59 articles Articles posted in Life

Career Options in Criminal Justice

If you are considering a career in criminal justice you may be surprised by the diversity and variety of jobs that are available. Opportunities can range from working in prisons or probation, legal aid or public defender positions and even charities serving specific criminal justice interests.
The possibilities are wide ranging and almost all of the jobs help you contribute to society and have a direct impact on people’s lives.

While each of the specific jobs has different requirements you will typically be deeply involved with protecting society and assuring the safety of the general public.

You will be required to interact with people from all different backgrounds and will need to very quickly develop a connection with them.

Your intuition and interpersonal aptitude will be put to the test with almost every encounter, and the more skilled you are in these areas the greater positive impact you will have.

Typical Jobs in Criminal Justice

There are diverse job categories and opportunities within criminal justice. For instance, you may choose to be a police officer that protects the community and keeps people safe from crime. In this role, you will have direct on the street interaction with a wide range of individuals in potentially difficult situations.

If you prefer to work in a different environment, you could consider become a parole officer. In this role you would work with offenders and provide pre-sentence recommendations to the court. You would also work with individuals about to be released from prison and help monitor them and ensure public safety after they are placed back into the community.

Numerous jobs are available for individuals interested in working as a prison officer. These positions are very challenging. You may also want to see if working with youthful offenders is the right path for you. As a youth offending officer you may participate in youth Intensive Supervision programmes and other initiatives that are specifically designed to assure better outcomes among young people.

Other Types of Criminal Justice Jobs

 There are extensive options available for criminal justice jobs beyond the typical ones mentioned above. If your calling is to work in defense of those charged with a crime, you could consider a career with the Legal Aid Agency or the Public Defender Service. There are also numerous charities that offer the opportunity to work for criminal justice reform.

Among the careers in criminal justice there are a number of offerings that are health-related. If you focus on offender health you could pursue a role as offender health nurse, pharmacist, mental health nurse or a drug treatment nurse.

There are also specialized opportunities available in the field of substance misuse, including substance misuse recovery workers and nurses.

If you are interested in a career in criminal justice be sure to research the different options there for you. It would also be very helpful to talk with people in the jobs you are interested in and ask for their help and advice as you evaluate your career opportunities.

It’s Not Too Late For 2017 Resolutions

We blinked, and now we are in the early months of 2017 is upon us. If you’re like most people, you’ve set some standard resolutions in the past, such as the ever so popular weight losing and money gaining goals, and unfortunately if you’re like 92% of them, you quit. Not you, not this year! It turns out that small, fun, resolutions are the cure to a life-changing and successful new year. Below are the top Four suggestions.

https://www.pexels.com/photo/scrabble-resolutions-3297/ – free stock image 🙂

1.) Affirmations

Many of us fail to realize we are constantly having conversations with ourselves. One major reason for quitting, is that we have the horrible ability to talk ourselves out of goals by saying “I can’t”. Replace your mental dialogue with a few affirmations to say as many times as possible throughout your day, there is truly no excuse to give up on this one, it costs nothing and can give so much. A few examples:

– “I can achieve my dreams.”- “I am a happy and confident person.”- “2017 is my year to transform.”

2.) Extreme Makeover

Have you ever heard the phrase “Dress for Success”? This isn’t something that one does simply for fun, in the privacy of their own home. A wardrobe makeover can transform the way you feel from the outside in. A few style tips:

-Ask yourself what you want to be, for example, if you would like to be a high-powered executive in a successful company, a dress suit is a must.

-Play with your look, many clothing retail stores offers a variety of styles for men, women, and kids, there’s even an “inspire me” section on their site, so you can explore fresh looks. Don’t rule out a certain style, it may be just what you need in 2017.

-Save on Style- Many people have a goal of building their savings account, revamping your wardrobe should never cut deep into your pockets. Most online retailers such as House of Fraser have voucher codes and promo codes, in addition to huge promotional savings on their sites. If you don’t see a discount, do a quick google search before buying, there are often codes for free shipping and seasonal discounts.

