A-Z of Lynette

So, I’ve been meaning to do this for MONTHS now…but my blogging habits have been a bit hit and miss with life and work taking priority. Now that I’m getting back into my old routine of posting every Wednesday evening, I thought this would be a good one to start off with: for a bit of insight into me 😊

A is for: Almond Milk

No more cow’s milk (or cream) for me, so I’m onto the alternatives! Almond milk is my go-to.

B is for: Bish

My wonderful husband, my best friend of 10 years, and my rock.

C is for: Cake

I love cake. Cake is my weakness.

D is for: Dance

Obvs. If you don’t know what my relationship with dance is, where have you been? 🙊

E is for: Eating

I. LOVE. TO. EAT.

F is for: Friends

Special friends who are always there, always supportive, and whom I will love forever.

G is for: Gardening

My favourite summer past time – there’s just something about weeding/planting/sorting/making things pretty, that’s really satisfying.

H is for: Hufflepuff

My Hogwarts house. Say what you want about Hufflepuffs, but we’re brilliant because we have ALL the traits of ALL the other houses – the sorting hat has no choice but to put us there 😉

I is for: Italy

The next country I want to visit!

J is for: Jelly Babies

The only sweets I hate.

K is for: Kinky Boots

One of my top 2 fave musicals AND it was my Hen Do surprise, so it will always have a special place in my heart – as will my hens.

L is for: Late

I will ALWAYS leave home 5 minutes after I plan to. I’ll never be late to where I’m going, but I’ll always be RUSHING.

M is for: Mexican Food

My fave cuisine – as long as it’s gluten free! 🤤

N is for: Netflix

What did we do before Netflix?! I love a Netflix BINGE!

O is for: Overthinker

Yep, I’m a huge over thinker, particularly when it comes to my career – but it doesn’t help anxiety either.

P is for: Positivity

I’d like to think I’m quite a bubbly person, I try to bring positivity to every corner of my life.

Q is for: Queen

The band behind Ed’s current employment! I’ve always loved their music, but now it’s something even more special, because of the We Will Rock You tour. I can’t WAIT until my next visit to the iPlanet!

R is for: Rubis

CHOCOLATE WINE. It’s heaven. 

S is for: Singing

Dance consumes most of my life, but it isn’t my only theatrical love. I trained in Musical Theatre, so I did it all. And I love to sing.

T is for: Theatre

So much of my life revolves around theatre and I feel so grateful and lucky to be able to say that I turned my hobby into a career.

U is for: Underactive

I have an underactive thyroid – which means my thyroid doesn’t produce enough hormones and I have to pop pills daily to keep my levels ‘normal’. It got diagnosed in my final year of college, and it affected my final few months there because when it isn’t medicated correctly, I feel dizzy/have a feeling of vertigo. Which isn’t ideal when you’re a dancer, and I hate that it spoiled my time/opportunities at college. Although I still get affected by it now and then when my medication doesn’t work correctly (which is usually when I’m over worked/run down/under rested/under nourished), life is much easier to get on with these days.

V is for: Viva

Little Voldy, my Vauxhall Viva, is my first ever car! We’ve been together for 2 years.

W is for: Walks

The best way to de-stress. I love walks, whether that’s alone or with Ed.

X is for: Xmas

I know it’s a bit of a cheat, but X is hard 😂 And Christmas is my favourite time of the year!

Y is for: Yorkshire

My gorgeous home county. I was away from it for 5 years when I was training/living in London – never again!

Z is for: Zzz

Yessssssssss I love to sleep, who doesn’t 😂

Lynette x (3)

Life Update: Autumn 2019

Hiya lovelies! 👋 It feels like such a long time since I last posted…

So, back in summer, I had a very smug morning when I managed to plan out all my blog posts for the rest of the year. I didn’t write them, but they were all planned out, and knowing what a hectic few months I was about to have, I felt really on my game…

…and here we are now, 3 months later, after an unintentional break 😂 Life became incredibly busy and stagy (more so than usual), so I didn’t have time to write! And, I’ve always stood by the fact that blogging is my hobby, and I should only be writing if I’m enjoying it and/or inspired to do so.

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I DID however have time to think about my new venture, my VLOG 🎥 It’s been much easier to work on than the blog, coz I’ve just gone around filming bits of my life with my phone! Yes, editing is time consuming, but it’s easy to leave and come back to when I have small pockets of time (it tends to be late on a night when I’m winding down from work). I can’t do that with the blog, I need to have time to sit and focus my mind on writing without distractions or having to break off. I’ve done 6 so far, all which have a ‘come with me’ kind of feel to them. That wasn’t the intention when I first started it, but with how life’s played out the last few months, it just seemed to work. CLICK HERE to get to my channel if you missed any/all of the vlogs.

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So if you haven’t been anywhere near me, my social media or my vlog, I need to give you a quick update.

