3 Years Later.

I don’t know why every year I’m surprised at how long it has been since my accident. That day changed my life completely and I didn’t even know it at the time. Long story short for those of you who are new here, when I was at uni I had a horse riding accident. It was what seemed like a simple fall which lead to me think I was fine, despite an ambulance trip. After 2 weeks,  a doctors visit, another visit and then an emergency hospital visit I was told I had damaged four vertebrae in my spine. And, so it began.

I’m not going to write a whole post on the past 3 years and everything that happened since, instead, I want to focus on now. As I write this I’m in a job I’ve been wanting to be in since I was at university, I have a flat, friends and a wonderful partner. That’s all well and good but it is still a struggle. I have been in pain since the accident and I will continue to be in some form for the rest of my life because of the damage that was done.

There are days when I’m depressed, where I think why did his happen to me? When I want to pack everything in and lay in bed. I don’t I carry on, I lean on the wonderful people around me when I need to. I take pride in my job, my blog and the things I have and continue to achieve. Of course, I do get upset that I can’t easily go and do things that others my age can. Going out and being on my feet all night? Nope, not happening. Taking part in a sport or intense exercise? Not a pretty ending. I miss riding, I miss standing at the front of gigs but I try not to focus too much.

Mostly, I’m using what happened as something to remind me how far I’ve come and how much more I can, and will do. I’m working on a new idea, which relates to what happened (and that’s all I’m saying for now). I’m trying to forgive myself when I do struggle and need to ask for help. I’m getting through, each day as it comes, I’m accepting the fact that I have to do things a little differently.

I’m fully aware that this post is probably a brain dump, it’s also not my most eloquent post but that’s what it’s like. I don’t want sympathy, it is what it is and I’m here, I can still walk and I’m still going. That’s all that matters.

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Mini Harry Potter Primark Haul!

Hello fellow Witches, Wizards and Muggles.

I recently popped up to London with my Mum and might have happened to fall into Primark Oxford Street. Which means I might have visited the Harry Potter section in all its glory. Although I’m actually glad my local doesn’t have as much stuff or I would probably be living on beans on toast. Anyway, I wanted to share with you my mini haul from the trip so let’s get started!

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Socks and Earrings! 

I don’t think I own an adult pair of socks, they’re pretty much all character socks of some description. I’ve seen the Dobby socks for a while at my local Primark but the Honeydukes ones were nowhere to be seen. So now both sets are sitting nicely in my draw. #sorrynotsorry I also picked up these adorable earrings with little Potter symbols and they might well inspire a more permanent magical symbol…

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Hogwarts Letter Purse 

Again, this is one that I’ve been searching for forever and it feels like such good quality. I think this was about £6.00 and I’m in love with it. But the front isn’t even the best part…

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Look at it! I’m just so in love with it and I would have paid so much more for it. So in love.

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PJs 

I also picked up some new PJs with shorts rather than longer leggings. I hadn’t seen this design before it’s in a really lovely cream and dark red colour with Stars, the Sorting Hat, Keys, Broomsticks. They’re really comfy too.

Harry Potter Firebolt Funko Pop

Bonus – Harry Potter Funko

Ok so this wasn’t from Primark but it was from London and the first Funko I have bought in SO LONG. I have the majority of Potter Funkos but there’s still some I’m chasing. Anyway, this was an exclusive Harry with Firebolt and I love it.

 

So that’s my mini haul! What did you like? If you want to see my previous hauls you can click here for the most recent!

How To Start A Blog

How to Start a Blog

So in the last two or so years, I’ve had something interesting keep happening. A lot of people I know on Facebook or in person have come to me to ask how they would go about setting up a blog of their own. When this first happened I was so confused, me? It was weird. I didn’t feel like a huge authority on blogging but then I got it…

I’ve been blogging for about 7 years now, I feel like I’ve got a good following and people saw me as being the one to talk to. Then someone asked if I’d write a post about starting and I thought, why not? So, here’s my way of setting up a blog.

Choose your blog name 

This is where a lot of people start and then stop. This is hard and you need to find something that suits what you’re about. I’ve seen some great quirky ones but also using your name is fine as well! It’s completely up to you.

