Mad Max and the educated squirrel

My neighbour is a delightful old Jamaican gentleman. Well I say neighbour but he is not actually a next door neighbour but more or less lives at the bottom of my garden! O.K not really at the bottom of my garden like a leprechaun but his garden reaches the end of mine sideways on, so we only really see each other when we are out there, mainly at weekends.

I hear him often, he is a musician, a jazz musician and has travelled the world making music. Ill health has brought him back to be based in Hackney but he still makes music now and again in a few local clubs. He sings a lot in his house at all hours of the day and night and belts out an amazing version of ‘No Woman No Cry’. Oh and yes it was a mistake for me to say I loved that song, the repeats went on for about 3 days!

Max is trying to grow vegetables, but is battling with the squirrels. We have endless discussions on how to get rid of these pests. I have suggested a shot-gun but Max is far more mellow and doesn’t like the idea of killing them.

I had a couple of those infra-red, high-pitched noise deterrents that are supposed to scare off animals so gave him one to try but they weren’t terribly successful with the squirrels. Max was getting very frustrated as these pests were getting through all types of netting structures he had created and were destroying his precious plants.

Eventually he bought a trap, I was still voting for the shot-gun but he said no and anyway I probably meant an air rifle! So that was me put in my place, what do I know!

I hadn’t seen him for over a week until this morning, he was very excited to see me. At last success, he had caught a squirrel. Now this is where the boundaries of credibility merge, I can only tell it like it happened.

I asked him what he had then done with it, being a bit worried that a dead squirrel might encourage our local fox population!

But no Max doesn’t like killing, so he sat down and talked to it!

Yes that’s right, he sat down and explained to the squirrel that we all had to live together and if only the squirrel would allow his plants to flourish he would then share the harvest with it and we would all be happy. The squirrel would then benefit from better quality food than just a few mere seedlings.

Now it seems Max wasnt convinced the squirrel was listening so he repeated this lecture 5 times a day for 3 days. I was trying very hard to keep a straight face, Max was deadly serious and showed me the cage and remains of fruit he had been giving the squirrel while he lectured it.

He explained that after three days he told the squirrel to go and tell his friends to leave his garden alone and then come back in a few months to share the produce.

Please don’t laugh but I have been in the garden all morning and havent seen a squirrel yet! So I hope he told them to stay out of my garden too.

How do you cope with these pests, I would be interested to know.

Rosanne x
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5 little questions about bra fitting

Ask yourself these 5 little questions.

  • are you always fiddling with the back of your bra ?
  • are the straps always falling off your shoulders ?
  • can you pull the front of your bra away from your body ?
  • do you get an ache on your shoulders ?
  • are your boobs sitting on your belly ?

If you answered yes to one or more of these then I can guarantee that you are wearing the wrong size bra. In fact I could say that your bra is too big around your body and you should be wearing a smaller band size and probably a bigger cup size.

A proper bra fitting can solve all of these problems instantly and make you feel like a new woman.

So go out this week and try on some new bras, get some proper advice and a bra fitting, you will be amazed how fantastic you will feel. Rather like the lady who came in today and said she was a 38B but left grinning happily and wearing a 34E. She looked instantly slimmer with neat perky boobs. Her friends were amazed at the transformation and thought she looked at least 10lbs lighter.

Let me know about your bra fitting experience and what size you really are after a proper fitting.

Rosanne x
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The Simple Things

Great excitement today, I saw my grandsons for the first time in three weeks as they had been on holiday. Normally I see them a couple of times a week so it seemed an age since they were here last.

I thought they would have so much to tell me, so much had happened since I saw them three weeks ago. They had been to Disneyworld with their dad, his girlfriend and their new baby sister for the first time and then the day after they returned the baby had been christened. I was looking forward to hearing all about it.

They came steaming into the house ‘nana, nana we are back, nana where are you?’. A big cuddle from the  4 year old while the 6-year-old headed off down the garden. I followed asking had they enjoyed the holiday and how was everyone.

‘Yes it was good and the baby cried all the time. Nana where’s the frogs and toads can we play with the tadpoles?’ How many tadpoles are there can we count them?’

‘Can we get the net and look at the tadpoles and other creatures please nana come on!’

Did you see Mickey Mouse?

‘ Yes and Donald Duck, Nana where’s Mr Toad, is he hiding, please help us find him, nana come on find him now.’

So I gave up trying to find out about this wonderful holiday and we went on a toad hunt instead. So here we are two little boys after the holiday of a lifetime and they just want to play with a toad!