The biggest most exciting bit of news, is that my INSANELY talented hubby headed off to London at the start of August to start rehearsals for the 12 month We Will Rock You UK/Ireland tour! 🤘 That’s when I started the vlog – the aim was to have something to keep me occupied whilst he was away. It proved to do just that, and I really enjoy it! LOOK AT MY SUPERSTAR, I’d have fan-girled so hard 😂 

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September came and went in a whirlwind of classes and rehearsals 💃 At this point, I was working my normal job (and in that rehearsing for my Sunday Academy kid’s Showcase in October, and also starting to workshop ideas for the Studio’s Christmas Show and annual Showcase in 2020). Rehearsals for Footloose were in full swing (3-4 nights a week), and I was also spending my Sunday afternoon in Shipley rehearsing for Shrek.
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It was wonderful, but I had no time for a social life or family – so you can understand that there was no hope for the blog! Shrek happened at the beginning of October in Bradford (you can see my show week video here), then 3 weeks later, Footloose opened in Harrogate (and you can see behind the scenes of show week here).

dfjn.jpgNovember appeared as if by magic, the shows had ended, the Academy showcase was over, and suddenly, life got that bit more calm (by comparison!). I’ve had plenty of things to do though, and it was only last week that I got a weekend (the first since summer, so it was VERY much needed). I gave the downstairs bathroom a complete makeover (without using a drill, some of you will be very relieved to hear!), and I’ve got on with all the adulting things I’ve been putting off for the last few months (tax return, new car insurance, gardening – oh yeh, I know how to party) 🎉

And suddenly, Christmas is nearly upon us! 👏

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It’s been a crazy few months, and as well as it being ridiculous fun and allowing me the opportunity to work with some absolutely incredible people, it kept me distracted from the lack of Ed in my life. He’s been home a couple of times (when the show went to Sheffield and Newcastle and he was able to stay at home and commute over), and I just had him home for 2 weeks because WWRY was in Leeds! WHICH by the way, I HAVE to plug now, because it’s AMAZING. 🔥

The show’s always been one of my favourites, but I was blown away, and that’s not just me being biased…though, I have to say, my hubby’s a ROCK STAR, particularly when he went on as Brit! 😍 The show’s been staged brilliantly, the band are amazing, and the TALENT of every single person on that stage is mind blowing. Please, just go and see it. If you can find spare tickets that is…

Image-1.jpgSo the tour continues, I miss Ed like mad, but we make it work, and Whatsapp voice notes are our favourite thing. It’s like the personal touch of a phone call, but without the hassle of having to wait until you’re both free – which is perfect for our lifestyles. Rehearsals continue during lesson time at the Studio, both Academies are into skill building term, and I have no cover work lined up. So it’s all plain sailing!

The plan now, is to get really festive! It’s my absolute FAVOURITE time of the year, so as soon as I get back from work on Sunday (festive Costa in hand), the tree will be going up, and the house covered in fairy lights.

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Then, next Thurday, I head to the Country Living Christmas Fair at Harrogate Convention Centre! It’s on from Thursday 5th – Sunday 8th, and you can get 20% off tickets if you click on my little link just here 😊

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IMG_5193_Facetune_27-11-2019-16-29-01.jpgWe have the Studio’s Christmas show in a couple of weeks, then work will finish for Christmas shortly after. I’ll then be enjoying some long awaited time off!

I’m sleepy, I’m run down, I’m not sure how I’m still functioning – but I feel very happy, and so lucky. I need to take this opportunity to thank every single person that’s shown love, care, support and understanding to myself and Ed over the last few months – you know who you are and we appreciate and love you so much ❤️

NOW…BRING ON BLOGMAS! 🎅 I’ll be posting a Christmas themed blog every other day during December and on the days I don’t post, I’ll be sharing one of last year’s blog posts! 

Thankyou for reading, and thankyou for supporting for my blog/vlog/Insta – it means a lot 💖

Lynette x (3)

 

 

26 Discoveries In My 26th Year

Welcome to my birthday post! I turned 27 at the weekend, so it’s time for ’26 Discoveries in my 26th Year’ 💖

A lot of bloggers do ‘__ things I’ve learned in __ years’, but last year I wanted to keep things a bit more light hearted for my birthday, so I posted ’25 Discoveries In My 25th Year’. And I enjoyed it so much, I though I’d make it an annual thing 😊 So, this post is a cocktail of lifestyle, beauty, fashion, food, drink, general musings and life lessons. Enjoy!

1. Tying the knot is THE MOST INCREDIBLE FEELING

IT IS HONESTLY THE MOST MAGICAL DAY OF YOUR LIFE. I struggle still to express in words how incredible the feeling is, and how you’ll feel like you could just burst with love! The entire day is amazing obviously, but that feeling of saying ‘I Do’ to your soul mate doesn’t compare to anything you’ll have felt before.

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2. Gym shark leggings are the best leggings

No arguments. They just are 🦈 Yes, you can get other leggings cheaper elsewhere, but I’ve never found another brand that does such gorgeous, flattering, high waisted, seamless leggings. And naturally, you have to get the matching sports bra too – because we feel like girl bosses when we’re all matchy matchy, right? 💪

3. Plants and flowers in the home really do help brighten and lift the mood

I saw Sophie do a blog post on this ages ago when we were still in the flat, and thought ‘ermmm okay…?’, and didn’t really get it. That is, until we moved into the house (1 year ago tomorrow!) and added a couple of plants. Because since then I just haven’t stopped! It makes the place brighter, fresher, and we can never have too many!

