Happy Birthday Little British Pea!

Wow, A Little British Pea has turned one today! I can’t believe it was already a year ago that I began this blog, with a completely different name and for completely different reasons to what it has become. I am only just realising what I can do with this blog, and I am thankful to each and every one of you, for every view, like and follow, which has spurred me on to continue something I never thought would last a week!

Thank you!

Double thanks to double awards …

Thank you very much to dorothymcdonall at Eyes to Heart who, on 24th March, nominated A Little British Pea for the Liebster Award! I had begun to prepare for “accepting” this award and passing it on when I became ill for a second time, and so I couldn’t even take care of myself for a week, let alone take care of my blog!

And then, in an extraordinary turn of events, as I decide to come back to blogging on Weekly Photo Challenge day, I find I have been nominated for the Liebster Award for a second time by dreaminofobx at Things I See and Know. So, I hope I don’t sound terribly big-headed, but I shall graciously accept them both!

The Rules

  1. The Liebster is given by bloggers to other bloggers who have less than 200 followers.
  2. Each blogger should post eleven facts about himself or herself.
  3. Each blogger should answer the eleven questions that are asked by the person doing the nominating.
  4. Choose eleven new bloggers to nominate for the Award and link to them in the post.
  5. Create eleven new questions for your nominees.
  6. Go back to their pages and tell them they’ve been nominated.
  7. No tag backs.

Eleven Facts About Me (I will do this only once!)

  1. I can’t think of one fact, let alone eleven.
  2. That realisation makes me wonder how anyone can find my blog interesting, let alone give me two awards!
  3. When I first started school I would tell people I was born in Sweden, until a Swedish girl started speaking to me in Swedish, and then I realised … I probably wasn’t born there! My mum later informed me I was actually born in Swindon!
  4. I’m almost 21 and still can’t drive – I am learning now though!
  5. My first flight on a plane was when I was 17 – in the 3 and a half years since then I have taken a total of 22 individual flights!
  6. I like to include France in my list of countries I’ve visited – in truth I only went through the northern corner coming out of Calais and going into Belgium!
  7. I’m addicted to Vanilla Coca Cola, the only time I’ll drink something fizzy! Usually I only have it when I am in the US, but now it’s back in the UK, I fear I cannot resist …
  8. I have a terrible obsession with collecting pens!
  9. I don’t always know how to correctly use an apostrophe – isn’t that sad?!
  10. I am short – only 5′ 2″! I’d never wish I was taller though.
  11. I love genealogy – my family tree goes back to the 1500s, and so far my ancestors are all from England, except one from Ireland!

My Answers to dorothymcdonall’s questions

  1. What’s your favourite ice cream flavour? Chocolate chip mint! I could eat it all day every day, it’s delicious!
  2. What are three things on your bucket list? My top three would definitely be visit Machu Picchu, do a bungee jump or skydive and see the northern lights.
  3. What’s your occupation? I am a receptionist at a dental practice … it’s actually a lot more fun that it sounds, promise!
  4. If you had a chance to dine with a celebrity, dead or alive, who would it be and why? Ooh, that’s tough! I would probably pick someone like Einstein! That would be an awe-inspiring conversation … and completely one-sided!
  5. What’s your favourite way to spend an unexpected afternoon off? If the weather’s nice, I would take a walk up to Windsor Great Park – I never miss an opportunity to go there! If it’s not so great outside, then I’d just sit and read.
  6. Do you have a personal anthem? If so, what is it? Hmm, no I don’t have one, but I wish I did!
  7. When was the last time you walked in nature and where were you at the time? As you all know by now, Windsor Great Park is the most likely place to find me when it comes to nature! I was there only yesterday.
  8. Which travel destination has delighted you most unexpectedly? Leipzig, Germany. We were only staying there one night and day as that’s where we flew into on a visit to Chris’ German family. I didn’t realise just how much Leipzig had to offer, and I really want to visit again to truly appreciate it all!
  9. If you were a colour, what would you be? Yellow. My room has been yellow more times than any other colour (I re-paint my room often!), and I love how it’s just so sunny and bright. I would like to cheer people up with my sunniness and brightness.
  10. Can you name five sports beginning with the letter “S”? Snooker, Skating, Swimming, Skiing … Surfing.
  11. What book, fiction or non-fiction, have you read that has changed your life for the positive? Wow, I couldn’t possibly answer this question with one title! Every book I read affects me, and that’s why I absolutely love reading!

