28 Feb 2017

February reads: Memoirs to add to your reading list

Memoirs to add to your reading list

Don't ask me why but I'm strangely obsessed with memoirs atm; these are my recent favourites. They all stand out as strong, powerful books, are all written by intelligent, sassy women and all tell unique stories. Go read: 

Brain on Fire by Susannah Cahalan 

Bloody hell this book is incredible. Beyond incredible. It tells the true story of when Susannah Cahalan, then aged 24, suffered from anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis. She was living an ordinary life in New York, working as a journalist, when suddenly she started suffering from paranoia, psychosis, violent seizures and slowly lost control of her body and personality. From her memory & journals, and hospital footage & testimonies of her family, friends and doctors for the month she cannot remember, she tells the story of her descent into illness, the incorrect diagnosis, her time in hospital, the slow recovery and what it takes to re-build your own personality. A really fascinating read, and will make you very grateful for your own physical and mental health.

The Year of Living Danishly by Helen Russell

I become strangely obsessed with this book for a while; I kept giving it to other people as gifts. You may have heard of it amongst this hygge obsession we’ve all been having but it’s so much more than that. Helen Russell is a journalist who had been living the London life for twelve years. Her and her husband lived in a basement flat, worked long hours and were unable to have a baby. And then her husband was offered a job which would mean moving to rural Denmark for a year. At first, she’s having none of it and then eventually is persuaded to give it a go. After doing some research, she’s startled to discover that Denmark is supposedly the happiest country in the world and so she sets herself the ‘happiness project’; a year to find out why her new home is the happiest place to be. It’s half like reading a blog post about a couple who are experiencing relocating to a new country and half like reading a really interesting article about the ins and outs of life in Denmark and why it makes them happier than the rest of us. And I loved the whole thing. I loved Helen’s writing style, and her stories about suddenly living in rural Denmark, and I loved learning so much about the country. Really recommend this one; you will probs want to move to Denmark when you’ve finished though.

Where Am I Now? By Mara Wilson

Remember Matilda? Remember Mrs Doubtfire? Remember the little girl? Well obvs, of course you do. This is her, and a collection of essays which include stories of growing up famous, suffering from anxiety and a letter to Robin Williams. The stories are less about being the-girl-from-Matilda and more about what it is to grow up as a woman. It’s witty, honest and really quite poignant

Animal: The Autobiography of the Female Body by Sara Pascoe

I don’t know how to describe this one. It is kinda like a memoir in the sense that Sara uses personal stories and draws on her own experience, but it’s also a bit like reading the notes of a very funny university lecture... with a diagram of a vagina.  This is a book about being a woman, although I honestly think more men should read it as well. We’d probably all have a better understanding of one another. It’s about sex and menstruating and jealousy and boobs and broodiness and growing up and the future. And there’s the evolutionary history and science behind it all as well. So interesting and snort-on-the-train funny.

Ctrl Alt Delete: How I Grew Up Online by Emma Gannon

I loved this book. It gave me so much nostalgia for my childhood. Emma was born the same year as the World Wide Web so literally grew up alongside the internet. Whilst I’m a couple of years behind, I could identify with every experience she spoke about. I grew strangely wistful thinking of the days of MSN and Myspace and was cracking up at the dodgy webcam stories. One for hilarity and nostalgia and, although a book about growing up with the internet, it will also make you consider the importance of logging off from it all.

If it's your kind of thing (and seeing as you're reading a book blog post, I'm guessing it is) the Royal Society of Literature is running a poll at the moment on the Nation's Favourite Second Novel. Go read more and cast your vote here

Happy reading x 

25 Feb 2017

My First Cervical Screening

My first cervical screening

I’ve questioned several times whether this is something I should really be talking about on the internet. I mean, there’s TMI, and then there’s outright oversharing which makes people uncomfortable and I can’t quite decide where this falls exactly.

But I appear to be doing it anyway. So, if any family members are reading this, please don’t tell my Grandma I wrote about my vagina on the internet. Kay, thanks.

Once upon a time, I perhaps thought that my letter inviting me to my first cervical screening would actually arrive on my 25th birthday, lying amongst birthday cards and hefty amounts of cake. I wasn’t expecting it to pop up unannounced a good five months or so before I turned 25. Which is why I maybe got excited at the mysterious letter and thought maybe Hogwarts had finally decided to get in touch.


