Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Kitchen Lust List!

 
For as long as can remember I have been obsessed with interiors. As a little girl, I dreamed of having a house when most girls dreamed of wedding dresses. I was forever re-organising my bedroom, always begging my mum to let me redecorate it. In fact in the 14 years I lived in my home before moving out, i had my room decorated about 5 times! Then when we got our first family computer, my grandparents bought me The Sims, and say no more.

So as soon as we saw our new house online I was deep in Pinterest before we had even set foot through the front door. 

The kitchen is smaller than my current kitchen but has an amazing layout, amazing cupboard & worktop space, the designers really have made the most of the space. It is a gorgeous off white gloss with dark grey worktops & matching floor.  Unlike other rooms, there isn’t much to do in this room, we already have gorgeous crockery etc so I’ve been putting together a little lust lives of my kitchen must haves for when we move! 

B&Q subway tiles, Applecrate UK shelves, Belfast Sink

First up I’ve got some of the ‘bigger’ purchases that I will need to save a little for. The kitchen is not tiles, so this is something we will definitely be doing. It goes without saying I want Subway tiles, I have found a perfect colour match to the kitchen in B&q (buy here) and they are a great price! There is a lovely big space by the kitchen window that I want to shelve, I’ve got a picture in my mind of these gorgeous chunky wood shelves full of jars, plants etc, so when I found these scaffold board style shelves on Applecrates UK, I fell in love. They are £29.99 each and I would like 3, but they will be worth the wait I’m sure!  Lastly, Although this is not a necessity at all, I really want to change the stainless steel sink for a Belfast sink (I mean who doesn’t?!) this one from Tap Warehouse (shop here) is a thing of sheer beauty!

We desperately need a new kettle and toaster. I’ve been lusting after the Breville set with the copper details, but decided as there is a lot of chrome detailing in the kitchen, to stick with the chrome version. I love these, they are a lovely fresh white and will look so nice on the side. I got these for a total bargain in Tesco too, I think £24.99 each! I also love these gorgeous ceramic jars with textured detailing and wooden lids, perfect for the coffee, tea bags & sugar. Again these will look great against the units, I want to keep the kitchen as minimalist and clean looking as I can. I’m obsessed with wood details at the moment so I love the wooden lids. These are Argos. Although I have also seen some gorgeous aztec type print ones very simialar but in grey, potentially they might bring a bit of colour, but I cannot remember where I saw them! And lastly a large glass jar from Wilko, they have them in so many sizes and they will look great full of pastas, biscuits, etc on the shelves I mentioned above. They also come with a little blackboard label which i adore because who doesn’t love labelling stuff?!

I love this serving stand from Ikea, I think it would be perfect for all our fruit and will look lovely on the side.  As I mentioned, I already have a gorgeous dinner set, plates, bowels, glassware etc but I love this pink plate from H&M Home, a few of these would be lovely for serving goodies for guests and will match the planned living room decor! The serving mitt is also H&M Home, and it’s just super cute! I only have 1 pair of oven gloves so definitely need this! And again for my shelves, I love this hanging plant from Ikea. It’s artificial, two kids to keep alive is enough!

 Lastly, I adore prints. My current home already has so many, and a new much bigger house is calling for lots more! I recently discovered Desenio Prints (I know late to the party as always!) I picked out a few things that are very ‘us’! Chris and I both love cooking and experimenting with herbs and flavours so I this herb print is on the must list, imagining it on the famous shelves! The cocktail print just goes without saying, this mama loves a cocktail! And I’m imagining the coffee print in A5 save in a little black frame above Mr P’s coffee machine! 

I have lots more products saved into my phone that I love for the kitchen, but I think these are my top products! I will certainly do a haul over on my channel once I start to buy more things. 

Do you like any of these products? What are your favourite kitchen must haves or kitchen accessories?


Thursday, 15 March 2018

A promise to myself

I was in primary school when I first looked at myself in the mirror and told myself I was ugly. That I was fat. I now find that fact absolutely horrifying, and really, really sad. That is sixteen years of saying things to myself, I would never ever say to someone else.  It is funny how those memories stay with you.  I remember a boy called bobby saying I had a nose like a pig.  Then all the other boys laughed, and in the weeks that followed they would push their noses up and snort like pigs when I walked past. I was in primary school when a teacher referred to me as 'lanky'. I was always referred to as lanky. I was always stood at the back in school plays, I always remember feeling like a total giant. I was tall and very skinny, like I am sure, many other 10 year olds but I felt huge, I would try to stand and sink my shoulders down wishing so much I could be shorter like my best friend. But I think the beginning of my insecurities started when my adult teeth came in and I was only maybe 7.  my front ones to be precise. And then the 'Bugs Bunny' comments started. The worst thing about those comments is that they came from some family members. I can hear the "whats up duck" in the stupid bloody voice so clearly.  I wouldn't hold it against them, I think people are much more aware these days, than they ever were about the effect of words. But still to this day, I try to remember to smile with my mouth shut.  I will use my hand to cover my mouth when I laugh. I don't even realise I am doing it. Those insecurities run so deep that its sub-concious now. 

 

Then  just a few months after turning 9 I developed Type 1 diabetes. And then this young awkward pre-teen, who was already experiencing insecurities, was suddenly different. Suddenly had bruises on her legs and arms from injecting 4 times a day. bruises on her little fingertips from the constant blood testing. She had to go into the cupboard to treat a hypo. It seems mad now that I had to hide away in a cupboard or a toilet to do my insulin, or drink some Lucozade. but they were the rules. Kids would should 'ewwww' at me if they saw me take a blood test. In secondary school that got worse, Girls would act as if they were going to faint if they saw me get my needles out. I totally get they didn't mean harm. Thank god, I had a little army of protectors, friends, who even though I don't see that much now, I treasure for that very reason (Tarn, Chelsea specifically, if you are reading this I am looking at you.) I always felt different. singled out. weird. disgusting. Even teachers tried to snatch away my insulin pump and I would have to explain mortified in front of a class of girls that it wasn't an MP3 player.  My injections left me with a hard patch on the front of my tummy. And that is when I remember starting to refer to myself as 'fat'. I would stand and always try to hold my arm or an object over my tummy. something I still do now. watch me on a night out, stand with my clutch over my tummy. I can't help it. In reality I think it was barely visible but to me, compared to all these other 11 year old bodies, it felt huge. Of course when I would speak to my mum about it, she would say ' you are not fat, you are beautiful, my beautiful girl.' That would make me angry. She was lying. I now know she wasn't.  It must have been painful for her to see her young daughter think that about herself.
 
I dreaded dance. a whole class of girls, in tight black leotards, in a room with a full mirror. By 13 or so, I was even taller, with big boobs and wide hips. I hated it. I loved dance, musical theatre etc had always been my 'thing'. But it stopped being my thing, right there in front of those mirrors. I would get comments from people close to me that I was 'big built' (i'm not. I am just tall.) The reality was I was a size 8/10.

At my lowest time, I would self harm. take sharp stabs at the 'fat'.  I would watch myself bleed and for a short while it just made me feel better. I cant explain why. This just went on silently in my bedroom and I was lucky that the selfharming never took over or became more than a fleeting habit. And I am not sure there is a single person who even knows that about me.

My low confidence affected my friendships. I think it still does if I am honest. I was so convinced everyone was thinking 'she is fat' etc that I withdrew. Friendships became a surface thing and I became guarded and insular. To the outside I was loud and brash, which I know sounds as if it wouldn't make sense, but to me it does. Being loud and at times, obnoxious, full of attitude was my cover up. When I was 14 I got a boyfriend, he was kind and lovely to me. He was really my best friend, and at times, my only friend and I think of him fondly, although we broke up when I was 17, he got me through those awful last years of high school. 

Then came sixth form, with my diabetes under control, I had slimmed down, and was feeling pretty good about myself.  Away from the all girl environment and at an all boys sixth from, I gained confidence, I gained friends, I remember it as one of the happiest times of my life (and is where I met Mr P.)   I had never really had attention from boys before, and I enjoyed it, is there shame in that? I don't believe so. But of course when a girl is confident, there will always be hate. And so it began. She muttered the word Slag every time I walked past her. I wasn't a slag. I don't believe anyone is ever a slag. She started rumors about me. (she had been my closest friend until she turned). Why is it girls do that to one another? 

Then I started dating Chris. I was happy, still self critical a lot of the time. But it wasn't affecting my life as much.

