How to Lift Your Soul…

Hello Beautiful People

I’VE GOT SO MUCH TO TELL YOU But I must do an ACTUAL post first…so first up I need to say…

Apologies for the absence AGAIN!! I’m a terrible blogger and I deserve punishment, although looking at my stats is punishment enough right now so I have instead decided to pluck up the courage to just say AH WELL SH*T HAPPENS and give you a nice fresh new post, just for you, yes you, I’m talking to YOU!! This is all yours, I hope you enjoy it.

Now as some of you may or may not know I began meditating a few months ago, around the same time that I started this blog.  When I started out I found it so difficult, I had a real problem with staying ‘quiet’.  With my Bucket List, I wanted to try to bring myself some inner peace and start to feel like I was pushing my own life forward.  Now I must insert a small disclaimer here, for anyone reading who has not read before, I’m not religious, at all, I have no interest in religion but in a moment of utter darkness I fell to my knees and felt it was natural to try this meditation malarkey that that woman banged on about in Eat, Pray, Love.

I remember the first time I tried it, I couldn’t sit still.  I kept shuffling and wriggling, I was bugging myself.  I stood up (battling the sitting position convention) I shook my body out like I used to in Drama class, I shook and I shook and I shook till I got pins and needles all over then dropped to my knees again.

‘this isn’t working’

This little voice in my head was driving me mad, I wanted so badly to feel utter peace and calm from the rage inside me but it just wasn’t working.  I laid on my front, literally face down in the carpet.

nothing.

I sat in the ‘typical’ position, legs crossed, hands pinched between finger and thumb.

nothing.

I let out a massive sigh, literally expelling every ounce of air from my lungs and I felt it, a brief billi-second of peace, of silence.  I opened my eyes and fist pumped ‘YES!!’ I looked at every inch of my body studying the position that had allowed me this precious moment of silence.

NOT ATTRACTIVE.

This pose would not win me any princely kisses that’s for sure!  I was sat like a teddy bear sits when they are dropped from a great height.  Slouched and comfortable.  Legs akimbo, arms limply by my side, I leaned up against  a cabinet in my room, and noticed that from where I was sitting, I could see the entire sky, really bright and a deep navy blue, tinted with sparkling stars.  In that moment 4 things came to me, that shaped how I would meditate from here on in.

  1. My ornamental (literally I think it’s made of plastic) Buddha was positioned in a way that I felt she (yes my Buddha is a she, because well, I said so! apologies for any offence caused) so, I felt that she was looking down from my murky windowsill, her stare was washing over me and actually felt very supportive.  Almost like she was saying ‘it’s ok kid, keep at it’, so I always meditate in her shadow.
  2. Night time was the best time to do this.  My house was silent, all I could hear were the distant snores of the Incredibles and the murmur of Batman’s TV.  This was a peaceful time, a magical sort of time that lends itself very nicely, to the calming nature of meditation.
  3. I liked the dark.  I had started this little experiment without realising it, in the pitch dark.  The only light was coming from the moon and stars, it made me feel all philosophical and poignant.  It made me focus, eventually, allowing me to block out the stuff around me.
  4. I DON’T SHUT UP!  This really got on my nerves, I just cannot not think, it’s infuriating.  So I decided to use it to my advantage and I found myself singing in my head.  I would do my breathing exercises, focusing in my mind on different places in my body (called chakras or something!) and I would sing in my head.  Whatever came to mind.

This is the official guide to your Chakras, I just work my way around the body, but this is here just incase you really wanted to know 🙂

I don’t meditate every day.  I feel that takes the effectiveness out of it for me.  I meditate when I feel I need to.  When I need to bring myself some peace, or just need some time to myself I find meditation surrounds me in a little bubble where I can be entirely alone for a little while.

Your probably wondering, so this is called HOW TO LIFT YOUR SOUL…..Well……how do I? right??

Well I have created a mini playlist just for you, of the songs that I turn to when meditating, I have a playlist of every single song I have ever thought of whilst meditating but here are the top 6 that are truly my favourites!  I hope you enjoy and if you don’t already I’d suggest meditation to anyone at all, but my advice would be DO IT YOUR OWN WAY.  Don’t ever feel like you’re doing it wrong, find your own path and be your own person.  Do what’s best for you!

P.S  Yes you will hear a theme with the songs, they represent my favourite music I think, the music that truly settles my soul, some are covers, and some are weird, and some will have you thinking REALLY?? YOU MEDITATE TO THIS?!?! Well, I hope you enjoy 🙂

This girl is just amazing, Kina Grannis is still in the shadows over in England, but in America and around the world she IS a superstar.  Her voice is like warm honey!  This is my favourite cover of hers.  I’m not really a Taylor swift fan, this cover brought me round and Kina really has found a song that suits her beautiful voice!

