Donna without Claire



Today I’d like to chat about Plus Size Brands, well one in particular, Donna – previously known as Donna Claire.

Remember Donna Claire?!?!?

Frumpy, floral frocks that everyone’s great aunt (usually the cat lady) used to love!

Well…after Donna dropped Claire and just became “Donna” they’ve upped their game and brought in some good pieces.

I picked up a few items from them a couple of days ago and I was pleasantly surprised.

Affordable, trendy and the quality was good too!!!

Well done Donna ( Claire was totally the problem)!!!


Jeans are always a struggle for me – but these black skinny jeans are super comfy – I did have to tailor the ankle to make it skinnier, but I usually have to do that since I have thin ankles and they were a real steal at R200.00 a pair when Donna (with no Claire) had a sale on all jeans.

The shirt I basically bought because it has little tie details on the sleeves and because it’s white and who doesn’t love a white shirt right?!?!? The shirt is also super comfy and stretchy too. Plus girls love the stretchy stuff!!!


Don’t ask what I’m looking for…I’m awkward and I have no idea how to pose so there’s that!

Outfit Deets: Jeans & Shirt – Donna / Pumps – Ackermans / Earrings – H&M / Bag – Bata

I picked up some other items from Donna (without Claire) that I’ll show you in another blog post…and I’ll probably pick out some more stuff from them that I’m lusting over…

Like this mesh bomber – Yasssss!!!! (HINT HINT Babe!)

And this soft parka – love!!!!

And these cuties – Must!

The World is changing and I’m so here for it!!!!

Thanks for stopping by!

Lauren xxx

Grace and Glory (Pt3)

Happy 2018 my peoples – finally catching my breath and sitting down to write my 3rd and final excerpt of my near-death experience!

Friday, 13th 2009

I gave birth to a baby girl – (who was kinda weird looking but ok – she was mine) it was a scheduled c-sec, 6 weeks early because Aimee wasn’t thriving inside my womb. She weighed in at a tiny 1,7 kgs and stayed in ICU for a couple of weeks. I couldn’t help but blame myself for speaking death over her life while I was in pain but even in the midst of my foolishness, God’s mercy reigned and soon Aimee was home.

Aimee is the ugly duckling who blossomed into a beautiful swan – for real!

My health steadily declined over the next year and I knew that I had to undo the weight loss op – this op just wouldn’t let me be great and I had 2 girls and a husband who needed me – I was the only person who could give them a healthy, happy mom.

The doctor was right btw – I could not find a doctor willing to do the reversal. They wouldn’t take the risk of me dying at their hands after all the complications I’d had and the strain my organs took, so… I was forced to go back to the doctor who did the initial op.

February 10th, 2010

The day after the reversal I started having severe muscle spasms/seizures (again) and the nurses didn’t know what to do – the doctor was unreachable – it was then we learned about the numerous charges he was facing for patients dying from this operation. The doctor was attending a court case and an ambulance would only be available to transfer me from Pretoria West Hospital to Milpark Hospital in 3hrs – so my husband did the only thing he thought would save my life. He signed me out, put me into his car with drips, open wounds, pipes and bags hanging out of them and drove in peak hour traffic to Milpark Hospital. On arrival the nurses at Milpark wouldn’t admit me with open wounds #ButGod- my doctor arrived and I was taken straight to ICU.

Within weeks I was out of ICU and recovering well (although my body would never ever be as it was pre-op) except I started gaining weight quite rapidly. My body had been starved for so many years that it was storing everything and anything it could.

One morning while getting ready for work I casually mentioned to my husband that I’d be seeing a dietician to help me lose weight when my daughter had a panic attack.

In all that had happened I hadn’t realized the message she was getting from all of this. To my little girl… me being skinny meant hospitals, constantly being sick and fatigued and her little mind had conjured up this correlation and she was afraid.

It was then that I decided to make a conscious effort in accepting my body. If I wanted my girls to have a healthy body image then I had to make some changes  – enter the birth of this blog!

So you see it’s much more than #OOTD’s or the latest trends – it’s a constant reminder that we are fearfully and wonderfully made by God. This blog has forced me out of a mindset of self-harm, self-hatred and shame. It has forced me to look at myself through God’s eyes and start taking care of myself from a place of love rather than a place of hate.  This blog has forced me to speak MY truth.