It took me several weeks to get round to making the appointment because life and then I fell at the first hurdle which was when I called my doctor’s surgery and the receptionist asked me when I was mid cycle.

Yes, fine, I should have known the answer to that. But honestly, I didn’t bloody know. Not just because the only thing I keep an eye on when it comes to ‘my cycle’ is when Ms P is gonna show up but because I am shockingly uneducated about these things. Anyone else a believer that sex ed at school was poor af? Like great, I learned how to put a condom on a cucumber (something I have NEVER had to do in real life, and certainly not in a sexual scenario. Unless, hang on, was the cucumber supposed to represent something....?). I asked friends when they think the beginning of their cycle starts and everyone gave me different bloody answers, proving my point. (Google says first day of your period if you’re still confused.)

I didn’t give the actually appointment much thought until the day came around and then I flicked through the little booklet the NHS had sent me and cringed at the diagrams.

Like what the eff is a speculum?!

Obvs I didn’t want to go but obvs I still did. Cos who the effing fuck wants cervical cancer?

I was the last appointment of the day and the nurse was a babe, who seemed chill and didn’t use the word speculum.

Although I gotta say, someone asking you what you do for a living whilst rooting around in your vagina is not the one.

Anyway, I had to lie back on the bed thing, and was told to take lots of deep breaths like we were about to start a yoga class and off she went. She kept telling me I was doing really well and to just keep breathing which I did, whilst also thinking that THIS WAS WEIRD, and then she stopped and told me that my cervix was rather high up.

Um, kay?

She had to get a longer swab so she could reach it. HOW DREAMY.

Oh and then there was blood.

THAT wasn’t in the effing brochure. She was all chill and said that some people do just bleed and not to be alarmed and I was like WHATEVER JUST GIVE ME A TISSUE.

And then half way through the second attempt, she says that she wants to do a cervical examination because there’s something on my cervix.

Cos that didn’t set off alarm bells.

But again, she was chill as a cucumber (I really should stop mentioning the cucumber) and said she was almost certain it was *insert name of something I can’t pronounce* which she described as like an under the skin spot, but on your cervix.

Only I would have acne inside my body.

She said she didn’t want to do the examination then because she didn’t want to make me bleed more, plus she couldn’t see properly cos of the blood and, I quote, ‘it’s dark in there’.

I can only apologise for my poorly lit vagina guys. I’d change the light bulb but my basic DIY skills are surprisingly shocking.

Two weeks later, I went back to repeat all the fun.

She poked around again, made me bleed again and spent an awful lot of time staring inside my vagina. No complaints of the lighting this time round though (probs cos I’d added fairy lights).

Eventually she said that she thought I had, basically, a skin tag on my cervix. If you’re not aware of the joy that is skin tags, they’re basically just harmless bits of extra skin that grow for no apparent reason. They tend to grow in awkward places but they don’t actually cause much harm unless they get caught on something, in which case they usually bleed. I am a pro when it comes to skin tags. Mine like to grow on my face just to be REALLY FUCKING ANNOYING. I have one under my left eye and one on the inside of my left nostril, and I’m currently on the waiting list at my GP surgery to have them removed.

So I wasn’t particularly surprised when I was told skin tags were growing on the inside of my body as well as the outside. Or that, when knocked, it bled (yay).

So the nurse wasn’t concerned but it’s standard procedure to refer a patient to a gynaecologist now that she’s seen it. A gynaecologist can take a closer look, potentially with a microscope, and confirm that it really is harmless. And maybe then people could stop looking up my god damn vagina.

So I wandered back to my life and had a snazzy Christmas, and my actual screening results came back normal, and everything was fine and dandy; until the nurse gave me a call in January saying that before they refer me, the doctor wanted to have a look at whatever it was.

It was official. My vagina had never been this popular.

This time round (in my third vaginal exam but who’s counting?) I got a different prognosis. Either it was a skin tag or, more likely, cervical ectropion.

Nope, I didn’t know what she was chatting about either.

Even when I left the GP, I was still confused so I did what any rational person would do. I stared at a lot of vagina diagrams, read a Wikipedia page and asked my best friend (a nearly-qualified medic) to explain it to me via snapchat drawings (see the artwork above).