3.) Drop the Digital and add to your time

This day in age, cell phones have become such a huge time trap in our lives, we often don’t even notice it. The average person spends anywhere from 90 minutes to 4 hours on their cell phone per day. Think of what could be accomplished by dropping the phone and incorporating something more enriching into your life. A few suggestions to get the most out of this disconnect:

-Put your phone out of sight, not just in your pocket, cell phones are highly addictive, as is social media.

-Begin a routine with your new-found time, walk the dog, organize one area of the house, read a chapter of a book, workout, take a long bath.

4.) Meal Preparation

Instead of focusing on eating healthier every single day, choose one day out of the week to “meal prep”, this can be simplified: 

-Make enough food on Sunday to divide into lunches and dinners for Monday through Wednesday. Repeat the preparation on Wednesday for the remainder of the week. This takes the guesswork and excuses out of healthier choices.

The truth is, if anyone has ever made positive changes in their life, then you can too. You are capable and determined (otherwise, you wouldn’t have read this far) to succeed. A new year is a new start, and can bring with it a brand-new story. Cheers to the positive momentum you are bringing to your life.

Be More Sociable with e-Cigarettes

Smokers enjoying e-cigarettes and coffee at Vape bar at the Shoreditch, London on the 20/03/2014. Photo: David Tett

It’s 2016 and I think we can finally say that cigarette smoking is becoming a thing of the past, thanks to tight restrictions and the brilliance of e-cigarettes. There are so many benefits to choosing an e-cigarette instead of traditional smokes, but today we want to talk about how they enable you to be more sociable.

Vaping indoors

Since the smoking ban, a night out has never been the same for smokers, with people needing to pop outside every time they want to indulge. Now, things are different. Many pubs have banned e-cigarettes, but there are a select few places which are tolerant, so if you can find a vape-friendly venue for your night out, you won’t need to banish yourself every time you want to vape. There are even vaping cafés turning up in some towns and cities!

Smell

I don’t know about you, but as a non-smoker, I used to hate hugging my smoker friends and family directly after they’d smoked, because the smell seems to get everywhere and cling to their clothes. Vaping actually smells nice — or at the very least of nothing at all — and I definitely don’t mind hugging a vaper!

Sharing Liquids

Because e-cigarette liquids come in so many flavours, it’s not unusual for people to test their friends’ liquids to see what they think. Some retailers even offer gourmet blends, made to your taste and that you’d never think to try if you hadn’t sampled it from your friend!

Less Harmful

Public Health England have found that e-cigs are up to 95% less harmful than real cigarettes, which means your health should improve when you make the switch. As a knock-on effect, you could be able to do things you’ve not been able to do because of smoking. This includes participating in sports, if smoking had made you too out of breath in the past. Five-a-side footy with your mates, here you come!

Saving Money

One of the biggest benefits of smoking an e-cig is the sheer amount of money vapers have saved. I know someone who quit smoking cigarettes and switched over to e-cigs, but still put aside the money they’d spend on cigarettes every day. They’ve just booked a holiday to Cuba! Think about all the stuff you can afford to do with your friends and family, using the money that you won’t be spending on cigarettes anymore!

Have you made the switch to e-cigarettes and felt more sociable in the process? Leave me a comment telling me about it below.

 

Car Maintenance You Can Do Yourself

Car Maintenance You Can Do YourselfAnyone who knows me knows that I’m quite headstrong, which means that I don’t like deferring to other people if there’s something I can do myself. Sure, I ask for help with the bigger things which are beyond my skill-set but there’s plenty of things I do by myself, including certain areas of car maintenance. Youtube is a great source for videos on how to do things yourself and I thought I’d give you an insight into things I do myself, especially before an MOT!

Keeping Tyres Properly Inflated

If your tyres are under-inflated it can have various knock-on effects and can even have an effect on the fuel consumption of your car. Making sure they’re fully pumped up is something that can be done at home and it’s wise to get an air compressor bundle to make the whole process easier.

Changing Your Wiper Blades

Ensuring that your wiper blades fully clear your windscreen is really important from a safety point of view and is something they’re hot on during an MOT. Changing them yourself is surprisingly easy and most models of car have blades with just clip off and on. It’s very simple to do and will save you a labour cost if you take them to a garage.