Choose your platform and theme 

Personally, I like WordPress because it’s just easy to use so I mention it to everyone. There are a lot of others you can use and all have their merits but I’m 100% a WordPress girl! To start though trial something for free, I didn’t start paying for my blog until a few years ago because it was something I wanted to do, the same goes for themes there are a lot of great free ones before you go ahead and pay money out!

Note down some ideas of what you want to write about 

Blogging needs some consistency as in posting a minimum of once a week to start. There’s no point in putting out 5 blogs at once and then nothing at all for 3 weeks. Spread it out and remember scheduling is your friend!

Follow other bloggers and interact 

The blogging community is brilliant, so make sure you interact with them. There are Twitter chats to join in on every single night and it’s a great way to get hints and tips as well as views! Also, read and comment on other blogs.

Welcome to blogging! 

So, there are a few things to get you started! Blogging is fantastic and a great way to get to know yourself better and get better at your passion. I’d love to see new blogs so make sure you link them in the comments or if you have any more questions about blogging you can email me at chloefmetzger@gmail.com for a chat!

London Book Fair Haul!

Hello beautiful people!

This week I finally went to the London Book Fair. I’d heard a lot of great things but never had the reason/money to go. So when I was invited to attend as part of the Book Blog awards I snapped it up. On the note of should you go, it was a weird experience for me. I did notice that there wasn’t a lot of awareness in regards to Book Bloggers (a lot of the people on stands seemed either confused or disinterested which was a shame) so I did feel a little awkward.

Will I go again next year? I’m not sure. I did really enjoy seeing more of the book industry but at the same time, it kind of opened my eyes. I do feel there’s a lack of diversity in the industry. When I looked into going into publishing as a student there was little to no way of getting in without doing unpaid experience, which wasn’t an option for me. I really think it’s something that needs to be looked at and it kind of proved itself at the fair.

BUT I did speak to some lovely companies who wanted to talk and took my card. To further that a few of them also gave me some copies of various books so I wanted to share them with you!

 

Good Night Stories For Rebel Girls 2

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls 2 – published by Timbuktu Labs 

I spoke to the wonderful team at Timbuktu basically just gushing about how much I love these books, how wonderful they are etc.  Amazingly, I was given a copy of the second book as well as an awesome tote bag. I was also reminded of the new podcast which has gone up recently which I need to check out and can’t wait to. The guys here were awesome and if you want my thoughts on the first book you can find them here.

Paper Girls

Paper Girls – published by Image 

This was another instance of me gushing about how many graphic novels I loved that Diamond distributed. So Diamond are the distributors for so many of the graphic novels I love. After talking I was offered to take home something from the stand, so I picked up this beautiful copy of Paper Girls vol 1. So, so pretty.

The Man on the Middle Floor

The Man on the Middle Floor published by Red Door Books

I saw this advertised everywhere in London and the person on the stand was so lovely and pushed it into my hands. This is apparently a murder with a mystery element and I’m not sure I would have picked it up myself but I’m glad to give it a read.

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Tubing published by Red Door Books

Also handed to be by Red Door, this is one I’ve been looking forward to. This is a thriller set in London and deals with living an unfulfilled life, jealousy and violence…I think? I’ll keep you posted                                            The Old You

The Old You by Louise Voss 

I was handed this while I was sitting down by a random person and funnily enough, I wanted to be on a blog tour for this a while ago but unfortunately there weren’t enough copies. This is another thriller, there were a lot of those, about a woman whose husband has dementia and things start getting sinister and it looks at who to believe. I really hope it’s a good representation.

Her Name Was Rose

Her Name Was Rose – Claire Allen

So, I know nothing about this book. Someone had just left this ARC on the floor and I decided to give it a loving home. After looking it up it centres around a woman who kills a young mother in a car accident and how she cannot move on. Other than that I’m not sure so I’m going into this knowing not much and I’ll keep you posted.

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And that is all of them! Are any of these on your TBR piles? Any you can recommend? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Thanks for reading 🙂

 

carrying on surviving the past year

Carrying On: Surviving the Past Year

Hello, hello, hello

I know, why am I talking about the past year when it’s April? You see the past year has been tough, really damn tough. It was unexpected and difficult and at times I didn’t really know how I was going to get through it all. I wish that was me being dramatic, I really do.

