Just a little extra post for today. As I’ve not been feeling well past few days and my lack of sleep has caught up with me I went for simple but gorgeous comfort food tonight. Baked Beans on Toast but not as you think, mine has a little twist.
Branston Baked Beans x 1 can
Wholemeal Bread x 2 slices
Fresh parsley x chopped handful or to taste (I like lots)
Parmesan Cheese x freshly grated
Freshly ground black pepper
Now I know you are not stupid but I can guarantee if I don’t write the method someone will ask me.
So open the can of beans (I much prefer Branston than Heinz) put in a microwavable container and cook according to your microwave instructions, mine is 3 minutes as I like mine really hot.
While the beans are cooking toast two rounds of wholemeal bread.
While all this is cooking chop up some fresh parsley, I used flat leaf but you can use curly too. I have about a small handful but I love parsley. They are your beans so have as much or as little as you like.
By this time everything should be ready so butter your toast (proper butter sorry none of that pretend rubbish), mix the fresh parsley into your beans and pour over your toast.
All that is left to do then is to season with freshly ground black pepper and lots of freshly grated parmesan.
That’s it how easy is that. I promise once you try them like this you won’t want to go back.
Why don’t you leave a comment about the way you like to eat yours.
Today I am posting a summary of all the motivational quotes and inspirational quotes that I have posted on Instagram this last month.
I do find reading these kinds of things gives me a bit of a kick up the backside that I need. Sometimes you just get caught up in the day to day life and we just need to stop and be still for a short while remind ourselves of what we are actually capable of.
I am going to be doing some creative visualisation exercises this weekend so next week I’ll let you know how it went.
Another weekend is upon us. Hope you all have a fantastic weekend whatever you are doing.
Why Rainbows May Cry – special offer price for my book ends at midnight Free sample on blog
Special price offer for my book ends at midnight
As the title suggests the special price offer for my book ends at midnight tonight. It is currently for sale at £2.45 on Amazon but will increase to £9.99 at midnight.
What is it about?
For those of you who don’t know, I wrote a collection of poems based on the twonks I met through online dating over the past couple of years. It was never my intention to publish them it was just a cathartic way for me to deal with these situations at the time. A friend read them and suggested that I publish them and that is what I did. I thought it only right to make it more accessible by launching with a reduced price for a short time but my special offer price for my book ends at midnight tonight.
There is a sample poem located in my blog and this is the link. I will also now share with you the poem I used as my profile on any dating sites I am currently still on. You will find this poem along with others in the book along with the others.
My Dating Site Profile
Dating sites are just a nightmare
Full of people being dishonest
They hide behind their computer screens
The lies they say just astonish
The ones without photos are married
This I worked out quite easily
The ones holding a large fish
Well, they think they are being really funny
The ones standing next to a Porsche
Guys, we know it’s not yours so please just stop it
Hi gawjuss… really? it is gorgeous
I can’t believe someone just wrote that
And guys please when it comes to your photos
Please, please look around and behind you
Your dirty toilet, wonky shelf and clothes stack
Says a lot more than your spray painted six pack
I do not want to see photos of your trouser snake
And I am definitely not going to be your wank line
And when I say don’t; I really do mean it
A warm, lovely, smiley face is your guideline
My bra size is none of your business
So please do not even think to ask me
As for just “Hi” what the hell?
Come on guys be a bit more gutsy
If you make me smile or make me laugh
Then you are definitely more than half way there
It does not have to be a long paragraph
But just a few words to show that you care
A wicked sense of humour is just perfect
With twinkly eyes and a cheeky smile to match
Come on guys just come and woo me
There you go, easy peasy and there is no catch
I have had a lot of positive feedback from people who have bought the book reducing some to tears which I find incredibly moving and I’m very touched.
Remember – Special price offer for my book ends midnight
If you would like to purchase the book in Kindle or paperback before midnight please click this link and it will take you to the store.
Now I thought I would just jump right in at the deep end here. I would like to find out your opinions on UFO’s and aliens and ask you the question do you think they really exist?
Do you believe?
