Saturday, 18 July 2015

Love this song!

I love music from this era it seemed soo fun and free and not contrived or trying to push some subliminal message down your throat. I wish musically we could take it back to the 90s. Also the fact that this group is called Jade makes me love them even more. I actually remember my auntie getting a signed picture of them for me and I thought it was the best thing ever :)

Friday, 17 July 2015

Love this song!

Tour of the Caribbean

OK so I already know this could potentially be more costly than my plans to travel around Amercia (Which means it may not happen for a few years) but I wanna kinda island hop around the Caribbean so the kids can learn more about their history and see where they came from. I particularly wanna take them to St Kitts and Jamaica so that they can see where my dad and their dad grew up and meet their extended family. Plus I’ve never even been to St Kitts so that will be an experience for me too. I’d love to visit a couple commercial islands as well as the unspoilt non commercial ones just so that we can see the difference between the islands. I wanna stay outside of town so that the monsters can make friends with the locals kids and we can have a more authentic experience. I wanna take them to historical places so that they can learn about black and more particularly their Caribbean history and of course I wanna take them to see all the beautiful beaches and sample the local cuisine *cough cough and the local rum*. Once again I wanna go for the cheapest options of travelling through the Caribbean so will try to take boats as much as I can, if not I guess I’ll have to bite the bullet and catch a Liat or Caribbean airlines plane, which are tiny, too small for me, even just typing that I may have to go on one makes my heart race. But I guess if there’s no other option I will just take a few shots of
some extra strong Caribbean rum to calm my nerves before I board.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Mummy why cant I go outside?

So I put the monsters to bed at 7pm (very latest 7.30) and when they look outside and see their friends playing happily they don’t understand why they’re in bed while they’re friends are out. OK, so I have absolutely no desire for my kids who are 5 and 6 to be outside playing all after 7 when their bedtime is at 7. Because if I let them play out till that time then by the time they get in, shower, have their hot drink and bedtime story it would be near 9 and I don’t feel they need to be up at that time on a school day, especially as most mornings they complain that they’re still sleepy. So I don’t even wanna imagine how annoyingly whingey they would be after going to bed at 9pm each night. I see some little kids playing outside till 9-10pm  with no supervision which I think is crazy. Fair enough it’s light outside but it’s still late so there’s no way I’d let my 2 out at that time unaccompanied, OMG I’d be a nervous wreck!

Also we have a weekday routine and I find it makes life easier when we stick to it, which is why I let them play outside early. I’ve had RD’s friends knocking for him after 8 which I find totally bizarre, I’ll answer the door like RD is in bed, why aren’t you?? Also I cherish my Jade time once they’ve gone to bed I wouldn’t purposely do anything to eat into that time. Fair enough every once in a while staying out late under my supervision is fine but not everyday, No No No.

I always teach Cali and RD not to be followers so when they do say “How come our friends can play outside at night and we can’t” I simply reply “You are not your friends,” and they know exactly what I mean. We don’t follow fashion around here.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Time to chill out

Dropping a dress size

So as I continue to pile on the weight, I am now a very snug size 18.. kinda leaning towards a size 20. Now I’ve been a size 20 before and I hated it, I was 15 stone and a size 20 and totally depressed. This was just after I’d had RD 5 years ago, I was so sad and paranoid. I remember going to the dietician and just being sad and crying so much that the dietician started crying too. I’ve never felt so down about my appearance before. I was getting leg and back pains from all the weight I was carrying and I couldn’t fit into any of my pretty clothes. Then after the dietician helped me get back on track, I swore I’d never be that size again, yet here I am years later nearing a size 20 and slowly creeping up to 14 stone and I fucking hate it!
Even worse, I’m going on holiday and I don’t wanna look like the token fatty. I know I’m not gonna get back to a size 14 before my holiday, but I feel a size 16 is an achievable goal if I work hard enough. Basically I have to be super strict with myself as failure is not an option. All my holiday clothes are a big 14/16 and I refuse to spend more on new clothes when I already have a fab holiday wardrobe.
So I figured if I listen to my trainer and eat 5 small meals a day, drink lots of water, go gym at least 3 times a week then do my fun dance workouts the rest of the week, use my Ultra Slim pro twice a week and use my (Argos version of the) Slendertone everyday, cut down on my sweets and alcohol then hopefully I should be a size 16 in time and will look half decent on the beach this summer.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Do you really need a kids club?

