Monday, 30 September 2013

O C T O B E R D A I L Y: A B L O G G I N G C H A L L E N G E

I'm such a procrastinator. A serial procrastinator. But I solemnly swear to not neglect this blog, not now, not ever! So to help me get back into the whole blogging thingy majiggy..I've decided to take part in The October Daily: Blogging Challenge. Thanks to the lovely Mary @ Secret Obsession I'll finally be blogging daily and making use of all the time I have in my ever so boring life. (Ha!) I've never taken part in a blogging challenge before but it seems like fun so I thought I'd give it a go.
Here's the interesting topics Mary @ Secret Obsession came up with:
1. Share at least five reasons why you blog.
2. Get a certain or favorite lyric/s from your favorite song, and tell us how it inspires or describes you. 
3. Share a high school memory that you will never forget.
4. Share your experience during your first few weeks/months in blogging.
5. Complete the sentence: If I had a _________, I would __________. You can make as many sentences as you'd like.
6. Dig out a childhood photo and share something you remember happening during that time the photo was taken. You can post as many photos and describe as many events if you like.
7. Go without something (e.g. phone, twitter) for a day and tell us what it feels like.
8. Share a blogging/photography tip or tutorial.
9. What are 5 songs that elevate your mood?
10. Pick 3 random blogs from the link-up below, describe their blog, and tell us what you think about it! Share a snippet/screen capture of their blog too!
11. What are the things you love to do during rainy days? List them down!
12. Your day in photos.
13. Comment on this: If you cannot find a way out, look up.
14. What are your Top 5 favorite posts in your blog? Don't forget to share a link so we can check it out!
15. Post you favorite word and describe it in photos.
16. What are your goals and dreams for the future? You can share to us your dream house, dream workplace, or even your bucketlist before you turn 25!
17. Time for Throwback Thursday! Raid your archives and re-post something you want us to read!
18. Name at least 3 scents that trigger a good or bad memory.
19. Write about something you believe in. It can be anything at all!
20. Show us what's in your bag!
21. Guest posting! Write 5 questions, ask someone from the link up below to answer it for you, and post their answers on your blog! To make sure everyone is invited to guest post, ask the blogger whether he/she's invited for a guest post already. If not, then you can ask another blogger. If you've been asked to guest post more than once, do all of them! :) 
22. Post a review about a book, lipstick or anything you like! Rate it in a scale of 1 to 5.
23. If you could hang out with a celebrity for a day, who would that celebrity be? Why did you choose to hang out with him/her? What would you do or where would you spend that day?
24. Write a letter to someone whom you judged by first impression. It can be a serious or a humorous one! :)
25. Tell us a bit about the place where you grew up. Don't forget to include a couple of photos!
26. Enumerate the ways that a guy can win your heart.
27. Imagine you are only seventeen right now, and your big 18th birthday bash is happening next month. How are you going to plan for it? Like: What would the theme be? How many people are invited? Will it happen at the beach? Be creative! It's your birthday after all. Don't forget the photos! :)
28. Outfit post! Show us your favorite or your usual get-up!
29. How would you define 'Happiness'? 
30. Share a generous act that you did to a complete stranger. (e.g. helping an old lady with her luggage and getting asked to join her for a snack!)
31. Who are the people you miss? What are the things that you miss doing together?
If you wanna take part in The October Daily: Blogging Challenge then link up your blog here :-) 

30 day we go!

Okay, so 7 months ago I purchased the Jillian Michaels 30 day shred DVD.....and I still haven't used if! Terrible I know! I've read and heard nothing but good reviews about this DVD but I just haven't got round to trying it out just yet.
So seeing as we're officially in October I've decided I WILL start the 30 day shred! I've put on a ridiculous amount of weight over the past month due to my medication so hopefully I'll be able to burn all this unwanted fat off! Plus, I looked in my wardrobe the other day to see size 10 clothes that don't even fit me anyone and I refuse to buy new clothes in bigger sizes! 
Fingers crossed I'll be slimmer and trimmer in 30 days time. I'll let you know how it goes and if I'm happy with the results then I might even post a cheeky pic! 
Click here to buy Jillian Michaels: 30 Day Shred [DVD] - £5.00

Sunday, 29 September 2013

On the look out:....for an AW13 Coat

Winter is soon approaching, which means we have to welcome back the dreaded cold nights! I've always been more of an autumn/winter kind of girl as I love the whole layering thing so the thought of investing in a new winter coat excites me as a matter of fact! Every girl needs a good ol' staple coat to add to her wardrobe and if you need help looking for one, I've narrowed it down to my top 7 faves. 

3. H&M boucle jacket - £34.99

Which one do you like best? (P.S...number 2 is my ultimate FAVE!)


Friday, 27 September 2013

Lying to be perfect.

