Why I Haven't Planned Any Blogmas Posts

Why I Haven’t Planned ANY Blogmas Posts

It’s the 1st December and bloody hell hasn’t that gone quick! Throughout the internet, I’ve seen people starting Blogmas and Vlogmas where the very dedicated post every single day either in the run-up to Christmas or throughout the month of December. So, what about me?

I love seeing everyone’s post and last year had a great time with my own Blogmas posts, however, when I came to this year I had to think about it. Things are different to last year, mainly, because I started working freelance and running my own business all of my spare time and energy are going into that to make it a success. I’ve been doing this since August. And, honestly, I really want some time to relax in December. I need to take a break before the madness of 2019 when I’m hoping to get a few projects going.

Really, this is a form of self-care for me. When I blog I want to put things out that I’m passionate about and care about. Trying to write and schedule 25 posts just felt a little overwhelming this year and so I decided to take care of myself. That said, I’ll still have all of my regular blogs up and ready to go! There’ll even be some bonus blogs with my favourites of the year posts that I LOVE to do (they’re my absolute favourites).

Why am I writing this? Mostly because I wanted to remind other bloggers too that if you simply don’t have the time, the energy or don’t want to do Blogmas don’t feel like you have to! We all know how long blogging takes getting the ideas together, writing, editing, taking any images, making images etc. With Christmas being such a hectic time of year I don’t think we should put more pressure on ourselves.

While I will 100% be supporting and cheering on my favourite bloggers as they take part in the mammoth task and maybe next year I will get involved again, who knows? Right now, my focus is going to be recharging my batteries a little and making big plans for next year!

Are you taking part in Blogmas or Vlogmas? I’d love to know why/why not in the comments. If you are please leave your links too – I’d love to support you!

Muddled Millennial_ The Beginning

Muddled Millennial – The Beginning

As I write this, I am sitting in Cookie Monster Pyjamas, with a doughnut pillow behind my head and an existential crisis brewing in my head. Welcome to my ongoing mid-twenties crisis. Take a seat.

I’d been toying around with writing a few blogs about being a millennial, because everyone seems to think we’re terrible and um, I think we’re kinda okay. Maybe not all of us, but for the most part. I kept putting off writing it because, well, I was procrastinating. It’s as simple as that.

The logical part of my brain is telling me I need to calm down, it will all be fine I am not the only one. Plus, when I googled quarter life crisis there was a HELL of a lot of people feeling the same. So I thought I’d do what any self-respecting millennial with a blog would do, write about it. Standard.

So, you know the crushing panic that comes with being in your mid-twenties? You do? Awesome we’re on the same page. I’m in this weird part of my life where my friends think I have my shit together, I think they do but really we’re all muddling along.

I’m watching my feeds fill up with ‘I said yes!’, baby posts, new jobs, amazing holidays and here I sit, in my pyjamas. The thing is I don’t have a bad life, in fact, I’m fortunate. I have a wonderful partner, a nice home, family and I’m working for myself – so why do I feel so stressed?

When we were kids we thought we’d have everything sorted by 25. I thought I’d have a mortgage, be married with a kid. Have I done any of these things? Nope, not one. I have done cool things – but sometimes even that feels like it’s not enough.

So, this is a kind of muddled, messy introduction to my latest series where I’m going to spill the tea about being a millennial and hopefully get some of you to as well!

Are you also a muddled millennial? Let me know in the comments below!

 

I’m Up For A UK Blog Award!

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I can’t quite believe that I’m writing this but my little old blog is up for an award at the UK Blog Awards this year! As most of my regular readers know, I’ve been writing this blog since just before I started Uni, *cough* five years ago *cough*.

I’ve never been up for an award like this before and I’m so grateful. I know it’s something people say all the time but just to make it to the second stage has floored me. There are some absolutely fantastic people in every category!

Voting is now open and if you do like what I do and would like to vote for me you can do so here.

Thank you so much to each and every single person who has read my blog! You’re the best!

How Blogging Helped Me Get Jobs

I’ve been blogging for a long time. I started my first blog at 17, it was just for book reviews and an excuse to keep all of the books I had accumulating in my bedroom. I never dreamed at that age that blogging would help me get jobs. I don’t think I’ve ever had an interview where blogging hasn’t been bought up – in a good way!

People will look you up on the internet before a job interview, that’s just the way of the world now. How much they stalk  find out varies from person to person – which is worth keeping in mind if there’s stuff on a blog you’d rather people didn’t know in a professional sense.

 

It shows you can write

A big part of blogging is writing. No matter what you choose to write about from beauty to books and beyond, you’re writing. You’ll also develop your own style and opinions.

Almost all jobs require writing at some point. It might be emails, it could be proposals or reports. Even if you have an outside adventurous job you’ll probably need to be able to write.

It showcases so many other skills too

I’ve learnt so many skills blogging. I create graphics, I’ve learnt about SEO, marketing. I probably wouldn’t have the job I have now if I hadn’t started blogging. You can really show these off in a blog.

