Next Year I Promise I Will NOT …

2013 is approaching and as I look back on the past year I find myself reflecting on what went well and what did not.  So the done thing is to make some new year’s resolutions.    The same time last year I promised myself I would start running, eat healthily, find my degree interesting and stop biting my finger nails.  By the 5th January I was sat in front of the TV in my newly purchased running gear, eating a 1 kilogram bar of dairy milk chocolate, in a deep state of denial about the large pile of books on the French Revolution lying on my desk, whilst intermittently biting my finger nails in a state of panic about my other three resolutions.  It is safe to say that this trend continued well into 2012.

It's safe to say this was not me!

It’s safe to say this was not me!

This year I’m not going to set myself resolutions in the traditional sense, I’m going to make a promise to myself about what I am NOT going to do!  I see it as channelling my inner whiner!  But these are definitely my top three.

Number 1 – I refuse to be inspired!

A hasty statement perhaps but I will explain.  I watched the Olympics, I enjoyed the Olympics, I believed with no training or commitment I could become the next Jess Ennis.  In short it is fair to say I felt the Olympics was inspiring, but my inspiration only went as far as buying some trainers!  So when I say I refuse to be inspired.  What I actually mean is I refuse to be inspired, spend money on my new inspiration and fail to commit to the cause.

Number 2 – I will NOT think up ridiculous money making schemes!

I say this as I have a penchant for believing, as exhibited by my Olympics example that I do not need to plan things.  In my wisdom I thought I could write a book in 2 weeks, send it to a publisher and be a millionaire before returning to university in October.  One small problem was that I didn’t actually have an idea for a story; but knew that 50 shades of Grey had been a big seller, so set about writing my own version.  It is safe to say that 50 shades of brown remains in a state of permanent incompleteness!

Number 3 – I will not embark upon DIY skin care projects!

Now when I say DIY skin care I mean, in essence homemade face masks.  Lidl at some point in 2012 had avocados for sale at about 30p each.  I thought ‘bargain!’ so bought 5.  Of course having not thought the process through I couldn’t think of anything to make with avocado except guacamole.  So they stayed in my fridge for 2 weeks before I hit upon the idea of making a facemask.  The face mask was a combination of avocado, natural yoghurt and honey – a recipe I wish I had never  found on the internet.  I mixed up as it said to do and applied to my face.  Unfortunately the avocado pieces were too heavy and gravity came into play.  I had pieces of avocado falling into my eyes, mouth, lap and covering the table I was working at with a thick unpleasant, lumpy, green paste.  And to top it all off when it was removed – my face was just sticky – Not a success!

Face mask take 2:  the turmeric disaster!  This one was truly the worst of all, I forget the other ingredients but I know there was turmeric.  I mixed it all together, applied to the face and left for 30 minutes.  Unfortunately upon removing the facemask I was made aware of the fact that turmeric stains.  I was yellow for a week!

Sigh!

New-Year-2013-Frog

Happy New Year Everyone!

Follow me on Twitter @LucyBarclay1

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Arm Chair Football Punditry – ‘If they’d have followed our advice, they’d be winning 8 nil by now!’

I will start this post with an explanation as why I have been away for so long.  My university exam season took hold, the time of year when I lock myself away, see no one and become an obsessed maniacal revision fiend.  However I am now finished, out of hiding and ready to pass my opinions.

Now for my return post – my victim is Euro 2012 – a four yearly footballing championship.  A championship that the fans among us will become convinced England have a chance at the title.  The media – television, radio, newspapers, special Euro 2012 features etc etc will all fuel this dream.  Why? Because England won the world cup in 1966!  In the commentary from Ukraine vs England, England qualify for the quarter finals and are ‘unbeaten and unbreakable.’  A fairly OTT assessment of a 1-1 draw with France, a fairly sketchy 3-2 win against Sweden and a slightly improved 1-0 against Ukraine.  But perhaps I’m just being negative.

