Tuesday, 7 July 2015

#ThisGirlCan #SelfLove My story

Fun fact, this is currently my lockscreen. I need the reminder.

Before I begin, this is probably going to be my last post on this blog. I feel the need to start over fresh. I've loved the time I've spent here but it's time to move on. Also, this is quite a personal post. I actually wrote this originally as a diary entry and adapted it for the blog. It's difficult to share but I feel I have to.
Alright, onto the post:

The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again and expect different results.

Without beating about the bush, I need to love myself. I keep thinking I do but then someone or something comes along and all the love I'm supposed to be giving to myself automatically gets reassigned to them.

I get obsessed with making others happy so I don't have to make myself happy. I convince myself that their happiness is my happiness and that just isn't the case.

I've tried everything to distract myself from learning to love myself. From narcotics to religion, but mostly men.

I've often wondered why things went wrong and I think it's because people can tell when they're being used as an emotional crutch, even if you don't realise you're doing it.

RuPaul says: "If you can't love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?"

It's true.

You may think you're being caring, sweet and loving, but are you? Or are you just deflecting everything you should be giving yourself?

It's easy to go overboard to try to "express yourself" but you'll just end up scaring the other person away, leaving you with a big, gaping "what's wrong with me?!" shaped hole.

It is not your new beau's place to fill you with all the love you crave, it's yours.

Self love is the most important kind of love.

It makes you strong, which in turn makes you attractive, but also gives you the sense to know you don't give two shits what is and isn't attractive.

It's so difficult to think highly of yourself when we're conditioned by society every day to believe we're not good enough.

We are good enough.

We are beautiful.

We are strong.

We don't need a text from that guy you're seeing to confirm you're worth a damn.

You got this shit.

Try to focus on your journey and treat everything else as extra. Wonderful and amazing, yes, but extra. An added bonus if you will.

So I'm going to go shopping and spend the evening reading inspirational quotes and watching inspiring YouTubers while listening to #GirlPower playlists on 8tracks.

And I'm absolutely not going to text the guy I like. Noooope. Not at all. Unless he texts me first I guess...

My new obsession is me.

Love and rainbows,

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Update: Birthday Travels

Hey guys!

I just wanted to drop a quick post to update you on what I've been up to recently.

To be honest, up until my birthday, I hadn't been doing much. Work had been really busy and fluctuations with my anxiety have kept me pretty much out of commission.

However, for whatever reason, in January I had decided that I was going to be brave and do something so completely out of my comfort zone it left me almost having a panic attack in security...

I went to New York.

For my birthday.

By myself.

I met family I had only ever spoken to on facebook and whatsapp and spent the best part of two whole days with them.

Luckily, after an initial "I'M NOT GOING" breakdown at Gatwick Airport, the rest of the trip was incredible.

My plane was beautiful. I got to fly on a Dreamliner and just.. urgh, it was a dream (my best friend and I have a thing about planes)

So my cousin and her daughter picked me up from JFK Airport Thursday night and thankfully we clicked straight away :)

They're amazing and I miss them so much. I can't wait to go back and visit them again. Money permitting, I'll be back in Summer!

So my birthday (Friday 20th March) consisted of going on a real American school bus (that my cousin drives!) and a beautiful IHOP breakfast.

In case you didn't know, pancakes are my favourite thing in the world and it breaks my heart there aren't many places around where you can get American Pancakes in the UK. So breakfast was a dream :)

After suitably stuffing myself, we drove into Manhattan, wandered around Times Square and 42nd Street (or 39th?) a bit... then got caught in a blizzard. It was a total whiteout! Incredible to have snow on my birthday and in NEW YORK of all places, but it was so heavy we couldn't really wander around any more.

Saturday was lovely :) We drove into Manhattan again and visited 39th Street (or 42nd???) and I got to see the Empire State building, Macy's and we did a bit of shopping. My lovely cousin also got me a fragrance from Victoria's Secret as a birthday present. Thank you Cheryl!!

(back home, sitting pride of place)

We did a flying visit to Central Park Zoo and the Children's Zoo. It was really nice despite being crapped on by a bird in the Tropical Zone!!

