Thursday, May 30, 2013

Farewell Deflating Bride ....

It is time to say farewell to being a deflating bride.  It's not because I have deflated, oh no! The deflation is still continuing... But because I am no longer a bride, but now a wife!!

So to continue reading about my rollercoaster weight loss ride (worst rollercoaster ride EVER!) then please come on over to my new blog; Diary of a Weight Watching Wife...



Thanks to all who have read my blog over the last 18 or so months. It's been really helpful and I have enjoyed every second of it...

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Thought for Today



If you know someone that is fighting to survive, or you think that they may be loosing that fight, get in touch with them.  Help them.  Be there for them.  Get them in touch with someone who can help. Visit www.pieta.ie or some other support services.  Tell them that their life is worth fighting for.

Mental health is everyone's problem.  Mind the people you love. Reach out to those that seem a little lost. Or, if you feel lost, just ask for help. 

Friday, March 22, 2013

Thought for the Day

T Minus 14 Days

Oh Holy Moly... There are only 14 days to go.  As I type this I am squeaking.  It's embarrassing.  Every time I think of the wedding, I get over excited and squeak. I want to jump up and down and squeak away to my hearts content.  Which is great! Once I am in the privacy of my own home.  But if, for example, I am sitting in the office working away quietly and then a wedding thought pops into my head, well, it can get a bit awkward!

Himself is back from his stag.  It was a three day affair (longer than the planned wedding celebrations I'd like to point out) and I think they sort of broke him.  Not physically. But possibly emotionally.  He hasn't been right since he came home.  He's a shell of a man! Three days of drinking has taken it out of him, although surprisingly, as we have gotten closer to the week anniversary of the "Best Weekend of his Life" he has started to wish he could do it all again.  There's rumblings of repeating the weekend next St Patrick's weekend. As long as there's no Mankini, I think it would be fine!  Yes, Mankini. A Mans Bikini. It's not a pretty sight. I don't recommend you even google it. But they put him in a Mankini.  I saw a picture, full frontal of course, and the image is forever ingrained on my memory. It's not a happy memory....

Lets not think of such dreadful things!!

While himself was off having the best weekend of his life, I was also having a pretty damn good time.  My wonderful friend Bianca and her beautiful Mum Allison came ALL the way from Australia to celebrate our national holiday with me.  Well, to be fair, it wasn't just for that, they are also seeing a little bit of Europe for a couple of weeks, but I like to think that everything is all about me. At least for the next 14 days!  We drank and ate and danced and I showed off my lovely dress.  It was great fun. 

So as I am running out of weekends, it is full steam ahead for the next two weeks.  Mostly with meeting people for lunch, getting nails and eyebrows done and all sorts of lovely lady things! Isn't it wonderful?

Woohoo! We're nearly there!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Happy Mothers Day to my Mum

Today is the day that children all over the UK and Ireland dedicate to their mums.  It's the day where mum's get breakfast in bed, home made cards (sometimes even when the child is a grown up!) and get spoiled by the children they made.

I have a particularly amazing mum.  I know that I am quite biased on that front, and you will probably argue that your mum is the best, but I don't care. I know that my mum IS the best.

She is one of the most beautiful women I know.  She is kind, loving and forever selfless.  She has always put the happiness of me and my siblings miles and miles ahead of her own.  She is a quite and unassuming lady that would never fight or argue. But if she thinks for one second someone is attacking her babies, she will change quite quickly into a fighter. She is supportive in everything I do, even the mistakes.  She taught me to stand on my own two feet, believe in myself, even when she didn't always believe in herself.  She helped me to become compassionate, thoughtful and tried very hard to instill in me 'think before you speak'... not necessary the most successful lesson learned, but I still try.

My mum is wise and compassionate.  She would walk the earth a million times over to make someone she loves happy.  And she taught me to do that too.  She taught me that loyalty and respect for others were the most important qualities in a person, apart from manners.  Manners cost nothing but are worth everything.  She also taught me that it is easier to forgive someone than to hold on to the anger and bitterness caused by a grudge.

As I prepare to get married, I realise that while my mum is just another lady to most people, she's the most important lady I have ever, or will ever, know and I would be much less a person I am today but for her.

