Meet Team Ugly Bug 2017!

15871443_10154875170687392_8806069389560558239_nI am so excited to announce that I have been chosen to be part of the 2017 PR Team for Ugly Bug Plans alongside some wonderful Planner Girls! I’ll have my own dedicated discount code for you to use shortly, but in the mean time,you can use RainyDay20 on orders over £10 to get 20% off – there has never been a better time to buy yourself an UglyDori, or some of the wonderful new stickers that Michelle has in store! There is also an extra little ray of sunshine, because if you mention in the comments section on Etsy that Alyson sent you then you are also going to receive an additional free gift! How awesome is that?

Now, before you run off and go shopping, meet my fellow PR Girls for UglyBugPlans

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The Tuesday 10 : I’m Loving It Right Now

tttenbuttonIt’s time for another edition of The Tuesday 10! This week we are talking about the things that we are loving right now! My list is going to have a pretty big mix of things that I am enjoying of late including food, tv, hobbies and other general stuff! I’ve been working on trying to get more time for myself lately and focusing on these things that I love is helping me think about how I can do that!

 

  1. Game of Thrones

    Seriously! How good is this show? It should be criminal. I adore the books that the series is based on and I am desparate for the next one to come out. Thankfully season 5 of the TV show is on our screens now and I am thoroughly enjoying it!

  2. Pocket Letters

    I got into the whole pen pal thing in January and recently I was introduced to Pocket Letter Pals. It is where you take a baseball card sleeve with 9 pockets and fill each one with a decorated ATC or a quote. You add a letter in one pocket and maybe trade some goodies in the others like washi tape samples, tea, candy or anything at all. I’ve made 17 so far and have another 7 to go out! It’s such a fun way to use up my craft stash and make new friends. Incidentally, if anyone wants to trade snail mail with me I am more than happy to do so! This video explains pocket letters way better than I can!

  3. Eton Mess

    I adore Eton Mess, but it is something I haven’t been eating due to the calories! However, I hit on a tip from a fellow Slimming World member for making a whipped cream alternative that is free on the plan and I have been eating it like it is going out of fashion. In fact… right now I am thinking about going to the store for more ingredients after gym tomorrow! It’s so lush. I am going to share how to make it on my other blog very soon!

  4. Working Out

    I never thought I would see the day that I said this, but right now I am loving working out! I’m taking 2 aqua aerobics classes a week and hitting the gym 2 or 3 times a week as well. Sometimes I also go swimming. I am also walking a lot with the dog.

  5. Once Upon A Time

    I used to be totally obsessed with the tv show Once Upon a Time, but for whatever reason my Tivo stopped taping it after season 2. I found out its on Netflix so I have been binge watching seasons 3 and 4. I gotta be honest I am kinds over the Frozen thing and I think there is too much focus on Elsa in season 4, but I am hoping it picks back up real soon. I also learned there is an Alice in Wonderland spin off which I am really excited to see so I hope it comes on over here!

  6. Spring Time Weather

    The weather has been crazy! One day I am walking in the park in a t-shirt and the next I am getting bombarded with hail! I don’t know what has been going on. However, it seems like it is finally beginning to clear up and we are getting more chance to go out to the park and even plan some day trips soon.

  7. Spooky Movies

    For so long, Robbie has not been abe to watch ghost type horror movies with me. He went through a spell of really awful nightmares triggered by his anxiety and everything spooky made it worse. I missed watching them with him, but now he is able to watch again and we have been on a massive horror movie kick lately. almost every night we watch one! My recent favourites have been Ouija, Annabelle and The Conjuring. We also watched the mini-series on TV of The Enfield Haunting which I loved.

  8. Smash Booking

    I am still really loving Smash Booking, although I have fallen behind a little bit. I am still working on my weight loss books and 365 book  and I started a quote journal and a pen pal book. I also have plans for a Harry Potter book, and About me book and I still have a spare 2 books!

  9. Planning For Summer

    I am detemined to get out and do something this summer. We signed up for Historic Scotland passes and I am looking forward to seeing some castles and things. I also have plans for a day trip to Ireland, a visit to the Safari Park, a Trip to Millport and some other fun days out.

