By Aislinn De'Ath

By Aislinn De'Ath
Click on my face to link to my vlog!

Friday, 28 February 2014

Women, ladies, girls....

Morning Reader! Gosh, it's a nasty cloudy ol' day in London-the sky is so grey it looks brown. But I am in a great mood. Why am I so smiley? Because over the next week many wonderful things are happening!

First off, it's my birthday week. Last year, my birthday was a wash out, I was so unwell that I had to cancel my birthday party and ended up on my sofa feeling very very sad instead of wearing a fabulous dress and seeing all my lovely friends. This year, I am going to dance on a BOAT. On the THAMES. And it shall be lovely. My real birthday (Tuesday) falls on Shrove Tuesday. Which is a brilliant excuse to eat pancakes. Then, on the 8th of March, my wonderful parents are taking me out to celebrate. And it's International Women's Day!

Now, normally IWD creeps up on me, and then I see it on Twitter and give a half hearted 'Whoop, I have a womb'. This year, which has been a year of seeing the incredible women in my life go from strength to strength, I'm actually going to mark it by making a couple of vlogs about being a woman.

Here's the first of the vlogs, which was inspired by beautiful-inside-and-out spoken word poet Natalie Patterson about 10 things every woman should know:CLICK HERE FOR VLOGGY GOODNESS

If you go back through my archives you can also find some blogs about being a woman:

What does it mean to be a woman

The Good Girl Dichotomy 

My Womb Is Not Marked With Your Name Sir

And also, please go and check out the work of wonderful feminist photographer Hannah Nagle, who at 19 years of age takes incredible photos and is a generally awesome lady:FOR PRETTY PICTURES CLICK HERE

Anyway, that's all for now folks,
Have a delightful day, wherever you are!

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Vive La Smug...

Reader, in the past year or so, me and one of my favourite girls, Lady Luxe, have come up with a new way of living. It's a very un-British way of approaching life, but we rather like it. So here it is:

Vive La Smug.

Confused? Don't worry, I'll explain.

So, last year was pretty intense for both Lady Luxe and I. We both went through pretty big break ups, lost a lot of self confidence and worked ourselves into the ground. I gained weight and she got scarily thin (amazing how stress can affect people in different ways!). So when we came out the other side, we decided to use our experiences to improve our lives. It all started after she finally ended things with her ex. We went out for a night, just before Christmas and had sushi, went to a night market and then got drunk on a boat, dancing under the stars in full view of the London skyline. As we danced, we laughed and laughed, suddenly feeling the weight of the world leave our shoulders. We had jobs we loved, were living in one of the greatest cities in the world, wearing the highest of heels and the kookiest jewelry. We were going on dates and planning adventures. I turned to Lady Luxe and grinned. 'We are SO BLOODY SMUG!' I yelled, jubilantly. 'Vive La Smug!' she responded, and we broke down in giggles again.

Normally, being smug is seen as a bad trait-but why shouldn't we be? We are normally incredibly self deprecating, we spend our lives doing things for other people and work really flipping hard-we deserve a bit of a smug glow when things go well!

And now it's become a life philosophy. Instead of being effacing about our successes in life, we text or call each other and proclaim 'Vive La Smug!'. The cause for the smugness could be anything, but most of the time it's stuff that we imagine would happen to women in novels-getting a promotion, having a particularly wonderful date, getting a great compliment, having a night out that was just too cool for school-any success that makes us feel delightful.

Because life is too blooming short to not be smug about the fact that you got taken dancing and kissed under the stars, or got cast in a film, or mistaken for Paloma Faith twice in one day (this has started happening with alarming frequency of late. I have decided to take it as a compliment and not a suggestion that my wardrobe is slightly too kooky). I always say 'This is one to tell the grandkids' But what if I don't have grandkids? What if I step in front of a bus tomorrow? I need to enjoy the good stuff while I can! Otherwise, it's all a bit pointless really isn't it?

So my lovely Reader, go forth and embrace the smug!

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Diving into my late twenties....

Reader, it is my birthday next week. I am about to slip into the second half of my twenties. My friends assure me that you are only in your late twenties when you hit 28, but even so, it's a little bit of a shock given I'm almost certain I was only 14 yesterday (see picture below).

The thing is, when you're younger, each birthday passing is another landmark moment. The first time you can legally vote, have sex, smoke, drink, enter an over 21's club. Then suddenly, your 'landmark' birthdays don't mean 'hey, you can do this now!' but rather 'oooh, should you REALLY be doing that still?'

My lovely curly housemate wrote this blog entry about things we are too old for which is very funny and interesting and you should most definitely go and read. And it got me thinking about some things that I shouldn't still do at the ripe old age of twentyfivebutalmosttwentysix (see picture below) but still do. So here is my list of...   

Things I shouldn't do at my age but that I still do anyway

(yeah, I realise that is a remarkably long title, but oh blooming well!)

  1. Leave my make up on when I go to sleep sometimes
Yeah yeah. I know. It's horribly bad for my skin and probably the cause of the couple of spots on the tip of my nose. My skin is screaming at me when I do this, like a kettle. Or an angry monkey. Or something of that ilk. But when you're sharing a bed with someone (particularly someone of the  
opposite sex) is it not much better for them to see you looking all smudgy and Brigitte Bardot like rather than a bit shiny and vaguely hag-like of a morning? I know some will say to me 'but Ash, when you take your make up off you will look all fresh and vibrant of the morning and less like Ke$ha!' To which I laugh at them. A lot. Because without make up, I do not look fresh. I look like a 12 year old with bags under her eyes. Sometimes I also leave my make up on just because I can't be bothered. Which means spending a lot of money on anti-aging stuff seems silly, but I don't do it often enough to really bugger up by face. I hope. (When I need a face lift, feel free to throw this back at me though)

      2. Wear tights with skull and crossbones on

I'm a pirate till DEATH mo fos. Deal with it. Or walk the plank

      3. Eat chocolate frosting right from the tin

I'm at an age where losing weight is a lot harder. Yet ignoring the calories on the tin and just digging in with a large spoon is one of the greatest delights ever. It's just wonderfully indulgent and naughty and messy and makes me very happy. Same goes for Nutella (which I can't stand on toast but love straight out of the jar)

       4. Drink more than I should

As my dear friend Jon said in a recent vlog on what boys find unattractive, my drink limit is one drink. But I think my limit is a whole bar of drinks. So I end up doing really stupid, juvenile things. Like stroking Tom Hiddleston then running away before he turns around, or kissing very young men, or falling over, or talking far too much for my own good and having to hide under my bed for a long time. You'd think that at my age, after so very many ridiculous drunken nights, I would finally have got the hint. But no. I still forget that I am a complete lightweight occasionally and try and keep up with rugby players and very large men. And it never ends well for me! Last time I was so hung over I was in bed till 5pm the next day! So I have decided to stick to a 3 drink rule from now on. Apart from on my birthday. Obviously. 

     5. Watch sitcoms instead of the news

When will I be grown up enough to want to watch the news please? I still have no desire to and end up watching repeats of New Girl or How I Met Your Mother or Episodes instead...I do have quite a good idea of what's going on in the world, but that is more down to watching the Vice channel on YouTube really...

    6. Watch cartoons

Adventure Time is one of the greatest things ever. And I love it with all my heart. I think part of me wants to be Marceline The Vampire Queen really. 

    7. Go to my mum when I need to cry

Sometimes, I need to cry. But I am a grown up lady with a grown up life, so I just don't have the time. So I fabricate an excuse to go to my mum's house and inevitably she can tell there is something wrong because she has terrifying powers of deduction (or can see my bottom lip quivering). All she needs to say is 'Are you ok?' or 'What's wrong?' and it's like a tap has been turned on and suddenly I can cry and cry and get all of the rubbish out of my emotional pipes. And being an awesome mother, she gives me a hug, plonks me in front of the telly, and makes me laugh. At 25 years old, you'd think I would have found a way to work through my emotions by myself, but she is still the greatest sadness-unclogger I've ever found.

