Jam-packed with sober stories of inspiration, motivation and ideas for a life on the other side of the wine glass.




Just remember, not today lady, not today, and don't drink even if your ass is on fire.

editor's note Welcome, October, how kind of you to drop by! I love October evenings that roll in early giving me an excuse to make hot chocolate and lounge around in furry socks and leggings in the evening time - fabulous! I am a recent convert to hot chocolate but have always been a fan of decent warm comfortable socks so expect to see them in the October issue of Hola Sober which is due out next Sunday! Our Pledge 100 TARA group continues apace the ladies digging deep, forming a beautiful community of like- minded-empowered-souls and learning a whole lot about themselves and each other. It is beautiful to see unfold and I continue to be grateful to my righthand woman, Ann in London, who has been a trojan of hard work and leadership throughout. We have some fashion and beauty products this Sunday, some sober motivation and inspiration and as always the wisdom and words of our Hola Sober community. I continue to be grateful to the Hola Sober Host team who are knocking it out of the park week-on-week holding space for women who want a daily check-in. To Beth who is taking care of social media, give her a follow ladies, she is doing a terrific job ❤️ Please join me in the sober dawn chorus as we say not today lady, not today. Susan Christina Creamer

Susan Christina Creamer EDITOR + PUBLISHER


before you


Today we dare not forget that we are the heirs of that first revolution; let the word go forth that the torch has been passed to a new generation of women. Let all who hear us speak know we will bear any burden to support our Hola Sober sisters on this journey. To all sisters on high, know we are here fighting a new fight as a new set of revolutionaries who will oppose all who stand in our path, to assure the survival and the success of our sobriety, at our very core this much we pledge.




Empowerment Program within a closed group with online kick-ass learning. Modules include science, myths, time management, and personal development. This program is designed to create sustained sobriety and a permanent upgrade to your life. It is suitable as a refresher for those in sobriety or a kick-start for those beginning their adventure. Don't bother signing up unless you are going to show up for yourself as we don't hustle at Hola Sober, we share our knowledge and support systems freely and it's up to YOU to commit and do the work. Our program includes a morning video from Susan our Founder, daily lessons, weekly closed support meetings, a chat group, and our new Tribe Online Community Platform.

Our next Pledge 100 Sober Empowerment Program will kick off on September 1st, 2022.











A little wintergreen to brighter your wardrobe comes courtesy of COS


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A little winter yellow to brighter your wardrobe comes courtesy of ZARA


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Sezane offers this DINA BRACELET


DANA ANKLE BOOTS Light Beige Click here

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Hola Sober


daily email



“If you heard this often from a person in your childhood:

A daily practice creates a ritual for ourselves that sends our subconscious the message: I matter. I care about myself. I can put myself first. I am capable. I am resilient. I am empowered to make choices in my own best interest. We've been conditioned in a society that says the answers are 'out there.' That seduces us into deeper levels of distraction + avoidance through social media, relationships, food, shopping, the list goes on + on. The answers are within us— they always have been. This is the warrior's journey. Those willing to do what most people avoid for a lifetime: looking within without running away. Those willing to sit within the discomfort of how confronting + overwhelming this work can be at times.

Stay the path. Trust the process. Laugh at it all. In a few months, you will look in the mirror + feel the indescribable feeling that comes with consciously

“You're so dramatic” “Stop being overly sensitive” “You're so moody!” “Smile, there's no reason to be sad” “You are too much” You'll most likely have internalised a core message: “Something is wrong with the way I feel. Some emotions are bad + I shouldn't have them.”

creating your life.” Dr. Nicolas Lepera

As we head into our beautiful gift that is Sunday can I take the opportunity to tell you.. YOU are not too much. YOU are not being a drama queen. YOU are a beautiful and powerful woman finding her way in recovery. We are fabulously flawed and human fighting every single day to be better. Hold onto that. Stay the path, trust the process, laugh at it Please join me in the sober dawn chorus as we say not today lady, not today. Susan Christina Creamer

True healing occurs when we are active participants.

True transformation occurs when we practice— when we commit to small daily promises. When we commit to showing up for ourselves. We've been conditioned in a medical model that teaches immediacy, quick fixes, + the “expert” model where we outsource our knowing to someone outside of ourselves.

