How To Boost Your Self-Esteem

There are some people who go through life feeling 100% confident about everything they want to do in life. If you’ve ever been the person to feel a lack of confidence in your skills and abilities, you might be in the percentage of people who have issues with their self-esteem. You don’t need to feel unworthy of anything, as you deserve everything in life. The key is in knowing that you can build your self-esteem and confidence up so that you can feel as if you are capable and worthy of more in life. 

Most of the time, there’s a solution to a problem. If you’re dealing with issues with getting older and the effects on your skin, then you should know that a facial and good eye cream is going to help you. If you were losing your hair, then a prescription of finasteride 1mg could make a difference. The point is that whatever your issues are with your self-esteem, there’s likely going to be a solution out there to help you. Your confidence matters and your self-esteem matters, and if you do something about it early enough you can build on it and make sure that you are feeling fully confident about your day-to-day life, too. Self-esteem isn’t static. It’s going to go up and down depending on what you have going on in life, and you needn’t strive for perfection for acceptance from your peers. In fact, you should be able to improve your level of self-esteem and build your confidence and happiness, and the biggest factor here is in knowing that you deserve it. So, with this in mind, here are some helpful ways that you can boost your self-esteem!

Image Source: Pexels

  1. Take some responsibility. It’s important that you remember that you are in charge of yourself. If you have low confidence, you have to make a map to get your confidence back. You might not be able to control external factors in your life all the time, but you can certainly control your reactions to them. You can control whether you go out there to get some help with it. You are responsible for your happiness and your successes, and you have to take some responsibility for it. Creating the right habits to boost your self-esteem are on you, and if you don’t create those habits, you’re going to miss out! Your self-esteem is important, and if you take some responsibility for it, you’re going to find a way to feel more confident, you have to remember that you are the driving factor behind it. 
  2. Know what you value, and live those values. If you start to live a life of purpose and intention, you are going to clarify what matters the most in your life. Your values are your personal foundation and the most you live by those, the better. These values are going to reflect the decisions that you make, and they’re going to give you a better sense of self, too. Living with integrity is important for your whole future, and your words, thoughts and ideas depend on it. Your confidence will grow when you have a stronger sense of self.
  3. Know what your strengths are. As important as it is to know your weaknesses, you need to know what your strengths are, too. Knowing what you are strongest at will help you to learn what you’re good at, and this will help you to feel good about yourself. If you want to have good self-experiences, then you need to have some great self-awareness. That means you need to make a list of all of the things that you’re good at. And then you need to believe in those things. 
  4. Face your fears. No matter what they are, facing your fears is so important if you want to boost your self-esteem. No one is exempt from fear; we all have fears and it’s those fears that either fuel you to do more and face them, or it makes you shrink away and more afraid of everything. The most important thing that you can do is face your fears and beat them. Identify them, face them and beat them for your confidence to go up.
  5. Commit to your happiness. It’s important that you commit to being happier if you want to build your confidence. One of the biggest issues with self-esteem is that you are living more in your head than in the world around you, and it’s important that you commit to seeking out things that will make you happier if you want to feel happier!

Self-Care Suggestions After A Personal Injury

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Recovering from an injury can be difficult. Regaining one’s health can take a long time, causing several physical and mental challenges for many people. While some people can fully recover from injuries in a matter of weeks or months, others are left with long-term concerns, including mobility difficulty, attention issues, or chronic pain that may change a lot about their daily activities. Even those who fully recover their physical health after an accident are frequently left with severe emotional and mental scars such as anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder. 

The rehabilitation process differs for everyone, but people can use a few basic methods to heal and cope with their trauma, such as self-care practices. Here are some self-care ideas you can implement in your routine to help you overcome and deal with the effects of personal injury.

Financial recuperation 

Physical recovery is critical, but so is a financial recovery. While dealing with or overcoming your personal injury, you would incur various expenses such as surgeries, counselling, in-home care, and other health-related expenses. Some of the injuries incurred may prevent you from working and cause you to lose your source of income. All this can have a strain on your wellbeing. Therefore, looking for financial recovery is an effective form of self-care. 

