Cathedral Grove

Let’s Connect: Share + Promote Your Blog!

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Many of us may still be in lockdown, but we can still connect.

While a lot of tragedy and uncertainty has come of these strange times, it hasn’t all been doom and gloom these past few weeks. Just take a look at some recent examples of people helping others and communities pulling together in the face of adversity. It’s inspiring stuff indeed and most definitely to be encouraged and celebrated.

I know one thing I’ve been reminded of as of late is the great importance of positive connection, acts of kindness, and supportive communities to our overall well-being and quality of life – and I’m certain many of you can relate to this as well. 

With this in mind, I’d like to offer this space to anyone and everyone reading this now as a place to share and promote your blog and social media links. Let’s connect!

If you’re happy to share with others:

  • Leave a link to your site in the comments below.
  • Please include a brief overview of the sorts of content readers might find on your site too.
  • Feel free to direct people to your associated social media pages too, if you want.

Hopefully, this will help foster some really supportive interactions and grow a nice sense of community amongst bloggers of varying interests and backgrounds.

 

 

 

 

The 2.6 Challenge: Supporting UK Charities in Need

2.6 Challenge

This Sunday – April 26th – would have been the 40th running of the London Marathon, one of the world’s biggest one-day charity fundraising events. In 2019, race participants raised more than £65 million for the charities of their individual choice. With the event cancelled this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, its organizers decided to create the 2.6 Challenge instead – encouraging people around the UK to become ‘Home Heroes’ by doing an activity of their choosing where they live, sharing the message with others that charities throughout the country are especially in need right now, and either fundraising or simply donating to a charity. 

Activities can be anything really – from completing 26 laps of your garden to doing 26 minutes of yoga, or even planking for 2.6 minutes. It doesn’t have to be a physical challenge though; you could even bake 26 delicious cupcakes, if you prefer! Whatever you choose, the aim is to do it in some form of 2.6 or 26 – just as a marathon is only a little bit over 26 miles in distance. If you’re not certain what to do yourself but you’d like to take part, check out the 2.6 Challenge’s ideas page for inspiration.

This weekend I’ll be doing 26 minutes of meditation and donating in support of Mind, a mental health charity which works to raise awareness, promote understanding, and provide mental health services here in the UK. I won’t be fundraising in this instance, but I hope that my 2.6 challenge and donation to go with it will inspire some of you to give what you can to a charity of your choice this weekend. 

Will you be taking part in the 2.6 Challenge as well? I’d love to hear about what you get up to and which charity you’re championing in the comments below!

2.6 Challenge (static version)

 

 

 

Happy {Belated} Birthday, Cathedral Grove! {Along with Some Other News}

Cathedral Grove Turns 2 Years Old

Hey, everyone! Megan here. It’s a day late, but I wanted to celebrate the fact that this here little seedling of a site has just turned 2 years old! I suppose it isn’t really a seedling anymore, then. Perhaps a sapling? Either way, here’s a heckin’ cute lil animated sun I made to celebrate!

To help celebrate, I’ve been very busy this week working on some new stuff for this site – doing a lot of graphic design, staring at a lot of codes and related hieroglyphics, live chatting with a lot of tech gurus who know a heck of a lot more than I do about any of this stuff. Just generally getting my Blog Boss on – or trying darn hard to, anyway! So, what’s new and what’s in the works? 

New Contact Details

Well, to start with, Cathedral Grove now has a dedicated business email. If you’d like to reach out privately, you can now send questions, compliments, ideas for features, or inquiries about future collaborations to hello@cathedralgrove.blog. Of course, you can still leave a comment on a post or one of our social media pages too – but now there are even more ways to say hiya!

New Monthly Newsletter

Next up, I’ll soon start sending out a monthly newsletter update, and you can sign up now if you’re interested! Now when you visit Cathedral Grove and click on any post, you should be given the opportunity to subscribe to our community mailing list via email, courtesy a small pop-up form.

Social Media, but More Social

Current world events have highlighted, outlined, and underscored the beneficial importance of positive, regular human interactions – be those online, in person, or via some other means – to our lives. For a while now, Cathedral Grove has been available to follow via Facebook or Twitter, but I want these pages to be more than just dumping grounds for new posts. I want them to be places where we can come together, albeit virtually, and share interesting thoughts, ideas, creations – what have you – with each other. I want them to help cultivate kind words and deeds, share and grow new ideas, and foster a respectful, supportive community spirit. To help, I’ll be sharing even more interesting reads and positive news stories on both platforms in the coming days and weeks. I’ll also be sharing a variety of daily mindfulness and more general well-being challenges too. Please do feel free to join in!

