The day I opened up

I was about 16 when I had my first proper planned (ish) conversation about my mental health. I waited behind after a lesson and decided I was going to talk to my teacher about how I was feeling.

The first thing I said to my teacher was “what’s the point of life sir ?”. As a philosophy teacher, this question probably didn’t seem that absurd to him. But he soon realised that this wasn’t curiousity that had caused me to ask this.

He asked me why I was asking this. I told him how I was feeling. How it felt like I was floating. How I could go through a day and not really engage in anything and not remember what had gone on. How I felt so incredibly anxious. I also hinted at the way I felt suicidal and that I was hurting myself .

I felt like I couldn’t be entirely open with him as I was terrified. I really didn’t want my parents to find out but I knew that there was a chance my mum would be told.

It was his responsibility to pass on what I told him and he did but my mum wasn’t contacted.

After this first conversation the next conversation about my mental health was easier and they continued to get easier the more I hand.

It is also a little bit difficult for me as every conversation is different but I feel so much more comfortable talking about mental health now.

My top tips for if you wanted to open up about your mental health would be:

1. Plan the conversation. If you can plan a bit of the conversation in your head it can make it easier.

2. Pick a date. If this person is likely to busy or if you need to make an appointment to talk to them it is always helpful to pick a date. This can stop the disappointment of the person not being available.

3. Deep breaths. Try breathing deeply or some other breathing exercises to try and keep calm whilst discussing this as it can be difficult.

And finally

4. Don’t Rush. If you aren’t ready to talk about it then don’t worry. There is no rush. You can talk about it whenever and wherever.

Hope everyone had a great Time to talk day.

Love

Abbie xx

Day 16-Favourite Lush Products

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 16-Favourite Lush Products

Today I needed something quick to write about, so I decided to write about some of my favourite Lush Products

The Comforter

I’ve had this product in both a shower gel and also a showder.

Their showder is effectively a powder bath bomb which you then use to wash your body.

You get it wet and it turns into something like a body scrub.

The smell of the comforter is like candy floss. It’s perfect for people with a sweet tooth (but don’t eat it).

Yuzu and coco

I’ve had yuzu and coco in a body wash, although you can buy it in bubbleroon. On the label it says it smells of chocolate orange, but to me it smells of chocolate and coconut. Either way it’s awesome. The colour is a little weird but don’t let it put you off.

Intergalactic

Intergalactic is a bath bomb. It smells minty and is really refreshing smell, and it contains popping candy so you can hear it popping.But that’s not the best thing about this.

The best thing about this bath bomb is the colour. It starts off being multicoloured and then changes to a dark blue and glittery bath. It looks like a clear nights sky.

Mask of magnaminty

This is by far my favourite face masks. I can suffer with really bad breakouts and this deals with them quickly.

It has tea tree oil in it and smells super minty.

It’s a really nice mask to use after a long day when you’re trying to relax.

Spa Treatment

I had my first lush spa treatment this year and it was amazing. I had “the comforter”.

But I’m going to write about this in a separate post.

Sorry if this seemed pretty rushed tonight, I wanted to get a post up but I’m babysitting so I didn’t have much time.

I hope you enjoyed it regardless.

Love Abbie xx

Day 15- My Body (TW)

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

TW (body image, BPD, eating disorder)

I wrote this on a train, I am not a poet so I’m sorry if this isn’t any good.

Day 15- Body (a poem)

My body belongs to ME

it is a vessel; in which I am contained.

Yet, this container is damaged,

it’s been beaten and battered.

You see, If I was a dog, I’d have been taken away.

I’m not a dog though, and so I must stay.

Yet, like a dog, my body continues to love me unconditionally.

I have been hurt beyond belief, I have hurt it beyond belief,

not just physically,

some of this damage, you cannot see.

But it’s not all bleak, and my body and me we are not weak.

For I am not broken, I am a fighter.

I have fought and battled many a day,

We have fought and battled many a day.

But I still can’t find the courage to say,

“I love you body…

 I’ll be okay”

WE’LL

 

 

Day 14- Vegan Food Products

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 14- My Favourite Vegan Food Products

This post is going to be a list of some of my favourite vegan food products. Some are accidently vegan and some are just made vegan.

Oreos

Some of you may not know that Oreos are vegan, but they are, exciting times! If you want to be creative with them, you could make cookie dough Oreo brownies. You just need to make the cookie do vegan by using oil and vegan spread, and you can just use a brownie packet mix made with either lemonade, coke, or just using oil. Super junk food vegan style.

Party Rings

Childhood favourites, and they’re vegan. Do you remember sticking them on the end of your finger? And then biting into your finger by accident when trying to eat them? Well if you’re vegan you can still experience this. Even though you know it’s only a bit of icing on a biscuit, it’s a nostalgia thing, right?

Wheaty Chorizo

This came in a vegan subscription box, and it was the last thing to be eaten in there as I thought it was going to be gross. I was wrong. This is however, one of those things you should only eat if you’re okay eating things that taste so much like meat. They are yummy.

Skittles

I have a massive sweet tooth so I was really worried that I wouldn’t be able to eat chewy sweets. But skittles are still on the cards. Yay

Tesco Vegetarian Sausage Rolls

These are one of those things again that you probably wouldn’t like if you don’t like things that are too realistic to meat. These say vegetarian on the packet but they are vegan and so good. My stepdad is a massive meat eater but he ate these and didn’t realise they weren’t meat.

Linda McCartney “pork and Apple” Sausage rolls

I only found these the other day and they are as good as the ones above but feel a little fancier. Plus, the apple flavour makes them even better.

Ben and Jerrys

Obviously when I say Ben and Jerrys I mean the dairy free stuff. It’s just as good as the other stuff, but unfortunately slightly more expensive, so definitely just a treat.

Lemon Drizzle Nakd Bars

All of the Nakd bars are vegan, but my favourite one is the lemon drizzle one. It tastes like a lemon and coconut cake.

I understand that the food I just mentioned is mainly snacking stuff, so I will write post at some point of some actually meals. I just wanted to point out that we can still have the treats as a Vegan.

Love Abbie xx

Day 13- The Steiner Experience

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 13- Working in a Steiner School

At the beginning of the year I arranged to do some volunteering at a Steiner school that one of my old teachers now works at. I did this for 4 weeks near the end of June. It was very much an eye opening experience for me that I thoroughly enjoyed. I wanted to just do a basic post about my experience.

The Atmosphere

I didn’t really know anything about the school before I did this. But from the minute I walked in the building I realised that it wouldn’t be anywhere the near the same as I school I went to, or anything like any local comprehensives.

As I was sat in the reception it just felt so different. The school had this atmosphere that was just so positive. The staff looked so relaxed, and the children seems so happy.

Classes

The classes are split into year groups like normal schooling but the class names are a year above like American schooling. For example, class 6 would be year 7. The students have one main teacher and then separate subject teachers. Their main teacher will work with them from year 1 up until year 11, and their classmates will stay the same (except if people leave).

A School Day

The day started off for me with the children coming in and shaking the class teachers hand and then waiting for the other children to arrive. After this has happened the children then say their daily verse, do their movement (sort of like yoga), and then will play the recorder, sing, or learn a tongue twister.

After this the class went out to play a game. These games were brilliant; they were all about team work.

Once they had got their brains energised by the morning activities they then started their main lesson. Their main lesson is a two-hour lesson that happens daily that is about a certain topic, they will do this topic for a number of weeks, in the younger classes this may be something like animals, in the older classes this could be the body.

In these classes they will write poems about their topic, or might read books on it.

The other lessons they have are art, form-drawing, literacy/numeracy, R.E (older classes), eurythmy, music, games, hand-work, mandarin, and Spanish. Some of these are taught by their class teacher, and some are taught by specialist teachers.

My Opinion

It was really interesting to see such a different view on education. I learnt a lot from the people who were working there.

Whilst I was there I was treated like a member of staff but even more than that as I felt so at home there. I was trusted to teach some classes and I have never felt more honoured: somebody who knew me visited one day but didn’t realise it was me as they thought it was an experienced teacher.

I absolutely loved how happy the kids seemed there, I loved how involved the parents are, and I loved how the child was view holistically and not as an exam machine.

Steiner teaching is something I would really like to revisit if I had the chance. It was an experience I will never forget.

Love Abbie xx

Day 12- A Year ( and a bit) With TTC

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 12- A Year (and a bit) with TTC

Just over a year ago I became a young champion with Time to Change. Through this I have been given some wonderful experiences and have meet some even more wonderful and lovely people.

Initial Training

At the initial training was where we all met. It was a weekend long training session, and was full on but amazing. It was the first time I had been with so many people who knew what it felt like to be me and have experience of having a mental illness. Here I met all the other fabulous young champions as well.

Testimony Training

Testimony training was more intimate, there was around ten of us. It was here that I got to meet Rachel properly, who has now become a good friend of mine. Here we shared our personal stories and experiences of mental illness. It was a tough and emotional day but it was amazing to see the strength of everybody in that room, including staff who shared their stories. (Joss=Inspirational/Amazing)

My First Testimony Delivery and DoH

The first testimony I delivered was at a school in Leytonstone. I went with Joss. It was quite intimate, there was probably only about 15 people in the room, but I was terrified. It was the first time I had ever properly shared my story, but the teenagers who were in that room were so polite and listened to me, I was so honoured to have their attention.

I didn’t realise that my story would have so much of an impact but one of the teachers was crying and some of the students came up to me at the end and spoke to me. It’s an experience I will never forget.

This day wasn’t just that visit though. In the afternoon was asked to go to the Department of Health to talk about what it was like to be a Young Champion. There I got to meet the lovely and inspirational Sue Baker.

It was such an amazing experience to be able to speak about my experiences in front of people who I believed to be much more important than me.

My Second Testimony

For my second testimony delivery was with Tanne. I went to an all-girls private school just outside the centre of Bristol. This was in front of about 40 girls. I found it easier this time to deliver it as I had done it before. But I did feel the pressure as I wanted the girls to look up to me. I really hope they did.

Testimony Deliveries (going it alone)        

After these two testimony deliveries I ended up doing two whilst I was at steiner school doing some volunteering and one whilst I was working on NCS.

Whilst I was at the school one of the teachers asked me to deliver my story, he already knew it as he worked at my previous school, but he wanted me to share it with two of his classes. These classes we year 7 and year 8. He thought it be of benefit for them to hear it.

Straight after the first one I delivered to the year 8s I had a boy come up to me at the end and say thank you, as his uncle had taken his own life, and he was glad to hear somebody talking about the topic of mental health.

After the second one that I deliver to the year 7s I had one girl come up to me and speak about her anxiety and how she wanted some help, so I spoke to her about it.

I had these reactions straight after I had done it, but for the following three weeks I had more reactions.

I had the mother of the boy who spoke to me come up and thank me in the playground. I then had a mother of one of the other boys come up to me, hug me, and cry because her soon was so touched by my story and she wanted to thank me for sharing.

I also had a mother come up to me and tell me that it really impacted her daughter and she was glad that she now had insight and another mother emailed the head teacher saying that I had made her daughter feel like she was no longer weird and that she would be okay.

I was so shocked with the response I had but in a good way. I’m so glad I managed to have an impact in this school.

I delivered another testimony on the second phase of NCS to a group of 30 16/17 year olds and the reaction I got from them was very similar. I also had a few of them saying they were shocked and didn’t expect me to have any issues. They had previously spent a week and half with me, so I think it surprised them as I must of seemed “normal”, I tried to tell them there is no such thing.

Reading Uni Conference

Another event I took part in was a young people mental health conference at the university of Reading. I went here with Jacob, Mary, and Jack. Here we delivered our own stories of our experiences. My main focus was on the teachers who helped me- you can read a blog about them on here. This was an amazing experience.

Bristol Uni WMHD

With my new regional co-ordinator I help facilitate a stall at Bristol Unis world mental health day event. There I spoke to members of the public about mental health, Time to Change, and what they could do support a friend. It was a lovely positive day, surrounded by wonderful people.

 

What’s next?

Over this year I have met some wonderful people who I can now call my friends, Rachel, Jodie, James, Peter, Mary, Jacob, Jack and many others.

I’m currently planning to write a book, with the help of Jodie and Rachel.

But I also hope to just do lots more testimonies in schools as I like the idea I can positively impact people’s lives directly.

Thank you all for a wonderful year (and a bit) and I look forward to what we get up to in 2018.

Love Abbie xx

Day 11- Favourite Books

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 11- Favourite Books

I haven’t read a full book in a while but I wanted to write about some books that have stuck with me. Some of these are YA and some are not. These are just books that I’ve enjoyed.

Doing it: Let’s talk about sex- Hannah Witton

I have a fascination and interest in how society views sex and all things around sex. Which may be weird for someone who’s not interested in having it, but there you go.

Anyway this book is all about sex and relationships. It’s the sex education you probably never got, especially if you relied upon your local secondary school.

I engulfed this book within a day. It covers everything, from the very complicated laws surrounding the age of consent, to sexting, to orgasms. It’s fantastic.

It should be given to schools to give to teenagers. But even if you’re not a teenager and think you know what you need to about sex, then I highly recommend reading it anyway. I learnt a lot from this book and it is just so well written.

I love Hannah Witton so much.

I really think everyone should read this, and if you read it and enjoy it, then definitely check out her YouTube channel.

Moranifesto- Caitlin Moran

If you’re going to take advice from anyone, take it from Caitlin Moran. Moranifesto is a collection of all her different columns and new writings about all sorts of topics.

Her columns are funny and heartfelt.

I truly think she might rule the world one day.

She inspires me to better a woman.

Will Grayson, Will Grayson-John Green + David Leuthan

This book is one of the first books I read in a while after a long time of not reading. I read this within a day of buying it.

It’s a heart-warming story about two boys named Will Grayson who met in strange circumstances and helped better each other’s lives.

One of the Wills points of view is written by John and the other by David. This way of writing just works so well.

The characters are so loveable, and hilarious.

This is the perfect “coming-of-age” story that mentions sex, sexuality, and mental health. It’s just fabulous.

The Art of being normal- Lisa Williamson

Another heartfelt YA novel. I really can’t say much about this book as I don’t want to give it away, but this book is full of surprises. It follows the topic of gender identity. It is lovely and so current at the moment.

Like I said, I really don’t want to give it away, so have a read.

Am I normal yet- Holly Bourne

This book is the first book that is part of the spinster series that Holly Bourne has written. It follows a young teenage girl who is trying to follow a “normal” life after being diagnosed with OCD and having just come out of hospital. She is trying to have friends and be “normal” without her OCD getting in the way.

It explores topics such as mental health, relationships, and feminism. A wonderful YA novel for any age.

It’s all absolutely fine – Ruby Elliot

I first came across Ruby on Tumblr on her blog Ruby ETC. She’s an illustrator who uses art to express and illustrate her feelings. She has mental health issues and most of her illustrations are about what that’s like.

Her book is a collection of these illustrations and new ones, she has also written bits in it as well. The book is wonderful, a great mixture of funny and sad. She is incredibly talented.

The Lorax- Dr Seuss

Okay, this one may seem strange, but there’s a few reasons for this choice. The Lorax is a book I first read when I was 16 in a philosophy lesson. We were made to read it in relation to environmental ethics and ever since I have fallen in love with the book.

The book teaches lessons about how we should be looking after the environment and how money and greed is destroying it.

It is one of my favourite stories, and I have very special copy of the book that was given to me by my philosophy teacher when I left school.

Day 10- HAMILTON

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 10- HAMILTON

I want to write a really long post about this, but at the same time I don’t want to spoil it for anyone. So I will try not to. However, I expect most people who are going to see this no the storyline from listening to the soundtrack anyway. The first song gives you the rundown of what’s going on anyway.

I was so nervous about going to see this show as I have been waiting for two years to see it, I bought my tickets in January, and now it’s gone. But it was so worth it.

I don’t really know how express my love for it.

I was scared that it wouldn’t live up to my expectations, especially because I’m used to hearing the Broadway cast but could I be more wrong.

I think the best way for me to write about this is to split it down, so I’m going to write about the individual characters and the set, as like I said I think most of you will know the storyline.

The set, theatre, costumes, and the band.

Firstly, the theatre, Victoria Palace theatre is now looking beautiful since the refurbishments. It’s one of those theatres that no matter where you sit you get a decent view of the stage. The décor definitely suits the show itself and I think it will make a lovely home for the show over the next few years.

The set. The set and the staging was fab; it was fairly simplistic yet complex at the same time. With so much going on on the stage anyway it was important not have masses on set to contend with too. The balance was perfect.

The costumes were stunning. Whoever made them deserves awards, they were just beautiful and were a mix between contemporary and 18th century wear (it’s possible).

The band was obviously so talented and played amazingly on the night.

Alexander Hamilton- Jamael Westman

Jamael had big boots to fill, as most people who have listened to the show will be familiar with the incredible Lin-Manuel Miranda, the man who wrote the show, playing Alexander Hamilton. But he did an absolutely incredible. He was fresh out of RADA but you’d think he’d been playing the part for years.

He played the character with such emotion. He has got the character down to a tee.

You fully see the character grow up through the show, and Jamael did this excellently.

Eliza Schuyler/ Eliza Hamilton– Rachelle Ann Go

Rachelle had previously been in Miss Saigon and although I had never seen her I had heard great things. She played Eliza so gently at the beginning of the show, which was nice, as that’s how she should be. However, because of this I was worried that when she needed to be fierce near the end I was worried she wouldn’t be. But she didn’t let me done and sung “Burn” beautifully and with such passion. She did a fantastic job.

Angelica Schuyler- Rachel John

Rachel was absolutely brilliant. Angelica is one of my top favourite characters. She is a fierce, strong, feminist, but she also has vulnerable side which is seen in songs like “satisfied”, and “quiet uptown”. Rachel got this balance of her character absolutely spot on. I was so impressed with her. Also Rachel’s voice is just beautiful!

Peggy Schuyler/ Maria Reynolds- Christine Allado

“And Peggy”… Christine managed to do both of these characters justice. These seem to me to be two difficult characters to play as they are so different but also similar. She plays the young naïve Peggy in a sweet but mischievous manner, and then manages to swap to play Maria in her desperate, but sexual manner. Just great.

Hercules Mulligan/ James Maddison- Tarinn Callender

I didn’t think that Mulligan and Maddison were that similar, but they are a Tarinn perfected it. Mulligan and Maddison are both big and loveable characters that also present them self as quite strong. Hard on the outside, soft on the inside. Also a both quite humorous characters.

John Laurens/ Phillip Hamilton- Cleve September

Cleve managed to play two very different characters in a brilliant way. He had the job of playing John Laurens who was one of Hamilton’s friends who worked alongside him, with a passion for ended slavery. Laurens is quite a quiet and somewhat sensible character.

We meet Phillip when he is only 9 years old, and although Cleve is a fully grown man, he still manages to play this really well. The relationship he has with Hamilton in both characters is wonderful and sweet. He truly is a great actor.

Aaron Burr- Giles Terera

Aaron Burr was the most shocking one for me. Burr does a lot of singing as he is basically the narrator of this story. So I was very much use to Leslie Odom Jr’s version that it was strange when I heard someone else’s voice. But I really enjoyed the way he played him. Giles portrayed Burr as a much more sensible and bitter character than he is portrayed in the soundtrack, and actually I think that’s the way he should be played. Terera did a really good job.

Lafayette/ Thomas Jefferson- Jason Pennycooke

When I penny dropped that these two characters are played by the same person it all made sense. These two characters are both funny and witty, although one’s kind of an enemy of Hamilton and the other a friend, they are both very similar. Jason’s portrayal of them both was brilliant, his dancing was great, and he was just so funny. He also perfectly mastered the Guns and Ships rap.

