Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Extreme Makeover - Home Edition

First things first 'the key to change is to let go of fear' a phrase that has quite simply changed my life and I'm not even joking!! For me, change was one of my biggest fears, I hate change but two weeks ago a lot changed for me and the weirdest thing is, I wasn't afraid, I was actually ready to embrace it.
 I'm not talking big mental changes here like moving to Bayreuth or giving away my cat, I mean really small changes that will add up such as a shift in my attitude, deleting people off Snapchat and Facebook or even a different hairstyle but I knew one of the first steps for this 'new year, new me' was to completely transform my room and that's what I'm going to talk you through today.

Unfortunately I don't have any before and after photo's of my room but I'll try describe it as best as I can. My room hadn't been decorated in about eight years, it was bright luminous pink with photo's of rugby players, teddies and even some Spanish flags hanging about....It was literally the most childish room in the world and seeing as though I'm 21 I definitely needed the change.
 I got the idea to redecorate my room on the Sunday night and on Monday morning I decided there was no time like the present and began thinking about what way I wanted to style my room. I'm really interested in the chilled, hippy theme so went to Penney's and picked up a few little bits that I thought matched this style.
After the fun part was over it was time to head to Woodies to buy the things you actually need to decorate a room and believe you and me I had no idea what I was doing, I decided to get a trolley because I thought to myself 'that's the first step an adult would take isn't it? They would get a trolley' so that I did and crashed my way through the doors of Woodies, as you do. I decided to then make myself a list which just completely freaked me out and made me question whether or not I needed a new room after all..
- Under paint
- Grey paint
- Wall paper
- Brushes
- Overalls
-Dust sheets
- Lampshade
- Another lampshade
- Curtains
and the list is pretty much endless but once we eventually found the paint we were looking for the struggle started all over again, how much paint does one need? will one tin do or do we need another one? What's this colour like? Is it water or oil based (okay, that last question wasn't asked but we got the answer and that's all that counts)
 It wasn't long until our two confused faces attracted the attention of a worker who took the utmost pity on us and decided to show us what we needed, how much we needed and the fool profest ones they had and fair play to that man for keeping his cool because I couldn't have done it.
When we eventually bought everything but the kitchen sink, and the lampshades and curtains and about ten other essentials we needed we decided right onwards and upwards into Harry Corry to buy curtains...which long story short we're never going to mention again...OKAY?!!!

We began painting straight away and that in itself is something I never want to do again, it's just absolutely not fun at all like not one bit fun, not to mention the big overalls that made us look like we were on a one way mission to mars, it was dreadful but finally the first coat was done and in the morning it started all over again as round two commenced.
 After that it was time to call the mother because lets face it I had absolutely no idea how to stick up wall paper, to be totally honest with you I had just found out it didn't stick itself and you needed a paste so yep, thank God for mothers!!!

Then finally the painting was done, the paper was up and it was time to put the final touches to the room...
And there you have it ...€200 less, two days of stress, and hours of tears later my new and improved bedroom.
I have to say I impressed myself and it just shows what you can do with a friend, a mother and shite load of work. I probably would love my room a little bit more if I didn't then have to spend the next ten days locked inside it with chicken pox but none the less change is good and I'm loving it so far!! 
I also realised this entire post was just to show off my new room so I hope you like it, or else the jokes on me :O 

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Lynda's Survival Guide To ... The Pox

At some stage in every single persons life they will come across Chicken Pox, also known as the biggest pain in the arse since time began but normally these rotten, disgusting, ugly itchy red spots attach themselves to defenceless children however for me, I wasn't such a privileged child to get them at the age of eight or nine like the rest of my friends, nope I have to turn twenty one years of age before this plague attached itself to me and seeing as though I'm currently house bound with nothing to do I've decided to write a post about surviving the pox as an adult...or well, a twenty something year old who is yes technically labelled an 'adult' but is just definitely nothing like an adult. 
First things first I didn't want the chicken pox, I didn't want time off work, I didn't want an empty bank balance for 2 weeks solid but life, it ain't always easy and my struggle began almost three weeks ago when I began feeling sick. At the time the flu was a rampant thing, everyone was 'dying' literally everyone, snuffing, coughing, spluttering near me it was disgusting but me and my fantastic immune system, we managed to fight it off..all of three days before it hit me, or so I thought.
 All was fine though until last Monday week when I realised the plague was upon me but it wasn't exactly flu like symptoms, migraines, dizziness, feeling sick constantly. Now I'm not one to over react but I honestly thought that this was it, God was calling me, my time was up but nah I wasn't going near a doctor no way hosey if my time to go was here then go I would until, I even considered writing a will so to be honest when I started getting the itch and noticed my changing face I was delighted to hear they were chicken pox...well look anything is better than thinking you're about to die, a relief if nothing else (that was until I realised what the pox were.)