Career Changes

Aaaaaand this is where it kicked off. In April 2017 I was let go from a Marketing job. To be fair I wasn’t happy in it and now I know it was a good thing, a really good thing. So I did some temp work, some more work which turned out to be temp work before I found my current job. Now I do what I wanted to do when I graduated, I work in Social Media. I love doing extra research, looking at stats and people listen to what I have to say! That said my confidence took a really bad hit for a chunk of the year but I’m back guys!

 

Relationships!

So, Ali is a Sound Engineer and back in April 2017 he hadn’t done much travelling for work. We also hadn’t spent more than 2 weeks apart since we were 13 and 14. Everything changed in that regard this year. Now we’re used to spending time apart from a few nights to two months after a busy summer and his first tour. When it first came around I panicked, I cried and I was petrified of sleeping alone. Now? I miss him but hello, double bed for one? Yes, please.

Personal Challenges

Only a few days after losing my job, I lost my second Dwarf Hamster, Hamski. That was heartbreaking, we knew she was old but the timing just seemed cruel. Because of everything that was going on my mental health took a hit, I became very anxious and depressed, I thought that everything was destined to fail in my life. I was in a lot of pain which, I found out was going to continue to be a constant in my life. I really had to work hard to overcome my personal issues to succeed.

But it wasn’t all bad…

Of course, I’m going to throw in a cliche. It has to rain for flowers to grow. I believe that everything happens for a reason in your life, this year reminded me how resilient I am. I’ve been knocked on my arse and got up again. I’ve got a job that I love, that I feel so passionate about. I have my little Hamster, Wickett. Ali and I are actually closer since he started working away and then coming back. I started to get comfortable with how ‘boring’ I am. I know I can be fully independent if I need to be.

Long story short, it was shit but I got through it and I bet you could too.

 

monthly favourites lifestyle blogger

March Favourites!

So a third of the year is done. No biggie, it’s cool, I’m not terrified. That said it’s been a pretty quiet month so I wondered if I should do a monthly favourites post but my lovely Twitter followers said they wanted to see it, so why not. Here are my slightly short monthly favourites.

Books

I read a total of 12 books last month which I was super proud of any. It’s definitely a result of some amazing books I got through. There was a good mix of Fiction, Non-Fiction and Poetry so I’m keeping my fingers crossed I find some good ones this month too! You can read about them all in my wrap up here.

Music 

It’s been a while since I’ve had a music favourite, simply because I’ve been listening to the same few playlists in the car with one exception. My boyfriend introduced me to the amazing band Against the Current. I’ve had them on repeat, especially the above song which is a great driving tune!

 

Snowmageddon 2018

Snow! 

I don’t know if the snow itself is a favourite but the walk I got to take with Ali was and when I didn’t have to go outside it looked very pretty. That said I’m fine with us not having loads of snow next year, my car was not happy. Either way, I wrote a post all about Snowmageddon in the South!

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Food 

Can we all take a little time to appreciate how tasty Creame Eggs are? I only had 2 McFlurries and an undisclosed amount of actual eggs. I know some people might not count them as food but, c’mon it’s chocolate…and I’ve been running on sugar this month.

Fashion

A few fashion favourites are my new Stitch t-shirt from Primark which is SO adorable and cost about £6 I think? I also picked up some new Vans in their outlet store in Portsmouth for £33 and they are the comfiest shoes I own.

Blog Posts

5 Things You Should Know About Living With Chronic Pain 

Fantastic Feminist Authors

Why Do You Blog?

Top 10 Books I Read in Winter

Did my GCSE Choices Matter? 

 

 

 

 

I’m in a Funk

Blerghh. That’s not a normal start to a blog post, is it? Recently I’ve been sitting at my laptop trying to write, well, anything and not being happy with the result. I’ve attempted blog posts, non-fiction book ideas, fictional book ideas and I’ve just felt really ‘meh’ about it. The thing is it doesn’t just cover my writing. In general, I’ve been in an odd fidgety mood where I just can’t seem to feel good about what I’m doing.

