Articles on this Page
- 11/29/18--07:03: _Feminine hygiene ad...
- 11/29/18--07:05: _People want Brussel...
- 11/29/18--07:05: _When is Christmas J...
- 11/29/18--07:06: _Pudding boobs are h...
- 11/29/18--09:08: _Costa has suspended...
- 11/29/18--09:21: _Can you dye your ha...
- 11/29/18--09:27: _Bus driver charges ...
- 11/29/18--09:32: _From dinosaur nugge...
- 11/29/18--22:42: _How to deal with th...
- 11/29/18--23:00: _‘Relax and it will ...
- 11/29/18--23:51: _Woman with ovarian ...
- 11/30/18--01:07: _How long does sex l...
- 11/30/18--01:08: _If you have a messy...
- 11/30/18--01:27: _Why does my dog shake?
- 11/30/18--01:34: _Man surprises girlf...
- 11/30/18--01:37: _Stunning, sustainab...
- 11/30/18--02:02: _Women sleep better ...
- 11/30/18--02:37: _People are truly ba...
- 11/30/18--02:45: _How does buying a h...
- 11/30/18--03:06: _Mad Men inspired ho...
- 11/29/18--07:05: When is Christmas Jumper Day 2018 and what is the money raised for?
- 11/29/18--07:06: Pudding boobs are here for Christmas, as expected
- 11/29/18--09:08: Costa has suspended their meal deal until after Christmas
- 11/29/18--09:21: Can you dye your hair when you’re pregnant?
- wear gloves
- leave the dye on for the minimum time
- work in a well-ventilated room
- rinse your scalp once the dye is applied
- 11/29/18--22:42: How to deal with the curse of cuffing season insomnia
- 11/30/18--01:07: How long does sex last, on average?
- 11/30/18--01:08: If you have a messy desk people think you’re selfish and grumpy
- 11/30/18--01:27: Why does my dog shake?
- The trembling continues for more than an hour or two
- You observe any other symptoms such as lethargy, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea, laboured breathing, etc
- You identify a potential toxin in the environment that your dog may have accessed
- 11/30/18--01:34: Man surprises girlfriend with a proposal in an escape room
- 11/30/18--02:02: Women sleep better with a dog in the bed, researchers say
- 11/30/18--02:45: How does buying a house with shared ownership actually work?
- 11/30/18--03:06: Mad Men inspired home goes on the market for £113,000
Swedish feminine hygiene brand Libresse – which we know as Bodyform in the UK – is celebrating the beauty and uniqueness of vulvae; the labia, clitoris, and vaginal opening.
In a refreshing new advert, they show the female genital form through moving fruits, food, origami, and purses.
The three-minute ad, Viva la Vulva, is an all-singing and dancing celebration of the differences of a woman’s vulva.
Libresse not only aims to promote the brand’s shower gels but also encourage acceptance of one’s genitals, as some women feel insecure about the appearance of what’s in their pants.
‘At Libresse we are convinced that each vulva is unique and that differences are shouted,’ says on the brand’s website.
‘We want you to feel proud of what you have, ranging from pubic hair to the size of the scalp. Too bad that this little (but amazing) part of the body can actually have a big negative impact on self-esteem.
‘Vulves and slides are the essence of what we are engaged in, therefore we use our voice to be more outspoken and open. We always explore the best ways to take care of your most intimate body parts.’
In the video you can see naked women covering up their genitals holding up an item resembling the vulva, which makes you realise just how many things resemble a set of labia.
From a woman (with stretch marks) holding out a shell, to picking up a fortune cookie, to close-ups of actual vaginal lips of women in tight trousers, the advert aims to normalise different types of vulvas.
The ad comes after a study from Australia last year found that of 443 GPs, 54% had seen patients requesting vulvoplasty (referring to any cosmetic sugical procedures that change the structure or appearance of the healthy external genitals, including labiaplasty). And from 2003 to 2013, the number of women having labiaplasties increased by five times.
It’s not the first time Libresse has shared an important message as last year they created a period advert that showed blood instead of the nonsensical blue liquid we’re used to seeing for sanitary products.
In it, a woman who is showering can be seen with drops of blood down her leg. In a previous advert advocating for open discourse about periods, their tagline read ‘no blood should hold us back’.
Apparently, people are more excited about Brussels sprouts than they are pigs in blankets this year.
New research by Tesco has shown that our tastes are changing, and vegetable dishes are becoming more popular thanks to the rise of plant-based eaters.
The nationwide research showed that in Scotland, 5% of people will eat a vegan or vegetarian Christmas dinner, compared to 9% of people living in the south.
It’s no surprise that Brighton was dubbed the ‘vegan capital of the UK’. with 12% eating a plant-based diet.
The report also showed that Brussels sprouts were seen as a more important addition to a Christmas dinner than pigs in blankets were. Maddening.
Alongside this, 40% of households still buy a Christmas pudding, but this is mainly by over 50s – with less than a quarter of 18-34 year olds buying one themselves.
The data also shows the nation is split over that age old decision: whether or not to serve Yorkshire puddings with Christmas dinner. People in Norwich were the most likely to do so – 50%– while just 13% of people in Belfast and 19% in Edinburgh said they would.
The days of waking up and drinking until you go to bed on Christmas day are also coming to an end, too, as 14% of people surveyed said they won’t be drinking at all, and a fifth saying they’ll have a low intake.
Tesco’s Christmas report was launched to celebrate ‘the many debates and rituals that make Christmas what it is for people up and down the country,’ Alessandra Bellini, the chain’s aptly named chief customer officer, said.
‘Our research found that, by and large, we’re still a nation of traditionalists – but with a third of people mixing things up at Christmas each year, that is changing.’
Brussels sprouts beat pigs-in-blankets in Britain's favourite Christmas food according to TescoBrussels sprouts beat pigs-in-blankets in Britain's favourite Christmas food according to TescohattiegladwellmetroBacon wrapped cocktail frank on a wire cooking rack
Everyone’s favourite sartorial Christmas tradition is just around the corner and will see a whole 24 hours dedicated to festive jumpers.
Christmas Jumper Day has encouraged everyone from office workers to beloved pets to pull on their favourite knitwear and raise money for charity.
Here’s what you need to know about the tradition and how you can support it.A very young Donald Glover spotted in resurfaced 2004 Beastie Boys Live DVD
When is it?
Christmas Jumper Day 2018 is on Friday December 14, leaving plenty of time to uncover your favourite pullover from storage or hit the shops to invest in a new one.
Who organises it?
Save The Children launched the campaign in December 2012 and has continued to run it ever since.
You can sign up online and get a free fundraising kit.
Where do the funds go?
Save The Children is a charity dedicated to helping to improve the lives of children and families around the world.
The money raised will go towards delivering life-saving care and medication, helping to provide an education and supporting struggling families.
How to donate to Save The Children
You can help support Save The Children by organising a Christmas Jumper Day at your place of work, study or among friends.
You can also take part in other fundraising events – such as sponsored runs or walks – or make a donation directly on the charity’s site.
Dog wearing Christmas sweaterDog wearing Christmas sweateralibhaizaina
So naturally, they have a few tricks up their sleeves for Christmas. They’ve come up with pudding boobs which is pretty much what it sounds like – Christmas pudding painted on a woman’s breasts.
The look, much like all their busty creations, involves a topless woman with glitter painted over her bosoms, this time in the shape of the popular festive dessert.
Though it’s probably too cold to rock this look anywhere outside the bedroom, it doesn’t require much, just some glittery face or body paint.
If you wanted to recreate the design, you will need some artistic flair; begin by drawing the outline of the Christmas puds on both boobs. Fear not, the nipples will be covered by some nip tape.
Then, fill in with brown and silver glitter, topping it off with green and red for the holly leaves. And voila, you’re not only tucking into a fruity pud, you’re wearing it.
In a matter of hours, the Go Get Glitter Instagram page was filled with over 3,000 likes, with many commenting to say that this was their Christmas inspo.
The hashtag #puddingboobs also took off, with 46 posts inspired by Go Get Glitter. Unfortunately for them though, the Instagram community has reported some content that hasn’t met the platform’s community guidelines which means you can’t see any of the posts, for now at least.
The original post is still up though and many users tagged their friends to suggest they should opt for the design instead of a Christmas jumper.
Some joked that they would wear the look to their Christmas party while others appreciated the trend but wouldn’t dare to pull it off.
One person commented: ‘Can I do this with my bum instead?’
We don’t see why not.
Fans of the Costa meal deal, we must warn you not to shoot the messenger.
The offer has been rescinded, at least for the time being, meaning you’ll have to pay full price for lunch combos.
The previous deal was £4.95 for a toastie, a small or medium hot drink, and a pack of crisps, fruit, or popcorn.
It was available between 11am and 2pm, making it a perfect option for lunchtime.
Customers have expressed their anger at the coffee chain on Twitter, after getting to stores only to find that there were no more cheap toastie meals.
It seems it isn’t a permanent change, however, and is simply due to the fact the offers change around every few months.
A Costa spokesperson told Metro.co.uk:
‘The Costa Coffee Meal Deal was removed from stores in November as we introduced our limited edition Christmas menu. We will be re-introducing our meal deal, with some exciting new options early next year.’
As long as you can hold off until January, your meal deals will be back as promised.
There are plenty of other options in the store to tide you over, from bonfire spiced drinks to a pigs in blankets mac and cheese.
Costa Coffee_Coffee Plus MenuCosta Coffee_Coffee Plus MenujessicacvlCosta meal deal
When you’re pregnant there’s a list of things you’re not supposed to do; smoke, drink alcohol, eat sushi, among others.
There are some things in the grey area that people have opposing views on, such as spray tanning, painting (inhaling fumes), using a sauna/jacuzzi (risks of overheating, dehydration and fainting), and even exercise.
Using hair dye is also a concern for some as it contains chemicals that mums fear may be absorbed by the scalp and thus enter the bloodstream, possibly reaching the foetus.
But how true is that?
According to the NHS, the chemicals in permanent and semi-permanent hair dyes are not highly toxic. Most research, although limited, shows it’s safe to colour your hair while pregnant.
Excessive use of hair chemicals could be harmful but they would have to be massive doses, unlike what you’d get in a normal hair treatment.
The American Pregnancy Association also backs this and states the same is true for dyeing your hair while breastfeeding, though there is little research in the area.
If you are worried about colouring your hair when you first become pregnant, you might want to wait to 12 weeks at least.
Many women decide to wait to dye their hair until after the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, when the risk of chemical substances harming the baby is much lower.
If you’re colouring your hair yourself, you can reduce the risk further by making sure you:
Highlighting your hair, by putting the dye only on to strands of hair, also reduces any risk. The chemicals used are only absorbed by your hair, and not by your scalp or bloodstream.
You can also use semi-permanent pure vegetable dyes, such as henna, which is a safe alternative and can be used to darken hair.
But remember that your hair condition might change during pregnancy. It might become less absorbent, frizzy or unpredictable. So it’s best to test a strand first using the hair dye or treatment you intend to use.
You should also speak to your hairdresser for advice.
What chemicals are in hair dye?
To achieve a permanent color, many hair dyes work using a system of ammonia (or ethanolamines in the case of some ammonia-free products), hydrogen peroxide, and p-phenylenediamine. The ammonia pulls apart layers of the hair’s proteins, so that the dye can access the hair shaft. Next, hydrogen peroxide bleaches the hair and helps p-phenylenediamine, one of the primary coloring agents, to become trapped in the hair.
These common dye chemicals are associated with negative health effects. Ammonia is a respiratory and asthma irritant, a potential endocrine disruptor, and is persistent in the environment, meaning it sticks around. P-phenylenediamine is associated with birth defects, skin irritation, liver and blood toxicity, and allergic reaction. It is restricted for use in the European Union.
Can you dye your hair when pregnant?Can you dye your hair when pregnant?faimabakar1
A pampered dog is internet-famous after her owner was forced to fork out for a ‘dog ticket’ on the bus.
Heidi Lewis initially thought the driver was joking when she took the number 27 in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, last Thursday and was made to pay 90p for her tiny French Bulldog Chanel.
However the six-month-old puppy was determined to get her money’s worth and hopped up onto her own seat next to Heidi.
A hilarious photo of Chanel relaxing on the seat next to a picture of the dog’s ticket with the comment ‘you paid for a ticket so you get a seat, babes’ quickly went viral, with more than 40,000 shares and likes.
Heidi, a 26-year-old mum-of-three, says this is the first time she’s ever been asked to pay for a ticket for Chanel – and questions why dogs are charged when babies go free.
Heidi from Twyncarmel, Merthyr Tydfil, said: ‘When the driver said I needed to pay for a ticket, I just laughed and I thought he was joking. I carried on walking.
‘He turned round and said ‘no I’m serious’. I replied ‘okay then, show me the ticket’ because I didn’t believe him.
‘I just started laughing then thought, ‘well if she’s paid she might as well take a seat’.
‘I was quite shocked really because I was thinking ‘why should a dog be charged if they don’t normally have a seat?’ Babies don’t have to pay.’
Support worker Heidi had been doing the school run last Thursday when she was told she’d have to pay for Chanel.
Bought as a birthday gift in September, the dog had reportedly never been charged before but made the most of it and even refused to budge when it was their stop.
Heidi said: ‘I’d done the school run with my kids. It’s £1 for my child – it’s only 10p cheaper for a dog.
‘Chanel hates sitting on the floor, she stands up on the bus normally when I take her on.
‘I’ve taken her on the bus before and they never told me about getting a dog ticket, but this time they said I had to, so I was just shocked.
‘The driver didn’t say anything and we were the last ones to get off the bus.
‘When I was getting off she wasn’t having it and wanted to stay put, so I had to pick her up to get her off. She’s been pampered too much.
‘He’d seen that I was taking my time and laughed when he saw me picking her up.
‘She loved the trip, she enjoyed looking out of the window.
‘Normally she’ll only sit when she doesn’t want to walk, but this time she enjoyed her own seat at the back.’
When Heidi told friends and family about the incident, she says they admitted they had never paid for their pets either.
Heidi said: ‘Some people have said they’d never realised you’re supposed to pay for a dog.
‘All my family have all got dogs and when they take their dogs on the bus they don’t have to pay. I’ve only ever seen people just walk on the bus with them.’
On social media, commuters and dog owners were split over whether dogs should be allowed a seat or if they should even be charged for a ticket.
Since Heidi’s post was shared, there’s been mixed opinions on the matter,
One person said they’d never been charged for a dog before, while a bus driver said: ‘I never charge for dogs – they’re more well behaved than the humans.’
One woman wrote: ‘She deserves a seat. She’s a paid traveller like everyone else.’
Someone else said that she’s always had to pay to take her dog on the bus, explaining: ‘You’ve always had to pay for a dog on a bus in my city and I believe it is at the driver’s discretion as to whether they are allowed on.’
On Stagecoach’s website, their conditions of carriage state: ‘One accompanied, well-behaved dog or other small animal which will not be a danger or a nuisance for other customers or our staff is allowed to travel with you on our buses at the discretion of the driver who may reasonably decide where on the bus the animal is best carried.
‘A fare may be charged for dogs and details are contained in the Guide to Tickets of the local Stagecoach operating company available on our website.’
A spokesperson for Stagecoach in South Wales said: ‘A dog charge has been in place for many years and contributes to the cost of cleaning the interiors of our buses.
‘There has been no change to our policy. There is no charge for guide dogs.’
This pampered pooch went viral after her owner was forced to fork out for a 'dog ticket' on the bus - so she cheekily claimed her own seatThis pampered pooch went viral after her owner was forced to fork out for a 'dog ticket' on the bus - so she cheekily claimed her own seathattiegladwellmetroPIC FROM Kennedy News and Media (PICTURED: CHANEL THE FRENCH BULLDOG WITH OWNER HEIDI) This pampered pooch went viral after her owner was forced to fork out for a 'dog ticket' on the bus - so she cheekily claimed her own seat. Heidi Lewis initially thought the driver was joking when she took the number 27 in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, last Thursday and was made to pay 90p for tiny French Bulldog Chanel. However the six-month-old puppy was determined to get her money's worth and even hopped up onto her own seat next to Heidi. SEE KENNEDY NEWS COPY - 0161 697 4266PIC FROM Kennedy News and Media (PICTURED: SIX-MONTH-OLD CHANEL THE FRENCH BULLDOG) This pampered pooch went viral after her owner was forced to fork out for a 'dog ticket' on the bus - so she cheekily claimed her own seat. Heidi Lewis initially thought the driver was joking when she took the number 27 in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, last Thursday and was made to pay 90p for tiny French Bulldog Chanel. However the six-month-old puppy was determined to get her money's worth and even hopped up onto her own seat next to Heidi. SEE KENNEDY NEWS COPY - 0161 697 4266PIC FROM Kennedy News and Media (PICTURED: SIX-MONTH-OLD CHANEL THE FRENCH BULLDOG) This pampered pooch went viral after her owner was forced to fork out for a 'dog ticket' on the bus - so she cheekily claimed her own seat. Heidi Lewis initially thought the driver was joking when she took the number 27 in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, last Thursday and was made to pay 90p for tiny French Bulldog Chanel. However the six-month-old puppy was determined to get her money's worth and even hopped up onto her own seat next to Heidi. SEE KENNEDY NEWS COPY - 0161 697 4266PIC FROM Kennedy News and Media (PICTURED: HEIDI LEWIS' ORIGINAL POST ABOUT DOG TICKET) This pampered pooch went viral after her owner was forced to fork out for a 'dog ticket' on the bus - so she cheekily claimed her own seat. Heidi Lewis initially thought the driver was joking when she took the number 27 in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, last Thursday and was made to pay 90p for tiny French Bulldog Chanel. However the six-month-old puppy was determined to get her money's worth and even hopped up onto her own seat next to Heidi. SEE KENNEDY NEWS COPY - 0161 697 4266
A month to go before Christmas – and don’t we know it.
Supermarkets are packed to the rafters with seitan turduckens. Radio stations already have Mariah on repeat. And old enemies suddenly seem to have called a truce.
Ahh, we’re just one viewing of Love Actually away from a festive full-house (but let’s not lose our heads just yet, it really is only November still).
While one omni-vegan rivalry was trying to bury the hatchet this week, however, another was just getting going – and in Brighton of all places.
And vegan pets didn’t have a much better time of it either.
What a week in vegan news it’s been!
On the one hand, the fired Waitrose editor and vegan journo are now pals…
Remember when Waitrose Food ed, William Sitwell, joked about killing vegans in response to a pitch from freelance joumo Jemima Webber?
Well, they’re now both totally cool with each other – after they bonded over hate mail.
In fact, the i claims that pair shared a load of vegan tortillas at vegan pub, The Spread Eagle.
Jemima is reported to have told Sitwell that it was never her intention for him to lose his job when she shared their email exchange on social media. He then apologised, calling his behaviour ‘flippant and immature and silly’.
The plant-based journalist then wrote on her Instagram after the meeting, saying that Sitwell had shown her ‘nothing but kindness’.
‘I think the fact that we’re able to discuss these crucial issues, listen to each other and not hurl insults sends a positive message, and that hopefully some of the nastiness shown by both sides of the argument will abate,” Nelson said.
Not only that, but Sitwell has even suggested that the pair should come together to ‘explain the world of food and describe it to people of our persuasions’.
Oh, and the former Waitrose editor has also written on his own Insta that perhaps cutting down on meat is a good thing.
An early Christmas miracle indeed.
…on the other, vegans and meat eaters have clashed in Brighton
Brighton, sweet, pure Brighton. Land of hemp and dairy-free dreams.
This week, Direct Action Everywhere (look ‘em up if you haven’t heard of them, sigh) had a go at diners eating at a steakhouse in the seaside town. They played sounds of cows being slaughtered while people ate and after 20 minutes, they eventually left.
But rather than just take it on the chin, a stag party – including ‘a £250 Oompa Loompa impersonator’ got up and started chanting back at the activists – telling diners to ‘stand up if you love meat’.
You can read more about the incident here.
It could be illegal to make your cat vegan
Let’s say this first and foremost: don’t get a pet if you can’t handle feeding it meat if its natural diet would include that. Cats are carnivores, end of.
So quite rightly, the RSPCA has warned that people who feed their felines a plant-based diet could be breaking animal welfare laws.
They told the Telegraph that while dogs are omnivores who can eat a ‘wide variety of food types… (and) can survive on a vegetarian diet as long as the diet is well-balanced, cats are strict carnivores and depend on some very specific nutrients that are found in meat…so become seriously ill if they are fed a vegetarian or vegan diet’.
But there are some who believe that the evidence against a well-balanced vegan diet is inconclusive.
Plant Based News reports that vegan vet Dr Andrew Knight believes that there hasn’t been enough research into alternative diets to conclude that non-meat diets really are so ruinous.
‘I’ve trawled through the scientific literature for studies describing their adverse effects,’ he says.
‘Oddly perhaps, given the strength of ‘urban wisdom’ on this issue, I’ve struggled to locate any scientific evidence demonstrating that cats and dogs fed well-planned and nutritional vegan diets are less healthy than the norm.
‘Yet, I have found evidence of one kind. I’ve accidentally located more than 10 published studies documenting hazardous ingredients in commercial meat-based diets, or adverse health effects in cats and dogs maintained on them.’
A good compromise might be to feed your kittie as much whole foods as you can – swerving away from cheap, mass produced cat food that contains God-knows-what under all that jelly.
Quorn might be launching vegan dinosaur nuggets
Imagine the scene. There you are, circling the drain at 11am the morning after a big night out. Nothing will save you, apart from some baked beans and nuggets. But where’s a vegan to find some crispy-yet-moist novelty-shaped nuggets?
Well, soon, in your own damn freezer, because someone drunk emailed Quorn a few months ago asking for dinosaur-shaped nuggs to help manage her depression and now the company is genuinely looking into it.
While not all Quorn products are vegan, it seems quite likely that new products would be – especially as it’s just acquired the biggest meat-alternative factor in the world and already offers vegan chicken-style nuggs.
In the meantime, Quorn has just dropped some Cracking Cranberry Balls at Morrison’s and Ocado.com, which it says ‘goes perfectly with roasted vegetables and crispy potatoes’.
Never too early for cranberry-anything.
Missing smoked salmon? Well, get a load of F-ish
There are few things quite as delicious as smoked salmon and cream cheese bagels. Sorry, but it’s true – and missing out one of the saddest things about veganism.
At least, it was because some genius has come up with a bottle of F-ish – a plant-based alternative to smoked salmon. While Moko isn’t not the first to discover that one can make a salmon-like food from carrot, this is the first product to be bottled – meaning you can serve up brunch at home rather than schlepping it over to Hackney every weekend.
‘When I was younger, I lived in Japan and ate a lot of seafood,’ Moko tells Metro.co.uk.
‘I absolutely loved the flavour and texture it brought to my plate. However, as a vegan and environmentalist, I made a decision to end my contribution to the mass-farming of fish.
‘After realising I was missing the taste profile, I wanted to create alternatives for people like me, whilst also bringing awareness to issues of marine cruelty, overfishing, and aquatic ecosystem destruction.
‘I run a vegan event space where I organise vegan Cheese and Wine parties (as well as other events) where I started serving F-ish to customers over a year ago. People loved it! I don’t know why it’s taken so long for me to start selling it as a stand-alone product!’
Made from organic carrots which are marinated and baked using a ‘special method’, Moko says F-ish ‘satisfies a smoked salmon craving for those who have chosen to abstain from seafood for any reason.
‘It’s great because it allows people to experience the nostalgia and pleasure of a similar taste and texture, but in a more sustainable way without compromising their values. It’s also useful for those with allergies or pregnant women not wishing to risk ingesting pollutants.’
F-ish is due to be rolled out at markets, small independent stores and online next week – and hopefully bigger places like Wholefoods and Planet Organic soon.
Someone, pass the jug of mimosa…
Tibits launches a vegan fondue
Trust a Swiss company to solve the molten cheese crisis many of us have come winter. Tibits is bringing the Alps to London, by launching a vegan fondue (£24pp).
It’s going to be launching at the Mayfair branch on 3 December, where there’s a Christmas Alpine Terrace complete with an 8ft Christmas tree and outdoor heaters. Oh, and the plant-based pioneers are also going to have their festive cocktail menu on the go, offering mulled wine and hot buttered rum.
Brick Lane curry house wins ‘Best Vegan Indian Restaurant’
City Spice launched the first vegan Indian menu on Brick Lane a while ago and now the curry house – led by a teenage manager – has just landed its first award.
It was named London’s Best Vegan Indian Restaurant at the prestigious Bangladesh Caterers Association Awards – known as the ‘Oscars’ of the curry world.
Since its first vegan curry menu was launched, the restaurant has seen a 170% increase in bookings.
Its current 14-dish extravaganza has been inspired by the tips and tricks of some of the world’s most talented Michelin chefs at the Taste of Briain Festival in Sri Lanka this year.
Restaurant manager Abdul Muhaimen, 19, who created the menu, says: ‘Brick Lane is an incredible institution, but every institution needs a kick up the bum once in a while! Palettes are changing, and the street needs to catch up.
‘While we’re delighted to have been recognised by the BCA, that’s just the tip of the iceberg for our family run restaurant. Since its launch we’ve now sold more than a thousand vegan dishes, the cost of which has paid for the first year of my university degree – my dad couldn’t be happier!’
‘It’s taken me stacks of selfies to perfect my sleeping-face, and if a guy stays over, I lie there in my “aren’t I pretty and elegant” sleeping position, getting no sleep at all.
‘It takes time for me to feel comfortable sharing my bed with a new boyfriend.
‘Sometimes I ask them to leave after sex, saying I have a 3am conference call with Australia. One guy made a fuss about getting up, so I accidentally spilt water all over the duvet…’
Lexi’s problems sleeping with a new partner will probably ring a bell with almost everyone who’s recently paired up for cuffingsSeason. What’s that? You haven’t heard of Cuffing Season? It’s totally a thing. Cuffing season is like the human equivalent of finding a bear to hibernate with. It’s getting loved up as the temperature drops, eating stew on the sofa, and wearing matching onesies. When it’s five degrees outside, it’s less about a partner in crime, and more about a partner for Amazon Prime.
But as lovely as it is to snuggle up with someone who’ll keep our feet warm, sharing a bed with a new partner isn’t always easy – and cuffing season insomnia is leaving us bleary eyed.
It takes a while for me to get used to having someone in that space,’ says Louise. ‘Sometimes they snore, or steal the covers, or try to hug all night. I like space when sleeping – I’m not a snuggler, so that can annoy me.
‘And it’s feeling self-conscious too. One guy thought I was awake all night worrying about my ex, when actually I just didn’t want to fart or snore when I was sleeping.’
Gemma has similar problems. She tells us: ‘I wake up with their every move, then I lie there wide awake, feeling very aware of myself moving and fidgeting and breathing. I can’t relax or switch off – I think I wake them up sometimes. And I’m such a farty a person, I have to hold it in or sneak off to the loo, because I hate farting in front of guys.
‘I just feel so tired and useless the next day – it can easily take a couple of months before I’m comfortable enough to sleep through the night.’
It’s not just women who are suffering from cuffing season insomnia. Ed says: ‘when I stay over in a new relationship, it’s unfamiliar surroundings – it’s their bed, not my bed, so I have trouble sleeping.’
Even when Ed hosts the slumber party himself, getting to sleep with a new girlfriend isn’t easy.
‘Some people are fidgety in their sleep, and even the calmest sleeper usually moves around a bit, so I’m likely to wake up,’ he explains. ‘Then I’m awake, and this person I’m attracted to is sleeping, and I’m lying there feeling horny.
‘I also feel self-conscious when I’m in bed with someone I don’t know well – I worry about flatulence, and waking up drooling over someone else’s pillow.’
For Ed, it can take three to six months before he sleeps through the night with a new partner.
Jack finds it can take easily six months. He says: ‘I’m used to having a king size bed to myself, so it’s difficult if I stay over and have to share a double. And you’re never going to sleep in your natural position. Spooning’s great, but I can’t lie like that all night, so I’m conscious that I’ll have to move, and I worry about waking them.
‘It makes sleeping with someone in the initial stages quite difficult. When you’re comfortable in the relationship, you can have a cuddle then separate and it’s not a problem – it’s not, “oh he doesn’t like me,” or “doesn’t she like me?” But in the initial stages, it’s tricky.’
Despite the lack of sleep caused by spending the night with a new girlfriend, Jack finds he functions well at work the next day.
‘I think it’s my endorphin levels from the night before,’ he notes. ‘Also, when I spend the night with someone I really like, I think my sleep quality is better because I’m happy and content. I might not get as much sleep as I would by myself, but the sleep I do get feels like a really good deep sleep.’
Psychologist and sleep expert Hope Bastine backs up Jack’s theory. She tells Metro.co.uk: ‘Being in love is equivalent to being on ecstasy, and it’s proven that being with a loved one improves sleep quality.’
So why is it so tricky to sleep with a new partner?
‘In dating, when the couple are taking turns to sleep over, they’re experiencing continuous change,’ explains Hope. ‘The sounds are new, the environment’s new, and it causes our brain to go into dolphin mode, where half our brain is asleep, and the other half is awake.’
In an effort to cure cuffing season insomnia, here are Hope’s tips for a better night’s sleep with your hibernation mate:
How to remedy cuffing season insomnia:
Create a home from home
When you sleep over, bring things that remind you of your bedroom at home. It could be a favourite book, a throw, or a print of some artwork you have on the wall.
Mask out unfamiliar sounds with white noise – or pink noise, which is more relaxing – using an app like Sonic Sleep.
Don’t feel you have to be ‘perfect’ – but if you’re worried about farting, avoid gas-producing foods like pulses and cabbage.
Choose foods such as turkey, tuna, and tofu, which help you to sleep; eat light, and have a banana – they help you sleep and they’re good for your gut.
Get snoring checked out by a doctor, but sleeping on your side can be a quick fix, as can using eucalyptus oil to open the air passages and make breathing clearer.
Bend to bond
Create a sleep ritual to cement the bond in your relationship – it will create a feeling of well-being that will relax you for sleep. Start with a sleep tea from Pukka or Clipper, then meditate or do yoga together in bed – and make sure you leave time for pillow talk.
Shot to pieces
If you’re feeling fatigued the next day at work, don’t over self-medicate on caffeine. Instead, reach for a Berocca, or a ginseng energy shot, and try to find somewhere quiet to meditate – it will regenerate your brain!
And if you think your relationship has the potential to last beyond Cuffing Season, don’t jack it in just because of a few sleepless nights.
Dating and relationship coach James Preece says: ‘A new bed, a new partner and new surroundings can take some getting used to. However, if things work out between you, you’ll both learn to relax in each other’s company.’
How getting into a new relationship is wrecking people's sleepHow getting into a new relationship is wrecking people's sleepellencscottHow getting into a new relationship is wrecking people's sleep
Fertility is the real F-word for a lot of women. Not straightforward or simple, but rather a minefield of tests and disappointments bringing with them the recurring and disturbing notion of having failed at something you have almost no control over.
Trying to get pregnant when it’s just not happening is one of the most difficult and stressful things many woman will endure. And unfortunately, well-meaning friends and family sometimes make things worse by managing to say just the wrong thing.
Obviously every woman – and relationship, friendship – is different and you may find that your friend who is struggling to conceive or has had a miscarriage even says some of these things herself. In which case, fine.
However, we spoke to many women who have had fertility issues or are having them now. From their honest feedback, we made this list.
Here is a guide to the things never to say to a woman trying to get pregnant, whether naturally or through IVF… and what you CAN say instead.
‘Stop trying and just relax and it will happen.’ Universally the most hated of all – each of the many women polled despised this pithy promise. Says Amanda, ‘As a 41-year-old desperate to conceive, news flash – YOU CAN’T STOP TRYING! Every single cycle counts.’
This is closely followed by anecdotes about your brother’s girlfriend’s sister who ‘did 7 rounds of IVF and then fell pregnant naturally when she stopped worrying about it.’
‘When you’re pouring your life savings into trying IVF,’ says Sharon, ‘the last thing you need is some smug git telling you you’re getting it all wrong.’
‘Are you pregnant yet?’ and also the marginally less subtle, ‘Any news?’ accompanied by raised eyebrows. Admittedly a well-intentioned way to ‘check in’ on progress, each time it’s asked it requires the listener to repeat their own sad refrain of NO.
It’s like constantly asking someone you know who is jobless and hunting, ‘have you found that job yet?’. Leave it alone – when there is news to share, they will share.
‘Do you get straight out of bed after sex? You know you need to lay there and elevate your pelvis for a few minutes after sex’. ‘Oh!! Thank you!’ says Claire 39, ‘If only we’d known, after three years of total unexplained infertility and numerous investigations, it was just a matter of keeping my legs in the air!!’ Note to well wishers – assume couples struggling to conceive have already tried this.
If she’s had a miscarriage: ‘Well at least you know you can get pregnant!’ – if she’s had a miscarriage, this is not helpful. She has suffered a loss. You don’t need to try and find the upside.
‘Here’s an update of MY bump (with pics) via email’ #notmyfriendanymore
‘Have you been checked for chlamydia?’ This was from my mother of all people,’ says Kate, early 30s.
‘Have you considered adoption?’ A wonderful thing – but this is a personal decision and not one that should be suggested as an alternative to getting pregnant.
‘Have you tried pomegranate? Are you drinking raspberry tea?’ All our women requested that people stop throwing out alternative remedies. Clearly well intended, it nonetheless assumes that these issues are simplistic and the person doing all they can to get pregnant – including potentially giving themselves daily injections – overlooked a simple fix.
‘Oh, we didn’t even have to try.’ ‘I only had to look at my husband and I was pregnant!’ And ‘I’m just too fertile!’ Anyone who feels it is appropriate to complain about their own abundant fertility (#blessed ) as a conversation starter directed towards someone who is struggling to get pregnant is a basic b****.
‘It’s all part of God’s Plan’. Universally detested. No one believes that God doesn’t want you to have your much longed for baby.
Don’t complain about your own kids: People without kids, even if they’re not doing IVF, get really sick of parents trying to compare who’s life is harder. ‘You’re so lucky you don’t have kids!’ or moaning about being a mother and how hard it is.
Says one woman seeking help to conceive, ‘If you’re already a parent, don’t moan about how s*** having kids is, and try to claim you’re lucky for not having that commitment and being able to get pissed and be spontaneous.’ It doesn’t help.
‘Well at least you’ve got one!’ to someone with secondary infertility. Take it from someone who’s been there, it still hurts – and the longing for a second child to complete a family unit that feels unfinished can be surprisingly powerful and all-consuming.
‘Have you thought about giving up?’ Yes, yes we have… a million times over…
‘At least you have a niece and three nephews from your brothers – AND you get to give them back at the end of the day!’ Yeah, it’s not the same, but thanks.
‘I just think if you love each other, it will just happen.’ GAAAAAH.
‘How many goes at IVF will you have before you give up?’ Sharon 47 says, ‘Even thinking about having to stop IVF for financial, emotional or physical reasons just breaks your heart. And it’s certainly not “giving up”. It’s a brave decision that is only made after a lot of tears. The best thing you can do when someone who confides that multiple IVF attempts haven’t worked yet is to give them a hug and listen. Not give advice based on what some mate did. Not ask if they’ve tried some bonkers diet. Not start insisting they see this doctor or that expert or have some random treatment. Just please listen. We’re not asking for a cure if we confide in you – we’re asking for support.’
SO HERE’S WHAT TO SAY
Offer positives – message every day and say how great she is coping with her needles and nightly injections, encourage her.
Do ask how it’s going if you know your friend is doing IVF/trying etc. But don’t make it the only topic of conversation unless they really need to vent about the frustration, exhaustion, needles, drugs, weird discharge etc.
Do not be offended if your friend turns down an invitation, especially if they are in the midst of IVF – it can be be incredibly exhausting physically and emotionally.
Suggest girlie nights out or in to take her mind off the pressure and daily fears.
Offer distractions – ask about OTHER areas of her life. Showbiz editor and IVF mum Nikki says, ideally something along the lines of, “I’m meant to be interviewing Tom Hardy tomorrow but can’t make it. Can you possibly go instead?”
Make sure she knows you are always on the other end of a phone call. Says Sharon, who endured multiple failed cycles of IVF and two miscarriages before becoming a mum at 46, ‘My best offer came from BBC London radio presenter Petrie Hosken. She installed the emergency code word of ‘cabbage’. If I texted that word to her day or night she promised she’d be round in an instant with a cold bottle and a warm shoulder to cry on. That’s exactly what I needed in a mate.’
‘I really hope it happens for you because you’d both be great parents...’ says Liza 41, was the best thing anyone said. “it’s just honest and it’s acknowledging you’re trying without any (unintended) smugness.”
Following a miscarriage – Claire, 37 says that following her first miscarriage a caring friend named Georgia wrote: ‘You’re at the beginning, not the end, of what is not always an easy journey but one that you can do because you are strong and so many people love you.’
Karen shares, ‘As for IVF, I had a friend that had gone through it before me and had a child. I talked to her a lot, it does feel like if you haven’t gone through it people don’t really understand. So it can be very isolating. My lovely friend even gifted me her purse she’d used for her medication, hoping that it would be lucky for me. I still have it. I also have two gorgeous boys. I am very, very lucky.’
This story is part of Fertility Month, a month-long series covering all aspects of fertility.
For the next four weeks, we will be speaking to people at all stages of the fertility journey as well as doctors, lawyers and fertility experts who can shed light on the most important issues.
If you have a story to tell, please do get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is a selection of the stories from Fertility Month so far - and you can find all Fertility Month content here.
Social infertility is very real and very shitSocial infertility is very real and very shitashleysinlondonCaption: METRO ILLUSTRATIONS (Picture: Virgin Miri/ Metro.co.uk) Social infertility is very real and very shit Is there a word for when you find out there???s a name for something you???ve been feeling or experiencing? Because if there???s not, there should be. You see I recently found out (via this wonderful piece my friend Emily Maddick wrote for Grazia magazine) that there???s a snappy term for the fact that I desperately want children but might not be able to have them because I???m still fucking single. It???s called social infertility. While plain old medical infertility is something you hear about all the time, social infertility is so rarely spoken about I only just came across the phrase a couple of weeks ago and I???m afflicted by it. Like mental illness - which is only now starting to be treated as seriously as physical health issues ??? social infertility is seen as something that???s either made up or totally avoidable if only the person concerned would just pull their socks up and bloody get on with it. But I???d like to make it very clear here and now; I am not being too picky, I am not playing fast and loose with biology because I???m a spoilt brat who thinks she can always get her own way, and I am certainly not prioritising my career and purposely putting procreating on-hold to climb the greasy pole - I simply haven???t met anyone I could possibly, under any reasonable standards, have children with. And believe me, no one???s more disappointed or upset about this fact than me. To give you some background, I???m 35 and have been single for all of my 30s and a decent chunk of my 20s. Yes, I???ve dated. Yes, there have been people I???ve liked and others who have liked me (although, unfortunately, rarely the twain have met). I???m the product of a stable, loving, two-parent family, and have always envisioned creating my own equally traditional family unit with marriage and kids. And yet, despite my long-held hopes, dreams, and many, many dates, it hasn Copyright: Virgin Miri/ Metro.co.ukWoman's hand holding positive pregnancy test
A woman who faced questions about when she was due thought she was ‘just fat’ – when in reality she was carrying a 26kg ovarian cyst.
Keely Favell, 28, started gaining weight back in 2014, her tummy ‘slowly getting bigger and bigger’.
At first she put it down to standard weight gain, then suspected pregnancy – but after multiple home tests it was ruled out.
When she went to the doctor her GP was convinced she was about to give birth to a child, so gave her an ultrasound.
It was then that Keely discovered she was carrying a cyst the size of seven newborn babies. Surgery was needed.
‘I’ve always been chunky, but over the course of a couple of years, I gradually got this tummy,’ said Keely.
‘I couldn’t understand it – I was exercising and eating healthily, but I was slowly getting bigger and bigger.
‘It crept up so slowly that I didn’t know anything was wrong – I just thought I was putting on timber.
‘I’ve been with my partner Jamie Gibbins for ten years and we did wonder a few times if I was pregnant – but we did home tests and they always ruled it out.’
In 2016 Keely first went to her GP after fainting at work, but her symptoms were dismissed as a side effect of acne tablets or a result of stress.
‘My GP didn’t even attempt to examine me. I was sat there with a big coat on, so I unzipped it, pointed to my belly and said “could it be anything to do with this?”
‘Looking at me, anyone would have thought I was nine months gone. It wasn’t the first time I’d been mistaken for an expectant mum, but my GP had the test results and should have known better.
‘People had seen me waddling around, carrying this lump, and I’d been asked a few times when I was due.’
Keely faced so many questions about what people assumed was a pregnancy that she’d started to go along with the story, embarrassed to admit that – as she thought – she had just put on weight.
‘It was so embarrassing trying to explain that I was – or, so I thought – just fat,’ she said. ‘I’d go along with it to spare everyone the blushes.’
It wasn’t until January last year that Keely finally went for an ultrasound, by which point her tummy had grown drastically.
‘I was lying there with Jamie beside me as the radiologist moved the probe over my tummy,’ she remembers. ‘I saw her eyes widen in horror, but the screen was just blank.
‘The look on her face said it all – something was wrong, and when she said she had to get a consultant I started to panic. Jamie did his best to reassure me but I felt paralysed with fear.’
The consultant sent Keely for an emergency CT scan, which found that her large tummy was due to a massive cyst surrounded by a 25cm-thick sac of fluid.
The only option was surgery, despite concerns from doctors that there may have been more than one cyst or that it could be attached to other organs.
‘Until they opened me up, no one knew for sure what they would find,’ said Keely, whose stomach swelled another five inches as she waited four weeks for surgery.
In March of last year, Keely underwent a five hour surgery to remove a giant cyst weighing 26kg. That’s the same weight as seven newborn babies.
Thankfully, the cyst turned out to be benign.
‘It weighed as much as a seven or eight-year-old child,’ says Keely. ‘I remember still being groggy from the anaesthetic as they wheeled me back to the ward, and excited hospital staff were shoving photos in front of me.
‘I didn’t really understand why until I came round properly and everyone was treating me like a minor celebrity!
‘Then they explained how big this cyst was and showed me the pictures – I couldn’t believe I’d been walking around for so long carrying this medical alien.
‘It looked like a massive pile of ice cream so I called it Mr Whippy!’
