The 2 words that make every woman squirm; ‘smear test’.
Growing up, I dreaded the day I hit 25 because I knew it would mean having a cervical cancer screening or a smear test. You hear so much negativity about how it’s painful or uncomfortable and the amount of woman getting them is at an all time low and to be honest I can’t blame them. The thought of laying on a bed, naked from the waist down having a stranger investigate you is a daunting experience and one that I wanted to put off forever.
In the Uk, you receive a letter inviting you for a screening and once you have had it done, you don’t have to re-do it for another 3 years. I received my letters; yes I had received 2 before I did it; last summer and immediately folded them back up and hid them. Out of sight, out of mind and all that. Fast forward to last Monday and I was on the phone to my GP’s booking an appointment. I don’t know what came over me but I finally plucked up the courage to have it done in the week and I wanted to share my experience because I genuinely do believe there needs to be a bigger conversation about it because they can literally save lives and really aren’t as bad as everyone thinks.
So flashback to Wednesday, I arrived at the doctors and followed the nurse down the corridor into the room. There it all was; the form of questions, the bed, the curtain and the swab. Trust me, if I could have left at that moment I would have. The nurse was so lovely, she sat me down and went through a few questions about my last period and when I received my letter etc. She then explained what was going to happen and took me through the curtain so I could get unchanged and in place.
Sitting with your ankles together and your knees apart is never a good look for anyone but believe me when I say nurses do this every day and they genuinely don’t care what it looks like, they are just there to do their job. I’ll be honest, I am the biggest wuss and have no pain tolerance at all so I was expecting the worst. I’d be lying if I said you couldn’t feel anything but it was about a 1.5/10 and it was more discomfort than pain as you could feel the bristles of the swab but that was it. I couldn’t believe how quickly it was over.
The results usually get sent to your home about 2 weeks later. It’s really that easy. I think I was in the room for about 5/10 minutes and most of that time was spent not being prodded; so please, if you haven’t and are of the right age go and get your smear test done. I felt so proud after and it is there to potentially save your life and stop anything cell changes becoming too nasty.
If I can do it, then you definitely can.
– Hannah X
I am a massive over thinker and often find that night time is the worst because no matter how tired I am, my mind is continuously in over drive worrying about a million different things.
I have tried so many things to try and shut my mind off; including the classic camomile tea but what works for me the most is pillow sprays. I didn’t even realise pillow sprays were a thing until I went to a blogger event and there was kindly one in the goody bag. I tried it out and couldn’t believe I hadn’t used one before.
I have tried a few different ones now, each with different scents but I find that the ones with lavender oil in them work best for me and the one that I have been loving the most is the Sweet Dreams spray by Feather and Down. Every night I look forward to getting into bed and spraying a few squirts of this because honestly I am out like a light in about 5 mins, which is great compared to the 40 it used to take.
It’s mad how much the way you sleep can affect the way you behave and function. I find work can be very stressful and I find it very hard to relax so from now on a pillow spray is a staple in my night time routine and probably equally as important to me as moisturising.
Have you ever tried a pillow spray and what do you think of them?
Wow, it’s been a while since I last wrote a blog post. To be completely honest, I got pretty used to scheduled posts going up when they were supposed to during Blogmas and of course I wanted to spend some quality time with my loved ones one the holidays.
But here we are, in a whole new year. My welcome to 2019 was perfect; Jack and I had a cosy night in with a home cooked meal, wine, chocolate and movies. I’ve done the whole going away for New Years and going to parties but it’s definitely more about who you’re with then where you are.
During the Christmas break I thought a lot about what I want to get out of 2019 and the biggest thing out of everything is to be happy. The last few months have been a little bit difficult for me as I have been feeling anxious and finding it too easy to see the negative in every situation and I’m tired of living like that. Of course there are going to be bumps in the road but as long as I am happy and surrounded with my favourite people then that’s all I want.
Of course there are some other achievements that I want to hit this year:
– Pick up a language
I say this a lot but I really wise I could speak a different language, I think it is such a fantastic skill to have. I have tried in the past but usually give up and forget to get back into it. This year I want to really work on my Spanish and French
– Read more
Last year I really made an effort with reading and actually read a lot of good books that I enjoyed and this year I want to do even better. My parents got me a book for Christmas which I have already started so hopefully this sticks
– Grow my blog
I loved taking part in Blogmas and all of the engagement it bought to me and my blog, I really felt part of the blogosphere and I want that more often. I would love to collaborate with other bloggers and brands so hopefully 2019 is the year I can make all of this happen and really grow Hannah’s Little Corner
– Make and document as many memories with my loved ones
For someone with a Photography degree, I really don’t take photos as often as I should so this year I am determined to photography and document as much as possible. I don’t want to forget any other 2019’s great memories
What are your goals for 2019?
Ah, I can’t believe this is the last Blogmas post of 2018; its been hard keeping up with sharing my posts and promoting them but I have loved every single minute of it and want to say a massive thank you if you have read any of my posts.
