August Lust List

Despite being totally in love still with my wooden Jord watch I wanted something in rose gold to switch it up every now and then.
I wear Rose Gold rings on my left hand so ideally wanted a Rose Gold watch to go with it.

With my tattoo sleeve almost finished I'm looking at flowers to fill and also want some text and script in some gaps too. So far on my left arm I have the word 'Breathe' and 'Brave' and want to add to it with some other words that mean a lot to me and that inspire me.
Momento Vivere is one of the first tattoos I wanted right at the beginning but couldn't really fit it in anywhere at the time.
Serendipity is one of my favourite words and seems ideal to have tattooed alongside other pieces that mean so much to me.



Euphoria #tt2016

When I think back to 3 years ago....well...3 and a half years ago....and my attitude and thinking towards motorbikes, and road racing it was completely different to how I feel now.
I thought it was selfish. How could these men, and women, risk their lives, put their families through the anxiety and nervousness of the dangerous speeds they travel on these machines. I didn't understand the thrill.

My brother has a motorbike and has done for years. I never really wanted to think about the dangers of it. I've always thought, and still do, that he is a safe rider, and seeing these riders involved in Road Racing made me feel a bit sick really. So I avoided it.

I watched Road. And I fell in love a bit with their passion. However, I also felt heartbreak at the sadness of the loss of lives involved in the sport.
In fact, I struggled to see it as a proper sport. How is it a sport when it is so dangerous?! When they are riding these bikes at such ridiculous speeds. On normal roads. Normal roads with tight bends, blind spots, humps and bumps.
I'd never enjoy it. I would never understand it, not properly.
I knew of the Dunlops, I loved their passion...but would never understand it.

Until I went. Until in 2015 when the first bike came past. I've written so many times about how the sound, the speed, the atmosphere, the adrenaline filled my body and pierced its way through my skin and into my blood and my heart.
At that point I didn't fully appreciate it. I still felt it was selfish. I still didn't understand it completely.
But the thrill....as a spectator. As a fan. I understood that thrill.
With only 5 days there, I think I was pretty overwhelmed and had a lot to take in. The dangers of it seemed to be more prominent to me than anything else and I tried so much to get my head around who was racing, how the racing worked and so on. I was only there for practice week so a lot of my days were filled with exploring the amazing island.
I had a few personal things going on too which filled my head. But I knew one thing for sure.....I wanted to get to know this sport some more and I knew I would be back.

Then in 2016, when I first planned this post. And edited the photo. Set the title and the plan of the post. I got it. I got it all.
I understood it.

Despite the danger, the end result, not even just the winning but the actual TAKING PART and succeeding. Completing the 37.73 mile race is enough. Of course, winning and getting a podium, being recognised for being one of the best, setting records and so on is surely everyones main aim and dream. However, just completing the circuit is an amazing achievement.

This year, 2017, I was lucky enough to be treated by my amazing brother and to get a seat in one of the grandstands. The one we were sat on was the one that saw all the riders come in at the end of the race. It amazed me how many people walked away from the stand once the "big boys" came in. However, we stayed until the last bike came in.
It was a massive wake up call for me to see the reactions of the racers as they came in.
A group of three stuck in my mind. As they came in they stopped and accepted the praise and applause from the crowd, and their reaction was enough to give me goosebumps.
They looked liked winners.
They celebrated like winners.
Because they had completed the course.
That was enough for them.

So many people, who are not into road racing or bikes, seem shocked at the deaths and the injuries sustained by the racers. And 3 years ago, I would have been shocked too. But looking into it, and experiencing it, it's almost the norm. The deaths, the injuries, the accidents, the sadness, the heartache...it's expected.
It's not what anyone wants, of course, but tragedy, it is inevitable. 

In an interview Robert Dunlop said he would rather die doing the sport he loves than to be ill for 6 months and to end up dying.
And at first although I thought it was selfish, I then got it. I understood it.
I now understand it.

And everytime those bikes speed past, or there is an accident...either a small one, or a fatal one, I remind myself that they are doing what they love.
They know the risks.
And they take the chance.
I realise how thrilling it is for me to watch, and how much more thrilling it must be for them.
I can't even imagine how it must feel to be on that bike. How through each section of the course they must have this feeling of achievement, but also of knowing the toughest parts are yet to come, or have just gone past.

I now understand it as a sport.
I have masses of respect for each and every rider, for their families, for the sport.
And especially respect for the fallen riders...and have hope that before they died, they managed to feel and experience Euphoria. At least once.

 noun: euphoria
a feeling or state of intense excitement and happiness. 
"in his euphoria, he had become convinced he could defeat them"
synonyms:elation, happiness, joy, joyousness, delight, glee, excitement, exhilaration, animation, jubilation, exultation

Quote taken from the film Road. Photo my own.



Mann Cat Sanctuary | TT2017

This year I was spending two weeks on the Isle of Man, longer than the previous 5 days in 2015 and 8 in 2016. And was able to explore the island after deciding to drive over in my car. With that in mind I came up with a list of things I wanted to do and places I wanted to visit when the racing wasn't on.

As a Crazy Cat Lady and a mummy to two cats I had to visit the Mann Cat Sanctuary. Now, to be honest, I like dogs as much as I like cats. I only really have my two cats because of my ex-husband, cats would never really have been my choice of pets. However, after reading about the Cat Sanctuary I really wanted to visit to see what it was like.

The sanctuary was founded in 1996, by Sue Critchley and Carole Corlett, to provide a safe and peaceful haven for unwanted, disabled and traumatised cats.
There is no entry fee, but a suggested donation of £5 or a gift of a box of cat food pouches. I went to the supermarket and ended up taking a big bag of cat food tins instead of just a box of pouches.

I had this idea that it would be all magical and beautiful. As I pulled up in the car park I was immediately made welcome....by a couple of cats which was lovely. I loved that they were there straight away, even if I was a little nervous at driving with them so close to my car. After a stroke and giving them some love I walked up towards the Sanctuary and saw a member of staff. Not knowing where to go or what to do with the food I lifted the bag up and happily said "I came with gifts" *massive cheesy smile".
I was told quite bluntly "Up in the Sanctuary" and felt slightly deflated. No "thank you" or "welcome". Nevermind, more of a welcome in the Sanctuary surely. Again, I didn't get it.
They took the bag of food, placed it on the counter and then I was free to have a look around. I guess I kind of expected a bit more of a welcome, a bit more of a "this is what we are, this is what we are about, these are the places you can go" but nothing.
A little deflated and overwhelmed I headed outside. Although there were volunteers around again, I wasn't really acknowledged which was really disappointing.
I sat for a while and felt better by having at one point a little queue of cats waiting to jump on my lap for a cuddle and some attention. It was one of those moments when I wished I had more hands.

After around 45 minutes I decided to leave. I walked inside, again hoping for some acknowledgement, but nothing.
I also felt like it was missing a hygiene element and as I left I was surprised there was no facility to wash my hands. I thought a bottle of antibacterial gel would have been a necessity. Especially when some of the cats are clearly poorly.

Despite being disappointed by the Sanctuary I did fall in love with one of the cats and if I could have done, I would have stolen it. I loved how it looked like it posed and smiled.  He/she would have been the ultimate souvenir.


Flixton Aviation Museum | Summer List

Two weeks ago we created our Summer List. A list of things I wanted to achieve and get done with the boys in the summer holidays.
That afternoon we headed out to cross the first thing off our list, choosing Flixton Air Museum.
The air museum is around a half an hour-40 minute drive from us and is something we have considered before and driven past a few times, but never visited.

First established in 1972 as the Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Society, the museum houses a varied array of over 60 complete or partial aircraft as well as uniforms, photographs, medals and a variety of other war and aviation related memorabilia

The weather wasn't great, although it was just a slight drizzle it was enough that the grass was quite damp leaving us with wet feet. However, we were still able to enjoy the planes outside and to enjoy looking in the hangars and offices at the various articles.

The Aviation Museum is free to enter, which seemed like madness at first to me. However, with donation boxes dotted all around I'm sure they make more money through that than they would with an entry fee system...at least I'd like to think so anyway.

With a cafe, a little shop to buy a souvenir...and an ice cream...it is a great way to spend a couple of hours for adults and children.
We'll definitely be visiting again.



July Lust List

Although I've had a Pinterest account for a long time now I had mostly used it for quotes. Until two years ago when I discovered tattoos and then more recently I've become absolutely obsessed with it.
Pinning tattoos, nails, make up, hair, quotes and articles.

I wanted to put together monthly posts..."Lust Lists" sharing basically what I have been lusting after the most.

Since I took my engagement and wedding ring off it has annoyed me and frustrated me that I have marks left on my finger. 
For almost two years I have debated getting a tattoo on that finger. Something that is relevant to love and my heart. I wanted a puzzle piece originally until I looked into it and thought that actually, it wouldn't look quite right as the pieces would be straight on three edges with just one to interlock. It would look a bit too boring. 
I now pretty much have my heart set on getting a padlock, or some kind of keyhole. Thinking that maybe one day someone might get a tattoo of a key so they are matching. Wishful thinking, But it's something I love...love...LOVE...the idea of. 

After nail biting again I went back to having my nails done. Oh thank goodness I did! I wanted something bright and slightly summery but not tooooooo bright. I loved coral/orange and definitely wanted something along those things, with an accent nail too. 

I am lucky enough to be going to Paris in September for my birthday. I am tempted to be super cheesey and a complete loser, and to look like a full on toursit and to buy a 'Bonjour' tshirt or jumper. I'm so excited to be going and feel like maybe the Bonjour jumper would be particularly useful if the weather is slightly chilly whilst we explore Paris for the day. 



Me and Mine | July 2017

With the summer holidays now here I am determined to try and do as much as I can with the boys.
We have our Summer List to go through to try and make sure we get out and spend time together.
It's hard when it is just the 3 of us somewhere pretty and special as I don't have anyone to grab a cheeky snapshot of us. However, I am going to make the most of having a phone that I can just whip out and capture as many moments as possible. 

I'm not only going to include photos of the 3 of us, but any photos of me and just one of the boys too. 

The first 7 photos below were taken on a day out to a local Abbey. It is so beautiful. We did then visit a gorgeous beach but my old phone was shocking and the battery died before we got there. Nevermind. 
I absolutely love that in pretty much every photo Harry is pulling a funny face. He would smile up until the last moment when I would stop looking at the screen and look at the camera lens, then pull a face. Then wait until I looked back at the photo and would laugh.
The 8th photo was of a Harry-Mummy morning at a birthday party for a school friend of his. 
9th was at an aviation museum we visited and have wanted to visit for a while. The weather was slightly drizzly so we only had a short visit...and again....low phone battery so I didn't get as many photos as I wanted but I did take my camera to get photos of the boys and of the planes.
10th photo is us at TKMaxx...I took this photo as a joke in all honesty because I see on Instagram these perfect lift shots and of mums and children shopping. But actually I kind of like it. 
And the last one...clearly just us at home. With a sneaky little appearance from Walter laying in the back. 

With a month left of the holidays now and lots of other plans I'm hoping the next post is full of even more photos of me and my little team.

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