My Second Blog Birthday

I am currently on holiday but thought I should acknowledge a milestone for my little blog. It is now two years since I started blogging properly. When I get my teeth into something, I generally stick at it for a while but doing this for two years was totally unexpected. My blog birthday is here and I am grateful to all the wonderful readers and contributors who have helped me get this far.

Looking Back

Although I had a free WordPress blog for a while, I rarely used it. Once in a while I would write a book review or poem but it was very much a hobby.

Then, at the end of May 2022, I made a decision to blog regularly and establish a site that celebrated the things that I enjoy. In doing so, I became a part of the brilliant blogging community. As a result, I have made some blogger buddies and appreciated making valued connections and friendships.

Things I Have Achieved

At the time of writing, I now have 983 followers, written 671 posts and welcomed many wonderful guest posts.

I have also joined an incredible group of bloggers called ‘The Climate Change Collective’ where we celebrate environmental initiatives. Each month we take turns to write posts, including recent research and practical methods to help fight global warming.

Here is our May article for you to have a look at:

Thank you so much for supporting my blog and taking time to respond to my articles with comments. I really appreciate the love my blog has felt and look forward to another year of producing lifestyle articles. If you haven’t already followed the blog, please consider it.

On it’s second blog birthday, I think I will have to raise a glass in appreciation for the blogging community.

Read, Watch and Listen – 2023

Every month I put together reviews of various books, TV shows and things to listen to. In this regular feature I recommend some great entertainment that you may or may not have heard of. These are my latest suggestions for things to read, watch and listen to in May, including the highly anticipated Queen Charlotte.

Right now, I am bogged down with work deadlines but I have still found time to enjoy my favourite pastimes, guzzling up books and watching or listening to TV shows, podcasts and great music. Hopefully one of them will grab your interest and make you want to check it out.

Read ‘The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo’

I am slap bang in the middle of this book and really engaged with the story. When a journalist is invited to meet Evelyn Hugo, a famous Hollywood star, she has no idea what is in store. A well written narrative by Taylor Jenkins Reid takes us on a journey through Evelyn’s dramatic life.

I won’t give anything away but we can assume that Evelyn had seven husbands. Each part of the book focuses on her experiences with each of them. The journalist gets swallowed up in Evelyn’s uncomfortable experiences and the prejudices she faced as she navigated her way through a film career.

I have no idea how it will end but the quality of writing seems good and the story is really interesting.

Watch ‘Queen Charlotte’ on Netflix

Set loosely in the time period where Mad King George ruled over England with his wife, Charlotte, this drama is fruitful. Although it is a spin-off from Bridgerton, it works well as a stand alone.

We see the Queen that we know and love from Bridgerton and her bestie, Lady Danbury, both during the Bridgerton time period and also several years earlier. Forced to marry an English King, Charlotte felt quite remote and judged for her race, but soon tried to take control of the situation.

Without saying too much, there is a lot of rumpy pumpy in this series, much like in Bridgerton season one. It is funny, romantic, harrowing and intriguing. For me, the highlights are hearing Julie Andrews narrate and listening to the orchestral arrangements of modern pop songs.

Listen to ‘Padum Padum’ by Kylie Minogue

I was just about to recommend another podcast when Kylie’s new single popped on my screen. Veiled in red, Kylie has a brilliant new song that has a heart beat backdrop.

Going back to her pop roots and working with writers and producers from her Fever album, she does not disappoint. The music is catchy and as an ear worm it plays over and over in my head. Maybe it will yours too?

My favourite current song.

Final Thoughts

I really like all of the things I have recommended in this post. I have been a Kylie fan since I was 8 and am enjoying reading a Taylor Jenkins Reid book for the first time.

Hopefully you find something you like in my suggestions to read, watch and listen to for May. Recently I also reviewed The Mother on Netflix, starring Jennifer Lopez. Please comment your thoughts on my reviews and consider following my lifestyle blog for similar future posts.

The Mother – Film Review

As someone who loves watching films at the cinema, I have been impressed by the number of movies made for streaming services too. Lately there have been some really entertaining ones such as Boston Strangler and The Last Kingdom: Seven Kings Must Die (which I should have reviewed by now). This week I want to share my film review of ‘The Mother’ – a thrilling new movie starring Jennifer Lopez.

A wolf and her pack play a part in The Mother.

‘The Mother’ had an exciting trailer showing J-Lo doing pull ups in the Alaskan forest and readying her rifle for battle. It suggested that she had a daughter who she was determined to protect at all costs. As far as trailers go, it definitely made me look up and take notice.

So when it was released on Friday on Netflix I quickly started watching. Here are my thoughts about this Number One Netflix film.

What’s It All About?

The funny thing about this movie is that we don’t really hear Jennifer’s character’s name spoken. In fact, the subtitles and IMDB refer to her simply as THE MOTHER. This made me chuckle but as you watch the movie, it kind of makes a lot of sense.

J-Lo literally is THE MOTHER of this film, dominating every scene with her likeable but tough leading role. I have always been fond of Jennifer but even my friends who don’t normally watch her films have warmed to her in this.

The Mother gets caught between two moguls in an arms deal and tries to inform the police. At the start she is pregnant and we can only guess that one of these bad guys might be the father. Joseph Fiennes plays Adrian who is one of these deadly characters who is constantly in hot pursuit of J-Lo and eventually the daughter too.

The Mother helps an FBI agent who later makes it his job to keep an eye out for the daughter. He becomes an ally to J-Lo and does a lot to keep her informed and defend her too.

The daughter is adopted for her own protection. Zoe, played by Lucy Paez, has no idea about who her mother is but soon is put in danger and comes into contact with The Mother.

Will The Mother reveal her identity or can Zoe guess? Can The Mother keep her safe from the militia? Is Adrian the dad or Hector? You will have to watch to find out.

Positive Points

– Niki Caro did an excellent job of directing this fast paced story. She followed the live action Mulan movie with this juggernaut.

– There was a heart to this story. Stripped down, it was all about a relationship between a mother and her daughter. It brought a tear to my eye.

– The parts of the film based in Alaska at winter were breathtaking and the cinematography was great.

– Jennifer and Lucy had good chemistry and you believed J-Lo’s motivations for going to extremes.

– At 1 hour 55 mins the film still flew by as it was thrilling, intriguing and well acted.


– Perhaps there could be slightly less violence and more dialogue. The script is great but I would have liked a little more balance.

Final Thoughts

This film is jam-packed with thrills. It is well written and has a good story arc. Jennifer is incredible in this role, where she obviously had to do a lot of physical preparation. The actress playing the daughter will no doubt appear in more high profile movies as she was excellent too.

Definitely check out ‘The Mother’ on Netflix and let me know what you think about this film in the comments.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my film review of ‘The Mother’. Perhaps also consider following my blog for future similar articles about movies, TV, books and climate change.