Category Archives: General

Activity tracker hates me

My activity tracker hates me

 

Activity tracker hates me

That’s me after a run. Okay, it’s not me, I’m lazy, haven’t run since the last time I was about to miss a bus, and I bought a Jawbone Up a few months ago to motivate me. I’ve since come to the sad conclusion that my fitness tracker hates me.

Why?

Well. At first I had it set to nag me every 30 minutes if I hadn’t moved. This was called an idle alert and it vibrated the  bracelet helpfully to remind me I was being a lazy cow. Except that I wasn’t really being lazy at all. I was on a train, or a bus, or a deadline. The problem was that it didn’t know that my lack of physical activity wasn’t always down to Eastenders and Netflix, but most of the time I was doing things that paid for luxuries like a smart phone with a Jawbone app that nags me.

I soon turned that function off. It made me feel  guilty when I WAS being lazy and  just annoyed me.

I loved the nifty sleep function. I really like getting geeky and seeing how  much sleep I’ve had, dream sleep, deep sleep and light sleep. As I expected, most of my sleep is light, which is  my beloved’s farts always wake me up! Its a great function…until it starts nagging you to go to bed. “Smart Coach noticed you’ve been going to bed late recently” and “Try to go to sleep before 9.53 to get enough sleep”

I’m 45! It’s a while since anyone’s told me  it’s past my bedtime.

Even better, if I do defy smart coach, it tells me off. “You missed your bedtime!”

Sorry…

Another reason my activity tracker hates me is that I don’t do 10,000 steps a day. I mean, sometimes I do. But you know, rain, cold, work, Hollyoaks. So it tells me how many steps I do and helpfully adds, “You haven’t been  your normal active self today”

Smart Coach is a sarcastic cow.

If my heart rate is a bit high when I wake up, it helpfully suggests that I might like to drink more water, do some yoga or go to bed early. I was probably just having one of those awful nightmares about spiders. Or my ex husband.

So why can’t I just take it off and stamp on it? It’s because when I do hit my step target, sleep for eight hours and drink eight glasses of water, I feel like I’ve achieved something. Until smart coach tells me I missed bedtime AGAIN…

If you want to torture yourself with your lack of activity or erratic sleep habits, find out more here…. https://jawbone.com/up

 

 

wpid-wp-1469831741868.jpg

Writer girl 

You can take girl away from the magazine but you can’t make her stop writing. 
I’ve got a massive creative surge going on right now and I’m trying to decide what to do with it. My business website is being redesigned, and apparently a WordPress update has sent the whole site into meltdown so it could be in maintenance for some time. 

For research, I started reading my Professional Beauty magazines and I really got the urge to write magazine features again. I used to love writing features… Finding stories, getting inside information, interviewing interesting people and getting things from different angles. I know it was just spa and salon magazines,  not anything heavyweight,  but I adored it. The whole process of putting a magazine together was just absorbing and I learned so much. 

Being freelance I do get to work on magazine features sometimes but most of my work is web copy and blogs. They have rules that features didn’t. SEO rules. Word count. Click bait. It’s a different ballgame. 

I still write for trade magazines, mainly health and social care but I yearn to write something meaty and dare I say glamorous?  I want to create a magazine of my own one day, online if I have to, but indulge my writer girl habit in interviews and actually finding out interesting things that people might not know. 

I’m also getting urges to get more artsy and creative with pictures, photos and design. 

I suppose the best thing about being freelance is that I get to do whatever I want with my business. Watch this space… 

Dad

Happy Birthday Dad

 

Dad

It would have been Dad’s 75th birthday today.

It’s been almost a year since  we said goodbye to him, and I wanted to write something, but rather than wait  the anniversary of the day he died, I  wanted to celebrate his life, on the anniversary of the day he was born. It seems so much nicer. So here’s my birthday letter to my Dad…

Dad, its not the same without you . I still think of the house in Ipswich  as ‘Mum and Dad’s’ and I catch myself saying it out loud sometimes too. Mum has a cracking picture of you on the landing, your eyes seem to follow me around the room and you have a knowing smile on your face. Mum says that sometimes  if she has a bad day and she’s looking at  the photo, she tells you to stop smirking. I thought that might make you laugh.

