little things bringing me joy lately

23 Feb 2021

This time last year I was at an ice hockey game with my friends at the biggest arena in Belfast and everything was chill but literally, a month later we went into lockdown as things started to spiral quickly out of control. I think if you told any of us that night that a year later we'd still be in lockdown we wouldn't have believed you. I think it's now more important than ever that we're consistently doing things that make us happy because the monotony of life in lockdown coupled with the darkness of winter can really start to take its toll. I thought I'd just share a few things that I've enjoyed recently that have really made the whole staying at home thing a tad more enjoyable.

having time to slow down

I spent a large portion of lockdown one doing uni work because I was in my final year and knee-deep in my dissertation so by the time I actually got to do any fun lockdown activities for myself it was June so I think the actual state of lockdown life hit me a little later than most. I have so much respect for people sill doing uni online because even half a semester almost killed me! I've loved having free time to be able to just sink my teeth into a good book or just have a chill night watching a movie or series. I was always so so busy at uni with society events and activities that by the time I'd done my work for the day it was time to go out again and then by the time I got home it was time for bed. 2am Nightvision (our CU's club ministry) was so rewarding but not great for the old relaxation! I obviously wish that I could get back out and do stuff but I'm so thankful for this time to just not be busy every minute of the day because I know at some point it'll all start up again.

Volunteering again

On a typical Friday night, pre-lockdown I could always be found at my church, helping out at our youth group. My love language is quality time and my main spiritual gifting is servantship so I'm always happy to help out with things and this lockdown has led to me helping the youth and kids team run a couple of ministries. I help lead a girl's small group on a Thursday evening and also help lead kids church on a Sunday morning, both on Zoom. Obviously, it looks a little different to my usual volunteering (and the zoom fatigue is real by this point) but it's so nice to be able to get involved in things again, getting to see different people in different contexts and to have something to channel my energies into.

Family Time

I'm very fortunate that I've gotten to spend all the lockdowns with my family because I know some people haven't had that luxury and have been stuck pretty much by themselves since March and that's something that I'm trying not to take for granted. I get annoyed at times when there's a house full of people and not having any privacy, especially when it comes to trying to create content. I was trying to take some photos the other day against a blank wall and my dad happened to be in the rooms so I asked if I could possibly have it for a few minutes to shoot some content to which he replied 'yes' but then proceeded to stay in the room and watch! Like Dad, not the point! That aside I've found it so nice to be able to watch some TV together in the evenings (especially with my mum as we have quite similar tastes). The past few weeks we've been watching Only Connect and University Challenge, Celebrity Best Home Cook and Death in Paradise but with most of those finishing up we'll have to find something new to watch now! It's just such a nice simple thing to do that's enjoyable for all parties especially when only two of us can watch Netflix at the same time so it cuts out that problem too!


I've tried many different forms of journaling throughout the years, and few of them really stick, but at the start of this year I invested in a question-a-day journal which has been a really simple thing to insert into my night routine. I usually stick on some music and then do this along with my devotional. It asks a different question every day ranging from silly things like 'what are three foods you love?', 'who would you invite to a dinner party?', and 'what songs do you have on repeat right now?' to deeper ones like 'what are your strengths?', 'what would you change about your life?' and 'what are some goals you want to achieve?'. I opted for a three-year one as well so hopefully, if I keep this up, I'll be able to use it to reflect back on this funny year in the future and see how things have changed - hopefully for the better!
So those are just a few things that have been bringing me joy lately, I also just needed an excuse to post these pictures before it's spring and the snow days are a mere memory. What thangs have you found have been bringing unexpected joy into your life during this difficult lockdown period. I know that this particular season has been harder than others for many (myself included) so if you're feeling a little low, or just want a friendly face, my inbox is always open because I know that it can sometimes be easier to confess things to a stranger on the internet than it can be to those closest to us! I hope you're all keeping safe and well!

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