My last few days…

… working two jobs!

Hello all,

I’m finally here. I have two more days of being both a nanny and an English teacher. And boy is Friday a tough day to end on:

  • 7.45 to 8.45 Nanny work
  • 9.00 to 11.30 first class
  • 11.30 to 13.30 second class
  • 14.00 to 15.30 third class
  • 17.00 to 18.45 nanny work

And then home time and chances are I’ll have a migraine.

The next few weeks, I’ll be sorting out my organization. I’ve to make time for class prep, my 2 books that I’m working on (the one you know about and the secret one), re-start my French lessons, and do all my extra hobbies: my carpet, my drawings and paintings, my zentangles etc.

I wanted to drop a line to let you know that this week is a high anticipation week for me and I may be too tired to do any blogging this weekend. And a special hello to all my new followers, thanks for joining me!

I hope your week is as exciting as mine,

Enjoy yourselves,

Elegances Icy


Review of A walk to remember


The characters have the same names but aren’t as clichéd as the movie, which is a lovely change. I’ve always loved the movie but the book is simpler and to the point and because of that is much more heart wrenching. You will need to have a box of tissues beside you at all times.

It’s a beautiful story. A story that will last throughout the ages. A story that I will re-read again and again, even when I know it off by heart.

Review of Amazing Gracie: a dog’s tale

Amazing Gracie: a dog’s tale by Dan Dye and Mark Beckloff

Initial thoughts:

I think it might be similar to Marley and me, I liked that book so that would not be a disappointment however I also don’t want to feel like I’m reading the same book again.

Review: 3/5 stars

If you are in the mood for a feel good book and you love dogs, then this is the book for you. This beautiful story is told by Dan Dye, who starts out mourning his old dog to finding the joys of a new dog. I had great fun guessing what business they would eventually get into. The descriptions are top notch. I really felt all of my senses coming to life and creating memories with Gracie too.

Making the decision to adopt a new pet after the old one died is always difficult. I still have this stupid notion that if I don’t return to the family home I can pretend all the animals (Lexy the dog and Whiskers the cat especially) are still alive and well. I struggled a lot with the sense of betrayal when Scarlett came into our lives. I never even got to give Whiskers one last snuggle. She never got the chance to destroy another one of my jumpers with her happy drool.

There were a couple of things that bugged me. The need to treat dogs as humans and not as dogs and dressing dogs up in clothes, putting those aside I enjoyed the book.

If you are feeling down about humanity, this is the book for you. Only a deaf dog could bring so many nice people to the front! My cat is snuggled into my armpit as I read this. Pets are awesome creatures.

Final thoughts:

Turns out Amazing Gracie was written before Marley and Me. I was happy to see there were photos of the dogs at the end of the book.

My hectic life

Hello all,

My life is changing again. I have now been teaching business English for six months and for the past two months I have been working 2 jobs. That is one job too many. As of 12/11/18 I will only be working one job, thankfully. My goal is to work 15 hours per week teaching. I’ve calculated that I will be able to pay my rent (everything included: electricity, gas, etc.), pay for half the groceries and be able to save. The saving option is the most exciting thing for me. Imagine actually having an emergency fund? Shocking!

I am currently working on a certificate to teach English. And when I’m finished the second job I’ll be spending more time on that. It all comes down to time management. I ended up in hospital last weekend, I’ll tell you more later. It showed me just how much time I was spending on lesson planning. I now have a strict rule: only spend half the time of the class on the lesson plan. On average the class lasts 1h30m which means I spend 45 minutes preparing that class. And no working on the weekend!

All my hobbies and my writing have gone out the window since I’ve been so focused on the teaching. The last few days I’ve had more free time and it has been very strange. I’m in that period where I don’t want to do anything in my free time. I know that will break soon and then I’ll be slowly picking up my hobbies and my writing. I’m already in an online writing group, it’s not active for the moment but once again, when the 12th of November rolls along, I’ll see if I can get anyone to respond.

My health problems! I have 2 fairly major health problems at the moment. My lungs and my pancreas. I keep loosing my voice and coughing a lot so I’ve an appointment with a specialist at the end of November to see if I’m allergic to something or if I’ve asthma, or if it’s something else.

Thursday the 18th of October I took a tablet of codeine for a migraine and woke up in terrible pain. And then proceeded to have a panic attack. I now, completely understand why people stay locked up indoors to avoid experiencing a panic attack. It is by far the most horrible thing I’ve ever felt. And I have awful period cramps, so I know pain. I lost feeling in my hands and thought someone had a belt wrapped around my chest and was yanking at it. I full sure thought I was going to die. I spent 5 days in the hospital. The codeine had blocked my pancreas from working and my pancreas had started to digest itself. There are 3 main causes:

  • Gall stones No sign of these
  • Alcohol Don’t drink
  • Medical ?? Please be the codeine!

I have a long list of things I have to do so that the doctor is sure I’m ok which I’ll be doing in the next 2 months. To finish I want to say the staff of the Valence Hospital are amazing. So polite and kind and I really felt taken care of and safe. Also the SAMU who I yelled at on the phone, I’m very sorry, it was not you, I just couldn’t figure out how to breath. And the guys who brought me to the hospital, thanks so much, I felt so safe.

That’s really it for now. I will try to blog more often in the future. I really want to do NaNoWriMo but I’ve nothing prepared and life is a bit hectic right now…so we’ll see! Good luck to everyone who is doing it.

Have a good week!

Elegances Icy

First Buddhist post

I was going to write out a big post on Buddhism as promised but honestly it was beginning to bore me. Here is the first installment of poems to explain my journey. Enjoy.

My last confession was sixteen years ago.
I’ve never regretted it, you know,
Letting go of believing in you.
You’re not a bad God, that is true.
You gave me no comfort, just emptiness,
You bring others a sense of calmness.
I don’t begrudge them, they have their path
I won’t point out the mistakes in their math.

I’ve found the Buddha, he was a man.
One man, who had a plan.
He tried every available teaching.
It made my brain ping!
Look him up, his story is out there
For anyone who has a care
To find the peace inside of them
Letting go of all the mayhem.

It is official, I am a Buddhist
I follow the path with trust.
That is the noble eightfold path
There isn’t any bloodbath
I’m not saying it is easy.
Every single day I see
The wisdom behind his words
And how to handle my life’s hazards.