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A quick update: a longer-than-expected blogging hiatus

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Image from Tumblr

Hello readers!

Alas, it seems that my small hiatus from writing ended up being a few months! Balancing studying part-time (well, one subject short of full-time) around working full-time, as well as adjusting to hubby’s new job (and long commutes as a result) has taken a bit of a toll on me creativity-wise. As a result, I have been left with little time, energy or inspiration to keep up with writing some posts on here since the start of the year.

However, now my first session of study for the year is over, I have three weeks to use to my advantage to try and get things back up and running. I’m giving myself a little goal of writing a new blog post/idea of a post every day (or 2nd day if I’ve built up more ideas from the day before) just to help me get back on track.

I do feel a bit unsure again of the direction things will take on here, but I know one thing: I want to keep it true to myself. I don’t want to be a try-hard trying to appeal to one particular niche, or try to pretend to be an expert in anything. I will continue to write honestly about life and its adventures in relation to my interests, chronic health and everything in between.

Thanks to those who keep encouraging me to keep blogging, and keep asking me for updates. It really helps me to stay inspired and keep writing!

Until next time (which is hopefully sooner, rather than later),

Mrs Ginger Fox 🙂

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Image from Tumblr

Christmas with Mrs Ginger Fox

Merry Christmas readers! I’m back after taking a break for a month, and am hoping to start 2016 with the blog going in a better direction. In the meantime, I wanted to write a few posts to end 2015 and reflect on the year. To begin with, my recap of Christmas:

Christmas is always a wonderful, yet busy time for me and my family. This is the first year since I started working full-time where I’ve been able to take extra leave around Christmas, so I have some extra time to relax. Normally, Christmas celebrations and catch-ups with family are crammed into a few days before I return to work for the first day of the following year. However, I’ve had an extra week off before Christmas, and two extra weeks off before returning to work. As my sister is also due to have her baby any moment (she’s technically due early January), our family didn’t make any extensive plans. This has meant that Christmas has been rather relaxed, and just about catching up with family.

My side of the family waits with anticipation for the arrival of my sister’s baby, which meant our Christmas has been quite close-knit: my brother and sister and their spouses joined hubby and I in seeing Star Wars, my sister and sister-in-law and I all went op-shopping together (the first time I’ve been in months!) and hubby and I joined my brother and his wife for a mini-LAN party playing some Borderlands. Today, I’m off to catch-up with my sister and sister-in-law again, and it just feels so special to have so many moments with my side of the family this Christmas. Whilst my birthday is this Sunday, we’ll all be catching up for a casual BBQ lunch and just taking it easy. It really is an exciting time of the year!

With my in-laws, we get to have an extended Christmas as my sister and brother-in-law and nieces are visiting their relatives and will return for the New Year. it’s always been such a joy to share Christmas with nieces and nephews: I feel I’m at an age where Christmas isn’t as “magical” as it used to be when I was younger: presents aren’t really exciting like when you were a child (I mean, gift giving is nice and all, but no longer the focus). For me, seeing nieces and nephews celebrate their first few Christmases and being able to share it with them is such a nice experience.

I also had an awesome bonding moment with my hubby’s parents: we played our very first game of Cards Against Humanity together. Little did I know that the first time I’d be playing this game would be with my in-laws, but it was hilarious and we had such a laugh together. It really was a great moment to share together.

Lastly, even though I mentioned that Christmas is no longer about gifts…I did receive a rather special gift. My dear hubby and some family members all pitched in to get me something I’ve wanted for about 10 years: a Shamisen (Japanese equivalent of a banjo, of sorts). This has really been a dream come true for me, and I’ve spent the past few days setting up the instrument and learning my first song. It’s bringing me a lot of joy so far – being able to practice a little bit of music everyday whilst learning an unfamiliar instrument.

Anyway, that’s pretty much the summary of what Christmas has been like for me and my family. I hope you all have a safe and happy holiday season!

Merry Christmas from Mrs Ginger Fox and hubby (Arjade/ZorakTheTroll)

Merry Christmas from Mrs Ginger Fox and hubby (Arjade/ZorakTheTroll)

Week 33 Update, 2015

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Hi there! Yet another week has passed, and I’m still quite unwell (hence another late post which I was meant to put up a few days ago – sorry). So, I bring you this update from home while I try and recover. Here’s what I’ve been up to:

-My sinus and ear infection is still present, and I’ve been fighting them all week. In fact, my ear infection has led to my ears being quite blocked, and being unable to hear properly. I went to work for all of last week, however I struggled to get through each day and was a coughing mess for most of the time. Pushing myself to be at work, combined with a reaction to the antibiotics I’m on for the infections has led to me having bad asthma (something I haven’t had for years). I ended up having to leave work on Monday and go straight to the doctors as I was having trouble breathing. Turns out, I was having a bad asthma attack, and I had a couple more during the day. So, I’m now on steroids for  few days to try and combat the asthma, and now have a puffer again. However, the steroids cause my blood sugar levels to become quite high, so I have also been tackling abnormally high blood sugar levels as a reaction to the steroids. It’s been really exhausting for me trying to combat all of the illnesses and their reactions to my diabetes, however I was on doctor’s orders to be on bed rest for the start of this week with no talking (it really triggers my asthma). I really hope that I’ll be on the mend this week, as I’ve been so sick this year and just want to have a healthier immune system again that doesn’t impact on my ability to be a normal, working, positive young adult.

-I also managed to have an embarrassing accident last weekend. At the local supermarket, I was walking along pushing the trolley, when my feet gave out from under me, I slipped backwards and completely stacked it onto the floor. Once I hit the ground, I found the reason for my fall – one single, squished grape someone had dropped on the floor on the way to the checkout. Luckily, my fall happened in front of the cash registers with lots of staff to assist. Luckily, I seemed to have only badly grazed my knee and have a bruised big toe after having it all checked by a doctor (on a side note: with my bad luck recently, the receptionists at the doctors now know me on a first name basis…haha). I’m really glad that nothing was damaged too badly, other than my pride (I was in my tracky dacks with no makeup and gross hair due to being ill, and fell over in peak hour of weekend grocery shopping). Oh well…with my string of bad luck lately, I surely have some good coming my way soon, I hope?

-I’m feeling pretty miserable that I haven’t been able to exercise or do lots of walking due to illness. Most of my working days last week were at around 7000 steps, and then bed rest days were at a maximum of 5000 – a big decrease in my normal activity. Considering I also haven’t been able to go to the gym for almost 2 weeks now has made me feel pretty useless. My muscles and lungs are quite sore due to the amount of coughing I’ve been doing over the past week, but I miss the feeling of muscles being stretched from exercise. Exercise also makes me such a more productive and happier person, and the absence of it is starting to make me feel quite down.

-Finally, I can reveal the sewing project I was working on! Hubby and I had a friend’s surprise birthday party to attend last weekend, which was a costume party for “Super Heroes and Villains”. Unfortunately, due to illness we were unable to attend, which I was pretty sad about as we made our costumes completely by hand! Hubby and I decided we were going as Aqua Man and Mera (his wife), and I went about making myself a flowing dress made out of shiny scale fabric. Mera normally wears a body suit, however I was definitely not-so-keen to do the same, so went about making myself a dress instead. The sewing project was actually quite easy, and went of relatively without a hitch, and I now have an epic dress for future costume parties and events. I’m currently working on a blog post about my progress on the dress so you can see how it all unfolded step-by-step, however just wanted to share what I’ve been up to, now I can finally reveal the project 🙂

-This Thursday (which is actually tonight at the time of uploading this post), I officially start my postgraduate studies. I’ve been gradually prepping myself, organising a study space at home, setting up my computer and making up a study routine to follow. I am hoping that over the new few weeks, I’ll be trying out some study tips, apps and other bits and pieces and will review them on here. I received the updated subject outline last week, and notes for the first lecture, and the subject seems like one that’s a great introduction subject for me: it touches on approaching business from a professional and personal perspective, and has lots of interesting case studies. I’m hoping it will be the positive, encouraging boost of a subject that I need to get my brain into the motion of academic learning again!

-Over the next few weeks, I’ve set myself a goal to start working more on my appearance and dressing more for me (or how I want myself to be). Since becoming ill, it’s been a struggle for me to put outfits together and match the brightness of the outfits which have become my favourite confidence-boosting pieces. I’ve also not been in a position to buy many new pieces for my wardrobe, but am aiming to start giving myself a little budget to saving for those prized pieces I want to call my own. As such, I’ve been working on a big “wish list” of pieces I feel I need to complete my wardrobe collection, based on the past year of wishlists I have online, as well as combating the practicality of pieces (making sure they’ll be able to be worn in many different outfit combinations). This is to hopefully stop me from impulse buys, and work more towards a stricter budget to start saving for bigger things (a deposit for a house) and be more financially stable. I’m also hoping to start working more on my hair (once I have recovered from my present illnesses), and start doing wet-sets more often now I have all of the tools I need. I’ve had these goals for at least the past year, and want to start working on them while I have the time to focus on them.

That’s all I’ve been up to for the past week. Thanks for reading, and for hanging in there whilst I’ve been ill, unproductive and uninspiring in writing not as much content on here. I’m hoping I’ll get my inspiration back soon! 🙂

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Week 29 Update, 2015

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Hello there! Apologies for another late update post for the past week – unfortunately I had a few medical issues over the weekend and on Monday, so I had to have a little break from writing. Anyway, here’s what I’ve been up to:

-On Saturday, and again yesterday (Monday), I had some diabetes complications. For unknown reasons, I had extremely high blood sugar levels (over 25 mmol), and they were refusing to lower themselves no matter what I tried to do. Hubby almost took me to the hospital, however as I had no ketones (therefore not as much risk of ketoacidosis), we decided to wait it out. Both times, my blood sugars stabilised between 3-5 hours after having the initial blood sugar reading of 30. The second time, however, I was able to get through to my diabetes doctors, who suggested that I may have had a “bad” insulin pump site, where the insulin was not absorbing properly into my system. This could have been due to a build-up of insulin in the same area, or a whole lot of factors. After I did a complete change of my insulin pump site, my levels have since stabilised. Overall, the whole experience was quite scary – not being able to pinpoint a reason as to why my levels were so high, combined with not being able to reduce the levels is something I haven’t really experienced before. To top it off, I ended up having a hypo last night after the whole ordeal, so I am completely exhausted! It’s been tough – I’ve gone through the past few weeks of having lots of hypos, and to now have these unexpected high blood sugar levels…my Type 1 Diabetes is definitely not my friend at the moment.