Look, I’m not going to lie…it’s not all rainbows and unicorns all the time…it’s a constant battle every single day to walk in confidence and acceptance of yourself – and I am no expert but I do know that our bodies are miracles and we should treat them as such.

Also…My husband has literally loved me through THICK and THIN! 

Thank you for reading xxx

Much love

This is no longer MY story…but God’s Glory! (Pt2)

I’ve received an overwhelming response since posting Part 1 of “My Story”…THANK YOU for taking the time to read it!


Friday, January 12th 2007

I’m in ICU, have been for a couple of days…I have a 2yr old daughter and a husband whom I’ve only been married to for a minute, I’m 25yrs old and I’m dying!

Doctors are talking about cardiac arrest, renal failure and a host of other things if I don’t see a specialist neurologist immediately only…there aren’t any available to attend to me.

But God…

A Pastor we knew came to see me in ICU, he prayed for me, anointed me with oil and asked me to say the sinners prayer with him – well…since I couldn’t speak it was more grunting – but God heard me.


Suddenly things are happening & I’m transferred to Milpark Hospital ICU where a specialist neurologist is waiting for me (FAVOUR right there). The next day my husband finds me sitting up in bed – not fully recovered BUT it’s a vast difference (Jehova Rapha) and within 2 weeks I’m out of ICU.

Doctor’s prognosis…

“The op needs to be reversed as soon as possible – the medication is only a short term solution and it’s not guaranteed – the problem is – your organs have taken strain and having major surgery is a great risk. You’re not going to find a doctor willing to take that risk!”


“There’s NO way I’m going back to being fat”…I would take the meds…I’d be ok…I’d live…right?!?

I did…I took the meds, (15-20 different tablets per day) and although the quality of life wasn’t great – I was alive, I was skinny (too skinny) and even fell pregnant with another baby girl!

Carrying a life but contemplating taking my own…

My pregnancy was agonizing – pain, complications and more pain!

Did I mention constant, breaking-out-in-cold-sweats-lying-awake-contemplating-suicide-PAIN?????

The pain was so bad – I considered aborting my baby – I couldn’t take it & ultimately had to undergo surgery at 19 weeks which relieved some pain…SOME!

I’d dropped another 20kgs during this time – weighing a meager 40kgs at 7 months pregnant – Aimee wasn’t doing well in utero  & had to be delivered prematurely – such a fighter though!

Every year I’d end up in ICU for a few weeks, this wasn’t a life, I wasn’t living,  wearing 9-10yr old clothing, my hair was falling out, my skin was dry and pale, my ribs & spine were protruding, I was withering away (the weight loss didn’t stop) and when it  dropped below 40kgs I had to be real…I had to undo this…I had to!

I’m smiling but inside I’m dying…

Thank you for reading Part 2…

PS: Part 3 is the finale I promise LOL!

Much Love xxx

This is my story…PT 1

I’ve been receiving a lot of questions regarding my “testimony” I mentioned in my previous blog post…so I thought I’d do a post around “My Story” to fill everyone in…it’s kinda long so I’ll do it in bits…


A lil background…



…committed suicide months before my birth…Mom raised myself and my 5 older brothers by herself (yes 5 older brothers) – twas a hard knock life for me LOL!

Early childhood was pretty normal and then at 8 I started gaining weight – it was only well into adulthood that I discovered the reason behind the weight gain… (#METOO).

Since then I gained weight at a steady pace and by high school I was hiding behind baggy tees and jeans ( it was easy to be a tomboy with 5 older brothers). Low self esteem, no confidence, insecure, constantly on diets – I despised the reflection in the mirror!  I started dating my now-husband when I was 17 which was another difficult thing to comprehend – I mean he’s a snack…what did he want with a fat girl like me?!?

Fast forward to 2005…

A year after giving birth to my daughter I’d heard about an affordable weight-loss operation being offered by a doctor in Pretoria – it sounded like a saving grace (and that’s probably what it was but in a totally different way).

