Monthly Archives: October 2017

Halloween Memories

I remember as a child not going Trick or Treating. My parents saw it as a sign of begging and back then Trick or Treating wasn’t as big as it is now.

However when I was 9 I was allowed to go! I went with my best friend and another friend of ours, her older sister and her older sisters friend. We had a blast. We got dressed up, we received so many treats as well as toothpaste samples! The lady told us they were for after eating all our treats! Actually a neat idea! We also had some tricks played on us, the one I remember was a lady answering her front door but her husband running out of the back door in a ghost costume! We screamed so loud, much to his amusement, but he did give us some treats afterwards.

My best friend and I both dressed up as witches. I remember borrowing her Mum’s shawl! We’re also wearing bin bags as dresses! And for some reason we decided to both wear trolls around our necks. I have no idea why but I’m sure there was a reason at the time.


Afterwards we went to our friend’s house where we watched a show called Ghostwatch. It was made to seem like live TV and at the time we thought it was. There were presenters in a studio and then a crew that had gone to investigate a house with a Poltergeist called Pipes. It actually scared us all silly and I remember when I got home I demanded my Mum come to the bathroom with me so I could brush my teeth as I was scared Pipes was in there! It sounds ridiculous but I was only 9 years old! I’ve just noticed on the cover art it’s rated a 12. Weren’t we rebels!


What are your Halloween memories?

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How I Earned the Halloween 5K Medal

I entered my result for this race as soon as I’d done a 5K in October. By the time you read this post I’ll be away on holiday and I wanted to make sure I’d entered my 5K time well before going on holiday because otherwise I’d forget for sure!

So I completed this 5K on 7th October at parkrun. I’d really wanted a 5K PB but sadly it wasn’t to be as the wind was ferocious. That’s the thing about having a seafront parkrun, it can be so windy. As it was parkruns 13th Birthday my local parkrun had put on a pacing event so people could try for a PB but even the pacers struggled to make it in on time due to the wind. So a sub 45 minute parkrun still eludes me but I’ll keep trying. Or maybe I’ll have managed it by the time you read this! We’ll see!

So with a time of 45:36 I earned the 5K Halloween Medal from Virtual Runner UK. This medal was a surprise as, for some reason, I didn’t realise it opens up! It’s another really cool medal.

Halloween 5K Medal

Halloween 5K Medal

It’s such a great medal, I love that it opens and says Trick or Treat. What a neat idea. The medals from Virtual Runner just get better and better.


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How I Earned My Golden Ticket medal

This is actually a medal I earnt in September, I just realised I hadn’t posted about it yet! Oops!

The Golden Ticket medal could be earned by completing a 5k during the month of September. I didn’t complete a 5K specifically for this one, instead I decided I’d do 5K’s throughout September and pick my best time. I perhaps did this a tad early as if I’d hung on until 30th September I’d have had a better time but that’s another story.

So the end of September was approaching and my best 5K time was the Bayside Summer Series 5K I did so I entered that time. It’s kind of like I got two medals for the same run but considering the weather it was worth getting two medals for that run!!

If you missed my post on the Bayside Summer 5K it’s HERE

Now this medal is something else, check out these pictures! I love it.

Golden Ticket Medal

Isn’t it fab how it opens up to reveal the golden ticket! Willy Wonka would be proud!

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What I Do When I Get Sick in Autumn

On Tuesday I posted my How To Prevent Getting Sick in Autumn post. However, it’s inevitable you might get sick, even with the greatest of intentions not to. Here’s how I go about tackling a cold.

Anti-Bacterial Hand Gel
So now I’ve caught those germs, it’s essential to keep washing my hands or putting on anti-bacterial hand gel after coughing or blowing my nose.

Tissues with Balsam Oils
When I’m blowing my nose every two seconds it gets sore so I like to make sure I use tissues with balsam oils to at least try and prevent it getting too sore. Although it inevitably still does so I also use…

Every time I blow my nose I dab on some Vaseline to stop my nose getting too sore from all the blowing and wiping with tissues.

Vicks Sinex Micromist
This nasal spray is literally a godsend. If you have a blocked nose, even if its really blocked, this nasal spray will clear it. It’s supposed to last 12 hours and it usually lasts most of the day for me. I use it in a morning and before I go to bed at night along with…

Olbas Oil
I dab Olbas Oil on to my pillowcase at night. I’m sure on the instructions it says to put a couple of drops on to a tissue inside your pillowcase but this doesn’t work for me. Instead I out 5 or 6 drops on to both edges of my pillow so which ever way I face I feel the benefit. I swear by Olbas Oil and used to really like the plug in vaporiser they sold but I haven’t seen these in ages.

