Sunday, January 26, 2014


We went Cardiff this weekend to see my sister in law and father in law. We had a lovely weekend, we want to a science museum and the kidlets were very spoilt.

The hailstorm we drove through on the way home was apocalyptic!

Thanks for having us Aunty Claire and Grampa x x x

Thursday, January 23, 2014


Today I stumbled across this article called 'A new normal: 10 things I've learned about trauma'. I have read it quite a few times today. I'm going to be massively self indulgent (more so than usual!) right now, and say that spinal fusion is indeed a trauma. Its a trauma I just can't swallow!! I can really relate to the article. Point number 3 'healing is seasonal, not linear' has really touched a nerve with me, and put words to my frustrating round of 'I feel great, I'm so grateful for spinal fusion, life is just so much better' followed swiftly by 'I am angry! I used to run and run and think nothing of it and now I can't'.. I like that healing is seasonal and not necessarily linear. It makes me feel less insane. Even if I do feel like a slightly broken record.

So. To the truth. I felt amazing and in control last week whilst juicing, but this week not so much. My mental 'health' really does rely on my physical 'health' and I do need to workout to feel good. Its being able to when there are not enough hours in the day and you can't just nip over to the park. That's all I'm going to say right now, I'm trying to sort it out.

In less depressing news, actually, in massively exciting news, I have today applied for a place on the 'Access to Higher Education' course at a local college. Its a course for adults who want to go to university and who haven't studied for a long time. Fingers crossed I get an interview - and then ultimately get a place! I will keep you posted.

Thanks for letting me ramble Clanettes. When I look back at my posts over the last year, I am aware that I do put my rose tinted glasses on when describing things, because lets face it, who wants to read the depressing drivel of a broken woman. But equally, its getting on for nearly a year now and I'm starting to think that people think I should be 'over it' by now. Well sometimes I just need you to know that I'm not always as fixed as I'd like you to think I am! I'm def not 'over it'!! Ha ha!!

I'll leave you with x-ray pics of my mums fusion, compared with mine. Hers is on the left in both pictures. Hers is 25 years old and made of steel, my is obvs not yet a year and made of titanium. My fusion is clearly a lot bigger, but interestingly, my mums scare is much bigger than mine. Just need my sisters x-rays now!!

Apologie for the poor quality, these were just held up to the back door and photographed with the light (and garden!) behind them.
Lots of love x x

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Juice detox take two - final thoughts

It's Sunday today, I'm writing this post on the treadmill at my gym. I've just done a sweaty half hour on the cross trainer and I'm now cooling off and typing on my phone.

The five day juice detox ended on Friday, and I weighed in yesterday morning (Saturday) at 13st 10lbs. A 10lb loss. I'm thrilled!! Absolutely delighted!! More over, I FEEL AMAZING!

Friday night was tough, that surprised me. I didn't really help myself though, I had a whole chicken in the fridge about to go out of date and no room in my freezer.. So I roasted it. Smelled heavenly! I did some food prepping for this weekend, knowing I was working yesterday. And I made my lunch for work with the tenderness and excitement that people normally reserve for new babies!!

After 5 days of nothing but fruit and vegetable juice, I was keen to go easy on my body yesterday. Which meant planning, because the lovely cafe at work does not do 'kind' food. 

Yesterday consisted of:
Hot water and lemon juice, and a 'liquorice and peppermint' herbal tea made upon waking and allowed to cool.

Apple and ginger juice shot

Breakfast was a pineapple and green veg juice, so my body was happy going to work.

On my morning break I had a banana and four oatcakes, with peanut butter. I can't tell you how much I love oatcakes and peanut butter. It's my go to snack. I may have been a little giddy as I ate then very S L O W L Y, just because I could. Washed down with more peppermint and liquorice tea.

Lunch was brown rice, salad and tuna, but I only ate half, I couldn't be bothered with the chewing!! But I devoured my plain live yoghurt, honey and blueberries and a little treat packet of dried strawberries. Washed down with 'squash' (juiced pineapple and lemon diluted with water) and some carbonated water.

My afternoon snack was a Nakd bar and grapes, and the rest of my 'squash'. Glorious!!

I was super excited for my dinner. Paul and the kidlets picked me up from work, we dashed home, and then I dashed straight back out for a lovely evening at Lucy's. She cooked salmon fillets, lightly spiced brown rice and asparagus with greens. Like heaven to my mouth and my body!!

Juicing teaches lots of life lessons and I think everyone experiences these lessons differently. I was a size 24 at my biggest, just shy of 18st and after a year of being at a size 14, despite everything my body has been through and accomplishes this year, I have clearly hit my body's happy weight. Regardless of what my head thinks!

If you did the global juice last week, and you competed it as directed, well done you. You have hard core mental attitude! Big up yourself xxxx

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Juice detox take 2!

I did a 3 day juice detox last August (see here) and I have embraced juicing ever since - I generally have a juice for breakfast most days. Jason Vale released his latest offering '5lbs in 5 days' and I immediately wanted to join in. The one thing juice detoxing taught me last year, was that its massively easy to consume stuff your body just doesn't need. I was hugely strict off the back of last August, and then as time passed I became more relaxed (and positively went crazy with delicious food throughout December!) but have generally settled into a happy 80/20 pattern. I am lean and mean with my food choices 80% of the time, and relax over the odd muffin or glass of wine 20% of the time. It works for me. As does the gym - I spent an hour on the cross trainer tonight!

