8 Great Bookshops to Visit in Berlin

At a time when the ebook and internet shops seem to be taking over from the local book shop, I love this post showing some fantastic book shops in a capital city….Berlin

Capital Nerd

1.jpgBerlin’s urban metropolis is one of great history and rich culture, and a veritable paradise for bibliophiles besides. Rare and old second-hand books can be found in flea markets and antiquarian bookshops, while countless small local book stores pop up like mushrooms between the streets of Berlin’s neighborhoods, from the magical Kreuzberg to Bergmannstrasse and Friesenstrasse. Here we take a look at eight of them.

Hammlett Krimibuchhandlung

In Friesenstrasse you will find the small bookshop of Hammlett Krimibuchhandlung (not such a small name, we know!), selling exclusively new and second-hand books of crime mystery. The books are mainly in German and English and the owner is willing to help customers find exactly what they are looking for with his extensive knowledge of the niche genre. So, hit Hammett for all your John le Carré-related needs folks!

Hammett Krimibuchhandlung, 27 Friesenstrasse, Berlin, Germany,

Dante Connection

Kreuzberg hosts a number of fascinating…

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Currently….July 2017

I found this link up party when visiting Roseann on This Autoimmune Life – she has written a lovely post for the party being co hosted by Stephanie on Wife, Mommy, Me blog.  It is a monthly link up where you are given 5 prompts to answer – Stephanie says it is the easiest blog to write…ever, and Roseann thought it looked like fun.

So here goes with what I am CURRENTLY doing…..

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Documenting – My daughter finally has an appointment with a genetics consultant tomorrow having been turned down by paediatrics and rheumatology for consultations.  So in the hope that she will be recognised as having hypermobile Ehlers Danlos syndrome and have some more help at school, I am documenting her issues to date…mainly pain, dislocations, dizzy spells, lack of coordination….and on it goes along with the strong family history from yours truly and my mum before me.  Wish us luck!

Accomplishing – my initial response is very little, but then I look at my post on this blog “Magic Monday – Inspiring Blogs for You!” and can say that I am accomplishing a regular weekly feature…..thanks to all of your amazing blogs.

Enjoying – my daughter and I are currently enjoying the American teen TV series Awkward – it really has become a guilty pleasure.  The traditional teen drama is turned on its head with irony, role reversals and humour…..we laugh out loud!

Reading – I am currently reading The Devil’s Claw, a proof copy that I will review for author Lara Dearman, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari and The Versions of Us: The Number One bestseller by Laura Barnett (our monthly book club read).  I read masses and belong to a local group, Netgalley and the fantastic “The Book Club on Facebook” run by Tracy Fenton from Compulsive Readers blog.

Spending – I seem to be spending more and more time visiting different hospital consultants.  I really have gone from being a medical professional to a professional patient!  Good job I don’t mind hospitals – can’t say the same for the waiting room times!

The school holidays have begun, which whilst it means that I have more mess in the house, less food in the cupboards and more stress, secretly I do enjoy having the kids about – even the 21 year old who is currently on a summer internship – but don’t tell them I said that!!

Claire x

Taking Care of You – How Much Time Should You Spend On Your Well-being?

This really rings true for so many reasons with me and for my “healthy” friends too……

When Women Inspire

It’s a busy time, and we’ve got a lot to worry about. No wonder so many women are struggling to find a few moments each day to address their own well-being. Children, partners, pets, parents, friends, and careers all seem to come first. But even if you have an hour or so in the evening, doesn’t it feel a bit selfish to then indulge? It shouldn’t do, but for some reason, we tend to feel a little guilty prioritizing ourselves.

Why should you self-indulge? Your health and well-being are essential to others as much as it is for yourself. If you’re unwell, you can’t focus your strength and energy on family or work. You have to take time out to rest and get well again. But if you’re regularly taking the time to focus on your health, you’re actively reducing your risk of becoming ill in the first place.

What…

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Monday Magic – Inspiring blogs for You!

Good morning, it is a beautiful day here in South London and the beginning of the summer holidays.  The A level student – will have to change his name now – has been dog and house sitting for the last week, and the lovely girl is currently in her PJs painting…..she may be great at art, but she is so messy!!  There are paints, pencils and pencil shavings everywhere – the beginning of my lounge turning into an art studio for 8 weeks.

