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jANUARY

Pay-Day Purgatory. That middle time during the worst month of every year where you literally forget the concept of monetary transactions because money does not exist in your life anymore.

Spare change? Goodbye.

Contactless card? Forget it, gal.

Online shopping? You're delusional.

pay me jenny slate GIF

The days of being financially independent are long gone. Winter is here.

None of us can recall a time where we could 'spot' our friends for food, or the blissful moment when you don't have to check your balance because you're aware that it ain't empty. (Rarely happens but for some unicorns apparently it exists)

Those were the days…but now we're trapped in Pay-Day-Purgatory, land of the tense and agonising wait to be paid. Those last few days where all you can do is sit in your home and mope, because moping is free. 

 life vs GIF

1. Looking in long-lost-lands…

2. Time no longer has meaning

3.  Have centuries passed or is that just us?

 4. We're getting snappy, to say the least

5. We've even turned to milk for guidance

6. There's not much time left to wait, but we don't know if we can hold on much longer…

7. When dat sweet, sweet coin finally hits the bank, those heart eye emojis will be let LOOSE

8. Let's be grateful we're not American federal workers right now, those people need prayer

9. We'll be like Mario himself collecting those beautiful golden coins the SECOND the cash slides itself into our banking DMs

10. We're being majorly left on read by pay day…Not cool

11. Let's be honest, we really shouldn't be trusted with money in the first place, should we?

12. Finally, we'll leave you with a soporific lullaby to put your worries to bed…Pay day will come. Eventually. From the ashes. Maybe. 

The countdown continues anew, once again we wait in the darkness by the frosty window, trying to remember a time when we could wave our bank cards and expect something in return.

Shout out to January for being an absolute B*TCH.

pay me GIF by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

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There's something about January that makes people feel the need to search for the next love of their life, apparently.

Maybe the new year just makes us feel just a lil bit… broody? The first Sunday of the new year happens to be the most popular online dating day of the calendar year, according to Hinge.

Whether you're hungry for a new job, a new place to settle or a new gal or guy to send all of our heart emojis to, the turning of time urges us to reevaluate parts of our lives which may feel lacking in some way.

tv land tinder GIF by YoungerTV

January 6 is so popular in terms of online dating apps that it has been dubbed "Dating Sunday", and industry experts are predicting that 2019 will be bigger than ever for the online love world.

Hinge analysed activity data from 2016 until 2018, and saw a massive spike in conversations, as well as far more dates being arranged and a much higher messaging response rate. Gas.

In 2017 there was an increase of 41 percent of people who began conversations on Dating Sunday than the week before- and in 2018 that figure rose to 59 percent. Jaysis, these numbers don't lie, do they?

perfect match art by GIF IT UP

62 percent more users set up dates on Dating Sunday in 2018, and Hinge also reported increased in daily user activity, with 20 percent more conversations being carried out and a 36 percent higher message response rate.

Singles who are seeking love clearly become influenced after Christmas ends and the parties simmer down, will you be swiping right today?

We might just go and update those profile pictures seeing as the competition is higher… bring on the messages, lads.

fox tv GIF by STAR

We're ready for it. *Winks*

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Dr. Rhona Mahony has pledged that women whose unborn babies have fatal foetal abnormalities will be offered terminations from January at the National Maternity Hospital.

As the hospital's master, Mahony made the claim after it came to light that some maternity hospitals and GPs won't be ready to begin extended abortion services from January.

A spokesman has said that staff are "working to ensure we have a full, safe and compassionate service in place as quickly as possible".

Dr. Mahony's spokesman continued;

"Notwithstanding the outstanding logistical issues, we expect to provide termination of pregnancy in situations of fatal foetal anomaly from January 1."

Minister for Health Simon Harris rejected implications that the January target for abortion services was aligned with politics, and has commented that this claim was 'offensive'.

He added that the services will not be available everywhere straight away, and that it needed time to embed and evolve with the help of clinicians. 

Yesterday, the Seanad continued with their debate on the Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy Bill.

Dr Sharon Sheehan, master of the Coombe hospital, has commented that her new system of service won't be ready by January.

She said; "To ensure the provision of "safe, high-quality, sensitive and compassionate care for women", it is essential to have the finalised legislation in place, an agreed model of care nationally and national clinical guidelines.

