Tag Archives: Blogtober

Damaged Goods

I am taking part in blogtober and attempting to blog every day this month. Today’s Blogtober post , day 11, is here .

I’ve heard myself described as damaged goods .

More than once . Sometimes to my face often as a chinese whisper , occasionally during a spiteful argument .

When I heard it , I felt it .

It’s a phrase meant to make you feel shit. It’s meant to mean unwanted , undesirable. AVOID THIS WOMAN AT ALL COSTS – HER DAMAGE WILL INFECT YOU – DANGER!!

I’m a single mum fast approaching 40 , attempting to cling onto sanity who has so many hang ups picked up from abusive and toxic relationships that yes sometimes I can be hard work no I’m not using that phrase , that’s another one thrown at me to keep me in my place .

I’m not sure which of the 3 seems to be the biggest issue to people who want to judge (the sneerers as I like to call them -picturing Cyril Sneer from the racoons -do you remember him?)

(Thats the dude !!!)

Sorry totally distracted ….reasons I’m damaged goods !

Single mum

Yes there is no father in our house , no new partner living here to help pick up the slack. This is a fatherless household and likely always will be now . Does that make me damaged though? Well I guess we need to look at these things from the sneerers prospective … The sneerer would look at my family life I guess and decide that 4 children and not a man in the house for over a decade. Well no one else is going to want her now . Obviously something wrong with her , can’t keep a guy . Poor kids .

Except the thing is we’re a family and we’re beginning to become quite the team. The elder three are at glorious ages where they can help with school runs and make dinner and get themselves up to ensure things can run smoothly here . We’re a team – we do not have an Alpha Male team captain I’m going to give you that one but we really have no place for one !

Mental health issues

My mental health is like a little selection box of problems and quirks.

Anxiety ✔️

Meaning sometimes I avoid humans , sometimes I can’t talk on the phone . Sometimes I’m browsing the bread in Sainsburys and I’m overcome with such dread I feel I’m going to pass out and my face goes numb .

Low mood ✔️

Yep some days I’m so filled with self loathing I can’t even stand myself. Some days a happy song dare come on my playlist and I tell it to f**k off cos I’m too miserable for that (this is a true thing that happened yesterday and I did giggle afterwards at my ridiculous behaviour!)

Some trauma related issue that noone has quite gotten to the bottom of yet ✔️

This is fun this one . Hypervigalence…my goodness forever in fight or flight mode , unable to settle ,forever looking for danger.

Fun anecdote to lighten the mood on this one. The other day a bird flew past and flapped her wings slightly louder and I screamed. Shrieked in the street.

So does all this rendered me damaged ? I prefer quirky myself . Obviously the sneerers would say look at the state of her can’t even answer the phone some days , scared of her own shadow. Who on earth would want that – no one with any sense !

I’m actually quite comfy with my whirling , slightly off normal brain function these days . It was Mental Health awareness day yesterday , I read lots of stories. There are loads of us ! Are we damaged ? Well yeah maybe but we’re bloody strong and tenacious too.

Domestic abuse damage

I’ve gotten over lots of hang ups over the last few years that I was left with after years of abuse .

Once upon a time though , I wasn’t me a decade on happy with how I look and who I am .Once I KNEW I was fat and ugly and useless and the worst mum and thick and pathetic and no wonder I had no friends and everyone definitely laughed at me and thought me just an absolute bloody idiot !

Yes I was damaged by years of abuse and trauma. Yes it was added to by other people -Sneerer types comments

Ah 2 sides to every story though

She must have pushed his buttons

She’d drive anyone to hit her

Some couples just don’t mix well

She just likes playing the victim

No one’s ever going to want her , who’s going to take on all her issues ? No one !!

If you’re reading this and you’ve been through or are going through abuse and have heard any of these statements about yourself let me tell you now it’s bullshit .

They’re phrases that come from best ignorance though usually worse than that.

Usually to keep us quiet ,to silence our voice. I’m just some woman off the internet you don’t have to listen to me but just know these phrases are crap spoken by people who know the grand total of eff all.

So yes ok more damage here . Damage caused by another person. Damage another person or people made the conscious choice to inflict on someone. I think I know who the real danger is in this situation.