(was it you??)

The snow leopards were my favourite by far; so beautiful and majestic. Although the sea lions were hilarious.

After heading to my cousin's house in the Bronx to meet more family briefly, it was back to JFK for my overnight flight home.

It was such a brief trip but one that I'll remember fondly! I took a lot of video footage and am trying to edit it together (not that easy on a windows) so when that's done I'll post it up here too.

New York, you were incredible. See you again soon.

Until then, love and rainbows xoxo

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Love List: 2015

I can't believe it's been a year since I wrote my first Love List.

2014 was an illusion, I swear. I feel like I blinked and missed it.

But there's no point living in the past. It's 2015 now and time to get ish well and truly done.

Well, that's the plan anyway. I'm sure I don't have to explain that things don't always work out the way we think they should. I believe that each of us does have a plan, we just don't know what it is...

Cryptic ramblings aside, I'll explain once more what a Love List is:

(I was going to copy and paste from my original 2014 post but that's so incredibly lazy. Although if you are interested in my original post, you can find it here)

A Love List is a list of resolutions, if you will, but with less of the pressure. Approximately 92% of people fail in their New Years Resolutions. It's understandable why if you look at what resolutions are.

Resolution: 1. A firm decision to do or not do something. 2. The quality of being determined or resolute.

Maybe it's just me but that doesn't sound very fun...

We've taken it upon ourselves to set January 1st of each year as a "new start". I swore near the beginning of the month that if I saw one more "New Year, New Me" post, I was going to scream.

We put so much pressure upon ourselves to "change" because the previous year is up and we've got this blank canvas and we need to make it "the best year ever"...

Guys, it's just another day.

If you feel the need to modify your lifestyle or do more/new things, it should be because it's the right thing to do at the right time for you, not because a calendar has determined that you have 365.4 days to get yourself sorted out.

I created my Love List because it's a list of things that I would love to do and it just happens to be 2015. In fairness (and slight contradiction to my rant two sentences ago), the beginning of the year is a good time to plan things. I think mainly because you've got an entirely blank diary to fill and a lot of time to fill it.

My list last year wasn't entirely practical and I found myself not achieving everything I wanted because my needs and wants changed. This year, my Love List will be different.

I'm starting off with a list of things that I'd like to achieve/do but I will probably review it every so often. Again, less pressure and I'm allowed to change my mind about stuff.

So that introduction was a lot longer than originally planned but hopefully it explained what I'm doing and why.

So without further ado, here is my starter Love List for 2015:
  • Learn how to take better care of my natural hair
  • Pass theory test
  • Pass driving test
  • Pass TEFL course
  • Exercise more. Zumba, pilates/yoga and walking, including walking to work twice a week
  • Take up hiking/climbing. Start in SN Park (local to my house and kind of hilly)
  • Learn how to manage depression/anxiety better. Look into natural medications, meditation/stretching and read more on the subject
  • Improve relationship with God. Read more faith books/texts. Read the Bible more.
  • Write more. Work on my novel. Try to get short stories/poems published and entered into competitions. Write regular diary entries. Use writing prompt books. Blog more.
  • Get involved with more church events and activities
  • Stay on top of money. Consistently use budget tracker app and try to save
  • Be daring. Take more risks.
  • Travel. Places to visit:
    New York
    Aberystwyth (to visit my cousin at uni)
  • Get more tattoos, including:
    Dad's birthday
    Mermaid silhouette 
  • Complete Goodreads Reading Challenge of 45 books (there is a widget for this on my Creative Writing blog and on my Reading List page where you see how I'm managing)
  • Complete PopSugar Reading Challenge (found on Pinterest)

  • Vary reading/book genres. Try something other than dystopian YA
  • Experiment with style more
  • Try and live a healthier lifestyle
  • Cut down material possessions

So that is it for now. This list (and variations thereof when I inevitably change my mind about stuff) will be available here year round.

Until next time cherubs, love and rainbows xo

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Lady Talie of the Inked Clan

So there will be no apologies. 

I love you all but... no.

All I'm going to say is writing when you really don't want to write is so. Fricking. Difficult.