She continued;

"There has been extensive work, and that is continuing to proceed at a pace, but they are not ready and we now have only 20 days before this service is to be introduced.

"In my opinion, the country is not ready, and therefore the Coombe is not in a position to deliver these services from the January 1."

The Rotunda maternity hospitals spokeswoman commented that;

"Rotunda Hospital will be complying with enacted legislation providing the appropriate model of care, resources and funding is in place to enable a safe service provision to women".

The Irish Family Planning Association has also said that an exact date of availability for abortion services cannot yet be offered;

"We are still working on a number of outstanding issues. We're working to resolve them as quickly as possible and we're making good progress. We won't delay in providing abortion care once that's done".

The Irish College of General Practitioners and the Institute of Obstetricians are set to meet today for the discussion of clinical guidelines which are seen as essential for doctors.

A 24/7 helpline will hopefully be advertised by the HSE once the legislation is passed for guiding women, GPs and hospitals.

Feature image: BusinessPost.ie

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Getting ready to start the much-needed seasonal detox doesn’t mean that you have to forget all about your favourite comfort food.

In fact, we have rounded up some delicious recipes that will help you stick to any healthy 2017 plans while still filling you up and keeping hunger at bay.

1. Healthy potato mash

Dairy-free but not taste-free, this mashed sweet potato recipe is even better than the real stuff, with added nutritional value too.

2. Chicken goujons

This ultimate weeknight comfort food CAN be part of a healthy diet: just make it yourself instead of buying it ready-made in the shop!

3. Potato chips

If you want to cut down the calories, don’t fry your chips: bake them. With this delicious seasoning, you won’t miss the greasy stuff from the chipper.

4. Shepherd's pie

While it might not be just as good as your mam’s recipe, this shepherd’s pie will give you a taste of home without causing any damage to your waistline.

5. Spaghetti Bolognese

This classic Italian dish doesn’t have to make you feel guilty. With a few small changes to the original recipes, you can enjoy it as often as you want. To make it even healthier, use spiralised courgettes instead of pasta.

6. Thai curry

An easy weeknight dinner, curry is a great way to introduce more vegetables into your diet. Rich in plant protein to keep you fuller for longer, this delicious recipe won’t make you miss your Asian takeaway.

7. Ice-cream

Don’t feel bad about indulging with this dairy-free ice-cream, only made of good and healthy stuff. Ben & Jerry who?

8. Cheesecake

A traditional cheesecake is probably one of the worst things that can happen to your diet. But if you use low-fat dairy, it can turn into an acceptably clean January pre-workout treat.

9. Raw millionaire shortbreads

Raw, full of good fats and natural sugars, this delicacy will satisfy your craving for sweet while providing you with loads of nutrients.

10. Mini-pizza bites

Easy to make, vegetarian, low in carbs but high in flavour, these aubergine-based pizzas are a great healthy recipe to make whenever you feel like giving a call to your friends in Dominos

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It's very likely that for the first time in over a week, you will need to set your alarm clock tonight.

And that, we know, is utterly traumatising.

After approximately 10 days of lie-ins, boxset-binges, late lunches, mammoth dinners and countless glasses of vino, you have to go back to the real world.

Love or loathe your current job, the adjustment will take some getting used to, so why not make it easier on yourself by considering the following points in order to ensure a stress-free week ahead. (And praise Jesus it's only a four-day'er.)

1. Prep your outfit

Stop whatever it is you're doing right now, and prepare your clothes for the morning.

It'll take the guts of 20 minutes to iron an outfit and prep some accessories, but it'll be the most productive 20 minutes you can spend today, frankly.

Just picture how much easier tomorrow morning will be if you put a little time and consideration into the task without the pressure of a looming rush-hour commute.

2. Check your emails

OK, so some might argue that this action will eat into your holiday-time, but if you can face a quick inbox blitz, it will make the first hour back in the office a whole lot simpler.

Deleting and starring over the course of just 10 minutes will make trawling your correspondence tomorrow a little less stressful.

We're not going to lie, it will require a deep breath, but just remind yourself you're simply doing a digital spring clean and anything pressing can wait until the morning.

3. Set some goals

No one expects you to move mountains in your first week back to work after Christmas, but setting a few simple goals will help to alleviate The Fear.

Whether it's as simple as replying to that email you ignored during Christmas week, de-cluttering your desk by the end of your first day back or scheduling a chat with your boss about upcoming projects, giving yourself some milestones will really help you to focus.