Its taken a while but I realised recently that Damaged Goods – that vile phrase definitely says more about the person using it than the person they’re saying it about.

I also realised I’m going to start owning it actually.

When I was a kid my dad worked at a sweet factory (the dream right?) on a Friday he got to bring home sweets they couldn’t sell because they were wonky or misshapen. They didn’t fit the perfect aesthetic the customer was looking for.

To us though they were special treasure that not everyone else was allowed to experience!! They were unique and delicious and when shared with the right people were received with love and appreciation.

That’s me that is !!!

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Blogtober – day 8 – Make walking to school more fun in October

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With thanks to Annette at 3 Little Buttons for her blogtober prompts

I am taking part in blogtober and attempting to blog every day this month. Today’s Blogtober prompt is making walking to school more fun in October. I am going to veer slightly off the point here but stay with me .

Walking to school is no more in our house. Small girl started high school in September and though sometimes we still catch the bus together , often she wants to walk with her friends or is happy for her siblings to catch the bus with her.

I have moaned about about the school run all the time I’ve been doing it . We moved house away from school so it was always a bit of a trek . a train then a walk from the station. I moaned and grumbled but really deep down a lot of the time it was quite nice (not all the time obviously we’re not the Waltons!)

With 4 children that golden one on one time can be tricky to grab hold of and me and small girl’s journey to school was it !!

If she was tired or grumbly then she did need distracting on the walk from the station to school – see I did promise I’d come back to the point. So the only way I could think of during these times to make the walk more fun was simply chat. Small girl is a chatterbox anyway so getting her talking distracted her from the walk.

When she was much younger our school run chat often centred round her funny little questions that she’d ask. My favourite to date was “what is your favourite word to write in joined up writing ?” It got me thinking more than I expected I can tell you !

We made grand plans on our school run , but at this time of the year there was soooo much we could chat about. What was she going to dress up as for Halloween , what should we do for Bonfire Night and then the big one ….Christmas!! we could happily chat about Christmas from September onwards . Food and films and panto and all the other exciting things we had coming up!

I’m sure there are other things that would work better on an autumn school run to make it fun!! For me and small girl though it was simply always about the chat!!

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Blogtober – Day 4 – 5 things that make you smile

With thanks to Annette at 3 Little Buttons for her blogtober prompts

I am taking part in blogtober and attempting to blog every day this month. Today’s Blogtober prompt is 5 things that make you smile in honour of national smile day! I am a big smiler , I love to see other people smiling too and how lovely is the feeling of making someone else smile ?

Going ‘home’

I’ve been away from Hull for more than a decade now but I get this feeling when I go back. As soon as the train passes through Brough I get excited , I’m nearly home. I always tell people this and they probably think me nuts but when I step down from the platform from the train and see the Welcome to Hull sign I grin like a Cheshire cat!

Also my sister is there and she is the person who makes me smile more than any other person in the world. Although that’s more of a giggle , hysterical laughing and guffawing than a simple smile. Honking my nephew calls my Hull laugh!! Really my family are hilarious! I think so anyway, you might not think so they are an acquired taste but they definitely,definitely make me smile . A lot .

The kids being nice to each other

Or generally just getting along. The girls having an early night so as they can lay in bed and gossip.and chat . The boys ‘mental away days’ following Stockport County to bizarre places .

I came upstairs the other night to find teen boy the younger teaching small girl how to change a duvet cover. ..please teach me next?

When the big 3 were little it was a kind of bickerfest . With me gritting my teeth , remembering my sister and I used to be the same and now she is my fave person. I’d just hope that when they got older they’d get along and be friends and (for the most part) now they are.

Receiving sweet texts

I’m almost 40 ….yet you can see me grinning at my phone like a loon from time to time when the exceptionally handsome man in my life has his charming pants on.

It’s a bit nuts having a teenage like crush at my age but as I never bothered with them as an actual teen I’m allowed this one ? Owed a bit of lovehearts for eyes syndrome ?

Also , it’s so much fun and makes me the smiliest !!

Finding the perfect gift

I always claim to have 2 skills in life :

I make an amazing pie and I am good at finding presents .

If you like you can down grade my pie making abilities but present finding is something I love.

