The Write Stuff – How to write creatively

Let’s say this is not going to be your usual how to guide. Yes I lead writing in a primary school. Yes I write this little ol’ blog in my corner of the interweb and Yes I studied creative writing at university but does that mean I have the right to tell you anything?

Technically no.

I’m unpublished, except for that one poem hidden in an out of print book somewhere; the name of which I can’t remember. That technically means that I know absolutely nothing. However, what I do know is how to write from the heart and to me that’s what creativity is all about.

Nobody has exactly the same thoughts or opinions about the same thing. I mean let’s test it out… what 3 words come to mind when I say the word morning?

For me it’s stretch, work, yoga now if you chose exactly the same words as me I’d like you to hop out of my head and make your own way in the world because this lane is taken. However if by some non-miracle you chose different words to me congratulations, that is the beginning of creativity. The best exercise in creative writing I got was just to sit and allow your mind to wonder and write EVERY SINGLE THOUGHT that comes to mind. When you’re done you have so much on the page that can create something beautiful.

This poem was composed from random thoughts.

If I could sit in a different city everyday and write for a living, I think that’s what I’d do. Creativity is often born out of experience. The more you allow yourself to experience in life the more you have to write about. How many of us can write about stripping off in the Caribbean on a back road up a mountain and jumping into a river in the mid morning sun with soap and flannel in hand for a river bath, before climbing into the back of a strangers pick up truck to head into the nearby town?

Though it can be taught in books, it’s probably better to read a wide range of books about everything than to read one book on creativity and think that you can unlock the power of creative writing.

So to be clear, what I’m telling you is this.

1. Write anything and everything.

2. Live a life worth writing about.

3. Read widely.

Get those creative juices flowing and when you’ve done that share it with me. I love to see it!

Personal Space Bubble

I didn’t post yesterday, I’d like to say that it was purely an oversite and I forgot, unfortunately that’s far from the truth. After having spent all week staring at a computer screen, which is the new normal for teachers, I took Saturday to break away and have no computer screen time at all. Sunday I was back at it again uploading and creating files for the week ahead, to say I’m tired would be an understatement. I’m exhausted and I absolutely would rather be back in the classroom with my school babies than hiding away at home because the government failed to implement a successful track and trace system to protect people from the dreaded Covid.

So here I am today, late, to fill you in on my exciting life of glitz and glamour. I would love to say that I have a whole lot to report but apart from meeting a couple of new dogs and their owners, I really haven’t had time to do anything and even if I did, there isn’t anywhere to go that doesn’t involve standing in a queue.

Speaking of standing in a queue, I was doing my weekly shop and the woman behind me clearly didn’t understand the 2 meter rule and hit me with her shopping basket. She did apologise, she wasn’t the one that was rude. That, I’m sad to say was me. My response, “You can move back and give me some space you know.” She apologised again and I overheard her telling her mum she had “forgotten the 2 meter thing.” If I’m honest, it isn’t even Covid that made me feel that way, unless I’m out at a party dancing with a good looking member of the male species or snuggled up at home with loved ones, I don’t enjoy people in my personal space bubble.

I’m going to try and get better with that. I know now is probably not the best time to learn to get closer to people but at least I can attempt to be a little more welcoming in my demeanor and connect with my inner yogi when the mere thought that someone is getting too close sends my mind into asylum mode.

So that’s me for this week folks, no real glitz and glam and no place to wear fancy shoes, I might have to throw a zoom party just for an excuse to dress up.

Feeling Myself

If you’ve been following since launch day you may have read my post Boss Moves you will also note that my tag line is ‘A mix of lifestyle and fashion, from a self proclaimed mess’.  The last few weeks has been one of those weeks were the ‘mess’ rears it’s ugly head.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m still very proud of myself but I’m also feeling very sorry for myself. 

Every once in a while depression tries to take over this beautiful mind of mine and drag me to a place I really don’t want to go!  It may also be a dose of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), I hate the winter.  The darkness of it, the cold of it, it makes me spend all day wishing I was anywhere but here.  It also makes me feel moody, unattractive and absolutely miserable.  I don’t have to be scantily clad to feel beautiful, but it helps.

Joggers and a T-shirt in the house hiding from the cold is no comparison to a bikini on any beautiful hot beach in the world you can take me to right now.  I don’t think it’s just me, there must be millions of people wanting Covid to do one so we can get back to hopping on planes in the winter to alleviate our aching bones and energise our tired brains.

So this weekend, what you get from me is lazy day outfits and throw backs to some time sunny where I could walk around half naked because I wanted to.

Outfit Ann Summers

Festive Finds

It’s almost Christmas and if you’ve know me for a while you’ll know that I’m not the biggest fan of the festive season. It’s probably because it’s advertised as this amazing family filled occasion with lots of food and family fun. I’m not disputing that I have had some great Christmas’ filled with just that but as the years have passed and my mother has disappeared back to our sunny island of Barbados, I have found myself looking forward to another normal day spent at home with my children. Don’t get me wrong that’s lovely, I’d rather that than a day forced to spend time with people I barley talk to.

However, all that being said, I’ve decided to make this Christmas a good one and completely embrace the spirt of Christmas with all the love, laughter and enjoyment that it brings.

The children haven’t asked for much so their gifts are sorted and with it being just us, I have no need to go overboard with the cooking but I will make dinner special. I’ve also decided that as I probably won’t have anything under the tree I’ll probably treat myself to a little gift and here are the ones that top my list.

1.

If I had a spare £6000 laying around then this would definitely be one of the items I’d place under the tree for myself, as an alternative, Boohoo has this little number that is by no means the same quality but at only £16 but there were no lambs killed in the making of this one, and it’s cute.

Boohoo alternative

2. I’m very much a reader so a book has to be on my Christmas list and this one seems like the perfect addition to my book shelf. It’s a collection of essays written by black female authors and as an aspiring author myself it’s I’m going to sink my teeth right into it.

3. It’s all about the knits for me this season and this Jumper dress from Boohoo has just the right amount of detail to make it interesting but is simple enough to keep it classy, just like me.

4. There is something about these boots, I’m not usually into patent items but these almost sing to me, the lyrics are sex appeal, sass and an all out good time. I don’t know where I’d wear them as tier 3 is looking more and more likely here in London and my mood fluctuates between stay home and take a walk around the block.

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5. Then last but not least there is this:

It’s advertised as a gym bag but I think it’s the perfect weekend bag for the weekend in Morocco that I’m sure someone will be kind enough to get me for Christmas.

What’s on your wish list this year?

Embrace the Fro

I don’t know about you but embracing my afro was a real journey. I used to beg my mum to hot comb my hair and for those of you who have been through the experience, you’ll know that having your hair hot-combed is a mild form of torture. Those burns to the scalp and ears were well worth the pain just to flick my hair like the white girls in movies.

This is where representation is important, if you don’t see yourself on the television, in the classrooms, in the business world and in books what you aspire to becomes something that is so far detached from you that in your mind it is virtually unobtainable.

Top: Boohoo

I’ve been so enthused to see a rise of representation in the media of black and ethnic minority people and my only hope is that this doesn’t just fizzle out as a fad but instead becomes our new normal.

I was very privileged to have been sent a copy of the book ‘Lily and the magic Comb‘ by singer songwriter VV Brown. The book is a great addition to any little girls collection. It’s a great book for teaching rhyme in the early years and inspires little black girls to harness their imaginations and dream big.

I’ll be running a competition over on my Instagram to win your own copy of Lily and the magic Comb so head on over and enter.

Love Yourself

During the summer I was sent a days worth of Veto Diet meals from a company called Love Yourself. Now anything that promotes self love and wellness is right up my street. Though it’s not something I’ve always been good at it’s something that I ultimately desire to live by. Who in there right mind doesn’t?

Having struggled with weight issues, at times being overweight and struggling with over indulgence and other times being underweight and having to remind myself that eating is a necessity, the Veto Diet offered a vegetarian balanced option to healthy eating.

The promotion for the diet is great the photos are enticing and I was really looking forward trying it. Did it meet with my expectations? unfortunately not.

Picture from website

It’s not that the meals were completely tasteless in fact quite the opposite they tasted ok but for £130 for 5 days worth of meals ok just doesn’t cut it. The portion sizes were ok and I did feel adequately full after eating them but it honestly doesn’t take a lot to make me feel full.

