New Year’s Resolution? Fuck It!

Hello Lovelies,

So, 2014 is upon us and many of us will be making new year resolutions. Most of us will break them by the end of January, some will make it to March and a handful will succeed in keeping them. Why is this? Why do we torture ourselves with this ritual each year? I have a theory and I believe it’s because we either a. Choose something we think we SHOULD be doing, rather than what we WANT to be doing or b. We pick something we’ve always wanted to do but we go about it all wrong.

Let’s look at route a. first. I’m using weight loss as an example here because it’s one of the big ones (no pun intended), along with quitting smoking and cutting back on booze. Also, it’s something I can relate to on a personal level. Maybe you are unhappy with the way you look and you feel that you need to lose weight, but why? Is it because you’ll never fit in the size 8 dress featured in that overpriced glossy magazine (fuck glossy magazines and those overpriced clothes…that’s a whole other rant though)? Is it because you think you will feel like you can finally start living if your thighs no longer touch at the top? Is it because you’re mum is always commenting on your weight fluctuations and it makes you feel like a loser (ugh, been there)? Because let me tell you, all of those things are external pressures that make you think you SHOULD lose weight and that you SHOULD look a certain way. I say FUCK THAT! What would you rather be doing? Do you really enjoy spending all of your time obsessing over the way you look and what you will do when you lose weight? Do you honestly believe life will be better if your were slimmer? ‘Cos I know some pretty miserable skinny ladies. Tell you what, why not start doing what you WANT right now? Always wanted to dye your hair bright green? Do it (or buy a green wig to wear at weekends if work does not permit fabulous rainbow hair, the bastards)! Want that tattoo? Get it! Want to take up roller skating but worried people will laugh at you? Fuck them, do it! Chances are, people won’t be laughing at you anyway, they’ve got their own shit going on. So, do what you WANT and the rest will follow.

Fuck yeah, rainbow hair!

Fuck yeah, rainbow hair!

Now, let’s look at route b. So, ok, you rilly, rilly do WANT to lose weight/get fit. Your health is suffering, your joints are creaky and you’re just too young to be feeling this old. Maybe you want be able to perform a perfect roundhouse ‘cos you want to feel strong and you want kick arse. This is where I find myself right now, having all sorts of body problems and health issues due to developing M.E (that’s a whole other post right there, maybe I’ll get to that at some point) and wanting to claw some of my strength and energy back. Whatever the motivation, make sure it’s coming from YOU! So, fine, you’ve got your resolution. Now what? Well, like most people, you go cold turkey on the junk food (when I say ‘you’ I’m really talking about myself), restrict your calorie intake and exercise every day like a crazy person until you get to January 31st, exhausted, unwell, miserable and disillusioned because you’ve only lost 3lbs. So you start eating ALL OF THE BISCUITS. Om, nom nom nom and then you don’t stop and resign yourself to that fact that you broke your resolution.

Om nom nom

I’ve started, I may as well finish it…

Well obviously. You over did it. You were pretty mean to yourself, do you treat your friends like that (and if you do, I’m surprised you have any)! How about being your own friend? How about taking it slow and gentle? There doesn’t need to be pain to gain, what’s the rush anyhow? Enjoy the process, give yourself kind words of encouragement, hold your own hand (metaphorically, obvs’) and keep going, step by step, day by day. Little bits of progress build up to result in large achievements. You WILL fuck up. You WILL have off days. You WILL want to quit at times. Keep going, even if it’s hard. That guitar chord you just can’t seem to get right, the language you are struggling to get your tongue around, that block you get when writing your short story or that entire pack of biscuits you ate while watching TV, just.keep.going. And failing that, FUCK RESOLUTIONS! Instead, why not set an intention? A rough guideline to follow? Pick something fun and start small. Don’t pressure yourself and make it enjoyable. My intention for 2014 is to explore new (and old) creative avenues and to make art. I have no idea where it will take me, what I will learn or what I will achieve but I INTEND to create. I’m excited to get started! Your turn…

Random Thought Of The Day #3

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Dr Nommy Von Balderdash at 10 weeks old

Ok, so the cute puppy photo may have been used as bait to get you to click on this but I promise, there’s a link! When you think about it, “live every day like it’s your last” is really bad advice. You could end up doing all sorts of stupid things. Surely, “live every day like it’s your first” makes much more sense. It encourages you to see the wonder and beauty in the world and take chances, without all of the reckless abandon that could end you up in trouble. Seeing Dr Nommy grow, explore and learn has been wonderful, The tentative yet determined way she tackled new experiences was not only as cute as hell but also inspiring. We can learn something from this adorable evil genius!

