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Cats get a bad wrap, and gals who are only mad about them get an even worse one.

Being labelled a 'crazy cat lady' by your nearest and dearest in public doesn't exactly endear you to strangers because… well… apparently you're a crazy cat lady.

And who needs that drama in their life?

Possessing an innate devotion to felines has its ups and downs, and here are just 13 of them.

1. You never really know where you stand.

That cat could have spent the last two hours purring happily on your lap, but that's not going to stop it clawing the hand off you at a moment's notice.

"You little f**ker!"

2. Defending their narkiness is a full-time job.

Insisting that your cat is just having an off-day when visitors rock up has never fooled anyone.

"No, no, she's normally so friendly! I'm sorry, she must be feeling a bit depressed today."

3. You secretly fear your cat only likes you so it can get food.

While you might bask in the moment they wrap their body around your legs before skedaddling over to their food dish, you do question their motives.

"If I missed one damn meal, I'd never see them again. Better overfill that bowl."

4. You have on more than one occasion pretended to be dead in order to see if they would care.

They didn't.

"Pssst, I'm dead over here. Hello?" 

5. You have grossed yourself out by looking in their ears.

You know you're not going to like what you see, but sometimes you can't resist having a good gawp.

"Jaysus, it looks like a load of miniature brains."

6. You have cheered yourself up by playing with the pads of their paws.

Tracing your finger over those spongy little feet is an instant pick-me-up.

"Touch it! Oh my God, would you look at this angel!"

7. You have questioned whether your house smells like cat pee.

Randomly sniffing the air to see if your cat has made a holy show of you is par for the course.

"Do you smell cat p*iss? Oh my God, you do, don't you?"

8. You feel secretly super upset when your friends chat about pets, and yours doesn't even get an honourable mention.

When you find yourself insisting someone compliment your cat, you know you have a problem.

"Maybe if you actually made an effort with her, you'd see how amazing she is."

9. You get a pang of jealously when you hear about pet dogs rescuing their families from burning buildings.

Insisting that the media has a bias towards dogs is one of your go-to drunk rants.

"Although to be fair, Fluffy would have probably set the fire. Hic"

10. The sound of your cat caterwauling at night is enough to make you want to move house.

Living in fear that your neighbours will think you've raised a sex-crazed feline keeps you awake at night.

"For Jaysus sake, can he not keep it down? Making a holy show of us."

11. Enduring a prolonged yawn from your cat after their dinner is enough to make you dry-heave.

You're super glad they're having a chill time and totally glad they're close enough to nuzzle noses with you, but that breath is like the portal to hell.

"Does mouthwash for pets exist?"

12. You still struggle to understand why your cat feels the need to present their arse to you on a regular basis.

When they turn around and happily raise their tail, you do wonder why you're so devoted to them.

"No please, don't make me look."

13. You get a massive pang of pride when you watch them clean up after doing their business.

The way they dig that hole in their secret corner of the garden and then cover up their business with loose soil is definitely something to write home about.

"You wouldn't see Rover next door at that craic."

 

Most Irish Mammies are utterly devoted to St Anthony, so chances are you've been advised to speak to the man himself when you're tearing the house apart in search of a missing earring or set of keys.

However, it looks like we may be giving good ol' Anthony a break if we're to follow the advice of researchers at the University of Aberdeen.

According to recent research, the vast majority of us spend too much time searching for missing items in uncluttered areas of our homes when logic would suggest we should hone in on the messier areas of any room.

Conducting a study into the theory, researchers used an eye tracking device when asking participants to find targets in two different visual scenarios.

The findings established that instead of using our peripheral vision to sweep over 'easy' areas, we actually devote all our attention to the tidier areas and tend to avoid areas of clutter… which makes little to no sense in reality, but that's humanoids for you.

"If you're looking for your keys, you should focus on the areas with the most clutter because if they were somewhat more obvious, you would have found them by now," said the study's author Anna Maria Nowakowska.

