Category Archives: entertainment

Balancing the Scales

Those who know me will tell those who don’t that I have a slight tendency to worry about things: money, work, weight, the fact that we are slowly running out of chocolate…

The main thing I worry about though, is worrying. Do I spend too much time worrying about work, and not enough time worrying about how many workouts a week my puggle is getting? Do I spend too much time worrying about money and not enough time worrying about how I spend my time? Do I spend too much time worrying about how much I weigh and not enough time actually enjoying the food I can eat? Most definitely.

I’m worried about finding the balance between work and play. How much more time should my mind spend in the office than my body does and how much time in the day should I dedicate to stressing about whether I’m doing a good job while my body is actually in the office. Is it OK not to worry about work even though I often deal with people whose entire livelihood is in my hands? Am I going mad here?

How do you find the balance? How do people successfully juggle all that and not manage to worry about any of it too much? I honestly have no idea. I don’t think I’m ever going to be one of those people. I’d be too stressed out over not worrying that I’d probably give myself a complex. I do yoga sometimes to find my inner chill, but there is always at least one point in every session where I worry I’m not doing it right.

Then I found this video:

It now makes total sense.

I know I may spend too much time worrying about work, about my genetically impaired pooch, and worrying itself. Yes, I do clean too much (but honestly, that’s now become more of a weekly workout than a chore now), but I do put the important bits in the jar first as well.

Yes, I do focus maybe too much on my job sometimes, but I always want to make sure I’ve got time to put the people in my life above my source of income; I may fill my jar with an awful lot of sand, but it is just that – sand. It’s tiny bits of grit that I overthink because it’s a personality flaw, but I’ve got my big priorities straight. And while I may not be cured of my overthinking – it’s comforting to know that there is always room for chocolate.



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Going Mouldy

taken from

Been left too long…

Somewhere down the road, I stopped writing. I didn’t write down my food, I didn’t write down my ideas, and then low and behold, I was back at square one.

Jeans got tighter, well written blogs went unpublished, I lost myself trying to get other, ‘more important’ things done. I went stale. I’ve not used them enough, so my writing’s gone off and my weight’s gone up.

And so, with a heavy heart I went crawling back to my weekly meeting with my tail between my legs. I wore the lightest thing possible and shunned all jewellery in a desperate bid to retain some pride, which was stupid because I then looked ridiculous standing in a school hall in the middle of January, freezing to death because I was wearing nothing but leggings and a vest. Even so, I sucked it up, or in, and gingerly stepped on the scales. For the first time in a year and a half, I was out of my gold range.

The nice thing about going back to weight watchers is that everyone is so understanding and supportive. No one looks at you and goes, “Oh you stupid woman, have you no self control?” We are all in it together. You don’t have that when you write. There’s no one standing over your shoulder saying, “You should publish that, no don’t just save it and ‘come back to it later’ because you never will.”

So I’m adopting healthy body healthy paper, or something to that effect. I work on one, the other seems to improve as well, but I have to keep it up if I want to get better. I can’t go off the rails and worry about it later. I have to acknowledge when things have gone awry and work to improve them, to make sure I don’t go off again.

I’m baking a fresh batch, I’m starting anew, turning a new leaf so the weight’s off my shoulders (and now my thighs,thankfully). I’m back in my gold range and I am publishing again. It’s funny how writing and weight loss work together to form one giant stress bomb which leaves me running for the emergency chocolate.

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Posted by on March 14, 2013 in diet, entertainment, food


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Fifty Shades of Food

My friend has a ‘first date’ this week. She is all excitement and nerves at the moment and it has been really nice to re-live the experience with her. We have been discussing hair and outfits, meeting places and do’s and don’t’s. It’s the start of the honeymoon period, when everything is shiny and new. Both sides make more of an effort to impress. You must be perfectly coiffed, you have to laugh in all the right places of the conversation and the jogging bottoms are either buried in the wardrobe or incinerated with the understanding that you should buy a shiny new pair when you reach the ‘nights in’ stage. You make a fresh start with everything and decide that you WILL make more of an effort this time. This is the exact same way all new diets start.

The honeymoon phase

The honeymoon period of my diet is over. We are making less of an effort to show our commitment  to one another. I am no longer gazing at my diet with loved-up puppy eyes and seeing nothing but perfection, the joggers are out and the make-up is gathering dust in the crevices of my handbag.  I have passed the stage where all I can hear is wedding bells and dreaming up my children’s names. Instead I have reached a more steady phase wherein I am living relatively comfortably with my diet but the spark has died. Things are not perfect, we don’t always get along. We have our little tiffs every now and again, and there have been several occasions when I have almost been drawn away by some delicious creation who was prepared to offer me more excitement than my regular old diet ever could, but I always come back begging for forgiveness and promising to try harder.

I know my diet gives me what I need, even when it cannot give me what I want. We are comfortable, even if we are no longer head over heels. But I am BORED.

Now however, there is a new spice in the mix. Something to shake things up. Something that has shown that it is OK to misbehave (and punishment is sometimes not completely bad…) Fifty Shades has re-invented diets.

The world’s best diet

Think about it for a second before you dismiss me as insane. If Anastasia Steele was dating a diet, it worked really well. She does everything she can to make her man happy and it turns out that she actually enjoys her new lifestyle. Eventually, just as she starts wondering if this really is the diet for her, the diet starts to give her things in return for being so well behaved (wink wink for the readers). It becomes a relationship well on course for years of mutual benefit (another wink wink). As it turns out, she’s actually dating a man (oh, that man…) And they compromise for each other to make the relationship work, and boy, does it work.