My Answers to dreaminofobx’s questions

  1. Who is the most famous person you’ve ever met? Well! Living in Windsor has it’s perks – I’ve seen most of the major members of the royal family, and can see visiting diplomats etc when they are visiting the Queen at her favourite royal residence – Windsor Castle! I’ve also seen various celebrities – footballers, musicians, film stars, comedians – visiting Legoland Windsor when I worked there for 4 years. But actually met, as in spoken to them? Hmmm … none!! Well, apparently I served the footballer at Legoland, but as I don’t follow it, I had no clue who it was!
  2. Why did you start blogging? Haha, I started blogging because at the time I was planning to be an au pair in Paris, and so I wanted to document the experience. Well, that never happened! But I decided to change the blog name and give blogging about life in general a go.
  3. What is your most likeable quality? Umm, I don’t think I could answer that myself.
  4. What is one item you should really throw away, but probably never will? I am a hoarder. Not like those on the TV, but I like to keep things which have certain memories associated with them. I don’t display them or stick them in scrap books (I started that last year and never got far!), so they just sit in a box waiting for me to feel sentimental and look through them all. Tickets, receipts, wrappers, various other bits and bobs I’ve just kept. I know they’ll all have to go when I move to the US, but I’m not thinking about that right now, haha.
  5. If you could be anywhere in the world this New Year’s Eve, where would you choose and why? It’s always been a dream of mine to be in Sydney to see in the new year! It’d be great fun being one of the first people to celebrate it! But that’s not likely … I never go to a major city for New Year’s Eve, I always stay at home and fall asleep on the couch with the rest of my family!!
  6. Summarise your outlook on life in six words. Always look on the bright side!
  7. What event in the next few months are you most looking forward to? I have my 10K run on 6th May to look forward to – that’s only 1 month away! Then in the middle of July I’ll be turning 21, and then at the end of July my sister and I will be taking a trip to Helsinki, Finland! So a lot to look forward to for now.
  8. If you had a $100 gift card to spend in any store, where would you choose to spend it? Staples! (see fact 8!)
  9. What cheers you up when you are having a bad day? If it’s a free day for me, I’ll go for a walk. It is always the best way to unwind and calm down if things are going wrong. If it’s raining (which let’s face it, it usually is!) then I’ll pop in a yoga DVD and get lost in an hour or so of yoga. Perfect stress-busting right there.
  10. What one piece of advise would you give to a new blogger? Don’t worry about finding your niche. Unless you deliberately started blogging to talk about a particular topic, then don’t stress over keeping to the same structure. Blog about whatever you feel like blogging about, whether it’s pages of writing, or just a picture for the day, don’t worry so much about keeping it the same. People like variety!
  11. If you could create a memorial to yourself in a city park, what and where would the memorial be? Hmm, I don’t think I would want a memorial to myself!

Eleven Questions for my Nominees

  1. If you could learn one skill that you’ve never had, what would it be, and why?
  2. If you had the chance to redo things in your life, would you?
  3. Are you a procrastinator?
  4. Do you have a fear that you have not yet conquered?
  5. Do you have a dream you’ve suppressed due to life commitments?
  6. Do you prefer to go to bed and get up early, or late?
  7. Have you ever told a lie and repeated it so much that you eventually believed it yourself?
  8. What is your favourite time of the year? New Year, Summer, Christmas, etc.?
  9. If you could travel to any point in time, when would it be?
  10. Do you share your blog with people you know in real-life?
  11. What inspires you?

My Nominations for the Liebster Award (Go on, give them a visit!)

The Hoppy Mommy Bunny


Airstream Family


The Random Act of Kindness

Jumbled Contents of My Head

The Photography Butterfly


Still and All


My Year of Sweat

Goodbye 2012 … hello 2013!