New Simple Activities to Print and Share, for Free

Many of you might be homeschooling your children right now, while others might be looking for something a bit different to do to help ward off boredom and keep the mind stimulated. To help us all stay positive, inspired, and mindful during these strange times, I’ve started designing an assortment of simple, straightforward mindfulness, gratitude, and nature-based exercises you or your children can easily do at home or in your garden. These Wild/Kind activity sheets will be available soon, starting with a doodle + write activity all about Growing Gratitude.  

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Honestly, This Post is Just 7 Cute Animal Pictures to Help Brighten Your Day

Does what it says on the tin.

Feeling stressed about current events? Hit pause, and take a gander at a few adorable animals with me.

Yeah, that’s right – no hard-hitting journalism here, folks. Just fluffy, feel-good content to share with you all today in the hopes of lifting spirits and bringing about good cheer. 

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All images via free stock photography sites Pexels and Unsplash.

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Greetings from Self-Isolation

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It’s my last day of self-isolation.

Some part of me wishes I could tell you of all the reading, writing, making, and planning I did during my precautionary staycation, but truth be told I mostly chose to watch lighthearted gaming streams from the likes of Playstation Access and Outside Xbox and played a solid amount of the quite silly, rather enjoyable Two Point Hospital myself. I have no regrets though; sometimes when the world has gone a bit funny, it’s good to have a bit of an escape.

My sincere apologies for the lack of posts lately, but I think you will all be able to understand in your own way when I say it has been – how to put it – an eventful month. Between visiting a family member in hospital, coming down with a nasty viral illness myself, needing to self-isolate as I’ve recovered to protect more vulnerable members of my community, and learning yesterday that my workplace would be closing today until further notice – well, this past month has been a wild ride. But, of course, these sorts of things and much more are happening to people everywhere.

This year, a lot of negative, attention-grabbing things have happened around the world in a relatively short amount of time – but there have also been many, many, many acts of kindness and things for which to be immensely grateful. I think that it is so vital to remember that, and to ensure that we continue to recognize all the goodness that persists in our communities and around the world in these trying times.

As I suddenly find myself with rather a lot of free time to do with what I will, I sincerely hope to post a lot more regularly in the coming days, weeks, months. There will be a new Monday Mindfulness post up at the start of the week, and I hope to share an array of positive news stories in the coming days as well. I hope that you’ll continue to join me here in my humble little thought-garden, the Cathedral Grove.

Wishing you all the very best,

Megan

 

Wishing Y’all a Very Happy, Healthy 2020!

Happy New Year (2020)

I know I’m posting this a little bit late, but better late than never, right?!

I’m bidding 2019 a fairly fond farewell (…and hoping you are able to do the same), whilst wishing welcome to the new year, and indeed, the new decade.
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From One Sort of Rambling to Another: An End-of-Sabbatical Update

Basho - The Journey is Home

Hello, fellow wanderers and wonderers… I’m back, and so too are more regular updates on Cathedral Grove!

Yes, as of today it has been 6 whole months of putting my full-time employment on hold in order to travel near and far, visit friends, meet new friends, try a whole lot of delicious world food, acquire a taste for good beer and coffee, drink gallons of herbal tea, and just generally live my life to the fullest before needing to earn a bit more to keep the home fires burning and the wee cupboard stocked.

I still have a few rest and life administration days before I return to work, so I just wanted to pop by, say hi, and ask how all of you have been. There will be more details about my various adventurings in the coming days and weeks, but in the meantime I’d love to hear about what you all have been doing to stay healthy and well, the adventures big and small you’ve enjoyed, and the projects you’ve been most passionate about… whatever bits and bobs of joy, accomplishment, and personal growth you may feel inspired to share with the world!

Anyway, I’ll end this little update here. So hello once again, and goodbye for today. Until we next meet, may you be happy and well!

 

P.S. If you haven’t already, feel free to follow me on Instagram (@insta.meg.ram) for lots of travel inspiration! Most recently featured: Iceland, Sweden, and Montenegro. More photographs from my world travels to come soon…

A Fundraiser in Support of The Woodland Trust for My 29th Birthday

My 29th Birthday Fundraiser Graphic

Hello, everyone. Megan here, sharing something a little bit different with you all today on account of a certain other day coming up.

You see, Thursday, May 23rd will be my 29th birthday. Around this time last year I decided to do a small fundraiser for a favorite charity of mine, The Woodland Trust, which I have been a supporter of since 2016. With your generous help, I was able to raise £75 for this great cause. This year, I’m hoping to match that amount – or perhaps even surpass it.

The Woodland Trustreally does vitally important work, in my humble opinion. Created in 1972, it is now the UK’s largest woodland conservation charity, helping to restore ancient woodlands and create lots of new native woodlands too. If you would like to know more about what they do, please check them out via the link provided.

If you can donate a small amount to this cause, it will be immensely appreciated. And if you can’t or don’t wish to donate but would be happy to share a link to my JustGiving page with others, your kindness would also be greatly appreciated.

In advance, many thanks!

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Cathedral Grove Reaches 100+ Followers!

…and to celebrate, I’m giving away free e-hugs to all! 

I know it’s no free all-expenses paid trip around-the-world (…we’ll have to save that giveaway for 100,000 follows, I think…), but free hugs are also pretty great and they won’t give you jet lag so that’s nice too, I suppose.

Anyway, thank you SO much to one and all for helping me reach this meaningful milestone. 100 followers may not seem a lot to some, but it means a great deal to me. Thank you all once again for reading, liking, commenting, and sharing as you have so often done over this past year and a bit. 

And so…

*hug*

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*hug intensifies*

Cathedral Grove is 1 Year Old Today!

Cathedral Grove at 1 Year Graphic

Hello and huge thanks, everyone! Because of all you lovely people out there kindly following my little seedling of a site, Cathedral Grove has put down strong roots and branched out in all sorts of ways that really please me. 

One year ago today, I published my first post – Hello, and Welcome! – here on Cathedral Grove. Since then, I’ve shared over 70 posts on topics near and dear to my heart, primarily focusing on travel + adventure, nature/environment, and well-being.

Thank you so much for joining me on this journey. I’ve certainly enjoyed working on this little creative project of mine, and I hope that you’ve taken something positive away from it as well.

I’m going to keep this short and sweet, but there will of course be more to come soon, so please stay tuned! 

In the meantime, many thanks once again to one and all! 

 

 

 

It’s March 4th…

…the day we march forth toward adventure! (See what I did there? Honestly, we didn’t choose this particular date because of how it sounded, but now that I’ve thought of this connection I find the date rather appropriate, really!)

Yes, that’s right – today is the official beginning of our sabbatical. A few months off work to rest and re-center, to scratch that travel itch, to try new things and discover fresh interests, to have experiences and take part in training that might help us in the future both professionally and personally. 

Honestly, knowing what a worrier I can be about all the things, at all the times, I expected that as this day approached I’d be a big tangled ball of stress-yarn. Instead, I’ve felt lighter this weekend. As I was finishing my last few shifts for the time being this weekend, I noticed how positively different I felt. A weight was being lifted, and I could breathe deeply again. 

It feels so good to be in command of my time and energies for the next while and a bit, to be able to say ‘yes’ to experiences and endeavors that I’d ordinarily refrain from, feeling that I needed to reserve a significant chunk of myself for the intense, physically and emotionally draining work week ahead.

It might sound a bit cheesy, but today I feel like a superhero. Wonder Meg. 

I rather like that.

(Now I want to wear a cape.)

I’m so grateful to you all for joining me here on my little seedling of a site, and I’m really looking forward to sharing loads more content with you soon. Until next time, thanks so much for stopping by and sharing in my journey a bit more. I’m sending all of you all the mental hugs and high fives I can.

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Sabbatical Shenanigans: An Update on Things (Hopefully!) to Come

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Hello, lovely people!

There’s no Monday Mindfulness post again this week, but it will return once more before too long. You may have noticed that I’ve taken a little break from posting much of anything over the past few weeks. Fortunately, this hasn’t been due to any unfortunate events! Rather, it seemed best to put creative endeavors aside for a short while, just so Nick and I could focus more intensely on furthering our plans for our upcoming work sabbatical as we draw closer to its start.

So – what’s new with us? Well, mostly we’ve been working away as normal. We’re both adventurous activity leaders at a residential centre, so for around 12 hours each working day we’re looking after a group of primary school children and their teachers as we run them through a quick succession of activities like canoeing, climbing, archery, zipwiring, et cetera… When you’re working with a lovely group and things are going well, it’s quite enjoyable and fulfilling. Other times it may be that you’re having to lead a canoe session during a hail storm, or you’re breaking up fist fights between not-so-pleasant children, or you’re cleaning up buckets-worth of sick in the dorms… In other words, it can be a bit of a mixed bag, you know? You just never know what each new work day will bring. 

Anyway, we’ve been busily mapping out our sabbatical a little bit each weekend since just before the new year, and we’ve now got a better idea of when and where some things will be happening.  Read More