June 30: Didn’t that go fast?


Clear blue skies today and …


… the moon tonight. It will be a full moon in two days

Leo took this shot of the moon. I hope the skies are as clear on Thursday when it’s full. Loves me a good fullmaaaaoooooooon, I does! 🙂

Will keep this post short today. It was wonderfully warm and sunny, unfortunately a bit too hot for the work Pastora and I did – counting all the karate clothes and moving boxes and things while making the inventory. I rode straight home and jumped in the pool.

Still feel like a kid at Christmas on the bike, even if I was overtaken by an electric bicycle on the flat. (I keep telling myself the man had longer legs than me.) My niece suggested the bike should be named Brad, but I already have a Brad in my life and I’m well and truly over him. So far Bruce is still the leader (not hard seeing as Brad was the only suggestion!).

One of the two new plants, which I promised to mention today, has me stumped. The Celosia venezuela was easy to find because of its magenta prongs, but the second has me baffled. It’s quite tall and could possibly be another Campanula variety? The flowers are a beautiful blue and have very obvious petals. Any takers?


New plant number one – Celosia venezuela – the magenta spiky one in front of the lavender


And do you think this is another Campanula variety?

Can’t believe half the year has gone! How would you rate the first half of this year? I’m pretty happy with how it’s gone so far and hope you are too (and hopefully I’ll be struck by ‘exercise lightning’ tomorrow and be back on the bandwagon for the next six months!).

What will I do on December 31? I can’t very well keep a blog titled fitfor15in15 when it’s no longer 2015, can I?! Should have thought about that a bit harder.

I haven’t mentioned the I Quit Sugar program for a few days because I find it boring talking about food, but it’s going well (not perfect) and I’m really watching what goes in. As hot as it was today, I resisted the temptation for ice cream! That’s a win.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

June 29: Zoom zoom zoom!

The new bike, known in Switzerland as a Töffli (which I spelled incorrectly yesterday), proved to be a worthy stallion this morning and afternoon.

It takes 30 minutes to ride to work, which shaves 20 minutes off my commute time. I park at the top of those mega-steep steps, so I still get a bit of a workout. Maybe I should make a new goal to be able to run up those steps non-stop (at the moment, walking them without stopping would be a win!).

The wind was cool, the light was gloomy but the Alps were visible through the clouds, the seat was comfortable, the fumes weren’t too overwhelming and I just loved the buzz and hum of the straining engine.

Leo is slightly amused by my excitement over something that 14-year-old kids are allowed to ride to school. We also think there’s a rule here, that if you’ve lost your driver’s licence, you can still ride a Töffli. So maybe people will see me and think I’m a teenager, or a lawbreaker. I’m fine with either.

On the way home, I stopped at the shops, because I can do that now 🙂 and bought two plants to fill some holes in my garden layout, and some laundry liquid. They all fit wonderfully in that fetching plastic green basket on the back. If you missed it yesterday, here’s another angle 🙂


I’m also particularly fond of the muffler rust, as you can tell

I overtook a few bicycles and was overtaken by everything else. There’s a long slow hill on the way into town, where I felt like running beside the bike to help with the speed, and on the way home, I was worried about the motor blowing up. S/he was flying down the hill!

Which brings me to my reader request. I think the bike needs a name. I’m quite partial to Bruce, because it’s old-fashioned and reliable. Very apt.

Do you have any suggestions for this gallant steed? Should it be male or female? I’m open to all suggestions. The bike make/brand is Alpina, s/he was born in 1983.

It’s been a day of good fortune today. This afternoon we discovered a loop hole in an electronics company’s advertisement. It said you could take all your working Apple smartphones and tablets back to them to recycle and you would receive money towards ‘Apple products’. What the advert failed to clearly state was it had to be another Apple smartphone or tablet, as if you were doing an upgrade.

So with a little bit of hassle we managed to make our point that even though one part of the ad said swap old for new, it didn’t actually say the new had to be a phone or tablet. Just an Apple product. I’m now the proud owner of a new wireless computer mouse, a green iPod Nano to carry when running (it has a workout app as well) and a CHF50 iTunes voucher. All for the grand sum of CHF16.

What’s also brilliant is we have now Kondo’d our electronics! We took in two iPhone3s (neither worked so we didn’t get any money), an iPhone4, my dead iPhone5 from earlier in the year (again, no money) and my old iPad. I have been wanting to get rid of those electronics and all the associated cables for a very long time. Clean drawer! Relief!

