25 years since the release of ‘Take That & Party’

Here’s a blog post I wrote today for one of my other blogs, Merryn Music.

Merryn Music

Today, 17th August, marks the 25th anniversary since Take That released their first ever album ‘Take That & Party’ back in 1992. I remember it well, I had been following Take That since their first single ‘Do What U Like’ dropped in July 1991, with its saucy video including jelly covered bodies (which was intriguing to my 12 year old self!).

So, fast forward to August 1992 and ‘Take That & Party’ was released including top 40 hits ‘I Found Heaven’ (UK #15), Tavares cover ‘It Only Takes a Minute’ (UK #7), ‘A Million Love Songs’ (UK #7), ‘Promises’ (UK #38), ‘Why Can’t I Wake Up with You’ (UK #2) and Barry Manilow cover ‘Could It Be Magic’ (UK #3).

To celebrate this 25th anniversary, we have created a #ThrowbackThursday playlist featuring 50 boybands from The Monkees in the 1960s through to Lawson from last year. Enjoy!

– Jenny

 

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Whose blog is it anyway?

When I first starting blogging back in 2012, I never thought I’d get any followers. Who’d be interested in my ramblings? I now have followers, and I am so grateful for every one of you. To be honest though, for a long time, I found myself not being able to blog on here because I felt so guilty that I didn’t have the time to read the posts of everyone who follows me. So I figured, if I don’t blog, then I won’t have to upset the people who would have known I’d been online but hadn’t read their posts. It probably doesn’t make any sense, but I didn’t want to offend anyone.

Now that I run the Merryn family of websites (Books, Charity, Magazine and Music) as well as doing my day job, I have even less time than I did in 2012. I have sorted out my email account so that I can read the posts written by my friends, but I am honestly so sorry if I’ve posted recently and haven’t been over to read your blog. If I win the lottery and can leave my day job, I’ll have time to read everyone’s blog. Until then, I have to be selective with my time as trying to please everyone has been making me ill. I figured it was better to focus on my health, which means scaling back on how many people’s blog posts I can follow.

I just wanted to put this out there so people don’t think I am ignoring them by choice, I’m so sorry x

Manic Panic Hair Dye

I have dyed my hair a few times in the past with Manic Panic dye, I even filmed the last one and popped it on YouTube (video at the bottom).

I really really want to dye my hair again so I have been looking at the options on the Manic Panic website. I’m going on a special day out with Michelle in June so I’m going to dye my hair the weekend before.

Since I last checked out their website, they have added loads of new colours so I’m really stuck for choice. I have managed to narrow it down though 🙂

I think out of all of them, I’m most taken by Hot Hot Pink but Michelle prefers Purple Haze, but I guess all will be revealed in June! I’m so excited!

(if you click on the image, it will take you straight to the webpage for that colour if you wanted to find out more information)

Velvet Violet
Plum Passion
Deep Purple Dream
Purple Haze
Fuschia Shock
Vampire® Red
Infra™ Red
Cleo Rose™
Hot Hot™ Pink

The weight race: the final verdict

20161231-the-weight-race-2016

In January of this year, me and Michelle decided to go vegan for lots of different reasons, but for me being lactose intolerant was one of the main reasons.

One of the happy outcomes of this lifestyle change was; the weight started coming off me really easily. I have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, so losing weight isn’t exactly easy but I have to say that being vegan is really suiting my body. As well as going vegan, we also dropped refined sugar, which has really helped too.

I just calculated that this year I have lost a whopping 2st 3lbs, which I am really happy with! This is the lowest I have weighed in the 8 years that Michelle and I have been together, and therefore the lowest weight I’ve been in my 30s! I’m excited to see how much I will lose in 2017, as we will be starting back in the gym in January after a bout of ill health stopped us going in.

Bring on 2017! 🙂

My blog is 4 years old today!

4-year-anniversaryI just popped on to my blog to catch up on posts and found out from my notifications that my blog is 4 years old today! This was the very first blog I ever created, and back in 2012 I was reluctant to even start one as back then blogs were quite often seen as “Look at me! Look at me! Give me attention!” kind of things, and seen in a negative light. Happily, people love blogs now 🙂

I haven’t had the chance to blog on here as often as I would like, but this blog gives me the opportunity to chat about all kinds of stuff that I enjoy, like films, music and food, and I love having an outlet to just waffle in 🙂

I took a look at my stats over the last 4 years, and here’s what I have found:

I’ve had an amazing 7,866 views! That’s crazy! I never realised that I’d had over 3,000 visitors too. For such a small blog, that’s a fantastic number.