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4. Adding fried onion to scrambled egg is magic

YUMMMMM. Fry your onions first, and only when they’re done to perfection do you add your eggs. You’re welcome in advance 😇

5. Planning a wedding is SO STRESSFUL

I’ve written about it plenty of times before during The Wedding Series (click to get to the blog post which includes links to every post in the series) – so I’m not going to go into detail again. But OMG. It’s crazy. It makes me stressed to even think back to some of the problems we had to deal with!

Lynette & Ed

6. Moving house is SO STRESSFUL

Planning a wedding and moving house within 6 months was never going to be plain sailing, and bloomin heck did we have our fair share of stressful house problems too! It was worth it in the end, just as everyone promised, and we’ll be forever grateful to the fam, (our parents in particular), for your support and help during this time 😘 But WOW is it a stressful experience, I honestly don’t think I knew what stress was until we had to deal with the ins and outs of buying a house!

7. Vlogging is fun!

A week or so after Ed left for London, I had a sudden lightbulb moment, and decided to try my hand at vlogging. I already enjoy blogging and I’m familiar with editing on Premier Pro – so I thought, why not give it a go? It’d give me a project to focus on when I’m not working, and hopefully serve as a distraction when I feel lonely. And so far, it’s proved to do both those things, and I’ve loved it! If you’re interested, go check and the Life With Lynette Vlog out.

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8. Those people who you cut out last year? You don’t miss them one bit.

It was one of my 25 Discoveries in 25 Years. And I’m so glad I did it, coz a year on, I feel fresher and lighter from removing toxic people from my life. It’s such a good (and quite empowering) feeling.

9. Madeiran wine is hella tasty

Who knew?! Well, we do now after Madeira! It’s almost a sherry, a really sweet sherry, and it was so special to find a specific taste which we’ll forever associate with our honeymoon. I want to go back…

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10. TCM scar gel

I discovered this at the start of the year when I started panicking about wanting to have perfect skin for the wedding. I’ve always had problems with my skin, one of which being the red scar marks that stay with you forever after a breakout. Bio oil can be good for this, but it takes a long time to work, so when I saw TCM advertised on Facebook, I figured, why not give it a go? And OMG. It WORKS! It really works! Within a couple of weeks I saw massive improvements, and now, I wouldn’t be without it. I recommend it to anyone.

11. I’m much better at managing my anxiety

It’s not something that’s disappeared completely, but I’m so much better at managing my anxiety these days. Compared to a year ago, yes, but even MORE so compared to 4 years ago. There’s been a few occasions over the last year where I’ve said yes to doing things (both work related and social), that I know I couldn’t have done before. It makes me sad that it took hold of my life as much as it did when I was in London, and potentially spoiled a few friendships…but that can’t be helped, and the fact that things have improved so much is amazing.

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12. Schwartz carbonara mix

I mean, I’m sure there’s thousands of yummy carbonara recipes out there, but when I get home late 5 or 6 times a week because of work and/or rehearsals, I just can’t be bothered to cook properly. So when I already have lardons in the fridge (part of Adult Life Hacks Part III!), all I need to do is add the mix to semi skimmed milk, and chuck it in a pan with the cooked lardons and mushrooms. BOOM.

13. The love for your friends grows so much more when dealing with adult problems (as opposed to small high school dramas)

I don’t think there’s anything to explain, it just does. And I want to thank my closest friends for being so amazing, supportive and understanding (as always), but particularly since Ed’s been away. You all know who you are, and I can never thank you enough. 

Lynette & Ed

14. My cardio’s rubbish

I mean, as dancers (and especially as a teacher), it’s rare to spend more than a couple of minutes prancing around without stopping. But with all the Musical Theatre that’s been in my life recently, I’ve had to get used to full out routines whilst singing again…which has been interesting, because I haven’t done it for a few years – I’m a bit out of practice! 😂  I’ve been having such a stagey time recently and it’s wonderful, but it’s just highlighted how unfit I am, and how reliant I am on my anaerobic life!

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15. Spotify’s Chillstep playlist is perfect for any mood

Credit to Ed for discovering this. If I want some chilled background music playing whilst I’m cleaning the house, doing my makeup, or just need to chill out (and I’m not feeling my Ludovico Einaudi playlist), Chillstep is the way to go. And it’s now a playlist I associate with my Bish, our house, and our wonderful honeymoon ❤️

16. Unicorn Shimmer

They have so many colours, you can put them in ANY drink, and it’s just a bit of fun if you want pretty drinks for a party, special occasion…or because it’s Tuesday and you fancy it 😂

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17. Lipcote

After all my years in theatre, I can’t believe I didn’t know about this before this year! And my main reason for falling in love with it, is that I struggled for (literally) months trying to find my wedding day lipstick – I just couldn’t find the perfect shade that was long lasting. If you aren’t familiar with Lipcote, you sweep it onto your lips once you’ve lipstick’d and blotted and it’ll hold your lipstick in place, regardless of whether you’re eating, drinking (or kissing)! The only drawback is that after a few hours it can become a bit flaky, but you can just wipe your lips off, start again, and you’re all set.

