Tuesday, October 7

Day 7 - Ultimate Blogger Challenge - News Days

I don't like today's challenge at all, so I am going to do a bit of a chatty post instead. It is News Day after all. 

So the latest on Pandas & Pens

1. Pandas & Pens is moving to WordPress! I still love blogger but the fact is, WordPress feels more professional to me and for some reason, that seems to make my posts a much higher standard of quality. I care about quality in general, so not entirely sure why WordPress subconsciously makes me feel the need to take more care over my posts, but it does. I really want to make life as easy as possible for my readers. I want you to be able to use my blog easily, get something uplifting from your visit to my page and I want you to feel inspired to go do something awesome with your life. Right now, I feel that blogger is too relaxed for me and that is just not happening. So yes I am making the switch to WordPress, I do already have one blog over there, in fact Pandas and Pens is the last one of my creations to make the switch. 

2. I am still doing the ultimate blogger challenge. I'm finding it very interesting to broaden my horizons in regards to content on this blog. I will continue with that challenge so expect to see more posts soon!

3. Finally, the theme here this month is fear, you can expect to see some related content very shortly! 

Think that's about it! 

Have a great day guys!! 

Much love



Day 6 - Ultimate Blogger Challenge - My Favorite Film

It's another link today guys,

I have already covered today's challenge in a previous post on this blog. I love Christmas films, they are by far my favorite because of the atmosphere they instantly create, however the film I wrote about in the link below, is my favorite for deeper reasons then this. Nothing is ever as it seems. even in the darkest night a single candle can ignite hope bright enough to turn things around....see if you can guess which Christmas film I'm talking about before you click the link.

My Favorite Christmas Film

Monday, October 6

Day 5 - The Ultimate Blogger Challenge -Advice Day

This blog is not the home of my advice stuff so today I am just going to post a link to a recent advice post of mine. 

Kind of a bit rushed off my feet at the moment, I am in the process of switching over to WordPress so a lot of my blogging time has been dedicated to website design and the like as of late. Please bare with me. It's very nearly all done!! 

Saturday, October 4

Day 4- Ultimate Blogger Challenge - The Finest Things In Life Come in Fours!

Today's task is to write about something positive that comes in four.

Now to be honest I didn't get this assignment till very late in the evening as I didn't receive an e-mail 

detailing this assignment so I kind of failed to write that quality post I wanted to upload today...so I 

am going to do this assignment at a later date. At-least I haven't fail to upload something! 

Catch you tomorrow guys!


Day 3 - Ultimate Blogger Challenge - Sick Day!

So today I'm not feeling well so to make up for the lack of quality post today and possibly tomorrow, I'm going to just do chatty type posts while I'm ill, but then make up for it when I'm feeling better.

I've pretty much been curled up sleeping for the majority of today. Autumn is my favorite time of year and one of my favorite things to do is just lay quietly and listen to the rain and wind outside, especially at night. Another of my favorite pass times is to sit up in bed with a good book and a nice cup of tea. This has pretty much been my existence today, other then taking a walk to the local shops to pick up some much needed pain killers.

Anyway, time to try and sleep this sickness off! 

Fingers cross it works!


Thursday, October 2

Day 2 -Ultimate Blogger Challenge - The Person I admire most is...

Today's challenge is to talk about someone I admire and tell you why. 

My brother Jesse sprung to mind as soon as I thought about it. I am so proud of him because he is the most humble, down to earth guy and yet he is working towards making a real change in the way society looks at mental illness. He is a comedian, an excellent writer and phenomenal public speaker. He to me, is picture of grace. He lives his faith in Jesus but in a real, very relate-able way and he is the least judgmental person I know. For these reasons and many more. My younger Jesse is without a doubt one of the most admirable people in my life. 

Day 1 - News Day - Ultimate Blogger Challenge

As you can see there hasn't been a post on this blog for a while, so in order to get back on track I have decided to do the Ultimate blogger Challenge ( click the poster at the side of this post to find out more) This challenge will be a part of my own personal challenge to create 100 new high quality posts across both of my blogs in two months. I know it's a heck of a lot of work but I do feel like I can do it. Well I hope so at-least! Eek! 
Also, I have decided that from now on Pandas and Pens is going to have monthly themes that my posts will be based on. The theme for October is fear. That means you can look forward to crafts, an original personal growth series and book reviews all revolving around this topic. 

I think that's about it for today.

See you tomorrow for the next challenge post! 

Tuesday, September 30

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Saturday, May 31

2014 Updates

Although the time index for this post says it was written in 2014, I am actually writing this quick note in 2018. I deleted all of my posts after BEDM 2014 because I was grief striken. 

I lost my grand-father and dog with in a month of each other and there was a ton of trauma attached to the year 2014 for me. 

So I stopped writing quality. 

