Blogger Recognition Awards- Sharing the story of starting my blog!

I’m delighted to have three nominations for ‘THE BLOGGER RECOGNITION AWARD’ where I now get to share with you the story of me starting my blog and my advice for other bloggers too.

I was nominated firstly by Nicole over at ‘Cool N Creative’ and then more recently by ‘The Invisible Vision Project’ and Karen Bradshaw over at ‘The Mommy Lady’ (Click on their individual names to open up their award post’s where they nominated me) – Thanks guys for the nomination and appreciated recognition!

The story of how my blog ‘HELEN’S JOURNEY’ was started and why:

Continue reading “Blogger Recognition Awards- Sharing the story of starting my blog!”


Touching Gift Ideas for your Loved Ones

Here are some handy ideas for getting touching Birthday gifts for your friends and loved ones…

There are so many gift ideas out there, sometimes you can feel confused and lost as to what to get your friends and loved ones for their birthday. Well here is a break down of some lovely gift ideas through me sharing with you a list of gifts I had for my Birthday this year, that helped to made it so full of love and effort…

Continue reading “Touching Gift Ideas for your Loved Ones”


Life Lessons that the Season of Autumn/Fall can bring for us all!

Life lessons the season of Autumn / Fall can bring to all… and how to stay positive through seasonal changes.

Like most things in life, how we experience the change of season and weather, is down to our personal perspective. This post is all about purposely choosing a positive perspective as we transition into a new season…

Believe me, as someone with a chronic illness that is worsened in the colder weather I know oh too well the amount of dread the colder weather months can be met with and the effect of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) depression that seasonally comes in the dark Autumn and Winter months.

However, learning to see the beautiful life lessons of the season helped me to embrace the change instead of dreading it – as it can’t be changed through dread or worry, so instead might as well be enjoyed for its positives even though it brings along negatives too. ‘Balance’ and ‘every cloud has a silver lining’ come to mind.

“What possible lessons could the Autumn / Fall give me?” I hear you ask. Let me explain…

Continue reading “Life Lessons that the Season of Autumn/Fall can bring for us all!”


Product Review: ‘Anayah Natural Skincare’. 100% natural, organic and handmade.

When using natural beauty products it’s a great idea to follow different brands on their social media channels. Then not only can you keep up to date with their current products and new products being launched, but you also get to see their offers, promotions and competitions too.

A local natural product company I follow is ‘Anayah Natural Skincare‘ based here in Birmingham UK, but available to order online. They ran an Instagram competition to win free samples – so I entered and guess what, I only went & won! 👏 (So the reviewed products below were gifted to me as part of their online competition.)

Continue reading “Product Review: ‘Anayah Natural Skincare’. 100% natural, organic and handmade.”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Travel & Days Out

Kirkstall Abbey – A free day out in Leeds any time of the year, surrounded by beauty, history and fun for all ages and abilities.

Looking for a free day out in Leeds?

‘Kirkstall Abbey’ is a day trip full of history, beauty and fun for all ages and abilities – any time of the year!

A cool place to visit while in Leeds is a place called ‘Kirkstall Abbey’ – so cool in fact I visited twice in the space of four months! It is easy to get to, being three miles from the City Centre of Leeds, off the A65.

Kirkstall Abbey is a Cistercian Monastery founded in 1152 and one of the best-preserved monasteries in England.

Continue reading “Kirkstall Abbey – A free day out in Leeds any time of the year, surrounded by beauty, history and fun for all ages and abilities.”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Chronic Illness, Travel & Days Out

‘Odeon LUXE’ A review of the luxury cinema experience; making watching films more accessible when you have physical ailments

ODEON LUXE – watching your films in a more luxurious way!

My local Odeon Cinema (Regal Cinemas in the USA) was out of action for a while as it underwent a refurbishment, but this wasn’t any old refurbishment with a new carpet and a dash of fresh paint. No, I’d call it more of a luxury makeover! You see it didn’t just get a new word in its name – it got a new identity. The ‘LUXE’ really is visible to see!

Continue reading “‘Odeon LUXE’ A review of the luxury cinema experience; making watching films more accessible when you have physical ailments”


Using CREATIVE WRITING / POETRY / PROSE & SONG LYRICS, to express yourself & your inner emotions towards different experiences in life!