TARA + THOMOND Online Class Wisdom

OMG!!! Have I ever seen a reduction in the inner turmoil that comes from drinking!!!!! I feel so much more peaceful now that I am in sobriety. I realize now that the drug I was using to self-medicate, to help me relax was making me more anxious, crazier, and lazier!! Once I was able to see that I was unable to find peace in a bottle I needed to find people to help me find peace in myself and also find those things I enjoy to keep at peace!!! The first thing I did was move, I began to swim and bike ride……..next came the volunteering (with horses). I have loved horses since I was born!!!! I find instant peace when I am taking care of these majestic animals….next, I started to create. I took an art class I thought looked interesting ( I taught art for years to children but chose to hurry home to my friend Chardonnay after school instead of filling my soul with my own art). Now I have a weekly art date with a friend and once a year we sell our wares so we can buy more art materials 😃 ….these and sprinkling in yoga, walking in nature, babysitting grandkids when I have time! I could not do any of these things if I was drinking…….MPM -

The act of NOT DRINKING is the biggest "I love you" that I give myself daily. My self-love practices include naps, cooking food that makes me happy and nourishes me, walking every day, and marveling at the earth coming alive yet again. The rebirth in nature also helps me feel a rebirth in myself. A new chance to do better, be better. When I'm heading out the door and glance in the mirror, I tell myself 'you look incredible - let's do this shit!' -C.C.-

I have always struggled with the concept of purpose; thinking that I had to do something or be someone who was going to change the world. That thought has led me to feelings of inadequacy as I have not been able to fulfill that type of purpose. The statement “With age comes wisdom” is so true. I now see my purpose as being kind, loving, and empathetic to those around me. Not always easy to do, especially when someone cuts me off in traffic! And not as simple or easy as it sounds as being kind, loving, and empathetic requires active listening, not making assumptions, and calling myself out when I find myself judging someone else. - Regina -

I’ve had a very mixed life in that I know I’ve been very fortunate in many ways but also shite has happened too. I’ve always battled through the bad times and so it’s very strange that I started drinking once I retired and depression set in. I drank to numb the memories of the bad times as I had the time to dwell on my past. I felt I should have done better… very disappointed in myself. I think I’ve had empathy with others other than myself and am certainly less judgmental than I was although there’s still the odd irritation! I’m certainly happier in my own skin as my confidence creeps back slowly. This group has totally changed my hope of success. -S.D.-

An Extract from Honouring Restoration by Pixie Lighthorse hit home, " Dismiss my desire to work things out, jump up to write something down, and tend the many loose ends. Let everything drain out of me and into the Earth. Allow me to restore and soothe my senses under a midnight moon or on the soft sand of a shoreline. Calm the space around my voice box, the hands I gesture with when speaking, and the spine that works hard to hold my body upright. Hush the room I stay in and pacify me into neutrality. Melt me down and seal me inside a womb of peace. " Just. Stop. When you need to. Full stop. Why is that so hard, especially when we need it most? And boom- I realised something I had been confusing and that is- self care is not self-improvement. Self-care actually has to come first, or at least if it does- there is a smoother path toward self-improvement, but self-care is the foundation of your house...whereas self-improvement is the window dressing and the appliances. Self-care is having the right oil in your car. Self- improvement is the leather seats. Without one, the other doesn’t really matter. It’s really hard for some of us (especially women) to just stop. Taking time to take care of ourselves still often feels like it should have some action to it, a goal for the end of the time spent, something to show for it, maybe even an opportunity to get something we normally wouldn’t have time to do (like read that book on the nightstand, or clear out that email inbox, or make holiday shopping lists.) We think “well while I’m lying here, I might as well get 1-2-3 done.” No. Dismiss my desire to work things out, jump up to write something down, and tend to the many loose ends. We try to still have a say in how things are moving around us, the tasks, the schedule, and what’s for dinner, but the point is Hush the room I stay in and pacify me into neutrality. - Alexandra Hartley-Leonard


