Lately (January 2018)

Lately  (January 2018)


January is over – finally! Did anybody else feel like it was the longest month ever? Perhaps it’s something to do with having to stretch out that pre-Christmas pay packet, but my gawd did it feel like a long slog! That said, the month was kind to me and 2018 started perfectly.


Baby Feet


I wrote a post all about this the other day, but early on in the month I became a bonefide Auntie for the first time when Ben’s sister gave birth to a beautiful little boy. He is teeny tiny with a good crop of dark hair and, at the moment, blue eyes – although these still may change colour. It’s so exciting to have him here, at last, and I can’t wait to watch him grow.
This month also saw one of my closest friends send me a copy of her 12-week pregnancy scan which put the biggest smile on my face! I am already 100% invested in this little person and can’t wait to meet them!


Hospital Shenanigans
This has been quite the month for me in terms of medical shizz, and all in the best possible sense. Within the first week of the New Year I was formally discharged from my Consultant and I am now OFFICIALLY considered to be free of Cancer! From now on, I’ll have to be checked once a year to make sure it doesn’t come back, but as it stands, I’m considered all clear, wahoo!
Then, finally, after 3-years of not getting very far with my GP and NHS physio, I used my health insurance policy to get some private physio instead. Within 5-minutes of being in the appointment I was being referred for an MRI scan (which I’m awaiting a date for at the moment) and I’m having regular appointments to try and fix me. After 3-years of not being able to walk properly and being in pain 24/7 it really does feel like a massive weight off my shoulders to finally be getting some help. It might be a long-haul to recovery but I’m hopeful I might be able to wear heels again one day!


Vegan Full English Breakfast The Royal Hotel SouthendThe amazing Vegan Full English Breakfast at The Royal Hotel


Going Veggie and Living More Ethically
Towards the end of last year I found myself veering away from meat more and more. It wasn’t a conscious thing, I just didn’t really want it, so I started eating a lot more meat-free meals. Then Christmas Day came and as I prepared the turkey, whilst rubbing the oil and seasoning onto its wings, I was hit with the sudden realisation that this had been alive just a short time before and I remember thinking, “I can’t do this anymore”. With that, unintentionally and for no other reason than it felt like a natural step for me, I stopped eating meat.
It’s only been a month, I know, but in all honesty, I haven’t missed it at all. If anything, I’ve found I’m being a little more adventurous in the kitchen as I’m putting more thought and effort into what I’m making. Ben is still very much a carnivore so each night I make two separate dinners – one veggie and one with meat – and so far, it’s all going great!
As well as meat I’ve also cut down on my dairy significantly, using substitutes (soya milk, coconut milk and oat milk) and drinking more mint, chamomile and green tea. A few people have asked if I’m feeling any benefit health-wise to the change in my diet and the answer to that is a solid “Nope!” but I feel more content in my mind knowing I’m making decisions that sit well with my emotional and moral compass.
(I’m also trying to be more ethical in other areas of my life too, but I’m going to write about it separately in a dedicated post, so keep an eye out for that!)


Self Care
One big change that January saw was me making more effort to practice self care. I’ve deleted numbers from my phonebook and removed people from Facebook who brought me down, I’ve closed Twitter when I’ve seen negativity, I’ve taken myself into account when I’ve thought less than complimentary things about myself and quickly turned it around to focus on something I do like about me… I’ve removed those toxic things that would niggle at my brain and oh boy do I feel better for it (although, of course, there’s still a way to go, it’s a learning curve, for sure). There’s a whole heap of other stuff I’m doing that has made a big difference to my everyday life and well-being… perhaps there’s a blog post in that too?


A Penny For Them Hair Extensions


Switching Up My Hair
Anyone who knows me will know that I get bored with my hair ridiculously quickly. I’ll get a new style, swish about everywhere giving it the big’un, then a couple of months later I’ll decide my head is actually pretty boring and start looking for something new. Having managed a whole 4 months with the same look, I decided a change was in order and got extensions fitted. I opted for micro-ring as they don’t cause damage to your own hair (no glue or bonding required) and so far I am loving it. I’m not the most proficient person when it comes to hair so you’ll generally find me with it down and straight, down and curly, in a ponytail, or in a plait, but regardless of not being able to jazz it up too much, I’m having fun with it. Let’s see how long I manage to keep this look up before I get bored again…


Old Fashioned Cocktail The Royal Hotel Southend


The Royal Hotel
January also saw me visiting my favourite restaurant/bar, The Royal Hotel, twice – a frequency I could definitely make a habit! The first visit was the day I was discharged from hospital so I celebrated by drinking my weight in Old Fashioned’s, and the second was for a blogging event. I’ll be telling you all about that in the coming week as you have got to see their new breakfast menu and their amazing underground bar; it’s unreal!


Making Plans
I’ve never been one to go with the flow. Although I like to let life guide me, I generally like to have some idea of where I’m going as it makes me feel a bit more secure and less like I’m free-falling towards old age. Last week I sat down with pen and paper, my laptop and a spreadsheet and started making plans – both for this year and on a more long-term basis (gotta aim for that home of our own with a snazzy kitchen and VELUX windows!) Being able to see on paper what I want to achieve, when I want to do it and how I’m hoping to get there makes me feel much more together and helps to make those goals look so much more achievable. I am determined to make 2018 a great year and the first step to me achieving some of the things I want later in life.


Ahhh it’s been such a good month and I am feeling so much more like myself than I did last year. That little buzz in the air I used to feel is coming back and I am more clear-headed, focussed and relaxed than I have been for a long time. I don’t presume to say that I have finally got my shit together, but I definitely don’t feel as lethargic and lost as I did in 2017!


Happy February gang, let’s make it a good’un!





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  1. Jane O'Sullivan
    January 31, 2018 / 3:01 pm

    Congratulations on becoming an Auntie, isn’t it just the most amazing feeling ever? xx

    • Penny
      January 31, 2018 / 3:22 pm

      Thank you! It is! It’s such an odd/amazing feeling to think I’m going to get to watch this little tiny person grow throughout his life – it’s exciting! xx

  2. February 1, 2018 / 10:43 am

    Sounds like a brilliant month Hun! So happy for you!

    • Penny
      February 1, 2018 / 1:04 pm

      Thank you! It hasn’t been bad, hopefully the rest of the year continues this way! xx

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