5/30/2016

currently//the office

A friend told me to watch the UK Office. So I did what any normal person would do when a friend recommends something. I watched the US version. Ha!

I love it but, to be honest, season nine was a bit meh wasn't it? I found myself craving to skip to the very last episode but I held on and made it...

Does anyone else really, truly, believe that Cleveland is based on Stanley? Every time I watch the show I get very angry because Stanley has to be Cleveland right? He has to be! I just don't want to live in a world where Stanley is not Cleveland. Do you?

But, also, the show is really awesome isn't it? So awesome. Is Michael Scott the best boss in the world? I love him. Dwight. Jim. I just can't even... Love it.

What is it about office shows? Next up may just be the UK version. May. Or I might need to re-watch Parks & Rec

5/27/2016

friday five//some favourite b. memories

As each week comes to a close B. gets closer to five and I get closer to becoming a super extra annoying sentimental person. Behold, some fave memories of the kid--

The time Bailey spent an entire year wearing this hat. Here she wears it backwards so you can't see the bunny face but, man, she loved that bunny hat. And then one day it got so tattered and worn that it had to get thrown away. B. was devastated and we tried to console her with owl and cat beanies but her love affair with them stopped that day and it broke my heart a little. 

When we had B's baby photo shoot and this happened.

When this photo & face happened. One of my absolute favourites.

When she decided she wasn't scared of Santa anymore and after this decided to conquer her fears or just test the scary stuff out. And just like that, she started climbing the really high jungle gyms and just went into things knowing she was awesome and could do it.

When she started laughing. She discovered herself in the mirror and thought it was the most hilarious thing in the world. When she really laughs you have to laugh with her, you can't not. It's infectious. Back then she laughed at her reflection or silly sounds. Now she laughs at poop jokes and cucumber in pantries. 

5/26/2016

deadpool//the greatest movie alive?

Last night Husband and I watched Deadpool and, today, I am still smiling from the absolute joy of seeing it. Yes, I have a day off with the house to myself and all I have to do is wait for a courier to deliver a bunk bed and, man, it sure is tempting to watch it again. It's as if I can't help myself, as if the movie was made to be so addictive that you have to watch it multiple times within a twenty four hour period.

This is just how I felt while watching the Force Awakens but Deadpool wins because Han Solo doesn't die in it {or star in it but that's just semantics}. It also wins for best opening credits, breaking the fourth wall and Ryan Reynolds still being fuckable even when his face went bad.

I know I'm super late to the party but if you haven't seen it you need to watch it. Now. Go take a sick day or a whatever day because this movie can't wait. And, no, I don't care if you don't like "superhero" movies because your argument is invalid by sheer case of shut up.

Seriously.

Deadpool may just be my favourite movie.

& I so need a Bea Arthur shirt. 

5/25/2016

techly speaking//olixar boombrick bluetooth speaker

We were in the market for a new speaker that was a little bit beefier and, as luck would have it, Mobile Fun {which is based in the UK so I feel all fancy now} reached out to me to review the Olixar Boombrick Bluetooth Speaker and it ticks all the boxes. I love it but Husband is probably the most obsessed with it and, to be honest, I think the hobbit has now claimed it as his own {typical}

The Olixar has high fidelity audio that easily fills the room without being tinny. It's cute, blends in to existing decor easily and has some weight to it but is still easy to move around. The speaker has Bluetooth & line-in connectivity so you can connect any audio device and has automatic Bluetooth pairing so no passwords are needed {thank bloody goodness. Is anyone else terribly hopeless with passwords?}.

Another handy feature {which I'll probably never quite get around to using} is that there's a built-in microphone for hands-free calls and conference calling. There's a rechargeable battery which I love because I detest buying batteries. Play time is 8 hours with a 3 hour charge time.

The package comes with the speaker {duh}, a 3.5mm to 3.5mm AUX cable, USB charging cable and user manual. The speaker also comes with a two year warranty which is wonderfully nifty. 