This kid is Cameron Mitchell.  His covers are awesome!! As a recent fan of Coldplay and I bit of a nerd for covers I searched around and I found that I loved this version much more than the Coldplay version.  Sorry Coldplay.  This song has always served me well in meditation as it’s quite upbeat and speeds up my breathing!

I always turn to Ed Sheeran.  In times of utter happiness and utter despair, Ed Sheeran always gets played no matter what.  I’ve loved Ed’s music since the moment I first heard him on SBTV in my mates bedroom, Iron Man demanded I listened to it and sat me down.  I was blown away by every second of Ed’s performance.  This song in particular calms me down a lot because well 1. it’s a beautiful song and 2.  Rupert Grint is in it and let’s face it, I’ve been a Weasley lover since I was 13!!

When I’m feeling like I need to really concentrate, Lior’s album always comes to mind.  All of his songs, upbeat or more relaxed always bring me to a place that is pensive and peaceful.  This song is called Bedouin Song, it really shows off Lior’s Israeli roots.  I first saw Lior at WOMAD festival years ago and since have followed him avidly!

Now, you’re probably thinking, REALLY???!!! a Rihanna dance track?? WTF?!?!  This song came to me one night when I was in a really bad place.  The fast beat allowed me to move my body in a fast way to release anger and tension whilst the softer lyrics encouraged my breathing to be much slower, it had a strange effect making me feel revitalised and relaxed all at the same time like I had just been boxing crossed with floating on my back in a freezing cold pool!  It was awesome!  This song taught me not to try to box in my meditation, it taught me to ALWAYS let it all come naturally.

Adam Pluse came onto my radar a few weeks back and has already creeped into my meditation periphery.  This version (yes it is a cover) of Titanium by David Guetta ft. Sia honestly rocks my sensual world, I sit imagining the beefy drops in the original version then get lifted away by the lute-ing guitar.  Adam has a unique way of playing the guitar which just increases it’s awesome-ness.

So there you have it, my 6 songs to lift your soul.  I hope this encourages you to try meditation, and to try it your own way.  Nothing in this life is ‘normal’, here is a quote from The Thing, it was his status today and it made me feel really happy…

“We all strive to be “normal” or compare ourselves to “normal” people. We are told it is a common behavior or a trend as though there is one code of conduct and we have an inherent urge to comply. The main objection is that we all have different ideas of what “normal” is. What we each perceive as “normal” differs because it is a personal projection of how we feel we ought to live our lives. It should never be exposed to external influences. Conduct yourself by your own standards not others.”

Happy Blogging, Cheers for Reading…

L.J.Simms x

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Here Comes the Sun, Do-Dun-Do-Do…

Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter …
Little darling, it feels like years since it’s been here”

. . . . . . . . . Sun is Shining. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . .Weather is sweet. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . Makes ya wanna move. . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . Ya dancin’ feet . . . . . .  . . . . . . .

The COUNTDOWN TO SUMMER has already begun, but recently us Brits have been having a test run.  With average temperatures reaching 23C in some places this past week, we have been livin’it up and basquing in the sunshine before the clouds rain and SNOW arrive next week.  With this in mind, and friends down this weekend it got me to thinking about all the things I love about summertime.  Now I’m a self confessed Fall/Autumn Bird!! I love big chunky knits, scarves, hats, jumpers, big thick jeans and my Ugg boots.  I’m not a massive fan of sun dresses and an awful lack of wooly tights!!

Although my moaning suggests I hate every single thing about the summer, there is an awful lot that I actually love about the summer months that I’m going to share with all of you today!…

♥ WATERMELON ♥

Oh my b-jeseee-juu-juuu-juicee!!..I LOVE WATERMELON, but I can only eat in in summer, fresh chopped up it’s refreshing as icy cool air and packs serious punches in smoothies and sorbets!! Classic contender for fruit salads and cocktail fish bowls all summer long, crack one of these out at a BBQ and no one will be complaining.

♥ NO SHOES ♥

Yes you heard me correct, I’m a no shoes girlie!! Some people find it weird, me? I love it!! No socks, crack out the old pedicure set, get buffing and polishing and get them little piggies out for all to see.  There is nothing better than wiggling your naked little toes in fresh mown grass, clean dusty sand or the cold water of the pond!

♥ SWIMMING [and floating] ♥

I love pools in the summer, going swimming in the winter always feels useless to me, you get in cold, you get out freezing, and wet, now you go out to your car and your frozen, icy, and still cold.  In the summer you get out the pool on holiday and the warm sun dries your skin gently, as your arm gets some much needed exercise lifting that 4th Mojito up and down and up and down, it’s the perfect exercise routine during those short lived summer moments.

