Rant Of The Week: Country Girl, City Heart

On a Sunday afternoon in February, after many cups of tea and the urge to bang her head off the desk repeatedly, a very normal, very frustrated girl was hit with a strong case of writer’s block. That girl was me, and I would like to dedicate this post to my friend Joseph who put up with my whining about writer’s block before throwing a load of great ideas at me when I was all out (seriously, I’m sorted for weeks now!) The Fox Files biggest fan apart from my Nan, just saying…

Anyway, I finally have some inspiration back and am ready to write, so here goes!

Picture a faux fur wearing hopeless romantic blogger, and add a village with a population of about seven and there, you have my life. Being a country girl isn’t easy when you have the heart of a city girl and a shoe collection that could put a Kardashian sister to shame. Of course, I don’t wear 90% of these shoes, the heels are too bloody fab to get smothered in mud, and I can’t walk in them anyway. They are simply for show and the occasional night out (if I have a lift into town, of course.) My wardrobe belongs to the wrong place altogether, no matter how hard you try, some towns just aren’t ready to start a fashion revolution, so you have to start one yourself even if it means standing alone in metallic heels and a leopard print coat.

Romance revolutions are even harder to start. If you try to find love it either turns out you’ve already loved him, he’s friends with someone you used to love, or you can’t love him because your friend does, and probably has since she was 16. It’s difficult to step outside of the bubble when you’re not in college, so all romance revolutions just seem to end up turning into romance revivals. Is it something about that rural air? The smell of freshly cut grass? Manure? Whatever it is, poor cupid is highly intoxicated because of it and his arrow aim is horrendously off. I know myself for example, I already have about 25 of the same arrows lodged in me because even when loved failed I kept going back for more, probably simply due to limited numbers of dreamlike men. And I don’t know if you realise, but 25 of these harmless marks from cupids arrow do eventually build up to one giant scar, unwanted bitterness and a serious case of ‘the fear’ when checking your sent messages on Sunday morning.

Can you ever start fresh in a small town? Is it possible that you can meet a guy and won’t be aware of his whole romantic (shift and drift) history? Can love ever start a new burning flame in a small area or will it always rise from the ashes of the past eventually? How can our hearts fully move on if our bodies remain in the same place? And will your own fashion sense only feel at home in certain places, or is it our job to build a home for the fashion to grow in no matter where we are?

Don’t get me wrong, I love living in the countryside and when I’m older I want to settle in the country… but a couple of youthful years in New York couldn’t hurt! There are cocktails to be drank, new jokes to be made, shoes to be bought, and plenty of love yet to fall into.

Rant Of The Week: Braving The Storm

There comes a time in every girls life where we are faced with a decision – we can either walk on eggshells, or we can strut on them in high heels. It can be very tempting to stay at home in your pyjamas eating a pot noodle, watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians and avoiding a situation that you don’t particularly want to face, or you can be strong, shave your legs, put on tan, lift your head up high and strut into the room like Sandy at the end of Grease.

Some girls (maybe the wiser ones) choose to skip events that may make them feel socially awkward, but not me. If I have my heart set on going somewhere, I’m going by hook or by crook. I may spend twenty minutes saying ‘Oh maybe I just won’t go’ but this always just delays my getting ready time because I always end up going anyway. I just don’t think about it until I’m having a mini heart attack as I’m stepping out of the car, and by that stage it’s still too late, I’m going, so here goes. However, it can be difficult sometimes because I’m a crier. When everything gets too much for me, everyone knows it and my runny nose shows it. You feel me?

We’ve all been there though, whether you’re worrying about seeing an ex-boyfriend, a girl you’re arguing with, or your replacement… overtime, life heals you. Tears about new girls turn into ‘feel sorry for ya hun’ and your desire for other men starts to make a comeback. What is this I’m feeling, attraction for the mystery man across the room? Am I sick? Is this normal? Am I allowed to start moving on? Have I officially lost my blubbering mess status? Was I delusional for the past six months, or just an idiot? There is no room in the air for awkwardness because your hair is taking up all that space and any negativity is bouncing off your highlight and perfectly smooth bronzed legs.