I'm yet to name him {feel free to send suggestions} but he's wonderful for playing music outside {B. loves that, our neighbours probably want to stab us -- kid is obsessed with Wannabe} and for listening to music in the shower. A wonderful addition to our home. And, seriously, what should we name him?

*I received the speaker from MobileFun but was not paid for my review. As always, all opinions are my own. 

5/24/2016

danza dates//winter is coming

I have been looking forward to tomorrow's Danza Date {yes, I'm lame} for over a month. Because, Deadpool and, also, some non-sick time with my Husband would be lovely. We've all been sick, me for two months, B. with a chest infection and on a ventilator so she can breathe and Husband with minor toe surgery. So... yup. Fascinating stuff right? Anyway, ingredients for a wonderful Danza Date-in --

& deadpool

5/23/2016

advice to my younger self//don't sweat the slut stuff



When I was younger, and a virgin, everyone around me, friends, peers, family, called me a slut. I hated it. The word, the label, the sneers, created so much depression and anxiety for me. I was so tired, so scared, so heart broken. I slept all the time and I couldn't understand why people were saying these things about me when I'd barely even kissed a guy before.

Later, after I finally had sex and realised that I loved it I kind of embraced the word and everything that went with it. Deep down, though, I had this gnawing feeling that girls weren't supposed to like sex and they certainly weren't supposed to have multiple partners, especially not at the same time. I still hated myself but I learned to stamp out the negative voices with multiple orgasms.

And, today. Well, today I'm married {duh} and I still love sex and I'm not quite sure how I feel about monogamy. I frequently call myself a hoebag mostly because I think the word is quite fun and, also, because if it's one of the only words out there that can describe a girl who likes sex {why is that?} then I'll embrace it. I look back fondly on my pre-Husband days and I don't see anything wrong with what went down {semi-pun intended}.

If I could talk to fifteen/sixteen year old me I would tell her that there ain't nothing wrong with having lots of sex because, hey, sex is fun. And if the result of multiple delicious orgasms with different guys means people will call you a slut, either to your face or behind your back, then so be it. Like so many things in life, it says more about them than it does you. And, really, if you're going to have a roster of guys then fucking own it.

Be safe. Be happy. Do it for you. Don't have sex out of obligation {and, yes, there were two guys back then that forced me into it. I'm not entirely immune}. Have fun. Don't be ashamed because if guys can do it so can you.

And here's the thing -- the owning your labels {no matter how shitty} -- is the best piece of advice I can give to my younger self and anyone else in the world. If you must {and sure, it would be wonderful if society & people weren't so predictably stupid}, call me a hoebag, a slut, a whore. I could care less. Call me any name under the sun. Most of them are probably true. But, here's the thing, I don't care what anyone thinks of me. I know me. My family knows me. My true friends know me. That's all that matters.

5/20/2016

friday five//the lazy oaf edit

If there is one brand that embodies "me" it is Lazy Oaf and, look, yes, I am just basing that on their name. Luckily, they don't just have their name going for them -- they have some pretty adorable pieces too. You can shop them here but I most like to get my Oaf on when I'm trawling Asos for bunny and cat items that I most certainly do need. Take a look at my top five picks --

one. the baby tea dress -- I love a good tea dress and this denim take is wonderful. The black detailing and the embroidery take it up a notch.

two. a weird one piece -- I'm weird and I like it. This swimsuit is quirky and pretty and even though Australia is nearing flannelette sheets and heater weather I want to snap this up in preparation for swimming season. By the way, how cute are the ruffles?

three. denim patches -- quirky & a lighter denim to add to the collection. Love the patches on this.

four. bird dress -- in the same style to one & three but oh-so very different. I love a detailed collar and some pretty birds. Yes please!

five. piano shirt -- sometimes black & white can be drab but the buttons, collar and frill hem make this shirt a must have. I doubt I have the body type for it but it's wonderful all the same. 


5/18/2016

seven

I was recently reminded that Seven is one of the greatest movies of all time. And, no, it's not just the Kevin Spacey factor but, also, yes, yes it is. 

