs, along plenty of fruit and vegetables that contain vitamins and minerals. Spinach and broccoli, for example, contain iron which helps maintain the flow of oxygen to all parts of the body – citrus fruits will help absorb the iron and give you a Vitamin C boost.

Other foods that will help include nuts and seeds for Omega-3 and wholegrains as a source of biotin. For great looking hair during the winter months, eat well.

Hair Care Products

The sheer range of hair care products can be overwhelming, but choosing the right products plays an important role in helping you look great in winter. To save time and confusion try looking to Capital Hair & Beauty, where you will find everything you need all in one place.

A gentle shampoo used alongside oil treatments, that contain macadamia, will act as a great foundation that will help give your hair body and vitality. Depending on the type of hair you have, you may also look to a detangling spray or conditioning mist to increase manageability and reduce frizz.

Using three or four good quality products is all that it takes and anymore could lead to your hair looking overworked – it’s about choosing the best products for you, your lifestyle and hair type.

Show me the Honey

To lock in extra moisture, a weekly treatment using raw honey will give your hair that extra boost it needs through the cold months and beyond. Start by brushing your hair to stimulate the scalp and eliminate and tangles, then apply honey, tips to roots. Then leave for around half an hour before rinsing with warm water.

Head Massage

The ultimate way to pamper yourself through the winter and to revitalise your hair and scalp is to book yourself in for a head massage. This helps with blood circulation and foods the hair with nutrients, leaving you feeling great and your hair looking fantastic.

Bring on Spring!

How To Keep Your Hair In Great Shape Through The Winter Months

Cuddle Fairy

The intimate space that is your bedroom should be the place where you feel most comfortable and that is a real reflection of you as an individual. Taking the time and effort to make it so is both life affirming and comforting and so well worth it. Here are some tips that can help you revamp your bedroom and achieve a fresh look for the Spring.

Spring Cleaning

Achieving a fresh look all starts with a little Spring cleaning. Take the opportunity to go through your wardrobe and store or get rid of any clothes that will be surplus to requirements once the Spring ushers in some warmer weather. Next, go about decluttering the rest of the room and giving it a thorough deep clean – there’s nothing like starting with a blank canvas.

Once this has been achieved, it is time to start thinking about a fresh lick of paint and your Spring colour palette.

Spring Colour Palette

Grey and white has always been a stylish and popular colour combination, however add to this a splash of pastel pink and you have something that is light, fresh, sophisticated and beautiful. The trick with this particular combination of colours is to use the pastel pink sparingly. Overuse can leave the space looking a little garish and overwhelming – subtle hints are all that is required.

Window Dressing

Having achieved a fresh new colour palette for the bedroom, it is now time to embellish the look and dressing the windows is a good place to start. For a wonderful choice of curtains try Direct Blinds, who have a broad range of products to suit this look and have a reputation for quality and value.

Bedclothes and Soft Furnishings

Next indulge yourself by investing in some new bedclothes that are in keeping with the colour palette you have used to paint the room. Choose Egyptian cotton for the ultimate luxury and don’t be afraid to mix it up a little when it comes to pillow cases – this will help give the room some extra dynamics.

As far as soft furnishings go and if your budget will stretch, a new rug and possible some cushions will add vibrancy to the space and, of course, more comfort.

To complete the revamp, choose some candles and something to make the room smell wonderful, some tiger lilies perhaps as these will also match the colour palette. Then you are all set to spend your first night in your new look bedroom.

Lucy At Home

My Random Musings

Hawaii has always conjured up a sense of luxury to me and as a child seemed totally out of reach much like a trip to Disneyland. I had no idea what properties were available on Hawaii and certainly no concept of houses for rent in Hawaii at all.

Hawaii

I have already via my blogging career visited Disneyland and in a year where I am making my dreams come true, perhaps I should plan a trip to Hawaii.

It’s all perfectly achievable and I have enjoyed looking at houses for rent in Hawaii.

So what tempts me to see Hawaii apart from the well-known warmth of the people?