So today mum, while I can't be with you to spoil  you, I would like to say a huge thank you.  Thank you for always wiping my tears, making me laugh, standing beside and behind me when I need it, pushing me forward and leading me on. Thank you for being my friend, but more importantly, thank you for never letting our friendship get in the way of you being my parent. Thank you for shaping me into the person I am and instilling a sense of loyalty, compassion, respect and ambition in me.

Happy mothers day.  You are, without a doubt, one of God's treasures.  I love you.




Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Still in Recovery

My Hen party is over! Super sad face! I can't believe it went so quickly, and I'm still in recovery! I am not as able as I once was!

I did not stop smiling from 1245 on Friday the 1 March until... Well, I am still smiling actually!

On Friday my wonderful mum and little sister arrived and we had lunch with my grandmother and then came home to my house to get organised for my big night. My very talented make up artist (yes, mine! All mine and willing to share) came to do some tans and eye lashes - two things I have none of! And to sort out the caterpillars (or hitler moustaches if you speak to one of my bridesmaids) I call eyebrows.

We opened wine while we waited our turn and I made dinner.

It was lovely having my mum and sister meet with my bridesmaid and another of my closest friends and have them all getting on.

Then it was my turn to get my tan done! Oh Jesus I don't know what came over me! She had the tanning tent up and ready to go and told me to get stripped and hop in and she would just fix the gun and get started.

While she fiddled about with the tanning gun, I got stripped! And I mean it, I got stripped! The poor divil turned around to spray me and was left with the image of me with my back to her, arms out, legs akimbo and my big bare white arse mooning up at her in all it's glory!

As I said, I don't know what came over me! It's not like I've never had a spray tan before! And you know the worst bit? I didn't even notice till she started and I thought "something doesn't feel right". And then when I realised what I'd done, sure I couldn't tell her to stop and wait till I put my ninnies back on! So I let her continue while I tried not to shake with laughter!

Awkward is not the word!

But naked tanning aside it was a lovely start to my brilliant weekend!

My bridesmaids arrived laden down with bubbles and badges and veils and sashes! I was dickies up to the nines and have once again concluded that every outfit should have a veil!

The girls did a wonderful job! The venue was beautiful the food was amazing and the lady that taught us all to dance to Proud Mary was hilarious!

I am very grateful to my wonderful ladies and can't wait till we all get together again for the wedding!

A big thank you to all that came and helped me feel incredibly special!

A very special thank you to my almost 85 year old grandmother who also helped celebrate! I was very proud to have her there in all the hen gear and laughing and joking with everyone! Definitely a special moment to have a grandmother in a hen party tie listening to you answering some pretty darn embarrassing Mr and Mrs questions!!!

Here's me dickied up to the nines! And one of my nana with some of my beautiful aunts and my mum!

Here's to the next 27 days flying in!!!





Eyes Wide Open

Two Saturday's ago was a learning weekend for me.  Some might say an eye opener. 

I had the pleasure of taking care of my darling Buns for the weekend.  For those of you who don't know who the buns are, they are my two year old twin godsons (one is an honorary godson the other is an actual godson).  They are beautiful.  Their names are Connor and Aaron, or according to Aaron, Connor's name is Baby and according to Connor, Aaron's name is Gannon.  They also have a dog that's been called Penny for the last 19 years but is now suddenly KiKi!

This is the first time I've had the pleasure of the two boys without their wonderful Mama on the scene to keep things ticking along smoothly.  Oh holy mother of god!

These two are crazy.  They are wired to the moon and every other planet in our solar system.  They are funny and affectionate.  They are busy.  Very busy.  They don't stop talking all day long (something they have clearly picked up from their mother, along with a temper that could demolish a living room and it's contents!). They have the funniest little accents and are obsessed with car washes.  All they talk about are car washes.  Until they see one.  Then they are afraid of it and they cry.  As I said, eye opener!

The biggest lesson I learned that weekend will stay with me all the days of my life. And probably Aaron's too.  I think to say myself and the child are traumatised is an understatement.  I haven't been able to stop thinking about it.  You know when you get a few minutes of quite and your mind wanders? Well mine wanders to "The Incident"...

I have been quite proud of the fact that I had managed to make it loving these two little people for 30 months without once every having to change a number two nappy.  It was an achievement I thought.  And I accepted that if I had them for the weekend, I would at least have to change 4 of them.  Thinking that 1 number 2 per day per child was an acceptable quota. It's not. I felt like I changed about a billion of them.  If I didn't know any better I'd say their mother told them to hold on for dear life until I came and then let loose.