I know you believed in Jesus and heaven, and that  you had faith you’d end up there eventually. I remember you being quite impatient to go there, this time last year. I hope you found your heaven. I hope you’re enjoying yourself,  swapping anecdotes with Terry Wogan, Victoria Wood and Caroline Aherne. I think you might be a bit wary of David Bowie and Prince though -but I’m sure they’re lovely.

I’m sure I can feel you around sometimes. Often if I’m upset or frustrated I can imagine you giving me that look, the one that meant you really wanted to tell me what to do, but thought better of it. I think to myself, ‘I wonder what Dad would say’, when I’m stuck. I think about you  whenever I see a robin – they seem to show up a lot. Remember your last Christmas when you decided to collect just about every Christmas robin ornament you came across and put it somewhere in your room? You proudly showed off your little collection when you came home from the hospice and it was just the two of us, and we had a laugh at  the daftness of it all.

I’ll always be glad I had that week with you. I did my best to spoil you, and you were on good form that week. I’m very glad you decided not to drive again though. That drive back from the garden centre was a bit of a white knuckle ride!

I hope you’ll be proud of what I’ve achieved this year…it’s not been the easiest year but the setbacks have just made me more determined. You said that I should stand up for myself more, and that I could have a lovely life if I stopped doing what everyone else wanted me to. I’m working on my people pleasing. Officially a work in progress. If you’re watching over us, you’ll  also know that me and Moley could do with a hand sometimes, too. It’s not been plain sailing this year…is it ever?

I miss you every day, Dad, we all do. Jenny bought you a present from the garden centre for Father’s day, Mum is taking flowers to church to remember you on your birthday. I’ll be thinking of you, and smiling at good memories. You in that Fez, doing magic tricks badly. I’ve still got that Fez.

Dad's fez

Remember the Christmas parties where you insisted we all had to dress up? The gleeful way you joined forces with Andy B to annoy me and Mum with Barron Knights songs? Playing the Stylophone with me (Mum found that in the loft the other day, shame about the whole Rolf Harris thing)

I could go on and on. As time passes, more little memories pop up. I wish you were here today, wanting everyone around you and to be centre of attention on your birthday.I wish I could give you one more daft card and a nice pressie, and go out for dinner with you and Mum to celebrate. I know we’d end up at the Westerfield Railway, and you’d probably have the belly pork. With a glass of something alcoholic, seeing as it was your birthday.

So I’ll raise a glass to you today, Dad, on your birthday. Love you, miss you. Happy Birthday

Sarah

xxx

 

 

 

 

IMG_20160718_1015318_rewind

Monday- it’s a bit warm

IMG_20160718_1015318_rewind

I’m off to sunny Diss in Norfolk today, to talk to a potential new client. It’s always good to get new clients on a Monday, it sets you up for the week. I’m in a good mood today, despite being hot and bothered, and dreaming that I had slugs growing up my nose last night. The dream was so hideous that I decided to stay awake and lose at Yahtzee on my phone instead of trying to go back to sleep. 

So here I am, in the sunshine,  waiting for the   10.24, eavesdropping and wondering when the young couple sitting on the bench next to me will realise that their  baby has done a  monumentally smelly poo in his nappy. Because I’ve  noticed. As has probably everyone else on the station. Please don’t sit too close to me on the train. I don’t deserve that. I’m a good person.

The pooey nappy reminds me of  a story I heard about a dopey  mum of a five  year old who when she was asked why the child was still on nappies, replied “she’s shown no interest in her potty! ”

She probably thinks it’s an ornament. Sit her on the thing until the poo is forthcoming and she’ll soon get the picture. Poor baby will get mercilessly teased wearing nappies when she starts school. Like I was when I wet myself in the playground because a few girls were holding me down and tickling me to see what happened. I had to wear navy blue knickers from the lost property. I was only about six and I knew the true meaning of humiliation already.

