A Haircut, Psychic Powers and a Da Vinci Exhibition

The park was dark and moody in the morning…

I started a dark and moody Wednesday in the hair salon, and ended it in the woods in the glorious sunshine.

As you do.

I got my hair cut for the first time in several years. It’s something I had been meaning to do for quite some time, but the fact that 1. I’m incredibly lazy and 2. I dislike paying large amounts of money for something that inevitably spends most of the time being tied up in a ponytail, meant that it was long overdue. I loved having ridiculously long hair (it hung all the way down to my lower back) when I went out, but during the rest of the time it had become an annoyance.

There’s nothing more horrifying than the moment after you’ve had your hair washed and brushed back and you’re faced with yourself in the mirror while waiting for your stylist. If ever there’s a point where I can see the similarities between my round head and an ageing turtle, then this is it. And there’s nowhere else to go – spinning around and facing away from the mirror would only result in staring directly at somebody else who is experiencing the same thing, so the only option I’m left with is to try not to awkwardly stare at myself and find something interesting on the table in front… Continue reading

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Greenday, Hot Dogs and a Bunny That Hates Me

As the weather has improved, The Bloke and I have been ‘out and about’ over the last week.

On Wednesday we went to see a performance of American Idiot at the Alexandra Theatre, a musical based around the songs of Green Day. I wasn’t sure what to expect – The Bloke is a huge fan of Green Day and our assumption was that it would be done in the same way that We Will Rock You and Mamma Mia are – incorporating the songs into the plot line. Marking the shows 10th anniversary, it was exactly that – set after 9/11 it follows the stories of three childhood friends and the individual journeys that they follow as they make their way in the world. Continue reading

A Missed Opportunity

In 1996 I went to a Party in the Park festival with some of my friends. At the tender age of 15 I was generally a stadium rock and Brit Pop enthusiast and had started to go to concerts – my first being Bon Jovi, supported by Van Halen and Thunder at Cardiff Arms Park for the These Day’s tour in 1995, followed by Blur at the GMEX. Despite my general rock persuasions, I also had a perhaps stereotypical penchant for boy bands and teen-focused male singers. Take That tickets had always been impossible to get and they were on the verge of splitting up, so when I saw that Peter Andre would be performing I jumped at the chance to see him. 

I remember it being a beautiful day, and I was looking forward to singing along to Mysterious Girl and screaming about how gorgeous he was. Unfortunately, when we arrived there was an announcement that he wouldn’t be attending that day as he was ill, along with a voice message from him apologising to fans. I was gutted.  Continue reading

Six Years of Blogging: Time For a Change?

I received a notification the other day to tell me that I had signed up to WordPress six years ago.

Crazy.

For the most part, it has been a life-changing, generally amazing experience. I hit the million views last year (which was insane), and it has seen me through getting engaged, getting married, quitting my job and starting my own Social Media Management business and provided me with a whole host of wonderful people, events and opportunities that I wouldn’t have thought possible when I was filling out my details and hastily deciding on a name for my own little space of the internet.

I tried to think of a suitable and hopefully useful topic to write about that focused on my blogiversary, but it proved to be a little more difficult than expected without repeating the same things that I have talked about many times. While I absolutely love the Social Media Management and freelance writing, I’m undoubtedly struggling with my own blog. Continue reading

An Evening at The Club and Spa, Birmingham

I love a good spa day, so when I received an invite to go to the newly refurbished Club and Spa at the Cube I jumped at the chance to see what updates have been made to one of my favourite places to relax in the city.

Located in The Mailbox, one of the most exclusive areas of Birmingham, The Club and Spa is part of The Cube complex, and the spa area has recently undergone a £500,000 transformation. In addition to the pool (complete with a waterfall, jets and kelo sauna areas) and a gym with personal trainers, the half-million pound refurbishment means that spa now has an even more extensive range of treatments and relaxation areas. Continue reading

A Job Interview

After becoming self-employed in 2015, I have got myself into a (albeit happy) little rut and daily routine in which I run my business. It’s a nice way to work, but over the last few months I’ve been feeling the need for a new challenge. As if the universe was trying to tell me something a friend tagged me in an advert on Facebook the other week for a major Birmingham website that was looking for Freelance Content Creators for their lifestyle section of the website. It was the perfect opportunity that I had been looking for – I’ve been a lifestyle blogger for six years, it would potentially be a chance to meet a whole bunch of new people within my field, I’d be able to write whatever I wanted about the city I have lived in and loved for most of my adult life and it wouldn’t impact on my social media business and freelance writing work that I already do.  Continue reading

My Cat is Still a Jerk

An angry cat…

I had planned to take the day off on Saturday and have a bit of self-indulgent me time while The Bloke was off on a photography thing. I had worked every day that week and was looking forward to having the house to myself, putting all the technology away, snuggling up under a blanket and watching a cheesy film and an unhealthy breakfast. 

The cat, however, had other ideas. 

We awoke on Saturday morning to see that Mr Jerk had developed a swollen eyelid and was busy shaking his head and attacking his little face. So, after the usual  ‘there’s-no-way-you’re-putting-me-in-that-cat-carrier’ power struggle, off we went to the vets.  Continue reading

How to Leave Teaching

How to Leave Teaching

Today marks the fourth anniversary of handing in my resignation, leaving a secure and financially stable teaching job to head out on my own and start again. 

Like the thousands of teachers who leave the profession every year, I couldn’t cope with the workload and pressure and it was affecting my physical and mental health.

My reasons behind the decision to walk away are no different to the hundreds of teachers that have contacted me since I published that post – workload, expectations, behaviour, health concerns – and they have all shared their own personal horror stories about the things they have experienced within their careers that have made them realise that they need to leave. 

Of all the questions I am asked, by far the most frequent is simply this:

How do I leave teaching?
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Pancakes, Pancakes, Pancakes…

It’s Shrove Tuesday – Pancake Day – here in the UK, so The Bloke and I decided to make a morning trip into the city to have them for breakfast. We went to Cherry Reds who were offering all-you-can-eat American style pancakes with syrup. Of course, I made a statement to The Bloke about wanting to eat as many as possible and then could barely make it through two of them, but it was a treat to get out of the house and go out for breakfast. I like Cherry Reds, it’s reasonably priced, a really nice atmosphere and the staff are lovely. Always a nice way to start the day… Continue reading

Things to See and Do at Witley Court, Worcestershire

The Bloke and I have taken to going out on day trips mid-week as of late, taking advantage of the general working day and term-time schedules to visit places that would be busier at the weekends. We’ve got Annual English Heritage passes which allows us unlimited free entry into English Heritage sites and discounts on other places like Blenheim Palace, and living in the West Midlands means that we are lucky enough to be a short drive away from some stunning stately homes, castles and historical places of interest.

One such place is Witley Court.

A hidden gem, I couldn’t believe that I had never heard of it before (despite living in Birmingham since 2001), and it is just a forty minute drive away from where I live.

Witley Court and Steps

Witley Court and Steps

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