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An Interview with..

If I am totally honest with you, I have tried to come up with some witty snippet which shows my sheer admiration for the woman I am about to interview and nothing came close. In other words, Rachel Salter, otherwise known as Dollie is not only one of the most inspiring people I have ever met, but is truly an incredible friend.

Whilst sharing her love of all things Disney, her illnesses, and her up and coming bundle of Joy, its safe to Say the love she shares throughout her channels, will soon be shown in an all new light. So I would like to welcome you to the wonderfully magical world of Dollies Adventures...

Hope you’re okay and are still as wonderful as ever! 2018 was such a massive year for you, what does 2019 hold for you?

Hey Em! Thank you so much for having me as apart of your interviews, I am so grateful to be given this chance to sit and have a little natter with you. Well kicking of 2019 with the most incredible news that I am going to be a mummy. My husband and I have been trying for a baby for a long while so feel completely blessed to finally have this beautiful baby in our lives. Baby is due in September and I cannot wait. This year will bring lots of lifestyle updates in regards to pregnant life, decorating the nursery and on top of that LOTS more Disney and lovely pretties! I am still working with Soap and Glory reviewing new products which is always such a joy and I hope to work with another big beauty brand in the coming future all being well, I’ll reveal as time goes on.

Disney is such a huge part of your life, are you planning on taking any more trips to the land of happiness?

My husband and I are absolutely planning more trips to Disney of course!! Once Baby is big and old enough to safely and comfortably travel we will make that magical journey to the castle and share it with our baby.

For me you embody Disney, you provide so much happiness to those around you whether thats through your blog, social media or friendship. Even supporting people like myself when we were completely young and naive. So, I was wondering, If there was one thing you would want to tell your younger self?

Oh that is an incredibly good question and one that generates nothing short of a powerful response. What I would tell my younger self is to STOP! Stop confirming to trends, groups, popular opinions and acting a certain way because you thought it was cool ~ Be your own person, stand out because you’re yourself and proud. Make decisions based on your gut and not your heart and always have faith in your own mind and abilities. I would tell myself to stop being to hard on yourself, you put too much pressure on yourself and you don’t need to. Enjoy life and the little things because with hard work you’ll reap the benefits so work hard but don’t forget to let your hair down because your only young once and shouldn’t look back regret can eat a person alive.

You are so passionate about spreading awareness about disabilities, is this something that you will continue to do on your blog and socials?

100% absolutely! Awareness is key after all! Individuals with disabilities are amount the strongest of people I have had the deepest pleasure of meeting, working with and crossing paths with, I adore everyone I have met and am humbled and inspired by everyone’s journeys and lives. WE deserve everything that everyone else is offered, the disabled community deserve a voice and a platform and if I am but one person who helps stand up and creates a voice then so be it. One person is better than none. When I was first diagnosed with my health conditions it wasn’t the condition that hurt and tore me apart it was the sheer loneliness and isolation being sick brings and I couldn’t bare the thought of anyone else feeling this same feeling. So if I have to speak openly and freely about my health including all the embarrassing parts in order to stop just 1 other person feeling that loneliness creep in ~ then my blog has made a difference. That’s why I’ll continue to speak freely, openly and proudly about my disabilities on as many platforms as possible.

Just one thing I admire about you is your openness to discuss your own illnesses, whilst still taking on the world like the ultimate boss. Do you ever think your amazing mindset could be changed?

Oh bless you babe, thank you, no way!! My mindset will never change I will continue to be the honest, humorous and sometimes sarcastic writer about my own health for as long as there’s a platform I will continue to have a voice.

In the past you’ve been a constant support when I’ve struggled with my mums illness’s. Is being a support to others something that means a lot to you ? And do you have your own supporters when things get tough?

Hearing that makes me feel so happy knowing that I have offered support to you in times where you’ve needed it the most, that makes me so happy. I feel very passionate about helping and supporting others because to be honest with my illnesses and disabilities made my life incredibly difficult and I probably did not have as much support as I needed not through anyone’s fault but Purely because my support network where so fearful of the diagnosis and the life I was living that they wouldn’t accept or acknowledge it and that made it hard to manage alone. I had no choice but to become my own biggest support and learn to be strong for everyone else and myself. This is probably why I am passionate about helping and supporting others.