At first I found it kind of funny, like 'yes I'm not dying' sending out Snapchats to the lads like 'look at the state of me...HAHAHAHA' with a few red spots on my face, shur Jaysus what do people be complaining about these are grand. Yeah you look ugly but a week off work, ideal....
  Then I woke up Wednesday morning covered head to toe in agony and itch and there it was the feeling of death back again, no laugh, no craic and most definitely no snapchats I can assure you!!!
I can truthfully say I had never been as sick or as miserable in my whole entire life, the older you are the worse they're supposed to be and with the majority of my pox attaching themselves to my head and face the pain in my head was unbearable, not to mention my hair and face (the moneymakers) in jeopardy, times are tough!!
 I'm still covered but the spots have tamed and the pain has subsided so apart from being poor and bed ridden I'm definitely over the worst thanks be to God!!

The only advice I could give someone now that has chicken pox is nurofen plus... calamine lotion and a lot of tolerance. I still haven't come to terms with how ugly I'm currently looking with them but the sooner they're gone completely and I can wash my hair properly and look great again then the better...counting down the hours believe me!! ;-)
 What also helps the itch is by running a bath then filling socks right up to the brim with porridge oats. You then place the socks into the bath water so it kind of turns milky then get in...and low and behold itch be gone!! For me the pain was way worse than the itch so all I could count on was the nurofen but they do ease off thank God!!

I've never experienced anything like them but hey if at least one thing good came out of them it's after 21 years I've learned they're chicken POX and not chicken POCKS....shur look, every cloud and what not ;)

Monday, 16 January 2017

Interview With One Third Of The Fupin Eejits - Eddie Whelan

''If you can laugh at yourself you are going to be fine.
If you allow others to laugh with you, you will be great''
A quote that really reflects the motto of a group I'm going to be talking about today. 
Psychiatric nurses Eddie Whelan, Senan Byrne and Stevie Cahill make up a comedy three piece known as The Fupin Eejits. Sketches you've probably came across on Facebook such as The Leaving Cert sketch and on popular app 'Vine' for those of you living under a rock and haven't yet heard of Vine it's an app that allows you to make 6.5 second long videos that loop and aim to have you in stitches by the end something that these three lads seem to do very well. 
 I first came across The Fupin Eejits when I discovered their helium balloons vine and to this day it's a video I don't think I'll ever get over, sheer comedy gold!! 
I was delighted when I got the opportunity to meet with one third of the The Fupin Eejits Clonmel's Eddie Whelan to chat all about how the group started, where their ideas came from and how things have changed since they began. 

Who would have known that by downloading one app so much could change for the three lads but it was Senan who got the ball rolling and encouraged Eddie to jump on board: 
''Senan and myself initially became friends through work. I always knew he had  a keen interest in computers and technology so it wasn't unusual for him to be asking me to download apps for the phone but at the time we never thought an app simply called Vine would have such an impact on us. Now Senan on one front is usually so mature and professional however to this day I still think he only wanted to have someone goofy in videos so the embarrassment would not just be on him as he used videos to express his creative genius.Our interest grew when some of our videos together went relatively viral We ended up doing a few videos together and they actually did very well on Vine and went viral. Again it was through work we bumped into the legend that is Stevie Cahill, who was already massive on his own page 'The Irish Take'. The three of us just clicked and became great friends, we always have such a good laugh together anyway that all we needed was a camera to record what we were doing''
It's unbelievable what makes Irish people laugh, the originality of 'fupin' is comical to me a nd few know it actually came from the greatest show ever placed on television Father Ted, the Fupp off! episode (Father Ted -Fupp off!
''I'll have to give the credit to Senan for this one, It came from Father Ted - the episode where they can't curse at the picnic and the reason being is because we didn't want people to think we were taking ourselves as serious comedians. We knew we were going to be making goofy videos so we're slagging ourselves before anyone else gets it in, it's original'' 

Eddie and Senan are both Tipp men hailing from Clonmel and Stevie from up the road in Kilkenny and when watching the videos you'll notice they're all filmed around these local areas, a prime example is 'Trainspotting' which was filmed in the one and only fine town of Carrick On Suir in Tipperary (swear I'm not biased at all) but it's not the lad's aim to keep it local it just has to be that way: 
''It's all down to timing, we're all psychiatric nurses in Kilkenny so it can be hard to find time. Stevie is married to Claire with three lovely children, Senan is engaged to Lynsey so I probably have the most free time, but trying to find the time for us all that's the hard part'