  10. Supernatural

    I am in love with this show. We spent a couple of months binge watching Seasons 1 through 8 and now season 9 is on TV. I love it. I am so jealous that the US is on Season 10 already!

Tuesday 10 : Things You Might Not Know About Me

tttenbuttonThe topic for this week is a fun one : 10 things about me! I you want to get involved with The Tuesday Ten then why not pop over and join our Facebook group! I don’t really like talking about myself so it was definitely a challenge to think of 10 facts. I tried to come up with interesting things that people might like to know. I don’t know if they are actually of interest, but I’m sharing them anyway ’cause that’s just how I roll!

  1. I suffer from Limbphobia – an irrational fear of missing and/or deformed limbs. Mine is specifically centered on hands to the point where I actually tuck my hands inside my pillowcase in case anyone ever tried to cut them off as I sleep. Crazy, I know! Unfortunately, I am a total gore whore, and the easiest effect in horror movies is severed hands. I have to shut my eyes all the time! I also feel a little revolted by people I see in the street with deformed or missing limbs and it makes me feel like a horrible person! I’m not judging them, I just have a phobia!
  2. I am a certified Fire Walker – On two separate occasions I have walked across a 15 foot long bed of hot burning embers. I did it as a fundraiser for Yorkhill Children’s Hospital. My son has some special needs and we have been lucky enough never to need the hospital, but they cared for me as a child and it is great to know that they are there above. I loved the feeling that fire walking gave me. I shared my experiences about it in this piece of Life Writing published by Ink Pantry.
  3. I’ve walked barefoot over broken glass – The second time that I did fire walking I decided to take the plunge and do the glass walking challenge at the same time. It was a 30 foot long bed of real broken glass. We actually had to help smash the bottles! It was very scary and not at all calming like the fire walk. you can see me cling to my instructor’s arm!  It was empowering, but I’m not sure I could do it again.

  4. I’m an amateur ghost hunter – Okay so if you have read my blog for any length of time, then maybe you know this already. I am always going to paranormal investigations or fiddling with my ghost detecting equipment. You can read some of my exploits in my regular Freaky Friday posts.
  5. I love dressing up in costumes – I adore fancy dress and I will take every opportunity to dress up in costume. Hallowe’en is of course my favourite time of year, but I have been known to dress up at Christmas, other holidays and random events that are in need of costume! My graduation party was in fancy dress!
  6. I’ve had so many jobs it is kind of crazy – I’ve pretty much worked since I was 13 years old and I have held so many different jobs! I was a pizza chef at an Indian takeaway, I worked at a Football Club (soccer) where I worked 3 positions at various times – security steward, ticket sales and silver service in the hospitality suite. I have also worked as a baker’s assistant, a sandwich artist, an HR clerk and an area manager for Subway. My goal in life is to work for a magazine.
  7. I am the baby of my family – I am the youngest of four girls! This is us with our mum – in order of birth from the left it goes #1, #3, mum, me & #2.
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  8. I got married in a scarlet wedding dress. – My mum and my mother in law were both dubious. If I had a penny for every time I was told ‘Marry in red and wish you were dead!’ I would have a ton of pennies! However, my sister (#2) did such a beautiful job that everyone loved it! (See above) I’m not a white, flouncy sort of a person and I wasn’t going to start on my wedding day!
  9. I consider Tigers to be my spirit animal – I am obsessed with Tigers. They are such beautiful creatures and I feel a huge affinity to them. I have always said that I am a tiger on the inside and I just need to find how to get her out! Tigers are my spirit animals. As long as I can remember I have been known as Tyger online (or some variation MissTyger, Panthera, TygerQueen, TygerDiva). I include the name in my Weight Loss blog ‘A Little Less of Tyger’ and my business name ‘Tyger-Net Media‘.
  10. I’m pretty sure glitter runs in my veins – I adore glitter. It’s kind of odd because I’m not overly girly. I am more punk/goth in my style. However, I cannot pass by something that has glitter and/or crystals. My smashbooks are always full of them. I wear glitter makeup and hairspray like it’s daily wear! I just think life is better when you sparkle!
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What’s an interesting thing that people might not know about you?

 

Why I Am Proud to be Glaswegian …

They say that you can tell a great deal about people from the way they handle a crisis. This week the people of my home town – Glasgow  -showed what they were made of again as they pulled together in the face of tragedy. At around 2.30pm on December 22nd, a city bin lorry lost control in the city centre and struck a pedestrian before mounting the kerb and ploughing through crowds of Christmas shoppers on one of the busiest days of the year. It headed towards George Square where the city’s main Christmas tree, lights and carnival are. Thankfully, rather then striking the square, it crashed into a hotel which is still devastating, but certainly reduced the loss of life. As it stands, 6 people lost their lives and 2 are fighting for their lives having being treated for critical injuries. 4 more are in hospital and countless others had minor injuries. So many families across the city are facing a Christmas tinged with sadness. In fact, Christmas may never be the same again.

tribute2-gettyIt is devastating and the pain and the loss will be felt citywide this week. However, as I watched the crisis unfold on television, I also felt a flicker of pride in my heart. I listened to eyewitness accounts and heard how people had ran to the aid of others. We have perhaps one the best emergency services in the world and they were on the scene with impressive speed. However, until they arrived it was the people of Glasgow who held things together. Shoppers, office workers, those enjoying the festive lights all jumped into action. Civilians stopped the traffic, assisted the injured and even performed CPR on individuals who had been mown down. Everyone rallied around each other. Within minutes locals had already taken to Facebook and arranged candlelit vigils for the deceased and their families. A local taxi driver had made it clear that he was available to drive anyone to and from hospital to visit those injured completely free of charge. The closest church had arranged a memorial service and grief counselling. For all our faults and petty rivalries it is in times of great trail that we get to see the real Glasgow and last night she showed us her heart. Today, the Christmas lights in the city have been extinguished as a mark of respect. The bodies were removed early this morning passing through an honour guard of the police, fire-fighters and paramedic who had been working through the night. We can’t forget the impact this will have had on their Christmas either. Nor can we forget the poor driver, currently in hospital who will have to live with this for the rest of his life should he survive. It’s still not clear what happened, but reports say he was slumped over the wheel and it has been suggested he may have suffered a heart attack or similar causing him to lose control of the vehicle.

It’s the second consecutive Christmas period that has been under a dark cloud for the people of Glasgow. Just 13 months ago the city was devastated by another freak accident when a Police helicopter lost power and crashed through the roof of a busy local pub. On that occasion there were similar examples of kindness as people from all walks of life pitched in from the Asian takeaway owner who brought out an endless supply of food for the rescue workers to the high class hotels who brought people into their lobby and found blankets and other comforts for those involved. Then there were the ordinary people who following the tragedy raised thousands of pounds for the families of the 10 people who lost their lives.

It makes me think back even further, not to a Christmas tragedy, but to a failed terrorist attack on Glasgow Airport in 2007. The first terrorist attack to take place in Scotland since 1988. The only loss of life in that attack was one of the suicide bombers who died from his injuries a few weeks later. On that occasion once again the people of Glasgow stood together in the face of adversity. It was members of the public – holidaymakers and airport staff – who apprehended the terrorists and who dragged the injured people to safety. Baggage handler John Smeaton will forever live in our hearts as a living legend for his role in the incident and his immortal words on national news when he responded to a question about what message he would give to terrorists by saying “Glasgow doesn’t accept this. This is Glasgow; we’ll set aboot ye.”

Glasgow doesn’t abandon her own. There will always be one of us on hand to step in if something goes wrong. The world should look to this city (which many joke has won both the friendliest city and the murder capital of the world in the same week) for an example of how best to handle a tragedy. Here you will see no looting. Here you will see no riots. Here you will see no retaliation. All that you will see here is people who love this city and who will extend their hand to their brothers and sisters in their hour of need. We are not black. We are not white. We are not Muslim. We are not Christian. When it comes right down to it in our hour of need all that we are is Glaswegian. I couldn’t be prouder to count myself as one of them.

