A Little Inspiration From Ellen

In my WP Reader last night was this post from Ellen, the creator of Gone Floatabout:


Underwater, Coral, Fish, Sea, ReefSo beautiful!!! I need things like this to revive me. What an amazing planet we live on!

I’ve only ever been diving once, that was in Turkey – but it is one of the most special memories I have. I would love to have chance to explore more of our magnificent oceans.

Life is not about politics. It’s not about the economy or the housing market. For thousands of years our incredible planet has been turning. People didn’t have supermarkets.

Never lose sight of our inheritance. Look after it. Keep it clean and healthy. There is no home like ours!

It Keeps Me Warm As Life Grows Colder

Jim Adams, aka Newepicauthor, the creator of A Unique Title For Me, is hosting SONG-LYRIC-SUNDAY and this week he has chosen the theme: COOL/FREEZE/HEAT/MELT

sduirhtwThis is a really hard time for me. I decided weeks ago that I would have to skip today. Yeah, just skip it completely. I am going to sleep in for as long as I can. Then I am going to wake up, shower, dress, lace up my hiking boots and go walking. I don’t want to do anything else today. Not only was my flight to Australia (which should have been this weekend) cancelled, but it is also five years since an event that is still a marker in my life. I just gotta take a little time, a little time to think things over.

I could say a lot about how the memories of that night freeze my heart. I could say a lot about how the flashbacks I have had heat my blood to boiling. I could say a lot about how Goldfinch knew just how to melt my frosty exterior. I could say a lot about the peace I regained with Jack was refreshing a cool. I could say a lot about the heat of passion that followed.

But instead…while I go for my walk…I will leave you a song which is just as dramatic as what is going on inside me at the moment. Foreigner, “I Wanna Know Love Is“.

I gotta take a little time
A little time to think things over
I better read between the lines
In case I need it when I’m older

Now this mountain I must climb
Feels like a world upon my shoulders
Through the clouds I see love shine
It keeps me warm as life grows colder

In my life there’s been heartache and pain
I don’t know if I can face it again
Can’t stop now, I’ve traveled so far
To change this lonely life

I wanna know what love is
I want you to show me
I wanna feel what love is
I know you can show me

I’m gonna take a little time
A little time to look around me
I’ve got nowhere left to hide
It looks like love has finally found me

In my life there’s been heartache and pain
I don’t know if I can face it again
I can’t stop now, I’ve traveled so far
To change this lonely life

I wanna know what love is
I want you to show me
I wanna feel what love is
I know you can show me

I wanna know what love is
I want you to show me
And I wanna feel, I want to feel what love is
And I know, I know you can show me

Let’s talk about love
I wanna know what love is, the love that you feel inside
I want you to show me, and I’m feeling so much love
I wanna feel what love is, no, you just cannot hide
I know you can show me, yeah

I wanna know what love is, let’s talk about love
I want you to show me, I wanna feel it too
I wanna feel what love is, I want to feel it too
And I know and I know, I know you can show me
Show me love is real, yeah
I wanna know what love is…

Written By: Mick Jones





Someone who cares about you, and knows you have had challenges, keeps on trying to offer you advice. Only it is not helpful. They use cliches and say things like “look on the bright side of life”…or “every cloud has a silver lining”…or worse! At first you tried to overlook what they were doing because you know they are well motivated, but they keep on doing it. It’s as if they have made you their mission.



What is THE CARAMEL CRUNCH? Well, it’s all about decisions. When it comes to THE CRUNCH what would you do?

One of the definitions of the word CRUNCH is:

a crucial point or situation

 – generally involving a decision with weighty consequences

  • Your response can be a quickie. Please feel free to send a comment to say what you would do, and if you have time or are inclined, please feel free to explain your decision.
  • If you would like to create a post with a longer explanation of your decision, please pingback to THE CARAMEL CRUNCH post. (Or copy and paste a link to your post in the comments section – please feel free.)

If you know anything about CRUSHED CARAMEL, you will probably realize I am a gentle soul, so my questions are not supposed to be terrifying! What I am hoping for really is to see a variety of responses. Afterall, it’s pretty obvious that WordPress bloggers are from a huge variety of backgrounds and cultures. It would be fascinating to learn more about how we as individuals make decisions.

Some of the questions I am going to ask are questions I have discussed with friends when we have been having coffee or dinner. I often find there is no clear right or wrong. It can be so much a matter of our individual experiences and outlook. I find it fascinating how very different some of us are when it comes to decision making.

We all have different outlooks, and may make different decisions. I am really looking forward to learning WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

One Way Street, Decisions, Opportunity



Fickle! Me?

Woman, Portrait, Lovely, Fashion, LuxuryMy emotions have been more temperamental than is normal this past month. I know why. Perhaps you know why, it depends on whether you have had the patience to read any of my longer posts. But adding to the challenges this month (I have had a lot of flashbacks to the night I was attacked and the events leading up to that night) seems to bring, is the accumulative effect of tiredness over these past months. Working at least six days a week is wearing me out. But I have a little time off ahead of me.

dfhagifaWhat I will do on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday has been a question for a while. I have lots of options. But I have been reluctant to commit myself to anything…because I don’t want to feel tied down to anything. I want to wake up when I feel ready, and do whatever I feel like, without feeling obligated to keep a promise to someone.

I have chatted to a friend of mine roughly once a week for the past few months, and today she said I was fickle. I asked her what she meant. She laughed and said it was frustrating to her that I kept changing my mind.

Apparently, from week to week I have said things like, “I just don’t want to be alone during those days,”…then a week later, “I think I just need some time on my own,”…then a week later, “I’ll go crazy if I am all on my own with these intense thoughts and feelings,”…and then, “I just need to sleep and shut out conversations and chit chat about the virus and the economy and everything exhausting”.

Woman, Watch, Girl, Lady, Clock, JewelryAt some point I told her, “I have lots of plans to keep myself busy, sorting out clothes and books, cleaning out the insides of all my cupboards and drawers, and giving everything a really good clean.” When my friend reminded me I had suggested I would do lots of spring-cleaning, apparently I replied, “I don’t want to be stuck indoors, I want to be out walking in the fresh air.” Yet on one occasion I told her that though I love walking, “I’m not sure walking on my own is good for me, because if I am downhearted I end up sobbing while I walk.

Even this week, when I found out Jack was coming home, I said, “I am going to go up to see him and sit outside on the grass while he obeys the 14-day quarantine and sits out on his balcony”. Later I thought that was not wise, and I told her today, “It’s not a good idea for me to go near the place I was attacked.”

dsfafadgafMy poor friend!!! Can you imagine how confused she is listening to me? I love her so much! I hate it when she tries to give me advice – it is always terrible advice – full of cringe-worthy cliches. But she is a very lovely friend nonetheless, and I love that the two of us always find things to laugh about (we have both had some painful challenges to deal with). We are looking forward to meeting up for a coffee at some point. She’s in a county outside of London, and I have not used public transport since February. But when it is safe…she is one of the people I am longing to see.

Anyway…as soon as she said I was fickle…I could not help think of Rigoletto…but as you all know, “it is a woman’s prerogative to change her mind!!!”

Woman is fickle
Like a feather in the wind
She changes her voice and her mind
Always sweet
Pretty face
In tears or in laughter, she is always lying
Always miserable
Is he who trusts her
He who confides in her his unwary heart!
Yet one never feels
Fully happy
Who on that bosom does not drink love
Woman is fickle
Like a feather in the wind
She changes her voice and her mind,
And her mind,
And her mind!


Preparing For The Worst Of It

This awful time is looming. I have a couple of days off work – at last and thank goodness! I want to relax and chill. I have decided to do all I can to prepare myself for a pleasant few days – buying foodie treats and some half-price champagne (no tennis to watch this year – except replays but I am not missing out on strawberries and champagne).

I have been putting together a playlist on YouTube with happy songs, not sad songs, and I have a couple of books that always cheer me up at the ready. I am going to chat with everyone who is very close to me. At least Jack is here in England. I have decided I don’t want to travel up there just yet. It will bring me a stone’s throw from where a security guard found my battered body.

Summer, Poolside, Red Hat, Strawberries

Hopefully on my own I will push the awful memories out of my head. One thing that I am struggling with is the heat. The night I was attacked was the hottest day of the year…(and it was hot during the night too) – record breaking hot. I have been waking up repeatedly at night convinced I was lying in the undergrowth on Hampstead Heath – it fills my chest with a traumatic shock and takes me some time to recover from.


Peace Of Mind

If the taunts of strangers could be quashed, slander by people I respected could be obliterated, if wounds inflicted by dearest friends could heal.

If my favourite park was not where I was violated and left for dead…then I would be at peace. I would have peace of mind.



This is my response to this week’s 50-Word Writing Prompt hosted by Deb Whittam  and Kristian Fogarty:


My Boyfriend’s Back!

I have missed Jack sooooooooooooo much! It has felt like forever that he has been away. I have been worried about him. Worrying about someone who is miles and miles away from you is hard!