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This.

-On top of diabetes health scares, I also had another health scare last week. I had my first anxiety/panic attack in a very long time (in fact, I don’t remember the last time I had one – it’s been that long). It was completely unexpected for me – nothing obvious had triggered it, and I felt completely helpless when it happened. It was pretty embarrassing (we had friends visiting at the time), and it ended up giving me quite a bad migraine/illness the following day. I really thought that I had gotten reasonably better with handling my stress and anxiety levels, but this came out of the blue for me. It’s left me pretty frustrated, overall.

-Curves Complete has been a roller-coaster this week while I’ve been tackling the above health issues. However, I’m proud that I was able to keep up my workout routine around it all. I appear to have lost the weight that I put on last week, and reached my step goals the majority of the time. I’m really hoping that my health won’t impact my process this coming week.

-Last weekend, hubby and I participated in the 24 hour Twitch TV stream with our lovely friends at Gorilla Wolf. The stream was held to farewell Ash, who is returning to Canada for now (she will be returning to the US – the stream was to help fundraise to make this happen). I’ve said it so many times before – these guys are fantastic and have such potential. It’s hard to explain, but for hubby and I, these guys are like extreme pen-pals to us: we get to hang out with them each week, swap stories and support each other. Gorilla Wolf have just started up a Patreon campaign to help their dreams of running Gorilla Wolf (via Twitch, podcasts, YouTube and a website) a reality, and hubby and I have signed up. These guys take the time and effort to really communicate with their fans, involve the community that they have created in the work they produce and maintain such a positive attitude. They really deserve a lucky break, and I highly recommend checking out their Patreon and donating  – even $1 a month will bring these guys closer to making their dreams a reality.

-Hubby and I did our regular Friday night and Saturday morning streams on Twitch TV last week (we hosted Gorilla Wolf for their 24-hour stream, therefore had no Sunday stream). It’s been really exciting seeing that we now have regular visitors and participants in our stream – it makes us feel so encouraged to keep our stream running. Streaming on Twitch TV also gives us the chance to play through video games – having the time “booked in” for it means we get to regularly keep up a hobby we were struggling to do otherwise.

-Something very exciting happened last week: I have a sewing project! I have to keep what I’m making a secret (I can reveal in a few weeks what it is for), but I have the chance to make a very cool dress. I spent the weekend finding a very easy pattern to use for a stretchy dress (the fabric I’ll be using is a bit “special”), and I’m hoping to get things started next week. Once I can reveal what I’ve been making, I’m hoping to write up a post of the process.

That’s about all I’ve been up to! Thanks for reading 🙂

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Week 20 Update, 2015

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Hello readers! After a busy weekend of cleaning (yay, rental inspections!) I’m taking a moment to write my update for the past week before I am too forgetful. It’s been a long week! So, here’s what I’ve been up to:

-Last week, I officially settled back into the Curves Complete program. It appears that after having three months off to recover and heal up my leg, I’ve only really gained a kilo or so from where I left off at the gym. Considering I spent two months where I could barely do any physical activity due to my leg, this is a massive relief for me. I’ve set a few realistic goals to help me get back into the swing of having the gym and exercising as a daily habit. I managed to get back into my 4 days of gym last week (including a Saturday morning session…I was crazily motivated), go on a walk every lunch break, and exceeded my step goal for 5/7 days. The only things I need to reintroduce are my strictness to following my Curves Complete meal plan, as well as yoga before bed. So, as of this Monday, I’m starting back on Phase 1 of the Curves Complete program just for one week to ‘jump-start’ my system. Currently, I was on Phase 3 of the program, where there’s quite a large food allowance in comparison to Phase 1. However, after three months of no exercise and not looking after my food choices as well as I could have, I’d like to give it a go. So, if I am cranky or stressed this week, it’s likely going to be due to my change in food amounts. That being said, yoga really helps with my stress levels, and now that I’m able to sit on the floor with my legs crossed (my NLD flare-up did not like this one bit), I’ll be able to start doing some small exercises before bed. I am SO excited and motivated towards getting myself back on track to being healthy and happier, now that I have some long-term goals in mind!