Nobody does deadly sins better than Seven. Nobody. 

I'm not a huge Brad Pitt fan and, to be honest, this is the only movie of his I can stand him in. I find it tricky to separate an actors personal life from their professional one but Seven is just too darn good. I can't give it up. Besides Freeman and Spacey more than make up for Pitt's presence.

Can we just discuss how genius it is that nobody knew Spacey was in it until his first scene? How surprising it was? Spacey can play a psychopath, we all know that, and in this he's perfection. When I watch the movie I obsess over his every move, how calculated, how brilliant. Love him.

Love the whole darn movie and the final showdown. Ugh. I get excited just thinking about boxes and wrath and envy. 

5/16/2016

that married life//changing names

Are you aware that there's this thing in life where people actually give a crap if you change your surname when you get married? There is. Apparently, if you change to your Husband's surname you are a terrible person. Anti-feminist. Abused probably. Weak. Blah. Who the fuck cares?

I did change my name to my Husband's surname when I got married. Husband and I talked about it before and he was happy to change to mine {ha!} which I quickly vetoed. We also discussed making our own surname because he isn't attached to his at all. In the end, we were both far too lazy to do anything of the sort and I was just like, meh, and assumed his name.

I am not abused. Weak. Whatever. My Husband cooks dinner and does the dishes okay? But seriously... this is actually an issue that people think about. They judge people on this crap! As if it's important at all. Change your name. Don't change your name. Who cares! 

This was never an issue in my house. Husband would let me do what I wanted to do when it came to my surname because he's a normal functioning human being. When it came down to it I just took his. The main reason for this was because I couldn't stand my maiden name. For me, it associated me with my father and I just needed to be rid of it. The name was tainted, it made me sad and it didn't feel like me. So I changed. Sure, I could have made up a new one {because lets face facts Gaff is a hideous name} but, see above, I'm a lazy fuck.

Yes, I have been told that my new surname is not my real name. It actually legally is. I have been told I am anti-feminist. Sure. I have been told that my Husband doesn't actually love me because if he did he wouldn't have let me do this. Totally. 

Whatever rational I have to stupid comments doesn't actually matter because this topic doesn't matter. It is quite literally the most non-starter I have heard of. I changed my surname because I wanted to and if anything matters in this topic it is this.

So if you're in the same boat or nearing it, please just do whatever the fuck you want to do. Don't let anyone get you down. Just do you. 

5/13/2016

friday five//the almost five years gift guide

Bailey turns five in less than a month. I can't quite believe it. This year has gone so quickly. Where did the time go and other cliche nonsense? But, seriously, time? What's the deal?

There is not one inch of me that is sad about B. growing up. I'm just so darn excited for the kid, to watch her continue to grow and learn and be awesome. This year B. and I have planned her birthday together and it kind of feels surreal that my kid is sitting with me as we pour over websites trying to find the very thing she's after. She's opted out of a party and has planned a pretty amazing adventure for herself.

This year for her big present B. is getting a bunk bed {which I plan to decorate with tassel garlands like this} that also has a desk and drawers built in so that's sorted but I also wanted to share five other wonderful gifts {or gift ideas} for that almost five year old --


Sylvanian Families -- B. is currently obsessed with these adorable guys & I just love this motorcycle & sidecar set.

Wooden Sushi Set -- any wooden play food is good in my book & B. loves cooking in her kitchen and playing cafes with her food cart so this is perfection.

My Little Pony PJ's -- these Cotton On Kids pj's are adorable and currently in our gift box for B. to unwrap come June. I just loved the vintage-y design of these. 

Yoda -- B. loves a good Build A Bear trip and it's become a kinda-tradition {which she chose to forgo last year} to visit BAB every year on her birthday before we go on her outing/s.

Frozen Operation -- I picked this up for B. along with Frozen Monopoly. Kid loves anything Frozen and she's currently obsessed with board games and I can't wait to play these with her.  