Throughout my creative work journey, I have used words in many ways to express myself and to give others a platform to express themselves too. So it is only right, that the way I try to express the emotional rollercoaster I’ve been on through the written word and creative means of poetry and creative prose.

Continue reading “Using CREATIVE WRITING / POETRY / PROSE & SONG LYRICS, to express yourself & your inner emotions towards different experiences in life!”


What I’ve learnt from 3 years of growing my hair for charity, to make a wig for a child with cancer


Have you seen the hashtag floating around on social media #shorthairdontcare ?

Well, this was always my reality, as I’ve almost always had short hair, even as a child as I made washing my hair such an ordeal as I hated getting water in my eyes (mix of eczema, sensitive eyes and being a diva) and disliked getting my hair brushed too! I think it was just easier for my mom to let me have the shorter hair I wanted.

Yet for the past 3 years, as I’ve been growing my hair an extra 12 inches in length, for a charity donation my hashtag became #longhairdontcare instead, as I grew my hair the longest it has EVER been in my whole 34 years of life at the time.

Only now, with ‘the big charity chop’ being two weeks away, my reality has now become the opposite of that hashtag. As now it’s more like #longhaircozicare

Continue reading “What I’ve learnt from 3 years of growing my hair for charity, to make a wig for a child with cancer”


My 1st Versatile Blogger Award & Interview sharing ‘7 FACTS ABOUT ME’


that will give you a sneak preview into where around the world my journey has taken me & just what my footsteps have got up to…

How exciting my 1st ever Versatile blogger Award! A big thank you to the lovely Cailin over at the blog STUMBLY for nominating me for this award (click on her blog name to open up a new window with her post with my nomination in.)

Before I share a few fun facts about myself and then list my own nominees, here are the rules/guidelines for us nominees to follow:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you. (Links to their site are pretty sweet!)
  2. Share 7 facts about yourself.
  3. Nominate no more than 15 bloggers for the award.

7 facts about me to share my life experiences - Helen's journey Blog

7 Facts About Helen’s Journey Blog:

Okay, so as my 35th birthday is soon approaching I refuse to focus on what I don’t have by this age (if you’ve read my post “Single? Childless? How these things can’t take away your ability of being a loyal partner or your maternal instincts to look after a child! then you know the list is mostly missing) or bad situations of the past.

Instead I’m choosing to focus on all the great life experiences I’ve had in life and the amazing places around the world I have visited – as when I reflect on these I feel richly blessed beyond age, health, status etc.

So the following 7 facts about me I’ve chosen from my bag of life experiences & dug out the photographs to go along with them too…

  1. I’ve lay inside a tomb, deep inside a great pyramid in Cairo, Egypt. It was REALLY hot down there! I couldn’t resist jumping in and posing for a pic – it’s just part of who I am 😉

Helen's Journey Blog lying in a tomb inside pyramid of Giza Cairo Egypt

2. I’ve held a baby alligator! Yes you read that right, but don’t worry there was a professional handler there to talk me through it and make sure I held it correctly for safety for us both.

It was after an air boat ride through the Florida Everglades swamps filled with alligators. As a huge NCIS & CSI fan you know in my head I was pretending I was on the airboat with Horatio in the opening theme tune of CSI MIAMI right 😉

Helen's Journey bog holding a baby Alligator

3. I have driven a Quad bike across some of the Sahara Desert and watched the sunset over the sand dunes.

Helen's Journey Blog sitting on a quad bike watching the sun set over the sahara desert

4. I got to see my home football team ‘Birmingham City FC’ win the Carling Cup final at Wembley Stadium, winning 2 -1 against Arsenal in February 2011! It was a brilliant day with my family that I will remember forever, what a high and a buzz. A well deserved win KRO! (our slogan KEEP RIGHT ON! aka KRO)

Helen's Journey Blog at wembley watching birmingham city fc beat arsenal 2 - 1

5. I’ve climbed the Statue of Liberty & Empire State building (ok I was only 5 so I only remember tiny moments but I do remember doing both…

The statue of liberty I remember it being endless winding stairs and it being boiling hot and my Auntie freaking out as she is scared of heights.

