Saturday, 30 March 2013

Making a Cameo appearance

cameo apple
The humble apple.

Part of my staple diet since 1976. I juice these bad boys, eat them with cashew butter, crunch them, bake them, love them.

Mia reminded me yesterday to juice some apples, and I always sneak in some spinach and cucumber in there too, but wheatgrass the Minis draw the line at -  "it's bleugh mummy".

Fair play.

Anyway, I have been sent some Cameo apples to try, a new British variety from Kent which have made their first appearance this year in supermarkets and I luuurve. They are nicely crunchy and crisp, and perfect for small and big people snacks. Let me know if you try them. You can find Cameo's in Tescos, Sainsburys, Morrisons, Booths, Budgens and Co-op, online and on Twitter (Apples are great social communicators you know).






I was sent some Cameo apples to try and as such must disclose in the post. A-thank-you.

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

What really matters most

mia and eva

I saw a shocking infographic today about the effects of stress; as someone who lives with illnesses which are without doubt exaccerbated by the S-word, it shocks me to think how much stress we put on our systems.

Sweat and Snap with Sweaty Betty comp

sweat and snap

sweaty betty fit crowd

Last month I was super thrilled to announce that Sweaty Betty have asked me to be one of their Fit Crowd ladies. We are a team of 20 bloggers who will bring you the latest news from Sweaty Betty, and will hopefully inspire you with our workouts.

Now, as you all know I have chronic endometriosis and chronic fatigue syndrome, so what business do I have being a fitness ambassador? This is what I love about this campaign; The Fit Crowd is a mixture of athletic and honed babes along with those of us who aren't so active, either due to health, life, motherhood, or whatever. We are a mixed bunch of abilities and personalities so if you follow the hashtag #thefitcrowd on Twitter you can read about all that we get up to. Some of the ladies are from Team Bangs 2! the group of lovelies I ran my first ever half marathon with in 2011.

Currently I still run but also cycle more and yoga is my main meal of exercise as I manage my CFS and Endo symptoms. I pretty much live and die in my yoga gear, and I go to the wonderful Time for Health in St Ives which has a fabulous team and a gorgeous studio. Any downward dog fans will be pleased to know that these new Vinyasa Capri Pants have just hit the stores (and I have my beady eye on them!).

Now, if you love Sweaty Betty clothes as much as I do, here is your chance to win yourself some goodies! Sweat and Snap is a competition offering £150 worth of Sweat Betty clothes to splash out on.

Full details of the challenge are here and the rules are ever so easy peasy.

1. Take your take a photo of yourself wearing your favourite workout outfit.
2. Tweet the picture to @SweatyBetty_UK
3. Include the hashtag #TheFitCrowd

The deadline is the 31st March so get snapping!

Disclaimer: Sweaty Betty invited me to be a Fit Crowd member and as such I received sponsorship in the form of goods.

Monday, 25 March 2013

The things aren't what they seem meme


The other week, my good friend Bangs wrote on her blog a post about the difference between how things seem, and how they actually are in relation to our curated lives online.

I am having to dictate this post to you, because I am too exhausted to write. There is no make up, lomo lense or fictitious curation here.

Last week, I wrote a post about how Superwoman can do one, and it seemed to really resonate with many women out there; however, I failed to actually explain further, to portray how my life actually is living with chronic fatigue, illness and also trying to be a mother to my beautiful young twins Eva and Mia.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Wifi: breaking up is hard to do

[caption id="attachment_4583" align="aligncenter" width="540"]wifi - breaking up is hard to do free wheelin' with no WiFi[/caption]

I have just come back from a week in Center Parcs in Sherwood Forest with no WiFi access for a week in the villa. *cue drum roll*


Not only that, but I LIKED IT.

I loved being with the Minis for the week and just playing around -  we did swimming, bowling, water slides, bike trailers, Princess parties (them, not me but you never know...) and generally being-on-holiday-type-stuff.
Now, you remember last week I blogged about my quest to re-dress the balance in my life by dropping the Superwoman pressure? Well, I have progress to report.

On Monday before we left my body was so tired and my chronic fatigue so exacerbated that I only managed half of my Monday yoga class before leaving, shaking with sickness and exhaustion.

Easter Wishlists


Frankly, Spring can't come fast enough for me. 

It has been a looooong, hard winter and I am done, done, done of cold days and rain. Harumph.  I can't say I haven't been dreaming of moving to warmer climes. I hate being so cold. But, when Spring in England does come it is worth the wait. The blossom, the light, the country walks, the nights drawing out. But it has taken its sweet time to be fair.

Easter can invariably mean a house full of chocoate for the kids, which means:

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Superwoman can do one

For the last two weeks I have been struggling. Struggggggggling, I tell you - it turns out (how we laugh), that having endometriosis and associated chronic fatigue does NOT mix well with being super busy with work, attempting to have any kind of life, being with my Totally Awesome Twins and maybe uttering a sentence or two to Miles (drooling into the sofa doesn't count as conversation, I hear. Pah.)

I am so proud to have had a brilliantly profitable work pipeline recently, no mean feat as a self employed bod and a far cry from my early days of freelancing, known as the Staring at the Letterbox for the Cheque days.