George Washington- Obioma Ugoala

Obioma Ugoala, when he first walked on stage and opened his mouth me and my sister turned to each other- what a voice! He has such an incredible singing voice. He played George Washington with compassion and just did an excellent job. As I said, his voice blew me away.

 

King George- Michael Jibson

From the original cast recording King George was my least favourite character and I think it was just because all I could do was hear him. Michael has changed that for me. He played the loveable, yet hateable, English buffoon perfectly. Think 18th century Boris Johnson. He made me love the character, he was just so damn funny.

George Eaker- Curtis Angus/ Charles Lee- Leslie Garcia Bowman

Curtis and Leslie were mainly ensemble but they did take on two quite crucial characters. Leslie plays Charles lee and depicted a funny, clueless, but then bitter character perfectly and in a hilarious manner. Curtis obviously plays someone who no one likes because he does a bad thing, but does it well.

Ensemble

Finally, the ensemble. What an amazingly talented, strong, and fit bunch. They had to do tough choreography and do it well, and they did. They were amazing and I don’t know how they did it. Again I was blown away by their talent.

 

 

Overall it was an amazing show and amazing night. I just hope I get to go again.

 

Love,

Abbie xx

Day 9- Shows I’ve seen in 2017

 

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 9- Shows I’ve seen in 2017

Over the past year I have been lucky enough to see quite a few shows, the majority of my student loan went on It. It was my new year resolution to see as many as possible. I’ll try and do them in order but I’m not sure I can remember.

RENT

The first show I saw this year was RENT. I saw this in February whilst I was still living in Liverpool with my sister. I didn’t know much about it so I didn’t know what to expect. But I was not disappointed at all.

It shows the lives of a group of friends, who are all different types of artists trying to make it New York city. But not being very successful doing so.

It contains very little spoken dialogue, so is more of a rock opera that it is a musical.

Their lives are not very happy, within this musical there are muggings, evictions, and death. But it ends being a heart-warming show.

Within the cast I saw, they had Layton Williams as Angel. He was absolutely phenomenal. And he can dance in higher heels than I could ever imagine even walking in.

I really did enjoy this show, however, the theatre itself had strange acoustics and was quite hard to hear in.

But I would definitely recommend.

The Adams Family Musical

The Adams Family musical is a “kooky” version of traditional family musical. It was definitely a feel-good show. Although in a way it followed the predictability of an average love story, it was definitely not your normal version of a love story.

The cast consisted of Les Dennis playing a hilarious and loveable Uncle Fester, Samantha Womack as the “don’t mess with me” Morticia, and Carrie Hope Fletcher as the strong and independent, but love-struck Wednesday.

The show was loveable and filled with so much talent. It was the perfect family show.

Avenue Q

Avenue Q is the opposite to the musical above, it is definitely not a family show. I have seen this musical three times now and it never gets old.

It’s hilarious, but also heart-warming.

It is effectively the naughty muppets. The main character is a puppet called Princeton, he is desperately trying to find the meaning to life, and has just started his new life on Avenue Q. Its rude, funny, and lovely.

Yet every time it does add to my existential crisis, mainly because I feel like I relate to that puppet quite a lot.

The only thing I will say is be careful who you go with. If you think you can bare sitting with your nan during a puppet sex scene, then go for it, bring her along!

The Jungle Book (kids)

Whereas the other shows I’ve mentioned have either been professional casts- touring or west end, this show wasn’t. This was put on in our local theatre by local youth group. There is nothing cuter than seeing a bunch of 9 year olds singing Jungle Book songs.

Support local theatre!!

Girl from the north country

This musical is something like I have never seen before. It follows the story of the local guesthouse in Minnesota 1934. Elizabeth is played by Shirley Henderson, she is slowly suffering in the grips of Dementia, she has a adopted daughter who is pregnant and no one knows who the father is, and a husband who is cheating on her and is the owner of the guesthouse.

The musical is based around and includes Bob Dylan’s music. The way in which they incorporate the songs is amazing, the actors play most of the instruments alongside the band.

The cast includes Shirley Henderson, Sheila Atim, Bronagh Gallagher and Ciaran Hinds, plus many more.

Although it has completed its run at the old Vic theatre, it has now moved to the west end.