Anyway, I digress, "The Incident".  When I dressed the Aarron bun, I put a vest and t-shirt, Jumper and Jeans on him.  It was a little thermal vest that I tucked into his jeans.

Mid-afternoon it was nap  time. So I brought them up to bed and put them in their little cots in their lovely bedroom and said "night now" and ran down the stairs looking forward to a cup of tea and some quite time. I could hear them talking to one another "Hello Carwash", "Bye Bye Car wash" etc.  Then it changed to "Bye bye yuk". I thought Aaron was saying bye bye truck. He wasn't. He started to cry. I went to him. I wish I hadn't.

When I got upstairs, I realised he was actually saying bye bye yuck because in the middle of the bedroom floor was a nappy.  Not an open nappy, it was sitting there are if it was on the arse of an invisible child.  Still done up in perfect shape.  I thought, damn it, he's after going for a pooh and taking off his nappy.

Thats not what happened.

The nappy was clean.  He was still saying bye bye yuck.  I couldn't piece together what I was seeing.  I couldn't make my brain understand that he had somehow wiggled out of his nappy and had clearly pooh-ed but where?  Then I saw it.

Yes, you guessed.  Aaron wasn't alone in his cot.  He was accompanied by a number two on his blanket.  I heaved. I couldn't beleive that I would acutally have to touch this.  I assume that when you have had a part in making the arse that makes such a mess you are less inclined to wretch.  I had no hand in this process and therefore I nearly vomitted all over the place.  Way out of my depth.  I told him that this was all very uncivilised and things needed to change.

I got the place cleaned up. But naturally, the Aaron Bun was as traumatised as I was and he refused to nap.  And in turn, the Connor Bun decided that he wasn't napping either. So we all went downstairs and I dreamed of a pooh free day!!!

Moral of the story? Never ever ever put a nappy wearing child in a vest that doesn't button between their legs.  Ever....

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Thought for the Day

What's my plan for the weekend you ask?

With only 35 days until the big day, you might well be wondering what my plan is for this weekend... It's a good plan. Its my Hen Weekend! OMFG I'm having a hen party! I'm so excited about it I keep wanting to do a little excited dance and squeal!

I don't really know what's happening for it.  I know that my mum and sister are travelling down to stay with me on Friday night.  One of my bridesmaids is also staying with us.  We are getting tans and other such girlie things done and I will be getting these caterpillars I call eyebrows groomed and HD'd to within an inch of their lives! I'll be loverly.

Then on Saturday we go into Dublin City Centre and check into a hotel and I wait to what happens.  It's not as hard as I thought it would be to be kept in the dark.  It's difficult, but not impossible.  Me being the control freak that I am, I thought I'd be foaming at the mouth and having panic attacks that I don't know anything but I'm actually surprisingly calm! Well, I say calm, but what I mean is "Rachel Calm"... I'd still like to accidentally stumble across all the details and know everything. But I am doing my best to keep my nose out of it and go with the "flow".  Going with the flow is a new concept to me.  Not entirely sure how I feel about it, but I'm giving it a bash!

My bridesmaids are amazing ladies and I know that whatever they've done for me is going to be great craic.  Sadly, one of my amazing ladies cannot make it back from the sand pit she calls home (abu dabi). Stupid sand pit. So we will have to celebrate without her, but thankfully she will make it back for the wedding. 

Excitement is building. I can't wait for it. My only issue is finding something to wear.  Once upon a time, when I had issues finding something to wear it was because most shops didnt' stock clothing to cover my cuddly frame.  Now, while there is still enough of me left to get a decent comfortable cuddle off, the problem I am having is that I don't like anything! The hunt continues this evening and if I don't find anything I could always throw on a wedding guna!!

There are only 35 days until the big day.  Can you believe it? I can't. 35 days. Just over a month.  There's 29 days until I finish work.  Basically my life is now broken down into countdowns.  Normally, I have one big countdown a year - Christmas.  Now, I've got four including Christmas. 

1. Finishing Work
2. Wedding Day
3. Honeymoon
4. Christmas

There's lots of little things to be sorted out. Like getting a chunk taken out of my engagement and wedding rings.  Pain in the ass right? But as I speak my engagement ring is swinging about my finger like a bangle, and when I put on wedding ring (for a practice, I need to get the tone of "I do" correct.  Cannot be too giggly or too sombre. Or at least that's what I tell himself. In actual fact I'm like a magpie. Anything shiny I'm on it like a car bonnet, so I keep taking a peek at it and doing my squeaky jig!)  This is wonderful news I know. It's the one thing I've been waiting for on my deflation quest - skinny bloody fingers.