As much as I was looking forward to getting involved with this detox, I took a 'food holiday' last week and enjoyed a variety of foods that I wouldn't normally dream of eating (not even in my 20%) like mars bars! Oh how I love a mars bar. But actually, I don't rate the gratification for the cals consumed, so normally steer clear. Not last week! Which in turn meant I was expecting the 'grey' death I experienced last time.
Not so!! Clearly my 80/20 rule works, and whilst my food holiday had a damaging effect on the scales last week, it hasn't effected my overall ability to deal without sugar and other conveniences. Amazing!

My weight normally hovers around 13st 08lbs, a couple of pounds either side of that is where my body naturally resides now (a nice size 14 if I do say so myself, oh yeah!). Happily just inside the defined 'healthy' BMI range. Following my 'food holiday' I was 14st 06lbs on Monday morning.... BOOOOO! So I'm hoping to be under 13st on Friday! I lost 9lbs on the 3 day detox last August... What will happen this time!
I downloaded the app to help me, and I make my own juices using my beloved juicer. Its always reassuring when you see what you have made looks vaguely like the original!!

My juice is darker here, because I add wheat grass and spirilina powders to boost the nutrient value.

I prep all my fruit the night before, then juice and decant it into sports bottles so I'm ready for anything during the day.

And my evenings have looked like this - herbal tea/carbonated water and lemon, last juice of the day and an SOS bar. Jason Vale obviously sells his own, and I was lucky enough to try one (they are an acquired taste!) but I have opted to stick to my fave Nakd bars instead.
I'll be back to update on weight loss and final thoughts. Needless to say, I feel great right now!! I also miss food. I am looking forward to making informed choices - and chewing - on Saturday!!

Sunday, January 12, 2014


We are back at school, and work, and back into 'normal' routine. I am doing over time and volunteering at the hospital, I have fit in exercise where appropriate and I'm about to embark on a juice fast. I thought as I drove home this evening, Little mix 'change your life' blaring, that I am feeling content. It's been awhile since I have been able to say that. I always seem to be striving for bigger or better, pushing myself sometimes unnecessarily, because everything I need is here if I know where to look.

This week Niamh and I embarked on a new fun group, and she really loved it. I enjoyed seeing her enjoy herself and doing something specially just with her.
She goes to another group on a Monday, here she is playing with Livvi.
The bigs went back to swimming. Lochie is now a grade 4, Bebe a grade 3. They both went in at the deep end for the first time this week.
Lochie went to the theatre in his own with Beavers this week. How did he get so big?!

Paul has been poorly this week, and whilst it's horrid when you're poorly, it has when nice to have him at home!

I find it hard to talk about all the things I would change about last year, I find it even harder to talk about all the things I wish I had goals set for, for this year. But it's getting easier to be content in the moment. I am finding fulfillment in myself away from sport, and I didn't realise the crutch it was, until it was taken away from me. It isn't the be all and end all, and yet I can recognise that I do need it in my life - in a way that benefits my body!
The other thing to note, yet again, is how good yoga is for me. I spent the whole day on an active dept. today and my back is getting so strong with lifting. I can really notice it. It is good!

I went straight from work to volunteer at the hospital again this evening. I really enjoy the time I spend there, I feel massively useful. (Finally!) Tonight I was lucky enough to sit with two incredible mums. The first mum had lost her first baby at two weeks old, she was so worried about her new baby and I was privileged to sit and listen to her talk through her birth story. The second mum, with her first baby (Orla! Beautiful name!), was a total feeding dream and a delight to talk to and support. I got to have a cuddle too. Definite perks!

So clanettes, I feel like I'm going through yet another period of growth and renewal, thanks for sticking with me! 
5 day juice fast this week, I'll update on that later.

Lots of love xxx

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Peer supporting

I've just got back from peer supporting on the post natal ward at my local maternity hospital. Clanettes, I feel AMAZING! 
I coincidently knew one of the midwives from thornhill who was on shift and she took me round. I spent an hour with an Indian woman and a teeny tiny 8hr old baby, talking her through latch and then hand expressing.. Ended up helping her express into a syringe..! I wrote it up in her notes.. I felt useful. Babies and birth and mothers are miraculous.
As are my own children, who knew I was off to do something important for myself tonight, and gave me my own special badge. 
I've taken important first steps towards my future tonight and I LOVED it!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Christmas 2013

Happy new year Clanettes! I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and a very happy new year. We have had a lovely Christmas, we went to stay with my parents and my sister and her family joined us. Last night, NYE, Paul and I stayed in as we always do, Paul cooked and this year we played scrabble and watched Jools Hollands - and a bit of Gary Barlow too!

Here are my fave pics from the festive season..

Between Christmas and new year we always see Paul's Dad and Sister at his uncles house.

And new years eve

No massive planning post from me this new year. I haven't pushed myself to book and enter any sportives, races or events. I have realised this week that I still have a lot of healing to do, and I need to concentrate on my physical wellness before I can start pushing my physical limits again. Damn it.

I start volunteering in the hospital again next weekend, just as a peer supporter on the maternity wards - I'm equally thrilled and terrified! I'm hoping to get enrolled in higher education this year too. More on that in future posts.

I hope the seedlings you plant in the next few weeks bring you happiness and joy throughout 2014.
Thanks for sticking with me Clanettes. Thanks for reading xxx