This week, I’ve been exhausted. REALLY exhausted. It’s a product of bad things happening during a too long period of time. But I also enjoy every good moment 100%.

Sometimes when I get into exhaustion mode like that and my head is empty, I question why I keep running this blog. Maybe I don’t have anything to say anymore? But then I remind myself that spring and summer are coming, with flowers in the garden, road trips and walks on the beach, and then I will have at least photos to share.

That feeling of relief when you fix a blocked drain

Despite the exhaustion, I’ve had some very good moments during the past week. It started with a blocked drain. And with our small house, a blocked drain isn’t only A blocked drain, it’s THE blocked drain because everything is connected. Maybe it is in larger houses too? I’ve no idea.

We were in trouble for three days, couldn’t fix it, and our plumber was busy for at least another week. The bathtub was filled with brownish water and I had to ask our neighbour (who spends most of her time in her other home in England) if we could use her shower and washing machine. So how is this positive? Well, imagine the feeling when we finally managed to solve it! 🙂

You know, it’s the little things in life…

Music sessions are back

Music sessions in pubs are back. On the 8th of March, last Tuesday, our regular session in the hotel bar in town started again. I had decided to go and give “the new normal” (that awful expression) a try. I’ve been the most Covid-cautious person around here, but lately I’ve felt that in a way I don’t care anymore, however weird that sounds. Perhaps it’s just my mental fatigue mixed with the knowledge that Omicron is milder unless you’re very old, have a serious condition, or are unvaccinated. But I’ve decided to go back to life.

Recently I’ve started to realise how much being isolated affects my mental health. My overthinking gets really bad, my mood with it, and at times I’ve thought I should at least ask my GP if he thinks I should try antidepressants. But then I get some good days and let it go. And every time I go out and see people, then I feel like a different person!

Waiting for other musicians to show up, I enjoyed a whiskey inside a pub for the first time in a long, long time

So unless new information regarding Covid emerges, I’ll socialise again, and I had decided to go and enjoy this first music session no matter what. Surprisingly, I didn’t feel anxious although the group of musicians was much larger than what I felt was comfortable (again, because of Covid). And it felt really, really good to do something NORMAL. Oh, how I’ve missed that feeling! My musical performance was rough, though. I’ve ignored my concertina for a long time so I didn’t bring it, and while I would be competent enough on the guitar to join in on Irish tunes with it, I didn’t hear myself enough to give it a try. I played chords most of the time and didn’t do a good job with it because I’m very rusty with Irish music. But I can only get better from here! I’ll dust off the concertina, get back to some regular practice and I’ll bring it to the pub tomorrow because I think I still can play some of those tunes with it.

On Friday we met at a friend’s house to play some music with a couple of more friends. What joy! Again, the feeling of NORMAL.

Learning more about Lightroom

A highlight last week was the camera club meeting where one of the members held a tutorial about Lightroom Classic (if you don’t know, it’s an Adobe program that enables you to organise and rate your photos and do your post-processing and editing, it’s a very clever piece of software). I’ve been using Lightroom for quite a while but I have lots to learn, especially about the library. After this tutorial, I decided to re-do my Lightroom library and add ALL my photos there, even those old and bad ones from way before I knew how to handle a camera. Just to have everything in the same place and be able to find things easily is a blessing in itself. Some of my older photos may even be decent if I try some editing.

So from Wednesday until Sunday, I’ve been building a new folder system for my photos, then importing everything into Lightroom. Very time-consuming indeed but I’m very happy I did it! Now I’m going to go into each folder, delete those I don’t need to keep, and try some more editing on others, one folder at a time.

Continued physical exercise

My Friday training session was the second with my new PT. It was a good one. My squats felt spot on and I now learned why my split squats didn’t work last week. I did a heavy shoulder/arm session this time and it feels really good.

The weather

The weather has been absolutely terrible lately. Cold and windy, some days with winds around 50 km/h. Unbearable! On Tuesday night after the music session, it was nice, mild, and calm in town but when we came home it was almost stormy. Lately, we’ve even been talking about finding another house eventually, to get away from these hard winds. We can’t avoid the Atlantic storms of course, but here up on the hill, we have much more wind than other places in the area.

But Friday was a quite good day. I took a stroll in the garden and saw that the Clematis is growing happily and it even has some buds.

Yesterday was also a nice day with sunshine and just a little wind. We went to Cork to do some shopping and collect whiskey samples for an upcoming event. How lovely to get on a small road trip – and I’ve finally bought some decent containers for growing seeds. Also, collecting whiskey samples means meeting people! That feeling of NORMAL again… I love it.

This morning it’s sunny and with almost no wind. I had a wonderful moment of calm while sipping my morning coffee. The plan for today is to prepare some music for tomorrow’s session and meet my camera club friend for a nice beach photoshoot. It should be a joyful day!

I do this “Joyful moments” series to help myself focus on the good things in life. With everything going on in the world, my tendency to overthink is my worst enemy, so focusing on the positives is my only way to stay sane. These posts may be a bit random, but they help me keep on the sunny side!

Linking with Denyse Whelan’s Life this month.



  • 14th March 2022

    I’ve heard the expression “caution exhaustion”. All our restrictions will lift next week. I’m not sure how comfortable I feel about that.

  • Joanne

    14th March 2022

    All wonderful reasons to feel more joy! I think getting out into the world and seeing others is huge for our mental health. It does throw me a bit when we’re in a crowded room now with others but usually only for a moment because it has been so long since we’ve done that.

  • 15th March 2022

    Hello Susanne, I love your Joyful series because no matter how difficult life is there are still moments of joy we can find in our day. I know that sounds like a cliche but it really is true. Even blocked drains can be a joyful experience when they are fixed! I’m so pleased you are socialising and also exercising both are great for our mental health and well-being. Music is wonderful for the soul! I look forward to your next Joyful instalment. Please take care.

  • 15th March 2022

    Hi, Susanne – Thank you for this joyful post. I am also delighted to get out and see people, now without masks.
    Fingers crossed that this continues!

  • 16th March 2022

    Hi Susanne – I can relate to how Covid has affected you socially etc. As an overthinker myself, I think your joyful series is a fabulous idea. I know how wonderful it is to do some ‘normal’ stuff again. It really does make a difference doesn’t it? I don’t think we will ever take those things for granted ever again.

  • 16th March 2022

    I loved reading this Susanne because you are doing all you can to focus on joy, no matter what…I also know how much we miss what was normal. As Spring continues to bloom where you are, the days will lengthen and I reckon there will be more joy than you can write about!! Thank you so much for linking up your blog post for the FIRST #LifeThisMonth Link Up on Denyse Whelan Blogs. I do hope you return for the next one: Monday 11 April 2022. Warm wishes,Denyse.

  • 25th March 2022

    I really needed this today – perhaps that is why I haven’t been able to comment before? I have had a hard time finding joy this week. Reading about your joys (again) made me smile. Music. Exercise. Fresh air. Beautiful pictures. Home ownership victories. (Although admittedly that paragraph made me so happy to still be renting, with Larry and Les on call if I need them…) I am so impressed with your venturing out into the real world – overcoming your discomfort (or at least quashing it enough to be ‘okay’ with it), and enjoying time with friends. And, oh, I can sympathize with the wind. It has been crazy windy here this winter – actually *whistling* in my windows and keeping me up at night. Not sure why but goodness, I wish it would calm down (or, perhaps, blow in some summer weather, not more snow? :>) Take good care, as always. Hugs to you.


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