Aromatherapy Sprays by The Divine Hag [Review]

The Divine Hag - Aromatherapy Sprays Review

There are those moments in life that happen when you least expect them and this review opportunity was certainly one of those! I was on the train home from London and struck up conversation with one of my fellow passengers. When a young man came on stinking of cannabis and thus, filling the cabin with the smell, she whipped out this spray and within seconds the smell was gone. I was in absolute awe. I’m asthmatic and I’m also allergic to cigarette smoke (and any recreational drugs smoked cause a reaction in me too) so the rest of my journey and evening could have become very unpleasant as a result of this one random stranger.  We started talking and I mentioned my blog, and Margaret was kind enough to offer me that particular aromatherapy spray there and then, with a promise to send me some products to review. ((Polaroid stock used in banner is from danielle-lee.))

 

The Divine Hag - Aromatherapy Oils & Sprays

Described as an “aromatherapy lifestyle concept”, the company’s creation is steeped in paganism (something that appealed to me spiritually as a pagan) and is heavily influenced by the aspects of the Celtic triple goddess.

We are a woman focussed company, creating scents for women at every stage of life.

As anyone with asthma and allergies knows it is imperative to find products that help solve the problem without causing more problems. It’s a difficult task and one that Margaret set out to do when she created The Divine Hag. As someone with chronic health conditions herself and a strong sense of smell, she’s well aware that chemical smells can cause a strong reaction and even pain for people with certain conditions. With that in mind she set about creating products that provide optimal relief through a layering of dilutions that are suitable for everyone. All of The Divine Hag products are therefore organic and hypoallergenic.

 

The Divine Hag - The three products being reviewed

The Products

Along with the original spray she sent me, Margaret sent me three other samples to review. I will only be reviewing two of them and the original room spray, however, as the third sample was the Period Ease Spray which I want to test it a bit more before offering a review.

In this review I am going to be reviewing the following products:

 

The Divine Hag - Clearing & Re-energising Spray

Clearing and Re-Energising Spray

Ingredients: clary sage, cypress, lemon, citronella, rosemary.

To say I fell in love with this spray is an understatement. This is the one that Margaret whipped out on the train and has been my constant companion ever since – it goes everywhere with me. It’s been my absolute life line this summer with the heatwaves as it’s been way too hot to cook with the kitchen window closed, but our neighbours smoke so it always floods our kitchen with the smell. Thankfully I could just spray a few bursts of the re-energising spray and hey presto, smoke-be-gone!

It wasn’t actually originally designed for this, mind you, although Margaret has been super happy to find out that it’s got another amazing use (and of course, I’m extremely happy it does too!). The spray, as the name suggests, is blended from organic essential oils known for their positive properties. When sprayed they weave together to not just boost your mood, but also clear your head – something that we all need in this busy world. The result is an uplifting, clean and positive space for you to move forward with whatever you need to do. It comes in multiple sizes so you can pop a little one in your bag and take it with you to work, so when things get a bit overwhelming you can just spritz it.

The scent is also not designed to be overwhelming either – my fiancΓ©, Chris, is quite sensitive to strong scents and he is happy for me to spray this around. It’s very light and airy, with a very slight citrus under tone that gives it that burst of energy.

It isn’t just amazing for cigarette smoke either. I’ve been testing it on pretty much any strong smell that causes me irritation – or annoyance – and it’s been great. It really does help to disperse it and unlike most air fresheners it doesn’t leave anything hanging in the air, it literally does what it’s name for; it re-energises and clears the room. So far I have tested it on; bonfire smoke, cat urine and cat poop. If you have cats you will know how strong the smell of cat urine is and nothing, and I mean nothing, ever gets rid of that smell. So I am really happy to have found something that helps disperse that AND smoke in one bottle! I will definitely be buying a new one of these when this one is finished!

 

 

The Divine Hag - Blissful Sleep Spray

 

Bliss Sleep Spray

Ingredients: geranium, roman chamomile, rose, lavender, rosemary and ylang ylang.

I’m fortunate not to struggle with sleep that often, however, Chris suffers from chronic insomnia so we have tried a lot of sleep sprays out to try to help him. I also like to use them because sometimes when I go to bed I find that the events of the day, or the lack of productivity, catches up with me and hits me full force right before bed. Sleep sprays are naturally designed to ease your mind and relax you so they help me drift into sleep.