Anyway, off I go to Diss to seek my fortune. Fingers crossed smelly nappy baby sits at the other end of the train and my negotiations go according to plan. Have a nice Monday!

625c70ba1816f98549f4e22495670b4b

Change of direction

625c70ba1816f98549f4e22495670b4b

You have no idea what I’ve been through to get this blog post done. But I was inspired and it seemed a shame not to run with it. 

So I’m writing from my phone, because the only way I can update this at the moment is by turning the WiFi off and using my data. Really. The web host has been having some issues with all the sites in its server and mine have all copped it. If you’re looking at the link on a Sky connection you’ll think it’s expired. Excrement. I meant to type excellent there, and it got auto corrected, but I liked it.

So, a change of direction?  I’ve been a bit lost taking about the plus size and health stuff lately. I’m just not as  bothered as I was. I’m bored with all the outrage and pointless spats about the use of the term plus size. Or who is really fat and who is playing at it.

I don’t want to go on about my life either. It’s not that exciting. I write stuff. I eat stuff. Sometimes I exercise. You know about Dad. I miss him, we all do, but you guys don’t want to hear about that every time I write a post.

I can’t tell you about the job I just left. Maybe  because I signed the official secrets act and I don’t fancy being thumb screwed by the men in grey at HMRC if I spill the beans on the highly classified work I was doing there. Or maybe because I’ve filed the whole experience under “WTF was I thinking?“ and subdivision “never speak of this again”

So I’m just going to talk about  everyday stuff that I think about. I’m getting my mojo back, found my sparkle under the sofa and I’m on a massive creative roll at the moment. Right now the things occupying my mind include my sleep statistics (I’ve got  a Jawbone), and a lack of sleep, according to said gadget.

Turning 45 and not wanting to look or feel it is up there, along with the perennial “Why do people watch Jeremy Kyle and even worse, why do they appear on it? “

I might even share a bit of politics if I’m feeling ranty. I’m a lefty, liberal, feminist Europhile so that could make for interesting comments.

It’s getting late so right now all I’ll say is:

1. I wish my laptop would bloody well finish its updates. It’s been on 34 of 36 since I started this post and I want to go to bed now.

2. I really want my blog fixed so people on Sky Broadband can see it and not think this is a spam site.

3. I wonder if I’ll get eight hours sleep tonight. My Jawbone app twinkles at me if I do.

Night all.

Still on update 34….

Red umbrella in storm

The One Where I Really Should Have Listened

finalbolest1

I think you can probably call it a life lesson.

You might have wondered why there’s been nothing from Gorgeously Full Fat since September? Where do I start? Obviously losing Dad was MASSIVE. I watched him deteriorate slowly and spent more hours than I care to count up sobbing on my dear Moley’s shoulder. It’s not nice seeing someone you love going through that.

It’s just as bad not knowing how to help – my Mum was looking after him right up to about a week before he died and we were all worried about her almost as much as we were worried about him. I thought I’d done most of my grieving before he went; I was way off the mark!

Distraction

While I was processing everything, I was distracted by the promise of a new job that was going to take me away from it all. I liked the idea of a new start. I’d let freelance work slip, lost a few clients that hadn’t been replaced and in all honesty I was ready to chuck it all in and go back to office world again. I was feeling bereft; I wasn’t useful to Mum any more, Dad was gone.

Moley was having issues of his own that I couldn’t help with and I wanted to run away. I started fantasising about getting my old Ipswich life back, a new job,a  new home perhaps, social life and a chance to be near to Mum again. We saw a flat we loved, and put everything in motion to buy it.