You know when you’re in a shop or just browsing online and you see something you just know someone else will love , and how that will make them smile ?? Amazing feeling !

A good Sunday Roast

You knew food of some kind was going to make this list right?

Can anything beat a really good roast though? When the roast potatoes (the most important part of any Sunday roast and what I will judge you on if I come to your house for dinner) have a crunch but are perfectly fluffy inside. When your Yorkshire Puddings rise perfectly , your veg is cooked to perfection and your gravy the perfect thickness……now THAT is worth a smile !!

Awwww now I’m hungry….smiling though.

Hope there is lots for you to smile about this #nationalsmileday

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Blogtober – day 3 -Share a poem for poetry day

With thanks to Annette at 3 Little Buttons for her blogtober prompts

I am taking part in blogtober and attempting to blog every day this month. Today’s Blogtober prompt is share a poem.

I really should have tried to write a poem. That really would have been a creative challenge for me I don’t think I’ve written poems since school , which is a shame really as I do love poetry. I shall write a poem ..it’s on the to do list and now I’ve told you guys I have to do it.

For now let me share a poem with you from the super talented Holly McNish about parenthood , and timely again for a woman trying to work out who she is when not mum …about precisely that , how we lose our own identity for a while.

Hope you enjoy

https://www.channel4.com/news/poet-hollie-mcnish-motherhood

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Blogtober – Day 2 – Bucket list

With thanks to Annette at 3 Little Buttons for her blogtober prompts

I am taking part in blogtober and attempting to blog every day this month. Today’s Blogtober prompt is Bucket List.

This is a timely one for me as I’m going through a transformative phase with the blog . Sort of going from parenting blog to …what do I do now they’re growing up and who am I when I’m not mum blog.

Maybe need a snappier title.

I wrote this week about approaching 40 and how I’m looking forward to it. I know there are many lists out there of things to do before you’re 40. I started reading them LAST birthday and wrote all about how I didnt think I was capable so I’m not going to go on about all the stuff I have roughly 10 weeks to do .

I have a different kind of a plan for 40.

40 is when it all begins for me right?

The kids are older . I have this weird thing called free time now . I need to start using it to discover the answer to the old Who Am I? conundrum.

So instead of a bucket list of things to do before 40 , I have a few things I want to do WHEN I am 40 , after I’ve turned 40 . Less time pressure and more focus on a bit of good old self discovery.

I’ll share a few :

Run a marathon

This was something eldest and I discussed years ago . One day we’d love to run a marathon,just to say we had. I think in my head back then it had to be London , but tricky to get a place so currently in my head it’ll be Manchester next April. If the body complies or not is a whole other thing.

Give something back

When I left the abusive relationship I was lost and scared and supremely overwhelmed. I talk often on my blog about The Freedom Programme and how doing that course saved me . Next year and for the foreseeable really I’d like to give more women the chance to do this so maybe raising money for the womens centre where I did it could help that , and I guess I could combine that with the marathon running.

Finish the book

Been writing a book all my life I think!

One is coming together nicely but I do need to dedicate time to it to try and pull it all together and I suppose see if it’s even any good or not . Some of this free time I talk of definitely needs to be sent the books way.

Visit new places

I’ve been nowhere . Seen nothing . I had babies in my 20’s and grand plans were on the back burner a while . Doing some exploring in my 40’s has been in The Plan for a while now and I am really excited about this one .

Learn something new

I absolutely bloody adored school. I loved learning . I’d very much like to go back to college and learn something new. Conversational French for the European adventures maybe ,an actual writing class to pull along this book?! I don’t know yet but think the brain could do with a new challenge!

So there we are some of the things on my when I’m 40 bucketlist ! Can’t wait to get cracking!!

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Best FREE cold/rainy day attractions in Manchester…

Today’s #Blogtober17 prompt is Weather.

Part of the lazy side of me was going to rehash one of my old summer posts but re reading them it just made me a bit sad that we just didn’t seem to have much of a summer this year.

SO as it’s half term week and it’s a bit cold and rainy I thought instead I could tell you of our favourite places to go on Manchester of a rainy day and even better , they’re all free!!!

The National Football Museum

We’ve lived here almost a decade now and safe to say , in Manchester , as Hull City fans we’re in the minority!!! However as football fans we’re part of the gang!!! The National Football Museum is a football geeks dream! Youngest son would move in if he could. At 15 he has the most obscure knowledge of football facts ,I always say if they ever bring back Fantasy Football they’ve Statto’s replacement right there…anyway I digress as per. The football museum is great , the trophy cabinets are spectacular. Regardless what team you support you’ll find something of interest.This pic ,taken the first time we ever visited is the eldest listening to the radio commentary of THAT Dean Windass goal (the blurry hand of youngest son makes it look like he’s doing some rude hand gesture at the nutter behind him but I assure you this is not the case).

You can have a perfect time at the museum without any added extras but for an added charge you can also take part in some great interactive football games. This interests eldest girl as she has little interest in football history but does very much love beating her brothers at football.

Overall a great attraction for a football fan. My boys are taking their grandad for his first visit this week!!!

Imperial War Museum North

Just a short tram ride from Manchester City Centre itself .The Imperial War museum is up near Media City and the Lowry Theatre. The building itself is stunning .Once you get inside the interior is pretty breathtaking too.

The first time we all visited small girl was only about 6 and I was a bit worried it might all be a bit scary for her but I was wrong. The museum is so interactive the little ones can easily entertain themselves with displays and push buttons to their hearts content. In subsequent visits though, now everyone is that little bit older the highlight for us all has been The Big Picture Show element. Throughout the day films are shown on huge screens in a lovely big space in the museum. The lights go off and the most immersive film experience takes place ,complete with bangs and flashes (really little or easily worried children you may want to taketo a different part of the museum for this bit) and retold accounts of war experience are played alongside pictures giving a really in depth experience of what people went through. The theme of the film changes throughout the day too so you could see a couple of different ones.

Also…stop for a cuppa in the coffee shop for a gorgeous view of the Quays.

Heaton park

I know I know I said rainy /cold day activities. I’m not crazy I promise but this place is somewhere we have visited no matter what the weather!!

Another one a tram ride from Manchester city centre (plenty other public transport options and you can of course drive but small girl just loves the tram)

We started visiting here when small girl was a toddler . There’s a little farm , a boating lake and a great play park and she would pick Heaton Park as a place to go whenever she was given the option. Now as a 9 yr old , well there’s a little farm , a boating lake and a great play park so she still loves the place.

A great place to visit and go for a walk on a crisp day to blow away the cobwebs , and with a choice of places to go sit with a hot chocolate to warm up and nibble on a cake it covers all bases.

The Museum of Science and Industry

Last but by no means least.

Our absolute favourite place to visit in Manchester. The 17 yr old still loves it as much as the 9 year old!!

We love MOSI!!!

There’s just so much to see here . Some permanent features such as a whole building full of planes and cars and other vehicles  or a textile exhibition.

The Experiment! Department , well we’ve lost hours in there playing various games and doing puzzles. It’s so hands on and great for enquiring minds to soak up knowledge without even realising it.

The fab thing about MOSI is that you can have a different experience each time you go (and we have been A LOT) There are always new and changing exhibitions to run along side your old favourites!

It really comes into its own during school holidays where there’s so much for the kids to do. Shows to watch and take part in , craft activities and workshops.
Look what we did earlier this year? Learned about sewers and made slime?!

I know it looks as though small girl is channelling her inner Deirdre Barlow here but honestly she was having fun!!!

Also it’s currently Manchester Science Festival so no doubt there’ll be some extra special activities taking place . Click on the link in the title to have a look. I’m sure we’ll have paid a visit before half term is out.

So there’s our fave things to do in Manchester should it be raining…in Manchester? Surely not right? They won’t break the bank either!!
I’ve not been coerced or bribed (unfort) to include these places they genuinely are just our faves !





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Villains and Superheroes – Be my superhero, it’s easy


Todays Blogtober theme is Villains and Superheroes. I have struggled with this one so I decided to make it personal. It’s actually just a list of things people do that annoy me and then one things people do that endear themselves to me in essence but was really quite cathartic to write in hindsight!!!