Now some people don’t believe in UFO’s and Aliens or maybe it’s a case of they don’t want to believe in UFO’s and Aliens. One of the reasons for not believing I think is because it would make you question so many things; all the religious fanatics including every day Mr Joe Bloggs who goes to church every Sunday and believes in God. Now, what would happen to Mr Joe Bloggs if Mr Grey Big Black Eyed Alien landed in his garden suddenly? What would happen to his belief system then? Does that mean that God doesn’t exist? But surely if you can believe in something as random as God you should be able to perceive that we can’t possibly be the only intelligent life form out there.
I was very surprised just how much material there is out there supporting intelligent life from other planets. I have been watching a lot of documentaries recently about UFO’s and Aliens that just seemed to have appeared from nowhere and each one is sounding more and more feasible the more I watch them. If you look on google you can find many sites with various information and reports, for example, Open Minds TV and for more information on the famous whistleblower Bob Lazar. The actual footage of him is out there for you to watch. He is a physicist who claims he worked on captured UFOs etc, he has since this had his life threatened and been shot at. Here is another good information link on UFO evidence.
Peoples Theories and Views
I’ve heard and read many theories on UFO’s and Aliens and if they do really exist. Here are some of them:
Some people believe that aliens have been visiting us for thousands of years and have been experimenting on us and our DNA the whole time. Making some kind of alien/human hybrid for reasons unknown.
Some people believe we were actually created by Aliens and that there is evidence to show this found in cave paintings, historical sites etc. and that Alien hybrids live among us.
Some people believe that the government is drip feeding information to the media to slowly integrate the population into believing about aliens by watching films, ie. close encounters of the third kind, First Contact, etc. to avoid a mass panic when something does come out.
One theory I read was stating that Aliens actually have complete control of a site in America i.e. Area 51 and are working with the government. They have been given an area and resources and agreement for their continued abduction and experimentation of humans or as they were referred to containers. If you think about it any being that is able to visit this world has a much greater level of intelligence and if they wanted to start a war we really wouldn’t stand a chance and I have linked Stephen Hawking’s theory on this.
What about abductions? Do we believe or don’t we. I’m sure there are some accounts which are complete and utter fiction and nothing else. But there is evidence out there that shows some people who claim to have been abducted have passed lie detector tests and their accounts never change.
I’ll be honest the thought of alien abduction scares the crap out of me. No thank you I don’t want any of that thank you very much but it doesn’t mean that I don’t believe in it. I hope it’s not real but I remain open minded.
Some of the witness accounts have come from extremely intelligent people including military personnel, scientists, pilots, constabulary, a president. I know two people myself who still to this day believe that have seen a UFO.
I am completely open minded but I think hand on heart, I lean more to believing in intelligent life on other planets than not.
Over to you
I find this subject completely fascinating and would love to hear your stories, experiences or beliefs on this subject.
I’ve just found my old camera and it still has photos on from about 5 years ago. The only holiday I’ve had in 19 years can you believe that.. anyway I went to a little place called Bembridge which is on the Isle of Wight. Have to say this is one of my most favourite places. I could quite easily live there for the rest of my life no problem.
I am just going to post some of the photos of my time there. A little snapshot into my past so to speak. Hope you don’t find them too boring.
The photo above if you look closely you can see there is a wasp bothering her which is why she is snarling.
As you can probably tell I love cats, especially BIG cats.
This lion was so incredibly gorgeous. I was very honoured to hear it roar before it was fed. I can’t remember the statists now the keeper did tell us the but roar of a lion can be felt inside you because it resonates at an unbelievable level. The hairs stood up on my arms.
The lab belonged to the relative whose house I was staying in. Harvey tried to hump the poor thing at every given opportunity – he’s such a dirty dog.
My youngest two outside Osborne House. This has to be my favourite historical building I have been to so far. It is beautiful and is set in beautiful surroundings. When looking around you can feel how loved Prince Albert was by Queen Victoria. I actually felt quite emotional in her bedroom. She passed away on the chaise lounge at the end of her bed. But by the side of the bed, she had a portrait of Prince Albert which I found very touching. It was the first thing she saw when she awoke and the last thing she saw before closing her eyes.