The armchair football expert

Now I will not lie, I will enjoy Euro 2012 as much as I can.  I will hope England will do well.  I might even get excited (to an extent).  But I will not climb on the ‘rampant optimism’ band wagon.  Rather than get overly excited and eventually sinking into a state of depression when England manage to clutch defeat from the jaws of victory, I prefer to watch and observe the behaviour of menfolk.  Now this may be a sweeping generalisation but my male counterparts seem to, now that Euro 2012 is upon us, have become footballing experts – all believing themselves to be the next England manager.  In fact, they appear to believe themselves to be better than the current manager himself.  Although don’t get your hopes up boys, you won’t see ‘England manager’ pop up on the guardian jobs website any time soon.

Exhibit A – the brother.  Normally a minor football follower, supporter of Liverpool FC but only to support someone, prefers cricket.  However now Euro 2012 has come round, this minor football fan has become something of a football pundit – in his mind at least.  Comments during England vs. Ukraine have included ‘if we are to persist with route one football, we need someone who is good in the air – bring on Andy Carroll’ and ‘he’s never going to beat Hart from that range’.  What?  Now when I last checked my younger brother was NOT a football pundit, commentator, expert etc.  However he seems to have assumed this role since the beginning of this tournament.   I can only conclude he will get worse if England are to progress past the group stage.

Euro 2012

This does however lead me onto my next rant!  Why do football fans (or any other sports fans for that matter) insist on using the term ‘we’ – ‘we’re going to score’, ‘Looks like we’re going to cash in here’,  ‘we are looking poor up front’ etc.   May I point out that just because one chooses to wear an England shirt, does NOT mean you are on the team.  WE ARE English but WE ARE NOT England!  But that rant over, I shall move on to exhibit B.

The father.  Now this man becoming an expert is even more ridiculous than the brother.  This is a man who, as rule despises club football, claiming it to be boring.  This is also a man who has been known on several occasions to fall asleep, chin on chest, during England internationals.  Therefore for this man to suddenly don the crown of ‘football extraordinaire’ during big championships is absurd.  Yet without knowledge, or much genuine interest in the sport, the commentary emanating from his prime seat on the sofa is interesting to say the least.  Remarks have included ‘all of my comments have been erudite and well informed’, ‘terrible goalkeeping’ and ‘even I would have headed in Rooney’s first chance’.  A true football pundit?  The new England manager perhaps?  Well if you can be an expert after watching one match, sitting on the sofa, I suppose anything is possible.

Rooney euro 2012

And finally the worst culprit – the boyfriend.  I will give him credit though where credit is due, he does know a lot about football and sport in general.  An avid follower of Newcastle United, with knowledge of every football player, championship and result – however even with his knowledge, he still is not England manager.  I think he forgets that playing football manager on his laptop and FIFA on playstation does not constitute work experience.  This armchair England manager is worst of all, with the constant spouting of statistics.

I hope England win, I really do, but if not, at least I’ve been entertained not necessarily by the football, but by my armchair football pundits!

 Follow me on twitter: @LucyBarclay1

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100 days to go …

I woke up this morning only to be greeted by an email on my phone that told me there are a mere one hundred days until the London Olympics.  Now I’m not exactly a sports fan, so god only knows why I receive such emails.  I can’t think of anything less fun than sitting watching someone run round and round a track or even worse throw a pole with point on the end as far as they can.

London 2012, only 100 days to go!

But don’t get me wrong, I have no complaint about the Olympics being in London … apart from maybe that god awful kit designed by Stella McCartney.  I’m not sure a ‘sharp and contemporary’ kit is going to help the medal situation.  Especially when Usain Bolt said today he wants to run 100 metres in 9.4 seconds!!

Not sure about the crotch patches Stella!

Now that is just insane Usain!!

When I read that I started to fantasize about being able to move that fast myself.  A gym session might pass quicker – maximum calories burned, in minimum time.  What if I could get everything done that fast? If I could read a book in just 9.4 seconds, I’d never be behind on uni work again!  Oh the possibilities …

But back to the Olympics.  Despite not being a sports fan, I think the games could be great.  I know there are people that say ‘what a waste of money!’ etc etc.  Maybe that’s true, but how many events can create universal interest and excitement? How many events can bring so many people together? And how many events do you know of that have their own countdown timer in Trafalgar Square for god’s sake?