The Empire State Building, I remember being at the top and it was all caged in and we used a, what seemed huge at the time, telescope to look out over New York.

6. I watched the Olympic Torch handover in the UK when it passed through my home town Birmingham (England’s 2nd City).

Helen's Journey blog watching the olympic torch handover in UK

7. I went into the Atlas Mountains in Morocco, when I was in Marrakech. We went to see a beautiful waterfall.

Helen's Journey Blog in atlas mountain waterfall marrakech morocco

So there you have the 7 life experiences I’ve chosen to share with this award – I hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know me more, as I have enjoyed sharing them and looking at the photos again.

Right, here are my chosen nominees for The Versatile Blogger Award… (Anyone who participates, don’t forget to tag me in your posts so I can see your replies.)

  1. nikki at nikkipedia
  2. Positive Changes Journey
  3. Trail By Fashion
  4. Off To The World
  5. mishi pcm
  6. Simple Hijabi
  7. The Happy Diary
  8. Fam by Choice
  9. Mamma in Joy

the versatile blogger award and interview sharing 7 things about me, Helen's journey Blog

Fancy finding out even more about me? Then read my other blogger award interviews by clicking on the award names below to open interviews in seperate tabs:

Enjoy reading my posts and poems? Then don’t miss out when new stuff is posted –Please click here to join my Email Mailing List to receive an email notification when a new blog is posted!

Why not come & follow my blogging footsteps on other Social Media Platforms (click on names to take you to the different media profiles):

Bloglovin Google+ / Instagram / Twitter / Pinterest / Path

Facebook: Fibromyalgia Awareness & Chronic Illness Support Group

Helen's Journey Blog wins The Versatile Blogger Award & interview sharing '7 things about me'

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Chronic Illness

“Fibro-my-what?” Let me explain… All about the health condition FIBROMYALGIA


Let me explain…

The 12th of May is ‘Fibromyalgia Awareness Day’ – So what better way to become aware, than by reading this blog post!

You write it: FIBROMYALGIA

You say it: Fi – bro – my – al – gee – ah.

The origins of the word:

“fibro”for fibrous tissues such as tendons & ligaments

“my”indicating muscles

“algia” meaning pain.

Also referred to as:   FMS (Fibromyalgia Syndrome)

“Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition of widespread muscle pain, profound fatigue & sleep disorder, along with many other symptoms.”

According to the National Fibromyalgia Association3-6% of the world’s population has Fibromyalgia syndrome. 

Continue reading ““Fibro-my-what?” Let me explain… All about the health condition FIBROMYALGIA”


‘WORLD EARTH DAY’ – What is it & how can I join in by making changes to my plastic use?


April 22nd is ‘World Earth Day’ which grew out of this day in 1970 when millions went to the streets to protest things like pollution, pesticides use and other global ecological awareness issues. Below is a quote from the president of World Earth Day to know more about the origins of the day:

“It is a day of political action and civic participation. People march, sign petitions, meet with their elected officials, plant trees, clean up their towns and roads. Corporations and governments use it to make pledges and announce sustainability measures. Faith leaders, including Pope Francis, connect Earth Day with protecting God’s greatest creations, humans, biodiversity and the planet that we all live on.”

– Kathleen Rogers, President of World Earth Day. (Quote from

Continue reading “‘WORLD EARTH DAY’ – What is it & how can I join in by making changes to my plastic use?”



The power of words!

Everyone loves a good quote, right?

