Who am I? Who are you?

What would you say if I asked you “Who are you?” or “Who am I?”

I may read from my about me page but is that really who I am?

Partly

I am a crazy tattooed mum to four amazing young ladies..

A foster mum to one very special young man.

I am a gothic loving lady who is finally learning to love her plus sized body.

A new lover of fashion and with a complete addiction to books.

 

Yet I am also a woman who thinks way to much and often gets lost inside my own head.

I worry all the time.

From

Have i done that right?

Are the kids ok?

Will they like me?

To

Why are children dying?

Why are there so many wars?

Why do some have so much when others have nothing?

 

It’ so hard to answer the question “who am I?”

I think I can only answer this as who I am right now.

 

Life is always evolving.

I am not the person I was 10 years ago.

I am not the person I was last month.

In fact I am not the same person as I was yesterday.

 

Life, events, circustances and people they change me.

who am I

 

So what would you answer if I asked you ” who are you?”

 

Style on Sunday

This week has been so hot and my wardrobe choices have been pretty limited.

Although I would love to have a selection of pretty summer clothes the finances say different.

This doesn’t stop a girl from dreaming though.

This weeks style on Sunday is a little different as I have been joined by one of my beautiful girlies.

Say HI to Brodie

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So here are our outfit choices for this week. h02lh291500w

I just fell in love with this dress from Simply Be’s Folktale collection its perfect for these summer days.

I would wear it with these gorgeous sandals. g04dd581505s

And to finish it off I absolutely adore this bag. h04nl707506s

All this outfit was from Simply Be.

After seeing the beautiful Becky Barnes rocking the jumpsuit I have been wondering if maybe one would suit me.

So when I came across this stunner from Yours Clothing I knew it was going to be an outfit pic for this week.

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Its beautiful isn’t it and with a pair of simple black Platform court shoes again from Yours Clothing the outfit is elegant and so stylish and I so want it. 340df274-f62e-4f19-ad9b-6f88bca28596

Now for my girlie’s outfit pick for this week. She has chosen a cute pair of high waisted shorts from New Look

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Paired with with a sweet turquoise crochet T-shirt 313453948

With a gorgeous pair of sandals from ASOS to complete. image1xxl I

think Brodie would look beautiful in this outfit but I confess to being completely bias.

So there are our outfit choices for this week.

Click the photos for links.

Grief is like the ocean

Grief is like the ocean.

Sometimes it feels as if I am drowning sinking deeper and deeper into the dark.

Fighting again gigantic waves that would be a surfer dream.

Other times I can see the beauty all around me.

Moving gently as the warm water lulls around me.

It’s strange but one thing I am learning is that grief is unique. Everyone feels, hurts, heals in there own time.

Last night all I could think about was my beautiful Livvy.

My heart forever broken was tearing me inside out.

The missing had become almost unbearable.

I just wanted to hold her in my arms again.

I was angry at losing her.

Angry that the world just carried on without her.

The early hours seemed endless.

As the storm crashed outside one built up inside me.

So I cried.

In fact I cried harder that I had in a long time and it was fantastic and so needed.

When I hold on to the pain inside it consumes me. So releasing it is freedom.

So as the tears fell my anger did to.

I understand that no-one knows what is around the corner for them. Healthy children get ill, planes crash and the world at times can be a truly awful place, wars, genocide and murder.

Yet for nine years I got to have my baby with me. I got to receive the gift of being her mom and for that I would spent many more nights in tears.

Life hasn’t gone how I had dreamed. In fact I am so far of course it’s crazy. But it has given me the greatest gifts I could ever of asked for. My beautiful girls.

I miss Livvy so much and I can guarantee that there will be many more nights like last night.

That’s ok this ocean journey isn’t over yet.

But as Psalm 30.5 reminds is “Joy comes with morning “.

I am so grateful I am Olivia’s mom and I know one day we will meet again.

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Style on Sunday

I may have mentioned a few times that I have been on a journey this last year, one of body confidence.

Actually getting to a place where I like who I see in the mirror.

Its been a crazy ride and one that has happened thanks mainly to the support I have received from the plus size community. Their guidance and truth spoken to me has lifted a self hate that I have had for over 20 years.