Only 100 days to go …

So even as a complete non-sports fan: I have say I might be a tiny bit excited about the Olympics.  Not for the sports, I can think of nothing worse, but just the sheer scale of the event.  Just the atmosphere it will create.

But shhh, don’t tell anyone!

 Follow me on twitter: @LucyBarclay1

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The Double Bum Effect! The Horror of Bikini Shopping …

It’s got to that time of year again when the sun starts to shine, albeit intermittently.  Now I am willing to accept that the temperature has barely increased to above 14ºC, and I had to de-ice my car this morning – But in my mind its still summer, or at least the beginning of.

We may have only had a mere 3 days of sunshine, but this is the weather in my mind (one can dream)

And yes although it pains to me to admit it, I am one of those people that is a bit too keen.  The sun comes out and to me the only thing to do is replace the coat for a light cardigan, and the jeans in favour of shorts.  However this does usually mean I’m sat shivering in corner, while everyone else is enjoying their day – perhaps they’ll be wearing the jeans, hat and scarf I wish I was wearing.  At least if I was wearing that I’d be warm.

But as the sun does start to rear its head, my first thoughts are bikini shopping.  Now I’ll browse numerous shops and websites for that perfect swimming ensemble.  Yet never does the image on the model quite live up to my expectations once I’m wearing it myself.

Current Favourite, African Bandeau Bikini, Topshop £26

I’m not overweight and have never been overweight.  I’m a size 8 yet unfortunately I have been blessed with a rather large derriere. And while this does not result in calamity on an everyday basis, bikini shopping is something quite different.

But firstly to illustrate the sheer size of my backside, not long ago I was walking down my own road, albeit I was wearing a body-con skirt but in my defence I was heading into town for a night out.  I’m just minding my business until I hear the horn of a car go, I turn round only to be greeted by a very considerate gentlemen.  So considerate in fact he had taken the time to climb half way out of a moving car’s window to yell pointing at me, ‘look at the back-end on that!’  I’m still none the wiser as to whether that was a compliment being given to my ‘back-end’ or not.

When it comes to the all important summer swimwear choice I am drawn in by the various patterns, tribal, aztec (although I’m convinced that’s the same thing as tribal) floral, stripy etc etc.  However why oh why do these shops not consider that perhaps some people have a bum? Bikinisets generally come in sizes 8, 10, 12 etc.  But why is it so hard to find separates with that same print you’ve fallen in love with in the sets?  Why can’t I buy a size 8 top and a 10, perhaps even a 12 for the bottom?  Now being an A cup on top usually isn’t a problem for fit, but having an above average size backside is.  But of course you can bet if the bikini fits like a dream on the bottom, its somewhat gaping on top.  Therefore I am usually one of those people that have to sneakily change the bottoms for a larger size, in fear of what I call the double bum.

Now the double bum is not the best look, especially when exposed on the beach.  Like I’ve said the top half usually is a perfect fit.  However the bottoms … no no no!  Too tight, normally exposing a little too much flesh for my liking and cutting in at all the wrong places. Creating what is usually, an unsightly bulge or bulges to be precise.  And to demonstrate further what I mean, this illustration should clear up any misunderstanding as to what the double bum is…

The double bum effectNow my bum is big, and I tell myself Kim Kardashian has this same genetic makeup.  And while that’s true, the double bum effect doesn’t quite have the sex appeal of a sculpted Kardashian posterior!

Of course you never see the likes of Jennifer Aniston or Katy Perry with this problem.  But of course they’ve got an army of dieticians, personal trainers etc etc.  But whilst focusing on these celebrities an the perfectly formed backsides, lustworthy legs and sculpted abs I think we all forget that that comes at a price.  Now I am not someone who is going to feel satisfied having eaten a handful of granola for breakfast, a bowl of soup for lunch and wait for it … An entire lettuce leaf for dinner.

I can’t be doing with that, I just try and eat healthily and try and exercise (even if thought of running makes want to crawl up into a hole and die).  I don’t want to be pumping iron at the gym everyday.  I just want to be healthy but enjoy myself, so if that means that a bar of chocolate now and then or a bowl of ice-cream is banned.  I’d rather keep the double bum.

 Follow me on twitter: @LucyBarclay1

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