I was excited about the thought of a new job and totally ignored the nagging feeling that I might not be doing the right thing. (sign #1) I put it down to nerves as it was years since I’d worked in an office. I couldn’t shake the uneasy feeling but it was too late, I’d committed myself, everyone was so pleased I’d got a ‘proper’ job. I even bought proper work clothes!

Grey November

I started the job in November. I was determined to make a good impression and to really make a go of it. We were going through the mortgage process, it was all going to plan although the fees seemed to be escalating and I was putting every spare penny into the house buying fund. We were both really excited about the move, it felt like a new start, and after the year we’d had, we bloody well needed one. So I ignored the sinking feeling when I walked into the basement of my new office building and started my two week induction (sign #2), I was going to damn well make the best of it.

The other newbies were really nice, which was a bonus. On the second day we all got taken to the area of the office we’d be working in…I was hit by a sense of OHMYGOD when I looked across at banks of desks, monitors and people in headsets. The phones were ringing continuously and the heating was up so high I felt a bit faint. I was going to be working in the civil service version of a call centre. And everything was grey (sign #3)

Then the flat fell through (sign #4) taking a whole lot of upfront fees with it.

Red umbrella in storm

Not such a Gorgeously Full Fat Christmas

Still determined to make the best of it, I headed up to where I was going to be based and got put with a ‘buddy’ responsible for training me. I was really lucky, he was very laid back, and I liked him, We spent more time than we probably should have done between calls talking about food, especially when we were on a late lunch break.

I went out with the team for pre Christmas drinks and most of them didn’t seem to like the job much, although everyone was really lovely and friendly, the impression I got was that most people would be off at the first opportunity. A lot of them had been transferred from another office and felt like they’d almost been tricked into it (sign #5)

Flexitime that wasn’t

I was really hacked off because not only had the move fallen through, but now I was going to be travelling to Ipswich every day, I realised that the flexitime was actually a rosta and the only shift I could realistically get in for was the 10-6.  (sign #6) It was OK, though, the managers said they’d let me get in a bit late for the 9-5 and I could make up for it when I was doing the 10-6 shifts. Then they scrapped the 9-5 shift altogether and I was stuck on the late shift, every night (sign #7)

Then from January, the powers that be shut the waiting rooms on Bury St Edmunds Station for at least six weeks. It might not seem like much but when you’re waiting there for 30 minutes or more every day, and it’s bloody freezing, a waiting room is an essential. (sign #8)

 

The silent scream

Moley’s hero, David Bowie, died on 10 January. I was sad; I actually shed a few years, something I haven’t done for many celebrity demises, Then we lost Alan Rickman. That was a depressing week. Ashes to Ashes was the soundtrack of the entire week – not a happy song in itself.

Strung out in heaven’s high, hitting an all time low” reverberated around my head. It was there every morning when I woke up, taunting me.

At this point, every part of my psyche was screaming at me to go back to the job I loved. But I had too many voices in my head telling me to do different things. And none of them were mine! I knew my family were relieved I had a full time job. Mum was happy I was back in the civil service and working in Ipswich, even though the 30 minute lunch break meant I never got to see her. Moley was pleased there was regular money coming in. Mum in law never really understood freelancing and was always keen for me to get a job in an office or a shop.

But my heart wasn’t in it. And I had Dad’s words on my side; he told me not to let other people tell me what to do. He asked me – OK made me promise – to sort myself out. And in the book he left me, he also said that his advice to me was to decide what I wanted – and go for it. I felt almost as if he was the only one on my side as I got more and more flattened by the job, the travel and the hours.

Numbing out

I would be in tears on a Monday morning sometimes. I couldn’t get out of bed; I couldn’t sleep either. Moley knew how miserable and tired I was; I didn’t want to go out or do anything at the weekend, the cleaning wasn’t getting done, only the bare minimum, and he was getting sandwiches for dinner. I didn’t do any food shopping any more. I wasn’t in for a Tesco delivery and I couldn’t face going to the supermarket  (sign #9)

17401_costa-coffee

I’d sit on the sofa playing on my phone night in, night out, numbing my brain and trying to escape. I filled my days at work with endless cups of coffee and shit food to keep my energy up, I forgot what vegetables and fruit looked like but got to know the relative merits of every coffee shop and sandwich shop in Ipswich!