Dear Diary, : Jimmy Carr – Naval Gazing

#1 Who are you when no-one is watching? Because, this is the real you. Now whether you like this or you don’t, he has a point. Whether you’re a prolific nose picker or mega sweet fiend I’m afraid this is who we truly are. No seriously though it definitely got me thinking, so give it a go, make a physical or mental list of what you do when no-ones watching, how you feel when no-one is around and that will tell you what you need to know, even if it’s that you do nothing, that in itself is key. #2 ‘Google operates as a modern day confessor’. So yes many years spent in therapy, reading books and working on self-development when actually all we really need to do is check our Google history. Now of course it’s a real example but also a metaphor as we do actually know what we have been searching without actively checking on our Google history, but the concept is genius in my view. All the emails from Susan referencing women all over the world searching for ‘do I drink too much alcohol’, it’s right there, you are addicted to alcohol. But other things too, when I checked my metaphorical Google history it left me disappointed and a little sad, you’ll see why in a minute. So my Google history said: Body dysmorphic. Hear me out here. I haven’t been diagnosed with this but if anyone was checking my Google history I am sure they would have no hesitation in labelling me with this or at least referring me for some psychological input. Searches I had in my Google history: Breast uplifts, Botox, cheek fillers, jaw fillers, fat dissolver injections, eyebrow micro-blading, low carb eating and how to get rid of piles (sorry about that last one!). That list made me wince for sure and not just because of the piles. Bringing up two daughters this list scares me even more, especially seeing as I am actually perfectly fine and this is actual madness, this needs to stop for their sake. Next up, identity crisis. Searches I had in my Google history: Avoidant attachment styles, fixing yourself in relationships, forgiving partners, should I stay or should I go, signs of bipolar, signs of EUPD, signs of ADHD. Society has a lot to answer for here, labels, diagnostics when all we are really doing is being human. Experiencing emotions, living humans. Normal (for the most part). Love Emma xxx

There’s a term we use in the counselling and therapy world and it’s known as Naval Gazing. You will notice I love a little reference to theory here and there.Anyway naval gazing is not as you would imagine the ogling of persons within the Royal Navy, it is in fact as the Oxford English Dictionary tells us ‘the activity of spending too much time considering your own thoughts, feelings and problems’. Now as people recovering and stopping drinking I feel this is all we are ever doing and a lot of it necessary of course. So whilst it sounds a little negative in its Oxford version I would imagine this is helpful for so many of us not just in recovery but in our day to day lives. But, and here’s the big but, it feels like we never stop, like we never switch off from the naval gazing. We talk about being in the moment and being mindful but how can we be in the moment and mindful if we are actively naval gazing all the time? Trying to figure out who we are, what we are all about and improve ourselves. All this can take years and years without ever getting where we need to be. There’s a quicker way according to comedian Jimmy Carr though. Now stick with me here as many of you will know him as a foul mouthed, rude on the edge of your seat (ready to walk out of the auditorium) type of comedian, us not him walking out I should clarify. I am the biggest fan of audiobooks and I recently listened to his ‘before and laughter’ and as it was a comedic self help book there were some real nuggets of knowledge and information that apply directly to us on our sober journey. I have to add here that the book gave me a whole new perspective on comedy and made me realise there’s more method to it than a person just insulting people for the sake of it. If you wish to learn something different, give it a listen or read, you might surprise yourself. But I digress. We spend all this time trying to figure ourselves out and understand ourselves when according to Jimmy all we really need to know or do to understand ourselves are the following three things.

We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.


I urge you to find a way to immerse yourself fully in the life that you’ve been given. To stop running from whatever you’re trying to escape, and instead to stop, and turn, and face whatever it is - Anna Lembke-


“Therefore, dark past, I’m about to do it. I’m about to forgive you for everything.” - Mary Oliver

“I urge you to find a way to immerse yourself fully in the life that you’ve been given. To stop running from whatever you’re trying to escape, and instead to stop, and turn, and face whatever it is. Then I dare you to walk toward it. In this way, the world may reveal itself to you as something magical and awe-inspiring that does not require escape. Instead, the world may become something worth paying attention to. The rewards of finding and maintaining balance are neither immediate nor permanent. They require patience and maintenance. We must be willing to move forward despite being uncertain of what lies ahead. We must have faith that actions today that seem to have no impact in the present moment are in fact accumulating in a positive direction, which will be revealed to us only at some unknown time in the future. Healthy practices happen day by day. My patient Maria said to me, “Recovery is like that scene in Harry Potter when Dumbledore walks down a darkened alley lighting lampposts along the way. Only when he gets to the end of the alley and stops to look back does he see the whole alley illuminated, the light of his progress.” ― Anna Lembke

You do not have to be good. You do not have to walk on your knees for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting. You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves. Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine. Meanwhile, the world goes on. Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes, over the prairies and the deep trees, the mountains and the rivers. Meanwhile, the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again. Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination, calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting over and over announcing your place in the family of things.