Of course, that kind of dramatic surgery has left Keely with some scars. She has stretchmarks you’d expect from a pregnancy, as well as a 30cm scar from her sternum to her pelvis. The removal of the cyst also meant the loss of her right ovary.
But the loss of that hefty weight has made Keely feel incredible.
‘I was sore, but walking around felt absolutely amazing,’ she says. ‘I felt like I was floating!’
‘I lost sight of how difficult even simple things like driving a car or walking up the stairs had become.
‘Losing my lump gave me my life back – I can’t thank my surgeon enough.’
Woman's ovarian cyst was the weight of seven babiesWoman's ovarian cyst was the weight of seven babiesellencscottKeely Favell shortly before she had surgery in March 2017, with an ovarian cyst that weighed the same as septuplets.Keely Favell of Swansea, Wales, heading into surgery at the city's Singleton Hospital to have a 26kg ovarian cyst removed, in March 2017.The 26kg ovarian cyst removed from Keely Favell's belly during surgery at Swansea's Singleton Hospital.Keely Favell recovering in hospital after surgery to remove a 26kg ovarian cyst.Keely Favell approx 2 weeks after her surgery to remove an ovarian cyst
We’ve talked before about whether there’s an ideal length of time for sex to take, and came to the conclusion that as long as everyone is having fun, it doesn’t really matter how long sex takes.
But how long do people on average have sex for?
It’s a hotly debated topic, and a surprisingly hard thing to research. Partially because we often lose track of time when we’re enjoying ourselves sexually, and also because there’s a bit of a tendency to exaggerate.
Despite the fact that women are increasingly vocal about not wanting to have penetrative sex for hours on end, there’s still a myth that being able to go on for hours and hours is an achievement.
Observing people having sex for the study also throws a bit of a spanner in the works, because having sex in a lab environment with a load of people watching you might rather change how you get it on.
A 2005 study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine explored the topic of average sex length by having 500 couples (from the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Spain, Turkey, and the United States) time how long they had sex for over a four week period.
Sex was defined as the moment of penetration through to the moment of male climax. That’s 2005 for you.
The length of time couples had sex for ranged from 33 seconds all the way up to 44 minutes, but the average over all was 5.4 minutes. Which tallies with the poll Metro.co.uk did on this topic.
Variable factors between the couples were their nationality, whether or not the man was circumcised and if they used a condom.
According to the study, condom usage and circumcision had no consistent affect on the length of sex.
Nationality wise, no one nation was much different from another, with the notable exception of Turkey, where the average man lasted 3.7 minutes.
people tell us the things people said during sex that instantly killed the moodpeople tell us the things people said during sex that instantly killed the moodrebeccacnreidpeople tell us the things people said during sex that instantly killed the mood
Let me preface this by saying that my desk is a cluttered pile of wreckage.
But I’m nice, I swear.
So I do not agree with this study one bit. Not at all. But we must continue onward and report what they found. Sorry in advance to all my fellow people whose desks are littered with boxes of tea and old bits of post.
New research from the University of Michigan suggests that people with messy desks at work tend to be seen as selfish, uncaring, and cranky. Lovely.
Psychologists performed three experiments with 160 participants, who were asked to sit in one of three offices: one that was clean and uncluttered and one that was ‘somewhat’ messy, and one that was ‘very’ messy.
All the offices were identically decorated to imply the office belonged to a male researcher, with personal items such as a cup containing sweets, a baby photo, a baseball cap, and academic journals.
In the neat office everything was neatly stacked and the rubbish was in a bin. In the ‘somewhat’ messy office books were leaning on shelves, some textbooks were on the floor, and a clock showed the wrong time. In the ‘very’ messy office there was rubbish, dirt, and increased clutter.
Participants were asked to guess the researcher’s personality based on the office’s appearance, rating the man based on the big five: sociability, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness to experience.
Surprise surprise, the researcher with the messiest office was seen as the least conscientious, the least agreeable, and the most neurotic.
That implies that those with messy desks tend to be seen as uncaring and unlikeable. Great.
Messier offices led to some participants thinking the owner possessed one or more negative personality traits, too.
This perception could have an impact not only on how your coworkers see you, but how your boss judges your work… so it might be worth doing a little tidy this afternoon.
Study leader Professor Terrence Horgan said: ‘When there are cues related to less cleanliness, order, organisation and more clutter in an owner’s primary territory, perceivers’ ascribe lower conscientiousness to the owner, whether that owner is a worker in the real world, a job-seeker, a student or a researcher at a university.’
Co-author Saran Dyszlewski said: ‘Once trait information becomes activated in perceivers’ minds, either consciously or unconsciously, that information can subsequently affect how they process information about, the types of questions they ask of, and how they behave toward the target, possibly bringing out the very trait information that they expected to see from the target in the first place.’
So if you’re messy, you might be treated as though you don’t care about work or other people, which in turn might make you act like you don’t care about work or other people.
Your surroundings are important, basically. Wipe down that keyboard and chuck out the post-it notes.
messy desk paperworkmessy desk paperworkellencscottstack of brochures, files and documents, on mess desktop, monitor of pc in background
When our pets shake it’s easy to pass it off as a sign of them being too cold but there are other causes of cats and dogs shaking, trembling or shivering.
It can be hard to spot the difference as dogs particularly shake for all sorts of reasons – it could be due to excitement at seeing you, because of pain, old age, or nausea.
But sudden shivering and trembling may be symptoms of something serious – like kidney disease, poisoning, or injury.
So, if your dog suddenly starts trembling or shivering, it’s important to take note of other symptoms such as diarrhoea, vomiting, or limping. In this case, you should talk to your vet right away.
One reason that your dog might shake might be, similar to humans, as a form of temperature control. When you get a fever, your body’s thermostat is reset to a higher temperature. When the temperature attempts to drop back down to normal, shivering occurs in order to restore the new, elevated temperature set point.
If your dog has a fever, they may shiver to create body heat; you can check if your dog running a temperature by feeling their nose. If it’s wet and cool, that’s a good sign they’re healthy, if it’s dry and hot that could mean they have a fever.
According to the Pet Health Network, shaking can be a sign of a medical disease such as kidney failure or hormonal imbalances. Neurological disorders and muscle diseases commonly cause trembling as well.
A variety of toxins cause trembling as one of the earliest neurological symptoms. Some examples include chocolate, antifreeze, and snail bait.
In older dogs, trembling may be caused by muscle weakness.
Shaking is also common for smaller dogs but doesn’t necessarily mean anything is wrong with them. If it persists, you might want to see a vet.
If you do notice out of character trembling, observe your pet’s other behaviours, take their temperature – the average temperature of a healthy dog is 101 °F or 38 °C.
You should see a vet if:
Close-Up Of Woman With DogClose-Up Of Woman With Dogfaimabakar1
A man proposed to his unsuspecting girlfriend by planting a note in an escape room challenge.
23-year-old Martin Rooney spent weeks preparing to pop the big question to his partner of three years, Emma Littler.
Booking in a friend’s name and sneaking there beforehand to put the note inside a box, he even got his sister to take Emma to get her nails done beforehand.
And when she reached down, unfolded the message and began to read, he was waiting behind her on one knee.
Martin said: ‘Her face was a picture. She squealed a bit and then just ran at me.
‘I can’t really describe the feeling when she said yes. It was amazing.’
Video footage taken inside the escape room shows Martin nervously pacing up and down, waiting for the right time.
When Emma’s back is turned, he can be seen kneeling down with the ring in his hand.
The moment his bride-to-be turns around, Martin gets up and the couple embrace and kiss.
Martin added: ‘We went to Cambridge Christmas shopping.
‘I told her I was going to find her a present but I went to the escape room to drop off the note and the ring box.’
He stashed it inside a chest, with the note for Emma to read.
Martin from Southery, Norfolk added: ‘I wanted it to come off perfectly and I was worried that something might go wrong.
‘She opened the chest but was more interested in the final clue than the box where the note was.
‘I was like “What’s that over there?”, trying to get her back to it. Eventually she did and opened it.’
The special moment happened at Lockhouse Escape Games in Cambridge on Sunday afternoon, and Martin praised the staff for helping him carry out his plan.
Martin added: ‘We managed to break the record of the escape room even after the proposal.’
The couple, who have known each other since secondary school, had previously been to other escape rooms, where players have to solve a series of puzzles and riddles to find their way out of a room – usually in a limited time.
Emma, from Watlington, Norfolk said: ‘In one part of the escape room, you have to solve a code. I was more interested in that at first.
‘Then I went back to it and there was a box. Inside, there was a note saying “turn around Emma”. I did, and he was there, down on one knee.’
The 25-year-old added: ‘I was so shocked and happy at the same time. I just said yes straight away.’