-Over the past week and a bit, hubby and I have reached our goal of 100 subscribers to our YouTube channel, Arjadia. Our channel was originally just run by hubby, who focused on retro game ‘let’s play’ videos. However, I recently also became involved to help him have more variety of content. As a thank-you to all who have supported us so far and given suggestions and feedback, we’re holding a giveaway, which closes on June 10th. Details can be found in the following video, however in summary we are giving away $20 for Steam to one lucky subscriber. To enter, you must be subscribed to our channel, and leave a comment on the giveaway video with your suggestion on what we should be doing next on our YouTube channel. We will then select the best/most creative entry. I’m pretty excited about this – being on YouTube was something I initially wasn’t very keen on doing, however it’s really grown on me and I can’t wait to share more gaming reviews and play-throughs. Plus, it’s something awesome that hubby and I can do together 🙂

-I mentioned last week that we were having some financial struggles. Well, this week I’d like to really express how thankful and grateful I/we are for our families. We received some fantastic support and generosity from our families over the past week, which has been really touching. As I’ve grown older, I’ve started realising how amazing our families are. Both sides are truly supportive and encouraging of all family members, and go out of their way to ensure  no one is struggling or having too rough of a time. Such care is quite rare in a large number of families these days, so we really count ourselves as lucky and blessed to have this. Hubby and I now see that, even though we’ll have some financially tough times for the next few weeks, they’re not as bad as we thought and we’ll be able to get by.

-Last week, we received news that our real estate/landlord wanted to inspect the property within the next week or two. With such short notice (I thought we were meant to have two weeks’ notice), our place has been in shambles due to not having time to clean. However, with hubby having a free afternoon which matched with the real estate’s schedule, we managed to pencil in a Monday inspection –giving us the weekend to tidy. I guess it was the motivation to kick ourselves into gear with tidying up. Since having my NLD flare up, I’ve been pretty useless in keeping the place tidy. Plus, at the best of times, I’m not the tidiest person. In particular, I find it really difficult to keep on top of tidying a place when renting. It’s hard to explain – I think the idea that the place isn’t actually ‘ours’ is quite un-motivating for me when it comes to doing a tidy-up. That being said, I should be all OCD about keeping it tidy due to the fact that it isn’t ‘ours’, however because I don’t have that feeling of ownership or a connection with the place, it’s tough. Anyway, enough said – the place got tidied, and we’ve had a rather boring, exhausting weekend as a result.

-Actually, we did take one small break from tidying over the weekend, where we popped into the local Comic Convention event called ComicGong. The convention is in its second year (from memory), and you could tell that the word had gotten out about it. Unfortunately, I can’t do a full review of the event as I only popped in to visit some friends of hubby’s to briefly check out their stall. However, from my observations, the convention was way too crowded: it was tough for any normal person to easily walk through the event, let alone anyone with limited mobility (I was struggling with my leg in some parts). With the exposure and great promotion of the event, attendance numbers have soared for it, it seems. Therefore, hopefully the convention is moved to a larger area for future years. That being said, the convention had a great variety of stalls, extended range of cosplayers and great atmosphere. I hope I get to attend future ComicGongs!

That’s all I’ve been up to, for now! Thanks for reading 🙂

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Week 16 Update, 2015 (sorry it’s late!)

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Apologies for the delayed post, yet again! I’ve had a crazy busy week with work, which started with all-day event at work on Monday, where due to being outside in torrential rain and wind, I became quite unwell. However, I have strived to make sure a post gets to the blog for my weekly update! The rest of this week was full of a work conference and many big work events, so apologies if next week’s update is a bit bland.

In all honesty, the past week has been a blur, so am not sure what I’ll be able to update you about!

-My NLD seems to be getting better! The dermatologist wants one more check over next week before he can decide if I’m ready to return to the gym and trying to walk more. What’s been even more exciting is that I can actually *see* the difference in my ulcers. They have healed over much more, and have become “itchy”, which is normally a sign for me that my skin is starting to turn into a scar in those areas. After some investigation on the NLD group I’m a part of in Facebook-land, it seems that my NLD was going through a stage of being “dormant”, in a sense, since 2013ish. However, for several reasons which could include stress, sickness and humidity, the NLD and its ulcers became active again in late January this year. I am really, really hoping that my NLD has recovered enough for me to start being active again next week.

-On another note, I’ve had a rather negative week relating to self-confidence, especially related to appearance. Due to my NLD, as you already know, I’ve had to stop going to the gym since February, and do minimal walking and maximum resting. As a result, I’ve gone backwards in my progress at the gym, I’ve put on weight, and my energy levels have dropped. To top it all off, I discovered over the weekend that I currently can’t comfortably fit into any of my jeans. I needed to have some jeans for a work event this week, and discovering that I couldn’t wear any of my current supply of jeans due to weight gain was really upsetting for me. Hubby was able to talk some sense into me, as he reminded me that I need to rest to be healthy – if I kept at the gym and pushing myself, my NLD would not heal. So, the rest time now is for my overall long-term health, and I can easily get back on the wagon and lose the weight I’ve gained over the short-term. I really wish I could have my immune conditions

-Over the weekend, I had the chance to play the Elder Scrolls Online due to the “Welcome Back Weekend” event. I have been ever-so-curious about trying out this MMO since I’ve become hooked on the Elder Scrolls game series (note: Skyrim has been filling a LOT of my spare time whilst I’ve been unable to go to the gym and go outside…perfect game to play when you are on bedrest). Overall, I am incredibly impressed; this game has the depth that World of Warcraft was missing for me, and I love the world of the game. So, I’m looking at writing up a review on this game, and compare it to World of Warcraft. I might also compare these to my brief experience in playing Neverwinter online too.