Essentially, it’s a common condition where cells from the cervical canal are present on the outside of the cervix. I think. Probably. That’s how I’ve understood it anyway. It can be caused by hormonal changes that occur from being on the pill and is not linked to the development of cervical cancer.

But the doctor still couldn’t be one hundred percent sure so I’ve still gotta go see a gynaecologist and am still waiting for a letter to show up referring me.

And THAT is how my first cervical screening went down.

I think I wanted to write about this because in the weeks between those appointments, I felt slightly nervous. Not all out but the thought lingered at the back of my mind. What if it isn’t something harmless? What if it’s a cyst? What if I have polycystic ovary syndrome? What if I can’t have children? What if it’s cervical cancer? These kinds of thoughts always drift in and out of our minds all the time. Mostly, we just dismiss them, just as easily as we dismiss going to the doctors for a check-up. It’s not urgent, we’re busy, we’ll be fine anyway.

I just googled cervical screening appointments and apparently (according to the internet anyway...) only one in three women in my age range (25 – 29) actually go and get screened, despite the fact that the screenings are free, take a very short amount of time and save as many as 5,000 lives a year.

I get feeling awkward and embarrassed (lol see this entire post) but I’d take awkwardness and embarrassment any day of the week if the alternative was effing cancer. Wouldn’t you?

So I think I wrote this post to show that it’s likely your cervical screening would be a lot less complicated than mine. Unless you have my luck but at least we can have bants about it. Great friendships are built on vagina stories – just sayin’. But otherwise, stop faffing about and book your appointment. It’s really not that big a deal and could potentially save your life.

Oh and I’ll keep you updated on how the gynaecologist appointment goes. I’m sure more hilarious banter will ensue and you can all lol at my life some more.

14 Feb 2017

Two Years of Us

Two Years of Us - anniversary

Whenever I tell people how long G and I have been together, they always look surprised. “Is that all?” they say. There have been moments where I’ve said to G that it feels like we’ve been together an age and he always jokes that I make it sound like I’ve had to sit through a boring film that felt like it would never end.

I guess we’ve fit a lot into two years. It’s funny how quickly someone becomes such an important part of your life, how quickly you can’t imagine life without them.

G and I met for the first time in August 2014. It was the first week of my job at the time and I was attending a big meeting in Manchester. There was a good twenty people in the room and we were sat next to each other. Apparently. I have no memory of this, although G does; I thought we met in November when my manager introduced us. Awkward.

I don’t quite remember how we got chatting over work emails but we did and eventually he asked if I fancied going out for a drink. It was the beginning of January 2015 and I genuinely hesitated as I was on my way to meet him. Not because of him but because of that general fear of social anxiety. Like oh god, I don’t really know him, what if we have nothing to say and it suddenly ends up being really awkward?

Anyway, I told myself to get a grip and went to the pub, thinking that if that situation did occur, I could just have the one drink and then head home.

I don’t really remember how many I did have. I do remember laughing a lot and suddenly realising that I was drunk at about 10 at night. And throwing up the next morning in a classy fashion.

Needless to say, there was no awkwardness. There was lots of chatting and laughing, and he came back to St Pancras with me so I could catch my train, despite the fact that it was out of his way. I think he kissed me on the cheek but that night’s a bit of a happy haze.

Over the next few weeks we went out for drinks a few more times, and to a gig, with a lot of texting in between. We used to stand in the middle of St Pancras station late at night waiting for my train. That was where we had our first kiss. If you’d seen us during those few weeks, saying goodbye, you’d have probably rolled your eyes and told us to get a room. But I really couldn’t have given two shits.

And then on Valentine’s Day 2015 (purely coincidental), I went round his for the first time. He cooked jambalaya and we opted to stay in rather than go to the pub. The next morning he made pancakes just cos I said I fancied them.

And from then, we were together. The next weekend, he came to mine for the first time and we went to St Albans for the afternoon. I can remember walking round the park and telling him that I’d always fancied living there so you know, I sowed the seed early…

London was a big part of the first year of our relationship. We did so much. Day trips and quirky cinemas, fancy meals and going up skyscrapers, rooftop bars and theatre trips. G had the most incredible view of the London skyline from his house and we could climb onto the roof from his balcony. We watched sunsets and the New Year fireworks, and all the planes coming into land. Admittedly south London was a bit of a pain to get to but I fell in love with London properly that year.

