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A Time Less Ordinary

Today we greet you from the depths of a time less ordinary. Yes it was 4.30 am, i repeat AM when Big Bear and I awoke and realised that we were unable to return to slumberland. A rude awakening indeed. Both myself and the Bear are renowned for our ability to sleep, in what can seem to others as impossible situations. Oh yes in our time we have slept on buses, in the garden and most notable once upside down against a fridge – all without a problem.

You can imagine then that we felt somewhat aggrieved this morning to discover our power for the power nap had dissolved into a stark staring – slightly scary alertness. As ever though we seek to find a positive in this mayhem that is life – and without too much trouble, a coffee and a banana, we began to realise what a blessing it has been that we can’t sleep today.

We sat in the living room with the faint haze of first morning light coming in through the window – and everything it touched seemed truly beautiful. We heard the clock ticking and instead of finding it an almighty brain drenching din, it seemed soothing a rhythmic, like life’s heartbeat reminding us how lucky we are. I heard the rain coming down and for a moment it felt like only myself and the Bear were present in the world – a strange but wonderful feeling. Of course then i heard Mr. G snoring upstairs and reality came crashing back down – but you know, that was nicely reassuring too.

This time in the morning is often spoken of in tongues – people dare not mention it, less they rue the misfortune of being present in it – but actually, like most things we fear, it is only the thought of it that is unpleasant – and with a little understanding it is actually one of the most calming, reflective and in it’s way productive times of the day. A precious moment of peace, unadulterated by the pressures and demands that the dawning of real time will bring. 

So – and we whisper this so as not to disturb those of you who are sleeping soundly – when today dawns and you feel the racing pace of life hit you over the head with the pounding of the alarm clock, remember there is nothing so important as your happiness and there is a time and a space to nurture that. It doesn’t have to be 4.30am, it doesn’t have to be the living room – but it does have to be sought often.

And now for a Jedi Knights crossed with a Marshmallow – and the Bear

 

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xxx We love You lots – smile today F and B xxx

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Use your loaf!

Use your loaf!.

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Use your loaf!

A very happy Thursday to all of you  – and tho it may be cold, wet and rather Octoberish, let us take a moment to remind ourselves it is in fact June!!!

At present my summer clothes are sitting sorrowful in their draw, mourning the premature death of what promised to be sunnier days. My umbrella mocks them, knowing it is essential to my daily movements and will not be dispensed with in a hurry. So how to cheer up this rather wounding weather????? Ask the bear – he’ll have an idea.

Food – which to be honest is his answer to most of life’s quandries, but it aint half a bad place to start. Big Bear pointed out that baking is the key here. According to his mutterings baking something yourself is not only rewarding in the fact that you will have achieved a culinary experiment but that – all being well – you really can have your cake and eat it. A valid and rather tempting point was made. Now I am by no means a Delia, a Heston or indeed a Gordon, but i can follow a set of instructions (apart from one’s relating to the construction of flat pack furniture – those are never ever  to be trusted!)

While it is easier to buy a nice cake or a loaf of bread, once in a while it is somewhat therapeutic i find to make one yourself. The bear certainly has no complaints, tho it is usually cookies he requests. I’ve told him, once you can wield a spatula yourself you can make all the cookies you like – he frowned and turned away!

I think the point the bear is trying to make, albeit in a self gaining way, is that it is all to easy to feel down, or lost or saddened at times when things aren’t quite going as we feel they should. I know i am heavy hearted whenever i look out to find it raining, and i sigh when i have to turn the heating on in June – but i have a choice. I can either continue to do nothing and feel like a bag of old socks, or i can use my loaf! (with the help of the cuddly oracle of course).

So i vow that if i feel low, i will not give in, i will do something – even if it is to bake a slightly burnt, oddly shaped loaf of bread or a rather flat looking cake which may be confused with a jammy frisbee. I will do it because it will be mine, i will have achieved it, i will not have wasted my time and i will eat it (even if i do lose a tooth or 2 in the process!) It’s not about what you do. it’s about why you do it and if it serves to bring a smile to your face then it is worth every second. If it serves to bring a smile to someone elses faces then that’s a bonus – and who doesn’t want to come home to culinary creations of the third kind!

