January 1st, 2021

A lovely start to the New Year, just getting outside for a short walk down to Queens Park to admire the frosted scenery. We even had a very light sprinkling of snow.

It’s pretty much been the only time I’ve gone out for a proper walk in several weeks as I’ve been struggling with some self confidence issues having piled on about 2.5 stone (35 lbs) in the last 7 or 8 weeks. The lure of a crisp, snowy morning set my inhibitions firmly to one side and the simple act of enjoying a slow, thoughtful walk definitely improved my mental well being. Going forward, if it’s not pouring with rain, I’ll be starting most days this way. I almost forgot the profoundly positive effect outdoors and nature has on my psyche.

Wishing everyone a Happy New Year. Be kind, be happy. C xxxxx

38 thoughts on “January 1st, 2021

  1. Happy New Year Carolyn! What beautiful scenery! We’ve had quite a snow blizzard this morning (North East coast UK) and more is forecast. I am just motivating myself to walk to the Post Office instead of driving ! Thanks for your motivational shove ! X

    • Happy New Year Melanie! Love the cold and the snow so envy you although I know from experience that having to commute to work on snowy roads is horrid so I do hope all will be OK xxxx

  2. Be gentle with yourself. Weight isn’t the whole of you, and anyone who thinks otherwise isn’t worth knowing. Enjoy each day, especially these bright, cold days of winter. X

    • We are our own worst enemies, absolutely weight doesn’t define us! I think I’m just disappointed with putting so much on so quickly when I have such physical plans this year that require fitness but crazy how putting on 35 lbs can change your mindset and make you feel blah! These cold sunny days are wonderful! I’ve just been out again for a walk and feel exhilarated!!! Xxx Thank you for your support!

  3. Hi Carolyn,

    What lovely photos. It is good to get out, especially when stuck in it down in the dumps. Don’t worry about the weight gain, I’m sure we’re not the only ones. Besides, aren’t we supposed to put some on for winter?! It will soon come off with those lovely walks.

    Keep your chin up!

    Babioli X

    • You are right, I stupidly gave up walking daily and started putting on weight almost immediately and then this caused me to eat more in itself, vicious circle. Yep, a walk a day keeps the chocolate away…hehe. Thank you xxx

  4. Happy New Years, Carolyn. Good on you for acknowledging where your stumbling blocks are and working at removing them. You are not alone.
    I will be very curious about the physical outcomes for the entire population once Covid is dealt with. I think we are going to find that the stress levels have really done a number on our health and our waistlines. Here in Nova Scotia, our Covid numbers are very low (this according to worldometer and CBC covid tracker) but I think we are having other issues with such things as heart disease and stress related problems. Stay strong. This too shall pass.

    • It almost feels like a dream, the past year. It’s brought forth all sorts of emotions. My biggest fear is my Mum and Dad and I was feeling so anxious about visiting after working all week in an office. I’m working from home now and am not allowed to visit them at all. We have gone up to tier 3 so all our nine essential shops are shut and we can’t mix with others. Lovely Nova Scotia, what area do you live in??

      Take care, best wishes and happy new year xxx

      • Hi Carolyn, I’m up the Eastern Seaboard, right on the ocean near Sheet Harbour. We are all mostly “Staying the Blazes Home!” as Premier McNeil told us to in March. We have seen a post Christmas jump in cases and are now up to 27 active cases in a province of just under a million people. We had our last covid death on August 23.

      • Haha I saw that he said that!!! It’s pretty much out of control here mostly due to people passing it around buy mixing with others, we had 57,000 new cases today in a country of 60 million and nearly 500 deaths today too. The vaccine is being given to the elderly and more vulnerable right now so that is great xxxxx

  5. Good luck Carolyn! I’ve started the fast 800 diet today having read the remarkable success people have had on the fb group.

  6. A walk a day is definintely the way, the fresh air just really helps with how you feel for the rest of the day doesn’t it. I find I have to get out as early as possible otherwise I’m just thinking of excuses not to go, and I find it so much easier when I’m at my flat as I only have to open the door to go for a walk, here in Wales I have to get in the car and drive first as we live on a main road with no footpaths or verges … which can in itself be a perfect excuse not to go!!

    • I can totally relate to that. Do it early or otherwise other “priorities “ take over. Just as they say financially you should always “pay yourself first”, I’ve decided that in 2021 I’m going to pay myself health wise first with a walk being the first thing I do every day. Last year was so insane putting all my energy into my job, I was in physical and mental burnout by Oct. Never again! I’m nearly back to a good place thanks to resting and brisk walks over the holidays, but the commitment has to continue. Don’t let excuses get in the way of your health and well being. Happy 2021 Sue!

