I love a list and lists love me .

I love a list

I really do

I love to write down all of the things I need to do , and tick them off one by one, each one lifting my spirits and giving me a warm glow

I sometimes, in times of incredible busy-ness, put things on my list I’VE ALREADY DONE to make it seem like I have already completed many tasks, and I’ve only a few left.

Even better than a list, is a journal.

A brand new book, with crisp unspoiled pages, ready to attack with a pen with a fuzzy topper, or that looks like an avocado.

I can write my dreams, my thoughts, my fears, my ideas, my hopes, my secrets.

At the moment, for me, the key is the list.

My day is normally very standard, gym ,work, socialising, home, housework.

That may sound boring

It looks boring.

But it isn’t.

I love my work, I’m a self employed drama tutor and teach often times over 100 kids per week. That involves coming up with brand new work plans, full of imaginative and creative ideas to keep them amused and entertained. I never do the same work plan twice!

I also run a catering business which involves coming up with brand new menu plans, full of imaginative and creative ideas to keep the customer delighted and happy. I never do the same menu twice!

I’m busy and active and ….in my darkest moments, I fear that I’ve lost it all.

That scares me.

So this is where my list comes in. and this is very important ,for me, and I suspect you too.

It fills my day with purpose. A reason to get up ! Stops me from rolling over and sleeping til midday .

Maybe once, when I was younger, the thought of laying in bed every day until 12 sounded like the dream. Or when we get a day off or are on our holidays a lie in sounds bliss, of course. |

But ask yourself this, if you are asked in ten years time how you spend the Covid 19 months, and your reply was , ‘sleeping’, would you regret the waste of all that beautiful time you will never get back?

So my list consists of my plan. My plan to fill my day with as much , home based wholesomeness as is humanly possible. Cooking,learning, reading, exercising, drawing,painting, baking, gardening, cleaning, cat cuddling, man cuddling, talking, listening, wee nap, walking , and most importantly focusing. On the moment.

My dream is to emerge from this like a butterfly.

With dyed roots, washboard abs and like I’ve just woken up in a cornflakes ad.

I DONT want to look or feel, like I’ve wasted the opportunity of time, the gift of all the free time in the world to do what I want, with puffy eyes, grey hair and a squishy butt.

This time we have, is a precious gift. Not all of us are lucky to have time. We have but one life, and this is the time to decide what we really want to do with it xxx

Walking in Balance



This shifting of balance, and feelings is an almost minute by minute experience at the moment. I find my self laughing heartily as my partner does silly dances , or does impersonations of familiar characters. I know he is trying to keep my spirits up. And it works. Yet, the next minute, I have my fingers in my ears like a child singing ‘lalalala’ when they don’t want to hear something, or switching off the news when it becomes overwhelm.

This reminded me of something,this high alert, it reminds me of stressful times, fear, and it reminds me of loss, of grief.

And it is all of those things. All of them.

The anticipation of the unknown, and the loss of all that is and was familiar around me if very like a death. Not of a person. But of my identity.

There are 5 stages to grief.

Denial ….Rolls eyes, considers conspiracy theories, laughs at the messenger

Anger…….People are so annoying, why are they so selfish, who needs that many bog rolls?

Depression….Crying over the small stuff, focusing on the loss of work, income, socialising.

Bargaining….Once this is over, I’ll be a better person. When we get through this, I’m going to appreciate my parents/children/work more .

Acceptance….Ok , I understand this is only going to be for a short time, and I will make the most of the situation, day by day

Yet like grief, we bounce between these emotions , and in no particular order, on a minute by minute basis,

I understand a lot, about control. I placed myself into an exile for many years, depriving myself of fun, food, and adventure, while I battled, and overcame a 13 year eating disorder. I look back at that time , with distance now, but with an appreciation of how strong I was , to come through it, but also with a bit of sadness, that I wasted so many years. But I can not and would not change that path, because it led me to here, and who I am now.

I guess, like most of us, we like, and need to be ‘in control’ or our lives. But are we really?

We can plan our day, and make the best use of our time and travel and dance, and make love and …..

But the only true moment we have in our hands, is this present second. The past is gone and the future is yet unseen . Not one of us can say with any 100pc certainty, what tomorrow , let alone 3 months, from now will bring and that is a beautiful thing.

I don’t mean that in a ‘oh but we could get run over by a bus ‘kind of way. Simply , that we only can guarantee the next breath, and then the next one.

We have no power or control over what our next door neighbour is doing, and whether, or if, they are stockpiling or using their daily exercise to run to the off licence to stock up on boozies. We cant do a thing about it, we can only focus on ourselves and how we respond. Using up our vital energy to worry about that, is going to create more stress and unbalance in our calm.

I’ve asked friends to not send me Coronavirus linked private messages, trying to scrape back some power for my self. But it would be much simpler for me , to just not open the messages. I have got cross with Sean for sharing his facts and figures with me, it would be simpler to say ‘ I’m busy at the moment, tell me later’ , then return to watching my reruns of Baking with Samantha .