Times They Are A Changing: My Drastic New Hair Style

Hello Lovelies,

So, what have I been up to lately? Well, I was poorly for a couple of weeks though I’m much better now but that’s boring information so I’ll just cut to the chase. I got my hair cut. ‘Wow! Big deal!’ I hear you say. Well, when I say cut, I mean CUT, like, a lot. I’ll let the photos do the talking…

New Hair 01 New Hair 02 New Hair 03 New Hair 04 New Hair 05So, yeah, it’s a big change for me. I felt that I really needed a drastic change and a fresh image, as I had been growing my hair out for nearly a year in order to film vintage hair tutorials (which I never did) and so I could have lots of hair to play with when I go to Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekender next spring but got so bored with it and it just felt so ‘meh’ to me. So I headed over to see Emma at Rockalily Cuts and explained what I wanted. I want to thank her for her extreme patience with me and her dedication to getting it just right, Emma, you are amazing! It’s basically a pixie crop with some length kept on the top because I still wanted to be able to do pomps and quiffs at the front of my hair. I LOVE it. I don’t think I have ever been this happy with a hair cut in my life! I kept waiting for the shock to hit me but it never came, I just feel super happy about it, there was something very liberating about seeing all that hair fall to the floor. When I first had my hair cut from the middle of my back into a bob seven years ago, I came home and cried for an hour because I couldn’t believe what I had done and didn’t know if it suited me (and even though it grows back, it’s not like you can glue it back on). I like how vibrant the colour came out too, I love me some orange hair dye. I’m really looking forward to learning a new way of styling my hair and dealing with the challenges it brings. I imagine I’ll be getting more adventurous with my hair once again now that it’s short. Have you had a drastic hair cut/colour change lately or been thinking about having one?  Does shorter hair look more grown up? Does having shorter hair make you want to play around with it more? When I had my hair in a bob, I was always playing around with the shape of the cut and my hair went through every colour of the rainbow. Comment below and let me know your thoughts. That’s all for now, as always, thank you kindly for reading.

MHB

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New Family Member!

Nommy's First Day 19Hello Lovelies,

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter you may already know that the Mr and I have a new addition to our family since last weekend. She is a Chihuahua and Pug cross and she’s nine weeks old tomorrow. Allow me to introduce Dr Nommy Von Balderdash (Nommy for short).Nommy's First Day 01 I’m completely in love with her, she’s as cute as hell and very funny. The next few weeks are going to be intense with crate training/toilet training etc but I’m very excited. I grew up always having at least two dogs in the house and I have been desperate for a dog since I moved out of the family home. Unfortunately rented flats tend not to allow furry free roaming pets (luckily, my landlady didn’t mind me having my pet snake, Reuben, who was my first family addition six years ago). Now I live with the Mr who owns his place, I can finally enjoy being the companion to a four legged friend.Nommy's First Day 08 I will try to continue blogging as much as I can while I train Nommy and fit in hair/makeup jobs. I’m still trying to get used to blogging regularly and working out what I like/want to blog about, it’s a work in progress and I’m learning as I go.
That’s all for now, thank you kindly for reading.

MHB

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Paris Trip: What I wore.

Paris Trip. Tiki BarHello Lovelies,

I arrived home from Paris a couple of days ago, me and my Beau had an amazing time. We mostly looked at dead stuff which was interesting, creepy and fun. It was pretty cold over there but it was dry and sunny at least. We did a lot of walking, I am still pooped out! Here’s what I wore from my capsule wardrobe…

Day 1: I totally forgot to take a photo but I wore my black Capri pants, indigo vest top, black sweater and boots traveling out there. Comfy and practical and yet still smart. We checked into our hotel and then went wandering up to the Bastille (well, where it used to be) and along the river before heading to a vegan Asian fusion restaurant for take-away to eat in our hotel room.

