a solemn sort of happy list

You know when you're happy but entirely and utterly miserably depressed? The past few weeks. That. But it occurred to me, as I was happily plodding along folding washing, that there have been a few moments or things {okay, a load of those} that have lifted my spirits in this kind of darkened fog --

one. an adorable hot air balloon pint-sized bag from an even more adorable friend

two. banana tea towels & bath mats 

three. my kid who acts like me in almost every way -- who has, now, planned and laid out the earrings she wants to wear on her birthday

four. the fact that my kid will be six in less than two weeks

five. walking in on my Husband watching My Little Pony all by his lonesome

six. walking in on my Husband eating bacon, sitting perfectly straight, and looking the happiest I ever seen him

seven. snuggles with B. especially in the morning, before school, when Husband is at work and it's just her and I

eight. Miffy pyjamas that speak to exactly who I am -- not a morning person

nine. Harry Potter earrings

ten. the look on my Husband's face when I sing along to Cell Block Tango in the car especially when he knows how much I despise people who pop their gum


friday five|i need...

There aren't many activities that fill me with as much happiness as shopping. Things make me happy. Here's five I need --

new read -- Into the Water by Paula Hawkins -- I wasn't a fan of Girl on the Train. It had so many pieces of a novel that I love but it just felt clumsy and I didn't enjoy it. Still, I'm tempted to give her new venture a try just in case she's figured out how to pull a story together. Hopefully this one lives up to the hype.

planner love -- jaxandpepper anniversary monthly kit -- a kit that can go in any month is a rare find and this one from jaxandpepper on Etsy is simply divine. The fact you get a custom box just adds to the perfection. Hoping to pick this up for my July monthly spread. 

dr. seuss & peter alexander -- currently planning to get the Thing 1 & Thing 2 pj's from here as anniversary gifts for Husband & I because we're a family who love to match.

studs -- marc jacobs ice cream studs -- because who doesn't love ice cream and whimsical studs?

glowy perfection -- Kiehl's Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque -- if a product promises radiance I'm all there. Currently having a bit of a Kiehl's love affair and I can't resist buying everything they have to offer.  


on darkness

I've come to realise that life is full of inexplicable dark moments. Of depression. Of blankets. Of any form of light creating turmoil in your mind. Sometimes I crave the darkness. And sometimes darkness is thrust upon me in the cruelest ways. Of wanting to be with my family and being unable. Of craving nothing but them and, yet, being capable of anything but.

Darkness can feel welcoming but it can also be soul destroying. Isolation. Feeling out of place in the safest of environments. Feeling no sense of belonging. Feeling unloved and incapable of giving any. And sometimes it's nothing. Just complete, overwhelming, blackness that swallows you whole and consumes you. That causes your entire body to ache and your thoughts to come to a screeching halt. Of nothingness. Of being nothing. Of feeling nothing. Of seeing nothing.

It's lonely isn't it?


friday five|favourite things

Sharing five of my current beauty favourites --

Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Botanical Cleansing Oil -- my favourite way to remove make up which just so happens to be the most efficient and effective. This stuff is glorious.

Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate -- I usually detest any product that feels like oil on my skin but this is lightweight and wonderfully nourishing. Using this in conjunction with the cleansing oil has made such a difference to my skin and I adore the results. 

Kiehl's Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado -- I'm going to jump right off and say -- this is the best eye cream I have ever tried. I have no qualms in declaring this to the world. It's hydrating and the perfect product for the under eye area. Yes, you do need this.

Lush Angels On Bare Skin Cleanser -- I've long forgotten that this scrubby cleanser existed and I'm horrified that I could be that stupid. My favourite scrub -- not too rough or too gentle.

Lush Lemony Flutter Cuticle Butter -- I'm not great with doing or taking care of my nails. Fingers and toes have always been in the "too hard" or "too groomed" basket for me. I like to look nice, neat, polished but I can't stand looking too perfect so I always seem to let my nails slide. I also hate sitting still for long enough to get a manicure and/or pedicure and I am terrible at doing my own. The one thing I will do {aside from moisturising my feet} is apply a cuticle butter and this one by Lush is my one and only. It's lusciously soft, actually works and smells divine. 


one more year of...

