A letter to all the music snobs out there!

As I have mentioned in a previous post, I bloody love music. It has the power to lift me up or give me comfort. It makes me dance. It makes me cry. It makes me feel stuff. It’s amazing and I’m forever in awe of those with the talent to create it.

However, what has always pissed me off are those people who believe that they are somehow superior to others because of their taste in music. I’m lucky, I grew up in a house full of music and wide ranging music styles. Some days my dad would be playing Glen Campbell or War of the Worlds and on others, my mom would be playing her Boogie Nights mix tape. I did my GCSE coursework to the tunes of the 60s and me and my childhood friends made up dances to everything from Buddy Holly to Bucks Fizz.

By university I’d learnt that it wasn’t cool to admit to liking pretty much anything but 90s indie, preferably from Manchester, and for years I felt like I had to hide about 75% of what I loved.

Then I properly grew up and realised that I don’t care if I’m cool all the time. Music is so subjective. It’s personal. It’s an emotional thing. It’s what touches us and sounds good to our own ears. It is a time or a place. It is a loved one or a fleeting moment.

So for that very reason, no one can be better than anyone else because of the music that appeals to their ears and no one should be able to make you feel bad for liking what you like. 

What’s more, there can be no such thing as a guilty pleasure when it comes to songs because – if it makes you happy then there should be no guilt! 

Warm regards
Katie x

Midlife makeup lesson

Anyone remember the heavy blue and green eye shadow from the 80s?⁣

And then do you remember those ladies who carried on the trend way after it was considered flattering? ⁣
⁣Now, I’m not a massive follower of trends so if it makes you feel good, crack on! However I do think that getting stuck in a rut and doing what we’ve always done with the products we’ve always used can be a bit ageing. Products change so fast and many brands are now created with ageing skins in mind (@studio10makeup I’m thinking of you! 😍) They are so much more flattering than something that we may have loved in the past.⁣

With that in mind, I invited Sian @flicks_and_red_lips from @so_coco_rouge to one of my #midlifeglowup chats which was full of top tips and advice. If you haven’t had chance to watch yet, go to my IGTV and give it a save now!⁣

This week I caught up with Sian again and as it was half term I invited my (mainly) teacher friends, and my daughter, along for a virtual makeup lesson. I haven’t seen them all in real life since September so it was a lovely way to see each other but do something completely different together.⁣

We all used the make up in our own bags, (so no pressure to buy anything new) and Sian gave us a step by step demonstration on how to create our own ‘face.’ Undoubtedly we all learnt something new and I definitely now have more confidence on how to do a blended eye. So watch out. There may be some more colourful eye shadow posts on the way!! ⁣

Have a swipe to see more of the results and the before.⁣

Products I used:⁣
Serum foundation & lipstick @bobbibrownuk 
Blush & lipliner @studio10makeup 
Eye shadow @toofacedlovestheuk 
Lip gloss @trinnylondon 

Spring – can you hear me?!

So what to do when you can’t get to spring fast enough? Bring a touch of spring to your outfit!⁣

I’ve been quite colour averse for the last few months but when I saw this cardigan @moobou it screamed SPRING at me and so I treated myself! And, as a Brit, we need cardigans all. year. round! So I did check out what it looked like with my beloved shorts too. It passed the test!

So come on spring, let’s be having you! I’m ready, my bulbs are ready and my cold bones are most definitely ready! ⁣
Who else is ready? 🌷🌱🌷⁣

#MidlifeGlowUp

Unbelievably, we’re half way though my #MidlifeGlowup chats! Time flies when you’re talking to some really interesting people! 🥰 I can honestly say that I have taken away something from each and every one of these conversations and I’m sure that you will too. They also cleverly overlap and interlink, so make sure that you catch the whole set to get maximum benefit!

So far I’ve chatted to:
@cocobee06 about ‘if not now, then when?!’ and general go get’em positivity!
@componopersonaltraining about overcoming your barriers to exercise and getting fitter for a healthier life. Remember that there’s a special, Midlife Glow Up, full body exercise vid over on Anna’s IGTV.
@ukglowology about caring for your skin and face yoga.
@annie_breen_nutrition about reclaiming your energy and the importance of looking after your gut.
@so_coco_rouge answered many of your questions about makeup and not getting stuck in a rut of doing the same old, in the same old way!

Still to come:
@marvellousmidlife is here on Wednesday to talk about peri menopause and some of its ‘invisible’ symptoms and where to get advice and support. 
@katie.portman will share her styling ideas for developing your personal style and colours.
@traciesedit will be here to answer any hair issues and styling questions.
@drlouisewrites will round it all up and talk about what she learnt when writing her book ‘Your Best Life. A Doctor’s Guide to Radiant Health Over 40′
@componopersonaltraining will hopefully be back to see how your fitness mojo and motivation is getting on by March!

If you have any questions to be asked in the upcoming chats, feel free to drop me a message.

Just go to my IGTV tab to catch up on anything that you may have missed. They are around 40 minutes long so treat them as a podcast, bang one on while you’re doing something boring and have a listen! ✨

Last night out out!

Never one to miss out on a decent viral bandwagon, I’m joining with @moodswings_and_otherthings (Insta) Lottie’s post about her last night out before lockdown 1. 

Unbelievably mine was almost a year ago. 29 February 2020! 🙈 We went to Nottingham to go out with some of my husband’s colleagues. We ate amazing Thai food, pretended that it was his birthday so that the waiting staff would bang drums and sing to us (think it’s in my silly Instagram highlights if you want to see!) and I took this never-seen-the-light-of-day toilet selfie! 