I really recommend going to see this.

I had my heart-broken into a thousand pieces, it’s just beautiful.

The play that goes wrong

This is an immersive theatre experience; from the minute you enter you are part of it.

I saw this in the afternoon of the day I went to see Girl from the north country, and it is just hilarious. Even though I’m not into slapstick that much, this is just brilliant.

I don’t want to say much about this as I don’t want to give it away.

Just think of your dad doing amateur dramatics.

Hamilton

The last show I have seen of this year is Hamilton. This is having its own post, so I’ll tell you about that later.

 

Love Abbie xx

Day 8- Vegan Peeps

Hi, I’ve decided to do a blog every day for advent (well at least try to). These blogs are going to be about various things, some about mental health but also some about other topics. I haven’t planned them yet, so they may be (most definitely will be) rough around the edges.  Some may contain trigger warnings; I will say this before the start of the post.

Day 8- Vegan Peeps

Never did I think I’d be using the word ‘peeps’ in a blog title, but there we go. This post is going to be all about the people who I follow/watch/read in the vegan community. Even though I no longer vegan, I do hope to be one again soon, and these people are really great to follow.

Vegan Geezer

Bob, is from London and makes videos about his vegan life, he is also a vegan activist. He became vegan in 2013 and has been vlogging about it ever since.

The first time I heard about him was when I was still eating meat and I had gone to Bristol Viva last year. I went to watch a talk by him and he contributed to me going vegan.

He has children, and him and his wife have raised them vegan too. His videos are great and are about things from vegan recipes, ‘what I eat in a day’, to hauls, and the life of his vegan and awesome son ‘Jojo’.

If you’re just curious about veganism, then I highly recommend his video “why vegan?” which is a presentation/talk he did in a school.

He does pop up around the country at various vegan festivals, so keep an eye out, you might be able to say hello. (He welcomes people coming and speaking to him).

YouTube- https://www.youtube.com/user/VeganGeezer

Twitter- https://twitter.com/Vegan_Geezer

Brianna Jackfruitson

This lovely lady is another YouTuber called Brianna. She became vegan when recovering from an eating disorder, and I think she started of raw but now she just eats what she wants, obviously vegan though.

I first came across her in “clean eating’s dirty secret” this programme was done horrifically and portrayed veganism as a restrictive, clean eating diet, when this is just not true. Brianna also criticises how she was portrayed in this documentary. It is presented by Grace Victory, but I don’t think she fully understood what the difference was between “clean eating “and veganism.

Rant is now over about that documentary.

Brianna’s videos range from mukbang (recipes), to what I eat in a day, and reaction videos. I like Brianna as she shows how diverse a vegan diet can be and also that recovery from an eating disorder is possible.

YouTube- https://www.youtube.com/user/BriLovesPetite/search?query=mukbang

 

 

Vegan Voyager

Laura is a northern vegan and mental health YouTuber from Newcastle. I came across her videos when I was looking for vegan ideas, and she showed me a lot of “accidentally” vegan food. She teaches you that you don’t have to completely change what you have in your cupboard in order to live a vegan lifestyle.

My favourite videos from her are her haul videos, quite often done in a supermarket like Aldi, so that anyone can afford to eat vegan. Her videos are particularly helpful for students who want to follow a vegan lifestyle.

YouTube- https://www.youtube.com/user/lauraacanfly/about

 

Jack Munroe

Jack is well-known for being a journalist, writer, and activist around poverty issues. Jack is also vegan. They have recently produced a recipe book called “cooking on a bootstrap”. Not all of their recipes are vegan, but the ones that are look so good.

They are also inexpensive to make, so that makes things even better.

Their blog link is here – https://cookingonabootstrap.com/ and from just having a quick look now, there are lots of vegan recipes.

The link to buy their book is here- https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cooking-Bootstrap-Monroe-Jack/dp/1509831118

And I also suggest following on twitter as their tweets can brighten up your day.

 

I wish I had more people to write about but these are the ones that spring to mind currently.

Hope this is helpful, go and check all these people out.

Love

Abbie xx