I know some people say to have hot lemon, or hot honey and whiskey but personally I prefer a big measure of Whiskey or Rum just as it is. It’s perfect for numbing your throat if you have a tickly cough and unblocking your nose.

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How To Prevent Getting Sick in Autumn

Autumn brings with it a change in weather, and for whatever reason, that turn in weather brings with it illness and germs. So how do you keep healthy in Autumn?

Here’s some of my tricks.

Anti-Bacterial Hand Gel
At work I am constantly using antibacterial hand gel or washing my hands. This is because I am constantly wiping noses or getting coughed and sneezed on! I work in a baby unit and of course, they don’t know to cover their mouths or how to wipe their own nose. This is also useful to have with you when at the gym!

I’m not the best at eating enough fruits and vegetables through the week. I can nail it at weekends when I have more time to cook but I fail in the week. To compliment my diet I take Vitamins. This ensures I’m always getting enough of the vitamins I may lack through my diet, especially Vitamin C and Zinc which are well known to boost your immune system.

Flu Jab
I get the flu jab for free at work every October. More work places are offering this now and it’s also available on the NHS or at places like Boots. The flu jab protects against Swine Flu, a particular strain of flu that affects the elderly or people who are more vulnerable by having a long term illness and Influenza B that affects children.

I always try to make sure I get 8 hours sleep a night. This isn’t always possible, and actually I feel much better for having 9 hours sleep a night. Sleep deprivation is known to affect your immune system so plenty of early nights ensure I manage to stay fighting fit.

Making sure I exercise regularly is something I strive for, not only for weight loss, but to help boost my immune system. Moderate exercise is proven to improve your immune system.

Marshalling at the Great South Run and Runner Reviews

Yesterday I was a marshal at the Great South Run in Portsmouth. It was looking a bit hit and miss as to whether the event would take place or not as Storm Brian was battering Britain. The Saturday events were cancelled due to high winds but the Sunday proved to be a tad less windy so we were good to go.

Marshalling meant an early start. I was up at 6am to meet some other marshals from my section at the Gosport Ferry at 7.20. It was still dark when I arrived with just the tiniest bit of light starting to creep up.

View of Portsmouth

The view of Portsmouth from the Gosport Ferry

We caught the 7.30 ferry over to Portsmouth and then walked to our marshal meeting point Wetherspoons! We had breakfast and were given instructions for the day. We were then headed off to our marshal positions. My friend Anna and I were based just before mile 5 where we had the very easy job of making sure no one tried driving up a closed off road. What wasn’t included in the marshal instructions was directions to Gunwharf Quays! I must have been asked how people could get there on foot 30-40 times. I had no clue and sent them all to Anna who thankfully knows Portsmouth a bit better than me!

We were in our marshal positions by 9.05 which felt really early but it gave me time to take a selfie, spot a few friends walking to the start and drink coffee. It was really cold stood still and the wind seemed to whistle right through us. It wasn’t long before we were adding layers, scarves and hats!

This is from InstaStories hence the temperature stamp

Soon the race was under way and the ladies lead group came past us. I shouted words of encouragement to Charlotte Purdue (who came 3rd) and Gemma Steele (who went on to win) and then to Jen who I know from parkrun who came in 9th place!

There were over 20,000 runners and I managed to spot quite a lot of friends from parkrun. It was great to see them and I received sweaty hugs and kisses and shouted words of encouragement to those that were further away from where I was stood. It was such a great atmosphere. People were thanking us for marshalling as we encouraged people who had their names printed on to their tops. I had a funny “argument” with one guy. I was shouting to the crowds “Well Done you’re all awesome” and a guy replied “No you’re awesome” so I shouted back “No you’re awesome” this went on until he was right down the road. It was funny.

We were allowed to leave our marshal position after the last walkers came through. It was around 1.30pm when we left. We’d been so lucky with the weather. It might have been windy but at least it didn’t rain. It took me a long time to warm up though and in the end I opted for a hot bath as I just couldn’t get fully warm. Oh and then I did something….I went online and booked myself a place in next years Great South Run!!!! I have a year to get ready so I’m praying I can train and stay injury free. Fingers crossed.

