As June meets July …

Blimey, if I thought May went quickly, June positively whizzed by. A busy old month to say the least.

With all the current sad and scary news on the TV, it was joyous to see this beauty on the first Sunday of the month. You’ve never seen me move so fast with my camera to capture it. A rainbow of royal proportions if ever I saw one.

 

In between the sunshine and showers, Mr B and I thought we’d sort out our garden. We’d neglected it a bit so had a mass mowing, pruning and weeding session and could actually admire what was in it.

These lovelies for instance …

On the 14th, my best friend Clare and I trundled up to Waterloo for an afternoon of pampering courtesy of a generously gifted voucher I’d received from a friend some months earlier. Destination Mandara Spa  at the Park Plaza Hotel near Westminster Bridge.

Ooh it was divine!

I had a lovely shoulder back and neck massage, Clare had a facial and after lazing round the indoor pool in our robes and braving a stint in the steam room, followed by some light refreshments, we emerged relaxed and refreshed and extremely grateful for the experience. We also had the bonus of a bright sunny day.

Talking of sunshine, the temperature climbed and climbed …

This little lot well and truly came out of hibernation!

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Mid-month also saw my wonderful publisher Choc Lit  celebrate its 8th birthday. I created this little banner to go with all the fab messages and comments and all round good cheer that ensued online in recognition of their success.

Sip Sip (3)

 

Then came Father’s Day. We spent a delightful day with my parents who came to us for a meal and some fizz (there may have been a few sweets flying around as well! 😉 ) I love this pic of Dad taken a few years ago in Spain in one of his many hats.

Dod

Mr B had the last two weeks of June off work. We hadn’t booked a holiday, but with the weather being so glorious, we made the most of it and had one or two days out, including a day trip to Brighton. We did all the usual fun stuff, sat on the beach, a walk along the pier, fish and chips, a stroll round the Lanes, ice creams, amusements. It was great! I swear in all the dozens of times I’ve been to Brighton, I have never seen the sea this colour. It looked stunning.

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Here’s a few more pics I took.

 

On Saturday 24th I proudly attended a Workshop entitled ‘Moving from a Worrier to a Warrior’ organised and run by my lovely friend Clare, a fully qualified Confidence & Empowerment Coach, the aim of the event being to teach us ‘over-worriers’  some brilliantly helpful techniques to help banish those inner fears and frets. It’s amazing how the language we use can influence our thoughts and behaviour. I learned so much and took away some valuable tools with me to introduce into my everyday life that will, I’m sure, help me tremendously with my over-thinking and analyzing. Clare’s hoping to run a similar workshop later this year, so I will keep you posted.

Here she is in full flow!

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The team at Choc Lit informed me that As Weekends Go  had been selected for the KOBO  UK Super Summer Sale which was welcome news. I’m always very appreciative of any promotions, and it gave my book a little boost. Anything that helps widen my circle of readers can only be a good thing. I’m still receiving some fab messages and reviews which makes working on the sequel a little less daunting, so once again, a HUGE thank you from me to you 🙂

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Mr B and I rounded off the month with a trip to London. We set off for Notting Hill Gate, and walked down to Holland Park  which, if you have never been, is well worth a visit for the beautiful foliage alone, not to mention a lovely cafe with outside seating, exotic feature gardens, peacocks and plenty of space to sit and watch the world go by. We walked round the entire park and then headed off along Earl’s Court Road on a slow mooch back to Victoria Station, taking in the King’s Road, Sloane Square and the grandeur of Belgravia on the way.

Not that we were envious or anything …

Some pics from our day.

 

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We also crossed this road. Couldn’t resist snapping a shot of the sign. Quite fitting what with Father’s Day earlier in the month 😀

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Reading-wise this month, I finished Lizzie Lamb’s Girl In The Castle   which I thoroughly enjoyed. A great heroine in Dr Henriette Bruar who we meet en route to a remote Scottish castle to register the contents of its library. The history and Gaelic references Lizzie includes in the book add sparkle and authenticity to the story. A gorgeous hero in Keir Mackenzie and a brilliantly created cast, including cantankerous ferryman and manservant, Lachlan, whose spats with Aunt Alice, the housekeeper, had me, at times , in stitches, bring the story alive. Lots of conflict as the castle’s secrets and discoveries unfold, as do the secrets and troubles of the characters themselves. All in all a top read.