 ♥ ♥ ♥ SUMMER ROMANCES ♥ ♥ ♥

Aren’t they just the best?  The rush of sneaking around, being cheeky, finding that magical someone on holiday who totally gets you and then the inevitable tragedy of returning to grey and stormy Britain and sitting by your window rembering how he sang that last song to you at Karaoke and the whole crowd at Butlin’s totally loved it!  He’s not your ‘usual’ type, but Ibiza helped you find him.  You wouldn’t normally ‘date’ a guy called Bertie, but the Gran Canaries allowed you to see past a name.  And you would NEVER sleep with a guy on a first date, but in Zante, every bar is a different date rightt???? well then we’ve been on 7!

Summer romance is the best, totally guilt free possibly teenage soul destroyingly beautiful romance!!

 ♥ GARDEN PARTIES ♥

 Oh my crystal balls, I love garden parties…paper plates, paper lanterns, paper cups, paper streamers, paper napkins Maybe it’s just the paper I like??  No, seriously, the atmosphere of a garden party, especially a British Garden Party is second to none!! Crack out the cider, get the sausage rolls sorted and bang on some Bob Marley, and summer has arrived!! Making sure there is sufficient cover from baking sun and nasty clouds and popping up fairy lights to lighten the dark when the sun comes down but the party continues!!  Eating Al Fresco, and having water fights in the summer sun! Marvellous!

 

NOW, NEXT UP IS ONE OF MY FAVOURITE SUMMER PLACES!

♥ BRIGHTON ♥

Brighton is one of those places that excites me as soon as I see the first sign for Lewes from Tunbridge Wells.  When me and Wonder Woman, are racing down the motorway knowing when we get there, the arcades are calling, the doughnuts are frying, the chips are being chipper and the lanes are calling us in with their lilting magic.  Brighton is the perfect summer place to be, especially in the lanes.  You feel like your in a different world when your shopping down there, with a smoothie in one hand and a bespoke cookie in the other you can be there for hours, then skipping down onto the sunsetted beach watching the old wreck drift off to sleep as the new pier comes alive with swirling rides and flashing lights, oh to be a Brighton Dweller…

 ♥ P.Y.O ♥

Being a Kentish girl, nothing excites me more than when the Pick Your Own signs start to pop up around the county.  The workers start to set up little stalls in the local laybys selling the freshest strawberries, raspberries and cherries that money can buy.  All the fruit that’s not ‘perfect’ enough for Tescos and the like, come straight into our homes down here in Kent and we are lucky lucky lucky!!  Kentish Strawberries, need no sugar, no cream NOTHING, just a bag filled to the brim and my own hand for picking them up and I’m in heaven!  

♥PIMMS’O’CLOCK♥

This is a magical time of day.  You don’t know about it?  Really?  Well let me tell you all about it.  Pimms’o’clock is a magical time of day where it becomes totally acceptable to start drinking large pitchers of this fabulously summery aperitif!  If you’ve never had pimms you gotts try it especially in the summer.  Top a large amounth up with lemonade and ramm it full of cucumber, mint, strawberries and oranges tonnes of ice and enjoy!!  The simplest, easiest way to get nicely merry on a summer’s eve!

~♥~ HOT AIR BALLOONS ~♥~

When I was a child, my Grampy and my Mum used to take me to a Balloon festival every other year or so.  It used to amaze me the different shapes, sizes, being able to see them so close fireing up the fires and filling the vast canopies with hot thick air, the basket gently lifting off the flattened grass and the excited passengers leaping inside.  When I see a Hot Air Balloon, I instantly drift of to being in the back of my Grampy’s car, driving somewhere and spotting one out the window in a dusky light driving back from my Great-Grandparents house.  I would see the balloon and tell my Gramps who would tell me to follow it till it flies over the bump…[the bump being the horizon]….they were always so fun to watch and track across the skies, a lovely summery memory!!

♥ DRESSING LIKE A HIPPY ‘COS IT’S FASHION ♥

I love this about Summer.  Now my Mumma dresses like a hippy all year round, me, I have to restrict it to the summertime, when the boho shades and long beach dusted hairstyles come back in.  The giant canvas bags, the calming pastels set against the bright whites and mellow taupes.  SUMMER comes alive in fashion and it’s the one time of year I find myself really having to FIND things to wear, but I love it, I buy a few key pieces and just mix’em’up Gok Wan stylee!!

One of the places where this one becomes like no other, and I dress only for comfort and comfort alone and that is…

♥ WOMAD ♥ 

The Womad festival is in this country for a mere 5 days at the end of July and everytime I’m getting ready to go, come rain or shine I know summer has well and truly begun!  This is the Siam Tent at Womad, it is beyond describing, nothing like eating hot churros in here!!

 ♥ BBQ’S BAYBEE ♥

Ain’t nothing summery without a BBQ!  I love to be inventive with my BBQs though, I love doing my chicken wings and burgers and hotdogs etc, but I love going to town and doing seafood skewers, lamb koftas, ribs, corn on the cob, baked potatoes stuffed with cream cheese and chives, my world famous potato salad, and my legendary Guacamole courtesy of my awesome cousin in Minneapolis!

Remember, BBQ’s ain’t nothing without BEER!

♥ROADTRIPPING♥

Is there anything better.  Than, jumping out of bed and packing a bag, stuffing it full of random mismatched clothes, grabbing a bottle of pop from the shop and leaping into a friend’s car and going for a drive?  To the  beach, to the park, to the lakes, to the forest, to…anywhere really!!

 FREEZE-POPS AND ICE-CREAM ♥ 

When it’s really hot, like so hot that you forget about wearing make up, you pull all your hair on top of your head so nothing touches your skin, you wear the lightest cotton clothes and the thinnest sandals and its just super hot.  Can you remember what it’s like, to open that freezer unit chocca-block full of ice cream and freezepops and ice lollies….It’s heaven!  I think my favourites HAD to be mini-milks! never chocolate always vanilla or strawberry!  When I remember them, they were the perfect combo of creamy ice cream and a freeze pop, they were 15p back in the day and totally AWESOME!

♥ SHADY PLACES AND SUNSET ♥ 

There’s a certain smell at this time of day in the summer.  It’s almost hazy, like plants and sea air and forests all mixed into one.  Like the random smell when a ladybird lands on your cheek, sorta mixed with the smell of hot rain on the tarmac, and a lingering of firewood.  Shady places under trees and next to walls are always interesting, little lines of ants making their way to the picnics, flowers growing in the cracks of walls and tiny birds taking a restful nap in the trees.

♥ MASSIVE SUNGLASSES ♥ 

AWESOME FASHION!! LOVE THEM!! Theres alot of aspects of summer that you kind of want to hide from teh rest of the world.  Big baggy eyes where you partied really hard at the weekend, sunburnt cheeks from the beach trip with the girls, peeling forehead where you caught the sun a bit too much, last night’s makeup up after a cheeky little flingo!!

 ♥ ICED TEA…………
……..Iced Tea……….
…………..ICED TEA ♥

My mum and I have a slight obsession with Iced Tea.  1.  It has to be LIPTON! 2. Mango sucks, Peach is okay, Lemon is the best.  3.  It must be served in a stemmed glass almost like a very large brandy glass, with lots of Ice, a Straw and by a delightful belgian waiter at Café De La Paix in Poperinge Belgium.  If it ain’t broke don’t fix it, and this combination quite simply will never be broke!!  Oh, and a stay at Talbot House is always best.

♥ MEADOWS, GARDENS AND OTHER GREEN STUFF ♥

I’m not much of a countryside person, for someone who essentially lives in the countryside.  I’m not a fan of bugs, I don’t like walking through fields and I hate the idea of being chased by a fox or other wildlife.  When summer hits town, I love going out with my brother for long walks around the raspberry fields and through the woods, it’s always a laugh and when we go with Wonder Woman and Ruby the dog it’s so funny watching her want to sprint off whilst we are all lagging behind!

AND LAST BUT DEFINITELY NOT LEAST..

The best thing about summer??  The ultimate most awesome thing about a few random weeks of patchy sunshine, searing heat then freezing rain?? What I hear you scream is the best thing about an english summer???  It’s the people!  It’s being on the beach flying kites, it’s yelling at the outside tv’s that aren’t loud enough over the roar of the fans drinking outside whilst the pub stays silent, it’s clubbing with your mates and coming home to daylight at 5am, It’s helping your step-gran out at the local church fete, making cakes and treats to be served with tea, it’s the refreshing taste of orange squash after hating it all winter and enjoying it in massive jugs after a mammoth water fight….Summer, sun, long days, and longer weeks make for an amazing summer, and it’s the people that make it, nothing else matter’s really.

Hope you enjoyed this,

Happy blogging, Cheers for Reading,

L.J.Simms ♥

I don’t wear Lipstick but if I did…

I WOULD WANT THEM TO LOOK LIKE THESE BEAUTIFUL DESIGNS…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This last one is my favourite, I love the sharpness, the detail and the texture in the paint is awesome!! Much prefer it on a canvas on my wall though instead of on my ACTUAL lips.

Normal blogging will resume tonight orrrr maybe tomorrow,

Happy blogging, Cheers for Reading,,

L.J x