Runners Reviews

Anna – finished in 1:13:23

Amazing day! I went with no expectations, I just wanted to see what I could do. Loved the atmosphere and the crowds and it was fantastic seeing so many runners I knew and also amazing supporters and volunteers like you! The weather wasn’t horrendous, yes gusty but not too bad considering all the warnings. Top day.

Check out Anna’s blog

Kerry – finished in 1:40:27

Perfect conditions, a tad windy but not as bad as we had thought! I was doing great until Mile 8 and body shut down. I soon realized that it was due to being severely dehydrated and not eating since the day before. Definitely a lesson learnt! No PB for me, but hopefully next year!

Check out Kerry’s blog

Paul – finished in 1:12:15

A great day out at the Great South Run. I arrived early to relax with a coffee before changing into my run gear, my beloved Stokes Bay junior parkrun running vest (Paul is our ED at Stokes Bay juniors). Then greetings with friends before heading to the start pen to mingle with thousands of others, keen to get underway.
Generous crowds shouting and cheering around much of the start, I settled into a comfortable pace, first mile a bit quicker than I intended. Then the second mile beep, heading through the naval base, I actually looked at the runner alongside who looked bemused as I said “oops that mile was a bit quick!”
I felt ok and passed by someone I knew, said hi and pushed on, shouted hi again as I saw him still heading up Winston Churchill Avenue as I was heading back down. He didn’t hear me! Still going well at mile 5 I saw Rebecca and Anna and collected high 5’s. Then another high 5 from my son around mile 6.
Starting to feel tired by mile 7, I slowed a little. When I saw a row of children all wanting high 5’s, a guy in front got a few, then they cheered as I went down the line of 8, high fiving all.
Trying to save a little for the headwind on the final 2 miles I rounded the corner. It wasn’t as bad as I thought, I stayed to the side getting some shelter and still kept some decent pace going. Happy to cross the line, I was wanting to match my time from last year, but managed to go 2 minutes quicker. 1:12:15 very happy.
Now for a quick calf massage to free the muscles,  but this was very painful, but necessary! My feet survived with a few small but angry blisters.
On getting home I was so pleased with my run I immediately entered next years GSR, can’t wait!

Penny  – finished in 1:59:22

Penny (right) before the run

Penny (left) After the run

I absolutely loved yesterday. I met up with Shona before the run and we chilled together. Shona literally chilled as wasn’t wearing enough layers to keep warm. Lesson learned for next year.

The start is always exciting with everybody gathered together waiting for the warm up and start. We set off together chatting like normal but there was so much to see and hear that we didn’t chat all the time.  The first mile marker appeared out of nowhere.
I enjoyed reading the backs of people’s shirts and looking at costumes. It was nice to spot familiar faces too. Unfortunately by about 6km I needed the loo. I knew there were toilets at 10k so kept going. I didn’t tell Shona my plan to stop as I didn’t want to mess up her time.
It was my plan to be under 2 hours this year so as I stood in the queue for the loo I checked my watch to see if I could still do it. It was disheartening watching people go by. My toilet stop lasted 4 minutes so I knew I had to pick the pace up. It wasn’t too long until I over took a T-Rex again. Then the Wonder Women were in my sights and I knew I was almost back to the group I was with before my stop. At 8 miles I over took the other two T-Rex and started to speed up. Lots of people were walking and struggling against the wind but I was on a mission. When I got to 9 miles and checked my watch I knew if I kept at that pace I could reach my target time.
In the end I finished in 1:59:22 . I had made my target. Shona was in the queue for goody bags too. She was only 2 minutes ahead of me at the end.  I would have loved to have run the whole thing together because we would have encouraged each other in those last 2 miles and who knows what time we could have done together. We will have to see next year.

Did you run the Great South Run? How was it for you?


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My Favourite Movie

We all have that one movie we love. The movie we can quote, the movie with our favourite actors, the movie we never tire of watching.

My favourite movie has some lovely quotes in it that make me think of Autumn. It has some lovely lines that make me go all gooey inside.

My favourite movie has my favourite actor in it, Tom Hanks. Everyone likes at least one of his movies right?!

My favourite movie has some really corny songs in it, but actually, they really make the film what is it.

My favourite movie is now kind of retro, technology changes so much that I’m not even sure people use chat rooms anymore.

Have you guessed what it is yet?

My favourite movie is “You’ve Got Mail”

You've Got Mail

Image from Amazon

I love this film. I love it so much I own it on DVD and then bought it on Blu-Ray when it came out on that too. Tom Hanks is my favourite actor and quite frankly has the best lines in this movie.