It has been so amazing and life changing that I cannot and will not stop harping on about how truly fantastic it is.

One of the real difference’s  I have seen in myself is with clothes. I actually love clothes. No more do I turn to the comfortable old favourite of a tee shirt and jeans. Now I love to try different styles and colours.

The only thing stopping me from having a whole new wardrobe is the lack of funds, but hey thats not going to stop me looking and wishing.

Then I noticed a few of the bloggers had created their wish list and i though why the hell not.

Each week I will share with you my outfit of my dreams.

So here’s this week dream wardrobe choice.

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I am i love with this Glamorous Black Lace Hepburn Dress from Lady V London  it is truly stunning and I think it would be perfect for so many occassions.

I would then add a cute pair of wedges from Yours Clothing.

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Then to finsh I love this vixen red handbag from the Rock Collection. This is so me.ODVV-BGA3581-VoodooVixenRedHandbagWithBlackFlowers-1

 

Well there we go the first of my new weekly wishlist.

Click the photos to visit the stores and take a look for yourselves.

Green fingers

My garden never used to be anything but a place my children could play. I was never excited about flower beds or hanging baskets, it just simply wasn’t me.

So imagine my surprise when this year I started noticing all the different plants and actually enjoying a wander around the garden centre.

I think it may have something to do with this.

 

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The “Olivia” rose from David Austin Roses.

I came across this beauty by chance and it blessed

 

my heart that something so beautiful shared my late daughter’s name.

Of course I had to have one and now my garden seems to be coming alive thanks to this beauty.

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It is just stunning.

This rose has spurred a new interest for me and now look what else I have.

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Who knows maybe I do have greenfingers after all.

 

A mom or a referee?

Sometimes I feel less like a mother and more like a referee.

Always negotiating, enforcing rules.

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Image courtesy of vectorolie / FreeDigitalPhotos.net 

Everyone warned me that it could be like this but I never expected a war zone to be found in my living room.

I love my girls and while I accept that growing up and finding their freedom is part of life’s journey. I’m not happy that they have decided each day is an opportunity for a battle.

How can they go from being best friends to worst enemies?

Seriously it’s driving me mad.

I am proud I have raised such independent spirited young woman but hey please let them take on the world and leave their poor mama alone.

I am tired and emotionally shattered with this parenting stage.

Reminiscing and yearning for the days of night feeds and dirty nappies. I may have been exhausted back then but at least they didn’t answer back so much.

I know its a stage that all go through and one day my beautiful kind caring girls will return and the dragon headed all knowing beautiful monsters will disappear but its so not easy.

Image courtesy of AKARAKINGDOMS / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of AKARAKINGDOMS / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I recognise this year is going to one of big changes, university, college it certainly is  going to bring a new dynamic to the relationships of the girls.

A new dimension in their sisterhood.

I’m praying a little space will make hearts grow fonder.

Who knows?

I guess until then I will resign myself to the role of mediator for a little longer.

So does anyone have a whistle?

 

Scared she will be forgotten

I have a confession to share.

This week I have found myself really scared

Scared people will forget Olivia.

That as the years pass her beautiful smile is fading from people’s memories.

The fear actually causes my heart to race and my chest to tighten.

She cannot be forgotten

She cannot be allowed to slip from your minds.

You see my girl was amazing.

Yes I know all moms will say this about their children but Livvy she was truly inspirational.

Her courage

Her wit

Her strength 

Her life 

Changed every bit of me.

She taught me the value of the moment.

How precious the here and now is.

I learned to listen,

Really listen to the world around me.

The whisper of the wind

The harmony of a bird song.

She taught me freedom

To dance like no one is watching

To sing tuneless but with heart.

She taught me about love.

True unrelenting love.

The release of your whole soul to another.

Each day was a gift wrapped up in a lesson.

A lesson of love, 

A lesson of compassion

My girl she kept on giving when all had given up.

Kept on dreaming when others had awoke.

How can she be forgotten?

Please don’t forget my beautiful daughter.

Hold her in your hearts like the gift she is.

Dance in the rain and under the rainbow she will send.

Hug each other tight with all your hearts.

