Can I be your friend?

I seen a post recently on a FB group I’m part of, a girl looking for friends. The girl feels she has friends within the group but once she’s outside of it, she feels like she has nobody. She knows people but there’s no friend friend if you know what I mean.

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I’m very lucky when it comes to friends, I’ve managed to hold onto friends from school and my bestest friend Ash, from national school. I mean she even forgave me for that time when we had a fight and the stone I threw, went through her open sitting room window and hit her little cousin, Selina on the head. Even Laura, who lives in another town and I don’t always get to see when I get home, we don’t speak as often as Ash and myself but she still counts as a close friend just like Ci. The thing is we don’t have to speak everyday to know that, if the shit ever hit the fan we’d be there for each other, even if it is just an ear on the phone.

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Ash & moi!

I moved to London in 2000, on holiday, if you ask me Da. I worked in a pub for a long time so you kinda have to be sociable to do that…well like 80% of the time…when you haven’t had to get up for the delivery or you’re not hungover. That’s where I met Calvin, a.k.a Quelvin/SuperChocolateBear/Bumbacleet. Twenty-five years my senior, I know I can trust him with anything and a cooler guy I’ve never met….well me Da’s pretty cool too actually. I’ve met other people too, but some people you meet in passing, some you miss, some you don’t. Some you wish you’d had more time with ‘cos even though you only knew them a short time, they definitely made an impact on you. One thing’s for sure though, if you have these people already in your life make the effort to keep them and not lose touch.

I think as you get older it certainly gets harder to make new friends. We become shy. We worry about what the other person will think. What if they think we’re weird or worse have no interest in being our friend.

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New friends

What happens to the bravery we had as kids, when we would play with everyone and not worry about what they thought? We just spend too much time over-analysing. So we mooch around being sad and lonely, because we’re too afraid to take the first step and ask “can I be your friend?” I’ve made new friends since having Small Man, and even though I think I’m ok with approaching new people, in my head I feel kinda nervous. I think oh God these people are much cooler than me…oh my God why didn’t I wear something a bit dressier, but then I get sense and I think well here I am, this is me and shur listen I dunno what’s gonna happen unless I just get in amongst it! This was how I met Courtney. Well really I met her through Slimming World but we actually became friends when I actually got me finger out and just asked for her number so we could hang out sometime. This sounds kinda weird, sorry Courtney, but I knew when I saw Courtney that I wanted to be her friend. As Calvin says, ” we gravitate towards certain people”. I felt weird asking but I think she was kinda glad to be asked.

The girl who posted the “cry for friends” was actually really brave and open. We should all take a leaf out of her book cos as she said “if you don’t ask, you don’t get!” The person you’re sitting next to could be feeling  the exact same way as you…just ask!

love Donna x

Lightning McQueen themed birthday

I reeeeally meant to post this aaages ago but never mind, shur here we are now. So Small Monkey’s current obsession is Disney’s Cars. There was a phase where we watched either Cars or Cars2 EVERY night before bed….we’re down to 3 or 4 times a week now. I actually quite like the film though so I’m coping well. Anywho if your little one has a similar taste this post might be for you…failing that Pinterest is king! (My little posty wosty here should give you everything in one hit though!)

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Firstly, let me tell you where I booked, just in case you’re in the area and don’t know…Tiny Gym at Camberwell. It cost £125 for 1hr 45mins. You got the use of the kiddie gym for 25 kids (or kiddults in our case) for 1hr and the use of a room to decorate and have your party in. The gym itself was great craic. The main attraction was the long, bouncy running track that everybody loved. There’s also a ball pit for smaller kids too. The room though, left a bit to be desired, but what do kids care? The time may have seemed short but it was well worth the money and it actually seemed longer, so yeah check out Tiny Gym if your in need of an idea.

So if you want people to come to your party you need to invite them eh? My fantabulous friend printed me off similar invites to these, I found through google as well as the little colouring books you’ll see later.161027111524_wm

Now no party would be complete without a cake and with Lightning being the theme, well he had to be the cake too. I’m no Mary Berry but I like to make the cake myself and I’m quite happy with how he turned out. I just used pre-prepared cake mix for this, filled with jam and loosely followed a tutorial online to shape him. I hate using the roll out icing and didn’t buy enough red so there was a panicked Sunday morning dash to Morrisons to sort that out. Lightning’s race stickers are made from rice paper and I got them here and his wheels were oreos. The good news is, if you can’t be bothered with all that effort, Asda now do a Lightning cake, sadly though it looks pretty small and hasn’t got great reviews.

With it being a car theme, I decided to turn the table into a motorway by using black table cloths, from ebay and used masking tape to make the road markings. I wanted the balloons to resemble traffic lights…as you can see with the colour scheme. I wasn’t overly happy with how they turned out, as I’d no clue how to make balloons sit nicely together but you get the gist. I bought helium from Argos and ordered plain helium balloons from ebay  with the odd printed Lightning balloon thrown in, my brother had the delightful job of blowing them up. I ordered red party cups from…yep…Ebay baybeeee!! I like to have a little personalisation, so I ordered some personalised Cars stickers and made my own Cars themed cups. This worked out cheaper than actual proper Cars party cups. I found a one off deal on the Cars themed napkins and plates on Ebay, so do scroll through to find the best deals when you look otherwise “themed” can be quite expensive. I made the food place cards by just cutting up some stiff white paper and going round the edges with black marker, I then stuck a Cars sticker on each. Cheap and cheerful…I was delighted with how they looked. I’m also a sucker for a personalised birthday banner…I like to keep them. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a pic of Monkey’s one but I ordered from here and it was really cute….of course if the afore mentioned brother had of printed me off Monkey’s birthday pix…I probably would have a pic…hint hint!

 

For the the party bags, my friend put together some Cars themed colouring books from free printables found online. Between Ebay and the 99p store, the bags consisted of a winners medal and trophy, a car, a colouring book, some cars stickers, a party blower thingy majiggy (what are those things called?) and a kinder bar. In each trophy I wrapped a little parcel of smarties in cling film and popped them inside. I stuck a personalised thank you Cars sticker on each bag too.

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Now the fooooooood!! I can get quite grumpy I think when I’m getting party ready. I do have a vision in my mind and I tend to try and do it all myself, luckily for me, Ash won’t have it and my brother Steve had already started buttering bread and giving me jip! As it’s a party of course there were sweets but I’m a firm believer in it doesn’t have to be just sweets…we gotta try find a balance right. I had some ideas of what I wanted but again Pinterest really helped. So here’s what we had….my fav’s were the fruit cups and traffic light sambos…so cute to look at…

Fillmore’s Fruit Cups: flat bottomed ice cream cones filled with fruit.

Flo’s Strawberry Milkshakes: cupcakes topped with strawberry butter icing, sprinkles and one of those yummy lace thingys for the straw.

Doc’s Chocolate Drops: white & milk choc buttons and smarties.

Sarge’s Surplus Sambos: I bought a car shaped cookie cutter and Steve lovingly cut peanut butter and jam shaped sandwiches.

Mater’s Dipsticks: hummus with celery, red pepper, carrot and cucumber sticks.

Sheriff’s Traffic Light Sambos: Ash was in charge of production here. A slice of cheese sandwiched between two slices of bread played the part of the amber light. The circles were cut out using a fruit shoot top. A cherry tomato was used for the red light and cucumber for the green.

Luigi’s Casa Del Tires: oreo cookies

Pitstop Popcorn:…well it’s popcorn innit!

Mater’s Junkyard: wotsits and onion rings.

Sally’s Airbags (hee hee): giant marshmallows.

 

 

I took along bottles of water and sugar free fruit cordial for drinks. Oh and I totally forgot to cook the cocktail sausages to bring along…raging had these cute flags to use!

So there ya go, that’s how I did it and apart from my annoying balloon display, I think it looked quite good. I hope you find it useful, please share your pics of any themed parties you’ve had…I love a nose! I’m off now to start redecorating Monkey’s bedroom Cars stylee…I’ll let ye know how that goes.

Love Donna x

P.S Thanks Ash & Steve for help, actually, thanks for everyone’s help and thanks for showing up xx

 

 

Time waits for no man.