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Have a lovely November grown up go getters – i mean June, well at least i think i do? Now where has my spatula gone?  . . . . .  . . . .  . BIG BEAR!!!!!!

Love and Dozens of cookies! F and B xxxxx

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Flower Power

It’s a beautiful day out there, and by out there i mean past the curtains, past the door, into the sunshine 🙂

As it is so lovely i ventured to a place long forgotten this morning, a place where enormous jungle grew high and wide, strange creatures lurked and a sense of foreboding hung in the air . . . . Yep i went to the GARDEN!

I felt a little sorry for it as i looked around. It has been neglected through a long and difficult winter. Some things have flourished while others have died and some things look plain lost, not least the patio style furniture lurking somewhere at the back with its parasol more akin to a white flag of surrender!

So with the re-discovery of the garden/ wilderness it got me thinking about the power of the flower. Big Bear LOVES flowers – roses are his favourite, I asked him why he so liked them – as they were neither cuddly nor tasty which are usually the only 2 things he need take into consideration. He said that it was their colour and bravery that he liked. Now colour i can well understand, there is nothing quite as beautiful as the blood red rose stark against the dullness of all it surveys – but bravery . . . hmmmmm . . . i had never considered a flower to be brave before in my life – this would take some explaining. So with that i poured a cup of tea, got out the cookies and let the Bear do the talking!

He explained – Roses are brave. They are brave because they are so very fragile, yet they burst force unapologetically and display all they have. they are vulnerable – a sharp frost, a cold wind, or a hungry creature can devour them in seconds. However, they do not shy away and protect their beauty in the shade, they do not show a little and preserve the rest – no they throw their lustful bloom into life and leave it there exposed, to be loved or lost, but to be known whichever way fate takes it.

At this stage my half dipped cookie collapsed into the tea and a lot of searching around with a teaspoon ensued. But biscuit dramas aside – i was astonished. Big Bear was right (again!) and it made me realise something quite important. We are all vulnerable in some way and we are all beautiful in someway. Equally we all need to be breave sometimes and expose our most delicate feelings to possible rejection or humiliation. Sometimes the fear of this grows too much and we avoid the issue entirely feeling that perhaps it is better to have not known the answer and kept our dignity safe and in tact than go all out in the face of the unknown and try, despite the possibility of hurt or failure.

So today i am a rose, i am strong and i am unashamed to try – whatever comes my way. I will try to believe in myself and know that if i allow myself my moment in the sun then i may achieve something great – equally i know i may fall fall on my face, but like the relentless red rose – at least i will be remembered ( even if it is only because my skirt went over my head as i hit the ground!)

Have a blooming lovely day garden of grown ups

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xxx Love and Cookies F and B xxxx

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Some lovely email responses to the bears thoughts – thank you x

flissandbigbear

Sunday afternoon – the quiet time when things that have buzzed around our frantic minds all week take a moment to settle. The sound of lawns being mowed, the smell of freshly baked bread, the sweet song of the birds in the trees . . . . . . Ok so i am just watching an episode of the Darling Buds of May but hey, it wouldbe a nice reality wouldn’t it!

Today’s topic for discussion/ thought/ vague consideration before falling asleep after a rather delicious Sunday roast is SIZE. We are filled with many preconceived ideas about size from an early age. Who hasn’t, for instance, heard the old adage ‘Size Matters’ and vehemently tried to deny it does. Everything we are subjected to revolves around it’s size, the biggest diamond, the smallest ipod, from fashion to food, technology to treasures size is everything. 

This is all well and…

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All shapes and sizes welcome

Sunday afternoon – the quiet time when things that have buzzed around our frantic minds all week take a moment to settle. The sound of lawns being mowed, the smell of freshly baked bread, the sweet song of the birds in the trees . . . . . . Ok so i am just watching an episode of the Darling Buds of May but hey, it wouldbe a nice reality wouldn’t it!