It shows you have a good understanding of digital

Digital is the future. People can try and deny it but it’s true. This kind of follows on from what I was saying about showcasing skills. You also understand the pace of online vs other media. Always a good thing.

It shows a little bit of you as a person!

No matter what you blog about, this shows insight into who you are. Are you into books, movies, politics? This gives a flavour and a lot of companies value getting to know the person they are going to hire. After all, you can spend more time with your colleagues than your family!

 

So, that’s my list, I’d love to know what you would add! Let me know in the comments below!

What’s Happening To My Blog?!

Hello, hello, hello

Well, I’m writing this when I should be cleaning my flat – procrastination at its finest, am I right. That’s all you need to know about me even when I’m procrastinating I’m still doing something. Anyway, I digress.

I’ve noticed both this month and last month that my stats have dropped. Part of me didn’t want me to admit this – I see so many bloggers getting amazing opportunities, growing their followers and talking about the 1000+ views they get a day. It’s easy to hide away and feel down.  And I did – I try with my blog and not seeing it go up does frustrate me. BUT there is a reason.

Earlier in the year, my blog was what I did every night, any spare moment I had was spent on the blog and it grew. Every year I eagerly watched as my stats nudged up and it made me feel like I achieved something. I paid so that I could edit my SEO better this was a huge thing for me.

I still love my blog BUT as most of you know, back in the summer I became a freelancer. That is amazing in itself (update to come soon) but it takes up a lot of my time. I am working a lot because as you know there are no guarantees as a freelancer. Work, work, work – am I right? Because of this, I’ve had to cut back a bit on the blog.

This is not, in any way, me stepping away from the blog. I might not have thousands of views a day, deals with big businesses or get trips around the world because of my blog (although, I 100% would do that) BUT it’s something I love to do. So, while I might be stepping back slightly to get this off the ground – I’m not going anywhere.

Sorry guys, I think you’re stuck with me!

On Loneliness

Recently, I heard that young people between the ages of 16-24 feel the most lonely It didn’t surprise me in the slightest because I completely agree. The last few years I’ve felt very lonely – even in the last few weeks I’ve struggled with loneliness. I have a very loving family, I quite often just go and hang out with them.

I feel like there are so many ways you can feel lonely and, often, it’s not easy to talk about. You don’t want to worry people, you don’t want to seem needy and, for me at least, there are confusing feelings. Have you ever been in a room full of people and felt alone? I’m sure you have.

But what are the biggest reasons to feel lonely?

Social Media

I love it, it’s literally my job to create, manage and monitor social media. That said, everyone posts a highlight reel which means it can look like everyone is out having fun, living their best life and you’re sat at home in your PJs. I know this and, sometimes, I still feel lonely! It’s easy to get swept up in it.

Growing up and apart

Your late teens and early twenties are also a time of huge change. You grow up and a lot of times you can grow apart from people you’re really close to. Some people I know have moved to new cities or even countries.

Not knowing what the hell you’re doing

I can *seem* like everyone else has their shit together. They don’t, I promise you. Everyone I speak to says they don’t know what they’re doing with their lives, they question everything they do. But for that conversation, one of you has to admit it and that can be the hardest part, am I right?

Relationships

So many people I know feel lonely because of relationships. I have friends who are single who feel lonely, friends in relationships to feel like they’re disconnected from friends who are single or in very different relationships. For me, I feel lonely when Ali goes on tour, as I write this he’s in Manchester. Not having him to hug can be really lonely.

That’s just some of the reasons I think people my age are lonely – but I might not have your reason listed. I guess I’m writing this because I wanted to say you might feel lonely but you’re not alone.

Disneyland Part 1

Disneyland Paris – Part 1

It happened! I went back to Disneyland Paris for the first time since 1999. Yep. The last time I went to Disneyland I was 5 years old and things have changed a little bit! This time I went with my Mum and sister and OH MY GOD DISNEY. So, because there is so much to cover so as requested on Twitter I’ve split it into 2 posts. So get ready, here we gooooooo!

 

Day 1 

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I had a 4.00am alarm. 4am. To get a lift to the station (thanks Dad!) in London. From there, things got a little manic we got there when we were told but hardly had time to get a cup of tea before rushing off.

We then took a train to Lille, where we changed. Then, after an hours wait, we got onto another train (this time a double decker…apparently that’s a thing?) to get to Disney. The station is right next to the Park, thankfully and we’d already booked for our bags to be taken to the hotel.

By the time we’d arrived we’d been awake for a damn long time, I’d had limited caffeine and was starting to flag. So, we took a look around the shops before taking a peek at Hollywood Studios, which I’d never been to in Paris! We even went in the Slinky Dog ride but, we were absolutely exhausted so went to our hotel to finally check in.

We stayed at the Newport Bay Club which was BEAUTIFUL! I mean c’mon look at that bed. The whole hotel was sea themed, we ever had little porthole designs with the characters in them in our room. The end of day 1 was an early one, with dinner in the hotel. The food was good with options but the best part were the desserts. Tiny, perfect desserts. I went to bed with a happy tummy indeed.