18. Gardening is really satisfying

I think it’s for a combination of reasons, starting with the fact that it’s a good distraction (I spent my entire day in the garden the day Ed left). Getting rid of weeds, moss and grass growing between the paving slabs feels so satisfying, particularly when the root comes out really easily. And when you stand back at the end of the session, whether you’ve been weeding, planting flowers, rearranging, or adding fresh stones to your border – you feel good. You can admire your beautiful garden, knowing that you were the one who made it look like this, which makes the feeling even sweeter.

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19. Pink clay mask

Again, I got this at the beginning of the year when I had a freak out about my wedding skin. The pores on my nose just love to say hello to the world and I hate how friendly they are. There’s a well known brand that does these pink clay masks, but I couldn’t justify spending that amount of money when a more affordable brand might do the job just as well. And this does! My pores shrunk and redness was massively reduced. It’s effectiveness has been highlighted even more since forgetting to use it…because those pores have started being friendly again recently 🙄

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20. How to turn off the gas…

We’re not going to go into detail, but Handy Andy was round, we were trying to mount a TV bracket on the wall, and there was an argument between a gas pipe and a drill. I’ve never run so quick in my life, but I know how to turn off the gas the new house 🙈 Safe to say, we gave up on the TV bracket idea and went for a unit instead…

21. Wide leg trousers are a wardrobe staple

It was back before the wedding when I was trying to work out what to wear on our flight to Madeira – I wanted something that was suitable for a cool Yorkshire morning, comfortable for a flight, and not too warm for a hot country. A pair of wide leg trousers in the sale from Boohoo were the answer, and I loved them! So much so, they turned into a go-to outfit during summer, and I invested in a couple of other pairs, one of which I wore round the pool…

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22. Candy Crush

I know it’s been around for years, but I didn’t download it until a couple of months back. And now I’m wondering why I never had it in my life before!

23. Gin. All the gin.

Yep, I wasn’t a gin drinker until 2018. I tried a G&T yearsssss back and didn’t like the taste, but last year realised it’s actually the taste of tonic that I don’t like. So, I use lemonade as my mixer instead! Which is quite dangerous, because now I can drink ALLLLLL the gin 😉 Current favourites are Parma Violet, and Rhubarb & Ginger. I love the nice, sweet, flavoursome gins, so if anyone has any more to recommend, drop me a comment!

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24. Shazaming TV shows backing music is genius for routines

I wouldn’t be without the Shazam app, and this is the main reason why. I can’t believe that my big ‘Montagues and Capulets’ piece came from Love Island, but (for those who know it) it was worth it, right?! #LetTheGamesBegin. And this year I did ‘Deeds Not Words’ with my Saturday Academy kids, part of which I heard on the ‘Suffragette’ film 💪

25. Britney is my fave daytime perfume

I can’t believe that out of all the perfumes I tried in Boots and Superdrug, our favourite new smell for me is Britney Spears. Although, it’s worked out quite nicely – it’s much more afforable which is good for an every day smell that gets spritzed every few hours. If I were doing that with my two Versace perfumes I’d be burning a massive hole in my pocket 😂

 

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26. I need to believe in myself more

I’m not sure whether I will, but I know that I should.

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Bring on 27 💪

Lynette x (3)

My Favourite Nail Varnishes

I haven’t done a beauty post in a while, so I thought it was about time I did. And today, one of my faveeee things because I love my nails to be pretty 😊

Barry M Iron Mani

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For strengthening and hardening, I haven’t found another product as good as this for it’s price. I’ve been a strong Barry M fan when it comes to nail varnish for longer than I can remember, and what you get for the price, is one of the main reasons. If you’re struggling with weak nails that keep breaking or refuse to grow, give this a try.

Barry M Gelly

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I love that the Gel look nail varnishes really do look like what they promise, and I’ll always go for a Barry M Gelly when I want a really nice neutral look.

Rimmel French Manicure Super Gel

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It doesn’t go on as pink as the bottle looks which is a shame (but to be fair, when does a nail varnish come out the same shade/colour/intensity on the brush as it looks in the bottle). But it’s lovely if you want your natural nails to look that bit prettier.

Prism Polish

I happened across this last year whilst browsing on Etsy for a nice Rose Gold colour (why isn’t rose gold nail varnish a thing in Boots and Superdrug?!) I loved it, there’s so many different colours – and you can see from the picture how the light and the angle can alter it’s look 😍

ILNP

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So whilst I loved the Prism polish, it wasn’t quite Rose Gold enough for my wedding and honeymoon nails! This is an American company so it’s that bit more expensive for shipping, but it was so worth it. I finally got my perfect Rose Gold shades, the varnish itself goes on thinly, smoothly (much better than I’ve ever found with any other brand), and I’d really recommend ILNP (maybe as a treat for yourself, because it’s that bit more expensive).