I'm walking the ass of myself. I did 25k in 5 days last week and I'm getting my Jillian Michael's DVD on.  I'm moving up to week two this week and I'm pretty sure it's going to be AGONY!

So this is where we're at.  35 days to go, a finish work countdown and a hen party! It's busy business!!! I will update with news on hen party shenanigans!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Poking fun at it All


Poking Fun at it All


Thought for the Day


“Forgive the past, Accept the Present and Trust the Future”.



This comes courtesy of a wonderful and apparently wise friend! Not entirely sure where she came up with it but I think it's marvelous!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Weight Loss Visuals - WARNING: Not good if your having your breakie!

Now listen kids.. This may not be a breakfast read!!! I was fluttering around on the Internet and stumbled across these pics and I thought, as inspiration, I would share them with you.

How many times have you hopped up on that scales at your weight loss class, gym, bathroom, friends bathroom and realised that you ONLY lost one pound or ONLY lost half a pound? And how many times have you been flippin ragin that you ONLY lost that amount?

Well my friends, feast your eyes on what loosing one pound in weight actually looks like.  Now, look it, it's not pretty - but you will think it's amazing!



Isn't that unreal and gross at the same time!

And, if you loose 5 pounds, this is what it looks like:


Imagine having to carry that around with you all day ? Isn't it mental?

So next time your feeling a bit crappy about ONLY loosing 1 pound or a half a pound, whip out these pics and take a good hard look and say "Well done me"! (and also, "Jesus that's disgusting"!)
 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy St Valentine's Day - A Special Day

Yes. Today is a very special day for me and many people like me - approximately 31,000 people like me, in Ireland alone.  Today is special.  Not because the card companies tell us we should show our love to a special someone with gifts and chocolates and all that other stuff.  Today is special  because it is a day to celebrate  the Patron Saint of Epilepsy.

Unless you suffer with this condition, or know someone who does, you probably won't be aware that Monday, 11 February 2012 was national Epilepsy day.  It was a day where people like me, and many wonderful people I have been put in touch with because of this condition, spent their time trying to raise awareness of the condition, dispel common myths and take the some of the fear that others feel when confronted with someone with epilepsy.

Do you know that 1 in 5 employers in Ireland would not employ someone because of epilepsy?

So, to do my bit and promote awareness, I have decided to tell a little bit of my story, which I am very sure most of you who know me will have already heard.

I was diagnosed with this condition when I was 19.  I took a massive seizure in a cafe in a busy shopping center with two friends, one of whom was heavily pregnant at the time.  I was admitted to hospital and subjected to a number of tests and scans and various other things.  It was a frightening time.  My parents were so worried.  They actually thought that I had a tumor.

When I was given the official diagnosis I was alone.  I had no one with me, because I was an 'adult'. This woman I had never met informed me that I had a life long, life changing and frightening condition that could kill me if I didn't take care of myself.  I was given a list of everything I couldn't do, some medication and sent on my way.  It was terrifying. I was 19 and being told that I couldn't continue to live the way I was living.  I may never drive, I couldn't even lock the bathroom door anymore.

My parents were delighted that it wasn't a tumor. I felt like my life had  ground to a halt.  I had never even really heard of epilepsy in any  real sense.  I didn't know anyone that had it and I most certainly had no understanding it.

So I did what every 19 year old does.  I went out, I partied harder than I have ever partied in my life and I did the exact opposite of what I was told to do.  The seizures kept coming.  My family got more and more concerned and I eventually got admitted into hospital again.

It took me a long time to come to terms with this condition. A very long time. It took me sitting down and accepting my limits and deciding that I would not be defined by it. And then I began to look after myself and really try to get the seizures under control. But that didn't work either for many many years. Any stressful situation and I'd seize.

There are many forms of epilepsy  and many forms of seizures.  I was diagnosed with Junior Myclonic epilepsy and suffered from three types of seizures.  One is the seizure associated with epilepsy, fall to the floor, loose consciousness and shake.  Sometimes I would loose control of my bladder. They were the worst.