Umm... if you’re travelling solo with the kid’s then hell yeah, a kids club is a necessity especially if you only go on one holiday a year. A kids club allows you to have some ‘Me time’ and enjoy the holiday too.  You don’t have to use it all the time, but it’s nice that it’s there when you need a break. It’s also good for the kids to go and make new friends and play new games. As the kids get older you’ll find (well from what I’ve seen) that they won’t wanna hang out with you at all (because you’re not as cool and their new very cool foreign friends) and will go in and out of the kids club as they please, leaving you to laze on the beach with a cocktail and lets face it, what child really enjoys relaxing, they just don’t get that staying still can be a good thing. If I ever forced my kids to relax on the beach with me they would both complain that they’re dying of boredom.
Also a kids club means a reliable babysitting service. So if you fancy going out for a drink or to shake a leg in the evening or even going to one of the hotel restaurants that only allow kids over the age of 12 at least you know your kids are in safe hands as in my experience the kids club ladies also double up as babysitters.
So I’d definitely recommend going somewhere with a good kids club. Really read the reviews (and check the forums and message people who have been on Tripadvisor) because not all kids clubs are good. You may have to pay more for that luxury but it’s definitely worth it if it means you all have a fab stress free holiday.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Time to chill out

Street Feast

So as it was my child free weekend I had planned on just staying home, relaxing and catching up on some writing, but when I was invited up to Street Feast I was like Food? Drink? HELL YEAH!! I’d actually heard about this last summer and never managed to reach so I was very eager to go and experience it this year.

OK, so Street Feast is basically an outdoor food market in London where you can go and try lots of interesting new foods that might not normally be available to you. Me and my girls went to Dinerama in Shoreditch but they have the same event in Dalston and Lewisham. I had such a lovely time. It was a good vibe and full of the usual Shoreditch trendies as well as tasty food and amazing cocktails. One of my girls tried the Lobster Mac’n’Cheese which was lovely and I tried the duck wrap from Duck n Roll as for some reason I was craving duck and also wanted something I knew wouldn’t upset my stomach and ruin my evening.

There was also an upstairs area where most of the bars were that had a fake lawn area to give a vibe of a beer garden. I tried the Big Kahuna cocktail which had rum and was very fruity. I also loved how the barmen poured freehand and didn’t bother with them crappy measuring cups, so when I later had a rum and cranberry it had a real kick! I also had some tequila slushies which looked pretty sweet and innocent but packed quite a punch. I had maybe 2 or 3 and I was good after that.

Also as well as eating and drinking people were just hanging out as they had a DJ who played the kinda music you would hear on Solar FM and I love Solar FM me and the kids listen to it everyday while we eat dinner so I enjoyed it and had a little dance. But then I probably would’ve danced to the sound of a pin dropping after all those bloody slushies. But I had a wicked time we stayed till around 11ish and the place was still full when we left. Oh also did I say it was free (before 7 I think) obviously you have to pay for the food etc, so you don’t have to spend a tonne of money and you know me I’m all about saving money and being frugal. But I’m soo glad I decided against being a boring old fart and came out, now I can’t wait till our next adventure.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Bagging a cheap holiday

OK so family and friends always still ask me how I get such good deals on my holidays and the main reason is because above all other things I book very early. Most times I will book a year in advance as the earlier you can book the better the deals will be and the easier it will be to haggle down the price. Travel companies regardless of in shop, online or over the phone have all kinds of amazing offers that are not even advertised but somehow magically appear when you book early. I remember Virgin Holidays had an offer where it was actually cheaper to fly Economy out and Premium economy back than it was to fly economy both ways, even 1st class was affordable, like maybe a couple hundred extra as opposed to the over £1000 extra it is right now. I've found that the closer you get to the holiday dates, the less likely you are to get a deal. So book as early as you can, don’t be afraid to haggle the price down and never take the first offer and you will get a good deal.