I think I just booked a ticket to go to Electric Picnic next year with the girlies! I dunno where the hell I’m getting the money from to pay for it, actually I haven’t even got the deposit for it yet and I don’t know who’s gonna babysit the Small Monkey as hubalump is likely to be working. I’ve just come back from 9 days at home, I’m going to a wedding in Donegal next month, possibly an overnighter in Dublin in December and I AM going to Paris in Feb/March…again, money and sitters feature heavily in my problems here but shur what about it? Time waits for no man and I fully intend to start sh*tting money!

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We poo money!

Waaaay back in 2008, I decided I was going to wait for the right time less and do more of the things I wanted to do, caring less about what others thought. So I did. I went to visit my fairly brand, new friend and her “met-him-a-coupla-times” hubby in Sweden.

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Yep, that’s me there!

I never fully believed when I told her I’d visit that I would, but one day I decided what’s stopping me? I don’t pay real bills yet (I was working in a pub…food & lodging inc), no kids and no boyfriend, so I booked my flights and off I went. I came back and booked onto a Hadrian’s Wall camping hike for Great Ormond Street Hospital. I knew nobody else going and I’d never hiked anywhere. The furthest away I’d ever camped in my life, was about 12ft from my back door at home in the back garden. The only thing I did know was, I’d always wanted to see Hadrian’s Wall and I wanted to do more for charity so this trip was a win win situation. It was a 25 mile hike and being inexperienced, there were bits I found tough but it was a great experience, I made a new friend and we still talk today. Ooooh and I ate lunch under the tree where Kevin “Robin Hood” Costener defended the boy in the tree!

 

From there I booked a girlie holiday with my future in laws to Gran Canaria. I took my Ma on her first foreign holiday and we had an absolute ball. I kept up the charity work effort by doing one sponsored event a year.Me bestie and I did the Moonwalk for Breast Cancer in 2012, we walked 26 miles…in a row…through the night!! Small Monkey crossed his first finish line for Great Ormond Street Children’s hospital aged 1. Hubby also did his first charity event that day aged 33.  Bar a trip to Lanzarote, after that my “travelling” quietened down a bit as we were saving for our wedding. I did other things though, I booked tickets for hubby and myself to go see musicals that I would normally wait until I had the money, but we were saving anyway and when were we ever gonna have the money? I also did a travel and tourism course somewhere in amongst all that. Oh and I took pole dancing lessons! Why? Cos I wanted to. It looks fun and the pro’s make it look sexy as hell and I’m sorry but what woman doesn’t want to have a good time looking sexy as hell? (Admittedly the reality was somewhat different!) Was I planning on becoming a pole dancer? Nope, I’ve not an ounce of upper body strength for a start (mahooosive respect to those women who can do it). What did people say? Oh I’m sure some had their opinions but why should their opinions stop me from doing what I want?

Things quieted down a bit once I had Small Monkey, but once I made up my mind to stop waiting (for what? I don’t know) and just got out and went to our first Mother and Baby coffee morning, things started happening again. The things I go to or do might not seem big or as exciting as some of the other things I had done but they were tailored to suit my New Mammy Life. I stopped waiting to be invited places and packed myself and Small Monkey off on our own and it’s still the same now. If I wake up in the morning and the weather’s amazing, we’ll go to the beach.It wasn’t planned and we might not get there til lunchtime but shur what else am I at? Wandering around the same street, thinking I should have done this. There doesn’t always have to be a plan. Seriously lads, we’re never at home! Why? Because time waits for no man! Hubby is a different kettle of fish, he is one of those that will hum ‘n’ haw and worry about what will happen, he’s convinced we’ll get stabbed, attacked or bombed wherever I suggest going, so now I don’t wait (although if I do get him going, he normally enjoys it and tells everybody it was his idea!). I don’t wait for hubalump to ponder whether or not we’ll survive a trip to Bexleyheath, I just go. I’m tired of sitting and waiting!

