Friday 27 October 2023

Autumn 2023 - And what I've been up to lately!

I thought it was time for a bit of a catch up! Here's what I've been up to lately:


I did another order with Wob a few weeks ago and I also did some charity shop shopping, so I'm quite well stocked up on books to read at the moment! I also make regular use of the Amazon Prime Library and free Kindle books. Some of the books that I bought were ones that I borrowed from the library during lockdown and really wanted to read again, like Where the Crawdads Sing, Great Circle and The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot

I really enjoyed the Elon Musk biography and so I've started reading Steve Jobs also by Walter Isaacson. This one isn't quite as gripping - it's pre-Tik Tok and so you need a longer attention span to get into it! Also I'm not quite as interested in the early history of computing as it's a bit before my time. I'm hoping that it will pick up a bit once we get into the iPods, iPhones and so on.


Harry and I are still working our way through Red Dwarf. We have finally made it to the end of all the episodes that I've watched! Now we have seasons 10, 11 and 12 to go, and I've just discovered that there is a very short season 13 to watch too, so there's plenty to go with for now

I've really been enjoying A Small Light on Disney+. It's a biographical drama of Miep Gies, one of the secretaries who helped the Frank family hide in Amsterdam during World War 2. I'm very familiar with Anne Frank's diary as I've read it many times over the years, and last month we visited Anne Frank's House in Amsterdam. But although the Frank family and others do appear in the series, the focus of the story is on Miep, her husband, and the risks that she and many others took during that that period. It's fascinating, because the diary very much focuses on life inside the Annexe and this takes a look at the wider historical picture of what was going on outside. I would absolutely recommend it!


I've been having a lot of fun crafting with Hama beads again. I worked on some Halloween projects and I have some more ideas as we get closer to Christmas.

Hama beads sorted by colour

I'm also quite into jigsaws at the moment. I had a big clear out of my jigsaws recently because I had so many. I used to do some reviews for Ravensburger and I'd collected quite a few which I knew I wouldn't do again. I found myself re-visiting a brilliant channel on YouTube which I used to dip into a couple of years ago - Karen Puzzles - and it inspired me to get into puzzling again. There are so many beautiful jigsaws out there! I started by treating Mia to a Squishmallows jigsaw that we could work on together while my husband was away and it was really fun, and not as difficult as it looks, she loves her Squishmallows. I've now got a few puzzles lined up on my wish lists for birthday and Christmas, and I'm thinking very seriously about attempting a 3000 piece puzzle in the New Year (I can't start one now because we'll need the dining table for Christmas dinner!)

Ravensburger Squishmallow jigsaw completed

Listening to

I listen to Spotify in the car on the way to school and back, and that's a lot of listening time. But I found that Spotify was just playing the same songs over and over, and it really annoyed me that it was choosing what I listened to. So I found how to turn off the feature that auto plays songs, and I stopped choosing the curated playlists like Daily Drive. Instead I downloaded lots of albums, mainly ones that I used to listen to as a teenager, and I've been working my way through them. When the album has finished it just stops and I have to consciously choose what to listen to next. It's working really well for me, and it's also reminding me of songs on albums that I loved but haven't listened to in years because they aren't the most popular songs from the artists. 


I still love playing Pikmin Bloom on my phone! I started playing when it was released two years ago and it's still keeping me interested. Every month there are different challenges which can be a little frustrating at times, especially if you don't spend any money to play, but I find that it often gets me out for a walk during the day if I need to plant some flowers in a particular colour or walk a certain number of steps. I also like playing when we are travelling as I can pick up different seedlings, it's quite limited around where I live and play.

Working on

I've been trying very hard to stop the scrolling on my phone, especially constantly checking of the news and never ending websites like Reddit. Reddit is great for keeping up with hobbies, but I found that I was spending longer reading about about other people doing a hobby than actually doing it myself. It has really helped, my mind feels much clearer and I feel like my attention span has increased.

Looking forward to

This last half term of school always seems like a long one as the days get shorter and the weather gets colder, especially after such a warm, sunny summer. I really hope this winter isn't as cold and long as last year! But I'm already looking forward to Christmas and spending time together with family. We also have a holiday booked for Easter which is the one that was cancelled in March 2020 due to Covid, and although it's a way off yet it's definitely one to look forward to!

What have you been up to lately?


  1. I've got such a huge tbr pile, I'm going for a Stephen king novel next as I've never read one! I'm glad I'm not the only one who listens mostly to my teenage music!

  2. It sounds like you have been busy.
    I need to rewatch Red Dwarf, I did used to love that show. x


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