You have an amazing ability of making every one feel amazing about themselves. You’re so motivating to everyone, who motivates you?

I think personally it’s not who motivates me it’s more so what motivates me. The motivations comes from the fact that I was told I would never be able or capable of doing something, therefore find love and motivation is finding a passion for something that no one believed that I could but don’t get me wrong the smaller passionate bloggers inspire me because they remind me that we all started somewhere and everyone deserves a chance and a platform to do what they love.

In the past you have dabbled in YouTube, is that something your going to continue ? Or is blogging the way for you?

I would LOVE to do some YouTube pregnancy videos however I’m honestly struggling to find the time to do everything. When your pregnant, working and walking around with some absolutely crap health issues days can run away with you and sometimes finding time to eat becomes a task in itself. If there where more hours in the day I would love too.

You have worked with some amazing brands recently, is this something you’d love to continue?

Yes I feel absolutely blessed to have been given such wonderful opportunities with brands and I hope that I continue working with some more, as I mentioned earlier there’s one more in the pipeline but I’m not allowed to mention that yet ha ha!

I could ask you a million questions (honestly) but if there was one thing that you wish you could tell others, what would it be?

One thing I could tell others?! Wow such an incredible question and to be honest I’m struggling to narrow it down because I am quite a passionate conversationalist and depending on my audience would depend on my topic. One this I would say is this STOP pushing smaller bloggers away just because of the amount of followers they have, so you ever think sometimes people just deserve a bloody break and need just 1 person to step out of the line of judgemental influencers and vouch for them?! Let’s just all be mindful that everyone is doing their best and sometimes someone just needs a break! Oh and STOP THROWING PLASTIC IN THE BLOODY SEA WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU!! Ha ha!

And with that exceptional environmental point, I wanted to mention the impact Rachel has had on the blogging community- in particular the impact she’s had on smaller bloggers. Being a constant support for any blogger questioning their abilities, sharing her own thoughts on issues that effect all small writers, and fighting for equal opportunities- its safe to say that the blogosphere really would be missing a star if Rachel decided to end her adventure.

As of right now all I can say is thank you to this amazing woman. The support she has not only given me, but SO many others really has shaped who we become as a writer’s. For that alone I, owe a lot to Rachel.

So here’s to Dollies Adventures, I hope you never lose your way,

Em x

Disclaimer: All images used throughout this blog post are owned by Dollies Adventures. A conversation prior to the publishing of this interview confirmed that i was allowed to share them.

If you would like to see more of Rachel’s work, please feel free to click the links below.

Instagram handle: @dollies_adventures

Twitter.

Blog.

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The Life Switch up.

Hello you beautiful people.

I know, I know its been a while- and for that i am not in the least bit sorry. Life over the past few weeks has been quiet, with quiet came a few realisations. I realised that (and I don’t mean to boast- well maybe a little) but i finally feel like i have my shit together. Trust me, i am just as shocked as any one.

NOW, by no means do i have the answers to all the millennial issues. I am still shit with money, fat and my sex life is dryer than the Sahara desert- i’m just good with it. We are all to often caught saying

‘ you should only look back to see how far we’ve come’

But if you are anything like me, then you will only look to the positives of the past. Nights out, relationships, graduations are all things i compare my current life too. But what about the crippling anxiety, mounds of debt and self esteem lower to than my bank account. If i am to be perfectly honest, i really am bloody happy to be where i am today.

*cough* Cheesey as fuck*cough*

Photographer: Rebecca Walker.

Dieting.

Now lets start with the shit stuff. Dieting. My last blog spoke about my ‘ditching the term plus size’. Hatred for the term probably comes from the negative relationship with my body. Now, i look at dieting as a way to learn how to cook, how to prepare myself for the week ahead and even to a certain extent, how too budget. Dieting has been such an awful experience in the past. From rationing my food to living off 800 calories a day, i never wanted to be the size i am. Yet, here i am the wrong size of 25 with my huge bum and 28 E boobs (and yes, crippling back ache).

Right now i am technically dieting, Slimming world has been a way i can learn how to cook for my new veggie lifestyle. With friends and family not being the most supportive Slimming world has been a great network for recipes.