You can do so by looking at alternative ways of making money. Online options such as creating a blog or vlog documenting your recovery journey or taking advantage of remote working opportunities is a great way to make some money. If the injuries you endured are due to the negligence of your workplace, it is vital that you also seek the necessary compensation. Although this may be challenging, you would be able to gain some financial freedom and much-needed peace of mind. You can hire professional legal services providers to take you through the necessary legal processes to make your claim, offer sound advice, and handle any legal issues along the way.

Consult a physician 

Another self-care practice you should consider after your injury is to seek medical attention regularly. Although this may seem obvious, many people leave incidents with injuries they don’t know about, such as herniated discs, traumatic brain injuries, or ligament damage in their knees or shoulders which would only be detected after a medical examination. Some people are also reluctant to see a health professional because they are sceptical or do not want to incur health bills. At the same time, others do not go to their scheduled follow up appointments. All these practices do more harm than good. Take care of yourself by getting the medical attention you need.

Make sure you get enough sleep

Most people need seven to eight hours of sleep per night to stay healthy. If you’ve had a severe illness or injury, your body may require more rest than usual. The effective functioning of numerous essential healing processes necessitates sleep. Sleep deprivation makes it difficult for muscles to repair after an injury. When it comes to recovery, getting enough rest is crucial, but injuries can make sleeping difficult. As a result of their injuries, many patients have difficulty sleeping. Others cannot sleep because they are concerned about their health or fearful of the traumatic event that caused their injuries. To remedy these issues, it’s sometimes as simple as drinking less coffee or sticking to a regular sleep pattern. Some folks, on the other hand, require medication to get enough sleep. Check with your doctor before taking any sleep aids, especially over-the-counter medications, to see if they interfere with your recovery.

Healthy dieting 

Keeping your body healthy with the right nutrients you require for overall health while recovering is critical. This means that while you are recovering, you should be more careful of what you consume. Besides watching what you eat, you should also consider developing healthy eating habits and meal plans. 

Remember that these suggestions are only a starting point; you should get specific guidance from your doctor on optimising your diet. People suffering from injuries should eat adequate protein, Vitamin C, Zinc, Vitamin D, and Calcium and eat general health. It’s also crucial for persons using painkillers to eat a lot of fibre-rich meals. This may assist in alleviating constipation that these medications are known to produce. Finally, keep in mind that a lot of individuals say that some foods have healing properties. Make sure you only listen to medical advice and are familiar with the food-based health claims assessment process.

Looking After Your Outward Appearance Can Boost Your Mental Health; Here’s How

When struggling with our mental health, the way we look on the outside is often the least of our worries. And understandably so. But taking the time to look after the way we look can help boost our mental health.

It’s all about that buzzword; self-care. And practicing self-care can take time, partly because having ‘you’ time can feel selfish. But we all need to be selfish sometimes. Because looking after ourselves means we can be more present in our other relationships. 

Setting aside some time to pamper yourself will give you a plethora of mental health benefits. Here are just a few to get your teeth stuck into. 

Image by Madison Inouye via Pexels

A Self-Care Routine Provides Stability

Having a routine is essential to all of us. And over the coronavirus pandemic, many of us lost those routines which can be integral to our mental health. Loss of routine feels like a loss of control. Like you’re adrift in the open sea. 

Making self-care a part of your daily routine acts as a grounding force. They’re stabilising and comforting. An anchor for you when you feel all at sea. 

Certain times of the day or outside occurrences can trigger intrusive thoughts, which lead to cycles of worry. But you can break these cycles with a little bit of self-care. Doing something nice for yourself, like a skincare routine or a long bath, helps you focus on those simple activities. It breaks the cycle because you’re engaged in an activity rather than being in your head. 

It Helps You Get Out Of Worry Cycles

And little self-care routines enable us to practice a little bit of mindfulness. The act of being mindful lets us think about sensations we’re experiencing without passing judgement. And this can help our mental health in the long run as we learn to be less judgemental of our emotions or thoughts. 

