lauraslovesblog

This is a blog about all the things I love in life, and sharing them with you.

To Repeal or Not, that is the question! — April 22, 2018

To Repeal or Not, that is the question!

Hello everyone!

I am going to write a blog post that will probably be controversial but I am someone who voices their opinion on matters. And this particular issue has been bugging me for quiet a while.

Lets talk the 8th Amendment!

The reason I decided to write this post is because I just spent a lovely chilled Sunday morning catching up on social media, Snapchat, Instagram etc. There were at least 4 influencer’s that were advocating for a Yes vote on their social media. While I have no issue with them voicing their opinion, in fact I applaud it. I felt a little uncomfortable that it’s only Repeal being thrown out to young people.

I am going to openly say here that I am still undecided on how I am going to vote! I am still on the fence as I have quite a few reservations.

I believe the 8th Amendment in its current form is out dated and it needs to be reformed.Β  My reservations with just repealing it begin with this first question…

What will replace it?

I have been involved in politics my whole adult life and this is something I am quite annoyed at. The Government is throwing a Referendum out to the people but with no concrete or definite replacement. When we voted in the Nice or Lisbon Treaties or even the Children’s Referendum we knew exactly what we were voting for and how our constitution would be reformed. With this referendum we don’t! We know that if the country votes Yes, the 8th Amendment will be repealed and removed from our constitution but then what?

Do we leave such an important piece of legislation in the hands of the Government? And for any successive Government to change at any point without consulting the people. That is what we are faced with. This referendum ultimately takes the control away from the people and into the hands of politicians. Maybe that is the right thing to do but at the moment it sit’s a little strange with me.

Another thing that really annoys me with this particular referendum is the aggressiveness of the campaigns on both sides.

The Yes voters, as a woman if I turn around and say that I don’t know how I am going to vote, I face a backlash and abuse. That I am anti-women, I’m living in the dark ages, cop on to myself……. the list goes on!

To the No voters, if I turn around and say that I don’t know how I am going to vote, I again face a backlash and abuse. That I am pro-abortion, What about the babies? again the list goes on….

I simply do not believe this issue is as simple as black and white, it is most definitely sitting in the grey area.

To all of those people I am not anti-women, I am very much pro-women but this is an issue that affects everyone in society and everyone is entitled to their opinion. We are in the centenary year of when women gained the right to vote. It’s ironic now that 100 years on we face abuse from other women and men for choosing to vote a certain way.

I know of quite a few people of all ages who are afraid to voice their concerns, opinions or thoughts on this issue for fear of attack from either side! That in my opinion is so wrong! We live in a democracy, no body should be afraid to ask a question!

I am going to close this blog post by asking each and every one of you, to think deeply about how you are going to vote. Don’t listen to either side, get informed, contact the Referendum Commission. The only impartial agent in this referendum.

Referendum Commission

To those who know how they are going to vote, the next time you happen to encounter someone who is voting or considering to vote in an opposite way to you I urge you, RESPECT their opinion. They are equally as entitled to it as you are! Have healthy discussions on the topic, it’s good, you may learn something from others.

Never ever, abuse or ridicule someone for having a opinion different to you!

Get out and Vote on the 25th of May, and get informed before you do!

Lots of Love

Laura

Xxx

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Book Review Month 4 – When Breath Becomes Air and Michelle Mone – Might Fight to the top — April 9, 2018

Book Review Month 4 – When Breath Becomes Air and Michelle Mone – Might Fight to the top

Hello everybody,

Can you believe its April already!

I’m back with another book review, and again I’m also procrastinating. I have lots of project work to do but I just can’t seem to focus on them. So I am writing a review of the books I read this month.

Now as some of you may know, I said that I would read a book a month and blog about it, well this month I managed to read 2. I think it’s habit forming, I was never used to reading religiously but the more I make a habit of it the easier it is getting and more I am choosing to do it.

So this month I read 2 very different books but both telling a personal story. I tend to gravitate towards those kind of books.

The first one I heard of through Terrie McEvoy, an Irish blogger who reads loads!