When I was younger, I always thought the kinda guy I would go for was a guy into writing and literature. A guy who liked dreaming as much as I do, and questioned the big things and probs read poetry.

My teenaged self was such a cliché.

I actually did go out with a couple of guys like that. My main experience? They never get shit done. Ever. Questioning the big things meant they questioned you and their relationship with you constantly. Reading poetry meant they preferred to sit in a darkened room with their poetry book, and smoking. They thought that was glamorous.

In reality, going out with my teenaged-self’s ideal guy was pretty darn stressful. And boring.

Maybe we were just too similar. Or maybe they were just knobs. Either way.

Unlike previous guys, I never had to deal with mind games or ‘playing it cool’ or trying to guess if he’s being sarcastic or a twat over text with G. There was just never any bullshit.

G is good at, and enjoys, maths. My maths teacher once told my parents that I had a ‘mental block’ when it came to mathematics and, quite frankly, I still use my fingers to add up. G likes sport and has several medals from running races. We all know the idea of me running anywhere is laughable. He’s tidy, I’m messy. He sensibly puts money into savings, I debate if I can buy my twelfth candle of the month. When we decide to head out, he puts his shoes on. I faff cos I gotta go for a wee and have I actually brushed my hair today and where the fuck did I put my keys goddamn it?! In my head, I often compare us to Wallace and Gromit. I’m Wallace, wandering around coming up with mad ideas and eating cheese. He’s Gromit, rolling his eyes and pointing out the impracticalities of my mad idea (usually that we can’t actually afford it…).

I must be a pain in the arse but he doesn’t seem to go away.

So maybe there is something in the ‘opposites attract’ theory.

I think it probably seemed like we did everything fast. After three weeks together, we went away for a long weekend in the Lake District. A couple of months after that, we booked a holiday for the next year, with no doubt that we’d still be together. Tbh I’ve lost count of the amount of trips away we’ve taken together. After just six months, we started talked about moving in together and, just after our first anniversary, we did. At one point, we were talking about moving to Manchester (for cheaper housing). If one of my friends had told me they were thinking about moving hundreds of miles away with a guy they’d been with a few months I’d be like ‘um babes, you crazy?!’ We share a bank account. We live together. We plan to buy a house together, and we’ve spoken about marriage and babies like we already know it’ll happen someday.

But, it never felt fast. It felt like everything happened at a completely natural pace. It’s only when I’m asked how long we’ve been together, that it suddenly occurs to me that it sounds like a relatively short amount of time.

So today, Valentine’s Day 2017, it’s two years since he cooked jambalaya for me for the first time. I don’t really like the fact that our anniversary is Valentine’s Day because of the obvious cliché and the fact that it’s the day after my birthday. But we’ll never forget it I suppose. And I like to acknowledge it passing. It may be a cold, grey Tuesday in February sure, but we’ve been together two years and that makes me smile. And, of course, it means we’re having jambalaya for dinner.

13 Feb 2017

Oh look, I'm 25

Oh look, I'm 25 - birthday

Good morning my darlings, how was your weekend?

It’s a Monday morning and I’m actually in a good mood. I KNOW.

There are many things contributing to this. The fact that I’m not at work. The fact that the sun has come out (and about time too). The fact that someone has just brought me a stack of pancakes, soaked in maple syrup, and an Oreo milkshake (which I just had my first sip of and oh baby is it good).

Oh and it’s my birthday hence all of the above (yeah, I'm arrogant enough to assume that the sun has come out because it's my birthday).

I refuse to go to work on my birthday, a bit like a child refusing to go to school amidst a tantrum. Nah uh, not happening pal. I don’t necessarily need to have big plans, I just find it depressing to work on my birthday. I like to acknowledge it happening and to do that, I don’t want it to feel like just any old day. This year, in particular, I knew I couldn’t go crazy with celebrations on my actual birthday. For starters, there’s only so crazy you can go on a Monday in the middle of February. But mainly because G and I a) went out for the most amazing nine course tasting menu meal at the weekend to celebrate both my birthday and our anniversary and b) have booked a helicopter ride in New York (!) as our birthday presents to each other. Fair to say we’re already going pretty crazy.