Happy Pills

The doctor increased my happy pills dose. Did I mention I was on those? Never thought it would happen to me but a week and a half before I started the job I was still crying all the time and in no fit state to start a new career. The pills didn’t seem to help a lot but a couple of weeks into January I gave in and upped the dose (sign #10).

I went into work, afterwards by this point I was hating every day. I was so exhausted I was struggling to stay awake after about 3pm. I was up at 6.30 (usually awake about 5) out of the house at 7.30, waiting in the cold for a bus to the station, waiting in the cold for half an hour at the station for the train, getting into Ipswich at 9, at work about 9.30 with a take away coffee in my hand. I’d work on the phones until about 1.30, grab a half hour lunch (walk to the shop, grab a sandwich, walk back and eat it) then work through till 6. It wasn’t unusual to be there after six – my record was 6.30 as I was stuck on a 40 minute call. I’d walk to meet Moley who would drive me home and by the time we were out of Ipswich and I was home it would be 7.15 ish,  I felt guilty because I couldn’t keep up with the little bit of freelance work I’d kept on so financially we were worse off with my train and bus fares!

I was often in bed by 9, tossing and turning. Four hours sleep was about average, six was a treat!

Tipping point – the last sign

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9vfMj1Fae0s

So what tipped me over the edge? What sign did I actually listen to? Well, I was talking to Moley about having to go to work the next day and I felt physically sick, I blurted out “I just want to go back to freelancing”

I’d been wanting to say that for so long I thought I was going to burst. It was like a pressure building up inside me, I was being told so unequivocally that I should be writing. I’d had a day off and done some freelance stuff for a client and enjoyed being creative so much I was almost aching to get my old life back again. I missed being able to write and come up with ideas. I missed feeling useful.

Moley amazed me. He said he’d support me whatever I decided and I said I’d think about it for a week or so. Inside I was doing cartwheels. I forced myself in for another week and as I got out of the car on the Friday evening I said, “I think I’m getting a sore throat”

And some.

That was it. I had chills, a fever, aches, my skin hurt to touch and then I got tonsillitis and a cough. I’ve still got a sore throat two weeks later. I resigned last week, then this week after going in for a few days and feeling like absolute death, waking up at 4 in the morning and not sleeping again, taking far too many painkillers and wanting to sleep all the time, I saw the doctor. So I’m now signed off for two more weeks and when I go back I have a few days and I’m done.

Listening to my inner gut feeling would have saved me all this stress, When will I learn?

I have to say, the people I worked with were all lovely. Even the managers. I can’t fault any of them…it just wasn’t me, it felt wrong, and as if I was being forced to rethink from the word go. I also need to say that my darling husband has been amazing. He’s been 100% supportive and understanding. I was so happy when he agreed that it was for the best that I gave the job up, despite the fact he works all hours at the moment. I love him to bits, I suppose I never thought anyone would care enough to be so supportive. I’ll make him proud! I’m so lucky to have such a lovely husband.

So as of 26 February I get to start again. How lucky am I?

Anyway…that’s what’s been going on. Sit tight for the fun part!

 

 

 

 

140416 Dad

Dad

140416 Dad

So my last post was almost two months ago…I guess you can probably tell that there’s been a lot going on, and in all honesty I haven’t had the time, energy or inclination to sit and write blog posts because I’ve just not been in the mood for it.

Dad died on 11 August.

Yes, we had well over two years to prepare for it, but you never think it’s going to happen. Especially if your dad fought like mine did to stay around. I still think he’s going to surprise us all by having another miraculous recovery, that yesterday’s funeral was all a bad dream and he’ll be back in that chair dispensing anecdotes and words of wisdom again one day.

Only, he won’t.

