Book Release – Freebie

So, you may or may not have noticed that I have been missing from the planet for a few months or more. Well the reason behind this is that I have been preparing my new book for release and I have the promo here for you in a bookfunnel promotion for you to grab!

Diary of an ageing twenty something is the first book in a trilogy exploring the hurdles of life for ‘Shannon Black’ . If you like ‘Bridget Jones’ then you need to get your hands on this trilogy. Think Bridget Jones covered in filth and you have got it. Immerse yourself in the free giveaway of ‘Diary of an Ageing Twenty something’ today and relive your own rollercoaster of adolescence!

I would also love it if you would leave me feedback (good or bad) and let me know your thoughts.  Thank you for your support of my blog for all these years and I hope you enjoy my new offering : ).

All my love xx


2016 – Off you F ……

My facebook newsfeed (I guess like yours) is full of a pure split of mood today. You have the kind of people who are stereotypical for New Years Eve – you know the ‘New Year, New Me’ people. And then the rebels, who find this tradition far too uncool and therefore have to take one of two approaches. The first being – ‘I will carry on being the same sassy twat that I have been in this year so travel on if you don’t like it’.  And the ‘Well I know I won’t make it past two weeks of being ‘good’ so I will not even bother – be the real you’!   So I guess the question is where do you and I lie? Well I have spent the last hour laid in bed (in my semi hungover, mouth like Gandhi’s flip-flops, exhausted but can’t sleep due to inebriation and I have an annoying huge human making difficult to breathe sounds scarily (and annoyingly) at the side of me) trying to decipher where I lie.I think it is fair to say that we all had dreams when we set out as teenagers, how many of us have actually acheived that life? Or how many of us even want to anymore? That said .. there are certainly some things I would have different if I had the chance:

  1. I would give my children away before they reached their teenage years thus saving me hours of anguish, frustration and my medication cupboard would be less full.
  2. I would run like a mother hubbard when my husband proposed so that potentially I will not have to turn Tom Hardy down when he convinces me that a night of his loving is all I need.
  3. I would have moisturised more. Or maybe that is going too far and I would have at least taken my make up off occasionally. Thinking about this .. maybe it is less distressing to the man who has to wake up next to me everyday to not have a stand in for Golem twisted by the side of him.
  4. I would have ditched my extreme determination of being a working mother and would have laid on the sofa more with my babies watching mind numbing TV before they turned into teenagers and laying on the sofa with them is only a fleeting figment of the past. Although admittedly, there is no part of me that pines to lay next either of my older kids now. Listening to my teenager daughters drivvle about who has just lost their virginity in the corner of a very packed party and now has found fame on snapchat or my son detail the latest streaming sensation that has just ‘invaded’ his channel and sent him subs (please don’t worry if you have no idea what that means – me neither – i just nod and say cool) is not my idea of bonding and I am not sure how else to do it if I am honest. Maybe I should just change point 4 to I would have no job so that I could actually have a shot at enjoying the years that I am blessed to walk this planet.
  5. I would remove my addiction to social media from my brain so that I could have been rolling in my millions by now lazing away the days on my yacht … instead of knowing what type of vegetable I would be in my next life, who my virtual soul mate is and how somebody’s kid in Cambodia was turned into a fish finger by aliens in their back garden.
  6. I would be younger and hotter. Ok so maybe this is taking things a step too far. I mean growing old is a gift isn’t it? but let’s not pretend that you enjoy watching your breasts get lower to the ground, your arms shake as you frantically point your kids to their bedrooms or the stark realisation that thanks to the branding team at 18-30 you are now officially labelled as too old to have fun! Why do I need to be hotter ? Because, I am still hoping that one day I will have to make the decision between my darling husband and Mr Hardy (see point 2).
  7. And it seems a compulsory requirement to mention my weight since it is New Years Eve. And I am not too cool to admit that I would do anything to address my ever-expanding waistline, chinline, leg breadth and gluteus maximus region. Is it even necessary to care about these things after 17 years of only ever waking up next to the same man, who knows the creases of every curve and loves you regardless (he is more concerned about my attitude than my cellulite if we are to delve into it). Well yes I believe it is, I am fast approaching the ‘needing two seats on a plane’, the ‘your not allowed on this rollercoaster’ and more importantly you have no clothes to wear so feel more comfortable in your pyjamas crew.