She is currently working a matching picture of her grandparents’ other bull terrier (she didn’t like the first one that she started – pictured!!), has been asked to paint some canvases for the library in her old primary school (I think Harry Potter will figure!) and has a viking picture on the go for an instagram pal.  Oh, not forgetting the self portrait for her course work and the scrap book entitled “Blood, Flesh & Bones”.  She is taking some hideous pictures of family members hands, feet, elbows…..my dad told her she can’t afford his fee to strip off!!

Lucy self portrait

The start of a huge self portrait

As for me, well it has been a tricky week as you will have seen in my post about my benefits review, and I hate to complain about the lovely weather but it does send my circulation/POTS problems crazy.  I did manage a night out in London with Duncan though!  He told me we were going to a jazz concert in the Crypt of St Martins in the Field, Trafalgar Square – but when I saw some news feed that morning I had a sneaky feeling that I was actually being taken to the Formula One Live event in Trafalgar Square!  I wasn’t, but it did mean that the whole area was extremely busy and this was my first time in the wheelchair in a very crowded place which was quite intimidating.  The concert, with the wonderful Zena James, was fab though – a mixture of traditional and modern music jazzed up.  You should hear Zena’s version of Rag & Bone Man’s “Human”!!

Monday Magic

This week I have some posts on blogs that are all new to me and I have really enjoyed finding them.  I hope that you all enjoy exploring some new reads too…..so sit back with your cuppa and take some R&R with a new blog post!

https://needlintobenormal.com/2017/07/06/you-cant-go-back/

https://asecondlifeweb.blog/2017/04/11/idiocy/

https://headachehelper.wordpress.com/2017/07/16/the-what-not-to-do-if-you-have-chronic-pain-series-1-beat-yourself-up/

https://thelessonsoflyme.wordpress.com/2017/07/14/lizards-and-bunnies-and-cats-oh-my/

https://kathleenburkinshaw.wordpress.com/2017/05/03/why-did-i-choose-the-last-cherry-blossom-for-my-title/

http://www.bbhwithms.com/multiple-sclerosis-information-overload/

http://www.multipleexperiences.org/2017/07/15/what-i-would-have-done-differently-with-my-ms-diagnosis/

https://fromroopalismind.wordpress.com/2017/06/08/it-is-easier/

http://www.spinepainwarrior.co.uk/post/162956718101/coping-buying-equipment

http://www.lifeunplannedblog.com/how-to-be-less-of-a-hot-mess-and-rock-your-to-do-list/

Please like and post comments if you enjoy these posts – and for any C.I. bloggers who haven’t already, please check out The Chronic Illness Bloggers community, we are a very supportive bunch!

Claire x

 

 

 

 

MS & Memory Issues: I’ve Remembered Why I Loved This Book from Meg at BBHWITHMS Blog

This is a great book review that had me laughing from Meg, the MS blogger at BBHWITHMS.

“A month ago, I saw a post on Instagram – about a book.  A book about woman writer that is living with MS.  Something about the brief snippet included in this post grabbed my attention and I clicked over to this writer’s IG profile and read some more.  I became more and more excited about this book  – to the point that I actually headed over to Amazon and ordered it right then and there.  This might not seem like a huge, monumental thing for most, but I don’t make spontaneous purchases online, even a $16.00 one.  I just don’t.  I add things to shopping or wish lists.  I bookmark pages, I even sometimes email myself a link as a gentle reminder that I am thinking about purchasing an item.  Each thing has to be thought about, the cost calculated into my budget and then maybe, if I still feel I want or need it after a few days or weeks, I will move forward with the purchase.  I don’t just buy things willy-nilly.  Yet that particular night I did, because something about Cory Martin and her story spoke to me and I felt I had to read her book.

It arrived…and I read it… in one day…and it was everything that I had hoped it would be.  She has written the exact type of memoir that I love to read.  She is open and honest and raw but does so with a humor that resonates deep within me.  This is someone else that gets the reasons to laugh and smile at this stupid disease. ”

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Picture from Google

To read the rest of this post go here I’ve remembered why I loved this book!

Normal or Difficult Problem? All depends which specialist I see……..the joy of chronic illness!