I also read Lisa Hill’s Meet Me At Number Five , a belter of a debut that has the perfect blend of romance, wit, drama and ‘reach for the tissues’ moments, with some really emotive subjects covered. Set in the horse racing world, we meet a lively array of characters with a baddie you’ll love to hate. I especially loved Clara, the no-nonsense, ‘say it how it is’ grandmother. Well done, Lisa! More please 🙂

 

Much love to you all,

Jan  X

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Posted on July 3, 2017, in Jan's Posts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Hi Jan, what a fabulous blog post – varied and interesting. A bit of writing, some travelogue, a bit of what-Jan-did-next, something about your lovely friend Clare and her life-coach business and a generous shout out for Girl in the Castle. I’m so glad you like it because we have a similar sense of humour (!). Nice, too to see another friend’s debut novel on your page. I first met Lisa about five years ago at the Chipping Norton Book Fest, along with a mutual friend, Adrienne Vaughan. We were all just starting out – but look at us now! Keep up the good work and keep your flip flops out of the cupboard until November, at the very least. LOL.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much for your lovely comments, Lizzie. I’m glad you enjoyed reading my update. June was definitely packed with all sorts of fun. Great to hear about the connection between you and Lisa Hill and Adrienne – it’s so good to see how we’ve all progressed.

      Have faith that the flip flops are going nowhere fast! 🙂 X

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely post today, Jan. So varied – lots of interesting bits and pieces – (Worrier to Warrior sounds right up my street) – great pictures, too.
    Thanks for the recommends, too. I so enjoyed Lizzie’s latest (that magical setting!) – and am adding Lisa’s to my list!

    Liked by 1 person

    • June, thank you so much! Yes, I can definitely recommend Clare’s coaching for ‘worriers’ techniques. Glad you enjoyed the post & pics. I think I went a bit photo crazy last month. Still, it all makes for happy memories. 🙂 X

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Foreword: I am writing this while wearing flip-flops (and a sparkly diamanté pair at that!), I think you’ll approve, Jan! 😉
    It’s always a pleasure reading your monthly updates, and I love the photos! Such a beautiful rainbow 🙂
    Thank you for the recommendations, too. I can only agree on Lizzie’s GITC 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Really enjoyed spending ‘June’ with you and your wonderful family and friends Jan … a charming, chatty and delightful post, just like your good self. I too read and reviewed Lizzie’s latest Girl in the Castle, just LOVED it!!! And Lisa and I are old pals, having met – when we were staying in a monastery – very early in our journey as students of the wonderful Julie Cohen, so her debut is also on my TBR. Keep smiling in the sunshine and pushing that pen! X

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ade, I read the prequel to Lisa’s book last night (a short story sent as a treat to the Choc Lit Team) and now I want to know what happens! Sounds like a very good one! It’s on my (ever so long) TBR list too 🙂 x

      Liked by 2 people

    • Adrienne, it’s so lovely to hear about your history with Lisa H. A monastery! Sounds v interesting. Good to also know how we all loved Lizzie’s latest book so much. A winner for sure! Thanks for your commenting. Delighted you enjoyed spending June with me 😀 X

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hello Jan, you don’t know me but I have just finished reading “As Weekends Go”. I could not put if down but had to when my eyes got too tired ☺. I really want to keep on reading about Rebecca and Alex, is there a sequel under way? Awesome story, thank you ☺
    Not sure how the blog thing works, my first time in one so may be n the wrong place for this comment?
    Jane

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Jane, what a lovely message to see – thank you for letting me know how much you enjoyed As Weekends Go. I’m actually writing the sequel as we speak and hoping to submit it to my publisher sooner rather than later. Fresh dramas for Rebecca and Alex of a different kind! Thanks again for getting in touch. It’s so appreciated! Jan x

      Like

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