My personal favourites:

Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me wanna buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address. On the other hand, this not knowing has its charms.

The whole purpose of places like Starbucks is for people with no decision-making ability whatsoever to make six decisions just to buy one cup of coffee. Short, tall, light, dark, caf, decaf, low-fat, non-fat, etc. So people who don’t know what the hell they’re doing or who on earth they are can, for only $2.95, get not just a cup of coffee but an absolutely defining sense of self: Tall. Decaf. Cappuccino – I can not go in to Starbucks without thinking of this line

Good thing it wasn’t the fish! – Apparently Tom Hanks ad lib’d this line!

Yeah. I would have asked for your number, and I wouldn’t have been able to wait twenty-four hours before calling you and saying, “Hey, how about… oh, how about some coffee or, you know, drinks or dinner or a movie… for as long as we both shall live?”

To be fair Meg Ryan also have a couple of good lines too, in fact she has my absolute favourite line from the whole movie:

I wanted it to be you. I wanted it to be you so badly

Have you seen You’ve Got Mail? What’s your favourite film?


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My Favourite Autumn Quotes

Whilst I’ve been writing all my Autumn/October posts the same quote kept falling in to my head.

Fall In New York Quote

This quote is from my absolute favourite movie “You’ve Got Mail” and the quote is said by my favourite actor Tom Hanks.

It made me wonder what other Autumn quotes there are, so I thought I’d look some up and share with you.

Autumn Colours Quote

Go To The Parks

Colours in its pocket

Let Dead Things Go

Do you have a favourite Autumn quote?

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My Favourite Halloween Movies

As Halloween draws closer I thought I’d list some of my favourite Halloween/Scary movies. Snuggling down under a blanket on a cold Autumn evening is the perfect way to spend time!

The Craft – The film focuses on 4 teenage girls who are outcasts. They use witch craft to make things go their way. The main character is Sarah who has just moved to the area and becomes friends with three girls. The spells they perform soon start to have a negative impact on their lives rather than the positive impact they had hoped for.

The Craft

Image from Amazon

The Witches – I loved this film as a child. It’s based on the Roald Dahl novel by the same name. It’s about a little boy called Luke who goes to stay in a hotel with his Grandmother. She tells him that Witches exist among us and the tell tale signs. It turns out the hotel they’re in is hosting a convention attended by Witches from all around the World. The film is about how Luke plans to get rid of the Witches.

The Witches

Image from Amazon

The Addams Family – And the sequel to this film, The Addams Family Values. Both films I loved as a child. I used to like watching the old TV series of The Addams Family so when this came out I remember going to see it at the cinema. The storyline isn’t great but it’s still fun.

The Addams Family

Image from Amazon

Stephen King’s IT – Ah this film is a classic. I watched it as a child and didn’t find it in the least bit scary. I’m worse watching it as an adult!! I’ve yet to see the new one. This film is about Pennywise the Clown and a group of outcast children. Why are they always outcasts? The story is about how they kill IT.

Stephen King's IT

Image from Amazon

Carrie – Another classic horror movie. Again I saw this as a child and it had no effect, but scares the life out of me now. The hand at the end gets me every time. If you know, you know 😉 Carrie is an outcast! Another outcast who lives with her Mother who is an extreme Christian and slightly crazy. She gets bullied at school so another school girl asks her boyfriend to ask Carrie to the prom. The prom doesn’t go to plan!


Image from Amazon

What are your favourite Halloween/Scary films?

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What I Don’t Like About Autumn

I’m a big fan of Autumn, honestly I am! It’s my favourite season. But there are some things I don’t like about Autumn so I’ve listed them below.

Autumn seems to be when the rainy season comes back full force and you have to start carrying an umbrella with you every time you go out.

Unpredictable Weather
Following on from rain, you never know what the weather is going to do in Autumn. The mornings start off cold so you layer up, pop on a coat and scarf, then come mid afternoon it’s glorious sunshine and you’re stripping off the layers! You just can’t win.

The leaves look so pretty when they’re laid on the fall having freshly fallen. However, after a few downpours of rain they become a slippery death trap!

Remember those early Autumn walks through the woods, you and a friend or your pooch, crunching through the leaves, admiring the late evening sun. Now you’re up to your ankles in mud wondering why you didn’t just go for a walk around the block.

Do you love or loathe Autumn? What’s your favourite season?

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