I am a Librarian

I have mentioned my job as a Librarian on here before but I have not directly mentioned where I work. I try to keep the two a little separate. I enjoy my job – it has its challenges but I do very much enjoy working in the library world.

Reading and Education are two things I am pretty passionate about. I live with an academic, I work in Further Education so we can’t really avoid the subject. The Boyo’s field is Human Geography which was incidentally my first degree. Our house is filled with maps and books.

I’m very privileged that I grew up in Scotland and that I have benefitted from an excellent education system that has been mostly free, that I have family who were supportive and willing to help me whilst I studied and that studying was accessible and open to me.

I’m also lucky that my parents were happy to indulge my bookworm habits and that we had a very good public library in my hometown.

If you are interested in How I became a Librarian you can read it here on the 23 Librarians Blog.

If you want to know more about supporting libraries in the UK you can read some information on the CILIP website.

Autumn Leaves

I haven’t blogged in rather a while. I work in education and every year without fail the start of the academic year and how busy it is takes me by surprise. This coupled with being short staffed has led to me working on average an extra 10 hours a week. My brain was frazzled (or as the Boyo says head fried!).

I’d built up enough time that I managed to take a week off when the students were on their October break. I promised myself I would relax and just enjoy a few days at home. This of course did not happen. I promptly arranged things for everyday of the week off. I seem to never learn!

I started off the week with a long weekend on the most wonderful Island I know. The Isle of Arran off the West coast of Scotland is my favourite place and this time I got to take some of my favourite people. The Boyo + myself + 2 best friends + 1 husband (not mine!) + 1 toddler + 1 dog + a house with a sea view and a cosy fire = a formula for a great weekend. We had so much fun. Wandering the Island, eating food and drinking many cups of tea and playing games in the evening. The verdict is that the girls are best at Cranium and the boys won the trivia game (only just!). I feel at home and relaxed on the Island and it was great to finally show my friends the place I love. We had a Treasure Trail for Brodick that proved to be a good idea and the games in the evening while the toddler snoozed were so much fun. This time of year is just spectacular and the scenery on Arran was magnificent. I really love autumn and my friends got to see the Island looking rather good. None of us really wanted to leave; my thoughts are leaning towards making this an annual event from now on.

Arran  View up Glen Rosa

My sister then came down to visit me for a couple of days and I did have a meeting in Dundee for work that I had to go to. I spent the latter half of the week in my hometown visiting family. I went to The Good Food Show in Glasgow with my Mum and spent far too much money but I do now have a kitchen stocked with tasty treats (not all unwholesome).



The last day of the holiday was spent at home catching up with my (tired) Boyo who had been at a stag do in Aviemore and then before we knew it the alarm clock was beeping on Monday morning and it was time for me to go back to work.


Countryside around my house

I do feel a bit more rested but at certain points in my week off I had time to think (I was working so much prior to the holiday that there was no time for anything). I had to stop myself a few times from being very negative about myself again. The truth is there are much more important things in life but the only way for me to stop these petty negative thoughts is to tackle them head on.

The conclusion: whilst I am happy that efforts I have made to deal with stress have resulted in the chronic headaches lessening I am very unhappy with the way I look. Looks should not be important, indeed I have no huge aspirations to suddenly turn into a model or princess (haha as if, some very potent magic potions would be needed) but I know that I looked far better 3 years ago than I do now. Yes I do have excuses and some of those are valid (medication, bereavement, desk job) but I’m not happy and I’m being judged by other people (I’ve had comments from Gran and dad in past week and Boyo earlier in the year). Ultimately if I lose a little weight and get some zest back it will do wonders for my self esteem. I do not want to be thin, I just want to go back down 2 sizes so I can fit in most of my very nice wardrobe again.


