Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE

Love and Marriage – a reflection on my Grandparents 70th wedding anniversary!

As the title of this blog gives away, today is my Nan & Grandad’s Wedding Anniversary, so close to celebrating 70 years together but unfortunately she died 11 weeks ago now. However, this post is one of celebration, reflection and appreciation and of love not of loss.

What a blessing it is in life to find love, marry, have children and stay together to watch your children have children and then some of your grandchildren have children! 💞 Yet, I ponder, do some people take this chance in life for granted as if love, marriage and actually staying married, is a guaranteed part of life?

cONTINUE READING
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Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE, Spiritual Life, Wellness & Positivity

Spring: How to enjoy a season of renewed hope, new possibilities and a fresh perspective

The promise of a future, that the blooming flowers of Spring, reminds us of!

So here we are, it is officially Springtime. Although Spring doesn’t start until March, I had been noticing little signs of Spring throughout the last part of February with more sunshine, fresh shoots springing up from the ground and buds appearing on plants and trees.

the promise of a future that blooming spring flowers reminds us of. blog post all about spring's message of hope by Helen's Journey www.helensjourney.com

Just look at the photo above, there is such a stark juxtaposition between Autumn/Winter and Spring/Summer. We have the hard, cold, solid soil – representing the harsh cold winter we have just got through. Then we see the flowers that were still able to grow and push through this soil with perseverance and determination to push upwards towards the light.

We are those daffodil bulbs that were buried in the cold, harsh winter months – maybe hibernating in the warm or suffering from the Winter blues. Yet, seeing those fresh daffodil shoots appear from empty looking soil, is a reminder that no matter how hard life has got, there is always a renewal of hope for better.

Read more life lessons from spring
Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE, Wellness & Positivity

The dangers of Tunnel Vision and how to break down the walls to widen your perspective in life

The dangers of having ‘Tunnel Vision’ in life:

Sometimes in life when we feel overwhelmed by it all, we can have tunnel vision because the thing that is overwhelming us, is all we can think about & see ahead… 🚇However, if we looked outside the tunnel we could see the bigger picture!

How ‘Tunnel Vision’ restricts your perspective in life:

Just like in the photo I snapped used on this post; by not having tunnel vision, we also get to see the bigger picture surrounding the tunnel not just the limited views from inside the tunnel.

Continue reading “The dangers of Tunnel Vision and how to break down the walls to widen your perspective in life”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Spiritual Life, Wellness & Positivity

Survival Tips for when life feels overwhelming!

Life at times can seem to be in a whirlwind with so many things happening all at once. When life is like this it is no wonder we can feel swept off our feet and spinning like we are in the tornado with Dorothy and Toto in ‘The Wizard of Oz’. However, my following survival guide for getting through these times of severe weather suggests: to take the journey step by step, get things done bit by bit and get through what is ahead day by day!

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. “

Bible Verse: Matthew 6: verse 34 (NIV NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION)

Continue reading “Survival Tips for when life feels overwhelming!”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, CHRISTMAS, POEMS

“CHRISTMAS CHEER” A Christmas Acrostic Poem encapsulating the Christmas Season.

A Christmas Poem encapsulating the beauty of the Christmas Season and all its traditions:

Happy Christmas to all my readers!

I decided to write a poem to try to encapsulate the beautiful atmosphere of Christmas time and all the things that work together to make it a special time of year. So, I chose the word ‘CHRISTMAS CHEER’ to use in an acrostic poem – enjoy…

Continue reading ““CHRISTMAS CHEER” A Christmas Acrostic Poem encapsulating the Christmas Season.”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Wellness & Positivity

The Power of THANKFULNESS! Top Tips for logging GRATITUDE, to bring more happiness & inner peace into your life, through the joy of gratefulness! (Including a FREE Printable: WEEKLY GRATITUDE DIARY!)

The Power of THANKFULNESS & Top Tips for logging GRATITUDE.

Including a WEEKLY GRATITUDE DIARY free printable, as my gratitude gift for my readers!