I thought I’d feel better once the funeral was over as I’d been dreading that day so much. It was the saddest I have ever felt. His funeral was in two parts; the crematorium which was absolutely hideous but mercifully very short, and the service at his old church where friends and family all came to celebrate his life rather than mourn his death. The church was full, he had so many friends and people who wanted to say goodbye. He would have been pretty chuffed to see the turn out, and hear the lovely things people said about him.

My brother and I both wrote eulogies for him, and we tried to keep it light-hearted because he said he didn’t want misery, he wanted people to have a laugh, and remember him with a smile. I hope I did him proud. I wasn’t sure I’d manage it – thought I might make a show of myself and not be able to say it all, but luckily I did.

The thing is, I feel even sadder today. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s the thought of my brother and his husband flying back to Australia tomorrow and knowing I won’t see them for possibly two years. Maybe it’s the finality of everything – we’ve all been so focused on Dad for so long, how he is, whether he’s up or down, whether he’s in or out of the hospice, what the doctors are saying, then the funeral…it’s left a big space in more ways than one. I miss him so much. I never thought it was possible to feel emotions I did in his last days at the hospice, on the one hand just wishing he would let go and be at peace, on the other hand selfishly just wanting him to stay around a little bit longer because I wasn’t ready to lose him quite yet.

The last time I spoke to him properly was three days before he died. He was telling us to pray for him to go peacefully, and talking to me and my sister about the book he’d left for me with his life story questions in it. He was even being cheeky about the nurses and having a bit of a laugh. That’s how I wanted to remember him, and it’s how I will remember him. He passed away peacefully, with Mum by his side, in the St Elizabeth’s Hospice in Ipswich. He wasn’t in pain, and had been asleep for a couple of days, but we had all been sitting with him, talking to and about him, laughing and joking about the good times and silly things we’d done together. I know I saw his eyebrows go up a few times and I swear he almost smiled at one point.

His last wish for me was that I would sort out my health. So I promised him that I would. Right now, I’m still getting my head around everything, but once I’m back to myself again, I’ll be doing that, for you, Dad.

So…RIP my lovely Dad. You were there for all of us when we needed you, I love you, and I hope I was there for you when you needed me too. Gone, but never forgotten…

PS: I’m going to be raising money however I can for the hospice – it’s such an amazing place. If you feel moved to make a donation, if you knew Dad or just know a good cause when you see it, you can donate here:

http://peter.clark.muchloved.com/

Broken into Tiny Pieces

woman-506120_1280

Baby steps.

That’s how you’re supposed to do it, right?

You know when you get to that point in your life where you reach complete overwhelm? That might or might not be right about now. But I’m OK – this is a cheerful post, despite the title. I’m on this, I’m breaking it down, I’m dealing.

So you know when you have one of those days where you wake up with so many things on your mind that you know you need to address, but you really don’t know where the freaking hell to start?

I had one of those dreams last night that makes you sit up and think about what life could have been like if I’d taken a few different turns in the road, and although it wasn’t a particularly pleasant dream, I woke up with a sense of “I can do this.”

I think when you know there’s so much in your life that you’re not entirely happy about, some of it which you feel completely powerless over and other parts which you think you could probably make a start on but are going to take A LONG TIME, the temptation is to think “Ah, sod that” and just have another biscuit. Or is that just me?

So I’m taking stock of what I’m already doing to upgrade my life and what really does need sweeping out from under the carpet.

I CAN take control of the niggly little health issues that bother me. I have the power to make a start on that and so I have. I’m self-employed and I’m proud of the fact I’ve never had a day off sick in almost eight years but I do need to look after myself.

SELF CARE BABY!

(I’m not good at self-care. Everyone who knows me, knows that.)