And remember; don't overwhelm yourself by making goals that are simply unattainable by the end of week; small, but achievable goals are the name of the game here.

4. Go for a brisk walk

The night before you return to work often causes anxiety which means you may not be able to properly shut off and enjoy a solid eight-hour sleep.

With this in mind, it's important you get some fresh air by taking a brisk walk before winding down for the night.

We know you're very likely hungover, exhausted or a combination of both. but grab a friend, a family member or download the latest episode of your favourite podcast, and hit the pavement for 30 minutes.

It'll only help, we promise.

5. Pamper yourself

Look, it's not easy returning to work after a fortnight of excess, and Lord knows you're probably not feeling in tip-top condition, so make sure you treat yourself during your final hours of the Christmas holiday.

Root out any pampering products you found in your stocking, pull on your cosiest pyjamas and settle down with the book you found beneath the tree because finding the time to relax is absolutely paramount.

You've prepped for the morning, you've gotten a head-start on your emails and you've even fitted in a little exercise, so now it's time to indulge yourself before smashing your weekly goals.

Ladies, you've got this.

 

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Look, we all know that there’s no time like the present to embark on a journey of self-improvement, but as Christmas approaches, most of us fall victim to our own excuses.

It’s too hard to eat well, drink less and do more when we’re faced with tins of chocolate, countless social engagements and a couch that can't do enough for us.

So, what do we do, instead? We make a solemn ‘New Year, New Me’ vow to ourselves, and cross our fingers we’ll actually stick to it this time.

Mercifully, it’ll be a lot easier this time around thanks to an event which is taking place just six days into the new year.

The aptly-named Fresh Resolutions brings together some of the country’s greatest leaders in the field of health, fitness and wellbeing, and seeks to support, encourage and educate those in attendance.

Featuring the likes of Roz Purcell, Siobhan O’Hagan, Jennifer Rock, Rob Lipsett and Pat Divilly, the event is all about increasing productivity, providing training tips and meeting like-minded people.

Taking place in Dublin’s RDS on January 6, Fresh Resolution which will be a mixture of talks, panel discussions and Q&A sessions, is exactly what you need if you’re determined 2018 is going to be your year.

Ladies, we'll see you there.

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If ever there was a day to pack up and jet off (even if only for a mini-break) today is that day. 

And while circumstances may decree that we simply hibernate until February, if you come across a forgotten few pennies in a Christmas card – that cash could go very far indeed.

Yup, SHEmazing! has now trawled through the Ryanair sale for a bargain… coming up with these gems for your consideration.

 

1) Cork to Malaga

Leave: Sunday, January 22

Return: Wednesday, January 25

Cost: €63

Note: It's currently 18C and sunny in the south of Spain.

 

A photo posted by Rafa Sequeira (@rafasequeira) on

2) Dublin to Brussels 

Leave: Monday, January 23

Return: Monday, January 30

Cost: €20

Note: The River Jazz Festival will be taking place at the time.

 

A photo posted by Cibeli Maciel (@cibelimaciel) on

3) Shannon to Berlin

Leave: Monday, January 23

Return: Friday, January 27

Cost: €51

Note: Berlin is still a gorgeous winter wonderland right now.

4) Dublin to Cologne

Leave: Saturday, January 21

Return: Wednesday, January 25

Cost: €46

Note: The local Kölsch beer is best sampled on home-soil.

5) Cork to Liverpool 

Leave: Sunday, January 22

Return: Wednesday, January 25

Cost: €26

Note: The Tate Liverpool is holding a free Tracey Emin exhibition at the time. 

 

A photo posted by Tate Liverpool (@tateliverpool) on

6) Dublin to Paris

Leave: Wednesday, January 25

Return: Wednesday, February 1

Cost: €37

Note: A notorious pricey city, Paris is a lot more affordable at this time of year. 

 

A photo posted by Futuradria Viaggi (@futuradria) on

7) Dublin to Amsterdam 

Leave: Tuesday, January 24

Return: Wednesday, February 1

Cost: €42

Note: Tulip season is kicking off – so visit the world's only floating flower market, Bloemenmarkt.