As I’m not a massive night owl I don’t really miss mad nights out that much, but I do miss sitting in restaurants, eating food not available within a five mile radius and live events and music. We had so many theatre trips, concerts and a festival cancelled so I can’t wait to dance and sing badly, and loudly, with 100s of people again. One day! 

Fancy joining in and sharing the story of your last night out out?

Hello pink & blue kitchen!

Let me introduce you to our DIY kitchen makeover!⁣

Here’s the backstory – we had a nice kitchen when we moved in. It wasn’t our style but it was neutral and not offensive. Unfortunately over the last year all the shiny vinyl started to fall off/break. We tried glueing it but frankly it looked shit so we started to rip it off instead. Then we started painting what was underneath. Then we started spraying everything else gold! Peddle bins, sockets, light shades, knobs, taps, ovens and speakers! 😂

We have totally transformed the kitchen for under £100 in two weekends and a couple of evenings. There’s still some paint where it shouldn’t be and not enough in places where it should be! I still need to varnish the cupboards to protect them and we must get the roof repaired before the leaks cause the ceiling to fall down 😱 but it’s back to being a liveable kitchen again and the #pinkification of the house goes on!! 

Never have I ever. Part 2 – the clothing edition.

Happy Monday folks! ⁣

Fancy another game of never have I ever to start the week? This time it’s the ‘clothing edition.’ ⁣

I’ll start you off – never have I ever worn animal print! 😱 I know! It’s a massive Instafave but I’m not great with a pattern. Check out the photo of my wardrobe! 🙈 It’s something that I’m looking to improve after my #midlifeglowup chat with @katie.portman in a couple of weeks. ⁣

Your turn! What trend have you never tried?! ⁣

It seems that we love dungarees!

This is my contribution to #andyshomecatwalk. The brief for this week is #whereverilaymyhat. So where’s my hat eh?⁣

Well I’ve twisted the brief somewhat in a Paul Young 80s stylee and added the ’that’s my home!’ bit at the end! So the above are photos of me in my natural habitat – my home, my denim and my big thick socks!

To be fair, the photos are not as important as the homelessness message that @rebeccaweefsmith and @dappasnapper are trying to raise over the next few weeks along with their #wearingwellbeing message to help our mental health during lockdown. As I’ve said before, the last year has definitely been a reminder of how lucky I am to have a beautiful roof over my head and a garden to tend. I’m aware that we are all just a couple of events away from losing our home, so I’ll hand you over to Rebecca for all the info…⁣

I am just one little person but this Instagram community we have built is bigger, louder and bolder. You lot are amazing. Your support makes my world feel brighter. With you around I am hopeful. ⁣
Caring about how you look, clothes, fashion, style is often classed as shallow and self- obsessed. My experience of fashion friends is the opposite. But then I am very lucky. ⁣

Yes we can help ourselves to feel better about all the shit that’s going on by getting dressed in clothes we love BUT we can also show that in doing so we care about others. ⁣

One unexpected outcome that I love about #Andyshomecatwalk is seeing the connections that evolve and branch out: people who are sharing posts and content that I’ve never met but who are willing to make an effort to spread Andy @dappasnapper story and raise awareness and funds for @sheltercharity. I wouldn’t get quite so far if I stood on a street corner with my boards but with all your help on Instagram I think we can make a splash with this campaign, what do you think? ⁣

Check out Rebecca’s profile for more info on how to join in and how to donate.⁣

Never have I ever…

Fancy a game of never have I ever – the make up edition?⁣

I’ll start us off!⁣

In spite of being born in the 70s and growing up the 80s, never have I ever worn blue eyeshadow….until last week! Turns out that I quite like it and I might even try it again at some point.⁣

Any ’never have I ever’ make up stories to share? Or any top tips for wearing blue eyeshadow? I have green eyes so I know that it’s not meant to be the greatest combo but as I was going for a 70s vibe….🕺🏼⁣

2020 you little git!

How to look back on this year and summarise it in a little blog post?! ⁣

It wasn’t all bad! I’ve loved the extra family time, I enjoyed the moments with a slower pace of life. I appreciated all the sunshine and having a garden where we could enjoy it. I discovered that I’m a self motivated exerciser and working out at home is a better option for me. I’m a solar powered lizard, yet in the right coat, I’m happy as Larry walking out in the wind and rain. I appreciate the little stuff even more than before. We’ve got to know some more neighbours and worked together to improve our local area. I’ve had an excuse to be incredibly silly. I spend a lot of time by myself yet never get bored and I get great value for money out of my Netflix subscription and my joggers!⁣

However there is no denying that it’s been an absolute shitter of a year! I no longer watch the news and venturing on Twitter is like stepping into a war zone. Thinking about the cost of this year on human lives and mental health, education, finances and wellbeing is absolutely devastating. The conflicting opinions, the division, the mistrust, the confusion. ⁣

My own work life was pretty much decimated and with it went a part of my identity and a piece of my own confidence. I’ve always thought that I was an introverted extrovert but now, after months of solitude, I think I’m displaying more introverted traits. I seem to have lost the art of conversation, perhaps because I simply don’t have a lot to talk about anymore? I’ve talked to my little community on here more this year than most people in real life and that makes me happy and sad in equal measures!⁣

So after this essay, (with no conclusion) I just want to wish you all the best possible start to 2021. So incredibly pleased to have had you join me for 2020 and I look forward to seeing you again next year ✨