Body Image – One Step At A Time

Anyone who knows me, whether through my blog, on Twitter or ‘in real life’ will know that I have body image issues.  The way I see myself does have a certain impact on my everyday life, however, I don’t often show the outside world; I’m very good at hiding my feelings.

However, having said all of the above, I am a MASSIVE hypocrite and am always totally baffled and really saddened when I see another person (male or female) suffering from having a poor opinion of their self-image.  I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve seen/heard women saying they feel ugly or inadequate and I’m taken aback and shocked at how they could feel this way when I don’t see what they do.

Unfortunately, with the way the world is, I don’t see this improving; in fact, I can only see it getting worse.  Every magazine, television programme, film etc these days shows celebrities looking perfect and, although we know that as normal human beings, without access to personal trainers, hairdressers, professional make-up artists, expensive designer clothes and Photoshop, for us to look so amazing is unachievable, we are still left feeling that somehow, we just don’t compare.

This is what upsets me the most.

I look at the children of my friend’s and family and wonder how old they will be before they start looking the mirror and mentally tearing themselves apart bit by bit.  How old will they be before they decide they’re too fat/too thin/too short/too tall?  How old will they be before they get called a nasty name by another person and believe that those words and that description of them is true?  I look at these children with their openness and innocence, and I worry for their future.

For me, I think I know where my body image issues come from – I’ll give a brief outline below:

I dropped out of school when I was 13.  I was a lot smaller than the other children in my year, I was pale skinned, I was ginger and I was a book-worm.  I was an easy target for bullies and they took the bait.  At the age of 13, I ended up with depression.  I left school one afternoon, told my parents I wasn’t going back and never did.  I’m very lucky – I have an amazing, understanding family and they accepted I’d tried with all my strength to make it through school, but I just couldn’t do it anymore.  The bullies had won.

At the age of 15 I had my first boyfriend.  He was 24.  At the time I thought I was really cool for going out with someone that much older than me, but looking back on it now, it seems really odd.  I wasn’t street-wise and I looked a lot younger than my age.  I’m sure he decided to date me because I was easy prey for him.  Being my first boyfriend I had no idea what to expect from a relationship.  I won’t go into huge detail here as it’s not really what this post is about, but he used to leave me terrified and covered in bruises, he would tell me I was ugly, that no other man would want me and he’d point at women in the street or celebrities on television/in magazines and ask me why I wasn’t them.

Even now, to this day, every single time I see a pretty female on television or in the street, I feel sick.  It’s insane and I know it is, but I can’t help it.  I’m nearly 27 – it’s 12 years later and I still bear the scars of that first relationship.  I’ve learnt to keep these feelings to myself, but to know that my boyfriend finds another woman attractive, thinks she’s pretty or has a nice figure provokes a reaction in me that is hard to describe – I get red hot, my heart starts pounding and I feel physically sick.  I also get an overwhelming feeling of wanting to run.  Quite often I have to take myself out of the situation as it’s the only way I can cope – I’ll walk out of the room on the premise that I need a drink, or if we’re out then I’ll say I’m going to the toilet.  I just have to take myself away from the situation.

(Thankfully, I’m a pro at hiding my feelings and my boyfriend has zero interest in my blog, so he will remain unaware of the above!)

As I said, I’m sure this must sound insane to some people, but I’ve lived with that every single day of my life since I was 15.  It’s never gone away and I’m not sure it ever will, but it’s something I’ve had to adapt to live with.

Despite all of the above, I am absolutely 100% not happy for anyone to feel like this.  I don’t want one single other person in the world to feel the same feelings as I do.  I’ve had plenty of years of practice to be able to look cool, calm and collected on the outside whilst my stomach is flipping in somersaults of panic on the inside; but somebody else may not be able to do that, somebody else may not be able to cope.

So, although I’m just one person and I can’t change the world, I will be posting about body image issues in the future and linking them under the tag ‘Body Image’.

I may not be able to solve everyone’s problems, I may not be able to even solve my own, but they say “a problem shared is a problem halved” and, if nothing else, it may help some people to know they’re not alone.