Graduation 3 years ago, this dress won’t even look at me now. 😦

The key things I am looking at right now to help me with this are obviously food and exercise. I have been doing a bit of research into 5:2, The Hairy Dieters (love them), exercise classes locally (but given my work hours this is proving hard!) and thanks to Molly’s blog I am also thinking about investing in a Jawbone. I am seriously challenging myself to try more vegetables using the techniques the hypnotherapist gave me. It is very easy for me to be weak and need some self discipline and encouragement (not nagging, Boyo has made that mistake before). I’m also stubborn so if I can just redirect my stubbornness in a direction that would lead to a healthier me then that would be useful.

I’d love to know if any of you have tried a particular type of exercise and enjoyed it. I have not got great co-ordination and I have dodgy knees so anything that is a very impact type sport (like running) would not really be ideal for me. I’d also really love to hear if anyone else has had a food aversion issue?

We bought a cross-trainer nearly a year ago and the Boyo does use it but I haven’t. I know how to use it, I am not scared of the machine or find it difficult it is almost as if I am scared to try to lose weight in case I fail? maybe tonight I’ll just face that (irrational) fear and get on it.

Wish me luck!



ps. I am also looking for tips on which mobile phone I should go for. I can upgrade next week but after 4 years with a blackberry it is time to change. I don’t need anything too fancy but something with a  decent camera would be good. Any advice much appreciated!!

Busy Bees

My oh my it has been a while since I blogged. The Boyo and I have been busy bees. The end of term (we both work in FE/HE education) always arrives far quicker than you anticipate. I’m always filled with this idea that once the students have gone I’ll so much more time to get on with my huge to do list. The reality is my to-do list gets even bigger and meetings, training etc. is always hurriedly squeezed in before everyone goes into summer mode at the end of June. The annual CILIPS conference was on as well and I was luckily able to attend the Monday, so it really has been a busy couple of weeks work-wise. Many of our staff are term time only so I have to try and get as much information from them before they disperse and my aim is always to try and get everything magically done before they return in August. This never happens but it is good to have good intentions, yes?

We’ve also had Boyo’s family visiting, including their gorgeous dog who was actually staying with us for a week. I miss our walkies and her lovely velvety soft ears. I am definitely still broody for a dog of my own but I also know that with our work schedules it just wouldn’t be fair. Luckily the Boyo was able to take some time off whilst they were here and he got lots of walks with the dog – including 2 Munros, and I was able to join them at evenings and the weekend. So we’ve enjoyed some really lovely walks around our village, Dunkeld where the Boyo’s family were staying and Loch Leven. Unfortunately the weather was pretty mixed and the poor dog got drenched everyday of her stay.


We also have had some nice opportunities for tasty treats – cake and tea at Spill the Beans in Dunkeld, scones at Scone Palace – excellent, very good indeed, almost as good as my Granny made them, lunch at House of Bruar one day and a tasty takeaway from our local Chinese takeaway. I did some cooking at home as well, I made enchiladas one night – I’ll post my recipe/method in my next post. It is a bit of a cheat but a huge hit whenever I make them, especially with my sister who visits me regularly just to get fed these. I also made chocolate and vanilla loaf cake and one night we had 3 course with everything made by scratch by me. Vegetable and Coriander soup with homemade bread, Roasted Chicken breast with garlic mushrooms, roast peppers, steamed potatoes and a peppercorn sauce and then strawberries with cream and a homemade chocolate sauce to finish. So we have been well walked and well fed! The foodie post will be up soon – most likely Monday as I’m away this weekend.


What else? I attended my first hypnotherapy session last night. I’ve spoken before about how I really want to be Merry and healthy. A big barrier in this is my food aversions. I haven’t eaten fruit and vegetables as far back as I can remember. Mum claims I used to eat brussel sprouts when I was 3 but I cannot remember. It is something that I really want to change but I just find myself unable to swallow when I try to eat these foods. So I’ve decided to get some extra help. Whether it will actually work or not is still unclear but I really think it is worth a try. I’m worried this post is already a long post so I’ll finish up for now and save the details of my hypnotherapy experience for later.


I hope everyone has a jolly weekend, I’m off to visit family on a flying visit which will be nice. Cheerio for now!





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