Well, I must say I’ve rather enjoyed this ‘‘3 Day Quote Challenge’ with choosing a new quote to share each day and explaining my reasons for choosing it. I love to have fun with words, I love sharing and I love encouraging others – the perfect challenge for me 😉

As today 22nd April is World Earth Day’ I felt it appropriate to choose a quote from ‘Mr all things nature’ himself, Sir David Attenborough:



‘3 Day Quote Challenge’ Day 2 of sharing a quote to live by & reasons why I chose it

3 Day Quote Challenge:

Day 2 of sharing a quote to live by and the reasons why I chose it

So just what is the ‘3 Day Quote Challenge’? I hear you ask… well it’s when each day you choose a quote to share and explain your reasons for choosing it – I’m always up for fun with words! 😉

So here is my quote for Day 2:

encouraging quote for day 2 of the 3 day quote challenge by helen's journey blog www/
“I know this transition is painful, but you’re not falling apart: you’re just falling into something different, with a new capacity to be beautiful” – Quote by the Author William C. Hannan

Continue reading “‘3 Day Quote Challenge’ Day 2 of sharing a quote to live by & reasons why I chose it”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Chronic Illness, LIFE

3 day Quote Challenge – Day 1 of sharing a quote I love & the reasons why I chose it

3 Day Quote Challenge:

Day 1 of sharing a quote I love and why I chose it

I love a challenge, so being nominated to do a ‘3 Day Quote Challenge’ when each day you choose a quote to share and explain your reasons for choosing it – of course, I accepted!

Thank you to Shannon from the blog MSnubutterflies for nominating me for this challenge!

Here is my quote for Day 1:

helens journey quote about appreciating the small things in life you can do, not big things you cant do.
I questioned if choosing a quote from myself was vain, but considering I’m used to putting myself in the limelight, I thought I’d go for it! 😉

Continue reading “3 day Quote Challenge – Day 1 of sharing a quote I love & the reasons why I chose it”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Spiritual Life, Wellness & Positivity

Facing Your Giants! Encouragement for how to be as confident & as bold as David, in defeating your life’s Goliath.

Everyone has giants to face at different times in life, some bigger than others. However, this blog post will reassure you that no matter the size of the giant, they all give you the chance to prove to yourself, just how strong you really are!

Continue reading “Facing Your Giants! Encouragement for how to be as confident & as bold as David, in defeating your life’s Goliath.”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Wellness & Positivity

“TIME, REST, BREATH” The important need to simply stop, rest, just be & breath!


A slogan to remind us esp when we are stressed out or having a manic time, that we also need to take time to stop, de-stress and calm our minds and bodies down!

Sometimes your body gives you NO choice in just stopping and needing to rest or just be still.

I learnt this the hard way in my early 20’s when I got ‘Chronic Fatigue Syndrome’ & later on the debilitating health condition ‘Fibromyalgia’ (read all about my story of getting ill by clicking HERE to open a new tab blog post all about it).

For others it’s when they are pregnant, ill, fatigued, recovering from an operation or medical treatment etc – that they discover the concept of having no choice but to listen to their body and STOP! Along with that, is the discovery of the need for resting and the importance of just being still to aid recovery.

Give yourself time to just be and not do!

Continue reading ““TIME, REST, BREATH” The important need to simply stop, rest, just be & breath!”


Top Choices for Reusable Coffee Cups! How to cut single-use plastics & enjoy your coffee the environmentally friendly & non toxic way…

When it comes to coffee I’m really not your girl – I dislike the smell and the taste! (Sorry, not sorry!) However, when it comes to changing your habits of using plastic cups, lids and other non-biodegradable materials and not knowing how or where to find natural alternatives – I am most certainly your girl for the job!
So I made this handy comparison list for reusable cups, flasks, and bottles for your hot drinks on the go.

Here are some top choices when you’re looking for a reusable coffee cup for you or your loved ones, to reduce the use of single-use plastics:

Continue reading “Top Choices for Reusable Coffee Cups! How to cut single-use plastics & enjoy your coffee the environmentally friendly & non toxic way…”


“We are Woman!” A poem & a celebratory post about the power of a woman (Esp the single & childless woman)!

This week marked ‘International Women’s Day’ & ‘Mother’s Day’ ~ Day’s for celebrating all things woman!

A lot of people concentrate on the wonderful job we have of carrying human life form inside us, being a mother, a life-giver, a wife, a homemaker etc. However, if you are single and childless do not feel any less of a woman or feel uncelebrated, unrecognised or insignificant!  These days ARE for you too!!

I decided to write a poem to encourage those of us who are single and childless to still embrace days we feel highlight our ‘don’t have’s’ and instead celebrate all that we do have – after all we still have the power of being a woman! 😉

Continue reading ““We are Woman!” A poem & a celebratory post about the power of a woman (Esp the single & childless woman)!”


“WHO IS THE PERSON BEHIND THE KEYBOARD?” Interviewing Helen’s Journey as she is nominated for the ‘Liebster Award 2018’

Within the blogging world are ‘Blogger Awards’ awarded by fellow bloggers as they wish to know more about you.

This is because with most of these awards the person nominating you gets to ask you any questions they would like you to answer to get a better insight into who you are.

“I enjoy receiving these awards as it gives me a chance to open up and let my readers see more of the person I am away from my keypad.”

– Helen’s Journey

I was recently nominated for the ‘Liebster Award 2018’ by Terez Erickson from her blog ‘Inspire Me’ – we connected via Facebook blogger groups. (Click on her name to go and read her post in which she nominated me)

The Liebster Award was created by The Global Aussie in 2011 and is given to a favored blogger by another blogger as an expression of endearment and appreciation. Liebster in German means:’ sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome’. I know right, what a lovely list of attributes to have someone nominate you for representing!

helens journey nominated for Liebster Award 2018. 11 question get to know me interview

11 Questions to get to know the person behind Helen’s Journey better!


Here are my answers to the 11 questions Terez asked me all about myself:

1. When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?

When I was a kid I didn’t have a dream job in mind like most such as a teacher or a nurse etc. My natural yearning was to be a mother and have children to look after. At first it was my dolls but then when I was 6 my mom gave birth to my little brother. How chuffed was I to have my own live doll to look after! lol. I help my mom do everything with him – bath, bottles, nappies, the works. I literally carried him around with me EVERYWHERE!!! (fond memories)


2. What three adjectives best describe your personality?

Caring, Compassionate & creative! (It was a toss-up between compassionate and crazy to be honest!)


3. What was a fear you conquered?

When I was younger it was doing the hardest black runs when skiing. Being at the top and peering over the edge when it looks so steep and actually pushing yourself over the edge, setting off into the unknown… was a bit scary lol!


4. If you were a Looney Tunes character which would you be?

Tweedy Pie – fluttering my eyelashes but behind the blue eyes I have a cheeky side 😉


5. What is something that you never told anyone about you?

Erm… I don’t think I’ve told you all how much I love fancy dress? I’ve been to fancy dress parties as: Cher, Lady Gaga, Snow White, representing India in a sari at a Countries from around the world theme party, A school girl, fame… told you I love it! haha! But hey my drama degree runs in my veins, I can’t help enjoying playing different characters & being in role 😉


6. What makes you smile every time you think about it?

My late Grandad Mac ❤ Thinking of him just warms my heart & makes me smile! Did you read the poem I wrote about him? It captures his essence to a T! (Click HERE to read it)


7. What is your greatest strength and greatest weakness?

I think they are the same thing – my kindness! If you need help & I can help you I will. But certain people in my past have taken my kindness for weakness as I find it hard to not help you when you ask for it , even if you have done me a wrong or not treated me nicely.

I had to find the balance between Christian duty to help and the right not to be used and having the ability to say no without guilt. I mastered this in September 2017 & had a healthy cut of the unhealthy people in my life – Thank the Lord I finally did, as 1 month later in October 2017 I started blogging!!


8. If you could live one day of your life over which would it be and why?

Maybe the day I graduated. Not because it was the best day ever or anything so I’d love to experience it again, but to do my photographs again as I don’t like them. Sounds vain, but it’s because I was suffering from Post Viral Fatigue after the mumps which started my whole health demise saga.

I look so tired, drained and basically ill on the photos. After using all my energy on the long day of standing in ques and sitting for so long as all the names were called out – I was exhausted! So much so, I didn’t even smile properly on my photos let alone smile with the pride I feet for completing the 3 years it took to get it.

I’m so proud of my 2:1 Bachelor of the Arts Degree because of the hard work & commitment it took to get it – but I really don’t feel like that this isn’t captured in my graduation photos! Haha *cue us all singing the song “You’re so vain” like were on stage with Carly Simon & Taylor Swift ;-)*


9. What quality do you like most in other people?

A kind heart. You know when you speak nicely to waiting staff, you speak respectfully to people who are doing jobs to help like dustbin collectors, cleaners etc. A heart that, even if they say no when a homeless person asks for money that they say it with a warm smile and not a look of disgust. Those things I was taught growing up and I still hold as important things to do as an adult and for others who may be watching too.

I remember coming out a shop with my nephew and a homeless person was sitting on the floor. So I smiled at them and said hello, asked them if they would like a pack of some of the crisps we had just brought and handed them over. After they said thank you and I said “no problem, take care, bye” my nephew who was about 4 at the time joined in as we walked away and said “bye” to them too – it warmed my heart! ❤


10. Would you rather be breathtakingly beautiful, charmingly witty, or angelically good?

Charmingly witty! Looks fade, I wouldn’t be able to drink any cocktails if I was angelically good. But my humour that brings me smiles and laughs daily – even if I’m laughing at myself 😉

quote from helen's journey blog about receiving blogger awards as she is awarded the liebster award 2018


Here are my 11 Questions for my nominees: (I think they will make you realise why I was considering ‘crazy’ as an adjective to describe myself)

  1. One of my favourite UK Garage tunes has the lyrics “I’ll bring you flowers in the pouring rain” (click on the lyrics to open up the song in a new window to have a sing-song ;-)) Which type of flower that represents you, would you choose to bring me on a rainy day and why?
  2. Tell us about your most treasured item in life!
  3. If blogs had to have a theme tune that played every time people came onto your website – which song would you choose?
  4. If you were limited to only reading one genre of blogs, what would you choose? (ie: lifestyle blogs / beauty blogs / fashion blogs / food blogs, etc)
  5. If you had to choose a holiday destination that best summed up your blog, where would it be and why?
  6. Who or what inspired you to start a blog?
  7. If you had to only watch the same programme over and over again in life – what would you choose?
  8. Choose three words to describe yourself – one word for reflecting your mind, one reflecting your body and one reflecting your soul!
  9. If you had to make a personalised cocktail for your blog, what would you call it and what would be its ingredients?
  10. if in the end times, the big brother style government limited you to using only one social media app – which one would you choose to keep and why?
  11. I’m currently growing my hair for The Princess Trust charity that uses hair donations to make wigs for children with hair loss from cancer. What’s the best thing you’ve ever done for charity? Or would love to do for charity in the future?


The bloggers I am nominating for this award are some new or new’ish’ bloggers to get their blogs seen by a wider audience. Some others aren’t new bloggers but ones I wanted to know more about through them answering my questions:

Still want to know more about the lady behind the words?

Then why not read my other award nomination blogs where I’m asked more questions & have to list 3 things about myself to share with readers (click on each award to open blog post in a new tab):

Helen’s Journey wins The Mystery Blogger Award #1

Helen’s Journey wins The Sunshine Blogger Award #1


get to know me interview with helens journey as she wins the Liebster award 2018

To keep up to date on new posts by Helen’s Journey, here are ways you can follow my journey by blog & social media:

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Chronic Illness

What I’ve Learnt from over a Decade with Chronic Illness! Top 5 Life Lessons Fibromyalgia has taught me!

A reflection I am writing as I am undergoing treatment:

As I type this, I’m currently on a hospital bed receiving treatment for the chronic illness I’ve had for just over 11 years. As I am laying here with an IV drip going into my hand pumping anaesthetic around my body to try to numb my nervous system down, I find myself reflecting on the life lessons chronic illness has brought along with it…

  • You never know what’s around the corner.
  • You find out who is willing to make the effort for you, when you are simply unable to do it back.
  • There is a big difference between being alive and actually living.
  • Life comes down to love.
  • There is always a way to do it or an alternative.
  • You find out what your passion is when you can’t do it any longer.
  • You discover your core relationships.
  • The power of the mind and destructive thinking.
  • The danger of owning your diagnoses.

I could really let my fingers carry on and list a thousand things, esp as I’m on this IV drip for a few hours…but I’ll only pick a few from this list to explain in more depth:

Continue reading “What I’ve Learnt from over a Decade with Chronic Illness! Top 5 Life Lessons Fibromyalgia has taught me!”