Andy Warhol

 Iconic  American artist, director and producer who was a leading figure in the visual art  movement known as pop art ,Andy Warhol was born August 6 1928 and dominated the 1960s.
 His works explore the relationship between artistic expression, celebrity culture, and advertising that flourished during that period .

Notably an openly gay man before the gay rights movement he began to receive recognition as an influential and controversial artist in the late 50’s after a few gallery exhibitions .

 His New York studio, The Factory, became a well-known gathering place that brought together distinguished intellectuals, drag queens, playwrights, Bohemian street people, Hollywood celebrities, and wealthy patrons. He promoted a collection of personalities known as Warhol superstars, and is credited with coining the widely used expression “15 minutes of fame.”

In 1968 he was part of an assassination attempt by radical feminist and paranoid schizophrenic Valerie Solanas after she believed he had purposely stolen her work and had “too much control ” over her life.

“Before I was shot, I always thought that I was more half-there than all-there—I always suspected that I was watching TV instead of living life. People sometimes say that the way things happen in movies is unreal, but actually it’s the way things happen in life that’s unreal. The movies make emotions look so strong and real, whereas when things really do happen to you, it’s like watching television—you don’t feel anything. Right when I was being shot and  ever since, I knew that I was watching television. The channels switch, but it’s all television.”

He survived the attempt and died in the 80s of pneumonia.


Pinky Promise 

The Pinky Promise/Pinky Swear is already defined as a cult ritual , almost a child-like bond session of keeping promises and secrets but naturally this being AHS its origins are a lot more disturbing.

In this seasons AHS , the pinky game is used to transfer fear from one person to another. It has a slightly threatening presence , you can’t break the promise and Kai taps into the fear of potentially breaking the oath . It also appears to make people admit the truth and feel relief at doing so…… Howeber, this is no child like game and disturbingly the original pinky swear had a rather violent origin.

Originating in  Japan, as “yubikiri,” it literally translates to “finger cut off,” as in “if you break this promise I will cut off your  finger ”
Even more unnervingly  America defined “Pinky” in the 1860 Dictionary of Americanisms as a “very common term in New York, especially among young children,” often accompanied by this sing song chant 

“Pinky, pinky bow-bell 

Whoever tells a lie 

 Will sink down to the bad place 

 And never rise up again. “

Why I chose to homeschool 

Imagine your child crying every morning at the thought of going to school, imagine the refusals to get out of bed , of anxiously pacing the halls in the middle of the night, begging not to go the next day.

Imagine watching your child deteriorate so much, he refused to leave his bed let alone the house even at weekends.

Imagine, watching as all his self confidence slowly drained away and at the age of 8 was showing the classic symptoms of depression.

What would you do as a parent ?

I tried everything,  forcing him in, having him prised off me each morning tearstained and unhappy – only to pick him up in the afternoon where he was lethargic, pasty and complaining of headaches.

We tried rewards and consequences to no avail …

And all the time the pressure regarding his attendance was on, I took the advice of professionals. ..nothing worked.

The mere mention of school would put him in such a meltdown he would become violent , hurting others , myself included  …. putting him in the risk of hurting himself.

So, I got to the point where as a parent I questioned at what point do I say enough is enough ? When do I recognise mainstream school is making him Ill when he’s deteriorating right in front of my eyes ? 

And recently I have, his mental health is far too important to me to risk him getting any worse. I need to be there to help him heal and do so in a safe secure and loving environment. 

He needs help and support that only I can give him and an approach at his pace in order to want to get out of bed again, play in the garden and leave the house.

So, I made the decision,  instead of focusing on threats of fines and imprisonment, I needed to use all my energy to help my son and if that means by taking him out of mainstream school and homeschooling then so be it 

Sheer Frustration

I’m writing this at the point of sheer Frustration and it may end up all ranty but I’m needing to rant.

Hopefully someone somewhere will get what I’m saying. I’m not a neuro typical person,  neither is my son but my daughter is. Therefore ,  parenting can be hard,  harder than normal.

What works with my daughter won’t work with him , you have to think outside the box, walk on eggshell,  try and  avoid the confrontation s , the meltdowns , the sheer and utter devastation psychically and emotionally on a daily basis.

Things have got so bad recently I have to accept professional help , I ve had to get the school involved because after 8 years of doing it alone , it just became all too much.

And this was hard for me… to expose myself and my child in such a vulnerable way… to ask for help when all I ever learnt is it ll be refused . To let people in my home when I don’t even let my parents through my own front door.

So I’ve done this, I’ve done it because I love my son , because I want to help him.

But all I seem to get from everyone is the lack of understanding that he isn’t neurotypical,  they allude to my parenting , they suggest things that yes would work if he didn’t have emotional , psychological and pyschical disabilities – they don’t understand that I’m agreeing with them in concept but I know it won’t work and to be honest the consequences of trying would be catastrophic. This is not me being difficult. I’m being honest.

I feel undermined,  I feel like I’m being called into question when actually I have proof in the shape of a 12 year old daughter this isn’t my parenting that is the problem. It isn’t like i havnt tried the same techniques with both.

I had to remind them today of this,  I got upset through the sheer frustration of talking but never being listened to.

All I’m asking is that I have some support to do it the way I know will work, because I know I can’t do it alone anymore, I broke before Xmas but I need to be strong for my boy but I need  to be believed in.

The Seven Deadly Sins :Envy

The Seven Deadly  Sins : Envy 

 on JANUARY 8, 2017

​With its religious connotations throughout the book, Flowers in the Attic was always going to have the “hidden” religious themes such as the Seven Deadly Sins. 

In this section i will be exploring each sin and what section of the story they appear in , how they affect the characters and why ….

Envy (Latin, invidia)

Envy (jealousy, malice) —
Grieving spite and resentment of material objects, accomplishments, or character traits of others, or wishing others to fail or come to harm. Envy is the root of theft and self-loathing. Dante defined this as “love of one’s own good perverted to a desire to deprive other men of theirs”.

Sin: Envy

Sinner : Cathy 

The greatest  example of Envy rears it’s ugly head on the night of the Christmas party.

Corrine arrives beautifully  adorned in a green dress , breathlessly telling her children of the party her father is throwing her. 

The colour of the dress is linked to the symbology of  the  colour green – green  is the color  of the deadly sin Envy and through Cathys eyes and the exquisite detailed narrative we can, as readers feel Cathys own envy, longing and frustration having been locked up and missing out on so much ….

I was envious of the arrogant;

I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

For they have no pain;

their bodies are sound and sleek.

They are not in trouble as others are;

they are not plagued like other people.

Therefore pride is their necklace;

violence covers them as a garment.

Their eyes swell out with fatness;

their heart overflows with follies.

They scoff and speak with malice;

loftily they threaten oppression.

They set their tongues against heaven,

and their tongues range over the earth.

Therefore the people turn and praise them,

and find no fault in them….

Such are the wicked;

always at ease, they increase in riches.

All in vain I have kept my heart clean

and washed my hands in innocence.”

(Psalm 73:3-13, NRSV

This Psalm I feel really speaks for the seed of fear, doubts and negativity that has been planted in Cathys mind regarding her mother and this night and this dress with the adorning emerald jewellery just fosters her envy.

Envy is the most joyless of the Seven Deadly Sins, and trying to get to the bottom of it is like wrestling with a shadow. The glutton enjoys his banana split, at least for a moment, but the envious appears to derive only a gnawing sense of comparison, competition, and injustice from his secret sin. At its best, envy remains a hidden pool of ingratitude and resentment, secretly applauding the downfall and sorrow of others.

This festers inside Cathy the more time goes on and where it is proven her suspicion s are correct, her envy towards her mother is still a driving force behind her actions especially later on in the series particularly in Petals on the  Wind . 

She may require revenge for all that has happened but it is her envy, planted so long ago in 1957 that spurs her to dress in a replica gown in 1972 and exploit her mother the way she did. For the sad truth is despite all the sorrow, heartbreak and wrong doing , she loved her mother, so much so she wanted to be her – just like she did that Christmas Eve when she witnessed her in that Green dress.


I’m rather partial to a gritty period drama.

Give me murder, betrayal, secrets and lies in a historic setting and I’m there.

Add Tom Hardy to the mix and I’m – well- happier than the proverbial  pig.
Taboo, an eight part historical drama, premiered tonight on BBC One – two days before its premiere on FX in America.

Of course,  I’d been looking forward  to it but I hadn’t expected to be so gripped.

James DeLaney,  presumed dead for 10 years ,  returns to 1814 London for his father’s funeral. 

A complex man, part hero part villian, his “ghost” haunts those who wish he’d never come back.
With a reputation  that precedes him, alluding to despicable crimes – this is a man who’s mental health is just as unstable as his late fathers .

With amazing cinematic scenes especially  in his “episodes” in which he controls hallucinations  by simply putting his blood stained hand up and very sternly tells “I have work to do today” – you can’t help but be drawn into the storyline and his character especially. 

I may have swooned a little , if not a lot , every time he spoke even when he was threatening to cut a whores trotters off.

But as I’ve said his return is not particularly  welcomed and not just because he is thought of as the devil himself.

His sister, has mixed feelings,  for they share a dark secret of the past she wishes to be buried……

His brother in law is furious  he is the sole heir …

The East India  Trading Co wish to buy the inheritance  left to him and will go to any means to obtain it …
An intriguing , dark period piece which is disturbing with the underlying threat which is not obvious but unnerving all the same …. Hardy s performance and that of the supporting cast is just outstanding. If you get a chance , definitely  watch this …. I promise you ll love it! 

******Potiential Spoilers ************

OK,  I am totally calling it now 

The 10 year old brother is in fact the lovechild of James and his sister and the reason he left for Africa in the first place.

The brother in law  was the one poisoning  James father with arsenic in order to inherit 

Frances Letter to Reggie

The Letter that’s used from Frances to Reggie  to “prove” she hated him and wanted out in the Tragic Bride book and also used by Emily Browning when “researching” the role of Frances for the film Legend.
It’s pretty triggering  reading 

I am not in the least interested in seeing  you ever again in the whole of my life and I really mean that, 

I am only interested  in getting my annulment. 

Don’t ever try and contact  me not ever again because I have had enough of the life I’ve had to lead so far.

I am keeping myself occupied at the moment and I don’t want any interference from you ever again so get out of my life and leave me alone and let me forget the past .


Pretty strong words and tone, definitely not the simpering little wife we saw in the 1990 biopic portrayal of Frances in The Krays.
However, NOTICE  the date JUNE 1966 
Frances was sectioned in Hackney Hospital in JUNE 1966 and was there until the SEPTEMBER  –

At the time of writing this letter she was in an incredible  fragile mental state and in an episode of her personality disorder – you can tell this by the erratic writing style and heavy use of underlining almost every word. You can tell she is distressed, but this is a result of her illness not just Reggie.
This date and what was happening  to Frances has been completely overlooked in favour of “theories” which the media has wanted to prove with little regards to the sources origin or facts.

However, granted it is difficult to  understand  personality disorders especially how to understand  what she’s writing but at the same time appreciate  the fact her illness  is tearing her apart and it’s not truly her writing it. It is but only for that moment in time …. it is truly difficult to understand, unless you suffer yourself, that with her disorder,that she wrote that  but could have felt totally different after sending it – that’s how rapid the illness is -changing a person’s thoughts and feelings within five mins, ten mins, an hour …sometimes even within a split second.

This letter is a vital source when researching Frances as a person, it does provide  insights but not just one.

It tells us so much in that of her illness but sadly this has been overlooked … 

Preparing for the Bone Graft – Dental Appointment 

So two weeks after it was announced in Cleft Clinic surgery would be scheduled for 9 months time, the dental preparation work had to begin.

It’s hard because you know what’s going to happen but at the same time don’t, you don’t know how to prepare your child for this appointment – especially when they have behaviour issues,like Ryan does, to add to the mix .

Just getting him out the front door was a challenge , delaying tactics at full pelt , hyperactive in the car on the 20 minute journey to the local hospital …. he didn’t want to go but he was trying bless him.

Then the hospital appointment itself , hesitated and tried to back away from the department… laying on the waiting room floor to many stares.

A 20 minute delay …..

And then this first appointment… the one that’s going to start the process of our journey towards his third and final operation in his cleft experience – the bone graft

I must say, the orthodontists were great , explaining every step before hand and trying to make him feel as reassured as possible. 

First up was the teeth photographs , taken by widening the mouth with plastic grips.

Next normal photographs 

Lastly, and traumatically for both Ryan and myself – the dental impressions .He struggled, he gagged and then he threw up. I was almost in tears .

But he did it. 

My Ryans a soldier , he s been through so much during his cleft journey and today was just another step towards the ending. I just wish it wasn’t so heartbreaking though 


We have exciting news in the Life Less Ordinary household !!! A new family member !!!

No, I havnt given birth (heaven forbid – I ve done my time 😉) instead we have adopted a dog and are giving him a forever home .

Meet Jethro 

Jethro is a 6 yr old male Beagle and literally one of the loveliest dogs I’ve ever met.

 He hasn’t had the best start bless him , abandoned on the streets of Wales , he was found , microchipped but the owner “no longer wanted him” .

He was bought down to Kent by Last Chance Animal Rescue as he was scheduled to be destroyed in the Welsh pound he had been taken to 😢

Jethro thought he had found a forever home as he had been rehomed before coming to us but after being roughly grabbed by the collar he tried to nip and the lady bought him back – 

So luckily for us and him we were able to provide a home , he’s rather poorly at the moment with an ear infection and it turns out he does have a 2nd rate heart murmur but all he really want s is some love and affection.

He’s quite a character and already thinks I’m his mum !!! literally I’ve finally got Ryan to stop following me to the toilet and now Jethro does !!! 

We ve been in stitches at his ability to find all those crisp packets the kids have thrown behind the sofas and he will bark gently “talking” to us to tell us what he wants 😂😂😂 and he found his “comfy spot” …in my bed 

he’s settling in  pretty well but it’s early days … he’s strong on the lead but Ryan is happily walking him to school on a double lead and Jethro is definitely an adventure dog – loving to explore and stop and sniff every two seconds