London, Heathrow, Aircraft, Airport

Aaaaah sigh! It’s so good to have him back! This is the man I love. I was secretly hoping he would not be allowed to go abroad when he left in March. I was secretly hoping he would come home early. He admitted his heart was split. He has loved his time out there. But he has been worried about me. He has come home because of me.

He is still an international volunteer. When I went to a park and woke up the next morning in an ambulance, my health suffered a blow which means I currently don’t meet the criteria to be an international volunteer. I am thrilled that Jack can do what I cannot. I mentioned a few days ago…there is a very complicated situation caused by the rift that occured between us six years ago, which culminated in my dramatic disappearance from London five years ago (after I was attacked). That caused sensational waves and Jack and I have still not calmed the waters.

Now he has to quarantine for two weeks before I can be back in his arms. But I am going to go and see him at some point. He will stand on his balcony and I will call sit on the grass outside sunbathing and we will talk. I have Sunday, Monday and Tuesday off work. Yay!!! I am just not sure I can be near the park where I was attacked. I don’t think I am up to it at the moment. My chest feels traumatised from all the flashbacks and moments of fear I have had these past few weeks.


Grades Mean Nada!

I realized today…that part of me that teachers tried to develop has long since ceased to breathe. The seed they planted has dried up and withered.

Woman in Red Long Sleeve Writing On Chalk Board

Today I sat an exam. I aced it. It’s not the first test I have aced. I went through years of schooling and college education acing tests and being given A* grades. But it all became meaningless a long time ago.

It’s just a piece of paper. In fact nowadays, they try not to give you a piece of paper – everything is digital. But at least the course I had to do for work is out of the way. Grades mean nothing. Nada! Zilch! Educators like to put you in a little box and boost your ego. I have never bought into their nonsense.

What matters is the qualities within – the secret person of the heart – the love you show to others without any hope of reward, the courage to keep going when your hopes and dreams have been crushed, the mildness you display when others wrong you.




What Will Be In Our Picnic Basket?


Bloggers have been sending in photographs of their baking for the BAKING CONTEST which will be judged by our kitchen guru and baking legend Jeanne, the creator of A Jeanne in the Kitchen. The bakes are looking fabulous.

We also have photos of picnic creations pouring in! What a feast the 2020 SUMMER PICNIC is set to be. There is still time to take part.


18/19th July 2020

But please send in your photos now to:


I Am Being Unfriendly

I wrote this post about a month ago…and for some reason forgot to publish it. The situation has eased up a bit now. I think he finally realized he was never going to get anywhere.

Have you ever found yourself in a relationship (friendship) with someone who was a bit on the pushy side?

Keyboard, Typing, Computer, ComputingI don’t want to be unkind about this guy because I don’t know him well enough. But we came into contact through a mutual friend who wanted our support on a charity project he has been working on. Anyway, the three of us exchanged emails and files as we were working remotely on this project (yes besides working for the NHS, I am still keeping busy with work for charities).

Well…our work came to an end, and the guy who was a stranger to me carried on sending me messages. We would chat about different things…France, gardening, baking, books, wine. But then he began throwing compliments into the mix. I sensed he might be getting his hopes up so I made it clear that I have a boyfriend.

Exhausted, Tired, Cozy, Night, WindowAnyway…he seemed a bit disappointed, but he asked if he could keep in touch because he was enjoying our chats. He said he is bored and really struggling with social distancing and I had helped cheer him up. So, we carried on occasional chats. I have explained to him how busy I am because he was sending messages everyday…and I did not want to send a reply everyday (I did not think it wise).

So…it’s been several weeks that we have been in contact since the project ended…and he has started asking for my phone number. I am very careful about who I give my number to. My phone number is for a select few. Anyone else can contact me via email. I instantly sent a message to my friend (the one who needed our help on the project) to say “if anyone asks for my number please don’t give it out”. He replied back that he knows not to give my number out without asking me.

Beautiful, Girl, Smiling, Young, WomanI asked the guy (remember he is a complete stranger to me and I only came into contact with him due to working online on a project) why he needs my number. He said he is longing to hear my voice. That was not a good answer.

He and I never spoke on the phone. We originally exchanged three way emails with our mutual friend, and then once the project ended, we have chatted privately online. He has sent me lots of personal photos besides all the graphic he contributed to the project. That’s his field – graphic design. So I know what he looks like. But I have not sent him any photos of myself. I did send him a photo of the wisteria here in April.

Now I have resorted to ignoring his messages for long periods before sending a short reply. I am hoping he will get bored. I don’t want to be unkind to him as a human, but him saying he was longing to hear my voice and asking repeatedly for my number. It discombobulated me.

Oh Jack! You better hurry up and come back here. Jack has to sort out his visa….that is another story entirely!!!