Who else loves having their nails done? 🙋

Lynette x (3)

Adult Life Hacks (Part III)

I can’t believe it’s been over a year since my last ‘Adult Life Hacks’ post, but after some requests, IT’S BACK! There were 5 points in Part I, 5 points in Part II, so here are my next 5!

11. Command Strips 🖼️

After a dramatic experience when trying to mount a TV bracket on the wall last year involving gas, a hole in the wall and living off takeaways for a few days (I’ll let you fill in the gaps!), we just couldn’t be bothered dealing with the STRESS of banging 17 picture hooks into THE SAME WALL when we put up some wedding photos 😬 SO, Command Strips it was! Genius things, easy to use, and nothing’s fallen down yet (touch wood)!

12. Save Money on Flowers: Buy an Orchid 🌸

I love having plants and flowers in the home, it really brightens the place up. I love having a vase of flowers on the coffee table, but it really does add up if you’re having to replace them every week. Maybe one day I won’t notice the flower shaped dent in my bank account, but for now, a one off purchase of an orchid was a great idea! Just got to remember to water it (I’m not so good at that, but I’m getting better)! 

13. Always Have Lardons in the Fridge 🥓

I mentioned it in my first vlog a couple of weeks back, but they’re honestly such handy things to have around. They only take 3 minutes to cook, so when you’re not sure what to make for lunch or tea, it’s easy to throw them in a salad, some eggs, a pasta dish…the possibilities are endless! Unless you’re a vegetarian I guess… 🙈

14. Use a Potato Masher to Close the Windows 🥔

#ShortPeopleProbs, I can’t close the kitchen windows when they’re open in summer because I’m too short to reach over the counter 🙃 Instead of walking outside to push them in (which I’ve done a couple of times), grab your potato masher to yank them in again! Credit to Mama P for that idea!

15. Damp Paper Towel for Bird Poop 🕊️

Crediting my Dad for this one…we had a lovely deposit left on the back of the house, but apparently this hack works on cars too. Dampen a paper towel, pat it onto the ‘stain’ and leave it for a few minutes. You still might need to give it a firm wipe or little scrub (depending on whether you’re dealing with glass, metal or brick), but it’ll be MUCH easier to get rid of then.

And there we have it, 5 fresh new adult hacks for you! If you want to see the first 10, click here for Part I and here for Part II, and there’ll be another coming your way in a few months!

Lynette x (3)

Favourite Summer Bevvies

With all this hot weather we’ve been having, the summer beverages have been FLOWING, particularly as we just had a glorious bank holiday weekend! Here are the ones I can’t be without. 🍹☕🥂🍸🍺

Robinson’s Lime & Mint Cordial

Okay, so I love the flavour of mint when it’s in/on/with something sweet, but can’t stand it on food or in drinks (you will NEVER see me with a Mojito). However, I’ll have to find a loophole in that statement for Robinson’s cordial. I wanted to get some lime squash and this was the only choice in Tesco…so I thought I’d give it a go. And WOW am I glad I did! The mint is subtle, the lime not too weak, and I’ve been mixing it with lemonade every day for the last few days 😂 Whether you’re a mint lover or not, give it a try!

Iced Coffee

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I mean, iced anything, but can you go wrong with a delicious iced coffee? Whether it’s bought or homemade, regular milk or milk replacement, added flavouring or just as it is…it’s a summer must have.

Peach Iced Tea

Like the coffee, any iced tea is delicious, but my fave is peach. Really peachy as well, not a weak watered down flavour. All the peach 🍑

Two Brothers Cider

Any cider is good in the warm weather, but Two Brothers is the favourite of Ed and I. They tend to be on offer in the supermarket (bonus!) and the flavours are yurrrmy. Ed opts for Rhubarb and Custard and I go for Toffee Apple, a flavour I first discovered when I was in London, and it’s now a firm part of my life.

Lime & Soda

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My go to non-alcoholic summer drink in pubs and beer gardens since I was a kid. They’re delicious, and I suppose the flavour brings back fond memories.

Rhubarb and Ginger Gin

I’ve only really got into gin in the last year or so, mainly because that’s when I discovered it with LEMONADE. I hate the taste of tonic, so just never had gin before (they go hand in hand, right)? Not in our house! I mix any gin we have with lemonade to satisfy my sweet tooth. I love trying new flavours, and whilst Rhubarb and Ginger isn’t exclusively drunk in the warmer weather, it’s a yummy summery taste.

And obviously, the standard beer, prosecco, Archers and lemonade…oh, and water. Water’s important too #hydration 👍🏻 Have you got any other favourite summer bevvies?

Lynette x (3)

9 Reasons I Feel Like An Adult This Month

‘Adulting’ is a term I use frequently with my friends – sometimes sarcastically, sometimes seriously – but always with the slight disbelief that we’re ACTUALLY ADULTS, and not just moseying through life as our teenage selves did. I’m married, I have a house, a car, amazing jobs…yet I still struggle to get my head around the fact that I’m almost in my late twenties, and that the kids I teach will see me as a ‘grown up’! I decided I’d just take note of some of the things that have highlighted my ‘adult’ status this month:

1. I made an ‘unwanted presents’ box in the loft

It’s no secret that on some occasions during our lives, we all receive presents we don’t like, don’t need, or just aren’t ‘us’. We can’t bear to throw them away because we feel guilty (even though the person who gifted them will probably never know), and it’s not that we’re ungrateful…but when you don’t like whatever it is, or it has no place in your life, what do you do? Well, I made a box. A box for unwanted gifts that can sit in the loft, out of sight, but always there. And if you’re sat there reading this thinking ‘that’s awful!’, then you’re lying, and you know full well that you have your own system (even if it’s not the same as mine) of dealing with weird gifts.

2. We have a flowerbed

AND WE’RE VERY PROUD OF IT! We got a bit of advice from Granny Nette (thankyou!) about how to start, but other than that, we did it all ourselves! It’s really pretty, and we’re really proud of ourselves that we did something adult-y that went right.

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3. I bought a spirit level

I used to borrow dad’s, but I decided that I’d got to a stage in my life where I needed my own. So I got one.

4. Warm weather = more washing!

Once upon a time, the heat excited you because it meant you could go and do fun things, or spend longer with your friends. Now, if I wake up and the weather’s forecast to be warm with no rain, I get excited for all the washing I know I can get done (and dried!) that day.

5. I drove to get a Maccies and ended up coming back with M&S food

The intention after summer school was to drive to the retail park and treat myself to a takeaway…but as soon as I got there, I didn’t fancy it. So into M&S I went, and picked up some flowers for myself when I got there too.

6. Garden Centre trips are REALLY FUN

So, the homewear shopping trips started to become fun when I was a student, but since we moved into the house and we have a garden now, Homebase/garden centre trips have become just as fun!

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7. I had to shout at kids for playing in our drive

Yep, I turned myself into ‘that scary lady who lives at number ___’. But when the kids were playing around our cars, that’s a big NOPE. I got very cross. And anyone who knows me, knows that when I get really riled up, it’s not pretty. It worked though, I haven’t seen them anywhere near our house or drive since! Mwahaha…

8. I’m googling weeding tips

I don’t think there’s anything to comment on, there’s just no denying it’s ridiculously adult-y, and I wouldn’t have been doing it a few years back!

9. “Sorry, my husband deals with that”

It’s happen a couple of times, but the main one was to a Virgin cold caller knocking on the door with a ‘I noticed you’re not with us’ spiel…it meant I could get rid of him within 2 seconds of opening the door ✋

I also still feel giddy when I refer to Ed as my ‘husband’ or someone calls me by my new surname 😍

Who else has similar, scary moments of realisation?! 🙈

Lynette x (3)

Tips for Coping with Moving House

Moving house is a massive task. As we were moving, lots of people kept telling us that it was up there with divorce as one of the biggest/most stressful things you can do in your life. It takes over your life, and however much you tell yourself it’ll be fine and there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, when you’re actually living it, it can be a struggle. During our move, I made a few notes about things I was doing to help cope with stress/keep organised, and I’m going to share them with you now. I hope they might help someone out there!

MAKE PRIORITY LISTS

Undoubtedly, you’re going to be buying new things for your new place (woo!). If this is your first house, you’ll be buying loads of furniture. If it’s a new build you’ll be buying curtain rails and carpets too. Or if you’re a seasoned pro and have been in your old house for a number of years, you’re moving into a new space, so there’s bound to be SOMETHING you need. Make a list, browse online, go to the furniture outlet near you, and make decisions about what you’re going to do. Don’t leave it till the last minute coz you’ll just be creating more stress for yourself!

TAKE CONTROL OF WHAT YOU CAN

When so many aspects of buying/moving house are out of your control, it can be easy to feel totally powerless. And I suppose you are; your life, your future, is in somebody else’s hands – someone who isn’t emotionally invested and working 24/7 to make this venture happen. So if you’re panicking, or freaking out, take control over what you can, like organising your packing, or going shopping for new furnishings/furniture. You’ll feel better for it (rather than just sitting home, waiting for an email or phone call), and it means when the trigger’s pulled, you’re ON IT!

ROLL WITH THE PUNCHES

Whilst you can take control of what you can, sometimes you just have to accept the rubbish that comes with moving. It’s NEVER going to be a straight forward process, so it gets to a point where you just have to go with it, accept that only in a perfect world would it be a quick, easy, painless process. I found that once I accepted this and just went with it, I stressed a little less.

USE WORK AS A DISTRACTION

Whether you’re still in the purchasing process, or whether you’re into the move itself – allow yourself to take time away from it, and work is the perfect time to do this. When you’re home, your life is completely disrupted (you’re constantly reminded when the place is littered with boxes, half your stuff is missing and your telly’s sitting on the floor!). So when you’re at work, try not to let the move bother you. During the move, when I was in work I COMPLETELY immersed myself, and it really helped.