Think it puts lots of things into perspective don’t you.

Rosanne x
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Q and A….. All about me

I have been tagged to do this Q & A Meme ( and of course I have no idea what that means !) as some evil type of revenge by the delightful @coffeecurls you can read her answers here.  This took ages to do and I believe I am now expected to challenge a few more unsuspecting souls to answer the questions.

I hope you will all forgive me and blame @coffeecurls instead.

Which living person do you most admire, and why?

The ladies who come into my fitting room after going through breast cancer surgery make me really appreciate how strong we can be in the face of such an experience. We should really not complain about the shape we have been blessed with.

When were you happiest?

I think I am at my happiest now, I have grown to be my own person, I just took my time getting there!

What was your most embarrassing moment?

That would be when I was about 13 and going to the cinema with a boy for the first time.

I went to the loo in the interval and when I returned I couldn’t find our seats as it was dark and I sat down beside someone else.

He shouted to me from about 6 rows away then proceeded to climb over all the seats to get to me. The usherette ( yes it was a long time ago, they came round with ice cream in those days too!) was not impressed and kept shining her torch on us for the rest of the film.

I was then too embarrassed to kiss him goodnight as we waited for the bus home as I recognised my aunt in the bus queue, she had obviously been in the same cinema and probably witnessed it all.

Aside from property, what’s the most expensive thing you’ve bought?

I don’t normally buy expensive stuff, but I did buy a pair of J Brand jeans a couple of years ago for £140. They are the most amazing fit I have ever had in jeans and worth every penny.

What is your most treasured possession?

That would be Susie my little doll who I have had since I was 5 years old.

Where would you like to live?

Give me somewhere with a large garden, south-facing preferably and my family not too far away then I am happy.

What’s your favourite smell?

Roses, freshly baked bread, new-mown grass, the smell after a storm…..

Who would play you in the film of your life?

If I could choose then I would like Rene Russo I think she is amazing.

What is your favourite book?

That’s a tough one as I love all books but think I would go for Swallows and Amazons, read it time and again as a child and still own it and love it.

What is your most unappealing habit?

Finding it hard to accept criticism.

What would be your fancy dress costume of choice?

Don’t really do fancy dress but think I would like to be a fairytale princess, yes I know a very tall fairytale princess with big feet.

What is your earliest memory?

Creeping downstairs on Christmas morning and hoping santa had been…… and gone again…. after leaving lots of presents of course.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?

Eric Clapton very loud, white wine and a bubble bath, yep all together.

What do you owe your parents?

A brilliant carefree childhood and supporting me through all my mistakes.

To whom would you most like to say sorry, and why?

My children………..

What or who is the greatest love of your life?

Not including people it would be my garden.

What does love feel like?

Excitement, anticipation, butterflies…..

What was the best kiss of your life?

The second.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

Lift them up and drop them in.

And now a lttle jiggle.

No, no don’t do that!

Definitely the wrong size.

What is the worst job you’ve done?

I have never had a job I didn’t like.

If you could edit your past, what would you change?

I have done things I shouldn’t but if they were changed I wouldn’t have what I have today and I love my life as it is now so no changes thank you.

What is the closest you’ve come to death?

I have never been close to my own death.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

My children, they had it tough but they are truly fantastic people.

When did you last cry, and why?

A few weeks ago when I at last admitted that someone I really cared about was  not actually my best friend any more but someone I didn’t really know and we had somehow drifted apart.

How do you relax?

In the garden at every opportunity, a glass of gorgeous white wine, reading a good book. Not necessarily at the same time.

What single thing would improve the quality of your life?

If I really found it easier to understand techy stuff J

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?

Live is too short to look back, forward is the only way.

**************************************************************************************

And so, next to answer the Q&A are:

I am supposed to pass this on so being really nosy I would like to know more about these people and hope they tag other people I want to know more about!

Lesley  @AnEasierAffair

Josie @porridgebrain

Debora @lickedspoon

The lovely @notSupermum

Ces @Ces_Creatively 

 

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Could It Be Magic?

Todays 30 day blog challenge is to work a blog around a song title. I spent some time considering various titles that could relate to lingerie or bra fitting or other aspects of my business but I couldn’t think of anything I was totally happy with. Then this afternoon sitting in the garden I remembered something my 4-year-old grandson said to me.

‘ Nana its like magic’.

This is what he was looking at, fruit peelings ready for the compost bin.

He then had to explore the finished product when it had all rotted down and thought it was magic when he saw the new compost.