Today’s topic for discussion/ thought/ vague consideration before falling asleep after a rather delicious Sunday roast is SIZE. We are filled with many preconceived ideas about size from an early age. Who hasn’t, for instance, heard the old adage ‘Size Matters’ and vehemently tried to deny it does. Everything we are subjected to revolves around it’s size, the biggest diamond, the smallest ipod, from fashion to food, technology to treasures size is everything. 

This is all well and good at face value, but unfortunately it seems that we have attached some rather unhealthy categorizations to the idea of size. Take body shape for example, small and thin is a good thing, whereas large and fat is a bad thing – or so we believe. 

Big Bear thinks this is quite ridiculous, as bears come in all shapes and sizes and this is what makes them unique and gives them their character. He said to me, if he was thinner and smaller – he wouldn’t be Big Bear and how would i feel about that?! Well i can tell you i wouldn’t be very happy about that at all. Big Bear said wouldn’t it be much better if grown ups were more concerned with being happy and healthy and let their size and shape take care of itself. I admit here, i had to ask him to elaborate a little for my Sunday fatigued mind to catch up with his sparkling wisdom. So he went on – he said that everyone has a natural size/ shape when they are healthy, some tall some short, some thin some round, some curvy some lean, but they are all good if they are being looked after. I stopped his mutterings once again and asked him to repeat. ALL SHAPES AND SIZES ARE GOOD he shouted.

I get it now! So we can stop hating ourselves and judging ourselves and others by some strange internal measuring tape every time we leave the house. Naturally thin people shouldn’t be picked on by jealous others and equally the curvier amongst us should not be labelled fat and lazy just because their wrists don’t snap under the weight of their bangles. As long as we look after our health, are kind to others, believe in our abilities and celebrate the abilities of others, why on earth do we need to worry about our size and shape? If our dimensions are what makes us who we are then we may as well not bother with all the wonderful things life has to offer, because if you’ve arrived in the wrong package you’ve failed at the start – Ridiculous notion, but one we seem to keep perpetuating day in and day out.

So as of today, when i catch myself worrying that i may not look great in this seasons fashion – i shall make it last seasons fashion and wear something i like. If i find myself fearing what others think of me, i shall remind myself of anything good i have done and decide that these actions have been far more important than the size written on the label of my jeans. I wont envy the scarily skinny, nor shall i berate them – i will not fear the curves women are given nor shall i feel insignificant if i don’t have them.

Big Bear would like me to introduce you to his friends  – who are all different shapes and sizes and who are all as lovable and characterful as the next. So i hope that this message reaches at least one person and makes them see the world in inspiration not inches. Your best is THE best and seeing the best in others only reaffirms how good life really can be when you stop sizing it up!

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Love and Cookies xxx F and B xxx

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Scare the Bear within!

Hello hopefully happy hims and hers 🙂

It has been a few days now since myself and Big Bear made any jibber jabberings of any kind so we are back, and it has been an eye opening couple of days.

It is a little known fact that i suffer with ME and have to regularly visit the hospital to manage the condition. As such i have been encourage to integrate some gentle exercise into my life to help restore my health somewhat. I don’t know about you but the word ‘exercise’ gentle or not puts the fear of a thousand One Direction concerts into me! So i got to thinking as to why it was that we so dislike the idea of exercise or any physically demanding task which may or may not require the wearing of lycra shorts . . . . .

Big Bear explained that each and everyone of us has our own internal bear. Interesting start i thought so i let the little hugmeister continue. He said that our ‘bear within’ is something that can get very complacent if it is not challenged regularly and in order to do this you need to scare your bear to really feel alive. At this stage i worried that the scare factor may have to come in the form of a bungee jump or abseiling from an iron age bridge – but no, fears are apparently personal.

I think my fear of exercise may stem from a fear of failure – i.e. if i don’t do it well enough, am not the best at it, don’t do it long enough then i have failed. so i may as well not bother at all. This is the point,according to big bear where you have to find your inner Roar! You have to Roar (internally – otherwise you may be carted away to an institution of helpful though alarmingly forceful medical professionals) at your inner bear. Take the fear you have, of whatever it is and face it head on telling your inner bear that it can and it will win in any given situation.

