30 May 2013

New Outfit of the Day Post

Two posts today!!

I realised recently that I haven't done an outfit of the day post in a while.  As I am wearing my new +Dorothy Perkins dress today, I thought I would take a quick snap!

I've added a red cardigan from Primark to the dress given our inclement climate at the moment which also gives it a bit more pop and a little of the 50's feel to the dress.

The dress is elasticated under the bust line and feels lovely on the skin.  I have also added a slip underneath the dress as I think it may become a little see through in the sunshine.


Found here at +Dorothy Perkins currently on sale for £19.80


















Have you bought anything recently?

52 Lists - Week 5

This is a series of weekly posts. The idea does not belong to me and I have borrowed from Moorea Seal Becky Brown of Does My Blog Make me look Fat? is also doing these lists.
The idea is to post a different list each week to share with your readers and each other.


LIST WHAT YOU ARE GRATEFUL FOR

My family, and I include my friend family in that too.  I cherish the people that I love in my life.  They are my backbone when times are tough and people who will celebrate my happiness with me when times are great.

A special mention for my mum - for being just as silly as I am and being as much of a friend as my mother.

Another special mention for my best friend Vicky who has been there and stuck by my side through thick and thin.  She is amazing and I am very lucky to have a friend like her.

My determination - some call it being stubborn, but that determination is what helped me to quit smoking, stop me biting my nails and hold my ground in an opinion when I wanted to, but shouldn't, back down.

The psbloggers community - without whom I am not sure I would ever have found body confidence.

Twitter - yes, I did just say Twitter.  But joining Twitter helped me to find my voice and give me the confidence to really say what I thought.

Having a boss at work who I know has my back.  A very rare thing.  To also have a friend who shares my office who is just like me is another miracle.

For living in the UK.  We may moan about how badly off we are, but compared to others, we are so lucky.

Living in the 21st century as a woman.  Although we definately have a way to go in some areas, certainly when it comes to the issue of rape still being associated with how we dress by some, I am very grateful that I don't have to fight for the right to vote and that I am not a classed as a second class citizen.

My new philosophy of saying yes to everything.  It opens up a world of new possibilities.

My health.

A full time job that keeps the wolves at bay (just about!).

My new (much late in the game) lack of tolerance for all things negative.


28 May 2013

Cocktails and Giggles

It’s my mum’s birthday in just over a week. 

My mum has never been for a night out in the city and has never had a cocktail (not counting the watered down kind that you get from dodgy Spanish bars).  Given that she is turning 73 this time (shush, don’t tell her I told you) I decided that it was high time to remedy that.

Now my mum and I are quite similar in that we are both daft as a brush, we giggle at the drop of a hat and we both enjoy good food, good times and a drop of something to put a sparkle in your eye.

I booked a night in the +Premier Inn in Manchester for the Bank Holiday Monday and arranged for us to attend Jamie Oliver’s Italian followed by a few cocktails to end the night with a bang.

There were many many giggles (including when my mum managed to break her glasses, forcing her to use one of them like a monocle in order to read the menu), the food at Jamie Oliver’s was amazing and we found one more thing in common that night, a love of a Cosmopolitan cocktail.

Here are some photos from the trip.


Top from +Next 
Travelling with no makeup on, a first!

Excited to start our night out

My gorgeous mum

Like mother like daughter

Cocktail fueled expression!

Dress from +Simply Be My mum's jacket is from George at Asda


Home after a brilliant night, and no hangovers!

Have you planned any trips recently?


26 May 2013

An Appetite for Wellbeing


Have you ever been to a gym or a personal training session only to come out feeling horrible about yourself?

The wall to wall mirrors, the endless measurement, the guilt trips if you miss a session.  I can’t count the number of gyms and exercises classes I’ve seen that who constantly make you feel bad about the way you look.  One I recently saw posted a picture of a woman with the tagline, “If you don’t want to look like her, get to the gym this weekend!”.

A new business has recently opened in East Lancashire by my best friend.  Although she is my best friend I’m not the type to talk things up that I don’t honestly believe in, so no biased opinion (although, well done babe!).

The business is called Appetite for Wellbeing and the idea behind the business is to cover all your needs; mind, body and spirit.  The classes available are personalised for all sizes and all ages, together with nutritional advice for those who want to improve the way they eat which includes suggestions for delicious alternatives.  Not just “eat celery” for the plus size and “eat more pies” for the petite.

