Hellos and Goodbyes I'm Making In 2018

I never have been great with time keeping. If I tell someone I’ll be ready in 5 minutes, it usually means I’ll be at least half an hour later. That’s probably why I’m writing this post in February and not the first week in January when everyone else was putting their’s up. If I’m totally honest, what with one thing and another going on at home, I really haven’t felt like thinking about the year ahead and making goals for myself or my blog.

It took a phone call, a book and 12 minutes of a film to make me realise what’s important in my life. Well actually the combination of all  three that sent me into sheer panic and asking all sort’s of “What If?” questions. Half way through the film the female charactor talks about having her dessert first, then her main course, she goes on to explain that an asteroid could hit the earth or she could die without ever having had the one thing she really wanted in life. At this point, I had absolutely no idea what the film was about, assuming it was just a love story between a young couple. It wasn’t until much later on that it all became clear. The film is called Remember Me.

Which brings me to the reason why this post has the title it does and doesn’t include the words Goals or Resolutions. The minute I write those kinds of list I start to put too much pressure on myself and feel like I’ve failed if I don’t achieve them. When what I want to be doing is appreciating what I have already and enjoying things right now, there in the moment. I’m grateful for everything I have in life, from the husband and family who are always there for me to the everyday things like a bed to sleep in and enjoying a home cooked meal.

Hellos

Accept myself for who I am

If you’ve read my About Me page, then you’ll know I suffer from a disability and need to use a wheelchair. Truth be told, I need someone to push my wheelchair, even after many years of living with this illness, I still find that hard to deal with. So you can guess how upset I was that I had to turn down a lot of events and social activities, simply because of the complex symptoms that come with a rare neurological disorder.

Find My Confidence Again

The whole reason I started my blog was to post outfit photos because Facebook wasn’t exactly the place to put them. I’m not saying that there will be a fashion post every month, far from it, but I absolutely love styling up an outfit. Most of my clothes are bought from Ebay, Charity shops or reduced right down in the sales, I love finding inspiration on Pinterest and creating a look using my bargain buys. Last year my confidence got up and left the building, possibly social media making me feel like I should dress a certain way or that I wasn’t trendy enough. All credit to the people who can carry off an alternative look or even tuck a jumper in a certain way and make it look cool. On me, it just looks fake, like I’ve tried too hard.

Reconnect With Old Friends

I know friendships drift apart and lives take us down different paths, and I’m fine with that. It’s usually when a friend has a baby and start mixing with other parents who they’ll have far more in common with. You see, I can’t have children, so I have it in my head that they will no longer be interested in what I’ve done. I know that sounds silly, so I’m going to make every effort to message people I’ve lost touch with and spend more time with people who are already in my life. Which reminds me, I have quite a few penpals I need to return letters to.

Try Something New Every Month

I know, it totally contradicts my “no goals” policy for this year, so I’m not going to beat myself up if I miss a month I was 16 when I finished my first crochet blanket, and I was so flippin proud of myself. Since 2016, any new skills I’ve learn have all been blog related, slightly chuffed with myself for figuring out something on WordPress or my way around the camera settings. Yes, blogging is my hobby, but I’d like to try some different things too. I may start with something easy like making a savoury dish instead of baking my usual cakes and biscuits.

Explore New Places

One of the benefits of being married (amongst many others) is that I get to share good times and bad with another person. Adrian and I have visited a lot of places during the time we’ve been together, but there are so many more we’d love to explore. cities, seaside towns, museums, parks or gardens, it really doesn’t matter as long as it’s a new place to visit.

Remember To Read Those Books

Every night before bed, I’d pick up the book I was reading at the time and get through a couple of chapters. Over the last few months, I’ve slipped back into my old ways and watch YouTube instead. That’s all fine and dandy, but I know this has an effect on how well I sleep, whereas reading a book helps to relax me. Plus. I’ve learnt a lot through reading a book.

Being Grateful

I am incredibly lucky to have all the things I’ve got. I’m not talking about how big my makeup stash is, or having a wardrobe bursting with clothes, although they do come into it. I mean those every day things I take for granted, a cosy bed, having a nice meal, a hot shower in the morning, a cup of my favourite tea.