So today is a chilled one. I didn’t get out of bed until about 10 and it was lovely to wake up to birthday messages from my favourite people. I had a phonecall with my mum and step-dad and then discovered a big happy birthday balloon in the living room, left by G before he headed to work this morning. This made me happier than is probably normal but I love a balloon soooo…

I’ve taken myself off to The Pudding Stop for a spot of writing (with milkshake and pancakes of course) and then I have a massage booked at midday. An HOUR LONG massage. I’m already doing all the heart eyed emojis. I don’t have any specific plans for the afternoon but I think it’s probably going to involve some baking whilst listening to the La La Land soundtrack and then maybe binge watching something on Netflix without feeling guilty that I should be doing something more productive cos EFF OFF IT’S MY BIRTHDAY. And then hopefully by then, G will be home and I can open my cards and presents and order a take away.

As people get older, there seems to be a tendency to see it as a bad thing, and focus on things they haven’t done yet. But I’ve been spending most of the morning thinking of all the things I have achieved so far. I’ve decided that 15-year-old me would do a little excited sick down herself if she saw where I was now. 15 wasn’t a great year for me and I wish I could go back and tell her girl, you’re living in St Albans. You would LOVE your little flat. You spend a lot of your spare time sitting in cafes typing away. You’re paid to edit NHS guidelines. You have a week-long holiday to New York booked. You’re in a long-term relationship with the best guy (I know I’m biased but he did just buy you a birthday balloon so I think that proves my point). 

Just typing that out made me feel light and free, and I’ve realised that I probably need to do this more often. When I’m having (mostly daft) moments where I feel like I don’t know what I’m doing or that I’m somehow failing or that I should have achieved more by now; I need to look at my life through the eyes of 15-year-old me. Cos 15-year-old me would probably hate me in those moments. She’d look at me like ‘what the actual fuck are you talking about?! LOOK AT YOU BITCH!’ and she’d be bloody right. There’s a lot of pressure coming from all directions at this time of life and I think it’s very easy to compare yourself to others or feel like you’re not doing that great or wonder why you haven’t achieved your dream yet. But there’s so much life ahead of us and we have to be patient. If we spend all of this time of life comparing ourselves to others, and constantly putting ourselves down, then we’ll end up not enjoying the here and now. And I suspect that this is a pretty good time of life to be in.

Actually, I know it is. There’s Oreo milkshakes for crying out loud.

Enjoy your day you sassy thing you. And don’t forget how awesome you are.

10 Feb 2017

Foodie Discoveries in St Albans

Foodie Discoveries in St Albans

I’ve made no secret of the fact that St Albans is a foodie heaven. They’ve got all your standard chains plus fancier places and omg this is amazing unique places that make you do all the excited squeals. So I thought I’d put together a rundown of our best discoveries so far in case you fancy heading in this direction in the near future.

Maybe you fancy a trip outside of London or maybe you have friends here or maybe you already live here… either way come say hi and we’ll go eat food. Or don’t come say hi and go eat food without me. But I won’t speak to you again cos that would be cruel and you know it.


St Albans Foodie Discoveries

I’m starting with Bill’s because it’s the restaurant we ended up in after the very first time we went to see our flat. We debated whether it was worth having to buy a fridge and washing machine for (it was) and drew diagrams on the napkin. If I remember rightly, I had the halloumi and falafal burger and mini cinnamon doughnuts (which is still my main meal of choice). Basically we have a total soft spot for Bill’s and always end up there if all else fails or we just fancy an easy meal. The menu isn’t going to blow your mind when you first read it but it always tastes great, and they do brunch. Get the pancakes. 

I maybe didn’t realise that Bill’s is actually a chain because the one in St A was the first one I’d come across but when I sit in that cosy interior surrounded by candles and shelves of chutneys, I can pretend it’s unique.

Website here.

The Pudding Stop

St Albans Foodie Discoveries

Guys, GUYS. This place is right out of Hogsmeade. Everyone round here knows of The Pudding Stop and the moment it reached my ears (about 20 seconds after moving in), I was like WE HAVE TO GO NOW. Because I was hardly gonna wait was I? 

