All the crazy is worth it for a few seconds of magic…

3 years later my mixed emotions towards maternity are a lot more positive. I think I’ve come to terms with the fact that no parent is perfect and I’ve learned to have fun with my children. It’s been a wonderful privilege to watch them become themselves.

Sophie's Voice

This time four years ago, I had 2 hours to go until I gave birth to the pre-schooler. Labour lasted a blistering 49 minutes with the human bullet weighing in at just 5lbs and 13oz.

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Mr Sophie’s Voice and I thought we’d never have children. We were wrong. I’m very glad to say.
I am – like many of the women in my family, seemingly – not really ‘the maternal type’. I certainly find it difficult. I don’t think that I’m a natural, by any means. Motherhood is frustrating, thankless, boring and dirty. It’s also unbelievably rewarding, joyful, fulfilling and enlightening.

Like me, maternity is a swirling mass of contradictions. We don’t get on that well but we’re still in love.
I find it tremendously hard to be a mother because I can’t do it perfectly. I’m also very similar to both my daughters – which means that our home…

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A very twisted Valentine’s from Christian Grey, by Beth Penny

Another classic from the Valentine’s archive of doom…
50 Shades of ‘jog on, Mr Grey’.

Sophie's Voice

I was 18 when I first read 50 shades of grey. Whilst reading it, I felt so uncomfortable and it had nothing to do with the sex or ‘kinky’ stuff that was happening. After re-reading I realised it was because what was really written on those pages was an abusive relationship being sold to me as a love story. Not only me, but millions of people were reading this book and worryingly, falling in love with the man that is Christian Grey wishing they had their very own version of him.

But we need to ask the question- would you be happy with a partner who micro managed your life, dictated what you ate, required you to exercise a certain amount of days a week and cut you off from your friends and family? Add some good looks, a six pack and a billionaire status and you have Christian Grey.

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Screw you, Hallmark…

Happy Valentine’s Day, dear readers!

Sophie's Voice

Have a very happy Valentine’s Day, dahlinks.

I may have mentioned in passing that I am no great romantic.

What I am is a lover of stationery, expensive confectionery, flowers, good food, exciting lingerie, dressing up, champagne and good company.

All of which are available on any day of the year. Suck on that, Hallmark – you emotion vultures.

If you’ve made arrangements for today, have a lovely time. If you haven’t, well done. You’re bucking the trend of consumer sheepery.

Now go and enjoy all of the above list. Wherever and whenever you want. As often as you want.

Because you’re worth it. You really are.

As an aside, if anyone wants to buy me this outfit as a gift, I would be very happy to accept it.

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Day 3 of the Blogtober Challenge – my everyday essentials

Throwback Thursday…

Sophie's Voice

I honestly don’t know where to start here – this title has certainly making me question my definition of the word ‘essential’!

I condensed the list down to the things I need to keep the me sane and alive, in the end.

Starting at the beginning of day, I have to have my glasses – I have lenses but I wouldn’t be able to find them without my glasses. I wouldn’t even be able to find the bathroom actually.

Coffee – I’m lucky because Mr Sophie’s Voice makes me a cup of tea before he goes to work every day. That eases me into the day – but I need coffee to function like a real human.

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Smartphone – if I’m lucky enough to wake up with a little time to spare (before the girls start stirring), I have a shower then start work. I’m a sahm who blogs and…

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Day 2 of the Blogtober Challenge – My favourite quote…

More Throwback Thursday content – it’s Day 2 of the 2015 challenge.
That Emerson poem is lovely.

Sophie's Voice

When I got this assignment I felt sure that I had to choose the epic starting sentence from Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina as my favourite quote. That sounds pretentious – but it is truly amazing. However, I’ve never managed to get further than page 121 of my Penguin edition. I’ve tried – once a year since I was eighteen – but I give up every time. I decided that it would be fraudulent to claim it so my search began in earnest.

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I looked at other literature. There are some much loved examples to choose from, but many are just romantic notions now that the novelists’ subject matter is anachronistic. Time passes and I often get too caught up in a good book to notice that it’s not culturally relevant anymore. Those beautiful examples went – sadly – to the ‘rejected’ pile.

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I looked at some quotes from my personal heroes…

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Day 1 of the Blogtober Challenge – Five(ish) things about me

Blogtober 2017 starts on Sunday.
When I was starting out on Sophie’s Voice I was inordinately proud to be invited to do it for the first time.
Here’s my Throwback Thursday – all the way to 2015. Everything was changing for me and I have grown and changed even more since then. I’m a lot more political now – and a lot less placatory in some areas.
Thanks for sticking around. You make this worth doing, dear readers.

Sophie's Voice

This month I’m participating in the Blogtober Challenge and will be posting daily so watch out for more regular updates. Today my challenge is ‘Five – ten things about you’.
I’m very much in favour of navel gazing if there’s a self-improvement angle involved – otherwise, I have a tendency to just self-indulge.
This first assignment has a pretty loose brief. That sounds great but I usually like to focus on a specific issue and I’m fairly strict about sticking to that very defined brief because I do a lot of work as an activist now. It’s also writing about me. I tend not to focus on myself. I have no problems with using my experiences as examples but I’m not a natural exhibitionist and I tend to find my own life quite uninteresting. It’s what I do with my abilities that matter to me. What I do in my…

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Feminist icon and porn pioneer, Candida Royalle, will be missed – even if you don’t know why…

Throwback Thursday takes us back almost two years – to the sad, premature death of Candida Royalle. ‘The queen of female focused porn’ (as defined by Petra Joy – her good friend) is still relevant today as her legacy of embracing pleasure thrives.

Sophie's Voice

On Monday, Candida Royalle died after a long, painful battle against ovarian cancer.

She was the pioneer of feminist porn. While that medium might not appeal to us all, it’s important to remember women like her.

She portrayed women enjoying sex from a perspective that was completely novel at the time.

She did not concentrate on ‘the money shot’ – instead she showed her female protagonists’ pleasure and eventual satisfaction.

If you have sex now and expect to ‘get off’, if you think of sex as a reciprocal process, if you don’t feel guilty about satisfying yourself, then you have more to thank Candida Royalle for than you know.

Women like her offered people a visual depiction of the possibilities of good sex. That has to have a trickle down effect.

Sophie’s Voice is sex positive – I write with the stated aim of encouraging people to love themselves. I…

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Today’s favourite recipe – Day 19 of the Blogtober Challenge

For Throwback Thursday, I’m reblogging the recipe that I always seem to want to bake when it feels like summer has decided to stop showing up….apparently that was yesterday.
This time I cooked 3 batches – one with walnut pieces, one with chia seeds and one with both. In all honesty, I think I’ll leave the chia seeds next time. I prefer them in porridge.

Sophie's Voice

I love food – I spent a large part of my adult life feeling hungry and I can cook. There’s not much more depressing than loving the taste of canapes but having to turn them down at every party you attend. Well, not having to – except in my mind.

I found out I was pregnant in December of 2010. Then it was open season on food. I’d had a body like tits on a stick before then. A boy scout with boobs…well, not any more. I still have the boobs but now I have hips, thighs, rolling shoulders, apple cheeks and pouty lips. No arse – that’s still a glorified hinge but there’s a lot of rounded edges there. I’m never sure if I’m happy with it or not – it’s a mixed bag really. I touch on that occasionally but it’s actually quite a raw place for me.

I cook less than Mr Sophie’s Voice…

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