My sister drives now, so we go meet her and we head off to new parks or beaches, instead of sitting around saying we’ll do it…shur there a few weeks ago we were walking around 8000 year old caves in London! When we go home to Ireland, we try to have some sort of excursion. One of the best was probably the road trip to Tramore which was Small Monkey’s first trip to the beach. Four cars, packed with family, friends and sandwiches. We’ve been to Lough Booragh, Lullymore, Malahide Castle, to name but a few and we’ve also crossed the Cliffs of Moher, Clonmacnoise, Newgrange and Bru Na Boinne (how do ya do a fada on a laptop techie types?) off our list.I even got a Nicki Minaj concert and a trip to Czech Republic with the girlies in there too! (Ya know when your foreign friend says she’s going home for her 40th, and you, having never been to the country before and knowing nobody bar her, invite yourself along. Your friends are there and they jump on board, your Czech friend says yeah what the hell, be great to have ye but nobody really believes they’re going until tickets are booked and babysitters are sorted…yeah, ya know them times! #thebesttimes).

 

I think the point of this post is “do less sitting, thinking and more up and doing”. It doesn’t matter if it’s a tiny thing like going to get a pedicure or if it’s jumping out of a plane, if you want to do it and there are no reasons you can’t then why not do it? Stop caring about what people will say…or just care a little less if you can’t completely stop. Be the talk of the village, there’ll be somebody or something new tomorrow. If you’re not hurting those around you, then whose business is it anyway? Wear the sparkly arseless chaps to the pub tonight…well maybe don’t…chaps only look good on rugged cowboys and occasionally Christina Aguilera circa 2002…but you get my point. I had my hair dyed recently, with a rainbow streak. I didn’t do it ‘cos I’m unsure of my age or I’m clutching at my youth or because I’m having a mid life crisis. I did it because I’ve always wanted hot 161014083233pink in my hair but never thought I could carry it off and people would think I looked stupid. I’ve now decided I don’t particularly care to much what people think of my hair as long as I like it. I’d rather they like me myself than my hair. I also have 8 tattoos, most of which you can’t see anyway, because…yep you guessed it…they are for me, nobody else. Somebody did ask me though, why I have 8, or any I guess, what will I do when I’m 70? Well, please God, I’ll see 70 but no doubt life will carry on as normal whether I have tattoos or not. I might dread the sight of them by then, I really don’t know, but what I do know is, right now, today, I love them all…..well maybe one slightly less but shur listen YOLO….YOLO!! What about when you’re all wrinkly? Well I’ll just have more fun ironing them out trying to remember what they are. I think I just want to look back and think I don’t have to many regrets and I’m glad I got to do the things or at least some of the things I wanted, no matter how big or insignificant they may seem.

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It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day.

I’m not even sure if any of this makes sense to you reading it now, so I’m going to finish with  some words from this cool mutha f**ka….

“Look, if you had, one shot, or one opportunity
To seize everything you ever wanted. In one moment
Would you capture it, or just let it slip?…..

You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
This opportunity comes once in a lifetime
You better lose yourself in the music, the moment
You own it, you better never let it go….

So here I go it’s my shot.
Feet, fail me not
This may be the only opportunity that I got

You can do anything you set your mind to, man”

                                                              Excerpts taken from “Lose Yourself” by Eminem

So there ya go lads, life is only temporary.

Love Donna x

 

 

 

 

Pick up a pen & make somebody smile!

This year Thinking of You Week runs from the 26th Sept to 2nd Oct.

totallydonnamarie

TOYW_facebook_2015Hey guys! So this week is “Thinking of You Week”. It’s organised by the Greeting Card Association and runs from the 21st to the 27th of September. Yessss I know….a great way for them to get us to spend money, but I actually think it’s a great idea. I mean why do we have to wait for birthdays and Christmas to send cards? Remember when we actually had to pick up a pen and write a letter to find out how people were? My son’s not quite old enough yet, but other than maybe their letter to Santa, has your child ever wrote a letter? Writing to somebody is just so personal, it’s not something that is mass produced and pre-printed. It means somebody thought about you, just you yourself.

God I used to love writing letters, I wrote to my Nanny, my little brothers, my cousins including one I…

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Santa at Ruxley Manor

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Yeah, yeah I know it’s only September BUT if you want to take your child to see Santa and you want it to be worth it, then you gotta get in quick…seriously all the December weekends at Ruxley Manor are already gone!

