Sunday, 4 January 2015

2015 - a few home truths


Happy new year!

I went awol on most forms of social media this festive season.  It was just me and baby ET for quite a large portion as Mr T had to work (Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Years Eve and New Years Day to be precise - ugh!) and I thought taking myself away from the festivities might make me feel like I was not missing out quite as much.

This has been my fifth Christmas away from family and friends in the UK and Ireland, and I hate to admit it but it doesn't get any easier as the years go on.  Our aim was to complete five years as expats, save up some money and return to the UK when things have picked up.  As we enter into our fifth year out in Dubai, we have nearly reached our goal and are very nearly ready to move home.

I am getting itchy feet, in reality, I think my feet started to itch straight after I landed here in Dubai.  I don't hate the place, in fact I think it is a wonderful place to live.  Its safe, there is no tax, there is lots of sunshine, amazing restaurants and bars and don't even get me started on the hotels - all future hotel stays have been forever ruined!!  However the pull of loved ones at home is really strong for me, so strong it actually makes me ache meaning that I have struggled to really find my feet here.

My goals for 2015 are to try and make what may potentially be my last year living here a happy one.  I spent a great deal of 2014 in an unhappy place.  Putting my baby to bed for the last time in 2014, I whispered to him that I promised to be a happier mummy next year.  It breaks my heart to admit it but I have been a very sad mummy over the past year.  Post natal depression - I never thought for a second that this would affect me, but it did.

On the face of it I looked as if I had everything, an amazing husband, a beautiful and healthy baby, a nice house and lovely possessions, however in reality I was in a very sad place.  Longing for company, for those who have known me for years who I can open up to and know that I will not be judged and feeling utterly hopeless that I didn't have this.  I believed that my baby and husband would be better off without me in their lives.

I struggle with opening up to people, which is not ideal when you are going through a sad time as it is opening up what helps you to get through the sadness.

Whilst I am not 100 percent through the woods, I can admit now that I hit a stumbling block and I am dealing with it.  I have a fantastic husband who I can talk to about anything and a great friend actually here in Dubai who I can talk to, who just gets it and actually listens.  When you become a mother, people are so keen to pass on their two cents when they have absolutely no idea what you are going through and how their words (which for the most part are coming straight out of their arses) can send you spiralling into despair.  People sometimes just don't listen.  Whilst mother and baby groups and talking to fellow mums is fantastic and a great way to share experiences, be careful with what pearls of wisdom you choose to take on board.  I for the most part found these groups and these chats incredibly overwhelming and leaving me feeling totally alone in the world and like the worst mother alive.

I set myself the goal a few months ago to document all the things that make me happy, to try and focus on positivity.  It did work but I found it quite draining as I really am a lazy cow sometimes and just one of those people who often sees the glass as being half empty.  I will definitely try to carry this on though, no one likes negative Nancy all the time do they?!

I am not entirely sure how this post has ended up the way it has - I was only meant to be telling you about my new years resolutions and I have ended up spilling my guts out.  It feels good to put it out there though and be able to say I am feeling better and ready to start feeling happy again.

Happy 2015 for anyone who is still reading! I hope it is a happy one :-)

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Things that make me happy - Pies


I love a good pie.  I am from the north of England so I think it is in my genes that I must like pies.

Last weekend I had some leeks and mushrooms which were starting to look a bit miserable and withered in the fridge so I decided to whip up a tasty chicken pie.  I would love to be able to post a detailed list of ingredients and an easy to follow method but my technique for pie making is a little bit slap dash.  There was a little bit of leek, mushrooms, chicken, stock, milk, crème fraîche, mustard and white wine vinegar and possibly some random herbs.  The rest was just a whole lot of luck.

I did cheat and use shop bought pastry.  Gasp! Mary Berry would be rolling her eyes like there was no tomorrow.  It still tasted pretty good though and I have a needy toddler who clings to my ankles as soon as I venture near the kitchen so I think I have a good excuse for cutting a teeny tiny corner.

So without further ado I give you my pie.  Nothing fancy, not particularly great to look at but oh so tasty.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Things that make me happy - a little beauty purchase


Whilst I was back in the UK recently I attended the wedding of a close friend of my hubby.  He is actually the one who set us up.  My old boss nonetheless.

