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Last Chance to Join Belle’s 100 Days Worldwide Diet & Fitness Challenge 2018

A new research released two weeks ago showed that weight and obesity related cancers have now astonishingly surpassed smoking related cancers.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-43502144

If you are *SERIOUS* about losing weight, getting fit and making your health a priority, today is your last chance left to join this 100 Days Challenge.

It doesn’t matter how many diets you’ve tried and “failed”.

Success is never giving up and getting back on that diet horse.

Let’s make this the longest ride ever.

We’re not falling off that diet horse ever again!
Starting *Monday 9th April, 2018 to Tuesday 17th July, 2018*

For further information, please email:  Belles100DaysChallenge@gmail.com

Final Day - Belle's 100 Days Worldwide Challenge

Final Day – Belle’s 100 Days Worldwide Challenge

Please follow my progress on the Challenge on my Instagram page: belleslowcarbworld

Wish me luck!

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Guest Blog: The Discerning Divorced and Childless Friendship Club

*****Guest Blog*****

The Discerning Divorced and Childless Friendship Club

My divorce was a tsunami of grief and insurmountable changes. I had to either swim or sink into an abyss of darkness. I wouldn’t wish the pain I experienced on my worst enemy. Nearly three years on, of course I still have dark days, but they are getting fewer and fewer and I have chosen to concentrate on moving on in a positive and optimistic manner instead of remaining bitter about the past.

I set up the private Discerning Divorced and Childless Friendship Club to expand my social circle with likeminded people in similar circumstances as me, divorced and childless; a Group to have fun and to laugh again.

sunflower

Please join me and the 17 brave men and women who are already part of this brand new private Meetup Group.

Being brave enough to put yourself out there, meet new people and make new friends is extremely difficult, I know because setting up this Group is totally outside my comfort zone. Please join me on Saturday 7th April at 6.45pm for a small knit dinner for four people at the fabulous One Michelin Star Hakkasan Mayfair taking positive steps to meet new people and change something about our lives. You can find all details of the dinner meetup, including menu, by clicking the link below and joining the Group.

I have kept the Group events to a maximum of 4 because I want everyone to be comfortable and I want to foster a real opportunity for friendships instead of anyone being lost in a large groups.

Dinner at Hakkasan Mayfair (One Michelin star) A La Carte Menu, 6.45pm – 9pm

Saturday, Apr 7, 2018, 6:45 PM

2 Discerners Attending

Check out this Meetup →

Please read more about the Discerning Divorced and Childless Friendship Club below.

**There are no strangers here; only friends you haven’t yet met – William Butler Yeats**

Are you divorced/widowed/single, currently childless (not by choice) or childfree (by choice or separated from your children or for whatever reason), aged around 30 to 60, discerning and seeking new, platonic, long lasting friends and companions, to enjoy the best of London and the world?

Perhaps your children have flown the nest or for whatever reason you feel an affinity to this Group, please feel free to join. This is an inclusive and non-judgemental Group.

Do you need an injection of fun, laughter, adventure and happiness in your life after the end of a marriage, relationship or bereavement?

Do you enjoy eating in fine restaurants (in an affordable manner), travelling in affordable 5 star luxury or hosting/attending sumptuous dinner parties full of fun, laughter, music and dancing?

Are you interested in learning savvy new ways to make your reduced post-divorce income stretch a little bit more?

If so, this might be the Group for you.

Why I Started this Group

Nearly three years after the unexpected end of my long marriage, as I continue to rebuild my life in a positive manner, most books and articles tell us to seek comfort and joy in our children.

But what about people like me who are childless (not by choice) or childfree, and find ourselves in our 40s, divorced, widowed or single, and completely alone, in a coupled-up/family focused world, having been part of a close twosome that was supposed to last forever?

How do we fill our evenings and weekends when friends are married, with families and doing their own thing?

What do we do when the social invitations have dried up because they tend to revolve around friends’ children, who deem it fit to only invite those with children?

What do we do when good friends are scattered around the world or we’ve simply lost contact or drifted away?

How do we make new friends in our 30s, 40s or 50s when the traditional ways of making lasting friendships in school, university and new jobs, are a distance past?

How do we make new friends when we cannot meet new people at the school gate, children’s sleepovers, children’s parties, PTA meetings, school fairs, school trips, school fundraising events and all the new avenues open to parents?

How do we embrace our changed circumstances and still make a fulfilling, happy life for ourselves, full of genuine, platonic friendships and fun, without embarking on new and perhaps unsuitable romantic relationships?

Even if we choose to have new romantic relationships or even go on to have children, how do we avoid the mistakes of the past, by ensuring we still maintain genuine, close platonic, fun friendships, outside of our new twosome or family life?

My Aims for this Group

This Group is about moving on from the pain and hurt of divorce or loss, and concentrating our energies in a positive, constructive and optimistic manner.

It is about bringing together likeminded people who have a taste for the finer things in life, but we accept that for some of us, our financial circumstances have been vastly reduced by divorce. However, we have learnt to be savvy and clever with money – let’s explore cheaper ways of dining in the finest Michelin restaurants, 5 star luxury travel, sumptuous dinner parties and continuing to enjoy all the finest things in life, in an affordable manner.

It is about accepting that being single and childless might not be the life plan but it is the life we currently have, taking control and embracing a positive Plan B.

This Group is about saying a big fat NO to spending countless weekends completely alone – let’s start with monthly activities and take these new friendships, offline, into the real world.

It is about finding genuine friends to go out to dinner to that new Michelin restaurant on a Saturday night, hosting or attending dinner parties, exploring that trendy new cocktail bar, going to theatre, cinema, opera, West End musical, without feeling like a Billy no mates.

Let’s find a travel buddy to go on exotic holidays, without being the odd one out in a world full of couples and families.

Rules

We’ve all had enough traumas in our lives and do not want a Group with a long list of rules. However, if these prove necessary, they will be added.

For now, please be respectful, supportive, non-judgmental and considerate of everyone. If you RSVP for an event, please attend or cancel as soon as possible to enable someone else to attend. Please take personal responsibility for your own safety.

 

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This Divorced and Childless Woman’s Mother’s Day

Life is a funny old one.

What do you do on Mother’s Day when you are divorced/single and childless, and the whole world seem hell bent on celebrating their children?

This year, like I do most years, I decided to concentrate on the positive fact that I am lucky enough to have a wonderful mother who is still alive. I think of my friends who have lost their mums and I reach out to them to show some love. The day would usually pass without much drama or sadness. It is what it is.

This Mother’s Day, I had gone to bed late on Saturday night or should I say Sunday morning (2.48am bad, bad, bad, bad girl!) and around 9am on Sunday morning, in that dreamy/wakey/confused state, my door bell rang. I sleepily went to the video intercom and I could see a lady.

“I’ve got flowers.” With my eyes half closed, I couldn’t really make out the figure on the video screen.

“Flowers?” I answered sleepily as if she had just declared that she was dropping an alien from outer space on my doorstep.

“I’ve got flowers for xxxx xxxx.” My local florist said, saying my full name.

My scrabbled brain tried to decipher what on earth she was on about. My brain worked overtime trying to figure out who on earth could be sending me flowers. Various names flashed through my head and just as quickly, I discarded them. Could it have been the man I went on the date on Friday who I did not intend to see again? But he didn’t know my full name. And why on earth would he be sending me flowers? Stalker alert. Who on earth could it be from? I knew no one. I had no one. There was no one. This is odd.

“Could you please leave it on the porch?” I informed the florist whose van I could see on my video screen.

I sleepily went downstairs to the porch with the gait of a special agent about to solve the crime of the century. I would have to be extremely careful with this package. It clearly wasn’t some sort of assassination attempt as I recognised both the florist and her van. Then again it could be.

And there it was.

The most beautiful bunch of flowers I have received in longer than I can remember.

Flowers 2018

I reached for the card attached to the side. It read:

Happy Mother’s Day to our second mum.

Thank you for always being there for us.

We love you.