There is a reason why out motto is ‘ The People Make Glasgow’ and have we proved that this week.

The Adventures of Noble & Pond

Sunday Roundup : 3-9 November 2014

feeismsSUNDAYRUPI’m going to joining in with a new weekly post with Fee from Feeisms called The Sunday Roundup. If you fancy taking part and posting a brief summary of your week then pop over to her blog and link up!

This is my Sunday Round-up for the week 3rd – 9th November 2014. My week seemed to consist mainly of basketball related things – such is the life of a hoops mama.

Monday

10352941_672620602845522_6372525583712052534_nMonday’s are always a busy sort of a day. I wasn’t feeling to good as I have been battling with some kind of cold or flu for about 2 weeks now. I ended up getting up late and that put me behind on work. I always seem to have a bit of a back-log on Monday mornings because I try not to work on the weekends if I don’t have to. Despite being ill I did manage to finish a big order so that was good. It’s also a basketball day on Mondays. It sometimes feels like every day is a basketball day at the moment, but Monday’s are a scheduled training day, although mostly we have home games. The boys have been struggling to pick up a win lately having been up against bigger, stronger and more established teams – this is only Colliers’ second season together. However, the week the Cadet Men faced Ayr Storm and picked up an awesome win with Chris being one of the top scorers.

Tuesday

Tuesday was a pretty quiet day. Nobody had anywhere to be really so I spent most of the day working and watching loads of Ghost Adventures on TIVO!

Wednesday

It’s bonfire night and while I love fireworks I am not particularly into everyone having them. The local idiots just buy up as many cheap ones as they can afford and spend hours on end firing off rockets. They have no idea what Guy Fawkes Night is actually about and they have no clue about safety. The dogs were terrified and I can’t help wondering how all of the autistic kids that I work with through my charity post are coping with the noise. Year after year I feel like I am

Thursday

Robert went to bed sick after work today and Chris was pretty much hard-wired into his Xbox One! I was left to my own devices and managed to catch up on work and do a lot of planning for my own blogs. I have had to neglect them a lot lately due to work, but I feel like I have drawn up a strong editorial calendar and a good commenting and SMM strategy as well.

Friday

Basketball again tonight, this time an away game for the Junior Men. Chris plays Cadet level (under 16) in both the local and national leagues, but as the Juniors (under 18) are short on players he also plays on that team. We played Southside Originals at their home venue and managed to pick up another win. Like Colliers, the Originals are a new squad, but I think we are lucky to have some experienced coaches and staff which gives us a little bit of an edge. It’s great to see the boys smile after back to back wins. These guys eat sleep and breathe basketball and it has been hard to watch them get so down about losing.

Saturday

I spent a lovely morning with my mother-in-law at the local church Christmas Fête. We won a couple of raffle prizes and I picked up my first Christmas gift. I have officially started Christmas shopping! In the evening I drove over to visit my bestie who had come down from Edinburgh to stay with her mum one town over from me. We had a good little chat and a nice dinner before I headed home to bed to get ready for a busy Sunday.

Sunday

10624722_823679004363055_5924769950595359507_nToday is Remembrance Sunday so we are up early to attend the parade and service. Chris is an Explorer Scout and had been chosen to be a standard bearer for the parade. He looked really smart and I was very proud of him. I’m not in the least bit religious, so I admit I found the church service fairly long and drawn out! After church the parade headed to the war memorial to lay wreaths. We were freezing by the time it finished so we headed to McDonald’s for some sneaky burgers! Now we are just hanging out at my Mother-in-law’s house and I am catching up on some work. Later tonight both Chris and I are officiating at a Senior Women’s basketball game. I am sure I will be ready for bed as soon as I get home, its been a long day.

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BE June Challenge Day 21 : Describe your relationship with your parents.