Why does the way we see ourselves always differ from the way others see us? As women, our self perception is so inaccurate that we fail to see ourselves for who we really are. 
Just the other day I watched a film called "Lying to be perfect". It was about an overweight, frumpy magazine editor who is constantly overlooked by her co-workers. Wanting to be appreciated, she makes up an alter-ego. "Belinda Apple", a slim, glam advice columnist who encourages women to recognise their undiscovered beauty. In other words, she was living a lie. Now let's face it, we've all told little white lies but who are we damaging? Nobody but ourselves. Our insecurities are stopping us from reaching our full potential.
We spend a lot of time over analysing ourselves, looking for things to change. How many times have you said "I wish my thighs were slimmer" "oh I want a flatter stomach" or "I hate my nose"? The list goes on because we've all been there and done that. We need to appreciate the things we do like about ourselves rather than looking for the faults within. 
It’s a shame to think that the majority of us underestimate the impact our appearance has on others. It appears that we so are so focused on our flaws when we should be loving them instead. Imperfection is beauty, isn't it?
But who's to blame for our distorted self perception? The way that we see ourselves is the way that we present ourselves. WE are to blame. The mind is a powerful tool that affects the way we think, act and react.
When did society become so vain? Why are we given the impression that if we don't look a certain way then we are not "perfect"? We shouldn't have to conform to an ideal standard of beauty that doesn't even exist. Living in a media crazed world, surrounded by stick thin celebs doesn't help either. We live in an era where we are so obsessed with the way we look. Yes, there's no denying that beauty has a high value in society and influences many aspects in our lives but we live in a shallow world where we dwell upon the way we look too much, too often. It's not surprising that the majority of images we see are a result of clever lighting and digital manipulation, leading us to aspire to look so unrealistic.
Okay so I have a confession. I'm being a hypocrite. I feel like "Belinda Apple". I am my own worst enemy. I look in the mirror to see a grotesque monster staring back at me. I find 1001 faults within myself and I admit that I'm not happy with the way I look. For as long as I can remember I've always struggled to look past all my imperfections. I've always wanted to be the "perfect size 8 wearing girl with no flaws". The slimmest I've been is a size 10 BUT living with an autoimmune disease means my weight fluctuates a lot and by a lot I mean I could go up 3 whole dress sizes in the space of 2 weeks! With such rapid weight gain comes the awful scars....stretch marks! A girls worst nightmare! But my scars remind me of where I've been and what I've been through. The non existence of my confidence has stopped me from doing a whole lot of things in life but only I can change that. A negative mind leads to negative thoughts leading to a negative outlook on life. 
So how can we overcome the harsh perception we have of ourselves? Acceptance. Positivity. Confidence
We must first accept the person looking back at us in the mirror. When's the last time you said "I am beautiful"? Do it now. Love yourself for who you are because there is only ONE you. Accept your imperfections as it's what makes you different. Or should I say, look beyond your imperfections and learn to accept the uniqueness of your beauty. Accepting imperfections takes up less energy than chasing perfection. As the saying goes, "beauty is in the eye of the beholder".
Think positive thoughts and leave the negativity behind. Stop bringing yourself down and begin to build yourself up. Take the time out to think about all the things you are thankful for. By doing this, we won't have time to think about all the things we want to change. Be grateful you're still breathing. 
Confidence is key. Your perception of yourself determines your fortitude. Be certain in your abilities and believe in yourself in order to be the person that you aspire to be. Think about something you really want in life and ask yourself why you are yet to achieve it. Does the word "doubt" spring to mind? Now wouldn't it be easier to remove that self-doubt and replace it with self-confidence. Be willing to take a risk or that extra mile in order to achieve better things. You're probably wondering "...but how can I be confident? Stand tall. Be decisive in your thoughts. Love yourself. Do not fear failure. Be open to new ideas. TRUST AND BELIEVE. Don’t change what you are, just learn to be more confident in who you are.
Don't let your self-perception hold you back in life. People will always try to put you in a box but don't put yourself in one. We are our own limitation. Love yourself and stop lying to be perfect


Wednesday, 25 September 2013

The W O R S T month ever.

As I type this sentence, I'm currently laying here in a hospital bed for the 3rd time this month. Is this really happening? I'm literally having the worst month ever. I've spent more time at The Royal Free hospital rather than I have at home! 

• August 25th - Admitted
• September 6th - Discharged
• September 11th - Admitted 
• September 18th - Discharged 
• September 23rd - ADMITTED AGAIN

What was meant to have been a simple hospital appointment on Monday 23rd September 2013 turned into yet another admission. I've never felt so unlucky in my life. Spending my fourth week in hospital, going insane and not even recognising myself anymore, it's the worst thing ever. My body has swelled up so badly and I have currently put on 4 STONE in the space of 2 WEEKS Doctors say its severe fluid retention which I didn't even know was possible! This rapid weight gain has left me sore and struggling to even walk let alone move. And not to mention, my skin has stretched so much that I've been left with an awful load of stretch marks that itch like crazy! (A girls worst nightmare!)

Weight Diary

August 26th - 63kg
• September 14th - 73.1kg
• September 23rd - 84kg
• September 26th - 83.2kg 
• September 27th - 81.2kg 

I guess I'll never know why this is happening to me but God really is testing me. 

Thank you Lupus for ruining my life, invading my body and stealing my vision of myself. 


Monday, 23 September 2013

I hate you Prednisolone.

So I've never been the slimmest girl in the world but this summer I was finally content with my weight. A healthy size 10, slim thighs, trim stomach. I'd look at my reflection and think "Leah, is that really you?

I look at myself today and I don't even recognise myself. Thank you prednisolone for ruining my confidence, my shape, my beauty and my life. I went from being 63 kg (9.9 stone) in August to an awful 75kg (11.8 stone). In the space of 2 bloody weeks! 

Was it fat? Surely not, is it even possible for someone to put on that much weight within a short amount of time? Plus, I was eating less than usual considering prednisolone is meant to increase your appetite. The doctors reassured me that it was water weight, which gave me a glimmer of hope that I'll return to my slim self in due time. But how can one gain 2 stone in water weight? I hate you fluid retention. 

I've had SIX Methyl-prednisolone infusions and on top of that I'm currently taking 60 mg pred a day. As the weeks pass, the dose will be lowered which will hopefully make me lose the water weight.

So yes, prednisolone may be one of the most effective steroid drugs BUT the side effects are just dreadful. Weight gain is just one of many that I have to put up with. I'm experiencing the "moon face", the blurred vision (despite already being blind as a bat), the hair loss, the anxiety, the depression and I'm even having trouble thinking! 

It's funny how your life can change within a split second. But what can I do than to accept the change. I guess it's time to embrace the fatness! 


Sunday, 22 September 2013

Rihanna X River Island AW13

It's September 2013 and Rihanna is back with a bundle of statement pieces from her Autumn Collection for high street store; River Island. Now I've never been her biggest fan which is probably why I'm not that excited about the outlandish fashion icons second collection. However..I must say I was probably one of the first to have a browse through her new pieces. (Okay so maybe i was just a teeny weeny bit excited!) What was my initial reaction?..."expensive for nothing". 

I thought it would never happen, but it did. I actually bought an item from the Rihanna Spring Collection. It was the gorgeous Sheer Tie Dye Pinafore Maxi Dress. Now I can't remember the exact price but it was in the sale so I thought why not!

 The AW13 collection is made up of eccentric Rihanna staples. The camouflage and monochrome prints, oversized jerseys, leather garments, crop tops and not to mention the G4LIFE logo printed across nearly every single piece! The new collection channels a 90's vibe which screams tough girl with attitude instantly taking us back to Rihanna's "Good Girl Gone Bad" days as well as paying homage to her "Rated R" prime!

 Now lets talk about a few of my favourite pieces... 

  The first garment to have caught my eye is this yellow tomboyish shirt dress. (Also available in black) There's something about the sport luxe trend that I absolutely adore at the moment. BUT..there's only one downer and that's the G4LIFE logo stretched across the back. I love this garment so much that I might just have to turn a blind eye to the logo which I doubt ill ever come round to liking! 

Unfortunately this head turning monochrome dress is out of stock online (boohoo!)..but I guess i would have preferred this dress if it was a midi not mini! 

I basically live in oversized tees. The most comfiest clothing ever! It's burgundy, it's mesh, it has boxy sleeves and a longline fit. What more could I ask for? But yes this lovely piece is also currently out of unfortunate! 

Nothing beats my top 3 selected pieces above but heres a few others that have stood out just a little: 

Just before I go, remember I mentioned my initial reaction was the collection being "expensive for nothing" now let me explain why!. Maybe it's coz I'm a bargain hunter and I'd prefer to shop for cheaper alternatives but I couldn't help notice the Black Cold Shoulder Turtle Neck Dress

 Now I'm the type of girl to browse eBay 24hrs a day making sure I'm the winning bidder on every item on my watch list. A few weeks ago I came across this beauty. The EXACT same Rihanna dress for £39.41 cheaper: 


Final Thoughts...

 • What's your favourite piece in the current AW13 Collection? • Spring Collection Vs Autumn Collection? What do you prefer? • Would you want to see Rihanna team up with Topshop rather than River island? 

Check out the full collection HERE


Fresh start.

Well well well. My first blog post. A new blog. A fresh start. I started a new blog back in January 2013 but being the procrastinator that I am I slowly started to neglect my beloved blog. But I'm back...again! Hopefully this blog will last longer than the others.

Expect to gain an insight into the crazy world of Leah.

The main reason I neglected my previous blog was due to university commitments. I got so caught up doing my final year special project that I just didn't have time for myself. Seeing as I'm an avid lover of music, fashion and magazines, it was only right that I made a fashion and music magazine. I put all my blood, sweat and tears into this project as it's something I've always wanted to do. I can officially say I'm proud of myself, I graduated from university with a 2:1. If you put your mind to it, you WILL achieve!

A special thanks to fellow bloggers Shope Delano (London's Closet) Robyn (Robyn Mayday), Kate (This.Is.What.I.Do), Emily (Millynonymous), Clarissa (Vintage Doll Risa) and Frankie (Even Though I'm Skint) for featuring in my publication. Also a special thanks to AMN Clothing, Hubert & Calvin and The Du'Montts.

Here's the end product; The Style Playlist Magazine: