Category Archives: Health & fitness

Little things that make me Happy

It seems that life can get a little hectic at times. As we get caught up in the rat race that is life, we tend to forget or ignore the little things that pass us by from moment to moment. Be it the smell of food cooking on the stove that instantly makes your mouth water, to a much needed hug from a close friend… these are the little moments that complete our day and make it wholesome. I believe it is important that we focus on the little moments that evoke a smile, to remind us that sometimes, the things that seem so important at the time, are actually insignificant in the greater scheme of things.

Here are a few of those moments:

-Running into the sea on a hot summer’s day

-Watching our cat Lucy as she plays in the garden. She is so funny and entertaining and has brought us endless joy and laughter

-When people say thank you when you give way to them in the car (a little rare out here, but appreciated nonetheless)

-The feeling of removing conditioner from my hair after leaving it in for 20 minutes

-Hoovering… Some might say weird; but I find it therapeutic

-Spending time doing absolutely nothing

-Hearing one of my favourite songs on the radio, from start to finish

-Making a complex recipe from scratch, with positive results

-The feeling as I drive home after a Body Balance class

-A full 8 hours sleep. *Beautiful*

What are the little moments that make you Happy?

A visit to Pissouri

So far Pissouri has got to be one of my favourite places to visit in Cyprus. It’s colourful, picturesque and brimming with character. The bright flowers that surround the area give it a whimsical, romantic that make you feel like you’re on the set of a film! The little narrow streets of the nearby village were filled with laid-back locals watching the world go by. We stopped off at the Columbia Beach Resort for an afternoon of rest and relaxation, and discovered a tiny little chapel which was simply stunning inside. It looks so traditional from the outside, but when you enter, you witness an amazing little chapel with incredible, awe-inspiring artwork like I have never seen before. It’s bright, colourful and simply magical. A visit to Pissouri is a definite must!

How to get a good night’s zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

We all know the benefits of a good night’s sleep – from greater alertness to looking and feeling more bright eyed and busy tailed. But we also know how difficult it is to drag yourself through the day on a bad night’s sleep, and often how it shifts our perception of the day ahead.

Sometimes it’s through no fault of our own. Noise from outside, warmer temperatures inside (especially as it starts to get warmer), but often it’s due to other factors, such as stress and worry, and there are many techniques we can employ to promote more of the zzzzzzzzzzzzz’s:

-Don’t eat anything after 9pm. It’s heavy on our system and is more likely to keep you awake at night from discomfort.

-Set your body into wind-down mode at least 1 hour before bedtime (that means no stimulating TV or Internet to activate the mind). Instead, opt for a good book, a light read of your favourite magazine, or a soak in the bath.

-Exercise: Best done no less than 3 hours before bed. This is a fantastic way to release energy, let blood flow through your body and relieve stress.

-Drink plenty of water before 9pm. This flushes out toxins and refreshes the skin.

-Finally, switch off! Try not to think about anything – leave your day behind you. Tomorrow is a new day. Begin it feeling refreshed and positive, ready for the day that lies ahead of you.

I can’t live without

Every now and then we take a look through our handbags or make up collections and realise that there are a number of products that we simply cannot live without. Using them time and time, it is fairly evident that these are staple pieces in our cosmetic wardrobe, playing an important role in our day-to-day health and beauty regimes (obviously this is not really relevant to my male readership, but who knows maybe there could be some inspiration for a gift idea listed below?)

Particularly here in Cyprus, the change in climate has meant adapting to a different routine to ensure that my skin is well and truly looked after, and these products have become an indispensable part of my beauty regime.

Here are a few products which I simply cannot live without:

Elizabeth Arden’s amazing skin protectant balm:

Elizabeth Arden's amazing skin protectant

This product is brilliant if you suffer from dry skin, chapped lips and nails that are in bad condition. I also applied it to a few scars that I had and they have definitely faded. Amazing! I always carry this little pot around in my handbag and love its smell and texture, and I’m more than fully aware that I’m extremely behind in discovering this classic skincare product.

Evening Primrose Oil:

A miracle in a bottle

As far as I’m concerned I can’t live without it, and I’m discovering more and more people who swear by it every single day. Evening Primrose Oil is a natural remedy that has so many benefits there isn’t enough space on this page to list them. Described as the most sensational preventative discovery since Vitamin C, I started taking EPO to relieve discomfort from PMS, and have never looked back. I swear by it and won’t go for one day without taking a capsule. Harmony and balance in a bottle (as recommended by my mum – mother’s really do know best)!