On that note, it’s time for bed. Tomorrow I’ll take photos of the two new plants – forgot to do that – as my 30-Day Challenge (which is sporadic at best!) continues.

I look forward to reading your bike name suggestions! 🙂

Wishing you a wonderful day.

June 27 and 28: Weekend wrap

Saturday and Sunday served up plenty of sunshine so we made the most of it by being outdoors.

Saturday we worked in the garden and I did some small things around our house and Liliane and Rene’s too. Even though we’d spent the previous evening at dinner together, we all joined forces again in the afternoon for cards and dinner around the pool (for the first time ever, I didn’t lose a game!). I still find it so amazing to only turn the lantern on at 10.30pm.

Today there was an airshow in a neighbouring suburb, so we all stood in the garden and gawped at the heavens, watching the nine small planes do all their spectacular stunts. A forest blocked some of the view, over the Wohlensee, but all the loop-the-loops and high-up action kept us entertained for 20 minutes, and then they just all flew away again. It was almost sad – the way they couldn’t even wave goodbye!

We walked to Lotti’s house for her birthday gathering this afternoon, a good 40-minute wander in the sunshine on the path that I only ‘discovered’ earlier this year, that’s directly behind the house. Once home, a quick dip in the pool and a play on my new toy (see the last photo), ready for tomorrow’s commute to work, and two episodes of House of Cards wrapped it up.

Overall, it was a very social weekend, with maybe not the right sorts of foods consumed (Lotti’s birthday cake and a few other small sweeties) and not enough exercise completed to counteract the beer calories consumed, but wonderful fun.

In case you missed my post from yesterday, please click here to read the latest guest contribution to fitfor15in15, from personal trainer Richard Wheeler. He has some excellent tips, which I will be taking on board, for (re)starting your fitness!

Signing off with a mixture of photos from the week. Some wouldn’t load a few days ago, but most are from this weekend.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

Break it down by Richard Wheeler

This is the sixth guest post in the fitfor15in15 series designed to show the pleasant impact that feeling fit, in all its forms, can have on your life. Richard ‘Tricky’ Wheeler knows firsthand how tough the fitness road is when you’re first setting out. His practical method for achieving goals – breaking a two month period into two-week blocks – could be the kick-start you need. Take it away Tricky!

Break it down by Richard Wheeler (Personal Trainer in Sydney, Australia and lover of a good book*)


Tricky gives the bag what for

I wasn’t always a Personal Trainer. I wasn’t always fit and healthy. I wasn’t always interested in things like health, wellbeing, longevity and looking the best I can in just a pair of underpants.

I’ve heard it said that inside every fat person there is a thin person trying to get out. Taken as a metaphor, I think this displays a lack of understanding of what causes some people to indulge in such a way that we end up fat. Taken more literally, I think it’s just downright disturbing, but let’s not dwell on that.

I’ve known happy people of all shapes and sizes. I just wasn’t one, that’s all. When I was in my teens I was depressed and anxious. It was years before I really acknowledged this, but with the benefit of hindsight it’s blindingly obvious. I drank and partied a lot, because it seemed to make me feel better. By the time I got into my twenties I had not only established a pattern of behaviour, I had come to a number of hard-to-shake conclusions about myself, and the fundamental necessity of inebriation if I was to cope with life at all. I joined a gym at one point, and sometimes went swimming. I subscribed to that popular misconception that if you exercised a bit it somehow erased your misdeeds from history.

I’m proud to say I did manage to hold down a reasonably well-paid job. I just used most of my money to eat rich food, go out to pubs and clubs, and ensure that even a quiet night at home saw me downing at least a bottle of wine to myself. As I got a little older, in spite of the odd visit to the gym, my body decided it was time to outwardly manifest some of the damage I had been doing internally. I didn’t really notice straight away, but I started to see a fat person looking back at me from the mirror more and more in spite of my best attempts at self-delusion, and I realised I had to change.

I started to consider what I ate a lot more. I started going to the gym a lot more. I gave away the cigarettes, the alcohol, the partying, and, bit by bit, I changed. Please, as you read this, understand that what I just conveyed in one sentence was a multi-year project. If you try to do all those things at once, like you see a lot of people do at new year, chances are you’ll stick to it for a few days, then you’ll snap, go on a rampage and end up in a dumpster somewhere, clutching a cake in one hand and somebody’s pet Dachshund in the other.