The owner Vicky Rayson knows that people are able to function better when they are happy and above all are comfortable in their surroundings.  She operates a no mirrors and no scales policy.  Classes are offered in everything from getting started with exercise, personal training based on whatever you require all the way through to seated exercise for the elderly.

In addition Vicky offers assistance and personalised advice to those who want to exercise but have mobility or breathing problems and are wary of going to a gym.  She is able to work around any health issues that you may have.

There is also a free support group for breathing on the first Wednesday of every month.  This support group encourages anyone living with, or caring for someone with a respiratory problem to access ongoing support FREE of charge.

Sessions involve education, guest speakers, opportunity for you or a relative to ask questions relating to the condition, meeting other people, signposting to other services including Breathe Easy (British Lung Foundation), luncheon clubs, Age UK etc.

Check out the webpage at Appetite for Wellbeing to find out more.  

No judgement, no scales, no recriminations, just friendly focused help on what you want.  Check it out! x


24 May 2013

Times Flies

Eighteen years ago today, whilst I was in the middle of my GCSE English exam, my sister was in labour with my niece Georgia.  Quite where the eighteen years has gone since I’m not quite sure.

She has grown up into a gorgeous, confident, talented girl and I’m very proud of her.

 

Tonight in celebration of her birthday all the family went out for a meal to a local Italian to celebrate.  

I was in a bit of a tizz before the meal as I only had twenty minutes to get ready after work and what exactly do you wear so you look too young to have an eighteen year old niece?

Bad blogger that I am, I haven't done any outfit posts for a couple of weeks now so thought I would take a few photographs tonight of what I wore.

I decided to go with my Joe Brown +Simply Be  dress and a shrug from Yours Clothing.  One bracelet is from Cyrus and the pearl bracelet is from +Dorothy Perkins.  The lovely bird necklace I bought from www.NotontheHighStreet.com






Have you had any special occasions lately?




22 May 2013

Save UK Justice

This blog post is completely out of my normal sphere, but I feel that it is an important issue and one that hasn’t had as much publicity as it needs.

We all know by now that the NHS is being systematically destroyed by the Government.  Cuts are being made everywhere and with varying chunks of the NHS being sold off to the higher bidder, the NHS we all knew is no longer.

This matter has been well documented both in the press and on the various forms of social media.  What hasn’t had as much publicity is the cuts being made to the legal aid system for criminal matters and the ways in which the justice system is being changed.

While you think that these changes may not affect you, that you don’t intend to commit any crimes, remember that innocent people can be arrested just as easily as guilty ones.  Let it also be remembered that it the cuts are deemed “successful” by the Government, then the same system will be rolled out to family cases. 

At the moment if you have been arrested you are able choose a solicitor of your preference, be it someone who you already know and trust or someone that has been recommended to you in the knowledge that they will represent your interests fairly and provide you with the correct advice.

What the changes will institute is that upon arrest, if you are in need of legal aid, rather than having own solicitor attend you will provided with a duty solicitor who will also have any number of cases aside from yours to deal with.  Apart from the obvious delays in being seen that this will cause, with the duty solicitor having a constant and large stream of people to see, you are never going to get more than a few minutes with them.

If you are charged with the offence and subsequently bailed, this would ordinarily be the time, if you hadn’t got someone in mind already, that you would be instructing your own solicitor to assist you or asking for a recommendation of the best person in the area.  Once the changes have come into effect however, you will be forced to stay with the firm you were first allocated with, whether they specialise in that particular area of criminal law or not.  You will now be forced to stay with the firm you have been allotted, who have essentially just been chosen because they are the cheapest.  In my books, the cheapest is not usually the best quality. 

With the majority of people no longer being even eligible for legal aid, they will be forced to either represent themselves or face the legal bills themselves.

This will lead to many miscarriages of justice whereby you can’t afford to get legal advice and thereby you are unable to properly represent your case at Court which may well lead to a conviction through no fault of your own. 

Solicitors who you might previously have gotten some free advice from may no longer be open, as the changes with the legal aid, along with the new rules in civil litigation have forced many firms into closing and putting their employees out of work.
 