I felt like it was my only way out! Being skinny or what was deemed an “acceptable” size was 1 of my dreams…right up there with all my other life goals – that probably sounds shallow to people who can’t relate but…DON’T JUDGE IF YOU’VE NEVER BEEN THERE! Society sucks!!!

I had the op…which worked like this…

A human intestine is roughly 7m long, so the average person would digest meals in 4hrs…mine was bypassed to a mere 30cm so food literally just ran straight through my system…LITERALLY!!!!

From the get-go I experienced various complications ie. Gallstones, acid reflux etc… but the doctor assured me that things would be ok…my weight-loss would eventually stabilize and then stop when I was at the ideal weight for my height.

Within 12 months I had lost an astounding 50kgs – MAMA I MADE IT!!!!! For the 1st time I felt “normal”, “accepted” and I was eager to start living (I was 23 at the time).

January 2007

3 months after our wedding…we were on holiday but something didn’t feel right…I was tired all the time and had muscle pain and then I woke up 1 morning paralyzed! I couldn’t get out of bed, I couldn’t lift my arms or move my legs…that was the scariest moment of my life…I broke down because my husband had to bath me, dress me and comb my hair (AND HIS PONYTAIL WAS THE WORST – MY GOODNESS).


I was taken straight to ICU with severely depleted EVERYTHING – electrolytes, vitamins, minerals (all stuff I didn’t even know we needed…but ok). Basically my organs were failing and I was dying…WHAAAAAAT – weren’t we on vacay like a minute ago?!?!?!

Lauren's iPhone 672

But yes…I was in ICU, my organs were failing, all my muscles were in spasms which caused them to contract so I was curled up like someone that had just had a stroke, I couldn’t speak because my tongue (being a muscle too) was twisted and the doctors advised my family to come and say their goodbyes. Doctors didn’t think they could save me!

To be continued…

PS Please excuse the quality of some of the pics…it’s the only ones I have…being so accustomed to hiding from cameras!

PSS Joy comes in the morning…

Thanks for allowing me to share Part 1 with you…I’ll post the next one in a few days!

Much Love xxx











Life @ 35

I have been trying to get this blog post out for days but this flu/sinusitis/infection just wont leave me alone!!!

I celebrated my birthday a few days ago – well…”celebrated” is probably overzealous since I spent the day in bed cuddled up to a box of tissues, pills and orange juice, however, it was my birthday and I’m always grateful for another year of God’s grace!

I’m 35 – eeek!!!! Now, I don’t say that out of fear of aging – I actually love most things that come with aging (operative word being most).

Here’s a list of notable changes – some good, some not so!

  1. Rest is vital – in my 20’s I could survive and function on very little sleep, I healed from sickness or even major ops like my cesarean much quicker than in my 30’s. This past week I had no choice but to take 2-3days in bed just to get over this flu and I mean flat in bed, doing nothing – not even social media!

  2. Signs of aging – Fine lines and dry skin under my eyes have me googling eye creams – and they don’t come cheap y’all – I totally regret every time I rubbed my eyes, damaging that delicate under eye skin – I’m much gentler now (since seeing how expensive those creams are).

  3. Dry skin – I’ve always had oily skin and would skip heavy creams and lotions especially in the summer time but these days I find that half way through the day I’m looking like an ambassador for Lacoste – which also has me googling body butters – I’m such an adult (googling stuff!).

  4. Taste buds – This one is surprising – the older I get the more my palate changes – I now enjoy an array of veggies that I didn’t like in previous years.

  5. Counting pennies – I had a habit of mindlessly buying things for the sake of having new stuff or staying trendy but since trying to live more with less (that happens when you hit mid 30’s – you become all philosophical and stuff) I mostly buy quality, timeless and necessary items (also…I have 3 Kids and private schooling is expensive so I’ve become a cheapskate) – no shame in my game!

  6. Self awareness – I love how aware you become of yourself. Who you’re hanging around, what you’re listening to, what you’re reading, your thoughts, your words. It has brought a sense of peace to my life that I’m so grateful for. Yay for aging!!!

  7. No – It was never a word I could say (except to my kids). But I’m learning that it’s necessary for my sanity and emotional and mental health. It’s still hard though, but I’m getting better at it (except when it comes to chocolate- that’s still considerably hard).