You can’t let other people stop you from living your own life, if you are courageous enough to brave the storm you will become a much stronger person over time. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for unfollowing people on social media that make you sad and it’s not a good idea to go lurking, but in the real world, you can’t hide people from your newsfeed. Don’t go looking for drama, but don’t hide from reality either. I have been guilty of both in the past and this all led to the frequent and unfortunate runny nose situation…

Right now you may be wondering, why the pointless positive post? Well, I just felt like dedicating something to all the girls who go out and put on a brave contoured face when they are actually full of emotion, nerves, and occasionally alcohol. It is much easier to just stay home and upset yourself by watching everyone’s Snapchat stories, so if you’re brave enough to face the world when you actually feel like an unwanted potato, I salute you and I love you! Girl Power!

To My Beloved Nan

Looking back over the years, I remember many things – laughter, cuddles, the many goodbyes. What I never realised at the time was that these were in fact not real goodbyes after all. Leaving Nanny Josie was always a sad occasion. She lived in England, and we moved to Ireland when my parents hearts were young, free and fearless, and of course accompanied by a car boot full of suitcases, belongings, and the echoes of three young voices in the back seat asking ‘Are we there yet?’ A ferry journey always seemed to bring us so far away from what we knew, but we could always come back. It now all seems closer than ever as I am currently enveloped by love, the memory of nan’s rosy cheeks, and her cardigan which I managed to claim as my own.

In some ways my nan was such a stereotypical grandmother: she was smiley, kind, generous, cuddly, friendly to everyone- she was home. In fact, we always said she reminded us of the old woman in the film The Fox and the Hound. However, in other ways she was not only a grandmother, she was a friend. We laughed, we gossiped, we sorted out my life dilemmas and we discussed our favourite outfits (usually when she needed to sew something for me.) She was my nan and my lifelong friend, and to have that for 20 years of my life makes me a lot luckier than many other people.

Even though I did not see her as much as I would have liked as the years went on, she still taught me a lot about the meaning of family by building the bridge between family near and far, and giving me a taste of having my own family in the future by buying me a Baby Annabelle doll for Christmas when I was three. She gave meaning to the word ‘strength’ by fighting for her life to the last second and by keeping it together for all the years that followed my grandad’s passing. He passed away two years before I was born, but I still feel I know him through my nan’s stories, my fathers actions, and Ireland – one of two countries that I consider home.

Even though she is gone I know that she will live on through my three aunts, Mary, Kipsy and Dint. She definitely passed her crazy ways onto them and I will always return home to them when I feel like I need a cuddle from nan, life advice, or a good belly laugh. I feel equally at home with my uncle Chris, he is my only uncle by blood and the closest male link to my Dad and Grandad. I love winding him up but I also know he will always be there to protect me when I need him, because as him and my dad, the main men of the family would say ‘You’re a Fox, you’re not afraid of anything!’ There are endless amounts of family that I care about and they are spread all over the place in Bristol, Cornwall, Liverpool, and Ireland. Despite the distance, I know we will always stick together because that’s what my nan was all about, family. 

She taught me all about the angels and allowed me to dedicate a whole part of myself to spirituality. She helped me when I was down by telling me I have to send my angel to the angel of the person I feel anxious about. Due to this, my own angel had been ordered on a last minute visit to England recently to sit beside my nan’s bedside as she bravely took her last few breaths before she moved on to Heaven. She needed this company more than I did, and even though the angels could not stop the inevitable, they gave me another guardian angel by taking a precious one from earth that I had always known, loved and cherished. And hey, it’s not that often that you get a guardian angel that comes out with random lines like ‘Our Fe looks just like our great aunt so and so across the eyes,’ while you’re all watching a film.

Going through all of this has made me realise that the only things in life that truly matter are your health and the people that really love you. Live your life with people who care about you and make you happy, and don’t waste time worrying about materialistic things or things that make you feel anxious, because in the end the years pass by faster than we think and before we know it we are saying goodbye to the things we cherish the most. I know my nan is now at peace, but she also lived a wonderful life here with us by touching the heart of every person she met.

I am devastated to have lost you, the whole thing is still surreal. However, I am also lucky that I got to love and idolise you for as long as I did, and will continue to do so until we meet again. Thanks for all the memories Nan, love you lots like jelly tots xxx

5 Kisses Every Girl Is Familiar With

All girls will have a different amount of kisses in their lifetime. In our minds they range from the first ‘Oh my god, what way do I turn my head?’ to ‘Can you just be the only person to kiss me forever please?’ And in between all of that there are the drunken ones, the regretted ones, and the special ones. Okay, well, actually, I’m no expert. My list of past crushes and kisses are totally different lengths. I’ve kissed princes that turned out to be frogs, and I’m sure frogs often turn out to be princes.