 
Please sign the Save UK Justice Epetition

20 May 2013

52 Lists - Week 4

This is a series of weekly posts. The idea does not belong to me and I have borrowed from Moorea Seal I have also seen that @boo_brown is also doing these lists and her blog inspires me too.

The idea is to post a different list each week to share with your readers and each other.



List your Current & Future Goals & Dreams

Hug more. 

Criticise less.

Be happy. 

Help my mum to continue to feel as young as she looks

Cherish the ones I love.

Find love.

Continue to gain and maintain confidence

Promote confidence in others

Remember that there are always others worse off than I and to celebrate how lucky I am.

Try to become less patronising when making a point!  (Yes Vicky, you know you do!)

Take an online course.

Say yes more.

Hesitate before saying no.

Find love (yes I’ve written that twice)

Laugh more.

See a Formula One race in a foreign country.

Go to visit the Tiger Temple in Thailand.

Try not to worry about things I can’t change and focus instead on the things that I can.
 

19 May 2013

Nailed It

I’ve bitten my nails my entire life.  It isn’t something I’m proud of.  Given that I don’t like my hands anyway, I’ve always been self conscious about them and hid them away.

I have always wanted pretty nails and would love to paint them and experiment with different colours and designs.  The scarlet nailed women in old movies have always been my ideal.

I was looking in shame at my nails a couple of months ago and the thought struck me; if I can successfully quit smoking through sheer stubbornness and determination, surely I can stop biting my nails. 

Given the tiny size that they have shrunk to over thirty odd years, I knew that it would take quite a while to reach any sort of length.

After more than a few false starts and absentminded biting, I have now reached a stage where I’m happy not only to put my nails on my blog, but also paint them!  I may have a way to go with some of the nails and none are how I want them yet, I feel that the majority of the journey has been accomplished.

I’m a few weeks away from booking my first manicure and having a massive smile on my face.  Even at the current, still short length, they are now makes me happy.  One more goal reached!


What goals have you set yourself recently?


17 May 2013

May Wishlist

I am quite certain that you could lure me to practically anything if the words “Pretty Dress” were included.  I can’t help myself.

I have been looking around at the new dresses available and have fallen in love with a few that I thought I would share with you.




 
Peacock Skater Dress Desire Clothing £32.00
Red Multi Floral Dress Lovedrobe £40.00
Paisley Maxi Dress AX Paris at New Look £35.00
Kiss Print Dress – Evans £45.00
 
 I recently discovered Desire Clothing through a blog post done by the lovely Mrs Bebe.  I love the peacock pattern of the dress and the contrast of blue at the neck and waist.  As to the gorgeous red floral dress from @_Lovedrobe_ , well it's just fabulous isn't it?  I absolutely adore the floral print and the black edging.
 
I previously saw the paisley maxi dress on the +AX Paris site in their regular size collection and was praying that it would also be created for their Curve section so I was delighted when I found on the @NewLookFashion site.
 
Finally, the kiss print dress which was modelling by the gorgeous @CallieThorpe of From the Corners of the Curve.  I thought the dress looked amazing on her and I'm itching to see what it would look like on me.
 
I have previously done a roundup of my favourite dresses back in March and happily managed to buy one of them (read unable to resist so bought with my eyes closed at my bank balance).  I think you’ll agree though that the +Simply Be  dress as worn here is one I had to have ;)

What are your favourite dresses at the moment?
 
 

Five Question Friday!

Today I'm participating in the lovely Beka's Five Question Friday!

You may notice, greedy girl that I am, that I have added an extra 0 to the "How would you spend" question! haha
 
Please take the time to check out Beka's blog, she always has something interesting to read and is currently doing the 31 days of May challenge.
 
 

 

15 May 2013

Dear Future Me, Don't be an Idiot

Apologies first of all.  This post isn’t so much a blog post, but more a reminder to my future self.

Sometimes you just have to write things down to remind yourself.  I’m not talking about a “must remember to buy carrots” reminder here, I’m talking about having an experience, or a realisation and writing it down so that your future self doesn’t make the same judgement call/assumption again.

The lesson I have to remember today is not to self sabotage.  Not to presume that something happened for a reason that you can’t possibly know.

So this is my note to the future me.


Dear Future Me,

Stop being such a bloody idiot. 

If a guy finds you attractive, if a guy calls you beautiful and you believe him (something I never ever do usually), then the reason why he broke things off is therefore NOT for the way you look. 