-Update on plans for the future and “the epiphany”: as per the usual warning, I can’t go into specific detail about this. However, it seems that this may be a little further away than I hoped. Overall, it seems that working on having some savings and being more financially secure is a priority before we investigate the ideas we have further. It’s hard, because I can see how amazing our plans are, and how positive these plans are for my/our future, but it’s a realistic approach. Jumping straight into the deep end isn’t the best way to approach this at the moment.

-I’m still researching whether I’m going to take up some more learning to “up-skill” areas I want to be qualified in. Web Development, Digital Media and Graphic Design are all on the cards still. However, again, I don’t want to start anything unless I have the time, savings and better health. I want to pursue a qualification for the right reasons, therefore also don’t want to rush into it without thinking thing through.

-Wow. Reading this week back, I’ve realised how draining this is to read…and I’m sorry. Health (which is not showing any signs of letting me get back to living my normal and productive life), combined with stress and raised anxiety levels has really been getting to me lately. However, it’s important for me to acknowledge that I’ve had a bad week, and even more so to keep writing each week (a goal I made myself since the start of 2013, and have kept to). I think it’s important to demonstrate (especially online) that life is not always the perfect picture that can be painted online. Heck, there were so many times I wanted to put up an Instagram post last week complaining about how shitty it is to have three incurable chronic immune diseases…but it just wasn’t the right time, and I wanted to reflect on it when I was in a better head space. These weekly update posts give me the chance to get it out of my system, and move on to the next week. Again, I apologise that it’s been a bit of a less-than-positive and uninspiring post. Here’s hoping next week brings better things 🙂

Thanks for hanging in there, and reading through the whole update. I hope to bring lots of exciting news and posts in the next few weeks!

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My Favourite Bloggers and Online Communities

As a casual/amateur blogger, I am always seeking to find inspiration and support through following some amazing people and communities. These blogs and websites continually motivate me to stay positive, be creative and also to go after what I am passionate about. I am so thankful for finding these incredible people, who I follow on a regular (sometimes daily) basis, and am happy to share them with you now!

In no particular order…

Frocks and Frou Frou

Image from http://frocksandfroufrou.com/

Image from http://frocksandfroufrou.com/

Frocks and Frou Frou is the very first plus-size fashion blog I ever followed (back in 2009!). From the moment I found the blog through mutual friends on Facebook, I fell in love with blogger Lilli’s classic yet unique and quirky style. Being an Australian blogger based in Melbourne, Lilli also provides some fantastic feedback on purchasing from some of the major plus-size brands, as well as some easy-to-follow DIY projects. Her style of writing is friendly, informative and easy-to-read, and she has a very supportive fan following. For any of my plus-sized friends, I highly encourage you to follow Frocks and Frou Frou!

The Militant Baker

Image from http://www.themilitantbaker.com/

Image from http://www.themilitantbaker.com/

If you’re looking for empowerment and positive body talk, this is the blog to follow. When I first discovered the diverse and supportive community of plus-sized bloggers, this is the blogger that they all mentioned as an inspiration. Jess now not only pursues her body positivity on a full-time basis, but also runs some epic conferences over in the US, which would be amazing to attend one day! In particular, the first post of Jess’ which I read (my favourite too) is this: http://www.themilitantbaker.com/2013/03/things-no-one-will-tell-fat-girls-so-i.html

I highly recommend following Jess if you’re someone who is looking for a body-positive online community, as well as looking at how to love your body better: whether it be plus-size, average or skinny!

Offbeat Bride/Home

Image from http://offbeatbride.com/

Image from http://offbeatbride.com/

If you’re getting married, I am now introducing you to the Mecca of resources. Offbeat Bride was the only blog/medium (they also have a book) that gave me realistic expectations for my wedding, and helped me plan a unique, affordable, quirky-yet-beautiful wedding. After unsuccessfully getting any inspiration through common bridal magazines (seriously…I only found a handful of weddings under $20, 000 in these magazines, which was ridiculous), it was such a godsend to discover this website. The community is HUGE, and the forums are incredible for finding DIY inspiration, advice and ideas. However, this website doesn’t just stop at weddings – they also have a massive section dedicated to life/living/home in general. The posts relate easily to everyday life (especially if you’re a crafty/arty/creative person), and you can easily find yourself spending hours on their sites gaining more and more ideas for future projects.