Mood-Boosting Chemicals Are Triggered

Regularly caring for yourself in a way that feels good will start to change how you think. You’ll look forward to looking after yourself. And then, doing the activity will help release lovely endorphins to boost your overall mood. Because looking after yourself feels good. 

And if you have another health problem that can be helped by a long bath or other act of self-kindness, then you’ll continue to reap the rewards. Your body will improve, and your mind along with it as the outside trigger is reduced. 

It’s An Act Of Kindness To Yourself

The world can be stressful. And it can feel easier to watch TV until the early hours of the morning rather than take care of yourself. But taking just 5 minutes to look after your outward appearance sends a really powerful message to your mind. You’re telling yourself that you’re worth it. You’re worth those 5 minutes of skincare or those 10 extra minutes lounging in the bad with a good book. 

Taking care of the way you look is an act of kindness. And we all deserve more of those in our daily lives. 

Looking After Yourself Improves Your Confidence

It’s the most obvious benefit to taking a few extra minutes to do your hair or slather on a bit of moisturiser each day. Looking after yourself will boost your confidence. You’ll start to love how you look, and that love will translate into a brilliant boost for your mental health. 

When we feel confident in ourselves, we feel like we can tackle anything. And we can do it being authentically ourselves. The more that you are unapologetically you, the more confident you’ll get. But if improving your confidence means visiting Dr Jason Roth to correct a deviated septum or improve the way your nose looks – then that’s ok too. Because you get to decide what self-care and looking after your appearance means to you. 

Image by Hassan OUAJBIR via Pexels

Wrapping Up

Improving your outward appearance or taking extra time on the way you look doesn’t make you shallow. You are allowed to look after yourself. And now you can see that it brings lots of mental health benefits with it too. 

Remember that your mental health journey can be a long and ever-changing road. Being kind to yourself helps build a solid foundation of self-love. And loving yourself will help you see that you can take on anything. No matter how difficult it is. 

Understanding Birth Control Options And What They Mean For You

The birth control options available to us today have come a long way from where they first began. These choices help us take our contraceptive health back into our own hands. But there’s a lot of them to choose from. And they can have side effects you might not be willing to put up with.

But the first step in taking your health into your own hands is understanding the options. There are quite a few to get our teeth into, so let’s get into it.

The Natural Method

The oldest form of contraceptive out there; family planning. This method doesn’t use any device or medication. Instead, it simply means either abstaining from sex altogether. Or tracking your cycle to understand when you are or aren’t fertile. That way, you can decide when you engage in sexual activity based on whether you want to get pregnant or not. 

Obviously, this way can lead to pregnancy even if you try your hardest to avoid it. But it is about 80% effective if done perfectly. And as a bonus, you get to understand your cycle more. You’ll know when to expect your period and have more info on your mood changes over the cycle. It’s always important to remember, though, that going down this route doesn’t protect you from STI’s. So get yourself and your partner checked before you decide on the family planning method to ensure you’re as safe as you can be.

The Barrier Method

Probably the most widely known form of contraception, the barrier method involves using a device that stops pregnancy. And there is a massive variety of them. You can choose from both male and female condoms, the diaphragm, or the cervical cap. Condoms come with the added benefit of giving you protection from STI’s, but diaphragms and caps don’t. They sit around the ’80s when it comes to their effectiveness in preventing pregnancy.

The great thing about barrier methods is that they’re widely available, don’t mess with hormones, and can be used in conjunction with other contraceptive methods (like the pill) for added protection. The only downside is that you need to remember to use them. And in the throes of passion, they can easily be forgotten. 

The Hormonal Method

The most commonly known hormonal contraception has to be the pill. Taken by women, it uses a synthetic version of female hormones and comes in two forms; the combined pill of estrogen and progesterone and the mini pill containing only progestogen. Put simply, the medication works by keeping the egg and sperm apart. And that’s by either thickening cervical mucus, thinning the uterus lining, or just stopping an egg from being released altogether. It can also make all of those things happen at once. Depending on which pill you’re taking. 