Also, trying to be someone you aren’t just to stay in a relationship you already know isn’t going to work is also stupid.  Trying to be someone else full stop is stupid.  Insecurity isn't attractive.

Be yourself.  Always be yourself.  It will probably turn out that the person you actually are is what they actually saw in you in the first place.

Yours,

The idiotic person who is still trying to work things out.

13 May 2013

Staircase to Hell

I recently wrote a post entitled Getting to Know You in order to share a few things about myself with you.  One of points I shared related to my fear of stairs.

I have never met anyone who shares the same fear of stairs as I do although I know that they are out there.  What I think that I have is climacophobia:


“Climacophobia – fear of stairs – fear of climbing stairs or falling down stairs”


Open stairs are a complete no go.  Unless I am forced to go up them or have no other choice to get to where I need to be, I am not going up them.  Thankfully this isn’t a day to day issue.  The daily issues I have relate to going up and down stairs.

When ascending stairs I have to hold on to the handrail, usually for dear life, and my foot must be touching the front of the next step in front of me.   The higher I get, the more panic I feel, I start to feel dizzy and by the time I reach the top I am convinced I am going to fall. 


When descending stairs again I am holding on to the handrail and I am very very careful when coming down.  If the staircase is tall enough I sometimes have to come down step by step by step, which unfortunately is the case with the staircase at my office.  I am convinced that I am going to miss a step and if I let go of the handrail I immediately go very dizzy.


Unlike the fear of spiders or claustrophobia, this a phobia that I have to deal with on a daily basis and something that I am more than used to being made fun of for.  I constantly let people go in front of me as I can’t stand anyone being behind me on the stairs, especially as they usually make fun or try to hurry me along which sends me into near hysteria.


The fact that I live in a bungalow has been brought up on many an occasion as to the reason why I feel like this, but I am up and down two very large flights of stairs at work five days a week so I can’t see that as being the reason why.  I’ve never fallen down stairs either.


I’d really be interested to know if there is anyone else out there who has the same symptoms as I do, and would ask, how do you deal with it and have you have any help?


I called these the "Stairs of Doom" in Amsterdam
Having to set off a full five minutes before anyone else to get down stairs is irritating

52 Lists - Week 3

This is a series of weekly posts. The idea does not belong to me and I have borrowed from Moorea Seal I have also seen that @boo_brown is also doing these lists and her blog inspires me too.

The idea is to post a different list each week to share with your readers and each other.
 

Week Three - List Things that you should be proud of

Being of quite a self deprecating nature, I have always found it hard to say things I am proud of, but I am trying to break that habit and this list is a good place to start!

So here we go, the things I should be, and are, proud of.

  • I'm proud that a year ago I finally forced myself to look at my life and how to improve it.
I held myself back so much over the years, unable and unwilling to move forward confidently instead of hiding in the shadows.  Coming out from behind the shadows is probably the greatest thing I've ever done.
  • I'm proud of my new levels in confidence, both in myself as a person and also body confidence.
I'm not going to deny that it has been a hard journey to get to this stage, but I felt improvement with every small step I took, from the first patterned brightly coloured dress I bought, to actually wearing it in public and feeling confident and secure.
  • I'm proud of my blog.
Writing on the blog, posting pictures and as a consequence of that meeting and talking to other bloggers have been a brilliant thing in my life and I look forward to carrying on with it.
  • I'm proud of how my wardrobe looks these things.  
Just opening it up and looking makes me very very happy.


What are you proud of?



11 May 2013

Flash the Flesh Challenge


When a group of bloggers join together for a chat you know that the final result has to be super!! During a weekly #psbloggerschat a few days ago, we were talking about our preferences between mini and maxi and  Becky thought that it would be great to create a challenge which goal was to show a little bit more skin and our body (but with style and no vulgarity) showing proudly our curves. And so it was born “Flash the Flesh”.

9 times out of 10 when you compliment a woman, she will counter with something negative.  "You look lovely" today is answered with "Oh but my hair needs cutting".  

Every woman should have something about their body that they love be it pretty eyes, lovely legs, a small waist; we should celebrate the things that we love, not hide them.

