Along with the sunshine…

Years ago I had a genius idea. I thought it would be lovely if we could have a real life version of those romantic montages you get in films. You know the bit in a romcom where someone thinks back over their relationship and we see all the best bits. Now imagine being able to replay the special moments of your own life. That would be lovely right?

Not just the romantic high spots. A full on motion picture, this if your life best bits to play whenever you need a boost. It’s been a tough year so far. So allow me to wander through the memories that feel dreamy. I give you a snippet of my highlight reel.

This one probably doesn’t seem that special, but it still gives me butterflies every single time I summon it. I was just meeting someone for lunch. He was waiting on the steps of a gallery looking stern. As he saw me approaching his expression relaxed. When I reached him he kissed me in a way I hadn’t experienced before or since. I’ll never be able to explain what made that kiss different from all the others, but it made me feel completely wanted. Safe & desired & understood. Then he half turned, caught my eye over his shoulder and took my hand. I melted. It wasn’t a special day. We didn’t do anything extraordinary. There were no meaningful declarations. We definitely didn’t live happily ever after. Yet it is without a doubt the best kiss of my life. It’s funny the things that leave a mark.

I’ve been been consuming a romanticised version of New York City my whole life. It appears in my favourite books, music, art & films. It’s famous streets were home to idols real & fictional. From my early teens I was desperate to get there. I knew it would be incredible, but I was always a little afraid that the real thing couldn’t live up to the fantasy. NYC is turns out, is one of those rare things in life that never lets you down. It is every bit is as magnificent as I had hoped it would be. Everything looks exactly as you thought it would, but still seems unreal. It is a wonderful surprise to find that the place you’ve been dreaming about actually exists. The Empire State makes you believe Cary Grant might sweep you off your feet. The Dakota looks exactly as John left it. 5th Avenue is just like all those advertising posters from the 40’s. Every corner turned reveals a spot where that other Carrie might have swooned over Big. The skyline is as impressive as you imagined and the lights of the city twinkling from the park will take your breath away. More than that, it feels just like I hoped it would. It’s buzzing with creativity & promise & resilience. Wandering alone in Manhattan made me feel exactly as I had anticipated that it might. That swelling of excitement in my core was magical.

ly h Kerr NYC

During my fourth pregnancy I was offered an early scan. A chance to check everything was going to plan. I was terrified and excited. I can’t remember much of what was said. It’s all just a fear stricken blur until the glorious sound of my unborn child’s heartbeat made everything clear. That steady, seemingly irrepressible beat filled a gaping hole that I had worried was bottomless. Hope, it seems, can breach any gap. I’ll never forget that feeling. Whatever came after, I’ll have those precious minutes & that wonderful sound.

When my niece was a toddler my brother & sister in law took her to visit family in South Africa & Zimbabwe. They were gone for nearly a month and I missed her so much. I couldn’t wait to see her on their return. It turned out the feeling was mutual. When she saw me she screamed. She guided me to sit in the floor and climbed into my lap. The way her little face beamed at me is the closet thing to pure happiness that I’ve ever witnessed. Knowing that this precious little person could love me like that is one of the greatest feeling imaginable.

Muffin

On a girl’s holiday in kavos a huge group of us went out for Mexican food. As happens in places like kavos they gave everyone a free shot of tequila. Of the 14 girls assembled only my bff & I liked tequila. So, with a combination of confidence & stupidity that 21 year olds possess, we drank the lot. With 7 tequila shots in each of our bellies we embarked upon a night of awesomeness. The drinks continued to flow, we danced on bars and beaches. We sang at the top of our lungs. We lost the rest of the gang & met a variety of interesting strangers including a guy we named jiminy cricket (we never worked out why). Pam fell asleep on a giant pounding speaker and I mistook a goat for a dog. Finally we witnessed the sun coming up over the booze soaked island as we stumbled our way home. It was the ridiculously messy kind of night you only have when you’re young & far away from home. It was highly irresponsible and probably pretty dangerous, but I wouldn’t change a second if it. I’ll always be glad I had those party days. I’ll always be grateful I had the best friend possible to share them with.

