Something on my mind

Blogging has been the last thing on my mind recently.

Regular visitors to Bouche in the City will know that my father has Huntington’s disease and that I have a 50% chance of inheriting HD. I have never been tested and my mantra has always been that I will not be tested until I became aware of possible symptoms of the disease.

I guess for a long time I was not concerned and I guess deep down I thought that I didn’t have HD. I have a good memory, I wasn’t showing any motor symptoms and I wasn’t showing any emotional symptoms.

That was until last summer. I had some work done on my teeth and I had noticed that I occasionally bit down on my crown, which caused me to pull a face. It soon passed after a couple of weeks, or so I thought. Then after several months, my mother and husband noticed that I did it quite frequently. I am not aware that I do it and if I really concentrate then I can stop it.

During the same time, I also noticed that I would get involuntary movements in my feet and would get pains in my legs, at night whilst asleep.
I didn’t mention it to anyone, not a soul. I desperately wanted to tell my husband, but his mother was battling cancer and was very poorly. We needed to focus on her and making her comfortable through the cancer treatment.

My mother in law passed away in November. It was a difficult time (still is to be honest) I focused on being there for my husband and put my concerns back in the box in my head. I started to feel so angry about my mother in law’s death and would often find it hard to keep my emotions in check.
After Christmas, I decided I had to book an appointment with the genetic counsellor for the new year. It was after I had arranged it, I told Mr Bouche. He was obviously upset but understood why I needed to see her.

I went to the appointment and after speaking to the counsellor, I have decided to see a geneticist to have a motor test done. They will be able to observe me and conclude whether I am showing signs of HD. Depending on the results of that test, I will then decide whether to have the full gene test or not.

There is so much to think about and I am terrified to be honest. I am trying to be positive but some days that can be really hard. I will probably have a few weeks wait before I see the geneticist and is going to feel like the longest wait ever. But, what will be, will be.

A nervous Bouche



Goodbye 2012, hello 2013

So here we are, in 2013. 2012 brought much sadness and I am glad to see the back of it, if I am honest. 2012 brought a fantastic new job for me and greatness, work wise for Mr Bouche. Little J passed his 11 plus with flying colours and 2012 had the potential of being a great year. However, Mr Bouche’s mum was diagnosed with lung cancer in February and sadly lost her fight in November.
It has been a difficult 12 months and some days are better than others. We are all grieving and Mr Bouche is finding it particularly tough. It is hard to start a new year on a positive note with the sadness that surrounds us. But, we are battling on.

I did make some resolutions last year which you can read here

Did I stick to any of them? Well, one maybe. I found my dream job and work wise I am so happy. I didn’t do great on the blog front. I did not manage to do much about my body but I did become less pessimistic and I think I did ok at being a friend.

So what resolutions do I have 2013? Well I have decided on quite a few and I do aim to stick to them!

I am going to wear more sequins – When purchasing an outfit for a night out in 2013, I will be seeking out sequins and bling. I am 34 this year and realise that I may have to start being cautious when choosing outfits soon, as to not look like mutton dressed as lamb. So while I can, I am going to rock the bling and sequins!

I am going to try and eat less and exercise more – I am not going to go on a diet this year but I am going to join the gym and start doing the spinning classes I love again. When I was at my happiest (figure wise) I ate sensibly, ate out, had the odd treat and did three spinning classes a week. So I am adopting this mantra once again and hopefully I will start loving my figure once again.

I am going to wear less makeup – I love looking glam but looking back on some photos from 2012, in some instances I look more drag than fab. I am toning it down for my daytime look, going easier on the eyebrow pencil and going for a more smokey eye / neutral lip look for nights out.

I am going to let things go – I am going to stop worrying about things I cannot control. Sadly in 2012, one of my friendships deteriorated. One of my oldest and closest friends and I drifted apart. I have tried to keep things going but it has not been reciprocated. I am not sure if I could have done more from her point of view but I have tried to keep the flow of communication going but it hasn’t. Obviously, I am sad about this but I guess this is what happens in life. People drift apart and people can be in different places. I need to stop worrying and pondering on this situation and maybe in time we will reconnect but for now, I am going to let things go.