Dating.

Photographer: Rebecca Walker.

Want some juicy goss? Then go somewhere else.

As with the rest of my life, my romantic life is non-existent- and like my body, i am good with it. Friends of mine are getting married, having babies and me? Well right now, I’m sat in the same room i grew up in drinking a corona, watching an Criminal Minds.

After a few shit relationships I finally understand the importance of being alone.I have replied heavily on my exes, i needed some one to tell me i was okay- as stupid as it sounds i was to scared to live my life independently.

Romantic relationships just isn’t something i am looking for right now, but if Prince Charming wants to fall into my life with a classic Nintendo and a few bottle of beer, then I wouldn’t run away.

Striving for independence.

Independence means a lot to different people. To some it means paying your own bills, to others it means traveling alone, for me? It simply means being comfortable enough to create something that i’ve been to scared too.

A few years back i was scared of everything. My mental health health nose dived, panic attacks took hold and i had no idea what i was doing one day to the next. So for me, its time to finally be able to stand on my own two feet and leave my anxieties in the past.

And goals? You better believe I’ve got them now and right now, i am smashing them (i mean to really, I’m not the Hulk).

  • BUY MY FIRST HOME.
  • BECOME MORE COMFORTABLE WITH WHO I AM.
  • TRAVEL ALONE (even if it is only to centre parks)
Photographer: Rebecca Walker.

Organising my shit

Guys i am pretty okay with admitting that i am not Marie Kondo but i have started appreciating organising my life. Making breakfast the night before, ironing my clothes ready for the week on Sunday night and cleaning my space much more often, has made me feel so much more in control of my own life.

Like with so many things in my life, of course there is most definitely more switch up’s up to come but organising my life has impacted my life so much. I am so excited, to see how the year (and my poor attempt at organisation) goes.

Photographer: Rebecca Walker.

2019 has flown by so quickly, its basically the middle of march and I have no recollection as to what happened to February. This little update and content switch up has been something i have wanted to do for a while. I have spent so much time wasting my life with poor relationships, low self esteem and just accepting that i was always going to unhappy – right now, this couldn’t be further from the truth. I finally feel like i am working towards the things i have always been too scared too.

And i promise to share them with you when i finish them.

Always,

Em x

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Is it time to ditch the ‘plus’ in Plus Size?

Hello my beauties.

As i sit an write this , i cant help but stare and the copious amount of clothing I’ve been buying recently. With the recent developments in sizing, styles and stores, the Plus size market has become more profound than ever- right now, I am in total awe at how amazing the ‘plus’ size clothing is in the UK has become. For years the ‘Plus’ size clothing stores have been ill flattering, and lack all sense of fashion. With brands such as ASOS, River Island and even New Look have finally allowed the curvy amongst us to find affordable, fashionable clothing the ‘Plus’ size clothing market has never been as advanced.

Now, pals, i am by no means saying that there isn’t any room for improvement in the Plus Size industry. Seriously i can list the issues my 16-18 chunky bod has when fighting the losing battle trying to find something ‘nice’ in store. Yet, the growth the industry has had shows a complete shift in a much better direction. Empire lines, flowing material and more accesability show a much better understanding of a curvier woman’s need. I just can’t help but ask, with the growth in the industry i am left wondering isn’t it time to ditch the ‘Plus Size’ term altogether?

Image taken by Rebecca Walker

Image taken by Rebecca Walker

Outfit details.

Jumper: TU at Sainsbury’s.

Skirt: Primark.

Belt: Primark

Shoes: Raid via ASOS

Same clothing, same price.

Many stores now offer a plus size range, an has since started making the same pieces through out all their clothing. By this i mean much of the clothing in the plus size ranges is exactly the same (just sized higher) than much of the regular sized clothing. So, why am i walking up a flight of stairs to find a piece of clothing that i have seen 4 times down stairs?

As a rule, i don’t understand much within this segment of the clothing industry. Why should my reasonably sized boobs and Kardashian’s rival bottom mean I don’t fit into the Norm of clothing? Surely it would be better to make customers feel equal no matter the size of their behind ? Many stores argue that the fabric, patterns and even marketing equate to higher prices and being segregated from the rest of the other clothing items. Yet, with the fashion industry being one of the leading industries i highly doubt merging all areas of the clothing within a store will hardly knock the overall growth of the industry.

