Yes! I’m still alive and kicking!

Thanks to my followers for being in touch and asking me how I’m going. I find it hard to believe that it’s been a couple of months since my last post here!

I forget that not everyone has Facebook to keep up with the news as I post it.

I’m here in Darwin still, but had a quick trip to Brisbane to catch up with my godparents (Allen & Rose Jagger) when they were in Australia. It was wonderful to be able to spend almost a week together – been so, so many years since we did that. In fact, I think it was when I was at Rishworth!

Allan Jagger OBE, Ellie (my niece)Yvonne (my sister) and Rose Jagger

Not enough time to catch up with friends, but I hope to get back that way in May and catch up with all friends then.

On the home front, I still keep busy with the gardening – never ending trips to the dump with all the palm fronds. They might seem exotic trees to others and look like low maintenance, but they are a pain!  On the plus side, Molly and Janie are always up for a trip and love going out there for a drive.

Janie & Molly just love a ride in the ute!

Really exciting news is that two of the books I’ve been working on with clients are published. One has hit the best seller list in its category. I do enjoy editing, as it combines my love of reading and English skills. Who would have thought that it would lead to this?

Sasha and I have just finished working on the edits of a biography for an Australian client. It was nice to collaborate together and the book is currently doing the round of publishers. Once again, because of confidentiality, I am unable to reveal titles or authors.

The Dry Season is finally arriving, so walking around Darwin is once more very pleasant, as opposed to the hot, sticky humidity that’s been greeting me for the last 6 months!

Given I’ve got so many overseas followers, I’m going to start a regular weekly update to inroduce you all a little more to Australia, and I’ll be starting with Darwin.

That’s all for now folks. It’s girls night so Sasha and I are about to kick back and relax with the latest Season of Game of Thrones!


PS – our business blog is here

Enjoying a vino with my sister 🙂




A Week in Yorkshire

My last blog post was from Malaga just before I headed to the UK. To Yorkshire to be precise, which is where my mother’s ancestral roots lie. I spent many a wonderful holiday in my youth with my grandparents in the picturesque village of Green Hammerton which lies midway between York and Harrogate. I also lived and worked in England both in York and London for a few years, but that was a long time ago, it’s been 14 years since my last visit.Spring Tuba The Ship_Aldborough Mailvan_Phoneb GH20150330_112141-1

It was a delightful week, which flew past all too fast, and although the weather was cold, I was in my brother’s flat which is beautifully heated so I was very cosy and warm. Before I hopped into bed each night the electric blanket made it all warm and toasty before I slipped between the sheets each night.

The coming of Spring is certainly a wonderful time of year to visit England, as daffodils gaily line roadsides and tubs filled with spring flowers added a splash of colour, so even though the air is cold, the outlook is bright.

I spent a very happy time catching up with friends and family, eating favourite foods, both at home and out at the little country pubs which are so unique to the UK. They have English pubs all over the world, but they are just not the same. There is a special atmosphere that oozes from the buildings, the stone floors, the wooden beams and furniture that echo with hundreds of years of history, these places existed long before Australia was even colonised.

I know people say that English cooking is terrible, but that’s not true. It depends on who does the cooking. I feasted on steak and kidney pie, chicken and mushroom pie, Whitby fish stuffed with spinach and prawns served with white wine sauce, roast pork with proper, homemade Bramley apple sauce and much more. In between meals I feasted on homemade shortbread, Wensleydale cheese, Jaffa cakes, Pontefract cakes and the odd piece of fruit for good measure. I’m not sure how much weight I stacked on but who cares!

I arrived back in Spain last night and am all set to start work again later today on what is the final term of the school year here.


Pleasures in simple moments

The sun has gone on holiday. I’ve had to drag out the heater again, pile on jumpers and walk home in the rain – luckily I have a trusty brolly in my bag.

Despite the gloomy weather this as been a brilliant day which stared with a lovely email from ve540447_296256847127709_197996310287097_675934_299281390_nry dear friend (Susan) sharing all her news,  lots of nice comments, including one from a very old friend (Geoff) on my blog from yesterday.

A couple of hours later I received an extremely excited text message from a student with the news she’d passed her English exam (heaps of smiley faces told me she was pleased). The positivity continued with fun and laughter in subsequent classes and concluded with a really amiable conversation group this evening. Nothing earth shattering BUT I enjoyed every moment.

Happiness can be found in the simplest of things and by taking pleasure in the joys others experience. Make someone happy today by showing how much you value them as an individual. Pick up the phone, send a note, a text or whatever you fancy. Go on……reach out and bring a moment of happiness to both your lives.


Making friends

How and where we make friends is something we’ve been discussing as part of the English course I teach. On a personal level, as part of my online blogging activities, I’ve also been meeting my electronic neighbours so I thought it timely to share this link to a blog I wrote last year on the topic of friends.

If you decide to take the time to read the old post I’d love to hear your thoughts on the magic of friendship.