I have decided to take the notes, blog posts and journal posts from that year and turn it all into another project. Details of said project will be linked here when it is completed.

Take care guys!

Love Hayley


Sunday, May 25

Changing My (Blogger) Story

I think I've reached a point in my life where I want stability in many areas and this includes my writing. There will always be a part of me that likes to live by the wind, but in reality, that kind of life is irresponsible and doesn't hold very many long term benefits. 

I'm a free spirit, but I strongly believe that being a free spirit means you're free enough to go wherever the wind carries you, but just as free not to if you so choose. My main reason for starting blogging was very simple, I suffered with depression and my brother suggested I do something with my writing, the thing I've loved since I was a kid to help me cope with it. Being the kind of person I am, I decided if I was going to write then I wanted to do it to help other people and while that is a noble cause, I just don't feel the same way about my writing as I once did. There was a part of me that felt guilty for wanting to write for the fun of it, so I kind of put pressure on myself to use my writing for some higher purpose and honestly, that decision has been a burden from day one. I still have blogs dedicated solely to helping people but I really need a creative outlet also and that is really what Pandas and Pens will be about from now on. 

I've come to realize it's okay to write just because I love writing.

So here's to a fresh start, My faith based posts have been moved to Daisy Change , I want Pandas and Pens to be more about seeing the beauty in life, books and just being creative then anything else so that is why I decided to move those posts.

Anyway that's it for now,

Take care guys! 

Love Hayley 


Sunday, April 27

10 Tips To Inspire Others

If you didn't catch part one which was for everyone please feel free to go read that first then come back here. In this post, I am going to give my top tips for inspiring others with your blog.

1. Presentation is everything.

If you want to write an inspiring post, you need to prepare for this. Do your research, capture your thoughts, then spend a little time making sure that your post looks as good as it possibly can. Think about how you want your post to sit. The positioning of your words can change the entire tone of your post. Make sure you have appropriate images and links.

2. Don't forget the little guy.

Sometimes the smaller blogs have the best gems to help ignite great ideas.  Just because a blogger doesn't have a massive following doesn't mean they have no idea what they are doing. I know of several really good bloggers that have not long started writing their blogs, but their passion and ability to eloquently get their point across in their posts just hints at the fact these people have the potential to go far if they put the work in and play their cards right.

3. The little things matter.

Be it grammar or spelling, commenting on another person's blog posts, sharing a video via social media, these seemingly small things can make a big difference. Don't think that just because you think the thing you are doing to inspire someone else is small, that they will think the same. We have no control over how someone reacts to something we say or do, be it good or bad so living in fear of people's reactions really isn't going to help you in your quest to inspire, or indeed in life.

4. Know your audience.

Where are they?

How old are they?

When are they most likely to see your post?

How long would they want your post to be? 

In what format?

There may well be more questions, but this is an individual thing so please have a little think about it and spend some time answering those questions in the perpetration time of your post. All of these things will be factors in the final wording and execution of your act of inspiration.

5 Have fun with it.

Inspiring others a really rewarding activity in itself, but if you don't enjoy writing inspiring posts then don't.  Enjoying your work really will shine through your article and as I've touched on before, it's important to be comfortable so that your readers are more likely to also be comfortable and thus hear what you have to say.

Wednesday, April 23

10 Tips To Inspire Others Part 1


I know this post is overdue, my life as of late has been a little hectic but finally I've gotten the chance to sit down and just write. This post has had to be researched because even though I could pretty much tell you my tips off the top of my head, I wanted to include as many resources as possible for you to help you in your quest to inspire others. I will post a resource list a little later this week but for now, let's get into my top tips for inspiring others.

1. Be genuine

It's one thing to want to inspire others in general, it's an awesome thing to do, but the truth is you will feel far more comfortable and come across more genuine if you inspire others in the things you are passionate about. It is vital that you make those on the receiving end of your encouragement and inspiration feel that you actually mean what you say. If they don't all your efforts will come to nothing, you will feel deflated and may not even want to try to inspire others again.

2. Check your motive and know your audience 

Right, so you've worked out what you're passionate about and are about ready to start inspiring others in that field, the next thing you need to do is ask yourself why you care. Again, knowing the why behind what will make you more comfortable and you stand a much better chance of achieving your goal.

You also need to think about how your encouragement or inspiration might best be received. Inspiring others always have to have others at the heart of it, even if you do have some elements of selfish motive for wanting to do so in the first place. Good presentation and strategic marketing can be your best friend in this regard.

3. Use your gifts.

You are unique and you have a set of gifts, dreams,

 passions and talents that are all also a unique mix to you.

Use that.

