24 Apr 2016

Why You Should Love The Royals As Much As Me

Last Thursday the Queen turned ninety and I was probably more excited then than when my brother was born...sorry bro! So I think it's fair to say that I am a royalist through and through.

I think this all began with my love for history as a young girl when my Dad would make me watch TV documentaries about the Tudors, take me to museums up London and answer my very pressing questions about how exactly you mummify someone and why on earth the Celts thought it fashionable to paint their faces blue.

I mean a gal gotta know, right?

My school was probably a big influence too in which I remember spending hours drawing the Egyptian Gods in Art, writing diary entries from the perspective of a Victorian servant and dressing up as a Greek in a bed sheet thanks to my Nan's handy work on the sewing machine.

From there came my interest in the royals and their amazing and frankly terrifying family history that dates back over a thousand years from bloody battles, murderous villains, beheadings and a whole lot of drama that would give The Kardashian's a run for their money!

But at the end of the day, they are our history.

In a world where the press and parliament are viewed with negativity and suspicion, good old Queenie is one of the few people we can trust. What's more she is now the longest and oldest serving British Monarch who at the age of twenty one pledge her entire life to our service.

She has created peace between our country, Germany, Japan and most recently Ireland as well as travelling the world on our behalf and almost never for her own pleasure- I mean when was the last time you saw her sunbathing in the Mediterranean? Yet at the age of ninety she is still going strong, despite being a similar age to my Nan who spends all her time watching reruns of Countdown and The Chase!
"I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong."
      - Queen Elizabeth 1947

People are quick to judge the Royal Family but they forget that attractions related to them bring in on average £500 million a year from oversea tourists and yet new figures have shown that they only cost British Taxpayers 51p each! And although the attractions are unlikely to spontaneously combust should the monarchy be abolished, it is the Royals being firmly in the limelight that keeps them relevant today.

In years to come, we won't be remember for those smoking selfie we put up on Instagram, the time somebody wore the same outfit as us at a party or the time we threw up over ourselves with nerves before a big presentation and had to stand on stage wondering if anyone else could smell last night's dinner too!

 No, we will be remembered as Elizabeth II's people:

The crazy, patriotic people who camp out in the rain for the chance of spotting the Royals drive past in a car with blacked out windows. The people who line the streets madly waving union jack flags at who ever walks by. The people who turn up wearing weird and wacky things. The people who throw bouquets of flowers at the Queen even thought we know they will probably end up in the bin in ten minutes time. And the people and their communities who hang up bunting, bake the most gorgeous cakes and throw extravagant street parties to celebrate.

Britain would be nothing without the Royal Family, just another little floating island that people can't remember the name of.

Nauru or Djibouti, anyone?

Love Beth xx

17 Apr 2016

If I Were A Boy...

Oh come on, don't look at me like that!

There had to come a point in my blogging life where I would have to quote Queen Bey because duh she is the metaphorical Queen and this is that point. The idea for this long awaited post (sorry about that!) came when I was listening to an old pop playlist on Spotify because you can't beat the classics and lord behold "If I were a boy" was playing and it kinda got me thinking.

Don't get be wrong I love being a woman. I love wearing sassy dresses and high heels that make my heart swell. I love those intimate private chats I have with my gal pals about 'girly stuff'. I love pampering myself and slapping on a ton of beauty product half of which I have no idea what they do but who cares the packaging is cute and it smells like heaven. I love the solidarity that can exist between woman, how we stand up together and fight for the abolishment of arranged marriages or the right to vote against the self righteous, egotistical men who think they are God's gift and therefore deserve to rule the world. I love the fact that we live longer, are more nurturing and are better communicators and multi-taskers than men.

However, there are some things about being a woman that are not all sunshine and rainbows and for the most part I think it's quite easy to say that men have it a whole lot easier than we do. So please excuse me while I pop into my imaginary kingdom (don't pretend like yours doesn't have candyfloss cloud and ice cream snow too!) and live out the interesting scenario that Beyonce has proposed here:

"If I were a boy, 
Even just for one day..." 

I'd never have to experience the sheer horror of blood pouring from my vagina 24 hours a day for a week or sometimes even more if mother nature is being particularly harsh. I never have to to deal with the fact that it turns you into a raging bloated lunatic who doesn't know whether to laugh or cry half the time or have to do a mad panicked run to the local supermarket when I run out of tampons and forgot to buy anymore.

I'd never have to squat over a dirty public toilet or pee all over my knickers when I got cut short and ended up having to piss in the woods where even the squirrels seemed to mock me for not comfortably being able to pee in a bottle and throw it out the car window. Which FIY guys is gross especially when it's summer and the stuff starts to warm up and your travelling along the motor way with the window's rolled down...yuk!

I could get ready in under an hour and wouldn't have to worry about waking up at the crack of dawn to shower, wash hair, brush hair, blow dry hair, straighten hair, style hair, pick out an outfit, put on makeup, take off makeup because it makes me look like a clown, re apply makeup, spritz on some perfume, attempt to fit everything in a really small handbag, apply plasters to poor high heel worn out feet, put on heels and finally leave the house.

