Yoga Pants Disaster: Nearly

We all need good workout bottoms / pants / leggings right? If you are like me and your backside goes through phases of expanding and decreasing (woohoo the latter for me right now), then getting the right pair is important. This week my favourite yoga pants failed me…but it wasn’t as disastrous as it could have been.

Near Miss

I got back from class on Thursday. A pretty tough vinyasa. Heading straight to the shower I peeled off my yoga pants only to find a hole in them. Yep…a hole! Pants! Quite literally. This hole was in the worst place possible especially since my choice of actual pants that evening were, shall we say, brighter than my black yoga pants.

So back on they went; I spent about the next ten minutes sticking my backside in the air whilst trying to ascertain if I could see anything through them in the mirror. Basically a second workout.

I don’t know why I bothered. If someone had seen my pants (which is unlikely when the whole class is in down dog) they never shouted out ‘you’ve got pink pants on’. A quick memory scan and, nope, my yoga teacher never giggled at any stage whilst passing me.

A review of the hole…it was tiny. But it was along the seam of my backside and so unfortunately my yoga pants, my favourite ones, are now relegated to the ‘only when doing hiit sessions at home’ pile.

How do you replace your favourite yoga pants?

I spent the rest of the evening looking at new yoga pants (yes I have already failed in my Second Hand September). My conclusion. Far too many to choose from and prices vary wildly.

I looked at the branded Lululemon and Sweaty Betty ones. Whilst lovely they are really expensive with my favourite ones in each coming in at £108 and £85 respectively. Who pays that for yoga pants!? Ok quite possibly me but it was a Christmas present for my sister last year. I’ll need to check with her how they are holding up. Maybe they are worth the money, they are lovely.

I also looked at the Dharmabums one. The brand (not affiliated in any way) has aims consistent with sustainability and recycling. Great! But still around the £50 mark. I don’t mind this price tag as much but my favourite yoga pants where plain black, high waisted and with a lovely feel to them. Not too thick but not thin enough to worry about the see through thing that sometimes happens with yoga pants. I am not sure this makes sense but I kind of get the price tag with the patterned ones. I just don’t fancy buying patterned yoga pants until I get my body into that sculpted goddess type shape (I may never buy patterned yoga pants).

Yes I bought the exact same ones

This might sound mad…given they got a hole in them…but I replaced them with exactly the same brand and style. Why? Well loads of reasons.

My yoga pants were only £19.95. They have lasted a year. I have used them loads. Minus the recent hole, they have been really hard wearing and have withstood a whole lot of yoga. So surely it’s not too mad to get an exact replacement.

When you want the exact same thing it usually involves dissapointment. Brands move on and I often find the thing I want is discontinued (this happened with my favourite Dune loafers). So how pleased was I that these ones were still being sold on Amazon. So my disaster has been averted. I have bought the same ones….again.

I’ll give the link below. I do have an Amazon affiliate account so if you did happen to purchase them via clicking on this image I would get a small commission (if I ever do get some money from this type of thing I would likely buy a second pair…that would probably take years).

The funny thing

I got an email from IUGA today after they were delivered. They must have read my mind as this was a ‘tips and care instructions’ email. Handy, I thought, given my last pair. Maybe not. The instructions advised washing with cold water to avoid break down of performance fabrics. Well this won’t be happening in line with their additional comment that warm water is more effective at cleaning. Yes….I will wash inside out and not alongside rough denims etc. But I won’t accept point 4 on the email which was not to use fabric softener. Apparently it contributes to losing the wicking property over time (whatever that means) and “also causes a nasty lingering odour to develop”. Eh?!!

Yes I did go and sniff my old pair (not in a weird way…in a testing out the point way). No there wasn’t a nasty odour (thankfully!). The only thing worse than having a hole in your yoga pants at yoga class would be a nasty odour. At just under £20 I will take my chances on them lasting a year whilst not following the advice. Do the dearer ones give you this kind of advice?

Anyway…now I am back in my ‘favourite’ yoga pants I can breath easy again…whilst also feeling suitably comfy and sculpted :-).


