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The Pandemic and lockdowns have led more of us to appreciate our gardens, our connection to nature and the world around us. It seemed that when the traffic stopped and humanity was, largely, confined indoors the birds and other animals came out to play. We are lucky enough to have a garden and I have come to appreciate the sensory experience and joy it provides particularly when it is shared.

An RHS-commissioned survey revealed that “7 out of 10 of us consider that having a garden has helped our mental health during lockdown with everyday activities such as weeding, mowing…


We are all affected by the changing season which is why many of us to mark the seasonal cycle including the Spring and Autumn Equinox (when the length of the day is exactly equal to the night). It is really interesting when this seasonal cycle relates to the digital clock, we usually live our lives by. In November 2020 this meant that my need to get ready and leave for work nearly made me forget my morning prayers. I had to think of something that would keep me focussed on the changing prayer times whilst preparing for work.

The solution…


I am loving “Anne Boleyn”, Channel 5’s “three-part intimate psychological thriller, told from a new perspective — hers.” I am also enjoying “Natalie Haynes Stands Up for the Classics”, a radio 4 programme which takes a fresh look at the ancient world, creating stand-up routines about figures from ancient Greece and Rome. History and mythology that goes beyond, the usual stories of male leaders and their battles, has so much to teach us. I also love the title of the Guardian’s review “Anne Boleyn review — spoiler alert: she won’t make it out alive!” and the fact that “Turner-Smith’s casting…


The words “tears and Smiles walk side by side” really resonated. They were said by the Duchess of Kent, in an interview, that was shown on Channel 5. They resonated, on so many different levels, largely because of the Pandemic and the impact it has had on all our lives.

The Pandemic has not been the same for all, particularly with so many different health, economic and social inequalities. There has been misinformation, deaths and some of the pictures, even in affluent countries, have been difficult to bear. …


This is basically a rant against food waste particularly when so many live with food insecurity. “Ending food insecurity is a huge challenge with important health and social consequences that need to be urgently addressed” so it is outrageous when someone throws away a whole loaf of bread or a beautiful salmon just because of the best before date. …


I find it difficult when someone throws in a casual reference to an history that supports and underlines a view that, I think, needs challenging. The other days it was Monty Don’s saying that “in 1689 William and Mary were invited to take over the English Crown from Mary’s father, …James 2 and they moved to England.” I know history is written by the victors but I am not one of them and would like others voices to be heard.

In how to win friends and influence Dale Carnegie points out that one of the ways to make people like…


Apparently random thoughts are constantly rolling around in my heads and then there are times when we get focussed or obsessed with something. I understand that this phenomenon is not unique to me! I find writing blogs and mindfulness a great way to help me focus, so here are some musing and ramblings.

One of the things I was fascinated with, this week, was the ship that got stuck, in the Suez Canal, disrupting world trade. It’s now free but I still do not know, for certain, what it was called. All reporters called it the Ever given but I…


At a Naked Frank Theatre creative writing workshop, we were asked to write two things. It definitely made us reflect so decided to share my thoughts.

We have all been commemorating the anniversary of the first UK lockdown so:

Write a list of 10 things you have done/learnt about yourself this year.

1. Gardening

2. Visiting hospital bedsides, for work, for the first time.

3. What birds’ song sounds like with no traffic.

4. Checking in with friends via technology.

5. Seeing people in parks despite weather

6. Involved in tensions on buses: mask wearing.

7. Watching more television with…


In the Cambridge dictionary the word invitation is defined as a noun that is the act of inviting someone to go to an event; an action that causes, or encourages something to happen or an occasion when someone is formally asked to do something. Innocuous enough but it did upset me when it was used in “Around the World in 80 Gardens” a programme in which Monty Don visits the world’s 80 most inspiring gardens. It was a gardening programme which included history and reminded me how history is always written by the victors.

In episode 9 Monty Don, visits…


I was told, recently, that I am not very good at expressing my emotions. Not sure what that means but, let me be quite clear, I get quite angry with discrimination and injustice. I would not want anyone to be unfairly disadvantaged or abused. I get quite upset when someone makes a negative remark about another’s faith or religion, particularly, if it’s based on prejudice and a lack of reflection on their own faith, community or history. It’s okay to ask questions but we all need to do this in a way that is respectful and not just make statements…

Q Khan

Trainer, educator, well being facilitator …

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