Blogging Every Day in May – My (Proper) Roundup

Well, I did it! Phew, it was tough at times, but I managed to finish the challenge. And I feel it deserves a better round up than my BEDM 31 post!

During May, I neglected housework (although to be fair, I use any excuse to do so), and I ignored Rob and the cat’s hysterical pleading for food (ditto↑), all in the name of blogging!

Blog every day in May was a great idea from Elizabeth, and I chose to interpret her topics literally during the challenge. Being able to blog about whatever I want can sometimes feel a little overwhelming, there are just far too many options! So it was a nice change being told what to blog. I really enjoyed that part. I will admit its going to be tough thinking for myself again about what to blog now!

I think if the challenge was a course, or part of blogging school* I would probably be awarded a C grade, with a teachers comment saying “A good try, but your ending let it down” and maybe with a side note of “Helen needs to work on her grammar”.

What I have learnt from the experience is that it forced me to write my blog posts much quicker, and the more you practice something, the easier it becomes to you. Normally I will brainstorm a post, then keep it in my drafts folder for weeks on end, changing it serveral times, before I finally hit the publish button. The blog everyday in May challenge taught me to not over think things. I now find it much easier to write my thoughts down.

On the flipside, I published posts with some shocking typos (I have since corrected most of them, or at least the ones I have noticed!) I even published posts with the wrong date on them! Oh dear, thank goodness for the re-edit option!

Highlights – Being able to ramble on about my cat (again), talking about my gardening daydreams and pizza!

My favourite post to write was about my first job, and my favourite topic to read about from the other bloggers participating in the challenge was this one. I loved being able to peek into other peoples fridges! I am such a nosey parker!

Low points – I admit towards the end I completely ran out of steam and was forcing myself to post. I could not manage to make my morning rituals – eating breakfast and brushing my teeth sound exciting (because they are not!) I also (yet again) resorted to cheap gags and turned my blog into innuendo bingo. I am one step away from becoming Keith Lemon!

Anyways, I just want to say thanks for reading my BEDM posts! Now its time to get back to the usual nonsense on here about cake, Pyrex, the house, the VW fleet, and my so called life and the like!

*Just like Hogwarts, but with ASOS dresses, Swedish Hasbeens/Saltwalter sandals and Cambridge satchels as the mandatory uniform. With lessons about tea, nail varnish and how to score freebies. Maybe Elsie Larson would be Dumbledore?

BEDM 30 Who Inspires You?

Day 30 – Who inspire you? Are they close to you? Somebody famous? Or even somebody infamous?

This is another tricky subject for me, as I have drawn a blank. There are plenty of people I admire, but there is no particular person who I completely idolise that I can put a name to.

Its the people I meet in everyday life who inspire me. The average Joe or Josie’s that are not on the cover of Heat magazine. Though work I meet people who have heartbreaking stories about cancer, or care for their children with special needs, or are living on the breadline. My heart goes out to them when they tell me their stories.

Then at the other end of the spectrum (and just for the purpose of this blog subject) after scratching my chin for a long time, I thought of someone in the spotlight who I kind of admire. That’s Kate Middleton or whatever she is called now. Let me tell you right now that I am not a fan of the royal family (I think they are pointless) or putting celebs in general on a pedestal. But I do think she is a better role model for young, impressionable girls than say Katie Price or Kim Kardashion for example. I know K.Middy gets a lot of flack from some people for not being ambitious or having a career etc. But not everyone wants to be a high flying business woman or thinks that work is the most important thing in life. She is happy being a housewife/mum to be and that’s what matters. Its what she wants to do with her life, so leave her be.

I guess the theme here is that I am inspired by anyone who is selfless and puts others needs before their own.

P.S As you can probably tell a big guilty pleasure of mine is reading trashy celeb mags and the Femail website!

BEDM 29 Morning Ritual

Day 29 – Tell us about what you do every morning to help you get ready for the day ahead.

Phew, I am running out of steam with this blog every day business! I must confess I was not going to bother blogging today, but it would be really silly of me to give up so close to the end of the challenge! I am a little uninspired by today’s subject, but I have forced a blog post of sorts out of me. I warn you now, this is fascinating stuff……..

toothbrush

Image from thesurvivaltribe.com

I am not a morning person. I don’t feel human until about midday. I have been know to do all sorts of stupid things in the morning while half asleep, like put two contact lenses in the same eye, forget to put my deodorant on, leave the house wearing odd shoes, button my clothes up wrong etc.

