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At this moment #3 | Lifestyle

AT THIS MOMENT - WHAT I'M WATCHING READING LOVING // www.xloveleahx.co.uk

WATCHING

Oh God, what haven't I watched recently?! I had a bit of a rubbish mental health spell and my go-to escape from it is watching LOTS of tv so I don't have to think. I've just finished watching Designated Survivor on Netflix. It stars Kiefer Sutherland and it's a political thriller. The series has just ended and I hope it'll be renewed.

I also watched Alien Covenant at the cinema about 10 days ago. I really enjoyed it. I know a lot of people have said it didn't have enough aliens in it, but it is a prequel. I wish it had had less Michael Fassbender in it though, his Android facial expressions are so good it gives me the creeps!

Anxiety disorder and the importance of a morning routine

Anxiety-disorder-and-the-importance-of-a-morning-routine // www.xloveleahx.co.ukHaving anxiety disorder means as soon as I wake up I'm overwhelmed with things I need to do. They say an elephant never forgets, but I think it's the same for people with anxiety disorder. I'm scared to forget things so I have a never-ending to-do list in my head the second I wake up. No task slips my mind. I wake up knowing exactly what tasks I didn't do the day before, and before I've barely drawn breath a list of today's pressing tasks comes crashing down on top of me. It's no wonder it's hard to get out of bed on some days. As soon as I wake I'm giving myself a hard time.

Over the last couple of months I've introduced an idiot-proof 2-step routine which gives me the grace to actually wake up before I start beating myself up.

The first and most important thing in my morning routine is coffee.

You could say that's true of life too. 😉

National Trust - Scotney Castle visit

James and I joined the National Trust a couple of months ago and Scotney Castle was our first 'free' visit to a NT property. It's only about 40 minutes away from us at Lamberhurst in Kent. We'd driven by it often so it was our first choice. Scotney old castle (above) was built approximately c.1378–80.

Life lately including Navabi Blog Awards - vote for me!

Hello lovelies! I've had a whirlwind few weeks and I thought I'd do a bit of an update for those of you who like to follow my life as well as what I'm wearing. A few weeks ago we went to stay with our friends M&T in Wiltshire. We had a lovely time there and did a lot of activities. It was so lovely to spend time in the countryside with them and their kitties. Here's an outfit post from that weekend.

Another exciting thing is I decided to put myself forward for the Navabi blog awards this year, and I've been overwhelmed with the votes I've already received. I was joint first place initially and now I've dropped to 7th so you can vote for me here if you like what I do. Click on my photo (and the photos of anyone else you want to vote for - you can vote for multiple people this year) then fill out the captcha at the bottom. Ta da! I entered myself into the competition on a whim and it has made me realise something. I've often felt undervalued as a blogger - not necessarily by the people who read my blog, but certainly by some of my peers. I feel that people underestimate me, don't see me as a peer, and I always feel like a black sheep. Entering and realising I'm actually viewed with some esteem has made me realise that if you don't put yourself forward for things people assume you're happy to be in the shadows. I've realised the only person underestimating me before was me. Even if I end up last in the voting by the time the two week voting period is up, I've learned a very important lesson.

Manon Baptiste from Navabi embroidered dress & giveaway

Manon Baptiste Navabi A line plus size embroidered dress // www.xloveleahx.co.uk
Have I got a treat for you today! Thanks to those beauts over at Navabi I have one of the dresses in this post to give away to one of YOU! (UK only). It comes in sizes 14-28 and it's a stunner, so do read on for more photos and details about it. Scroll down to the bottom for the giveaway itself.

This is the Manon Baptiste Embroidered A-line dress *AL and I'm wearing a size 28. Because it's an A line dress it flows freely over my body, so if like me your bottom half is your most bounteous area, fear not! I sometimes have to take a size 32 to fit over my bum, tum and thighs so this A line dress is generous. Let's have some more photos, shall we?

Two simple ways to wear a black maxi dress

Two ways to wear a plus size black maxi dress // www.xloveleahx.co.uk
I've got a bit of a chilly weather two-for-one today. I created two very different looks with barely any effort at all, one of the reasons why I'll always love black maxi dresses. They're so versatile! These shots were taken on an overcast and windy day and I was really feeling the cold. I started off wearing a light boho style cardi but soon swapped it for the cropped denim jacket and scarf I'd brought with me. This sounds like such an 'nanna' thing to say, but my outfits are very much weather dependent and I often end up wearing more than I left home in. Fibromyalgia really affects my ability to regulate my temperature and I always have at least a scarf in my bag - if not a spare coat in the car - as I'm really miserable when I'm cold.

Any link with *AL written after it within this post is an affiliate link, which means if you click and buy from it I will earn a small commission.

