There’s only 1 thing I love more than a local brand, and that’s a local active wear brand! If you haven’t heard of Zest Lifewear, you are already missing out. Started in Brisbane, Sassii (the… More
I cannot believe it’s a new year already! Eeek! For me it literally only seems like yesterday that we were having New Years celebrations last year and saying good bye to 2016! For me, every year older I get is another year of ‘okay, this will be my best year ever’, but life is life, and sometimes it gets hard, things always go wrong and all of a sudden it’s December again and I am left thinking – was that my BEST year?
Don’t get me wrong, 2017 was an absolute blast for me, I advanced in my career, I travelled around Europe, I made some amazing new friends and of course I started my BLOG! But I am always left wondering, was that it? Was that the one year I will remember forever? So coming into 2018; another year older, another year further from my 18 year old self, I’m feeling a little nostalgic and wondering what I can actually do, to keep myself upbeat and ready for all the big things that I want to work towards in 2018. I’m not much of a ‘resolutions’ type of girl – does anyone really stick to those? So instead, I am looking at this as some seriously functional adulating and planning with 5 tips on how to really kick start 2018.
When the year is over, I’m always left wondering ‘should I have done that?’, ‘did I do the right thing?’, ‘could I have done more?’ – by taking stock of what you actually have accomplished, and maybe the things you thought you would but didn’t. The important areas of your life such as family, career, financial, relationships, goals, should all be things that get assessed at the end of the year. Ask your self what you accomplished, what do you feel you should of paid more attention to. Looking back at this can give you a shiny new goal for the new year, and perhaps make you think about the things that you are and aren’t capable of this time around.
Finished what you started.
What are your 2017 left overs? Which errands, goals, or projects slipped your mind this year? Re-evaluate, are they goals you want to re-set for 2018, or are they things that were more fickle than you first anticipated. It’s okay to move on from something that doesn’t satisfy you anymore. Perhaps last year you decided you wanted to learn to paraglide, and during they year you realised you’re afraid of heights – cross it off the list. Keeping things around that make you feel like you can’t achieve them, will only stress you out. And I for one am going for a stress free 2018!
Setting completely un-realistic goals will only lead to disappointment. Would I like to buy a house – sure, do I have any money? No. So my first goal is to pay off my debt. Big dreams are highly recommended and utterly fabulous, and we all need something to look forward to. However, your dream might come with steps, or a process; break it down into little achievements – paying off your debt, saving for a deposit, saving your repayments, that way you’ve got an achievable game plan towards accomplishing those big goals!
To follow those dreams, you need to make sure you’re taking the right steps – what am I doing to achieve those little milestone goals. Maybe I need to go out for breakfast less, or stop buying new clothes (I’ve picked a seriously hard goal). There will be lots of things you can do over the year to help work towards your goals and re-arrange your priorities to bring you closer to the big picture.
You do you.
Above all, be your own number 1 priority. Put yourself at the top of the list and take care of your soul. Be sure to re focus on your self when you need it, say no to people when it doesn’t suit, and steer away from things that make your life harder, whether that’s people or places. Make 2018 (and every year on), the year of you, that’s a goal we all need!
Tell me how you’re going to try and make 2018 your best year yet!
On a side note, thank you thank you thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the love and support you have given to #prettyforplussize in 2017, I am beyond words grateful for the amazing people, businesses and opportunities that I have encountered in the last few months. I can only hope the new year will bring even more exciting things!
If you are anything like me, Christmas Day is the perfect excuse to buy a new outfit. A new dress, some summery shorts, perhaps a cute pair of heels to show off at Christmas lunch; there are lots of options! But also many variables to consider, where are you going? Will there be physical activities involved (games etc)? Are you with family or friends, or in-laws?! If you are having all of these dilemmas and have none of the answers, read on, because I’m here to offer some insight.
For me, I want to make sure that I am going to be comfortable allll day. It’s Christmas and I live in Australia, which means summer – which means HOT. I’m a plus size girl, so if the weather is hot that means I am hot. I like to wear things that will allow me to keep cool, and also (in case I do start burning up) won’t show marks or get sweaty. Paired with this pre-assumed uncomfortable heat, the last thing I want to be worrying about is my strapless bra digging in and falling off, so there’s another prerequisite for my outfit of the day; supportive bra friendly. For most families Christmas Day can start pretty early and carry through until the evening, which means I want an outfit that doesn’t require a lot of touch ups or fiddling; also something that is going to hide my bloat from too much punch and Christmas ham. Finally, I want to make sure that I’m going to look nice in EVERY Christmas day photo, because let’s be honest, Grandma is going to be showing people those photos for the whole next year.
So, with those things in mind, I have put together a little collection of comfortable shoes, on-fleek earrings (because, they are the ultimate accessory) and fabulous outfits to help you survive Christmas day!
Outfit one includes this beautiful Bohemian Trader’s Dreamer Dress (which may or may not already be hanging in my wardrobe). This dress is 100% rayon, which means it is super cool and perfect for a hot summers day! Available in a few different colours (check the website), this bright raspberry is the perfect festive/yet cool combo and a great alternative to the normal Christmas red. It comes with a waist tie which you can tie mid waist or hip for 2 different looks, you can also remove it completely to wear as a shift dress! Festive and practical! The soft and floaty design means that you can go back for second helpings of that Christmas pudding and no one will know! Sitting at about knee length means you don’t have to sit out of Christmas afternoon games (cricket anyone?), and paired with these sparkly Palmaira flats and Bee Twomey Earrings makes it stylish and still perfect to chase the kids, dance with your grand dad and try out that new scooter your niece got for Christmas.
If dresses aren’t your thing, never fear, this City Chic combo will take you from opening presents to your fancy Christmas lunch. Once again keeping in mind my outfit requirements, although fitted, the Cascade Sleeve Top is a comfortable wrap style, available in black to hide any evidence of summer heat. The stunning sleeve details tie in beautifully with the exaggerated fill on the bottom of these Palm Play Shorts. Further on the shorts, the high waist band and the loose leg make me feel better about shorts in general, as I like to avoid possible love handles or accidental flashing at family members. These are actually available in a range of patterns (I have 2 other pairs at home), so if the palm print isn’t you’r thing you can always change it up a little bit! This time I’ve paired the outfit with these super cute Espadrille Wedges from Diana Ferrari (which I am VERY in love with); I personally love a good heel and short combo, it feels so fancy to me. The Espadrille wedge on these helps to keep the outfit casual and also wedge heel = super comfortable and ideal for backyard Christmas cricket. I also recently found Rowdy Designs at my local Etsy market and her Oval Stud Earrings add just the right amount of summer casual to this outfit combo. Bra friendly, in law appropriate, dressy enough to be on mums wall for the next 12 months – tick, tick, tick!
This last combo is for those of you ready to shake up Christmas a little. Who doesn’t LOVE a good jumpsuit!? This Little Party Dress Floral Jumpsuit ticks all the boxes for me; straight away – the shoulders mean you can wear a normal bra, the colour will hide any awkward summer marks, no need to readjust anything all day it’s all tucked in there, and people will be asking about your outfit all year when they see the photos! Once again, a jumpsuit is a great option if you’ve got young kids or activities planned as part of your festivities as you can move and jump around as much as you please. The pattern in particular is nearly faux festive, with its floral theme and hints of pinks and oranges. I’m pairing this with a super comfortable pair of Novo shoes, a block heel will help see you through the whole day. And I’m also loving the slide style and the mesh design as it will also become the perfect summer shoe (see honey, multiple uses, totally worth the money!). Topped off with these gorgeous Liona Lee Dangles, which just happen to compliment the jumpsuit print, this outfit will be perfect for any Christmas day occasion!
