The Muse, London Marathon et al

We seek her here, we seek her there – we seek that damned muse everywhere…

Blasted muse wasn’t here either, despite lovely setting!

Nope, writing inspiration is still in short supply (oh the horrors of the blank white page). I thought about blogging a steak pie recipe – bear with me here, oh dear few and loyal readers – in that I  genuinely made up the recipe, it did look delicious and it is a pretty easy way to fill your home with delicious aromas and contented men.

[Yup, you make this and all of a sudden, open your front door and there are queues of handsome, eligible gentlemen ready to eat your wares, compliment your cookery skills and sigh in satisfaction. It’s all gone a bit Stepford Wives.]

My excuse is that I’ve been blogging for Social Media Week Glasgow this week – attending events and writing up reports afterwards. All great fun and plenty of learning. I include links to my reviews of the events I attended – mindfulness & social media and NHS collaboration through social media.

Still searching for writing topics here though… An email popped into my inbox this week. Way back in the beginnings of 2011, I thought running a marathon might be… well, not fun, but perhaps a achievement to aim for so I said, ‘yes, put my name in for the 2013 London marathon‘.

Easy to make these promises when the future looks miles away, hmm? And lo, I get an email this week from the charity I work for saying, hey, we’ve got two places for you and friend for the 2013 London marathon.

Eeks. My first thought – ‘oh ho, training for the marathon may well guarantee wedding dress size smaller thing, hmm?’ Second thought – ‘lordy, I will have material to blog about forever more. I can talk about training, I can share my pain, I can post about the miles I’m clocking up each week, I can talk about what you eat for running long distances and generally become a complete running bore’. Happy days!

Then a friend made a valid point. Running the London marathon for charity three weeks before I get married has a few risks. Time, for example. Possible injury which rules me out of walking down the aisle as another. And also, it would mean that I’d be approaching the same people for sponsorship who would be attending my wedding meaning that they would inevitably lose patience splashing out on moi.

So, the marathon is a no-no (feel free to approach me if you would like to run on behalf of Carers Trust, though). And the ease of thinking up blog topics forever more ruled out too, bah.

Finally, I’d like to direct your attention to Patrick – now he is a gent imbibed with mucho talent. He takes great pics, he and his friends go for great adventures and then he writes it all up in a cool way and he is ARTISTIC, blast him!

Confessions of a Coke Addict

Continuing with the goal of achieving a less than 60bpm heart rate, I’m looking at incorporating a bit more cardio into my life. It’s dry outside and therefore a run should beckon, but I’m procrastinating by writing a blog post instead… Hey ho.

There is plenty of good info out there about goal setting. It’s not enough to say, I want to be fitter/thinner/richer/fluent in Spanish – you’ve got to be SMART about it. So it has to be a specific goal (having a heart beat rate of less than 60bpm), measurable (the under 60 thing), achievable (hmm!), realistic (double hmm!) and timely (by May 9).


Oops, another one down the hatch

Get thee from me Satan

Another way to bring down the beats per minute would probably be to reduce caffeine. And this could also lead to substantial money saving for me. Out there is a whole lot of people like me – the diet coke addicts who guzzle too much of the brown fizzy stuff every day. If you want to feel less alone in your addiction, check out these various forums, Ms Morphosis, Psychology Today and Sorey Fitness and pick up tips to help kick the habit.

As is often the case with diet coke habits, I’m particular about only liking diet coke in plastic bottles. So my habit currently costs me approximately £4 per day (£28 a week, £112 a month). Oh yikes, how truly horrifying. While I’m working out a budget for my wedding and cutting costs by not coughing up for seat covers (yes, they tend not to be included in what you get from your venue), I could probably cover the seats in pure Chinese silk from the money I spend on diet coke. Yikes indeed.

The gorgeous girliness of wedding planning!

My name is Emma and I’m getting married next year.

Apparently, the average UK wedding weighs in at just over £14,000 – so are weddings only for the wealthy? Does anyone really need favours? Or pipers or printed invites or make up trials, garters, special underwear and a £500+ cake?*

Now, I can think of plenty of ways to better spend £14,000 plus (which is not to say that financial common sense comes naturally to me; in the quest for the perfect complexion I have six bottles of foundation in my house). My budget is £7,000 and over the next few months I’d like to share with you (and invite you to share with me), my ideas for a wedding which might be cheap, but which won’t look it. Along the way, I’ll probably meander off topic and include musings on food, the bridal industry, shoes, diet & fitness and skincare.

*I don’t condemn you if you do. There sure is a lot of powerful marketing around the bridal industry and it’s a strong woman (or man?) who doesn’t get sucked into that quicksand of spiralling costs.

**Subject to change on a weekly basis. And £14,000 – that’s a flippin’ lot of skincare (or whatever else floats your boat).