We’re not all made the same.

Understanding body shapes must rival the Pythagoras theorem. Every woman, is shaped differently regardless of your weight, Height and even style. As a woman who is constantly battling her weight, why should my clothing make me feel any less than ‘comfortable’?

Now, i understand that with a copious amount of body shapes, stores are fighting a losing battle. Some items will never look great on a pear shape whilst others items are just too short for a six foot frame.Yet, isn’t it better for people to have a level of trust in their favourite clothing brand rather than share the feeling of ‘ i can’t believe i have to go their again’. Taking plus size out of the equation for one moment, isn’t it worth creating a space where everyone has value?

Image taken by Rebecca Walker

Image taken by Rebecca Walker

A Trigger?

Now, i am fully aware that some suffering with eating disorders may find this triggering. Walking to a separate area, in which you can shop with in comfort is important. However, many of the plus sized clothing collections are placed in obvious spaces. Women have to walk through area which see stick thin Mannequins, small items of clothing all of which only amplify insecurites. If stores don’t want this collection to be triggering isn’t it time to group all collections together and let all shoppers be equal. And if not, move the curve items to a much more discreet area of the store.

The future?

The future of the clothing industry will hopefully hold so much more growth within the ‘Plus’ sized category and for me, that is dropping the notion of plus sized all together. On a daily basis we are told that our size shouldn’t define who we are, so why are we allowing clothing stores to tell us any different? Walking through a store filled with smaller sized items, means that many like myself are forced to see what we could be. In a world of fad diets, motivational quotes and fakery, i am ready to stand up and say my size does not define who i am. Nor should it define how i feel in stores i spend my hard earn money in.

I can’t be the only person in the world which hates the term ‘Plus Size’. The size of my hips shouldn’t restrict the clothing i have access too. With the constant demand for affordable, fashionable clothing, when will the High Street learn that all customers are just as important as one and other. The size and shape of your body has no correlation to you or your sense of style. Kardashian bums, mum tums and massive lady lumps shouldn’t be a restriction, it should be something we have and can parade in a gorgeous leopard print shirt.

So tell me, what do you think? Is it time all customers were treated equally, or do you have an entirely different opinion. Please let me know in the comments below.

Em x

Disclaimer : I paid for these clothes with my own money and have never worked with either

Time to be your own Valentine?

Valentines, Galentines, 50% chocolate specials whatever you associate with the season of love, its here. In amongst the new couples, chocolate binges and sobbing singles, Valentine’s Day can be something that takes its toll on so many. Whether you’re a loved up babe or a sassy single, Valentine’s Day should be a day we celebrate our longest relationship; the one we have with ourselves. In the words of Ru Paul, ‘ If you can’t love yourself, how the hell are you going to love somebody else’.

I challenge you this Valentine’s Day to celebrate yourself, the challenges you’ve face and the next steps of your life. Realising that you and you alone are solely responsible for all the things you have achieved and will continue to achieve. So grab a nice bottle of plonk, run a bath and leave the world at the door step. If a bubble bath isn’t for you, then its perfectly okay to rewrite the terms of your own valentines night.

Take time.

Okay, before i rant on about turning the world off i am. Fully aware that for many stepping away from the world on a week night probably isn’t an option. Parents, care givers and even people who have to work more than one job don’t get the option of having a night of. Yet their is one option you do have.

Taking your time- once the day is over with, is a luxury. Leaving deadlines at the doors, plodding along with your to do lists, without haste is rewarding. Having the ability to complete tasks without any rush allows you to relax and feel accomplished. Take your time isn’t always a bad thing, remember the tortoise and the hare?

Embrace who you are.

Everyone is different, therefore everyone’s way of relaxing is completely different. Listing to metal, watching the entirety of the Marvel universe and or even sitting in silence. Embracing your favourite things and running with them, is ultimately the most important thing in the season of love. If not, what’s the point? Go on, grab another chocolate and watch another episode of friends, make your soul happy.

