Moments of Happiness in April 2015

Feeling the seasons finally shift into spring including a day of 26 celsius

Continuing our babymoon in Phuket with six days of "just the two (and a half) of us" in two luxury hotels (consecutively, not one each - now that would be greedy) and I ploughed through four books, spent many hours in a swimming pool doing pregnancy yoga stretches and enjoyed Thai food by candlelight, often with our toes dug in the sand. 

And then totally overdoing it at breakfast... of course.

Writing 2000+ words a day while on the babymoon.

Watching NewMan spend several hours setting up a camera to take photos of a lizard feeding while balanced on the top of a flower near our pool. The pics were worth his wait.

Watching Bloodline on Netflix and swaying from uncertain to addicted to "What-are-we-going-to-do-when-this-is-over?".

Going for sunnier bike rides with NewMan. I have a new appreciation of living in this country now I can safely cycle around it at seven months pregnant.

Getting over a very unexpected bout of laryngitis which rid me of my voice for three days. Boyfriend was very happy about that.

Having a good friend to stay for a weekend which involved gentle walks around town, lazy coffees and long dinners in our favourite restaurants in the neighbourhood.

Going on a private walking tour of the Red Light District one afternoon which included - in two very opposing extremes - climbing up the tower of the oldest building in Amsterdam and spending 2 minutes watching a woman strip in a peep show. A full report is to follow!

Spending a sunny Sunday morning doing a mindfulness meditation course which has helped me really relax into a few anxieties about the upcoming changes in my life. I've also started reading Mindful Birthing which I'm definitely also enjoying.

Dancing to Jamie Liddell in between chilling out to The Paper Kites and Kings of Convenience. 

Watching movies on the plane home from Thailand, including Cake and The Imitation Game. Both were pretty good but my favourite was Foxcatcher - some incredible performances in that movie.

Getting my Inbox empty for the first time this year. (Read my Inbox Zero tips here.)

Heading to the UK for a busy six days seeing friends and family, including a lovely Sunday afternoon spent with friends and family eating cake and drinking tea and sharing all my pregnancy stories - so far - and also sharing my hopes and dreams for Baby Bird. It was also an opportunity to see one of my very good friend's three week old baby who spoiled us all with sleepy cuddles. 

Hanging out with my two-year-old nephew on many of those days I was at home and watching him charm everyone he meets with his new ability to talk. I love that his favourite words seem to be "cuddles", "cake" and "Grumps" (what he calls my dad).

Enjoying the first gelato of the year.

Having a two hour Skype call with NewMan's mum planning her trip in the summer to meet her first grandchild.

Welcoming guest writers to the blog for the first time. Have a read of these two great posts: Why I Wasn't Afraid to Live Abroad at a Young Age and A Reader's Question: Is It Really Possible to Become Location-Independent?

Reading lots and lots of fiction from a real mix of authors, and for the first time this month I actually struggled to finish two books. Find out which ones here.

Enjoying some British treats not thanks to a suitcase loaded with goodies but thanks to a special delivery from British Corner Shop. I was especially happy to see some Dairy Milk, Crunchy Nut Cornflakes and crumpets included in the package. (They've all long gone now, sadly).

Playing Scrabble with my Grandma. She's 95 and beat me by nearly 100 points.

Publishing my latest short story Balloons for newsletter readers and on Kindle. It's arguably the most personal story I've written - it's about a pregnant woman on a babymoon - but just in case you've read it please be rest assured that her story is very, very different to mine (thank goodness!). Another brand new short story will be sent to newsletter readers next month, sign up to get your mitts on it.

Discovering that apple mojito mocktails are almost as good as the real thing. Or maybe it was just because I was sipping them at sunset while in a pool. Yeah, maybe it was that.

These are the things that have made me happy this month. How about you?

(Read my Moments of Happiness in January, February and March.)

Frances M. Thompson

Londoner turned wanderer, Frankie is an author, freelance writer and blogger. Currently based in Amsterdam, Frankie was nomadic for two years before starting a family with her Australian partner. Frankie is the author of three short story collections, and is a freelance writer for travel and creative brands. In 2017, she launched WriteNOW Cards, affirmation cards for writers that help build a productive and positive writing practice. When not writing contemporary fiction, Frankie shops for vintage clothes, dances to 70s disco music and chases her two young sons around Amsterdam.
Find Frankie on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Google+.

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