Pam & I

My Gran died young. She had cancer that recurred & spread. I was too young to understand the ins and outs at the time. In fact, I didn’t even know she was ill until close to end. I was the first granddaughter and she basically spoilt me rotten. She called me The Queen. She took me everywhere with her & made it her business to satisfy my whims. From my eagerness to ride horses to my heartfelt opposition to Mum’s chewing gum ban; Gran fixed it. What I’m saying is there are countless highlight worthy times to pick from. The one I always come back to is an uneventful Saturday. We were at Gran’s house & she was debuting what she described as her new look. She had started putting her hair in a tiny ponytail & wearing track suits. In my head it’s pale blue and pretty smart for a track suit, but my memory may be wrong. In any case it was a departure from her usual put together style. She was making jokes and asking how I liked the new image. I didn’t know at the time, but in hindsight it was a change prompted my necessity not fashion. She was getting sicker. She needed more ease and comfort. She must have been in pain. She had to have been scared. I never knew. I do know now how hard it is to be sore & sick all the time. I’m not facing what she did. I’m not dying. She never wavered. She took her narrowing horizons and made it something fun for the grandkids. When I think of her in that sweatsuit she’s laughing & living. That feels like real love.

When I went to Brisbane I was just getting into body positivity. The idea that my body wasn’t wrong was very new. Finding myself in a tropical climate with most days reaching at least 35 Celsius shunted my body acceptance journey into a faster gear. The heat was too intense to cover all the bits I thought needed to be hidden. I was compelled to wear things that would normally have scared me. Guess what happened? Absolutely nothing. I explored the city with my flabby arms & thunder thighs on show and no one cared. After a few days I stopped thinking about if I could wear certain things & just put things on my body. I began to notice that I actually liked how I looked in these items that I’d never usually have dared to wear. I felt comfortable. The day we went to an animal sanctuary was crazy hot. I wore a tiny little flippy blue vest dress. As I wandered amongst kangaroos I realised that I felt completely at ease. The animals were beautiful, the sun felt good on my skin. I was happy & free. It was one of those perfect days when I not only felt amazing in the moment, but I knew I was experiencing a breakthrough. If I could bottle up that feeling, I’d put weight watchers out of business.

Brisbane sunset

I was lucky enough to have a fairly delightful childhood. There were a lot of happy times. One of my stand out memories is the time I spent with my siblings after dinner & before dessert. My parents would send us into living room to let our tummies settle. Looking back I suspect they just wanted 15mins of quiet adult conversation. In any case, no settling of any kind went on. We took advantage of that unsupervised period to behave like mini maniacs. We played a variety of very rough & tumble games of our own devising. To be honest I’m surprised that both the room & all four children survived gems like ‘crocodiles’ & ‘pile on’. We did & those times were golden. This was before the boys got too cool to want to actually play with their little sisters. Back when my baby sister was still an adorably chubby cheeked little monster. It was long before any of us had any worries beyond how good pudding would be. We were securely encased in the family unit. We always had someone to talk to, someone to carry on with & someone to tease. We never doubted that our parents could handle any difficulty we encountered. Life was good.

Young Kerrs

It occurs to me that some of my happiest life snap shots are bittersweet. I’m not sure if it’s that just the way of life or a testament to what happens when the universe beats you up a bit. Either way, I’m glad I’ve mastered the art of counting my blessings. I suppose sometimes the cliches are true; you can’t have the rainbow without the rain.

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My week in pictures…

Last week I tried to cheer myself up with a change of scene and mini treats. I had a little work in Edinburgh, so I booked a hotel and mixed business with some pleasure.

I received an exciting offer that included a photo shoot. I wasn’t sure I was up to doing a big scary thing, but pushing myself was a good idea. I definitely needed a reminder that other people recognise my talents. Work aside I took the opportunity to see a couple of my Edinburgh people whilst I was through. I spent an evening each with a couple of my favourite men and even got a tad drunkity two nights in a row. I rarely do much past 6pm these days. It was bloody lovely to get dressed up and have some adult fun. Cocktails & carry on was the perfect distraction.

ly h kerr, rose wine, Edinburgh castle, neon lights Nail art, lingerie selfie, #projectpostit and blurry lights

It was also amazing to relax. Stepping away from my day to day life made it possible for me to temporarily shut off the falling apart portion of my mind. Crisp white sheets, starting my day with a swim and a yummy breakfast (that I didn’t have to make) all did me good.