     8. Eating and Drinking stuff aimed at kids

On a date a little while ago, I had a slush puppy. A red and blue mixed one. It tasted like it had been flavoured with acid, but it was AWESOME. I occasionally buy chicken nuggets and I currently have cookies in my freezer. When the rest of the table is ordering something really nutritiously balanced, like chicken salad, I am ordering cheesy pasta with chips. When I see cupcakes, my eyes get all big and sparkly like in a Japanese cartoon. And giant gummy worms are one of my most favourite things. 

   9. Shy away from talking about the serious stuff

I can do it with other people. If they have a problem, I am there to help, with tissues and tea and concern and lots of great advice and patience. When it comes to me, I hate having to talk about the serious things. Talking about money makes me want to hide, as does having to have actual grown up relationship conversations. Whenever I think I'm in trouble, I delay talking to that person for as long as possible (even if I haven't actually done anything wrong and am in the right!). I can't stand confrontation, I despise talking on the phone because I know I won't be able to pull silly faces and distract people. I have gotten a lot better at the whole 'serious conversations' thing, but when it comes to stuff that is very personal in a negative way, I behave like a child and hide wherever I can. Which is weird, because professionally I'm great at discussing the hard stuff-in fact, people tend to be a bit shocked if they see me in work mode compared to personal mode because I'm not afraid to say the things that need to be said, and can be quite brusque! Whereas in 'real life' I'll be found hiding beneath my hair...

   10. Being scared of the dark

I used to be so scared of the dark that I would go to sleep every night with the light on. Then I was in a relationship for 4 and a half years, and having someone in bed with me meant that I could turn off the lights and feel totally safe. This may have been due to my night terrors and the fact that he was very good at dealing with them, but I got used to sleeping with the light off and it got to the point that I couldn't sleep with any light in the room. Now I've been out of a relationship for about eight months, and the fear has come back a bit. But now the problem is that I can't sleep with any lights on. But I'm also a bit irrationally scared of the shadows in my room. The solution I've found to this is to turn off the light, then bring the duvet above my head. Because obviously monsters and ghosts can't get through duvets.

Despite all of this, I am actually quite looking forward to turning twenty six. I'm at a great place in my life. I get to do the career of my dreams, I live with one of my besties, I have a lovely relationship with my parents and I've met some amazing, wonderful people in the last year or so. My twenty fifth year has been dramatic, painful, ever changing and scary as well as exciting, beautiful, funny and breathtaking. It's been the most intense year of my life so far. And if I can deal with that I can deal with anything. So year number twenty six? Come at me bro. (So long as I can have a slush puppy on hand as well)

Tarrah Reader!

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Asking for it...

Reader, writing that last entry was like inviting fate to laugh at me. 'No nights out!' I wrote, thinking of my sofa and the tv shows I've been watching lately. 'My life is so dull and not like a dramatic 20 something life at all!'

Reader, last night was insane.

Fate decided to chuck me one of those nights that features in Girls, I met Lady Luxe and her amazing 7 ft male model friend, then we went for dinner (but since I'd been picking at things all day I just sat with them while they ate) and we drank out of jam jars (so Shoreditch darling). Then it was on to a private members club in Soho, where we had a ridiculous number of cocktails-and every time I finished one, someone would order another to replace it. Every time I went to the loo, I'd get offered a line of coke (which I never know how to politely refuse. I always sound like I'm turning down an offer of tea 'Oh, no thank you, I'm grand! But cheers anyway!') and in classic Ash form, I ended up acting like a total prat. After a large amount of alchohol, I got chatting to a really pretty lady in the bathroom and was sure we'd met. I kept saying 'Were you at this audition or that?' and even asked if she went to my old uni. In the mean time, her and her friend kept laughing. It was only this morning that I realised it was Angela Griffin, hugely famous Brit actor and presenter. I slightly wanted to cut my own tongue out for telling her she must 'just have one of those faces'.