Growing up, I have always dressed up for Christmas; I’m not really sure why but I love it. Usually I like to go out and get a whole new outfit (how extra) but this year I have chosen to wear the dress I wore to my sisters graduation which I absolutely love!
Do you dress up or keep it casual for Christmas?
Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and festive period and all the love for 2019
– Hannah X
Ah, tomorrow is Christmas Eve, I can’t believe it! Working in retail for 6 years meant that I often missed out on Christmas Eve because I would always be working, helping to set up for the Boxing Day sales. Last year was my first Boxing Day off in a long time and I took full advantage of it and pretty much did nothing but eat left over food and binge watch as many Christmas films as possible and I have a feeling that tomorrow will be no different.
During the day I plan on staying inside in my comfy clothes wrapping my last few presents and catching up on any films I haven’t watched yet; is it bad I haven’t watched the Grinch this year. Then after having dinner, I always like to change me bed sheets, have a bubble bath and get into some PJs. Every year, as a tradition, my mum will buy some new Pyjamas for us as this year is no exception.
Once I am all cosy, I usually get into bed and start to unwind, after all, you have to be asleep early to you don’t see Santa. My parent stay us to watch midnight mass and then by the time that’s over, we are al ticked up lady for the big day.
What are you Christmas Eve plans?
– Hannah X
We all know how much I love Lush, and Christmas, so put those 2 things together and we have the perfect combination. There are so many pretty Lush items this season so here are some of my favourites.
Magic Wand – this is probably my favourite, I mean look at it; it’s so pretty!
Snow Fairy – Hands dow the best smell in the world – now in bath bomb form
Princess Bomb – How adorable
Candy Cane – Definitely my favourite ‘new’ product
What are your favourite festive goodies from Lush?
– Hannah X
I am very lucky to live in the capital city but I’ll be honest, I often take it for granted because it’s always there and I only go to specific places as and when I need too. That being said, I love London and even more so when it’s the build up to Christmas. It’s so special and pretty. Me and Mum went into the city to explore the sights and I wanted to share a the special spots that I love the most.
My mum used to work near Fortnum and Mason’s, the department store off of Regent’s street and she has always taken us in there so she’s passed her love for it onto me. I love strolling around there anyway but there is something extra special about it at Christmas.
My favourite spot to go to is Covent Garden, purely for the massive Christmas tree that they have in the middle. It’s so pretty as it sit on the cobbles. While we were there, we also popped into the new Tiffany and Co store which was decorated with the most beautiful decorations that were all in the classic Tiffany blue colour.
Where’s your favourite place to visit in London at Christmas time?
– Hannah X
I love baking, even if I’m not as good as I think I am; and what better than Christmas baking. I popped into Sainsbury’s and picked up a shortbread reindeer kit and channelled my inner Mary Berry and thought who better to share it with than you.
The kit itself is great as it comes with the mix, the icing, the cookie cutter and some jellybeans for decoration and all you need to add is butter. I started by mixing the butter and mixture together with my hands to create the dough, arguably one of the best things about baking is getting nice and messy.
After the dough was the right consistency, I sprinkled some flour on the counter and used the cookie cutter to create the cutest little reindeers. The smell as they were baking in the over was amazing, it made the whole house smell so Christmassy and cosy.
I couldn’t wait for the biscuits to cool down so I could decorate them. The kit came with black icing for the eyes, mouths and nose and a little tube of white for the antlers. Now, I am not the most delicate when it comes to decoration but I think they turned out okay. As far as taste goes, I can’t comment because I actually don’t like shortbread but my mum and dad said they enjoyed them so I’m taking that as a good sign.
– Hannah X
Sticking to the winter care, I have also been trying to give my hair some TLC. I used to have really short hair and after finally realising the error of my ways, have been trying to grow it.
I have, after years of trying, gotten my hair to a length that I am happy with but with that growth comes a lot of damaged, dead hair. I always saw hair as this thing that you can do anything too because ‘it’ll grow back’ but I have become so protective of mine that I think I average on about 1 cut a year (I know that’s awful and if you keep trimming it, it will grow quicker). I have no real sense of rationality so think that one little trim will take my hair back to it’s shortest.
I love a hair mask and while in Paris, I stopped off at Sephora and picked up one of their overnight ones. I am obsessed with their face masks so was so excited to give this a go.
I went for the coconut one and it comes with the mask and a cap to keep everything in place while you sleep. Although, I had heard good things, I didn’t really know what to expect but when I washed it off the next morning I was very pleasant surprised with how soft and healthy my hair felt.
I will definitely be stocking up on these the next time I get to a Sephora.
Have you ever tried Sephora’s hair masks?
– Hannah X
I love a Christmas jumper and am genuinely gutted that you can only really wear them for a limited time. I also have been in the market for a new one so I have picked a few of my favourite ones.
1. Pale Grey Christmas Pudding Slogan Jumper – New Look
2. Christmas Jacquard Pug Jumper – Boohoo
3. ‘Sleigh my name’ embellished sweatshirt – River Island
4. Grey super soft embellished jumper – Wallis
Have you embraced a Christmas jumper yet this year?
– Hannah X