BUT. Methinks some balance is required, so I am going to follow the advice of the lovely, sanguine and sage blogger and buddy of mine Katie over at Pouting in Heels. She says, (and I quote):

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Midweek Mashup 5.3.2013

Mocha haircutThis last week has been the usual whirlwind at Diva towers - a  lot of fun and interesting stuff , mixed with some tricky times. But let's not focus on those ;) ❤ For starters, we went indoor wind surfing near Bedford last weekend. Sadly I couldn't take part as my endo was playing up, but the girls and I loved watching Miles and their Uncle Jamie and Auntie Lauren giving it a go. I will definitely be re-booking, hopefully after my op I will be able to go and play :) It was a FREEZING cold day so it was just as well that British Gas sent us to try the indoor surfing as I could use my Remote Heating app to make the house all nice and toasty for the surfers on our return. ❤ We went for dinner at Chiquitos last week, a lovely grown up escape at lunchtime. I love Mexican food, and rather surprisingly have never been to a Chiquitos before!  I don't eat wheat, rice or gluten and the menu was absolutely brilliant for Paleo and high raw food fans. I had fajita chicken which a huge salad and skewered prawns. Brilliant. ❤ I paid a visit to the lovely Sancturary Spa in Cambridge for a long overdue redemption of a birthday gift from my family. The Sanctuary Spa Cambridge opened a few years ago and I have always wanted to go. I can honestly say it was heaven. I went along after my hospital visit so was feeling a little shaky, and the 55 minute Hot Lava Shell Massage was absoluuuuuutely perfect. The hot shells really help tense muscles to relax, and it all really helped my pain too. I felt truly pampered, relaxed and zen like, and I can't wait to find an excuse to go back! The e Relaxtion room is available to clients who book for treatments that are at least 55 minutes, and you get to go and get snuggly in a purple blanket on a chaise longue with herbal tea. Frankly I didn't want to leave....❤ It's Mothers Day on Sunday! Oh yesssssss....I am loving these cute little reusable bubble wands from LUSH, who kindly sent me some to try. The wands are flower shaped, and you swoosh around in bath water to release the lovely natural fragrance. When the wands are all used up, the labels are embedded with wild flower seeds so little ones can enjoy a bit of planting;  you can also use the stick to help the plants grow, or I like the idea of some guerilla street planting of wild flowers. Brilliant, on budget and green, good work LUSH! ❤ I had a new hairdo! I am trying to grow my locks again so had left them for 6 months....and my hair got to the stage where it felt all dry and in dire need of sorting out. So, a mocha colour with blonde slices and a cut later and I felt like a new woman.

What have you been up to? Are you enjoying the Spring sunshine? Are you sorted for Mother's Day?


Sunday, 3 March 2013

Big H - the post I didn't want to write

Last Thursday I decided, along with my partner and endo specialist Dr Mathur to have a full abdominal hysterectomy.

I have had enough.

17 years into this disease, I am opting to butcher my body, to have my womb, ovaries, Fallopian tubes, ovaries - the full kit and caboodle- out.

I felt sick last week. Terrified, anxious, emotional, and grieving for my inner bits, the organs which have caused me pain for so long but which also grew my beautiful babies. I had a meltdown in John Lewis and everything (classic moment). I am scared; scared of a massive open surgery operation with 2 months recovery, scared of instant menopause (castration, anyone?!) scared that I have not done enough to stop this. But, enough is enough. I have two wonderful miracle toddlers and want to play and be with them as much as I can.

So. The latest step in my Endometriosis journey is around the corner.

Why haven't I done this before? Because this is a big op, it may still not heal me and I may still be in pain. So, it's not the easy matter-of-fact choice many believe it to be.

I truly believe that in some circumstances the body can heal itself. I believe nutrition and lifestyle play a huge part in management of conditions, and I have seen massive improvements from the changes I have made . But, unless I am drinking raw juice and doing yoga daily on a beach I just don't feel I am going to get this thing nailed on my own. If, indeed, it is ever possible to do so. For me.

So, I am now awaiting the date to get the Big H..and I am working on getting myself in a place of acceptance for it.

I don't want to be writing this post for several reasons. Firstly, I dont want to be doing it and had hoped to not come to this point. Secondly, it's a very personal choice and I do not wish to be judged for it; my experience of the internet and it's corners of nastiness lately have left me rather timid with sharing personal journeys. However, I founded Project Endo to help other women and my story in it's entirety is part of that mission. I am aware that there are women out there who have not been so lucky as me with fertility, and I have two healthy girls. I am aware there are those who oppose any medical intervention in the treatment of disease. But, I say that everyone is their own boss. No one can really judge without living my life daily, and personal choices are exactly that. Personal.

If truth be told, if it were just me I would still hang on but I have been bessed with Eva and Mia and I am doing it for them. I want them to have a mum who can play most of the time, not half the time or less. I am fully aware that even this drastic butchery may not help my pain and may even throw me other curve balls, but I feel I need to do it for my girls.

I owe them a mother.

I really and truly believe in natural therapies, in holistic approaches and complementary medicine, and I am 100% sure I would be so much worse without all the measures I have put in place.
I am a champion of the patient as expert, and think that if you get to know your own body well, then you know your limits and how much you can take. I can't take much more.

I expect there to be an expectation for everything to be ok following the op, that I will be "back ot normal". Well, I haven't been normal for two decades in terms of health, so this is another step in my journey.

I am so grateful to have my girls. I am grateful for all that my organs have provided for me and I feel so sad to let them go. This is not an easy choice.

However, I used to grieved for the children I didn't think I would have, and I won't let myself grieve for anymore time lost when I have one last choice left to try.
My endo has given me education on health, nutrition, and looking after my body. It makes me appreciate the good days.

Also, there are wonderul women out there I know of who are bravely battling terminal illnesses; let's get some perspective, this is by far an easier thing to take.

So - there you have it. My Big H is on the way. Send DVD's, yoga pants and dark chocolate. And thanks for reading.