And Now For Something Completely Different…

It’s taken me a while to get to this, due to various bits and pieces going on. I woke up this morning and found a comment from the lovely Anna Belfrage nominating me for a blogger award. This has put a massive smile on my face after a particularly difficult few weeks. The premise of the whole thing is to nominate inspiring blogs for the award, and answer a few questions about yourself in the process. Thank you for nominating me, Anna – here we go!

1. Display the logo on your blog. 
2. Link back to the person who nominated you. 
3. State 7 things about yourself. 
4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award. 
5. Notify your nominees.
I’ve done the first two, so on with the seven random facts.
  1. I have type 1 diabetes, and we’re coming up to the 18th anniversary of my diagnoses.
  2. I really regret my decision to not carry on with history while I was doing my degree. In my first year I did a joint honours with archaeology but alas when it came to the second year, I decided to go for single honours archaeology.
  3. I am thus, a trained archaeologist. I’ve done loads of awesome digs both for research and commercial contract purposes – two Roman villas, a leper hospital, Tudor House in Southampton and a random building site – my commercial contracts were the best jobs I’ve ever had.
  4. I used to be in a rock band. We were truly awful, but playing in front of two packed auditoriums and a pub packed to the rafters was absolutely amazing!
  5. As well as the diabetes, I also have coeliac disease and diabetic nueropathy. Because of all this, I take enough tablets to make my stomach rattle!
  6. I adore wine and consider myself something of a connoisseur of the stuff. I completely blame my parents for this as they’re wine nuts themselves (and that I blame on their impending move to Portugal where the wine is amazing, and super cheap!).
  7. I’m a tad obsessed with Monty Python, and can quote both Life of Brian and The Holy Grail almost word for word.
I’m now supposed to nominate 15 blogs who deserve this award. But if I’m honest every blog I read deserves it, as they’re all inspirational in their own right. I would like to mention a few blogs that are my particular inspirations:
  • Three Pipe Problem – This blog is absolutely amazing, and all about the Renaissance and art history. Please do check it out as it’s one of my favourite blogs out there!
  • Madame Guillotine – Does Melanie need any other introduction? She’s just brilliant!
  • The frenetic fox – I consider Claire one of my best friends, and her blog is brilliant! Although not history related, it’s certainly worth a read!

The Story Of The Travelling Red Dress

Today’s post is somewhat unusual. But I’m not going to apologise in the slightest. Not so long back, I came across something online called The Travelling Red Dress, an idea set up by the fantastic Jenny Lawson:

“I want, just once, to wear a bright red, strapless ball gown with no apologies. I want to be shocking, and vivid and wear a dress as intensely amazing as the person I so want to be. And the more I thought about it the more I realised how often we deny ourselves that red dress and all the other capricious, ridiculous, overindulgent and silly things that we desperately want but never let ourselves have because they are simply “not sensible”. Things like flying lessons, and ballet shoes, and breaking into spontaneous song, and building a train set, and crawling onto the roof just to see the stars better. Things like cartwheels and learning how to box and painting encouraging words on your body to remind yourself that you’re worth it.”

The idea is to wear a vivid red dress just for the hell of it, to wear something that reminds us that we are special, that we are worth it and that we shouldn’t be embarrassed to wear something that will make us feel as amazing as we really are. And do you know what? As I stood in that photography studio, I did feel amazing. The whole experience was just completely mind blowing, the photographer really put me at ease and made it so much fun. It was so nice just to let loose and really be myself for a bit; I’m not going to lie, the past few months have been rather difficult for me health wise so it was nice to just let my hair down and have some fun while wearing this absolutely spectacular red dress.
Not only that, the whole experience has made me feel better about myself. I wore the hell out of that dress and it has made me realise I can do anything. It made me realise that I can get the book written that has been in my head for the longest time, it made me realise that I shouldn’t let the stress get to me so much. It made me realise that I should just do those things that I never thought I could do before, that I should just have fun, that there is no harm in me letting my hair down. And now I can send the dress on to another fabulous lady and make her feel as special as she really is!
I just wanted to say a massive thank you to Claire for sending me this spectacular gown, and really making my day; and to Jenny “The Bloggess” for coming up with this fabulous idea. I couldn’t have done this without either of you.
Now, the travelling red dress is up for grabs. Please do contact me via email if interested. The dress is a UK size 12!
And now back to your regularly scheduled history blog posts……