They do pudding, cheeseboards and brunch. So basically my dream restaurant. The cheeseboard and brunch are both dreamy but it really is the puddings that steal the show. Doughnuts filled with nutella or homemade custard. Salted caramel & peanut butter brownies. The best pecan pie I have ever had. Butterscotch blondies. Ginger cake. Sticky toffee pudding. Bakewell tarts.

Lol drooling over my keyboard.

They’re open until 11pm, do take away and there’s weekly film viewings which is the only thing I still need to check out (I have a lifetime of regrets not going when they aired the GBBO finale). But the best bit? The Pud Mobile. Which sets itself up right by the station exit so you HAVE to walk past it on your way home from work. Okay, so slightly dangerous on the waistline and bank balance but imagine getting off the train after a bad day and seeing all those puddings smiling at you. Instant mood lift.

Website here. 

Redbournbury Watermill Bakery  

St Albans Foodie Discoveries

St Albans Foodie Discoveries

You can walk through the countryside to get here (you can drive but that is not the way to get the full experience) which is full of pretty country lanes and little streams, and a constant view of the cathedral on the hill. The watermill is stunning and you can go inside and climb to the top, and see how they make the bread. The bakery is open on Saturday mornings and they do hundreds of different types of breads. We packed up some cheese and then bought a loaf of bread and tore chunks off whilst sitting in the sunshine. We also tried some of their brownies which were spot on, and the guy gave us an extra one for free because it’s that kinda place. 

One to save for the spring/summer.

Website here. 


St Albans Foodie Discoveries

This place is classy but not pretentious you know? Like, you can go in your jeans and t-shirt and still feel at ease. The prices are kinda fancy but if you go before 7pm, you get three courses for £14.50 or two course for £12.50 and the food is uh-mazing. It’s also about twenty seconds from our flat so sometimes we just end up in there by accident. We’ve probably been about five or six times in total and I still love it.

Website here. 

The Steakhouse 

St Albans Foodie Discoveries

Obviously not one if you've now gone veggie. It is expensive, and there was a delay to our meal when we went which was a bit annoying but I liked the décor and the steaks were so good. They put a lot of effort into informing you of the different types of steaks, and sauces to go with them, and they were all cooked to perfection. The wine was also really good, and they do baked camembert as a starter. 

Oh and it’s right opposite the Odyssey cinema so a good one for date night.

Website here.

The Waffle House 

St Albans Foodie Discoveries

Not actually a new discovery because I’ve known about this baby for yonks. Me and the girls have been coming here forever and, fun fact, me and G came here for one of our early dates. It doesn’t really need must explanation, it’s WAFFLES. And yes, you have to get a savoury and sweet one even if it does leave you feeling a little bit sick. It’s on the other side of the park so you can justify two waffles because of the walk. Oh and they do really good smoothies and milkshakes FYI.

Website here. 


St Albans Foodie Discoveries

Italian. Duh. Like an independent, better quality version of Pizza Express. Only cheaper and more popular; you often need to book. It’s small and cute, and does really flippin’ good pizzas. The first time we went here, we decided to book a holiday to New York so there you go; magic pizzas.

Website here.


St Albans Foodie Discoveries

A very popular Turkish restaurant so book beforehand. They’re big on sharing; you pick two-three dishes per person and then just dive into the hundreds of dishes of food they bring you. Everything tastes incredible and the staff are really helpful at giving you suggestions on how much to order and what works well with what.

Website here. 

The Exquisite Peacock Emporium 

St Albans Foodie Discoveries

G thinks the name of this newish café is ridiculous which, you know, it is… but it’s also genius. I’ve meandered in here a few times on my Friday writing afternoons and it’s rapidly becoming my favourite cafe. They do homemade sandwiches, milkshakes and their muffins are the best in St Albans. The only downside is it’s always pretty busy so you can never guarantee you’re gonna get a seat buuuuut if you manage to squeeze on that big communal table in the middle, it may be the prettiest table background to ever grace your instagram feed.

Website here. 

In the St A area? Give me some recommendations! 

3 Feb 2017

Little Gems: 24

Little Gems lifestyle lists

Well hello there kids. It’s already February eh? I’m marvelling at how fast time seems to have passed like your typical walking cliché.

