IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE

If we were having coffee these are a few of the things I'd share from my life that happened in April. #midlife #ifwewerehavingcoffee

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE

If we were having coffee these are a few things I'd be sharing from Easter and the rest of the lovely month of April. I always enjoy a good 'Taking Stock' blog post, so I hope you'll humour me and sit a while as I share my news. There's nothing like a virtual cuppa and a chat, and I have lots to share from the last few weeks - including an Easter family visit.

BLOGGING

It's been a nice steady month of blogging for me - quite a change to the last three Aprils where I've been absorbed by (and at times a little overwhelmed by) the April AtoZ Challenge. I've missed it a little bit, but overall it's been nice to have had the spare time and room in my head for other things. I've enjoyed seeing a few of my blogging tribe committing to it for another year and seeing some of their posts linked up to our #MLSTL Party - they are braver souls than me!

I also finally got around to creating a proper email subscriber set-up. I've used good old Feedburner since I started and had been told it was unreliable and to use a different format for years. Well, Feedburner died on me at the beginning of the month, so I bit the bullet and sorted out setting up a Mailchimp list for notifications of new posts. After banging my head on my laptop several times in frustration, I finally figured it out and it's all up and running. So, if you don't get an email from me to tell you there's a new post on the blog, and you'd like one, you can sign up in my sidebar any time you like.

RETIRING?

Retirement continues very pleasantly. It's been 8 weeks since I left my job and I can't say that I've missed it in the slightest. It's been such a joy to not have the stress of a fairly responsible position coupled with the drama that overlayed it every time I went in. It's also been strange to not dread Mondays anymore. I saw this cartoon recently and remembered how Monday dread would kick in sometime Sunday afternoon. It's sooo nice to be out of that loop and Monday is a great day again. 

SMonday - that awful moment on Sunday afternoon when you realize it's almost Monday already.

I still haven't made any life altering plans or filled my days with many extra activities, it's just been nice to chill out a little and just "be". I suppose eventually I may need to make some plans, but it's been delightful not having to be responsible for anything or anyone - and I'm certainly learning to enjoy it.

MORE-ING

So what have I done to fulfill "More" in April? Well, to be completely simplistic, I've eaten more hot cross buns than I have in any other month of the year. I have a real love for these delicious Easter treats - toasted with butter and a cup of coffee - delicious! 

Eating hot cross buns for Easter - a favourite treat

And on my A to Z of new things for this month I added E for Email - setting up my Mailchimp emails, W for The Witness - a REALLY hard, puzzle filled video game that my engineering son tells me is good for my problem solving skills, and J for Junket - I made junket for the first time in about 20 years to use up some spare milk. It brought back a few childhood memories in the process.


FAMILY-ING

Easter always brings with it a lovely visit from our son and DIL and two grandgirls. We love having them stay with us for a few days and it encourages us to get out and about to playgrounds, coffee places and other entertainment for littlies. Our cats also get extra attention and it was a chance for them to meet Luna and give her some love too.

My Mum was also down visiting and we managed to merge family time with her and with my MIL (who lives nearby) so they could see their grandkids and great-grandkids. It's always nice to have lots of time with the grandgirls and their parents - I miss them when we haven't seen them for a few weeks.

Grandgirls

KITTEN-ING

Luna continues to be her delightful self. We took her to the vet to be sterilized and micro-chipped and (after a couple of days of feeling a bit worse for wear) she's back to her frisky little self and driving our older cat nuts by pouncing on her regularly. She's still an absolute joy to have around and we're so glad that she's part of the family.

Luna helping and resting
Luna participating in two of her favourite activities - "helping" and "resting" 

FITBIT-ING

I just have to take a moment to give a shout-out to the amazing makers of Fitbits. My lovely Alta Fitbit was going well until a few weeks ago when it overheated suddenly and died. I was SO disappointed because it was 14 months old and just out of its 12 month warranty period. The Help Forum said to email Fitbit for advice and that's when the good news started. The Fitbit team sent me a free postage label and asked me to return it to them and, after checking it, promptly sent me a brand new replacement! Now that's what I call fantastic customer service - which is a rarity in this day and age. So I'm even more in love with my Fitbit now!

WATCHING

This month's movie was Shazam! I went with high hopes after seeing the trailer. It starred a favourite actor of ours - Zachary Levi - from the "Chuck" TV series and it looked funny and a great take on the Super Hero genre. Well......my husband loved it, me.... not so much. I think I went with my expectation level set too high and it failed to live up to its own hype. A little bit too 14-year-old-boy-stuck-in-a-man's-body-ish for me I'm afraid. It was still a nice movie - just not in my top 10 I'm afraid.

WHAT ABOUT YOU?

Well that's it from me during April. What have you been up to? Any exciting Easter events, good movies, holidays or family stuff going on in your world?