When Breath becomes Air is a book by Paul Kalantini, a gifted neurosurgeon who finds himself on the other side of the fence when he is diagnosed with cancer in his mid thirties.

When breath becomes air

He tells how he has to come to terms with a diagnosis he was expecting, being in the position he was, he knew what his symptoms meant even before the results came back. He had to become the patient when he was so familiar with the doctor. The trials and tribulations of a cancer diagnosis particularly in someone so young. I was concerned that this might be an incredibly sad story so I was surprised when it was written in such a matter of fact matter with an air of empathy. He wasn’t concerned with how the cancer would affect him in a self pity way, he was concerned what his diagnosis meant for his family and he handled it in a very dignified and inspirational way.

The saddest chapter of the book is the last chapter which was written by Paul’s wife shortly after he died. And even that chapter in written in the same matter of fact style but perhaps more emotion.

This a book to inspire, for people to realise what’s important in life and even facing the greatest of obstacles, stay positive and optimistic even when the inevitable is staring you in the face, you just never know, so live you life on the motto of what if!

The second book I read was one that was on my list for a while. I work in marketing so I am always interested to hear how people built up there brands, and the story behind them. Michelle Mone – My Fight to the Top was high up on my list for quite some time and it didn’t disappoint. Michelle’s story is one of complete rags to riches but with a hell of a lot of hard work and pure determination in between. Her brand Ultimo lingerie was born after she was made redundant while on maternity leave and has since grown to become one of the worlds biggest lingerie brands. It hasn’t always been plain sailing, the trials and tribulations of business and how she overcame them.

Michelle is incredibly honest in the book, she doesn’t try and hide anything which makes her story even more refreshing.

Michelle Mone

If you have any interest in biographies or business stories, then I would highly recommend both of these books. Two very different life stories but both equally as fascinating.

I got both of these books fromΒ https://www.bookdepository.com/

I better get back to this project work now πŸ™‚

Lots of Love

Laura

Xxx

“Behind Closed Doors” by B.A. Paris – Book Review Number 3 — March 18, 2018

“Behind Closed Doors” by B.A. Paris – Book Review Number 3

Hello everyone,

I hope you have all recovered from your St.Patrick’s Day festivities.

I was very good this year and didn’t venture out, two reasons I’m not a big fan of messy nights out (Paddy’s is always one of them) and I have a college report due this week that I need to write.

So me being the queen of procrastination that I am, I’m here writing a book review for you instead of my report. I’ll get to the report next, they always get done, πŸ™‚

If any of you read my other reviews you will know that I made a new years resolution to read more books for fun. I said I was going to read 1 book a month and review it here so that I would stick to the plan. I’m in March lads and I’m still sticking to it. The New Years Resolution has lasted longer than my Lent commitment πŸ™‚

For the first two months I read books that I had received for Christmas

Jackie’s Girl by Kathy McKeon: ReadΒ hereΒ and Philomena Begley – My Life, My Music and My Memories: ReadΒ here

So for this month’s book I wanted to read something fiction based. I chose “Behind Closed Doors” by B.A Paris which I got on theΒ Book Depository.com

This book was recommended as being similar to “The Couple Next Door” by Shari Lapena and I had really enjoyed that book.

The story begins with a girl called Grace who meets a guy called Jack while in the park with her sister Millie.

Grace and Jack quickly develop a relationship that moves at a very quick pace. He is everything that Grace has dreamed off and the perfect gentleman.

Everything in Grace’s life is going like a dream and then she and Jack marry. This is when her world changes forever. Jack drops his perfect husband facade and reveals his true colours behind closed doors. To the world they really are the perfect couple but everything is not always as it seems.

What I enjoyed about this book is that I couldn’t put it down. I don’t have much time for reading as a pass time hence why one book a month was a task but this book I literally couldn’t leave down. I was walking around the house with my book in my hand. I read half of the book in one evening because I wanted to know what was going to happen next. There are quite a few twists and turns in the book and some surprises.

This is a brilliant and beautifully written book. If you like thrillers with twists and turns I would highly recommend this book.

Available on theΒ Behind Closed Doors – The Book Depository.com

Lots of Love,

Laura

xx

TV Series Review – “Scandal” — February 21, 2018

TV Series Review – “Scandal”

Hey everyone,

I want to publish more blogs posts and stick to do why I started this blog, to talk about the things I love.

I haven’t been the best blogger in the world and I am the first person to hold my hand up and say so. It has been more of when I think of it I will write about it, rather than any sort of structure. 2018 is the year I change that, I hope, that’s my plan anyways.

So with this in mind, I am going to review one of my favorite TV shows ever! I was also on the hunt for something to binge watch when I came across a TV show called “Scandal”. A drama series based around a crisis management agency in Washington. I studied PR in college so this show appealed to me straight away. I also have an interest in politics so throw a bit of that in and it’s right up my street.

The main character is Olivia Pope who runs Pope and Associates or Gladiators as she calls them. She is an adviser to the White House when scandals occur. Now it’s a drama series so these scandals are plentiful and also not your average political scandals. There is love, murder, deceit, betrayals, kidnapping, you name it and Scandal has it.

What I loved about the show is each episode has it’s own story as well as a back story but without overlapping each other. I love Olivia brilliance at her job, she know’s exactly how to deal with every situation and she knows exactly how people will react. I watched the first series in one day, I just couldn’t stop watching it.

Scandal cast.jpg

As with all good drama series there is love story between Olivia and The President. This is a relationship that develops over years, doesn’t exactly have a smooth sailing or a happily ever after. It really isn’t your typical, guy gets girl love story but it is an integral part of the show.

Anyone who has asked me for a TV show recommendation, this is the first one I recommend. Now the one hiccup, it’s not on Netflix, I’m still old school and have bought the DVD’s of all five series so far. And unlike many other series, there is no dip in quality of the shows throughout, there is no bad series.

It it currently on it’s 7th season which was announced it was to be the last. If you are on the lookout for something really worth watching, I can’t recommend this enough.

Did I mention I love it πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Book Review – “My Life, My Music, My Memories – Philomena Begley” — February 19, 2018

Book Review – “My Life, My Music, My Memories – Philomena Begley”

Hey guys,

So I’ve stuck to the new year resolution so far and book 2 of the year was Philomena Begley’s biography “My life, my music, my memories”.

This was another Christmas present. Anyone who knows me will know my love of country music and there is no question that Philomena is the Queen of the Irish Country music scene. I have been lucky enough to meet her on a quite a few occasions and know what a character she is.

Her book very much documents her life which you would expect for a biography. Her early years, her start in the music world, and the beginning of her life on the road.

It jumps between the the mania of life on the road and the relative calm of life at home for Philomena and her family.

While I enjoyed this book and Philomena’s story, I think the structure of the book was a bit off. For a lady who had just marked 50 years in the business I’m sure there were many more stories to be told. I would like to have heard more about life on the road, the best gigs, her most memorable performances. Now don’t get me wrong there are stories from the road in the book but I just feel there are many more to hear about.

What I did like about this book however, is it showed a completely different side to Philomena that we are not accustomed to seeing, the wife and the mother. For someone who leads such a showbiz lifestyle, her home life is the complete opposite. She clearly relishes in her role as a mother and now a grandmother.

If like me you are a country music fan, this is an enjoyable light read.

You can buy here

I am moving away from the biographies this month and have started a thriller “Behind Closed Doors”.

If you have any book recommendations, I would love to hear them,

Hope you enjoyed this,

Lots of Love

Laura

xx

 

Book Review – “Jackie’s Girl “ — January 17, 2018

Book Review – “Jackie’s Girl “

Hello everyone,

So it’s been a little while since I have written a blog post. Mainly because my life is super busy at the minute and I just didn’t have time.

Now book reviews are not something I would have done before but I do like to read every now and again and especially on holidays. I could read 2 or 3 books in a week when I just sit down and relax on holidays. This year I made a New Year’s Resolution to read one book a month and to make sure I do it I’m committing now to doing a blog review on each of them. πŸ™‚

Now when it comes to books, I like easy reads, if I am re-reading sentences to understand them, you’ve lost me. I also really like Autobiographical books, the human interest or just nosy streak in me. Last year I read Jo Malone’s autobiography and loved the conversational style of writing and just telling her story. Another good autobiography is Tamara Mellon “In her Shoes” The Story of Jimmy Choo. Again another story told in such a simple manner. On the non-fiction side I read “The Couple Next Door” by Shari Lepena which was recommended by Terrie McEvoy. I couldn’t put it down. It was brilliant.

For Christmas my sister bought me a book about an Irish woman telling her story about her life as PA to Jackie Kennedy. Jackie Kennedy is one of my icons so she knew this book was right up my street.

The story is very much the life story of Kathy McKeon, a young woman from Monaghan who immigrated to New York when she was 19. She began working with one of the world’s most famous ladies shortly after JFK’s assassination. She gives an honest insight into the lives of the Kennedy’s and also how the Kennedy lifestyle impacted on her own life.

Again it has a very conversational style, you get lost in the story and can almost imagine her sitting in front of you relaying the story.

If you are buying this book thinking you are going to hear all about the Kennedy scandals or drama’s then don’t. It’s very clear from the way in which the story is told Kathy and Jackie O’ had a deep respect for each other. She is honest about their relationship but there is still a very obvious unsaid affection for one another.

Kathy lived so close to some of the biggest moments in recent history but tells it from the point of view of family. When Robert Kennedy was assassinated the story Kathy told was very much of two little children who had lost an uncle they viewed as a father figure having already lost their father.

This is a lovely story to just sit down and read of a Sunday afternoon. I would definitely recommend it. If I had to make one criticism of the book, it would be I would like to read a little more about her life after the Kennedy’s to find out what happened next.

Jackies Girl

I hope you liked this one, let me know if you do or if you have read it.

Lots of Love

Laura

xxx

My Travel Bucket List – The places I have ticked — August 23, 2017

My Travel Bucket List – The places I have ticked

Hello everyone,

I haven’t written a blog post in a little while but lately travel has been on my mind a lot.

I was never bitten with the travel bug when I was in my teens or even my early twenties, I’m a home bird through and through. When I was in my first college course, as part of it we went on annual city breaks and I loved them.

We went to Lisbon which I really loved and we also went to Berlin and I wasn’t a fan. But that’s what I love about travel, exploring cities and discovering new places that you love and some you don’t. I would always much rather say I didn’t like somewhere than say I haven’t been. While I still don’t have the urge to live away (Always a home bird) I do suffer from itchy feet, I love planning the next adventure whether it’s to Westport or Amsterdam, I love planning.

I’ve compiled a list of places I have been to and I enjoyed and then I have the bucket list, the places I haven’t been to but are in the pipeline. I’m not one to return to places multiple times but there is a few that I would go back years later. Now these are in no particular order, some I loved more that others but all are worth at least one visit.

  1. Lisbon

As I said above I visited Lisbon some years ago as part of a college course. I was studying Interior Architecture at the time so the focus of the trip was architecture obviously πŸ™‚ I found the people, the atmosphere of the cobbled streets the whole city has a lovely warmth to it. I would definitely recommend it and I definitely would go back. It is a perfect city break for a little sunshine and sightseeing.

2. Amsterdam

This trip is very recent as I was only there in April. Amsterdam was one of those places that I thought I would never get to, I was that eager to go to it. Almost everyone I seemed to talk to had been and I wanted to go. We did a girls trip in April, flew mid week, stayed 2 nights but had 3 full days. And to be honest three days was enough. While I loved the city, it is really beautiful, almost like a dolls house on water if that makes sense, I’ve seen it, it’s done and off the list I have no rush to go back.

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3. Prague

My family and I often take group holidays together and 2 years ago we decided to go to Prague for the Christmas Markets. We went the first week in December which was the 2nd week of the markets. Hand on heart I can say that Prague was one of my favourite cities that I have been too. it’s just a beautiful city. The shopping is good, the scenery, the history, the food. I would love to go back in the summer time when the weather is hot and see the city in a different light.

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4. New York

Ah New York! After Thailand, New York was second on my bucket list from I was a little girl. It was a dream to visit this infamous magical city. About 7 years ago, my family and I took off on an another adventure. 15 of us heading to the Big Apple. New York was everything I dreamed of, I loved it. Driving in from JFK and seeing the city before you is magical. Everything about it is just aw dropping. The sights, the shows, the shopping, New York for me was like a fairy tale. I would go back in a heartbeat. I have heard people say that the second time is not near as exciting but I dunno I think if I went to New York every year I’d still be excited. If you have any desire to see New York I can’t recommend it enough.

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5. Kusadasi

I went on a family holiday to Turkey in 2009. I had never been and my Mum wanted us all to have one last family holiday together before we all grew up! I think she thought we would all fly the nest at 21 and not come back! We have been on at least 3 holidays all together since πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Turkey is a beautiful country, if you like heat (I do) then you will love it. The people are so warm and friendly and really appreciate you coming to their country. Now I know there is all the unrest and trouble at the minute that many including myself would be wary of going back. I know some people who went this summer and said they had no issues at all, a little extra security at the airport in Turkey but other than that they had a fab time.

6. Brussels

Brussels was a last minute impromptu over night stay! My sister and I went in a group last year, literally decided a few weeks before and headed off. We both have an interest in Politics so the chance to see the European Parliament was an opportunity we couldn’t turn down. And we literally couldn’t have timed it better, we landed in Brussels the first working day after the Brexit referendum. We sat in Parliament as every MEP in Europe was discussing the biggest issue to affect the European Union since it’s foundation. To most people this would be completely boring but to us, we were literally part of history in the making and we were very excited. We found the city itself is very centered around the Parliament. You could see it all in two days, it is very similar to Prague or Berlin in structure with a little french influence. A city to stop off and see but I wouldn’t be running back.

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7. Liverpool

Not very far away travel wise but Liverpool is one of my favourite cities to visit. I have been twice at this stage and would go back in the morning. It’s a really fun city, lots to see and do, great shopping, nightlife, restaurants and everything seems to be beside each other. The last time we went on a mini hen break, we stayed in the Radisson on the docks and we could literally walk to bars and clubs from there, it was fab! If you want a great girly trip I would highly recommend you look into Liverpool and it is so cheap to get there with Ryanair flights πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

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I didn’t start this off as a list of ten but I feel I may as well keep going when I’m on a ramble session πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

8. Edinburgh

Edinburgh, again like Liverpool is very easy got to with cheap flights. It’s a really fun city with lots to see and do, no matter what kind of style you are into it has you covered. It is a very very pretty city but if you are walking around I would not recommend heels as it is built on a hill and everything seems to be either up hill or downhill πŸ™‚ I have friends who return regularly for the nightlife so again if you are after a girly trip or a lads weekend, go for it!

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9. London

London, I have been to twice! Once when my brother lived over there and I went over for the weekend. We did the whole sightseeing thing, the London Eye, Westminister, London Bridge, Buckingham Palace, all the usual suspects. I fricking loved the London Dungeons and still talk about them, they are a must see if you are there. Went to the ones in Amsterdam and they were in my opinion a poor man’s version. The other I went over for the night to see a show in the London Palladium, it was literally a flying visit (see what I did there πŸ™‚ ) but I enjoyed it. Definitely a city to see at least once in your life.

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10. Lourdes

This is a random one! πŸ™‚ My Nana asked for someone to travel with her to Lourdes a few years ago as she wanted to see it. My cousin had travelled with her to Fatima a few years earlier so I volunteered this time. Was Lourdes high up on my list of place, definitely not but it is worth seeing. Regardless of religion, it is a place of awh! My Nana was marvelling at the churches and all the praying she could do but I was looking at the architecture of the churches, how they were built, the pure beauty of them. We also went on a tour to a little village in the mountains to visit yet another historic Church (Nana was in her element) but the French countryside was beautiful. And to see the Pyrenees up close was pretty cool. My Nana loved the whole trip and that to me was worth every Hail Mary I had to say that whole week.

 

I hope you enjoyed this, I love hearing other people travel stories and putting new places on the list.

Lots of Love

Laura

Xxx