Here is my list of 5 kisses every girl is familiar with!

1. The First Kiss
What way do I turn my head? How will we know when to stop it? Where do I put my hands? Yeah, lets not spend too long dwelling on that one…

2. The Life Changer
Such a perfect moment of teenage romance even if you weren’t sure if you actually liked him or not… nevertheless, this will be one to tell the children about when your husband isn’t around!

3. The Long-Awaited One
You really like him, he kind of likes you, you want it to happen but you’re also terrified because you know once you play one game of tonsil tennis with him you’ll be needing to go back for round two, marriage and babies…

4. The Drunken Rebound
Mine consisted of my friend saying ‘This is my friend and she’s really upset about a boy’ Nicholas Sparks novel material right there as he gazed into my puffy teary eyes…

5. The Bad Habit
‘Don’t let me go near him tonight’ *2 hours later crying on bathroom floor* ‘DAMMIT GIRLS, YOU HAD ONE JOB!’

And on the occasions where we are not doing any of the above, we are usually Ross…
Hope you enjoyed this post 🙂 Happy kissing and reminiscing! xx

Rant Of The Week: All The Single Ladies, All The Single Ladies

I have decided to rant about something very close to my heart at the moment – falling in love with fictional characters. I have decided to use this as a topic because I have still not come back to reality since my idol liked one of my photos on social media. This woman was Sarah Jessica Parker, or Sex and the City’s Carrie Bradshaw. She is New York City’s ultimate single gal, relatable writer, and the first and probably only woman to manage to marry Mr emotionally unavailable.Yes, like I said before, this is fiction. The reason she noticed my photo was because I tagged her in my outfit picture. The outfit was very Carrie and I completely styled it on her fashion sense. I wore it to NUI Galway as I was giving a talk at the Writers’ Society Convention. I really enjoyed it, it was a great day. After a mixture of nerves and excitement, ending the day with a like from Sarah Jessica Parker was the cherry on top. To others this may have seemed like just a bit of luck that a famous actress liked it, but to me, no matter how cheesy it may sound, this was a seal of approval from Carrie Bradshaw, an achievement that I will never let go of, and a motivation to keep doing what I love.

Even though not everybody thinks she’s the ideal woman, to me, Carrie Bradshaw is a symbol of single women everywhere. She is my idol. Many people say to me ‘but Carrie Bradshaw isn’t real’ however, that doesn’t make me like her any less. I like to absorb the lives of the Sex and the City girls, and for me, Carrie is the most relatable character. She writes, she loves fashion, she loves her girlfriends, and is constantly learning new things about the male species while fighting the heartache left behind by Mr. Big. For me, this is real life. Fiction based on a very real reality for women everywhere. She wears her heart on her sleeve and Manolo Blahnik’s on her feet while spending her Saturday nights sipping away on Cosmopolitans.

You see so many people obsess over things such as Harry Potter, Game Of Thrones etc, the list is endless, and this is what Sex and the City is for me. It is an escape from my own life and a place to take advice and learn from. SJP didn’t like my photo from her own point of view, she liked it as Carrie Bradshaw. So for anybody who likes to remind me that Carrie Bradshaw isn’t real, just remember that she is for single girls everywhere. Whether you’re Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte or Miranda, the show may have ended years ago, but the era of struggling single girls hasn’t.

Was this a sign from the Universe telling me I am doing the right thing by combining my love of fashion with my love of writing about life and relationships? Most definitely! Whatever you love, continue to love, even if it isn’t real life. Sometimes the things that aren’t real wake us up to the things that are. So to all my fellow single girls – if you’re confused, single and happy, or even left reeling from Mr. emotionally unavailable, free yourself and make yourself emotionally available for everything that the world has to offer – laugh with your girlfriends, over-analyse things that guys say, and work that scrunch dry. Enjoy your years as the ultimate single gal, whether it’s in the Irish Countryside or in New York City, keep going and everything will eventually work out the way it’s supposed to – because that is most definitely fact, not fiction.