2014 Freddie was born, I loved being pregnant. I feel totally at home with a pregnant belly. Is it ok to even say I feel beautiful when I am pregnant. It was like getting nine whole months off criticising myself. After he was born, I started to gain weight rapidly, by the time he was 9 months old I was diagnosed with an underactive thyroid which explained the large weight gain. I find myself telling anyone who will listen that I have underactive thyroid and that the insulin I have to take to keep myself alive causes weight gain and weight loss resistance. I need to defend my size so as not to be judged. but is anyone judging? I would like to say they probably aren't. But there will be those who are, and that makes me sad.  As JK Rowling said "is fat the worst thing someone could be". I am a kind and caring person, and I so wish looks were not what we were instantly judge on. Shortly after my diagnosis of under active thyroid we had Freddie's christening, I was swollen and puffy from the illness and new medication. A lovely old lady attending the christening told me I looked 'massive' and ridiculous standing next to chris at the size I was (which in reality was a size 16). It is safe to say I haven't seen her since. But those words have stayed with me.

Pregnancy number 2, and I distinctly remember arriving at an event and instead of hearing "hello" the first thing I heard was "oh my god you are massive" followed by a waffle of my friend is ahead of you and half your size and it went on and on. I stood there, tears stinging my eyes. I did have a big bump. I had developed a dangerous condition that was affecting my bump size and the health of me and my baby, I already felt like I was failing. I was already grieving for the instagram perfect baby bump, tight skin and a glowing round bump. 

And since Ottilie's birth, I can barely look in the mirror without crying. I see myself and all I can see is this huge, massive person. but I am so, so, so tired of feeling like this. I am sick of not posting or even taking photos of myself with my children. I have so many photos of Freddie and I, but hardly any with ottilie, because I just cant bare to look at them. Even selfies, I took so many selfies with F, I look so happy. I have about 3 with ottilie. In recent months, I have gone out the house less and less because I feel so uncomfortable with how I look. I am so convinced that everyone at baby sensory will be looking at me thinking 'corrr look how ugly she is' that it is easier to stay in.

The other day I thought it would be so nice to go for a spa day, maybe with some other mums. But then I realised there is no way I could. I just couldn’t bare my body in front of anyone else. And that made me sad because I would love to do that. But my lack of confidence is stopping me. It stops me doing so much and I’m missing out. so are my babies, I haven’t yet taken Ottilie swimming despite take F from 5 weeks old, I just think everyone will be judging me. 

I just want to point out I am in no way saying this for attention etc etc, this babble does have a point, bare with me. 

Anyway, a few days ago, Freddie said to me "you are so fat mummy".  "look at your fat belly and your arms are so hugeeee mummy". I froze. 

My first thought was oh my god I am so fat and ugly even my toddler has noticed. he will be ashamed of how I look bla bla. Then I realised, there is no way my three year old thinks that of his mummy and that's when I realised he is copying me. he is repeating words he hears me say to myself.  Oh my god the guilt. I have spent a lifetime, hating myself on so many different levels, and It absolutely breaks my heart the thought of my children going through the same pain and anguish I have and continue to do so.  I want them to love themselves. I want them to be confident. I want them to know they are beautiful the way they are and anyone who says otherwise is NOT WORTHY of their time, energy and love.  If someone calls ottilie 'lanky', I want her to roll her eyes and think 'what a dick' and give it not a second thought.

I have to be a role model to them. I have to teach them the way.  so here and now I am making a promise to them and to me. 

I promise to stop critisizing myself. to stop comparing. to realise that my body is amazing.  That it fights a cruel illness every single god damn day and that I am a warrior. I have conceived, grown and birthed two beautiful children, despite the odds. The soft tummy that squeezes into my jeans is nothing to be ashamed of. I am me. I exercise. I eat healthily. Instead of focusing on what I hate about my appearance I will concentrate on nourishing it, to give it the care and love it deserves. No more slagging it off in the mirror. I will put my energy into leading a healthy life, to teach my children about self love, self care and self belief. 

I am exhausted by it all. I wanted to write this as this is my truth, a part of my story. My pretty instagram pictures don't tell my whole truth and I don't want someone looking at my Instagram or blog, youtube, whatever and feeling shit about themselves, like I do looking at other people. SO this is the truth. And I am making a change, because life is too fucking short to not leave the house in case someone thinks you are fat. Or to cover your mouth every time you laugh in case someone thinks you have big fucking teeth. So you can expect to see me and my massive nashers grinning at you very soon. 

This year I said I would work hard to fight my demons. To make a change. Be positive. Find me. And I think this has been a great first step. And if I am all about positivity and empowering women, I need to start with myself, right? Thank you for reading. 

