Good morning all, or evening or what ever time of day this finds you at. I hope you are well?
I’m finally in fine form, thank goodness for that, it would have been tricky to get through last week still feeling rough.
Chris and I headed up to London on Thursday for dinner at Hakkasan with friends.
We headed up in the afternoon to the hotel in London. Getting back to the station in time for our last train can be a bit sketchy so staying up makes sense, plus we had a full itinerary for the following day too.
The weather had taken a chilly turn so I decided to dig out my big coat. I bought it years ago but it’s still going strong, even if the shop isn’t.
Coat from Aubin and Wills (the now defunct sister store to Jack Wills), Scarf from Lungta De Fancy, Jeans from Topshop, shoes from Yeezy.
It’d be lovely to trek around in high heeled shoes all the time, god knows I need the extra height but as I recently had a major fail shoe wise I decided to go with my Yeezy’s. Over priced and over hyped they may well be, and I’m no fan of Kanye’s musical endeavours but he does make an exceedingly comfy shoe, they’re like the Dr. Scholl sandals for millennials.
A few weeks back I wore my Christian Dior kitten heels, well clearly they’re not made for walking in because I was in agony on the night itself and then a few days later one of my toe nails came off, the entire nail!! :0
Which is why for walking around on my way to the hotel and for day time trekking about I chose to wear Trainers (sneakers/running shoes). Do they look as chic as a shiny black shoe? Nope, but I’m rather partial to my toe nails so I’m going to try and hold on to as many as I can.
Our evening out was so so good, can’t go wrong with great food and even greater company. There’s nothing better than a being with good friends, especially this time of year, everything just feels better, sparklier and festively cheerful.
London is dressed up to the nines and we were too!
I bought this tunic top a while ago now, I knew the perfect occasion would arise. Although at first I had thought it was a dress, but as the slits up the side go right past your bum, I’m thinking it’s a top.
It didn’t matter, rather than the tights I was going to wear I simply swapped them for my leather look leggings. I’m a huge fan of them. They’re comfy, they look great and more importantly I’ve never leaked in a pair so I feel confident on nights out in them.
Top from Zara, Leggings from Next, Shoes from Chanel, Bag from Dior.
I’ve been suffering from some hormonal bloating of late. I had to change my HRT tablets as there was a manufacturing fault on the ones I was on. Unfortunately all HRT has some side effects. This one has made my belly very big, well that and all the cake I imagine. ;)
I’ve been on HRT since I was 36, when I lost my womb and ovaries to the treatment for bowel cancer. Some forms of HRT are better than others, but I’ve yet to find the perfect one for my needs. Perhaps it’s because I had to start it super young but I just don’t get any of the positives my older friends claim to have on theirs.
I’m still hopeful of the perfect solution. And it certainly beats the alternative so I don’t sweat it too much (ironic use of language, seeing as I do plenty of sweating!!) .
We had a great night out and a fantastic meal, Hakkasan is a great restaurant, although the light bulb was broken on our table which meant that Louise and I dined in almost complete darkness, atmospheric lighting is one thing, not being able to see what you’re eating is something else completely. Call me old fashioned but I like to see at least the outline of my food. Hahahahaha thank god Iphones have torches otherwise we wouldn’t have known what to order either. Hahahahaha first world problems I hear you cry! Hahahahaha
It was a great laugh though, inspite of the darkness. Our friends are fab and bless her Louise had very kindly hand knitted a cosy blanket for our grand baby, who is due to make an appearance in February.
The following day was absolutely full on, in between his work calls, Chris took me over to the Savoy Hotel for a quick breakfast/brunch.
The Christmas decorations in there are mind blowingly good, believe me, we visited many fine establishments over the few days we were away, all the decorations were fantastic but the Savoy really went the extra mile. I thought I was going to have to drag Chris away from the helter skelter as he lovvvves them! Hahahahaha
Dress from Michael Kors, tights from Tesco, Bag from Dior and Boots from Gucci.
After some Christmassy photos and an amazing breakfast we were heading out when Chris dragged me into the jewellers in the foyer of the Savoy. I was completely and utterly surprised as he proceeded to buy me a beautiful necklace for Christmas. He’d already bought me a new bag so I was very surprised to get anything else. Roll on Christmas Day is all I can say! I think it goes without saying that Chris utterly spoils me. I’ve truly no idea how I ended up with such a generous, kind and funny husband, he is not just my best friend but the best human being I have ever met, ever in the history of humans! I have a couple of friends that are openly lining up for for him once I’ve gone...it’d be an insult if it wasn’t for the fact that I totally know where they’re coming from! Hahahahaha He’s the best. He’s my best. xx
Anyway, once spoiled we hopped in a cab and headed over to The London Coliseum for the English National Ballet’s The Nutcracker.
The couple we were meeting there had never been to a ballet before, so The Nutcracker is the perfect introduction. Alex had rather cleverly done her research and had read up on it, I really wish I had as I shamefully didn’t actually know the story at all.
So I did get a bit lost in the first half, there’s so much going on on stage at any one time it’s a bit disorienting. I didn’t know which little skit to look at.
If you’ve read my past blogs you’ll know I’m not one for the performing arts, I dislike theatre very much and I didn’t like the last ballet I went to either. So I appreciate my reviews of shows isn’t going to match with the majority of people’s experience.
But that said The Nutcracker is probably going to be my new Christmas tradition.