So there you have it. I wouldn’t change that much really. I would just be single, with no kids, living in the middle of the Pacific Ocean in solitary confinement whilst looking after myself sexually (as I would be unable to resist my very luscious body and smouldering good looks) And for days when I bored of myself …. there would always be Tom to call upon.  I would be irresistibly intelligent due to all the time I indulged on myself … the draw back being, I would have no idea what quote best describes me or what planet Kanye West was taking over this week! Look we can’t have it all readers can we?

Whatever it is you want from life and whoever it is you want to be…. it is without judgement (unless you are one of those men that are living as a puppy in a silicone dalmatian suit or the kind of woman who loves such a man/hound) that in abundance, I cast in your direction heartfelt wishes and strength for your journey through this bumpy ride of life.  May your year be carefree, fun, healthy and most of all happy.

All my love, the maker of the Gingers – Angelina xxx



The only serious post you will ever read on my blog. Grown up time. I need your help.

Today has been one of the hardest days of my life. I spent the day with my lovely friend of 14 years and we laughed and we cried and we laughed and cried some more. 2 years ago she was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease. Already she has no functionality in her body (needing 24hr care) and her speech is now already severely affected. It is so hard to see her in that position when she was the one trekking the lakes whilst I was laid on the sofa. She was the one playing badminton whilst I was getting smashed in the pub. Unfortunately for her she is now terminally ill and faces leaving behind two beautiful children of 15 and 11. I got in my car after leaving and was overwhelmed with a panic attack at the thought that she will have to leave us. It made me think how she must feel every minute and it has made my heart bleed with sadness. It made me want to run out there and grab every shred of life I can and live exactly the life I want …right now … regardless of the consequences .. because life can be cruelly snatched away and we only have this shot. Although she is running out of time I just have to do something to help her because I feel so so so useless and I want to do something practical because there is nothing else I can do and that is suffocating! So I am in the process of setting up a go fund me page for her (she isnt even on facebook and doesn’t even know about these things), she has applied for stem cell treatment in Isarel and since it is a potential £45,000 at least, she has little chance of making it but I thought it was more than worth a try. Time is of the essence so the next few months you will see me frantically arranging lots of charity events and begging! I’m not too proud to beg to save my friends life and so you will see plenty of it. The things we are organising so far are a Race Night in Sprotbrough, my lovely Jo Twiby is going to help me, if you would be interesting in attending please let me know and importantly if you are a business (or a lovely individual) and you can donate anything please please please let me know. Taylor is going to do another gaming stream like he did for the homeless charity in the summer and kennedy and I are organising a Dance Battle. Again if you are a lovely human being or own a business and you would like to sponsor the event or put up any of the cash prizes or offer your venue or services I would be grateful until the end of time. If you have any other ideas that we can put into practice then I would love to hear of it too. I’m sorry if this is a bit rambly but my heart is breaking and my head is whirring with the potential difference we could make to a family of one of our own. As many of you know I was closing ‘Wonder Toys’ after xmas to allow me to focus on other ventures but I will continue to run it to donate all profits to this cause for as long as it is needed. Thank you for taking the time to listen to the outpouring of my broken heart and I hope to hear from you all any ideas or offerings as time is not on our side. Please help. All my Love Angelina xxxxxxx

An 80’s Christmas Advent

There are not many perks to having teenagers, let’s just be honest for a minute. Although there will always be some twat reading this who frowns at their screen reminiscing of all their ‘Walton’ moments. Actually, now you have made me ponder it … there may be a couple! For example, having somebody to make you a cup of tea (or more likely witches piss), wash the pots occasionally (leaving clumps of sprouts still attached to the pan)  and of course walk the dog (leave the garden and stand around the corner for 10 mins having a fag before they return, dog un-walked).

Anyway I suppose they have a mild level of usefulness but the perk I was particularly mulling over today, was the idea that at times they have the ability to propel us back to our own childhood and fill our heads with memories of days gone by.  I had just such a day yesterday whilst christmas shopping with the oldest two.  Now this is a new experience for me. Now they are no longer encapsulated by the magic bubble of Santa and Christmas, I don’t mind them getting involved in the planning and prep of Xmas that I find somewhat, just as exciting as the day itself. I mean mostly if I am truthful, I love going to parties and getting smashed whilst belting out Mariah Carey’s ‘All I want for Christmas’ but to be fair, my kids are still at the getting smashed on Frosty Jacks in the Park stage so christmas probably doesn’t change that for them too much (just so it is on record … I hope this is not true .. but I am aware there could be more than a dash of truth in this).

So, whilst shopping, they were choosing their advent calendars. To cut a long story short, she chose a Yankee Candle one at a pricey £20 and he chose a Lindt one at slightly less gasping £10. Nonchalantly, the 15-year-old daughter asks me “What advent did you used to choose Mum”. I explained to her that we didn’t have these kind of advent calendars when I was a young one. After they stifled their giggles and looked at me with disbelief, they refuted my statement.

“Mum you must have had advent calendars, you were probably just too poor to get one”. Yes to be fair there was that! This led me to explain a bit about an 80’s advent, whilst they stood gawping at me like I had just shit on their shoes!

I began to describe the excitement we had over our advent calendars, just the way they do theirs. I described the A4 advent calendar which was simply a piece of card adorned with festive christmas images. Yes, just images, no playmobil santa toy, no bag of lego, no scented candle and not even a slab of odd tasting chocolate. You know, penguins skating on ice, three kings excitedly pointing at a star, a sprig of holly/mistletoe. So every day we would open one of the doors excited to learn what the image would be underneath. Well not every day, since we shared a calendar between 4 people every fourth day, you would get another turn. But it didn’t stop you from gathering around, eager to catch a glimpse of the day’s new picture! Now Xmas Eve was a bit of double treat … because you would get a double door to open! Oooooooooooohhhhhhhh! Behind the door most often would be a lovely picture of the baby jesus surrounded by his doting parents…. who would have guessed that? It was so bloody exciting.

Now if you were really lucky, your mother may have purchased a ‘Advent Candle’. Now this was exciting stuff. Every single day (yes every single day) you got to watch a centimetre of the candle burn away. Yes!! No really you did!! Was it fragranced? No! Did the smoke emulate Fantastic Beasts? No! You simply got to sit and stare at the wax be eaten up by the orange flame beast. Wait .. you thought that was it didn’t you? No the best was yet to come. You had to watch so carefully, so you could be the first to jump and be the blow it out when it was at the end of the marker for that day. How cool is that! The pressure and tension were unbelievable: akin to Christmas Morning itself.

In all fairness, whoever thought of that was a genius. It bought parents a few minutes of peace a day (pre device days), whilst the children were occupied by a candle … yes a candle! Who needs ipads?

Now advent calendars are just one of our many traditions, as I’m sure they are yours.Other things my darling children get to do are trips to the theatre to watch the Panto. “You must have watched the Panto mum?” they worriedly asked. When I informed them of what our parents did in order to contain our excitement and anticipation for the main man arriving they looked genuinely heartbroken. I couldn’t understand their looks of pity. I mean I loved colouring in my Jumbo Christmas Colouring Book whilst looking at all the fruit and the tin of Quality Street that we were absolutely NOT allowed to touch until Christmas Day. Still it was comforting to be surrounded by such treats, right?