This was taken in the gardens which I have to say were just beautiful with a gorgeous view out to sea.
I adore this ship. I didn’t want to get off it and would really like to go back again. They have the sail laid out in a building from The Battle of Trafalgar and you can see all the holes in it from cannon etc.
So there you go a little glimpse courtesy of my camera.
Today is my funny auto correct text messages day. I was going to do a completely different post today (I might still do it later) but I wanted to post this because it is still making me laugh. In fact, I think I might start collecting these and turn them into a book.
I sent this message to a dear friend this week and thought that I would share it with you all.
Then I remembered the time I got a message from what I think was a very ex boyfriend testing the waters so to speak to see if I would respond. He was making out he was wanting to get jiggy with it with a lady called Pam!
Below is a photograph of what he sent me and the image/reply I sent back to him. Lets just say… I never heard from him again. It might be hard to tell from the photo but I sent him back a photo of a very big hairy man.
I just thought I’d share a couple more of what I find while browsing the interweb today; Im doing this one to my daughter next time she tells me there is a spider in her room:
A classic auto correct mistake:
I hope they made you smile.. If you have any of your own to share please leave in comments.
Everyone have a fantastic weekend and will be back on Monday.
Reasons why you should draw more if you have depression
There are so many reasons why you should draw more if you have depression and first of all you don’t need to be an artist. You don’t need to be skilled and everyone can draw. It’s not about producing a masterpiece. But it is about looking at the world around you being more aware of shapes, form and space with the added bonus of it helping your memory believe it or not. Your emotions can be transferred into your artwork. It can be a way of expressing, managing and overcoming feelings in a proactive way.
Fear of the blank piece of paper
I will admit I am not the best artist but then I don’t need to be and neither do you. There is nothing scarier than having a blank piece of paper in front of you and making that first mark; it’s the same with writing; I promise the more you do it the easier it becomes.
A good way to warm up is to start with what I call scribble drawings just to get that first mark down on that blank sheet.
I am also the first to admit portraits I am rubbish at but I like to break down the face and concentrate on drawing an eye, or the mouth and I currently love doing eyes.
I absolutely love children’s drawings they are just so free. Kids love drawing and they don’t care if you like it or not and that’s how it should be. The most important aspect of drawing is the ability to see. You have to look at the object or the scene in front of you and translate it to the paper. This is done using pencils, crayons, etc which is a lot easier to control than watercolour or other types of paint.
Eyes are definitely the window to the soul and I just love the whole process of drawing the; I find it really quite meditative. In the future I will be doing tutorials so if you are interested please sign up and a newsletter will be sent out when these are available.
There is no question that the more you practice the better you get. Drawing also helps with your short term memory. You are using both sides of your brain and building new connections and pathways making your brain grow. The left side of the brain is responsible for logical thinking whereas the right supplies the creativity and you are also improving you hand to eye coordination.
Another good way to get started is by putting an object in front of you or an image of something and then put your pencil onto the paper. Now without looking at the paper or pencil and just looking at the object/image draw what you can see without looking at what you are doing.
One of the benefits of drawing is that it actually helps with stress relief. Actually creating something also makes you feel productive at a time when you are feeling the complete opposite which in turn makes you feel good about yourself. The act of drawing keeps you “in the moment” which can feel a lot like meditation.
Draw for yourself, do not try to compete with others or even yourself. Just let go and fill that piece of paper. If you are still really scared of getting pencil to paper wear a blindfold and draw an object from memory with the understanding that it is not going to be a Rembrandt but use it purely as a way of letting go and enjoying the moment.
Yes! Macaroni cheese tonight. Sam, my son is taking two accounting A Levels today; I am so glad my exam days are over. As a treat he’s got home made macaroni cheese tonight – a definite favourite in this house and I dread to think how many calories this one contains so we will just forget that little bit. What you don’t know doesn’t hurt you. I read that on the internet somewhere so it must be true.