Sometimes relaxation is relaxing. Other times relaxation is just relaxing. For everyone the difference may be subtle, but there is a difference. For me relaxing is a yin yoga class. Or a good book and a glass of wine in the garden. Time out from a madly busy week. It can even be a wild weekend with friends in Edinburgh; non stop busyness; just not work busyness. But then there are times when it is a little different. It may be a skiing holiday, or the beach in Koh Samui. It is also, for me, likely to be time well spent at a friends place in the countryside. The peacefulness, the quiet, the laughter, the drinks, and of course the Scottish banter.

Its very personal

When I think about what I find relaxing it usually involves yoga. But that is a central part of my life in Edinburgh and so it isn’t the ‘take me away from it all’ kind of relaxing. So a drive (or a plane if I am feeling a bit flush), to a place I know I am welcome in is an immediate calmer in life. It is a personal thing and everyone is different, but I feel just as relaxed heading off to the West coast of Scotland to friends as I do to the top most part of Scotland…as I also do to Thailand. Common denominator? Friends and time away the day to day normality.

Time away

This time it was West. Second time this year and planned as a result of enjoying friends’ company and a good mate hosting us the last time. I am also very lucky in that said mate has a gorgeous place in the midst of nowhere on the West Coast. Cows, swallows, butterflies (current Scottish 1 in 10 year phenomenon of bloody millions of them), dogs, cats and general country animals all add to the feeling of getting away for the weekend. Clearly wine was involved as was good weather (thank you Scotland I promise I will stop moaning about the heat) and good food.

Bliss. Just like a good shavasana at the end of a serene yoga class, getting away from the city and spending time with friends is good for the soul. No expectations. No demands. This meant that I had time to read my book, time to watch a movie (I fell asleep), time to have a walk on the beach, time to soak up the local culture (gala days and fairs), time to enjoy a coffee, soak up the sun and time to just be at a slower pace.

Affect / Effect

Whichever way you look at it, from a health or emotional perspective, time away from the hum drum of normality is good for you. Sitting back at home feeling a little knackered from the drive back to Edinburgh I am still feeling relaxed. I have a few pages left of the bloody brilliant book I am reading (‘A Fire Sparkling’ by Julianne MacLean). I am going to finish it tonight to end the long weekend and to keep the relaxation feeling going a little longer.

Tomorrow I will get ready to be busy again. A different type of relaxation on my fortnight leave from work. I will quicken the pace, get back in the Edinburgh zone and get ready to enjoy the Edinburgh festival. The fringe is an amazing time in Edinburgh and I plan to do loads. Just not tonight. I am still enjoying the effects of my relaxation with friends in the West Coast. Tomorrow will have a different effect and a different affect. A different style of relaxation.

That one week in Scotland when we complain about the heat

It’s finally here. Some heat. Some sun. But it is so hot. This is meant to be the hottest day of the year so far and temperatures in Edinburgh are set to rise to 28 degrees. The best thing about today is that I am off work!! The worst thing about this week is that it has been rather hot and I have had to work long hours. I am even working this weekend. So cue the perpetual moaning about the weather no matter what it is like.

General Weather complaints

There is a list. It is repetitive yearly. Please note I have just as big a list about the good points of the weather. But this post is dedicated to my complaints. My list goes like this:


  • How many times am I going to have to clear leaves up off this bloody garden?
  • There is no sun anymore and Its bloody freezing.
  • Why am I swearing and cursing a lot about Autumn?
  • My hair can’t cope with this.


  • This wind and rain is playing havoc with my hair (hair in frizzy mess or just generally bedraggled and stuck to my face)
  • Why does it never snow anymore for Christmas?
  • Why has it started snowing?
  • Why do the council not grit enough pavements (usually after falling on my backside down the hill)?
  • Why is this lasting so long (usually in April when it is still snowing)?


  • Why is it still snowing? It’s meant to be Spring!
  • It’s too wet to sit outside and I can’t plant my veg yet because the frost keeps coming back.
  • Why am I working on this one day when the temperature hits 14 degrees and this is a valid temperature in Scotland to get the shades on and get a sun tan. There is a phrase in Scotland when this happens “taps aff” meaning lots of blokes start walking down the street without their t-shirts on. Believe me this can be both a good and a bad thing.
  • Why is it not summer yet? Its cold!


  • This isn’t summer. It’s cloudy and raining (to be fair it doesn’t always rain but this features a lot in my weather complaints).
  • Why do I always pick the wrong annual leave? It was sunny last week and now I’m off the weather is rubbish.
  • I just heaved that sun lounger out to the garden for nothing. The sun has disappeared.