Hellos and Goodbyes, Outfit Of The Day

Goodbyes

Pressure

I’m not going to put pressure on myself to reach a certain target before a certain date, I’ve even ripped the stats page out of my diary. I’m not going to lose any sleep if I’ve lost followers over night, after gaining 10 the night before. I’m also not going to apologise if my post goes up on Tuesday, instead of a Monday. I’m not the sort of blogger who has followers that are waiting at a certain time, on a set day to read my latest post. It’s only me who puts the pressure on myself to get things done, all the time I’m missing out on being me. Unless something has a specific deadline, real life or blog related, then I’m just going with the flow and taking each day as it comes.

Stress and Worry

I worry far too much about every little thing. I get frustrated really easily, then I get angry with myself if I can’t do something, then I start worrying I’ve over reacted and end up crying. Then I’ll have to hunt for the cat who went running for cover. I’m going to start listening to my relaxation apps again, making time for me again, pamper nights, filling in my scrapbooks or colouring. You know the drill by now. I’m going to enjoy life the best I can.

I am a hoarder. I have this policy where I’ll “Put something to one side, You never know when you might need it.” Doesn’t matter how many times I try and declutter, it ends up cluttered again. This stresses me out then I get extremely frustrated because I can’t find anything. It’s time to get ruthless with everything I have, do I use it or need it, will I ever need it, if not then it’s going to charity or being sold.

Negative Feelings

I’m feeling great right now, even on days when I feel physically crap, I’m still feeling positive about life. Yes, I have daily struggles, but there’s plenty of other people that do too. I need to tell myself that something’s gone well rather than thinking of the negatives, I need to step back occasionally and remind myself of everything I have got and everything I have achieved in life so far, I need to focus on my own life and taking better care of myself, not worry about what other people are doing. I’m not going to let self doubt creep back in, like it did in 2017, so what if things don’t go quite according to plan, I know I WILL do better next time, but I’ll never know unless I try, will I?

Follow:

January Favourites

January isn’t my favourite month of the year after the excitement of Christmas now it’s time for things to start to get back to normal. It’s been a quiet few weeks, although I did celebrate my birthday on the 5th which was amazing. This year I’ve set myself a few goals and they’re clearly written in the front of my journal. Some of them are a little out of my comfort zone, I think it will be good for me to push myself and learn some new skills, so watch out for a blog post coming soon. I’m also keeping a weekly log of things that have made me feel good, something that’s gone well that week or something I’ve just generally enjoyed using. Hopefully by doing this it will help me feel much more positive and stop those negative thoughts that creep in every so often.

Moving on to my January Favourites, I have a right mix of beauty and lifestyles, so let’s get started.

january favourites, anatomicals puffy the eye bag slayer

Even with the best will in the world there are some nights I just cannot sleep, no matter how good my bedtime routine is. well, ok, so it’s probably down to staying up til the wee small hours, drinking and chatting with my friends. This doesn’t happen too often but when it does I look piggy and bleary eyed the following day. These Anatomicals Puffy The Eye Bag Slayer are the first eye masks I’ve tried and oh my word, they are amazing. They are shaped to fit under and around the outer corner of each eye, after leaving them on for about 10 minutes any puffiness has disappeared. Of all the under eye gels I’ve tried for tiredness, these beat any of them, hands down. They feel so refreshing and cooling on my skin, they almost have the same effect as putting a few ice cubes under my eyes. I think I’ll cry if Anatomicals ever discontinued these.

January favourites, lee stafford coco loco dry shampoo

January has been a month where I’ve not felt like doing much with my hair, to be honest an extra 10 minutes snuggled in bed in the mornings felt so much better than washing and styling my hair every few days. I discovered Lee Stafford CoCo LoCo CoConut Dry Shampoo by accident while shopping for a few other beauty bits. This is now an essential for one of my “I can’t be bothered” days, it doesn’t leave my hair looking all white and powdery and it soaks up any greasy areas at the roots, without leaving it feeling dry. My hair feels soft and looks like I’ve spent a bit of time styling it as this dry shampoo adds some volume. Did I say, it also smells amazing too.