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Just fake it, no one will know ;)

So if you’re not lucky enough to going away on holiday this summer, you can still have people believing you went away to an exotic island with Bronze Ambition. They have a range of self tanning creams and mousses and even a shimmer cream too and you know how much I love glittery stuff. So basically you can cheat, you don’t have to take time out of your day to actually sit out in the sun to tan you can just put the cream on for instant results. How easy is that and no one will ever know the difference (unless you tell them of course) Also if like me you’re already rocking your ‘year round tan’ in other words you’re a chocolate sister then I don’t need to tell you this won’t work on you, but the shimmer one will give you a gorgeous glow.

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Flying with IBS

So if like me you have severe IBS, then the thought of going on holiday to a foreign place which may have food that will trigger your stomach problems will make you super anxious when then obviously leads to a flare up before you’ve even gone anywhere. I used to struggle to fly because of my IBS, I remember once it was so bad a doctor abroad actually had to give me antibiotics to basically ‘back me up’ so I could actually get my flight home. Which wasn’t fun at all.
So now I’ve found a few ways of dealing with /avoiding a flare up and panic attack.

Fast before you leave
Now I don’t mean fast for the whole day, but if I have an early morning flight I try not to eat a heavy breakfast, I just have a hot drink and if must then some dry food like crackers. I then sleep on the coach to their airport so I’m not up thinking about food as theres nothing worse than having stomach problems which either lead to you missing your coach or being really uncomfortsble on the coach.
Make a mental note of where the toilets are in departures
I find this helps because then I’m not panicking about possibly needing to go and not knowing where the toilets are.

Arrive in plenty of time
I normally get to the airport hours before my flight (like 3-5) that might sound obcessive but I like to take my time and check in and go through to duty free. As I find that rushing will only disturb your belly and make you tense/anxious

Now you can eat a proper breakfast
And by proper breakfast I mean not a McDonalds breakfast, try get something you would normally eat at home even if its just tea and toast. I found that I can deal with eggs, bacon and maybe half a slice of toast. Avoid beans and sauces like the plague they have fructose-glucose in them and are very likely to do unpleasant things to your stomach.

Do a bit of retail therapy
Browse the shops in duty free, let the sales peoples spray the latest (and normally extorianately  priced) perfume on you, go buy that posh crème from Elizebath Arden, go get that make over at MAC. Treat yourself, it makes you happy and takes your mind off your belly and the impending flight

If possible choose an aisle seat
Because you don’t want to have to keep disturbing people to move everytime you need to use the toilet and you also don’t wanna make it obvious and have them know.

Listen to music/Read a magazine
If take off is one of your triggers (its one of mine) keep yourself distracted. This is hard but if you can concentrate on your magazine until the cabin crew get up and start walking around.

Drink lots of hot drinks
Try drinking lots of tea while flying and if milks your trigger then have black tea, that's what I do and it doesn’t taste any different to milky tea. The hot drinks are good for two things, breaking the air and avoiding a stomach ache that would’ve resulted from simply being full of wind.

Go if you need to go
Don’t feel embarrassed if maybe your belly doesn’t feel right and you need some ‘toilet time’ It’s a toilet and some people (well a lot of
people on the plane) are gonna have a pooh at some point during the flight. The worst thing you can do is hold it in because that will make the problem 10 times worse. Just make sure you you use the toilets right at the back lol

Sleep if you can

I find that sleeping garuntees no stomach problems. But if you’re not sleepy then get into a really interesting movie, then once you’ve watched a few you’re basically at your destination.

Friday, 3 July 2015

Travelling through America with the monsters

So thinking about it makes me feel that maybe I’m a bit crazy but I wanna do a tour through America with the monsters. I wanted to save enough money to take them away for the whole of the summer holidays and literally come back just in time for school. I don’t yet know where I want to start or end up but I know I definitely want to take in San Francisco as I’ve always wanted to go  there since watching Full House as a child and see the Golden bridge that was featured on the opening credits. I also wanna go to Atlanta. The only thing is I’m not a fan of domestic flights, so I wanna do the whole tour via bus or train, plus those methods should be cheaper than a flight anyway. It would also feel more like an adventure that way and give the kids lots of things to look at which would help to keep them occupied and just like our Heathrow trip, It will make the whole trip into a project and make a workbook with different activities to do in different parts of America. I’m also going to invest in a Polaroid camera so that the monsters can each take pictures and put them in their scrapbook. I also want to film the whole adventure from not just mine but from the monsters point of view.