2 x unsmoked gammon steaks diced
2 tbsp butter
350g macaroni dry pasta
1 x garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tsp English mustard powder
3 tbsp plain flour
500ml whole milk
250g mature cheddar cheese, grated
50g parmesan (I use more)
3 slices white bread blitzed into crumbs
Frozen petit pois (as many as you like)
Blitz the bread in a food processor to make breadcrumbs for the topping.
Boil the pasta for 2 mins less than stated on the pack.
Cook the diced gammon in olive oil and put to one side.
Meanwhile, melt the remaining butter in a saucepan.
Add the garlic and mustard, cook for 1 minute, then stir in the flour. Cook for 1 minute then gradually whisk in the milk until you have a lump-free sauce. Simmer for 5 minutes, whisking constantly until thickened.
Take off the heat and then stir in all the cheddar.
Stir the pasta and some seasoning into the cheesy sauce, then tip into a large ovenproof dish.
Add the gammon and the petit pois into the oven dish and mix together.
Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top.
Sprinkle parmesan over the breadcrumbs.
I tend to make it earlier in the day and cook at night time. Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6 for approximately 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
We tend to mop up the sauce on our plates with chunks of gorgeous fresh French stick.
So then 10 things about me, rubbing my chin in deep thought. At 47 I should be able to tell you more than 10 things about myself. But then I have always thought of myself as quite a deep and complex character on the inside. It’s almost like having two personalities the one the public sees and the one that is inside me. I’m sure that is something people can relate to.
To be honest, I am your typical Cancerian woman. Tough on the outside but soft as shit inside. I am tenacious that I do know when I have my teeth into something I don’t let go. Moreso if it is something that I am passionate about.
I am a bit of a warrior and survivor by nature I’ve had to be. What’s the alternative? I will touch on that at another point in the not too distant future.
Now I need to start my list of 10 things about me. Are you sitting comfortably then I shall begin (did I really just say that – yes I did):
I used to be a burlesque performer. Yes, I did… I really did.. I’m not fibbing. You wouldn’t guess that looking at me now I know. But burlesque performers come in all shapes and sizes including mine (I won’t talk about the time Greenpeace tried to throw me back into the sea) Woah Wardy don’t put yourself down I hear you say. Which brings me to the part of how I ended up doing Burlesque.
I had just come out of yet again another disastrous relationship. One in which I loved my partner so very much but it wasn’t reciprocated in fact he made me feel pretty crap about myself and fat and ugly basically. So after I had given myself time to lick my wounds I knew I had to do something to sort out my self-esteem and find out who I was again. Now some people cut their hair, buy a new outfit, buy a self-help book, spend spend spend but no I had to go one step further and enroll in burlesque lessons. But I, however, had the most fantastic time at these lessons and met some of the most amazing people. I enjoyed it that much I started performing as soon as the lessons ended. If someone had told me twenty years ago that in twenty years I would be standing on a stage twirling my nipple tassels in front of a large audience I would have fallen over laughing. But I did… I stood on that damn stage and I twirled my tassels amongst other things with the best of them. I’ll admit I needed some Dutch courage at the beginning actually quite a bit of Dutch courage, kind of a bottle of prosecco kind of Dutch courage… hic up. But the buzz I felt after the performance was unlike anything else. Also seeing the effect you have on people was exhilarating. The fact you made them laugh, whoop, cheer.. people you don’t know laughing at you not because you had done something wrong or had a fat wobbly ass but because you are funny and owned it. I will never regret my time spent in burlesque.
I performed in a can-can troupe – yep little old moi… kicking my legs like a good un In Blackpool of all places. This was alongside the burlesque but a lot more energetic. I certainly couldn’t do it now. I’d need an oxygen mask and a defibrillator at the side of the stage. But for those of you that do not know me believe it or not I can be quite shy so for me to perform in Burlesque and in a Can Can troupe running around the audience, flashing my frilly knickers and stocking tops you’d think I was mad. Hmmm, maybe I am.