I’m a big believer in the fact that being plus size shouldn’t hinder your fashion style, change your style or stop you from dressing up! I hope these outfits and handy hints help you prepare for your Christmas day, however you may celebrate, and if you’ve found them useful make sure you tag me #prettyforplussize in your fabulous outfits! As for me and what I’ll be wearing for Christmas, you’ll have to wait and see…
What a huge week last week was! If you’re playing along on Instagram you will have seen last week I took some time off to spend with my darling #instaboyfriend. And what a week we had! From musical theater, to birthday present, the ocean to poolside cocktails; we really took the opportunity to relax, spend some quality time together, and plan some epic blog content. We spent four whole uninterrupted days at the gorgeous Santai Retreat, and it was possibly the most relaxing and beautiful trip away we’ve ever had. The team at Santai were absolutely divine; with the staff being so helpful and friendly, and the venue looking so tropical and picturesque, it really does make you feel like you’d stepped into your own exclusive paradise. I even had a friend ask on my return, was it actually as good as the pictures?! YES! It definitely was, there was not one thing that we could complain about or have wished to be better, even the rainy weather for 1 day was filled with baths, in house movies and cocktails.
In all honesty, I didn’t have this weeks blog content planned, and while sitting on our balcony looking at the ocean, sipping our freshly popped champagne and nibbling on cheese I got inspired. See, from our balcony, I could see a young couple swimming together in the pool, no one was around, so it was just the two of them enjoying each others company. After a while I realised this lovely young lady was swimming fully clothed, so conscious about her body, that she was in a big baggy t-shirt and knee length board shorts. Granted, perhaps this was just how she chose to dress and had no reflection on her self confidence. But the way she uncomfortably pulled the wet material off her body every time it stuck, made me think different. I decided it actually made me so mad, that she felt so bad about her self in a beautiful location like this, that society and the media had programmed her to feel self conscious and like she wasn’t worthy of swim wear because of her size. And it just got me to thinking, of all the things young women feel like they ‘can’t do’ or ‘shouldn’t do’ because of their size. The things that society says you have to be skinny to do, or to be worthy of – which let’s be real, is a huge load of bullsh**. So, in honor of that darling young women, I decided to put together a little list of all the things I did in the last few days that I’m sure mortified the haters, and made me feel better than ever.
1. WORE A BIKINI! Oh my lord, how offensive! That’s right, I rocked my size 18 body in not one, but TWO actual bikini’s! Not a one piece that covered my from head to toe, not with a pair of board shorts or shirt over the top, and not wrapped in a towel the moment I got out of the water. In fact I walked through nearly the entire resort, from the pool to my room, with my towel over my shoulder and my bikini body on display. And you know what, I felt fabulous! I had 2 new bikinis to show off and that is exactly what I did. With a little encouragement from #instaboyfriend (bless him), I even got down in the sandy ocean and rolled around in the water a little to take a few photos. Was my stomach a little bloated, yep. Could you see my cellulite, sure. But actually, the universe didn’t implode, my rolls didn’t start a world war, and actually, I don’t think anyone even looked at me twice.
2. WENT FOR A MASSAGE! Naked! You heard it here first. I got my whole kit off (got under a towel of course) and let a stranger rub me down, and it was totally amazing. I’ve had conversations before with women who are worried about getting their gear off, or even not fitting on the bed, but I can tell you that was the last thing on my mind about 30 seconds in. This was the most incredibly relaxing and rejuvenating experience I have possibly ever had. Sure, I had a moment of ‘oh she can see all my rolls and back fat’ and ‘oh gosh my hips are nearly wider than the bed’ – yes I have many moments of self doubt too. But at the end of the hour, I cam out of that room feeling more relaxed and at ease then I have in years, and knowing that these beautiful stressed and run down women miss out on that feeling because they feel their cellulite may offend someone, is basically a crime.
3. ATE ALL THE FOOD AND COCKTAILS! Does anyone else sometimes feel like every one else is looking at what you’re eating and judging you. Hands up, me! And of course, everything in moderation, but I was on holidays, and I sat there, in the sunken lounge next to the pool, testing the cocktail list and eating delicious tapas for hours, twice! In all honesty, people came and went the whole time we were there, but the food was so damn good I don’t think anyone looked up from their plate! It was one of my first Thai food experiences too, and it was absolutely divine! I’m pretty sure I am obsessed with Thai food now, something I would of missed out on! The horror! Life is about living, and enjoying yourself, and sometimes, that just includes food.
4. DID A MINI PHOTO SHOOT! As a bigger girl I’ve spent years trying to make sure people aren’t looking at me. But if you’ve ever been to Santai Retreat you will understand that you can not leave that resort without wanted to photograph everything! Oh, the perfection! It really is like a mini paradise. And I couldn’t let that opportunity pass, so, I pulled out a few nice dresses I had packed and dragged #instaboyfriend through the resort shooting photos at the pool, against that wall, with those green plants, and sitting down, everywhere! At one stage I accidentally started posing just outside a family’s balcony, where their baby was quite amused in watching me. In another instance, I looked up and realised there was a woman peeking through her curtains watching me. That one hit me, I immediately stopped taking photos and felt stupid. Was she laughing? I don’t know. Smiling? Not sure. Making fun of me? Maybe, that’s how I felt. But that’s the point, why should I feel silly? I wasn’t hurting her, or anyone else for that matter. And if she wanted to watch on at my poses, then actually, that’s fine, maybe she wanted some pointers.
My point, is that you can’t let anything hold you back. Live your life. Go out with a bang, you do you girl. Your curves aren’t hurting anyone, and definitely aren’t offending anyone that matters.Rock that bikini, strip off (when appropriate), order another cocktail on your holiday. Just be.
*Please note this blog post is in no way sponsored or associated with Santai Retreat or any othre associating company, this was a personally selected location and the views are my own.
A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to participate in a new collection photo shoot with some incredibly inspiring ladies for Adrift clothing. Just this morning, this collection has been released! Yay! (Get your hands on it here).
Not only was a absolutely thrilled to be involved with Adrift, but to be part of such a special campaign in support of Share the Dignity has been something very special. Share the Dignity is an Australian women’s charity bringing dignity to homeless, at-risk and women experiencing domestic violence through the distribution of sanitary items, and funding funerals of those killed as a result of domestic violence. “We believe all women matter and all women deserve dignity and justice.” This charity is founded and spear headed by female power house Rochelle Courtenay, who I had the absolute pleasure of meeting during our shoot.
Rochelle is Share the Dignity’s founder and Managing Director; the title she is most proud of though is ‘Pad Lady’. This title came about and stuck while she collected of over 750,000 packets of pads and tampons across Australia over two years. She learned of homeless women going without basic sanitary items during their menstrual cycle. Most noteworthy, Rochelle decided the question was not “Why is no one doing anything” but rather “ What’s stopping me from doing something?” In March 2015 Rochelle took matters in to her own hands collecting sanitary items within her local community and distributing to local shelters. As a result, a simple idea of giving dignity to women, Share the Dignity has grown into a national charity. Consequently, it has over 1,500 volunteers Australia wide, and most noteworthy, provides multiple initiatives aimed at giving dignity to women.
As soon as Adrift approached me about this collection I knew I had to be involved. As a victim of domestic violence myself (a story for another time), I could not feel more strongly about providing women and victims with support. This new stunning collection includes gorgeous prints and vibrant patterns, and proceeds from the sale of this entire Blush collection are being donated to Share the Dignity. The target is $9,000; this will go towards a pink vending machine for a school or public bathroom so women in need won’t have to make the choice between buying food or sanitary products.
As a plus size women, events and functions can be a daunting experience. With race season fast approaching (or basically already here), it dawned on me that the races are not exempt from the feelings of anxiety and awkwardness that many plus size women feel. Uncomfortably shuffling through a crowd, sweating body parts and chafing thighs, unhealthy food and drinks that result in bloating; how good does going to the races sound right now! I know, pretty terrible, why would you go? Well if you’re anything like me, AN EXCUSE TO GET DRESSED UP! Woo! My favourite thing!
So basically, I spent a little time shuffling through my wardrobe trying to find the perfect races outfit to share with you beautiful ladies, because also, going to the races shouldn’t send your broke before you even get there! (Take note younger me) That said, if you feel like a new dress is on the cards, I’ve made some suggestions below. The two looks I’ve come up with, while you may not be able to replicate perfectly, I hope you can take the tips and tricks behind them and apply it to your own perfect race day look!
My first look was built around this gorgeous last season Sheike dress that I had in my wardrobe from a Christmas party. Sheike is a great place for those inbetweenies looking for beautiful pieces (I’m more around an 18 at the moment and I can squeeze into some of their more generous size 16 pieces). Although this particular dress is not available anymore they have very similar styles online (and instore) now in the Spotty Satin Dress, Night Noise Maxi and Exclusive Dress. The reason I’m backing these styles is because I find them sooo forgiving for many different shapes. They all draw in at the waist (on a stretchy band) creating a faux waist and then flow out over those gorgeous womanly hips we’re carrying around, creating a beautiful shape on the body. Also they are more of a straight cut style that many women like, however because they have that flow and don’t sit directly on the skin you can fit in a few more champagnes and canapes without worrying about bloating (that’s a big one for me! 😉 ). If you find a few drinks does make you bloat, or your prefer not to wear fitted clothing, these dresses are the perfect shape while still looking feminine and giving you shape.
I paired this dress with nude accessories and a bright lip! A good lip on race day can act as an accessory in itself and you can use it to tie your accessories into your dress by using a complimentary shade to a colour in your dress. I picked these Novo shoes up a few months ago for a photo shoot and have worn them with everything since! You can find a similar pair online. The best part about these heels is the wedge, my biggest races outfit tip is always, always, wear a wedged or thick heel. There is nothing worse then trying to walk through the grass in a stiletto heel and sinking into the dirt! For my fascinator, I like to match it back to either my shoes or with my dress (and then wear different complimentary coloured shoes). In this case I have stuck to the nude theme with this beautiful Max Alexander leaf headpiece. I personally love that it is on a headband, not something you have to pin in, as this gives me piece of mind for the entire day!
My second look was a little more ‘sultry’. This City Chic dress is one I picked up from one of their outlet stores during winter, figuring it would come in hand for many occasions during the warmer months. Right I was, it’s the perfect races dress! I love the style of the fitted bodice with the big A-line skirt, for those ladies who don’t like things clinging to their hips or just feel more comfortable that way, this is the perfect style. I love the flower/leaf detail in this dress as it makes it appear nearly transparent underneath, and breaks up that full on block colour.
For this look I have gone with classic black accessories that I had in my wardrobe. If all else fails black is always a good way to go accessory wise, and if you are struggling to match your black staples to a dress try to tie them together by using a colour/black combo earring, or adding a black belt into your dress. Again I’ve gone with a pair of Novo shoes from last season that I had in the back of my wardrobe, falling back on my ‘solid heel’ theory these ones will keep my feet comfortable all day. Underneath (both dresses), I am rocking my most attractive pair of spanx, it’s important for me to stay comfortable (and as un-sweaty) as possible on a long day out, so a good pair is worth the investment (and avoiding the embarrassment of a visible panty line!).
My beautiful black fascinator is a trend I love at the moment, with the lace pattern built up all over it. It also matches this particular dress perfectly! Once again, this Morgan & Taylor headpiece is on a headband to keep it secure on my head all day without having to worry. While some might object to having a headband covering your entire head, you can always style your hair to sit over the top so it is less noticeable. I’ve pulled my hair up and into a flat bun for this particular look, this way I don’t have to worry about curls dropping or humidity wrecking my straightening efforts. Also on a day out in the sun and crowds this is an easy and subtle way to keep your body temperature down. Personally, I over heat very easily, and there is nothing more mortifying then getting sweaty at a classy event, so by having my hair pulled up and off my neck I’m already keeping myself just a tad cooler.
So if you are heading off to the races in the coming weeks, I hope this has been slightly helpful! But the most important thing is that you feel amazing about yourself! Use the excuse to dress up, have fun, and embracing your own #prettyforplussize. Show me how you’re dressing up for the races by commenting or tagging me on IG!
Warning: This post contains themes of women’s health, specifically Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, fertility and Diabetes. If this upsets you or make you uncomfortable, please do not read on, as that is not my intention. I am not a medical expert and do not have professional knowledge in these fields, this is simply my own experiences and my point of view, if you have health concerns please contact your GP.
Last week, I asked my IG community if they were interested in hearing my story and experiences dealing with PCOS and Type 2 Diabetes. I was met with an over whelming response to do this blog post as well as many private messages from women reaching out about their own experiences or asking for advice. As mentioned above, this is only my story; my experiences, how my body works and the struggle I have been though.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (or – PCOS) is a complex hormonal condition. ‘Polycystic’ literally translates as ‘many cysts’. Women with PCOS commonly have high levels of insulin, or male hormones known as ‘androgens’, or both. The cause of this is unclear, but insulin resistance is thought to be the key problem driving this syndrome.
PCOS is relatively common and affects 12 to 18 per cent of women of reproductive age (between late adolescence and menopause). Almost 70% of these cases remain undiagnosed. To be diagnosed with PCOS, women need to have polycystic ovaries and be displaying some of the most common symptoms: irregular menstrual cycles , amenorrhoea (no periods), excessive facial or body hair growth (or both), acne, scalp hair loss, reduced fertility (difficulty in becoming pregnant), obesity, sleep apnoea or mood changes – including anxiety and depression..
In January 2016, I visited to doctor with concerns of my missing period, at 23 and having been on the same contraceptive (the pill) since I was 16 this missing period had me slightly concerned (yes, I originally went to the doctors wondering if I was pregnant). After confirming that a) my period had been absent for at least 3 months and b) I was not with child and c) I had put on a substantial amount of weigh in the last 6 months (around 20kgs) my GP took me through a list of questions and discussion that I can now see revolved around the symptoms for PCOS.
Had I been struggling with my weight? Did I have excessive hair growth? Hair loss? Acne? How were my sleeping patterns? Was I moody? My strongest responses were to weight, hair growth, and sleeping patterns (maybe I was moody, but I just put that down to my no nonsense attitude and intolerance for people’s bullshit). From this initial appointment I had months of doctors appointments, specialists appointments, x-rays, ultrasounds, blood tests, more poking and prodding then I have ever experienced before. And by June, after numerous visits to an Endocrinologist it was confirmed that I did infact have PCOS and that this condition needed to be monitored and supported with medication. Two weeks later I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes.
If I am honest, the diabetes diagnosis hit me harder than the PCOS initially. I specifically remember getting an email from my Endocrinologist at about 10.30pm at night confirming that I had diabetes. Boom. Diabetes. I was 23. Doctors assured me that I had Diabetes due to my PCOS and the effect that condition had on my insulin, that I was only ‘just’ diabetic, and that it was a easily manageable condition in my case.
I’ll admit it was nice to finally have answers to a lot of things. Although this wasn’t the end of the poking and prodding, particularity because of my Diabetes diagnosis there were more specialists to see and groups to attend. I went to a group on how to manage my diabetes in the first month, once a week, and I remember sitting there every week surrounded by people at least 40 years older than me just thinking “I shouldn’t be here”. I also started seeing a podiatrist (foot specialist), which then resulted in me seeing a HEART specialist, as we discovered the blood flow in my legs wasn’t ideal. On top of this I was seeing a Diabetes Educator, an Exercise Physiologist and a Dietitian. So by August, I was taking Metformin (for diabetes and PCOS managment) and Crestor (to open up my veins and promote blood flow). Due to the concerns about my blood flow it was recommended I go off the pill (to avoid encouraging blood clots), and find another type of contraceptive. Under the guidance of my GP & Endo specialist (Note: I do not have Endometriosis but PCOS can effect fertility in a similar way) I had day surgery to inset the Mirena into my uterus to manage my hormones and use as a contraception.
The Mirena is quite a common form of contraception and you only have to switch it over every three years, winning right?! Eh. I am not so convinced. While it didn’t seem to cause me any extra trouble with my cycle (still no period since 2015), it did give me a huge bout of acne. Being some one who had never struggled with acne before (beside the random teenage pimple), this is something I really struggled with, like ‘didn’t want to leave the house’ struggled with. I have gone from some one with very clear porcelain skin, to someone with red angry skin across my entire chin, lower cheeks and jawline, and it has scared that way. Unfortunately the type of breakouts I have had don’t seem to be innocent teenage pimples, rather angry hard boulders that sit under the skins surface and scab all across my face. I’m not putting this reaction 100% down to my Mirena, but also, I am. (More on this later).
Oof, are you still with me?
If you are, the next place I went was a Natroupath. There is a lot of conflicting information online with just about everything, and of course this was no different, but I personally am I believer in natural remedies coupled with medicinal so I wanted to give it a try. I went through the process with a Natroupath of trying to re-balance my system and improve my gut health for about 3 months, and I will admit many of the herbs I was drinking and vitamins I was taking did seem to be improving the symptoms like hair loss and my sleeping habits and energy levels. However, at one stage I was taking about 40 tablets a day (and this was quite a costly experience). This just wasn’t a solution for me. I couldn’t keep taking that many tablets and believing that they were all improving me THAT much, so I finished up with the Natroupath in hopes of seeing both how and if it had helped my body by comparison. Granted now that I am taking no herbal remedies I have been able to notice that a few things definitely did help (particularly with the sleep and energy levels), so I am in the process of looking into those again on their own.
In April of this year I took off on a 2 month holiday around Europe (which was amaze by the way). How is that relevant to my story, you may ask? Wellll. Remember the weight that I stacked on earlier? Yeah. Well it hadn’t been budging. In fact, working with a Dietician and Exercise Physiologist still hadn’t helped it budge. There had actually been times when I had put on MORE weight. Women with PCOS typically find it very easy to put on weight, and very hard to lose it (see earlier about my reference to insulin), and this had definitely been a massive struggle for me. The only thing, that I had found successful in trying lots of different diets and meal plans (under my Dietitians guidance), was meal replacement shakes. 3 shakes a day, equal to about 600 – 800 calories a day, was the ONLY thing my body was responding to in my weight loss effort. And if you have ever done any research on nutrition, that’s just a tad (about 1000) calories under the recommended intake. (Please note I am not in any way condoning this method for weight loss, I myself only do it for a week at a time under the guidance of a qualified dietitian.) But, I digress, the other thing that helps me lose weight… Europe?!
Yep, you read that right, I went to Europe for 9 weeks and came back 9 kilos lighter. Now trust me, if I could cruise through Europe drinking every second night, eating pasta and pizza till I exploded and having gelato every day for the rest of my life I definitely would. But alas, that is not my life, and those nine kilos have crept back on (plus 3, sigh). But really, the major change in my lifestyle when I travel is my activity level, I did a lot of walking the streets of beautiful European cities and climbing coastal Italian mountains, and I find this is the biggest thing that helps me lose weight. Exercise all day = weightloss… I’m working on it.
The other difference in this time was that I was very poor at taking my medication, and when I returned, my blood work was surprisingly promising (I have a diabetic test kit at home that I use for emergencies if I am feeling unwell, and I get blood tests about every 3 months at the moment). Because of that it was agreed that I could stop taking my doctor prescribed medication and I have been off all forms of medication for 4 months and just had my Mirena removed yesterday.
The next step for me is to go back to my specialist and check my blood again to see how my body has reacted to being off medication. The biggest change I have seen in getting rid of the medication is that my hair has started falling out A LOT. Luckily there is still some left on my head for now and this will be something I talk through with my specialist next visit. I am now also (with the Mirena out) putting no hormones into my body, which is something I would like to continue in hopes that my body will be able to balance itself out on it’s own after being on contraceptive for so long (since I was 16) and encourage fertility (in the future, calm down Mum). For those curious, because PCOS can effect your fertility due to it’s involvement in the menstrual cycle, I do very much want a family, and it was very scary (probably one of the scariest parts) to think that this might be effected by this condition. I am currently looking into more traditional therapies like acupuncture and Chinese herbs as this is another route that has been recommended to me and can be particularly useful in assisting fertility and preparing the body to reset itself.
My weight is a constant struggle for me and I am constantly battling my own demons to try and over come that and make progress. For me, this blog is a big part of that journey, of showing that I’m not of less value because of my size or struggles. I hope that to anyone going through a similar situation, this story helps you feel just a little bit less alone. Again, this is just my experience, this is what I have done and the results I have had, every single person is different and you may find something that made me worse makes you better! I am very lucky that I have found a wonderful team in my doctor, endocrinologist and dietitian (although I have stopped seeing her as frequently) and am happy to share these with anyone who is wondering. In any case I hope that this little insight into someone else’s condition can help you handle yours, and if this blog has sparked any questions in you, always feel free to get in contact with me and I will help in any way I can.
Hello gorgeous women of all shapes and sizes! I feel like it’s been a little while since I’ve written a blog post, but I have found something so fabulous I need to share it with you. It’s a tee. But it’s basically the best bloody tee I have ever put on my body.
So, back story. A few weeks ago, the gorgeous Rachael at Ruby & Lilli gifted me with some of her gorgeous product, 2 tees and 2 scarfs, to try out, take them for a spin around town. Now, as you may have noticed, I am very much a dress and skirt kinda gal. We’re coming out of winter and my baby elephant thighs (which I love, just fyi), are just not ready to be out on display yet. So in styling these t shirts, I wanted to put my thinking cap on.
The two shirts I’ve styled are 2 different sizes, an XL and a 2XL. Both tee’s fit me well (Note: If you’re looking for a size guide I have 110cm bust measurement), with the bigger style a much more relaxed and longer fit. I now have, in my ever expanding wardrobe, the Tout Va Bien and Sparkle and Sass tees and firstly the material is so soft and comfortable that they are perfect to wear for absolutely any occasion or activity. Secondly, the fit and cut of the shirt is such a nice style, it curves in the right places and even the XL is a great length to wear untucked over shorts or jeans. But my biggest realisation was how much I love the sleeves! The length of the sleeves are short enough to still be classified as a tee, but have just that little bit of extra length in them that means they don’t awkwardly cut into your arm.
I wanted to team my tee’s with something a little different, and style them in a way that I was hoping would appeal to you, gorgeous curvy women, as I know wearing shorts can be a confronting experience for many of us. So I stuck with my skirts! (I’m also obsessed with the whole skirt/sneaker trend right now so I ran with that). My first look was soft and feminine, colorful and flirty, and I adore this Modcloth skirt just as much as my new tee!
My second look was just a little bit edgier, with just the change of my skirt! I teamed my second tee (the larger one), with my City Chic pleather skit, and I loved this look too!! This tee was much more relaxed in a bigger size and you could do it tucked or un tucked, or even a sneaky half in/half out! I love this look for a concert or afternoon drink, comfortable but stylish! I’ve also taken to wearing this tee as part of my ‘activewear’ look, as its a perfect length to pair with tights! (Stay tuned on the IG for this look)
Overall, I’m definitely back on the tee train (choo choo!) and perhaps I’ll even try out a pair of shorts for a new look. I’m holding onto a few gorgeous Ruby & Lilli scarves as well that I cannot wait to team up with some new outfits! Either way, I’m definitely adding these gorgeous styles to my wardrobe staples for sure!