Friday, 19 July 2013

Blog Birthday Bonanza.

Today is my blogging birthday. 4 years! Who'd a thunk it? What started as me venting a lot of frustration and clawing back my sense of self, lengthy rambling post after length rambling post, has turned into so much more. Where I was when I began and where I am now, are two very different places. 

Back in 2009 I was rather lost. It's strange looking back now at how emotionally strained things were then. Sudden and serious illness has a way of hitting you for six. It leaves you reeling, and if you're lucky holding on by the skin of your teeth. The physical symptoms are bad enough. Chest pain that leaves you gasping in pain or collapsing tends to send your fear levels skyrocketing. But the changes to your sense of self and your relationships, and issues regarding loss and grief, can be rather hard to deal with. 

These days I am in a much better frame of mind. I have ups and downs but am better equipped to deal with them. I know I've faced a lot of bad health times and come out the other side. That knowledge makes it easier to cope when I'm stuck in that periodic quagmire of pain and fear, as my symptoms escalate. Strange to think that as my health has deteriorated my ability to cope with that fact has increased exponentially. 

What started as my personal venting has become a community, a place of shared experience and support. Advocacy and awareness have emerged and the blog has become a place to give voice to the patient experience not just for myself but for many. And I love the community that has sprung up here and on Facebook

And to say thank you to you, my fabulous readers, 
I want to celebrate my 4th blogging birthday 
with a GIVEAWAY. 

As I've mentioned many times, I like pampering. I think it is particularly important when you are chronically ill. We are in and out of hospital. Stuck in bed or on the couch, often for long periods of time. Times like that you need to make your world, as limited as it may be, as comfortable and lovely as you can

Anyone who has followed me on FB for any length of time knows I love Lazybones clothes and own more than a few of their pieces. I love the mix of vintage and feminine style. I love their dresses, but am particularly enamoured with their fabulous Relax range which I wear all the time. Practical, comfy, and pretty are a good mix. And, more importantly, can make you feel better even on your worst days.

And thanks to the lovely folk at Lazybones, one lucky reader has the chance to win two of their pieces

Up for grabs are two items from their Relax range, shown below.

(Rosita Top in Amalfi)
100% cotton voile, I love the loose fall of the Rosita top. So light and comfortable.

(Kate pants in Cream)
I love the detail on the bottom of the Kate pants. They are 100% cotton and light and flowing. 

How to Enter:

COMPETITION IS NOW CLOSED


The competition opens as of, 9am Friday the 19th July 2013 (Australian Eastern Standard Time).

To enter simply leave a comment at the bottom of the post sharing your favourite way to pamper yourself along with an email address so I can contact you should you win.

The giveaway will close 5pm Friday the 26th July 2013, (Australian Eastern Standard Time) using the Thor Method. With the winner announced Monday the 29th. 

The lovely folk at Lazybones were also kind enough to send me a pair of their soft and light Frankie pjs in Enna just in time for my surgery. If I have to be stuck in hospital I can now at least do it in style.

Thanks Lazybones!

Cheers
Michelle :)

Angus and Julia Stone, Mango Tree (2009)

37 comments:

  1. I love these pyjamas! Happy Blogging Birthday!

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  2. There is nothing in the world more relaxing and pampering than going to Spa Castle. Spa castle is a Korean spa in Queens. I love a room called The Sleeping room, it has these big, soft, leather beds, that I like to lounge on and just read....Then I can move my eyeballs up and see the 2nd floor of the spa, but it is quiet...I also love the women's spa room because to me there is nothing more relaxing than being submerged in hot water up to my neck. If I am feeling very in need of relaxation I get a body scrub. A lady scrubs your whole body and tosses huge buckets of warm water all over you. Bliss.

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  3. good luck with the surgery michelle, im sure everything will be fine. happy 4th blogging birthday. been reading your blog for a while now and you put into words what my foggy brain couldn't! take care of yourself. x

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  4. I thank my computer every time I see a new blog post from you. Thanks you for your 4 years of wonderful words. They've made me laugh and cry out loud.

    When I need to calm myself, I find haiku (little Japanese "one breath" poems). Here are a couple of faves from Issa:

    For you too fleas,
    the night must be long
    it must be lonely.

    and

    The world of dew
    is the world of dew
    And yet, and yet...

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  5. A day I experience only a few months ago and I'm still glowing.... I had lunch with a few friends then we headed to the ibah spa Austinmer and was pampered with a 2 hour massage and facial in the most idyllic surrounding listening to Australian natives birds while my stresses faded away. To complete the day we went onto eating Italian, drinking pinot noir and enjoying the great company. Still buzzing from an amazing day/night nothing can beat it xxxxx cecileschuldiener@gmail.com.au

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  6. Hi Michelle,Your blogs lift me like nothing else; but I mustn't laugh too much , so I try to keep to quiet giggles.A peaceful heart and mind can be such an achievement in our world-- hope this makes sense to all.cheers

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  7. Happy Blogging Birthday . Your words help me so much when lost in my head to a world of pain & subsequent isolation. You make me laugh, cry, empathise, understand.... need I say more. Apart from a great big thank you for blogging.