I'm wearing:
ASOS Curve hareem drape dress (out of stock) similar
here *AL £20 up to size 28
here *AL £20 up to size 28
here *AL £18 up to size 28
here *AL £18 up to size 32
Cropped denim jacket similar here £30 up to size 32 *AL
Open knit cardigan, Simply Be £17.25 *AL
Faux suede moccasins, Everything 5 Pounds *AL

New Look Curves Black Stripe 3/4 Sleeve Swing Dress

New Look Curves Black Stripe 3/4 Sleeve Swing Dress // www.xloveleahx.co.uk
Hello lovelies! I've had this dress for about 6 weeks but have only just got around to blogging about it. This is the second time I've worn it and it's now in the sale, so get in quick as it's selling out fast. It's a really thick fabric and nice and warm so it's ideal for these WTF-happened-to-spring days.

Here are the outfit deets then read on for more pics & words.

Any link with *AL written after it within this post is an affiliate link, which means if you click and buy from it I will earn a small commission.

New Look Curves Black Stripe 3/4 Sleeve Swing Dress now £10 *AL
White lace edged crop leggings, Yours Clothing  *AL
Iridescent handbag, Primark (in store only)
Skechers (similar) *AL
Biker jacket, past season New Look

Boho looks are for fat babes too

You don't have to be thin to pull off boho styles. It's all about confidence and mixing things up a bit so you look like you got dressed out of a tent at a festival. 
Yes I'm wearing that bloody hareem dress again, but I'm trying to illustrate how easy it is to style up a black maxi in any number of ways. It's a blank canvas and you can do gothy, witchy or boho looks with ease. Previous outfits of me wearing this dress are here and here. Although this dress is now out of stock, I'm linking to a few similar black maxi dresses.

Any link with *AL written after it within this post is an affiliate link, which means if you click and buy from it I will earn a small commission.

ASOS Curve hareem drape dress out of stock similar
here *AL £20 up to size 28
here *AL £20 up to size 28
here *AL £18 up to size 28
here *AL £18 up to size 32
Maxi crochet cardigan, *AL Simply Be £20 up to size 32
Striped flats, Primark
Handbag, thrifted
Necklace, Bluebirds and Daisies

Nature goth in Wiltshire

LOVE-LEAH-PLUS-SIZE-BLOGGER-IN-RAPESEED-FIELD // WWW.XLOVELEAHX.CO.UK
Oh God, about the last 6 outfits I've worn have involved this hareem dress, which has now sold out. I wonder if others did what I did - buy one, realise it was the comfiest dress on earth then buy another! Having two of them means it's rarely off my body. I'm sorry it's sold out (I dislike posting outfits when things are sold out) but you can knot a t-shirt over any black maxi dress and achieve the same kind of look. Carry on reading to see me frolicking in a rapeseed field and taking outfit photos with a cat sitting on my foot. As you do.

Everything I'm wearing apart from the dress is old. The leather jacket is old New Look Curves, as is the t-shirt I'm wearing over the dress. The dress is from ASOS Curve and I really hope they restock. These dresses are selling out as soon as they come in. I bought a yellow one less than a week ago and it has already completely sold out.

New Look Curves Black Embroidered Mesh Midi Dress

New-Look-Curves-Black-Embroidered-Mesh-Midi-Dress-La-Redoute-Castulana-grey-dotted-tulle-skirt
Hello lovelies! Today I'm wearing the New Look Curves Black Embroidered Mesh Midi Dress (as a top) over a La Redoute skirt from last year. There are lots of shots of bluebells in this post as we came across the most wonderful carpet of them while we were out on our travels around the Kentish countryside.

Any link with *AL written after it within this post is an affiliate link, which means if you click and buy from it I will earn a small commission.

I'm wearing:
New Look Curves Black Embroidered Mesh Midi Dress *AL £27.99 up to size 32
Castaluna dotted tulle skirt *AL La Redoute - in the sale for £17.70 right now - up to size 28
Pink trainers, Evans now sold out online, check stores
Leather jacket, past season New Look

ASOS Curve hareem drape dress

ASOS-Curve-hareem-drape-dress-witchy-boho-gothic-oversized // WWW.XLOVELEAHX.CO.UK
If you follow me on social media anywhere you're know I've been RAVING about this dress - the ASOS Curve drape hareem dress, which is completely out of stock in all sizes at the moment, boo! But hold on, they have it in another colour, yay! (link below). It's SO comfortable, so airy, so relaxed. I loved it so much I bought two and I've just bought a third in yellow. YES, yellow! Ohmyfrigginglord, I can't wait for it to come! I hope it's a slightly more ochre yellow than an erm, yellowy yellow. 😆 These dresses are oversized for an airy fit too, so if your size was out of stock I'm pretty sure the next size down would do.

It's wide cut at the hips and tapers a bit towards the ankle, and so by witchcraft it catches any hint of a breeze brilliantly to give you some well needed air conditioning around your nether regions. Have a look at the video on ASOS to see the drape of it. It's a thing of wonder.