  8. Do you – it’s easy to get sucked in by people’s lives on social media – for the longest time I’ve compared my blog or content to others and always felt like mine came up short, however, I’ve since learned that we’re all different, we all have different lives and we all have different stories to tell. I love inspiring people with my testimony – I believe that God saved my life for His glory and my testimony will always be a part of who I am.

Those are some things I wanted to share with you since hitting the mid-30 mark. I wanted to make it a list of 10 ( I mean who makes a list of 8 things) – (adulting is also making a lot of lists about stuff) but I’ve reached my philosophical quota for the day so that’ll have to do.

Thank you for reading and stay sassy xxx

Top: Makro | Pants: Old | Shoes: MRP | Bag: Old | Earrings: ByMissVoe (she’s got all the good stuff y’all – go check it out!)

Deliver ME from ME!

I’ve been on a journey of self discovery for most of the year (probably for most of my life hahahaha) – hence the sparse blog posts & #OOTDs or any sort of active social media life for that matter. 

It started with my spiritual walk, then having to relearn & reaffirm some truths about myself (especially after gaining back all the weight I lost last year) – I’m still learning – then came the decision to join the natural hair movement (NOT as easy as I assumed) –  spiritually, physically & mentally a lot was/is going on but the most prominent lesson I’m learning over and over is that I am my only hinderance. I am in my own way! 

My state of mind, the way I see myself – and I don’t just mean physically – it restricts me in every way in every area. Allowing fear, insecurities and a negative self image to cripple me. Constantly second guessing myself and doubting my abilities, living in a loop de loop of self-doubt & self shame. It’s time I break the cycle!!! 

I challenged myself to take these pics & do a blog post – totally unprepared – I had to get out of my own head , go against the grain, regardless of the weight I’ve gained or how I think I look with my big “boskop/kroeskop” because let me tell you, going natural has challenged every thought and every belief I had about myself, my appearance and my self image – Yes…hair…hair can do that!!! It’s a good thing though – it’s pushed me further out of my comfort zone – literally forcing me to embrace my truth! 

So with big arms, big hips and my now big hair – I smiled (a genuine happy smile) and posed for the camera! 

I’m big and that’s how I am right now. And this is who I am right now. And I want to live right now!!! I’m tired of hiding behind extra weight or heat damaged hair or jiggly thighs – constantly obsessing about the bathroom scale, shying away from cameras…NO… life is happening and I want to live it! 

This past week we said goodbye to 2 friends, 1 went to bed and never woke up – she wasn’t even 45yrs old – the other succumbed to injuries he sustained in a car crash – only 25yrs old – life is too short Lauren, quit fretting the small stuff! 

So this is me – boskoppy, saggy booby (I’m a mom of 3 & I probably could do with some new bras LoL – but good heavens who sets the prices for bras?!?!? – must be a man), big thighed & flabby armed – it’s me and it’s always going to be me, well, atleast physically maybe, BUT there’s another ME inside this ME and that ME is growing & learning everyday & in this moment, somehow, that’s enough! 

Leggings & Tunic: The Fix | Bag: MRP | Sandals: Gifted 



I forget but God…

Hey Beautiful People 

Here’s a funny story…not funny like ha ha but you know…

My confidence as a person and as a blogger has taken a serious beating since gaining weight. Last year I was able to drop a good amount of weight – not really intentionally though – I had a really trying year, my personal & spiritual life were a mess, I was stressed and depressed and honestly, I hardly ate. I’m a happy eater – so therefore we can conclude that I am happy a lot of the time…ha ha! 

Because of this I’ve been unmotivated to blog or even shop – I’m sure many of you can relate – but God has a way of always reminding me where He’s brought me from. 

This morning I picked up this stethoscope for a cousin (her kid needed 1 for a school project) but it instantly reminded me of the time I was expecting Aimee. 

A little scene-setting…

I’d had a weight loss op done a few years prior to falling pregnant and I wasn’t in very good health. I started off at 63kgs in the beginning of my pregnancy and by the 7th month I’d dropped to 40kgs. I was sick, in constant pain, I wasn’t eating and numerous times I contemplated suicide (the pain was that bad). I remember being in such tremendous pain and speaking such horrible words during my pregnancy – death, abortion, suicide – to name a few and yet at the same time I prayed that little Aimee would make it. 