1. Food

Any description of Hawaii culinary treats is so tempting to the taste buds.

The Pacific Ocean provides a wonderful catch of sashimi-grade fish whilst the fertile land provides a rich source of fresh fruit and vegetables.

Hawaii has seen many immigrants over the years from around the world all having their own influence on the cuisine so there really is something for everybody to savour.

Street food is out of this world for sure served on a paper plate and featuring everything from teriyaki beef with rice to the Japanese hybrid, spam musubi. You could also try loco moco breakfasts which is made up of white rice topped with a hamburger, fried egg and brown gravy. I am not sure what I think of that one but when in Hawaii …

I absolutely love how farmers markets are referred to as “Sunshine Markets” and the fertile volcanic soil makes for some amazing produce ready to purchase at a farm stand or market.

Relish the sight of colourful fresh fruits, flowers and vegetables. You will also find Hawaii-grown coffee, local jams and baked goods, macadamia nuts and pop-up restaurants too.

Be tempted by hulihuli chicken, gigantic papayas and avocados, coconuts, passion fruit and freshly-squeezed juices. Hawaii is a food-lovers dream destination.

One thing is certain, when you are in Hawaii you wil be saying “ono!” for all the right reasons as it means “delicious”.

 

2. Culture

Native Hawaiian culture is a big attraction. Island communities always have a unique way of doing things and Hawaii is no different. I might even try to learn a little of the native Hawaiian language and attempt to match the warmth of the  local community.

What I love about Hawaiian culture is how very rich it is as so many nations have contributed to it. It also has a lovely feel about it with the kissing on the cheek on meeting and the taking off of shoes when entering homes. I want to experience the “Aloha Spirit” up close and personal. This is the coordination of mind and heart within each person. It brings each person to the self. Each person must think and emote good feelings to others. That seems a pretty good way to run a life to me!

3. Events

The famous Prince Kuhio is honoured in March with special celebrations marking his impact on the island.

The following month, you can enjoy the Merrie Monarch Festive. This sounds a lot of fun as it promotes the art of the hula amongst other things.

From Spring right through to the start of Summer, the Mele Mei and Na Hoku Hanohano awards are held celebrating traditional music and dance.

Don’t think it ends there. In June, Hawaii’s first monarch King Kamehameda is celebrated.

The next month the Prince Lot Hula Festival makes a big deal of all things hula but in a non-competitive event that attracts people from overseas

In August right through to October all the major islands take part in the Aloha Festivals.

4. Natural beauty

As someone who loves nature, Hawaii has so much to recommend it. It’s an Instagrammer’s dream location. There are beautiful beaches with a diverse range of colours of sand, hidden sea caves along the Napali Coast and volcanic landscapes all of which are awe-inspiring sights.

I also want to explore at least a few of Hawaii’s 50 state parks perhaps  putting the Volcanoes National Park and the Kalaupapa Historial Park top of my list. Did you know that 90% of the 1,000 species found in Hawaii’s parks are found nowhere else on earth?

Adventure

Or course, I would be perfectly happy eating and exploring natural beauty but my family may want a little more adventure. Fortunately, this is also in plentiful supply. I can see my youngest son loving to try out surfing, scuba-diving and snorkelling. He is an adrenaline junkie and I think my teenage boy might also have a go. He recently expressed an interest in water sports which took me totally by surprise. My daughter may just be tempted to try paddle-boarding. By the way, if you have not read about Hawaii and the history of surfing, you should as I found it quite fascinating.

The really good news for someone who is not particularly sporty like myself is that there are readily-available lessons in these activities so you can be sure your children are safe and know what they are doing.

When it comes to adventures, I may well be tempted by a boat trip to watch the whales. I have always fancied that so it is high time it got ticked off the bucket list.

Conclusion

The more I read about Hawaii the  more I want to get there and enjoy that lovely culture whilst discovering the history of the islands too. I just need to work out which luxury retreat appeals to me most as the place to savour all those fine views and gorgeous food.