I had a Personal Independence Payment medical review this week (more of that another time!). My GP had requested a home visit, mainly as my dysautonomia/fainting is so much worse, but I was merely given another appointment a little nearer to home.  As it seemed near impossible to tie up the DWP who would have received the letter, with the review service (formerly known as ATOS) we decided between us that Duncan would try to get me there, but the GP was adamant not without all the letters that she had been sent recently.  Half a tree later we left her surgery – and this was just the correspondence since the beginning of the year.

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PAIN PALS BLOG

The day after the assessment, I received a copy of the letter dictated by my new rheumatologist to my GP.  Lovely man, but the person who he describes in this letter doesn’t appear to be me.  In fact she is completely at odds to the lady described a month earlier by the orthopaedic consultant, after a dislocation that required a trip to A&E!  The history of my shoulder pain was wrong, and apparently I have “a reasonable range of movement” …”with some discomfort” – ahem, I am hypermobile with very stretched ligaments & tendons so everything moves in every direction and I was actually referred for PAIN management.  Apparently my “other joints are normal” and I “really know how to manage my hypermobility syndrome”.

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Image saved from Pinterest

The ortho consultant said “she has been having pain in that shoulder for some time and was seen by my colleague 2 years ago…” and “on examining her shoulder it moves through a reduced range and her x rays show progressive glenohumeral joint arthritis, with a marked difference from 2 years ago”.  He goes on to say “Unfortunately Claire has a very difficult problem to solve. She has EDS….& has developed arthropathy within the glenohumeral joint”.  I was told 2 years ago that if I were 30 years older I would be whisked in for a shoulder replacement……this time the consultant could see a huge deterioration on x ray, but again explained that a shoulder replacement with my EDS is just not really an option as my ligaments & cartilages are so stretched.  A shoulder replacement would not stand up to recurrent dislocations!

So, the thing that the two specialists agree is that I have a really good knowledge of EDS and both do recommend conservative treatment with physiotherapy – again!  The physio with expertise in hypermobility syndromes who the rheumatologist recommends is out of area; my old physio who works with the ortho consultant is no longer able to see me on the NHS as he is a Consultant physio……..

This is the reality of a condition that affects multiple body systems with no one person leading the care!  So now the search for a physio, who understands that I can’t be “fixed” but need ongoing rehab,  is ON!!!

Chronic Pain and Avoidance

This post from Julie puts into words the feeling of having energy sapped by everyone and everything when you live with chronic illness…..

The second time around

Making it through the day with an overactive immune system is exhausting. You are trapped in a body that seems hard-wired to misbehave. You look and feel very different than you once were. You find many small things to celebrate. You purchase colorful new shoes because your feet and ankles feel better, you laugh at inane jokes just to feel alive. You hide your pain as much as possible so you can still seem fun and lively, this takes a lot of effort. Normalcy is an adopted attitude.

When you are in your twenties and diagnosed with a lifelong disease, it is a shock that is very difficult to accept. You have medicine bottles everywhere and are told to take this pill four times a day, the next pills you take eight of once a week, one pill morning and night, and another only at night. Disbelief sets in and you…

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Want To Be Featured on Dream Big? Well, I’m changing Things Up!

Have you met Danny on Dream Big and found all the work he does to inspire and engage us in the blogging world? Take a look……

Dream Big, Dream Often

Danny's iphone 022As most of my followers know I am big into helping other bloggers gain more exposure. My goal has been to grow a community of like-minded people and I am part way to my goal.  I will no longer be using the “leave a link and I’ll share your blog” tactic.

From now on I am going to share those who interact with my page.  So for those who comment and share my posts I will be selecting from those people to Feature on my page. From comments I will select the comments which convey the spirit of true engagement. From Shares I will randomly select.  So there will be 2 featured posts each day.

Basically I want to reward people who are engaging and sharing.  Good luck!

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Review of Roomba 630- Is it Worth the Price? from Darci at Life UnPlanned Blog

I belong to a great group for giving practical advice for Mom Bloggers – Life Unplanned – run by the lovely Darci.  She has just reviewed a cordless, robotic vacuum cleaner and it sounds great, particularly for my Spoonie pals!  I want one…..