I’m in one of my fave cafes, snaffling on a tuna melt panini with a pretty dreamy raspberry crush and sticky toffee muffin to go with. It’s been a weird old week but I’m feeling positive today. I got a lot ticked off my life admin list this morning, have got the good old writing bug going on and, hey, it’s the weekend baby. Oh and I gotta go pick up an M&S parcel later and, ngl, I’m excited to try on my new bras. The crazy life chose me.

Making the most of the positive mood, this is gonna be an extended edition of the Little Gems post full of things that have personally made me smile but also things that you should be smiling about as well. Cos the current state of the world is no effing joke and we need to be throwing out as much good and love as we can.

So without further ado…

1. It’s February 

And do you know what? I LIKE February. February means the weather is creeping towards warmer and lighter. February means my birthday. February means our anniversary. February means I am ONE MONTH CLOSER TO NEW YORK. 

2. Sally Yates 

The now sacked US Attorney General. Who stood for decency, and common sense, and a bit of bloody kindness. Who instructed her staff not to endorse the so-called-president’s bullshit travel ban. Who stood in front of adversity and said no. Fair to say, she’s going down on the right side of history. 

3. Creating videos 

As I said in my 2017 goals, I wanted to finally compile my Iceland video which I have (up on the blog in the next few weeks). And it gave me a bit of a video-making bug. I just loved it. I spontaneously made another one for my step-dad’s 50th weekend (here) and I feel this is the start of something. I mean, I know nothing and if you’ve been making videos for a while, you’ll probs look at mine like ‘lol what’s that’ but I don’t care. I love the process and I love learning a new skill. 

4. Everything J.K.Rowling has said on twitter in the last couple of weeks 

And also ever. That woman never fails to inspire me. Look at her campaigning for what’s right, and slapping down those Trump-supporters with So. Much. Sass. Buzzfeed has put together the best examples from the last few days over here

5. The sticky toffee muffin 

I am now eating. Good lord, it’s dreamy af. 

6. The big names speaking out

I don’t think I’ve ever loved Ewan McGregor more. AirBnB offering free accommodation to refugees affected by the ban. The lawyers at JFK airport. Starbucks pledging 10,000 jobs to refugees around the world. KEEP IT UP GUYS. 

7. Telling my fave pal that we need to meet up soon 

And that night booking flights to Edinburgh to go stay in March. For FORTY QUID RETURN. 

8. Gina Miller

Who, like a lot of us, asked a perfectly reasonable question, requested things were done properly and ensured that government representatives didn’t get drunk on power and do whatever the eff they wanted. Oh and she also owned the toss-pot UKIP guy in that Channel 4 News interview. 

Little Gems lifestyle lists

Little Gems lifestyle lists

Little Gems lifestyle lists

9. Passengers

I LOVED THIS FILM. Like, seriously loved it. The psychology of it has been buzzing round my brain for the past few days. 

10. The MPs 

Who, this week, said ‘er do ya know what guys? Morally, I don’t agree with this. So I’m gonna put my morals BEFORE my need to be in power’. Unlike some people. I’ll just leave this Mike Pence tweet here. 

11. The surprise weekend away in Devon 

For my step-dad’s 50th birthday, which I wrote about here. Please can I always live in a castle? PLEEEEEASE. 

12. THIS Trump Donald website 

Just click.

13. G and I getting a joint bank account 

And talking about buying houses, and when to have children. And how much trips to Australia would cost. We so adult and he so lovely. 

14. Angela Merkel reminding President Tango 

About his country’s obligations to the UN charter on refugees. Which seems like a better course of action then skipping around holding hands with him. We ain’t never gonna let that one go Theresa. 

15. People tweeting me to tell me 

They found my blog post poignant. That my blog post inspired them to book a holiday. That my blog post was just what they needed on a bad day. ALL THE HEART EMOJIS.

16. You 

The kind, sane part of the world. The part of the world that hasn’t completely lost their evil shit. Everyone who has marched around the world, against Trump, against fascism and the extreme right views. Everyone who is outraged, who is saying NO NOT TODAY PAL. You guys make me feel like it’s all gonna be okay.

Have a fabulous weekend.