I could wear the same thing twice and not be judged. Jeans and a hoodie all day, every day for the rest of entirety while the girls are left having to keep buying new clothes or finding new ways to accessorize for fear of that one person who will say "I swear you always wear that top!" or an even more colossal fear that somebody will wear the same outfit of you and you'll end up in one of those horrid magazine articles- Who Wore It Better!

 It would be acceptable to walk around topless in summer without being forced by social standards to keep that t-shirt on even though you have massive sweat patches and the materiel is so stuck to your back right now it might as well be part of you, when all your wanna do it rip it right off and get a good even tan like your male counterparts . But no can do!

I'd never have to worry about wearing a bra that is bloody uncomfortable and restrictive but is only slightly better than not wearing a bra at all. Nor would I have to worry about finding a top or dress that doesn't show my bra straps because god forbid anybody should see them and know that Bethany Dale of Essex wears a bra!

And lastly, the biggest one of all: I would never have to experience childbirth from the sheer nuisance of carrying around a growing child for nine whole months while it kicked and squirmed around inside my womb to the pressure it puts on my already peanut sized bladder so that for the rest of entirety I would never be able to pee in a straight line again, before going through the terrifying agony of pushing the little brat's watermelon sized head through a hole the size of a lemon only for it to keep me up all night.

So unless a bloke is as stupid to challenge me further after such staggeringly obvious evidence, I'm pretty certain that if I really were a boy, life would be a whole lot easier right now. 

No doubt about it! 

Love Beth xx

1 Apr 2016

The Place That Holds The Key To My Heart

There are some places in the world which just steal your heart away and capture your imagination and there is nothing you can do about it. The places that fill your camera roll with pictures that even though you have no storage left you cannot bring yourself to delete. The places that during Pilates or Yoga you go to because it's 'your happy place'. The places that on your death bed you dream about visiting one last time but never get the chance to.

For most people that place is probably a paradise island in the Caribbean, the coral reef where they once swam with a turtle or the top of the snowy french alps where they first put on a pair of skis. I haven't seen much of the world because a) flying scares the crap out of me and b) my poor bank balance just cannot deal with travelling for the sake of Instagram pics right now.

However, for me the landscape which I think will forever hold the key to my heart is the North Yorkshire Moors, a mere six hour drive from my hometown of Essex. And I'm probably the only person in history to say this but I actually...possibly...really do secretly like traffic jam so car journeys especially when you are the one in the passenger seat reading Harry Potter for the billionth time aren't even that bad.

All you can think about the whole time is those rolling hills of heather which seem to stretch on forever and ever, the fields of every shade of green you can imagine, the chirping of the birds that you didn't even know existed in the morning, the ewes and their spring lambs leaping over dry stone walls much to the Shepherd horror and the local legends from hundreds of years ago that my Dad and Grandad told me about which excited my eight year old brain so much that I can't even begin to explain.

I spent more than my far share of holidays up north as a kid. When all my friends were jet setting the globe, I was running across moors chasing crows away from corn in a pair of green wellies discovering the little villages like Lealholm, eating at glorious pubs and trekking down public footpaths which led us on adventures past fields of racehorses and rivers only crossable by old arched bridges surrounded by folklore and stepping stones and waterfalls which looked as though they had jumped right out of a fairy tale story.

I remember walking up Roseberry Topping that to my little eight year old legs was like climbing Everest. I remember riding horses across the top of the hills for hours on end. I remember petting pigs and collecting chicken eggs at farms. I remember climbing up and counting every single one of those one hundred and ninety nine steps leading to Whitby Abby, said to be the setting of Dracula's first appearance in England. And I remember walking alongside beautiful rivers and houses that I NEEDED to live in Great Ayton and just being so amazed by this country life when I had been so used to busy motorways and cities my whole entire life.

In other words Yorkshire was, is and will always be my sexy bae.

It has a landscape just as Instagramable as a Barbadian beach, as many animal and plant species as the Amazonian rain forest and a rich history that will give the Pyramids of Giza a run for their money. Not to the mention the fact that it's in England- practically next door if you don't get travel sick...otherwise your screwed!

I realise I often jump around with content and consistency on this blog more than a kangaroo jumps around in Australia but this is my blog, my place and you guys are technically my guests. If I spend hours slaving over a hot oven to cook you a meal and you don't like it, just shove it down your gob or hide it in the plant pot behind you and I'll be none wiser!

Yorkshire is part of me. My dad's side of the family grew up there farming the land for generations. It's in my bones. It's where I spent those precious childhood years and where I made most of my family memories. It was never about money. It was about doing small, in expensive things together and snapping photos and making memories which would last a lifetime. I love it and I hope you love it too.

Stuff the fancy holiday aboard, jump in your car or a train with nothing but a suitcase and a SatNav and see where you end up. It might just be on the North Yorkshire Moors. Who knows...

Love Beth xx
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