Gorilla Wolf  (check out their TwitchTV Channel here)

Image from http://www.gorillawolf.com/

Image from http://www.gorillawolf.com/

My absolute go-to for anything gaming-related, Gorilla Wolf are probably the newest group of peeps I follow on a regular basis. Gorilla Wolf is run by Dom and James, who are aiming to make this their full-time pursuit. I discovered Gorilla Wolf through my husband when we started to watch video game streams on TwitchTV. After spending ages trawling through the channels to find an entertaining Zelda play-through, we found these guys doing such an entertaining job at Majora’s Marsk (they were terribly lost though, haha). What kept us watching these guys is their entertainment value, dedication to investigating and reporting on new games, and their massive commitment to making their chat and followers as engaging as possible. We watch their TwitchTV channel on a weekly basis, and are so excited to see where the future takes them. If you’re after good gaming commentaries and play-throughs online with a friendly fan following, check out these guys ASAP!

The Adventures of Modern June Cleaver and Amelia Jetson

Image from http://junebugsandgeorgiapeaches.blogspot.com.au/

Image from http://junebugsandgeorgiapeaches.blogspot.com.au/

June and Amelia, two best friends run an amazing website which follows their retro and vintage-inspired fashion adventures. These two are my absolute inspiration when it comes to perfecting the vintage/retro look. They are such friendly and positive ladies too, and are willing to help out fellow retro fashion bloggers – they are so supportive and active on Instagram! Whenever these ladies share their outfits, they always link to each piece in their outfit, making it so easy to track down. These lovely ladies also host giveaways on their website from some incredible brands such as Erstwilder and Deer Arrow.

Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing

Image from http://www.blogforbettersewing.com/

Image from http://www.blogforbettersewing.com/

This lady and her amazing blog have inspired me to try and re-start one of my favourite hobbies from when I was younger: sewing. When I discovered her blog, little did I know that she also had a book. Within minutes of discovering her blog, I also found myself purchasing her first book, and I now also own her second book based on casual vintage. Gertie has a way of explaining her sewing projects in an easy-to-follow manner, and always includes pictures in her steps (I tend to get lost when following sewing instructions, so this is hugely helpful!) Gertie also creates patterns sold through Butterick, and also shares these through her blog. Her passion for sewing, as well as seeing the projects of her followers, makes this blog a fantastic creative outlet for those wishing to get some much-needed inspiration. She’s made me start the adventure of sitting with my sewing machine and tackling some long-awaited projects!

Who do you look to online for inspiration? Feel free to share your thoughts 🙂

This post was polished by Page & Parchment.

2014- Week 50!

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10 days til Christmas…and I have so much Christmas shopping to do still. With less than two weeks to go at work, I’m pretty excited and can’t wait for the break 🙂 Here’s what’s been happening over the past week:

-This post will be the last post you’ll see on my blog/website in its current format. On Friday, my husband and I will be working on moving my blog over to new hosting and making up the new layout (so it will be all set for the New Year). There may be some down-time, therefore apologies if there is during this time. I’m aiming that all the posts will be exported over, however there may be a small chance that some of my older posts will be lost. Anyway, I’m a bit nervous, but excited about the changes coming up to this site. I hope it inspires me to write more posts and ones with very different and varied content, and am hoping it too inspires you to keep reading here 🙂

-Curves Complete has been really tough to balance around my lifestyle this week. I’ve had Christmas parties, errands to run for Christmas, and crazy storms which has meant I haven’t gotten to the gym as much as I’d like to. I also had a hypo at the gym, therefore meaning that I didn’t get to complete one of my workouts. Also, hubby and I wanted to spend some quality time together this week, as we’ve been so busy. I didn’t get my steps up to speed this week due to dodgy weather and being busy around work, however we’ve been aiming to eat well over the past week with lots of salads. However, I know that I haven’t done my best over the past week and am disappointed with myself, and I know my gym coaches will be too. It is my fault though, and I’m hoping to try harder this week and (once we get to go food shopping) have more healthier food choices and less temptations of bad food because of stress.

-Over the past week, I’ve had a couple of people comment that I’m not as positive as I normally have been over the past year (particularly in the workplace). This year in particular has been difficult for me in this environment due to seeing so much negativity, lack of compassion from higher-ups and good people being taken advantage of and not being offered opportunities. It’s been really hard for me to maintain a positive attitude when so many changes have happened which haven’t had a great outcome in the end. I’ve also had a really tough time this year with my diabetes and immune system (including my WorkCover injury), where I’ve had to take a lot of sick leave. This has made me feel so guilty and that I’ve been letting the office down. It’s such a contrast, because out of this environment (in my everyday life), I’ve felt more positive than I’ve ever been as an adult. Therefore, I’m going to start working on maintaining positivity in all parts of life (including the workplace), even if I have to fake it. This week in particular, as well as the next few weeks are going to be particularly hard to apply this to (for various reasons which I won’t mention here), but I guess it’s better to be thrown in the deep end to begin with. I’m sorry if there’s anyone who has been impacted by my lack of being positive all the time 🙁

-This week I had my first trial of running a Dungeons and Dragons game, where my husband was the test player. It was just a small dungeon based in the Forgotten Realms campaign I want to run, and we only completed the intro and first room of the dungeon. Whilst I did enjoy GMing, there’s a lot of things to remember, which made me quite exhausted! I’m hoping to finish this test dungeon this week, and will then start researching and preparing a more thorough game. As hubby has been playing The Legeng of Zelda, Twilight Princess over the weekend, I am considering whether I could run a Legend of Zelda campaign as well. I do have the knowledge to run such a campaign, but would have to find players who would be interested in this.