X Y and Z.

The flowers were from my nephews (aged 16 and 18) and my niece (aged 13)

Flower card 2018

These precious, most adorable, super awesome, generous, kind, sweetest kids have spent money they don’t have to send their auntie, a most gorgeous hand tied, bunch of flowers, timed to be hand delivered on Mother’s Day, with the increased premium.

The overwhelming gratitude and love I feel for these kids, and to my sister for raising such generous, kind, thoughtful kids, is more than I can express on this post.

I am very blessed indeed.

If you are single/divorced/widowed and childless/childfree/separated from your kids or whatever your circumstances may be, if you are interested in widening your social circle, meeting likeminded people for fun, laughter, friendship and to get your mojo back, you may consider joining this brand new Meetup Group called The Discerning Divorced and Childless Friendship Club.

You can join the ladies already confirmed for the Group’s first meetup this Saturday, a reasonably priced gorgeous three course dinner and cocktail, at the fabulous one Michelin Star restaurant Hakkasan Mayfair.

Coming soon: guest blog from the Founder of the The Discerning Divorced and Childless Friendship Club

 

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Day 759 – 100 Days Weight Loss WhatsApp Challenge

Sorry but no more new Challengers after Thursday night (16/3). We now need to concentrate on preparing the 28 who have signed up.

Anyone who has been following my blog knows that as my marriage unexpectedly exploded in 2015, and I saw myself facing the divorce from hell throughout 2015 and most of 2016, I continued to try to lose weight, albeit taking a very long scenic route and being on the diet on and off and off and off and off and on and off and on and off!

I’m sick of suspending life to climb on and off the diet wagon.

I’m good with weight maintaining because I actually enjoy low carbing and exercising, but I need to get to a comfortable weight first and I’m far from where I need to be.

Sadly, all the on and off and on and off and back again and off again mean that I have made little progress in the last six  months.

insanity

And so, I’ve decided to do something different…

Something I have never ever done before…

I’m going to go on a 100 Days Challenge of staying on my diet 100% with total accountability and total commitment.

100Days

This time though, I will be doing it with a bunch of other people.

And so, two days ago, I posted on Facebook and Instagram inviting friends, family and complete strangers, to join me in this challenge.

As of right now, 26 awesome people have taken up the challenge to change our lives together in 100 days.

If you would like to join us, send me your contact details on my Facebook or Instagram or email me.

Start Date: Monday 20th March, 2017

End Date: Tuesday 27th June, 2017

100 days

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Day 743: Meals for One – Instagram it.

Last night, one of my closest friends who lives in the States asked who eats all the meals I post on Instagram as she was curious whether I do that much entertaining.

I replied that I post low carb, low calorie (200 to 300 calories), healthy dinners I cook for…myself. I said that I still wanted to have lovely dinners, the sort you would cook for/with a partner, even though I am single and live on my own.

Being single and living on my own does not mean that I should resort to TV dinners or sad looking supermarket meals for one.

Following our discussions, I had time to think about this and as minor as it might sound, I am proud that I have not given up on life or gone for easy options when it comes to eating for one.

I love food…therein lies my problem with weight. And I love experimenting with food. I am proud that I have continued to do so.

But why one earth should lovely dinners be confined to only those who are coupled up? What’s next? Transform myself into the stereotypical spinster (what an ugly word) surrounded by countless cats?

No way.

Self love is about being kind to myself and doing those things that give me joy, which include cooking, and having delicious, sometimes elaborate and interesting home cooked meals…for one.

In other news, following my latest restart on my diet, as of this morning’s weigh-in, I have lost just over a stone in 8 days; 6.6 kg. Now, if I can lose 3 more stones, I will probably be done with this diet quest…

Please follow me on Instagram, belleslowcarbworld  where I post photos and recipes of of my low carb, low calories and healthy dinners.

Below are photos of some of the meals from the last week. Click on the photos for recipes.

instagram1

instagram3

instagram2

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Day 623 – Thank You to Good Friends…We Are Yet to Meet.