Turn off the Tv. While it is useful to keep up to date with current affairs , to constantly have that negative buzz on in the back round, is demoralising , and panic inducing. The same with social and mainstream media. Yes, the parks have closed, but does it HELP my day to read 503 angry comments from people who are stressed and wound up?

Get out into the fresh air. Put on your favourite music and power walk until the sky turns black.

Read your books , until your bums becomes numb ,and your eyes begin to cross.

Kick a football with the kids until you never ever want to explain the rules again!

Like all grief, this will pass with time. It will be different for every single one of us. We will stay in the different stages for different lengths of time. We may think we have reached acceptance, and then are right back into anger a brief moment later.

We must accept power in our powerlessness, because this is something we are all going to go through. And we need to go through it to reach the finish line.

We will be fine

We will get through this

We will learn from this

We will be at peace

Sharing Space under Stress.



Today, we are finally close to lockdown.

A relief, of course, as we knew it was coming, but the old anarchist head on me is still questioning every decision being made by a government I never voted for, and never wanted in the first place. It is going against my very grain, to place my trust in such a bumbling buffoon, and I’m reluctant to add, ‘well he is all we’ve got’

But we need to press on as a community

And I digress, I have a much more pressing problem at home.

I’m sharing my space with a man, a man I love very much, but a man nonetheless

and both of us are EXTREMELY SET IN OUR WAYS

Of course I’m much more calm rational and level headed than he, once I get my own way !!

And , once he listens to what I need…well of course, it really does not work that way. Sean and I currently live apart, and that works perfectly for us, but we have decided to move in together over this trying time.

I’ve not shared a space with ANYONE, bar my son in over 25 years. I’ve not lived with a partner, nor shacked up with a boyfriend, in an entire lifetime.

My son moved out at 24, mumbling something about me being a ‘nightmare’ and ‘chill out’

I am joking of course, but yet, I’m not.

This will be very ,very trying times for couples who are at the end of their rope with one another ,or worse,in violent , toxic relationships, let alone a couple who only got engaged a few weeks ago,and are still in a love bubble.

I’m lucky, Sean is a strong, kind, positive man, who would never let anyone walk over him,and uses humour and silliness to diffuse arguments. But I feel for couples who have just lost that spark, lost that loving feeling and are now forced to spend every day in the same house, with the added pressures of money worries, job concerns, and fears for the health of themselves or loved ones.

So how do we arrange this, so that it can work, maybe not perfectly, but amicably?

The most important thing, I feel is to carve out a tiny bit of space that you can call your own.

Sean has set up a ‘studio’ in my living room. With that comes lots of accompanying bit and pieces of photography paraphernalia, leads, things, bits, stuff…..

He’s currently giving me a ‘top tip’ on how to put a hoover away!!!! (rolls eyes to back of head)

I’ve got my space, in the kitchen (definitely my domain) and my gym upstairs.

Secondly, as my son says ‘chill out’

Does it really matter if the dishes aren’t put away, or there’s socks rolled up on the floor, in the whole scheme of what is going on?

Wouldn’t we just die off, if our partners recited a list of what was annoying about US???

So give, and respect, space.

Do fun stuff together, make a plan, so the day just doesn’t become one long tedium

Despite having access to my garden at any given moment, we are waiting until after we have our work finished before we go out , light a fire log and enjoy the outside, just like we would only be able to do if we were both at work

For me, being a chef, I’m gonna make sure me and my guy have lovely food ,even if I don’t have access to every ingredient I want, I’ll make sure we eat well, and eat together .

If things are starting to get heated, have a code or signal, that you have pre worked out , that indicates ‘discussion over’, and ‘we will resolve it another time’. As I mentioned Sean always acts silly or hugs me reallll tight and that puts an end to him, or I, being annoying.

This is going to be a real learning curve for me. I’m excited to have him here, he’s sitting across from me right now, with his wee man bun up, and his head phones on, pretending to work (lol) I know that if I have a wobble, he is there for me. I hope I can be there for him too . I’m baking buns later, so that should help .

(edited to add, Sean just mentioned he is also very annoying,and that I’m his balance)

So , everyone, hug your loved ones, we are so lucky to have them xxxxx

(If you are in a terrible relationship, please avail of the services that are there such as Womens aid, and the police to get you out of an abusive situation, they are still there for you. Phone numbers below)

Womens Aid 02890249041

Belfast Area Domestic and Sexual abuse Partnership 02890666049


Hi , my name is Sheena and welcome to my website. I teach dance, drama, and art classes. I offer children’s parties, workshops and face painting at public or private events and festivals. I am also a vegan chef and offer catering for weddings, festivals, private and corporate events.

I have over 30 years experience in catering and 20 plus years in my creative work and have full public liability insurance, food hygiene certified and Access NI approved. I am certified in relation to current child protection procedures and policies and basic first aid.

If you would like to find out more on the services I offer or to book me for an event, please click on the relevant menu tab.

If you would like to find out more about me and my journey please click here to read a more detailed account.