From my own experience I know that there's days when I sit down to write a blog post and I have no inspiration but with such amazing, original content uploaded regularly you have to wonder where the ideas stem from: 
''Our ideas comes from everyday life, we're all mature and in our thirties so we like to put our own slant on things. We don't copy anybody else we like to think that we're that little bit more original. I was always acting the eejit as a young fella, the class clown and Stevie openly admitted he was a messer too so making videos is a form of expression we're under no pressure which is great and we've full time jobs so this is just a hobby'' 

Nursing and comedy seems miles apart but in reality they say a sense of humour is the best way to handle a profession in nursing, for Eddie this is a statement he really agrees with and having other hobbies to occupy your mind is the best way to go, 
''I was told humour is so important in my very first lecture in nursing especially in psychiatric nursing, you need to have a sense of humour and I really enjoy making people smile, even if it's at my expense'' 
I'm also big into sport and play with Moyle Rovers GAA, I love soccer and hurling but it's hard to find time to commit to a club with so much going on. This year I'm going to try get back into it all''

With so much going on one might ask 'would you ever go fully in to comedy' but it's not on the agenda for Eddie just yet, 
''I actually really enjoy my job so I don't think I'd ever give up the nursing and that's what makes it so relaxed and enjoyable making the videos. There's no pressure on any of us. The boys and myself all enjoy the acting side of things but we are however looking into stand up sketches because that's something we would like to try, why not?!'' 

So with all this committed time to making people laugh are there any benefits to it? 
''Benefits? Senan and Stevie are getting the benefits alright but they told me it's because they do most of the editing and Stevie once told me that I was the best extra in Ireland. We got brought over to Bordeaux for the Euros and also got to see the twitter offices in London which was a brilliant experience''

As stupid as I'm going to sound here, I actually got starstruck when I first met Eddie a couple of months back, and do you want to know the most embarrassing part?? Eddie didn't even realise!! It was back in October I passed him leaving a shop and just stood there speechless but thankfully for my sake Eddie and the boys do get recognised quite a lot *praise the Lord I'm not the only one* 
''If getting called a f*cking eejit is being recognised then we get it all the time. I don't know if it's becuase people mispronounce the name or they just don't like me!!
We're doing something that we enjoy, we're three really good friends and we enjoy making videos that make some people laugh.
 And just for the record me and Stevie never fight, we always agree on everything ''
*** Said With A Big Smirky Head***  

Tommy, the unofficial fourth member of The Fupin Eejits appears in loads of videos and on Eddie's snapchat (such as this video about Donald Trump) and honestly makes my day every time I see him appear, 
''The main question I get 'is that Tommy fella your father?' for the record he's a family friend who retired from nursing a few years ago, he was initially in one of my snapchat videos by chance and the feedback I got was unbelievable, I suppose people love his laid back attitude so now when I put up a snapchat without Tommy people tune out. Tommy has become my best friend now because of this....I'm only messing, he pays for the coffee...Ahhh I'm only messing''

There's still a big stigma towards mental health in Ireland and with the lads being psychiatric nurses it's a serious issue they have considered speaking about in the future with a lot of celebrities coming out about it in recent times.
''Great question Lynda! It's something me and the lads have been threatening to address as we feel celebrities are coming out talking about dealing with depression and anxiety issues which is great however mental health also involves disorders such as bipolar and schizophrenia and it's something we'd like to highlight in the future''  
You can check out the lads on facebook - FupinEejits
Youtube - Fupin Eejits
Twitter - fupineejits

A huge thanks to Eddie for meeting with me and taking his time out to give us an insight into the world of the Fupin Eejits!! Without a doubt one of the nicest, funniest men I've ever came across in my life!!
It was an absolute pleasure :) 

Thursday, 12 January 2017

My Heartbreak Story

Heartbreak is a something everyone will experience at least once in their lives and this is a story I've thought about sharing with you for a long while now, in fact it's been on my mind since December 23rd and the time has finally come to share it with you.

I will admit it's quite painful to talk about and not something I enjoy. As a matter of fact I write this with tears in my eyes but if my story can show you that there is light at the end of the tunnel then that will subside the pain that I have to feel when I write this post, just remember when one door closes another opens (even if it is more expensive and not quite as nice).