I don’t care if it takes me a trillion days, a billion fails and a million restarts.

I owe it to myself and to every single person who reads this blog and who cares about my journey, to keep chipping away at my fat, until I reach goal.

So….I’m back on the diet wagon.

I want to say a massive thank you to all of you who have followed my journey and those of you who have become my friends on Facebook through this blog, and who have extended a real and genuine hand of friendship.

thank you

Although we have not met face to face…yet, your friendship and support are tremendously important and hugely appreciated by me.

Let’s face it, you know my innermost thoughts, which 99% of people closest to me in the “real world”, whatever that is, are not privy to. 

You are all very important to me as real and virtual lives merge in our world.

The comment below on my Facebook, following my last post, from an incredible lady who I have not met…yet, but who I greatly admire and very much care about, like I do my closest “real life” friends, moved me more than I can express.

And so, I say, thank you.

“You are so brave! What a journey you’ve been on! I remember a year ago telling you it would get easier….and I stand by that….it does, but I too, after 8 years of being divorced received a letter from my ex last week…and it still hurts. In my experience the pain dulls, but it never leaves entirely.

But that discomfort mustn’t stop you moving forward with your life and pursuing your own happiness every moment of every day!

This may not be the outcome you’d have chosen but it is a new page, a clean sheet for you to put your mark on, and knowing you lovely one, it’ll be beautiful!!! Big Love xxxx”

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Day 610 – From the mouth of babes…Instagram It.

Please join me on Instagram and please share the link with anyone who might be interested in healthy lunch or dinner ideas.

I only post pictures of meals I cook, which are all healthy, low carb, low calorie meals suitable for most diets including Step 2 Cambridge, Dukan, Atkins, Ketogenic diets, clean eating, low carbing etc.

https://www.instagram.com/belleslowcarbworld/

instagram-join-me

Yesterday, I spent nearly 5 hours in the company of two delightful boys, one is 7 and the other is 5.

We baked shortbread biscuits and a two layered vanilla birthday cake, with buttercup frosting, complete with birthday messages and candles, after which we invited their parents and 5 month old brother to join our little tea party.

I did not even have a teeny weeny piece of cake.

This is a first.

Ever.

There is hope for me yet.

birthday-cake

At one point, the 5 year old declared that I was his best “Belle.” His mum tells me this is the height of his compliments.

At another point, he said:

“Mummy said you’re separated from your husband and you are no longer friends. You have two new friends, X and Y.” He proclaimed, naming his brother and himself.

That comment nearly moved me to tears. I gave both of them a high five, a kiss and a cuddle.

He also declared that I had the nicest kitchen in the whole wide world.

mouth-of-babes

Isn’t it just amazing how kids can make everything seem so easy and uncomplicated?

not-complicated

Since the last time that I wrote, the transfer of equity of my beautiful home into my sole name has completed. I looked at the title deed with my full name on it, with tears of joy, so much pride and immense gratitude that I have come out of my nightmare with a clean break and with my home as mine.

Just over a week ago, I finally deleted my ex ‘s phone numbers and that of his mum and sister from my contact list. The time was right and it felt good to have that firm closure.

But…things are not completely over.

My ex is still continuing with his ridiculous and crazy stance of taking me to court to fight over a previously jointly used mac computer which is over three years old and which I have been using alone since he left in April 2015.

The fact that this man is going ahead with this utterly ridiculous case tells me that his madness has not waned. His ludicrous barrister, with over 20 years experience, had demanded half a day of a busy Central London court, the busiest family court in the country, to talk shit about this computer.

The court has allocated 5 minutes instead of the demanded half a day.

Oh and for this laughable case, we are both required to prepare like a real case, exchange witness statements, evidence and all sorts.

I have been told to be prepared to be totally lambasted by an angry judge for this stupid matter coming to court but so be it. 

I look forward to a fun trip to Central London after which I will meet a friend for dinner and have a laugh.

crazy

In other news, I am still doing well in my diet.

I am also using my gym and in the last couple of weeks, have decided to weigh once a week instead of my previous obsession of weighing two or three times daily.