5/11/2016

let's visit my bedside...

my bedside table that is...

I'm just a sticky beak and I love seeing what people keep on their bedside tables. It's such a personal thing and sneak peek into who they are isn't it? Case in point, Husband has nothing on his aside from a phone charging on occasion. Such a Husband thing to do. 

Mine, of course, is such a jumbled mess of stuff and is either pin straight or messy as fuck. Me to a T. 

Over the years, my bedsides have changed from mini to massive and currently I'm loving the latter. Husband re-purposed our old dining table into a coffee table that eventually became my bedside and I love that there's plenty of room for everything I need. Though, I must admit, it's pretty obnoxious {just like me!}

I like to keep the essentials here and, of course, the "essentials" are really anything but. There's a framed picture of Maxy, tissues, medication and vitamins. I like to keep a notepad and pens handy {the desire to write a dozen lists always strikes at bedtime}, also crayons because I do like to colour and sometimes B. will pull up a stool and do some work here while I'm writing in bed.

I have some inspiration books and my current eye mask.

I currently have some other "lovey" framed prints, some notepads and various trays/bowls/boxes for all manner of things like jewellery, hair ties, a toy from B. & a lolly {?}. 

Rest assured my bedside table is rarely this clean. It is mostly a jumbled mess of mine & B's stuff because this is my brain most of the time. And, also, having anxiety makes me want/need to have everything tidy all the damn time but having depression makes the mess seem impossible and unbearable. My life is juggling between both and, mostly, failing miserably {just so you know}.

What's on your bedside table?

5/09/2016

j reads//the good girl by mary kubica

After a thrilling read? One that makes you all fidgety and antsy as you read it? That rattles your core?

Meet The Good Girl. All those things and more.

Because when a girl from a wealthy family is missing and the police have no clue you know you're in for a ride. 

Colin has been watching Mia. He knows everything about her. Where she works. Where she buys her groceries. His job is to abduct Mia and deliver her to his employers but there's just something about her that makes him change his mind. Instead Colin seeks refuge with his captive in a secluded cabin as they evade his superiors and the police.

The Good Girl tells the story from multiple sides but gives nothing away. It's suspenseful and haunting. Kubica's words stay with you long after the final page has been turned, long after the cover closed and the book set down. Mia's story is sad, heart-wrenching, frightening and compulsive and Kubica writes in such a way that you feel on the verge of hypothermia with the characters, you travel through all the layers of grief and fear. You're scared when they're scared, swallowing back tears as they shed their's and, ultimately, feel betrayed, shocked and broken as they turn their backs and the story closes.

A must read.



5/08/2016

mental health//on mother's day

In the week leading up to today, to Mother's Day, I have felt my depression worsen, have felt the blackness, the fog, creep over me and smother me whole. I have felt terribly sad and have bottled these feelings and continued on with helping B. learn how to read and write, practice her mini-talk about her favourite place in the world. I have eaten dinners at dining tables and smiled when I felt like absolute shit. I have loved and hated every second of it.

One may assume that I'm feeling crappy today because I don't have a relationship with my mother but nope, that's not it. Why would I? Today I am more depressed than ever because I feel like a mum not worth celebrating because I am depressed. I feel so cross with myself that my head can talk me into being miserable, into wanting to die because I have mental illness.

But, really, truly, I just don't feel worthy of love. Not any day but especially today. When Husband and B. set out on a shopping trip for me I swallowed back a lump in my throat. My head told me to stop them going because I wasn't worthy of their time. Instead, I let them go and pretended to be fine and ate salad and watched Real Housewives and tried to talk myself into feeling worthy.

It never works though does it?

Because if it did I wouldn't be in this mess.

I wouldn't feel like crap for medication and therapy not fixing me.

I wouldn't feel like a failure to B. for not being happy all the time.

I wouldn't have anxiety and panic attacks about sucking as a mum.

I would just be happy.

Fuck. I wish.