Review-of-Roomba-630

Picture from Life Unplanned Blog

“Are your floors a hot mess?  Do you struggle to manage your entrepreneurial duties with maintaining your home in a somewhat presentable state?  I try… lord, I try.  And I’ve found the most exciting appliance that will make you feel on your game and spoiled at the same time.  The Roomba 630 is a basic model iRobot Vacuum-Cleaning Robot.  That’s right, it’s a robot that vacuums for you!  Say what?  Hallelujah!  When I heard the concept, I just had to have one.

The Roomba has technology that navigates throughout your home, has an advanced 3-Stage cleaning system with brushes that reach into corners and suction your floors, simple one-button start, automatic dock and recharge, and vacuums over all floor surfaces including, carpet, tile, hardwood, and laminate without a glitch.

(This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.  See my full disclosure policy here.)

PERSONAL EXPERIENCE

My reason for originally trying the Roomba was that I’d had to have surgery on both hands, which made it very difficult to push a traditional vacuum.  The Roomba was gifted to me, and I’ve never looked back!……..”

FOR FULL REVIEW PLEASE GO TO LIFE UNPLANNED BLOG – ROOMBA REVIEW

Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You!

Good Morning!

I hope that you are all ready for another week – tennis at Wimbledon, more sun, heat and BBQs, and for many the end of the school term and for some the beginning of the long summer holidays.  So I really shouldn’t moan about this heat wave that we have in the south of the UK, but it is really sending my POTS/dysautonomia off the scale.  Please send me all your top tips and I will put a post together – funny tips too please!

Anyway I bought a big straw hat – not easy when you have inherited the family huge head! – and have been away for a couple of days with my parents to visit my brother at his new house.  We are talking brand new – living on a building site would aptly describe the estate at the moment – and my sister-in-law still has a lot of boxes to unpack.  Think I would be correct in saying mainly make up and bling…..she won’t be offended!  We were taken to the school play and end of year prize giving on Thursday, which was an incredibly hot day.  The children, aged 5 – 11, did a fantastic job of an interesting amalgamation of Romeo & Juliet, Peter Pan and the Cow who wanted to grow Sunflowers – beautiful costumes!  The whole event took place in a marquee – small Oxfordshire private school – and the heat during the afternoon was horrendous.  I think maybe the head should have adjusted her speech….shortened it!!

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Well earned picnic at nephew’s school – featuring Grandad!

Anyway,  despite being armed with said hat, water and the salt grinder from my brother’s kitchen, Auntie Claire had already fainted on leaving the portaloo.  But I completely stole the show at the end of the day with a fantastic backwards faint when standing up from my wheelchair to get into the car.  I came round on the gravel carpark floor surrounded by faces….not just those of my family!  There was a parent who is a doctor, the school nurse, a teacher……and my mum trying to explain POTS, my spinal cord stimulator etc etc…..and please don’t call an ambulance!!  The school nurse was quite excited, having come to these events for years and having nothing to do.  As a fellow nurse I loved this

!

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The stunning Hornbeam Walk at the Aston Pottery

Like many of you, I have spent the weekend feeling constantly giddy and last night managed to pop a hip and dislocate the knee and ankle on the same leg – the joys of EDS.  So whilst I should be at a governors’ visit day at our local primary school – Duncan would not let me go unless I could weight bear – I am instead sitting with leg up and finding some great posts for you.  The final You tube video comes from a young vlogger who appeared on the BBC yesterday morning to discuss organ donation in the UK – he has cystic fibrosis and is awaiting a lung transplant.  This post is about living with a chronic illness as a teen.

Time for your cuppa and relaxation time with some inspiring posts! Enjoy!Monday Magic

http://alifewellred.com/embrace-the-years-with-dignity-and-beauty/

http://xofaith.com/boost-your-confidence-beyonce-edition/

http://www.fromthispointforward.com/2017/07/facing-forward-jayne.html?m=1

http://www.thepaincompanion.com/blog/dancing-through-pain-to-freedom

http://bladder-help.com/role-hormones-bladder-health/

https://itrippedoverastone.com/2017/07/07/what-my-husband-said-to-me/

https://neurodivergentrebel.com/2017/07/07/lets-talk-take-a-break/

https://picnicwithants.com/2017/07/05/floaters-and-flashers/

https://theedschronicles.com/2017/07/06/model-with-eds-uses-her-condition-to-stand-out/

 

Please remember to like posts and follow these great bloggers!

Claire x