This is exactly how a good diet should and can be. It is possible ladies, (and gents, but I’m thinking you may not find this analogy really helpful…) A good diet will show you how to incorporate your cravings into a healthy lifestyle, so you aren’t deprived but you still watch what you eat. You do have to be prepared to make changes, and it may not always be an easy ride, (pun not intended… maybe) but you eventually come out with something that you can live with quite happily. You just have to find the balance.

And this is the conclusion you come to at around the third date. You begin to ease up on the hairspray. You start to share the less fantastic things about yourself. Your partner also starts to relax into the swing of things a little and you can begin to see where it is all going to go. If it works out then you are left with a relationship of compromise and cooperation. You give and you get. This is how a diet has to work. After all, isn’t a diet just a relationship with food? It won’t work if one side does all the work, you have to meet each other in the middle. You have to try things a different way and come to a mutual understanding that meets both of your needs.You need a Mr. Grey.

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Posted by on August 14, 2012 in books, diet, entertainment, food


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A Dream Come True

London 2012

And so the Olympics have arrived. Athletes from all over the world will be competing to fulfil their lifelong dreams of taking gold for their teams and their country. It takes an unbelievable amount of determination and strength to achieve something like that; to make dreams come true – the likes of which most of us will simply never have. Fortunately, I also saw my dreams realised this week, and I didn’t have to spend a single hour in the gym to do it.

I had a wonderful dream the other night. I was pregnant (that’s the less wonderful part – as much as I want to have kiddlywinks, I’m not quite ready for offspring just yet thank you very much), and I went to my doctor for a check up. She told me that the baby was not as big as it should be, but it was nothing to worry about. I am a stress head by nature, so my subconscious self was naturally scared to death. Now, whether in the dream world or the real one, the only immediate solution for the worries of the world is ice cream. It cures all ailments (except maybe tighter jeans, but that’s what Primark is for…) and it will always be there in a time of crisis. So anyway, I am sat there in my dream, stressing my pregnancy-induced swollen breasts off, when I realise there is a tub of Ben and Jerry’s in the freezer. I eat the lot. I swear, when I woke up, I could taste it. The long and the short of it was that after eating the whole tub, I went back to the doctor who told me that the baby had grown and it was perfectly healthy. Hooray for ice cream!

Now that’s what I call baby food

The dream got me thinking about ice cream, more specifically about how you can only really get your favourite flavours mixed in the same serving from really expensive ice cream bars which are a drive away from the comfort of your own sofa and DVD player. My favourite type of ice cream is Ben and Jerry’s and as I am a slave to product placement, and I dreamt about it, I knew I wouldn’t be happy until I got my hands on some. My favourite flavours are chocolate fudge brownie and cookie dough. For the longest time I hated having to choose between the two of them. So imagine my surprise when I am browsing the frozen section of the supermarket doing the mental coin toss of heads is cookie, tails is fudge, to find Half Baked Ben and Jerry’s. I had no idea this stuff existed. We have Sky+ so I don’t really see a lot of adverts – something I am now seriously regretting because I am out of the half baked loop. It’s brownie and cookie in one tub!!! (Trust me, this is worthy of 3 exclamation points…)

I guess I am a bit like an athlete who has had a bad race in this way. I missed my chance when half baked first came out, but I’m making up for it now. I will never be a champion swimmer, I’ll never be worthy of gold on track. I may never be able to do a back flip off a high beam (obviously I could, if I wanted to – I just don’t want to outshine everyone), but I, Morag Boles, have seen my favourite flavours united in one tub of delicious cold creaminess – and finding it makes me feel like I’ve already won my medal. Who’d have thought it – London 2012 and ice cream teaming up to help me see my dreams made real – the men and women of the Olympics proving that anything is possible, and the ice cream to prove that you don’t have to superhuman to get there… If that’s not enough to make a nation proud, I don’t know what is.

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Posted by on August 1, 2012 in diet, entertainment, food


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Ladies who Lunch

When asked to explain why people love Sex And The City, there are the obvious responses – the humour, the friendship, the outrageous sex stories… if you haven’t seen it and you like to keep anything to do with the bedroom in the bedroom, don’t watch this show. If you like a bit of humour with your date, you need look no further for your evening companion.

Oh, if only it were that glamourous
What keeps me interested in SATC is the hope the show gives me (futile though it may be). After watching an episode or two in the evenings I pray for the same outcome advertised in Carrie Bradshaw’s New York to happen in my own life. I would wait forever to find the same thing they all managed to find by the end of series 6 – the secret, the key to happiness. I am of course talking about the fact that these lovely ladies can eat out that many times a week and still maintain amazing figures.

In every single episode, they eat out. There’s cupcakes, pretzels, and more drinks than a Scottish distillery. How do they stay so slim? Every attempt Carrie Bradshaw has in the workout world results in her ridiculing it. Yes, she’s a fictional character, and yes the hope restored in me because they maintain their wonderful figures is stupid, because in real life, they probably live in the gym and renounce all things carby or calorific, but it’s still false advertising, or something to that effect which means weight gain would not be my fault.

Carrie got the lucky straw, she can write, she can dine, she can buy shoes which cost more than my entire wardrobe put together (including the actual wardrobe) and she’s never had to go up a dress size.

My idea of a lunch out is a sophisticated little side street restaurant with a girlfriend and a nice catch-up conversation over our salmon and country vegetables. In reality, it’s more like a Starbucks, or at the very most, a low fat subway, but then it’s an 8k cycle ride and a 3k run/ brisk walk just to burn off the bread. Even salads are bad in the non-fictional restaurants because they come covered in dressings. It puts a bit of a dampener on the ‘lunching ladies’ montage when you know that you can’t really be a ‘lunching lady’ without expanding the waistband and the overdraft for that matter. It’s a shame, I could have been the UK’s answer to Carrie Bradshaw but I just don’t have the genes to be with the ladies who lunch.


Posted by on May 18, 2012 in entertainment, food


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