Most sleep sprays are chock full of lavender but as Margaret explains here that’s not a good thing as it can result in you waking up groggy or with a headache. Many people are also quite sensitive to lavender too, so The Divine Hag Bliss Sleep Spray only has a touch of lavender in it, letting the other wonderful oils do the rest of the work to relieve anxiety and help ease you into a relaxing sleep.

I certainly found that it did the trick, and I didn’t feel as groggy in the morning. As I have rhinitis as well as asthma I can get groggy quite easily, so it was a relief to not feel like that in the morning. The spray can be as strong as you want it to be depending on how much you choose to layer it, or how you use it. I prefer to spray it directly onto a pillow, whereas, other people may benefit more from having it on a tissue placed inside a pillow.

 

 

The Divine Hag - Anti-Nausea Spray

Anti-Nausea Spray

Ingredients: peppermint, grapefruit, sage, lime, and ginger.

Nausea is to put it bluntly a right pest, especially if you have a strong nose. Even the tiniest hint of a smell can set your stomach heaving so I’m always a bit unsure of any anti-nausea scents. I always find that some of them are unbearable, filled with rich scents that are far too strong when your stomach is rolling around. Like the other Divine Hag products much care has been taken to ensure that this spray doesn’t do that and uses distinctive ingredients that you may recognise from various travel sickness home remedies. There’s peppermint which I recognise from IBS and upset stomach remedies as it’s well known for settling tummies, as well as ginger, another ingredient common in many home remedies. By mixing these with the uplifting scents of lime, sage and grapefruit Margaret has created a light and airy spray that I didn’t bog me down. This was especially important for me because my nausea always accompanies my migraines so anything too strong will just make my head feel very stuffy.

I do have to admit that out of the three products this was my least favourite. That isn’t to say that it doesn’t work; I think it is probably because I’m not a huge fan of peppermint and I can smell it quite strongly in this spray. It doesn’t overpower everything else, I’m just one of those people who just doesn’t get on well with it. The lime in the spray balances off the menthol smell of the peppermint nicely, taking off the sharp edge so if you’re not keen on peppermint like me it does make it usable – unlike other products that contain peppermint and all you can smell is the peppermint!

I can certainly see this being a product much more useful for someone with nausea caused by anxiety or travel sickness. I do tend to experience it with anxiety, however, did not have any such moments during the testing period. When I breathe in the spray I feel the sense of calm relief that I associate with treatments for travel sickness that I had when I was a child. I used to suffer from terrible car sickness as a child and we tried everything, eventually I grew out of it (thankfully), but I do remember that cool sense of relief as it flooded my body and my stomach settled. This spray gives me that same feeling, so if you suffer from travel sickness I would suggest picking up a sample to try – and based on the amazing quality and results of the other products I’d vouch for it working!

 

Conclusion

Aromatherapy is one of those things that has become trendy in recent years and almost everyone has become a dabbler; The Divine Hag is not one of those. Margaret is a connoisseur and as she puts it on her website she has chosen to put her super sensory nose to good use. The result is a variety of products that also include sprays for menopause, babies and studying/concentration (something I might check out for my focus issues due to fatigue!).  The Divine Hag also runs a series of workshops in London and Glasgow for a range of aromatherapy topics so if your interested in learning more about creating something for yourself you can do that too!

 

Over to You!

I really hope you have found this review useful. I had quite a few people ask me about the Clearing and Re-Energising Spray when I posted about it on instagram so I hope that this is useful to a few more of you. A lot of people struggle with unwanted smells and finding a calm space, so it’s a great addition to any home for a multiple of reasons. If you have any questions about that or any of the other sprays featured in this review please don’t hesitate to ask πŸ™‚

Have you ever used aromatherapy?

What is your favourite scent?

If you’ve never used aromatherapy has this review tempted you to try something?

Review: Engraved ID Bracelet from Butler & Grace

Product Review - Engraved Medical Alert Bracelet from Butler & Grace

When the opportunity came up to review an ID bracelet from a fashionable range I grabbed the chance. My fiance Chris was diagnosed with a rare heart condition called Brugada Syndrome by random chance when he was admitted to hospital for gall stones. If the doctor hadn’t checked his ECG on a whim we would have been none the wiser, and since it’s a very serious genetic condition we are both very grateful that he did! It’s meant a lot of changes to our lives, and a bunch of new worries, especially for me when I see Chris go out and about without me. I’m very much the mother hen type πŸ˜› I’m a worrier. And while we were given this lovely handy ‘I have Brugada’ NHS card from the genetics clinic for him to pop in his wallet – it’s not much good when he doesn’t carry one around often πŸ˜› ((Polaroid stock used in banner is from danielle-lee.))