Here we are again, it’s that time of year full of events that make everyone stop in their tracks and actually think about what they are thankful for. Nearly everyone enjoys Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day & New Year’s Eve and not just for the food and festivities! Whether you know it or not, it’s also because of the high that thankfulness and acknowledging gratitude, can bring during this time of year too.

Let’s discover more about this together and then at the end of the blog, I will give you tips and tricks on how you can incorporate the ‘power of thankfulness into your everyday life not just on specific days like Thanksgiving and Christmas Time. I will also give each reader A FREE PRINTABLE ‘WEEKLY GRATITUDE DIARY’ SHEETas my gratitude gift just for you!! 😉

Continue reading “The Power of THANKFULNESS! Top Tips for logging GRATITUDE, to bring more happiness & inner peace into your life, through the joy of gratefulness! (Including a FREE Printable: WEEKLY GRATITUDE DIARY!)”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE

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!”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE

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

“SHORT HAIR DON’T CARE” to           “LONG HAIR COZ I CARE”

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”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Chronic Illness

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

Fibro-My-What?

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.”

www.fibromyalgia-associationuk.org

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”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE

‘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/helensjourney.com
“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, LIFE, POEMS

“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)!”

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!”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, Wellness & Positivity

HOW TO GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK when life makes you HARD ON YOURSELF! A free printable Affirmation, to encourage Self-Love, Forgiveness & Letting Go.

This post also includes a free printable affirmation, to encourage self-love, forgiveness & letting go…

 

How negativity can affect your health and mental health:

Being too hard on ourselves has damaging effects, not only on our mental health but also our physical health too. It is scientifically proven that negative thinking and negative thoughts worsen a person’s health, lowers immunity and affects the brains function. Chronic stress, worry and negative emotions can unbalance our hormones and the brain needs a certain level of specific hormones to create the feeling of ‘happiness’.

That is why ‘self-love’ or ‘being kind to yourself’ is sooooooooo important in life, esp when you are already in ill-health or struggle mentally with issues of self or low mood.

Continue reading “HOW TO GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK when life makes you HARD ON YOURSELF! A free printable Affirmation, to encourage Self-Love, Forgiveness & Letting Go.”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE

Deaths reminder to treasure loved ones & work towards the legacy you’ll leave behind…

This blog is a gentle prompt to enjoy time with your loved ones, making precious memories and treasuring having them in your life. Hold them close and be grateful for all the blessings they bring and the challenges they bring also – as they both make an impact on your life. Generally treasure the people you spend the most time with and all those that make contact with you just to say “Hello, how are you?”.

Today’s reflection is one of importance, to TREASURING YOUR LOVED ONES and work towards YOUR LEGACY that you will leave behind!

Continue reading “Deaths reminder to treasure loved ones & work towards the legacy you’ll leave behind…”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE

Be ORGANISED & FOCUSED in life, with these TOP 3 ITEMS to keep you on track!

As I type this post another new year is fast approaching. My thoughts go towards a sense of preparation and planning, as most people do at this time of year when we start setting ourselves New Year Resolutions and goals for the new year ahead.

However, if you have an overactive and creative mind like mine, your thoughts can run away with themselves and you end up feeling confused, overwhelmed and like you can’t even remember everything that you just spent ages thinking about as there is just too much of it! *AND BREATHE!*

So the best way I find to get the lists and ideas out of my brain is to write them down and log them in some way. To do this, as I am in my season of preparation for the future, I have got 3 items to help get me organised and focused:

Continue reading “Be ORGANISED & FOCUSED in life, with these TOP 3 ITEMS to keep you on track!”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, CHRISTMAS

Remembering the REASON for the SEASON! A short Christmas Day Reflection

“Remembering the ‘Reason for the Season’!”

The big day is finally here; CHRISTMAS DAY 2017! Today’s chosen image is 1 from my childhood Church:

reason for the season christmas reflection

As you can see I perfectly positioned the camera to get the altar & cross wall hanging in the photo along with the Christmas Tree. For me, it is the perfect reminder of the reason we even celebrate Christmas! Although not the official date of Jesus’ birth (Yeshua (ישוע) in original Hebrew text) and also pagan origins of using evergreen fir trees that aren’t linked to this – it is what Christmas Time and the symbol of a Christmas Tree has meant for the generations of people alive today.

