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An Insight Into Me

'Always look on the bright side of life' – Monty Python

Month

June 2017

Ed Sheeran Live

Ok no beating around the bush on this one. I went to see Ed Sheeran Live in concert at the O2! You can take a moment to contain your jealousy before you continue reading.

First off it’s not the first time I’ve seen him live. I went to see him at the multiply tour and he blew my mind! At the time I was much more into the plus album but there were a few songs on the multiply album that I was loving so me and my concert buddy heading along, queuing for ages to get a good standing spot. His artistry was unparalleled. And had never seen before and have not since seen such artistry as his that night! 

Last night he blew the roof off the O2. One man and his guitar, building music before your eyes as he layers up the beats and then blasts out a song you love and the whole arena sings along with him! Opening with Castle on the Hill the whole room was amped up, he moved onto eraser and then into The A Team! That is such a turn around into his original work but wow I love it so much! From there he kept us on our toes with an insanely good mashup of Feeling Good with I See Fire and I know I keep saying it, but it blew my mind! His creativity is unbelievable! Other highlights included Lego House, Thinking Out Loud and Galway Girl. He also performed an incredible rendition of Nancy Mulligan with Beoga bringing the Irish themes out in full! 

Wrapping up with some of his biggest hits it was a night that I will remember for a long time!!!! 
Since the show I’ve been saddened to see people all over the twitter sphere and the media bashing his performance at Glastonbury! People saying he was playing to a backing track and completely missing the awe of his style! A one man band! A musical genius! Well their loss! All I can say is ThankYou Ed for making my life just a little bit sweeter for bringing your music into it! 

Kisses.

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My Top 10 Fathers Day Gift Ideas

Ok ok Readers roll up, roll up for the greatest advice you will ever read!

Fathers Day. One of the most difficult days of gifting ever! Harder than the dad’s Birthday I find! But Fathers Day depending on the Father is a day that might not require as much celebration! So here are my tips for finding the perfect Fathers Day gift.

1) A classic dads gift for a reason, Aftershave. The perfect scent doesn’t have to cost Some ideas might be Nino Cerruti 1881 Homme or Paco Rabanne pour Homme. Or if you want something more high end there are some great scents from Hugo Boss and Calvin Klein.

2) If your Dad is a suit and tie kind of guy, your gift problem might be sorted right there. Ties and Cufflinks make great gifts. From the jokes ones to the sentimental you can find ties and cufflinks for anyone if you know where to look. For high end try Harvey Nichols, they have a great selection of cufflinks or from someone more on a budget you can get some lovely personalised or dad themed or classic cufflinks from high street stores like argos.

3) For the personal touch you could get a Photoframe, decorate it how you like with things you love to do with your dad and put a picture of the both of you inside. This is a more time consuming effort but the love behind the creativity (even if it end up a disaster) will show, and he’ll love it!

4) Speaking of personalised gifts you could get the classic best dad mug, or some variation. The king of cheesy gifts the best dad mug, but if your dad is a coffee aficionado you could pair this with some great coffee grounds or nespresso pods in his favourite flavour so bring some class.

5) For other personalised gifts you could go with the key ring, mouse mat or calendar efforts which can all be found online on sites like keepitpersonal.co.uk and photobox.co.uk both of which i have used before and can vouch for the reliability although for engraved items the arrival time can be a while.

6) The I.O.U. Ok hear me out. Bearing in mind i’m posting this just a couple of days before Fathers Day I realise if you are searching the net for answers a lot of these ideas might take some time to arrive in the post if you can’t get them in store. You can solve this little issue with a little I.O.U. I’m not talking about a scrap of paper that says hey dad I Owe You 1 Fathers Day Gift. I’m talking about taking 10 minutes to write on a nice piece of card Your Present Is In the Post but for Right Now Here Is A Hug and Lots of Love! Or something of the sort, use your imagination. Alternatively you can write a little Winning Ticket saying ‘You are entitled to one trip out, to a destination of your choice, free of charge’ or ‘You have won a meal at the restaurant of your choice with 3 courses included!’ Oh that should have been number 7!