All helped along by the little worms he loves to play with !! My little helper then wanted to know what I did with the compost. So it was more magic from this

and a few months later to this my favourite primula vulgaris.

He was enchanted but quite impatient when he realised it took longer than a few hours for these seeds to grow into beautiful primroses.

But to a 4-year-old yes ‘This could be Magic’

Do you love the magic of seed sowing as much as I do? Such a tiny speck transforming into a beautiful plant in a few short weeks and all helped along with those fruit peelings.

‘Could it be  magic’ not quite what the song portrayed but still magic!

Rosanne x
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Is Money Ruining Football?

Is Money Ruining Football?

I’m sure that the vast majority of people will answer immediately with ‘Yes’ to the above question. But stick with me on this (please). For the record I am not a die-hard football fan, but follow the game with interest.

Over the last few years it is becoming more and more common for big money investors to pump millions into a football club in pursuit of glory. On the one hand this is great because it helps keep these clubs afloat and gives the fans much more optimism. But does it really work?

Chelsea and Manchester City have virtually a bottomless pit when it comes to the money at their disposal and don’t think twice about splashing the cash on new players during the transfer window. I’m a firm believer that players need to get used to playing with each other each week so that they form a much stronger team. Take Manchester United for example, Sir Alex very rarely buys a lot of players at the same time, and as a result the current crop of players are a settled unit.

From the fan’s point of view all these world-class players running around in your club’s shirt every week is fantastic, but success is always measured on results, and so far one team and manager stands above all of the others. I firmly believe that this is because Manchester United have a very settled squad, the other big money clubs don’t.

But is all this money such a good thing? The owners of the clubs aren’t really lifelong fans. They are billionaires that want something fun to do with their money. With the huge sums of money paid to the players (I’m coming on to that soon) what would happen to the clubs if the owners suddenly decided that they’d had enough and wanted something else to play with? Chelsea and Manchester City posted big losses recently for the last year, removing their funding would be catastrophic.

What about the players? Some of these players (allegedly) earn more in a week than some of us can hope to earn in 10 years. Yes I know it is only a short playing career and they need to look after their interests, but come on, the amounts of money they are paid is obscene. How can someone who doesn’t really contribute much to the running of the country be paid more in a week than a high-ranking Forces officer would earn in a year?

The club managers must dread picking up the paper each morning wondering what their star player has been up to last night and who with. It seems that the players hold the clubs to ransom at the moment. Take Wayne Rooney; he threw his teddy out of the pram earlier in the season, handed in a transfer request because the club didn’t have any ambition. A couple of days later he has been rewarded with a massive new contract and he claims he loves playing for the club and never wanted to go anywhere else. How does he repay the club? With sub-standard performances for most of the season and a foul mouth rant at a TV camera after scoring. I wonder what Brian Clough would make of it all!”

So to get back to the question, Is Money Ruining Football? I think that it is a necessary evil and to improve the standard and quality of the game you need to be able to speculate to accumulate, but the amount of money involved is truly shocking.

This is a guest post by rob@rsbookkeeping.co.uk as part of the 30 day blog challenge.

Rosanne x

 

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Top Posts from my 30 day blog challenge

Day 12 in the 30 day blog challenge is to write a bit of a round-up of the top blogs. As I am relatively new to blogging and know I havent yet attained a huge amount of followers to my blog it was really interesting to compare the stats related to my posts.

Top of the list with amazingly five times as many hits as its nearest neighbour was  ‘History of Lingerie …part 1′  This may be all down to the attraction of my cave girl what do you think? Look out for part two coming along soon.

Next we have my ‘5 top tips’ on how to feel fabulous, including those gorgeous red shoes. These are my favourite easy ways to really make you feel amazing.

‘The Secret of Bra Fitting ‘ seemed to grab lots of your attention this week, it is sooo important to get that correct fitting, do it soon please.

Then of course we have ‘Sugar and Spice and All Things Nice’ and the gorgeous CoffeeCurls I hope you have checked out her blog by now. I think she is getting her revenge by tagging me in a meme, and no I havent any idea what a meme is, so watch out for that one could be interesting!

So that’s it, almost halfway through the challenge and thoroughly enjoying it. These are the most popular posts from my 30 day blog challenge. I would love to know which of them you preferred and why. Please make me a happy little blogger and leave a comment in the box.

Rosanne x
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The Secret of Bra Fitting

Well the secret is, there is no secret.