 I love writing and I am really passionate about encouraging others to reach their goals and dreams in business, faith and life. I also am a very deep thinker, I can see 5 or 6 different projects detail by detail all at once  and not get confused, This is great for my chosen career ( life coaching) because it allows me to see what's going on in a person's soul, mind, spirit and emotions still hear what they are telling me at the moment so that I am then able to make suggestions that may actually be helpful. I love writing and I am very creative and I believe I've got the biblical gift of exhortation, all of this together allows me to write this blog with integrity and bring to blogger-land a fresh spin on blogging and hopefully help some of you guys in some way, in the process of this.

4. Do your research

Is there something in your local area you could get involved with? Do you have a friend that is need of a bit of encouragement? What is the latest news about the causes you care about?

Maybe you can't physically go half around the world to go help some starving children, but maybe you can send the workers doing that a little love on Twitter or other social media ( or go old school and opt for snail mail)  sometimes, just hearing that you are doing a great job is enough to keep a person going and for those of you who believe in the power of prayer, then you can definitely do that and let the person you are praying for know.

Find a need in your own little world, 

your local community or the wider world and get involved, 

either by your words, your actions or both.

5. Keep your eyes open 

Right so we've looked at the local area and the wider world, we know what we are passionate about and we are using our gifts and talents to inspire others, what more could there possibly be?

Well, you never know when (or where) you are going to find someone to inspire or encourage or get a great idea on how to inspire someone. Keep a note-taking device nearby at all times.

Personally, I prefer using pen and paper, but for you maybe recording notes on your phone or tablet as you have a spark of inspiration, works best. If you don't record these quick sparks, you will have forgotten them by the time you get home! It used to happen to me all the time!

Bonus Tip

There really is power in relationships, you will get far more done working with others then you will alone, so please don't be afraid to reach out!

On that note, I'm not afraid of working with others for a common goal. If any of you want to work with me please do get in touch!

The next post will be directed at bloggers. I have 5 tips for inspiring others with your blog. If you want to be kept up to date on that please feel free to follow me via any of the social media options available. I really don't care about numbers but I do care about my readers so please follow this blog via the best option for you.

I think that's about it for now, as always your comments and feedback are welcomed.

Take care,

Monday, April 14

Don't Chase The Rabbit - The Rabbit Hole Part 2

Here is the notes, on point..in the video I ramble allot about things you may find interesting, but are not really on point, so I didn't write word

for word what is in the video, I just wrote what is on point to this topic.
 ( see this is why I don't like being in videos)
Today I am going to use this video to address Christians primarily, if
you want to watch this and your not a christian that's fine but the reason I'm saying that is because
this is going to deal with the rabbit hole of the end times and conspiracy, and those two seem to go hand in hand.
Just to give a motive for what I'm doing this is because people are not living the abundant life that Jesus came to give,
as Ive said this is from a christian view point so i am going to be in the bible, although I will try to keep this as simple as possible.  When your looking at the rabbit hole of the end times as a Christian we go straight to the bible.  One more thing I know there are allot of end time theories but I'm focusing on Christian right now because there is allot of propaganda around the red blood moon theory and how that relates to Christian end time theology. Not going to go into that here. You are entitled to believe what you want to believe but this is going to come from a Christian view point as its the most current. 

From here on in I am going to give the scripture reference but not the actual verse because I don't want to make it too easy for you, if you want to check what I am saying is true then you will have to pick up your bible ( or google it) 

 So in the bible John 10:10 -11
Jesus is speaking, he is the good shepherd, so the thief is Satan or the devil and he comes to do three things steal, kill and destroy.
Lets unpack this in relation to the end times.(his is all based on personal experience and scripture)
Steal what? Your peace, from experience, I got caught up in the end times conspiracy thing about a year ago now, this is what Ive noticed, there is allot of fear around it. What happens people start to look at what is going on in the world, the opinions of people conspiracy and end times and then stop living.  They stop planning for the future, because they believe they have no future because of all that
is going on in the world. Life becomes very much about living in the moment but in a negative way and because you have lost your peace, Satan can then kill your hope. When your hope dies it leads to despair  and when you despair, you start to doubt your faith.

Lets now take a look at scripture to back this up.  Issiah 26 V3 if you are caught up in this rabbit hole your eyes are not on God.  If you ask yourself where your eyes areright now, then if you are in this rabbit hole chances are your eyes are on conspiracy, the news, what is going on in the world, leaning toward the opinion of great men, that have theories and Revelations about a variety of topics to do with the end times. and you will have very little fruit because fruit comes  from having faith in Jesus and of course the Holy Spirit, but
if you are operating in fear which is what happens when you have no peace, then you can not operate in faith and your not going to grow very much because you can't. You are effectively stuck. You can't have peace unless your eyes are on God. So if your eyes are not on God, that then gives the devil
the chance to kill your hope.  It is possible if you loose your hope to feel like there is no point in even being alive, or for that matter doing anything. Despair is a down word spiral that comes from lack of hope.  Lets go see what the bible says Pslam 71V5-6 Jesus is are hope, if your eyes are not on God
then you will loose your hope. That then opens the door for the devil to destroy your faith.  Why? Let's go back to the bible again  Ephesians 6 V16 Satan wants to destroy your faith so that he can destroy you.  Satan seeks to destroy you because you are so precious to God and He has such an awesome plan for your life, but if your faith has been battered, your not going to believe that God has good things in store for you, that  He loves you and that you can have an abundant life. Satan wants to destroy you but God is greater then Satan! ( greater is he who is in you then he that is in the world - )