Then great excitement occurred when Tom Hiddleston was spotted! My new friend Ruby and I decided to go on a Loki hunt (to no avail), but an hour later, I passed him deep in conversation. Realising that I was too tipsy to actually make a good impression by speaking up, I stroked his arm and ran away. I am ridiculous. I stroked and ran. Please someone kill me.

The rest of the night is a bit of a blur, but there was a kiss in a rooftop garden, dancing with my ex boss like we were old men at a wedding to tunes of the early 2000's, chats with celebs about my hair (a bloke from Eastenders called it 'A firey dream'), someone telling me they wanted to write a book about me and a taxi home at 4am.

I'm still not entirely sure what happened, it all feels like a mad haze. Occasionally, my hangover clears and I remember saying some really stupid, far too brutally honest things and have to hide under a pillow again (apparently drunk Ash has no grasp of social etiquette). Two nights of drinking have destroyed me, so from tomorrow onwards it's all about running, Bikram yoga and veggie soup.

For a while at least...


Friday, 7 February 2014

Expectation vs. reality...

Reader, the tv show Girls is one of my most favourite things. Everyone hates on it, but I can't help but adore it. Ditto my love of New Girl and The Big Bang Theory (How I Met Your Mother goes without saying). The thing is, I feel these shows are giving me unrealistic expectations of being in your mid twenties...



Every week, you get asked out by a new, highly attractive bloke. Even though you're not on any dating sites and you're only averagely hot. You have lots of really crazy sex in the apartments where you both live alone (because no one ever seems to have room mates that happen to be in on date nights), by the third date you magically know each other well enough to see each other in yer skimpies and if he hasn't proposed after 7 months there is something obviously, deeply wrong. Kissing always just sort of happens, even without any booze and there's always an amazing soundtrack. The dude knows innately what would make you happy and spends all his time and money doing that (did anyone see the most recent episode of New Girl? Seriously, what bartender could afford all that?!)


You never get asked out (apart from by people you really don't want to go out with) so you end up asking people out yourself. You fret about leg hair, cellulite and matching underwear, constantly question if you're ready for a committed relationship and spend a lot of time swearing at a wall with a panicked look in your eyes. Everyone is married or engaged apart from you. You are literally THE ONLY single 25 year old left on the shelf. And you are going to be a bridesmaid twice this year. Fuck. Kissing is horribly awkward for the first few times. And you always end up being the one to instigate. Your dates are either just like being out with your mates but with a snog at the end or you don't realise you're on one till months later when you go 'ohhh, THAT's what that was'. Out of the blue, your friends start trying to set you up with 'nice guy's who work in IT'. Occasionally you lie in bed and gaze at the ceiling thinking 'Carrie bloody Bradshaw never had to work this hard'.

E vs R: Work


You work in one of those jobs that probably won't lead to anything. Waitress, bartender, librarian, writer or something in an office that never really gets explained. Everyone is dressed in perfectly fitting gear that naturally suits them down to a T, your boss is a total ass but in a really funny way-or the parent figure that you seriously need in your life. There are at least 3 hotties to leer at, and somehow you work enough hours to afford a great life and few enough to have an insanely brilliant social life.


They haven't realised you have no idea what you're doing yet. Or that your suit is from Primark. You have to fight the urge to wail when you see how much of your paycheck goes to tax (how do you forget every month?) and there's a part of you that is seriously annoyed that work is not like school, where you had 6 weeks off over the summer. You are the youngest person there, and everyone seems to think this is what you'll be doing forever. They have no idea that you are also a rock goddess who will become a millionaire from making crafts on etsy and eventually marrying Rupert Grint.

E vs R: Social life


Drugs! Drugs at a rave in a warehouse! Where you know people! And you and all your friends are wearing really awesome clothes! And you end up dancing on a roof with a gorgeous stranger! Or you're spending a night at home and it's amazing because you NEVER spend time at home over the weekend unless you're hosting a bijou dinner party. You and your really good looking, funny friends are chilling out and eating take out from boxes and laughing constantly and by the end of the night you'll have got off with the one you've had chemistry with for ages. He will then become (almost instantly) your long term boyfriend. Or you head to the beach, in the vintagely cool beat up car one of you owns somehow, despite being a paperboy. You all strip off and run in screaming. When you emerge, you still look really hawt and drink beer from the bottle by a bonfire.


You're home. Again. You could have gone out but you didn't. Mainly because none of your friends are free on a weekend because they're all frickin' engaged or married. You eschew dinner for a family sized pack of crisps and low fat Philly cheese. Occasionally you text the boy you sort of like. Or you go out! Big Night out! Wooo! To Wetherspoons...

E vs R: Living Situation


You live in a loft appartment in a warehouse in a totally cool hipster area. Cause those are where the cheap places are. You either own it, or rent it with ease. You have wooden floors, a leather sofa and bare brick walls with neon strip lights and it looks totally fucking cool. Everything is open plan. Your bedroom is huge and really kooky, with an actual en suite and bay windows. Everyone is constantly shagging, because if you have housemates, they're really hot and you have total chemistry with them.


Holy crap, when did rent get so expensive? You live in a tiny flat with crap decorations. You've made an attempt at style, but all the Ikea furniture in the world couldn't make this crap look good. Over half your paycheck goes on this place, but it's still the cheapest place on the market. Your freezer contains some reduced ready meals and vodka. Your fridge has some ever so slightly gone off hummus and 3 kinds of milk. Your flat is where romance went to die-no one has sex there. It is not a place for sex. It is a place for watching tv under a heated blanket and making fart jokes whilst eating chips with gravy. And how the hell does it get this messy this often?!

E vs R: Looks


Your hair is SO shiny, and you have no wrinkles. And you're really thin despite living off your diet of take out from boxes and ice cream off a spoon. Because you're in your mid twenties. And no one ages or gets fat in their mid twenties. Your clothes are quirky and colourful and all fit and damn you have good skin. Are those your real eyelashes....?


You have never been this fat. Your ability to diet and exercise has just vanished. Along with the Boursin in the fridge. Your hair is being really bloody weird but you can't afford to fix it, so you half heartedly trim it with the kitchen scissors and occasionally put olive oil in it (which, rather leaving it looking like Zooey Deschanel hair, leaves it greasy and hanging round your face). Nothing fits, and you don't own an iron or a tumble drier so all your clothes are faded and wrinkly. Your underwear drawer is HOT though. No one ever gets that far, because your other clothes look like they've been kept in a big ball under your bed, but you know that underneath your clothes really gorgeous undies exist. Somewhere. In the lard. 

And that, my gorgeous Readers, is that!

Monday, 3 February 2014

Under the weather...

Reader, I'm a little under the weather at the moment. It's my own fault really, I've been working too much and then going out too much whenever I have time off. But seriously, not feeling yourself sucks. Everything hurts, I'm too foggy to focus on work or films or books but I'm also so bored I've started counting everything red in my room (42 things so far if you're interested). 

The thing is, I have loads to do. I need to do another vlog, I've got a seriously messy room, a deadline to meet for work and loads of other bits and bobs that require not being in bed with crazy nest hair and a fever. I'm working from bed, but it's taking much longer than usual because I keep mucking up and having to go back to fix things. Typing 'HR Mankier' instead of 'HR Manager' was not a proud moment...

Ideally, I need someone to come and put cold compresses on my forehead, feed me nice food and scratch my back. And it should probably be someone I don't fancy since I look like something you might find at the back of the reduced section of the should-be-chilled-but-isn't bit of Lidl. Slightly blue and scruffy. It's at times like this I wish I was Hogwarts educated. Because frankly, I could do with flying buffets of fresh pesto pasta and lucozade and a magical massage right now. 

I think the real issue is I don't ever really give myself a proper break. So I've been thinking of booking myself a little holiday by the sea, maybe going to Brighton for a long weekend or even Whitstable-somewhere I won't be able to work and will be forced to stay on the sofa with hot coco and films. 

Anyone have a spare house by the sea they want to lend me? 

Hope you're feeling more alive than I am Reader!