I am going to listen more – I am a bit of a whirlwind at times. I can be excitable and when friends are talking to me, I can on occasion be known to butt in and talk about myself. Friends have told me things and I have been so airy fairy that I haven’t taken things in. I know this must be frustrating so in 2013, I am making a conscious effort to listen.

I am going to stop saving things for best – If 2012 taught me anything, it is that life is too short. I am going to light my posh candles, use my expensive bath oil and drink that expensive bottle of wine.

I am going to try and dress nicer than I think I should – On those days when I think I’ll just throw an outfit together, I am going to stop myself and think about dressing a touch nicer. I am going to think about my outfits for work the night before and accessorise more. When just going to the pub in the evening I am going to dress up more, than I have in the past, and when going out for a special occasion I am going to try and not wear my faithful skinny jeans and pull out all the stops.

I have high hopes for 2013. I am hoping for a happy home life, no more sadness, successful work life and fingers crossed, maybe our plans for a baby may come to fruition.

Here’s to 2013.

Bouche x x x

Bouche is back

I posted a couple of times last week. A brief picture post and my follow up post on Jimmy Savile. I needed easing in gently. The past three months have been hectic, emotional and pretty awful to be honest. Mr Bouche lost his mum six weeks ago after a mere 8 months of battling cancer and hence I have really not felt like writing.
He is obviously devastated and although I am trying to be the best support that I can, I also miss her immensely. Some days I break down and some days it still doesn’t feel real. Grief is a bizarre thing and I think Mr Bouche and I are in for some emotional roller coaster rides in the coming weeks and months.
I don’t necessarily think Bouche in the city is somewhere to share my thoughts, memories and sadness. As my wonderful mother in law would not want me to pour out my thoughts about her in such a public way.
She would however want me to get back to blogging (which I love) and write some humorous, witty and random posts. So that is what I am going to do. I am feeling like my mojo is returning slightly and I am feeling ready to write. I am sure some of the posts I will write in the coming weeks will be utter bollocks but I will write them all the same!
I hope I haven’t lost any of my audience (if sparse at times) and my coming posts are not too shabby.
Sorry I have been away but I know you will all understand! (And if you don’t you can do one!)

Bouche x x x

Our song

A couple of weeks ago Nickie at wrote a post about her and her husband’s ‘song’. and gave me some inspiration to write a similar post.

Mr Bouche and I do have ‘our song’. It is a remix of Clocks by Coldplay and it was played at Manumission in Ibiza by the dj Fatboy Slim. We both have the same feelings about this song. We both realised that night that we were in love and thus it has become our song.

However, when we were planning our wedding, this song seemed an inappropriate choice as a first dance as the words to clocks aren’t very romantic. Choosing the first dance song was the hardest decision we had to make for our wedding and eventually we settled on a song. However, we both regret our decision and wished we had chosen something else.

This was our choice.

We had some songs in our shortlist which we wished we had had as the first dance. However, they were played during our wedding.–Ng

All of these songs have great meaning to us.

What is your song?

Bouche x x x

#Tag 20 questions

This morning I got my usual daily blog email from Yummy Step Mummy. It was titled #Tag 20 questions, in which she answered questions set by Loopy Rach. I am totally hijacking the posts but I liked the questions!

So here are my 20 questions and answers:

1. Thing you cannot leave the house without?
Penciled eyebrows, bronzer and mobile phone

2. Favourite brand of make-up?
MAC – truly amazing!

3. Favourite flower?
Gerbera – my wedding flower. My favourite colours are white or hot pink.

4. Favourite clothing store?
Reiss. I wish I was one size smaller so their clothes looked better on me. My favourite little black dress is from Reiss and makes me feel amazing when I wear it. Many of my favourite accessories are from Reiss too.

5. Favourite perfume?
Coco Madamoiselle by Chanel and Chloe Eau de Parfum by Chloe.

6. Heels or Flats?
I love heels. The bigger the better. I feel sexier in heels. Heels make you stand straight, with your shoulders back and your head held high. However, they kill me. I have bunions and heels cripple me so I do spend more time in flats.

7. Do/Did you get good grades?
Yes. Although I had a tough time during my GCSE’s and A levels, I worked hard and managed to get good grades. I managed to get offers from two good universities, Nottingham Trent and Brunel to do Economics and European studies. I deferred both offers and went to work for a stock brokers in the city of London. The rest is history and I never took up the places. However, later in life I would like to be an economics lecturer in further education and will do my degree.