Getting fit is about life outside of your comfort zone. It’s frequently a determined adhesion to the comfort zone that sees people pile on weight in the first place. I like to recommend to people that they pick one thing, and devote themselves to changing it for a couple of weeks, then move on to the next thing. For example, it’s important to look first at your diet. There’s no mileage in trying to work off a body you’re unhappy with through exercise if you’re trying to fuel the activity with doughnuts and crack. I like to encourage people to break down the next two months of their lives into two-week blocks.

In the first two weeks: Rid your house of junk food, buy in things from the fresh section of your supermarket, create a schedule that will allow you to prepare food ahead of time, so you’re never making food choices whilst starving hungry (guaranteed you will pick something high fat and high sugar). Have recipes to hand for things like stir fries, which are quick and easy but still tasty. Have snack foods available that are nutritious but still interesting to you. Personally, I make a lot of dips, because they stop carrot sticks being so f’ing boring.

In the second two weeks: Go out walking. Walk for a minimum of half an hour every day, and do it at a pace that you could carry on a normal conversation, but it would be broken into weird bursts of a couple of syllables. I once took a phone call while out on just such a walk and the person on the other end thought I was pleasuring myself because of the way I was breathing. If you try to talk and you sound like a telephone masturbator, you’re going about it right. I also encourage you to try to increase your incidental exercise during this time – get off the bus a stop early, take the stairs, not the lift, park on the far side of the car park, or whatever you can think of.

In the third two weeks: Start to incorporate some simple bodyweight exercises into your daily routine. Three times a week, do three sets of pushups and three sets of squats. It can be that simple in the beginning and you will see results. To decide how many pushups you should do in each set, I recommend doing as many as you can, then taking that number and calculating 80% of it. That is the number you will shoot for in each of your three sets. For example, if you can do 10 pushups and 20 squats, you will do three sets of eight pushups, and three sets of 16 squats. Rest for a minute in between sets.

In the fourth two weeks: Begin to consider the future. Going for a walk is something I will always like, because I find it fulfilling, calming, and still a great way to stay in control of my weight. However, a life of going out walking every night because you have to, plus doing ever more pushups and squats on your living room rug might seem like an unfulfilling way to get fitter. I take your point.

I have been a Personal Trainer since 2008, and there has been one thing during that time that has constantly amazed me more than anything else I came across in the industry. People would frequently show up at the gym who had absolutely no interest in lifting weights, running on a treadmill, doing classes, or anything else. They wanted the results, so they’d gone out and joined up with only the results in mind.

Imagine that your goal is to drop a little weight and maybe put on some lean muscle (unless this actually is your goal, in which case don’t imagine it, simply reflect on it). The fastest way to do this might be to combine a weights program with some sprints on the treadmill or rower, but if you absolutely hate lifting weights and running, you’re unlikely to stick with it, no matter how much you want the results. Consider something you might actually like to do instead, like a kickboxing class, or swimming, swing dancing, volleyball or yoga. There are hundreds of different choices out there, and whilst they might not all represent the fastest path to your goals, chances are they represent a path you will actually stick to, which means that in the long run, you will be more likely to get that lean muscle and weight-drop.

Getting fit and staying fit is all about finding a process you love, and doing it for the love of doing it. One of the fittest people I have ever met has no interest in fitness activity at all – he says it bores him senseless. He is, however, passionate about surfing and rock climbing, and he does them just because he thinks they’re a lot of fun. He stays lean, fit, strong and cheerful as a result.

These days I’m pretty damn happy most of the time. I have bad days, but the good days outweigh them massively. I enjoy going to the gym, or going out running. I discovered a love of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, which I hope to return to very soon. I won’t be a Personal Trainer forever, there are too many in the world, but it’s been an amazing ride!

* How Tricky and I know each other is a classic story. On Facebook, there is a section for favourite books. One of mine is Allan Sillitoe’s Saturday Night and Sunday Morning. In January 2008, Tricky contacted me via Facebook because it’s one of his favourites too. “… in a network of over one and a half million people, we are the only people who have it in our books list. That seems kind of wrong. Alan Sillitoe is a genius, and a sadly forgotten one.” Tricky went on to say no need to reply, he won’t contact me again, he just wanted to say it was cool that I liked the book too. Of course, I wrote back – if you love a book, you want to talk about it. Turns out we both lived in Sydney (even though he is English), both worked in television and had both worked in Camden, London, for different television companies. Too many coincidences to ignore! So we met up for a beer and have been mates ever since!

June 26: Feast or famish

Sorry I didn’t post this yesterday … busy having fun again!


This is the photo I mentioned previously where the tractor driver stopped. I thought he was going to get mad at me for taking a photo, but he just wanted to talk about the good weather!