I say this dozens of times a day, having a bra fitting is one of the most important things a lady should do. You need to try on a bra to make sure it fits correctly, no secret there at all. After all, would you buy a pair of shoes without trying them on? I thought not.

Your breasts are just as important as your feet and whether you love them or loathe them, feet or boobs, you must look after them.

A correct bra fitting is extremely important for all ages, whether you are a young girl exploring bras for the first time or her grandmother deciding to buy herself a new bra, while educating her grand-daughter in the delights of beautifully fitted lingerie.

It can be embarrassing the first time you go for a bra fitting as you don’t know what to expect, but it’s not a bit like the dentist it doesn’t hurt at all, not even a tiny bit. The bonus then is leaving with a gorgeous piece of perfectly fitted lingerie and not a dribbling, swollen mouth!

We are always discreet and no, I certainly don’t notice much else about your body except how the bra fits and how I can improve your shape by providing the perfect bra to enhance those curves. The technique of a bra fitter varies from store to store but ultimately the result should be the same, a bra that fits firmly around the body and neatly over the breasts without cutting in and being uncomfortable and without straps slipping.

I very rarely use a tape measure these days but I have had over 15 years experience of bra fitting and have dealt with lots of different shapes and sizes both in bras and in breasts. Yes, our breasts are all different shapes and sizes and not all bras will suit you, so its back to where we started of always trying on that new bra before you buy it. I would recommend a bra fitting at least once a year although I fit every time you buy a new bra.

Yes I do need to be in the fitting room with you and I do have to see your shape to assess the correct size you need. I did have one customer who refused to take off her leather coat and wanted to be fitted with it on! We got there eventually but it took a while. I am good but need to get a bit closer than that to do my job properly! In saying that, I can usually tell a customer if they are wearing the wrong size by looking at their shape and size  in the clothes they are wearing.

If your breasts are sitting on your belly the back of the bra is usually quite high up between your shoulder blades, if this is familiar, then you are wearing the wrong size.

Back of bra too big

 

The back of the bra should sit straight across  your back and quite low down to give maximum support.

Correct back fitting

The straps should be secure, not slipping, so as to smooth the fabric over the breasts.

Have you got that sausage shape going around your body where your breasts should be, then you are probably wearing the wrong size and shape.

If you have been wearing the wrong size it is not unusual for the new bra to feel slightly strange when you first wear it, a bit like a new pair of shoes. Please don’t start me on shoes again!!

The other query I often encounter is ‘Should my bra leave a mark on my skin?’ Now the answer to this is yes, it probably will leave a bit of a mark, the same way as your briefs or your socks, tights or jeans do. Any garment fitting snuggly on your body will leave some sort of mark and the more flesh you may have around your rib cage the greater the mark may be, as a bra will ultimately settle into your ribcage and not just sit on your flesh as a chemise would. If the back of the bra is low down in the correct place it should also eliminate quite a lot of back fat that can push out over the back of the bra.

Perfectly fitted bra

If you have not had a bra fitting recently I recommend that you do so as soon as possible, I guarantee that you will amazed at how your shape can alter just by wearing the correct bra size. There is an estimated 80% of women out there wearing the wrong size bra, are you one of these? Are you like a recent customer of mine wearing a 36B when in fact she needed a 32E ? Or the young lady in the photographs who was wearing a 36A but needed a 32C?

Let me know your experiences of bra fitting in the comments box and I will try to answer any of your queries.

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Rosanne x
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A day in the life of…..

Here we go then another day in the 30 day blog challenge, now who is really interested in a day in my life I wonder, other than my mother of course!

Do you really want to know that I am a rubbish morning person, dragging myself out of bed at the last-minute and into the shower in an attempt to wake up. Then breakfast….always….porridge and a banana….usually…. eaten sitting up in bed….watching the traffic outside and listening to the radio while checking twitter, hurrah for the blackberry! Suddenly its very late, hair to dry, make up to put on, choose the underwear, then the clothes, into the garden, feed the birds then out the door. Yes I can move quickly if really necessary.

Now I am here on time, just, 9.30am start of my working day at Rosa Lingerie.

 

Turn off the alarm, log into our radio system which monitors all the local businesses through CCTV and then start up the laptop which is essential to my business as all my stock and customers special orders are on here so I would really struggle without it.  One of the spreadsheets was playing up yesterday, yes I know, bad workman blaming tools and all that but I needed a quick sort out, so a call to the excel help line aka my sister and it gets sorted in seconds. Thanks sis!