I am lucky enough to have some real life superheroes in my life . My sister (obvs) , my friends , the woman who brings me my Nandos. Good people, people who enhance my life just by existing.

There are also villains who hang around like bad smells attempting to make my life hard. I am going to add that everyone on this list owns a penis. I’m sure of course that is purely incidental.

Anyway , I think really it’s up to you whether you are a superhero or a villain in another person’s life. Here’s a cheat sheet for mine

Villains :

Don’t let me in front of them in the supermarket when they’ve a trolley full and I have one single item.

Ask me to repeat myself on the phone – if I am talking to you on the phone it is because I absolutely have no other choice. I bloody hate it , makes me anxious and yes I am aware I have a dodgy accent but telling me you can’t understand me makes me wish the phone would self destruct.

Eat off my plate – this includes people I have given birth to. If I’m eating out and you fancy trying some of my food….simply don’t. At a push I can resentfully pop some of my food onto your plate but once your nasty little fork has been on MY plate ,my dinner is ruined.

Put plates in the washing up bowl with food remnants on *shudder*

Buy the Daily Mail……or the Sun actually.

Ask me to explain the offside rule if I show an interest in football unless you do exactly the same to a man.

Call me love /babe /sweetheart /darling. This isn’t endearing or friendly or affectionate. It’s over familiar and it creeps me out.

Superheroes :

Know the difference between your and you’re and to /too/two ( important fact : should I make this mistake it is a typo , my phone’s fault and I’ll probably correct myself if I notice as I just can’t leave it!) so I’m a pedant I can’t help it, it’s a character flaw!

Never make me talk about my feelings! They know this will turn me mute.

Do not ever ponder out loud whether you can have too many books. You can’t.

Give advice such as “pour yourself a GnT , eat chips and watch crap TV ” in response to my whining about having a bad day (thanks HSG!)

Are thoughtful….my favourite character trait in any human!! Remember the little details , recommend me books and shows , text me with random anecdotes from years back. Because I try to do this too but then always panic I come across a bit stalky , have been through your bins kinda girl!!

See? See how easy it is to be my superhero!!! I’m really quite low maintenance….though looking at the villains list possibly also a bit irritable. Ah I’m an aquired taste …..

What Superhero / Villain traits can people bring into your life?Quirkier the better please so I feel less of a freak!!!


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My weird crushes (part 2)

I know what you’re thinking – part 2?? How can I possibly read part 2 when I haven’t even read part 1 yet ? Well never fear my gorgeous readers …part 1 is right here . 

Thing with me is , I have a fair few crushes . Way too many for a 37 year old woman probably. It’s ok though they’re mostly famous people not the postman or anything. I’ve been meaning to write part 2 for a while now and sure given my recent crush frenzy (Greg Davis anyone? Just me?) there’ll probably be a part 3 soon enough….sorry!

I have an unusual taste in men I’d say , so unusual crushes I always find quite easy as most people find all my crushes unusual. Soooo here we go…

1) Toadfish (from Neighbours)

Earlier in the year I suffered a bit of a Neighbours regression. I’d not seen it in years but then Dee , remember her?, came back from the dead and I found  myself hooked. Then I found myself surprisingly crushing all over our boy Toadie!!! I think you’ll agree he has matured pretty well? Grown into his little face rather nicely . He’s got a baby and everything now and who doesn’t like a crush on a cute dad!! I’m absolutely certain it is the character I have a crush on and not the actor. Toadie is a likeable guy , funny , sweet. I did stop watching Neighbours again after that storyline concluded ,but I should probably pop by and check he’s ok!

2) Little Cook

YES !!! That so is Little Cook!!! Hot eh???

Parents who have only become parents quite recently ,you’ve been spared the messed up programme that was Big Cook Little Cook. It was about 2 guys ,one was average size but one was inexplicably tiny and rode around on a wooden spoon. They owned a cafe for fairytale characters goodness knows how it stayed open as they only ever had one customer a day and they seemed to pay their bill with a cute little thank you note and a bizarre gift! YouTube it if you’ve not seen it . …second thoughts don’t – just remembered someone totally filthed it up . Anyway I digress this guy here was Little Cook , I certainly did not fancy him then BUT he’s a stand up comedian now and I caught him on a panel show and thought hey up….Little Cook ,or Dan Wright as he is also known is handsome!!!! (PS in a related old kids characters that are now stand up comedians , Archie the inventor is hilarious!!!)