 

A photo posted by Francesca (@fra.ric) on

8) Kerry to Frankfurt 

Leave: Monday, January 30

Return: Friday, February 3

Cost: €34.50

Note: So much more than a commercial hub, Frankfurt's foodie scene is amazing. Try Vevay.

 

A photo posted by Katarina⛈ (@vvsions) on

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Yup, it's officially Blue Monday.

And while health experts and doctors are sceptical about the legitimacy of the concept of the 'most depressing day of the year,' a cold, dark, flat-out broke month is certainly enough to make us consider hibernation until February 1.

So if you are looking for something to lift your spirits – and one that doesn't involve spending any money (see above) – having a larf with the help of Netflix is a decent place to start.

 

Classic Comedy Series

 

Only Fools & Horses

London schemer Derek, his brother Rodney and their daft grandfather try anything and everything to leave their working class life behind.

The Big Bang Theory

Quarks fly when two geeky physicists discover that they have a new neighbour : a sexy actress who inspires them to try a relationship with a real woman.

Fawlty Towers

Haughty Basil Fawlty and his bossy wife try to raise the profile of their Fawlty Towers Hotel, but endless mix ups arise, leading to farcical lunacy.

The Fresh Prince of Bellair

The affluent Banks family finds their lives turned upside down when Street smart Will, a Philadelphia relative moves into their California mansion.

Gavin & Stacey

After a long distance courtship, Gavin and Stacey finally meet in person – only to be confronted with the strong opinions of friends and family.

That 70s Show

Feel groovy in 1970s suburbia, where a teen and his pals hang in the basement, listening to rock and indulging other hazy benefits of ‘70s culture.

 

Stand Up Comedy

 

Micheael McIntyre Comedy Roadshow

Michael McIntyre visits some of the UKs most iconic standup comedy venues, unearthing a portfolio of comedy’s brightest new talent.

Chelsea Handler – Uganda Be Kidding Me Live

In her first Netflix comedy special, Chelsea Handler recounts her African adventures (and provides hilarious photographic evidence)

Louis CK – Live at the Comedy Store

The comic puts his trademark hilarious / though provoking spin on finding a bat in his kitchen, seeing rats having sex, Boston accents and dead pets.

Jimmy Carr – Funny Business

British comedian Jimmy Carr unleashes his deadpan delivery and wickedly funny one-liners to a sold-out audience at the UK’s Hammersmith Apollo.

Aziz Anzari – Buried Alive

‘Parks and Recreation’ star Aziz Ansari takes the stage to share his unfiltered views on adulthood, babies, marriage, love and more in the modern ear.

 

Comedy Films

 

Sing Street

In 1980’s Dublin, a teen whose family is falling apart transfers to a touch school, where he forms a rock band to fit in and win a girls attention

Bewitched

Isabel Bigalow seems to be the perfect Samantha to star in a remake of the 1960s sitcom “Bewitched” but no one knows she really is a witch!  Stars Nicole Kidman, Will Ferrell and Shirley MacLane

Eddie The Eagle

This inspirational film tells the true story of Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards who became England’s unlikely ski-jump hero in the 88 Olympics.

My Best Friend’s Wedding

When she learns her platonic pal is getting married, food critic Julianne Potter realises her true feelings for him and tries to sabotage the weddings.

What Happens In Vegas

After a night of heavy partying in Vegas, two strangers wake up to realise, much to their displeasure, that they’ve gotten married.

 

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Arguably juicing has had its day; sure didn't we leave all that nonsense behind back in 2014, swapping over to 'clean' eating instead?

However, judging by a load of new-year-new-you social posts, a fondness for jucing lingers still. 

Welcome to the dreaded juice detox: usually a hellish 72-stint where suckers-for-punishment eat NOTHING but blended fruit and veg.

Delightful.

The upside? You can lose around 4kg/9lbs in three days – a weight-loss bang-for-your-buck that's certainly headline-grabbing.

The downside? You might go insane. That and the likelihood of cracking on day two and diving headfirst into a mega-tub of Nutella is, well, high.

Here's what to expect from your ill-adviced 72-hour a juice diet:

1) Headaches

A dull-headache that no amount of water seems to placate. Certainly, you shouldn't plan on doing anything too taxing – either mentally or psychically – during your juice-stint. 

2) Fawning

Suddenly, every tiny insignificant morsel of food seems hugely appetising and oh-so delicious. A week-old apple? Delightful! A scrap of bread? Oh, what culinary delights! Three almonds? Our kingdom for those three almonds! 