LilliesandLove xx
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My Week In Pictures


I don’t seem to have taken many photos this week – I obviously haven’t been doing very much exciting!


I made Goats Cheese, Red Onion and Asparagus
Quiche for dinner with one of my best friends.
Massively proud of my very talented friend
Ian Cook (PopBangColour) for his work on this
BugARTi Veyron – it’s being reported by all the
big car media platforms!  Amazing!

I paid off the second of my credit cards.
And a third one too!
My boyfriend gave me half a flower.  Yes, HALF
a flower.  I love it though!
It was my best friend’s son’s Christening yesterday
and I officially became his Godmother – such a
proud moment for me!  I wore this gorgeous dress
from Miss Selfridge for the occasion.





LilliesandLove xx
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Operation Debt-Clear Begins!

As you will know if you’re a regular reader of my blog, or if you follow me on Twitter, I’ve recently moved in with my mum so I can stop spending my money on rent/bills and start using it to pay off the mahoosive debts I’ve got myself in to.

As part of this, I’ve decided to create a new tag on my blog – Operation Debt-Clear – so I can post updates and use it as another source of inspiration and encouragement to push me forward and help me get myself back on the straight and narrow.

Today I post for the first time under Operation Debt-Clear and I’m outlining where I’m starting from.  At the beginning of each month, I will post an update as to where I am and how much I’ve managed to pay off.

I’m looking forward to reading these posts 1-year from now and being able to see how much I’ve achieved.

I first fell into serious debt when I broke up with my ex and signed over my half of our house to him, and from then on, it spiralled out of control.  I can’t sit here now and say it’s all down to the break-up – it was the starting point, yes, but I didn’t make things any easier for myself by burying my head in the sand and thinking it would all go away or sort itself out somehow.

I’m aware I was an idiot, but I’ve taken a huge step by admitting to my family and friends what a bad situation I’ve got myself in to, and now I’m looking forward to watching the debts shrink as I throw myself 100% into paying them off.

It’s going to be hard, but it’s also pretty exciting!!

 

Operation Debt-Clear Breakdown
1 August 2012
Current Date
% Paid Off
Credit Cards
£5,591.05
Owed to Parents
£9,794.10
Overdraft
£1,500.00
Total
£16,885.15
As well as the above, I also have a loan, however, that has a fixed payment/time period and I can’t pay it off any sooner, so I haven’t included it in these figures.

LilliesandLove xx

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LilliesandLove Asks… Poppy Dinsey

Poppy Dinsey


Poppy Dinsey is a well-known figure in the online world of fashion, and has featured in numerous national publications as well and being featured on several radio and television shows.
For those of you that don’t know her, I will explain her background.
I’m sure all of you have, at some point or another, seen an ‘Outfit Of The Day’ blog post or tweet.  This simple idea was the start of Poppy’s blog around 10-years ago.  She decided to start a blog on which, each day, she would load a photograph of what she was wearing.  Soon enough, Poppy was having hundreds of thousands of visitors logging on to her blog every month to see what outfits she had put together, and many of those were contacting her asking for details of where they could buy them.
Being blessed with brains as well as beauty, Poppy saw a business opportunity shining brightly.
It was from this idea that her website was born in September 2011 – WIWT.com (WIWT = What I Wore Today) – an outfit sharing social networking site.  Fashion bunnies across the globe can create their own profile on the network and share their daily outfits with other members, tagging the items they’re wearing, which in turn links back to the websites of the brands and shops the pieces are from.
For Poppy, the next logical step was to create an iPhone app, thus making the WIWT even more accessible to people.  No longer would they have to get to a computer to upload their outfits, they could now do it on the move whilst commuting, on the beach whilst sunbathing, or in bed with a hangover.
I think you’ll agree; the girl is a genius!
As mentioned earlier, Poppy has received extensive media coverage and is now considered a big name in the world of fashion having been featured and profiled on numerous radio stations, television programmes, MSN UK, and in Marie Claire, Company Magazine, Red Magazine, More!, The Observer, The Guardian, The Independent, The Evening Standard, The Sun and the Daily Mail – the Evening Standard even named Poppy as one of ‘London’s 1000 Most Influential People’ in 2011 for her work in the fashion and digital worlds – impressive, non?
Despite her huge success, Poppy is still one of the nicest people I’ve met through Twitter (her username is @PoppyD).  With over 13,000 followers and an official ‘verified’ tick (I’ll always remember the day her followers noticed she’d bagged a tick – and her surprise when she found out!), she always, somehow, finds the time to reply to people that send her messages and she’s very down-to-earth.  I’ve had conversations with her a few times about lots of different things (from celebrities to Angel Delight) and she’s always supportive and encouraging to other people.  When I mentioned my blog to her and the interviews I do, she was more than happy to help me out and let me feature her – me and my lil ol’ blog.
So – a lovely girl, a huge intelligence and with a business that lots of us girls wish we’d thought of first (!) – find out a little more about the founder of WIWT in our interview below:
DO YOU ENJOY YOUR CELEBRITY STATUS?
I wouldn’t say I have celebrity status. I seem to get the weird side (creepy men approaching me on the tube) without the good side (a private jet).

WHAT’S THE BEST FREEBIE YOU EVER GOT, SIMPLY FROM BEING IN THE PUBLIC EYE?
Anything I’ve been able to enjoy with my friends or family – so hotels, meals etc. Free shit isn’t much fun when you can’t share it.
IF YOU WERE A BISCUIT, WHICH WOULD YOU BE?
A Penguin. Delicious AND hilarious. (Because of the jokes on the wrapper. Ahem)
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE MEAL?
I’m slightly obsessed with rice at the moment, anything Mexican or Japanese with lots of rice and lots of chilli.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE DRINK?
Porn Star Martinis.
DO YOU SLEEP WALK?
No, but I used to get night terrors as a side effect of sedatives I was on. The word terror doesn’t even come close to describing it. I wouldn’t sleep walk, but I’d sleep fight.
IF YOU WERE ASKED, WOULD YOU DO A REALITY TV SHOW WHERE THE CAMERA FOLLOWED YOU EVERYWHERE?
I’ve been asked a number of times and I’m yet to be convinced it would be a good idea.
CARS OR BIKES?
Cars. 100%.
DOGS OR CATS?
Dogs.
WHAT DO YOU HAVE IN YOUR FRIDGE AT THE MOMENT?
Gavi and hot sauce. That’s literally all that is ever in there.
HOW MANY PAIRS OF SHOES DO YOU OWN? 
50ish.
ANY BAD HABITS?
Sleeping on my front when I know it’s bad for me.
IF YOU WERE AN ANIMAL, WHAT WOULD YOU BE?
A canary.
BEST PRESENT YOU HAVE EVER RECEIVED?
My Paloma Picasso for Tiffany necklace is the most precious thing I’ve ever been given. I can’t believe I own it. I got it for Christmas last year and I’ve never taken it off.
WHEN YOU WERE A CHILD, WHAT DID YOU DREAM OF BEING ‘WHEN YOU GREW UP’?
A banker.
WHAT HOBBIES DO YOU HAVE?
I don’t feel like I have any time for hobbies any more, my hobbies became my work. I’m very passionate about films though, I probably watch 5 movies a week.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE TV PROGRAMME?
Would I Lie To You?
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE FILM OF ALL TIME?
Adaptation or Silence of the Lambs.
WOULD YOU RATHER FIGHT 10 DUCK-SIZED HORSES OF 1 HORSE-SIZED DUCK?
10 duck sized horses, I wouldn’t fight them though. I’d take them home and cuddle them.
IF YOU COULD RENAME YOURSELF, WHAT NAME WOULD YOU CHOOSE?
Tuesday.
WHERE’S YOUR FAVOURITE PLACE IN THE WORLD?
A village in north eastern Mallorca where I spent a lot of my childhood.
WHAT ONE SING WILL ALWAYS GET YOU ON THE DANCEFLOOR?
Anything by Sean Paul.
DO YOU HAVE ANY FEARS?
Oh yes, hundreds.
DO YOU PREFER A ROAST DINNER IN THE WINTER OR A BBQ IN THE SUMMER?
BBQ in the summer.
WHO WOULD BE YOUR 5 DREAM DINNERPARTY GUESTS?
Gary Neville, Jeremy Vine, Tyra Banks, Beyonce and my boyfriend.
IF YOU COULD MEET ANYONE IN THE WORLD (DEAD OR ALIVE) WHO WOULD IT BE AND WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO THEM?
Tyra Banks. I’d thank her.
WHO HAS BEEN THE BIGGEST INFLUENCE ON YOUR LIFE AND WHAT DID THEY TEACH YOU?
Lots of people have shaped me, family and previous bosses have been the most influential I suppose. It’s hard to think of anything specific, I’ve learnt as much how not to do stuff as I have how to do stuff.
ARE THERE ANY WORDS OF WISDOM YOU WOULD LIKE TO PASS ON TO THE LILLIESANDLOVE READERS?  PERHAPS A QUOTE OR MOTTO?
Work harder.
IF YOU WERE STRANDED ON A DESERT ISLAND, WHAT 3 THINGS WOULD YOU TAKE WITH YOU?
Sun tan lotion, paper and a pencil.
WHAT ARE YOU PROUDEST OF IN YOUR LIFE?
I can’t say what the real answer is because it’s MEGA slushy so I’ll give you my second proudest achievement – WIWT.com
WHAT WAS THE HAPPIEST MOMENT OF YOUR LIFE?
I have lots of happy moments every day, I love laying in bed in the sunshine though. I don’t believe in curtains. (I’ve always lived high up enough to avoid them!) 
WHAT’S YOUR MOST EMBARRASSING MOMENT?
I don’t have time to be embarrassed. I let other people be embarrassed on my behalf while I just carry on being a dick.
WHAT’S YOUR EARLIEST MEMORY?
I remember being in hospital before my sister was born, so I was 2. I’m not sure if that’s my earliest memory but that head injury explains a lot.
DO YOU HAVE A MESSAGE FOR THE LILLIESANDLOVE READERS?
If you don’t like your life you can change it.
As well as WIWT.com, Poppy publishes her Lust List (from High Street to designer).  You can also follow her on Twitter – @PoppyD.
LilliesandLove xx
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Video: The Accent Tag