So, basically we make the whole process harder for ourselves. Good to know.
 

If you grew up in the town that was famously home to Arthur Guinness's first brewery, you'll know Leixlip is chock-full of its very own quirks, traditions and iconic establishments.

While a lot has changed over the course of two decades, there are some things which will definitely resonate with anyone who grew up in the town throughout the 90s and noughties.

And here are just 12…

1. To outsiders, the smell at the bridge was nothing short of eye watering. To you, it (tragically) symbolised home.

"Don't mind the stank.They're working on it."

2. Stepping foot over the threshold of John Paul's back in the 90s meant the summer was officially over, and a new school year beckoned.

"Mam, I want an elastic tie so I can do the elephant."

3. The Obelisk was haunted; no ifs, ands or buts.

"Dare you to walk around it three times at midnight, ya chicken sh*t."

4. Jungle World was your only man for birthday parties and half-day celebrations.

"Race ya down the Freefall."

5. There are certain songs which will always remind you of nights down the Ozone.

"Sean Paul and Blu Cantrell…"

6. Chanting 'Hiller, Hiller, scum, scum' constituted a good night if you were a 14-year-old Farender.

"Sketch, they heard us."

7. Chasing people who called you 'Hiller Hiller, scum, scum' constituted a good night if you were a 14-year-old Hiller.

"That's it. Get 'em."

8. You spent two hours hanging around outside Sam's after the Ozone in order to see if there were any gaf parties happening.

"Your man said there was something happening in Castletown. Get in that taxi."

9. Lucey's and Smaller's were the places to go if you had 10p to your name, and a craving for pure sugar.

"This is the fifth time we've been in here today."

10. Growing up in the birthplace of Guinness was your claim to fame on every holiday you ever went on.

"Sure, my dad invented it."

11. You used get a secret kick when Intel and Hewlett Packard featured on the news.

"Look! RTÉ is in Leixlip! In LEIXLIP!"

12. The Leixlip Festival was the highlight of your year at one point.

"I've been drinking for three days straight, and I can't find my way home."

 

If you'd rather stick pins in your eyes than endure the unskippable 30-second advertisements that YouTube force upon us, you're not alone.

Sitting through a 30-second ad in order to see a 15-second video of a cat with an attitude problem is not how we would willingly choose to spend our time, but alas, it's what they expect of us.

Up until 2018, that is.

According to emerging reports, the good folk at Google have announced that they will be ridding YouTube of all 30-second non-skippable which play before your chosen video, with a spokesperson saying "We’re committed to providing a better ads experience for users online."

"As part of that, we’ve decided to stop supporting 30-second unskippable ads as of 2018 and focus instead on formats that work well for both users and advertisers," they added.

But before you celebrate too soon, the announcement doesn't mean we will be free of ads entirely as we will still be shown advertisements under 30 seconds in duration.

And ladies, these can be made unskippable if the powers that be wish to do so.

So, it all really depends on how much you want to see that cat, right?
 

You don't need to be a genius to hazard a guess as to the items women carry around in their handbags, right?

Purse, phones, keys… so far, so standard.

However, a deep-dive of any woman's handbag will unearth a plethora of items which we couldn't live without… and a selection of others which we inexplicably carry around for months on end, but never use.

Only the very blessed among us possess an organised handbag, and the rest of us just suck it up, heave that yoke over our shoulder, and set about our day. (Dislocated shoulders, be damned.)

Here are nine things you most definitely have nestling at the bottom of your bag right now. 

Vaseline

If you don't have at least two tins of Vaseline in your handbag at this very moment, do you even have a handbag?

Murphy's Law: The moment you buy a new tin of Vaseline, the other one will make itself known.

Boots vouchers

There is at least one Boots voucher nestling in your purse, between the pages of a diary or in the inside pocket of your handbag right now.

And what's worse is you'll probably forget to use it.