I can already imagine that this is going to take a lot of planning as I think I may pre book our accommodation instead of just turning up and trying to find somewhere to stay, I think pre booking will take the stress out of it and the earlier I book, the more I can haggle down the prices. Also I’m guessing it would make sense to take a backpack instead of your standard suitcase, so maybe in the Christmas sales I’ll look out for a cute funky big travellers backpack. Depending on how much this trip is gonna cost I might have to aim for 2017 as at least the monsters will be 7 and 8 which (I’m hoping) is a good age to take them on that kinda adventure...

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Carnival Chaser

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you will know how much I like the Caribbean, Soca, Carnivals *cough cough and rum* so you wont be surprised to see that I really want to take an entire year and simply go to all the carnivals around the world. I’d love to see the differences in costumes, culture and music. Because essentially the carnival would be the same format but it would be interesting to see how each country interprets it.
 Berlin Carnival of Cultures (May)
After following this carnival for a couple of years on Facebook I now really want to experience Berlin as it looks like soo much fun and is non stop partying for the whole weekend. I don’t even think you really get the chance to sleep. Typically Germany wouldn’t be a place I’d want to visit again after experiencing a bit of ignorance and racism when I went there in my teens, but seeing the pictures and hearing about how it brings lots of different cultures together makes me want to give Germany another chance.

Rio Carnival Brazil (Feb/March)
Now who doesn’t wanna go to this one, it’s like the biggest carnival in the world. With a few days of parades it’s like one big party. It’s so colourful and flamboyant and I wanna go just to say that I went.

Hollywood Carnival (June)
Now curiosity more than anything makes me wanna go to this carnival, because I don’t think I’ll believe that there’s an actual Caribbean carnival in Los Angeles on Hollywood Boulevard unless I see it for myself. I just wanna see the set up and if it’s authentic or a watered down version of carnival. There must be lots of rules and restrictions. But I still just wanna go!

Trinidad Carnival (Feb)
Now I’ve been trying to go to this carnival since my uni days and why wouldn’t I?  It’s like the biggest carnival in the Caribbean. The costumes are beautiful and extravagant (and expensive) but I think I would rather just enjoy the billions of parties leading up to carnival and stand on the sidelines and watch the parade as opposed to jumping, unless.... a band wants to sponsor me.... J

Although all of the carnivals I mentioned have already happened this year,If you fancy experiencing a carnival heres a few that are coming up:
  • Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival (formally known as Caribana) 17th July- 5th August
  • Zoomer Carnival Rotterdam, Holland 25th July
  • Cropover, Barbados 2nd – 3rd August
  • Nottinghill Carnival, London 30th-31st August
  • Miami Carnival, Florida 11th October 

Singapore Airlines Suits

This looks amazing.... Oh a girl can dream.... Also *cough cough mile high club anyone* lol

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

When was the last time you was you?

Now that may sound like an odd question to ask, but after my ‘Reliving my youth’ post, it made me question when the last time was I was simply Jade and not Mummy Jade. Although I love being a mummy, I don’t have much of a social life as I’m in Mummy Mode pretty much all the time. Most times (as much as the kids can sometimes get on my nerves) I don’t wanna leave them to go out and the times when they’re away, I basically can’t be assed to go anywhere as I know I will have some kinda panic attack which will lead to stomach problems and ruin my day anyway. I know I should go out more but its just hard, then when I don’t go out I feel old and boring and realistically I’m not all that old to be feeling like a grandma. Speaking of grandmothers even my mum goes out more than me, shit even my kids have more of a social life than me. But I guess I’ve been hiding behind the kids for so long that I’ve kinda lost my identity a bit and find myself being quite quiet/shy and reserved around people when I do go out, which is not my personality at all, but I just feel like I don’t know who I am anymore outside of being a mummy.