The next step on my journey


Although I didn’t expect to learn much through doing my fibro awareness posts, I have. It’s the first time I’ve ever been in contact and chatted to other sufferers and it’s been a bit of an eye opener. It’s made to realise and come to terms with the fact that part of the reason I always feel so rushed, panicked and like nothing is getting done properly is because I’m trying to live a life which would be very busy without any illnesses, let alone someone with CFS and fibromyalgia. It’s not giving up to admit that and neither is tailoring my life so I’m not stuck in a cycle of depravation- always over-doing it, paying the costs and then being frustrated because I can never sustain a schedule.

Things have got to change. Part of that was actually writing down my “ideal” schedule- exactly what I would want to achieve everyday or every week- it was ridiculous so I’ve put some stuff on the backburner for now instead of trying to do everything at once. In honesty, that wasn’t enough, even after I cut out as much as possible, it was still obvious that I would still be doing too much. I had to make some tough decisions in reducing my work load in EVERY area of my life, including this blog. I have never been able to post as much as I always planned to on this blog and by rushing posts, I have sometimes compromised quality (if I’m honest)- re-reading some of my earlier posts made that obvious to me. I am, therefore, cutting back the features on this blog to what I think are the best parts and you may be seeing a few less posts on here but I promise to make them really good. I really hope my readership doesn’t go down as a result of these choices, I love each and every comment and subscription. It is a great moment in every bloggers life when someone signs up to be notified when a new post is published. It’s even greater to look back over the first year of blogging and realise how much more successful your blog is than you’d hoped and how it has grown.

Part of being a good blogger/writer is knowing what works and what doesn’t so I won’t be posting any more film reviews or sports time posts regularly, I will, however, be leaving the pages up so you can access old posts and I won’t completely close the door on the possibility of the occasional post in these areas.

And, I will be adding a new feature- inspiration of the month. Every month I will be choosing a person who inspires me and I’ll write a post on them and why they inspire me. If you know someone inspirational who deserves to be honoured then please contact me on the email address below- I am open to all submissions.

As you read in an earlier post, I launched my own small business this summer (eek!) called Pandora’s Box. In brief, Pandora’s Box grew out of the home-made posts on this blog. More and more I’ve realised my passion for vintage/retro items and remaking old things into new is something I want to share. Vintage shops and markets can be really expensive and so can handmade products so part of what I do is making sure all my products are really affordable, meaning that my products are cheap but I don’t make a huge profit but I’m ok with that for now. I love individual things but my flat is small and I can’t fit it all in so I’m happy to pass on vintage finds and home-made treats to happy customers. You can find out more about it and view items on the page here. I will post updates here on my blog for you to see and if there is anything which you love in a home-made post but for whatever reason don’t make yourself, you can request me to make it for you in the comments section on the post or on the Pandora’s Box page.

Related to this, as part of the Etsy community, I come across other great and very talented sellers- look out for posts for my favourite Etsy finds.

Most of all, I’d really like to take on guest posts, I welcome any and every proposal so whatever you feel you might want to put on screen and have published here, you can get in touch with me by email: kate.bennett@live.com

Thank you loyal readers,

Katie x

REVIEW: Larry Crowne


After many years of service and nine ‘employees of the month’, Larry Crowne (Tom Hanks) is fired from his job at UMart because he has never been to college. To ensure this could never happen again Larry enrols at a college as a mature student and is told that Macy’s (Julia Roberts) class will change his life. Along with nine other very peculiar classmates, Macy teaches them how to speak informally, but most of all how to ‘care’. The film follows Larry’s bizarre college experience and his relationship with his teacher Macy, who is unhappy with almost every area of her life, including her marriage.

As a sucker for ‘inspirational’ films about hitting bottom and starting all over, I was really looking forward to seeing this film but I left the cinema disappointed. Both Roberts and Hanks do the best they can with the poor script and often bad acting from the rest of the cast. The plot jumps around not really moving from one part to the next and the characters have no real reason to fall in love. The films tries to be a quirky rom-com but the cringe-worthy scooters gang and some bad “dad” jokes make it fall flat with barely a murmur of laughter in the audience. There were a few moments when I thought the film might redeem itself but ultimately the film is predictable and lower than mediocre.

“Hanks directs with assurance. Perhaps if he had teamed with a more agile writer, less given to cheesy yuck-fests, Larry Crowne would be the nuanced adult love story it aims to be.” -Claudia Puig, USA Today

“Misses every target by a country mile”- Graham Young, Birmingham Mail

FILM REVIEW: Bridesmaids


“By treating funny women as normal people, Wiig has crafted a game-changing comedy that’s even better than The Hangover.” – The Radio Times (Karen Krizanovich)

Annie (Kristen Wiig) and Lillian (Maya Rudolph) are childhood friends so despite being single and broke she is happy when Lillian gets engaged. As the natural choice for maid-of-honour, she has no idea that she’ll have to take on Helen (Rose Byrne), Lillian’s new friend. A lot of chaos and frolics ensue with Lillian’s bunch of peculiar bridesmaids as Annie tries to fulfil her duties on a very tight budget, while Whitney flaunts her cash and contacts. Bridesmaids is the female equivalent of The Hangover but I’m not sure I agree that it is better. I had low expectations, my boyfriend had even lower, but we both found ourselves laughing out loud, there are some hilarious moments and some cringe-worthy ones- just like The Hangover I guess. The acting is great, particularly by Wigg (who is also one of the writers), which means the characters actually seems believable and the antics all more hilarious. Melissa McCarthy’s character, Megan, will have you falling off your chair in laughter.There is, of course, room for some of the chic-flic elements, a bit of predictable romance and some cheesy lines- go with a group of girls and you’ll all come out smiling. If you know a bride-to-be you must force her to see it.