Photo of meal received

So to sum it up, the meals are ok and if you have a spare £130 to spend on them the Veto diet is a great plant based protein alternative to kick start your weight loss journey.

Throw it Back

I’ve been a good girl and against all my travel loving instincts I’ve done as told and stayed put in the UK all through the pandemic. I’m not asking for a pat on the back, I’ve given myself one already. It’s very easy sometimes to ignore all the rules and do what what I feel like doing. I’m one of these people who think yolo and just do it, but being that the elderly were being disproportionately affected, alongside the black and ethnic minority population, I thought it best to stay put and make sure I didn’t contribute to killing off some of the most vulnerable in our society.

Thankfully, I did get a little reprieve when we were able to travel within the UK and took myself off on a jolly jaunt to the picturesque county of Dorset. Staying in an Air BnB gave me the freedom to come and go as I pleased and walk around in the buff, if I felt like it. Imagine the alternative; walking into the hotel lobby nude, not a good look.

Dress Boohoo

Of course when I got there, I had to make known I wasn’t a local by strutting around the countryside in heels and a short dress and taking a million and one photos doing just that (first world priorities and all). So this post includes a little recap of the best bits, just for you 😉

Dress Boohoo

Boss Moves

You lucky lot are so spoilt, 3 blog posts on launch day. Thought I’d go right on in there and be the cherry to top off your working week, cliché I know. I blame the children I teach, it’s them that come up with these quirky sayings and don’t I just love them for it.

Anyway, back to business. Whilst some folk were out there complaining about having to stay in for a few days (or a few months who’s counting?) I was securing the bag and tucking a promotion in my back pocket. That’s not to say I don’t empathise, it’s hard out there and not enough is being done to support those who are in the lowest earning brackets, I know what it’s like, I’ve been there. So hell yes when I take a step up, I’m going to have a little moment of bragging. I’m proud of me.

To go with my new job role, I felt it important to step into it with the right shoes and no that’s not a metaphor, I’ve literally brought a few pairs of new shoes and up-levelled my workwear. Which was really just a case of wearing my going out clothes to work, as much like the rest of the nation, I have nowhere else to go.

Dress Boohoo Boots Ego

My primary love language is words of affirmation and my work colleagues have been filling my bucket with complements over my outfit choices this academic year so why not come on here and share a couple of them with you guys, I’ve gone for monochrome looks as they seem to be my go to.

Go on, fill my bucket. You know you want to 😉

Exchanged the socks for tights when I wore it to school. Dress from boohoo

Fresh Perspective

This year has been surprisingly tricky for us all to say the least. I’m sure nobody woke up on January 1st thinking, ‘let’s get prepared for a pandemic.’ I certainly didn’t, in fact I woke up thinking, I’m going to make this year rock. I’m going to throw out some old habits and tie up all my loose ends to ensure I achieve all my goals. Did a pandemic change that, hell no! As my daughter likes to remind me, I’m a true red (if you haven’t read ‘Surrounded by Idiots’ by Thomas Erikson, then get reading), I’m definitely a go getter and once I’ve set my mind to something, it has to happen or I spend the rest of my days agonising over how I can make it happen.

Joggers gifted from Femme Luxe

Right now you are reading one of my ‘has to happen’ moments. I decided that my old faithful parenting blog no longer reflected the person you see today and integrity is important to me. So what did I do? I ‘deleted’ all my blog posts and by deleted I mean saved them somewhere for safe keeping because I’m a sentimental fool. Now here we are. Gaining a fresh perspective. Getting to know the new me, with her old habits thrown out and her loose ends loosely tied (a girl has to have some flexibility).

Dress gifted from Femme Luxe

This week, amongst the many parcels I received due to spending my sorrows away, there was a parcel I had forgotten all about. It was my Femme Luxe delivery of a pair of joggers, a cute little dress and some much needed loungewear, after all, isn’t that what this year has been about? I’ve spent more time trying on ‘out out’ clothing than actually going out in them, but I’m not going to complain. There are a lot of things I wouldn’t have gotten done if this pandemic hadn’t come along and slowed life right down. Anyway, I’ve metaphorically talked your ears off long enough when all I really wanted to say was, Welcome to the new Mumma G. I hope you enjoy this new journey with me of fashion and lifestyle from a self proclaimed mess 😉

2 piece loungewear gifted from Femme Luxe