Likewise embracing your love life is necessary to surging this sickening loved up month. Unlike, so many on social media, you don’t have to be in a relationship to have a great Valentine’s Day. Amongst the ‘Boys done good’, sea of pandora rings, and new relationships which will be lucky if they last the month, embracing your own relationship status really is important- especially in February.

I am sure at one time or another we have all be shamed for being single, or have been told that the partner we have in our lives just isn’t the one for us. Yet, in the long run, all that matters is that you are happy- the options of sheep shouldn’t rule you life. Embrace what you have even if others don’t agree.

Stop- even if its just for an evening.

As a generation, us millennial love to be busy. We love to complain about the overtime we’ve accrued or the latest amount of responsibility that we have had shoved on our desk. A friend once said, ‘I’m just too busy to take care of myself’, a sad honest truth we are all guilty of saying. Well, isn’t it time we all just stopped and cared for ourselves for just one night. Whether its deleting twitter for a night, or inviting the girls round to dance to all of Atomic Kittens Greatest hits. Taking one night away from the busy life we have, isn’t going to effect anything. Stepping away from distractions is the best way to care for yourself, and isn’t that the best way to be your own valentine?

Treat yourself.

If you are anything like me, then spending time and money on yourself seems to fall by the wayside. Work, bills, social interactions all take president to the pamper we all deserve, The term pamper is personal, for some its having a bubble bath, for others its the full shebang, face masks and all. For me, its a fresh set of gels, a new piercing and an hair cut.

Finding your own way of treating yourself, isn’t selfish. There will always be something you should be doing, or even a task that you could have finished to a higher standard. These trivial aspects of our lives ultimately stop many of us stop treating ourselves, and for what? Absolutely beggar all.

Whether you have a valentine or not this year, treat yourself how you would love them to treat you. Bubble bath, foot rub, a good bottle of wine- sounds amazing to me. Having one night away from the responsibilities which play on your mind not only allows you to rest, but allows for you to focus on the task when you pick it up again.

Remember Valentine’s Day is merely 24 hours, you have the rest of your life to find who you are, embrace it.

Happy V-Day.

Em x

An interview with Steph’s World

Heys guys, lil ol’ me again, but this time I am bringing you something very special.

After meeting in a pod nearly a year ago, Steph has become some one who I couldn’t live without. Our weekly updates, giggles and hufflepuff pride make my heart burst with pride. If blogging doesn’t give me anything else I’m proud to say it has helped me find not only an amazing blogger but a best mate in the process. So before I get overly emotional, it is my pleasure to introduce you to Steph’s World.

The Interview.

Hi Steph,

Hope you’re well and had a lovely Christmas. Speaking of Christmas, how did you spend it ? And what was your highlights ?

P.S. Hope Santa was nice.

Hey Em, thank you so much for letting me be part of this series which I love! Christmas was so nice, but seems so long ago now. Working full-time; it was nice just to be able to sit back and relax over the festive period. On Christmas Day, myself and my boyfriend spent the morning with my family opening gifts before heading to his sisters house for Christmas Dinner (yum yum), a few rounds of “What do you Meme” and a huge cheese board.

‘Santa treated me very well this Christmas. I am very lucky to have received lots of Charlotte Tilbury goodies, new Hunter Wellies as well as a new strap for my Fitbit and a gorgeous Barbour scarf which has been so perfect for the cold weather. ‘

Steph has been such a monumental part of my blogging experience. From moments of empowerment when I almost gave up to promoting my little space of the internet- blogging would be so much less fulfilling with out my fellow blogger.

With that being said, I couldn’t help but wonder what blogging means to Steph.

Thank you so much for being so kind. Blogging to me is all about having fun with writing. If I don’t feel like sitting down and writing a post, I just won’t do it. I feel like I want to put 100% into my posts as they will be there for me to reflect on in years to come. I already sit down and read my past travel posts or my theatre reviews to relive those memories I love. I wanted to make my blog into my own little journal and somewhere to be able to be creative.’

Arguably, Steph is one of the most creative people I have ever spoken too. She constantly amazes me by endlessly supporting others in so many innovative ways. None more so than her annual Christmas Q/A. As some who has had the pleasure of taking part for the past 2 years, I wondered if she would be continuing one of my favourite traditions.