ENLIST THE HELP OF OTHERS

Family, friends neighbours – if they offer, accept their help with big thanks! There’s soooo much to do, and splitting the work load makes the task much smaller.

LABEL EVERY BAG AND BOX

So I was really good at this, I went labelling CRAZY – until we were packing up the last minute stuff. Those every day things that sit lonely in cupboards or out on the side ever since you packed up the other 98% of your belongings. All the last minute stuff happens in such a rush (coz there’s a lot more than you realise and you have to get out), and all our stuff got thrown into various bags and boxes. Which meant that when we got to the house, I could tell you exactly where the wooden spoons and the tealight holders were, but not the shampoo or pyjamas were. Not ideal.

KNOW THAT IT WILL GET BETTER

However stressed you are, however overwhelming it all is – it WILL get better, there IS an end to all of this – and when you get there, it’ll be the BEST feeling! You’ll be in your new place, you’ll absolutely love it, and the stress will slowly melt away.

RESCUE REMEMDY

And if all else fails – a couple of drops of Rescue Remedy will calm you down! It was my driving teacher that introduced it to me, and it’s a handy little bottle to have around when it all gets a bit too much.

If you’re in the middle of moving, about to move, or just nosey (coz moving is always bound to happen!) – I hope that one or two tips help you out. 

Lynette x (3)

How to Manage Wedding Stress

I’m writing this post at the end of January, just over 3 months before our wedding. And I have no idea what’s to come in the next few months of planning, but I’m currently lying in bed at 1am, unable to sleep because I’m feeling stressed and anxious. And I’m absolutely DONE with this feeling taking over and spoiling my experience, so I’m going to find a way to deal and manage it!

Every element of wedding planning is a mammoth task, it all takes so much TIME and there’s SO MANY things involved with each element you’re planning. Even something as simple as *wracks brain trying to think of the easiest part of wedding planning so far* the favours, can be turned into a marathon of multiple emails, tastings, design ideas, design approval, deposits, invoices, contract signing, final preparations…all with a smile on your face – because it’s your wedding, of course! Even listing it doesn’t seem to give it the credit it deserves! Whilst it’s very easy to say ‘just ask for help’, it’s really not as simple as that, when you’re the one managing the day. It’s incredibly time consuming and life encompassing, and there’s no way around that (unless you have someone else planning it for you)! I assume that it’ll be much easier to ask for help when the day gets closer and we need help organising and doing, rather than just the booking/planning that I’m doing now.

So, it’s only natural, that whilst you’re trying to plan the wedding you’ve dreamed of since you were a kid, manage your budget and keep everyone happy (along with everything else going on with planning and, you know, WORK and LIFE), you allow your mental health to deteriorate. It’s so easily done, but I really hope I can find a way around this.

The plan: to make a list of things that I think I might help alleviate these feelings. And then make a conscious effort to take my own advice over the next couple of months – I’m one of those people happy to give advice, but terrible at taking my own! I pray it works. Shout out to my incredible Maid of Honour (I know you’re technically a ‘matron’ because you’re married, but it doesn’t have the same ring to it!), who’s been so wise and supportive when I’ve needed her (as always). And a couple of her pointers made this list. I love you girl 💖

1. Make a checklist 📝

I’m a sucker for a checklist anyway, but with SO many things to do, any bride will want one! It’s an overwhelming list, and I find it so easy to see all the things I’m yet to do, panic, and try to do everything as soon as I can! But that’s not realistic, not when half of the things on there won’t/can’t happen till 4 weeks before the big day! But checking things off as you get them done will really help.

2. Formal planning time 📚

Related to point 1…have a list with dates of when you can/need to do things by. It shows that you’re on top of things and that you don’t need to have everything finished just yet! Then step back and distance yourself. Have a date/time each week when you review the list to check your progress…this way, you don’t need to think about it the rest of the time.

3. Make time to spend with a loved one 💕

Ban all wedding talk if you want, or take the opportunity to vent, but set a coffee date with a special person. Someone who you know will distract you/calm you down/let you talk your frustrations out/talk you through problems.

4. Equally, make time for you 😌

Find an activity that you find peaceful and calming, and devote time to that, and that alone – don’t get distracted! Reading in the bath, colouring, yoga – whatever it is, set aside time for you and it, and allow yourself to become completely immersed in ‘chill’.

5. Talk to your venue contact 💒

They do this for a living, it’s second nature. So if you have a question, why are you stressing about not knowing, assuming an answer, or googling it? Ask! You’ll feel better!

6. Write down any problems 📓

My wonderful Maid of Honour once told me (years ago now!) to keep a notepad by my bedside for any of those nights when you have a million things flying round your head. This has proved to be invaluable advice, as the nights are when I seem to struggle most with overthinking. Sometimes even writing a problem down, without necessarily solving it, can make you feel better.

7. Be honest 💬

Talk things out with your fiancé, bridesmaid, parent, sibling or friend, don’t keep it all bottled up. Even just getting things out in the open and off your chest can feel like a weight’s been lifted. They love you, they’ll take the time to listen, and help if they can.