It all goes back to Friday November 25th a day also known as Black Friday, I decided to spend the day shopping in Clonmel seeing as though I had just got paid and was fairly delighted with myself, I didn't go with the intention of finding a love but as I walked through New Look I spotted this coat....it was black leather with a gorgeous faux fur collar and I was in love, I'm not joking it was love at first sight. It's as if everything in the shop disappeared and all I could see was this one particular coat, as I walked towards it I noticed it was in the sale and reduced to €65 and the only one left was in my size, nothing ever felt more right in my life. Without hesitation I picked it up and bought it there and then, I've never had a baby but bringing home my new coat in the back of the car must have been the same feeling as a new parent bringing home their child, I just can't describe it. It was love.
I wore it constantly, literally every single day it made me feel so glamorous, whether I'd just fallen out of bed and looking like a donkey just with this coat and a pair of jeans the glam was unreal, I loved it so much!!
On December 23rd it's tradition in my town to go out and do the twelve pubs of Christmas so of course I had to wear my new fabulous jacket, I got so many compliments and was loving life. As we went into our third pub I took off my coat and left it on the chair beside me, pride as place. The pub was actually fairly quiet so when my two musketeers decided to go out for air I decided to run up to the bar and order a drink leaving my coat with a friend who was chatting to someone else thinking it would be safe  and when I got back the coat was gone!!! 
I'll never forget the pain, the devastation, the heartbreak, and I began searching religiously for it. Not only was my prized possession gone, my €70, house key and inglot lipgloss and liner... GONE!!! 
Devastation was an understatement and the pain doesn't end there. I searched every New Look store near and far and no luck, I sent numerous emails before being told the jacket was out of stock and since it was on sale it was very unlikely to ever come back in stock...the blood in my veins ran cold, I'd never felt anything like it. As I said, I understand heartbreak is something that happens to everyone, but I just pray you'll never have to go through anything like this.

After mourning the coat was a reasonable amount of time I decided the time had come to try find a replacement, It was tough but this is the part that everything changed. Early one morning I decided to raid the internet and eventually found a coat that didn't fill the hole still in my heart but slowly started to mend it.
 €52 in River Island and yeah I know it's not as nice but it will do, twill do, twill do. I also ordered another one and I do actually love it. 
 The be all and end of this story is like I said above there's always light at the end of the tunnel and when you think you'll never find something else then be patient it'll come along.

So there you have it, my heartbreak story right out on a page, I hope it's helped someone going through something similar, just keep going!! Keep searching and eventually something will come along...
All the best xo 

Monday, 2 January 2017

2016 Year In Review

Well it's officially here, Happy New Year everyone!! 2017 is finally upon us and if there's one thing I love it's the new year. For me, I see every year as a book that has twelve chapters this might be because I'm a writer but on December 31st the 2016 book is closed and on January 1st you have a new blank book for your 2017 and to know you have a brand new canvas to start again makes me so so happy and that's why I love New Years so much.
 As you may know every year (well last year - 2015 Year Review) I write my years review and this year is of course no different. These are my favourite posts to write because it's so rare you actually sit down and reminisce on 365 days. It can be such a whirlwind of emotions from sadness to happiness but at the end of the day no matter what happened that's my 2016 book done and here's my story from last year, I hope you enjoy.
 When I'm planning this post I normally compile a list of events that have happened throughout the year under sections like education, career and the plain weird stuff but when I write my post it tends to get pretty mixed up. I can't say 2016 was the best year of my life because if I did that would be a lie, but what I can say is 2016 was the most life changing year I've ever had and taught me more life lessons than ever before.
One of the most life changing things that happened this year was when I decided to leave Carlow and drop out of college that, I think has literally flipped my world around, making the decision to leave was heartbreaking and do I miss it?? Absolutely. Did I make the right decision?? 100% but with leaving college came the real world, something I'm still not fully grasping and to be honest, I don't think I ever will. You become an adult and with this I went onto get my first ever job, it was in a call centre aka the worst experience of my life. If there's one thing I learned this year it's that call centres are soul destroying and I'm not joking don't do it kids, don't do it. I don't regret working there though not for one second, I made great friends, realised how shit it actually is and also taught me how to quit my first ever job.... twice, you know, as you do.
 Thankfully I'm now in a job that I love and for that I'm so grateful, I love being independent, having money and as I work in retail I get to meet new people every single day so as they say when one door closes another one opens.

One of the most amazing opportunities I got this year was when I got the chance to work in Tipp Fm for a couple of months on the Breakfast BLT with Brian and Lorraine. Lorraine Murphy was one of the presenters I've admired for years so to get to work with her and have her as my mentor was incredible, I learned so much from Brian and Lorraine and I think personally it was one of my biggest highlights of the year and something I'm forever grateful for.

