LIFE | today’s thoughts …

I’ve been thinking about the past year and how surreal those past months all seem.

I’m thinking about life … and death. Especially death [ bear with me it gets lighter ] and how ‘weird’ it is to get your head around which may sound odd; but sometimes I have to remind myself that mums dead. I have such vivid dreams about her that some mornings I wake up and for a few minutes everything is like it was before. Momentarily my life’s complete again ; it’s more or less perfect.

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BEAUTY | Bath time pampering

Imagine for a moment if your will that David Attenborough and his film crew decided to follow me around to study and document my behavior in my natural habitat for a BBC special. Firstly it would be very weird and secondly they would be most likely to find me languishing in a hot, bubble bath …

I love nothing better than getting home from work, whipping my clothes off [ especially my bra ]  and climbing in for a long soak . I’ve been known to wallow for hours , especially in the Winter months, like a pig in mud.

So today I thought I’d share a few of my bathing essentials with you …  but firstly i like to set the scene. If I have the time I like to light a few tea-lights to create ambience and spritz the bathroom with something along the lines of Quietude Calming Mist from Temple Spa. I occasionally take a cup of coffee with me … a glass of fizz has been known along with a good book or magazine.

To be honest I don’t always have the time, I cant find the matches, or we’ve run out of milk ! But hey when it does happen it’s bloody lovely.

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STYLE | Joe Browns celebrate 20 years !

Have I told you I’m a frustrated performer? You know the one … can’t sing, can’t dance, [ what do you do ?] but longs to entertain. Longs to tread the boards.

Well it’s no surprise then that I like my clothes to have character too. Your probably thinking what is she waffling on about now …?!

Well basically I like to put my clothes on and take on a new persona. Clothes that give you life so to say. Make you happy.

Take this fabulous coat for example from Joe Browns I pop it on and I’m no longer Tracey from Sheffield [ well I am it’s not that fabulous!] But I feel like I could be the love child of John Lennon [during the Sergeant Pepper days] and a Bond baddie [ a sexy Russian lady one obviously]

It makes me feel sassy …

though I don’t necessarily look it . These photos were taken while I was quite poorly.

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MUSINGS | say no to plastic

It’s a bit of a different post from me today but it’s something I’m pretty passionate about .

Did you know that it takes 200 years for a plastic straw to decompose. You heard correctly two – hundred years!

That quite shockingly over 100 million marine animals are killed each year due to plastic debris in the ocean. Yep … one- hundred million!

In the UK only a third of plastic packaging used in consumer products is recycled each year, with almost two-thirds sent to landfill or incinerated

That’s a lot of big , worrying figures.

I sat and watched a programme just last week about plastic and the damage WE are inflicting on the planet .

My heart sank … and then broke a little .

I literally cried as I watched [ amongst other things ] pieces of plastic being flushed from a Shearwater Chicks belly. The chick was alive, the plastic doesn’t decompose it just sits in their stomachs leaving no room for food. Zapping their energy . Slowly killing them. That , that just wasn’t right. Over the last 50 years the Shearwater chick population has declined by a staggering 30%

To think we are partly responsible for destroying our planet makes me both very angry and extremely sad .

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BEAUTY | the bumper edition

If you know me you’ll know the things that get me excited around the collar … chunky bars of milky chocolate, large cups of frothy coffee and good conversation. Nights out dancing. Bradley Cooper, Martin Kemp , DiNuzzo from NCIS … [ I know so many men]

and good skin care

I guess you can chop and change your wardrobe, replace old pieces with new , upgrade , but unless you go under the knife you can’t chop, change or upgrade your skin. You CAN however use products to improve the overall look and feel of the skin; keep the wrinkles at bay or soften any you may have. Saying that some wrinkles are a sign of a life well lived…I fully embrace my laughter lines.

I love a good pamper and I’m all over experiencing new procedures / self-love . I guess I just want to look the best version of myself .

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MUSINGS | the poem

Morning ,

I’m posting something a bit different today …

Please bear with me and let me know what your think ; also let me explain.

I have mentioned this on previous occasions, so I’m sorry if you feel I am going over old ground; but there is not one day since we lost mum that I’ve not thought about her at some point . Sometimes it’s a fleeting memory and it disappears as quickly as it popped into my head. Sometimes my thoughts linger around for hours. Sometimes I remember and I smile , sometimes I’m reduced to tears.

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LIFE | the walk …

We walk . I talk mostly . Mollie annoyingly stops every 2 seconds to sniff anything and everything [mainly other dogs bums] and my dad asks me for the 16th time “you have got poo bags haven’t you?”

Have I got poo bags?

I’m queen bloody poo bag

Today they are strategically stuck in the top of my pants. The jacket and trousers I’m wearing have no pockets , the bags are easily accessible via the top of my leggings. I show dad the corner of one of the them popping out . He just gives me ‘that’ look and shakes his head. Yes dad I have poo bags.

In-between the ‘chit-chat’ I talk about mum in an attempt to get him to open up more. Sometimes it’s awkward; I sense it makes him uncomfortable. Dad gets teary and quickly changes the subject … but today it’s somehow ok .

He tells me it’s their 51st wedding anniversary in a few weeks and we reminisce for a while. I love talking about mum. This pleases me.

Over the past months I’ve learnt to become ‘friends’ with my grief. That may sound ridiculous but for as long as I am around I never want to forget a thing about my mum . I want to keep her alive; to talk about her, remember her … that’s normal behaviour right?

I guess I can’t have one without the other so I welcome my emotions wholeheartedly ; I figure the only way to move forward is to let them wash over me any which way they choose – come and go as they please so to say .Be that in the way of tears , laughter or everything in-between.

I’ve found nobody talks about death ; how to deal with losing a parent . It’s a conversation nobody wants , so you muggle through the best you can. In the dark without a torch.

Grief has no pattern. It hits you at unexpected times and places . It can be short and quick – a fleeting memory that strikes you down [ remember Portuguese tarts in Sainsbury’s ] Sometimes it lingers and your stuck on an emotional roller-coaster for however long that ride decides to last.

I guess grief will become my norm. Just like breathing, eating and sleeping it will become routine…not always so raw, but always there bubbling underneath the surface.

So please bear with me I am still ‘healing and adjusting’ … at the same time please don’t ever tell me to get over my grief because that would be like saying get over your mum …

I pondered over these thoughts today with dad . He is used to me , I was a ‘deep’ child. I didn’t think I was making much sense to be honest , but he nodded his head in agreement, his eyes glazed over and he said

“If there’s one thing I’ll never forget Tracey it’s your mum … never ever … how could I ?…”

[ I smile and we carry on walking in silence for a few seconds]

“Now you did say you had poo bags didn’t you ?”

x

5 Life Lessons I would pass onto my younger self …

Hindsight is a great thing … unfortunately hindsight is just that …

hindsight

ˈhʌɪn(d)sʌɪt/

1. understanding of a situation or event only after it has happened or developed.

At the ripe old age of 47 I’ve lived a very full and eventful life . There have been amazing highs and devastating lows. I fell in love far too easily and in the process I kissed a lot of frogs ; turns out they don’t all turn into Princes.

While I’ve had a blast I’ve also made ALOT of mistakes and although I don’t think you should ever have regrets I do have a couple. Not taking the opportunity to audition for the weather girl position at my local TV station being one of them.

Which led me to reminisce ; muse about life [as you do] I have no complaints but if I had done things differently where would life have taken me? If I had the chance to talk to my younger self what 5 life lessons would I pass on .

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