No I am not pregnant, thanks for asking

So today I am blogging from Castle Court in Belfast…I am here exhibiting my bouquets and hoping that some lovely brides order with me…. shameless sales pitch but go check out my work on FB (The Sparklepin Bride).

So today I am going to do a little blog post about a condition that really sucks….IBS – Irritable Bowel Syndrome.  I always felt like after eating was my stomach was in cramps and the term ‘food baby’ was misconstrued for an actual baby….yes that is right, I was once asked was I pregnant due to my swollen out stomach.  CRINGE (and pretty upsetting to be honest).

I first visited my doctor about this quite a few years ago, only to be sent away with a course of antibiotics that were for excess stomach acid…. which is not what my symptoms were, but hey I gobbled them up in the hope it would work. Doesn’t really take a genius to work out that they didn’t.  So back to the doctor I go…. same conversation over again and once again out the door with a course of antibiotics.  This time though the doctor had diagnosed Irritable Bowel Syndrome.  I left the doctor’s surgery knowing I now had something to explain the swollen belly, but truth me told I couldn’t tell you what it meant, or how I got it. I was just told to take some pills before eating and take some pills after eating should the pain get too much.

To be honest, it just wasn’t good enough.  I was so sick of having to choose my outfit carefully, working out what I was going to wear depending on what I was going to eat.  Then I would spend the next few hours of my life discreetly making sure my top was pulled down over my stomach and I didn’t look just about to give birth. SO back to the doctor
I went, now this time the doctor gave me (a little tiny tiny bit) more info, confirmed it was IBS and told me to stay away from caffeine <—- that was the little tiny bit of info I told you about.

By this stage I was UBER fed up. And I mean UBER FED UP. Fast forward to July 2016 when I started going to Fionnbharr and had the daunting task of filling in a food diary for a week for him to look through. When I told him I had IBS, he immediately went and did a little research, asked me my symptoms, talked to me about nutrition and how your body works to break down food and that was when I started to understand why my stomach and gut was reacting how it was. Complete light bulb moment. Shocking that a personal trainer was able to tell me more than my own GP.

This was the beginning of finding Paleo……

Coconut addiction update – all good on the coconut front. Got another compliment on my hands being like mini coconuts. Life is good!


First Impressions last

Hi all, so welcome to my first ever blog post. Pretty exciting stuff! So, I have probably put a lot more thought and effort into this blog post than is needed, but first impressions last….and this post may very well dictate whether you come back for round 2.  So lets set the scene….I got myself a nice new notebook, jotted down a bunch of ideas and found myself the most hygge (pronounced Hooga) spot in the house…I will do a blog on hygge before you all think I have lost the plot.

I am sitting in our second living room, which doesn’t have a TV and is pretty minimal with furniture (two big grey sofas, a big leather trunk we rescued from a skip, some speakers and a guitar… oh and also plenty of candles). It’s a nice quiet space just to chill and take a little reflection time, and obviously I have a cup of tea in hand and a piece of 85% dark chocolate (for strength and concentration obviously).  So here it goes, my first blog, and I hope you enjoy!

I want to quickly chat about my relationship with food, don’t panic, I’m not intending on recounting the last 28 years of my life in this blog, detailing my transition from milk to solids. No-one really cares about that. However, I am sure there are people out there who might relate to what I am about to say. I am a comfort eater… things go wrong, someone better bring me a cream bun. I didn’t (sometimes still don’t) possess willpower…. if someone else is eating it, pass it over here love. Eyes bigger than my belly, oh hello giant googley eyes. That is all well and good, until the guilt hits after you’ve shoved a whole packet of custard creams in your mouth and because you have IBS you now look like you may give birth any moment. Not cool.

The question is, what are you going to do about it? In the past, I’ve tried fad diets, supplements that apparently speed up metabolism and increase endurance at the gym, I also tried joining a gym but didn’t really know what I was trying to do so I spent most time fixing my hair in the mirror whilst briskly walking on a treadmill, and last of least accepted the belly was there to stay. Let me tell you something for nothing…. none of those options were a good idea, NONE. All I did was set unrealistic goals and set myself up for a fall.

Listen, I am not an expert of any sort on these topics, I am purely going to give an honest account of how its been for me. You want to do a fad diet, knock yourself out; you want to take ‘metabolism fastening’ substances – eat them like jelly beans for all it is to me. But here is my advice to you:

  1. Educate yourself. Speak to someone who knows – a dietician, a personal trainer, a nutritionist, a fit friend, Google it if you have to. Make informed choices about how you ultimately treat your body
  2. Be sensible – your health is your wealth
  3. Be proactive – don’t accept that you’ve just put on weight and its there to stay, or you have a condition like IBS and theres nothing you can do about it. I am pretty sure no matter what it is, someone can help you, and you can help yourself
  4. Don’t just complain about it. Make a change. No-one is going to laugh at you or put you down for trying – and lets face it, if they do, they are a moron.

So these are my words of wisdom for a Tuesday night. I am going to enjoy the rest of my cuppa and go spend a little time with hubby before we gotta do life all over again tomorrow.

Goodnight y’all

Deborah x


FYI – coconut addiction still going strong. Coconut products used / consumed today = 2. And yesterday someone told me I smelled really nice because of my coconut handcream….Boom.