Day 2: Striped stretch pencil skirt, long sleeve black scoop neck top and indigo sweater. I wore my leopard print beret to keep my head warm. I wore my boots again because we were doing a lot of walking and I decorated them with my purple rose hair clips. We went to the Pantheon, ate vegan cake and went for drinks at the Pop In bar in the evening.

Paris Outfit 01Day 3: I wore my striped skirt again but this time I wore it with my off the shoulder tee and a red belt. I wore a red bandana too to tie the colours together. I wore my boots and added skeleton hands to my bandana. We went to Pere Lachaise cemetery to see the graves of Oscar Wilde, Edith Piaf and Jim Morrison to name just a few. Paris Outfit 02Day 3- Evening: I changed into my leopard print wiggle dress and added red lipstick for the evening. I originally planned to wear my heels to my beau’s gig at the International but kept my boots on so I could have a proper dance.Paris Outfit 03Day 4: On the Sunday, we were heading off to the catacombs. It was freezing so I put on my Capri pants, leg warmers, boots, vest top, sweater and my convertible wrap with my fuzzy hat to boot. Not the most stylish of outfits but I was damned if I was going to freeze!Paris Outfit 04So, as you can see, I didn’t wear everything I packed. I didn’t wear my heels, all of my accessories, evening top or blouse but had we gone out for dinner somewhere fancy, I would have had something to throw on. It also meant I had plenty of choice without over packing. I managed to get my Mr’s clothes and toiletries into the same small case as my stuff! I’ll be posting more about my Paris trip over the next week, including a look at some of the vegan eateries and the creepy places we visited. That’s all for now though, thank you for reading.

MHB

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Death Jam: Review

Death Jam 05Hello Lovelies,

Earlier in the week I attended the Death Jam, organised by Els of Cookie Von Stir. This event is similar to her Deathless Death Cafes, in that there is cake and talk of death but with guest speakers and a slightly (only slightly!) more formal setting. I baked some death themed cakes to add to the collection of goodies being made by various attendees (I’ll be posting the recipe later in the week) and made my way to The Crypt at St Mary’s Parish Church in Islington.Death Jam 01Death Jam 07

The two guest speakers for this first event was Alom Shaha, author of The Young Atheist’s Handbook (a great read, highly recommended), science communicator and film maker and Peter Cave, philosopher, lecturer and fellow of The Royal Society of arts among other things.Death Jam 10

After a quick introduction from Els, Alom kicked off the evening by reading a chapter from his book, a chapter that dealt with death and his rejection of god; the story of the death of his beloved mother at the age of 13. As Alom read and at some times faltered, I was teetering on the edge of tears, despite having read the book before and knowing what was coming. Once he had finished reading, nothing more needed to be said or asked.Death Jam 11

Peter Cave stepped up next and lightened the mood with his power point presentation on philosophy and death. Funny and irreverent, his presentation certainly gave me food for thought and left me wanting to go away and read all of his books.Death Jam 12

After the talks the chairs were cleared away so people could mingle, discuss death and eat copious amounts of home made treats*. There was a wide range of attendees, both young and old, curious and skeptical, religious and atheist; and it was a pleasure to stay and talk with them about their views and feelings on death and why we are here.Death Jam 14

I very much look forward to the next Death Jam which I believe is on the 28th March, though I will post closer to the time when I know for sure. I highly recommend attending, as eating cake and discussing the macabre side of things are a fine and interesting way to spend an evening. Death Jam 03 Death Jam 02The next Deathless Death Cafe (similar thing, minus the guest speakers) is at Pogo Cafe as usual and is being held on Thursday 28th February. That’s all for now, thank you kindly for reading.

MHB

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*Els made a delicious treats too. Here are the recipes for her amazing chocolate fudge cake, chai coconut flapjacks/cherry bakewell flapjacks.

Death Jam 09 Death Jam 04

Birthday Fun.

Birthday Fun 01Hello Lovelies,

It was my birthday last week and I think I have only just fully recovered. I had 4 days of fun and frolics with family, friends and my beau. My actual birthday was on a Thursday, so me and the Mr set off for some gruesome fun at the London Museum’s ‘Doctors, Dissection and Resurrection Men’. A wonderfully macabre and interesting look at the practice of body snatching/grave robbing and the surgeons who pioneered medical research through nefarious means. On display were a vast array of surgical and post mortem equipment, pickled body parts and skeletons among many other great things. Highly recommended.