They’re around 99% effective with perfect use, and they can help reduce period symptoms or stop them altogether. But they don’t protect against STI’s. And they come with a long list of side effects. That includes an increased chance of blood clots. Because of this, they’re not given lightly. You’ll need a consultation with a GP, and you’ll need to visit regularly to make sure they’re still right for you.

With them being hormone-based, the biggest effects, however, can be to your mood. Many people on the pill struggle with anxiety, depression, headaches, and general mood changes. For some people, the side effects are too much to deal with. So if you try the pill and these side effects don’t settle in a couple of months, go back to your GP and weigh up your other options. 

The pill isn’t the only hormonal method available. You can get 3 monthly injections of progesterone which have the benefit of not having to remember a tablet every day. There’s also an IUD (intrauterine device), also known as the coil. This also uses progesterone, but it does come in the non-hormonal form of copper. That works because copper is a spermicide. You can also get a transdermal patch which will need changing every 3 weeks. This is like the combined pill because it uses the two artificial female hormones. Or there’s the implant, which is progesterone only and is put just under the skin of your upper arm. 

Choosing the right hormonal contraception can be a minefield. There are a lot of side effects to take into account. Make sure to select the one that’s really right for you. And if you’re not happy with the one you’ve chosen, you can change it.

Final Thoughts

While we’ve come a long way to have this many birth control methods at our fingertips, it can often take a while to get the right fit for you. And the onus is put in the court of the woman to figure it out. It’s difficult. Especially as the long-term options can have serious side effects, you’d rather not have to deal with. 

There’s always the permanent option of sterilisation for men and women if you’re sure children aren’t for you. For men, there is a possibility to reverse this. If you’re considering a vasectomy reversal, visit dereklok.com.au for professional advice. No matter what option you go for, it should always be your choice. Because it’s your body.

And while women take on a lot of responsibility for sorting contraception, and some of the options leave you with complex side effects, the point is that we have choices. And those get better and better with every year. Not only that, but our understanding of sexual health, particularly women’s health, gets better with each passing year. And that’s something to celebrate. 


Hooked On Sunshine Blankets

I’ve been making Hooked On Sunshine Blankets this year having joined the group quite some time ago. Nessa’s patterns are absolutely beautiful, intricate designs that are written so well even I figure it out through brain fog eventually! I hadn’t blogged for a while so I figured I’d show you all what I’ve been up to.

Atlanticus

To start with I made the Atlanticus for Izzy, she loved the pattern and knew what colours she wanted. I’ve made blankets before but never this complicated and stunning. I did doubt myself ever finishing this but somehow I did in just a few weeks too!

Liliana

Next I made the Liliana for the lovely and very pink celebrant Berni! She was so patient even though this blanket took me a little longer than the Atlanticus and so appreciative when I was done it really gave me a boost in confidence.

Phoenix

My third HOS was the Phoenix for the very talented author and one of my besties, Fiona Morgan. She’s had quite a rough time being hit by covid and some personal issues that I wanted to make something really special as a (late 😅) housewarming gift.

Thankfully Crochet UK had the perfect yarn for a Phoenix blanket and I couldn’t wait to get started. This took me a little longer than the last two blankets, mostly because summer holidays with two kids is hard work. But I eventually got there and then decided to delay further by making a bolster cushion to go with it haha!

For (the sake of it)

While waiting for materials to finish the cushion my fingers got a little antsy and I already had the For pattern ready to go and some lovely cotton yarn I really wanted to try out. I sat reading the notes as always and like the idea being that we always crochet For something/someone but me being me decide this was the blanket I wanted to make For the sake of it.

My mental health has been wobbly, with my past and my chronic pain battling for headspace I’ve felt too guilty to do things just for the sake of it. I have so much encouragement from the Mr, family and friends to just rest or do something for me so I decided alongside braving the therapy that my For the sake of it was going to be exactly that for as and when I just fancy crocheting for the enjoyment of it. No deadlines, nobody in mind to gift it to. When it’s done I may well gift it but until then it is just For the sake of it.