Emma, an operations assistant at a shed manufacturer, said Martin’s proposal ‘genuinely came as a complete shock’, adding: ‘I’m just really looking forward to the wedding now.’
They plan to tie the knot in 2020.
It’s officially the time of year to enjoy cosy evenings and lazy weekends in your home. The summer heatwave is long gone, and the magic of Christmas is now fast approaching – and there’s nothing more exciting than snuggling up in a nice warm house or flat, surrounded by good company and great, versatile design.
So, how do you make your home winter ready and change it into a lovely, toasty little den? You don’t need a total redecoration or renovation to achieve this; just a few simple additions can transform your summer pad into a relaxing winter home.
Be it in the living room, the bedroom, kitchen or elsewhere in your home, IKEA can provide the little touches that make all the difference without breaking the bank ahead of Christmas. This is why it works by the philosophy, ‘The Wonderful Everyday’, because it can be be the little simple things that can make life just that bit more special.
IKEA also achieves this with environmental credentials at the heart of its designs and materials it uses. Its Bold Sustainability trend looks to show off their striking and unique creations that are perfect for cosy winter nights in, while still providing all-important eco-friendly living.
Winter evenings are meant to be spent curled up on the sofa in front of the television – and maybe sipping on a hot cup of tea, or even treating yourself to a mulled wine, too! Now, to make this almost perfect scene even cosier, you need to get yourself covered up with a nice woollen blanket.
The KAVELDUN is just the job for getting nice and snug on the settee this year, or in your favourite chair, or even as an extra bit of warmth when you go to bed. The renewable wool used is another push for recycled materials used by IKEA.
The woollen blanket is so warm you’ll forget about the chill of outdoors, and, more likely than not, you’ll probably find it difficult to leave your sofa for any Christmas parties you are supposed to be going to…
The KAVELDUN comes in a grey and off-white tartan that will suit the majority of décors, and as the wool is stain-resistant, you don’t have to worry too much about spilling a drop of tea on your new blanket. At just £25, it is the ideal way to stay snuggle down in style this winter.
Keeping things warm and bright during the darker winter months is key to creating the ultimate seasonal den. Done right, you can ignite your room with a welcoming, festive glow – and, surprise surprise, you don’t need a Christmas tree to achieve this.
A wonderful alternative is the STRALA lamp shade which will liven up a lounge while still adding a Christmassy feel to your room during the winter, and will continue to brighten up your evenings throughout the year, too.
The star-shaped shade comes in a range of colours and patterns and can be hung as a pendant or used on any table lamp, making it versatile enough to fit any home. The STRALA is available for just £4, so if there are a couple of styles you like, then why not try them both and turn your home into a star-filled winter sky? Magical.
The days may be shorter, but there’s still opportunity to keep up the lightness and warmth of summer in your own home to keep you feeling merry and bright.
One of the most effective ways of injecting life into your home this winter is to introduce new plants to your home.
The HOWEA FORSTERIANA is a simple yet striking plant with the power to make a resounding difference to your living space. Native to Australia, a Kentia Palm is easy to care for, requires little water and is perfectly happy in a shaded area – essentially, it’s the perfect winter-time houseplant.
You have two options: £40 for the potted two-metre high plant, or a more subtle 90cm option for £12; whichever one you go for, you can be sure your own little winter hideaway will be brought to life.
Picture this: sitting down with a mug of hot chocolate in front of the TV on a sheepskin rug. That’s the stuff Christmas movies are made of!
And, with the cold nights setting in, there’s no better time to treat yourself to a soft and warming rug to keep your feet toasty and to add a touch of winter glamour to your abode.
Comfortingly sized, the SKOLD is big enough to become a feature of any room, but still compact enough to be used in a number of off-hand ways. While at home on the floor, SKOLD doesn’t look out of place draped over a stool or on a sofa, and immediately delivers warmth and style to your living room or bedroom.
This versatility makes £50 a tempting price for something that adds chic cosiness to any room, and with a number of colours to choose from, SKOLD could be the simple finishing touch your home needs this winter.
Often all it takes to transform a room is a simple change, and the VENDLA cushion cover is one of many items the creative homeowner can add to achieve just that. If it seems remarkably easy, that’s because it is. VENDLA is affordable at a mere £4.50 and, perhaps more importantly, kind on the environment.
IKEA’s Bold Sustainability developments in design mean products no longer need to be created in the traditional neutral tones.
The VENDLA cushion cover is strikingly attractive and allows you to add your own personal expression to your living room. It’s also made from sustainable sources, meaning you don’t need to fret about the damage you’re doing to the environment keeping your home on-trend.
It’s also multifaceted. The VENDLA cushion covers will look fab on any sofa or bed, but they’ll also make for a trendy and comfortable spread for the floor when you’re having a cosy night in with a film and friends. That’s versatile design.
The difference smart lighting can make to your home is substantial. The TRÅDFRI dimming kit aims to make your transition nice and easy and gives your home a warm glow, transforming it into an idyllic hideaway during the cold months.
Whether you intend to start off in your living room or your bedroom, with cold or warm light (we’d recommend the latter) TRÅDFRI allows you to customise your lighting to even the minutest detail.
If, as we expect, you enjoy the addition of smart lighting, IKEA’s expandable system means you can add panels, wireless LED bulbs and more, while putting together pre-set moods for whatever occasion. Plus, with its ready-to-use smart kit and wireless dimmer switch, you’ll always be just a touch away from finding that perfect glow at the dining table.
By downloading the TRÅDFRI app you can also control individual lights and colour temperatures at the touch of a button, meaning your home and all your new accessories will always be lit just the way you want them to be this season. Ranges are priced from £13 up to £65 depending on the size of dimming kit you start with.
IKEA - Bold SustainabilityIKEA - Bold Sustainabilityjaffajay
Dogs are magic.
Here’s yet another reason why dogs are the best pets and should be worshipped for their capabilities – it turns out that, if you’re a woman, your pooch could be the key to a good night’s sleep.
New findings by researchers at Cansius College, New York, showed that women who slept with a dog in their bed enjoyed a better quality of sleep, woke up earlier and felt safer.
The study, which had 926 adult female participants and was published in the Anthrozoös journal, also revealed that pups beat out both cats and people in helping women snooze.
In fact, it was found that sharing a bed with felines was just as disruptive as sleeping next to a human, and owners felt less comfort when doing so.
Meanwhile, cuddling up under the covers with Fido made owners feel secure and comfortable, as well as encouraged them to wake up earlier, compared to when they slept without a pet or next to a cat.
Admittedly, researchers said this could be due to how owners perceive their pets and the findings needs further input.
‘Dog ownership and its associated responsibilities may cause individuals to adhere to a stricter routine,’ researchers told the New York Post.
‘Keeping to a consistent sleep schedule may be beneficial to dog owners.’
Sorry cat people, the battle is over and the dogs won.
Long haired dachshund sleeping in bed with his humanLong haired dachshund sleeping in bed with his humanallieabgarian
Far be it from us to judge how someone pops the question.
Unless you’re part of the ‘that’s it, I’m wedding shaming’ Facebook group, whose sole purpose is to shame other people’s stories of proposals and wedding ceremonies.
Usually the focus of the Facebook shaming is a teeny diamond on an engagement ring or an unsuitable choice of wedding venue.
This time around, people are baffled by something a little… different.
And by different, we of course mean a story about someone proposing to their girlfriend by hiding the engagement ring in their penis.
Don’t question the logistics just yet. We’re puzzled too. But let’s get the basics out of the way first.
In the ‘that’s it, I’m wedding shaming’ Facebook group, someone posted a screenshot of a woman’s engagement announcement, which, alongside a photo of her ring, read: ‘Last night he asked me to blow him.
‘I put my hands on his cock and this is what I pulled out. He is truly a blessing in my life. I wouldn’t ask for anything else.
‘In a perfect relationship, don’t date a broke f*** and if you give him the best head he’ll ever get, cook him food, and don’t be a c***. You might get a 1.6c e diamond too.’
Now, some research tells us that this Instagram post was in fact posted way back in 2015, and that the caption has since been changed to a simple ‘Je t’aime’.
The couple (who we won’t name out of respect for their privacy) have since got married and seem to be living a very happy life together.
For reasons unknown, the screenshot of that Instagram post has come back around on the big, wild internet, and people are responding with wonderment.
Where, exactly, was the engagement ring? Was it balanced on the head of the man’s penis? Was it hidden underneath the foreskin?
Of course, it may have all been a joke or a way to show off some serious blow job skills.
Regardless, people are baffled.
‘I’m really confused,’ wrote one commenter. ‘Is he uncut with a foreskin the size of Canada that he fit a ring inside? Did he put the ring around his penis? I MUST KNOW.’