Whilst I have no photographic evidence of my outfit, the happy couple, the venue or any part of the day whatsoever, I did manage to take a picture of the lipstick that I wore, or intended to wear.  Max factor's Lipfinity in the shade Frivolous.

I love the colour, it is a gorgeous, rich autumnal colour.  I however failed to read the instructions before applying it and just rather haphazardly wacked it on.  The end result was a little patchy and I bottled out of wearing it in the end and plumped for my usual, boring nude pink instead.

However since this initial faux pas, I have applied it properly according to the instructions on the box and it looks great.  It lasts for ages.  In fact it is an absolute bugger to remove.  The colour doesn't transfer to your teeth either which is another big bonus.

I tend not to buy many non essential makeup items these days so I thought this was definitely worthy of a little write up.

Things that make me happy - Date night


So before we ventured over to the Emerald Isle and fair old Blighty, hubby and I had a little down time sans bambino.

Our usual haunt of the local golf club was the venue and some very tasty ribs were consumed.

Here is a little glimpse of what I wore for the evening.  A casual look which I paired with my new Loubies.  The top is from Warehouse purchased many a moon ago and the jeans are a new Topshop buy which are something my pre mummy self would never have purchased.  However the super high waist on them hides a multitude of sins (i.e. saggy skin) which is a definite must for me.

I am not great at taking selfies.  I never will be.  I also have a smashed iphone which doesn't help things.  I am hoping the birthday fairy might be kind and deliver a new one.  I also do not own a full length mirror.  I really should reconsider doing these 'what I wore...' posts!!

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Things that make me happy - a photoshoot


A bout of illness and a trip home saw a hiatus in this newly acquired blogging mojo of mine.

However I am back but offer no promises of daily posts as I seem to struggle to keep up with them.  Some evenings I am just too damn lazy to engage my brain and write a post.

Yesterday I dusted off my very neglected camera and took some long overdue shots of Baby ET.  He is not quite a baby anymore!!

These were taken after his first week of nursery.  Since embarking into the big scary world of education I have seen lots of changes in ET.  Some good and some not so good.  Nobody told me 1 year olds had temper tantrums.  I have been duped into believing this was what the terrible twos were about?!

The good habits he has picked up are very lovely.  He is obsessed with sharing everything with both my hubby and I.  He also now loves children of his own size, he is not quite so sure about the bigger kids yet, all in good time I suppose!

So far nursery is going well.  Baby ET seems to be enjoying himself and I am relishing being able to enjoy 3 whole mornings to myself.  I admit I sometimes feel guilty, like I am offloading ET and relinquishing my motherly responsibilities.  However deep down I know that this is the best thing for all of us and it will help us to flourish as a family.

So now I hand you over to my little handsome superstar...

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Things that make me happy - Loubies


Today Mr T announced he was going to the mall to meet a friend for coffee with ET.  I thought hurrah, finally an empty house all to myself for the first time in forever.

Just as I thought my day couldn't get any better, something else happened.

Later in the afternoon I noticed a little brown bag out of the corner of my eye.  Mr T of his own accord had gone out and chosen an early birthday present for me.  A lovely shiny, classic pair of black Louboutin shoes.

Now I was in two minds whether or not to post this as I did not want to come across as being a little boastful,  however I thought this lovely gesture was worth documenting.

I have lusted after this particular pair of shoes for a long time.  I always seem to struggle finding black shoes.  None of them seem to quite fit the bill.

Whilst I don't doubt these beauties will be hell to wear after a few hours, slipping them on my feet makes me feel so elegant and poised, even if I was wearing them with my cereal stained pyjamas.

I think they are an absolute classic and they will stay with me for years to come.

Well done Mr T, you have made your wife a very happy lady indeed.

Disclaimer - please ignore my disgusting chipped nail varnish - I spent the morning cleaning and my nails took a battering.

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Things that make me happy - happy/sad television


I am flying solo tonight.  Mr T is still at work.  Delayed as usual.  So I am making the most of having the television to myself and catching up on Long Lost Family.

I watched this with Mr T a while back.  After the first story, he declared that he could not bear to watch anymore as it was just too darn sad.  I disagreed with him.  Yes, even the most cold hearted of people end up in tears watching this show but they are not tears of sadness they are happy tears.  These nice people are being reunited with family they never thought they would see again.  Happy happy happy!!

I love happy tears, they make me feel invigorated and on such a high after shedding them.

What makes you shed a happy tear?