8. Favourite colours?
Silver – I love everything silver. I am like a magpie! This was also the colour in our colour scheme for our wedding.

9. Do you drink energy drinks?
No. I have a thing about sugar and never have sugar on cereal or in tea. I hate these energy drinks and know they are really bad for you. Diabetes in the family will do that! The only exception to this is when I have had a few drinks and am offered a jeagar bomb!

10. Do you drink juice?
After some extensive work on my teeth last year and hearing from the dentist about how bad fruit juices are for your teeth, I do steer clear. The only exception is when I consume the odd vodka and orange!

11. Do you eat fries/chips with a fork?
Always! I try to use cutlery wherever possible!

12. Favourite moisturiser?
Chanel – Hydramax + Active moisure gel cream

13. Do you want to get Married?
Am married and always wanted to be so.

14.Do you get mad easily?
I have a short fuse. I blow up, then calm down quickly and then it is forgotten. I forgive easily and never hold grudges.

15.Are you into ghost hunting?
I am really into the paranormal. I was seen by my mother, at the age of 12 conversing with a spirit whilst half asleep, I don’t remember. I believe that I am surrounded by spirits and think I would enjoy a ghost hunt.

16. Any phobias?
I am scared of losing my memories. My dad has Huntington’s disease and has lost lots of his memories. I take lots of pictures and hope to record memories on this here blog, just in case.
Disorder and lack of control also make me anxious. I have a little bit of OCD.

17. Do you bite your nails?
No. I had false nails for a long time and I am desperately trying to look after my natural nails and get them all to a nice length. I have managed to get 7 out of 10 nice, just three to go.

18. Have you had a near death experience?
Once. But, not something I want to talk about.

19. Do you drink coffee?
Yes! I am a big coffee drinker and probably drink 4 cups a day. I don’t mind a kenco instant but I love a rich fresh coffee!

20. Do you like swimming?
Yes, absolutely! I was a good swimmer as a child. When I was about three and a half, my dad and grandma took me into the sea at Hastings. A big wave came and swept me off my feet. I jumped out of the water and said ‘can we do that again?’ I loved water and used to waterski as a child / teen with my Dad off the back off his speedboat!

Care to share?

Bouche x x x

Maid of honour

When I was a little girl, I dreamt of having a sister (my actual sister was born when I was 23) I was stuck with brothers and they didn’t appreciate it when I tried to turn them into a sister, with the help of Mum’s Wardrobe and some makeup. So when my Mum’s sister had a baby girl, I was in my element. We lived in different counties but our Mum’s were close, so we grew up together. I used to get so excited when I knew I was going to see my cousin, so much so that on one occasion I actually wet myself in the car journey there.
Although our worlds were very different, I lived in a very middle class street with parents that were still together and financially, I guess we were doing better than most. My cousin was born to a teenage mum, with a wayward dad and lived in a poor part of town. It didn’t matter to me that we were a little different. I loved being with her and often used to beg my mum and Dad to let me stay there in the holidays.
As we grew into adults we both became distant from our Mum’s and for a short time we became a little distant ourselves ( Our mother’s doing,it is probably important to mention). We both knuckled down and got good jobs, along with settling down and deciding to marry wonderful men.
In the past two years we have become closer than ever and, when my cousin told me that she was getting married I was thrilled for her. She excitedly told me of her plans and the things she had seen for her big day. She asked my advice and I was happy to find nail salons and veils.
Back in the summer, she asked me to organise her hen weekend. I was thrilled to be getting involved. I won’t lie, organising so many women was hard work but we had a great time in Brighton earlier this month. She also asked me to make a speech as sadly her parent’s nor sister will be present at the wedding.
Apparently, I am good at talking and she wanted someone who had known her all her life to speak in place of the father of the bride’s speech. I was very choked up when she asked and even as I am writing the speech, I have emotional moments.
So you can imagine what I was like when she asked me to be her bridesmaid. A blubbering mess to be precise. So Easter Saturday, I have the honour of being the maid, the father and the cousin. She is going to make me so proud and I hope I say and do all that is required. So that everyone knows how much I love her and am so proud of her and all that she has achieved and become.

