My Week In Happy: Stressipes, recipes and taking things at my own pace


This has been a relatively quiet week for me going-out wise allowing me time to spend a bit more time reflecting and less time doing.


Spent some time learning about the kinds of things stress people out at work and how these ‘stressors’ can cause us to behave. At times it can be difficult to separate out issues at work from other events in our lives and all of these anxieties can combine to become what I think of as a ‘stressipe’ (rhymes with recipe).

Cheer Up Love - upcoming events

Giving my whiteboard some love.

Lifestyle is one of the key factors (other than personality type) that affects how we cope under pressure – one key aspect of this is making sure we do stuff we enjoy. That’s a big part of what is about – and to make it seem more official I’ve started using my whiteboard to display the fun events I’ve got coming up.


Received a last minute invitation to see War Horse at The Lowry. I was actually feeling pretty weary but I knew that the offer was too good to turn down. It was lovely of my colleague Andrea to think of me when someone had to drop out the day before (especially as the ticket was just a tenner).

I had seen and heard a lot about the show, which is story based around the events of World War One, it’s not a subject I am normally drawn to but the spectacular puppetry and gripping emotional plot made it totally worth it.


I recently decided it was time to get really serious about nutrition. On the advice of my personal trainer, it’s out with processed food, too much cheese and gorging on sugary fruits, and in with a high protein diet which includes ‘good fats’ like nuts and seeds.

Angie's chilli

Chilli grown and packaged by @angieokchan – used for very tasty salmon and broccoli stir-fry.

All of this has taken considerable getting my head round but it really does make sense – so it’s back to the chopping board for me! I’m experimenting with recipes that consist of 40% protein, 30% carbs and 30% (as proportions of the overall number of calories. If you have any suggestions for meals I could try I’d be glad to hear from you!


Popped in to Silicon Drinkabout Manchester at The Lower Turk’s Head near Shudehill tram stop. I hadn’t been to a Drinkabout for a while and I have to say the venue was ideal for chatting and mingling.

Had fun hanging out with @angieokchan, @frimkron@cnorthwood, @ianforrester and we *somehow* ended up chatting for ages about dating and Ian’s proposed ‘flirkshop’ event and eating at the legendary Northern Quarter burger joint Almost Famous (definitely not nutrition compliant!).


My lovely friend Elizabeth invited me round to her flat for a ‘bring and share’ afternoon tea she was holding. This was kicking off at 4pm so I thought I had plenty of time to bake. Of course, I couldn’t do anything simple. Of course, I knew that the supermarket would not stock one key ingredient in the recipe and max out my culinary skills.

I also knew that I would forget I had a fan-assisted oven which meant it didn’t need to be on so hot, and that I definitely had a cake tin big enough to put the finished product in.

Slice of avocado cake

Avocado cake – yum!

Also, I definitely knew when I tried to whisk the ingredients with a hand-held blender that they would spray all over the hob and work-tops. What I did not know was that this would necessitate a complete reorganisation of my cupboards as they had kind of been annoying me lately.

Thankfully, the cake turned out well in the end – due to feats of engineering with ingredients, oven heat and transit arrangements. It was lovely to catch up with Elizabeth and her family, chat about BBC Radio Cumbria and drink tea, but it was a definite bonus that I had made a cake I felt proud of – happy days!

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