So if you follow me on Instagram/Twitter (insert shameless plug here), you would know that, quite a while ago, I got my first tattoo!

It's so simple and so perfect and I absolutely love it!! Exactly what I envisioned :)

So apart from to announce my arrival to the clan of the Inked, I thought I would do a little post on my experience with it.

The Place

I got my tattoo at the beginning of October, if I remember correctly, at Steel Point in Croydon. Those guys are boss. I've told them it won't be long before I'm back. If you're in the area and looking to get tattooed, I'd say definitely check them out. 

Their prices are pretty decent as well. My tat only cost me £40. I know some people say "you get what you pay for", but the guys there are professional and generally awesome. 

Every procedure was followed to the letter and I got such a talking to about aftercare; they were incredibly thorough and made sure that I understood completely what I had to do next. It's safe to say if you look around, you can get quality at a decent price!

The Design

My tattoo is the date of my mama's birth. She is without question the most important person in my life. She's been my best friend and my rock and just an absolute angel. It felt like the least I could do was permanently mark myself in her honour.

I got very simple, sans-serif numbers; partly because I didn't want anything too fancy for my first tattoo, but also because they look like the font from The Matrix to me. 

Yes, that sounds extremely random, but a lot of my teenage years were spend bonding with Mama over our love for The Matrix films. We watched them again and again and discussed so many theories from the story for hours on end. It's a very comforting memory in what was quite a painful and confusing time in my life.

It just made sense.

The Pain(!!)

The thing most virgin tattoo-ees are nervous about is what the actual tattooing is going to feel like. We've all heard tales of varying amounts of pain and it's bound to stick in your mind, even while trying to distract yourself with daydreams of what it's going to look like when it's done.

I was no exception. I was freaking out so badly. I'm a complete infant when it comes to pain. 

So I psyched myself up as much as I could, sat down, stuck my arm out and...

It didn't hurt.

I'm not even kidding.

It felt like scratching. Uncomfortable, yes. Out and out painful, no.

The curves of the numbers stung a bit but apart from that, I've had worse scratches from my psycho cat.

Overall, I'd give the pain a 2/10. Completely manageable for even those of us with laughably low pain thresholds.

The Maintenance/Healing

Like I mentioned earlier, the guys at Steel Point made sure that I understood what needed to be done in terms of aftercare. I have no idea what an infection of the skin looks like but I have zero desire to find out so I stuck to the instructions to the letter!

I had to buy Bepanthen (yes, that's nappy cream) and apply a thin layer to the tat 2/3 times a day after washing it with warm water. By washing, I mean splashing and lightly rubbing. I couldn't submerge my arm fully in water at all, I was warned. Bit awkward when all you have is a bath at home.

I kept it dry and aired and avoided wearing anything that was constricting to the area or would rub.

That was literally the biggest issue; trying not to rub or drag anything (eg clothes, towels) across it. Or scratch and, holy shit, I wanted to scratch!!

I was warned about the itching beforehand. There was no sign of it for about two weeks, then it set in and set in hard. My tattoo itched for about a week with barely any let up. I thought I was going to go mad. The best thing to do is lightly put something cold on it and scream into a pillow. I'm semi joking about that last part...

Altogether, it took about four weeks to heal, which wasn't bad at all.

The Addiction

Is real, my friends.

Seriously. I've got my next four/five tats planned out. I need to get saving.

This is what my lovely tattoo looks like as of now (ignore the filter, I've been obsessing over afterlight)

It's all healed and settled and I can go back to relaxing in my baths!

One thing I haven't mentioned yet is that my darling best friend, Emma, got tattooed at the same time as me. 

She got this gorgeous daisy in honour of ME!! Can you believe it? We've been best friends going on 14 years so it was about time ;) 

I was so incredibly touched that she would get my favourite flower. We shed a few emotional moments that day. So sappy but I love her so much and will definitely get something in her honour too. Need to have a serious think though so it's perfect, just like her.

Shameless plug: follow Emma's blog here!

So that's all for now, I'll see you guys in the near future.

Until then, love and rainbows xxx

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Brain Farts and Lactose Products

So Day Two of pretentiously sitting in a coffee shop writing.