When it’s unusually hot

Apparently we British folk are obsessed by the weather. I might have disputed that in an attempt to look nonplussed about such things but the above points provide evidence to the contrary.

This week the temperatures have been up in the mid twenties and whilst there was initial elation, the reality hit me whilst sitting in the car on the motorway in a massive traffic jam. Thank god for cars having air con. Thank god I didn’t have too much water before getting in the car.

This kind of temperature is fine when on holiday. On holiday I would be waking up in an air conditioned room (the joy) and after showering I would be lathering on the sun lotion and getting a towel ready for the pool. The reality at home is that I have woken up in the middle of the night to open the window. I have pondered the only bedding options I have (duvet not thin sheets) given I have spent the night doing a too hot duvet off, too cold duvet on, too hot duvet off dance finishing in one leg out and one leg in. I have also considered why no one here (other than hotels) has air con (and then dismissed this on reflection of all the points listed above).

On holiday I would not be pulling on a pair of tights and a dress (probably both black due to my bare leg issues at work). I also wouldn’t be getting into an already hot car with a coffee. I wouldn’t be sitting in a morning meeting with a number of other people who have had an equally bad sleep (the grumpiness can be hilarious though). On holiday wouldn’t be depressing myself with the thought that by the time I get home the sun will have disappeared from the garden.

I clearly am obsessed with the weather!

Today I am off and as I said it is meant to be the hottest so far. So the sun lounger is prepped and ready for the garden. I am looking forward to a tan. In reality this will probably mean going a bit red due to the pastiness of Scottish skin. This is the one time (and week) of the year when I think there is utility in my face moisturiser having an SPF factor 15.

I will stop having a moan and complaining about the heat for a while. At least until noon. Then I expect to be commenting on the heat to my neighbours, looking for a cloud in the sky and wishing it to cover the sun for a bit of respite (this usually works the other way around – see points above) and drinking a lot of water.

This is the one week of the year when we complain about it being too hot! There are lots of things I like about the weather. But it may be some months before I am posting about the benefits of dark nights and the coziness of sitting inside with a bowl of soup whilst watching the rain, wind and snow. For now I am content with my complaining. Next week when it is raining on my annual leave I will probably complain even more. Anyway – to the garden!

My flip flops have shrunk!

Image by Uli Ebner from Pixabay

I shrunk my flip flops. I wasn’t even going to wear them today as its not sunny in Edinburgh. Apparently it is to be lovely later but I am off to Glasgow for a lunch. Anyway – I digress. I actually shrunk my favourite flip flops. Gutted!

The events that led to this catastrophe

I was in the garden on Tuesday. Such a nice day and so we (a couple of neighbours and myself) had a bottle of wine. Sitting under the sun umbrella my feet were peeking out into the summer sun; I really do like my feet when they have a summer glow.

Then from nowhere there was an eerie shadow that passed overhead. Odd given there were no clouds in the sky and the warmth of the sun (and the wine) was making everyone rather cheery. I looked down. I looked at my toes. Realisation hit. There was a splurge of dark slimy stuff on my pinky toe and, oh hell, my favourite flip flops. I screamed (to be fair I thought initially it was a slug!). My neighbours’ (they are meant to be friends) reacted. That was until they, and I, figured out that the slimy stuff must be bird poo.

They say (whoever they are) it is lucky for a bird to poo on you. I didn’t feel lucky. Toes were quickly soaked under the garden tap. Neighbours were quickly descending into hysteria. In my state of shock there was only one thing I could do. Laugh.

Don’t ever put your flip flops on a wash dry cycle

My flip flops, did I mention they were my favourite, required immediate attention. I ran inside and emptied my washing machine (washer dryer to be exact which is honestly a godsend in Edinburgh due to the changeable weather). In went the flip flops. I have washed them before so didn’t think anything would go awry. Stupidly I picked the quick wash dry cycle. This was probably in the hope that I didn’t need to wear my alternative flip flops, which are much less sparkly and less comfortable, for too long.

The wine took over. We laughed about the situation. I forgot all about the flip flops. Until this morning. Jumping up and out of bed early I retrieved them to wander through to my kitchen for coffee.