I’m making the most of technology and have linked my Fitbit with Map My Walk and My Fitness Pal so that I can cheer myself on in tech. I am SO proud of myself for actually getting off the sofa at 8pm yesterday and going for a walk. That time of day is usually reserved for getting acquainted with the sofa…

I’m going to be really, really brave and look at my money situation as well. This year has been a complete and utter bitch financially, and I’m sorting that at so many different levels. I’m working on my money blocks using techniques from Denise Duffield Thomas’ amazing books, I’m tapping away at all the emotional baggage I have around money and not feeling I deserve it; and in practical terms I’m investing time into Pick Yourself Up at the moment, I’m applying for regular jobs to take the OMIGOD out of looking at my bank account and I’m also going to write a book to go with Pick Yourself Up about how I’m doing all this.

I haven’t decided whether to make it a self-help book or embellish the story a little and make it read like a novel – it’s not started yet!

I’ll blog it as I go along anyway.

I have to look at my overdrafts and accounts today and start small on setting up a savings account and a ‘pay shit off’ account. Starting small is going to be the way to go. My income is dropping by another third next month and I’m slightly worried to say the least!

I want to upgrade my life TOTALLY. There’s so much I need to sort out and so I’m looking at the little things, breaking it into baby steps, using my new EFT Tapping training to help me work on emotional baggage and looking after myself at the same time.

I just had a massive wake up call this weekend and it’s made me think a LOT about where my future lies, what I’m aiming for, my goals, my values and stopping coasting along when I could be doing so much more.

So, yeah. Tiny pieces…

Moley Farty Pants

Very strange naked man farts by fire

My name is Sarah and I have a problem.

OK, so technically, my husband has the problem, but he shares it with me. He’s a chronic farter.

Before anyone tuts and thinks that I might be in all sorts of trouble for sharing this little issue with the world, it’s OK. He’s actually quite proud of it. When he left his last job, there were references to his delightful smell in his leaving card, and most people give him fart-related jokey gifts for Christmas.

I’m just putting out a request for any help that anyone might have in stopping this atrocious habit before he spends more nights on the sofa that he does in bed! Many a night just lately he’s been banished to sleep in the living room in disgrace, after a night (or two) of not only waking me up with a jump with a particularly violent sleep trump, but the aftermath that makes me choke – then have to leave the bedroom in search of air freshener. If you hear a news story about a woman who snaps and smothers her husband with a pillow in the middle of the night, I plead extreme provocation and quite possibly a bit of fart poisoning.

You see, Moley’s emissions are not just amusing little toots that come along every now and again and do no harm. He didn’t earn himself the nickname ‘Rancid Mole’ from a few noisy trumps that made everyone giggle. He can clear a room. A house, even. If you get stuck in a car and he has to let one go it’s all you can do to restrain your gag reflex. It’s vile.

Secrecy, reluctance, talkativeness concept. Woman closed her mou

These farts can strip wallpaper. They make your eyes water. It doesn’t matter what he eats, either. Beans obviously set him off as does cheap Iceland jalapeno pizza but it really doesn’t matter what he eats, he will still fart. I beat him around the head with cushions, I shout, I swear, I make him take charcoal tablets, I threaten him with a room full of scented candles. I even spray him with perfume (although I’ll have to stop that, I’m getting low).

Other than that, he’s really quite lovely. He’s kind, he’s caring, he’s funny. He gives good cuddles, he puts the bins out, washes up and hoovers when I ask him to and he brings me home wine and flowers to cheer me up if I’m having a bad time. So, apart from the smell, I can’t really complain.

If anyone knows a surefire cure for flatulence, please let me know….

Beautiful young woman jumping on a giant flower

Picked up by my Bra Straps and dropped on my head!

Beautiful young woman jumping on a giant flower

 

It’s been a very eventful few weeks, that’s for sure!

But I’m in a better place than I have been, with a renewed sense of determination and purpose, and it’s FRIDAY so it’s all good.

The ‘Bra Straps’ project came to a halt two weeks ago when we went our separate ways. I’m not prepared to slag my ex-business partner off here, but in all honesty I rushed in too quickly, beguiled by a strong personality and a bit of flattery, and the promise of a 50/50 partnership in an idea I really thought could work.