So lets tie this all up,

The rabbit hole of the end times and conspiracies is endless if you choose to stay in it, if you wanna get out of it as a Christian we go to the word of God, the bible. We should be more bothered by what it has to say then
what people have to say on anything, not just this because the word of God is truth, opinions of man, or woman can be wrong because it is apart of human nature to be wrong sometimes. On that note, don't just take
even me at my word on this, do your own bible study, but do it prayerfully and don't dwell on it for too long. Going back to John 10:10 Jesus came to give us abundant life and if you are focusing on end times and conspiracy
and you are caught up in this rabbit hole, as described in this post and video, then your not really living. the abundant life Jesus came to give us. Jesus didn't die for you to exist, he died for you to live.

Let that sink in, then let's finish this up with one final scripture and parting thought. Philippians 4 V 11  So as Paul says he we are to be content in all things. Whether it is end times or not and no matter what season of
life you are in, remember it is only a season and seasons change. There are so many more positive things to study in the bible or focus on, you could be focusing on God's love, what he has to say about you and his amazing grace rather then focusing on the end times which in my opinion is the spiritual equivalent of a greasy beef burger if taken to the extremes of falling into the rabbit hole, it's not good for you and God has more to life for you then that.  

The bible is allot more then just the end times and there is more to life then just focusing on that.  So to finish this rabbit hole can be a bottomless pit, but maybe this blog post is the rope dangling just above you to help you get out, but the choice is in your hands.  If you do choose to get out of it, give to God, don't feel guilty about it as that is what Satan will try to make you feel, but Jesus died for us knowing what we would get into and He died anyway  and he loves us anyway.  Remember Jesus didn't die for you to exist, He died for you to live,there is hope in Him so turn your eyes back to Him, and watch how he turns things around.

Till next time,

Thanks for listening,

Love Hayley


Sunday, April 13

Don't Chase The Rabbit - The Rabbit Hole

Welcome to the rabbit hole,

We won't stay long here because the rabbit hole has the power to
suck us in and refuse to let go, if we are not careful. So in this post we
will do 3 things.

Identify the rabbit hole
Identify why it is dangrous
Identify the first steps to get out of it.

Once we have done this, we are getting out of here!

Imagine if like this rabbit you were peering over the edge into the rabbit hole, you would see many carrots enticing you to reach out and take hold of,
that is how it starts, we see something in the rabbit hole we want to know and get so
preoccupied with grabbing on to that thing, that we don't realize we have lost our balance
and fallen into the rabbit hole, until it's too late. When we finally realise we are in a bottomless pit,
just falling, hope of getting out becomes so low, that many people just let go and let themselves fall.

This reminds me of a Childhood favorite book Alice and wonderland. when Alice falls into the rabbit
hole, she see all sorts of pecuiler things, furniture floating up as she falls down. We will be revisiting Alice
and her adventures throughout this series but for now this is the only part we need to be thinking about.

Falling, falling, time suddenly feels like some distant dream, nothing
makes full sense, and in an almost zombie like state we keep falling further and further
into the rabbit hole.  Alice saw things as she fell, what do we see? Well this really depends on which rabbit
hole you fell into.

If you fell into the rabbit hole with a strange, prymand symbol on the sign post, then you will likely see, cards,
papers, techonology of all kinds, and maybe even alian faces as you fall.

If you fell into the rabbit hole with a pile of scrolls on the sign post, then you will likely see, strange beast like creatures, angels with trumpets,
666, mark of the beast engraved on peoples bodies, guilontines, guns, natural disasters , bible pages, or even images of Jesus himself or people burning in hell.

If you fell into the rabbit hole with a big $ or £ ( or whatever currency is in your area) on the sign post, you wil probally see, guru's, cars, houses, cash,
celebrities, food, beautiful woman/gorgoues men, champaign  and whatever else your heart so desires, floating up, just out of your reach as you fall.

If you fell into the rabbit hole with all these symbols( or even more symbols then mentioned here) on the signe post, then stay tuned, there is hope for you, like you I fell into that hole and so I can
give you first hand, the secret to getting out. If you fell into just one of these, the same advice will apply, however if you can't relate to any of  these rabbit holes then ask yourself if you
feel empty, if something is missing in your life, if you are searching for something.  The sad fact is, anyone who is searching for something has potentional to fall into a rabbit hole. If your not, then feel free to skip this
series, but if you relate to any of the rabbit holes mentioned or that final question about searching for something, I hope you will stick around. What I am about to teach you, is designed to give you hope, no false carrots here
just plain truhful facts, wrapped in love and grace.