Today’s topic is to describe my relationship with my parents. Unfortunately,  I lost my dad when I was 11 years old. I think it hit me particularly hard because I was always a daddy’s girl at heart. He was a great man who was able to build pretty much anything we asked of him! I have some great childhood memories of flying gliders, castles, and garages that he had made us. He also taught us all about gardening and growing fruit and veg – something I am afraid to say that I never kept up. He was ill for most of my life, but I didn’t really notice. I think it became second nature for him to be in hospital. After he was gone I had to learn to build a relationship with my mum. I don’t think it was the case that I never had a relationship with her, I think I was just closer to my dad, Since he was so ill my mum worked and if it wasn’t my dad caring for me it was my older sister. I still have a really close bond with her today.  I think that my mum and I rub each other up the wrong way. This is mainly because I am fiercely independent and she likes to interfere get involved! We cannot live together, but when we have our distance we get along great. I admire everything that she did in bringing up her four girls and numerous foster kids with no money and little support due to my dad’s health. I look at the relationships that others have with their parents and I am glad that I seemed to have been very lucky! Our family was built on love because we didn’t have much else and I would not have had it any other way!

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BE June Challenge Day 19 : How did you feel the moment you became a parent?

967293_10200102836273525_1863138721_oHow did I feel the moment I became a parent? I know that you are supposed to say that there was an instant love and that all of the pain was worth it, but do you know what? All I felt was pain, nausea and crushing fear. I was a teenager, I was a single mother and I had no idea what I was going to do with my own life let alone a baby. I had a hard labour, I had been hospitalized for a week and I spent most of that time crying myself to sleep. Following my son’s birth we had to stay in hospital for another week and I felt like I was going out of my mind. I felt like every eye was on me – judging me. They weren’t, but that was how I felt. I was in pain. I felt sick. I was exhausted.

1072664_10200851059892087_51846604_oDespite all of that I did know that I loved him. He was my little miracle. I’ve mentioned before that he probably saved my life and that is completely true. I was on a self destructive path and my life was going no-where. Parenthood, especially unexpected  parenthood (I was 30 weeks pregnant before I knew) is scary. Suddenly there is another human being depending on you for everything. You are suddenly responsible for not only feeding them and clothing them, but also to teach them everything. How could I suddenly be expected to shows this little guy how to become a grown up when I had no idea myself? Needless to say we got there in the end. I learned as much from my son as he did from me. So while I did feel all of the usual love and excitement, the overriding emotion in that moment was fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of the responsibility, fear of failing him.

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BE June Challenge Day 17 :What is the thing you most wish you were great at?

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Image By hyena reality

If there was one thing that I really wish that I was great at then it would have to be time management. I have so much that I want to achieve, but I never really seem to have the time to get everything done. I make lists, I prepare schedules, I set alarms on my phone. No matter what I try I can never actually manage to complete a to do list – ever!

My main priority is to get my client work done and in an ideal world I’d handle that before lunch. That would give me the afternoons free to work on my business site, and to get my blogs off the ground. Now that I have completed my degree, I should have plenty of time available to me. However, it seems like I have less time than ever before and I often find myself working well into the early hours of the night without ever having managed to do anything for myself – don’t even talk to me about household chores. Part of the reason for me starting this blog is to get myself more organized. I think that if I can get on track with it then I will be able to improve my time management skills.

In the mean time, anyone have any tips for me?

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BE June Challenge Day 7 : What Is Your Dream Job and Why?

For most of my adult life I have drifted between ID-10088177jobs, never really settling into a career. When I was getting ready to leave school I had my heart set on being a motor mechanic. However, finding someone to take me seriously as a girl in the 90’s who wanted to work on cars was difficult. No matter how many interviews and aptitude tests I aced, no matter how many practical trials I completed with existing mechanics telling me how good I was I could never seem to catch a break. There was always some kind of excuse, but I knew that it was because I was female. 