So i did. I went swimming! Yes that’s me, the woman who hates the changing rooms (mainly due to the fact that someone else’s toe nail clippings always end up stuck to the underside of my foot), he woman who would rather wear a bin liner to a black tie ball than a swimming costume and yes, the woman who does not do well in what is in fact an oversize bath full of strangers. I felt sick, i thought it wasn’t worth it as im not very good at swimming. BUT I ROARED! Yep i thought, what the hell, im going and even if i only stay 5 minutes iv’e tried. Well i was there half an hour and i felt really good, not because i had swamfor half an hour but because i had overcome a fear – however small, i fought and i won just as the bear had predicted – clever chap!

So i guess my point is this – sometimes you have to dig deep, make yourself do something you know will benefit you but that you don’t want to do. So i urge you, don’t let your inner bear get complacent, wake it up and face a fear however small it may seem, it is a giant achievement for you.  We would love to hear any giant leaps/ fears you have tackled recently or maybe want to tackle soon.

And you never know one day i may even end up at a One Direction Concert . . . . . . one step at a time hey!!!!!!!!

Up close and personal – one scared bear!

Love and Cookies xx F and B xx

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Possibilities not Probabilities

Today began the same as any other, open eyes, rub eyes, take in blurred vision of the world/ my bedroom – stretch. So i was not prepared for the fiasco that followed. You see i had not slept well at all, things on my mind, couldn’t get comfortable, you name it – it was a sleep sapping issue.

So i got up and decided a good breakfast would be the best start, and indeed it would have been had i not thrown the milk on the floor, dropped jam down my dressing gown and put the kettle in the fridge! I put that down to a false start and preceded to get dressed, and the outcome was not much better i am afraid. Having hairsprayed my underarms and deodorised my hair the chaos was becoming too much to bear – at which point it was a bear who stepped in to stem the insanity.

Big Bear took me back to my opening qualifier about not having had a good nights sleep. He said it was strange that human children avoid sleep like the plague but human grown ups want nothing more to sleep yet can’t get it right. He seems to think there is a method in this madness. Big Bear feels that as children we avoid bedtime because we are having so much fun being awake. Everything we do as children is full of joy, excitement and possibility. On the other paw as a grown up being awake means having to do things we don’t want to, handle responsibility and go through life on a treadmill of probabilities.

I listened to the bear with my under eyes not just having bags but resembling the luggage carousel at Heathrow Airport and let his wise words sink in a moment. Could it be true that if we stopped looking at life as a list of chores we may in fact get a better nights sleep and even perhaps not be seeing it as the highlight of our day? I am under no illusion that this would be easy but surely it has to be worth a try – if only to save my fridge and kettle from ever meeting again!

So i have vowed to try at least, to lose my obsession with ‘a good nights sleep’ by having ‘a good days awake’ – i shall approach everything i do with a sense of newness and smile while i do it and i will not see each day as a series of minutes and hours to be filled doing what i ‘Should’ be doing.

I would hope that there are people out there who will join me – at least in the trying stage – what have we got to lose except another day to mediocrity? So when you lay down tonight, shut off stress and drift into dreamland. You won’t solve all your problems this way but everything looks better in the morning. See each day as full of possibilities not probabilities – relish in the haze of hope don’t languish in the heat of horror.

So here’s to a better days awake leading to a better nights sleep 🙂

Let Us Spray! x

 

Love and Cookies F and B xxx

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United we stand . . . .

Sunday is upon us all and so far it has been a day with some sun – so it has not deceived me in any way. It is a weekend packed with sport from the Spanish Grand Prix to the last day of the Premier League. Along with the vast array of sporting fixtures today is a huge tension. Lewis Hamilton was moved from the back of the grid despite clocking the fastest qualifier and a poll position due to a fueling issue. Over in the footballing world there is a relegation place to be avoided like the plague and a certain Premier League title to be won. So what is it that draws us into these sporting fixtures with a sense of ecstasy and dread in equal measure? With the Euro’s up ahead even the most football phobic amongst us will raise a st. george inspired plastic pint pot at some point and chant the immortal EN-GER-LAND, so what is it that makes us care in the face of our best efforts not to?