Almost 10.30am and I have a rep due in to finalise autumn/winter buying so I pop out quickly to my favourite coffee shop for our cappuccino before we start. It’s a quiet morning customer wise so we get a good start choosing the new ranges.

Customers come in needing a bra fitting attracted by the new lingerie in the window. The bras were fitted perfectly, then it was a case of choosing the matching bottoms, yes short and thong that’s a good decision. A mum about to go on holiday comes to try on a swimsuit, she is unsure about the bikini so soon after the baby but I encourage her to try it on, she looks amazing, I certainly didn’t look that good three months after giving birth. She chose the Moontide Spot On range in red, fantastic reversible swimwear.

 

Almost 1pm and the buying is finished including some stock fill ins due to be delivered later in the week. The rep leaves after making an appointment for next month and I do a bit of tidying up.

A young couple come in with a baby in a buggy, the mum needs to be fitted for a nursing bra. It is their first baby and they are so excited grinning from ear to ear. The baby is 5 days old and so tiny, so cute but looking really uncomfortable in this buggy! Mum went into the fitting room where I helped her into a new nursing bra, she was thrilled and so much more comfortable. She told me her friend had suggested that she come to me as she knew we would make sure she got the correct fitting bra. I love recommendations!

The husband then said the friend had also given them the buggy but they thought there was something wrong with it as baby looked so uncomfortable. I had a good look at the buggy and realised they hadn’t laid the base of it flat so poor baby was almost in a sitting position! After a bit of readjustment baby was happily lying flat in his buggy and mum and dad were grinning like a pair of Cheshire cats as they left to show off their baby to some friends.

Time for more coffee, so up the road to Absolutely Scrumptious for a refill and a quick gossip. Met a couple of other business owners in there so had a quick chat about how business was going this week then back to the shop.

While I was out a parcel was delivered, so my neighbour in Affinity took it in for me. I now have a large box of  ‘specials’ from Chantelle Lingerie to unpack and put away for customers. They seem to be mainly our best-selling T-shirt bra Rive Gauche. I add the names to the customer ‘specials’ list then send them all a text to come in and collect their orders. The items are then listed on the stock list on the computer.

That time already, 4pm and curious schoolboys and giggling girls looking in the window, not yet brave enough to come in and look around. I am really not that scary honest, I have had my coffee so its quite safe!

By contrast a charming old man who hardly speaks any English wanders in, he indicates that he wants a red set for his wife! When I tried to ask him the size he needed he points his walking stick worryingly close to my boobs and said ‘Yes Yes!’ then pointed to the red bra again. No he didn’t buy anything, I was bit too worried about that walking stick being waved around!

Almost the end of another day full of interesting customers with their own stories to tell. A quick tidy round so everything is organised for tomorrow then its home for a nice glass of wine and a bit of dinner before I check out what the next assignment is on the 30 day blog challenge!

Are you taking part in the challenge? Go on sign up here then we can all get a chance to share your day.

Rosanne x
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History of Lingerie… part one

 

There are things best displayed by concealment’

These words by Michel de Montaigne in the 16th century are the ultimate description of women’s lingerie.

The following posts attempt to give a lighthearted look at the changing face of lingerie from a simple bandeau to the highly technical garment it is today.

Bras have been around in one form or another for thousands of years. Perhaps starting with the animal skin wraps used by the cave girls.

Maybe they looked something like this.   Stunning don’t you think ?? 

Well I do!

This cave girl is my daughter taking part in Stokey Fashion Rocks in November 2010 when we raised over £6000 for Breakthrough Breast Cancer.

Around 2500BC Minoan women in Crete wore a type of push up corset with a cutaway jacket which pushed their breasts up and out of their clothing. The original topless look!

                                                            

No this one is not a child of mine but look at those perky boobs!  Cretan women were the style icons of their day.        

Research shows that initially very little was worn in the way of underwear at this time but active Roman women in the 3rd and 4th centuries wore wraps of material around their breasts to reduce movement while taking part in sport and also to conceal the developement of a mature bust. These bandage type garments were known as fascia. So there is nothing new about sports bras and minimisers.

                                      

Anyone for tennis? These ladies were very competitive and although they were not allowed to play in the Olympic Games they held their own 500ft race called the Haraea in honour of the Goddess Hera.

With the fall of the Roman Empire the practise of binding the breasts fell into disuse. Barbarian women left their breasts free under a tunic or dress, just as Christian women did in the early Middle Ages and continued to do so for several centuries.

If you like this and want to read more about Lingerie Through the Ages subscribe to my blog and look out for future posts in this series.
 
Rosanne x
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