I have two rituals I always do in my comatose state. One is to eat some breakfast. I have learnt the hard way that I cannot function on an empty stomach. I need all the help I can get with my concentration span. The second thing I always do before leaving the house is brush my teeth. I hate not doing so.

BEDM 28 Bad Advice

Day 28 What is the worst advice you have ever received?

Wow, this is a really tough subject. I cannot think of any bad advice anyone has given me, and if I could, surely it would mean I am holding a grudge or blaming them for something? If anyone has ever given me any bad advise in the past, I’m sure it was not intentional.

Instead I am going to flip today’s subject around and offer some good advise to y’all –

BEDM 27 Secret Talent

Day 27 – What are you good at that nobody knows about? Tell us all about it.

The answer to this is nothing. I am Ms Average at everything.

Does anyone remember the series Scott Mills had on his show a few years ago called “What’s Becky’s forte?” Well someone needs to do that for me because I don’t have a forte.

To be honest if I had a secret talent, I would not keep it secret. I’m not a show off, but if I had a forte, you can bet your life every time I had one too many I would be demonstrating my party trick!

Things that I wish I could do include –

Drinking a pint with no hands

Wrapping one leg around my neck

Putting my whole fist in my mouth

Amazing impressions. Due to my broad Kentish accent (basically I sound like a chav) my attempts at funny voices sound a strange mix of Irish, scouse and Aussie. All at once.

BEDM 26 Fantasy Dinner Party

Day 26 – Dinner party time – Who would you invite? What music is playing? What are you eating? Is there entertainment? Let your imagination go wild!

I hate dinner parties. There, I said it. I stubbornly refuse to accept I am an adult who should do grown up things like host dinner parties. I roll my eyes and huff and puff like a teenager when Rob suggests inviting some friends round for dinner. I love cooking, but I hate the pressure of cooking for guests. It fills me with fear – What if I burn dinner? What if I give them food poisoning? Do I have to be the perfect hostess like Bree Van De Kamp? Why cant we all just go to the pub instead?

Enough about me, I am working on my fear of hosting dinner parties/being old and boring. In the mean time Rob cooks for our guests, and we call it a “meal” rather than a “dinner party”. Its just a little psychological play on words to make me feel better.

So for a fantasy dinner party. I would not cook. Nah, sod that. We would get some pizzas or Nandos delivered, or have some posh buffet type nibbles to pick at (miniature everything!) The guests would be Keith Richards, Courtney Love, Jim Morrison, Keith Moon, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrick, Jonny Depp, Dave Grohl, Cara Delevingne, Rihanna, Rob and me.

To be honest it would be more like a massive piss up than a dinner party. With no awkward small talk or putting the world to right style debates about property prices and politics. The booze would keep flowing, everyone would share stories and just have a right laugh. Also, it would not be hosted at my house, as I would not want anyone being sick in my bathroom. No thank you.

Then after eating we would all move on to a pub and then a club afterwards. The club would be a perfect indie dive bar like they used to have them in the 90’s, complete with sticky floors and dodgy loos, with great tunes playing until 3am. Plus the next day I would wake up fresh as a daisy and hangover free. Perfect!

BEDM 25 Music Love

Day 25What are your top 5 favourite albums and why?

In no particular order here are my top 5 albums –

  1. Leftfield – Leftism This takes me right back to my partying days. Its the perfect album to listen to when you get back from a heavy session, and the perfect album to listen to when you are hungover. I listened to this album a lot.
  2. Smashing Pumpkins – Siamese Dream An album I will never get sick of. Rob and I are both looking forward to watching the Smashing Pumpkins at Glastonbury next month. It will be my first time seeing them! Rob has seen them live at Wembley arena way back in the 90’s, long before I met him.
  3. Nirvarna – Nevermind Tops every classic/best album list a going and rightfully so. A classic that is *gulp* almost 22 years old now and still sounds fresh.
  4. Orbital – Work 1989 – 2002 It feels a bit of a cop out putting a best of in my list, but to be honest some Orbital album tracks can be a wee bit lengthy. When I got my iPod 6-7 years ago (and its still going strong, I love my little pink nano!) I just loaded this album on it for my Orbital fix (‘cos I am lazy, plus I can only fit about 800 tunes on it). I love every track (except the one with David Gray on) and these are great power walking tunes.
  5. Roisin Murphy – Overpowered Remember the mid noughties when everyone was going electropop? This is an album from 2007 that more people should lend their ears to. Its my favourite pop album, and I dont really do pop albums. PicMonkey Collage

Image links 1/2/3/4/5

Hang on, scrap that! I have changed my mind! Number five now is –

Jeff Buckley – Grace A beautiful album from a beautiful man who was taken too soon. I will admit I have not listened to this album for a few years, I played it to death at the end of the 90’s/early 00’s. If I was stranded on a desert island I would want this CD/download with me.