I’ve been forgetting/don’t have time in the mornings to make my breakfasts for the I Quit Sugar program, so for the past week I’ve been making do with a tub of natural yoghurt and a small sunflower seed bread roll on my walk to work.

At CHF2 from the supermarket, it’s not too hard on the wallet but it’s lacking in thrills. So tonight, after a good morning putting together an inventory of karate clothes at work with Pastora, and a few quick beers together at Cafe Pyrennes afterwards (fast becoming our Friday ‘welcome to the weekend’ ritual!), I was really, really looking forward to dinner with our neighbours and their friends at a nice restaurant in another village 10 minutes drive away.

A juicy steak promised plenty of song and dance but wasn’t all that entertaining – this time the Angus beef came from the property of one of the members of the Swiss band Yello (they had some big hits in the 90s, including Oh Yeah). Not really a smash hit this time ’round, despite plenty of veg to make it a feast, so our last meal there remains my favourite.

After dinner, Eve, Paul, Lotti and Fritz came back to sit around the pool with Liliane, Rene, Leo and I in the beautiful twilight (would be amazing to go walking in that light), and the men demolished (and yes, I am using this term with confidence) a bottle of Montenegro that Leo’s dad gave him for his birthday. We’re glad it’s gone! We don’t really drink hard spirits or liqueur at home, and the shelf in the lounge room is full. Maybe by putting the bottles on display, people think we enjoy it and they’re encouraged to buy more. Unfortunately, we don’t have anywhere else to store them, apart from the cellar. Hmm … there’s a thought! 🙂

One thing I’ve really missed with consuming less sugar these past three weeks is a glass of elderberry cordial. They love it here (it’s called Holunderbluten syrup). Feeling adventurous? You can make your own cordial here, if you have access to a tree, or if that’s not quite your style, how about elderflower wine?! Hic!

So my 30-Day challenge plant name for you today is the elder (Sambucus). We have many trees growing around the property, but I’ve never made the syrup!

Wishing you a wonderful day.


The Aare river running through Bern. I cross this bridge to go to work

June 25: Stress … and relax

As soon as the boss goes on holidays, everything falls in a heap, right?

My new boss went on holidays today so of course the email system failed and the website wouldn’t work. Handy, huh! By 4pm it had all been sorted out (hopefully), but I hated having to send Marko an email to say, “Um, do you know how to fix this?”

I met Claudia for lunch and we wandered around the Botanical Gardens. There’s a palm building, nice and humid, which I didn’t know existed. Love being surprised in your ‘home’ city. So many wonderful plants – I didn’t know vanilla, originally from Mexico, was part of the orchid family!

Here are two which stood out for me (as part of my 30-Day Challenge to learn more plant names) – the Acalypha hispida and Victoria cruziana. In the pond with the Santa Cruz water lily was a turtle that bites, or so the sign said. We saw some other turtles at the cafe, sunning themselves. So very sweet. I would load a photo but the computer is going soooo slow – not having much luck with technology today! Oh well!


Acalypha hispida – red hot cat’s tail or fox tail. The blooms were so soft


So peaceful, and impressive. Victoria cruziana, or Santa Cruz water lily

This morning on the walk to the bus, a spotted a great photo opportunity – clear Alps, a corn field and a tractor approaching; a true summation of my Swiss experience. After I took the photo, the driver of the tractor opened his door on approach, and I felt a bit nervous. Was he going to get mad at me for taking a photo? No, he just wanted to talk about how amazing the weather was and how clear the Alps had been at 6am. Very un-Swiss, and a wonderful surprise!

Tonight, Claudia and Dani came for dinner, and by surprise Liliane and Rene joined us as well, on the terrace. We had a great laugh and Leo and Dani smoked their obligatory cigars together. Very funny. We hadn’t seen C&D since New Years – we better not wait another six months til next time!

The Junikäfer were out in full force – amazing how many come out at dusk. They really are a force to be reckoned with and Boy, the dog, loves eating them. They must be packed with protein! And it was hilarious watching Leo trying to swat them away – he’s really not a fan of flying insects!

I’ve given up waiting on the other photos to load. I’ll add them in tomorrow! Night night.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

P.S In loving memory of an amazing Kiwi friend, Annie, who was beaten by the cancer demons tonight. She made a lasting impact. Words can’t really do her justice.

June 24: Mixed bag of goodies

I’m typing this again, because, for some reason, my original post went missing! Arrggghhhh! Not what you need at 11pm!

Didn’t fall asleep on the couch this afternoon, because I didn’t sit on it!

Came home from work, put on my daggy clothes and helped Rene in the garden. The two new front wheels for the lawnmower arrived last week, but the weather’s been terrible so no chance until today to put them to the test. Many trips to the compost were made, because the grass hadn’t been cut for two weeks (since I broke the front wheel).

After whipper-snippering around the edges, I finished off the mowing. Then I weeded around the garage (damn nettles!), dead-headed Liliane’s roses and the pots around the pool, and then I thought I’d have a rest. Sat on the terrace for two minutes and saw a plant which I really don’t like the look of, and never have, so I pulled it out. Then I had to give the soil a bit of a scratch to patch up the hole, then I thought I ‘mose well weed that garden bed too. Oh and why not my main garden bed as well, while I’m in the swing of things?! All up today, three hours in the garden and one hour of walking. Not too shabby.

I managed to snap a few pictures in Bern’s Botanical Gardens. After yesterday’s 30-Day Challenge plant name, my eye was drawn to another Allium strain, Allium fistulosum. In German it’s common name is Winterzwiebel, or winter onion. In English, it’s the Welsh onion. I thought the stems would smell oniony, but nothing.


The Welsh onion in Bern’s Botanical Gardens

Even though I really didn’t feel like it, I cooked another I Quit Sugar 8-Week Program dinner and finally flopped on the couch for two episodes of House of Cards. Didn’t eat a sweet thing all day! After 2.5 weeks of much less sugar than normal, I’m finding it easier and easier. The natural yoghurt for breakfast seems sweet enough. Never thought I’d say that! Berliner doughnuts were on special today in the supermarket – six for the price of four – and I walked straight past (while shooting daggers at the man who grabbed a packet so nonchalantly!)

All up, a nice mixed bag of goodies today. I hope you achieved too. And as always …

Wishing you a wonderful day.

June 23: Easy does it

After yesterday’s meltdown of gigglical proportions, I feel better – but not enough to actually do any exercise! Part of me thinks ‘start afresh on July 1’, another says ‘just start now and stop moaning’. I wanted to do more than walk to and from the bus today, but once again, I fell asleep on the couch for an hour this afternoon. I really don’t understand why I’m so tired? Probably because I’m not moving enough!

One thing I have taken on board from all the lovely comments and suggestions (thank you) is to take it easy. Not only with putting the wheels back on the wagon but with myself. Sometimes I can be a hard taskmaster and have to learn how to expect less to achieve more. Or does that sound self-defeating?! What I’m trying to say is baby steps chasing that carrot.

On the walk home from work I saw this wonderful hummingbird hawk-moth. I’ve only seen one twice before, in my garden, in three years. The first time, I was convinced it was a hummingbird! Ha! They’re amazing to watch, and incredibly hard to photograph well on a phone because they’re so fast.


The best of 15 attempts!

The light had a really nice glow to it this afternoon, after heavy rain overnight and this morning.


Chickens on the loose in Oberwohlen


Lovely colours at the farmhouse with the chicken run

Had a productive day today and I’m looking forward to going again tomorrow. Marko is on holidays from Thursday-Tuesday so I’m trying to soak up as much as possible in case orders come in while he’s away.

Kevin Spacey has been on my mind a lot lately, because I’m thoroughly enjoying him in the series House of Cards. Does any current actor have better facial expressions than his? He really conveys emotion so well with just the slightest lift of an eyebrow, a glance, a breath. I find him mesmerising!

It’s nice to immerse yourself in a television series now and then. We seem to be doing it quite a lot lately (to be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever watched so much television in my life!). But at least it’s quality, and without the dreaded commercials! The irony of that comment is I used to make those commercials! Bwahahahahahah.

I’ve fallen behind on my 30-Day Challenge, learning plant names, but I’ve found a new ally. The Dojo is very close to Bern’s Botanical Gardens, so I intend on spending time there tomorrow, pen in hand. But for now, how about some Allium shoenoprasum, or chives as they’re commonly known. I have some planted with the thyme and rosemary and love the purple flowers.

The I Quit Sugar program is going well, but perhaps that’s what’s making me so tired at the moment. I have been pretty good but tonight I couldn’t resist two small chocolates from one of Leo’s birthday presents. They were so small, wafer thin, I possibly couldn’t … say no.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

June 22: The wheels are falling off


Our house in the morning light


At long last, the Alps are visible again! Taken on the walk to the bus this morning

Ok, I’m going to be totally honest here. I haven’t done any exercise for a very long time. I’ll say that again, with em-PHA-sis, so I feel bad. A verrrry loooooong tiiiiime.