I decided to do something I don’t often do and just let it do it’s own thing changing colours naturally too. Normally because the yarn had short colour changes unlike the yarn for the Phoenix I would worry it looked messy. So far I’m at round –  and can’t wait to see the finished piece when I can buy more yarn in the new year!

Tackling My Mental Health

I’ve been tackling my mental health again, it’s always very up and down as long as I can remember.

*Trigger Warning*

I struggle to ask for help as many do when suffering mental health issues but after a few big wobbles earlier this year I decided I really needed to deal with my mental health better. I was already struggling and very wobbly when again, my benefits were messed around with due to DWP not even attempting to read my doctors notes.

Obviously the huge cut in money left me feeling awful, a burden to my family making them suffer and go without because my physical and mental health is rubbish. Building up yet more debt because we only just finished paying off the loan we took from them last time they messed up. Add to that the fact I’ve felt like a burden and waste of space since a young age, I was seriously considering how easily I could escape it all by jumping out of our 11th floor window. The Mr thankfully saw how much I was struggling and talked to me about trying to get counselling again.

Inclusion Thurrock

There is a self referral programme called Inclusion Thurrock that offers a few services to help those struggling with their mental health. I attended a few CBT session here previously but after a few sessions I ran away knowing I’d simply get discharged.

I found CBT unhelpful for me but I’ve recently learnt I need trauma focussed CBT due to my PTSD and panic disorder thanks to the therapist who is still trying to assess me after two appointments.

Knowing my past is a bit much for some people can make it difficult to open up and talk about the really bad parts, I used to try and blurt through the blog but then found it hard to write how I really felt. I can laugh and joke and tell stories like I wasn’t there and it was all fun and games but my new therapist is quite easy to talk to and I’ve managed to spill a bit already and realising I’m not making myself worse but my past was more traumatic than I believed/still believe at times so it does have a big impact on my day to day life.

EMDR

My therapist has suggested trauma focussed CBT and EMDR to help me process my memories and move forward. Tackling my mental health is more than just making me feel better, our mental health affects those around us too and I’m very aware of that. I don’t want the girls growing up struggling because they’ve seen me go through it and I want them to see that its ok to ask for help.

EMDR utilises the natural healing ability of your body. After a thorough assessment, you
will be asked specific questions about a particular disturbing memory. Eye movements,
similar to those during REM sleep, will be recreated simply by asking you to watch the
therapist’s finger moving backwards and forwards across your visual field. Sometimes, a
bar of moving lights or headphones is used instead. The eye movements will last for a
short while and then stop. You will then be asked to report back on the experiences you
have had during each of these sets of eye movements. Experiences during a session may
include changes in thoughts, images and feelings.
With repeated sets of eye movements, the memory tends to change in such a way that it
loses its painful intensity and simply becomes a neutral memory of an event in the past.
Other associated memories may also heal at the same time. This linking of related
memories can lead to a dramatic and rapid improvement in many aspects of your life.

I have to admit at first I thought it sounded a bit silly but reading more into it I’m feeling hopeful it may help and willing to give it a go as my mental health affects me constantly and the constant memories and flashbacks make me react differently to how I would usually, I can become panicky, think people are annoyed for no reason, jump at little noises etc as well as affecting my mood.

Not Giving Up

This week my therapist is on holiday and I’m determined to pick up the phone next week when she is back unlike my previous therapist. I felt like I had traumatised her simply by explaining BDSM. I didn’t feel she was able to cope with my being completely honest about what I had seen and grown up around so when she went on holiday I took the opportunity to not return. Thankfully my current therapist doesn’t seem as horrified by what I tell her, obviously she thinks it’s all horrible but I don’t feel like I’m traumatising her at least which is giving me more confidence.