Today, and all this week, I'm struck by a conversation I had with my Husband not too long ago. About suicide. About how depression talks you into it. About how you fight it for so long and then, one day, you just can't fight any longer. We talked about, snuggled up together, and my Husband admitted he was scared for me. I cried for it then and I cry for it now because I know there's a very real possibility that I may never get better and I may kill myself. And my Husband knows it too.

That terrifies me.

So, no, today, I don't feel deserving of all this love. Because I have depression and anxiety. And I have a kid who deserves better than me. 

5/06/2016

friday five//the last minute mother's day guide

Eek, it's almost Mother's Day. Well, that happened rather quickly didn't it? If you haven't finished or even started shopping for that special woman in your life never fear. I am here! But, also, I just realised how stupid that sounds. Sure, the never fear part was utter crap but also the shopping part as if the only thing this occasion calls for is gifts. I know I'm being all grinchy again but seriously? All I really truly want for Mother's Day is a handmade card, snuggles in bed and the free reign to watch all my favourite Disney movies {Enchanted, Snow White, Cinderella, The Jungle Book}. Still, I ain't going to say no to gifts {materialism and all that} and here are five stupidly random favourites --

one. The Force Awakens -- who doesn't need a copy of this on hand at all times?
two. Bart Simpson PJ's|Target -- I may have grown out of watching The Simpsons every single day but the show still holds a special place in my heart and these jammies look adorable and give me cravings to watch the movie right this second. In my humble opinion every mum needs pyjamas.
three. Love Stack Make-up Pocket|Mecca --  simple & gorgeous. Perfect for any mumma to carry around her beauty essentials.
four. Spiced Pumpkin Pecan Quick Bread|Williams Sonoma -- remember when I ranted about this bread last year? Williams Sonoma has now come to their senses and believe me when I tell you that this bread is the most delicious thing in the world and needs to be baked for every mum in the world for Mother's Day breakfast in bed. Unless they're allergic to nuts and then that would be weird.
five. Magnetic To Do List|Kikki-K -- perhaps, the most random selection of all but I need this man. The cat! And who doesn't need a to do list?

5/04/2016

the non-drinking shame

Here's something you may or may not know about me -- I don't drink. Apparently, if you listen to the crowd, this is something to be ashamed of. You are not fun. You're judgmental. You're boring. You really do want to drink you just need to be talked into it. For hours. And then a bit more. And when, still, you smile, perhaps a bit more stiffly now, and say no thanks people roll their eyes and step away from you as if you are the problem.

I am not ashamed of myself for not drinking. I am not ashamed that I have put that limit on myself. And neither should you.

Because, here's the thing, the people who tell you that you'd be more fun if you had a drink or two are the ones who should be ashamed. The people who think it's okay to drink and drive with children in the car should be ashamed. The people who think it's okay to try and pressure you into drinking, these are the people who need to be ashamed. Not you.

I don't drink for a variety of reasons. The biggest one, of course, is I don't want to. I grew up in a family of drinkers. I was given beer by my parents before I was fifteen. Every single gathering was alcohol fueled. I thought this was okay. It wasn't then and it isn't now. As I got older and turned eighteen my anxiety and depression became a stronger force in my life. Instead of getting help I drank to ease the pain. Some nights I blacked out and couldn't remember what had happened. I didn't remember drinking.

I used to drink heavily at family occasions because I didn't want to be there.

When Husband and I decided to try for a baby I stopped drinking. I didn't want to drink while trying because I knew I'd hate myself if I was unknowingly pregnant and had had alcohol. I didn't drink while I was pregnant either because, hey, that's just what's done. After B. was born Husband and I decided that we weren't going to drink around her. Not because we were ashamed but because it wasn't necessary.

After Minnie my anxiety and depression got worse and I was diagnosed with PTSD. I still wasn't ready to fully admit to any of this. Admit that I needed help. Therapy. Medication. So when B. went to bed I would drink wine until the pain went away and I slipped into a blank sleep. It felt like bliss. So anytime life got hard I repeated this. Drinking in bed. Alone. Wanting to die.

And then, I don't know, I just woke up and decided to stop. I took myself to the doctor. I got myself on medication. I was warned not to drink alcohol. I was told to take care of myself. So I did. I am. 

Husband doesn't drink for himself but also for me, for moral support. Because he saw how I was and he's seen how alcohol plays a leading role in people's lives and he doesn't want that for himself, for me or for B.

Of course, I don't hate people who drink. I don't judge them. Why would I? There's nothing wrong with it after all. But it's just not for me. Which is what people seem unable to grasp. As if, drinking is the best thing in the entire world. As if, one can't have a good time without it. As if, it's what makes you a real man or a fun woman. 

So, no, I'm not ashamed of not drinking. I am, however, ashamed of the people who try to pressure me, and others into drinking, as if seeing you slur your words is just the thing to make me quit not drinking. As if, I'd ever listen to what society deems acceptable. As if, I'd ever sacrifice the safety and well-being of my family. As if you matter.


5/03/2016

sticker spotlight//confessions by court

After some truly adorable character stickers? As obsessed with Star Wars & Harry Potter as me? Love some good cutesy love-themed stickers? Look no further than Confessions By Court

I ordered 3 pages of stickers - Harry Potter, Star Wars {called "outer space" stickers} & cute perfect match picks {I plan to use these to mark date nights with Husband}. They came packaged together as such with some cute little samples that almost made the two week wait {from order to door} worth it. That elephant though! So adorable. 

All of the stickers I ordered are matte {a.k.a not glossy} which I actually tend to prefer when it comes to planner stickers. I think matte is easier to apply and write on {if need be}. Glossy stickers tend to "pop" better off the page but I think these pretties from CBC are lovely in all their matte-ness. 

The Harry Potter & Star Wars were $3.50 each. The perfect match was $3.00. Usually I wouldn't spend that much on non-functional stickers but these were just too delicious to pass up -- perfection. 

Now, as I mentioned earlier the wait on these was 2 weeks which was advised at checkout but still...ridiculous, no? From post to door these took an entire week to get to me so keep that in mind when purchasing. I'm pretty impatient but I'm just so chuffed with these that I couldn't hold a grudge for too long. 


Here are the gloss sticker samples all on their lonesome. As you can tell, when photographed they have a glossy sheen to them. They also feel nicer to touch & they're all pretty darn adorable. 


Another bonus for me was that the package had a "do not bend" sticker affixed. Simple, yes, but necessary and a wonderful touch. 

Confessions By Court is currently on a short break but as soon as she reopens I highly recommend anyone obsessed with planner stickers gives some of her products a go {yes, postage time and all}. A definite repurchase for me. 

& here are some of the stickers in action --

because I'm wonderfully lame I went through my new planner and added perfect pairs to each of our monthly date nights. I love how whimsical they are. 

5/02/2016

being mum//what i miss the most

Generally, I'm that pretty annoying breed of parent who doesn't miss anything about life before baby. I mean, why would I? Life with B. is infinitely more fun than it was without her. But, look, I must confess, there is one thing I miss. Morning sex.

When was the last time I had morning sex? 5 years ago. Perhaps just a smidge more. I miss it I tell you. Remember how delicious it is to wake up next your somebody and just want to jump on? Remember how fun it is to wake them up by kissing them in places? Yeah that. I miss it.

You can't have morning sex with a kid. Sure, you could lock yourself in your room or lock them in theirs but that's just not me. Perhaps, it could happen while B. is watching TV with breakfast but it wouldn't be as enjoyable now would it? Imagine the pressure. Imagine the time constraints. A quickie is wonderful a few times a week but not in the morning. Never in the morning. Morning sex should be luxuriated over like breakfast in bed only better.

One day I'll have morning sex again. I'm not sure when that will be. Perhaps if B. has a sleepover at someone else's house? When B. grows up and moves out? I don't know but as soon as it dawns in the future I'm writing it down to celebrate.