Welcome to No Books Allowed. This is a new monthly feature hosted by Raimy from Readaraptor, which is used to discuss things things in life which aren't connected to books. This post can be used to talk about days out, music, TV, video games, films etc for all those book bloggers out there who do occasionally do stuff other than read and go to book events!
Ah, April. You kind of sucked, didn't you? I'm very glad to see the back of you. I really hope that next month will be that fresh and new start that I need. Because I've been on a terrible reading and blogging slump that really has just gone on far too long. It's time for that to go.
And while I haven't been reading as much lately or blogging, I still wanted to take part in this feature. So, here we have all the exciting things I've been up to this past month...
During April's Easter holidays, my family and I went on a little trip to Amsterdam. Ooh, I was a bit quiet about that, wasn't I? I didn't mean to be. I had planned an entire Amsterdam-themed week on the blog which I never quite got around to. Next time I'm there, maybe!
We had a lovely time though. Strolling along the canals, seeing the sights. The boys enjoyed seeing windmills and I loved this display we saw about how wooden shoes are made. We took a canal boat tour and had a lovely time all around.
My favourite experience will be something you'll hear about soon in its very own blog post, but I also really loved visiting the Maritime Museum. I was amazed at how much effort the museum had put into attracting the interest of small children. We saw some famous paintings and it seemed to inspire E, who is already a keen artist. My only disappointment about the trip? There were no tulips at Keukenhof. Major sadface.
Ooh. I just wrote a really long and very telling paragraph about depression and then I deleted it. I feel like I'm constantly censoring myself in this regard and even though I feel more open about discussing this topic, it's still not something that I'm very honest about. We'll see how that goes in the future. I've been struggling this month and since the beginning of the year. I've been trying new things and taking it easy with some of my responsibilities and that has seemed to help. It's an ongoing process though.
It always saddens me when things get to the point where I have to drop blogging in favour of other things. I love my blog and I love the community that has been built around it. With the help of my lovely new guest reviewer and some planning, I feel like May will be the month in which I return to full-time blogging again. As much as I love books very much, I'm also a pretty big blogging nerd. I think even if books were taken out of the equation, I would definitely still blog. Because I like coming up with blog post ideas and writing lists and organising events. It gives me a buzz. Hurrah for blogging!
One of the things that really kept me busy this month was completing an assignment for my university course. I always sort of think to myself whenever a new uni course begins that maybe this year will be the year that I actually talk more about what I'm studying on the blog? Maybe? And it never happens. Mostly because while *I* find Psychology very interesting, I'm not entirely sure how to present the subject to you, my blog readers, in a way that will be interesting.
This year the focus is on cognitive psychology and the assignment that I was working on at the beginning of the month was a scientific report to do with a mixed attention study of visual perception. Once things kicked off I found myself really immersed in the experiment and the background research that this built upon. But will everyone find it as interesting? Probably not. I felt really panicky about handing in this assignment because I left it to the very last minute. Recently had my marks back and I did pretty well! My next assignment is due in less than three weeks and I'm hoping to do more sooner rather than last minute again. Wish me luck!
And finally, the only other thing that has kept me busy and occupied this past month is some work that we've been doing to make our back garden look nicer. We have this large strip at the back of the garden that was once filled with horrible over-run bushes and weeds. So one weekend, N and I went out there and spent nearly 20 hours clearing it all out, laying down black sheeting and new top soil and planting a mixture of wildflowers and other pretty things. The plants are all really small (and that photo is only 1/3 of the space we cleared) but we're hoping that the flowers will fill out a bit more in the next few months. Plenty of work still to be done!
What have you been doing during the month of April? And do you have any brilliant non-bookish plans for May?