Anyway, last Christmas, Small Monkey was two and a half and showing an interest in Santa. Wooo…exciting!! The two years before that I just took him up to Winter Wonderland. It’s free, and he wasn’t getting the whole “Santa” thing anyway, but unless you get in early there can be a lot of queuing and it’s fairly rushed, I still have some cute pics though. So yeah, he was finally interested so I thought, now lads, now the fun begins and true effort is required. I tried booking Selfridges and Hamleys, granted it was October I think, so my efforts were futile. So in the end I was saved by another Mother (anuvva Muvva..hee hee) on a Netmums chat…mmm…could’ve been good old Facebook either though and heard about Ruxley Manor Garden Centre.

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From Waterloo, it’s about 55mins by car, or 1hr 20mins by public transport, which is a pain but it really didn’t seem that long. You will need to sign up online to book an allocated slot, adults are £4 each, Small Monkey’s age is £10, and the visit lasts about 45mins. Obviously, with it being a garden centre, there are fabulous Christmas grottos and displays everywhere. The miniature railway set up is just beautiful to look at, so do go and have a nose around. Oooh and they have their own resident reindeer!

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Now the fun stuff! I really wasn’t sure what I was expecting for £10, I thought “ah he’ll get a nice picture with Santa and some little knick knack at least” but both myself and hubby thought the time to get there and the £20 (for all of us) was well spent. At the entrance to the grotto we were greeted by an Elf and given the first stamp in our  “grotto passports”. After a short wait our group (it wasn’t a big group, just the right amount of people) was led through the magical doors to Santa’s grotto by……MRS CLAUS!!! Yep straight into her cosy, log cabin kitchen, where, accompanied by elves, all the children were sat down to make their very own magical reindeer feed. There was also a Jingle Bell sing-a-long where instruments were handed out, annd of course, you got your passport stamped. Well I dunno about anyone else, but I was delighted and my Monkey looked like he was enjoying himself too. Now there is a little bit of time at the end, if people get their acts together, where you can get a cheeky pic with Mrs Claus. They are quite happy to take pics but you are on a tour and you don’t want to get left behind.160911124446_wm

Through the next door, we are met by another group of extremely happy elves and we’re all asked to take a seat at the wooden tables. We were then told the story of “the Night before Christmas”. Like I said, I hadn’t a clue really what I paid for but the elves then started handing out little pouches and boxes of markers and crayons. The Monkey would be making his very own Christmas bauble. The also handed out some extra pictures for the kids to colour in too. Ah shur it was great, the elves bopped about here and there spreading Christmas cheer and stamping passports. I mean just look at his bauble…my child is an artiste! He coloured that in himself, we never touched it….yep…I am extremely proud of that bauble lads! We then gathered by the doors to meet the Big Man himself.

We were led into a room with a bench all around the edge and lots of cushions on the floor for the kiddies to sit on. Aaah, you’d want to hear the oohs and aaahs when the kids discovered who was asleep by the fireplace. Their little faces were something else lads seriously. You can’t put a price on that. Santa had a little chat with the crowd, answering questions, asking questions, you know the usual “have you been good and make sure you be good, don’t forget to put the reindeer food out and a bikkie for him” kinda thing. Of course as the kids had been so good he decided to give them all a present and OMG, the presents only came down the chimney!!! Delira!! Each child was called up individually and given their present. The kids under 3, as Monkey was, got quite a nice Christmas Elf
each but you could tell from the boxes coming down that the older kids got something more exciting, say. (On booking online, you’re asked your child’s sex and age, so the present given is suitable, which is lovely). It was so lovely seeing my little man go up to get his pressie from Santa…I think my eyes were wet. As the present giving was wrapped up…heh heh…do ya see what I did there?..the elves came back to help each child or family have their picture with Santa, stamp passports….annnd all the parents were given a BABY CHRISTMAS TREE EACH!!! We got a lovely picture in the end even though our original take got mislaid…on leaving Santa to collect our photo it gets a bit crazy. We actually got to meet Santa again as our picture had to be re-taken.

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Once the tour was done, we had a wander back to the reindeer, took in the fabulous light displays and thanked God we don’t live in an actual house with free reign outside. Have ye seen “Deck the Halls”?? I was really good too and only bought a snowman to go on my fireplace. We also spent ages looking at the miniature railway and Christmas town display…I dunno what happened to my pics of that but it was beautiful.