If we were having coffee these are a few of the things I'd share from my life that happened in April. #midlife #ifwewerehavingcoffee

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47 comments

  1. What a lovely month you have had, Leanne. Your granddaughters are just so adorable and precious times spent with them making memories. Gosh I haven't had junket since I was probably about 10 years old - that is almost 52 years ago!!! I've subscribed through your Mailchimp and it is working beautifully. You are doing the right thing just enjoying your time off and not rushing into anything before you are ready. April has been moving house for me after 11 years in my MIL's home and celebrating my daughter's birthday and then grandson's 5th birthday yesterday. Hope you have a lovely May full of MORE things to enjoy in life. xx

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    1. Hi BBB - your April will certainly stick in your memories for a while! It certainly was a major shift mentally and physically leaving the old behind and launching into the new - and who knows where you might eventually end up (Bunbury??!) And I hadn't had junket for a similar number of years - it was nothing to write home about, but a fun memory.

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    2. Hi BBB, oh Bunbury sounds lovely and yes I remember junket being quite bland but it does bring back fond memories. I've pinned and always enjoy your Monthly Review. Great start to #MLSTL and have a great week.

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  2. Btw Zachary Levi has a role in the 2nd season of the Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. It’s a wonderful series and he is good in the role, which isn’t terribly big. If you liked him in Chuck you would likely like him in that. Don’t worry you will find your path over time.

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    1. I'm glad he hasn't completely lost his way since Chuck and thanks for the encouragement that I haven't completely lost my way either :)

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  3. I had a week off with the kids (old mom with young kids) and am so glad they are back in school. We traveled to see my ailing mom (shes way old) and thankfully they see past her frailty and just enjoyed her.

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    1. Old mum vs young mum - so many points in favour (and against) each isn't there? I'm glad you enjoyed the holiday with the kids - and totally understand how relieved you'd be to have some headspace back now they're in school again x

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  4. Leanne you have had a busy fun filled month. I felt like you when I retired the time just flew by and now I wondered how I had time to work. lol

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    1. I'm starting to wonder the same thing Victoria - every day is such a joy - no more early mornings, no more traffic battles, no more stress.....I could go on for hours - I'm just loving this retirement gig!

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  5. Busy month Leanne! Please translate what is Junket? Adorable grands and kitty! That is a fantastic cat perch, btw!

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    1. I put a link on the word "junket" for you Haralee - I figured there might be a few people who didn't know what it was :)

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  6. I used to hate that feeling on a Sunday night! Smonday is a good word for it. #MLSTL

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    1. Me too Lydia - it sucked the joy right out of Sunday afternoon and evening. I don't miss the feeling at all!

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  7. Always good to read your catch-ups Leanne. I'm glad you got lots of family and kitten time. We had a number of family birthdays to celebrate in April and I got in my first hike of the year. It was a good month. Now on to May! Enjoy! #MLSTL

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    1. I can't believe May's here already Christie - it seems like the year is flashing by again. Is it because I'm getting older or because life is so busy that time flies? I actually enjoy looking back at the month to give some aknowlegement to what's come and gone before launching into the next one.

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  8. Such a lovely April you've had, Leanne! I'm glad you're enjoying retirement and not rushing into anything. Your granddaughters and Luna are adorable. I had a similar great customer service experience with my selfie stick. #MLSTL

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    1. Isn't it great when you get good customer service Natalie? It's a shame that it's so infrequent that it stands out in stark relief when a company steps up and does the right thing.

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  9. Another busy month for you Leanne. Your photos in this post are gorgeous. As are your grandchildren and Luna #MLSTL Sharing on SM

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    1. Thanks Jennifer - it's always nice when there's joy to share and simple pleasures like a friendly cat, great time with family or other treats from life. I'm certainly appreciating the little things more these days.

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  10. Leanne, congrats on your retirement - and on taking time to figure out what your next moves are. Sometimes "just being" is the hardest thing to do! It sounds like you're doing retirement right.

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    1. Hi Julie - yes you're right about the "just being" part. As the weeks tick by I seem to be getting better at allowing myself to enjoy the peace and calm of no longer working. The thought of returning to the workforce is fading slowly away!

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  11. Hi, Leanne - I always enjoy your catch-ups. Your April had so many wonderful highlights. I too enjoyed the not scrambling to do the A - Z Challenge this year. The relaxing pace was great!

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    1. I loved the AtoZ for the 3 years I participated Donna, but it really is a hard slog to do it well. All the reading and commenting is what took my time and it was very pleasant this year just cruising at my usual pace instead of the frantic AtoZ pace!

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  12. You know what? I can tell how much more stress-free you are in your words and activities. Your pace seems to have more of a relaxed nature to it these days, so I'm glad you are enjoying your 'retirement' days. It's nice to just 'be' sometimes isn't it? I enjoyed reading about your month and already subscribe to your newsletter, thanks for sharing your findings with me, but I've decided not to bother going down that route at the moment. Stay well and happy Leanne xx #mlstl

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    1. Hi Deb - I put off Mailchimp for at least 2 or 3 years, so don't rush into it until what you have no longer works for you. And yes, I'm feeling so much more relaxed now I'm not dealing with all the work trauma - and it really was traumatic to my heart and soul. I'm getting better at allowing myself to realize that I've earnt the right to be able to live life on my own terms instead of being part of the rat race - bliss!

