What will your New Year look like?

As we count down the hours to beginning a New Year it is often the time most of us give some serious thought to what we want to achieve or prepare for next year as we contemplate the highs and lows of the year that is ending. I think for many of us the big three are health, wealth and happiness for ourselves, family and friends.

I almost didn’t use the word wealth, it kind of has negative connotations in the frugal community. I think we immediately feel that wealth is synonymous with greed or an abundance of money or assets. I believe that for most people that read my blog and drop a comment below, wealth is not something we strive for in the abundance sense, rather the peace of mind that comes with having enough money to not struggle, to pay our bills, to enable us to help our kids out, to afford repairs or to replace our washing machine or to pay our rent or mortgage. To have enough and a bit extra for a rainy day fund, is plenty enough for most of us.

Wealth, I feel, falls into five main categories

  • Financial (money)
  • Social (relationships)
  • Physical (health)
  • Mental (health, spirituality)
  • Time (freedom)

Becoming wealthier in these five categories I feel, leads to increased happiness and health. A little more money means less worry, having some enjoyable social contact or friendships means less loneliness, working on improving ourselves physically and mentally brings us better health and creating more time leads to a freedom, something we all need to pursue our passions and dreams, or spend more time on the things that make us feel happy.

So for me 2023 is all about becoming a little wealthier in each of the 5 categories and I’ve listed how I’ll try and improve these below:

Financial: I’ve spent a lot in 2022. Bought a much needed higher spec computer to allow me to run software I need for design and video creation which is part of my day job but also allows me to earn a little extra money outside work. HOWEVER, this also means that my rainy day fund has had a couple of months knocked off it so to get that back, 2023 will be a LOW SPEND YEAR for me. As part of living on WW2 rations for the year starting on January 9th, I’m going to mend and make do!

Social: I protect my alone time ferociously, almost appearing anti-social. I prefer a quiet night in to a party or a social event even though I do love people! However, I think it’s really important to have those social interactions and friendships. I’ve started having a monthly chat and wine night with a friend of mine every month. We get together, at one of our houses for a few hours and I love that. It’s good for the soul. This will be the only time I’m drinking alcohol in 2023 too (except for Christmas!).

Physical: Going back to the 1940s. Emerging myself in the simple way of eating during rationing and will be walking more, getting more fresh air. Just these two things to focus on improving my health and reducing my weight. I’ve also signed up at my GP’s surgery with the nurse for regular chats and weigh ins to help me keep on the straight and narrow.

Mental: I will find the time and money to do some therapy with a local professional to get to the bottom of my over eating. Working on my physical health, finding time for social interactions and friendships plus the counselling will I feel improve my mental health.

Time: Time is freedom and I need my freedom. It will be hard to be a little more “selfish” in 2023, I don’t like that word though. I think it’s important to prioritise free time by ensuring you get to do something that makes you feel wonderful whether it’s walking, writing, reading, art or working on passions and projects. It’s easy to let these things slip.

I’d love to hear what your hopes and dreams are for 2023. Please drop a comment below!

C xxxx

My WW2 Recipe Book Volume 1 is in the works!

Yes, FINALLY, it’s in the works! Four books/volumes will be published this year via Kindle Direct Publishing at Amazon in the UK, USA and Europe. I will also sell my Authors copies via this blog if there are people who prefer to not buy through Amazon…but I’m jumping the gun a bit (because I’m excited!).

Well, so far I’ve designed the covers of my first two recipe books AND created all the book layouts inside too! (now to add in the photos, text and graphics).Yes it’s happening! I knew I’d get stuff done during the Christmas break by switching off from everything else.

Have a goal of 50 recipes from my blog in each of the 4 volumes/recipe books. They will be working recipe books so space for notes and jottings. I’ve meant to do this for years. You never find time unless you MAKE time so yes I’ve been spending most of Christmas working long hours and looking like sh*t!!! Haha! Am so excited though!! It will be a dream come true when I get this first one finished!

C xxxxx

PS: I anticipate the first paperback book will be completed and ready to order by end of SPRING. It will be available via Amazon and on my Authors page at www.CarolynHyland.com and here of course.

Merry Christmas 2022 to Everyone.

Dear all,

I’m overwhelmed with the lovely words of support in my last post below. I just wanted to say that I truly appreciate every single word of encouragement and support, especially from many of you who are already going through so many challenges and difficulties yourselves. The “Human Spirit” and our capacity for empathy amazes me, despite what we are fed every single day by the media that undoubtedly tries it’s hardest to turn man against man, I still believe most of us are good and kind and strive for happiness and peace.

I’ve been reading a book, Human Kind: A Hopeful History by Rutger Bregman.

Bregman opens with…

This is a book about a radical idea.

An idea that’s long been known to make rulers nervous. An idea denied by ideologies, ignored by the news media and erased from the annals of world history.

At the same time, it’s an idea that’s legitimised by virtually every branch of science. One that’s corroborated by evolution and confirmed by everyday life. An idea so intrinsic to human nature that it goes unnoticed and gets overlooked.

If only we had the courage to take it more seriously, it’s an idea that might just start a revolution. Turn society on its head. Because once you grasp what it really means, it’s nothing less than a mind-bending drug that ensures you’ll never look at the world the same again.

So WHAT is this radical idea?

That most people, deep down, are pretty decent.

As we yet again move forward into another troubling and uncertain year, I’ll hold on to these beliefs and face the year ahead with optimism and leave the past in the past and make the best of the future.