So lets  sum up what I've said so far , the rabbit hole is different depending on which one you fell into and its dangrous because it steals your hope, time and dreams the carrots of sucess,happiness, truth and love are always
just out of reach...but there is still  hope.

In the book Alice does eventually hit the bottom and then her adventures can begin. Hitting the ground for us, is basically a very painful, short sharp wake up call. Maybe for you this series will be your wake up call. There is more to life the carrots. Let me show you what I mean...tomorrow.

Love Hayley.


Wednesday, April 9

The Meaning Of Life According To Hayley Esther Part 2

So this post is a couple days late. Sorry about that, I'm not going to make an excuse for it, but I am working on getting posts up when I say they will be. 

Anyway, getting to the point I said last post that happiness is a fruitless quest because happiness is so fleeting. So what then should we be looking for instead? How does this relate to the meaning of life? 

Well firstly, this relates to the meaning of life or at least what I believe the meaning of life to be, because  we are all unique and see things differently. What life means for me, may not be what it means for you and that is okay. I don't think there is just one answer to this question we all have thought about at some point. 

That said, generally speaking we all tend to agree that the meaning of life is caught up in what you do and who you do life with, be that other people or a higher power or even yourself. As previously stated we are relational beings. We need each other, which is why loneliness can be one of the worst emotions a human experiences. Now the Christian in me would love to put something in here about how Jesus is the only answer and I won't deny that I do believe that, however, this is just what life means for me and since this is my post, I can only really tell you how I see things. If you were really only interested in the principle then feel free to skip the next paragraph but since I did state I would be explaining my view on the meaning of life, lets now do just that. 

My philosophy on the meaning of life is very simple,  Love like Jesus loved and live like Jesus lived. Typical Christian answer right? Well yeah but my reasons for this may surprise you.  If you look at the bible and even historical accounts, we know that Jesus was a radical of his day and that is the thing about walking this faith walk that I love so much, the freedom to be different, the idea that we live for something bigger then just ourselves, so you basically get to be unique, but there's nothing selfish about it. The idea that we were designed to be exactly who we are, and that who we are is a vibrant, beautiful person with so much to give to this world if we only put our mind to it, fascinates me. What is even more fascinating to me is the idea that since we are unique, what we each bring to the world is also unique to us. No one else can bring exactly the same thing, exactly the same way to the world. Even if someone were to copy someone else, it would still not be identical. You may think what you have to offer is so small it won't be missed if you don't but that is just flat wrong, you are beautiful even if you don't believe it and you do have something to offer to this world. You may be wondering how, since I don't know you I can say that with full conviction that my words are true. Well that goes back to Jesus too, He loved unconditionally, and if you can learn to love yourself  like that and try to extend this to others, then life just seams to feel more meaningful.  Don't write yourself off just yet, you're still here, so you still have time. do something amazing because you can and remember unique is beautiful. 

So maybe your thinking maybe just maybe I might be right but you have no idea how to start on this whole contributing something to the world thing. If that's you then let me just say the answer is allot more simple then you may think and in actual fact, if you do this you may well find happiness accidentally. 

I don't want this post to be too long so I'm gonna leave it there for now, I do still have a couple posts in this accidental series, they should be up later this week.

Take care guys!

Love Hayley 


Sunday, April 6

The Meaning Of Life According To Hayley Esther Part 1

So the title pretty much says it all, this post I am going to attempt to explain what I think the meaning of life is and why I believe what I believe. Before I can get into that I first need to give you some background information to explain why it matters and why I have come up with my own philosophy on the meaning of life. So to do this, lets take a flash back to the early 1990s I was 3 sitting in my bedroom playing with my dolls, when suddenly something in me just clicked, I just knew I needed to ask Jesus into my heart and so I left my dolls, ran down stairs to where my dad was worshiping God on his guitar as he so often did, and asked my dad to tell me how to ask Jesus into my heart. I became a Christian that day and I'd love to say I never looked back but honestly, life is messy and my story did not end there. 

Now before you go click off somewhere else, let me just say that while Jesus and becoming a Christian is apart of my story, it is not my whole story and I am certainly not going to preach at you or be all religious and bash you over the head with a bible in this post, no, just stay open minded for a moment and trust me when I say I am going somewhere with this. 