Bouche x x x

The old lady

Whilst watching Eastenders this evening, Derek referred to Pat as ‘the old lady’. Which instantly made me think about  my Nanny. I have wanted to write a post about her for so long but I have been waiting on some old photos from my Mum.

My Nanny, was always referred to as The Old Lady by my Dad, his brothers, my Grandad and literally all the family. As a young woman she was known for being a social butterfly. She was always immaculately turned out and enjoyed a drink and a dance. I remember hearing one story where she was dancing and had a full skirt on. She spun around on the dance floor, and exposed her knickers which matched her skirt and which she wore over her tights!

My earliest memory of my Nanny is at a family party and she was having a good dance on the dance floor. I was about three and I was mesmerised by her. I watched her dancing for a while before she scooped me up in her arms and started dancing with me.  


I was named after my Nanny whose name was Joan. I don’t think it was just the name I inherited from Nanny, I am also known for my love of a good boogie.

Nanny had four sons, so when I was born, the first granddaughter, I was spoilt rotten. I always remember my childhood christmas’ at Nanny and Grandad’s and they were fabulous. We always played lots of games and Nanny’s cooking was pretty terrible, but we didn’t care. We loved being there!

As time went on, Nanny and Grandad split and divorced and Nanny met and later married a lovely man.They moved to Leeds and I saw her less frequently. Soon after my Dad was diagnosed with HD, Nanny was also diagnosed too.

She soon swapped dancing for the church and travelled the world whilst she still could. As the disease took hold and she became very poorly, I decided to see her less and less. I was scared and I didn’t want to see her sick. I wanted to remember her as the social butterfly, she once was.

Nanny passed away in 2007. I was devastated and even though almost five years have passed it still feels recent. I am sad she never got to see me get married but I hope she was watching over us.

So to The Old Lady, you are gone but never forgotten and every time I dance, I dance for you.

Bouche x x x

Goodbye 2011

So that’s it. 2011 is over and 2012 is upon us. I can’t lie, 2011 has been a disappointment but that said I thought I would give you a run down of Bouche’s year anyway!

January – I started my blog! After months of tooing and froing I finally did it! Mr Bouche turned 32. I joined Weight Watchers, with the view of losing three stone.

February – Was a quiet month but I spent 5 hours at Guys hospital having my root canal treated. I helped a good friend move into her home after a turbulent 18 months for her

March – Little J turned 9 and I suddenly realised that he as becoming a young man. My good friend Doris and I headed to the cinema and ended up in London Gallery’s and had a fab night. Mr Bouche took me on a date, even though I had, had three hours of root canal treatment!

April – April brought Easter and lots of family time. I spent lots of time with Daddy Bouche. I also visited my GP to be referred to the genetics clinic at Guys. The first of the 2011 babies was born to a good friend and he is a beaut. Our girly trip to Butlins was booked for later in the year. The royal wedding brought a houseful at 11am and some hangovers the next day!

May – The second of our 2011 babies arrived and he is a handsome chap. My mother in law turned 60 and we had a lovely day at my sister in-law’s. More root canal treatment for Bouche and a big girly night out. We also went for our first appointment at Guys Hospital to discuss our options at the Genetic clinic.

June – My sister and law and I headed to Wembley to see Take That in concert. June also saw Huntington’s awareness week and the summer party at my Dad’s home. I attended an Ann Summer’s party which was more than fun. We also had a family get together at Mr Bouche’s Dad’s house and I finally met his aunt from New Zealand.

July – July brought the third of our 2011 babies and she is absolutely adorable! I also headed to Essex for Essex Polo which was hilarious and so much fun. Amy Winehouse passed away and I wrote the saddest tunage tuesday. July also brought a client go karting event at work and despite being very competitive my team came second from bottom!

August – I bravely had my second tattoo, of our wedding date in roman numerals on my wrist. We joined the local Huntington’s Disease support group for a meeting and made some new friends. We also celebrated our first wedding anniversary and had a bit of a shindig at home.