Anyone that has followed my blog a while will know I quite often get side tracked and bounce from one subject to another and thankfully my therapist also let’s me do this without interrupting which is quite helpful as often I find several things from my past all link to how I’m feeling and reacting to situations now and she let’s me blurt that and how I see the link but can’t shut it down, hence the suggestion of trying EMDR.

I’m hoping I can tackle my mental health and start making some progress. I spent so long ignoring what I went through as a child and teenager, making jokes out of it all that I didn’t realise the impact it’s had on my way of thinking especially about myself. I knew my past messed me up a little bit but I didn’t realise how traumatic it really was.

I’m catching myself now and realising, things like when the Mr accidentally knocking my wax burner, I found a way to blame myself. I instantly felt guilty, it’s my fault, I shouldn’t have put it there, shouldn’t have put it on then, should have told him it was on, shouldn’t want something so silly just because it looks cool and smells nice, wasted money on a pathetic want because I’m a selfish bitch.

In the moment this all feels real, looking back it’s absolutely ridiculous and as the Mr said, it was simply an accident which he cleared up and put right. Yet I still kept berating myself. The hardest part is realising it when I calm down, seeing how ridiculous my reactions are and then I wonder how on earth the Mr puts up with this shit on a daily basis. How bloody annoying it must be! Hopefully trying a different style of CBT and trying EMDR will help with this as I am truly fed up with my past messing with my present.

Reaching Out

Have you been struggling with your mental health or tackling your mental health? I imagine lots of us are right now, I hope if you are you can find a service that can offer some help. If it doesn’t feel like it’s helping talk up, there may be another service they can offer or recommend that may be more beneficial. Please don’t do what I did and give up.

Having explained to my therapist what happened last time, she reminded me not everyone will click with every therapist and we are fully within our right to ask to see someone else if we don’t feel comfortable. I feel a bit silly now as I could have worked through these issues years ago had I spoken up and asked to see someone else but I’m determined to tackle this properly now and if I don’t feel comfortable I will be asking for a different therapist or therapy instead of struggling for a few more years then 6 months waiting for help!

If anyone is ever struggling please remember my social media DM’s and blog email (relentlesslypurple@gmail.com) are always open for a rant or a blurt. I may not have the answers or be able to help you heal but quite often I can listen, sympathise, make stupid jokes and help find local services that may help you. Tackling mental health is tricky but having people to blurt to can make a huge difference!

Wicksteed Park 2021

We visited Wicksteed park last week! We visited the year before last and absolutely loved our time there and was really excited to be invited back again. The one thing we love about Wicksteed is that you can make it a cheap/free day out or spend a bit of money. Entry is free, the playgrounds are huge and there is plenty to do for everyone.

Wicksteed Park is the UK’s first playground for children and offers a wide range of activities for all the family across the park. From meerkats, birds and other animals to several playgrounds, rides, a boating lake and theatre there is just so much to do at Wicksteed. Activities and rides change occasionally and this visit there were some new rides, an update to the meerkat enclosure and a theatre is being finished!

Our first visit had to be the meerkats, Izzy absolutely loves meerkats and was so excited to discover they had a brand new enclosure that allows you go get much closer and watch the meerkats play in their habitat.

Whilst at the Meerkats enclosure we heard some music and discovered a little area we either missed last time or has recently been installed with musical pipes which the girls really enjoyed creating music with.

We also stopped at the bird aviary looking at all the different colourful birds flying around us. We love this area, it’s so lovely to get up close to the birds although you need to watch your step as there are often little ones on the floor.

Next we headed to the main playground, last time we visited during a heatwave so the metal was too hot to play on, this time however the weather was perfect. The girls spent a good 30 minutes running around trying out all the different climbing frames, see-saws and swings. There’s something there for all ages and its absolutely free to play here.

Next up we had to do the train ride, we love a train ride and the scenery around the park is stunning! After our train ride we returned to reception to collect the £40 meal vouchers we were gifted in exchange for blogging about our visit. The girls decided to have a hot dog from the cafe and we had chips, cheesy chips and burgers from Franks which were lovely and great portion sizes too.

