The Weekly Balance – #65

Welcome to another Weekly Balance post! Let’s take a look at the last seven days, what I’ve been thinking about and what I’m recommending to you guys from this week.

What I’m thinking about…

Making the most of Galway before I leave it! I’ll be moving to Dublin at the beginning of the summer, and I’ve realised in the last couple of weeks how little time I have left in Galway, a place I’ve called a ‘home away form home’ for almost two years now. Where does the time go?! Much of my time here has been subject to national COVID-19 restrictions on domestic travel, so I’m a little behind on my places to visit. However, currently we’re allowed to travel within our county, so I’d better get my Galway list out again! All suggestions welcome from any fellow Galway fans out there.

What I’m reading…

This week I finished two books, and loved both. The first was The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah – as you guys will have read, I’ve discovered her books relatively recently and am a huge fan. The Great Alone is an incredible, absorbing read. Set mostly in the 1970s, the book follows the Allbright family – father and Vietnam war veteran Ernt, mother Cora and daughter, the protagonist, Leni – as they move their lives, against a background of Ernt’s struggles with his post-war mental health, to Alaska (the Great Alone). Ernt moves his family to this remote, beautiful and harsh state for a new start, a home where they can be self-sufficient and live in their own company, a move the family hope will improve Ernt’s mental health. What unfolds is a story about the complexities of family life and love, the power of nature and it’s ability to unveil our strengths and weaknesses, the value of community bonds and friendship, and the beauty of enduring love against the odds. Reflecting on the book, I’ve realised just how captivating the book is. You are literally transported to Alaska with the Allbrights, picturing their home, the community – I lost count of how much Googling of Alaska I ended up doing! It’s a book well worth adding to your list.

The second book I read this week was the second novel in the Bridgerton series by Julia Quinn – The Viscount Who Loved Me. I don’t know how many of you reading are fans of the Bridgerton Netflix series, but I LOVED it, and have been meaning to read the books for a while now. In short, the book was the light-hearted escapism I was hoping for – as a fan of Pride and Prejudice, Emma and Jane Eyre I figured I would, and these books are much more light-hearted too. I’ve got the first, third and fourth installments to read soon – hooked!

As always, let me know what you’re reading in the comments below, I’d love to hear!

What I’m listening to…

Here’s my top podcasts from this week.

Where Is My Mind?: I’ve been a fan of this podcast for a while now, and the latest episode caught my eye. Hosted by Niall Breslin (Bressie), this podcast is predominantly about mental health, helping us to understand it and the many factors that affect it at the individual, community and broader societal level. The latest conversation is between Bressie and our Taoiseach Micheál Martin – it’s an enjoyable and honest conversation about where we are at with mental health in this country and where, particularly politically, more work is needed.

Renegades: Born In The Usa: This podcast is a series of conversations between two of the most famous men in the world – rockstar Bruce Springsteen and former US President Barack Obama. I’ve just finished the series this week, and I have to say enjoyed every episode – their conversations cover a range of topics from fatherhood to modern day American to their friendship itself. The chat is interspersed with music from Bruce too, making it a pretty fun listen.

What I’m watching…

I’d love to tell you guys I have a new show to recommend for you – but, I don’t. I’ve been keeping up with Grey’s Anatomy (season 17, weekly episodes on RTE Player!) and working my way through my current Netflix favourite, The Bold Type. If it ain’t broke… and all that!

And that’s a wrap for this week gang! If you want to get in touch, you can find me @theirishbalance on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. I hope you have a lovely week ahead folks – remember, stay informed with the advice from your local health authority regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. Stay safe, wash your hands, wear a mask, keep your distance and be kind!

Ciara x

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