It feels like 2012 has only just begun, and yet 2013 begins tomorrow! I am so very optimistic for what the year ahead has in store! So, in 2013, I hope to …

  •   Take Spanish classes. I have learnt all I can from Rosetta Stone, and it was a great platform to build a decent base of knowledge. But now, I think it’s time to take some “proper” classes, and to really speed up my progress! Of course, the majority of Chris’ family speak Spanish as a first language, and some of them don’t even speak English at all. So, to be able to speak to everyone at the wedding, it is pretty important to learn their language!
  • Read the Bible. I have never been a religious person. Spiritual, yes, but not religious. That changed after attending a church with Chris and his family when I first visited the US in August 2010. I was amazed at how much the words resonated with life, and I was captivated by just how much it all made sense! And so, when Chris bought me a Bible for Christmas in 2011, I always aimed to read it, and in 2013, I will!
  • Blog regularly. I know I have neglected to keep Little British Pea up to date, but I will certainly make an effort to post more than just entries to the weekly photo challenge! Life has been a bit up in the air for the latter part of 2012, and for a first blog that was only started in April, it was always going to take the back seat in terms of priorities. So, for 2013 I really want to put more effort into this blog, as I know I will want to look back in a couple of years, and the fuller it is, the happier I will be!

  • Read more. I am an avid lover of books, and I take so much joy in reading. The process of discovering characters, getting lost in the story, that moment when the plot is revealed. I cry as much when I read a book as I do when I watch a film. And yet, I find myself not reading as much as I used to, and I want that to change in 2013. In 2012 I completed 8 books, so for 2013 I will set myself a modest target of 15 books.
  • Get (even more) healthy. Hah! Another cliché, but it is one I think everyone at least tries, right? I have been amazed at just how much I improved my health in 2012, after setting the same goal at the beginning of the year. I think I have eaten more fruit and veg in the past year than the several years before that put together! And the result? Amazing! I never suffered with acne itself, but I did get regular and annoying spots, and it did get me down. Well, as I look at my reflection in the mirror today, I love seeing that my efforts have paid off! And my health? Well, put it this way, for most of my life I have had symptoms of some description, and it usually got bad over winter (doesn’t it always?). This year? While I was sat at work covering various colleagues falling ill to several different flus and colds and viruses, I never once caught anything! Not even a cough! So, after results like that, you can bet I want to continue into 2013 and for the rest of my life!
  • Walk more. Ok, so I already walk an average of 11 miles a week, and I love it! At least one of my days off is spent walking along the wonderful Long Walk (my last visit of 2012 –>). But, there are plenty of other places nearby and within walking distance that I can get to, and that I have neglected to explore. So, in 2013, I would like to expand my horizons and seek all those new places. And photograph it all, of course!
  • Start planning. We are aiming to hold the wedding in the summer of 2014, which is actually not that far away now that we are on the brink of starting 2013! I look to 2013 as a year full of planning and lots of excitement about the future, as Chris and I prepare to put the visa wheels in motion. I know there may be setbacks and hurdles, but isn’t that the joy of getting married?

So, I hope you all have a wonderful new year, and that 2013 offers as much hope and optimism for both new journeys starting, and old journeys continued.

Until next time …

A Little British Pea is born …

When I first set about creating this blog, I did so with the intention of simply documenting the build-up and eventual “panning out” of my experience as an au pair in Paris. After only 3 weeks I can see that I am actually quite enjoying this blogging thing more than I had expected to! And I have come to realise I will be using this blog for a lot more than simple entries about my time in France.

And so, Little British Pea is born. I decided to change my blog address from anaupairinparis to littlebritishpea in order to account for the change from what I had intended this blog to be, and what it has already become.

“Little British Pea” is my fiancé Chris’ nickname for me, because I am Little, I am British and apparently my head is small and round like a Pea 🙂 In turn, my nickname for Chris is “Fuzzy Egg”, because his head is shaped like an Egg, and he has Fuzzy hair that never does what you want it to!

On another note, I had my first pretty successful attempt at a panorama shot! My camera, a humble Nikon Coolpix L120 which I bought for my trip to the USA in November, came with a feature I had never had before – Panorama. It also included the free software to stitch the photos together. I had messed around with the feature already but, not having a tripod, they never quite turned out right! I bought a tripod when I was in the USA with the intention of going back to Cherry Springs State Park, though we never got around to that! 😦

So, a couple of nights ago, there was this rather pretty sunset – nothing out of the ordinary, but at least I could see the sun for this one! And so I thought I’d have a go at taking a panorama shot. And this was my result …

And this was another attempt …

I really enjoy panorama shots now! You can get so much more into them, I will certainly be taking more in the future, that’s for sure 🙂

Anyway, I just wanted to share those haha

Until next time …