Tuesday, 30 May 2017

ON "BLOGGER BLOCK" . . . A.K.A. WHY I'M REALLY BAD AT POSTING . . .

Once again, I haven't posted for a couple of weeks.

I'm not going to apologise for it because that makes it sound like I actually think people are waiting with bated breath to see my next post appear in bloglovin (well, all 66 of you subscribed to my feed anyway - feel free to join them if you haven't already, eh?)



It's actually quite hilarious (in a distinctly unfunny way) that as I popped into blogger to open a new post, I glanced at my list of drafts and noticed I had one entitled "Bloggers Block? Maybe I Can Help". It was quite laughable really given that I have been suffering from it myself recently. And I haven't actually written that aforementioned post yet. Bahahahahaha.

(I'll maybe wait a couple more weeks before I write that particular post. Just so the sweet stench of irony can clear up a bit first...)

So I regularly get "blogger block". I'm sure I'm not alone here, right? (Please tell me I'm not.) I seriously admire people who can post every single day, or even several times a week regularly, because I just can't seem to keep that momentum going, and it's like I just get some sort of blogger burn-out if I try too hard to post on the regular.

So this is what tends to happen to me . . .

Very occasionally, I have a day to myself, with no plans, and I commit myself to sitting down and writing a few posts. I tell myself that this is my chance to get organised - I will finally have a ton of posts scheduled and while those posts are still waiting to be published, I'll get even more written up. I will be The Girl Who Is On Top Of Her Blog (TM) finally, the readers will flock to me and comment in their droves, and I'll be a PR person's dream and . . . then I wake up.

But yeah, sometimes I do manage to get a few posts ready to go. It usually takes me a while. Like maybe I planned to do five posts, and I only do three. But, y'know, I feel accomplished. I've actually set myself a goal and mostly achieved it. And the only way is up from here. I still have tons of ideas, and I just need to be a bit more focussed and not get distracted by googling ridiculously random things like how all the old Hollywood greats died. (True story.)

So fast forward a couple of days and those scheduled posts have all published . . . and I'm on my laptop browsing through every single dress on  asos rather than actually writing any more posts. (By the way, do you pronounce it AS-os or AY-sos? I pronounce it the first way because it was "AS seen on screen" originally but I seem to be in the minority and when I told a girl who complimented by dress last week that it was from Asos, she thought I said "Argos" and it was all very confusing and a tad embarrassing. But, once again, I digress.)

So then I think "I really really need to write a post, this is getting ridiculous, but first, let me check Boohoo and see if they have got any new dresses in since the last time I checked two days ago."

And after I've exhausted Boohoo, any other clothes website I can think of, had a little side trip off to Amazon to buy some more books for my Kindle even though I still have seventy million books I've still to read already on there, checked Facebook to see if I've missed anything in the last ten minutes, spent twenty minutes composing a pithy tweet for Twitter that I'm sure will get re-tweeted loads, uploaded a picture to Instagram, checked Facebook again, checked Twitter to see if aforementioned pithy tweet has been retweeted yet (no. People just clearly do not get my humour), and then ended up in some slideshow of what happened to all of the stars from some 90s TV show . . . I'll turn my attention back to the window opened to Blogger, and click the list app on my phone for inspiration to strike.

I have a massive list of blog post ideas and I add to them on the regular. As soon as something pops into my head, I open my wunderlist app and stick my idea in there, adding to the huge pool of post ideas I already have. However, there's one problem here. I STILL don't always remember what the post was meant to be about!! 

For example, I have one that just says "google". That's it. "Google." What about google??? What was my great idea? More recently, I have one that says "would I lie to you" - I asked the boyfriend "do you have any idea what this post idea was? Was it the TV show?" He suggested it might be the 90s Charles And Eddie song. It could very well be - Heart FM play it all the time and I'm sick to death of it. But surely I couldn't make my dislike of that song into a whole post?? It's barely reaching anecdote status in this post.

