I’m not usually one to head to M&S on my shopping trips, preferring to stick to high street stores such as TopShop and Zara. However, around this time of the year, it suddenly gains a major allure and I find myself drawn to it, looking at all the lovely Christmas items I certainly don’t need, but 97% of the time end up buying anyway. It wouldn’t be Christmas without M&S.

“Aha! It’s not even December yet!” I hear you say, and whilst that’s true – it IS Black Friday weekend.

I went into M&S this weekend in search of a brand spanking new bra. And I found one:

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ROSIE FOR AUTOGRAPH: Beau Lace Underwired Non-Padded Silk Balcony Bra A-DD

Luckily for me though, rather than paying the original £27.50, I ended up paying around £19 due to the M&S Black Friday sale. I spent an hour in there and could have stayed for longer if not having to go in search of food and being totally slowed up by Saturday dawdlers (this is LONDON don’t you know!?).

I checked out the website when I got home though and have bought more than I should have (in the form of Christmas gifts for friends and family – and more than a couple of ‘treats’ for myself…). To try to redeem myself (and to stop thinking about my bank balance), I thought I’d share some of the best, beautiful deals I found with you.

These deals are live until the end of Cyber Monday so chop chop – once it’s gone it’s gone!

Visit the website to shop now: http://www.marksandspencer.com

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Mimi Floral Low Rise Thong£6.00 £4.20

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ROSIE FOR AUTOGRAPH: Lace Trim Playsuit£25.00 £17.50

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Nude Rose™ Silk Suspender Belt – £10.50 £7.35

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ROSIE FOR AUTOGRAPH: Eau de Parfum 30ml£14.00 £7.00

All images courtesy of Marks and Spencer.

The best emoji ever has been named as Word of the Year by the Oxford Dictionary and some people are majorly pissed off about it. Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 12.02.22

“It’s not even a word,” they cry (not with tears of joy), “where would it even go in the dictionary? It wouldn’t! Are we really so stupid?”

But that’s just like,  your opinion, man…

The emoji, otherwise known as ‘face with tears of joy’ made up, according to Oxford’s research, “20% of all the emojis used in the UK in 2015 – a sharp rise from 4% in 2014.”

But with 76% of the UK adult population owning a smartphone, and of those, between 80% and 90% using emojis, how is it even surprising to anyone that this is the case? I mean really.

Emojis have crept their way in to popular culture and there’s not much we can do about it now. Remember the time Hillary Clinton asked US graduates how they felt about their student loans in three emojis or less? What about when Andy Murray predicted his entire wedding day in a tweet made up entirely of emojis?

I’ve used emojis since I’ve had a phone. Everyone has used an emoji at least once and its becoming a fact that they are a large part of modern culture. What would text conversations be without a innuendo-aubergine or a classic side-eye? What about the nail polish one that signifies what a sassy bitch you are?

So chill out – we’re clearly not all going to be speaking pure emoji over the next couple of years. Accept it as just another way that modern culture is evolving.

And trust me, there’ll be worse ‘words’ to come for you to get on your high horse about soon enough.

Let’s talk about why some people choose to spend their lives demotivating and putting others down. Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 14.02.34

I mean, I’m not sure what they get out of doing it. For those on the other end, it can be an all-round painful, embarrassing and hurtful experience which I personally wouldn’t ever want to inflict on somebody else. Nor would anybody else who is normal.

The first thing to know is that a happy, self confident person does not put others down. They might provide useful, constructive criticism but they won’t put others down. This tells you a lot about the person who criticises you. Some people are very negative about others because:

  • They need to make themselves feel like they’re in control
  • They need to feel more powerful or to cover up their own insecurities

In fact, anyone who does this shit might as well have a flashing neon sign above their head screaming: *VIOLENTLY INSECURE*

Just scratching under the surface can reveal to you just how unhappy and disillusioned and frustrated that person is with life.

But that’s their problem, not yours. Knowing this can go a long way to being able to detach from the comments. If you know it has more to do with the person making the comments than about you, it makes it far easier to not feel hurt by what’s been said.

