Thursday, 19 January 2017

Being gay is so offensive!

Time for a quick rant. 

I was reading an article today on the Daily Mail (sorry) and ever since have been slightly seething. The article was about how advertising standards watchdogs allowed 'offensive' adverts to be aired in the UK last year.

There were a few where there may have been a point - I mean kicking a cat is not acceptable in any world. Here's the article for you to make you're own mind up: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4134232/Ten-offensive-TV-ads-cleared-watchdog.html

The reason I am mad though is because Match.com's advert for 'someone will love your imperfections' was the third most complained about because of this:

That's right two women kissing is the third most offensive thing on TV! I mean really!

And despite the tag line showing in the picture above potentially showing lesbianism as an imperfection the advert was actually normalising gay relationships and we loved it.

Here's the ad in case you missed it:


More over we need more of this type of advertising to silence those complainers. While Gay Pride parades in the UK have become somewhat of a advertising stage for major employers including Nando's, Sainsburys, Tesco, Marks and Spencers', British Airways and tons of others it has always been a positive for us. We want the visibility, we need the visibility and we need to continue to fight for it as long as any advert showing 'gay' is featured on a list of 'inappropriate/ offensive advertising.

May 2017 see more of these:
And
Sainsburys Christmas advert 2016






Not because I want to replace 'traditional' families but because the world is changing and if it isn't reflected in advertising then anyone outside of that 'traditional family' is discounted.

We know how key visibility is to those struggling, to those who feel isolated in within their own families and to those who think it's just them. If this blog has taught us anything it is that there are so many reasons to embrace being gay but to publicly show that love is love regardless of gender.

Visibility has always been a key thing for us, remember the post we did on whether Lesbian Tribes exist or more to the point are visible? Or when we were doing 'What's Happening hot Stuff' that always included the latest 'gay visibility news'

I hope in reading next years article things have moved on....please - especially with Trumps impending presidency - can we make acceptance the theme for 2017?!

Let us come together and dance in the light rather like those who gathered to dance outside mike Pence's house last night:
For we know that;

Stay strong, stay visible and know that you are never offensive if you are showing love. 


Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Thank you Obama!

Okay it's getting horribly real now and I don't like it. I don't like it one bit. How did this happen so fast? The Obama's are leaving the White House and I am just not ready to accept it.

Am I the only one who can't watch the farewell speech without wiping away tears?!

President Obama and First Lady Michelle have been a key part of my adult life and saying goodbye is totes emosh. I mean for me they went above and beyond turning the American Presidency into something I was interested in. That I cared about. They made politics real to me. They made me take notice and i'm not even American.
Love this!

Throughout the five and a half years that we have been writing this blog Obama has been President and involved in some major decisions that have had an impact on our lives. Search 'Obama' in the search bar and there are over 47 mentions of him in our posts (type Cameron or any other Prime Minister in and the results are less than 5).

When we were doing our 'What's Happening Hot Stuff' rounds ups we frequently reported on the up's and downs of USA politics and the impact decisions were having on us personally. Would Obama come out in support of gay marriage? Would gay marriage be allowed? Would our marriage be legal? Fast forward a couple of years and those questions seem like distant memories. Thankfully. And even though our marriage wasn't legal at the time (because some charmer called Butch Otter put up £1 million dollars to stop gay marriage in Idaho in the month we got married) so many people we know have been able to marry legally. Thanks Obama.

We also consoled ourselves with the letter he and Michelle very kindly wrote us a congratulations letter on the occasion.


And that wasn't the first time he wrote to us. The first letter is here.

Obama's support of gay marriage promoted us to write an entire What We Love Wednesday post dedicated to him. Do you remember his first statements on how he felt? Here's one:
According to ABC News, Mr Obama said: ”I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together, when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married.

Can you imagine a similar thing coming out of the mouth of the current President Elect?

Oh and the joy and relief when Obama got his 2nd term - do you remember that election? We stayed up to 4.30am and unlike like the recent election I stayed up from excitement instead of fear. Not only was Obama back where he belonged but the highest number of women were voted into senate, an openly gay senator was elected and pot was legalised in two states.

We aren't just fans of Barack Obama though, we have and continue to love Michelle. Her first feature on the blog was in our Powerful Women we admire post and then she got her own follow up 'What We Love Wednesday' post about how awesome she is. Since writing that post our respect for her has increased ten-fold (her last Democratic Convention Speech - amazing). In face we are pro her running for President in 4 years. Her articulate, poignant, meaningful speeches are inspirational. Not just in what is said but in delivery. Michelle has poise like no other and while Beyonce may be Queen-B i'd take Michelle Obama as President any day.


Here's a highlight reel that Sky released that made me smile:


What will we do without them?! I guess it was going to be a pretty tough act to follow whoever took over it's just made worse by the fact that the worst (2nd worst? Is Pence worse?!) person is now president. What a legacy though, in two terms, and against the odds, Obama:

He'll certainly take some beating as the best president we have in our lifetime. 


Deep sigh.....let the cheeto presidency begin.....sob.....weep.....sniffle.....wipe away tears. 


Tuesday, 10 January 2017

New Year, New Us....we yoga now!

Isn't that how all January posts start?! Oh it's January we must start the diet, commit to our new years resolutions, become a whole new person. Or in our case whole new people. Well i'm anti it all, kinda. I'm not against people who are gung-ho come the 1st and are able to stick to changing but at the grand old age of 33 I know myself well enough to know that it doesn't work for me.


Take dieting, after a Christmas binge if I was to suddenly starve myself the new me would be a seriously hungry and grumpy person. I can just about get my brain into gear getting up in the dark, if I had to get through the morning on nothing more than fruit my output would not be worthy of employment.

A few of my diet thoughts in the past have included:


Of course we could do Veganuary but realistically it's too much of a step change to be something we stick to this early in the year. Although if you are interested in the benefits check out https://veganuary.com/ and here's why we tried veganism last year.  We have decided to try to re-introduce vegan meals though as they do seem to be healthier - even if dinner just becomes a ton of veg. But don't try and tell me courgetti is just as filling as spaghetti - it may taste the same but one leaves me satisfies and the other leaves me hungry.

Our January plan is simple, eat less, move more. 

As we aren't doing anything revolutionary we aren't expecting revolutionary results but we have to start somewhere and this is a plan we can both stick to.

In terms of the move more well leaving the house is already achieving that - I kid, I mean we did manage a dog walk almost daily over Christmas so we moved. Plus cooking two Christmas dinners really worked up a sweat.

On a serious note though we are building more moving into our days. We signed up to a 30 day yoga trial where we paid a one of £30 fee and can go as many times as we want in 30 days. It has been enlightening....and not in a spiritual sense! I had NO idea what to expect and other than downward dog I hadn't heard too much about what was involved. On turning up at http://barefootbirmingham.com/ I took a deep breath and got ready to om.......

The first session was eye opening so I thought I would share my thoughts in a quick list of what I wished i'd known:

  1. You don't actually have to flexible to go to Yoga the classes focus more of stretching and lengthening you rather than twisting and contorting you - that's for later
  2. You do sweat - depending on the level of natural fitness will depend on the level of sweat
  3. It will seem like everyone will turn up with a Yoga mat and seem to know all the poses but actually that doesn't matter at all and it's useful to have more people than the instructor to watch 
  4. There will be people pulling out poses / stretches while you wait for the class.....don't worry just find a mat and relax, the instructor gets everyone doing the same thing
  5. If you don't want to be touched you don't have to be! This was a point of concern that the instructor might try to bend me in a way I can't naturally go but they actually help adjust your poses or help you stretch in the right way 
  6. Take water
  7. You may fall asleep during the corpse pose and that's okay - 3 classes in and I've heard at least 2 snores
  8. The stretches may make you fart....so far I have survived but they did acknowledge that should air escape just continue the pose and everyone will move on
  9. Even as a non spiritual person I can see the mind and body benefits - I come out of class feeling straighter (physically) and more at peace (unfortunately after the first class I found the car had been hit so my namaste when to namasnae)
  10. It is for everyone. Sure the instructors are super skinny, muscle god and goddesses but there are all ages and sizes in our classes and there are straps to help you reach your toes and blocks to help you reach the ground. Plus there is always baby pose to save you
  11. Oh the names - baby pose, warrior, happy baby, downward dog, cat, cow, plank and a whole lot more and we are only 3 sessions in, you don't have to know them but it helps to not laugh when you a room of grown adults on their backs legs in the air holding on to their toes in the happy baby pose!

Here's a video from our studio:


When we aren't yoga-ing, which is at least half the week as 1) there is no way we can do back to back classes - we tried and the second one almost had us weeping and 2) life is busy - we are doing work out videos at home and I still have netball in the schedule. And we still have to walk Bisbee.

At this point I have no idea how long we can stick to our current regime but with swimsuits to get into for Sydney in less that 4 weeks we have a reason to get fit and hopefully lose a few pounds. It'll be worth it to not be super sweaty when enjoying our trip down memory lane. We may even recreate a few of these gems!

BBQ breakfasts, days at the beach or in the city - ah why did we move back?!

We have also managed to pass on most of our edible Christmas gifts and had a final farewell to the remainders last weekend at a mini-Friendsgiving celebration we had with friends who had missed Thanksmas due to a wedding. We barely ate anything all day in order to enjoy a gammon (cooked in a slow cooker with coca-cola - divine) and a ton of veggies.

A few of my co-workers tried to off load their final treats at our team meeting today and I was proud I could resist, although it did lead to a 45 minute discussion on everyone's keep fit plans which almost had me diving for the chocolates :)

In case i'm missing something I think the only thing every dietitian or fitness guru can agree on is eat more of the good stuff, less of the bad and move more. If I am missing something though please feel free to let me know - i'm always up for a quick win!

Happy January - good luck if you are trying a new regime!


Thursday, 5 January 2017

January Blues and Santorini dreaming

January is in full swing and after battling through two very long days at work I am finally getting back into the swing of things. Is it me or are those first days back just the worst?!

I was welcomed back to work by this and I think it sums up the last couple of weeks.....


We already completed out getaway plans as Laura's Pop turns 90 in February so we are jetting off to Oz to celebrate with him. On the first day back my first action was to book a holiday. Not bad at all. The only thing is by April I am sure i'll be struggling with only 2 weeks annual leave to get me through the rest of the year. 

Oz will be awesome though. It's been 6 years since we were last there and we can't wait to check out all our old haunts from living there. We will be in Sydney for a week then up to the Central coast for family time. It'll be a flying visit but hopefully a sun-kissed one.

To deal with the January blues I have mainly been watching and re-watching the wonderful video Laura put together of our trip to Santorini. You can check it out here: Santorini two year Anniversary Trip. We have also been loving This Is Us and The Crown.

It's the trip we also recorded a two year Q&A video, check it out here.

We aren't majorly into vlogging but these videos are great reminders of an amazing trip and such a happy time. These are just a few of the photos from the trip and if you do plan on making a trip our recommendations on where to stay can be found: here



We hope you January is starting well for you.