Mary Oliver



I put Autumn Porn in our September issue and so many of you enjoyed it that I have included it in our Sunday morning read as a girl can never have too many interior design ideas! To Follow on Twitter Click here Feast Your Eyes on these Beautiful Homes



Spanish Garlic Shrimp Gambas al Ajillo


1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil 10 large cloves garlic, finely minced 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes 1 pound shrimp (about 25), deveined, shells left on 2 tablespoons lemon juice, from about 1/2 lemon 1/4 cup Spanish brandy, or dry sherry, optional 1 teaspoon smoked or sweet paprika, optional Kosher salt, to taste Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1 tablespoon fresh parsley leaves, chopped 1 baguette, sliced, for serving



In a large (12-inch) sauté pan or heavy frying pan, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, lower the heat, and sauté for about 1 minute or until the garlic just begins to brown. Be careful not to let it burn. Raise the heat to high and immediately add the shrimp and lemon juice, along with the brandy and paprika, if used Transfer the shrimp to a warm plate and pour over the sauce, or you can serve straight from the pan. Sprinkle with the chopped parsley and serve with slices of fresh bread. Enjoy.. Stir well to coat the shrimp and sauté until the shrimp turn pink and start to curl, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.




As the sauce is a vital part of this recipe, it is important that you do not overheat the oil or burn the garlic, which will impart a bitter taste to the dish. Adjust the heat to make sure you are simply warming the oil and garlic. In Spain, gambas al ajillo is prepared with the shells on or off, depending on the chef. This recipe calls for keeping the shells on, but you can peel the shrimp before cooking if you prefer I am a shell off girl, my husband is a shell off guy!

EASY Pecan Pie Brownies INGREDIENTS Cooking spray 1 box brownie mix, plus ingredients called for on box 1/3 c. maple syrup 3/4 c. packed brown sugar 2 Large eggs 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract 1/2 tsp. kosher salt 4 tbsp. melted butter 3 1/2 c. whole or chopped pecans


Preheat oven to 350° and line a 9"-x- 13" baking pan with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Prepare brownies according to box instructions. Pour into prepared pan and bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until brownies are set and no wet batter is visible. Meanwhile, make pecan filling: In a medium bowl, whisk together maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, melted butter, and salt until smooth. Add eggs and stir until combined, then add pecans, stirring until fully coated. Top baked brownies with pecan topping, spreading evenly. Return to oven and bake until pecan mixture is set, 20 minutes more. Let brownies cool completely before slicing and serving.

A recipe from delish which I find a fabulous kitchen resource

Spanish Chickpea + Spinach Stew


2 tbsp / 30 ml oil (I used olive oil) 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped 1 medium red onion, finely chopped 3 tsp cumin (ground) 1 ½ tsp smoked paprika (ground) ¼ - ½ tsp cayenne pepper or hot chilli powder ½ tsp salt 2-3 tsp brown sugar black pepper, to taste 2 x 400 g tins of peeled plum tomatoes 1 tbsp of tomato paste 1 ½ cups of cooked chickpeas 200 g of spinach a handful of almond flakes, toasted fresh parsley, chopped (optional) cooked rice (I used brown), to serve with



Heat up the oil in a large frying pan (ideally with a lid). Add chopped onion and fry on a low heat until almost translucent, stirring from time to time. Add chopped garlic. Keep on stirring frequently until the onion is translucent and garlic softens completely and releases its beautiful aroma. Add all the ground spices to the fried onion and garlic mixture and stir them around well. Fry them off gently for a minute or two stirring the whole time as they burn easily. Add tomato paste to the pan and stir it into the onion and garlic mixture. Squash plum tomatoes with a potato masher in a separate bowl before adding them to the pan. Add tomatoes to the pan, salt and half of the sugar. Let the sauce thicken by simmering it on a low heat with no lid on. Give the sauce a good stir from time to time. Once the sauce thickens, taste it and season with some black pepper and more sugar if needed. I used 3 tsp of sugar in this recipe as my tomatoes were quite tangy, but you may not need as much. Stir in cooked chickpeas and let them warm through. Now add in the spinach and place the lid on to let spinach wilt and cook in the steam. If you are not in a rush, you can gently pan-fry the spinach in a little olive oil and garlic separately and then add it to the dish, but that’s optional. Serve over rice, sprinkled with toasted almonds and fresh parsley.









Spanish Almond (Polvorones)

Ingredients 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 3/4 cup raw almonds 5 ounces (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter 3/4 cup sugar 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt Confectioners' sugar, for dusting, optional


1. 2.