“Ok … well you must have snuggled down with your parents to watch Christmas Films on the sofa on Christmas Eve Mum”. I hated to keep seeing their faces full of anguish at my fond memories of childhood but I shared them all the same. I explained all about the Working Men’s  Club Establishment. I explained that in the 80’s children did not own their parents, and as such parents were free/allowed to go out and enjoy themselves guilt free without some jumped up little fucker on Facebook accusing them of neglect. In hoards, parents would skip off to the pub hand in hand with the partner they had managed to keep as they still had a life together and they would settle down with their friends for the night (yes this generation even had time for friends!). They would watch ‘Meat Dog (tribute to Meat Loaf)’ throw out some vocals whilst sharing their Tupperware tubs of pickled onions and pork pies that they had bought to share with neighbours and friends. Yes in the 80’s people knew their neighbours as they didn’t have to work 15 hour days in order to pay for the piles and piles of presents that their children were not ever going to play with and were never going to be grateful for. This was a double-edged sword as it also meant that they did not have to spend 12 hours of Christmas Eve wrapping said presents and therefore freed them up to go and get smashed in the club.

“Didn’t everybody feel sorry for you Mum” they asked. No kids because in the 80’s there was a common understanding that children were not the be all and end all of this world and that to raise children successfully did not mean that they had to have every single Kylie Jenner Lip Gloss or encompass every second of their parents lives but instead that children (and parents) enriched each others life’s and a parents job was simply to ensure said child did not die!

Take me back to 80’s Advent any day … I might have some money in the bank and a shred of sanity!



Did you ever hear the one about the Pet Goldfish and the Husky?

Being a mental mother, there are lots of complexities in my life. Of course there are the children, the husband, the work environment and …. the dog!!! Now I am sure there are many a dog lover in the midst of you, and don’t get me wrong I love my dog too, but he is probably at times the biggest ‘complexity’ (for want of a better word) in my entire life.

It may be poignant at this point to mention that he is in fact a Husky! Why is this important? Well, if you are a husky owner you are already beginning to feel deep sympathy for me. Huskies are hard work to say the least. They are energetic, intelligent and damn well bloody defiant (there are of course positive aspects to the breed, but I am struggling to think of them at this moment).

Now after him being part of our life for 2 years, I can honestly say that we have adjusted. I no longer get cross when I come across a half eaten shoe. Well, after you find a half eaten Clarks school shoe on the 9th September, the heartbreak cannot possibly match that can it? And when you find you are struggling to breathe in the night and open your eyes to a big fat hairy arse at the end of your chin (keep your minds clean here readers, I am still talking about the dog), after a while it becomes the norm. Also, I no longer want to vomit with anger at the household adjustments that my darling Husky has taken upon himself to make: like chewing off my letter box, ripping the beading from the windows (yes if you ever pass my house, that is a real life huge husky sat on my windowsill watching the world go  by). And I have honestly grown to love the fact that i now have no doors that separate my living room from the kitchen – the gentle breeze flowing from the letter box through the living room down to the kitchen provides just the right climate for the Siberian breed. Finally, walking a husky was a strange experience too, and to be honest, it probably shouldnt be labelled as ‘walking the dog’, as clearly the husky is walking me…. ok … maybe ‘running’ me would be more apt? I now have grazed knees for all the right reasons (god bless middle age).

So yes, we have adjusted to the chaos that is living with a husky it seems, but I absolutely draw the line at today’s turn of events and I am most definitely, definitely not his friend today (and probably tomorrow too, unless he looks at me with his ears back : / ).

This morning upon cleaning out the goldfish (who may I mention have been part of our family for considerably longer then said Husky), I accidentally smashed their bowl. Due to the size of them, I decided (in my infinite wisdom) to put them in my bath whilst I went to get them a new bowl from the pet store. I saw it as a bit of a treat actually and enjoyed watching them for a good ten mins before I left for the store. I thought how excited they must be to have so much space and a change of scenery (although admittedly, the white background I’m sure wouldn’t have been too stimulating.

Before I set off for the store, I placed the husky in the garden (as I do when I go out), to ensure that I had a sofa to come home too. Imagine then my extreme distress when, as pulling up on the drive I came face to face with a dripping wet Husky sat proudly on my windowsill eagerly awaiting my return. I had clearly forgotten to lock the back door (disaster since he can open doors). My heart was in my mouth as I fumbled with the key to let myself in and leg it upstairs. With horror, but not surprise, the bath was completely empty! In the Husky bounded, jumping all over me with bits of goldfish stuck to his claws and soaking wet with the stench of fish.

I have to admit to checking his mouth …. not sure what I wanted to find. A happy little Nemo sat on his tounge waiting to be rescued maybe? “Murderer” I yelled at him, tears pricking my eyes. I was already haunted by images of our pet goldfish swimming around in his stomach! I didn’t suppose waiting for him to shit them out would help the situation either?

As I grabbed his collar to lead him outside in complete disgust of him,  I stood in something squishy. Instant vomit inducer!! Right there squished in-between my toes and chipped nail varnish was the head of poor Sharkey. An image and experience I am sure will remain with me until the end of time. On a brighter note, at least we had something to bury!

I will admit to my eyes leaking a little. I feel so responsible. I was their mother … I was supposed to protect them! What if they think that I put them in the bath as a trap and set the Husky onto them. Like a scene out of hunger games! Oh it is all too much …. I think this may just haunt me until the day I die. At least it has dulled the memory of the day my daughter murdered her hamster! … .But that is a story for another day!


Teenagers v’s Parents

Sooooooo everyone makes mistakes, right? I think even ‘mistake’ might be too strong a word…. let’s just leave it at ‘over reaction’. Mornings are not my favourite time I must admit. With a full time (very demanding job) and 3 (very demanding) children, two being teenagers .. it was never going to be rainbows and unicorns was it?  Some days are easier than others but this particular morning, everything that could go wrong (you got it) did go wrong. Actually that pretty much sums up my normal everyday life!

I was already considerably late for work and my youngest had wrapped herself around my leg sobbing and begging for me not to abandon her!! As I drove away from her tear stained face and shaking hands … my mind was racing and my heart slowing. I had worked until 1.30a.m that morning and had got back out of my temporary place of respite at the chime of 5a.m to try and get the last necessaries done for that day. I was physically and mentally exhausted and my teenagers, oblivious to the mental breakdown that was occurring behind my professional work attire and my heavily made up face, were not the best of company for me on that journey that morning.

I attempted to start a conversation with them … you know .. just the “what lessons have you got today then?” Clearly this irritated them to the point that they had to snap my head off. I mean in all fairness to them, they had to take their earphones out and had to rotate their heads roughly 45 degrees (I mean what kind of monster am I). So understandably their patience had waned a little. Well, snap! My patience waned right at the same time. So, within the confines of my convertible, I exploded! Through bright red cheeks and gobs of spittle I informed them of the way I viewed them. You know … selfish little gits who cared for nobody but themselves! I am not quite sure I worded it so professionally but I think I got the message across. They were now aware that I was actually the birth giver (by all laws of parentdom that meant that I had a right to claim the throne as the ALPHA) and not the maid, wallet, cleaner, counsellor, chef and general toilet scrubber!! And with such a pedestalled position … if I wanted a god damn conversation with them … they would bloody well give me one!!!

As I finished parading my feathers and standing my ground .. my cheeks began to de-flush and my voice began to return to its pre-exorcist state, until …. I glanced in the rear-view mirror and caught a glimpse of ‘the teenagers’ stifling giggles and rolling their god damn eyes at each other! How very frigging dare they!

With a swerve of the wheel and a screech of the tyres I kerbed the car and threw my angry little self out of the door. I pulled the door open and demanded they both get out. They just exchanged confused looks with each other. Oh, so they thought I was kidding did they? I took myself around to the boot, took their school things out and dumped them on the kerb. “Out!!” I demanded. Reluctantly they began to get out. “How are we going to get to school?” my son dared to ask!

“With those special thin things attached to your abdomen dear Sir” I replied. He expressed his fear of being late and getting a detention and I reminded him that because he would never get out of bed, I was always late for work – I took a moment to tell him all about Mr Karma and I chuckled to myself as I got back in my car. Boom! Power struggle won! As I sped off feeling like Beyonce in my heels and shades …. I checked my mirror once again, eager to see their jaws on the floor as I had well and truly taught them a lesson they wouldn’t forget today. But what do you think I saw? I saw two brats in absolute fits of hysterics at the side of the road!!!! I mean proper belly laughing, leaning over grabbing stomachs kind of laughing!! Oh no you didn’t! Oh yes they did.

I couldn’t lose this one … I had come too far! Without hesitation, I u’turned the car and skidded up at the side of them, jumped out and did the only thing I thought would hurt them. I snatched their mobile phones right out of their unsuspecting little hands … jumped straight back into the car and sped off … I did however take a moment to lean out of the window and yell … who is laughing now my little hyenas! Boom!

Ok so my victory may have been short lived when once at work however, I realised that I had indeed abandoned my kids in a village they didn’t terribly know very well without any means of contacting them! This resorted in my having to call the school to check they were there and to explain why I didn’t know if they were there, and then an anxious 2 hour wait before somebody got back to me to let me know they were there safe.

choatic-morningMaybe it is time they learnt to catch the bus to school, I’m sure that is much safer for us all then continuing to car share through puberty … maybe I should bring that up at the next family meeting!






The Willing Possession of the Womb

It isn’t an easy decision. But one we often make out purely because it is part of our expected life path. Motherhood!  And let’s face it .. we think we are making a decision to share our life with someone. How on earth can that be a terrible thing? What a nasty shock then I suppose to realise that actually you gave up any right to be considered a human in your own right the minute that sperm protruded your body! Slave to the sperm, one could say! Could the sperm then be considered an exorcist. It enters your body (hopefully with your will .. or at least consciousness albeit) and it manifests itself. Slowly it grows, sucking the life out of you. Taking all the goodness for itself right from the very first days of implantation leaving you weak, vulnerable, sick!

Slowly, it grows taking over both your mind and body. You can no longer remember your own name and people are more interested in the possession bulging out of your abdomen. They are not free of its pull either. They feel scarily compelled to touch it … through your very own skin. What a violation ..yet they think nothing of it! 9 whole months you carry it around, whilst it stretches every piece of your body, leaving its mark in the form of silvery lines just to prove it owned you – branding! When it no longer needs your immediate protection or strength it expels itself through the most excruciating crevice you could imagine.  Luckily for us .. clever humans have invented medication and surgical procedures to enable us to get through it alive. Although those suffering from a perineal excision may not think themselves so lucky.

The trick is thinking that the pregnancy is the stage of exorcist possession. Mmmmmm, let’s think about this. From the moment the baby reaches this world, it demands your every waking moment. It hungrily feeds on your breasts draining the energy that you desperately try to preserve. Should you be caught sleeping on the job …. he will see to it that you rise to your feet like a disciple to your God! Like Cinders herself, it will ensure you have no time left to tend to your body and desires. Instead such things will be lost amongst your stretch marks and saggy breasts.

One day you will feel the pull to revisit your life from before. Perhaps a simple solo trip to the supermarket, or a few fancy cocktails on the Town. And you may well decide that you have earnt it and skip along. But the child will use telekinesis to reach you and fill your head with thoughts of guilt and self-loathing and quickly you will return to its side, apologising for your selfishness and assuring it of your full attention from now until the end of time.

Ah yes Motherhood …………….. the metamorphisis of the Female Human!