Givency’s Eye Lifting Gel:

Givenchy Lifting and firming de-puffer Eye Gel

I doubt I will ever find the perfect cure for reducing those hereditary dark circles underneath my eyes, but that certainly hasn’t stopped me in my quest for a cure. Givency’s Eye Lifting Gel is an instant eye sparkler; it , tightens this delicate skin area and leaves you feeling bright-eyed and refreshed. Definitely a positive investment for an immediate refreshment.

Sudocrem; Antiseptic Healing Cream:

A great relief from rashes, cuts and sores

Most mother’s with newborns swear by Sudocrem, and this is most definitely a product that I have been using since a young age. However, that doesn’t mean that I’m going to stop using it any time soon, since it is the perfect remedy for bites, stings, rashes and sores. Thanks to Sudocrem I rarely have to visit the pharmacy upon being bitten or stung during the summer months, as I just apply it to the pained area before bed, and leave it to work its magic overnight (also great for spots). A little gem in a pot!

Cargo Lash Activator:

A great mascara that enhances eyelashes

Praised for its lash-enhancing formula, the makers of Cargo claim that this mascara can boost your lashes significantly, after just 30 days of use. I can’t figure out if my lashes were already this long before I started using this product, but I’m fairly certain that they weren’t! Topped with a more defining mascara (such as Max Factor Masterpiece mascara), this product works wonders in giving the illusion that your lashes are lengthy and luscious, opening up the eyes and giving you a naturally youthful appearance.

Soltan 8-hour sun protection face cream:

A moisturising sun cream for the face SPF30

Though I rarely used suncream whilst living in the UK, I will not go for a single day without applying it out here, even during the winter months. The sun is so powerful and has so many damaging effects that it is not worth exposing your skin to UV rays without being protected, particularly the more delicate and sensitive skin on the face.

So there you have it: 6 products that I simply cannot live without.

What products do you swear by?

Attributes I do not appreciate

I have been living in Cyprus now for exactly one year and although I love this little island with all its quirks and peculiarities, there are some habits that I have always loathed, and that seem to be somewhat more common in this part of the Mediterranean. Here are a few that I witness on a regular basis:

Coughing without covering your mouth

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a light or a heavy cough; it’s rude, it’s disgusting and it’s unhygienic. Please cover your mouth. This also applies to sneezing, naturally.

Picking your nose when in public

This is a revolting habit and shouldn’t have to be witnessed by an innocent onlooker. Whether you are in your car, crossing the road or browsing through the supermarket, please do refrain from cultivating such disgusting habits in public.

Driving really slowly in the fast lane whilst talking on your phone and/or smoking a cigarette

The entire issue of driving etiquette out here could encompass an entire post (if not more), but it’s something that’s been written about on countless occasions and I very much doubt that anything will ever be done – so I won’t even go there. From screaming children on the laps of drivers (who, of course, are talking on their mobiles), to a complete lack of awareness for where the indicators are and what their role is, the list of incompetencies in drivers out here is immeasurable, juvenile and incredibly dangerous. Even a short drive down the highway could result in a major accident, and I personally believe that the government need to take serious action to limit the number of deaths on the road every year. There are so many life-saving measures that could be put into practice to eliminate these daunting statistics, but until then, I am fairly certain that the above practices, and others like it, will continue.

Lack of respect when entering a shop

Either you are ignored entirely or followed around at a one metre distance until you get so frustrated that you turn around and head straight for the door, without purchasing a thing.

-Inability to queue

This habit is extremely irritating and doesn’t help when you’re in a rush to get out of there. I am also the type of person who doesn’t like my personal space to be invaded, so can’t stand it when people get too close to me in the queue. Personally, the worst part for me is trying to type in your pin number before the person behind has stood so close to the machine that you might as well be whispering your pin in their ear. This I do not appreciate.

I’m not saying that the above habits are unconditional throughout Cyprus, but they are fairly common and do very little to reassure us that this island isn’t inhabited by a bunch of Neanderthals. Oh and I’m pretty certain I’m not alone when I highlight these matters…

 

Opening hours of our local postoffice... (yes, this really is 2 hours per day)