Thank you for reading my blog. I know I sometimes have been AWOL, it’s been a busy and difficult year and sometimes disappearing is my way of coping when feeling overwhelmed. We all do what we have to don’t we. We are human…

I’m going to disappear now. Tomorrow is Christmas and like hopefully most of you reading this, will enjoy happiness on this glorious day.

May you have a wonderful Christmas and wishing for peace and happiness for all.

Lots of Love, C xxxxx

PS: And here are ALL the Ministry of Food leaflets for you to download!

The 1940sExperiment for a Year – Take 2

I’m done. I’m literally the lowest I’ve been in regards to my health and quality of life in many, many years and coupled with Covid, The Cost of Living Crisis, and the looming possibility of WW3 (whether this happens or not the war in Ukraine will undoubtedly impact us economically), I simply cannot become unhealthy. I have no partner, I’m the sole wage earner, there is no back-up….quite honestly I’m petrified!

In recent months, especially since contracting Covid, my weight has soared and I feel very unhealthy indeed. I know you have likely heard this from me several times before, and trust me I try so hard for a while and then something life changing happens and I turn to food for reassurance and comfort. I’m so fed up with it all, I hate living like this. I’m hurting and only I can change this.

With seemingly only able to achieve success when I throw myself into something 100%, to the point of obsession, it seems to me that I need to commit to living another year on WW2 rations as a historical project to eat simpler, eat healthier, lose weight, use less, make do and tackle the cost of living that we are all struggling with by learning from our ancestors who had to endure those tough and uncertain times. Something serious has to be done, I’m honestly concerned that I’m on the way to becoming impacted medically by my over eating and living such a long time with morbid obesity.

It’s now got to the stage recently where I am seriously out of breath walking up the stairs and my back pain is just awful and am finding it super difficult to walk to work (it’s a mile there and a mile back). Where is that woman who just two years ago could walk several miles, who 5 years ago ran the London Marathon?

On January the 8th I’ll be 57 years old and want to commit to a life changing journey for a year to:

  • Lose 100 lbs (7 stone) by eat simply using WW2 rationing and continue researching and recreating historical recipes while doing so.
  • Live simply and make do with what I’ve got, be more environmentally mindful, avoid waste
  • Attempt to live on very little and save as much money as possible
  • Record details of the experiment on my blog
  • Start some therapy to deal with my eating issues
  • Increase my stamina and health again by walking more as my weight comes off

Essentially the focus of my blog in 2023 will be what the blog was originally about coupled with making do with less in every aspect of my life.

If you are new to my blog here’s some back story:

The 1940s Experiment is a personal journey and social experiment living for one year on a wartime ration book diet to conquer obesity.  100 wartime recipes will be recreated with photos as well as experiences of living on a 1940s WW2 ration diet… 1 authentic wartime recipe will be re-created for every 1 lb lost.

My highest ever weight was 345 lbs… I started the 1st full 1 year1940s Experiment in 2011 (but had done shorter challenges before then) at 315 lbs and lost 80 lbs, today I am 296 lbs. I’ve had a few stops and started along the way since but now I’m committed to seeing this through.

This will be my second proper attempt to live on wartime rationing for a full year.

Here was the result of my 1st full year original challenge: HERE

Thank you for your time reading this, you know I wear my heart and my troubles on my sleeve, some say it’s setting myself up for failure but it’s just the way I cope with things.

Hope everyone is OK, looking forward to Christmas and some proper rest. What changes do you think you will make in 2023? What will your focus be?

Lots of love as always, C xxxx

1940s WW2 Christmas Clips

I’ve been uploading some short clips to my YouTube channel that you might find interesting. I’ve enjoyed finding and sharing these and the full versions can be found on the channels highlighted on the clips. I found the Christmas Post clips really interesting and can’t even begin to imagine how difficult it must have been to deliver mail when quite often, in bombed areas, homes would be lost.

The clips can be found here

C xxxxx

Ministry of Food Leaflet No. 21 How To Preserve Tomatoes

Just 3 more leaflets to share and 3 days to Christmas! Yesterday was my last day at work, today, like most others who have finished work for the year, am catching up on chores that desperately need doing!!

You can download this leaflet here.

C xxxx

Ministry of Food Leaflet No. 20 Soups, Broths and Stews

Just 4 more leaflets to go! We are now into 1945, infact Leaflet No. 19 was published in 1945 too so this is the second one during that particular year.

You can download this one here

I also wanted to thank Sue for her donation that came in through PayPal. As always unexpected but very grateful and will be used towards maintaining/upkeeping the blog. Thank you xxxx

C xxxx

Ministry of Food Leaflet No. 19 Making the Fat Ration Go Further

Good morning! I’m keeping it brief as I am getting ready for work and just squeezing this in before I have my first coffee of the day and some breakfast!

It’s my last day at work too and have a long Christmas holiday now which of course has got filled with practical appointments I haven’t been able to fit in yet such as my next Covid booster, Flu jab and my cars MOT! I’m planning on spending time giving my house a clean and tidy starting tomorrow, wrapping those final presents and will visit my parents again before Christmas too.

Hope you have a great day!

You can download the Ministry of Food Leaflet No.19 here!

C xxxx

Ministry of Food Leaflet No. 18 High Teas & Suppers

These leaflets are so useful for simple, no fuss, sensible and economical cooking aren’t they!

You can download this one here

C xxx

Ministry of Food Leaflet No. 17 Jam Making

Sorry again, so far behind! Many other things to get done right now but I’ve just finished work and spending the next hour catching up before I make my dinner. C xxx

You can download this leaflet here.