Lets now flash forward to 2004,  having just been through some really hard times. I was a teenager and on top of everything else, I was diagnosed with an eating disorder, I hated myself. So began a journey to become a version of myself that I could stand being around. Since I am a Christian, I got to hear allot about our identity in Christ, but to me this just made me frustrated, I knew who I was in Christ, but I wanted to know who I was in me.  This became my mission from the moment I was diagnosed with my eating disorder. I have been recovered from my eating disorder for nearly 5 years now, and yet this mission continued on until very recently when I finally found my answer and you know the ironic thing? I had the answer all along I just couldn't see it. 

The pursuit of happiness is something people from all walks of life, all over the world are longing to find the answer to. Some people even believe that happiness and the meaning of life are the same thing. I disagree with this because happiness is fleeting, once you find it, it never stays, just like a butterfly resting on the leaf of a flower for just a moment, blink and it's gone, so it is with happiness. There are so many contributing factors to being happy but to me it seems like a waste of effort when the object of this pursuit is so fragile. The pursuit to find the meaning of life however, is much more valuable and the crazy thing is, when you find the meaning of life, or at-least what life means for you, you find yourself happy allot more of the time. I believe that joy is much better then happiness and yes there is a difference, but that is for a later post so I'll leave it there. The point is the meaning of life is not to simply just be happy as so many films, books and songs would have us believe. There is more to it then that and there is more to you. 

The next part of this post will be up tomorrow,

Until then,

Take care 

Love Hayley


Changing My (Blogger) Story - Time to commit?

Unless you follow me over on bloglovin, you may have noticed that some of my posts have gone. I've recently been giving allot of thought to where I want to take my writing and how my blog fits in and the like. I first started blogging in October 2012, but that blog no longer exists. Neither do the posts from back then. I didn't take as much care as I should have with the security and basically ended up loosing the entire google account it was connected to. Lesson learned. I started again in March 2013, a year ago now, since then I have experimented a heck of allot to find my writing style, the type of content I want to produce and various other factors that go into creating this blog. While this has been fun, at some point the experimenting needs to stop or at-least, be allot less frequent and defiantly more toned down. I think I've reached a point in my life where I want stability in many areas and this includes my writing. There will always be a part of me that likes to live by the wind, but in reality, that kind of life is irresponsible and doesn't hold very many long term benefits. 

I'm a free spirit, but I strongly believe that being a free spirit means you're free enough to go wherever the wind carries you, but just as free not to if you so choose. My reasons for starting blogging was very simple, I suffered with depression and my brother suggested I do something with my writing, the thing I've loved since I was a kid to help me cope with it. Being the kind of person I am, I decided if I was going to write then I wanted to do it to help other people and while that is a noble cause, I just don't feel the same way about my writing as I once did. There was a part of me that felt guilty for wanting to write for the fun of it, so I kind of put pressure on myself to use my writing for some higher purpose and honestly, that decision has been a burden from day one. Some people are designed to help people through their writing in a self help manner, I'm just not one of them and that's fine. 

I've come to realize it's okay to write just because I love writing and if I truly want to help people there are plenty of other ways to do it that may be more suited to me as a person then self help, so yes this does mean changes to the structure of this blog but I do honestly feel like the changes I am making will make me happy and therefore more attentive and committed to this blog.

 I will outline these in just a moment, but before I do I just want to say thank you to my readers that have stuck with me all the changes over the last few years. It means so much and I hope I can write posts that inspire you in the future, I am still  very passionate about inspiring people to reach their potential, I'm just taking a different approach to this. I hope you understand. 

Out Line of  The structure of this blog from now on.

There are two main projects with in this blog that will be continuous...

Whatever Wednesday - Something random help me keep my creativity flowing and  maybe make something cool in the process.. hopefully. 

Food For Thought Friday - Just a little something to make you think. 

As well as these two projects I also aim to post allot more creativity in general, I want to get my poetry, short stories and songs up on my blog, some intended to entertain other intended to inspire, either way I hope my creations will bring a smile to your face. 

Finally, I am a book and film fanatic so I want to have a section on my blog dedicated to this in time. 

Additionally I intend to be allot more interactive with my readers and also post videos via YouTube to compliment some of my blog posts.  If you have any questions, or post requests, feel free to get in touch via any of the social media available. I do really care about my readers, so I want to post content that you actually want to see. 

Final Thought.

I am not predictable by any stretch of the imagination, but that doesn't mean I can't still be committed to my blog, writing and readers. Here's to the next chapter of Pandas & Pens, we're only just getting started! 

Love Hayley 


Friday, February 28

Self-love for Bloggers Part 2

Dear Awesome readers,

When I saw in my blogging schedule that this topic was my blogging task for the day I cringed.

The truth is I really haven't been doing the thing that this post is about very well lately, so I guess writing this will serve as a reminder for me and a kickback on to the right track because I really don't want to be a hypocrite!

I have a note in my schedule that I wanted to go more into a point from my last self-love for bloggers post in a  little more depth. If you haven't read part one, I have a link here so you can go back and read at very least the last couple of paragraphs so that this post makes a little more sense.

The point from the last post I want to explore a little more is  See yourself as a whole person and plan accordingly. 

I strongly believe that we are all three-part beings. 

We are spirits, with souls living in flesh cases called bodies. Your spirit and soul live forever, but your body does not.  This belief guides what I am about to say below, but you don't have to believe this in order to get the point of what I am going to share with you, I've just included my own belief for background purposes.

OK, with that said let's jump into today's post.

Let's start by defining what I believe about each element of our three parts. I could be wrong, but this is how I understand things.

The Soul - Designed for connection with others, we are relational beings. It is also the centre of our emotions and if we hurt inside it's usually the soul that feels the pain.

The Spirit - The essence of you, your passions, creativity and desire for something more comes from this part of us. It is designed for connection with a higher power ( God) spiritual things that happen to us are often more real than this earth's reality. We are designed for relationship without a creator because we are created in his image, and this is the part of us that cries out and hears from God.

The Flesh - The car, or whatever transport you want to call it, that gives us movement and the ability to physically feel in this world. The bad side of the flesh wants what it wants, it is selfish and has no interest in a higher power, it hates waiting for things and has many sinful tendencies. 

If we have a relationship with God, this part of us will never ever want to have anything to do with it. If we allow this part of us to take the reigns of our lives and do what it wants, we will always end up in a mess somewhere along the line. 

The good side of the flesh is our body, it's not wrong to look after our bodies, in fact, it's really important that we do. Our bodies are the house for our souls and spirits and the first part of us the outside world will see, therefore it is really important to look after them, not to mention if we don't look after our bodies we will get sick. We know this, I'm not saying anything that you haven't heard before...but where I am in life right now I need the reminder and maybe you do too.

This, in essence, is what I call  Simple Temple Living.

It is possible to have spiritual, soulish and fleshly desires, the three intertwine and can war against each other within us, however, it is possible to get these three parts of you to get along, the next post is going to focus on how to do that.

For now, though, I think that's about it,

Hope you are all having an awesome day!

Sunday, January 19

How To Do It All (and still be relatively sane)

Self Love For Bloggers

There is a delicate balance as a blogger, between reading or watching things because it's research for our own blog, and watching and reading things just because we enjoy it.

 I am convinced true life balance is a complete illusion.

I have believed perfect work/life balance was a myth for many years work-life/balance requires perfection, this is an unrealistic goal to be chasing. None of us is perfect so why chase perfection?

With that in mind, the title of this post claims the content you are reading contains advice on how to juggle life as a blogger. 

It does. 

Trust me I am getting to that, but before I give you my tips for managing blogging and life, I first needed to set the scene just so I can give you what I think is the number one most valuable self-loving thing you can do for yourself as a blogger and indeed a person.

Don't put so much pressure on yourself,
 take some time every day just for you. 

You can't make your blog as awesome as you want to if you don't have the energy to take care of you, then you will be on top of your game to take care of your blog or whatever else you need to do.

1. Remember the three C's

  1. Consistency 
  2. Connections
  3. Cut it down!

Consistently putting our goals into little tasks will make life a lot less stressful and increase productivity but we were designed for a relationship so there will come a point where we can no longer do things on our own.

How does this apply to bloggers?

We can consistently create all the content we want to, but if we don't network we won't likely have any readers!

Building relationships is a beautiful necessity.

If your blog is your business, then I can understand why you feel like you want to do everything yourself I get it, trust me I do. It is your blog and you want to make it what you want it to be. That is more than fair enough, but if you reach out to other with different skills, and focus on your own strengths you will make some new friends, create a more professional feel on your blog and be less stressed because you have delegated those things you're not so good at to other people.

2. Mix it up!

Set some time to research how a bunch of different people handle juggling blogging and life, then cherry-pick the tips you like, find what works for you and create your own unique schedule that is perfect for you.

3. Preparation is everything

The one thing that everyone needs to do in order to have a schedule that will be productive is planning ahead. There are many ways to do this. Some people schedule their blog posts, others have life management files, others still use calendars, agendas or dairies and then there are those people like me that do all of the above. Whatever you decide to use to manage your life, make sure you do plan ahead. Knowing you already handled certain things frees up time to do other things and is an excellent stress killer!

4. See yourself as a whole person and plan accordingly.

If you see yourself as just flesh and bones and forget about taking care of yourself emotionally and psychologically then your body will suffer for this. Make sure before you take on new tasks that you are mentally, emotionally and physically up to the challenge at hand. If not then don't be afraid to say no. We've come full circle, it really is super important to take care of you before you worry about all the demands of life.

5. Keep it simple.

You knew this one was coming, this entire blog is about simplicity after all!

 The key thing you need to remember when creating a plan to manage your life is how your plan is serving you. A good management plan should be simple, help you be productive and on task to complete your goals and NOT a burden! 

There is a big difference between being stretched or challenged and feeling overwhelmed or burdened, but that's a whole other post.

Anyway, I need to follow my own advice and look after myself and go eat something so I will leave it there.


Got a complaint or comment? 
Let me know below and let's all together grow!
If this post was of help you please consider donating to our blog, so that we can keep making great content like this for you. 

Thursday, January 2

Happy New year & Cracking Xmas Wrap up.

I just realized that some of my cracking Xmas posts that were scheduled didn't actually go up on my blog. It feels like the moment has passed now, it would be uploading for the sake of it  so I'm not even going to bother upload them so that means Cracking Xmas is all finished.

I think the search for the meaning of Xmas can be interpreted in allot of different ways. For me personally I think what Xmas means to me is a time that outlines the truth about relationships, be it family friends or significant others, relationships and people are very important and I really learned the value of that through this series.

That said, thank you so much to all my readers for sticking with me this year and roll on 2014!

Happy New year all!


Cracking Xmas - In Search of Stars - 10 Common Misconceptions about Christianity

1. We all believe the same thing.
While are basic foundation is pretty much the same, different Christians believe different things and have very different interpretations of the bible, this comes into the way in which we conduct our lives. Christianity is very much about personal choice in terms of what you believe and how to conduct your life based on your convictions. 

2.We hate gay people and they are going to hell.
Not at all. We don't actually hate any one group of people, God is a God of love and as His children most of us will try to follow that example and be very tolerant of people, regardless of their life style. Being gay won't get you to hell as of itself. We believe it is down to what you do with God's son, not how you choose to live. 

3. Christianity is the biggest kill joy religion ever, you can't do anything.
We believe that the rules in the bible are there because God loves us and has our best interest at heart. While there are certain things some Christians will be very much against, Christians are suppose to be and can be very happy people from all sorts of walks of life. It is very much down to personal conviction in allot of cases. 

4. Drinking alcohol is a sin. 
Jesus's first miracle was turning water in to wine. Go figure. Seriously though, the bible doesn't say you can't drink it just advises against getting drunk because God is just looking out for you and knows if you drink to much you will get a hangover. It's as simple as that.

5. Christians are super-humans that never do anything wrong.
News flash, Christians are humans too! I can't stress this enough, we all have our own minds, make mistakes, dream, fail and love just the same as anyone else. Becoming a Christian doesn't mean you will never sin again, it just means that your less likely to want to because who really wants to knowingly hurt someone they love?  

6. Christianity is incompatible with logic and reason and certainly has no place even trying to co-exist with science. 

Tell that to Albert Einstein, C.S Lewis or Issac Newton! To start with faith and logic are polar opposites but once you have had faith in God and He has come through for you a few times, it becomes logical sense to trust Him, even though your mind may try to logically reason that faith doesn't make sense to the mind. That is because it was never designed to make sense, it wouldn't be faith if it did. This one is confusing but you can look into it for yourself if you want to know more. 

As for Christianity and Science co-exists, I know a very intellectual scientist that likes to put it this way....

" Science is the how of what God did"   

They can exist side by side, but I am not going to try and explain it because it does take faith which is why to some it may seem that this is entirely impossible.  

7. Christianity is boring 
This one always makes me laugh. Christianity is anything but boring!  Well maybe to some is, but personally being able to live with the knowledge God is looking out for me no matter what is really comforting and encourages me to enjoy life. God wants his kids to have fun its not all serious prayers and solemn songs. In fact, there are so many different types of christian music of all genres, and in doing research for this article I came across Christian martial arts groups, Christian wrestling, Christian break dancers, Christian goths and even Christian anime, gamers and comic book lovers, just to name a few. Christianity is more diverse today then ever. 

8. You have to clean up your act to go to church.
No, Jesus would accept you as you are and so should all believers, again its only the minority that lets us down.

9. Christians are judgmental.
Yes, some of us are unfortunately, but those that are have just not really understood the love of the God they claim to serve and experienced His grace yet. This goes back to Christians are human too, we are more then capable of making mistakes and unfortunate we often do.

10. Christians are a bunch of hypocrites!
This one is unfair human nature tends to look at the negatives in all people. What happens allot is that non-believers will catch a Christian do something that they believe is against our bible and will latch on to that one thing, instead of remembering all the times that one believer got things right. I can assure you if that believer truly loves Jesus they will feel awful about it, you telling them how much they messed up is the last thing they need. If you are not a believer, then just think of it as being nice to your fellow human being to not rib them about it. However I am not going to claim that this one is complete rubbish, some "Christians" hypocritical" but again I would argue they don't really know the Christ of the Christianity. 

Introducing Alterations - The Art Of Change Mangment

Today guy's I'm just going to jump straight into this. It's been a while since I last put a post out and that's purely jus...

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