September – I turned 32, this involved a carvery lunch, a girly breakfast on my birthday, dinner with my aunt and uncle and a big girl’s night out. We also took Little J to the O2 to see Batman live. Babies number four and five arrived (twins) and are real smashers! I took my cousin to a wedding fayre and she asked me to make a speech at her wedding. Both Mr Bouche and I were personally affected by 9/11 and we remebered the date by purchasing a beautiful canvas of New York for our lounge. I also worked in the disaster recovery site and got to see Daddy Bouche lots that week, as I was based near his home. September also brought worry. We went to Guys Hospital and after they had looked at family history, they wanted to test me for a duplication of chromosome 15. It was one long week but all was well and I was negative.

October – October started with a sex and the city afternoon tea in London and a family bbq at my aunt and uncles (otherwise known as mum and dad number 2). We had a wedding reception which was fab and a visit to Mr Bouche’s uncle’s restaurant in London. I started organising my cousin’s hen weekend. Work was frantic and looked as if we were in trouble and our jobs were at risk.

November – We had another wedding reception, a 30+1 birthday party and the girly Butlins 80’s weekender. It was also the month that my company collapsed and I was made redundant along with half of the company, with the further 50% go early in 2012. With that it brought leaving drinks and an interview.

December – The start of my unemployment! My little sister was 9 and we had a tea party at Casa Bouche. I had a girly curry evening. Lots of christmas shopping was done. I met up with my cousin for some wedding preparation shopping. I signed on. I claimed ppi. We had an appointment at Guys and missed it as we were stuck in traffic. I had two interviews and am still waiting for the result. We had a visit from an absent friend. I avoided my family at christmas (I saw them on the 23rd, this isn’t really christmas is it?). We saw Little J on christmas eve and gave him his presents. Christmas day we visited Daddy Bouche and then came home for the Bouche’s christmas where we saw no-one but ourselves! Boxing day, we went to Mr Bouche’s sisters ( and had a lovely day. The 27th saw us at Mr Bouche’s Dad’s which was eventful as usual. The rest of December has seen me mainly eating cold meat, cheese and pickles and drinking wine in my pj’s! I have managed to apply for some jobs and have an interview lined up for early January. Mr Bouche and I spent New Years together in doors, toasting the new year in and ushering 2011 out!

What will 2012 bring? Below is what I know will happen for certain!

An interview in January, which I hope will be successful and bring a whole new adventure.

A wedding in February. Mr Bouche’s best friend’s sister gets married.

A hen do in March organised by myself for my darling cousin.

A wedding in April, where I will be the acting mother of the bride and will read a speech about my fabulous cousin in a father of the bride fashion.

Little J doing his 11 plus. Wowsers, where has the time gone?!

The Olympics hitting London.

Our nephew goes to university.

Everything else will be, no doubt a rollercoaster!

Happy new year everyone, lets hoping 2012 will be fantastic!

Bouche x x x

Bouche and the Shoe Fetish

A few weeks back, Nickie at and I were having a drunken natter on Skype and Nickie was showing off her new boots. Whilst admiring Nickie’s new footwear, I admitted that I have a little shoe fetish. A fetish which has, at times become obsessive and has landed me with a lot of footwear!

I mentioned to Nickie that I thought I had about 130 pairs of shoes and she said that she would like to see a post about my excessive amount of footwear. So here it is. I decided to have a recount on the footwear front and I don’t actually have 130 pairs of shoes, boots, trainers and sandals. I have 147 pairs! Wowsers, how did it become so many?!

I started bringing the shoes out of the two slider wardrobes, from under little J’s bed and from the loft to photograph them today and realised that they would fill little J’s bedroom floor easily!

So I am going to do this in stages!

 Here is my first selection…


The below shoes are from French Connection. They were bought for our engagement party three years ago. They absolutely kill me every time I wear them but I love them because they are quite unusual.

The next shoes are from the Very website. They were very reasonably priced and I bought them in both grey and blush pink! These were the shoes I wore on my last day at work.

I love 50’s fashion. I love tea dresses, the 50’s style pin curl and chignon hairstyles. So when I saw these shoes in the sale in Office about three years ago, I had to have them! Whenever I wear these shoes, someone always comments and asks where I got them from. I love shoe envy!

These suede boots are over the knee and lace up at the back. I bought these last winter and are my winter staple. Even though these are flat boots, I can wear on a night out with fancy tights and also over skinny jeans during the day. I bought these from Kurt Geiger.