I am a Type II diabetic. My own sodding fault if you spend your life eating crap and a lot of doughnuts it’s going to bite you in the ass! It bit me… so now I am taking medication to control it and will always have to watch my diet and my health more than I used to. Don’t get me wrong I don’t deprive myself but I don’t eat as many doughnuts as I used to that’s for sure. I do need to get back on track with this and dieting and eating healthy will be something that I will be covering a lot of in the future.
I have a condition called Fibromyalgia. Now this condition can be the worse thing ever. Tiredness, I don’t mean in an “oh gosh I’m tired today”, more of you can’t move your limbs because you are depleted of energy kind of day. Now, this isn’t every day and it’s one of those conditions that comes and goes. No day is ever the same. You can be in a lot of pain when you have a flare up so more medication to be taken. My consultant told me it is because my deep sleep isn’t deep enough to refresh my body and that starts the chain of events that leads to a flare up. When you have a day with more energy than usual you have to pace yourself otherwise you will regret it the next day or the next couple of days. It took me a while to get my head around it but I’m ok with it now. This is why I have turned myself to writing as my way forward because it fits in around my condition and is a lot better for me. I now actually feel like I’m doing something, something important and productive.
I am the founder of a depression and anxiety support group. Several years ago I had a huge dip emotionally and needed medication and also some kind of counseling. Now counseling works for some people it worked for me once. But, seeing someone once a week for six weeks isn’t always enough. Because of this, I set up a group called Harrogate Black Dog which currently has about 200 members. I have to say this group of people are just amazing. They always support each other in the most incredible ways, no one’s messages are left unanswered. No one is judged, ridiculed, laughed at, made to feel alone or stupid. I am so glad I did this and that it helps people. I realise it is not for everyone but if it helps one person then I am happy.
I have a first class honors degree in art and design. Yes little old me has brains or I did have but I think my grey matter may have shrunk somewhat or I’m getting dementia; maybe both – yikes. I graduated in 2002 following a horrendous couple of years. So believe me if I can do it so can you.
I was once homeless. Yes during my degree I became pregnant (unplanned) with my youngest child who was born in 2000. Luckily for me at the time she was born during the summer so come September and the start of the new academic year my daughter came with me to lectures and the university were just fantastic. I was also able to base myself in the Harrogate College rather than Leeds which helped immensely. Because she would not take to the bottle I had to breastfeed her which meant she went everywhere with me. Now also during this time, I was living with her father who I also had a 2-year-old son with and also a son from my marriage who was 8 years old. This relationship was very turbulent and violent; he was also emotionally and financially abusive. Following one particularly violent episode, I was rehomed in a refuge for several months before being given a home by the local council. So this was all going on through my second and final year at University – newborn baby, toddler, an 8 yr old, violent relationship, no money, having moved from Leicester in 1997 no friends, no house and no furniture just the clothes on my back all at the time I was supposed to be concentrating on my degree. But I passed; I got my degree, and I got a first class honours to boot while all this was going on. Although I had mitigating circumstances they were not taken into account at the end although I was entitled to ask for them to be considered. This I am very proud of and I remind myself sometimes what I can do when I put my mind to it. I realised the power is within and promptly had this tattooed on my inner arm as a constant reminder.
Once a psychic medium said to me, “You are such a little fighter and tenacious with it, like Boadicea, and just like that Cancerian crab in a rough sea, holding onto a piece of seaweed with its claw while all the other sea creatures are being thrashed about you are there with your claw firmly holding on until the storm passes”.
I am a published author. This is something I have wanted to do since being a teenager because I loved books and still love books. Not just fiction, but non-fiction, recipe books, art books, self-help books, spiritual books and I can spend hours in a bookshop. The published book came about in an odd way really. I was having a really bad time of it in 2015 and 2016 with dating. One disaster after another and it was really getting to me. I started writing poems about them all and had managed to get quite a collection by the end of 2016. A friend of mine read them and suggested that I should publish them and this is what happened. My first book has a link on here “Why Rainbows May Cry“. I have had a good response from it so very glad that I did it. In fact one person contacted me and told me that it made them cry. I was so humbled by this. The fact that my experience and my words moved them that much. It was a huge compliment although I don’t want to deliberately make people cry.