I purchased 1 of these stethoscopes because I was so afraid that she’d die inside my womb. The pain would keep me awake at night and I’d lie there with my stethoscope trying to make sure I could hear her heart beat – I’m not sure if I did hear it – but that’s what I did! 

Aimee had to be delivered prematurely, she just wasn’t thriving inside my womb so at 7months she was born at a tiny 1.4kgs – literally just skin and bone. She stayed in Neo ICU for close to 3 weeks and it was the hardest 3 weeks of my life. I blamed myself for everything that happened to her – it was all those terrible things I spoke over her – I’d say – but I was in so much pain that I just wasn’t thinking clearly – I know that’s no excuse though! 

This was a month before Aimee was delivered ☝🏽

Today God reminded me of His awesome, miracle-working power. He reminded me where He brought me from ( a dying bed in Milpark ICU), He reminded me that my story, my message, is so much more than anything as superficial as my weight. I look at Aimee and I’m in awe of Him – that even in my weakness, my pain, my sickness, He had a plan for us. I am so much more than the number on the back of my jeans. 

I’ll be doing a blog post on my story soon!

Thank You for the reminder Lord. 

Stay Slayin & Stay Prayin y’all 

Lu xxx 

Bata Shoes

Bata Shoes launched their new range called Insolia and I was so blessed to be spoiled with a pair in the loveliest deep red – yayness!!! 

Now, as a heavier girl, I tend to avoid heels as they can be quite uncomfortable and painful – I guess being heavier on my feet adds more pressure on the forefoot – BUT – as you can see, the shoe is designed to reduce forefoot pressure and allows for even weight distribution – and let me tell you – THEY AIN’T LYING Y’ALL!

I was able to dine and dance the night away in these babies with zero discomfort! I’ll definitely be adding a few pairs from the range to my shoe collection! 

Thank you to Bata Shoes for the spoil and for getting it precisely right with this design! 

Thanks for stopping by and stay sassy now! 

Lu xxx 

Style Inspiration – Beauticurve 

I fell in love with this top the moment I saw Rochelle Johnson from Beauticurve rocking it. I knew I had to have it but that meant actually having one made which was the best decision because that seemingly small idea was the catalyst to getting me off my behind and making my dream a reality.  Only God!!!

I approached my trusted tailor (now trusted friend) and had him make up this top for me. Since then Joe and I have designed (and re-designed) a few items and it’s exciting and exhilarating and scary all at the same time, but I’m loving it. (Watch this space My Plus Size sisters!). 

We added the cut out detail to the bottom of the top as well (to give it our own pizazz) and I’m quite pleased with the final product but I’d like to hear what my ladies out there think of the top, so please, holla at ya girl?!?

Top – DIY (well kinda ha ha!) | Jeans – MRP | Shoes – Makro | Sunnies – Cotton On 

Stay Sassy now xxx


The Timeless Trench


IMG_2862 (Edited)

It has been a VERY long time since my last post but allow me to let you inside my head for a bit…

At the beginning of the year I decided that I would only pay for clothing that fit the following criteria:

  1. The item was a classic/timeless piece or
  2. It was something that I personally designed and
  3. It’s something that was tailor-made to fit me and
  4. Aim for quality over quantity

So in essence that meant that I really had to put a lot of thought into my purchases – no more adding items to cart just because!

Which brings me to this Timeless Trench Coat from the fabulous Fablane Online  – purchased at a ridiculously affordable price – absolute value for money because the quality is fantastic!

Trench Coat – Fablane Online | Leather-Look Leggings – China Mall | Tank Top – PnP Clothing| Heels – MrP | Sunnies – Cotton On

I love that it’s light-weight which is perfect for mid-season weather as well as layering for the colder days approaching . I went with an all black outfit to put emphasis on the coat and I think it worked well!

Thank you Michelle @ FabLane Online – you NEVER disappoint!

Stay tuned for more classic and unique items I’ve added to my wardrobe in the last few months…and stay sassy now!

Lu xxx