Once we had eaten we decided to have a slow walk down to the lake where we discovered a smaller play area and a sand pit for the kids to play in.

We stopped there for a bit then headed inside the mini theme park area to have a go on the rides. There are several rides to choose from including their latest, Galaxy Invaders!

The girls are still getting used to rides, especially Eva with her sensory sensitivities however she managed to ride a few rides in the end including the dinosaur rollercoaster, lady bug rollercoaster and the paraglider rides. Izzy even managed the lady bug rollercoaster although she said it was a little too fast for her still and the honey bear ride which she really loved, especially as she could make me really dizzy spinning us faster!

Next we headed to the land rovers for the girls to have a drive around the little course they have. These are so cool and I’m a little jealous I’m too big for a go haha!

Of course we had to visit the slides next where the girls had a few turns and really enjoyed themselves. I had to miss out on the tree top walk this time due to my mobility worsening but as our friends came with us, Eva was able to join them and do the walk while we checked out the goats below. Izzy and I decided to have a few cheeky goes of the clown rollercoaster ride while we waited too which she really loves. It’s great for the younger ones who don’t want to go too fast!

By this point we were all exhausted and couldn’t wait to head back to the ice cream parlour for a lovely ice cream to cool down with. We then headed to the gift shop but the girls have far too many teddies and we couldn’t find anything with the Wicksteed park logo on it which would have been nice as we love collecting things like that to look back on all the places we’ve visited. The prices are fair though and there are quite a few toys and teddies to choose from.

Finally we headed back for one last visit with the meerkats before heading home, finishing our day off nicely.

We were really glad to be asked to visit Wicksteed Park again as it is an all round lovely place with plenty to do, we still missed parts of the park where I slow us down a lot, a camping trip would be ideal to fit everything in next time!

How To Survive Without Grown-Ups By Larry Hayes

We received How To Survive Without Grown-Ups by Larry Hayes to review. This comedy sci-fi adventure book is aimed at children 8+ and is full of fantastic illustrations by Katie Abey.

How to survive without grown-ups
Front cover of How to Survive without Grown-ups By Larry Hayes

How To Survive Without Grown-Ups

Mum and Dad have left – gone to Mars, and they’re never coming back…

But this isn’t one of Dad’s weird jokes; it’s REAL. It’s up to ten-year-old Eliza and her genius little brother, Johnnie to find out what’s going on and launch a rescue.

Can they handle vampire squids, a suspicious villain, a secret island full of traps, and a trip into space? And – more importantly – will they ever get their parents back?

Larry Hayes

Larry Hayes has a day job running an investment fund, a part-time one as financial director of a homeless charity and on Fridays he home schools his two kids letting them decide what to study. How To Survive Without Grown-Ups is his debut novel.

Katie Abey

Katie Abey is an illustrator who lives in a teeny hobbit-like house in Derbyshire with a cat, a hedgehog, a small human, and a rainbow-haired husband. Her work often features sarcastic-looking animals, and she likes using a lot of colour: she is allergic to Magnolia.

Eva’s Thoughts

How to survive without parents is a witty, family-friendly book, where readers go into the world of fiction in the year 2053! I loved all of the many characters in the book! My absolute favourite is  Myrt, The lemon family’s Cocker spaniel, whose nemesis is all things orange! 

Jonnie and Eliza Lemon’s parents are going to Mars forever! Luckily, the confident and brainy siblings come up with a plan to get to their parents and make them not want to go to Mars. So they pack their stuff, and set off across the ocean, and run into many obstacles and advantages along the way.

They run into robot animals and many more things along their travel path. They soon meet the mischievous Noah, who tricks them into staying and he pretends to help save their parents. He actually doesn’t help and instead sends high technology robots to go into their brains so he can hack them too.! Luckily, they avoid this and finds out Noah’s true ways…. 

After this, he locks them in a treehouse and sends the robots to go after them! I won’t spoil the ending for you but this is such an enjoyable read with lots of action and interesting characters.