My house is haunted. Things don’t happen now as much as they used to thank goodness. But I have experienced some strange things in my home and so have my children. Shadows of people walking past, the shadow of half a person walked past me when I was sat on the sofa; just the bottom half. Someone stroked my hair to the point it made me turn around and no one was there. An ex-boyfriend saw a figure walk across the landing -Just the outline (unfortunately for me it didn’t scare the boyfriend off). Things disappearing and then reappearing in strange places, door handles moving on their own. The scariest for me was when I was lying in bed, it was still dark and I felt someone sit on my bed. I froze, and believe me I kept my eyes firmly closed. Another night I was in bed falling asleep when I was enveloped by the strongest most beautiful floral smell it just permeated within me it was everywhere, really intense but beautiful then it just faded away. I get left lots of white feathers to the point where I had one tattooed on my inner wrist with a love heart inside. My little angel feather to remind me I’m not on my own.
I have a car called Tallulah Love Rocket. Yep, I’m not making it up. It’s a black Mini Cooper S convertible and goes like shit off a shovel. Oh, I’m a classy bird me don’t you know. Just because I live in Harrogate does not make me a lady; I’m from Leicester remember me duck the home of the bright fluorescent orange cheese and the very gorgeous Kasabian! Anyway because I have such a diabolical memory I can never remember my number plate when I need to so I bought a private one with my initials on it. TLW which as well as being my initials is also the initials of my car but as my dad says, Tallulah Love Wocket.
So that was painless, 10 things about me some of you may know but not everyone. Think I might do a follow up to this in a couple of months with another ten incredibly interesting facts – yeah they will be – I promise :o)
The main reason I am doing a lifestyle blog is because my love and passion of writing. As soon as I could write I fell in love with it. Words and the emotions they invoke, the use of words to preserve special and precious memories. Blogging for me is just the same as writing a diary; it gets everything out and once written down any worries seem to get diluted.
I really don’t mind if I get one subscriber or one million subscribers the intent behind this for me will always be the same. To reach out and be heard; it really doesn’t get much better than that. Someone actually wants to read what you write about, what drives you crazy or makes you deliriously happy.
Another reason for this lifestyle blog – this is me – this is my voice – the one I have in my head and my heart and my soul is the one you are listening to now. I am sharing that with you personally and to the world; my thoughts, my dreams, my desires are here for you to read and to reflect upon. It could be that I might frustrate you, irritate you, befriend you, relate to you, comfort you, inspire you. Hopefully it will make you look at the world through the eyes of someone else which makes you feel not so alone.
Everything I have read about blogging says you must choose a niche. Why must I? Well I’m not; well not yet anyway because I am going to write about anything and everything that is important to me at that particular time. I am a passionate person and passionate about a lot of things. Over time I expect the subjects I write about will narrow down and will help me find a niche subject but I will let that happen organically.
Finding things out
Blogs are a good way to find certain things out. Are you looking for a particular recipe, wanting to try a new make up brand, is such and such a good purchase etc. Blogs are always a good way to find the answers that you are looking for.
Another great thing with a blog is that it grows slowly into an online community and gives you a sense of friendship and belonging. I set up a Facebook group approximately two years ago called Harrogate Black Dog for people suffering with depression and anxiety and that group has a tremendous feeling of community and belonging and friendship.
On the plus side as the blog grows giveaways and special offers and discounts became part of the benefits to readers and subscribers; which is never a bad thing.
I find that by writing about my projects, my fears, my dreams, they are closer to becoming a reality. It makes me accountable without trying to impress anyone in the slightest. This is as a platform for me to learn and grow and reach my goals and live my dreams.
By reading peoples blogs it opens up your horizons; you can try things you have never tried before or feel more motivated to do so.
Writing gives me a lot of pleasure and satisfaction. Just switching off getting into my zone and being able to just watch the words fly on the screen in front of me without thinking too hard about what I am going to be writing about.
This is my voice and I am going to share it with you.