Asking me at this time of the year is very wrong haha. I love my Christmas Blogger Q&A series so much that I have ran it now for three years. I always forget how much work and preparation I have to put into it for it to run smoothly in December. Even then I do have a few fails where I forget to publish a post (oops).

Will it be something I continue though? You heard it here first – Steph’s World will be running the Christmas Blogger Q&A in 2019!

I don’t think the run up to Christmas would be the same without it, so I will be doing them for as long as I can and people aren’t sick of it.

I have a ‘Behind the Scenes’ post on my blog if you’d like to snoop into how I run my series.

Speaking of Steph’s immense creativity, I wanted to share with you the creativity she shares throughout the other 11 months of the year. One of the most exciting things Steph has spoken about is wanting to develop her blog more.

Every year I seem to want to have a little shake-up on my blog; whether it’s refining the “Lifestyle Blogger” categories I want to cover or changing my blog theme and style.

In 2019, I would love to create more mini-series on my blog as well as another potential Guest Blogger series in the Summer. Watch this space…’

With Steph wanting to refine the ‘Lifestyle Blogger’ category, I was brought back to one of the most empowering blog post’s Steph has ever written. A few months ago Steph shared her own battle with hair loss. As a friend, I was immensely proud of the honest and empowering post she had written. I wondered if in the future she would be open to sharing more health related posts.

Thank you so much for your love and support – honestly, you made sharing my story a little easier knowing I had an amazing friend like you by my side.

Sharing my journey was so hard for me. When I started my blog, I was very much in the middle of my hair loss. I kept very anonymous on my blog with no current photos of me because I was worried about how my hair looked. One of the reasons I set up my blog was to share my story – but then it took me over another 2 years to actually share it. ‘

I knew I wanted to share my experience of hair loss as when I was going through it, I struggled to find other people’s stories and essentially I wanted to see that they came out of it the other side. Now that my hair has come back to a state I’m proud of, I knew I had to sit down and make that draft post into a published post. It was difficult, very heartbreaking to have to see how far I came through it, but it was needed. The response from fellow bloggers and even strangers on the internet who wanted to hear my story, ask further questions and ask for advice since sharing the post has made it all worth while. To me, that’s what Blogging is about.

Throughout this interview you will probably come to realise I have so much admiration for Steph, not only for the empowerment she provides others, but because she constantly astound me. To me, Steph is everyone’s blogging best mate- the exact reason she started her blog.

With that in mind i wanted to ask her what she wanted others to think when reading her blog.

‘“Omg, I would love for her to be my Best Friend”. Ok, I’m joking about that.

I just hope that people have fun and enjoy reading my posts. Whether they are informative, enjoyable to have a nosey into my life or look at some photos I’ve took, I just want people to have fun. I hope that comes across in my posts. ‘

Spoiler* she completely did…

Personal

Steph may not realise this but in the 365 days I have known her she has grown into such an amazing person. Every conversation we have leaves me proud and I can’t wait to see what 2019 holds for this amazing twenty something. No matter what happens this year there is two thing’s both Steph and I will always have, and that is our love of Harry Potter and her being a constant source of inspiration.

From donning her Hufflepuff scarf, to being genuinely one of the most supportive people on the internet I can honestly say Steph’s World is the home of Hufflepuff (well, other than Hogwarts). With that in mind, I wanted to asked who inspired her.

Hufflepuff Pride!

I’m inspired by so many people, too many to mention – one has to be the lovely Em Rambles though!

I am a massive scroller through Twitter and Instagram always on the hunt for new blogs to read. I find the community is so creative and I draw a lot of inspiration from them.

I can’t say I keep up to date with celebrities, but I do follow the like to Giovanna Fletcher, Mrs Hinch, Zoella & Carrie Hope Fletcher who keep me inspired to keep creating. ‘

I sent over these questions, just a few days into the new year but being the nosey buggar I am, I wanted to know what 2019 would hold for Steph.

*Teddy cuddles not included. (Teddy is Steps adorable family pet who i adore!)*

Totally just Teddy cuddles. He’s just like a fluffy bear!