 

Day 2

Our second day had a really early start but it was okay because we were off to character breakfast in the park! My Mum booked this as a treat for my sister and I. It was so worth it. We met 6 characters and while I still wish I’d seen Minnie Mouse, Donald and Goofy too we had fun! Here are some pictures of me and my sister that Mum took during the breakfast. And yes, yes I am wearing rainbow ears.

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The rest of the day was full Disneyland! We all wore matching shirts and matching ears because, you know, my Mum is adorable like that. So after you’ve just eaten breakfast what’s the first thing you do? Go on Buzz Lightyear shootout of course. I LOVE this ride. Next up I decided I’d give Hyperspace Mountain a go. Stupid me. I didn’t realise it was in the dark, nor that it went upside down. I did it but I was slightly traumatised after.

Through the day we took pictures in front of the castle (obvs), sheltered from the pouring rain before having to shade ourselves later in the day because it was boiling. We went on rides like Thunder Mountain Railroad, Peter Pan and Pinnochio – thank god for access fast passes!  Mum also treated us to so many snacks and treats…I kinda forgot how much she likes to feed us.

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I met my fave, Woody. I LOVE Toy Story and he was just wondering around and so we had to get pictures (which Mum didn’t want to be in because apparently, his head is too big?!) We also waited and watched the parade which was super fun. I haven’t watched a parade in SO LONG. And it really, really is magic and was worth the hour and a half we spent reserving our spaces.

And that’s just the first part of the trip!! Make sure to pop back tomorrow for the second half and even more Disney magic! But, before you go – who’s your favourite Disney character? Let me know in the comments below!

I'm a Gryffindor

I’m a Gryffindor

Gryffindor Pride Harry Potter

If you follow me on any social media or have been following this blog for any period of time you’ll know I’m a HUGE Harry Potter fan. I fell in love with the books, the movies and the whole Potter world. I can’t tell you why I fell so much in love with it, but I did and I never miss an opportunity to see or do something Potter related or celebrate the fandom. Oh and owning a lot of merch (see my most recent haul here).

Since I first read the books I have always felt like a Gryffindor, mainly, when I was younger because I saw so much of myself in Hermione. I finally found a girl in a book just like me. She loved studying and learning, was a bit of a know it all but loyal to her friends. As I got older I realised that I still strongly associated with Gryffindor, also with the slightly stubborn tendencies they are known to have…

In the above picture, my friends described me as looking like Gryffindor threw up on me. My two friends went it Ravenclaw aesthetic (hint of blue, well put together) and a lot of black and green for Slytherin…and then there was me. There was a Potter t-shirt under the Gryffindor jumper, obviously my scarf, red hair and even red and white Potter trainers. Even in the way we dressed we represented our houses when visiting the British Library exhibition.

Here’s what the Sorting Hat says about being a Gryffindor

You might belong in Gryffindor,
Where dwell the brave at heart,
Their daring, nerve, and chivalry
Set Gryffindors apart

 

Now, I know that there is a whole crowd of people screaming, it’s not real BUT there’s a beautiful sense of comradery in the fandom. This is something I grew up with and something I cherish. It may seem silly to some but I love the world of Potter, I love the fact that I relate so much to a book!

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What is your Hogwarts house? I’d love to know! Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

Pride Pledge

My Pride Pledge 2018

Hello, my lovely, lovely readers!

Now, I’m a big supporter of Pride as you know and recently I wrote my Pride Flag Book Tag and as much as I enjoyed it I realised something. While I was scanning my shelves and my Goodreads I was disappointed in the lack of novels that featured an open LGBTQ protagonist. There were some with those who hadn’t come out or side characters but that was it.

I completely understand and enjoy reading coming out novels but I wanted to read a few novels where it’s not the main point of the story. Where a character simply is LGBT and that’s not a huge thing.  So, this year I pledge to read more LGBT books, fiction, non-fiction, graphic novels.

I’ve read a lot of non-fiction about Trans women, a few of the most popular novels with an LGBT main character such as Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, etc but I’m not stopping there!

So, I’m trying to change that, I’ve ordered All Out and I’ll Give You the Sun. I have a long list of recommendations such as

  • Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
  • The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Autoboyography by Kristina Lauren
  • Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg
  • Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera
  • Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde
  • The Summer of Jordi Perez by Amy Spalding
  • We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
  • Bingo Lover by Tee Franklin
  • Chord by Chelsea M Cameron
  • Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family by Amy Ellis Nutt
  • Nevada by Imogen Binnie

While this is a decent sized list I, of course, want all of your recommendations as to what I should read! Have you got any favourites that aren’t on this list? Please do let me know in the comments below, add me on Goodreads  or follow me on Twitter. I’d love to hear from you!

 

Feminist Friday Returns!

Yes, you read that right I’m bringing back Feminist Friday.

I was really unsure for a while, I wasn’t getting the response I wanted, feeling generally deflated. Then I read a few books, got mad about sexism and started writing again. Really writing for a few weeks and, well, I decided that I wanted to bring this back.

I’m not sure it will be every week, I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to be writing about. There will be opinions and poetry and hopefully other women writing about things they are passionate about too.

Let’s start a revolution!