8) If you know your Dad’s style there is always the Clothes option. A nice shirt, t-shirt or selection of accessories including the Man-Bag can make ideal gifts, and if they hate it they can always return it just leave on the labels!

9) Wine and Dine. Mentioned briefly above, a lot of Dad’s (and Mum’s) might not want the extra clutter of nick-nacks however sentimental added to the growing collection of stuff in the house. So this is a great alternative. Mealtime is family time right! So do it is style at your dad’s favourite restaurant with family around showering him with love. All men love food so it’s a win win.

10) Whiskey and Cigars. Whilst I do not condone acoholism or smoking, both are extremely bad for your health, most Dad’s do enjoy a little of one or the other or both. So if that’s the case with your dad buying him a nice bottle of his preferred beverage or a nice cigar might be the perfect gift him so I couldn’t leave it out.

I hope you enjoyed this post, let me know if you used any of my ideas and if they went down well! Add in your ideas in the comments section too!

Happy Fathers Day.

Kisses.

Book Club for One, Book Club for All

No excuses, this blog should have been up ages ago but here we go.

I Was Here by Gayle Forman was a thought provoking read. The story follows 18 year old Cody through the traumatic months following her best friends suicide. Cody teams up with Megs college friends as she tries to figure out how it has happened. She is convinced that someone must be to blame. Cody discovers that Meg was conversing in an online chat room which encourages people to suicide. Cody makes it her mission to track down the individual who led Meg to her death. The story is tragic but exceptionally well written. With the feelings of pain and love and loyalty perfectly presented. It takes you through the stages of grief  walking with Cody as the best friend of the girl who died. It made my heart clench and break with Cody as she discovered she didn’t know as much as she thought about the person she called the better half of me.

Definitely worth the read!

Next up is Finding Audrey  by Sophie Kinsella. Sophie is an author I have long known and loved. Her books always take me away with them and I get carried into the lives of her characters. Finding Audrey is no different. Audrey is a frightened 14 year old girl, too frightened to talk to strangers, too frightened to go outside and definitely too frightened to look at the world without her dark glasses. So when her brother’s computer gaming friend takes a liking to her the passing of notes opens her up to a new way of tackling her anxiety disorder. She works with him and her family and her therapist to try and overcome her social anxieties and the story takes us on her journey. Whether or not she makes it across the finish line I’ll leave you to find out for yourselves. It’s a great read, insightful and romantic in balance with humour and real life problems. I loved it. Thank you Ms Kinsella for another fabulous book.

The last book in this long awaited book club is Jennifer Nivens’ All the Bright Places. Now I read this book a looong time before I saw it was in Zoe’s Book Club with WHSmith. I completely fell into the story and I loved the chemistry between our characters; Violet and Finch. They have both suffered a tragedy, both want to end their lives. They meet trying to do just that. on the edge of the bell tower at their school both hesitating before the act. It brings them together and they join each other in a journey trying to find light in their worlds. It’s a journey that is full of ups and downs, full of insight and romance and… I can’t say anymore without giving away the plot. So go and read and tell me what you thought in the comments!

Until Next Time.

Kisses.

How One Person can Change your Day

Hey readers. As many of you know, I’m a nurse. I’ve been working in the NHS in the U.K. For around 5years now (that’s including my training get time). During this time I’ve had some incredible moments with patients, from holding the hands of patients as they pass, so that they are not alone to seeing true love that has lasted the ages. But this post is telling a story of a woman whose story brought me to tears, of joy and sorrow.

First to know is that this lovely elderly lady is 91years young. She has a smile that lights up the room and a head of thick silver hair. Her eyes are a beautiful brown although glassy and don’t focus, as this lovely lady is blind.