2019 will be a year of surprises I think. I will be looking to make a bit leap into adulthood by getting on the property ladder (if all goes well). I don’t have a lot mapped out for the year, apart for being Bridesmaid for 2 weddings this year and a couple of planned theatre trips.

Here’s to finding out what 2019 has in store for me. ‘

And there you have it, an interview with one of the best people on the internet. Steph has been such a positive impact on my life, I couldn’t help but share my love and admiration for her. I can only hope that I am as good of a friend as she is.

So if you wanted to get to know this wonderful woman a little more you can find her here.

Instagram: @StephsWorld_X

Twitter: @StephsWorld_X

Blog: www.StephsWorld.com

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2018.

Let me set the scene, this time last year I was still massively in love with my ex, intent on losing weight and had I wanted the world – but with minimal effort. Even to this day I can’t quite understand what possessed the changes that 2018 brought, all I do know is I will be forever grateful for the life lessons 2018 has taught me.

Now by no means did any of these life lessons come easy, every change usually came after a heartbreaking decision which left me questioning myself. With the help of gin, laughs and even blogging 201, has become a year which turned into a surprising, yet thrilling

Throughout this post, I will share with you the things that I have learnt over the past year. From simple naive things my past self never knew, to the mammoth career change which allowed me to find my focus and fall in love with writing all over again. 2018, may have brought questionable political issues and a love of avacado no millenial ever knew they needed- but to me, 2018 has allowed me to realise that i am enough.

It doesn’t matter what others think of you.

NOW, where do I begin with this? In the past I have spent so much time worrying about how I come across to others. Constantly worrying that people who logically have no real impact on my life, don’t like more or judge my every movement. In past years its sent me into an anxious spiral which in turned into a battle with my own mental health. After being put on antidepressants a few months back, my mental health challenge began to subside, and with that I could build a sense of self. A sense of self that I have never had in the past 26 years of existence. And for that I will be forever grateful.

Embrace change.

As i looked back on the year i realised how much my life has changed. At the moment of those changes I began to have every area in my life questioned- not only by those around me but by myself too.

As time went on (literally talking 6 months, plus) I realised, whilst I still question my every move, I was still continuously moving forward. Whether or not others thought so, I was noticing the changes and that was enough. Every day I got up at 4.30 am, went to work and attempted to rectify any issues I had created the day before. This alone showed a tenacity I never knew I had. Yay, for me.

It’s perfectly okay not to be like your friends- And they should respect that too.

I have to say this could be my proudest achievement, my friends are beautiful, career driven, family focused women who constantly inspire me to push my own boundaries. Yet, for years I compared myself to them, so much so that it often left me feeling slightly insignificant. Actually more than slightly.

Realising that I am just as capable as my amazing friends, even with my Bridget Jones’ tendencies. Em Rambles is just as brilliant as so many others, all I had to realise was that I am totally worth it.

Saying no isn’t negative.

I’ve always wondered if saying no was a sign of weakness. Through out this year the term no, has gone from a negative term,into the most empowering word I know. I said no to a ex, I said no to toxic thoughts and I said no to others judgements holding me back.

Saying no is by no way derogatory, its empowering. Everyone should know the power of saying no.

Screw diamonds, chocolate is a girls best mate.

Think about it, period pains> chocolate. Break up> Chocolate. Life happens> Chocolate. No matter the time or issue, i find myself reaching for a bar of Dairy Milk, usually only last approximately 6.5 seconds.

No matter the shit storm, chocolate will always be my therapist, lover and ultimate comfort- as long as I ignore the calories and bulging waistline.

Dress however, the bloody hell you want.

Every man woman and child, at one point in their lives will feel down about their body. We will mutter things such as ‘ my arms look massive in this’, ‘I can’t wear this ‘cause off my huge muffin top’ and I promise not to mention those ‘thunder thighs’ you think you have. In any case, every question we mutter in front of the mirror, is only wasting time. Wear what your scared too and if any one has something to say, flick your hair and carry one.

They’re only jealous anyway.

You can find happiness in the simplest of places.

Not to go all Harry Potter esque on you, but I’ve come to realise that happiness comes from the smallest things. The rush of caffeine after your first coffee, taking your bra of immediately after entering the house and doing a boobie shake and even the pure satisfaction you get after ticking the last thing of your to do list. These simple pleasures we all know can make a bad day a little less shit and more freeing (literally).