When I was a kid I was obsessed with this song from Dr. Hook -- One More Year Of  (Daddy's Little Girl). I also felt like, perhaps, it was about me. Mostly because I had a death wish and was so sure that I wouldn't live to see adulthood. I listened to the song while I wrote suicide notes that I'd tuck into various corners of my room and I'd cry because the label of "daddy's little girl" seemed so sweet but as someone who was labelled one and abused behind the scenes it didn't feel so lovely....

Since I had B. I haven't been able to listen to the song. I remember when I was pregnant and we found out she was a girl -- I cringed internally and dreaded the day that somebody would call her "daddy's little girl" too. Sure, the label and the people who use it, usually, mean well but I'd spent my life wondering what I'd done to go from "daddy's little girl" to somebody he threatened to kill. I remember my mother using the label in a derogatory way even though she knew what I'd been through. Suffice to say I hated those three words and, subsequently, the song that I'd so adored growing up.

In the past few weeks I've found the song playing over and over in my head as some kind of mental torture. Since B. I'd avoided the song mostly because I can't stand the thought of losing her and the song hits too close to the home of my darkest thoughts. I remember getting the call from Husband at work, that perhaps, my greatest fear was coming true, that B. could really be sick, that she could die and that we needed to test her for things I'd never really imagined. I know children get sick and I know children get better and I know their families cope and, yet, the idea of B. having something that scary, the word "cancer" being forced out of my Husband over the phone. All of it. That song came back to haunt every inch of me.

I remember bursting into tears and I remember the inability to breathe and I remember the song lyrics slamming into me. After an excruciating snail-paced six days there was good news and lightness and, yet, the song still haunts me as if my head is not ready to let me be free of the idea of losing B.

...and soon my frightened eyes could see there was nothing on Earth that I could do...

And every time my head replays the song -- one more year of lollipops, ice-cream cones and soda pop -- I feel that aching, the pain, the terror, the paralysing fear as if Husband had just had the word "cancer" forced out of him for the first time. I feel relieved {and guilty for feeling so because I know not everyone has had the same results} and an incredible lightness of being, as I'm floating around incapable of being hurt anymore, but I also feel bogged down in the negativity of my brain that won't seem to let me move past the Doctors words... and that song, leaving my childhood haunting me all over again.


friday five|fave mumma moments

It's almost Mother's Day and I'm finding myself becoming a tad sentimental. I've been reminiscing about my time as a mumma to B. {a.k.a the best kid in the world} and I wanted to share a few of my favourite moments spent with her --

Any time we fall asleep cuddled up together. Then and now. I don't know why but I always adored waking up to find that Husband had snapped a pic of us together. This one is my favourite. I remember this day -- exhausted and Husband had told me to go to bed but I wanted to snuggle up with B. instead. I'm sure we were both asleep within minutes but any moment, even sleepy ones, cuddled up with that kid is wonderful.

Watching B. be a flower girl. We went shopping for the dress with the bride. She got ready with the bride and bridal party on the day and rode in the limo with them on the way to the ceremony. I could just see how happy she was the entire day, she couldn't stop smiling and I know she felt ridiculously special. Most of that is down to my friend who just kicked ass and I am so grateful to her for that because I think B. really needed it after a trying few months. I thought she flower girl-d amazingly even if I am completely biased.

As a complete soppy idiot I treasure all those quiet moments especially where I can become the creepiest of creeps and watch my kid sleep. I still can't get over her lips and lashes and her little squishy cheeks.

Celebrating all the birthdays with B. Hers is my favourite to celebrate because she's always grateful and, look, she's my kid and I like to spoil her a stupid amount. She's also at an age, now, where she writes birthday lists and carries around a clipboard planning her birthday and any parties months in advance and if that doesn't sum up me as a kid {except she's a million times cuter} than I don't what does. 

I remember when B. and I were just at home together, just the two of us, for, basically, two years straight and it was amazing. I've always been obsessed with taking photos because I'm annoying like that so B. and I would take photo booth pics on my laptop. Her face in this one gets me every time. I have now, of course, created a photo taking monster in my child and she now insists on photo sessions on my phone on the regular which has made my life.


If someone had told me that motherhood could be this amazing I would never have believed it. So often, you hear of all the hardships of all the sleepless nights and, sure, I make sarcastic comments that some parenting stuff is just so hard {sharing a blanket for one} but, really, it's just the most wonderfully fun experience in the entire world especially when I have a kid who cups my chin in her hands, looks me in the eyes and calls me "precious". 


on the jack rabbit

I've always been somewhat adverse to the jack rabbit style of sex. Pow. Pow. Pow. Just doesn't sound very good now does it? The aversion started when I was a teen and watched that Sex and the City episode where Carrie has terrible jack rabbit sex and, personally, from my one and only experience with a rabbit himself. Awful in both cases.

I don't remember this guys name. I can't even tell you what he looked like because I'm classy like that. I think I was sixteen or seventeen and he was nearing thirty{?}. I remember he refused to believe that I would actually want a beer to drink and ordered me a stupid fruity thing. He pouted when I said no to sex, refused to talk to me and then we did it. It probably lasted no longer than five minutes and it was the worst sex of my life. 

Before I started dating Husband I really wasn't all that picky about who I had sex with as long as I had an orgasm. And I always did. Except with Mr. Rabbit. I think he was some F-grade football player which he seemed ridiculously proud of as if that was a thing. He pounded away and I was too scared to say this is fucking horrible please stop and, also, he kept staring at his muscles {gross} in his mirrored built-in and I just thought it was the most hilarious thing in the world so I just laid there, wincing a bit and wishing it was done with. Wishing I was strong enough back then to say no when my head was screaming it, wishing that I wasn't so desperate for someone to love me {even though I didn't want this random to}. Wishing for a nice orgasm so this story wasn't so horrendous. 

Now, I look back, fondly, at Mr. Rabbit {what the heck is his name? was he blonde? or did he have brown hair? did he have eyeballs?}. My Husband and I laugh at the ridiculous tale from time to time. Hey, remember that time you had horrible rabbit sex with whats-his-name? Yeah that...

Now, I also look back in shame at all those years I was missing really fast jack rabbit sex because... fuck, it's really wonderful isn't it? Really wonderful when you're with someone who isn't really bloody old and who actually who knows what they're doing? Someone who can rabbit along with the best of them but still manage to give you a few orgasms while he's at it? That.

It's just occurred to me that this is quite a rude post isn't it? And I could just quit while I'm ahead but no... I shall go on. Because here's the thing, sometimes I think the rabbit can get quite a bad rap and that's a shame because really fast sex {preferably from behind} with a bit of spanking and biting thrown in for good measure is really all there is to life. If you're with a partner who can actually do it properly. If they don't stare at their muscles while daydreaming that they're banging themselves. If they've ever heard of and located a g-spot. That. All good stuff.


Is this too much information or no...?


friday five|mother's day gift guide

I know, I know, I couldn't be more unoriginal if I tried...

one. xo earrings|hard to find -- who doesn't need a sweet little reminder that they're loved?
two. the handmaid's tale by margaret atwood|amazon -- I've recently become hooked on the TV show so the book is a natural next step and an absolute must read
three. world's best mum eye mask|peter alexander -- a little ego boost combined with a sleep aid... necessary
four. sugarfina thank you bento box|shopbop -- sometimes candy needs to get fancy
five. tarte magic wands brush set|sephora -- because who doesn't need some unicorn brushes in their lives?   


watch|obsessed with mary berry

I first became obsessed with Mary Berry when I watched one season of The Great British Bake Off on Netflix. At first I was enthralled by this contestant who had a name that definitely started with a letter in the alphabet but once he was eliminated {or did he win?} I fell head over heels in love with Mary. She's adorable and her voice takes me to calm, anxiety free, places. I adore every inch of her.

Much to the annoyance of my child, I have currently been binge watching all things Mary on YouTube and feel instantly calmed as soon as I hear her voice. I've also found myself going to Mary when I'm having trouble sleeping and/or am too scared to fall asleep because I succumbed to Silence of the Lambs and Buffalo Bill terrifies me.

Is there anything more wonderfully calming than an English accent, an adorable cheeky streak and divine treats?

Mary Berry is sheer bliss.