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  13. Enjoyed reading about your month, and it was a good one, I think. I've been using Mailchimp for years and once you get the hang of it, it's a good and reliable service. Glad to hear that your Fitbit was replaced. Mine is still doing well and I love it,can't imagine not having it on my wrist telling me to get up and move!

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    1. I'm a huge Fitbit fan Candi - it is such a great motivator for getting out and going for a walk each day. And yes, Mailchimp is great now that I have it figured out and it's just doing its job in the background. Hopefully I'll remember what I did if I ever need to change anything!

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  14. Hi Leanne - Glad to see you were successful in setting up an email subscriber.
    Those kittens are so nice. :-)
    For me April was the month of A to Z Challenge. And it's done!
    Otherwise, we had elections in my city as part of the national elections which is being held across the country in seven phases.
    After intense heat over a few weeks, yesterday we had some heavy showers bringing the temperature down.
    - Pradeep, #MLSTL participant. Sharing on my social media

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    1. Hi Pradeep - I was very impressed with you tackling the AtoZ for another year. I was quite relieved to not have the pressure this year - I tend to plunge in really deep and try to comment and read lots of other blog posts - it's gugely time consuming! Maybe if I'm still not working next year I'll take it on again - the AtoZ of Retirement!

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  15. I came over via Chrome to say Hi from #MLSTL and leave a comment. :-) I'm exploring your A to Z New Things approach a bit as I'm drafting an update of my 101 New Things in 2019 goal. Not sure I'll flip over to that...too many challenging letters! Apparently I'm doing lots of new B things. As always, love you catch your posts!

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    1. Hi Pat - nice that you're still finding lots of new things to do. I only find a few here and there - and so far it's been easy slotting them into the AtoZ list. It will probably get harder as the list gets filled - in that case I'll double up (I'm sure nobody will notice!)

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  16. Leanne, I'm glad you are giving yourself a break and not filling in your post working life with a lot of things. Take the time to relax and enjoy some time to yourself. you can always add more things in when you feel like it!

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    1. I think that's the conclusion I'm coming to too Michele - there's time for more later, now it's time for just chilling out and calming the heck down!

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  17. Your April sounds lovely Leanne! I use MailChimp for email list but I haven't sent out a newsletter in over a year. I feel so guilty about it. I need to bite the bullet - get back onto it or ditch it. Great customer service from Fitbit and good to know. I love to hear about brands doing the right thing by their customers! Keep on relaxing and enjoying yourself. Can you believe it's May already!

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    1. I was so impressed with Fitbit's service Min, but it's a sad indictment on today's customer service when something like this stands out so strongly isn't it? I'm only using Mailchimp for sending out post updates, I doubt I'll be doing a newsletter any time soon - that's what my "if we were having coffee" posts is all about really.

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  18. I just love your 'If We were Having Coffee' posts. I enjoy getting a peek into your life and seeing the fun you've been having. (A mite jealous about the retirement part, but I'll be there in 1 1/2 years - which lately seems to fly by).
    Sharing for MLSTL

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    1. I thought I'd have to wait another 10 years before I could embrace retirement Trisha - but life has strange twists and turns (and this one is turning out not to be too bad at all!) And I love taking stock posts for the same reason - they makes our online friendships seem more personal don't they?

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  19. That job really was toxic for you. I am so glad you gave it away. This was a lovely read. Good news about the fitbit. I love it when companies go the extra mile.

    Denyse #mlstl

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    1. I loved Fitbit's excellent customer service too Denyse - and yes, the further away I get from that job, the more I realize the damage it was doing to me!

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  20. Leanne, I can't believe it's been eight weeks already! Obviously retirement suits you well... and for what it's worth, I think you are doing it the right way. You are allowing yourself to BE instead of focusing on DOing all the time. I need to follow your lead when I officially retire on the 17th :)

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    1. I'm so excited for you and you impending retirement Molly - I hope you'll be blogging about this next stage of life and linking it up to #MLSTL - I've missed catching up with you and must pop over to see how you're going x

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  21. Hi Leanne,
    Love roundout posts...just gives a little insight into what everyday life looks like at your house.
    Luna is adorable, as are the little girls. Family time is so precious!
    Shared from #MLSTL

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    1. Thanks so much - I love sharing these little snippets - they are a great reminder of the highlights and blessings each month - not quite as soul searching as my blog posts tend to be!

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  22. I remember that SMonday feeling. I would take a bath every Sunday night just to try to relax in order to sleep. Otherwise, I'd just be thinking about work all night long.

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    1. I used to start on Sunday afternoon and I'd be constantly reminding myself not to think about it and to enjoy the time I had left before the chaos began again. I'm SO glad to be out of that soup of stress Jennifer!

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  23. I'm still trying to figure out MailChimp. It's been annoyingly alluding me for awhile now. #AnythingGoes

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  24. Sounds like such a happily spent April, have a great time ahead - Thanks for joining us in Bloggers Pit Stop - Pit Stop Crew

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