Having recently set up my YouTube channel I found myself wondering what to record videos about.  I love watching other people’s and, to be honest, my favourite ones are the ones that are unscripted – the mistakes, giggling and ramblings show the ‘real’ person in front of the camera and that’s what I love.

After recording a few videos, watching them back and not feeling confident enough that they were good enough quality to upload, I saw Sammi’s video and thought it was a perfect starting point for me – an Accent Tag.

For those of you that don’t know what an Accent Tag is, it’s basically a set list of words that you read through so people can hear how they are pronounced in different areas of the world.  These words are the followed by ten questions.

This sounds such a basic idea but watching the Accent Tag videos is strangely compelling, and having the set structure to work by was great for me as it gave me something to work with rather than letting my brain wander off and do it’s own thing.

If you want to take a look at the video, I’ve added it below.  You can also visit my YouTube page and subscribe to receive updates when I upload new videos.
Enjoy!


Accent Tag 
The Words:
Aunt, Roof, Route, Wash, Oil, Theater, Iron, Salmon, Caramel, Fire, Water,Sure, Data, Ruin, Crayon, New Orleans, Pecan, Both, Again, Probably, Spittingimage, Alabama, Lawyer, Coupon, Mayonnaise, Syrup, Pajamas, Caught, Naturally, Aluminium,Envelope

The Questions:
1. What is it called when you throw toilet paper on a house?
2. What is the bug that when you touch it, it curls into a ball?
3. What is the bubbly carbonated drink called?
4. What do you call gym shoes?
5. What do you say to address a group of people?
6. What do you call the kind of spider (or spider-like creature) that has anoval-shaped body and extremely long legs?
7. What do you call your grandparents?
8. What do you call the wheeled contraption in which you carry groceries at thesupermarket?
9. What do you call it when rain falls while the sun is shining?
10. What is the thing you change the TV channel with?



LilliesandLove xx
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