8. Get some fresh air 🍃

Whether you go on a walk by yourself in silence or with your earphones in, fresh air will do you the world of good!

9. Plan a month in advance 📆

This was a piece of advice I saw on a website over summer. The woman had planned her wedding, imagining it was a month earlier…which meant that even the smaller things (that you might forget about, or stress over at the last minute) like service cards, tealights and bathroom basket were taken care of! This left her and her fiance with a calm and stress free few weeks in the run up to the wedding. I can’t remember where I read it, otherwise I would give credit, but organisation Queen over here loves that idea! I hope it works…

10. It’s YOUR DAY make YOUR DECISIONS 👰🤵

SO many people have said this to me. And thankyou, I salute you, because this has turned into a little mantra. There’s so much drama that can go on with a wedding, from family politics to the table runners being the wrong shade of blue. Whilst you will accommodate certain needs and politely take suggestions into consideration, remember it’s YOUR DAY. This is the first page of a brand new book, and the start of the rest of your lives together. For everyone else there, however close you are – it’s just another (very lovely, hopefully!) day. If you know that there’s a certain detail or two that will stress you out for months in advance, or you’ll hate on the day, just don’t do it, simple!

11. Take a breath, try and find a solution 💪

Whether your brain’s in a muddle over the seating plan for the third hour, the vendor you really wanted to use can’t supply a specific item you had your heart set on, or you can’t have the band/DJ you wanted – it’ll be okay. Naturally, when it’s your wedding, every task becomes personal because you invest so much in it. Every element is just one building block in the tower that is ‘your big day’. And sometimes, something will happen that will shake the tower, or a brick will be removed, and you’ll feel like you’re absolutely powerless to keep it all together. Take a moment, take a breath…find a solution. Work out HOW you’re going to deal with that problem guest, talk to family, source other vendors, get on Pinterest and fall in love with a new decor idea, ask for recommendations from whoever let you down, knowing they’ll recommend similar products/services to their own. I promise, that as soon as you find a solution to the problem, your stress and anxiety will melt away.

12. Acceptance 💖

Nobody can control everything. You can only do what you can and then ride out the rest. Focus time on accepting that what will be, will be, and be disciplined when your mind tries to tell you that you need to control everything. You don’t! Things will fall into place.

If you reached this point, well done and THANKYOU for sticking with it. This is probably the longest post I’ve ever written, and I had no intention of it turning into an essay…but it’s something I felt passionately about sharing. It’s something I’m sure every bride and/or couple will struggle with, and if I can help in any way, it’s worth the rambling!

Lynette x (3)

#DancerProbs Part II

Back when I was just dabbling with blogging a couple of years ago, I posted ‘#DancerProbs Part I’ – a post with my first 5 problems that dancers encounter in everyday life. And with so many #dancerprobs out there, it seemed only right to do another post…this may even turn into a little series, you never know! And shout out to Graham Hebron for the images – they’re a couple of years old now, but he wanted a dancer project in his portfolio, and I had a studio, so… 🙊

6. Choreographing to Every Song On Your Phone

The best time to create is when you’re NOT TRYING to plan something, so often for me that happens when I’m out on a walk. Or driving to work. The latter is much more annoying – has anyone else tried voguing whilst driving on winding country roads? Don’t. 🙈

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7. Bad pirouette days

It’s totally a thing. I don’t know why, but it is! Sometimes you just can’t turn well, regardless of the amount of effort you put into your technique , or the amount of times you try to correct/alter what you’re doing. And it can be INFURIATING! 

8. Dancing Down Supermarket Aisles

I have to say I haven’t found myself doing it as much recently, perhaps because I’m the sensible one in our relationship and have to keep Ed in check when HE skips down the aisles, salad bag and shower gel swinging in hand. I did it a lot when I was at college though. And often, I wasn’t alone, it was an entire group effort – yes, sometimes we got in people’s way or our trollies accidentally collided – but I’m sure a bit of entertainment by the frozen veg is exactly what the people of Sidcup wanted, right? 😂 

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9. Waking Up With Mysterious bruises 

Again, less common for me now – I teach more therefore I dance less, so any bruises I DO get, I have a pretty good idea where they come from. But back in the day, you’ll wake up to bruises on strange parts of your body with no idea where they came from. The most juicy, recent bruise I had (a few months back now) was on the shoulder…and I wasn’t the only one. Sorry gals. Bring your pillows next time we try shoulder freezes 😂

10. Relaxing Your Smile When You Turn Away From the Audience

It makes me feel bad, but sometimes it’s necessary! If you’ve never tried smiling for a long period of time, try it. It’s painful! On stage, after months of grueling rehearsals the pain in your face can be a good distraction from the pain in your arms or quads or calves perhaps, especially when your cheeks start shaking from being fixed in that position for so long. But that doesn’t mean it’s pleasant! I don’t like dropping character on stage, even if I AM facing the backdrop, but if it’s between that and getting facial twitches (they happen if it’s fixed for too long) mid kick line…

Stay tuned, there’ll be more dancer probs posts to come, as well as some ‘new home’ and wedding planning posts!

Lynette x (3)