Tattooed feet in hotel bed

Back in reality I tried to not to kill off my sapling of good cheer. I took my baby nephew swimming, it’s almost impossible not to feel good around that boy. I’ve taught him to say LaLa, what I what I called myself before I could say my name. Believe mewhen I tell you, my heart skips a beat every time he utters those two syllables. I bought myself beautiful flowers and delicious smelling candles. Ruffled the feathers of fuckwits with my radical accessories. Then indulged in some soppy, feel good films, tried Greggs’ yummy vegan sausage roll and attempted to not to stress about the mountain of tasks I didn’t conquer. It’s the little things in life, right?

Fresh flowers Political badges, vegan sausage roll & tulips

Spoonie tour guide is go…

Last week my sis in law’s nephew was visiting from Australia. He is making good use of his youth & doing a little travelling. His epic trip takes him around Europe before hitting the south of Africa & then stopping off in UAE on the way back down under. Obviously we wanted to show our visiting family a good time. Thus, the spoonie tour guide & another week in pictures was born. 

Since Simon’s mum & aunts had spent happy years in Glasgow he wanted to have a good look around. My brother & niece are also cheerleaders for our fair city, so we didn’t want to let the side down. First stop was Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum. Kelvingrove is one of my favourite places. An impressive collection of varied exhibits housed in a stunning building, which itself sits in a beautiful park. Simon was impressed with the architecture & variety. I was delighted to get reacquainted with my favourite Lowry, some early body positive art & a really old tree.

Kelvingrove Art gallery & Museum


We capped of Kelvingrove with a quick walk in the park. After saying hello to some very friendly squirrels we were joined by my mum & sister for a bite to eat. Special mention for Brewdogs’s vegan hotdog. Yummers.

Glasgow Xmas lights

Pitch black & freezing by half 5 isn’t ideal for visitors used to a warmer climate, but it does show off the Christmas lights to perfection. I swear Fraser’s add more lights every year. I’m not complaining, I’m a sucker for a twinkly light. Argyle arcade is getting in on the action too. We thought this looked like a very festive cat. What do you think?

In between excursions I squeezed in a date night with the Toyboy. Wagamama’a vegan pad Thai & The Death of Stalin are getting a big thumbs up. They are respectively delicious & hilarious. The TB agreed. I also found a little time to beautify my nails & spread some #ProjectPostIt wisdom.

Project post it

On Wednesday we took a day trip to Edinburgh. Simon was really keen to see the castle (his first) & it didn’t disappoint. We were really lucky to get fresh, clear day. The views from the castle were spectacular. 


I hadn’t been inside the castle since I was a child, but was pleasantly surprised. The buildings are amazing & the restoration inside is really well done. There are are so many little details that are so well done. It’s crazy to peer out of windows & realise much of what you’re looking is as it was hundreds of years ago. 


We met this fine unicorn fella & his lion friend keeping watch outside the National War Memorial. Plus discovered this cemetery for soldier’s dogs. R.I.P. puppers. 


Importantly,  our castle visit finally bestowed upon me the recognition I deserve. I am Scotland’s Crown Jewels. 


With temperatures dropping we got Simon inside for some food. Then had a quick mess around with the mirrors at the camera obscura. This is a fab attraction that we sadly didn’t have time for, but it’s definitely worth a visit. A quick glimpse at more Xmas lights warmed our hearts before we headed back west.

On his last full day in Scotland we took our intrepid traveller to Loch Lomond. What better spot to show off our country than on the Bonnie, Bonnie banks?



The view from Luss pier is divine. The village is lovely, the pub has a real fire & hearty fare. We couldn’t ask for more. 