‘Where was it?’ If it was ON his body, then this is going to be a very unsatisfying marriage. If it was IN his body, I’d get that ring cleaned before taking photos,’ another said.
Some people are suggesting that the ring was just hidden in the man’s pants, rather than actually in or on his penis.
One commenter wrote: ‘OK I saw this before and I was confused like where was it? In his hole? But now as I was scrolling by and saw it again I realized she probably touched his penis through his pants and felt it? And unzipped his pants and found the ring box?
‘She said pulled OUT, not OFF. So I’ll take it that in the process of getting his under clothes off, she felt the ring and pulled it out.’
Interesting. We’ve reached out to the lucky lady to find out the truth, and will update this article if we head back.
Story about proposing by taking engagement ring out of penisStory about proposing by taking engagement ring out of penisellencscottMETRO GRAB - taken originally from That's It. I'm Wedding Shaming closed groupStory about proposing by taking engagement ring out of penisThat's It. I'm Wedding ShamingMETRO GRAB - taken originally from That's It. I'm Wedding Shaming closed group Story about proposing by taking engagement ring out of penis That's It. I'm Wedding ShamingMETRO GRAB - taken originally from That's It. I'm Wedding Shaming closed group Story about proposing by taking engagement ring out of penis That's It. I'm Wedding Shaming
As you might have noticed, houses are expensive.
There are some great ways that you can get a big fat deposit back, like telling your parents to move to Central London and moving in with them rent free, instructing an elderly relative to give you a large chunk of money or just not buying avocados.
If you’re unable to lay off the green-gold, and your family are rudely unwilling to give you thirty grand, you might be thinking that you’ll be renting forever. Which isn’t the end of the world in countries like Germany where rental rights are on the side of the tennant.
Here in the UK, renting usually means living without pets and being unable to decorate your space. So yeah, it would be nice to own a property that you can live in without constant rent hikes, the threat of eviction and petty rules (NB: Did you know that you’re not allowed to put political posters in the windows of a rented property?)
Shared ownership is a scheme which has been brought in to try and combat the impossibility of buying a home. And it’s actually a pretty good idea. Unfortunately it’s also pretty complicated, which is why we’re here to explain it to you.
What is shared ownership?
Shared ownership is where you buy a percentage of a house for a percentage of the price. Because you’re only buying a portion of the house to start with, you need a smaller deposit and a smaller mortgage.
How does it work?
Most mortgages need a 10% deposit as a minimum. Imagine the house cost £500K. That means you need 50K cash for your deposit – a huge amount of money. But if you’re only buying a 50% share in the house you need 50% of the deposit, £25,000. Still a lot of money, but a more realistic sum.
You’ll then pay rent on the portion of the house that you don’t own. You’ll need to look at the combination of rent and mortgage payments to see if this would work for you.
When you have paid off the mortgage on the section you own of the house, you can buy another percentage of it, which is called ‘staircasing’.
How does it help?
It can also be difficult to get a mortgage for the full value of a house. A generous mortgage will give you 4.5 times your salary. If you’re earning £30,000 a year, that’s £135,000. Which will buy you a parking space in London, or a small house in a rural area.
If you’re in a relationship or have a close friend you want to buy with, you can apply with both of your incomes, but they won’t be equally weighted, and anyway – lots of us would really like to own on our own.
Who is eligible?
Shared ownership run by the local council involves an application process and an assesment of your need, based on your connection to the area. Often priority is given to former or current service people.
Lots of new builds across the country, however, have a simpler process. You’ll need to earn less than £90,000 a year in London or less than £80,000 outside of London, have decent credit and ideally be a first time buyer (though there might be flexibility on that, case dependent).
What are the downsides?
It can be tempting to get carried away with enthusiasm about shared ownership, because it makes the idea of owning a home seem like a possibility.
Shared ownership does have downsides. Staircasing is a complex concept, and it’s strongly affected by changes in the markets. If your house increases in value (usually a good thing) it means that buying another perentage will be more expensive.
Some shared ownership properties don’t allow pets, which might be disappointing, however you are allowed to decorate.
Resale can be complicated with shared ownership properties, however it might be that as shared ownership becomes more common that issue is resolved.
Is it just in London?
Nope, though there are more shared ownership properties in London. Probably because it’s the most expensive place in the entire universe.
Where can I find shared ownership properties?
You can search for shared ownership on sights like Rightmove, and there are dedicated websites like Share to Buy.
METRO GRAPHICS mg_forsale_homeowner_compMETRO GRAPHICS mg_forsale_homeowner_comprebeccacnreidMETRO GRAPHICS
A house inspired by Mad Men’s Don Draper has just gone on the market for £113,000.
It’s essentially a black trailer, which has been named after Don Draper, and turned into a portable home.
The 300-square-foot Draper trailer is jet black and features a slanted wood panel that comes down to create a porch and patio doors.
Other photos show the white-washed pine interior with a modern kitchen, bedroom loft and living and dining area that can be switched depending on your needs.
For those who’ve never seen it, Mad Men is an American period drama TV series created by Matthew Weiner and produced by Lionsgate Television.
It’s set in the 1960s – initially at the fictional Sterling Cooper advertising agency on Madison Avenue in New York City; later at the newly created firm, Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce (later Sterling Cooper & Partners) – located near the Time-Life Building at 1271 Sixth Avenue.
The Draper is built by Land Ark who are based in Buena Vista, Colorado, USA and is available to buy for £113,000.
Yes, that’s a little expensive for a trailer but it has very modern features including a white kitchen and sofa area.
It’s small, but somehow still manages to look spacious thanks to its design.
‘Optimized for an individual or a couple, this mid-century modern design delivers a functional layout in a sophisticated package,’ said the company.
‘The mud room entry features a seven foot plus width wardrobe, a separate W/D utility closet and a nook with a bench and cubbies. Connecting this space to the rest of the interior is a gallery with recessed lighting and clerestory windows.
‘From the gallery, ascend up the custom designed oak ladder into the sleeping loft enclosed with large windows.
‘A compact, yet surprisingly luxurious bathroom features a vanity, wall-hung toilet and a full size, walk-in shower with recessed lighting and a window.
‘Flooded with natural light, the main living area opens up to a large galley kitchen and a convertible U-sofa that transforms into a queen bed for the occasional guest.
‘Living extends outside through the sliding patio door onto a large hardwood deck that can be raised and closed for transport.’
Mad Men HomeMad Men HomehattiegladwellmetroDOWNSIZE in style with this Mad Men-inspired tiny house that sleeps up to four people and could be yours for just ??113k. Incredible images show the black exterior of the 300-square-foot Draper trailer which is named after Mad Men leading character Don Draper as well as a wooden panel that comes down to create a porch and reveal patio doors. Other stunning shots show the white-washed pine interior with a modern kitchen, bedroom loft and living and dining area that can be switched depending on your needs. The Draper is built by Land Ark who are based in Buena Vista, Colorado, USA and is available to buy for ??113k. Mediadrumimages / Land ArkDOWNSIZE in style with this Mad Men-inspired tiny house that sleeps up to four people and could be yours for just ??113k. Incredible images show the black exterior of the 300-square-foot Draper trailer which is named after Mad Men leading character Don Draper as well as a wooden panel that comes down to create a porch and reveal patio doors. Other stunning shots show the white-washed pine interior with a modern kitchen, bedroom loft and living and dining area that can be switched depending on your needs. The Draper is built by Land Ark who are based in Buena Vista, Colorado, USA and is available to buy for ??113k. Mediadrumimages / Land ArkDOWNSIZE in style with this Mad Men-inspired tiny house that sleeps up to four people and could be yours for just ??113k. Incredible images show the black exterior of the 300-square-foot Draper trailer which is named after Mad Men leading character Don Draper as well as a wooden panel that comes down to create a porch and reveal patio doors. Other stunning shots show the white-washed pine interior with a modern kitchen, bedroom loft and living and dining area that can be switched depending on your needs. The Draper is built by Land Ark who are based in Buena Vista, Colorado, USA and is available to buy for ??113k. Mediadrumimages / Land ArkDOWNSIZE in style with this Mad Men-inspired tiny house that sleeps up to four people and could be yours for just ??113k. Incredible images show the black exterior of the 300-square-foot Draper trailer which is named after Mad Men leading character Don Draper as well as a wooden panel that comes down to create a porch and reveal patio doors. Other stunning shots show the white-washed pine interior with a modern kitchen, bedroom loft and living and dining area that can be switched depending on your needs. The Draper is built by Land Ark who are based in Buena Vista, Colorado, USA and is available to buy for ??113k. Mediadrumimages / Land Ark