Aaaarrrrrgggghhhh! My flip flops have shrunk. How did that even happen? Why would rubber shrink? Why would I think it wouldn’t shrink? Why does this remind me of the time I put haggis in the microwave and it exploded? Why didn’t I think about the consequences?

Dealing with the consequences

I am now sat on the train to Glasgow trying to write this blog. I am also intermittently searching rocket dog and amazon to find replacement flip flops. When you have a favourite you want the exact same ones. Why is it you can never find the exact same ones?!!! This also happened with my Dune loafers recently (my favourite loafers). I bought a different pair but they are not the same. My amazon search (rocket dog flip flops) will take a while (I may sneak a look over lunch). The ones below are the black version of the white ones I have. If all else fails with my search I may have to go with them. If anything, these flip flops are generally the most comfy I have found. I would just like them to look as nice as the ones that are currently bordering on a size too small after that bloody bird sh** on them.

Amazon link on image

Birthday wish lists: are they a thing of the past?

Are birthday wishlists a thing of the past?

It is my birthday soon. Next week. Its not something I am keen on focusing on as it will be my 42nd year. This means I am definitely on the way in my forty something life. Ok – enough focusing (depressively) on my age. Its not that bad, but I’ve never been that good at birthdays. So when asked the question (yes it comes every year from my sister) ‘What would you like for your birthday?’ I usually coil into a small ball and rock front to back (much more smoothly may I say now that I started yoga haha!).

Do I have a wish list?

I generally don’t have one. This in some weird way makes it easier for everyone. I have got some wonderful presents just by not having one. Take, for instance, last year. Me and my mum went for lunch to Chez Jules (fabulously french and cheap but cheerful) last year and then we drunkenly went to Stewart and Christie‘s on Queen street because I suggested that I had always wanted a good ‘tweed’ jacket. Stewart and Christie’s is the oldest tailor of this type of attire in Edinburgh and I knew (in a loose way from a few parties) one of the owners and one of the tailors. This was following a quick look in a few George Street shops who would never compare. Result – I got a tailored (not bespoke but only a bit of work done) tweed jacket. It will last a lifetime! It is beautiful. My mum, having forked out for my birthday on my one, went back a month later to order her own. This also resulted in a drunken lunch (Tiger Lilly) to celebrate. All events combined meant good bonding over good presents over quality attire. The one thing it didn’t mean was that we stuck within the unwritten budget rule that as a family we have on presents.

The budget

This, as noted above, is an unwritten rule. A good rule as lets face it we are in an age where we buy what we want when we want. So a pre-defined limit takes some thinking. Don’t be shocked but its basically £50 per person. So my mum and dad will spend £100, me and my sister will spend £50. Its not much at all nowadays but to re-emphasise the point – we are in a time where we already have what we want so presents are something that should be different. Times have changed. Im not that old (as I keep telling myself) – but when younger we used to keep a list for ages (for birthdays and of course Christmas). The only times we got those overly desired objects was on these special occasions. At some point this all changed. We spend, use and discard. We don’t keep lists because most things are immediate. Its kind of sad and also wonderfully gratifying. I don’t even think its an age thing. As a single 40 something living in Edinburgh you would expect that I can sensibly afford the things I want. But to have the excitement back of the present list, the waiting, the build up and even at times the disappointment (oh the trauma of not getting that specific Barbie I wanted) would be something! We don’t do this kind of excitement in 2019. Its kind of a shame.

Rebel against the age

So….I thought of a list. All the things I have fancied since the start of the year. When the text came through ‘what would you like…’ I jumped on it like a typical amazon prime member. Here is my wish list. A feet up trainer (or alternative product)…oooh yes please (although that as you might have already calculated would be a joint sister and parents present). Or pick from the rest: yoga wheel, Blackberry and something or other Jo Malone perfume (my daily go to scent), Jo Malone soap (can’t recommend highly enough and am never using any other soap in the bath or shower ever again), candles (of any variety as always a good thing), or my incense sticks (this is a new thing but makes me very relaxed of an evening). If this list doesn’t work for them then I will take any surprise at my age! Only thing missing is a good man (possibly only useful at this time of year to buy me another lovely present)….ok scratch that – they are more trouble than they are worth and never meet the wish list expectations 🙂