Transition: What I Did Last Summer

So, I’m back after a long stint away from the keyboard. I’m in my final year of university now and keeping myself incredibly busy. My modules are going pretty well, I believe that my novel should be finished by Christmas. After finishing the first draft and not looking at it for three years, I feel like I’ve now acquired the necessary skills to see what I was doing wrong and put it right. That was my purpose in coming to uni. It wasn’t like I came to Cornwall for the nightlife, or to get away from my family; or to throw money I don’t have in to an elitist institution for the fun of it. No, my aim was to have The Ascendant finished by the end of my stay here. However, my Novel Writing module seems to be just the catalyst I need to get the motions moving. It’s pretty damn exciting.

The summer, much like university, has been a time for transition too. I was working two very different jobs, I lost and found some core people in my life, not necessarily the same ones. It was a roller coaster from start to finish and yet, it didn’t really feel like anything happened. When I was asked what I did over the summer, all I was able to say was ‘work’, and yet, even just from work, I felt myself changing. It had been a couple of years since I’d been in a job and since that experience, I’ve not wanted to go back into retail, or employment. I didn’t like how vulnerable you were when working for someone. I didn’t like feeling like a punching bag for customers and the employer. I haven’t been back inside the shop since. I haven’t even been into the other ones I didn’t work at because all I thought of when I saw them was the bad stuff. How I’d cry, or fall asleep, or both, when I’d get home, if I was lucky. If I wasn’t, then I’d cry at work, making sure I’d shut myself away somewhere first. It can be hard to think of the good when there’s a lot of bad stuff about.

This summer, I was afraid it would happen all over again. I picked up some work as an Avon Rep, delivering to friends, family and the neighbours. I liked that job because I love make up, I liked not working for someone else and I liked meeting new people. That was the first step to gaining my confidence. The second was when my sister offered me a job at the pub where she works. I was hesitant and so anxious that I’d end up with a horrible boss and I’d have to plan a murder or something. Getting into the swing of things and getting to know my work mates took a bit of time but I did get confident and I was pretty good at what I did. The experience of earning money again was a thrill I had forgotten existed. However, I still didn’t have a large amount of money as seeing my friends and family was still top priority, despite having two jobs, because once you go to uni, you don’t really see much of people. You can’t afford to.

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My best friend Jess cheering me up on a night out after having a hideous time with a friendship break up. 

The best part was hanging out with my sisters. It’s somehow easy to forget how much you miss them when you’re busy working a lot and you realise just how much you’re not around to see. That’s the hardest part. I was able to have a lot of interesting bonding experiences with my family. The situation with my friends changed a lot too. It’s like the saying goes really: You win some and you lose some. I expected that if something like that ever happened, I would have been a lot sadder than I was. Don’t get my wrong, I was pretty hurt, but I felt a little prepared for it. Like all of the previous arguments we had had begun building up a wall for me. If it had come out of no where, it would have hurt a lot more. And at first I thought: ‘I don’t have any friends now’. Then I had to take a step back from what I’d been thinking, slap myself in the face, and tell myself to ‘Stop being stupid, you’ve got loads of mates’. And I started to talk to and hang out with them more, alongside my family and I realised that when people love you, they don’t expect you to have to put in a load of effort all the time and they appreciate it when you do. When you love them, you want to but it’s not always viable. I’ve tried to show the same patience people show to me, back to them. I feel more secure.

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My sisters et moi lunching in my final week back home

The last phase of this transition was moving house. Same landlord, different house and a lot more problems. Will I ever rent from a private landlord again? No. If being at uni has taught me anything, it’s that landlords are more than happy to rip you off a bit of dolla and they think they are in the position to do so. *

Reflecting over the summer, I see that I have changed. Maybe not physically, maybe not deep down in my soul (I’m still forgetful, forever tired, and at times have difficulty concentrating) but I am wiser. My plans are becoming clearer and I’m coming back out of the shell that I’d put up over the last year. Now I’m back at Falmouth, I’m feeling much better for it. How was your summer? Have you felt a change of self? xo

 

 

 

Feature Picture by Cummings Photography

*I’ll probably write up on this further in the year

The 7th Wonder of Yeovil

Many of you may have been wondering why I had only mentioned 6 out of the 7 wonders of Yeovil, and I promise you it was not because I had forgotten how to count to seven. It was in fact because I wanted to write about the 7th in a completely different post, of course! Yes, this 7th wonder has made many locals awestruck, and I too find it quite astonishing.