3) Jurgen Klopp

Aaawww just look at his little face , he’s so unbearably sweet ! I love his post match interviews and his beautiful accent and his adorable smile . I am a sucker for a charmer and this guys just oozes charm out of every pore *swoons forever*

4) Alex Brooker

Now this one I don’t think is soooo unusual. I know at least one other person who feels the same. 

Funny though ,  that’s always so very attractive isn’t it? Possibly the most attractive quality in a person! Well our guy Alex here is funny. I love The Last Leg .It’s unusual that a programme can be really funny but also deal with serious current events too. I once wasted hours just watching Adam Hills rants on YouTube. Not only is he funny Alex Brooker but in a huge tick on the Kelly crush box , he absolutely rocks the male eyeliner look too ….soooo love that!

5) Matthew Wright

YES!! That’s me with the guy himself!! I love glorious first born’s absolutely cringed out face whilst I’m all blushy and grinning like a Cheshire cat!!!

I like The Wright Stuff , I like chatter , I like current affairs , I like listening to other people’s opinions . This show has the lot so when it came on tour to Manchester I dragged the eldest along with me and off we trotted. I’ve been crushing over Matthew for a very long time , he’s intelligent … that’s another one on the Kelly crush ticklist too and passionate and though noone else gets it I find him hugely attractive. 

Sooooo

Your turn , who do you find attractive that other people dont really get???



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Me, Being Mummy

Advice to my 15 year old self….

Todays Blogtober theme is teenagers.

I have 3 of them , so I’ve loads of material . Anyone who reads my blog knows I’ve loads of posts on there about being the mum of teenagers.

The idea of Blogtober for me though was to challenge myself to write new things. So I’ve decided to today leave my teens alone and think about when I was a teenager and what advice I’d give 15 year old me.

15 year old me was an odd teen she got her kicks from cycling to the library getting out a pile of books then coming home hopping into bed (no matter what time of day )then just read! Here’s what I’d tell her.

Kelly ,

You enjoy your own company . You always will .This is a great thing . If you can be happy alone that’s a gift. Life is going to throw 10 tonnes of shit at you but it’s going to be ok because you have a strength and a resilience that you’ve not had to draw on yet but it’s there . I promise that in the darkest of times there’ll always be a chink of light. You’ll get through.

One thing you could do to help yourself though is stop caring so much whether people like you or not. People pleasing is your thing and you’ll get to your late thirties before you realise that other people’s negative opinions just don’t matter. Save yourself 20 years of trying to change people’s negative views, if they don’t like you as you are screw them .Plenty do.

One last thing , you’ll not believe me when I tell you but your pain in the arse little sister will grow up to be your very best friend. Together you are quite the force to be reckoned with.

Oh….and we should probably talk about how you never ever ever want kids…. actually no let’s leave that!

Lots of love , Kelly xxx

I also called upon my friends to ask what advice they’d give their 15 year old selves and there are some real words of wisdom here…..some I could do to take on board now!!

Emma : You are beautiful and unique, don’t let anyone dull your sparkle.Be kind to yourself as well as others , you never know what they are going through




Colin: Travel as much as you can and never stop reading,because reading means learning about life.




Pam from pam’s bake and baby blog

Be nice to your mum,she loves you.One day you will understand she wasn’t intentionally trying to ruin your life.



Laura : Enjoy it! When you’re older you’ll realise this was one of the best stages of your life.Just wish I’d been richer at that point so I didn’t need to club with a friend to buy my pulse and could have afforded a whole bottle!



Andrea : Worry less , live more…oh..and you’re not fat you’re curvaceous and in 20 years you’ll wish you had this body still.



Sarah : Don’t be in a rush to grow up.



Adele : That first swear word that you say in anger will stay with you forever.Think before you say it.



Louise : Study! It does pay off. Your parents are always right.Stay away from carbs….oh and your parents DO know you’re pissed!



Thanks so much you wise lot!!!
What advice would you give yourself at 15 years old??


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