Preheat oven to 350 F. Pour flour onto a cookie sheet. Place the flour in the oven and toast it for about 8 minutes, occasionally stirring it so it toasts evenly. Alternatively, place flour in a non-reactive pan on the stove at medium heat and toast for 8 to 10 minutes while stirring. Remove from oven or pan and set aside. Place raw almonds on another cookie sheet. Toast the almonds until they change color just slightly, or about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove and place almonds into a food processor. Process almonds until they are finely ground into a flour-like texture. Reduce oven temperature to 250 F. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter, sugar, salt, and vanilla together with a hand or electric whisk. Add the flour and finely ground almonds to the butter mixture and incorporate all the ingredients well. The resulting dough will be very crumbly. Place a sheet of waxed paper on a cutting board or another flat work surface. Press the dough together to form a ball. Then press the dough onto the waxed paper. Carefully flatten it down with a floured rolling pin, into a 1/2- inch uniform thickness. Use a cookie cutter to cut out the cookies. Since the dough is dry and flakey, use a small spatula to carefully move the cookies to the cookie sheet. Bake cookies for 25 to 30 minutes until you see golden brown on the edges. Allow cookies to cool completely before removing them from the cookie sheet. They are so delicate that moving them while still hot will break them apart. Once cooled, sift powdered sugar over the cookies and serve. Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 10 days.










(Polvorones) are a kind of mantecado, a variety of Spanish shortbread. Traditionally, these cookies were only prepared from September to January, making them an ideal ending for a Christmas dinner. They're soft and crumbly and practically melt in your mouth.

Check out from your world at 4.00 p.m. every day wherever you are in the world, to check in with yourself. Make a tea or a coffee and have a moment of gratitude for the gift of sobriety knowing your Hola Sober Sisters are doing it with you. We hold our own gift of sobriety and all women on this journey, in our hearts daily at 4.00 p.m. Join us in this simple ritual and take a brief pause in your day.

Colette Louise

card of the week

. The Four of swords is the card of the week. The figure in this card is in a deep state of meditation. The colours in the card tell a story here. Grey is the predominant colour - looking at things without judgement/ observing with a neutral stance. Yellow is featured in a subdued way - mind is alert despite appearance. Then there is the colourful stained glass window - a mosaic/a puzzle. It’s complicated! This week and on a regular basis actually, we need to schedule in some down time. Not to see a movie or busy ourselves with a shopping date or rushing around anywhere. We need to take some time to process things that we have either packed away to deal with later or to examine patterns in our lives that are played on repeat. It doesn’t have to be super heavy stuff, although if we keep digging we may unearth some big old roots down there. We don’t need to go to an Ashram, I find cleaning the basement very therapeutic myself. Being brilliant at managing everyone else’s stuff while avoiding our own isn’t working anymore. The cracks are starting to show. The longer we wait to make a full stop and deal with our own poop the stinkier it’s gunna get!

Janey Lee Grace chats to Hola Sober Founder Susan Christina and it's a blast! Now Playing + Must Listen


- 14:55





The Daily Digest (Daily Email ) Sign up for your daily email inspiring or kicking your ass it is as changeable as Irish weather and includes Hola Sober Sunday sign up here


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Hola Sober Meditations Enjoy the HUSH series in the Hola Sober Meditation library created by the talented and fabulous Alexandra Hartley-leonard.



I make handcrafted, unique, silver and gemstone jewellery designed for each individual customer in my small bespoke silver studio based in South East England. I want you to love wearing your finished jewellery as much as I love making it. Talk to me about how I can help you create jewellery that is perfect for you. Please visit my website and reach out so we can work on your next self-care silver treat together!

GLOBAL SHIPPING Japanese word with a deep significance. From years of travel, work and art ESEKA Designs was born. Welcome to Eseka Designs, your online source of amazing gifts, clothing and accessories for your home! Each piece of artwork was named after a





The better the question, the better the answer. Make sure you are asking the right question. It is NOT am I an alcoholic? the question needs TO BE, Can I sustain a healthy life drinking like this?


If you wish to submit for our HOLA SOBER MONTHLY MAGAZINE; please email: submissions@holasober.com

To all ladies who give permission to publish your words. Thank you, Lisa Wilde for all your support, words, and help - thank you. Note: I am not a professional designer, writer, or creator; I am a woman who drank wine and now talks about not drinking creating this platform and magazine in a moment of pure madness offering EVERYTHING for FREE. If there are spelling mistakes or grammatical errors, cut me some slack as this is a FREE MAGAZINE made with love. The HOLA SOBER PLATFORM (Magazine, Meetings, Emails, Platform) would not be possible without the financial and loving support of my husband, and three sons whose help means that I can do this all the hours the universe sends. Shout out, as always, to Deb + Judith, Gee + Colette ❤️ www.holasober.com

| HOLA SOBER | Madrid | Spain | EPIC Sober Support Magazine | | Owner & Editor | Susan Christina Creamer | FREE |

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