Religious trinket

If you're the offspring of an Irish mammy, there's a chance you are currently in possession of a miraculous medal, mass card or guardian angel pin.

And every time you stumble across it, you feel a pang of guilt that it has yet to be used in the way your mammy would have intended.

Flattened tampon

If you don't have at least one flattened tampon with a peeling wrapper secreted in the depths of your bag, we doff our cap to you.

At least one a month finds its way to the graveyard at the bottom of our bags where it will languish until we get an upgrade.

Battered fruit

We have been known to find at least three battered pieces of fruit in our handbags by Friday evening.

Our intention to fill up on our five-a-day is easily forgotten as the week progresses, natch.

Receipts

Chances are there is at least one receipt in your handbag right now which speaks to your poor life choices.

Whether it was a round of shots in Coppers or an inflatable flamingo from a Euro shop, those receipts are sent to test us.

Over the counter remedies

Whether it's a Lemsip sachet or three individual painkillers (one of which is covered in Vaseline), you most definitely carry around items which help to numb pain in some way.

And why? Cos you think ahead and should be celebrated for that.

Grubby loyalty cards

You might only use one on the regular, but that doesn't stop you carrying around more than a dozen for establishments you never intend on returning to.

There's no way you're throwing it out; what if you NEED it one day?!

Totally random item

It could be a coin from a recent day at the zoo, a sachet of sweetener, a doodle your mate did for you or an article ripped from a magazine on the benefits of colonic irrigation.

Let's face it, your handbag wouldn't be a real handbag if it didn't contain at least one item which you would struggle to explain in polite company.

 

If you've ever found yourself wondering whether anyone would notice if you grabbed 40 winks in the office bathroom, you may be interested to hear that a designer has created a desk which doubles as a bed.

That's right ladies, Athanasia Leivaditou is attempting to make the world a better place… one catnap at a time.

So, how does it work exactly? Well, you'll be pleased to know that the designer has made it pretty simple.

All you need to do is slide back the desk surface, then fold the back of the desk down to create the mattress and crawl into your new workplace fort.

But before you drop a note in the work Suggestion Box, it's worth remembering that the design has not yet reached the market, so it may be some time before you're the proud owner of the convertible napping desk.

Still, we can dream, right?

 

It's hard to believe, but there was once a time when we didn't dedicate every waking moment to our phones.

When they eventually ran out of battery, we dusted off our charger and plugged them in. When they were topped up, we sent texts. And when they rang, we actually, you know, answered them.

Then the smartphone made its grand entrance, and everything changed.

Relegated to the annals of time, old reliables like the Nokia 3310 were pushed aside in favour of their jazzier alternatives which could take pictures and actually connect you to the world wide web.

But if you long for the days of yore, you'll be pretty pleased to hear that Nokia is relaunching its 3310 model.

Originally released in 2000, the sturdy old model will be revealed at the Mobile World Congress later this month, and can be yours for just £59.

And while the model has still been available through Amazon, this announcement means it will now be available directly from the company itself.

So, if you're somewhat of a retro enthusiast with more than a passing appreciation for a solid battery life, now's the time to celebrate.

We've all found ourselves justifying a 'sick day' because our bodies need to rest and recuperate, right?

And considering the public's annual desire to hide away from the world on the first Monday in February, it's no real surprise that today has been dubbed National Sickie Day.

We might tell ourselves we'll only spend a couple of hours under the blankets in front of the box before getting to grips with those things that we just don't get a chance to look at when we're in work all week, but unfortunately, it doesn't really work that way.

And here are just ten incidents which remind us why.

Expectation: I will take the day off and become a better person as a result.

Reality: I will eat Honey Loops from the box and wipe my sticky hands on the couch.

Expectation: I will pamper myself and return to work revived and refreshed.

Reality: I will be lucky if I brush my teeth.

Expectation: I will NOT sleep all day and wreck my sleeping pattern.

Reality: I will sleep all day and suffer insomnia all night.