We got back into town with just enough time to check out the Xmas market, more lights & gorge ourselves in the swanky Atlantic Line. 

As much fun as I had during my stint as a spoonie tour guide, it wore me out. Thus a weekend in my jammies with this pair was in order. There is a lot to be said for hot baths, cuddles & carry on.

We watched the sun coming up easy…

Last week I embarked on a wee mini break with the toy boy. I didn’t realise quite how much I needed some R&R until we checked into our lovely hotel. Although not an entirely restful trip, it was pretty perfect.


Lodge on Loch Lomond is a 4 star hotel right on the banks of the Loch in the beautiful village of Luss. The combination of rustic Scottish charm & luxury touches are bliss. The small spa at the hotel & huge shareable baths really took our stay  up a notch. However, the jewel in the crown is the view. Waking up to the stunning Loch & surrounding landscape is a dream. The calm is an enormous bonus, the only sounds we could hear from our room were the water lapping against the shore & the ducks quacking.


I’ve been visiting Luss since I was a tiny child. It is the setting of so many cherished memories; it’s basically my happy place. It was lovely to share it with the toyboy even if we did spend a lot of time in the graveyard.

When we weren’t creeping around viking graves we took a tour of the Loch. Sweeney’s Cruises do fabulous tour of the islands between balloch & luss. The toy boy really wanted to catch a glimpse of the infamous Scottish wallabies, but we had no such luck. 


The rest of our break was cosy dinners, midnight walks on the beach & soaking up that amazing view. It was all the romance & precisely what I needed.

Dirty Old Town….

This week I treated myself to a little Irish adventure. Accompanied by Mum and sister I paid Dublin a flying visit. So, what did 3 Scottish ‘girls’ get up to on the emerald isle? Give me a minute and i’ll tell you all about it.

First stop was of course the GPO on O’Connell St. The building itself is impressive, it’s history even more so. The beautiful structure that housed the birth of modern Ireland still bears the bullet holes. I failed completely to get any decent pictures of the landmark due the sheer volume of people attempting to do the very same thing. In lieu of that I offer you a glimpse of the attractive clock the GPO is adorned with.

IMG_3867

A few feet from the historic landmark stands the Monument of Light (An Tur Solais). The stainless steel sculpture is 398ft high & believe me, it’s an arresting sight. If you stand directly below it up look up, which is exactly what I did, it appears to go on forever. I’m a fan of the juxtaposition of traditional architecture & striking modern art. I highly recommend admiring Dublin’s Spire from the cover of the GPO’s pillared frontage. 

Next we cruised through Georgian Dublin on our way to Trinity College. I have long admired the library at trinity. The prospect of floor to ceiling tomes tickled my book loving fancy. The Longroom is that rare gem that exceeds expectations. I was in awe from my first step into the room. The steep spiral staircases, dark shiny wood, Latin & that unmistakeable book smell were intoxicating. I had found my spiritual home. If it weren’t for all the annoying tourists I would have been in heaven.

Dublin is packed with grand buildings, cool fountains & pretty things that catch your eye. 



The Irish charm flows across the Liffey with an array of bridges. Be they an 80million state of the art construct or the iconic ha’penny bridge. My personal favourite was adorned with horse mermaids. Yes, I said horse mermaids. 

Mum really wanted to visit St Patrick’s cathedral & we of course obliged her. I’ve never caught religion so allowed my Lauren to join her on the tour whilst I admired the floor in the gift shop.


From St Patrick’s we strolled past the Christ Church & headed to perhaps Dublin’s most famous spot, Temple Bar. Temple Bar is exactly as you would expect it to be; vibrant & cool. The streets are packed with street art, funky eateries & of course lots of pubs. 

Mum was lured into THE Temple Bar by the strains of live music. Dublin pubs are much like its people; friendly & boisterous. The Temple Bar was no different. The place was packed & the music (Wild Rover & other familiar tunes) was loud. It also afforded me the rare opportunity of taking a pub selfie with my tee total mum. 




Dublin was a joy. It was just what I needed to perk me up. Watch out Ireland, I’ll be back.