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So there ye go guys, if you’re in the southeast London area, I’d highly recommend Ruxley Manor to visit Santa. We really enjoyed it and look forward to going again this year.

Love Donna x

 

You should go & love yourself.

There 2wks ago I donned my 50’s style Lindy Bop dress, put on my face, failed to pin curl my hair in a 50’s style do, and headed off in search of Collectif Clothing‘s store on Commercial St. I was heading to Abby Russell‘s (AKA Curvy Living) “Self-Love and Style” evening.

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me in Lindy Bop, apres hair do!

*Just to be clear, when I say “self-love”, I mean, like, love yourself for who you are not “manual self-love” ye dirty feckers!

I don’t think I’ve ever been 100% body confident in myself but I don’t think I’ve ever really let it affect me to much. I like to think I wear what I want, be it in fashion or not, if I like it I’ll wear it. If I’m suffering from a “bad skin on my back” day I’ll wear something to cover it and if I’m feeling fat then I’ll wear something that makes me feel less fat or covers my lumpy bits. If I feel comfortable and I’m happy wearing it, then why shouldn’t I? The choices I make, I make to suit my height and my shape, I make them for me. Of course I love people to say, ooh you look great or I love what you’re wearing, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder and you can’t win them all lads!  Obviously, if you’ve read my previous post Slima-marinky-mee! or follow my FB page you’ll know I’m a Slimming Worlder, so yes my weight did bother me but even when I was heavier, I like to think it didn’t affect my clothing choices to much, or made me feel like a bad person. Yes I do feel better that I’ve lost weight, but I wore a jumpsuit at my size 16 heaviest, I loved it, I feel like I rocked it, just like I love my new size 12 jumpsuit….my weight does not define me…it annoys me but it’s not the sum of me.

I was a little bit nervous as I was going on my own and so knew nobody. Normally I’d see an event like this and think well nobody to go with so not going, but as time waits for no man, one must seize every opportunity, and so I booked it. Thankfully I was greeted by a smart looking waitress with a glass of prosecco. Phew! At least I could just stand and drink…it would make me look like I was doing something. Anyway once I was in the door, armed with my prosecco, I could take in my surroundings. I’d never been in a Collectif shop before and I was obviously missing out, looking online is just not the same. Everything is so bright and colourful in store. So many colours, so many fab items of clothing….and sweet baby Jesus, there was a sale on!! It wasn’t only the clothes that were so bright and lovely looking though, there were amazingly dressed ladies of all shapes, heights and sizes everywhere and one cool sales guy. The outfits! The hair!! OMG the hair!!

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Myself & Abby…total babe!

As I was coming in there was a gorgeous blonde with an amazing figure and the biggest victory rolls I think I’ve ever seen greeting the ladies who came in before me, this was Abby, the hostess. It’s hard to imagine that this gorgeous lady ever had any body confidence issues…or any confidence issues at all tbh, I’m pretty sure her atoms are made of sunshine!

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Fuller Figure Fuller Bust, Moi & Ivory Lovelust

On walking around some more, I spotted Georgina Horne (AKA Fuller Figure Fuller Bust or as I like to call her, the woman who can work everything, she’s the shizz!). It was through her FB page that I learned about the event. There was another babe, with close cut hair and one of the few of us not wearing a dress, that looked so familiar, like you know when you feel like you know someone from somewhere but you can’t think where or how…turns out it was Miss Leyah Shanks, Mother of The Body Confidence Revolution #TBCR.

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Leyah

It was so weird, like meeting celebs, although I only know these people through social media, it was kind of surreal meeting them in really real life. I wandered about the clothes rails, making mental notes of what I obviously NEEEEEDED in my life, cos I have “NO” clothes and made conversation with a few people. Inside I might have been slightly nervous and wondering why I came alone, but I normally just suck it up and go for it, so I did, and nobody thought I was nuts. I really wanted to say hi to George as she’d helped me choose an outfit via Snapchat the week before, but I thought I’d seem like a sack so took a seat. As I watched ladies have their hair teased into retro up-dos, Abby made her way over to say hi. She was really sweet, we had a great chat about where we were from, work, the event and she suggested I go get my hair done too. So I joined the short queue and Abby introduced me to another girl, who’d come alone. Whilst loitering I went in for the kill and tapped George on the shoulder. I explained who I was and was delighted to find she remembered our snap convo annnd I just had to tell her her boobs were even more mahooosive looking in really real life….haaa #starstruck!

 

160901013059_wmAfter having the opportunity to shop, try things on, get our hair & photos done, eat yummy canapes, drink prosecco annnnnd receive goodie bags, Abby asked us to take a seat. Herself, Georgina and Leyah all spoke about how they’ve all had issues with their bodies, their weight, their shapes, their confidence, anxiety and how the media has affected how we think we should all look. There were three totally different shaped ladies standing in front of us and I wanted to look like all of them, but at the same time why? There is only one of me, I am so rare I should be on an endangered list lads! There may have been somebody in that room wishing they looked like me! It’s so hard to remember everything that was said but one quote that stuck with me was from George, “try finding influences in YOURSELF that don’t make you feel sh*t”. We can look to others for inspiration and we can look at others in admiration but we still need to be us, not a copy. None of these women have said they are 100% happy with themselves every day, they have all said they have crap days where they don’t like what they see, as I think all of us do. What they are trying to say is what we see on the glossy pages of mags has been tweaked and airbrushed to Barbie-like proportions. For the most part it’s not what a normal woman looks like. For a start not “every” woman in that mag should be a size 6-8 and 5’7 because not every woman is a size 6-8. Most women will have blemishes, or scars, or stretchmarks or uneven skin tone…some even have tattoos, piercings and God forbid…..BODYHAIR!!! Nobody is saying don’t strive for YOUR version of perfection if it makes you happy but make sure you’re doing it because it makes you happy, not because it’s how society says you should look. Shur if we all looked the same it would be pretty boring eh?160901013332_wm

I don’t think I’ve said everything I want to say here but as this post is getting quite long, I need to draw to a close. I know that I came out of the Self-Love and Style event feeling confident, feeling positive but the whole time I was sitting there I kept thinking of how much somebody very dear to me along with one or two others could really, reeeally benefit from being here and hearing from all these really cool, stylish shapely ladies. Just to hear from people you don’t know, that you don’t have to be tall and slim to be beautiful. If any of you ever get the chance to attend  one of Abby’s events or an event like this, I’d highly recommend it.

I’ll finish by telling you about a conversation I had with a friend…. I sent her a couple of pictures of what I might be wearing to this event. She text back to say I look amazing and that she has no fashion sense. I replied saying, you probably do (have fashion sense) but you have convinced yourself you can’t wear something because of your shape. I told her about an epiphany I had whilst ironing a few nights before. If something bad happened to me where I ended up not dying but maybe paralysed but with full brain function, something where I was pretty much bed bound forever, I would hate to have all that time to think about all the things I should have done or worn but didn’t because I was afraid of what other people might think or say. Better I just do it now while I still can and not regret when I can’t.

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i just wanted to show you one of the dresses I picked up at the event from Collectif!

 

*I hope I haven’t offended anyone with my “epiphany”…it’s not intended that way.

Love
Donna xx

 

Beavergate.

I’m going to start this by saying if you’re somebody who believes your partner’s perfectly coiffeured lady garden or manscape naturally grows (or doesn’t appear to grow) in the pretty shape you see, then stop reading now. If your my brother, you probably won’t wanna read this either!

For the rest of us, who live in the real world of plucking and waxing, please read on.

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Photo credit to Allie Dragoo on Flickr

I dunno what possessed me Friday, to go and have a bikini wax. I mean I’ve had them before, they’re not fun. Maybe it’s the hot weather, tricking my brain into falsely preparing for a holiday I’m not going on…I dunno, I normally just DIY it with a tube of Veet at home. (I tried home waxing once. NOT.WORTH.THE.SAVING! First strip was manageable but forget about it after that, your brain now knows the pain you’re about to inflict on YOURSELF again and won’t allow it. The wax then starts drying, making it harder to pull off ensuing in an even more painful, slightly bloodier experience.)  Anyway, I normally go a little bit out of my area, I don’t need anybody I’m likely to run into at the nursery knowing what my lady bits look like. Plus the place I normally go to, in the grand scheme of waxing one’s nether regions, is amazing. However, these precious couple of child free hours are hard to come by (and no it’s not a 2hr job to cultivate my booosh, smart ass!) so I thought I’d chance a local salon……..