Granted, there are some really good ideas, in my opinion anyway, on my list . . . the problem is that a lot of the time I can't force myself to write the post, as enthusiastic as I may feel about the topic. I have to wait until I'm in the mood to write that particular post.

But wait . . . I've not read any other blogs in a while! Surely I should go and catch up with my fellow bloggers before I write a new post? I open up bloglovin and realise I have approximately 300 or so posts to catch up on (I follow a lot of people on there.). This is going to take a while . . .

After that, it's time to check facebook and twitter again (still no retweet action on my amazing tweet, seriously???), then I should probably check my email . . . oh, and what's for dinner tonight? I should probably look at Pinterest for some inspiration . . . and that's me for the night, once I've fallen down the Pinterest rabbit hole there's no escape.

So . . . repeat the above process over and over, for days, with the odd point where I actually manage to snap out of it and get a post written and published (very rarely) . . . until the point where I have a day off and grand plans to get a few posts written up and scheduled for publishing. And this time it's going to be different, this time I'm going to stay on top of things, this time I am going to be The Girl Who Is On Top Of Her Blog (TM).

Hmmm... well this is post one of the day . . . and I'm already feeling quite tired. :-/


Can anyone else identify???

Monday, 15 May 2017

P'S 2017 READING CHALLENGE . . . PART TWO!!!

So when I last posted about my challenge for 2017 to read 40 books, it was the end of March and I had read a grand total of . . . 5. But then I went on holiday for a week and a half and read . . . well, quite a few more. I don't know what it is about holidays but feeling so relaxed just helps me breeze through books in a way I just can't do at home!


Anyhow, I'm going to stick to my previous format and only post five at a time, but you may get a couple of instalments of this type of post in a much shorter space of time than last time . . . be warned!


6) Mad Love - Nick Spalding

In this book, a dating website decide to create publicity for themselves by matching up and marrying off two of their clients . . . even though they've never even been on a date before. Thanks to the little white lies that some people tell online, the new couple actually couldn't be any more unalike. But can they make their relationship work anyway?

I first read a Nick Spalding book back when I first got a kindle and really enjoyed it - this was no different. His books are hilarious, and some of the scenarios his characters end up in are just so cringily funny and out-there that you've got to wonder "has he actually dreamed up these himself . . . or have they happened to him?!?" 7/10


7) Sunbaked - Junie Coffey

I recently signed up to NetGalley and this was the first book I read from there. This was just before I went on holiday so as the book had a lovely island setting the plot really appealed to me. Nina, on a drunken whim one night, decides to buy a little house on the island of Pineapple Cay . . . and goes through with it and actually moves there! Pineapple Cay sounds like an idyllic little place, although she finds herself up against the local property bully/tycoon who wants her land, within minutes of landing. And then the tycoon's wife goes missing in mysterious circumstances and Nina somehow ends up drawn into this mystery.

It was a gentle but readable book, and I did enjoy it, it had just enough intrigue and interesting characters to keep me turning the pages and want to know what was going to happen. 6/10


8) Luckiest Girl Alive - Jessica Knoll

From the outside, Ani seems to have the perfect life - amazing magazine job, sweet fiancĂŠ . . . but she's hiding a past that was definitely not so perfect. But she's about to take part in a documentary about one of the incidents from her past, which brings a lot back to the surface.

When browsing books for my holiday on amazon, I came across the plot for this novel and it intrigued me which is why I bought it, rather than the fact amazon lauded it as a psychological thriller. I wouldn't have put it into my bracket myself personally but then I don't read a lot of books described as psychological thrillers so perhaps this is why. I breezed through this book in less than a day on holiday and, as past events unfolded, found it almost impossible to put down. 8/10


9) White Lies - Emily Harper

This is a fun story about Natalie, who decides she's sick of waiting for Mr Right to come to her and she is going to come to him instead . . . so she places a dating ad and waits for a variety of . . . well, losers to appear. In the meantime, she is worrying about her job as gorgeous Oliver has just been brought in by her company to make some changes . . . but could she be worrying about nothing here?

To me, it was pretty much obvious from the outset how the book was going to end but the journey was still fun and kept me reading. I wasn't a big fan of the letters she wrote to the man of her dreams at the start of each chapter, I found that part a bit overly cheesy (and, if you know me at all, you know how much I normally love a cheeseboard), but overall I loved the book. 7/10


10) One Italian Summer - Keris Stainton

Milly, her two sisters and her mum, who are all still struggling with the death of their dad, go to Italy for a family wedding. And Milly is very much aware that Luke is going to be there...who she hasn't seen since an embarrassing moment at her father's funeral. The location in Italy seemed idyllic and, was I not reading this on holiday, I would probably have been very jealous - it just sounded like the perfect place to go for a holiday and a wedding. The characters were great, the family were all very likeable and I feel like you get to know the three sisters really well and root for them to all find their happy ending. I have to admit I wasn't sure about Luke at first but he definitely grew on me.

This book (another one I had acquired through Netgalley) in turn made me laugh and made me cry, and kept me turning the pages (or flicking the down button on my kindle which doesn't quite have the same ring to it!) all the way through. I didn't want to put it down and I was sad when it ended...which is always a sign of a good book in my opinion! 10/10


So that's all for now . . . but expect another post or two around the challenge up very very soon!!!

What have you been reading recently?

Friday, 12 May 2017

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF ME... ON HOLIDAY!

Ah, how I love being away on holiday. And I was on holiday until yesterday when I came home (cries) although on the upside I'm not back at work until next Tuesday so at least I have some time to readjust to normality. Let's not think of that yet though. I thought instead I would have a wee chat about a typical day for me when I'm away on one of my sunshine holidays...


7.30-8.30am
I always tend to wake up early when I'm abroad, earlier than I would at the weekend when I'm at home. I usually spend this time before the fella wakes (he doesn't have my waking early problem!) catching up on social media on my phone, or reading.

9-10am
At some point I'll start getting ready for poolside, with the aim of being out by ten. This usually involves putting on and discarding at least one piece of swimwear before putting on my favourite bikini AGAIN (at least my strap marks will be the same, right?), and then getting my SPF on, a necessary but tedious evil. I usually need to juice up my phone too since there is rarely a socket anywhere near my bed and I've drained my battery catching up on aforementioned social media! 😂

10am
Now we're outside and trying to find a sunlounger that doesn't already have a person or a towel (grrrr!) on it. Oh and it needs to hopefully be away from other humans, particularly loud ones, and have sun on it for most of the day. I don't ask for much eh? I get out my essentials: more suncream, kindle, phone, insect repellant just in case, and get to loungin'.

12.30ish
Around about this time, weather permitting, I like a wee dip in the pool. This usually involves me spending about ten minutes inching myself into the water followed by about five minutes of actually swimming. Once I've dried off I usually want a break from the sun so will head inside.

1.30
Lunchtime. I've usually not had breakfast so starving by this point! This usually involves some sort of fresh bread accompanied by cheese and meat. Possibly a wee sangria or other fruity alcoholic beverage too... but more often than not it will be a Pepsi or (if I've managed to track it down abroad) some Diet Irn Bru!

2.00
At this point, the afternoon can go several ways. It could involve me going and sitting out on the balcony for an hour or two, going for some sort of walk... or just deciding to get ready early for the evening and then heading to a pub for some pre-dinner drinking! I could also go to the gym... but I never do. Although I did use an outdoor gym down near the beach one day en route to the pub. But that was mainly so I could film some funny boomerangs for Instagram stories so I'm not sure that counts...

5.00
If I choose to spend the afternoon chilling on the balcony, then I'll start getting ready around about five-ish.  Shower, fix hair, do make-up. Try on and discard several outfits.  (Does anyone else find they take back half the contents of their suitcase unworn?) Ready!