The second half was much more enjoyable and entertaining, it’s the half with all the familiar music...I defy any Brit of a certain age to resist singing in your head “everyone’s a fruit and nutcase” to the Danse des mirlitons, I’d say it was almost impossible! Hahahahaha
The second half’s familiar music continues with the dance of the sugar plum fairy and a few others, so I felt safer and relaxed.
The ballet is somewhat confronting, it’s very very posh for want for a better word. I’ve been able to go along to these things as an adult but going to the ballet or the opera was not in my upbringing.
But I find if you just clap along with everyone else you’ll be fine, and my god there is a lot of clapping involved.
Every prima that gets to come out gets an individual clap after their little pirouettey thing round the stage rather than just a general round of applause at the end of the show. It’s not too bad in The Nutcracker in fairness, but when I saw Sleeping Beauty a couple of years ago my hands were red raw, I was getting quite fed up in the end, I ended up with sore hands because they were doing their job that I’d paid good money to see. hahahahaha
The ballet is lovely, The London Coliseum is breathtaking and I really fell for the Nutcracker by the end, there was actual tears, I enjoyed it that much. A fine endorsement from somewhat of a stone cold dullard when it comes to the finer things in life.
And if nothing else you come out feeling all Christmassy inside.
Our evening continued on and we headed over for cocktails and dinner at Quaglinos.
I needed a dress for this whole day/night event. There was no way my bag would perform well with all the sitting and snacking in the theatre and then a full 3 course meal in the evening with trousers on.
I tried on quite a few dresses before I chose this one, but it’s perfect. It’s neither over or under dressed, it’s just right. And STRETCHY!! Most most important!!
If in doubt plump for fabric with a bit of give in it.
Always a safe choice, and the fact this dress has stretch, pattern and a belt, well ding ding ding I won the trifecta!
The night went perfectly well, no accidents or leaks.
The next day was rotten weather wise, we popped over to Harrods to meet a friend for coffee, did a small amount of perusing and a little buying, and then headed back to our hotel, where I struck upon the great idea (if I do say so myself) of afternoon tea.
It’s usually seen as a more feminine way to pass time, but it’s like heaven for Chris, he absolutely loves sandwiches, scones and cake. It’s the perfect meal for him but we very rarely get to partake in it together. It’s just not something we think to book. But our hotel fortuitously had a table for two available when we got back there.
Top from Tory Burch, Jeans from Topshop, Shoes from Yeezy.
It was soooo good, I would recommend the afternoon tea at Royal Horseguards Hotel.
It was reasonably priced (for a London hotel) and I was able to eat every single sandwich, I don’t often get to do that with my fussy eating.
It was even Christmas themed with little trees and Christmas pudding cheesecake.
I will probably book to go here again. I was really very happy with it. They even had decaf tea (I can’t take caffeine in any form, it really upsets my bowels and bladder).
We headed home after, although I think we should have booked in for an extra night we were so cosy and satiated there.
It was all in all a good few days away. No mishaps of the leaking kind, so that’s always a bonus.
I feel very grateful and fortunate to live the life I do, mainly I feel so blessed to still have a life when people far better than me haven’t been so lucky.
I’m truly lucky and believe me I thank my lucky stars, god and the universe for that every day. Xxx
Only a minor mishap ensued while we were away. I managed to upset the skin under my adehsive pad on the bag. I think I had been pushing my luck changing my bag 3 times a day. Colostomy users are very lucky to be able to be free to change the bags as much as they like. In my experience Ileostomy users tend to empty the bags rather than change the whole thing as regularly as I do, well I can do until the skin becomes sore, inflamed and bleeding.
I’ve been using some lavender ostomy wipes to try and calm the situation, which has helped greatly. My fondness for an empty bag is a little bit over ambitious for very sensitive skin.
To clear up any confusion. I wear ileostomy bags, even though I have a colostomy. Colostomy bags are sealed units, and I know this will sound weird to you but I feel claustrophobic in them. I like the idea of openable, empty-able bags far more.
Probably comes back to my germ/vomit phobia, that if at any time I go down with a tummy bug I can easily empty the bag rather than have to change it. Also sometimes I get very windy and the bag gets inflated like a balloon, I like to be in control of being able to let the air out. And you only get that freedom with an ileostomy bag.
I’ve also been trialling a new bag, I get very very excited when I find out about new stoma products and I saw this one on Salts Instagram feed. I even get a tad over excited when my new scissors arrive!! I know, I know - I should get out more! Hahahahaha
The new bags come in black, I found this very thrilling, perfect for under little black dresses!
I had to wait for my sense of smell to return after my cold, which it now has for me to give it a full testing.
It felt comfortable on, I love the colour. And apart from me accidentally bending over too far and squeezing air out the filter too fast it passed the smell test too.
A word to the wise, put your socks on and carry out any bending required before you change your bag. This applies to most bags I’ve used, Air pushed out the filter too fast makes the filter fail so you get a whiff of bag contents briefly. It’s most annoying. I have found once you’ve breached the capacity of the filter like that it tends to leak smell thereafter.
Ostoguard is great for soothing sore stoma skin. Well worth the investment or if you live in the U.K, well worth adding to your order.
And the Salts, Confidence Be in black are well worth ordering too.
Why them being black has excited me so I don’t know, but it’s just nice to have something new in the world of pooing in a bag. It can just get a bit mundane and samey if not. :)