It’s not often that I compare myself to the Queen, but I did notice in her Christmas speech that she didn’t mention the words Pandemic or Covid once. In all my newsletters, posts and blogs I have made a concerted effort to avoid the elephant in the room. I wish I could say the reason is there are so many other things to talk about… but I think I just don’t want to add to the noise. It is loud out there. Or perhaps I am more ostrich-like than regal, burying my head in the sand (but doing a wonderful headstand while I am at).
Christmas is a time to let go of all those dietary disciplines and just let loose! For a few days each year, most of us put our healthy eating efforts to one side and over-eat to our heart’s content. And it’s not just the over-eating, it’s rich food!
Take the traditional British Christmas lunch. Turkey, stuffing, pigs in blankets, roast potatoes, roasted carrots and parsnips, mashed celeriac, Brussel sprouts, bread sauce, cranberry sauce and, to top it all off, lashings of gravy. That’s how it goes in our family anyway. What’s lovely about the traditional Christmas lunch is that for every family there’s something a little bit different, which makes it the special annual over-indulgence it is.
And personally, I wouldn’t miss out on any of it. However, the after-effects can be disastrous. So here are some ways to help to alleviate the bloating, lethargy and sluggishness of the post-prandial Christmas state. (more…)
Back in lockdown 1.0, we all threw ourselves enthusiastically into our hour of exercise a day. We tuned in to Joe Wickes, we bought bikes, scooters and trampolines in record numbers. And of course, threw ourselves into the plethora of online yoga classes out there.
This time around the mood is slightly less enthusiastic. We know why we’re doing this – Covid has not gone away – but it feels harder. We’re tired, stressed and there’s only so much Zoom a person can take.
So how can we keep up our spirits this Autumn? Well here are TEN excellent reasons to get yourself outside every single day during this lockdown.
The thing I love about Halloween is the creativity it encourages. Even when staying indoors – which is likely to be most of us this year! – There are myriad festive endeavours we can do from the comfort of home. Pumpkin-carving, dressing up, making spooky cakes and biscuits and decorating the house with ghostly banners.
When I was growing up, Halloween, trick or treating and all the sweet-eating it encouraged was very much viewed with suspicion in our lentil-eating household. I was never allowed to get involved in any way. Easter was the only time of year that I might get loads of sweet stuff to eat and even then I remember once (to my absolute horror) getting a carob Easter egg. If you’re wondering, it looks like chocolate and tastes vile. (more…)
Some people love to hate Halloween. It’s an American custom they say, slightly sneeringly, or ‘trick-or-treating was never done in my day’.
Yes, the modern version of trick or treating and dressing up on Halloween came from the States, from Irish immigrants who took the tradition over America.
But the festival of Halloween is in fact one of the most ancient festivals known to man.
Halloween is based on the ancient Celtic tradition of Samhain. At this time of the year, it was believed that the barriers between the physical and spirit world break down, allowing more interaction between humans and spirits.