As I look at it, I see the Christmas tree representing the commercial side of Christmas, the presents, the tv toy commercials etc. Yet, I also see it as a communal point:

  • Where people gather around, as well as presents.
  • Families going out and choosing their tree together.
  • A group of people all decorating a tree together as a joint experience.
  • Children gathered underneath the tree on Christmas morning ripping open their presents.

Then in stark contrast in the distance you will see the beautiful and majestic altar and cross wall hanging. The cross representing the reason we even celebrate Christmas today – as Christmas is the start of the story with Jesus being born and the cross where he died representing the very act in which he was born to do.

I see the two being placed close together as a reminder to still put Jesus into Christmas;

  • The many children dressing up and reenacting the nativity story in their school plays.
  • Saying or writing CHRISTmas not Xmas which was designed to cross Christ out of Christmas, which is ironic as in the end it’s all about a cross anyways lol.
  • Choosing Christian Christmas Cards that have pictures of the nativity story on such as  the stable, wise men, shepherds, angels, the star, pregnant mary on the donkey etc.
  • Going to Church on Christmas morning or midnight Mass on Christmas Eve night.

Even if you don’t identify as being a Christian, remembering the reason for the season is for you also. For, if you believe it’s only a story then what an inspiring story to acknowledge and remember!

  • It is full of hope, wonder and amazement.
  • It has got community spirit from the shepherds.
  • Astrology and present giving from the wise men.
  • Spiritual support from angels and the spiritual realm.
  • A love so strong that Joseph sticks around to marry and look after Mary even though she’s pregnant & he didn’t take part in physically making it with Mary.
  • Strangers helping strangers in need out with stay in a free stable.
  • The hopes and dreams of all this baby would grow up to be and the responsibility on his shoulders from birth because of his fate to come….

What a story to remember this Christmas time! So please join me in remembering THE REASON FOR THE SEASON! ❤

Click here for the whole CHRISTMAS REFLECTIONS COLLECTION to have a quick read of them & they are all relevant to make this the BEST CHRISTMAS DAY ever, with perspective, clarity and a joyful heart

Or see below for a list of all my short reflections & click on the title you’d like to read:

 “DON’T GET YOUR TINSEL IN A TANGLE

PRESENCE over PRESENTS

 “LIFE is FRAGILE like a Christmas Ornament”

“Trying to stay STABLE while we celebrate the Stable”

“Even Sand can STAND, when it is designed to fall!”

“Remember the small stuff”

“Keep OLD Traditions but don’t forget to make NEW ones!” 

Each days chosen Christmas photograph will also be shared on my INSTAGRAM  and my PINTEREST accounts too, so click the links and keep up to date with my Christmas Picture CHEER 😉 

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

Bloglovin Google+ / Instagram / Twitter / Pinterest / StumbleUpon

Facebook Fibromyalgia & Chronic Illness Awareness & Support Group

Email Mailing List

Posted in ALL BLOGS, CHRISTMAS

“Keep OLD Traditions but don’t forget to make NEW ones!” Day 10 of 12 Days of CHRISTMAS REFLECTIONS with HELEN’S JOURNEY 

Welcome to another of my ‘Christmas Reflections’, inspired by my own Christmas Photographs.

So today’s countdown is 2 days until we wake up on Christmas Morning. Yes only this weekend to go! This excitement is a lift for some who sail high on the Christmas Spirit, yet a drag for others who have so much to do they wish it was two weeks left before the big day not two days!

However it makes you feel, I invite you to join me each day this Christmas season, as I share daily Christmas Reflections and of course one of my accompanying Christmas Photos that helped inspire the reflections! (I just love taking photos & sharing pictures lol)

Today’s image brings the Christmas reflection of keeping old traditions but not forgetting to make new ones! As it shows my old angel and my new one:

old traditions v new traditions by helens journey
Now we all have our own Christmas Traditions when the Christmas season is here once again. Whether it’s the decorations, whats on the dinner menu, or whose job it is to wake the grandparents up from their naps as we are impatiently waiting for them to wake up so we can open up our presents 😉

Even when it comes to our Christmas Trees; there are some that cant wait to get it up and put it up before December even arrives, while others stick to the tradition of putting the tree up 12 days before Christmas. Then there is the traditions of who decorates it and how, if you stick to a colour scheme and specific design or just put things on however and wherever you feel like it.