I love red shoes. I guess my love of The Wizard of Oz has influenced some of my shoe purchases. These are patent and have a triangular heel. I bought these from Topshop about 4 years ago.

These swarovski sandals are my blingy summer staples. I have bunions so I always struggle with high-heeled strappy sandals. So these are my fail safe evening shoes for the summer. Even on my wedding day, I kicked off the high heels in the evening and put these beauts on.

The next shoes are from dune. I have had them about 5 years and were bought for a friend’s wedding. I also have the matching clutch bag. Although they are four and a half inches high, they are so comfy. I also think they are quite a timeless style. Shortly after purchasing these shoes, Mr Bouche and I split up briefly. These are the shoes I wore on a make up or break up meeting, with a killer outfit. Needless to say, Mr Bouche and I got back together that evening. How could he resist me in these shoes?!

These little beauts are from Topshop. I have had these a couple of years. I bought them for no other reason that, I loved them and they are a bit slutty! They are patent peeptoes with silver platforms! They have seen me through dozens of nights out, weddings and even my honeymoon!

The below shoes are the newest of the shoes on this post. I got these from love label, and are extremely high and hard to walk in but they make me feel sexy and thinnish and that is why I adore them!

These little bobby dazzlers were bought by myself, when I was a bridesmaid for my mum and step dad in September 2008. I had a lovely dress but in a hideous colour, so I had to have fabulous shoes. They were very expensive, even though they were from dune but they have swarovski crystals and hence the high price tag!

 The below shoes are from good old Next. I bought them for my best friend Andrew’s wedding 18 months ago. They are so high that after a few hours wear, they are hard to stand in. However, they make my short stumpy legs look nearly long!


The last of the shoes are from Office. They look like they would give you blisters, but they are so comfortable, I can dance  in them all night. I bought these about five years ago. I can’t remember why but it was probably because they are silver, my favourite colour. These are my leave the house in comfort, dance all night, eat chips in, queue for a taxi and stagger through the front door shoes!

Do you love shoes as much as I do? Please comment and share below.

Bouche x x x x

Bah humbug!

This time last year I was half way through my christmas shopping. New decorations for my tree had been bought, I was busy making menu decisions for christmas day and had even made my own mince pies.

Now, don’t start thinking I am one of those Kirsty Allsopp types who start their christmas shopping in June, pickle their own onions and make fantastic personalised gifts. I am not! I don’t even really like christmas!

Mr Bouche and I have a mutual dislike for christmas and would happily stay indoors from December 24th to December 28th and not see a soul! We always shun family christmas dinner and instead choose to eat christmas lunch together and enjoy the day, just the two of us. We do visit Daddy Bouche on christmas morning but we always decline invitations.

You see, Christmas is not the same as we both feel a little lost. I have never enjoyed christmas since my Dad was diagnosed with HD. Christmas has never been the same. I don’t get along with my step dad and cannot think of anything worse than spending christmas day with him, over my dad.

Mr Bouche always feels a little sad. Little J usually spends christmas day and boxing day with his Mum and her family. It is hard for him to spend christmas day without little J and even harder to spend it with other children.

Last year, however, was the most perfect christmas. Little J had decided to spend christmas eve with us and woke up with us on christmas morning, the first time in 8 years. Even if it was 4.30am, it was just perfect. We had a family breakfast and we got to see Little J’s christmas morning face! I went into overdrive to make it the perfect day. It was the first christmas as a married couple and the first christmas in our house. The tree was up, on the first week of December and all the presents were wrapped weeks in advance.

This year could not be more different. I have bought three christmas presents. Every time that bloody coca cola advert comes on, I turn the tv over. Whilst in the supermarket this week, when I heard the christmas songs being played I put my iPod on and listened through the head phones and don’t even get me started on the John Lewis ad. Has christmas started early this year?

We have no definite answers from Little J as to whether he wants to stay on christmas eve, but I guess we are both expecting it to be a no. I can’t even start to get organised. I have zero interest this year. I don’t think being made redundant has helped and I am hoping the whole christmas period will pass whilst I am asleep.

I know it will be different when we have a baby. Maybe Little J will want to be with us all christmas, maybe we will embrace all family gatherings and not feel like something is missing, maybe I will buy presents in June and pickle my own onions!

Bah Humbug Bouche x x x