Taking a summer break and refreshing my goals


It’s that time of year when a summer break away is on the cards. Taking a well deserved break has brought me a new focus, a fresh outlook, a new enthusiasm and revitalised my energy banks. A few weeks ago Mr C and I took a week-long trip away with friends to escape and recharge. I used the time to relax and came back with refreshed goals and a new focus on my plans.
On a Friday afternoon, I set my out of office message on my work email, added a few final things to my suitcase, and Mr C and I excitedly drove to the airport. We parked up and within about an hour my body relaxed for the first time in months. We decided to have a different summer holiday this year, one that meant escaping. We headed away with some of our great friends to a stunning villa in the mountains of southern Spain. We stayed in a remote location with fabulous views, it was perfect and just what we needed after a particularly challenging year.
We quickly adjusted our routines and felt the benefit of being somewhere so remote. Quality time was spent with our friends, we read our books, slept lots, relaxed in the sunshine, swam frequently each day in the pool and ate incredible home made food. Mr C particularly enjoyed reading a few cook books and whipping up lots of yummy tapas and cocktails throughout the week, and we all loved it too! What I loved was the feeling of switching off from work, from the internet, and from things going on at home…
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My simple pleasure…watching hot air balloons

Watching hot air balloons float through the sky is one of my favourite simple pleasures. When I was young we would regularly see hot air balloons flying overhead and watch them land in our local school playing field. The excitement and pleasure of watching hot air balloons glide across the sky has stayed with me for life. Living in Bristol and being close to Ashton Court, a local launch site for hot air balloons, means that I regularly get to enjoy the sight of colourful balloons floating by, sometimes drifting along unknown until you hear the roar of the burner above you.

This weekend is the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta where over 100 balloons take to the sky in a mass ascent each morning and evening (weather permitting!), filling the sky above Bristol with hot air balloons of all shapes, colours and sizes. Five years ago at the Balloon Fiesta Mr C and I took a balloon flight. It was a birthday present and an amazing experience that I had always dreamed of doing. Ever since then the sight of a hot air balloon still takes me back to my childhood love of balloons and the day I went in one.


Taking a moment to stop what I’m doing and watch a hot air balloon drift by is a lifelong love and one of my simple pleasures.