16 September 2016

Confidence is Key

This weekend I went to the Curve Fashion Festival.  I will be talking about that in a later post, but first, I wanted to talk about the plus size community as a whole and what you receive from it.

You start out, much like I did, by discovering plus size fashion blogs and positivity.  Slowly, your wardrobe changes, your confidence to wear what you want, not what you think you should wear starts to progress and take shape.

Along with finding confidence in myself and what I wore, along the way I picked up something else, courage.

The courage not to cross a road when you encounter a group of people, just in case they are mean to you.  The courage to go out and do something on your own, without having to have someone with you or needing to speak to someone every step of the way.

Before I found the plus size community, other than in my home town, I never went anywhere on my own.  I wouldn't say that I was afraid, more that I just knew that I could not do it.  I did not have the courage to take those journeys without someone being there.

I remember a couple of years ago being asked to go to an event in London.  It was the launch of new plus size collection in Soho and I really, really wanted to go.  But travelling to London?  Finding my way around on my own?  Staying over?  My courage disappeared.

So what did I do?  I looked at all the plus size bloggers, all those who inspired me in their confidence, their style, the way that they were not afraid to go out into the world and live it.  I took the inspiration they gave me and went to London.  I came back a different person.  They helped to create a new me.  A more courageous me.  Someone who was not afraid to go out there and LIVE.

Which brings me back to the Curve Fashion Festival.  After spending many hours in the company of amazing women, especially the wonderful Kate Willshaw and the fabulous Stephanie Cummings (thank you again for the phone battery charge!) I was left with a couple of hours in Liverpool.  What to do?

The old me would have gotten a taxi to the train station and stayed there for two hours.  The new me?  She went out and saw a bit of Liverpool.  In a bright yellow dress, enough red lipstick to last me a decade and a smile on my face; I headed out.

A stroll along the Albert Docks, The Tate, a pirate ship (sadly my damn picture didn't come out) and the Echo Wheel of Liverpool.  A wonderful day.

Lashes from Doll Beauty 

15 September 2016

Food for Thought

One thing that happens as we grow up and get older is that our tastes change.  What we are passionate about, the music we love; the food that we eat.

As a teenager I remember thinking that I could never love anything more than listening to Take That (the first time around).  These days, although I listen to the odd song for nostalgia, you are more likely to find me listening to Green Day, Beyonce, electronic dance; anything basically other than atypical boy band music.  

Growing up and into my late twenties I never liked tea or coffee.  But one day, after trying a friend's hazelnut latte, I was suddenly hooked.  Fresh coffee in my store cupboard and a regular hazelnut latte with a double shot espresso is regularly seen in my hands.

One thing that I have noticed is that when people get past retirement age and well into their twilight years, their appetites decrease.  The plates get smaller, the variety of food they eat lessens.  This can mean that their nutrition can suffer as a result.

This can be especially problematic with people that suffer from mental health issues like dementia.  From forgetting to eat, not knowing what they want to eat; to not wanting to eat altogether.

This is something that I experienced with a elderly relative of mine.  Seeing someone who used to eat us out of house and home transform into someone who did not want to eat is heartbreaking.  So what do we do?  How can you get nutritious food into someone who does not want to eat?

The wonderful thing about the internet is that there is a now a wealth of information out there to help you.  Age UK are a fantastic resource and have loads of helpful information about everything from falls prevention to helping to spot when a elderly relative is having issues like dementia or Alzheimers and what you can do.

There are also things like nutrition guides that provide tips for getting healthy, vitamin rich food into people who are not that bothered about eating any more.  Things like doing away with three meals a day, which can be overfacing and changing to small meals, dotted throughout the day,

If your relative is in a care home, one thing to try is perhaps getting a mini fridge for their room.  Keep yoghurts in there, carrot sticks and sliced fruit.  If you are bringing in food from home, try to liven up what they are eating.  Bring small selections of different things to awaken their taste buds like potato wedges with curry sauce or something with a chilli kick.  Moist foods like soups and stews are also brilliant for those who are having problems chewing.

If you are having problems getting your relative to have protein, what about something like a Peanut Butter Split Smoothie, here is a great recipe which gives a brilliant 13.5 grams of protein in one drink.  Tip, freeze the banana first.

Check out all the food recipe websites and food blogs that are out there now and you really will find something to inspire you to cook, and your relative to eat.