-The weekend was awesome, because I got to relax and do some reading. I’m enjoying reading books from women who I view as powerful and positive role models such as Amy Poehler, Tara Moss and Cyndi Lauper. I’m still hoping I can reach the Goodreads goal I set myself for the year, but it means setting aside time to read every day to do so!

That’s about it for this week’s updates. Next week, this blog will hopefully be looking different, but will be much more exciting and diverse. So, here’s signing off on the format of this blog, which I’ve had for the past two years. I look forward to sharing my new website with you next week! Thanks for reading 🙂

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2014- Week 49

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Hello again! It’s the start of another week, and another week closer to Christmas. This week in particular, it’s felt very busy as we’ve been sorting out a lot of things before the end of the year. Here’s what I’ve been up to over the past week:

-Over the past few days in particular, I’ve been prepping for the relaunch of my website/blog. My dear husband spent quite a bit of time over the weekend making me a header/logo for the new site which looks absolutely incredible. I’m starting to brainstorm on the layout of the new site, how I’ll be setting up posts and also starting to write a few posts (so I’m prepped to deliver content in advance). I’m planning to write smaller, yet more frequent posts on the site with varied content: perhaps one “weekly update”, one opinion piece, and one based on clothing/games/music etc. I actually want to start writing more about the things I know, such as living with Type 1 Diabetes and Coeliac Disease, with posts related to this including Gluten-Free dining recommendations and travelling tips etc. In the next fortnight I’m hoping to start moving the blog over, which hopefully won’t break the website or take it offline in the process. So, if you do see any weird changes or stuff not working on here in the next few weeks, please let me know. Am hoping it will be an easy process moving it over from WordPress.com to WordPress.org (which will be hosted by GoDaddy, after much deliberation).

-Curves Complete program has been average this week for me. I worked hard to pass my step goal, which I did on 5/7 days this week. I surpassed 10,000 steps on 3 of those days! I’ve also been smashing my water intake requirements, thanks to us purchasing a Sodastream to go with our new fridge. I haven’t been using the syrups, I’ve just been making up bubbly water and adding lemon and cucumber (which is so refreshing, but I must try adding mint too!). Now we have our fridge, we managed to stock up on some fresh fruit and veggies and have started making heaps of salads. However, I do keep struggling with weekends, where I tend to make bad food choices, eat more (especially if I’m gaming or bored), and don’t get as many steps as during the week. Even if my progress is slow, I’m on a plateau and I could be stricter with my plan, I’m still making progress. Considering I’ve shrunk more than 30cm since starting earlier this year, I’ve accomplished quite a lot for someone who has a few chronic immune conditions that like to throw spanners in the works. In fact, this is probably the first year in my adult life where I’ve lost more weight than I’ve gained this year (and I’ll be ending the year weighing less than the start!). That’s something to be pretty happy about 🙂

-My husband keeps encouraging to GM my own Dungeons and Dragons game, and this week I finally took the first step in prepping for this. Firstly, my husband has written an awesome post on his site for first-time GMers, which can be accessed here. It’s a great read, and very encouraging for someone like me who is quite anxious about trying to impress newbie players and experienced players at the same time. Over the weekend, I developed my first mini-dungeon for hubby’s characters to have a run-through of, and I will be making another test dungeon once this has had a run-through. It is based in my favourite campaign setting of the Forgotten Realms, however I’ll be doing a lot of reading and research over the next few weeks to really get a feel for the type of game I want to run. Hopefully, I’ll be ready to start a game in the New Year, if I’m confident enough.

-It’s also now less than a month until I turn 25. I’ll be halfway to 50 (haha…), or 5 years to being 30. And you know what? I’m feeling pretty “meh” about it. I don’t even really want to make a big fuss about it. I guess one of the main reasons for this is because of how close my birthday falls to Christmas (it’s 10 days after), which means it’s quite difficult to even try and celebrate or have a party because most people are away on holidays. Also, the two celebrations are so close together that I kind of feel like I never get to celebrate my birthday to the same extent as others who have them later in the year (I know, it sounds selfish, and I sympathise with those who also have birthdays close to Christmas). Also, now I work full-time my birthday is normally one of the first few days back at work for the New Year. Luckily, it’s on a Saturday this time, but it normally isn’t (and I normally do work on it). I’m also not the most social person (I’m pretty socially awkward, actually) and usually struggle if it’s an event where I have to be in the spotlight. I’ve also had a history of trying to organise parties, and then little to no people turn up anyway. So yeah, not too excited about turning 25…

That’s about it for this week’s update. Between running around doing Christmas Shopping, getting new appliances sorted (fridge, toaster and Sodastream) and being very busy with work, there’s not too much to write about in detail. However, there’s some great things ahead with the new improved website I’m working on…hopefully you’ll like it! Thanks for reading 🙂

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2014- Week 48!