I notice as I walk in the door, there’s a special on “The Hollywood” today…hmm…no thanks, not my style. Now although the salon is full of ladies getting primped and preened, I still don’t feel comfortable shouting “hey-ay, I wanna get me fananny waxed please” over the hum of the hair dryer, so I just mumble an answer to the lady asking. Who in turn, very loudly relays that I’m here for a hollywood to her co-worker. I’m not but we can discuss styling once I’m not standing in the bloody doorway.

Said co-worker…we’ll call her Tina, for handiness sake, beckoned me to follow. I explain I’d just like a brazilian. Brazil’s always appealed to me more than Hollywood anyway. In Irish terms, your one basically says, “grand job, no bother, drop your knickers and hop up there like a flattened buddha”, and so I do. Now since attending the non-local Mecca of waxing, I’ve been forever seeking the local version annnnd I’m still currently searching, everything is compared to them. Tina has assured me she’s great at what she does, with people complimenting her on how little pain she causes, she even waxes pretty much all of her own body herself. Grand job Tina…but we shall see. She started at the top of my thigh, first strip off, it wasn’t to bad….now if you’re a beautician and there is some sort of order that mingeinas should be stripped in, then forgive me, Tina may very well have followed that order but it’s all a painful, breath holding blur to me. Unfortunately I don’t have solid upper thighs, shur listen we can’t all be perfect, and I’m no expert and I feel like Tina isn’t either, cos she is just ripping those wax strips off my inner thighs like annoying wall paper off a wall. I suggest to her that I should hold my thighs taut…lord jayzus, I’m clearly the guru here lads. Maybe it’s the fact that she feels like she shouldn’t be at work today as she’s just started her period and her tum and back are killing her. In fairness if I felt like this and had to come to work do defluff somebody else’s foof, the same thing that’s causing pain in me, then I’d probably give it a going over meself! She then has the cop on to ask me to hold my Mum-tum (why are these so hard to get rid of??) taut and attacks there…a small mercy I suppose.

Now, now…now the fun really gets going…Tina pops her head up and says “oh, I’m sorry, I forgot”. Huh? Yep…she’s only gone and scalped the lot! FFS!! She’s kinda looking at me as if to say, what will I do…she may even have telepathically asked me the question. Shur what the jayzus could she do? Stick it back on? The look I gave her said that, but my mouth betrayed me and said ah, shur what can you do, it’ll be fine! Don’t worry she says, I’ll give you Hollywood at no extra cost. Oh jee…fcuking thanks love, was the look I shot her but my mouth once again betrayed me and said “ah don’t worry I’ll pay for it!” DAM YOU MOUTH!!! I swear to God the non-local place must put some sort of calming, numbing gas in their air con cos I really don’t remember this happening…or maybe this is how the Hollywood goes….I actually really thought she was gonna give me an internal exam at one point and she most certainly burned the barn doors twice…despite me wincing and saying “wow, that’s hot!”. There was a knock on the door then, how long will you be Tina? Ten minutes. Ten minutes!!! Ten FECKING minutes…ah listen T, leave me be, I’ll make like a baby hedgehog suffering alopecia and leave. Thankfully though, after a rather close head-almost-in-my-vajayjay- inspection Tina seems happy enough and starts slathering on cream followed by clouds of talc. Oh thank God for small mercies, I go to get up. I’m not sure how it happend or how she managed it but as she’s saying turn over to me, she’s kinda managed to flip me like a burger onto my tum!! WTF IS GOING ON??? Yeah lads, shur didn’t I forget, I was upgraded to the Hollywood!! FML!

 

I’d just like to add, on later inspection, I’m pretty sure Tina removed skin in places, she IS not from Mecca Minge Defluffers and sadly is unlikely to ever make the grade. On a happier note my hoo ha is feeling alot happier now the whole ordeal is behind it….haa behind it!

The things we do to be fluff free!!

Love Donna x