One of the biggies in our house growing up was whose homemade angel was going to go on the top of the tree and who would put it up there as the last decoration to go on.

Now I made mine when I was 5 years old, as I’m sure you can tell by looking at it, so it sure took a battering over the next 25 years as it continued to take its turn on top of the tree. It is now retired from tree topping duty and is in my memory box resting its wings.

christmas angel made by helens journey aged 5

However, now living separately from my family home, the big decision was: Would I rigidly stick to tradition and place my very aged angel on top of my own tree?

While the angel rotation tradition was enjoyable and that is what I fondly think of when I look at my angel, I had to make the decision to start a new tradition and replace it with a modern angel and certainly a much younger model 😉

As you can see from the picture of the angel I made when I was 5, the years have taken its toll on it and the aging process like for ourselves defiantly shows – with malting hair and a hunched over back.

Well if you’re bending over backwards to stick to old traditions that have you breaking your back to do them the old way, even though they stress you out as the old ways just aren’t practical anymore – then maybe its time to replace them with new traditions?! Sometimes change is the best way forward… “Out with the OLD and in with the NEW!”

Please join me for tomorrows CHRISTMAS REFLECTION

Each days chosen Christmas picture will also be shared on my INSTAGRAM  and my PINTEREST accounts too, so click the links and keep up to date with my Christmas Picture CHEER 😉 

Dont worry if you missed earlier reflections as you can click on them below to have a quick read of them: 

Day 1: “DON’T GET YOUR TINSEL IN A TANGLE

Day 2: “PRESENCE over PRESENTS

Day 3: “LIFE is FRAGILE like a Christmas Ornament”

Day 4:“Even Sand can STAND, when it is designed to fall!”

Day 6:“Trying to stay STABLE, while we celebrate the Stable” 

Day 7:“Remember the small stuff”

pinterest keep old traditions and make new ones by helens journey

Posted in ALL BLOGS, CHRISTMAS

“Remember the small stuff” Day 7 of 12 Days of CHRISTMAS REFLECTIONS with HELEN’S JOURNEY 

So todays countdown is 6 days until we wave in Christmas Day. For some half the fun is counting down the days, in contrast others may find counting down the days really isn’t a fun activity.

However it makes you feel, I invite you to join me each of the 12 days till Christmas, as I share daily Christmas Reflections and of course an accompanying Christmas image! (I just love taking photos & sharing pictures lol)

Today’s chosen image is of a giant Ferrero Rocher:

25578914_1410065652435086_2111142109_o

I’m not sure the photo does it justice, it really was super sized! But is bigger always better?

Some strive for the biggest christmas ever each year. They spend so much time and energy on making things super sized and making them amazing for people to look at and experience.

Sometimes the phase “Good things come in small packages” is true. It’s the small touches that will stand out to people. So even though you may be going all out to create a Christmas extravaganza, which is totally up to you but id say pay attention to the small things too – as they often touch people the most and what they will pass on to others.

Lets remember the importance of smallness amongst this big Christmas season!

Please join me tomorrow for Day 7 of 12 Days of CHRISTMAS REFLECTIONS

Dont worry if you missed earlier reflections as you can click on them below to have a quick read of them: 

Day 1: “DON’T GET YOUR TINSEL IN A TANGLE

Day 2: “PRESENCE over PRESENTS

Day 3: “LIFE is FRAGILE like a Christmas Ornament”

Day 4: “Even Sand can STAND, when it is designed to fall!”

Day 6: “Trying to stay STABLE, while we celebrate the Stable”

Each days chosen Christmas picture will also be shared on my INSTAGRAM  and my PINTEREST accounts too, so click the links and keep up to date with my Christmas Picture CHEER 😉