I wrote a little while ago about what’s been up with me and got a lovely response from so many people, so thank you. I’ve been trying to get myself out of this mindset and pinpoint if there’s anything in particular, but I’m coming up with nothing. That was until I spoke to a friend of mine and found out she had quite a few of the same feelings.

Now, we’ve been friends since we were 11 years old and we have drastically different lives but we still had these feelings of not quite knowing what we’re doing and feeling like we’re not doing enough or what we should be for our lives. I’m going to throw it out there and say I’m not the only 20 something that feels like that at the moment.

There’s so much uncertainty about everything that even the smallest things can feel like they’re a huge deal. Take blogging for example. Logically I know that if I only post twice a week no one is going to die. It’s not a life or death situation but the thought still fills me with panic. Am I where I should be with my blog? Why am I not getting as many views as XX? Am I doing enough on my own social media? The list goes on.

We all know we’re not supposed to compare ourselves but, let’s be honest, we all do. My friend has two kids under 10 and worries about career stuff. I have started in my career and worry about having a family in the future. I guess it doesn’t matter where you are, you’re still going to worry about something and feel that you’re not doing it right.

Have any of my fellow bloggers been stuck in this funk before? What did you do to get out of it? Let me know in the comments below!

March-Book-Wrap-Up

I Read 12 Books in March?!

It has been a GOOD reading month, which I think is partly due to the fact I had some time off this month and could curl up with a few more books. It’s also due to the fact I’ve spent a lot of evenings on my own, no one to talk to means you’re not ignoring anyone! Anyway on to my 12 March reads!

Ok so technically This is Going to Hurt by Adam Kay was read in February but not in time for my last wrap up. I loved this memoir and think it’s an incredibly important read in modern Britain. I also read Lydie and Limited Edition, both graphic novels. Lydie was sweet but strange about a girl who believes her baby is still alive and the town who humors her. Limited Edition is about a woman in her 30s looking for love, it wasn’t my favourite but it was ok. Also I got an early release of The Astonishing Colour of After by Emily X.R Pan, which wasn’t for me you can see why here.

Next up I finished the incredible Mysogynation by Laura Bates, once again Laura wrote a book that I wanted to shout ‘hell yeah’ at, not an easy task. Following this I read The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura Steven which, no big deal, is currently my favourite read of the year you can read my review here. I also picked up the long awaited Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls 2, even more kick ass ladies and beautiful illustrations. Then I finally got around to reading The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin after I loved the film but, honestly, I was really let down by the ending.

After seeing Tony Walsh’s reading of This is The Place after the Manchester attack I needed to read his poetry. I picked up Sex & Love & Rock&Roll, it was a breath of fresh air for contemporary poetry. Next up Bygone Badass Broads by Mckenzie Lee a collection of stories about real women you might not know. I enjoyed it, but it wasn’t my favourite. Following this I picked up A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggests by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, a very short read but an important one I feel. I also finished Nobody Told Me which chronicles Hollie McNish’s life as a mother in poetry and diary entries from finding out she’s pregnant to her child at three.

Finally, I picked up Stacey Dooley’s On the Frontline with Women Who Fight Back which I fell in love with, review to come soon! Another poetry collection as well thanks to Netgalley of Bone by Yrsa Daley-Ward which was an interesting collection. I also FINALLY got around to Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Allbertalli which I didn’t love as much as everyone said I would…sorry! And finally, I finished and fell in love with How To Stop Time by Matt Haig, amazing just amazing.

What have you been reading? Let me know in the comments!

Don’t forget to keep up with what I’m reading you can connect with me on Goodreads!

 

Did My GCSE Choices Matter?

Recently I was talking to my younger cousin about what he’s taking at school for his GCSE’s. He rattled off, Geography, Resistant Materials, Business Studies…and one more I’ve forgotten, whoops. Anyway, it got me thinking about my own GCSEs, this summer it will have been 7 years since I left school (which makes me feel a little sick because, um, when did I get old?!) and I’ve never been asked for a job what I did at GCSE.

For the record, I didn’t pick the most academic subjects and by that I mean I didn’t pick any academic subjects. My choice GCSEs were Music, Drama, Art and Textiles, see not one on that list they were all creative and looking back on my emotional, misunderstood self, that makes a lot of sense. Also to me as a very creative adult that makes a lot of sense. Anyway, I’m rambling and getting away from the point. So, I’ve been wondering if what you choose at GCSE makes any difference to your life at all. I don’t think it did to mine.

Now, I know some people will be thinking about jobs like Doctors or Vets in which university admissions basically want you to know that’s what you want to do when you come out of the womb (which is total bullshit, but that’s another post entirely). I get that BUT for the majority of jobs what you choose when you’re full of hormones and spots doesn’t make a huge impact on your adult choices, you can retrain later, you can change your mind. Hell, the job I do now didn’t exist when I was making my choices.

 

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The day I picked up my GCSE results

I got good results, I went on to study at college (enough to add an extra course later on) and then got into university but do you know what? I’ve only been asked once to provide a certificate for my grades, I didn’t get to the interview but that’s one time. I’ve never been asked what I studied at GCSE, it’s never had an impact on my future.

So, did it matter? No, I don’t think it did and I don’t think it does for most people. I don’t think we should put pressure on these kids who make a decision at 14 years old about what they like. Introduce me to one person who still agrees and believes everything they did at that age. I’ve changed since that age, I’ve changed since last year!

What did you take for your GCSEs, do you think it impacted your life? Let me know in the comments!

 

Top 10 Books I Read in Winter

Top 10 Books I Read in Winter

It’s not a secret that Winter isn’t my fave, once Christmas is done I’m pretty much over it. BUT I did get through some cracking books in the dark winter months and I thought I’d share with you my personal top 10 from the previous season and hopefully give you some inspiration!

 

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The Exact Opposite of Okay – Laura Steven

A sneak peek of an upcoming review but I LOVED this novel so much. The main character made me laugh so much, I thought she was incredible and what we need more of in YA. This surrounds a young woman and a sex scandal. It’s not been out long but you’re going to want to pick this up.

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This is Going to Hurt – Adam Kay

I feel like this should be required reading for anyone who wants to make cuts to the NHS. Adams account had me both laughing and crying because it was a whirlwind. This is incredibly honest and so well written. Amazing.

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Misogynation – Laura Bates 

It’s no secret that I think Laura is an excellent writer and fierce female. This is her latest collection and I absolutely LOVED it. Every time I read one of these I just feel better?

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Only Child – Rhiannon Navin 

This novel will break your heart. I was lucky enough to get an early copy and be a part of the blog tour after talking about how much I loved it! My review is here, this was a stunning debut.

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A Court of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J Maas

This series has been all over the book blogs and Booktube for ages and I finally picked it up…and then it sat on my TBR pile for 2 months. Why didn’t I start this magnificent series earlier! I am in love with Maas’s writing and my review of the first novel here.

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Love, Hate & Other Filters – Samira Ahmed 

This is one of the first books I read in 2018 and I’m so glad I did! This is a novel about growing up, facing racism and following your passion. I absolutely loved it and if it doesn’t win prizes in YA something is wrong with the world. You can read my full review here.

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Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls 2

If you’re a regular reader, you’ll know I loved the first Goodnight Stories book (review here) and then there was a second and it was as equally badass as the first. You’re not going to want to miss it.

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Nobody Told Me – Hollie McNish 

I’m not a parent but that didn’t stop me falling in love with Hollie’s collection of diary entries and poetry as a first time Mum. We’re taken from Hollie finding out she’s pregnant (on the way to Glastonbury no less) to her daughter at 3 years old. A wonderful and unique book.

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Brave – Rose McGowan 

 Rose was the first to blow the Weinstein scandal wide open with her accusation of rape. I hate writing that because I 100% believe her. This chronicles Rose’s turbulent life and the movement that she started. She’s one to watch.

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Everything I Know About Love – Dolly Alderton

Dolly tells it how it is, your twenties are confusing and this is a great insight. It certainly made me feel less anxious. You can read my review here.

 

What have your top reads been this Winter and what are you looking forward to in the Spring? Let me know in the comments below!