2018 has been such a learning curve for me personally. The things I have spoken about above are all things that I have come to realise within the last 12 months. Whether you’re year has been amazing or the worst of your life I ask you to look for the positives. Even when the world seems dark, there will be one spark of positivity which can ease the bad days, whether its a pet, a loved one or even a cup of tea and a good book.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post and I hope it has you thinking about the life lessons 2018 has taught you. Leave a comment below and share them with my, and we can celebrate together.

Here’s to an amazing 2019!

Em Rambles. X

Happy Birthday, Mum.

On the date this blog post goes live it will be my mum’s birthday. I know many of you don’t know the relationship with my mum. So I thought I would introduce you to my amazing mum.

To celebrate the many years of awful presents, Mediocre gestures and the many forgotten cards, I thought I’d share with you just five things that my mum has taught me over the past 26 years. You see, my mum is pretty much one of my hero’s, as much as we argue, take the piss and annoy the crap out of each other. In a nutshell I know that no matter the situations life puts me in, I can cope because of the lessons she’s taught me.

So, mum, if you ever find your way onto this blog I simply wanted to say thank you for:

The definition of strenght.

I’ve made no secret on my blog that i have struggled with anxiety since me teens. What I may or may not have shared with you is my mum suffers with something similar. Throughout the years I have seen my mum battle with her mental health for years. Something that when I finally was diagnosed, I knew how to cope.

You see whilst my mum may sometimes feel like it,she has never given up. She gets up, goes to work, sees family and have a better social life than I ever have. Her mental health has its moments when things seem to go a little off yet, no matter the situation she has never given up on anything she has started. My mum is truly the strongest woman I know.

Mental health is difficult for anyone, sometimes our life has to stop to be able to start again down the line. Yet, for all intesive purposes my mum never has. If she was totally honest with her self, just for a moment she would find that no matter her struggle she has accomplished so much more than her self doubts would ever let her believe. Mental health issues or not, my mum will always be my hero.

It’s perfectly acceptable to say no.

One major difference between my mum and is how we show our affection for one and other. I, on one hand show love through hugs, and openly saying I love you. Yet, my mother is much more subtle in the way she shows her affection.

Offering her love through coffees and the occasional ‘are you okay?’. In her own way she reassures me through life’s problems, and whilst we often butt heads its our differences that makes the pair of us (I hope) realise that once I eventually own my own home, how much we will miss our caffeine filled arguments.

Any way my point with this is that, hugs, saying I love you and even the occasional pats on the back, sometimes make people feel uncomfortable- my mum for one. Each individual has there own comforts, for me that’s a hug at the end of the day, for my mum its running her a bath or making a brew she will ultimately not drink. In any case saying not to someone offering affection isn’t a weakness, its how someone else deals with their problems, when they and only they are ready they will come and let you know when you are needed.

It’s perfectly acceptable to laugh at your own jokes.

Whilst my mum and I may show our affection differently we both think we are hilarious. A sea of dirty jokes, jugedgments and sarcasm will ripen any sour day. This point may be little, and may be silly to some but this is my favourite characteristic of my mum. Her ability to laugh in any situation- even if it is some what inappropriate.

Mum, I love you to bits, keep making your dirty jokes, innuendos and I hope you continue to cackle through the next 365 days and more.

Don’t give up on people even if they give up on themselves.

Okay, now here’s this thing about my mum, whilst she may not be touchy feely, she has never given up on me, or for any one in her life for that matter. In the past I have made many mistakes, some I still regret to this day, but she has always taught me that the mistakes we make only shape the person we become. It doesn’t matter who you were 3 years ago it matters who you are right now.

So mum, here’s a little cheers to you, you have taught me so much more than this little list. We often argue, share chocolate and eye rolls, bu what I love about our realtionship the most is that no matter the time, place or even time of the month weve always got each other’s backs.

Simply put, the pair of us have been through a shit tone of stuff and there is plenty more to come. Whilst the world around us is constantly changing, my pure admiration for you will and has never differed.

I LOVE YOU MUM!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

P.S. Pornstar martinis to follow shortly.