My blogging didn't stop this year as 2016 was the year I set up my second blog LittlePieceOfHalloween
 I was nominated for 'Best Lifestyle' blog in the 2016 Irish Blog Awards. I also surpassed 100,000k hits on my blog and I'm still beaming ear to ear. To know people out there are clicking on and reading my nonsense is the most amazing feeling ever so if you're reading this now, then thank you so so much for your support over the year, I'm delighted!!
 I also got the opportunity to interview some incredible people this year such as my most read post ever, curvy model- Iskra Lawrence   former Eastenders Actor- Jack Derges
A real life witch - Patricia Weston, an Irish ghost buster Tina Barcoe and the owner of Ireland's most haunted house Aidan Quigley. Chatting to new people is without a doubt my favourite thing about blogging and each of these people were such a pleasure and an honour to feature on the blog.
 This year (well last year but you know what I mean) I also launched my new blog Instagram and twitter so if you're not already please come and follow me and in terms of blog wise that's been pretty much it this year.

In January this year we celebrated the first of the groups 21st birthday's and quickly realised that 21st birthday parties are the best things ever. Annmarie turned 21 on the 18th of Jan so we threw her a surprise party for her and it was probably one the best nights out in my life.
 Up next we had Karen's 21st and for three out of four to turn 21 in the same year I think it's safe to say we celebrated in style!

 In August it was my time to turn 21 and with months of planning and preparation it finally went ahead and turned out to the without a doubt the best night of my life (you can read about it here) It was one of those nights that to be honest I don't really remember it but it's something I'll never forget, does that make sense?
I was surrounded by my best friends and it literally was the greatest night of my life, as for the after session probably the greatest few hours of my life, loved every second!!

In February a very special thing took place in our town and that was the arrival of THE MR TOMMY BOWE!!! I kid you not!!!
 He's the most beautiful, kind, lovely, most unreal man on the planet and there I am..looking like a dog in a picture with him, EUGH!!

This was also the year of vehicles as Karen got her new beast (a nissan micra) and Annmarie went through cars like there was no tomorrow but it was also the year that I learned how to drive and believe me it was pretty touch and go for a while there.
I can't say I'm a natural at driving but I am pretty decent at it, once I get the car going I'm flying it but none the less there I am, a driver!!!

In April it was the first family christening in years as my cousins baby Lucy was christened, she's gorgeous and literally the pride and joy of the family right now. The cutest baby in the world.
 With that came nights out and what a few we've had, going on a night out is clearly my favourite activity I love it and we definitely celebrated in style. Between Aisling and Crellin's 20th birthday, a night out with Vera, a new moon party, Rag Week in Carlow and just too many nights out in general this year was fairly decent with them and there's only one that I stand back look at and go hmmmmm.....and that's very rare indeed. A night back in July which at the time seemed like the worst thing to ever happen, then what happens? flipped around and turned out to be a blessing in disguise literally, every cloud and that... 2016 you were some woman for the nights out!!

Other things that happened this year was of course Carrick basically going under the river Suir , Kings Of Leon making a return with their unbelievable album Walls, releasing my favourite KOL song 'Reverend'  and I discovered my all time fave song 'This Girl' what ultimate bangers!! 
 I tried coffee for the first time (won't be happening again I can assure you) I went to cover my first media event, a comedian in Thurles, I got a new cat.. Luna the psycho!! Mursher turned the big 4 and I lost my bestest friend in the world Molly. 

From October onwards this year the spiritual realm really took me over and I began getting very spiritual and interested in the paranormal. After starting my Halloween blog I wanted to ensure we had the best Halloween ever so started attending anything Halloweeny that we could find and Youghalloween was our first stop. What an unbelievable experience!!
 Becoming spiritual then, well it's not really something you can explain to anyone else because everyone is on their own journey but WOW! It's changed my life for the better and gave me such a different outlook on life, I love it so much. 
 The paranormal side then, well, coming from a person who still shivers to the theme song of Most Haunted it's weird how interested I became but there are two words I have to say....Loftus Hall.
 My favourite discovery of the year without a doubt, it's surreal. I've spent so many hours in that house over the past few months and each time I get a different experience I love it so much.

Overall my outlook on life has changed drastically last year/this year/ the year of 2016 you still get what I'm saying don't you? I really realised that negativity is what stops you from doing so much so if you remove that from your life you'll go on leaps and bounds. As harsh as it may be, pick out the aspects of negativity from your life, put in a bin and move on and it works great believe me.
 I'm so excited to start 2017 and although New Years Eve didn't kick off great I have such faith in this year and wish everyone the very best. No matter what happened last year, no matter what you went through just remember that this is a brand new book and you're holding the pen. 
Thanks so much again for reading my blog and I'll see you soon.
Happy New Year!!!
Lynda Xx