4-year-views

I was interested to see what my most popular posts had been over the years too:

In 2013 it was when I was nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award, which I was very proud about 🙂

In 2014 it was a poster about a bike repair and recycle project in Frodsham, which is such a great idea.

In 2015 it was a post about desserts from my childhood, which was inspired by a post by Nostalgia Pie in a post about ‘Old-Skool Ice-Cream Flavours‘. It was a fun post to research and gave me such a trip down memory lane!

So far in 2016, the most popular post has been about The Voice’s battle round 1 on 27th February 2016. I love The Voice and I was sad to hear that it was leaving the BBC for ITV, but now that I’ve heard that Tom Jones is back on it, along with will.i.am, I can’t wait to watch the new series 🙂

I had a look at the search terms that brought people to my blog and to be honest, they were all fairly relevant to the posts people ended up looking at. I was expecting comedic ones, but they were all pretty sensible. The post that a lot of search terms brought people to my blog for was “My favourite Sia songs“. I love Sia, and the fact that I mentioned that I walked down the aisle at my wedding in 2010 to Sia’s song, Day Too Soon seems to have brought a lot of people to my blog.

I have to say that I have loved having this blog and I am excited to see what I get to post about in the next 4 years! 🙂

Wednesday wisdom: Aldous Huxley

aldous-huxley-ww1
So many times I have felt like a passenger in my own life. Like someone else was in charge of the driving, and I was a hapless victim, waiting to find out where we are going and feeling ambivalent about it all. I have started to realise recently that I may not be able to influence the big things in life like health issues, money issues, etc, but I actually do have some small amount of control in certain areas of my life, and it’s on those areas that I am now going to focus  🙂

Less than 16 weeks to go!

But, to what you may ask! Well, it’s my 38th birthday in November and I am planning on going somewhere really fun and important to me, but I can’t tell you where yet as it’s top secret!

Sadly our car stopped working on Monday and we don’t have the money to get it fixed yet, so for now I am walking to work, which is 2.3 miles. There and back gives me exercise of 4.6 miles a day, which takes about an hour each way, so two hours in total. It was day 1 yesterday, which went fine, but I was so stiff when I got up today!

I’m currently 14st 8lbs so I’m hoping to lose a couple of stones with all of the walking (I only eat 1500 calories of healthy vegan food each day so hopefully it should be easy!), I’m hoping to be around the 12st mark by the big day.

Wish me luck! 🙂

Do you know an unsigned UK artist or band?

One of the things I love to champion is unsigned UK artist and bands. With that in mind, I run a regular feature on the Merryn Magazine website on Mondays called Independent Music Monday where I interview a different singer or band each week. If you know of anyone that I should be featuring, please ask them to take a look at this webpage, as that will give them more information 🙂

Weigh(t) to go – July 2016

Hello, happy July! (I know, I know, I’m a bit late with that greeting!)

I have been utterly rubbish at going in the gym since the last post in May, I was working flat out on issue 2 of the magazine, as well as working full-time in my day job, so the gym was the last thing on my mind every evening! Weirdly, I have actually lost weight but I’m not going to complain that I don’t understand how.

With regards to my weight loss, I was 14 stones 7lbs (203lbs/93kg) at the start of this month, which means I have lost 7lbs (3kg) in 2 months, which I’m really happy with. I know that people say that the slower you lose it, the more likely you are to keep it off, so that works for me!

Here’s my latest infopic. So, since 11th January I have lost a total of 2 stones 1lbs, which I’m really happy about! Onwards and upwards and I really hope that I can report back in in August with another weight loss 🙂

The weight race- (non-IG)- 01-07-16

Weigh(t) to go – May 2016

Hello, happy May!

I don’t know about you, but the first third of the year for me was shockingly bad, and watching the clock count down to midnight last night felt like New Year’s Eve. I’m so glad to see the back of January-April, and I am excited to see what May-August brings!

With regards to my weight loss, I am exactly 15 stones (210lbs/95kg) this morning, which is a nice place to be at the start of the month. I recorded in my blog post “So hello 2015!” which was on 11th January 2015, that I was 16st 8lbs (232lbs/106kg), so I have lost 1 stone 8lbs (22lbs/11kg) in 16 months, which I’m really happy about!

The weight loss did start coming off quicker once I went vegan on 1st January this year, and I started back in the gym recently, so I’m hoping that when I do my next weight update on 1st June that I will have lost even more! 🙂

To help me to see how far I’ve come, I’ve created a little infopic for myself 🙂

The weight race- (non-IG)- 01-05-16