  7. Keep your beautiful chin up Carolyne. I am in the same boat and you have just motivated me to get up and do that daily walk. Like you, I always feel better mentally and physically after. By the way, your Bare cupboard cake is a favourite now in my house! Please be inspired by the gifts you have shared with others through your site and posts. Keep up the great work, it’s so appreciated! Happy 2021!

  8. We are all in the same boat, weight wise. I’m just going to concentrate on good wholesome food again. Don’t worry about the weight. The days will start to get longer and brighter. You’re an absolutely amazing person.

    • Thank you xxxxx I think everything has just been exaggerated this year because of the weirdness of it all. And yes, absolutely good wholesome food….it really does make ya feel so much better bathing your body in good nutrition! Had two great days in a row now with some delicious food xxxx Take care c xxx

  9. What a beautiful beginning for a New Year! The park looks so pretty, you are fortunate to have that available within walking distance. All the best, love the photos, ann lee s

  10. So sorry you feel disappointed with your weight gain. I also undid over chritsmas my hard work. I dont feel we ever go back to square 1 though we just build on what we know and dust ourselves off again. Start small any walk is exercise. One good meal is the right step. It’s a new year. You are well and able. Your body is still amazing xxxxxxxxxxx
    P.s. beautiful wintery photos xxx

    • Thank you Anna xxxx You are so right! I’ve been out for my morning walk, it may only be 30 minutes but it really makes such a difference to my day already! xxxx

  11. Happy New Year Carolyn.

    Loved your photos of the snow & frost, it’s something I do miss about no longer living in Britain, I was brought up in Scotland & was accustomed to ‘real’ winters. I lived in England, various places but specifically in York (north of the city) for about 6 years & they have the most marvelous crisp cold days with hoarfrost that makes everything look like it’s been dipped in glitter. Now that I live in NZ, it’s topsy turvy temperatures – this morning it’s 23oc !

    Covid seems to have blinded people to the fact that if they don’t follow the rules (as was done during WW2) then things don’t improve. There have been too many bad ideas out there. No thanks to many politicians who don’t listen to medical advice. What’s the point of having WHO & other medical experts on hand if they are not listened to ???

    As for weight gain it does seem to be linked to weather, we eat more when it’s cold miserable weather, but walking it off sounds like a great idea. Just remember it’s not the fat you need to watch but the sugars !

    • Scotland is so beautiful with proper snow, I can imagine how much you miss it. Oooo York is absolutely lovely. Love it there and Castle Museum I love too. Love walking the walls. Shall miss it now it’s much further away. Crisp cold days are just wonderful. Everything looks mystical and magical. From what I’ve seen NZ is beautiful too!

      Yes I despair of the angry people right now, it’s scaring me a bit xxx

      • Good morning Carolyn

        Thanks for your reply, & your observations (with which I agree) but I am glad that I am not subjected to the present anger in the UK, it’s more than scary – it’s terrifying. The other pleasures I do miss re the UK are the ‘living’ museums, most especially Beamish & Coalbrookdale. Where exactly do you live now ?

      • Oh my favourite museums are living history ones. I’ve never been to Beamish but have been to others. I was living in Yorkshire (Nottingham before that and before that Canada). I’m now back to Swindon in Wiltshire where I was born. I made the move to be near my parents and hopefully be there for them should they need my help in anyway in the future. xxxxx

      • Ah Swindon – the home of the Magic Roundabout ! I think is should be renamed, as nightmare corn circles ! Like you I have moved around quite a bit from Edinburgh to Perth then Newcastle upon Tyne, York, Doncaster, NZ, OZ then back to NZ. A bit of variety ! Never lived in Canada but been on holiday (Easter 1995) to see the Hale Bopp comet over Toronto & Niagara Falls – wow to the Canadian skies.

        When the pandemic is over you must visit both Beamish & Coalbrookdale, you will need at least a whole day for each, you lucky girl ! Then there is also Weald & Downland Living Museum, which I have never managed to visit.

  12. Stay strong, stay safe. Good luck with 2021, I recently moved to a whole foods plant based diet and the weight is falling off, (except for the inevitable Christmas blip!) looking forward to getting to my ideal weight soon (ish). I know vegan lifestyle was a WW2 thing for a small number of people, but information is a rare thing, so am attempting to ‘plant base’ adapt some wartime recipes, thanks for all your hard work putting your site together over the years, you’re an inspiration.

    • Hi Richard, thanks for your comment. Yes wasn’t the word vegan created in 1940? I know the vegan society started during WW2 and vegetarian rations were a thing but not vegan as it was such a small minority. These days of course we do have more options, there definitely has been a positive change in the world in recent years towards different lifestyles. Have a wonderful 2021. C xxx

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