FILM REVIEW: Thor


Rated: PG

My rating: 7/10

IDMB rating: 7.6

83% of the audience liked it (Rotten Tomatoes)

Watch if you like: Iron Man, Spiderman, Hulk,X-Men

Based loosely on the Norse god and the Marvel comic book, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is a warrior, soon to replace his father as king, but his arrogance leads to his banishment from the kingdom of Asgard. He is sent to live amongst the humans, falling from the sky he is discovered by Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), an astrophysicist.

Marvel fans should add this film to their collection. As a keen lover of Marvel films, but with little knowledge of the comic books, I really loved this film. I can’t speak about how good this film is compared to the comics, but even if it pales in comparison, the film by itself is great and made me all the more excited about the upcoming Avengers film. If you know what the Avengers are, then stay to the end of the credits, they’re long but well worth waiting through for the clip at the end.

If you’re not a comic book film fan then you might not enjoy Thor as much as the ratings suggest. The storyline is predictable, the film drags on for too long, and you will cringe at the clichés. The film does have amazing graphics though, definitely worth shelling out the extra cash to watch it in 3D, even the graphics in the credits are amazing. And, on a superficial point, very nice seeing Hemsworth with his top off- wow.

Favourite quote:

“A wise king never seeks out war but he must always be ready for it”

REVIEW: Sucker Punch


The film centres around Baby Doll who is unfairly admitted to a mental asylum by her evil step father. As Baby fights for freedom with feisty Rocket (Jena Malone), reluctant Sweet Pea (Abbie Cornish), Amber (Jamie Chung) and Blondie (Vanessa Hudgens), we step into three alternate realities. The girls attempt to escape Blue Jones (Oscar Isaac) by following Baby’s plan, step by step collecting items which will unlock the doors.

Sucker Punch is a Marmite film, if you like films such as Watchmen and Sin City, then you will love it. Otherwise avoid. Once you get past the Marmite test, there are some definite flaws, the action parts of the film become repetitive and annoying. On the whole though, I enjoyed the film for its originality, suspense and plot twists. The gothic comic book style will draw in Batman and Spider Man film fans.

FILM REVIEW: Submarine


If you like: Made in Dagenham, Cemetery Junction, An Education, Nowhere Boy

Based on the novel by Joe Dunthorne

While the 1980s was full of money for the stockbrokers in the city, full of anger in mining communities and saw the rise of the ‘power woman’. In a little village in South Wales, Oliver Tate (Craig Roberts) could not be further removed from all of these things. In an Adrian Mole style diary narration, we get a sneek peek into Oliver’s life and the strange behaviour of the adults he is surrounded by. As with every teenager, boredom drives Oliver to create drama in his own life but soon finds himself overwhelmed. The film is really very funny, despite dealing with serious issues such as infidelity and brain tumours, but what could be expected when the film was directed by IT Crowd’s Richard Ayoade?

Submarine is Britain’s version of an arty French film. Instead of black coffee, we have tea on saucers and instead of cigarettes we have rain coats. Ayoade has done a good job in transporting the viewer into the ‘80s- the whole film is shot in a grainy film (resembling television of the time), Tate’s next door neighbour is part of a peculiar Eastern religion, and the music is just fab. I wasn’t alive in the ‘80s but I felt nostalgic. I’ll say little else because I don’t want to ruin the film for you, but go- I guarantee you will come out with a smile on your face.

Have you seen it yet? What did you think? Perhaps you disagree with me and found the whole thing annoying.

FILM REVIEW: Chalet Girl


Ed Westwick may be a hottie but even his sexy voice and charm couldn’t save this abominable film.

The worst film I have ever seen

Kim Matthews (Felicity Jones) lives with her clueless father and works in a fast-food restaurant. As a tomboy, Kim doesn’t fit the chalet girl model,

but when one of the girls breaks her legs, the agency is desperate and sends Kim. Kim finds it difficult to fit into the role- no one can believe she doesn’t ski. As a previous skate-border, Kim finally slides into snow-boarding, and gives more to the customers than required.

Chalet Girl is the absolute worst film I have ever seen, and I am not a film snob by any stretch of the imagination. Kim fits the typical plain-girl character, who eventually comes out of her shell. It’s not the predictability of the film which I found most annoying though. The actresses were awful, particularly Tamsin Egerton (plays Georgie), and the script was even worse. 15 minutes into the film, I felt I might murder if I heard the word ‘babes’ used once more. Even worse, the whole idea of the story is ridiculously flawed, as if families rich enough to own their own plane actually hang out with their chalet girls. Comedy would have been the only option to redeem this film, but the lame attempts at jokes fall flat on the face, the audience didn’t even smirk. The whole film was painful to watch and embarrassing for all involved in its production.