So I’d been wanting to get him an ID bracelet for a while now and upon reading that Butler & Grace were created by their founder Tanya in a similar situation, I realised that this was the company that could help me find just the right bracelet for the job. Something that Chris would be happy to wear, something in his style and that he wouldn’t even notice he was actually wearing a medical alert bracelet – because let’s face it, when you’ve got a life threatening condition carrying around a constant reminder of it doesn’t make anyone feel good.

 

ID jewellery with a difference

Before I go into the review of the bracelet we were sent I wanted to show you some of the variety of styles available from Butler & Grace, because I was seriously impressed with just how many different ones there were. Obviously we were looking for something suitable for a 32 year old man, however, there’s something for just about everyone. While browsing I saw styles that appealed to me someone who’s style isn’t really conventional (I tend to be a bit eclectic with what I like and mix boho, and rock chick at times), stuff for kids and also styles that I’m sure teenagers wouldn’t be ashamed of wearing either (I can imagine just how much of a nightmare that must be!). Here’s a few examples of those:

 

 

Our Bracelet

Chris likes chunky metal styles for his bracelets and so he went for Adore ID Bracelet. You’re probably thinking, wait a guy picked a bracelet with a heart? Yep he did, and no he doesn’t have an overly feminist side. He liked the style of the bracelet and as he said, and as you’ll see from the photos, you really don’t notice it’s a heart. If you look closely you can see it’s one but the only people getting that close should be the emergency services and they’re going to be concerned about much more important things.

 

Adore ID Bracelet from Butler & Grace

 

From the get go Tanya was absolutely brilliant and so patient with me when it came to working out the engraving, helping me get just the right inscription that would fit on the medical tag. The Adore bracelet comes with a circular tag which you can choose to have inscribed on both sides, or with one side inscribed and the commonly used symbol of medicine the caduceus ((fun fact; the actual symbol is the Rod of Asclepius but over time it’s become replaced with Hermes’ staff the cadueus – probably because people don’t like snakes!)) on the other side. We chose to go for the second option as we preferred to have an obvious sign that yes, this was a medical alert bracelet and not an average piece of jewellery.

The size of the tag allows for five lines of text. We chose to have Chris’ name, condition and a contact number listed. You can see the sizing in the photo below, however, you can’t see the full inscription as the phone number has been erased for safety reasons πŸ™‚

 

 

What we liked

The bracelet was really comfortable for Chris to wear despite being a chunky style. You would expect a big chain to be something you would really notice, especially with an extra tag dangling from it constantly. But no, he was happy to wear it for several days at a time and didn’t bat an eyelid at it – I honestly would have just been happy for him to be comfortable to wear it while out for a day at a convention or when we went on holiday. He ended up wearing it to the supermarket, lounging about the house and so on! It really is that comfortable! It’s also not a heavy item, the links are made of a light weight material. This shows the sort of care and attention to detail that has gone into Butler and Grace’s products; they’re aware that people want an ID bracelet they can forget is there and won’t hinder them in an event of an emergency.

 

Close up of the clasp of the Adore ID Bracelet

 

One thing that was important, especially to me as I have mobility issues with my hands, is that the clasp was really smooth. I don’t know if this is something Butler and Grace researched (and if they did, kudos it’s much appreciated!) or it’s just another sign of the quality materials they use, however, it was really easy to open. Not too easy in the sense that you need to worry about the clasp coming loose, just enough that there’s no need to struggle with it.

Finally, the inscription is neat and tidy. The tag is small and the engraving is carefully done, and yet it’s not too tiny. It’s clear as day to my terrible eyesight (I’m very short-sighted, -11 prescription to be precise!) and I don’t have any bother trying to read it. My eyes don’t even take that moment to adjust. It’s just there, easy to read and that is what you want on an ID bracelet. Easy, clear information that anyone can read with clarity. The fact that there are so many types of tags and options for what you can put on them as well, plus an awesome selfie wall full of examples on their website is a fantastic bonus.

 

Adore Id Bracelet laid out fully

Suggestions

While we were super happy with the product we did notice a few things we wanted to mention in this review, more suggestions than complaints. The Adore bracelet links have a small gap in them which is absolutely fine for the bracelet itself, they’re not loose at all. However, the same gap is attached to the loop connecting the clasp to the bracelet and that loop is a lot thinner. We would suggest having it tightening up a fraction just to save any mishaps from happening.

The ID tag itself is positioned right next to the clasp and this can make things a bit fiddly when trying to put the bracelet on, especially when you’re trying to put it on by yourself. The tag keeps falling in the way and you simply don’t have enough hands to hold the bracelet in place, move the tag out the way and fasten the clasp. It would be much better in a more centralised position in the chain.

Chris was also a little surprised at the size of the bracelet when it arrived. He found that the real size of the links didn’t really compare to the photos available on the website. We think it might be more useful for chunkier styles like the Adore bracelet to offer a size comparison photo to give a more accurate idea of size.

 

Conclusion

As you can tell we were both really impressed and happy with the ID bracelet and the range of options available. It’s not often that you find a range of jewellery that offers something for everyone in a normal store, let alone for a specialty item like medical ID bracelets. I personally love that Butler & Grace’s mission statement is to make sure everyone is protected, and that is what drew me to them in the first place. They’ve helped me protect my love one and honestly, I can’t recommend them enough. They are a company that takes your order personally because they have been there, they know how important it is to ensure you or your loved one has this information on them at all time. They want to help you reach that goal. Their website is easy to navigate and filled with information, and the team themselves are fantastic to communicate with.

 

Disclaimer: We were sent an item to review in exchange for an honest review, as always all words are my own and you can read more about my review policy here. Thanks goes to my fiance Chris for being the “guinea pig” and thoroughly testing this item, as well as giving his own review of it. I pretty much just did all the admin work! It was also thoroughly cat inspected by cat inspector George who ensured we followed strict protocol for the photo shoot.

 

Over to You

I hope you enjoyed this review! If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask in the comments.

Have you got a medical ID bracelet? If so, are you happy with it?

If no, is it because of the lack of styles available?

Have you considered getting a medical ID bracelet?

 

I’d love to hear your thoughts so please let me know what you think of the review in the comments!

Geeking by in May & June

Geeking by in May & June

As you can tell from how amazingly late this is, my May didn’t really go to plan. Well, the first half did. I’d planned for this to be just a single month update like normal, however, once I got started I ended up talking about most of June as well. Including the last two weeks, which is the first two weeks of June, also helps me catch up a bit too and is one less thing I need to schedule this month.

A Blogging I Will Go

As explained in last months Geeking by By, I was launching a new blog schedule this month and I was doing great. I rolled out the new Zodiac series, I had not one but two 10 things posts on the go ready to be completed in a few days – one for the following week and one for June. Transmog Tuesday was ahead of schedule with three completed sets ready, and the posts coming together without any rushing happening. It was great. Unfortunately what happened was not something that could be predicted nor was it anyone’s fault. We sadly lost Chris’ gran, and the following days and weeks naturally threw my schedule into upheaval. ((P.S. You may be wondering why I’ve said so very little about Chris’ Gran, while speaking so much about my own. It is not a slight to her; she was very dear to us and much loved. However, Chris is a private person and in this I respect his wishes.)) Despite everything I only missed two things; 10 things and Blog Links. I was so close to getting 10 Things done! I’m pretty happy that the changes I had put into place appear to be much more manageable and only under terrible circumstances did I have problems keeping up with the new schedule.

I’d planned to get back on track at the start of June, however, the UK got hit by a massive heat wave and while in Glasgow that meant for a few unpleasant nights, in London it’s absolutely unbearable. Since being diagnosed with ME I’ve become aware of an increase in my sensitivity to different things. Sound and light especially,  however, it appears that I am also extremely intolerant of heat. As I found out last week when I was visiting family in London, and after one of the hottest days nights I found myself with a violent migraine and hugging a bucket. Not fun. On the plus side I haven’t done that for well over a year. So despite the trials and tribulations with migraine medications this year, we are making progress! The heat was not conductive to thinking, let alone focusing on blog writing and plus I had other things to keep myself busy…

 

Family History

I have been fascinated with history for as long as I can remember. I know who’s to blame; my grandad. My mum’s dad, who we used to holiday with a lot and would take me around museums and point out things to me. He also loved antiques, and through him and my dad (who I’m pretty sure got it from grandad too!) I grew to love everything historical. So naturally my first degree was an Art History one. My love for art came from my dad’s dad, who I have a vivid memory of sitting down in his and nanny’s front room teaching me how to draw. You could say that my first degree is a combination of what they taught me. Sadly I never got to know him. He died when I was 5, so I have that strong memory and not much else to go on. So when I was given the opportunity to view old document and photos that had been released after my nan’s passing a few years ago, I snapped up the chance. I’ve spent most of the last 10 days with my head stuck in old documents, relics from World War II such as flyers from RAF dances, photos from my grandad’s RAF unit in various countries, and old photos ranging from my grandparents childhood up to my own childhood. I also managed to grab some time to raid a fraction of my mum’s photos which were gathered from her mother’s house after her passing. I got lucky and the one bag I looked through had a fantastic mix of old and young generations as well. I spent a lot of time using my parents scanner and now have a bundle of photos to edit and identify!

 

Meditation

I made myself a promise; from 1st May I would start doing meditation once a day. I knew I wouldn’t be attending a new mindfulness course for a while as I had to decline an invitation to the next one due to overlapping dates. That means the next one will probably not be starting until July or August. I wanted to get a head start, I wanted to go back and say ‘I’ve been working towards something’ and I guess a part of me wanted to stick a finger up at the meds that stopped me completing the course in January. I was ready to go then, I just needed to take that final step. You know that hard one, the one where you need to make yourself get your ass in gear. My meds were getting sorted, I was beginning to feel like a person again and I had a month before dissertation work really began. Now was the time to do this.

And you know what? I did it! I kept it up for two weeks solid. After that I still managed it once or twice a week, including once on the train down to London with a migraine. From the first session it made a difference, and I’m so glad it did because I needed that reminder. Without it I would have struggled to settle down, to push through those times when I couldn’t get comfortable or my cat was driving me up the wall. Thankfully the weather warmed up so I was able to coincide my meditation with kick his furry butt outside to get those five minutes of peace. I did try to up it to 10 every other day after the first week and it just didn’t work. I think I’m much better sticking to five minutes and just doing it at two different times of the day.

Even when I wasn’t actively meditating I found myself employing elements that I’d learned from them. I’ve just been using videos from Youtube (you can see my playlist here) as I’ve found I can’t meditate to a male voice and the recordings we were given with our course are a male voice. Therefore, each youtuber has a slightly different technique and I’ve picked up a few things from them. The one I use the most is from, and it’s simply ‘breath in happiness, warmth etc.’ and ‘breath out negativity, anxiety’ and it’s been helping me a lot. Especially at the end of the day when I was starting to get really bogged down with anxiety and negative thoughts for some reason.

 

Future Plans

Obviously getting back on track with my blog and meditation are top of my list. This week is going to be my scheduling catch up and hopefully *touch wood* I can get things under control again. As I said, the new changes seem to be working so it’s just a case of getting them in place again. I’m also going back to reviews! I have two in the works and a few more on the way, plus I just won a massive prize bundle of beauty products which I cannot wait to try and intend to review as I go! I’m planning to put together an actual list of products (mainly beauty, and some stationery/bullet journal ones too!) so that you guys can let me know if there’s something you’d like me to feature first. Thanks to a random chance encounter on my train back from London I met a lovely lady who I’m talking with about working on somethings as well, so watch this space *wink*.

Despite everything I’ve also managed to keep up with my dissertation work so by the end of today I’ll have finished stage one of my ‘get back into work’ plan. Stage one sounds very simple, but keep in mind that even the simplest tasks for someone with ME/CFS can be the hardest. I knew I couldn’t just throw myself back into it and hope to float; I’d have sunk and I don’t just mean metaphorically. I’d have sunk mood wise too. I’d have felt useless, and more importantly overwhelmed so I had to start slow. I’ve written about half of it and the “official” dissertation period is three months (ish – ish because I can’t remember the exact deadline date in August :P); June, July, August. So I’m ahead of schedule because I’ve done the reading, I’ve got my notes and research and half is written! That doesn’t mean I can slack though and I don’t intend to – I can’t. Everything takes me thrice as long. So back to ‘stage one’. I started by reading through just one page of my first draft a day, making notes and highlighting anything that sounded wrong or I felt needing clarifying.

I’d intended to finish stage one by the end of May, so I’m a bit overdue but to be honest I’m thrilled that I’m not that far behind. I’m also feeling pretty confident with actually starting stage two and three. Two is re-reading my notes on the rest of dissertation and catching up on what needs to be written now that I’ve reminded myself of where I was going with my arguments and discussion. Step three will be starting to actually write up the next one, and go from there. I do need to get signed off by the doctor though to be able to officially go back to my studies so hopefully next week I can confidently say ‘yes I am ready’. I definitely do feel that we changed the meds at the right time and that we are on the right track with the new ones so that helps a lot.

I’m not going to go into much gaming stuff this time around as I’ve got some plans for that. So just a small update; picked up Destiny 2 in last months Humble Bundle (woot!), been working on World of Warcraft stuff as usual, and Chris has gotten back into Terraria and we love playing it together so we’ve been playing that again too.

 

Over to you

How have your month and a bit been? Do you fare well in the heat or do you hate it like me? Have you completed a dissertation/thesis? If so, what was it in? Let me know in the comments, as always I’d love to hear from you <3 Thanks for reading and keeping up with my geeky life!

Geeking By in April

Geeking by in April

Last month disappeared in a whirlwind and April crept by so slowly! It wasn’t an easy month in many ways and a lot of work got done behind the scenes rather than on the front of the blog. I did work out some awesome things that I am happy to finally share with you!

 

New Blog Schedule Thingie!

Totally technical term there, however, it is an accurate one because I am using ‘schedule’ in a lose way. I need something flexible so that I don’t get overly flustered or bury myself in work or guilt for not getting work done. I am hoping to start getting this up this month. Like I said, I’ve been putting the ground work in for a bunch of stuff behind the scenes even if I’ve not actually posted anything. So here’s a sneak peek of how each month will hopefully start to look!

Zodiac Series – Taking over from the Birthstone series this will be on the same thought train but on a smaller scale. I’m setting up one pinterest board with a section for each zodiac sign filled with products based on each sign, as well as links to fashion and beauty gurus explaining how to identify your specific sign’s style. The accompanying blog post will have a lot less work in it and more information gathered from resources with some examples I’ve found and I’ll highlight some of my favourite products I’ve found on my hunt. Most of the links will be on the pinterest board though so I won’t need to find and edit 100 odd images this time.

Blog Links – I really liked the idea of a blog links list, however, I failed to find a way to make it work. Instead I’m incorporating this into a smaller blog series, so once a month I’ll pick a theme or type of blog link i.e. website listings, linkies, book related, etc. and post a list of 10 of them.

Tramsmog Tuesday – Old news really in comparison, but I love it and I will be bringing back my World of Warcraft Transmog Tuesday back every week.

10 Things – This one is purposely vague because I wanted something that didn’t have a real definition, something that I could just do what I wanted with each month. If I wanted to do 10 crime tv shows, or 10 cute animal tops then I could. This will be the wild card every month πŸ™‚

Geek on the High Street – I love this series, but it was sooo unorganised, no real time frame and so many faults. Then I had the revelation to make it a monthly themed feature! I can plan it around upcoming movies, events (Star Wars day, for example) and so on.

Geeking By – You’re currently reading it! The monthly update of my personal life, blogging, studying, goals and, of course, geeking!

Let me know what you think in the comments! πŸ™‚

 

Surviving

I never did a word of the year this year because I just couldn’t decide on one. Now four months in and I’m pretty sure it’s going to end up being surviving. That is literally what this month has been about. I have felt guilty at the lack of productivity and moving forward, but to be fair I don’t see HOW I could have functioned. At this point I’m just happy I managed to keep basic things like clean washing and stuff going! I mentioned last month that I chose to swap medications and this month was the horrible period of no meds and starting new meds aka still having no meds because they haven’t kicked in yet. I was doing ok until about the 16th and then it has literally been a migraine every. single. day. Yes, over-exaggerated punctuation is needed for that one. It has been hell. In a weird way it was a relief because for a while there I was like ‘oh crap, what if these aren’t migraines, they’re something else like sinuses or stress etc.’ and then my body went, NOPE HAVE THEM ALL! I had one last night, currently as I write this I have a niggle but so far I’m ok *crosses fingers, touches wood, prays to every god imaginable, sacrifices first born*.

I started the new medication for migraines a week ago so it should start kicking in soon, however, it’s a slow building one so I up the dose again in a week anyway. It’s been making me super dizzy but that IS a well known side effect and it seems to be adjusting. It is also helping me sleep better; my previous medication wasn’t a drowsy one, while the one before was so I’ve been missing that kind of medication just to help knock me out at night. I’ve noticed since the ME/CFS set in that sleeping has become harder for me, and also even more essential because to put it in basic terms my body is a very leaky fuel tank. Sleep is replenishes the fuel and my body is just leaking it all over the place, so I have been needing 12 + hours for several years now. I’m just getting myself back to a 12 hour rotation this month and being on this medication I’m actually sleeping better and waking up feeling more refreshed. So yey for a side effect working for me. Also, I may have been a little TOO happy that weight loss is a side effect….

That brings me onto the other medication which for privacy reasons I am purposely not naming, sorry, just some stuff is private and some people aren’t all sunshine and rainbows. Since stopping it my appetite has really decreased and considering I was on this for over 11 years I have to wonder how much it has added to my weight gain. I also started protein shakes for breakfast as planned so hopefully should start to see some change soon. I started the new medication today, and had to giggle at the warning label; do not eat with grapefruit. Seriously not an issue for me. I do not eat fruit (I can’t stand the texture!), and not a huge fan of the taste of grapefruit juice either.

 

Getting down with the Dinos

(aka Battle for Azeroth alpha)

We started wandering around Zandalar in the alpha and will continue to do so in the beta. There are so many cute dinos every where! I may have gotten just a tiny bit distracted…. πŸ˜€ So far the quests have been super fun on the horde side, I hope the alliance ones are just as good – we’re keeping them a surprise until BFA actually launches. I tried to play discipline, but I am just so out of practise with it and possibly even out of love with it now. It just doesn’t suit my play style any more so I’m playing as shadow – and holy void energies batman, we have actual AOE! You can see all my screenshots so far over here in the Battle For Azeroth gallery. They DO contain SPOILERS so look at your own risk!

 

In other Geekery

I’ve been working my way through more DC comics, catching up to date and getting my head hurt with some timey wimey stuff. I’m still with the bat family and have a few of them to catch up with, and I’ve also read The Flash, Teen Titans and the Dark Metal event now too. I also completely fell in love with Supersons, the adventures of Superboy (Jon Kent) and Robin (Damian Wayne). It is hilarious, heart warming and absolutely brilliant. The bad news is that it has been cancelled and will be ending πŸ™ Damian is a complete little git, but he has a heart of gold and him and Jon are adorable together. Next up is Justice League, Titans and the Doomsday event. TV wise it has also been a catch up time with NCIS, Private Eyes, Bull and Criminal Minds.

 

Over to you!

And that mixed bag of fun was my April, how did yours go?

 

((This months banner graphic is from my personal scan collection. It isn’t yet available to the public but you can find more over at my public gallery πŸ™‚ ))

Geeking By in March

Just Geeking by in March

Umm…. where the hell did March go?! It feels like I just finished February’s geeking by post, and I almost didn’t realise this one was due out. Woops! It really doesn’t feel like I did much at all for most of this month and then bam, The Sci Fi Weekender convention (22nd – 25th) was suddenly upon us. Since I’m dedicating a whole post to that experience that might mean this monthly update is a bit on the wee side of things. ((Image from Public Domain Images.))

 

All Clear

Let’s start with what has been the elephant in the room for me for a while now; my chest x-ray came back perfectly clear. Yep, nothing at all. I literally blurted out ‘really?!’ at my doctor because I was so sure I’d seen something in the x-ray and because I had been feeling that rotten. Fast forward a few weeks and I’m weaning myself off my migraine medication and lo and behold, I start to feel better. Apparently the one I was on did wonders for my migraines and then I had the massive infection at the start of year and it triggered a nasty side effect. I’ve now stopped it completely and about to start the 2 weeks of 0 medication before starting a new one. My doctor has also referred me to a headache specialist, which considering I’ve had migraines since I was 17 and have never seen one, sounds like a good plan.

I’m also stopping one of my main medications to swap to a new one. I’m on a high dose, it’s not working as well as it used to and it’s an old medication so my doctor recommended changing it. It’s a scary process, however, I’m at that stage of my health conditions where it is just about fine tuning my medications. Now’s the best time to do it as I have plans later on in the year.

 

Blogging

With each month that goes past I feel like I’m getting more organised and in control again with my blog. There’s a slow and gentle increase in activity from my end of things and I’m happy with the progress I’m making. I’d hoped to start a new blog series this month, and eventually I realised I was not going to get to it this month. That wasn’t a big deal, it’s something I could easily shift to the next month. Next month I’m hoping to just continue as I am and not over do it.

 

To Azeroth!

The last few months I’ve been talking about how Chris and I have been playing Divinity 2, this month it took a back seat as Chris got back into World of Warcraft and has been playing catch up. He now has all 110 characters, and I’ve been helping him complete the Broken Shore and Argus campaigns one by one. It’s so much fun and also so hard watching him play through all the class hall campaigns and mount quests because I am sooo bad at keeping my mouth shut about spoilers. I don’t do it maliciously! I just get overly excited or forget and let something slip /facepalm. We are big WoW nerds so we talk about the lore a lot, and there’s just so much lore and stuff to discuss from the class quests.

We also got a fantastic surprise this week – Battle for Azeroth ALPHA invites! We’ve had beta invites before, however, these are our first alpha ones and I’m sooo excited! Realistically I know I don’t have the energy to stream or video, so I’ll be posting stuff on my blog instead. So if you’re interested keep an eye out! We’ll be playing through the horde storylines as we play Alliance main and want to keep that side of things a surprise for when the game goes live. We’ll be taking a small peek at Alliance side, such as exploring zones but we’ll be avoiding quests and storylines. There will, of course, be loads of screenshots.

 

Diving back into comics

I finally broke my reading hiatus! Last year I read through (most of) the DC New 52 comics. If you don’t know much about comics, especially the big guns like DC and Marvel, there tends to be different lines that usually act as a relaunch of the universe and character storylines. So the New 52 was a useful place for a newbie like me to start, and I read most of the big story arcs. I tried to read some of the smaller ones, and succeeded for a bit until my enthusiasm tailed off and I got distracted by something else. I’d been putting off starting the new line, Rebirth, which would take me up to date rather than playing catch up because I felt completionist guilt. That lasted until this month πŸ˜›

I finished off (aka caught up to current issues) Wonder Woman first; when I first started reading DC I’d accidentally read her Rebirth arc first, got thoroughly confused and popped back to the New 52 line. That meant I didn’t have much of her left to read, so I quickly headed into the Bat family starting with the man himself, moving onto Detective Comics, Nightwing, Batwoman and Batgirl. I’m now onto Red Hood and the Outlaws.

I also popped my head out of DC to read the new World of Warcraft chronicle which was really interesting, exciting and actually personal for me because the lore has finally caught up to in game events. It was great fun and really made everything come together and feel epic. It’s hard to put into words, I guess the best way to describe it would be to say that it made it feel like we’d been a part of something bigger and not just playing a game. That sounds silly, however, WoW has become as much about the community spirit as it has the game and for me the Chronicle solidified that.

 

Time to Weigh In

Ironic subtitle since I haven’t actually weighed myself yet. I needed to pick up some new clothes before we went to the convention and had a big shock when I saw myself in a full length mirror for the first time. Holy crap I’ve put on so much weight. I mean, I knew I had put some on. I just didn’t realise how much. I wasn’t happy, and thankfully I was buying clothes in Yours Clothing which is a plus sized clothing chain in the UK which helps women feel comfortable with their size. I was at least able to buy clothes that made me feel better about it. Now that my chest problems are sorted out I need to get my health and weight sorted out. I loved the keto diet I went on; it worked amazingly well and I know that works best for my body now, which is great. Problem is I have zero energy to prepare and cook all those fabulously tasty and healthy meals. So I’m heading for the protein milkshakes to replace my breakfast and lunch, and starting gentle exercise. Doing so will help my energy levels and help combat the fatigue so I can get back onto the keto diet.

 

Telly Catch Up Time

I did spend most of the month on my Silent Witness binge, and then I went to a sci fi convention and came back wanting to watch alllll the shows. I’ve only caught up with Hawaii 5-0 so far. I watch a whole bunch of crime tv shows, so there’s all those to catch up on, as well as some sci fi/fantasy ones (including comic based). You can see what I’m currently watching by checking out (or following me!) on Trakt.tv, a site that lets you ‘check in’ and track tv shows and movies.

Hawaii 5-0 was an interesting one to start with because there were some major cast changes. Two of the main cast left at the end of last season due to a contract dispute (which to be honest, I agree with them and their reasons, but of course I’m sad to see them go). Both of their characters have been written out as off doing their own thing, which means there’s some new recruits Tani and Juni and Eddie the dog. Yes, I am completely and utterly in love with that dog. I am so glad he stuck around rather than being a one episode wonder as happens in so many crime tv shows. I’m missing the old guys, yet I do love the new ones especially Tani. Danny refers to her as a “female you” to Steve in the first episode and yep, she is! She’s totally holding her own against the guys and the older team members, while still showing vulnerability and youth. Lou has taken her under his wing, and it’s great to see them bonding. I’m also super happy to see Adam is now a cast regular. I always liked him as a character and an actor, but honestly, it really did just feel like he was always in Kono’s shadow. Now he’s finally not just Kono’s love interest and has a chance to shine.

I’m only up to the mid-season finale (as I probably will be with all my shows as I catch up), so I’m really curious to see what happens next. They really did leave that on a big question.

 

Over to You

Apparently I had more to say than I realised! How was your March? Personally April for me usually sucks, so I’m not looking forward to this month at all. Anything excited planned this month? Let me know in the comments!