January Favourites, Ted Baker Body Spray

Even on the days I’ve been at home I still like to spritz a light fragrance to make me smell nice, especially after my morning shower. I’m also one of those people who adds a few squirts when I get into my pyjamas at night. The fragrance I’ve been using through January is the Ted Baker Body Spray in Blush Pink. This has a really pretty feminine smell, with soft florals and notes of jasmine, sandalwood and musk. I felt dressed and ready for the day, even in an old t-shirt and leggings.

January favourites, Where's The Unicorn

Yes, I know I’m an adult but I’ve literally had so much fun with this book, I think it was one of my favourite presents I received for my birthday. Where’s The Unicorn is a brightly coloured book and you need to find a collection of unicorns as they travel around the world. If you loved Where’s Wally (or Unicorns) then you’ll love this book as much as I do, just no peeking at the answers at the back.

January favourites, Barry M Molten Metal nail paint Ice Pink

I love Barry M nail paints and have probably worn the shade Ice Pink from the Molten Metal Collection for most of the past month. It applies beautifully and lasts really well before any chips start to show. I wore this shade all over Christmas and have only just stopped applying it, I think it’s such a gorgeous colour. I’ll definitely be digging this out again during the summer months when I’m applying a bronzed makeup look.

January Favourites, The Body Shop Vitamin E Hydrating Toner

I’m already obsessed with The Body Shop’s Vitamin E range and recently picked up the Hydrating Toner with my loyalty points. Having dry sensitive skin I always have problems finding a toner that doesn’t leave my skin feeling as though it’s been completely stripped of any moisture. I’ve seen loads of people raving about this one, now I can see why. It’s super gentle and refreshing on my skin, removing any traces of makeup or cleanser. My skin feels extremely soft afterwards and it’s even helped clear up any blemishes I’ve had. This may be one of my January favourites, but I’m definitely repurchasing this and adding it into my skincare routine.

January Favourites, Anatomicals Cruisin' For A Snoozin' Sleep Balm

I ran out of my usual sleep spray and saw the Anatomicals Cruisin’ For A Snoozin’ Sleep Balm whilst on the ASOS website. I’ve been using it every night since as it has a wonderful relaxing fragrance including Lavender. Rosemary, Ginger and Lemon. The balm comes in a tiny tin and you take a small amount and gently rub it into your temples to help get you get in the mood for sleep. I think between the smell and the gentle massage movements it helped me switch off to anything I may have had on my mind before going to bed. I’ve also been taking it with me on journeys to use if I feel a bit anxious and honestly I’ve found it really helped settle my nerves and feel a lot calmer.

Well that’s all my January Favourites for now. I completely missed last months but still had some wonderful makeup favourites over Christmas.

What have you been loving this month?

Follow:

Birthday Celebrations

Another Birthday came round, who cares that I’m another year older? I certainly don’t, I still feel the same as I did at 11.59pm on the 4th January. Age is just a number after all, it’s how you choose to live your life that matters and who you choose to spend your time with. And for me it would involve plenty of cats, unicorns and the colour pink.

Birthday Celebrations

This year I decided not to have a birthday cake with candles, instead I chose to have iced doughnuts with multi coloured hundreds and thousands on top. I started off the day by having one (or two) with a huge mug of tea while still in my polar bear pjs, snuggled up in bed. With thoughts of “Oh this is the life” running through my head, I opened my birthday cards and presents from friends and family. It’s funny, every one of my cards was pink, I do believe people know me well.

Birthday Celebrations

I had very kindly received some money for my birthday and a few days before I’d gone shopping in the sales. There has to be one advantage of having a birthday so close to Christmas, quite a few of the items I’d had my eye on before had been reduced to half price. I’ve totally fallen in love with this faux fur biker style jacket from M&Co and would you believe I found these adorable pink gloves with a faux fur cuff on Amazon. The pink cord mini skirt was an absolute bargain at £8 from Sainsbury’s clothing brand Tu and the roll neck jumper I picked up from River Island.