3) Tremors

We're not talking full-on seizure here (if that happens, you know, call your doctor) but more of a slight, unexpected hand quiver by day three. 

4) Grumpiness 

You'll do a lot of moaning over those three days – largely because you're so hungry. All. The. Time.

5) Insomnia

An empty tum does not make for a restful night's sleep – so yes, you'll be wrecked as well as starving. 

6) Forward-planning

You wake up on day three and the end is in sight. This can mean only one thing: you start planning your escape. Bread, butter, chips, crisps – the whole lot will be on that throw-caution-to-the-wind menu once you're done detoxing.

7) Stupidity

A load of the weight you lose is just from being dehydrated and having nothing in your stomach – so you're shedding MAX a kilo-odd of actual fat. When this dawns on you a week after returning to your normal size, you'll wonder why on earth you bothered.

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Christmas is over, the first day of a new year has arrived, and so it must be time to start buying Easter eggs.

No, in fact, it's not time. It's definitely not time. But according to some wily retailers, January 1 is the perfect point of the year to start thinking about a holiday that's still three months away.

Shoppers in the UK and Ireland have reported seeing Easter eggs in various supermarkets, and they've taken to Twitter to offer evidence of this MADNESS. 

Just to clarify, March 27 is a full 85 days from today.

One shopper was even subjected to this awful juxtaposition:

Speaking earlier this week to the Daily Mail about the decision to stock the themed chocolate so early, Tesco said, "In response to demand from customers who like to buy them early, we are offering a limited range of Easter chocolates in selected stores.

"Our full range does not go into our stores until later in January."

Creme Egg, anyone?

 

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Ah, the gym. It's like Marmite; if you love it you cannot get enough, if you hate it the smell is enough to make you puke. 

Notoriously, gyms in January are ten times busier than normal as people's New Year's resolutions kick into gear. 

Not all of these gym-goers will make it to February:

1. The pre-work professional
Always in before six in a suit and runners, these people mean business. They hop on the treadmill do a solid two hours and off they go to work for another 34. 

Catchphrase: "Can't talk, gotta run – so late for a meeting with my CEO byeeeee"

2. The relaxed yogi
Always barefoot and pleasantly calm, the yogis will make you feel zen even when 'leg guy' is grunting while squatting in the corner. 

Catchphrase: "Would you like some nettle and liquorice tea?"

3. Leg guy
Yes, he was always going to be next.  Drinking a protein smoothie while lifting ten of thousands of kg, the natural habitat of leg guy is in front of the mirror. 

Catchphrase: "Do you even lift, bra?"

4. The Bridget Jones
This is us to be honest. Not a regular gym-goer but always striving to get fitter. 

Catchphrase: "HOW has it only been fifteen minutes since I got here?"

5. The Insta-snapper
Gym-gear? Check. Two-hour intense workout done? Check. Make-up still miraculously perfectly? Check. Mirror? Check. Snap, snap, snap! Inadvertently makes The Bridget Jones never want to come back to the gym. 

6. The fit mom
She's had HOW many kids?! Hope I'm like that one day….

Catchphrase: "The gym is my 'me-time'"

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January is a loooong month. Maybe not technically…but it sure feels like it, doesn’t it?! So, instead of listing all of the things we can’t wait to see the back of in February, like dark mornings and Christmas weight, we looked at some of the things we'll miss from January! 

1. Hot water bottles
The season of hot water bottle is almost coming to an end, so snuggle up and enjoy while you can!

2. Starbucks winter flavours
The red cups will soon be a thing of the past so it’s time to grab that double chocolate peppermint mocha hot chocolate with whipped cream before they disappear till next year!

3. Winter coats
Soon we’ll have to go shopping for a light jacket for spring time and that fur-trimmed hood will be packed away until October, sob!

4. Christmas jumpers
Some may argue the Christmas jumper season is well over, but we reckon as long as it doesn’t have Rudolph on the front it’s fair game for another few weeks.

5. Cadbury’s Roses and other Christmas-time treats
It’s that time of the year when everyone clears the junk food out of their homes…and into their offices. So, yes. We are still eating Roses if you must know.

6. Being organised
The New Year makes us organise our lives perfectly (until February). Armed with new diaries and fresh pens, we feel we can take over the world, one list at a time. 

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