In reality I found out that I was dangerously close to letting myself get steamrollered in a direction that made me feel uncomfortable, My vision for Bra Straps was totally different when I approached her at the start – but in my efforts to try and keep her happy I changed direction a bit and  I started feeling more and more uncomfortable with what we were doing.

Yeah, I’m all for positivity, self improvement and the Law of Attraction. I love me a bit of The Secret and Reiki/EFT – but I wanted to give women practical ideas and support, not empty promises and ideas they couldn’t put into practice. I can tell you to love yourself  until the sun comes down but if you really DON’T then the words are empty without a way of learning HOW, and giving you some support while you do it,

When I tried to put the brakes on the legal side of things until we’d established what we were actually going to be able to offer people, and how we were going to help anyone, it didn’t go down very well, and within a week, I was going it alone. I was OK about it at first, it meant I could go back to my original idea, even if I’d agreed to drop the Bra Straps part of the name. I hadn’t bargained on the financial repercussions of asking my accountant for advice on the partnership, the still unpaid for website or the fact I’d have to rewrite practically EVERYTHING I’d done.

pick1

I’d been wrestling with the fact I promised my Dad I’d sort my health out, and the combination of this and the fact that before we went our separate ways, I was being led down the road of  potentially getting seen in the media, photo shoots and being a public figure meant I also found myself at Weight Watchers for the first time in almost 15 years! It lasted a week. I lost two pounds, went home and binged for two days and realised “If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got”

I wasn’t sure how to deal with everything so I parked it for a while and focussed on building up the community of fantastic women on the free page for  Pick Yourself Up, and deciding on the way forward for the business. In all honesty, I’m going to have to get a full time job to pay for it all. BUT I’m still working on it and loving it. Instead of focussing just on one person’s experiences, and metaphysical ideas that not everyone can connect with, Pick Yourself Up is going to be about community, support and inspiration. I’m mixing positivity with practicality, writing ebooks and worksheets, setting up webinars (all in good time) and opening up a paid membership site to anyone who has something they want to share and promote. ANYTHING.

PYU

 

So if you are a business owner, you will be able to join for a small fee, and then promote what you do, on the understanding you also get involved and help other people. The same applies to anyone with a charity or interest they want to share, a fundraising project, a book….anything.

It’s open to people who just want to be part of a fun, upbeat and positive community of women, too. You don’t have to have anything to promote. I want it to be somewhere people can go for help, if they feel low, need a bit of a confidence boost or just advice.

I have ALWAYS wanted to be able to make a difference, to help people. This is how I’m going to do it. Why am I charging? Because websites are expensive, I have to pay for images, SEO, MailChimp and everything else, and it takes time to write ebooks. That’s all :)

As I was working on it this week, I decided to offer something I wrote ages ago to members as a freebie – my 35 Things to do before you go on a diet e-book. Of course, I re-read it. I read about the Chill Pod, Fitness Pod and more and remembered – they bloody work, Why the hell had I stopped using them? Pods are from ‘Thinking Slimmer‘ and are MP3′s you can listen to anywhere, dealing with boosting your confidence levels, inspiring you to enjoy fitness, relaxation, and helping you make choices effortlessly that put you back in control of your eating. They worked for me before and I stopped them because I couldn’t be arsed to listen to them.

They are all about 10 minutes long. Really?

Guess what I’m doing now?

Yep. Back listening to them again. I’m worth it, right?

It’s been a roller coaster. Isn’t my life ALWAYS? But I’m still sorting it all out. I’m still determined to get healthy for my Dad, who’s still with us. I promised, and I stick to my promises. I just might take a bit longer but weirdly after a couple of listens I REALLY want to get to the gym and I feel like looking after myself again.

So, you can pick me up, drop me on my head, even point and stare at me while I’m down there. But I don’t stay down for long! Have a fab weekend, lovelies. And if you fancy joining the page, here’s the link: Pick Yourself Up