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Hello there! Here’s my latest update:

-Over the weekend, I’ve been thinking about how to move forward with this blog. I’ve decided that, as of the New Year, I’ll be moving my blog to a private host, finally using WordPress.org (rather than the commercial .com), and also customising it more to suit the direction I want to go in. I want to use it as a more personal project to work on my writing, so whilst I will have a weekly update, I’ll be splitting the blog into sections. This will include my Curves Complete program updates, reviews on products I buy, my gaming experience and also any other commentaries. My dear husband is also going to be working on a custom header for me, and I’m hoping to move everything over in time for January 1st. You may start seeing some changes over the next few weeks, and perhaps some of my older content may go missing/not transfer over properly (fingers crossed that it does, though!), but as long as you use the url for this site, you will be able to access it. Now I feel more confident in being myself, as well as writing about myself and not caring about how small/large the reader audience is, I’m ready to take a step upwards and start a website/blog that reflects me better.

-Curves Complete was a bit stalled for me this week. After a very emotional week previously, I’m still struggling to get back into the gym with the same passion I had before I left for our honeymoon. My weight has plateaued, and I’m also struggling with getting my steps up and sticking to the meal plan. The coaches at the gym have been hard on me (which I do deserve, since I’ve been so lazy and emotionally eating), and I should have done a better job this week. I’ll be having my weigh-in today, and am hoping I get measured too so I can see some progress.

-Slowly, over the past few weeks, my confidence has been building in how I’ve been dressing. Initially, I was worried that because it was “different” to how most people dress (especially in an office environment) I would get into trouble. However, I’ve gotten so many compliments which has helped me continue to keep wearing the clothing that I *want* to wear (rather than things that seem appropriate to an office and fit me, yet are not very flattering and styles I don’t like). I’ve also gotten to the stage of saying “stuff it” in regards to what people think anyway; there’s no way I’ll ever fit the “type” suited of someone bland and who keeps up with modern fashion etc. Besides, even with my quirky style, it’s still quite a conservative one anyway. I can’t wait to add more items to my collection as I start having the style of wardrobe I’ve been dreaming of for such a long time, but I thought I couldn’t have because of my size. Very happy about this 🙂

-This week, something pretty special also happened. A photo of one of my outfits on Instagram was posted by Pinup Girl Clothing (yes, *the* epic pinup fashion company) and via Erstwilder on their social media sites. I was so ecstatic when I found out: not because I had a moment of being famous for as I felt really honoured to even receive a mention through their pages. Being a plus-size lady who doesn’t really have the typical body shape associated with a pin-up, I was concerned that I couldn’t “rock” the look well enough. However, from the shared picture, I’ve received so much love on Instagram with new likers and followers; all sharing in the love of fashion for all sizes and body types. It’s incredible being a part of such a welcoming and friendly community of women supporting each other and building up positivity in dressing how we want to.

-I spent this week getting back on the bandwagon for reading. I set myself a goal to try and read more this year, and with studying I did read quite a lot. However, it wasn’t really books/journals of my choosing. So, over the weekend, I managed to log in to my Goodreads account and realised I’m way behind in my goal to read 30 books this year (a goal I thought was a tiny, yet easily achievable one). To be fair, I have re-read several books on my “read” list this year, so I’m only about 10 books behind. Therefore, I’m aiming to have met the Goodreads goal by the end of this year. I managed to read 2 books on the weekend, and am making an active effort to meet this goal. Last night I ready Amy Poehler’s “Yes Please” autobiography, which was amazing, and I’m currently reading Tara Moss’ “The Fictional Woman”. I’m trying to read more books from women (in particular) who are inspirational to me. It’s so important to dedicate leisure time to reading, and it’s going to be a goal I’m setting myself to meet my Goodreads yearly goal.

-I’ve been feeling very down about my diabetes this week. Sometimes, it’s hard having auto-immune diseases (I have two), because people can’t visibly see that you’re sick. I’ve even had situations recently where people have thought I was faking a hypo, or wasn’t “actually” sick. Having to explain each and every time how my immune system is attacked, and how this can affect me becoming sick with other infectious conditions (due to having a weaker immune system) has been really tiring this week. It’s an ironic double edged sword: I just want to fit in and not be treated differently because I have type 1 diabetes and Coeliac disease (try to make it appear that it’s nothing too serious), yet I’m frustrated that people don’t understand that extent of these conditions and how they affect me on a daily basis. I’m getting exhausted in balancing these two worries, and I’m also feeling quite down about myself because of having these conditions. What if these conditions are holding me back from achieving everything I could? What if they are the reason I haven’t been able to process further in studies and a career? I know that in reality, they shouldn’t (as it’s discrimination), but I wonder if having them has personally affected me and made my abilities less than they should be. It’s really hard to explain, but I’ve felt incredibly sad and disappointed in myself this week thanks to my bloody invisible auto-immune diseases. My heart really goes out to anyone who is fighting the same battle on a daily basis. It’s tough!

That’s about it for this week! I’ll be focusing a lot on development of the new and improved website, and moving everything over in the next few weeks. So, these updates may be a little bit smaller/bland-er…apologies in advance! Thanks for reading 🙂

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