I wore this outfit with my burgundy knee high boots when I met up with a couple of friends for coffee and cake on the afternoon of my birthday. Even better, one of my cups of coffee was free from collecting my 15 stars on my Starbucks card, just in time for my birthday.

Birthday Celebrations

I’d already decided I didn’t want a big party this year, we’d both had a busy Christmas and I just wanted to spend the evening with Adrian.

We went out for pizza and then he took me to see The Greatest Showman at the cinema, if you love musicals and Hugh Jackman I’d definitely recommend watching it. Afterwards we came home and had a few glasses of Prosecco to finish off what was a wonderfully relaxed birthday.

How will you be celebrating your birthday this year?

Follow:

Good Things That Happened In 2017

I know it’s a cliche but honestly, 2017 has absolutely flown by. I can’t believe it’s New Years Eve already. This year has been absolutely amazing and I wanted to write some of the highlights down so I could look back on them. They may seem like little things, but to me they mean a lot and it makes me feel so incredibly grateful.

Good Things That Happened In 2017

1. Adrian and I celebrated 10 years of marriage, it only seems like yesterday since we had our special day together

2. Visited Brighton and met lovely Holly from Golly Miss Holly. We both had an amazing day hanging out together and the most delicious ice cream on Brighton Pier.

3. In the Spring I met my half sister for the very first time. She was brought up in Canada and I grew up in the UK.

4. Given the opportunity to feature some amazing brands on my blog such as GOSH and Timeless Beauty by Joan Collins

5. Being invited to the GOSH Autumn/Winter Launch event and a lunch with Pixie Lott and Kiss Cosmetics in London.

6. Was nominated for Most Addictive Blog in the We Are 30 Plus Awards. I was over the moon and still can’t believe it. Thank you to everyone who voted for me, you literally made me so happy.

7. Reached 5k on Twitter and 800 on Instagram, which for me is absolutely incredible

Southwold Beach Huts

8. Adrian and I spent a few days in Southwold. If you haven’t been then it’s a beautiful. quaint English seaside town with rows of pastle coloured beach huts. We had so much fun, even after getting caught in a rain storm.

9. Went to my first Halloween Party in fancy dress as Wednesday Adams. This was a major achievement for me as for years I’d had a fear of masks, I’m still not totally comfortable with seeing them but I’m getting there.

10. Had a major declutter in just about every room of the house, it’s amazing what things I’d forgotten I’d got plus I donated quite a few bags of things I no longer use to charity.

11. Enjoyed getting outdoors more. We have some beautiful parks and woodland areas practically on our doorstep, it did me the world of good to get away away from the PC for a while and escape into my own little world.

12. Remembered I love reading. Taking full advantage of living just around the corner from a library meant I could read as many as I wanted without the cost or taking up space on my newly cleared shelves.

13. Joined a Women’s Health and Support Group. We enjoy a range of activities including exercise, craft, baking and alternative therapies. Plus I met a lot of new friends which also helped with my confidence.

14. Stepping out of my comfort zone. Trying something as simple as a bolder lipstick or experimenting with fashion, I’ve loved every minute.

15. My First Christmas with my Sister. We both had such an amazing few weeks together, spending time with other family members. It was also extremely emotional looking through photos of our Dad, who is sadly no longer with us.

I’m hoping 2018 is going to be just as wonderful and that I’ll be sharing every moment with my friends and family.

What has been your most memorable highlight from 2017?

Follow:

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This MonthI love writing down what I’ve been up to during the month, usually I keep a note in my diary and photos in a scrapbook but every so often I’ll type a blog post to let you see a few snippets of my life. So grab a cup of tea, sit back and enjoy today’s Christmas chat.

Christmas hasn’t always been the most wonderful time of the year for me. As a very young child I would be alone in my bedroom, scared and sobbing my heart out. I thank my lucky stars for the kind, caring people who took me out of that awful situation and gave me a better life. I grew up and everything looked great, only to end up being shit on by an ex who left me for another woman and cleared out everything in my flat just before Christmas day. Other years in the months leading up to Christmas I’ve had a miscarriage and lost close members of my family. In 2005 I spent two weeks of the Christmas holidays on the neurology ward of The Royal Free Hospital, not knowing how bad my illness was going to get.