Changing Bulbs

Bulbs are another area where you can possibly fail an MOT so checking them before you take your car in can save you money. Buying from a local autoparts store, bulbs will set you back under a couple of quid each but more unscrupulous garages will charge four or fives times what they pay for them wholesale.

Topping Up Fluids

Checking your oil is something that most people remember to do, but it’s important to keep your radiator, screen wash, brake fluid and power steering fluid topped up too. They’re all available to buy quite cheaply and checking a diagram of what’s going on under your bonnet will show you where each of them is supposed to go – just don’t get them mixed up!

Valeting

Believe me, as a mum to two messy kids who spends a lot of time in the car, I know how messy things can get and it’s always tempting to drop it off at a valeting centre and take yourself off for a cup of coffee, but doing it yourself can save you a bunch of money. Get the kids involved with washing and hoovering the interior and they might think twice before messing it all up again!

Do you do your own car maintenance or is this something that you’ll happily pay a little extra for someone else to do? Leave me a comment below!

5 Things That You Can do to Turn your Life Around

Changing your life for the better is about setting a goal for yourself and taking a step at a time to get till there. The path, initially might seem difficult but if you try to take shortcuts, you may actually end up making your journey longer and more arduous. Get serious and make some improvements for a great start and after that taking action is the next important step.

End all toxic relationships

Any kind of interpersonal relationship — with your parents, siblings, partners, or a friend qualifies to be nurtured. Any toxic relationship is harmful for both you and the other party. Having a constant bicker with someone completely damages your system and creates negativity in your life. The worst thing that could happen is for the relationship to turn mentally abusive. For once, put an end to this relationship.

Be physically active

Spare some time in a day, say about 30 minutes for a good work out. If nothing more, do some cardio. It will not only make you physically fit and help you shed some kilos but you will be pumped mentally, too. Regular exercise boosts your mood and mental activity.

By changing your daily routine from stagnant to active, you can become more motivated to achieve your goals.

Acquire a new skill

When we get too comfortable with what is around us, we no longer want to take risks of trying something new. But, it’s very important to learn a new skill all the time and the experience can be rewarding. Start writing a blog or take up dancing classes- doing something that you like. This brings about a lot of positivity.

Cut your expenses and look for new ways to earn money

Have you ever felt as though you are struggling to live a good life by the end of the month? Then you are doing something wrong. Find ways to cut unnecessary expenses and make a valid savings plan.

Find additional ways to earn a bit of extra cash. You could do some freelance blogging that can pay you well or you could also try out your luck in popular UK bingo gaming websites. The games here are entertaining and also rewarding in terms of earning money in a fun way.

Get a diet plan

Eat healthy. Avoid bad fat food. and junk food. Stick to vegetables that have earthy colors like greens, dark yellows and brilliant oranges.

Doing an effective Detox Diet or avoiding sugar, wheat and dairy for a couple weeks could be a good idea. When you eat foods that are rich in these colors, you are absorbing the vibrational energy of the earth. Even if you love non-vegetarian food; go for rich protein meat and dishes like stews that are less spicy.

All you need is determination and a small push. You can start small, by changing your diet or turning off the TV. A tiny change now can become something bigger later in life. With that said, let’s start turning your life around.

The Day I Ran Over a Cyclist

Last Sunday started off a day like any other. Burrito Baby had been poorly for a couple of days, showing what we thought were the initial signs of chicken pox, which threatened to get our holidays off to a really rubbish start. However, after a very long sleep she woke up seeming much better and the sun was shining so I hatched a plan to take the girls out and surprise them by taking them for breakfast and buying them a paddling pool for the garden. We got dressed, covered in sun cream and left the house.

Living where we do means that we get a LOT of walkers and cyclists using the roads, especially on sunny days, so I’m always careful when taking the winding single lane road which leads away from home, and this day was no exception. I made it up to the junction which takes us out onto the National Speed limit lane at the end of our road and stopped to let a car and a cyclist go past. It’s a poorly-sighted road so I always give an extra couple of looks to make sure the road is clear.

Just as I pulled away, a cyclist came around the corner and into the path of my car. I swerved one way to avoid him, he swerved another way to avoid me, but we hit. He, and his bike, rolled over my bonnet and onto the concrete as I brought the car to a halt. I think I shouted a few expletives as I jumped out of the car and, stupidly, asked “shall I call an ambulance?”. Of course he needed a fucking ambulance; he’d just been hit by a car.

As I was calling for an ambulance, a few other people from the larger part of our village stopped their cars and came over to see what was going on, an older couple who went into help-mode and started propping umbrellas over the injured cyclist (who by this point, although conscious, was bleeding from his mouth and his knee and seemed pretty badly in shock), and a woman of about my age but heavily pregnant who asked if she could check on my girls in the back of the car.

The call to 999 was, frankly, excruciating. Our road doesn’t have a name and aside from a farm or two has no major landmarks, so trying to direct them to where to go was virtually impossible. In the end, I gave them my own address and told them to just aim for there because they couldn’t miss us. In fact, the police turned up after just ten minutes while the ambulance took a full 45 minutes to arrive. The people who stopped joked about how they suddenly understood why there was a defibrillator at both ends of our village. The injured man had been cycling with a friend who had made it to their destination, realised his friend wasn’t showing up and cycled back to find him.

I won’t lie; I was shitting myself. Until the police arrived, I was convinced that I was going to be clapped in irons and thrown in a cell. Although I was sure that I hadn’t driven recklessly nor made any careless mistakes, I’ve never been involved in this sort of thing and had NO idea how I would be dealt with. The first response car had two male officers on board, one of whom took me into the back of his car to ask me a whole bunch of questions and take my details, warning that I may be questioned under caution and breathalysed when the traffic unit arrived.

Low and behold, when the Traffic guys turned up, I was questioned again (the “anything you do say may be given in evidence”, etc, was casually dropped into the conversation but felt hugely surreal nonetheless) and given a Breathalyzer. I hadn’t had an alcoholic drink for about a week before the accident, but I was still relieved when the display read ZERO. The officer took photos of the car, questioned me and the cyclist and did a load of other bits before telling me that he was convinced that it was “just one of those things”, an accident which was unavoidable and which wasn’t due to anyone being at fault.

He said that the speedo on the man’s bicycle showed that he’d been doing 23mph around the corner as we collided and that it was a sharp bend, meaning it could have happened to anyone. His injuries (a broken tooth and a badly scuffed knee) were largely superficial because I was only going slowly as I pulled away. At the most, I may have to attend a course to prove my hazard perceptions skills but I wouldn’t be in trouble or even get any points on my licence.

Obviously I was relieved that the blame wasn’t being laid on me but I was also gutted that I had contributed to someone getting hurt, so I asked the man’s friend to apologise to him for me. As the ambulance pulled away, the officer who’d taken the cyclists statement came to me and said “He asked me to tell you to try not to feel guilty, he knows you weren’t at fault”, which made me feel mildly better.

Skip forward to 5 days later; I haven’t heard anything else about the man, so I assume he is on the mend. Despite the full force of a human man and a bike hitting my car, there’s a dent on the bonnet about the size of a fifty pence piece, so Volvo FTW. Sausage seems pretty unfazed by it all and BB has only mentioned it once – they were both in the back, Sausage looking down at Pokemon Go, so I don’t think they really saw much.

As for me…well, I don’t really know. I’ve had nightmares a couple of nights since it happened and I keep seeing the guy’s face as he rolled off of my bonnet onto the tarmac, the image popping into my head at random. I got straight back into the car and drove again because me being able to drive is basically essential to us living in our dream house here in the country, but I won’t lie; I feel sick every time I see a cyclist on the road and I have visions of them swerving in front of me as I overtake. The whole thing could have been a whole lot worse, but I still feel awful about it all.

Why am I writing this, you may ask? Well, I don’t know…catharsis, maybe? A warning to be extra, EXTRA vigilant for cyclists on the road? Maybe just to get it all off of my chest in the hope it stops swirling around in my brain at any opportunity. Who knows?

