July 23: Getting excited … and new hair!

Rode Bruce the Töffli to the hairdresser and I have new (helmet!) hair! Not exactly what I was hoping for, but it’s ok. There’s a bit of a language barrier problem, as she speaks a lot of Bern-Deutsch, so I occasionally nod like an idiot, completely lost.

Like today. I thought she was using two different shades of blonde as streaks, but she only used the lightest shade. So I have very streaky hair now – platinum blonde with my natural ash blonde. Here’s to the Sicilian sun melding it all together a bit better.

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Shorter and blonder and wavier

Leo said “You can’t use that photo – you look about 50 years older than normal” so I figured I should use this photo. It’s funny posting photos of myself, as I can only imagine what people who don’t know me think when they see the pictures. “Doesn’t smile much”, “Big teeth”, “Look at that zit!”, “Rudolph”, “Boring” come to mind. Funny how we always think strange things (c’mon, I know it’s not just me!) but it’s human nature, don’t you think?!

I think I explained my hair-washing experiment quite well to the hairdresser, but could tell she wasn’t impressed, so my hair has been washed and primped with hairdressing products to be ‘clean’. What really made me laugh was the stickiness of the curling cream she used, to make the waviness a bit more exaggerated, is very close to how my hair was feeling using the Dr Bronner liquid soap! Touche!

Tonight we finished season two of Broadchurch, a BBC series about a murder investigation in a small coastal town. We enjoyed season one, the start of season two was heavy going and a bit too much melodrama, but the ending was very satisfying. I gave myself a pedicure and manicure while watching and now my hands are also primped (or should that be pimped?!) for the holiday. I’m getting ex-CITED. Not looking forward to the plane, though, I just do. not. like. being in small flying sardine tins.

Today, thanks to the paris-to-go.com website, I did some further reading about the pH balance (I almost wrote pHD) of our hair and scalp. Ariana linked to Sonya’s website, which had some very interesting articles about making your own shampoo, like rye flour or coconut milk and aloe vera (which are balanced for our pH 4.5-5.0 skin), after the author ruined her hair using baking soda. I also tried baking soda and worked out very quickly (quicker than using Dr Bronner!) that it was not going to work on my hair. I found Sonya’s experiments very interesting, and nice to see some scientific analysis of the whole shebang.

Happy reading if you fancy … and wishing you a wonderful day!

July 22: Glory-ious Days

This afternoon, I raced home from work on Bruce in order to miss a big thunderstorm – didn’t take any photos of it approaching, but snapped a few shots after it had passed.

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Sunset on the Alps, taken from the front yard

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The brown, brown grass of home

It’s raining again now, 10.30pm, and boy do we need it. (That cool breeze will also make sleep easier tonight!)

Yesterday afternoon, after I wrote the post about what I’ve packed for our holiday, I met Claudia at the Marzili (public pool area) and finally snapped a few decent shots of the Aare – what bedlam it is on a hot day! This was Tuesday afternoon around 2pm (admittedly it is summer holidays).

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The steady stream of people walking back to the camping place to jump into the river again

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One of several places at the Marzili where you get out of the water. The rubber boats have to go down further to a dock area

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Have a paddle or a swim

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People put their clothes etc in waterproof bags, which also provide some buoyancy as you float or swim along

I’d like to buy a waterproof phone case so I can make a little film of the journey. Won’t be swimming for a while though, as all this rain will make the water murky and dangerous.

And last but not least in this photo-fest, proof that Dr Bronner’s liquid soap is not good as a shampoo for me. I’m getting my haircut tomorrow, and I think I’ll just let her wash out the weeks of … ??? whatever it is – soap scum? – and start again in Sicily, maybe with a bar of Savon de Marseille?

My friend SJ likes the home-made shampoo soap bars she can buy in her town. Do you use a soap bar for your hair too? Any suggestions? Because there’s got to be something better than this below! Maybe I should try the Ariana-method, from Paris-to-Go, and just use water combined with a good scalp massage?

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My greasy-feeling but clean head of hair

Wishing you a wonderful day.

May 30: Physical and mental #2

Woke up with the worst hhhhh…ayfever (you thought I was going to write hangover, huh?), so spent a few miserable hours in bed feeling sorry for myself and waiting for the tablet to kick in.

It wasn’t all a waste of time – I listened to more episodes of a thoroughly intriguing podcast called Serial. Being behind the times is a recurring theme in my life – this non-fiction story/series, about a Baltimore journalist trying to find out if a convicted killer is in fact innocent – was released to great acclaim in October last year and I’m only just getting around to checking it out. Highly recommended when your eyes are so puffy from hayfever that you can’t read a book! Or when you’re doing the dusting, or knitting etc, or can’t sleep at night and don’t want to turn a light on. I can’t wait to find out what happens! This definitely ticks the mentally fit box!

Once I was ready to venture outdoors, we put up the tent near the pool with help from Liliane’s friends Fritz and Lotte. Now all we need is clean water (once it’s warmed up a bit more).

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Many hands make light work

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An action shot from the working bee after-party!

I also mowed a small section of lawn that couldn’t be accessed last week because of a parked car, and then whipper-snippered further down the hill in that area. I don’t like mowing there because the mower gets quite a lean-on, on the edge of the forest, so I had to clean up the edges a bit. It was important to do it today, so it’s nice for when Rene comes home from hospital tomorrow – his operation went so well, he’s allowed to leave earlier than expected. Good news! (Hope I haven’t jinxed it now.)

And in other ‘good news’, here are some articles I’ve enjoyed this week:

My blogging friend Freda (am I allowed to say that, Freda?!) from livesimplysimplylive recently posted this ballet-influenced exercise routine which I’m looking forward to trying. Her blog has many interesting and inspiring musings and themes, and many calming photos.

Improved flexibility and balance have been high on my list of “wants” for 2015 and this article reinforces the need to bend and stretch, reach for the stars

Despite the disturbing headline, this is a wonderful, heart-warming story of true love and having to go to odd lengths for the same rights. I hope countries around the world soon follow Ireland’s lead.

Ariana from paris-to-go has completed one month of washing her hair just with water. See the results and read her thoughts about being chemical free here. Very inspiring!

And presto! The reason for the holes in Swiss cheese has been discovered!

Wishing you a wonderful day.

April 30: The knock-on effect

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Yesterday, I horsed around …

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And today I felt quite sheepish 🙂 (Yes, those black dots are sheep!)

I slept the sleep of the slightly sloshed last night and woke up feeling like I’d been on a 10km run. Sheesh, fun has a price, huh?!

Yesterday, before I ran for the bus and had a merry old time, I was having a productive morning in regards to my clothes. In the words of the lovely Ariana from Paris-to-Go, this isn’t a fashion blog, but I like reading about her wardrobe so maybe you might like reading about mine too. Change can be interesting.

I was spurred on by this article on the Becoming Minimalist blog, about people being happier with fewer choices in their closets. A sentence from Drew Barrymore’s blurb really stood out to me.

She mentioned clothes from her 20s were no longer appropriate and I had a sudden flash of a dress I like but don’t wear often because it has several frills on the bottom hem. My mum likes this dress and says the colours suit me, but I’ve only worn it about three times because the frills have always made me feel, well, a bit mutton-dressed-as-lamb-ish. It was no longer age appropriate.

Within seconds of reading Barrymore’s words, I knew what I had to do … I raced down the ladder and grabbed the blunt kitchen scissors and hacked off all the frills. I’ll wear it as a top and love it! Why hadn’t I ever thought of doing that before?! It’s light and cool, and will be a perfect, colourful, cheap, summer addition. I just need to hem it. (Sometimes inspiration strikes when you least expect it, but there’s no chance of me having any inspiration today!) 🙂

Here’s a photo of it without the frill. In my excitement I forgot to take a before photo, because I didn’t think I would even write about it. But I’m really pleased with the result so thought I’d show it off a bit ahahahaha.

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The hacked dress which is now a top

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That’s all the frill I cut off, hanging around the neck. Purple lace – eek!

So there you go.

I met Claudia in town today and we had falafel kebabs for lunch. Poor Claudia, I’m not sure it was what she was hoping to eat, but I had a hankering for something nasty. Drinking has many knock-on effects. I was craving a burger but went for something a little less greasy. That’s being nutritionally fit, don’t you think?!

It’s still afternoon, but I know I’ll be doing bedtime yoga as my fitfor15in15 workout today. I’ve done it a couple of times before and it really is a soothing way to wind down before tripping the light of the tired and not tipsy.

Wishing you a wonderful day.