Expectation: I will glance over some work documents from the comfort of my own home thereby putting myself AHEAD of the game.

Reality: I will binge watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians and judge them from my duvet kingdom.

Expectation: I will tell no one I am taking the day off as this is a private endeavour.

Reality: I will message everyone in my contacts and use the word 'suckers' more than once.

Expectation: I will spring clean the house because I am not unwell, but simply taking some down-time.

Reality: I will spill Honey Loops down the side of the couch and refuse to pick them up because I am taking some down-time.

Expectation: I will meditate and collect my thoughts because it's damn hard getting time to do it during the week.

Reality: I will obsess and worry about insignificant things which I don't even THINK about during the week.

Expectation: I will do some online research into local evening classes.

Reality: I will spend two to three hours reading about ostriches on Wikipedia.

Expectation: I will go for a swift walk around the block as fresh air is a daily requirement.

Reality: I will cower beneath the blankets when the doorbells goes.

Expectation: I will not ruin my day by feeling guilty.

Reality: I will ruin every waking moment by feeling guilty.

Ugh, pass us the lip gloss, we're rejoining the human race tomorrow.

If you lived it up in the States on a J1 visa over the last four years, you may be in for a bit of a windfall.

According to tax specialists, Taxback, up to 2,000 students across Ireland are entitled to tax refunds which amount to approximately $800 or €740.

Not too shabby, right?!

Commenting on the claims, spokesperson for the company, Eileen Devereux, said: “Many students struggle with the financial burden of loans, rent and tuition fees.”

“A three-figure sum like this can often go a long way to easing some of this burden,” she added.

“We process thousands of J1 tax refunds for Irish students every year and the feedback we invariably receive is that this windfall, while often unexpected, is very much needed.”

Despite the financial pressure on students nowadays, the company claims that a large proportion fail to reclaim their tax after a summer spent in the States.

“We are urging these students to take action before it’s too late – the right to claim becomes null and void after four years.”

“It’s not a difficult process and can be wrapped up in a matter of weeks,” she advised.

It has been estimated that approximately 10,000 Irish people are expected to take part in the 2017 programme.
 

Since 2012, thousands of us have been availing of the contactless payment service provided by Allied Irish Bank.

And in recent weeks rumours have been swirling that the bank intends to impose a fee of 0.20c per payment later this month – something which they denied this week.

Reflecting on the five years which have passed since its introduction, AIB reiterated their intentions to continue waiving the transaction fees for contactless exchanges.

Speaking to Newstalk, a spokesperson for the bank said: "We don’t currently charge a transaction fee for contactless as it’s waived."

"We have no immediate plans to charge," they added.

So, you can rest easy, ladies. We're in the clear for now.

Look, when it comes to Twitter put-downs, J.K Rowling is a master of her craft.

From rejecting racist ideology with cutting one-liners to calling people out on their blatant hypocrisy, the Harry Potter author takes no prisoners (from Azkaban or otherwise) on Twitter.

Reminding the Twitosphere of her quick wit earlier this week, the author appeared to encourage a disgruntled Twitter user to burn her DVDs after he took exception to her stance on Trump's executive order.

Hitting out at the author, the Twitter user wrote: "Glad I caught this article on yahoo. I will now burn your books and movies too."

Ripping it out of her critic, J.K hit back with an invitation to go right ahead as he may be doing society a favour.

"Well, the fumes from the DVDS might be toxic and I've still got your money, so by all means borrow my lighter," she invited in a response which amassed a staggering 375,000 likes in one day.

And it didn't end there.

Responding to a tweet from a girl who said she burned her entire Harry Potter collection, J.K suggested that some people were beyond help.

"Guess it's true what they say, you can lead a girl to books about the rise and fall of an autocrat, but you still can't make her think."

Never change J.K, never change.

While people have been blogging since the birth of the internet, the advent of social media means their level of exposure has increased dramatically.