I've have a large chest since entering my teens and I have a little bit of a love/hate relationship with my breasts.  I like my breasts but I hate the over familiar attention that they can attract sometimes.  I refuse to let that stop me from dressing how I want however and as my cleavage is something that I like about my body so here I am, flashing the flesh!





Check out the other lovely ladies below!

Becky @ Does My Blog Make Me Look Fat
Charley @ Big Girl About Town 
Steph @ Seeing Spots
Becky @ Mrs BeBe Blog
Beth @ Tinkerbell and the Lost Girls  
Christiana @Life of O  
Emma @ Plus Size Millard 
Kaye @ Polished Curves 
Kim @ Call Me Kim 
Nikki @ Natty Nikki
Lolly @ Lolly Likes Fatshion 
Mary @ Marys Big Closet 
Natalie @ A Wheelbarrow Full of Style
Rachel @ A Dress is for Life
Vicky @ Curved Opinion
Leah @ Just Me Leah 


9 May 2013

Birdy Birdy Girl

Just a quick outfit of the day post as I wanted to show you the new dress I have from +Very.co.uk .


I absolutely love anything bird print so when I saw this dress for £15.00, I simply was unable to resist!  I have paired it with my trusty teal cardigan from Next which seems to go with everything and some leggings from Very with a PU stripe down the side.


I love the colours on this dress.  It is a little short for me to wear without leggings or tights but it fits very well which is important to me.

I look a little windswept in these photos, apologies for that as I had just come in from a very windy and wet outside.



I love a good bargain, what have you picked up recently?

8 May 2013

What does a Daily Mail Reader look like?

If I were asked to think of someone who I would like to physically resemble, I would have said Rachel Weisz.  But now I’ve changed my mind.  I want to look like a Daily Mail reader, specifically, one who writes some of the comments.
 
Now the elusive Daily Mail reader has never been seen out in the open.  From comments made though we can begin to deduce what they must look like.
 
Here’s a profile:
 
Facial Features
Given various comments made with regard to “huge nose”, “needs plastic surgery”, “would need a bag over their head to be attractive” “ugly”, “disgusting to look at” etc etc it can only be deduced that the Daily Mail reader has perfect features, albeit features that would not be so perfect as to be labelled “too bloody good looking for their own good” or “vain” or “must be a slut”.
 
Body
Again, after perusal of the comments it is impossible to accurately guess the size and weight of a Daily Mail reader, other than it is “just right”.  Things therefore that cannot be said about a Daily Mail reader’s body are “you need to eat more pies love” “Fetch a harpoon” “Must have had a boob job” “Tits like a sparrow”, “disgusting” “intolerable” “can’t even look at” “a bad role model” etc.
 
As with the facial features however, we must also note that the Daily Mail reader’s body cannot be so perfect as to then be described as “whore” “vain” “who the hell does she think she is” “must have had plastic surgery”.
 
Given the above, I have finally come to a decision of what the Daily Mail reader looks like.  EVERYONE ELSE.
 
No one has the perfect face.  No one has the perfect body.   No one has any right to criticise the way that someone else looks.
 
So whilst I cannot accurately describe the physical features of a Daily Mail reader, their personality traits should be seen from a mile away.  Look out for rude, obnoxious, insecure, under confident and, if one of them ever reads this, probably angry and already writing a comment below of how I should lose weight, wear a bag over my head, live in a hole underground so I can’t be seen and hold up a sign apologising for the way I look.
 
Meow.

7 May 2013

Floral for Magnificent 7th Challenge


Hello all!  Hope you are enjoying the sunshine just as much as I am.  This is the second in the monthly challenge in the series and the theme this month is floral.

We will be posting on the 7th of each month, and the aim of the challenge is to create an outfit to fit the theme, using clothes from our wardrobes, and yes that does mean digging deep into the depths and finding those long lost clothes! Hopefully one of us won’t end up in Narnia, but you never know with a bloggers wardrobe!

I have a lot of floral in my wardrobe at the moment and have really embraced the feminine trends of this season.  For this challenge though I am wearing a dress that I bought last summer but sadly, didn't ever pluck up the courage to wear.

The dress is from +Next and with it's floral print and coral tones it is perfect for the summer.  I love wrap dresses and I particularly like this one.  Since as my poor little dress suffered the summer inside my wardrobe last year, I can assure you it will be making many an outing this year!






Please don't forget to check out the other ladies on this challenge too: