Without meaning to start on a negative, I am sorry that April’s ‘Happy and Positive’ post is beyond delayed, but it was put off due to some strong negative feelings at the start of this month that made writing about what made me feel good last month feel like that last thing I wanted to do. However, having come out of the other side of those few down days and with the mantra that “the grass is always greener when it has rained” firmly stuck in my head, I now feel in a better place to look at things in a much more positive light.
So let’s get started!
- This month we took some of the boarding girls to Hallstatt for the long weekend. We visited the salt mines, the ice caves and the five fingers viewing platforms as well as exploring the little shops and houses beside the lake. It was a short trip, but a busy and enjoyable one. Whilst I can now tick Hallstatt off my bucket list, I will definitely be going back (possibly without fifteen teenagers in tow!)
- It’s HOT, HOT, HOT here in Vienna now and the deckchairs are out in the parks. During the winter months it was hard to enjoy living here in what felt like an endless winter, but I am starting to remember all the reasons I love this city; brunches outside, buskers playing incredible music in the streets, the cherry blossoms that appear on the trees and the opportunities to bask in the sun beside the Donau (or swim in it when it get’s too hot!) In preparation for this glorious weather I also managed to get myself almost a full summer wardrobe (in one trip!) as my current clothes were not going to cut it. Long, loose trousers for the win!
- I started back doing my yoga and fitness again this month. I had had some time away from the yoga due to the spring break and I found that I really missed it. It had been an even longer break away from the fitness classes I was doing as our wonderful instructor had her baby. It felt good to get back into it again, especially outside, and I am looking forward to seeing the positive results it will bring to not only my general fitness levels, but also my mental health in the next few weeks.
- April is the month of Birthdays in my family. Our little Finn (my cousin’s son) turned one on the 9th, we then had the big three; my brother who turned twenty-one, another of my cousins who turned thirty-one and our little Scarlett(another cousins daughter) who turned three, all of whom had their birthday on the 10th. My cousin Jamie had his birthday this month as well my Uncle (his Dad) and last but not least, it was my Mama’s birthday on the 25th. Whilst I did not get to see any of these people for their birthdays, it’s always something to be celebrated.
- I am reading the fabulous ‘Big Magic’ by Elizabeth Gilbert, which I started in April. It’s a wonderful book in which Gilbert shares her advice on living a creative life. It had some great pieces of advice that I needed to hear at this moment in time. I would love to write more about Big Magic and Elizabeth Gilbert’s ideas, but I have to finish reading it first and take some time to process the work, so for now here are some of the quotes that have really spoken to me so far:
- In the last week of April I went to see the Sound of Music at Volksoper in Vienna. I pride myself on knowing the storyline, lyrics and at some points even the words spoken by the characters like the back of my hand, so to watch it in German was rather a surreal experience. They did have subtitles on a screen above the stage, but they did not always catch up with what the characters were saying and the song lyrics had to be changed for the German words to fit the tune, which turned out to be rather funny to see what they had come up with. I will admit to getting a bit teary-eyed as the audience was invited to join in in a rendition of edelweiss even if I was the only one singing in English! To see what I am talking about, click here, but be warned it is in German.
- I have managed to have a decent catch up with my bestie from across the pond a lot this month, which is saying a lot considering I work full time and she is in the final few months of teachers college. She always knows just what to say when I need it and even though she is overwhelmed with work and is six hours behind me, she always seems to be able to make time for a Skype session. It’s been two years since I have seen her and we’re both so ready for another big trip together soon and with her moving to Brussels for a year, exciting things are ahead! To see why I love her so much give this a watch.
- Sometimes it is hard to think positively with the hearing of such sad news. I heard this April that one of my favourite teachers in my whole life had passed away. Her name was Miss Duncan and she was my final primary teacher before I moved on to High School. It was hearing this sad news that I began to think of her again and how much she helped me get to where I am now. Good teachers really deserve recognition and she really was one of the best. I wish she could have known that after setting up me up with my Canadian pen pal, I finally went to visit her back in 2015, nine years after we wrote our first letters. She had such a beautiful soul and will truly be missed by many. Why do I include this in my happy and positive post? Well, because currently in my life I am so focused on looking forward and enjoying the present that occasionally I forget to have a quick glance back at the past. Sometimes the things that bring positivity into your life is that rush of gratefulness when considering what someone has done for you in your life. So whilst this news came with a lot of sadness, it also made me think back to her patiently trying to teach me maths almost twelve years ago and with this came a smile.
- This month I watched the incredible short film, The Silent Child which was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film at the Oscars this year, which it then won. It centres on a four-year girl who is born into a hearing family and finds hope when a caring social worker teaches her sign-language. It really tugs on the heart-strings, but more importantly recognises the importance of the necessity for support for deaf children in mainstream schools. It’s a beautiful and touching watch that I really recommend you watch.
- The biggest news of all this month is that my parents finally found their house in Austria! After spending a few days with them I traveled back to Vienna from Villach and heard a few weeks later that not only had they found a house and put an offer on it, but that it had been accepted! I am so excited for them and the adventure that awaits them (plus it makes me feel so much better about the possibility of leaving Vienna knowing that I can come back and visit!) I am ready to unpack boxes, paint walls, plant flowers and everything else that will go along with setting up their new life in Austria.
Well, that was super easy to write and all I had to do was just sit down and do it!
May is a big month too that includes a concert, a graduation and Eurovision, but who knows what else it has in store?!
I’m off to go and see…