All the Holiday Shhhtyle.....and that bloody back again

While we were on holidays the husband told me I go on too much about my back on here. Apologies if you agree but there is big news on the back this week so I'm talking about it again. It's at the bottom of this post so ignore away if you want to! 
Meanwhile, I need to share with you all my holiday style. Don't be expecting any organised capsule packing post here. I packed the WORST bag of rubbish to wear thanks to a hangover. But because of my trip to London (blog post coming next!) I was able to grab a few more bits from home to help me through the second week. The thing is that it's so hard to pack for a staycation on the North coast. We had amazing 25 degree heat as well as rain and cold. We also had sunny days where it was baltic and rainy days where it was hot. You'd have needed 4 wardrobes!

But I'll kick off with my (hungover) outfit for the journey up north....

(from the retail hell that is Sports Direct - ridiculous slogan but I liked the colour! Take care if ordering online as you won't be able to return it without sacrificing one of your children & donating a kidney....and even at that, they won't give you cash back - only credit)

Next an outfit from one of the glorious days...
Shorts - Tu Clothing (ancient)
Grey Sweater - M&S (was in the sale...can't find online)
Flip Flops - Sketchers 
(can't find online but there were tons in that evil shop Sports Direct!) 

The we had a day that started out cold and wet and ended up roasting. Outfit fail.
Jeans - Primark - current stock
Grey Knit - Benetton (past season)
Trainers - Seven Boot Lane (as before)

On the Sunday, we had a gorgeous day and I had a bloggy meet up!
Dress - Zara Sale - similar from Mango here
Cross Body Bag - Accessorise (this season's version on this link)

It was just so so lovely to meet up with blogging twins Zoe and Lucy who live near Portstewart and made time to have coffee with me and my own twins. Thanks to Mike, Zoe's husband, for taking the photo. We laughed and laughed all afternoon. What a tonic.
Then we had a sunny day with a FREEZING breeze - never took off my jacket all day and filled a hot water bottle as soon as I got in because I was so cold!
Jacket - H&M (similar here & here)
Dress - Mango (wearing a size M)
Followed by a slightly warmer day but I still wasn't shedding the jeans:
Khaki Jacket - Urban Outfitters (similar here & here)
And finally a beach day - yay! 
Dress - Next (past season)
Followed by a baltic windy cold day - sporting a new cold shoulder jumper from local boutique Stone
I took my coat off, took the photo, put the coat back on!
Jumper - Finery from Stone Boutique sale
Jeans - Primark

and a giggly shot from our penultimate day - wearing the same jacket as day one...and the same jeans & trainers come to think of it!

And that's as many photos as I took. I obviously dressed myself on other days but either it was more of the same (likely) or not work taking a picture of (more likely).

Did I enjoy the break? Definitely - more than I have enjoyed a trip up North in years. The kids are old enough to do their own thing both in the morning in terms of getting their own breakfast and watching some TV, and on the beach in terms of being safer in the water and more aware of dangers. It makes things so much easier for us as parents doesn't it? It was noticeable in the case of the teenager who had a friend staying nearby and who spent lots of time without us...he had so much fun gaining independence. There was lots of letting go and trusting involved. I think we all grew and developed over the 2 weeks.

And now for the back news - I finally got my injection. I had a late call on Friday to see if Wednesday morning would suit me and I accepted. You have to book around your cycle if you're a woman under 55 so if I'd not taken this appointment, I'd have had to wait for another month. Like I'm going to be pregnant *eye roll*. Like anyone of 54 is likely to be pregnant??!!

I did everything to distract myself leading up to Wednesday. On the day, I headed to the Ulster clinic with my weary credit card and a 'just in case' diazepam. The anxiety was as much about the cost as about the treatment itself. But I had nothing to be worried about on the latter. I simply had to put on an open back gown, lie on a table face down and the only pain I felt was the needle from the local anaesthetic. Literally about 2 minutes later, the consultant told me I'd feel some temporary pain down my sore leg, which I did. Next thing he said was 'you can get up now...'

I was bit wobbly afterwards and took the offer of a sit down with a coffee in the waiting room. When my husband came to pick me up,  I stood up.....and promptly fell over with a dead leg. An occasional side effect of spinal injections. So I got a wheelchair trip to the car and a half-carry into the house and then lay for the day on the sofa, battling with leg cramps that were worse than any of the sciatica I've ever had! To say I was feeling a bit miffed about the whole thing would be putting it mildly. Day 2 saw me wake up with a fully functioning right leg thankfully but with back pain. And remember, I'm still taking hefty medication. It was a bit of a downer.

The doctor said it can take up to 2 weeks to feel the benefits and I've had loads of messages confirming this from lots of lovely readers. Watch this space. I'll keep you posted! Oh and I've not washed my hair yet....sorry! I will soon.



  1. Feel so sorry about your back . Pain like that I know can be so unbearable and as you can't see it , but feel it dreadfully, it doesn't hurt to share . Do hope you get relief very soon . Love your posts and seeing your outfits . Sending some healing thoughts is the best I can do x

    1. Aw thank you so much - you're so kind to stop by and leave a lovely message. I'm taking all the healing thoughts....keep them coming! xx

  2. Have been following you on IG Avril but great to read all the posts in one go ! We experienced some of your weather so you did well with your holiday packing for two weeks. Hoping and praying the injection works for you and you start to feel some relief soon. I am in awe of your resilience and positivity , as longterm pain can really grind you down . xx

    1. Thank you Lynne - and we will get that coffee once the kids are back at school. Really looking forward to catching up x

  3. You look lovely, the kind of style that looks effortless and thrown on even though you've been planning it in bed that morning with your tea :) My figure is very similar to yours; may I ask what size Topshop Jamie jeans you wear? Thank you! X

    1. Thank you - yeah, some days are easier than others when it comes to getting dressed! I'm a 28 in the Jamies as they are so stretchy. Hope that helps...thanks for dropping by! x

  4. Totally understand the back posts. I had sciatica for 18 months, on tramadol, various spinal injections, acupuncture - you name it I tried it! Finally had spinal surgery which luckily for me, solved the issues. It was only with the gift of hindsight that I realised how debilitated I'd been trying to manage the pain and also that I was while not clinically, I was also quite depressed, so you write away and I hope the injections work, if not and your surgeon recommends, seriously consider surgery. Stay strong

  5. Thank you for the reply! Living with pain is such a draining and sapping experience that I hope it subsides quickly and brings you peace and relief. Love your Instagram and stories and blog, thanks for the company you bring me, you make people feel like a friend.

    Anna xx


I love reading your comments and will reply as soon as I can if you have a specific question. If for any reason, you are unable to leave a comment, just drop me an email at or leave a comment on the A Life to Style Facebook Page! Thank you xx

© A Life To Style | All rights reserved.
Blog Layout Created by pipdig