Roundabouts.

Ta da! Yes, the 7th wonder is the brand new and exciting ‘traffic flow solutions’ that have been introduced to roundabouts about Yeovil! The police station roundabout has cost a bomb and they’re now throwing money on the next roundabout. £14M on the next roundabout according to the Western Gazette. Wonders in Yeovil don’t come any more expensive than this one. The Bowling Alley could learn a thing or two.

See, I haven’t been home that long, but I have been around to pick up bits and bobs and for the amount of money, I expected a massive change to the landscape. The most that I have noticed is a few extra unnecessary traffic lights and some bike paths. The question to be raised though is: will they get used? Do Yeovilians  have the capability and fitness to cycle? Can they afford bikes on top of their fuel guzzling cars? Eh, or maybe that’s just me.

What do you think? I’m no motorist, not for a while anyway, but has it made a difference? I hear people complain, still, but is it because it’s really not made a difference or because we’re British and love a bloody good moan? Cheers for reading! X

The 7 Wonders of Yeovil

Guess who’s back? Back again? Yes. I am back home. I’ve been back for a few days but my laptop screens got screws loose… or missing… and so I’ve been a bit cautious about whipping it out. Now I’m at George’d dads and there’s a desk, I can finally write! Yay! So, this is my introduction. I was at uni, it was my last week before coming home for Easter and my friend told me that she’d read ‘How’d you write about Yeovil?‘ and loved it. She asked me how I found so much to write about our ‘little’ home town and the cogs in my dusty brain started turning for another piece. Yeovil and it’s 7 wonders and yes, there are seven, I counted.

So, I’ll firstly give you the list, and then I’ll explain:

  1. Taunton
  2. Neo
  3. Takeaway Alley
  4. Yeo Lesuire Complex
  5. Yeovil Country Park, AKA Ninesprings
  6. Wyndham Street

Here we have it and if you disagree, lets agree to disagree. If you can count to more than seven, then I’m real proud of you.

  1. Taunton is ‘the heart of Somerset’. Yeovil ‘has the mind of a city, the heart of a town’. But I think that 98% of people living in this pretend city, would rather live in the heart of Somerset, eh? It’s retail centre is much bigger and more popular than ours, this in itself has various advantages. It’s night life is pretty good, from what I last experienced a few years ago. And, as far as I’m aware, You never want to kill anyone from Taunton. All the people you could possibly hate live in Yeovil, so Taunton is agro free for most yeovilians. Taunton is Yeovil’s wonder and is only a 40-minute-drive-ish away, so it’s not all that bad.

 

 2. Neo is a wonder in itself. Now, I was going to write a separate review of Falmouth’s night life but I think it’s important that I have something to compare Yeovil’s night life to. I know you’re all groaning. Neo, and Yeovil, is crap, blah blah blah. But it’s our crap, and that’s what’s most important. You go out on your Friday or Saturday night, or both if you’re one of those warriors I mentioned in my previous article, no matter where you start, nine and a half times out of ten, you will end up in Neo. No matter how much you complain and cry in the toilets at Wetherspoons, you can not fight the magnetic pull. At night, Neo is the centre of the universe. Everyone knows it’s crap and yet no one can never say no. What choice do you have? Well, I’ll tell you.

I went out for the first time to ‘Club I’ (That stands for Club International’ in Fali. I was told to brace myself before going in and I was right to. I didn’t realise that there were two flights of stairs I had to walk up before getting into the club. At the end of the night, I watched a man fall down those stairs. Be thankful that Neo isn’t a health risk. On getting into the club, I realised that I was paying £2 for a mouthful of Archers and lemonade. There was no seated area, there were no podiums, poles, or massive ‘stage’ type deal, all of the peasants were thrown in together. It was barbaric. There were no bouncers around that I could see. And the animals took their drinks on the dance floor! You don’t get any of that Neo. After that night, I couldn’t wait to get back to Yeovil. You don’t need to use your hips and elbows as weapons just to create some kind of space to dance in. So, Neo is a whole different planet and it’s the only one Yeovil’s got. It brings so many different types of people together. The old, drunken men covered in glow sticks; girls in dresses barely suitable to be underwear, caked in make up to hide the youth in their faces, the men that go to impress these women, I could go on with the list of descriptions.

3. Takeaway Alley. How many towns do you know with it’s very own food quarter? 99% of Just Eat orders probably come from this one road. And it’s had a song written about it. One bands experience of Yeovil and Takeaway Alley was so bad that they actually wrote a song about it. It’s pretty folky, so it might not be to everyone’s taste, but just take a look at ‘Yeovil Town‘ by Show of Hands and listen carefully to the lyrics. In 10-20 years, I don’t think it’s actually changed. I went to New York a few years back and I know it’s hard to make a comparison, but one could say that Takeaway Alley is our own Little Italy, or Chinatown.

4. The Yeo Leisure Complex. I can barely even spell it, but it’s that area where the Nuffield gym is right in front of Pizza Hut. An accident? I think not. I associate Nuffield members with fearlessness and stomachs of steel, but I think the common conception of Nuffield is beefcakes and gym selfies on Snap Chat. You’ve also got the bowling alley which changes name so often that I’m not even sure what it’s called right now. All I’m aware of is that the alleys keep breaking and even the owners given up pumping money into it. I always have liked a good game of bowling though and the name has only changed like, three times. I guess the over priced cinema should also get a mention. But that’s all I can think to say about it. I love going to the pictures but I’d rather save money and go to a cinema in any other town but Yeovil. I hear Dorchester’s deals are perfect.

The Nolasco

5. Ninesprings is the location of summer in Yeovil. It’s a rite of passage in childhood because the park is ace. You’ve got ducks but don’t let your kids go near the swans. They’re feisty buggers, as one of my  younger sisters learnt when I told her to go up to one, when we were kids. For many teens, it’s where you go for the odd cheeky sexual encounter away from the parents, or just a lovely date if you’re more Yeovilite than Yeovilian. Ninesprings is lush though. It’s the place in Yeovil that could still be described as natural.

6. I’ve put Wyndham Street down as the last one. For some reason, Wyndham is broken up all over the place. You’ve got Wyndham Park, Wyndham Hill, Wyndham Street , Wyndham Court but it reflects one side of town. Wyndham street it just around the corner from takeaway alley and all kid of stories are generated on this one part of town. Due to the grotty secrets that it hides, it’s not really considered a part of the town centre, despite people local to Wyndham Street wishing it was. For now it’s just home to Domino’s, a polish shop and a notorious brothel, which, despite the police repeatedly shutting it down, comes back like a weed. I’d love to one day see this road become integrated with town life again.

So that’s the 7 wonders. I didn’t tell you they’d be pretty, or ugly. I just told you they were wonders. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading and if you’ve got any thoughts on what your own 7 Wonders of Yeovil are, pop them down in the comments! Cheers for reading! x

 

My Experience Of The Wedding Industry Pt2: Engagement Competitions

Hello darlings, I recently entered a local engagement competition on Facebook, you may have read ‘My Appeal‘,but probably not. it was something that popped up on my timeline from friends that had liked someone’s post in the competition group page. They had posted their engagement story and a picture of the moment. I thought it seemed like a lovely idea so I looked into it more. There were prizes: a photo shoot, a £50 voucher and various small discounts off of local vendors. The couple that had caught my attention on my timeline had a lot of publicity and exposure on Facebook. I thought: why not and through George and I into the competition.

It was tough.

I had a week to get as many likes on my post as possible. What I realised was this was firstly a popularity contest, secondly a writing contest and thirdly (if you submitted a picture) a beauty contest. To ensure my success, I decided I had to write the story well. I had to have emotion and hilarity and romance. My story is romantic and funny, but not everyone can word things as such. I picked a picture George and I took at my mums on Christmas day a couple hours after he proposed. I had the goods ready and they were pretty high quality, if I do say so myself.

The problem I was going to have was with the popularity bit. I’m a pretty introverted person and often keep to myself despite the fact I come from a big family and have a lot of friends. I didn’t really think they’d help but I messaged them anyway. After this, I think I must have gotten between around 150 likes. The leading couple were at around 220 and it was daunting because they were a lesbian couple. I really did not think I stood a chance against a couple that were potentially getting their likes from the LGBT+ community Facebook groups. I posted all across Twitter and Tumblr, but nothing really happened there. I then remembered that I’m a Pagan; I’m a part of a tight knit community, too. I saw a huge influx of fellow pagan people coming to like the page and I really couldn’t feel any prouder to be apart of such a wonderful community. And then there was also all of the different uni groups I was apart of, finally, there was a benefit to being a student.

hat

And then Saturday night happened. The leading couple gained around 200 likes and I really did not think I could compete. I felt down about it but George through my phone to the end of the bed and put on a movie, which made me feel much better about it all! The next day, we went out and enjoyed our Valentines day together before he had to go back home. After he went home, I had a sudden burst of faith. I shared the post again everywhere, added more Pagan groups and got my family and friends sharing on Facebook. I went to Instagram and Twitter with #WitchAndTheAtheist, because these things are easier to find with a hashtag, no? I’d gained 250-300 likes. I was far too excited to get the early night I wanted. I won with 10 minutes short of midnight.

I had messages coming at me, likes going through the roof and adrenaline. I really couldn’t believe what was happening and I could not wait to tell George in the morning about what had happened over night.

Of course, while this was all exciting, it wasn’t without drama. Right before I went to bed, a competitor had read through my comments and appeared to be getting argumentative. this worried me a little, I was too tired and excited to handle conflict but I did so well, and with the help of a friend. It wasn’t until I woke up and checked my notifications that I really had to laugh though. Someone had reported my engagement photo for nudity. I thought it looked a little bit suspicious but I chose to ignore it. I won. I didn’t know who did it, but it didn’t really matter.

engagement

But I learnt a few things from this experience:

1. People go crazy for things that are free.

2. Where there’s a popularity contest involved, seek out a large group of people, just like you.

3. People will try and argue and even do petty things when you take things as seriously as they do.

4. Faith is a handy tool to keep about you.

5. There will always be another competition somewhere so don’t feel too downhearted if it doesn’t look like it’s going your way.

6. Entering competitions is a good way to pass a long engagement and keep excited.

7. If you have ulterior motives… such as a best friend having a unpleasant experience with one of the other competitors, this makes you even more eager to win.

Cheers for reading guys, hopefully this won’t be the first and last competition I enter, I had a lot of fun and I hope you have enjoyed reading pt2 and if you haven’t get checked out My Appeal, go for it. The competitions closed now but the post and story still remain.  x

 

My Experience Of The Wedding Industry Pt 1: Maid Of Honour Duties

Hello my loverrrs! So, mum’s getting married next year. I’m the maid of honour. Recently, I have had the honour of accompanying her to the dress shops. I’ve had my first taste of what is to come for me in a few years time. I’ve not been overly impressed. It seems that dress shopping is actually rather difficult. I turned up in simple clothing and no make up- easy to take off if I needed to try on dresses, and the dresses remained clean and make up-free after they came off. Others clearly hadn’t had the same idea. Some of the dresses on the rails were dirty. Expensive and dirty. I didn’t find this impressive. Some of them were broken, with beading falling off and it was just remarkable. Of course, these things could be fixed but it makes the browsing experience a bit more difficult. Especially when other shops took better care of their goods: ie, putting them all in dress bags or hanging the trains up with the dress.

Another incident is service. I’ve been to four shops now in my local area. In the first, people were very helpful in showing us where to look but they also weren’t too intrusive. It was good service. In the second shop, there was no service at all. She sat at her desk pretty much all of the time and didn’t attend to us at all, despite the fact we were the only ones in the shop. the third shop was delightful, the woman guided us round and helped us a lot, which was necessary because all of the dresses were in bags to keep them all lovely. In the last shop, the woman attended to us for half of the time but she was not at all helpful and suggested mum wore a bridesmaid dress as her wedding gown. Neither of us were pleased with the suggestion. So, if you happen to be going to dress shops unless you are a size 8, and getting married for your first time, and with less of a refined taste, but with lots of money, service for you may be difficult.

Finding out that the sizes of wedding dresses were inaccurate and pretty much just all lies didn’t shock me at all. The whole clothing industry is unreliable when it comes to sizing but, I won’t bore you with the details, I’ve done an article on those frustrations already.

me in my first dress from the back

Another thing: I’ve realised what the maid of honours job is and I recommend to anybody being elected to take this role: Work out your arms or the dresses will do it for you. Wedding dresses are not light and they can get packed together pretty tightly. After all that heavy lifting, I felt like I was half a stone lighter and could sleep for the next 5 days. I always knew that shopping could be a good bit of cardio but wedding dress shopping is the next level on. There was speed walking to dodge the rain, pulling and lifting of the dresses and non stop standing around. It really was a long day. A 9-5 kind of deal.

in bridesmaid dress

Anyway, this was just a short update on things. You’ll hear more about this soon! Cheerio! xx