    I have lost my blogging mojo it seems so I feel a little fraudulent commenting but it doens't make it any less genuine.

    ps. doesn't matter how I try can't watch the video as its unavailable in the UK, sulk.

    xx

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  8. Mine is the simple soak in a bubble bath. Lock the door, closing out the interruptions of a busy house, a few candles and perfect silence. Bubbles tickling my nose and the warm water soothing my aching muscles

    Thanks for sharing with us, I look forward to your daily entries on Facebook and love your sense of humor, reminding us to keep positive.
    Congratulations on 4 years of blogging.

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  9. Mine would be the simple bubble bath. Lock the bathroom door to shut out the going on's of a busy house. A few candles, warm water to soothe my aching body, and enough bubbles to tickle my nose.

    Congratulations on 4 years of blogging. I love your way of put a positive spin on even the worst of things and look forward to reading your comments. Here's to many more years of sharing.

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  10. My favorite way to pamper myself is to get a massage. It's so relaxing. When I can't go for a massage and I really need to relax I like to burn a lightly scented candle, drink some tea and listen to some classical music.

    Happy 4th Blog Birthday! Hope you're recovery is going well!

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  11. My favorite way to pamper myself is to get a massage. It's so relaxing. When I can't go for a massage and I really need to relax I like to burn a lightly scented candle, drink some tea and listen to some classical music.

    Happy 4th Blog Birthday! Hope you're recovery is going well!

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  12. The simple things I find can be the most rewarding such as shaving my legs and having my nails polished, toes and fingers. After fighting against the truth of my situation I am learning to embrace the simple things for the hurdles are more realistic. Happy Blog Birthday Michelle, The Bionic Blogger to the masses.

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  13. I'm so glad I found you this year. I can so relate to what you go through. My favorite way to pamper myself is with ice cream. Even when the gastroparesis is bad, ice cream always makes me happy. Happy 4th Blogging Birthday! Thank you for sharing your experiences, good and bad and for being your cute funny self!
    chaney.angie@gmail.com

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  14. Happy Bloggaversary to your fabulous self! Since our a.c. is on the fritz (and we are in the middle of a heat wave), my favorite way to pamper myself lately is light colognes and floral waters I keep in the 'fridge, to either spritz myself directly, or spritz a cold wet cloth and swab my decks all over, LOL. I've commandeered half a shelf in the refrigerator door--the Guerlain cologne is the fanciest, but the lemon kolyonasi (Turkish lemon cologne) and Florida Water are the most cooling.

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  15. I think I'm too late to enter the giveaway, as I am in the US and miscalculated the time! However, my favorite way to pamper myself is to mix essential oils with a salt blend (epsom salts, sea salt and baking soda) and sprinkle it in a warm bath. Depending on what I need, I use the oils that will help me - ginger to help with blood flow, lavender to relax, eucalyptus for aches and pains, etc. I also like to do my own nail art. Sometimes I paint my nails like watermelons, or zebra stripes or with flowers. It keeps things interesting and whimsical.

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  16. What loveliness! :) The simplest way I pamper myself these days is dark chocolate and a funny video of some kind... Chocolate and a good laugh can turn any day around -- even those days that seem a total loss. :) Happy Blogging Birthday, Michelle, you're such an encouragement to me! Oh, and just in case, my email is: neuropoet3 at gmail dot com. Maybe Thor will pick me! :)

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  17. I would love to enter this contest but I am not sure where to put my email address. Help please!

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  18. Jus commenting to say how happy I am that you share your humor with us about your dys - I know I am not alone because of you.
    You make the world a better place, Michelle.
    Lori Schneider
    misdiagnosedme/wordpress.com
    arasevera@gmail.com

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  19. I've only just discovered your blog and it looks very interesting!
    My idea of pampering is simple as I have two young kids. It's crawling into a cosy bed with a great magazine or book, a hot cup of tea and some quiet!

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  20. I have read your full article and its was awesome and helpful for me. thanks for posting such a good article. I will come back to your blog again to read more post.

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  21. Happy Anniversary/ blog Birthday!!!! My favorite way to pamper myself is to relax after the kiddos have to bed with my honey curled up on the couch with a cup of hot cocoa and a good movie. I never last long and he usually has to carry me to bed. But it's SO relaxing! (portiamccoy at gmail)

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  22. Taking a bath and zoning out in front of Star Trek: The Next Generation on Netflix is about as good as it gets.

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  23. Happy Birthday, Living with Bob! May you have many more birthdays ahead of you. :D

    Pampering for me usually involves food of the chocolate variety, a bean bag, a book or iPad, a cup of decaf (boooo) coffee and some snuggles if I'm lucky. I also love going down and sitting on the beach during summer, can't wait for it to stop being so nitterly cold so I can be outside more often. (kendallate at gmail dot com)

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  24. Yay happy blog birthday! =D

    I love to pamper myself with an Epsom salt, bicarb and Himalayan salt bath, a fresh organic fruit and vegie juice, a bag of chips and then a calming meditation sesh and a nap.
    In fact I think I might do that on Friday..

    Email sageluvsu @ hotmail.com

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  25. Happy blog-birthday! Those pajamas are beautiful!

    My favorite way to pamper is with a massage or a foot-soak! (clift.christina@gmail.com)

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  26. Happy blog-birthday! Those pajamas are beautiful!

    My favorite way to pamper myself is with a massage or a foot-soak--so relaxing! (clift.christina at gmail)

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  27. Glad to see you around for another year. They are awesome looking.

    I am having to figure out a new way to pamper myself. Now that I am in Menopause(I am waiting on the blood test results), I am having to do all kinds of different stuff. I am pampering myself by not having a visitor.

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  28. I am having to learn Menopause pampering. Yea, I am loving no visitor. Woo hoo. Glad to see you still here.

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  29. I like to kill two birds with one stone. Oblige the need to visit the inlaws with some 'me time' by sending my mister and kids off for the weekend to see them. I stay home and invite my BF over and she and I listen to music and talk and laugh and howl and screech and the same all over again, and again. The years and responsibilities fall away and sometimes, even my worries about my health. For me, the conversation between friends is the most soul reviving and heart restoring pampering there is. Wish I could bottle it.
    Glad to hear you came through the surgery without the complications you feared. Great stuff! Rest and recuperate now; sounds like you might need a visit from your bestie!
    Rachel Cox dancinggiraffes@xtra.co.nz

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  30. I love reading a great book in my bed with the house nice and quiet. A cup of my favorite coffee completes the decompression. Jiattaway@ssd11.org

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  31. A nice hot cuppa and a favourite movie on whilst wearing some comfortable PJ'S.

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  32. Happy Blogday! I hope there are many, many more!

    First, I light some Nag Champa or Indian Temple incense. Then I wait for the inevitable yell from my dad of “what is that smell?”. After explaining myself, I then put on some music to sooth the soul. I find that AC/DC can be very soothing to my soul (go figure). Then I lay myself down (anywhere will do). Then I daydream. I dream of a world where I am not sick or in pain. I have regained the last 25 years of my life. I climb mountains, I swim seas, I ride horses and throw wonderful parties for all my friends (who are also not sick anymore or in pain) and we all talk and laugh at how wonderful our lives are now. And sometimes……I can actually feel it and I am warm inside and at peace for a time.
    Carla (CarlaSuD@aol.com)

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  33. 4 years? Wow. Looks like I've got a lot of back reading to catch up on.

    My current favorite way to pamper myself when I'm feeling low or in a great deal of pain is to take a very warm bath with a favorite book, then when I'm out to put on a funny movie and paint my toenails while I watch it. All those activities include hot cups of herbal tea sweetened with honey.

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  34. Argh. Forgot the email address. whathvnlymusic@aol.com. (Sorry!)

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  35. drat~3rd times a charm. cat +/- dog, tea, book, ratty cotton ballerina gown, book (usually bible), blankie on the porch swing.
    happy 4th sick-a-versary!
    blessings Michele
    ct96052@gmail.com

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  36. Chocolate wins, hands down. Or time with my dogs -- there's even a hospital here now who has visiting hours for pets! Might be worth the jog for me next time =)

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  37. Happiest (slightly belated) blogging birthday wishes, honey! How awesome that both of our blogs turned four years old in 2013. Much like yourself, though it very rarely focuses on my health in any degree of depth, a huge part of why I started Chronically Vintage was because of my health. I'd just gone through a couple of the roughest years of my life (up until that point - worse would follow) on the health front and I desperately, truly needed something to take my mind off my my constant medical issues and which would give me an identity in the public's eye beyond "just" being chronically ill. I'd always madly loved (and long worn) vintage, so it just seemed like a natural topic to write about and focus my (limited) energy on.

    There have been numerous times over the years where I thought I'd have to toss in the towel because of my health (especially in 2010 and '11), but through the highs, the lows, the horrible flare-ups, unexpected hospital trips, many surgeries, never-ending pain, myriad of symptoms that life with multiple chronic illnesses entails, hours a day in the washroom, new problems popping up often, you name it, it (dearest bloggy) and I are still here and going strong (ok, maybe not strong in my case...I can scarcely lift a sheet of paper some days, but here nevertheless and that's what counts!).

    I can't begin to tell you how much I admire your strength, fortitude, honesty, tenacity, and awesomeness. You are truly one of my heros and I hope dearly that you get to enjoy countless more years of blogging, dear gal.

    ♥ Jessica

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All who are lovely enough to comment should be showered with cup cakes, glitter and macarons. I promise to use my spoon bending mind powers to try and get that happening for all who are lovely enough to share their words. Those who go the extra step to share posts should really get a free unicorn. Or at least the gift of finding the shortest and quickest line at the supermarket on a regular basis. xx