Make those memories each and everyday.

Be compassionate

Be loyal 

Be mischievous 

Live life in love 

Just like Livvy did.

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Always #LikeAGirl

I came across this video the other day and yes while I found it rather thought provoking at the time I didn’t really think about it again until I had a conversation with my youngest daughter regarding sports day.

 

 

It seems a young man had told her not to bother on the tug a war because boys will always win.

Simply girls are weak.

Now my daughter laughed it off and actually ended the conversation with the words “we will see”.

Yet how many girls would have just felt defeated at that moment.

There are days when I honestly believe we have moved forward in gender association. That we don’t normally assume a girls ambition is to get married and have children. That girls, women can do whatever their hearts desire.

But have we really?

I actually get to see discrimination from a mans point of view. Often my husband gets asked what’s his real job. As foster caring and raising children isn’t really a proper job for a man. I watch him stumble for words to explain and see his shoulder slump in defeat.

In short he has just been told his manhood is in question.

Seriously 

Can we just wake up and realise that jobs shouldn’t be gender specific.

We shouldn’t be shocked at male nurses or female mechanics.

We should celebrate the diversity of life. 

Be grateful that our children get to see that they can be anything they want to be.

As for the above video I am proud to say “yes I run like a girl, I fight like a girl, and you know what that rocks because I am a girl”.

Also being a girl is pretty awesome.

 

 

Turning the page

I’m not quite sure I can find the words to describe my feelings from this last Saturday.

It’s quite ironic really as it was my words which brought me to such a magical moment.

You see a few months ago I came across an email asking for pieces to be submitted into a writing competition called Turning the Page.

The writing was to be a piece sharing your positive experiences of disability.

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Now I love to write as you already know and I’m a passionate advocate for disability awareness so this seemed a perfect opportunity to do both.

 

Yet entering my words into a competition was a little scary. Asking others to judge my heart.

Yet with Livvy as my subject matter the words came freely.

 

The competition was being run by Irwin Mitchell in conjunction and support of the charity KIDS a fantastic organisation which works with disabled children, young people and their families.

 

The idea was to raise awareness about disability from the ones who live with it.

 

Well I’m glad I found the courage to submit my piece as I was awarded joint winner in the 18+ category.

 

How amazing was that and on Saturday my family and I got to attend a special event at The Globe Theatre in London.

The whole event was truly wonderful. The welcome was warm, the food divine and the venue beautiful.

The Globe theatre is a an incredible place to visit. You feel such awe as you stand inside.

It fact awe was really the emotion of the day as I was truly spoiled. Besides my wonderful prize of a Kindle which I had already received. I was presented with a lovely framed copy of my writing and also an original drawing from the artist Louise Marshall.

TTP Presentation

 

This talented lady had taken the winners writings and created beautiful illustrations in interpretation of the words. I was shocked at how amazing the artwork was and I certainly loved mine.

Add to this a beautiful bouquet of flowers I was one happy lady.

flowers ttp

 

It was wonderful to listen to staff from Irwin Mitchell and KIDS and to hear their desire to raise awareness for disability. Their passion was evident.

I had a wonderful time and the highlight was definitely seeing my work published. Holding a copy of a book which had my heart inside was overwhelming. Knowing that I got to share my beautiful daughter with people meant more than words could describe.

TTP Brodie & I

The book is a compilation of the entries. It is being sold to raise funds for KIDS and can be purchased right now from the website.

I hope they sell many copies of Turning the Page not just because the funds are so needed. But because I believe that the writings in the book are truly insightful. A little visit into the world of disability.

I am still on cloud nine after such an amazing day. I am so grateful for all the staff that worked so hard to make the day so wonderful an would like to give a special shout out to Michelle from Irwin Mitchell who in the words of my youngest “is a lovely lady”.

Turning the Page is the title of the book and to be honest this whole experience has been a page turner for me. It has really given a much needed boost of confidence.

It also had given my heart a much needed lift.

I got to share my girlie with others.

Her memory lives on.

 

To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.

Thomas Campbell

 

Thank you Irwin Mitchell and KIDS for a fantastic day.

Thank you Livvy for being my inspiration.