The second type I took was an absence.  It was like I would stare into space and not react to anything around me.  When I snapped out of it I was always disorientated and frightened.

The final one I suffered from way a myclonic jerk.  The best way to describe this is that it is like the moment you are about to go to sleep and your body twitches or jumps.  I did that all day. Sometimes over 300 times a day.  My arms, legs, hands and feet would twitch.  Sometimes it was barely noticeable  other times it was strong enough for me to drop whatever I was holding.

What to do when someone has a seizure?

If you are out in a club or pub and someone is seizing, don't assume it's drugs and step over them.  That's happened to me on more than one occasion.  One time, it was someone that I thought was a good friend.  She just stepped right over me and said to my other friend she 'couldn't handle this'.

Don't crowd them.  I am always so disorientated when I come too.  I often come around thinking that I am after being in bed and dreamed I was going to have a seizure.  So imagine for a moment, you think your in bed, you open your eyes, your not in your room where you thought you were, your on the floor, surrounded by strangers and friends and feet and all sorts. It is terrifying. And then, when your really come around, its so embarrassing!  Everyone tells you not to be embarrassed, and you know you have no control over this, but its horrible!

Move anything dangerous that is around the person and make sure that they are safe. Sit with them, talk calmly to them, tell them they are ok.  Do not try prevent it.  Do not worry about swallowing their tongue, its a myth.  Do not put anything in their mouth. Do not call an ambulance unless the seizure lasts for longer than 5 minutes.

When they have come too, remind them where they are and put them in the recovery position.  Stay with them until they are coherent.  Stay calm at all times.  They may want to sleep - thats all I ever wanted. Keep talking to them.  Ask them for someones number to call. Get them a friend or family member on the phone if they are alone.

If you know someone with epilepsy, talk to them about it. Ask them how they feel and what it is like for them.

There are some great information websites out there.  www.epilepsy.ie is a great starting point.  Talk to kids in schools.  Epilepsy is a controllable condition.  31,000 people in Ireland are living with it at this very moment.  They are having seizures, dusting themselves off and getting up and starting the next countdown and trying to achieve another seizure free period.  This condition should be spoken about as normally as asthma or diabetes or migraine   There should never be a situation where a person doesn't get a job because of this condition.  We all need to get educated on it.

There is a beautiful girl I know that set up this amazing online home for Irish epileptics.  Her name is Rachel Ashe and her drive and ambition has helped bring this condition into the spotlight.  If you are someone that has epilepsy or knows a person with the condition, and you need someone to chat to.  Someone who knows exactly what it is you are experiencing and feeling, then come and join us.  If you even want to find out more info on the condition, come join us.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/JoinEpilepsyIreland/

Thankfully, I am now over 6 years seizure free.  But I also know, this thing that happened so suddenly has the possibility of returning to me at any point.  And, until then, I just need to enjoy every minute of every day that I am seizure free.

Happy Valentines day everyone! You see, its not just a day made up by card companies!!!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Be aware of your Nutritional Labels

Just read this interesting article. I did not know that sodium is not the amount of salt and to get the salt amount you multiply by 2.5!

This is good info and worth reading if your watching your weight / sugar and salt intake


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2273841/Named-shamed-The-big-brands-STILL-refuse-high-salt-sugar-saturated-fat-packaging.html

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

McDonalds.. Ever again?


Oh holy God! I just saw this on a facebook page. I'm not going to lie to you. My stomach is heaving at the thoughts of it... If this is true, I think I'll be giving fast food a wide berth for a while! Between this and the guy who found brains or liver or something cooked in KFC breadcrumbs I doubt I'll ever eat either again!
 
Taken and shared from the Facebook Page of Danny Garcia https://www.facebook.com/#!/danny.garcia.963
 
Can you guess what McDonald's food item this is????? Say hello to mechanically separated chicken. It's what all fast-food chicken items are made of. It's chicken nuggets, patties, and the meat in fajitas... In addition the processed frozen chicken in stores is made from this.. Basically the entire chicken is smashed and pressed through a sieve... bones, eyes, feet, guts and all. It comes out looking like this... There is more, because it's crawling with bacteria, it will be washed with ammonia, and soaked in it.. Then because it taste gross it is reflavored artificially. Finally since it is weirdly colored like 'Pepto Bismol' pink, it is dyed with artificial color.. This is what people eat and feed to their children... Enjoy !!!