Hindra’s Heroine By Kelly-Marie Pollock

I received Hindra’s Heroine by Kelly-Marie Pollock to review, the third book in the Chronicles of Nova Morgan Collection. I have been completely absorbed in the Chronicles of Nova Morgan, with its unique and hilarious characters and fantastic storyline, and am a little sad this is the final book in the collection.



*Contains adult content including sex, drug use, profanity, and violence*

Hindra's Heroine by Kelly-Marie Pollock Book Cover

Hindra’s Heroine

Holed up in an off-world island in the middle of the Irish Sea, Nova and her allies are nursing their wounds after the battle at Mount Divinity left Nova mortal once again. They’ve all but given up hope on ever finding a way off the island when Ruth, the wayward witch, wakes up screaming, visits assaulting her already fragile mind. With the entity Ultio now puppeteering her limbs, Ruth’s magics lead them back to London, back to where Nova’s story first began. Odyssey.

Join Nova, Ruth, Chaplin, and Noah as they group together with a whole host of new and familiar characters to infiltrate Hindra and take back what’s theirs.

Together, they must face the darkness lingering within and battle their way back to the light, but for one of their number that battle may well be futile.

For she is the slaughter, the world her lamb.

Book cover - Hindra's Heroine by Kelly-Marie Pollock
Kelly-Marie Pollock Author Photo

Kelly-Marie Pollock

Kelly is a married mum of 4 plus 3 adult step-children. She has an intense love of the Victorian era, Vampires, and is waiting for a Zombie uprising. Kelly’s passion is writing. She is also a mental health advocate and BiPolar warrior. When she isn’t reading or writing, she enjoys long nature walks with her husband and their children. Kelly can not get through the day without her morning cup of tea. She uses excessive amounts of sarcasm and profanity in most sentences and she’s not even sorry. (Why would you be!? haha!)

My Thoughts

I had been eagerly waiting for the final part of the trilogy to land in my inbox having thoroughly enjoyed losing myself in the storyline. Once again I was not disappointed! Nova’s strong character and resilience shine through as Ruth takes them back to Odyssey in an attempt to save their friends and take back what’s rightly theirs. Once again I truly didn’t expect the ending at all and was left feeling a little emotional. Kelly-Marie Pollock writes powerful storylines with fabulous characters with their unique personalities. I’m sad to see the story but can’t wait to see what’s next!

Devil’s Fjord By David Hewson

I received Devil’s Fjord by David Hewson so review thanks to Random Things Blog Tours. Devil’s Fjord is a standalone psychological thriller where two local boys go missing, exposing the darkness at the heart of the Faroe Islands.

Devil’s Fjord

A remote island. An isolated community. A terrible secret.

If the new District Sheriff, Tristan Haraldsen, thought moving to a remote village on the island of Vagar would be the chance for a peaceful life with his wife Elsebeth, his first few weeks in office swiftly correct him of that notion.

Provoked into taking part in the village’s whale hunt against his will, Haraldsen blunders badly, and in the ensuing chaos, two local boys go missing. Blaming himself, Haraldsen dives into the investigation and soon learns that the boys are not the first to have gone missing on Vagar.

As Tristan and Elsebeth become increasingly ensnared by the island’s past, they realise its wild beauty hides an altogether uglier and sinister truth.

David Hewson

David Hewson is a former journalist with The Times, the Sunday Times, and The Independent. He is the author of more than twenty-five novels including his Rome-based Nic Costa series, which has been published in fifteen languages. He has also written three acclaimed adaptations of the Danish TV series The Killing.

@david_hewson | davidhewson.com

Fans of Nordic noir will love this standalone thriller, perfect for readers of Tom Rob Smith’s The Farm, Elly Griffiths’ Dr. Ruth Galloway Mysteries, Ragnar Jonasson’s Whiteout, and Michael Ridpath’s Amnesia

⦁ As well as his critically acclaimed Nic Costa series, Hewson has also written three adaptations of the Danish TV series The Killing, which have sold over 54,000 copies