6.30ish
Head out. Spend lots of time just walking around in circles trying to decide where to go, end up going with the age-old classic of choosing a place and then PRETENDING to look at the menu outside until someone comes over to try and entice us in. Ha, fooled you suckers, we were coming in anyway... we just wanted you to fight for us. Order starters... despite saying we were only going to get mains. Because starters are literally the best thing about food ever and don't even argue with me about it because shhh.

7.30ish
Struggle to eat main because I had a starter. D'uh. But when they clear my plate away and offer me the option of dessert, it's hard to say no...

8.30ish
Head back to apartments via the supermarket so we can stock up on juice, booze and bread for the next day's lunch. I usually opt for cava if we're in Spain as it's ridiculously cheap. If we're lucky, we then get a nice sunset to capture on camera for Instagram purposes.

9.30ish
Find something to watch on the TV, this can be a challenge as the English speaking channels can be few and far between. I feel like we end up watching a lot of Van Damme movies, oddly. 😂 Settle down with cava and Milka chocolate (isn't it the best?) and head to bed when all the goodies are gone, ready to repeat all over again the next day...

So that's a day in the life of me on holiday. I already miss the feeling. To the point where I got home at 8ish last night and was already looking up holidays by 10pm...

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

20 FACTS ABOUT . . . P!!!

A bit of a lazy post today but I'm very much aware I haven't posted in a couple of weeks and as I'm currently in Lanzarote it will be another while before I can sit down at my laptop.

But anyway, I was tagged on instagram a couple of weeks ago to produce a twenty facts about me post by the lovely Dawn, which I did because I love things like that. And I thought, since I know not everyone who reads my blog now has ALWAYS read my blog, it might be nice to post it on here too just so you know a bit more about me. And if you are one of the few who has been reading my blog for a looonnng time, then it's a wee refresher session for you! What can I say, I'm nice like that.  ;-) So here goes!



1. I can juggle. (I went to a couple of circus workshops when I was a kid. Amazing the things you can find in Hamilton.😂)

2. Speaking of Dawn, the first time I met her was in a bar she was manager of. You could get a decent glass of wine for £1.50. I miss that place.

3. I really want to climb a munro but I don't really like heights. Or walking up hills. Both of which could be a problem. 😂

4. I have an honours degree in Marketing. It has served me no purpose in life.

5. My birthday is the 4th October. I love presents. (Hint hint)

6. If I'm in a town I've never been to before, I always look to see if there's a Wetherspoons to add to my "collection". I always know what I'm getting with a 'spoons. (Cheap wine.)

7. I've never had a pet. Not even a goldfish.

8. I've not been to a hairdresser since I was 17. Which is probably pretty obvious. 😘

9. I once memorised all the capital cities. It was 1988 though so a lot of the countries no longer exist. I'm not QUITE as clued up on the new ones.

10. I was the captain of my primary school quiz team. We lost in the first round.😂

11. I've worn contact lenses since I was 13. Not the same pair.😂

12. I love cooking but I hate doing dishes.

13. I wish I was one of those people who love cleaning and find it therapeutic. Unfortunately I'm not. That's probably one of the reasons why I love hotels because I don't need to clean them.

14. I spend A LOT of time looking at other people's food on instagram. Like HOURS.

15. I don't sleep a lot...unless I've had wine then I've been known to fall asleep pretty much anywhere. Even in public. 😢

16. I love travelling, whether that's abroad or in Scotland.

17. I still watch Hollyoaks. I'm 37. 😂

18. I love to know about stuff. I'm addicted to Wikipedia and one time when I was drunk I decided I wanted to know EVERYTHING and ordered books from amazon about Greek mythology, the Bermuda Triangle and...urban legends?!

19. I am ridiculously dog broody and basically turn into a blubbering mess every time I see one.

20. I love disaster films.

So that's pretty much me in a nutshell. If you can identify with any of my facts please feel free to reassure me that I'm not alone. 😘