Maybe as an opportunity to thank a few people – My fellow villagers for reminding me exactly why we wanted to live in a small, friendly community. The Cuthberts for making me strong tea, showing me their garden and their kindness and introducing us to their chickens – all of which calmed me down massively. My in-laws for, as ever, being on my team and making me feel less like a bad person. My kids for being resilient little buggers. Mostly Husband for hugging me, telling me that it wasn’t my fault and giving my hand a little squeeze whenever we have to drive past a cyclist. And the Police for realising that I wasn’t a hapless criminal, just a very shocked Mum of two on a Sunday morning drive.

I doubt the cyclist will ever read this but I hope he’s okay and that he’ll be back on his bike as soon as he’s able. I’d hate to think that his love of cycling was tarnished by this. Most of all I just hope that he and I are both able to get back behind the wheel and never have anything like this happen to either of us again.

get well soon

Things You Should Do Online

It’s a modern world we live in and it now seems that there’s barely anything that you can’t do online. Sometimes, it might seem like dragging out to the high street to run errands is the only option but there are actually a lot of online services which could make your life a whole lot easier. Here’s just a few:

Online Key Cutters

I have to say that it has never occurred to me that you could order keys from an online key cutters, but apparently that’s a thing! Every time I go to my local key cutters, I seem to either stand in a queue for ages or get sent away because the person who does it isn’t there, so this seems WAY more convenient.

Birthday Cards

Okay, so most of us know that you can order birthday cards online but many of the services actually offer a reminder service too. Add all of your important birthdays, anniversaries and other occasions to the calendar on your account and they’ll actually prompt you to send a card in time for the big day!

Write a Will

It used to be that you needed to deal with someone face-to-face in order to make a will, but these days there are loads of online services which allow you to write a will. Some of them will even print the documents and send them to you, OR keep them safe in a Cloud-based service.

Book a Doctors Appointment

You might not have realised but most doctors surgeries now offer a lot of online services, such as appointment booking, test results and even repeat prescription requests. It’s great that they seem to be moving towards the 21st century a little quicker as so many of these services have been the sort of thing that you used to only be able to do in person, which can be a real inconvenience.

 

Retirement: Everything You Need To Know And Consider For The Future

Being a parent, it’s difficult to see beyond the here and now. We focus so much on the daily routine. The school runs. The fact whether our kids are eating. The chores, our work life perhaps. Not feeling like we have the right balance, but yet hoping to have as much quality family time as possible, sound familiar? This is the norm for most parents of today. There is so much focus on what you should be doing right now, and less about the future. It was a different story for our parents and grandparents. They tended to make provisions for the future.

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It’s not that modern parents don’t think about it, I think it may be more to do with the issue of it seeming like a big task. Future finances, our retirement plans. They seem like such big decisions to make for our lives that seems so far away. But as we all know, time moves exceptionally quick. Before we know it, that will be us. So I thought I would take some time to break down exactly what you should think about for the future. It’s not as difficult as perhaps you believe.

Your finances

Finances are possibly one of the biggest things you need to tackle for your retirement and future. Once you or your partner leave employment, that is it for income. Of course, you can draw your state pension. The one everyone gets. But that may not leave you accustomed to the life you have gotten used to. Don’t threat. There’s plenty of things you may have already put the wheels in motion for, and certainly, things you can start doing right now.

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Equity Release

Have you bought a property that you own? Whether you live in it or rent it out for income, that’s one big step for securing your financial future. If you haven’t bought a property yet now’s the time to start saving to do it. It’s a great investment and one that can secure you in the future. Equity release is one of the things you can consider. This is where you draw down some of the equity in your property, it can be done in a lump sum and then used to live off or pay for things like holidays. Some people love this kind of option whereas others see it as using up funds that could be passed down to children or grandchildren when you pass away. The choice is yours to make, but it is an option.

Pensions

You may have one you pay into already, which is perfect. However, many employers now offer the workplace pension scheme, and it is one you should consider. The money is taken directly from your wages each month so you don’t need to think about it. Your employer also pays a set amount, which means you get more investment. It’s a great scheme that many of you can take advantage of. If you want to consider a personal pension, then there are many advisors who will be happy to advise on some of the best packages available.

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Savings and investments

Finally, when it comes to your finances, you could always look into your savings and investment options. This is where you could tie in your money to a high interest savings account for a set period. Or consider investing in the stocks and shares market, although that can be quite risky if you are inexperienced.

What you might do with your time

On a positive note, now is a great time to consider what you will do with the time you have. Retirement is a new chapter in your life and one that should be embraced wholeheartedly. You should make the most of the time. If you are unsure, here are a few suggestions.

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Make a bucket list

Start now and sit down and make a bucket list. This could include all the places you want to see and experience. It’s a great idea to get some perspective on where you want to go in life. Retirement is the perfect time to take advantage of seeing these pleases, but don’t let that stop you if you have the chance to begin exploring now.

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Travel

Now that you have some time, and no doubt have saved for retirement, you could consider travelling. There are many options like taking extended cruises, seeing different countries or travelling to the other side of the world.

Take up a new hobby

Whether it was something you stopped years ago or something you have always wanted to try. Retirement offers you the chance to start a new hobby, and invest yourself into it. It could be anything you like. If you are stuck for ideas, there are plenty of websites to provide some inspiration. Taking part in a hobby or pastime allows you to get involved in your community and could ensure you make some firm friends in the process.

The future beyond

The one thing we cannot predict is our health. It’s one of those things that would love to prepare for in advance, but sadly that isn’t the case. While you may take care of yourself with a balanced diet and regular exercise, you never know what the future holds. This is why it is worth having a plan in place, just incase.

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Would you consider a care home?

Many people are put off by the idea of heading into a care home when they are older but these days these places are state of the art and luxurious. A care home could provide you with everything you need around the clock, and provide you living that is more comfortable and rewarding. Care homes can cost, so this is why it is something to consider for the future, it’s worth knowing whether this is what you would want. If you want some more information, you can find it from HC-Care-Homes.co.uk.

Family carers

Alternatively, you could consider staying at home and having a relative or family member care for you. There are many benefits to this including being able to stay in your home. You could consider having it adapted to help with mobility. There are many options, depending on what you need. Carers get allowances to help cover the financials. If you wnat to look into this further, then check out https://www.gov.uk/carers-allowance/overview.

Have you made out a will?

Making out a will is often something we can forget to do. But it’s our opportunity to make a note of how we want things to proceed when we pass away. While it is never a pleasant subject to think about, what is nice is that you can ensure your family’s future. You may want to make sure that your children get the house, or that your grand daughter gets your wedding ring. It might even be to make a note f how you want things to happen when it comes to a funeral. It is your time to have your say, so don’t miss out on it.

Funeral plans

So as we mentioned this isn’t exactly a nice subject to think about, but you may have strong beliefs that you want taking into account when the time comes. Perhaps you don’t want a fuss at all, or want people to wear bright colours instead of black. Perhaps you want someone in particular to say a few words, or you prefer to be cremated instead of buried. These are all things that you have every right to request and note down. This is your last song. This is where you still get the chance to be in control when you have no control whatsoever. It’s one moment in your life that you have to think about it, and then it’s done, and noted for when it is needed.

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Dividing of assets

Again, perhaps not the nicest thing to think about it, but you have worked hard for your money and assets. The last thing you will want is someone else taking control of matters. In you will you need to make a note of who you want things to go to. Mostly people keep things simple and state that their estate is divided between their children, or to their partner. Many couples agree to have their assets transferred to one another in the event of someone passing before the other. Then it would be divided after that. It’s up to you. You can go into as much detail or keep it as simple as you want. Again once it’s done, it’s done. The only thing to bear in mind is that assets change over time, you may purchase more property or get a bigger house. Try and remember to keep your will up to date.

I hope this has opened your eyes a little about the future and made you realise it’s not as difficult to plan ahead as you once thought. It’s just about taking a few moments to consider some things, and then carry on living your life.

What’s Your Language Age?

Written in collaboration with SunLife

I think you can tell a lot about a person by the way they speak and specifically the language they use. Accents are one thing, but actual language is quite another, and I think language can give away a person’s age, background and a whole lot more. I’ve got quite a few little idiosyncratic phrases that I use, some of which started off intending to be slightly ironic (for instance…”OH MY DAYS!”) and ended up being things that I say every day. I also see phrases used by my younger cousins which I genuinely don’t even understand, which really lets me know I’m not that young any more!

SunLife has put together a language age quiz to see if they can determine your age by asking questions about the language we use. They said “The English language is ever evolving; long gone are the days of ‘tally-ho’ and ‘spiffing’, now we’re taking ‘selfies’ with our bae’…whatever that means. We’ve created a quiz to determine just how old your language actually is.”

 I must say, not only did I find it fascinating, I was rather amused by my own results…

SunLife language age

If I really think about it, I probably do use a few phrases which are a little bit…young…for me, but TWENTY?! Given the fact that it’s my 32nd birthday on Saturday, I can’t decide whether to be flattered or mortified!

I’m not sure whether to start making a concerted effort to keep up with the latest trends and buzzwords or regress and start using phrases that my Nan used to use, (gems like “GAWD LOVE US!” and “You can blow me down with a feather!”) but I’m pretty sure I’ll be paying a bit more attention to the words that come out of my mouth in future…well, maybe!

What was YOUR language age? Do you speak like a youth or more like my Nan? Or, did you find it got your age absolutely spot on? I’d love to hear how you got on so please do leave me a comment below.

Almost a Third of my Life…

Today is a bit of a special day here in the MTW house – it marks the exact day TEN years ago that Husband and I became a couple. Ten years have passed, not without some major ups and downs, but quite honestly, I think Husband and I have basically beat the odds. No-one expected us to last as long as we did, especially when we announced our engagement just six weeks after meeting, but a decade later, almost a third of my life, one dog, two babies, eight house-moves, new careers and a whole load of life in between, here we are. As much as I’d like to remain dignified in my self-satisfaction, what I actually want to do is give a MASSIVE middle finger to all of our doubters.

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I think most people who’ve been with someone for a whole decade will agree that marriage takes work. Unless you’re one of those weird couples who never argue (and I’m not sure they truly even exist, if I’m being honest), there will always be friction. Sometimes that friction feels too much to bear and I’m terribly guilty of failing to communicate at times, but Husband and I both work to make sure our relationship stays strong.

What I will say, though, is that although we sometimes argue, although things aren’t 100% perfect all the time, I’m still convinced that I made the right choice. I still find Husband absolutely hilarious, I still love our shared interests and tastes in music and films, as well as our differences and the fact that we learn from one another all the time. And, obviously, I still fancy him rotten *blush*.

With all that in mind, in honour of a DECADE of not killing one another, I thought I’d write some new vows for the next ten years together, just because no relationship is completely unchanged after ten years and I’m certainly not the same person I was when I was 21.

I promise…

…to do my best not to turn into my mother.

…to try to keep my tendency to over-react and be passive aggressive to a minimum

…to avoid rolling my eyes when you tell me how much you hate washing up

…to try stay awake through at least ONE film per week

…to be considerate of the fact that you’re not a happy passenger in cars and not take it as criticism when you point things out when I drive

…to never use the kids as a weapon or use you as a method of discipline when you aren’t here

…to put up with your farts…as long as you put up with mine

…to serve you smaller portions of dinner because I KNOW you can’t not clear your plate

…to try to stay young at heart and enjoy each other as the years go by

Romantic, huh? Maybe not, but sometimes it’s the practical considerations that we make for one another that remind us how much we’re loved. The fact that Husband knows how I like my coffee, or when he hoovers the car out even though I’m the one who let it get disgusting, or when he listens to me talk endlessly about the dramas which have turned me upside down over the past couple of years, always remaining on my side. That’s love, that is.

So, here’s to another ten years with my best friend and the best Dad I could wish for, for Sausage and Burrito Baby. Now, if he’d just vow to put his clothes in the washing basket, life would be perfect…!

Maldives, August 2006Look how young we look! (Ignore the random Maldivian man in the background…!)