When I first introduced myself to her she made the usual comment about my name, “Oh, Coco Chanel!” She smiled and laughed. I asked her how she was and explained what we were there to do. She thanked us and then joking asked if we could fix her vision too. Some of you might think that’s a crass joke, but the way I see it is that it’s just proof of the the survivor in her. Anyone who can joke about their loss of vision or any other personal tragedy is to be admired, they are incredibly strong and resilient.

She was quiet for a moment and then said quietly, “I wish I could just be on stage once more.” So I asked what she used to do, she told me she used to sing. Not professionally but she used to be asked to sing on stage. She told me how once she went out with her husband to a live music bar. There was a group of five singers on stage with a pianist singing their hearts out but you could barely hear them over the clamour. She was upset for them and when the manager asked her to go on stage she said no, she was out with her husband, she didn’t want to sing, and not there because if there were five fabulous singers on stage and no one was listening who would listen to her. Her husband pushed her to go up and sing, and she was annoyed with him because now she could see that was why he had brought her there. So under duress she went up on the stage, went over to the pianist and asked him could he play Eidelweiss, but he had to follow her lead. He replied that she would be surprised and she had laughed and started to sing, oh so softly. After a few lines she said you could have heard a pin drop. “Holy hell, they like me” she said that she had thought and she had begun to sing louder and louder building up to a big finale. With a round of applause she began to sing what she said later became her pièce de la résistance… climb every mountain. I told her how amazing it was that she could share her voice with all those people and give them that moment of magic. She replied that she wished she could sing for her friends at the club she attends now, but she hasn’t the breath for it. Then she laughed, “I wouldn’t before, but they don’t get out much anymore, so it won’t matter if I’m not amazing, they’ll still enjoy it.” I said that I was sure she still could sing if she wanted, so she tried.

I held my breath as she started to sing the first lines of climb every mountain. Her voice waivered but she sang. And wow. Her voice. Yes it can’t have been what it was, but it was a beautiful thing to witness. She made it through the first verse, took. A deep breath and changed the key and carried on. And when she made it to the last line with the notes up in the rafters that I can’t even reach she stopped and laughed and waved her hand and said “it’s up there somewhere, up high.” We gave her a small round of applause and I tell you it was incredible, it brought me to tears. She had even impressed herself, “I haven’t sung that in so long, I didn’t think I’d make it through it.” It was inspiring, and yes that moment, just a couple of minutes long, made my day.

Let me know if anything changed your day around today.

Kisses.

Makeup Binging

So for those of you teen beauty queens this post will not be something you relate to! For those of you who grew up without makeup and fancy beauty products or any beauty products like me, you might get what I’m talking about.

So as a nineties baby in a working class family, with parents who have strict morals I didn’t grow up having makeup. The closest I got was the cheap eyeshadow and sickly pink lip gloss you get out of magazines for kids that I started purchasing in high school feeling the need to catch up with my lost childhood. Star Girl and Top of the Pops magazine became my guilty pleasure as I purged them of their freebies and music/TV related posters that I proceeded to paste all over my bedroom walls. To give you some context this was me at 14 and 15. Not 10.

When I hit about 15 or 16 my sister started to supply me with make up. Her old mascara, eye shadows that she didn’t like or want anymore and soon I had built up a fair amount of make up that I had no idea how to apply.

And so 8 years later I’m still learning. With my main teachers being youtube guru’s like Zoe Sugg, AKA Zoella, Tanya Burr, Katerina Williams and many many more…

So now that I’m finally honing my skill I’ve taken to regular binges buying makeup products from everywhere and anywhere. My favourite high street store is definitely Superdrug as the prices are great, there are regular offers and I get to dip into loads of different make up styles without breaking the bank. I also like browsing the high end makeup counters like Charlotte Tilbury, M.A.C, Nars and many more but committing to that kind of purchase is a big deal for me, I have to know I love the product. My Birchbox subscription is another way I love finding new products.

I’ll try posting a few beauty posts and see how it goes. Maybe y’all can learn along with me. Let me know in the comments where you like to browse for new products, make-up, skincare or other beauty related items.

Kisses.

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