Birthday fun 02Birthday fun 03That evening we went for dinner with my mum at Mestizo in Euston. They have a vegan menu and I stuffed my face. My boyfriend had secretly ordered me a birthday cake from Ruby Tuesday, blueberry and lemon flavour, my favourite! The waiting staff brought it out to me with loud music, clapping and cheering. They proceeded to plonk a massive and very heavy sombrero on my head and handed me a double shot of their finest mescal. The food was amazing (I had mole for the first time, it’s delicious) and the atmosphere was great, I can’t wait to go back.Birthday fun 04

Friday the boy and I went to the V&A for the Hollywood Costume exhibition. It was packed because it was closing a couple of days later. I bumped into Honey Wilde and her Beau while there. It took a while for me to register that she was trying to get my attention as I was mesmerised by the Darth Vader costume looming over me. There were two Monroe costumes and they brought me to tears. It was the best exhibition I have seen since the Barbican’s Warhol review in 1997!

Birthday fun 05That evening we went home and had a good home cooked meal and watched a film as I had to be up early the next morning for a pin-up shoot with Tigzy and Ava Bonham Carter.
I hightailed it home from the shoot to get changed and get to my favourite pub, Big Red in Holloway for drinks with friends. Much dancing then ensued at the Buffalo Bar, calling it a night at 2am ‘cos I was broken.

Sunday morning I enjoyed a lie-in, cooked breakfast and lazy afternoon. My boyfriend and I then headed down to Brixton where we met some more friends for Thai food, drinks and a My Bloody Valentine gig at the Electric (yes, it was LOUD!).

Phew! What an amazing time. I was so pooped that I could barely move from the sofa on Monday and Tuesday. Thank you to everyone who made my birthday so special! That’s all for now, thank you kindly for reading.

MHB

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Non Resolutions

Photo: Retro Photostudio

Hello Lovelies,

Ugh, I’m glad 2012 is over if I’m honest. It left me feeling battered, tired and weary. I want 2013 to be better and this year I have decided against making new year’s resolutions. I usually just stress myself out over them and give myself a really hard time if I am not working towards my goals 100% of the time, which is stupid! So this year, I decided to make a few loose rules for myself and give myself an attitude adjustment instead. Here’s what I came up with…

  • Be more with less: Buy less, consume less, need less. Pare down wardrobe and possessions. Eat more simply. Enjoy the simple things in life.

  • Forget about big goal making: They are often overwhelming and make me put too much pressure on myself. ‘To do’ lists are fine but keep them minimal, succinct and manageable.

  • Worry less: Remember to let go and remember the phrase ‘this too shall pass’. Nothing lasts forever.

  • Smile more: Laughter really is one of the best medicines. It boosts endorphins and improves mood. It’s been proven with science!

  • Breathe: Meditation/yoga/going for a walk etc. will help clear my mind and give me focus. Fresh air and a bit of sunshine can’t hurt (yeah, SPF, I know).

  • Move: Try fun ways of adding bite size chunks of physical activity throughout the day. Dancing around the living room is a good place to start.

  • Play: Be open to childlike (not childish) wonder and playfulness, mischief and fun. Follow the rainbow.

  • Be pro-active and push creative boundaries: No matter how scary, if it’s not hard, I’m not growing/improving! My life is my art, art is my life (wanky much?!). Remember Frank N Furter ‘Don’t dream it, be it’.

  • Read more: There’s a load of books on the shelf just waiting to be enjoyed! Travelling to and from jobs is the perfect chance to read if I listen to my mp3 player less.

  • Make the decision to be happy: To me, this is different to trying to maintain a positive mental attitude. But means that I need to realise that life is not perfect and doesn’t have to be. Accept this fact and deal with issues as they arise.. Take responsibility for my own life and actions.

  • Forget about positive thinking: It’s exhausting and unrealistic. Seneca had a point, being a realist about things will allow me to deal with the bad times better (and yes, they will happen). It’s OK to have a moan from time to time, it’s OK to lose your shit on occasion. Then breathe and move on.

So, that’s what I have so far. It feels like enough to be getting on with. I’ve kept them fairly loose and easy to follow for the most part. Goals can kiss my butt! Have you made any resolutions? Or do you find them stressful too?

That’s all for today. Thank you kindly for reading!

MHB

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