Big Bear feels it is a sort of tribal instinct and a pack mentality that grown up humans have tried to shed but is actually ingrained into our cognitive make up. Human children are not so keen to shed their clan wearing, flag waving sense of belonging. As children we love nothing more than to be in a group, a gang, a club of some sort – it is a sort of badge of honour (even if it was the Brownie’s/ Cubs/ Stamp collectors guild!) Bears are no different, they distinguish themselves from other packs but are united in their membership to their tribe. Human grown ups get bogged down with social etiquette, the shoulds and should nots of polite conversation, the rights and wrongs of interaction.

Sport however somehow manages to melt the iron cloak of rightness, sheds the cape of correctness and allows grown ups to get tactile and get tribal. They roar the name of their favourtie team, chant the tune of their clubs song, leap up at the slightest hope and collapse at the mere suggestion of failure. They hug and embrace total strangers, share their woes with folks they dont know – untied simply by their love for a particular sport. This should be a force for good, and while i know some can take it too far, if we can channel this energy and use it to unite ourselves as friends with no room for enemies it can only be a good thing.

So while it may not be life or death, it isn’t the be all and end all – having a passion in common with our fellow friends (beary or human) is a good thing for the most part. Don’t shy away and fear spilling your chardonnay, don’t isolate yourself treading on social egg shells, pick up your stamp collection and get involved – your team (family/friends) needs you!

(And yes – our team is Derby County, come on you Rams!)

Love and Cookies F and B xxx

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Handbags at Dawn!

Another weekstart is upon us grown up guys and gals – woohoo! So it was this impending joy and sense of freedom that set me thinking about something that i feel has no place in our day – anger. I don’t mean anger at something hugely important; for instance coming home to find that your stash of Haribo has been raided by a hungry elephant, or going into your garden to realise that an enormous laser had burned through to the earths core and hot flowing lava is now damaging your geraniums! No i mean petty anger – you know the sort, the little things that bother you that accumulate like a raging river of venom and eventually you crack when the old lady skips the bus queue (i mean how frail is she really, i saw her rugby tackle a man in Tesco for the last Strawberry Trifle – there should be a test!) 

So i thought in order to iron this one out (ironing – i am angry even thinking about it!) i should speak to His Bearyness, which of course i did. He could not fathom this human condition of getting upset at the slightest thing, like someone running their trolley into your legs at the supermarket, your favourite magazine being sold out or the fact that your next door neighbour moved your wheelie bin. Big Bear acutally laughed at the whole concept – you see in the psyche of a bear there is a priority scale. At the top of the priority scale is life threateningly important things i.e Family, warmth, shelter, cookies (food and drink), cuddles, friends, morals – then there is a second tier on the scale which accounts for important but not essential things i.e Manners, Shoes ( i beg to differ) Clothes (debatable!), Entertainment, Money, Car, Charity etc There is no third tier – if it does not come in the top tier then it is not worthy of your frustration or anger. If it comes in the second tier – note your dissatisfaction but smile none the less.If it isn’t on the scale – it isn’t a problem.

So really all these little things are unimportant, and being annoyed about them saps precious energy which Big Bear suggests we should use for smiling. He believes that the more we smile, the more others smile and the less reason anyone has for being irritated, upset or angry at anything

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So put away your ‘handbags at dawn’ mentality. Stop waiting for something to go wrong, or to annoy you because you know it really isn’t personal. The dirty look you got from the man in the post office queue, well he’s having a bad day but not because of you. The waitress that slammed your cappucinno down is also up against it but not because of you. And the old lady with the trifle – well she’s just a crafty old fox!

Keep smiling – and send me and Big Bear a smile if we have made you smile 🙂

 

xxx Love and Cookies F and B xxx

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