Different shop this time! Still cute though. Filled with dainty cakes, pastries and (rather loud) French indie pop songs. I like the music but I'm getting a headache from the volume. My Britishness is in turmoil.

Do I ask them to turn it down?

I did decide to sit directly below the speaker...

But I'm almost 100% sure it's not normally this loud...

While I decide whether to stay painfully English and in pain or not.

The pain won. I asked politely and interjected with numerous "sorry"s for the volume to be turned down. I don't think the Queen would be impressed.

I'll make sure to have a long conversation with someone about the weather later to make up for it.

Good grief, I'm rambling today.

It's just been one of those days I guess.

Everyone seems to be having "one of those days". It must be the weather.

(British card restored!)

Anyway, I thought I would check in considering I have my iPad and keyboard with me once again.

If you've made it this far through the ramble, answer me this in the comments below:

Would you rather have an elephant sized cat or a cat sized elephant?

And tell me how your day has been.

I've got my beautiful writing notebook and a strawberry milkshake (as shown above) to be working away in and at respectively.

Until next time, peace and raindrops xo

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

So... This works

I admit, I was skeptical at first.

Yet it has taken less for an hour for me to be converted.

Sat in a trendy coffee place with your pretentious Apple technology actually does help the writing process.

Who knew?!

Well, lots of people I guess, but like I said up until an hour ago, I was skeptical.

It's great because instead of splashing out £600 on a Mac, all I did was buy a wireless keyboard (£5.99, thank you ebay!).

I do feel sorry for my laptop. It's becoming more and more obsolete. 

So quick life updates;

I've just started my old job back at the college I was working for March - July of this year.

Really happy to be back. I absolutely love my job! It's so rewarding helping the students and always great when they seem to enjoy working with you too!

It's only my second day back and I've already had two students sulking because I said I was only with them for that one class rather than the whole term. Confidence boost!

What else is new?

I had to take my nose piercing out this morning which is really irritating! A massive bump developed and nothing I tried shifted it. There are so many methods and remedies but this was a stubborn bastard. It point blank refused to move.

So I made the hard (not to mention painful) decision to take the piercing out this morning to let the area breathe and heal. The bump is still very prominent, even more so now without the metal next to it, but hopefully it will go down after a few days to a week.

I'm intending to re-pierce my nose at some point. Might even get my septum done.

Watch this space...

I think that's everything for now. I'm really enjoying this set up though, especially as I can take photos with my iPhone and they turn up almost instantaneously on my iPad photo stream (thumbs up for pretentious technology!) so expect more posts very soon.

As I'll be working every day, it shouldn't be too hard for me to tap into the College wifi or go to the nearest coffee shop and work away.


Anyway, ciao for now my loves xo

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Review: Dorothy Must Die

Dorothy Must Die
Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I'll be brutally honest, I struggled through the first half of this book. The storyline caught my interest more than the writing, pacing and imagery did. By all accounts it wasn't bad, but it just wasn't great.

I think the problem was that I'd hyped the book up in my head. It would have been difficult for it to live up to my expectations in all fairness. I was expecting to go on this exciting romp through Oz with this small town girl but Amy just wasn't likeable and I felt absolutely no sympathy for her. It felt like I was going on this journey with a boring tour guide.

I won't complain too much because, like I said, it wasn't awful. The magic parts were quite cool and The Order were pretty badass. Star the Rat was by far my favourite character.

I preferred most of the secondary characters to Amy (except Nox and Pete. Who are you? Why are you here? You have nothing to add to this story). She talks about feeling different throughout the book but this doesn't show in most of her actions or her thought processes.

Okay, okay, I'm complaining again...

The second half of the book really picked up. The castle was such a gruesome place to be and Dorothy is a complete psychopath. The "baddies" were written a lot better than the "good guys". I'm thinking Danielle Paige might be a bit bloodthirsty at heart but I salute her for that as it's not often I physically cringe at descriptions in books.

I will be reading the sequel when it comes out in 2015, but I hope it's a lot more gruesome. More blood and guts and less of Amy's infuriating internal monologue will definitely make the next book a must read.

View all my reviews