So after giving up on that particular dream I was pretty much adrift. I spent a year at college studying Travel & Tourism, but didn’t complete my second year after falling pregnant at 18. After the birth of my son it was a case of working to feed him, not building a career so I floated between bar work, retail work and customer service work. It wasn’t until I lost my job at a local bakery that I started to really think about what I was going to do with the rest of my life.  I remembered that I had always liked reading and writing and so for no other reason than to fill my days I started a degree in Literature (I should graduate any day now). I started writing again and I loved it. I was blogging on my scrapbooking site, and a few friends had hired me to set up their blogs or load their scrapping products into their stores and I started to wonder if there was a business in that. Around the same time I read a novel  by Katie Fforde where the main protagonist was a virtual assistant. That sounded like a good plan. It was time to investigate.

I found a website where I could apply for freelance work, and to my delight my first application was accepted. However, I never received payment for the work which did put me off more than a little. However, I persevered and found other freelancing sites where I could apply for writing work. Within a few months I was earning a decent amount of money and had some regular clients. Fast forward to present day and I have my own business offering web content and social media. I even outsource some of my work to others!

So is this my dream job? No, not really, but it is pretty damn close. I get to write mostly every day. I work from home and I feel like I am using my brain. However, somewhere along the road I started to get a bit of a dream developing in the corner of my mind. I discovered that my dream job was to work on a magazine. I have no idea how to make it happen, but I have it in my sights! For now blogging will need to be sufficient.

 

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BE June Challenge Day 5: What are the 5 things that make you most happy right now?

I figure that today, the best way to show you the 5 things that make me happiest right now, is to actually show you! So I am going to do a photo post today rather than a proper blog post! Sometimes a picture can say so much more than words!

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de662d1ea050056d0d59a596bf55d364My husband makes me happy. We have been through a lot together and I think we came out of it stronger than ever. We have been together for about 12 years and married for 3 years. It is a complete cliche, but I truly believe that he is my soul mate. He is the one special person that I want to annoy for the rest of my life! We are both flawed and we fight like cat and dog, but there is never any question of giving up. We know that we can do it if we stick together.

10151403_10202695649885684_127942063806882234_nMy son Christopher is my heart and my soul. He is now 14 years old and life with him hasn’t always been easy, but it has always been worth it. I look at him sometimes and wonder where my little baby went because all I can see is the man that he is becoming and I could not be prouder. Sure we have tantrums and arguments and times when he is the most selfish person I know, but that is just part of parenting a teenager! When I look at the other parts it makes all of that pale into insignificance. He is kind. He is loyal. He is smart. He is athletic. I love that he cries when we watch sad movies and that he would stand up and fight for someone weaker than him. I never expected to want a child, but I know that he was meant for me. I never expected to love him as much as I do. His smile melts my heart. If I leave just one legacy behind it will be my son!

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My family makes me happy. My mum and my 3 older sisters who are pictured here, but also my extended family. They all have something to offer in their own special way. No matter how far we seem to scatter across the country they are always in my heart and on my mind.

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Why is it that animals can make you feel so good? My boy Rogue will always be my baby. I love his little smiley face. I love his clumsy big paws. I love is chubby little belly. He is a German Shepard-Staffordshire Terrier cross and we have had him since he was just 8 weeks old. He is the only dog I know who loves to be hugged – properly hugged. We are talking arms around each other and squeezing tight. Every morning when the alarm clock goes off he crawls into bed between my husband and I for ‘morning huggles’. Every Saturday he throws his harness at my husband to tell him that it is time to walk in the woods. Every Sunday he whines non-stop until we take him to visit Granny! He nurses us when we are sick and would lay down his life for any one of us. I have loved all of my pets, but Rogue will always have a very special place in my heart. There is no other dog like him.

AI couldn’t have a list of what makes me happy without including my friends. This is Babs, my partner in crime, but there are other friends that should be included. Not just in real life, but also online. I’ve met so many special people online that I would include among my very best friends even although we have never actually met in person! I am actually a very shy person and I don’t find it very easy to make friends. I often come across as a bitch or a snob, but it is only because I hang back and take some time to observe people first before I open up to them. I choose my friends very carefully. I would rather be alone than with a friend I cannot trust. I think the great thing about my friends is that they are like me. We don’t need to talk every single day, we know where each other will be!

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