Please note – I reserve the right to change my mind again at any time.

BEDM 24 What’s in your fridge?

Day 24 – Describe and/or photograph what is in your fridge right now. Be honest!

Here is a couple of pictures of the inside of our fridge and I will talk you through whats in there.Fridge

BTW I have just realised I have spelt condiments wrong. Whoopsie! Picmonkey really needs spell check for Muppet’s like me!

I have far too many sauces and condiments as you can see. Without fail I always have salad cream, tomato and brown sauce, a pickle, mango chutney, tar tar sauce and mayo. Today on the top shelf we also have some tahini, jam, guacamole left over from a Mexican dinner, some squash and natural bottled lemon juice for cooking and drinking with honey etc, as I tend to let fresh lemons go mouldy in my fruit bowl.

Next shelf down we have last nights leftovers for lunch, kiwi’s, plain yogurt x 2, four fats – a buttery type marg for Rob and Trex, Stork and unsalted butter for my baking. And a jar of frankfurters, another junk food guilty pleasure.

Next we have too many cheeses in the cheese drawer. Cheddar x 2, parmesan, Dairylea, mozzarella, blue cheese and cream cheese.

Then we have Soda stream mixers, apples, pears and avocados. In the veggie drawers are broccoli, carrots, a bag of salad leaves, celery, a squash and half an aubergine. fridge 2
In the door shelves we have random jars of mustard, chipotle paste, a bottle of (artificial) lime juice, three icing colour gels (check the labels on them peeps, mine said they need to be refrigerated after opening), soy sauce, chili sauces, fish sauce, maple syrup x 2, eggs, pomegranate juice, filtered water and milk.

The milk has to be organic, as I read somewhere that the hormones they pump the poor cows with to produce more milk gives men moobs and girls loads of extra hormones. So I am doing us both a favour by buying organic, as I really do not need anymore PMT! I have also become a filtered water snob. When we fixed the kitchen up, we (Rob really) fitted new copper pipes and plumbing, so afterwards our water tasted really metallic and horrible. I bought a filter jug to try to improve our drinking water, and now I can really taste the difference between filtered and unfiltered water. Oh dear what have I become……

BEDM 23 Compliments

Day 23Tell us about the best compliment you have ever received.

I cannot think of the best ever compliment I have received. I tend to modestly play down any praise that comes my way. Or naturally think that the people who are dishing the compliments out are bullshitting. Or waaayyyy back in my single to mingle days (when I was younger and slimmer) think that they are only after one thing.

Here is a list of the compliments I have recieved that made me puff out my chest and gave me warm fuzzies –

Rob – “I like your homemade pizza much better than takeaway or frozen”

Friend – “You have a good eye, you should do it for a living.” She was talking about my second hand furniture finds, when she came around our house for the first time, and suggested that I could sell vintage furniture for a living.

Janet – See her blog post here. Very sweet of her!

Boss – “The customers have really warmed to you”. The first bit of praise I had from a manager in over 12 years, at the end of the first week of one of my new jobs. Its really nice to hear you are doing something right after years of critism.

Random stranger – “I like your coat, where did you get it from?” I was wearing a bright pink coat at the time.

Lady in the co-op – “Have you got any ID on you?” I was 29 at the time and I got ID’ed quite regularly until I moved house and went to a different shop for my booze (nothing to do with getting older of course). I love the think 25 policy!

And finally, I have to share this one. I had a random memory flashback, while trying to think of things to write for this post, and its just too funny not to share –

Music teacher – “You have the right lips for blowing.” A supply teacher told me this during a lesson were he had bought in a hosepipe with a funnel on the end of it and a french horn to teach us something or other about blowing horns. I was the only person who could make any noise with the instruments, and yes, I do have quite full lips. Now fancy saying that out loud in a classroom full of 13 year old girls! Me and my friends giggled about what he said all through secondary school!