Why am I telling you all this? Because even though it didn’t seem like it then, I got through those dark times. I met and married Adrian, I appreciate every single moment with him and feel so happy with even the simplest of things over the festive season.

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Onto the good stuff. We kicked things off by celebrating Adrian’s birthday on the 24th November. Usually we go out for a meal but this year he didn’t want a big fuss. Instead we spent a cosy evening in ordering a takeaway, enjoying a few drinks and watching a film of his choice.

Christmas Chat

Christmas Chats

Adrian and I went into town to watch the Christmas light switch on. It was freezing cold so I wrapped up in my thick Parka jacket and a woolly bobble hat, I wanted to have fun, not be shivering all night, It was already packed with people by the time we arrived but there were plenty of stalls and entertainers to keep us all amused.  First, I went into Costa and treated myself to a festive hot chocolate, I wanted to feel all cosy. The count down began and everyone was in good spirits. A local band played Christmas songs and everyone was having a little dance and sing along, even if they were slightly merry and out of tune. While everyone was admiring the pretty lights, I was getting over excited about Unicorns balloons.

Christmas Chats

Every Christmas we choose a new bauble for the tree in our living room. This year’s addition was to celebrate 10 years of mariage, so we chose one that represented us and I think this bauble is perfect. Adrian spent a number of years as a postman and we both love taking photos out in the snow, especially the robins that come down to our garden waiting for food every year.

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Who’d have thought I could have so much fun at a garden centre? Any other time of the year you’d have heard me moaning, but there’s something magical about going to a garden centre at Christmas. It’s almost like stepping into a mini enchanted forest. The displays were so beautiful, trust me to want to shake hands with the most expensive decoration in there! We did pick up a new holly wreath to go on our front door. Also I couldn’t come home without going into the cafe and having a huge slice of carrot cake with a large cappuccino.

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

While we were in the garden centre I headed over to their gift section and was quite surprised to find some amazing little stocking fillers. I’d actually started my Christmas shopping back in September, nothing like planning ahead. I still had a few little gifts to buy and couldn’t resist this adorable trinket dish, soap in a tin and unicorn hand warmer. I’m sure the people who they’re for will absolutely love them. On  our way out I came across another beautiful bauble which will be perfect for my pink and white themed tree in the bedroom. Honestly, I don’t need any more decorations.

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

For weeks I was going on about beauty advent calendars and not being able to find one that I really loved and thought was worth the money. Adrian quite possible needed ear plugs by that point because he decided to put together one for me. He found these mini stockings on Etsy from All Sewn Up By Sophia and filled them with mini gifts from the Boots 3 for 2 section. I absolutely love my  Homemade Beauty Advent Calendar, Adrian’s definitely scored some extra brownie points.

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Most of our friends spend the Christmas period with their families, so we usually have a little party at our house and this year was no exception. I wore a knee length black velvet dress and a diamante necklace, along with some of my favourite party makeup. Adrian made a couple of batches of mince pies homemade (fruit) mince pies, they were honestly so delicious that I’m not even bothered that I haven’t presented them perfectly just for a photo. We had an amazing evening with our friends, exchanging gifts, eating and drinking too much and catching up on each other’s news.

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

One certain lady was beyond excited when she woke up the following morning to find it had snowed. I can’t believe I got ready in record time, not even bothering to put on any makeup. Adrian pushed me to the end of the road where there is a small park, the wheelchair kept getting stuck and he was sliding about on the ice. He was determined to get me there, just so I could take some photos and put my feet down in the snow. It was great fun and we had a good laugh.

Christmas Chat and Fun Things From This Month

Finally I’ve been wearing my Christmas jumper and Santa hat as much as I can. Choosing pink and white made a nice change to the traditional red and green I’d normally buy. Sadly the print doesn’t show up very well in this rubbish phone selfie (sorry, the photographer was busy baking….again!) It says “I’m on Santa’s Naughty list” and was bought from Amazon.

Let me know something that’s made you happy this month, even if it’s not Christmas related.

Follow: