RESULT

THURSDAY 14TH APRIL 2015

So, I was a bit rubbish and was supposed to post this a long, long time ago. 

However, it’s Mental Health Awareness Week now, so it’s pretty good that I forgot all about it until today. Plus, closing night is always fun.

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Result is a powerful new play that explores the emotion behind every kick; a world in which dreams are built or destroyed in ninety minutes. A world in which the score means everything and failure is not an option. Where physical strength is celebrated but mental health is often ignored.

An important production that has the potential to make a huge impact, the play’s message is to overcome that ongoing taboo and tell us that it is fine for people to admit that they’re scared, lonely, gay or simply doubting. Although the play is fixed in the world of football, the piece deals with the universal themes of race, homophobia and mental health, and will resonate with any young man or woman who has struggled to just tell someone “I’m struggling.”

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Although the play has been running for a few weeks now, we are still short on funding and are looking for any support, big or small, that can be offered. Even just a fiver makes a huge difference.

Mental health is still a taboo subject. We need to start asking questions and challenging this issue. This play goes far beyond the world of football and should talk to people from all areas of life; we really believe it can open up a discussion on a topic steeped in stigma and so fundamentally misunderstood.

1 in 4 people will suffer from some sort of mental health issue this year- it’s time we started talking about it.

“It could draw attention to aspects of football and mental health and masculinity that people rarely acknowledge or talk about” – Gary Lineker. 

“This type of exploration, it strikes me, is exactly what drama is for.” – Simon Stephens (Olivier Award Winning Playwright.)

Result is running at The Pleasance Theatre from 21st April – 17th May.

Go check it out.

Words by Liam Stewart-George

ON YER BIKE

TUESDAY 13TH APRIL

Sometimes it’s nice to be outside.

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BRIGHTON MARATHON 2015

SUNDAY 12TH MARCH

My friend Imani is insane. She is insane because she ran 26 miles today. My friend Imani is also amazing. She is amazing because she ran 26 miles today.

Luckily for me, Brighton is a simple train ride away. Or so I thought. Meeting Jess, who almost didn’t make it due to unforeseen hungover circumstances and a desperate need for chicken nuggets, made for a somewhat flustered start to the day. But once we arrived in Brighton, found a good spot and ran alongside our bestie, we soon forgot about the drama of the morning.

Spending the day in this seaside town is always a pleasure. And although she didn’t get any chips and had to side step her way home after the race, I think even Imani would agree that it was the perfect way to spend a sunny Sunday.

Here’s what we got up to…

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A gazillion energy drinks and some almost-tears later, Imani completed the race in just over 5 hrs. Proud doesn’t even cut it.

Apparently it’s mind over matter, running the marathon, but I’m not so sure I could do it.

Could you?

WOMEN FASHION POWER

SATURDAY 11TH APRIL

The Design Museum. Never been before, never actually heard of it.

Boyfriend suggested it. I googled it.

Women + Fashion + Power ? I got dressed immediately.

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Well worth a browse, the exhibition spans over one hundred years and celebrates the empowerment of women through the ages- from Victorian corsets and dropped waists to the shoulder pads of the glamorous 80s. The exhibition features designs worn by Lady GaGa and pieces by Vivienne Westwood. I was mesmerised; genuinely one of the top 5 exhibitions I’ve ever been to.

Don’t miss out. It’s only on until the 26th of this month.

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This is only a sneak peak. I didn’t want to ruin it.

But go. Just go.

DAYLESFORD ORGANIC

MONDAY 6TH APRIL

When I turned 25, something happened to me. I suddenly found myself less able to eat bread all the time, I could no longer indulge in a bag of Kettle Chips and a Snickers bar in one sitting and exercise became a necessity rather than a choice.

This is how I found yoga. But I’ll save that for another post.

Not only did I begin to move my body more, but I began to think a little more carefully about what I was eating on a daily basis. I now gorge on all the vegetables I like, snack on fruit and rarely eat out. I thought my new lifestyle choices would mean that I would miss out on a ton of fun stuff because my mates love to eat, but it’s more about choosing wisely from a menu as opposed to skipping meals out altogether.

My friend Imani has always been into healthy eating and Jess is a nutritionist. This is how I know what I should and shouldn’t eat and they are the reason I end up in eating holes such as Daylesford Organic as opposed to GBK.

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Daylesford Organic only serves up produce from their farms. They chaperone your lunch or supper “from farm to fork” and when they do use produce from other suppliers, they ensure that they buy from those who are equally as committed to quality and sustainability as they are.

They’ve won plenty of awards for their work and the restaurant we visited in Pimlico is just perfect. With the white walls and wooden decor, it even looks like you’re eating, if that makes sense? They have a range of food to go and lots of goodies downstairs which make for great presents or quick snacks.

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I was impressed by the coffee. It was hot and not too strong- just how I like it. I did find the menu a little overwhelming however, so ended up going for one of the four specials displayed on the chalk board: a vegetable quiche. I got to pick two salads to accompany it (which Jess chose for me) and the whole plate was really tasty. The portion sizes were just enough.

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After we ate our food, we went for a stroll around Battersea Park to walk off our salads. A nice venue for lunch or a quick coffee, I would definitely recommend Daylesford.

One question though: why do we have to pay such a high price for organic munchies? I think if it were a little cheaper, more people would jump on board. Just a thought.

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But what did my pals think?

“Fantastic salads, nice staff, great cookies. I’ll be back to try the venison.” – Jess Mark

“Big fan of Daylesford and Lady Bamford. The food was good. Lots of choice and nice to know that it was all organic, locally sourced or from the Daylesford Farm. Nice, clean, white interior. Only downside is the setting: felt a bit like eating in an upmarket IKEA. Would have been nice to have a separate dining area.” – Imani Backes

“No Venison. Salads were boom.” – Helen (woman of few words) Keppe

EASTER WEEKEND 2015

SUNDAY 5TH APRIL

We celebrate Easter in our house as though it were Christmas. Huge roast, bubbles and board games.

This year was no different. Except for the Ouzo. That wasn’t anticipated.

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This smug chap at the end is my brother. He won every game of Articulate that we played, regardless of whose team he was on. Super intelligent or just plays this game too much? You decide.

TURNING 26!

SUNDAY 29TH MARCH 

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The last time I was bothered about getting older was when I turned 21.

Something about entering my early twenties freaked me out and now my late twenties are doing the exact same job. Much to my surprise however, it was my best birthday yet. Surrounded by the people I love was the best present I could ever have asked for and I felt very grateful today, despite being really quite hungover.

Ryan kicked off the celebrations by giving me my present before the party and I was a little overwhelmed to say the least. I had been banging on about saving for a camera for such a long time and he (unbelievably) took it upon himself to get me one- it’s definitely one of the best presents I’ve ever received!

Once I’d wiped away my tears of ABSOLUTE JOY, I got dressed and poured myself a G&T. We ate pizza and drank some too much prosecco before heading out to Tooting and then back again for drunken yoga moves and cheeseburgers. Here are a bunch of my favourites…

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Check out the cupcakes that my friend Helen made for me…

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… and some of the presents my friends gave me…

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I woke up this morning and gorged on cupcakes in bed before lounging around and working off my hangover whilst Ryan cleaned the flat.

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Mum and dad kindly came and picked us up late afternoon to enjoy a curry and open some more presents at home with the whole family.

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The best birthday yet! Here’s to being 26!

HAPPY PLACE

SUNDAY 22ND MARCH

Whenever something goes wrong, I head to Hyde Park.

Whether the god-awful Winter Wonderland is on or whether it’s hot enough to take a dip in the lido, it’s the place that I go to do all of my best thinking. I’m hard pushed in central London to find places to clear my mind and, as one of the more greener settings in the capital, it really helps to escape the concrete and just… breathe.

Luckily for me, the park is walking distance from my parent’s house. Yes, I know. This means that I can just slip on a pair of boots and take a wander to my happy place at a moments notice.

This weekend, for no particular reason, Ryan and I decided to cycle to that happy place and it was as DI-VINE as always.

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  Whether you’re visiting London or have lived here longer than I have, an afternoon spent exploring our most famous park is an afternoon well spent.

LOVE, JESS

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“Happy Mother’s day to the strongest, most beautiful and inspirational lady I know. My best friend, my confidant and my role model. If I become half the woman you are, I’ll consider myself a lucky lady. 
I love you xxxx”

LOVE, ELLIE

ellie millard

“Happy Mothers Day to my gorgeous mummy. Thank you for being the greatest, funniest and strongest woman I know. xxx”

LOVE, CHARLOTTE

Charlotte Glaser

“The most beautiful, selfless, kind and inspiring woman I know.”

LOVE, SINEAD

sinead mcnamara

“Mammy!! What a pleasure it has been to have seen you this year on your journey.
Ironically,by shrinking down you have grown so much as a person. It’s a side of you I’ve never known until now. An air of confidence that I’ve never seen in you and I hope never goes away. 
We are so proud of you now and always have been.
So here’s to the old you who has always put us first, screamed and shouted at us to ‘keep the fecking house clean’ (while cleaning it yourself) and who made sure we were all times table masters ..
But more importantly here’s to the new you, who is still all of the above but now clogs my whatsapp with selfies,steals my clothes and make up; but mostly is proud to have a pancake ass. Those women are truly rare nowadays.
I love you and  I hope I love my children, how I was loved by you.”

LOVE, ELAINE

Elaine Parker

“For your endless love and support!! You’re awesome! Happy Mother’s Day!!”

LOVE, ADRIENNE

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 “Thanks for all the lols, love and support mum! So proud that you’re mine. Without you, there would be no me.”

LOVE, MARLEE

Marlee Wilson

“Like many people, I spent my teenage years arguing with my mum. I would constantly argue back and thought I was ‘adult’ enough to say my piece, ‘how dare she tell me what to do, I am NOT a child!’ Was definitely one of my favourites! 

To this day, I wish that I could go back and give myself a slap for being such an ungrateful little brat! 
It wasn’t until I had children of my own that I truly understood what my mother has been through (and I don’t just mean the excruciating pain that is childbirth!!) 
The hundreds of thousands of pounds my mother has sacrificed, working all day and night to provide for us and give us the best. Going without every month so we would get our treats and our special days out. Going without her hair cut, new shoes, new clothes, manicure, or a much deserved night out, to buy us that STUPIDLY expensive and overpriced doll that we guilted her into buying because ‘all our friends have one’.

I regret every single day that I ever took my mother for granted, answered her back, or complained when I didn’t get what I wanted.

I will never be able to thank my mum enough for giving up her life for us, but I hope that she knows what an amazing, generous, strong and selfless woman she really is, and how much I love her.” 

LOVE, EMILY

Emily Finkill

“Reasons why I love Mummy Finks…

 1. I cause her so much pain through purely living – driving, going out, being alive in a big scary world, being hurt or upset, making my own (terrible) decisions- yet she will drop anything to hear about my day and listen to what babble I have to say at anytime.

2. She knows she drives me INSANE with the way she drinks coffee. And to be honest I’ve been so rude in the past, yet she will still love me for making snorting pig noises at her for being appalled should she call me and ‘accidentally’ SLURP down the phone.

3. I steal her clothes and accidentally never give them back- yet whenEVER I need a dress or a piece of clothing, she is always there with HER wardrobe open.

4. I have a weird sense of humour yet when we get to it – with a glass of fizz or even a glass of water – we can have a strong bout of non-stop sniggers.

5. I have managed to hurt her by being a moody, childish (and selfish at times) individual, yet she would never turn her back on me and never defy me THAT HUG which transforms me from that horrid monster back into her little girl.

Happy Mother’s Day.”

LOVE, OLIVIA

Olivia O'Brien

 Growing madder with age, making this road with you all the more interesting, you are still always one step behind me, in case I fall.

Love you always, Happy Mother’s Day”

LOVE, CATHERINE

Catherine Dunne

“You keep me sane with your sense of humour, your kindness and your strength. Thank you.”

LOVE, LAURA

laura watkins

 “My mum is amazing because she’s always there for me, supports me in everything I do, puts everyone else first, works hard, never says no to anyone or anything… And all of it while quietly and patiently waiting for a kidney transplant. She is incredibly stoic about her condition and makes a great effort to never let it affect her life, or ours as much as physically possible. 

The photo attached was from our first holiday – just the two of us – in Iceland a year ago last March, in the Blue Lagoon with our face masks on. Here’s to many more adventures after her surgery this summer!”

LOVE, CORIN

corin jackson

“I can categorically say that without my mum, I would be nothing like the person I am. Not in the slightest. Everything good in me is because of her, which makes her kind of magical. If she has the power to do that, she can do anything. Only when she feels that powerful will I have come close to giving her everything she gives to me.”