With the aid of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, bloggers can direct members of the public to their personal website, and – if lucky – acquire an overnight fan base.

And one quick scroll through any social media feed would have you believe that the life of a blogger is one long and glamorous launch, right?

But, is it really as simple as that?

Rachel Martin of The Insider Daily decided to address the myths head-on in a move which has helped shed light on the so-called 'ugly side' of the blogging world.

We'll let Rachel take it from here…

"Until now, I hadn’t realised that I only show the “pretty side” of being a blogger, without showing what it really takes. I post an airbrushed, glossier version of reality and more people need to understand the darker side of blogging. The profession of blogging and all the things that happen behind the scenes that readers never see or hear about," Rachel writes.

The title ‘blogger’ has become so unappealing. More often than not, people are speculating how much money bloggers are earning and their ‘dishonesty’ to their followers.

When I tell people I’m a beauty blogger, there’s a fairly good chance they’ll either question how I make money from it, or say something along the lines of, “You get free makeup? How do I sign up for that?”

Bloggers have received their fair share of backlash with a lot of negative connotations surrounding their ethics.

So, if a blogger is paid to promote a product, is it an honest review? I can only speak for myself but it’s very hard to say whether you’re opinion changes if you’re paid to promote a product. After all, if I’m being paid to review a product, I’m probably looking at it through rose-tinted glasses.

On the other hand, I’ve been spending my hard earned pocket-money on makeup for as long as I can remember. I have a standard that I maintain for all my beauty products, whether they have been sent to me or I’ve bought them, they have to meet my stamp of approval!

Now don’t get me wrong, I understand it’s big business for some people. I understand you have to do whatever it takes to do well but personally, I genuinely believe that you should always care about the honesty of the content you’re providing for your readers most of all.

 

There's a little bit of devil in her angel eyes Brows @anastasiabeverlyhills Dipbrow in Dark Brown

A photo posted by Rachel Martin (@itsrachmartin) on

Like in most industries, there’s definitely cliques within the blogging world.

A very fun, yet hugely intimidating part of blogging is attending events for brands. If you’re looking at these events on a blogger’s Snapchat, it’s easy to forget that the blogger attending has usually arrived solo. You arrive to the event and you don’t know a single person. Not one.

There are definitely bloggers, especially in the fashion and beauty categories, who are really friendly with one another. You might be welcomed with open arms or you might not, I’ve experienced both!

It can be so intimidating meeting these bloggers in this type of setting. The chances are you will meet absolutely lovely people but my social anxiety always seems to give me a mild heart-attack – despite knowing this.

 

Self esteem starts inside and radiates outward, not the other way around

A photo posted by Rachel Martin (@itsrachmartin) on


Blogging and social media go hand-in-hand. If you’re a blogger reading this, you’ll know what I mean. I’m always on the pursuit of certain activities with the end-goal of cropping it into a square and filtering my memories into perfection.

I’ll spend hours scrolling through Instagram but when you’re constantly hit with carefully curated and staged shots that show only happy moments in peoples’ lives, it’s easy to think yours isn’t good enough.

I’ve been thinking more and more about this. I realise that the problem isn’t only in what I post but why I post. I was so ‘connected’ through social media that I never had to be alone. 

 

Gone over to the dark side|| fresh set of @platinumhairextensions the lovely Stacey gave me the perfect balayage blend

A photo posted by Rachel Martin (@itsrachmartin) on


There wasn’t a moment where I had to look at myself long and hard in the mirror and say “This is it. This is who I really am,” and decide for myself whether or not I like the person I see. There’s no need for that any more; A handy device in our pocket can quantify just how loved and wanted and valued we are, one like at a time.

Not that long ago, I realised that all of this superficial gratification wasn’t benefiting me in the slightest and chose to start improving myself instead.

I’m not letting the number of likes or comments on a photo decide whether or not I’m good enough. Now I am happy with who I am, I can go on social media and not wish I was someone else.