Big loves.

Ps. You are beautiful.


Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Do you beleive in fate?


If you follow me on Instagram or have seen my new Youtube channel, you will know that we have wanted to move for a while.  In fact the plan was to move while pregnant. However with my step dad's cancer diagnosis it just wasn't a good time so I made do with staying put for a while.  Once he was given the all clear and Ottilie had arrived safely into the world, we decided 2018 would be our year to buy a house.  So in October, we put our beloved two bedroom flat up for sale.  

Within 4 weeks we had a  buyer and I had found a house that would suit us.  But it all went tits up as these things often do.  Our buyer pulled out and we lost the house we wanted. Heartbreak hotel.  But as people kept saying to us; "It just wasn't meant to be". 

The weeks went on and over Christmas we got majorly fed up, it felt like our flat had been on sale for ages with little interest. several more viewings came in January but no offers.  But then fate stepped in, weird coincidence or whatever you want to call it.  My mum and step dad had also put their house up for sale earlier in the summer.  They had been asked if they wanted to view a house, they knew it wasn't really for them, and despite almost cancelling last minute, decided to go and have a look anyway.  They got chatting to the estate agent showing them round, and long story short she had a son, desperate to buy a flat in Kingshill. My mum gave her my details and the next day she called, absolutely itching to get her son round to view.  He viewed the following day and put an offer in! Yay, we had a buyer! he began proceeding with solicitors etc almost straight away, so we knew he was serious.  Problem was we couldn't find anything we A, liked, B could afford (F*ck you south east house prices).

My parents had since decided they were moving to a little village about 20 minutes from where we live now. We had ruled out moving there too, we didn't know much about the area. I found a little cul-de-sac of new build houses on line, that sounded perfect, but the location was vague and I wasn't sure they were in a location we would want to be in (typical), there would probably be none left anyway as it said they had been built since October 2017.  I decided to ring the number just to see and again by some weird fate and coincidence, they were in the very same village my mum will be moving too!  I had such exciting butterflies, and we jumped straight in the car to go and investigate. 

When we found the road they were in, I just instantly knew. Rolling countryside views. two parking spaces right outside, a small little cul-de-sac of new builds and the houses looked perfect.  We did some more investigating in regards to the location, it would only add 15 minutes to Mr P's work journey, it was an 11 minute walk to the primary school, and a village shop/cafe/hairdressers etc. Perfect. 

This is when we went a little bit crazy... We were due to go to Disneyland the following week.  There was only four 3 beds left, They were doing viewings the week we were away and it would be likely they would all be reserved.  We did manage to get into all the gardens to see the garden size and peek inside and after seeing the gardens and the floor plans we set our hearts on number 7. So we decided, so not to miss them whilst away in Disney, to pay to reserve number 7, WITHOUT going inside! I know crazy.  Then it got seriously tense... We were not allowed to reserve one, before we had the Memorandum of sale (basically a piece of paper confirming) for the sale on our property! Our buyer needed to submit more things to the solicitor and we were told the earliest it would be issued would be Wednesday the following week.  We needed to reserve our house by Thursday am or risk loosing it to another buyer. SQUEAKY BUM TIME. 

So we spent the weekend and first half of our Disney trip seriously on edge.  Then Wednesday afternoon, our estate agent called.  The Memorandum of sale was done and had been issued.  So we rang and like two excited puppies paid to reserve our home.  £500 is a lot of money we wouldn't have got back if we decided we didn't like it, so thank the lord we absofrickinlutely love it on the inside too! 

I am going to be putting up a vlog of our first viewing on Saturday so keep your eyes peeled! 

I know that was totally long winded, but I really wanted to record this part of the journey.  We still have a little way to go.  I am hoping we will exchange contracts soon and we can really relax.  I am still scared that something will go wrong and am nervous to let myself really believe that this home will be ours.  Waiting for the solicitors to do their thing is SCARY. If I thought buying was scary, selling and buying simultaneously is by far alot worse! Any how, I pretty much share my whole life on social media and was finding it pretty hard to keep this in.  So I am embracing this nerve wracking journey and keeping my fingers and toes crossed that I will be sharing our 'family in front of our new front door with cheesy grins' photo VERY soon. The estimated move date we've been given is rather close so it is time to get organising and Pinteresting! I cant wait to take you on this journey with us, turning our three bed new build into a cosy, loved, family home.