Any link with *AL written after it within this post is an affiliate link, which means if you click and buy from it I will earn a small commission.

Drape hareem maxi dress *AL - link to yellow £22 up to size 28 
T shirt, old Pink Clove
Leopard print trainers, *AL Everything 5 Pounds - I always go up one size because of my wide feet
Apocalips lipstick, *AL Illamasqua £19.50 I think this teal shade is my favourite lipstick ever

What to do about shadowbanning


Up until a few days ago I'd never even heard of shadowbanning, or soft banning/stealth banning/ghost banning, but it happened to me so I'm going to tell you what I've learned.

I'm going to talk about the experience of shadowbanning and content blocking/link blocking on Facebook and Instagram, as this is what I've experienced. I've had problems on Facebook and Instagram for almost 6 weeks, only being let out of Facebook/Instagram jail yesterday. If you think you may have been shadowbanned on other social media sites, Google is your friend.

WHAT IS SHADOWBANNING ON SOCIAL MEDIA? 

Shadowbanning is a process where the user thinks their social media account appears to be working fine, but few other people can see their content.

At this moment #2 | Lifestyle

AT-THIS-MOMENT-LIFESTYLE // WWW.XLOVELEAHX.CO.UK

WATCHING

I'm currently watching Bordertown, which is a Finnish crime drama. It's set near the border of Russia and it's a typical dark Scandi thriller, which I love. I love Scandi writers like Jo Nesbo and I love their dramas too, like Wallander.

BORDERTOWN SCANDI DRAMA // WWW.XLOVELEAHX.CO.UK

READING

The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan. It's a lovely book, easy to read and heartwarming. I finished it last night and it left me feeling happy.

MAKING

Money disappear out of my bank account like a bucket with a hole in it. 


via GIPHY

STARTING

To gather birthday presents for my two gal pals whose birthdays are next month. 

FINISHING

I just finished watching Top of the Lake, a drama set in New Zealand. It was weird, but good. Weird in that the characters were all oddbods and the dialogue was kind of disjointed, but maybe that was the point. Elisabeth Moss was very good in it. I watch a lot of tv but I'm chronically ill, so bite me. 😛

ENJOYING

Eating cereal directly out of the box, avoiding housework and drinking copious amounts of coffee. Yup, a mental health slump but I'm getting through it one day at a time.

TEXTING

No one. I is misanthrope. 

LOVING

My blog! I sometimes look at it just before bed and think 'I did all this!' Considering my mental and physical health challenges I'm doing all right. And I don't do comparisons to other people anymore, so phooey to that!

HATING

The bloody Conservatives. If  you have absolutely anyone in this world you care about, vote Labour. Mr Corbyn may not be someone you can see in power, but do you really want the NHS run into the ground? Do you really want sick and disabled people to face a continuing witch hunt, blamed for all the crimes of the bankers? Jeremy has potential to grow. The Tories have potential to kill.

Thanks for reading. What are you up to at the moment? Lemme know!
Leah xoxo

Fat hippie chick

FAT HIPPIE CHICK FAT BOHEMIAN STYLE // WWW.XLOVELEAHX.CO.UK
Now spring has well and truly sprung I've got loads of outfit shots set in places with lovely scenery. James has been roaming about with our zoom lens instead of using the kit lens on our camera and the shots are so much nicer.

Any link with *AL written after it within this post is an affiliate link, which means if you click and buy from it I will earn a small commission. 

In these photos I'm wearing:
Gold kimono, Viva Voluptuous
Cross back vest top, *AL Yours Clothing
Ruffle skirt, past season ASOS Curve
Faux suede shoes, *AL Everything 5 Pounds
Necklace and earrings, Bluebirds and Daisies
Ring, gift from Mookie
Bag, Primark

Some words on not being the 'right' kind of competitive


This post has been in my drafts for months because I've been trying to find the right words. In coming to a realisation about myself and sharing what I've discovered I risk coming across an a self-indulgent prat, but I'm sharing this for anyone else who isn't competitive in the 'usual' way and feels out of place in the world. This post is long and may be rambling so grab a cuppa.

It's important to say I see competitiveness and being driven as different things. You can set yourself goals and pursue them independently of anyone else - that's being driven or goal-oriented. Then there's competitiveness, where a person has goals but they're about being elevated above others in their field and the prestige that it brings

I've been a plus size blogger since 2012, and in that time I've gone from a nervous wreck terrified of putting full length photos of myself into a blog post (yes, really!) to someone who's posted naked photos on Instagram to my 10k followers and shared them on my personal Facebook page for most of my friends and family to see. Although I've come on leaps and bounds in body confidence since my early days, one area of growth has been stilted until very recently - my confidence with my place as a blogger. I briefly touched on my 'I'm not wooooorthy!' feelings in my recent post 'About self-limiting thoughts' and I wanted to expand on that.