Walking to the bus and weeding the lawn for four days does not count (although I do think the lawn was the straw that ‘broke my back’, figuratively).

This blog is all about being fitfor15in15. Along with being mentally and nutritionally fit, I want to be physically fit with a minimum 15 minutes of EXERCISE a day. That was my mantra. That IS my mantra, but it’s all gone pear-shaped and I’m trying to work out why.

I’m surrounded by friends who are fit and healthy, who love to run or walk or go to yoga, and I know the benefits, yet I’m suffering from a severe lack of WTFC. Who The F*#$ Cares. I should care! I do care! So why is it so hard to actually get up and do it?

Freda from livesimplysimplylive has been totally succeeding in her 30-Day Challenge to do a ballet class every day for a month – she’s passed day 21! – plus, to top it off, she’s taking swimming lessons. I dip my hat to Freda for really sticking to her guns on this one. Some people love a challenge more than others and I’m in awe. I’m flailing!

Today should be Monday Runday. I came home from work (ahaha, how good does that sound) and had full intentions of putting on my sneakers. But first I sat on the couch. Then I lay on the couch. Then I fell asleep. Then Leo woke me up at 5.30pm. Oops.

Could it be a case of half-way mark burnout? In just over one week, it will be six months of fitfor15in15. I have no problem writing everyday (sorry for all the waffle) but for the past month I have had serious issues with actually exercising. Even for just 15 minutes. My brain says “neh”, which is a cross between “meh” and “nah”, so that just shows you. how. bad. I’ve. got. it.

It’s time to go back to the drawing board. It’s time to start again. There’s no shame in admitting a slight defeat – oh ok, a big defeat – and putting the wheels back on the cart. Or the donkey in front, instead of behind. Or a carrot in front of the donkey.

Light bulb moment! That’s it! I need a carrot … I’ve lost interest in my goals because they’ve been reached. Now that I’m happy with my weight, I’ve fallen for the age-old trap of becoming complacent. Why keep exercising when I’ve lost the weight I wanted to lose? Why keep going when I’m feeling healthy and more aware of what I eat?

Because it’s too easy to fall back into old habits. I don’t want those old habits returning – too much couch time, not enough active time. I can feel the lethargy creeping in after just one month. If I focus on how bad I felt last year, and how much better I feel this year, then the road to redemption will be much easier to handle.

Have you ever turned a positive into a negative then back into a positive again? Was it hard? Am I on the right track? Do you have any suggestions or handy hints to get the wheels, and body, in motion again? Should I set challenges, when I’m not very good at following them through to completion? Or should I just start with a fresh set of easy to achieve goals, rather than trying to bite off more than I can chew?

Wishing you a wonderful day.

June 20 and 21: Saturday night and Sunday morning

This title comes from one of my favourite books, Saturday Night and Sunday Morning by Alan Sillitoe. It was the right book at the right time for me (1995, living in London) and also reminds me of my friend Tricky (real name Richard) who will be fitfor15in15’s next guest contributor. I’ll tell you our unlikely and incredible connection when I post his helpful and humorous personal story later this week.

Nothing from Sillitoe’s book happened to Leo and I this weekend, but the title is appropriate to wrap up this double-whammy post.

Leo’s family came from Zurich on Saturday afternoon to celebrate both his and his niece, Lorena’s, birthdays. All up, with our neighbours Liliane and Rene, we were 11 people. It was a day of preparations and organising. Leo did an amazing job with all the food, and I made the cake, of which I ate a slice! Gasp!


One, two, three!

We ended the night quite late, with our neighbours saying how much they’ve appreciated all the work we’ve done around the property lately. So that was nice too.

Today, we were very lazy. Watched more House of Cards on Netflix and read about the Australians beating Brazil in the Women’s Football World Cup to make it through to the quarter-finals. Great news.

But overall, a quiet day today, after yesterday’s entertaining fest, was just what the doctor ordered. The sugar blowout continued with some chocolate marshmallow things that we forgot to give to the kids. The old saying is true – “If it’s in the house, you eat it.”

I actually don’t think that’s a real saying, but it gets proven true time and time again. Tricky will back me up on that! So the I Quit Sugar bandwagon gets serious again tomorrow. I can’t say I felt bad after eating the sugar, but I do know my brain said, “More! Give me more!”

I really need to do some proper exercise again soon. It’s been waaaaay too long and I can feel it. Fingers crossed this week is it.

Wishing you a wonderful day.