Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Book Club.

This month me and my friend/life partner Sophie decided to start our own book club - official name to be confirmed.

If you've read any of my other posts you might have come across mentions of Sophie, but if you haven't she is an incredible book blogger and avid book reader. I lived with her at university and we've been fairly inseparable since.

I've always enjoyed reading but never did it regularly so haven't actually read that much. I don't know why I haven't as when I do pick up a book I tend to love it. So in order to try and get into the habit of reading more often we are going to choose one book a month to both read so that we have someone to discuss it with after finishing.

It won't be easy to find some that Sophie has yet to read but I'm sure we'll cope, I will be updating our progress on the blog/maybe YouTube so if you're interested in hearing opinions on books or reading along with us you can! Here's Sophies page so check that too.

The first book on the list for February was The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman so expect a review shortly.


Thursday, 4 February 2016


This is me trying to be topical....

So today is what the wonderful people at time to change (an anti-stigma campaign set up by mental health charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness) call Time To Talk Day.
It's all about taking a few minutes to discuss mental illness in the hopes of spreading knowledge, understanding and most importantly support. You can talk to anyone about any aspect of mental health so whether you have experienced issues, know someone that has (you will even if you don't know it yet - maybe today can be a chance to find out a bit more) or just someone that has an interest - get involved.

To do my bit I have chosen to speak to you lovely reader, please feel free to continue the conversation in the comments and/or on social media!

There is still so much stigma surrounding mental illness, I always knew this but it really came to light in my own life when my GP suggested depression might be causing the issues I've been experiencing for quite a few years now - although it's hard to know because my low iron/aneamia have similar symptoms.
The last time I visited my doctor she decided to test my bloods for iron one more time, if I am still low after being on supplements I'm headed to a specialist. If the bloods come back okay then we will look into more emotional/mental issues.
When I spoke about this to my parents one reaction was "Oh great, becoming dependent on happy pills is just what you want." as you can imagine this didn't make me feel great about the whole situation. I found myself not wanting to mention it again and retreating into myself when it came to talking about my appointment. I felt like I was a failure because it had been suggested I might not be coping emotionally without medication and that it was something that was extremely negative and almost something to be ashamed of.
Then I spoke to my cousin who herself has suffered with various mental health issues, she was amazing and it was just what I needed. We had a long chat about what symptoms I had, how they effected me and I think most importantly how I reacted to certain situations. This was when my cousin agreed that we were experiencing very similar things and that there was potential that I could be suffering from a form of depression/anxiety. She then told me she was on anti-depressants and that it's the best thing she's ever done.
This prompted me to do more research into anti-depressants and the implications they may have - I urge everyone to do this even if you won't ever need them. It opened my eyes to how many people only take them short term and it just confirmed what I already knew about the scientific and biological evidence of depression.

 I'm yet to have my follow up so I don't know which path I'll wind up on but just having a small talk with someone that didn't judge or have preconceived ideas of what mental health is or isn't was a breath of fresh air. I'm now confident in knowing that if anti-depressants turn out to be the best option to get me back on the road to good health then that is what I'll do and it's okay. If you have any other health issues you'd seek medical attention and treat it so why should it be different for your mental health?
If it's just my iron and I go to a specialist at least I have gained more of an understanding of various illness's, how they can manifest and possibly how to help.

Let's keep talking about this problem because it's there and will be beyond the 4th of February because and things need to change.


Wednesday, 3 February 2016

January Favourites

Holy shit, it's that time again, if you can believe it.
Here's a few things I've been loving this month.

- Bend It Like Beckham the musical
Anyone that knows the tiniest bit about me will be aware of my love for musical theatre and it's definitely a love I share with my friend/wife Sophie.
We both have an appreciation for shows especially when they are performed in London, feel good and based on a film that we adore.
We weren't sure if we'd get tickets to this show when we arrived that day but we were lucky enough to get some half price and we then got upgraded from circle to stall seats ..... absolutely no complaints! If you enjoy going to the theatre I can't praise this production enough, it's colourful, funny and heart-warming. Everything a good show should be and I love it so much.

- Gel nails
For Christmas I bought my sister some diy gel polishes and dryer. When she visited for dinner one evening recently she decided to have a go at mine and my mums and used the colour changing polish!
I decided to buy this one as it looked kind of fabulous - it changes colour with temperature from blue to purple and when you're somewhere in between you end up with what looks like galaxies festooning your nails and who wouldn't want that?
It worked surprisingly well, they changed colour quickly and easily plus as they are gel they didn't chip like the normal stuff.
The only negative I would mention is that it doesn't feel great taking it off, you have to soak you're nails in acetone and scrub a little too. After that my nails were very dry so I would suggest getting nail moisturiser to help too.

- Warner Brothers Studio Tour: The Making Of Harry Potter
Yes it might have been my 4th visit and yes the only difference was that they showed us how they make fake snow and do the invisible foot prints.... so was it worth it?
Everytime I've gone has been just as magical as the last and I can't think of a single person that wouldn't smile when they walk into Diagon Alley. Oh also evey 5 minutes they make it snow in the courtyard too!

- Hooker boots
These were called such after my Grandad in the past commented on my cousins that were similar... he loved them by the way.
These had been sat in my amazon wishlist for weeks but I finally clicked the buy button and haven't regretted it one tiny bit. They are comfy and what I like to call "power shoes" because when I wear them I feel like I can take on the world.

- Binge by Tyler Oakley
I've been meaning to read this one since I received the pre-order but it just seemed to stay sat on my shelf (I have no bookcase so when I say "shelf" I mean floor by my bed").
Eventually I got round to it, read half and then stopped. I don't know why but I took a break, when I picked it up again I finished it in about 3 sittings. I enjoyed his writing style, the chapters didn't really follow any chronological (or other kind of) order but I quite liked that, it felt more like he was sat with me in a coffee shop regaling stories rather than meticulously planning, writing and editing a book. It was very personal and we are now best friends. Obviously.