That person wants you to feel badly about yourself. Don’t give them that power.

I’ve shared advice like this before, but as usual, I’m crap at taking my own. I’m really guilty of having to go off for a quiet five minutes to have a little cry – trick is to not let them know they’ve upset you. Then over time, the rest will follow and shitty little comments will be like water off a ducks back, biatch.

 

 

 

I originally wrote a much softer version of this blog earlier in the week for a client but it ended up Screen Shot 2015-11-05 at 19.47.52being unused – WASTE NOT WANT NOT THOUGH, I SAY.

You can buy almost anything online. For most of us, we stick to the more ‘normal’ side of things. Technology, online food shopping – or perhaps yet another jumper from eBay to add to your collection (if you’re my mother). However – as most of us know – the Internet knows no bounds and there is a lot of wacky, weird and frankly, creepy shit you can get sent straight to your door. Don’t even get me started on this.

From lucky bamboo trees to vibrators, I asked some people to tell me what the craziest thing they’ve bought online is.

N.B. All stories true, artistic license used in some. Some names are changed to protect the naughty.

“My boyfriend really loves bacon – like, really likes bacon. I thought it would be really funny to buy him bacon related stuff for his birthday because someone who loves bacon that much…right? You get my thinking,” says Lynette, “But it wasn’t funny. We’ve got a bacon t-shirt, soap, lip balm, plasters and even DRINKS. I can’t even bear to smell bacon any more.”

She’s not kidding, check out all of this bacon STUFF.

Maggie*, 26, decided to buy a ‘lucky bamboo plant’ – essentially a plant thought to bring good luck wherever it is grown. Apparently.

“I’d heard about the Feng Shui benefits of having a lucky bamboo plant in your home, so decided to search online for one. My friends think I’m mad but who is attracting the most auspicious chi energy now? Me.”

This. No ragrets.” said anonymous person on my Facebook.

Gemima, 25: “I haven’t bought it yet, but I really want that ballsack rucksack.”

Don’t we all?

And just to lower the tone, here’s one from Melissa*, 22:

“I was looking for vibrators online – no, come on, stay with me – I was looking for vibrators online but couldn’t make my mind up on which one to buy. I got frustrated, closed the window. Within the hour, I got a call from an agent from the website giving me a massive discount on the rubber shlong I was looking at. So now I’m realising it wasn’t from online. It was through a phonecall. I bought a dildo from a stranger over the phone.”

What’s the weirdest or funniest item you’ve ever bought online?

I tried my hand at a fabulous Chicken Noodle Soup this weekend and thought I’d share the recipe and Screen Shot 2015-10-18 at 22.42.31my method. It’s going to be a staple for the Winter months as it was so easy and tasty. In my other half’s own words: “I kind of wish I was ill as I know this would make it so much better!”

You will need:

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Vegetable or chicken stock (I used Knorr jelly pots)
Garlic cloves
Chilli powder
Sweetcorn
Mushrooms
Spring onions
Dried spaghetti
Salt and pepper

I used the above vegetables in this instance as it’s what I had to hand, but I’m sure it would work with others such as leeks and carrots for example. I also haven’t added any amounts as it really depends how much you’re making. I used two chicken breasts and about a two litres of stock which was enough for two large dinner portions, the next day’s lunch and then some!

  1. Make up your amount of stock in a large, deep pan and add the garlic (pressed or sliced, either or).
  2. Add the chicken breasts to the stock whole and leave on the heat for 20 minutes until the chicken is tender.
  3. Remove the chicken from the stock, place on a surface and shred between two forks into small pieces.
  4. Add chicken back to stock along with the vegetables, any spices and bring back to the boil.
  5. Take a handful of spaghetti and break into three, then break again if you want smaller noodles. Add these to the broth and leave to cook.
  6. Once the spaghetti is cooked you’re good to go – add some fresh spring onions and serve with garlic bread for a proper winter warmer!

Image: www.xiben.co.uk