Worst Dressed at the NTAs

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/6875069/-Worst-dressed-on-the-red-carpet-National-Television-Awards.html

Each year, not recently, but in the golden days of MSN, the awards season was my favourite. I’d pull up MSN news to catch all of the gorgeous gowns of the evenings and I’d evaluate them myself, as an ordinary 15 year old girl. I’ve always loved fashion and I spent a lot of time studying the fashions of red carpet events. Every time an article would appear, I’d spend ages in the comments: reading other peoples thoughts, agreeing and disagreeing where appropriate. I hadn’t even thought about all of that though until this article from the Sun popped up on my Facebook. I then had the miraculous idea of writing up my thoughts about what was worn and what was said about said garments.

Here are my thoughts:

Yes, Keegan’s ensemble did look a little strange: Maxi skirt with Aladdin style top, wasn’t quite a conventional pairing. The skirt was gorgeous and could have been paired with anything but the top did not do it justice. Although, the more I look at it, the more it does grow on me, I must say. But, it is still a strange pairing. I get the need for showing skin and colour coordinating with Mark but the style of the top, for me, was not a strong point in that outfit. It showed off her flat front but added unnecessary volume to her sides. I can’t really see where ‘Mary Tudor’ came from. Mary and Aladdin dressed very very differently, but go for it.

I thought Jorgie Porter looked stunning. However, her make up made  face look very gaunt in that particular picture and more spaced out than space man. I’d need to see more pictures to tell whether it was the make up or just a poor photo, but I have an inkling that it was just a poor picture. The dress was gorgeous and she was very lucky to wear this gown. I don’t quite see the need for such a skimpy body suit underneath, particularly in such cold weather but hey, She’s the  celebrity, not me!

I feel as though the writer, Hayley Richardson, over did it with Tess Daly’s dress stating: ‘Tess Daly also wasn’t afraid to flash the flesh’, ‘…a racy cut-out panel…’ and ‘While she’s got the legs for it, it left little to the imagination.’ These statements over exaggerated what Tess was actually showing off, massively, in my opinion by looking at the pictures provided. Her upper half was covered, no cleavage to bare, no tummy, no bum, only a bit of leg and it was a mesh panel, not a full open slit. I’d call it a classy gown, not a racy one. Tess certainly does have the legs for the dress so why not show a bit of them? And the dress is done in such a way that she can show off, and still have plenty to keep for ‘the imagination’, not that Tess Daly’s body is what goes around my imagination but, what ever floats your boat, I suppose.

Graham Norton was an interesting choice to write about, a long side Billy Connelly. Both are well known for their humour, eccentricity and general brightness. Of course, Norton was going to wear something funky and eye catching and of course, Connelly was going to wear some kind of Tartan. I didn’t see neither of those things as a shocker at all, nor does it look hideous on them. Their confidence has given life to what they wear. I think that Connelly’s trousers were pretty spot on too, not only showing off his awesome eccentricity, but also some intelligence. I’m sure there were at least a few members that attended the NTAs that would have difficulty spelling the word ‘parasite’, so go Billy! The thing about what Connelly wore is that… it was meant to be bonkers, it was meant to look mismatched, it was meant to catch the eye. He had a message last night and what better way to get it across than by getting fashion writers snapping up his outfit? Because, lets face it, that’s why most of us watch these things. We humans, take a large amount of interest in the aesthetic. Connelly’s not stupid.

Katie Price’s description was pretty spot on: ‘Meanwhile Katie Price looked like she’d raided her kitchen cupboards in search of a bin bag.’ No truer words have been spoken throughout this whole article. It’s the one thing I think I actually agree with. I don’t particularly like Katie Price, I did not rate the dress highly and I wasn’t keen how she had attempted to match it with a top knot either. it really was just a sack. Her hair had more shape. It certainly was an… unusual look but I don’t think she pulled that off at all.

Alesha Dixon was another celeb that I felt was being picked on a bit because I think her ‘judge-ment’ was brilliant. She went classic black blazer, high waisted black shorts, and a pretty navy top and gave the look edge by matching it to sheer black pleated palazzos. I’m a huge fan of palazzo style trousers and this outfit absolutely rocks them. They look so flattering on her and add texture to the dark outfit, yet Richardson wrote: ‘These high-cut shorts adorned with pleated sheer trousers barely covered her modesty.’ Making such a bold statement does little for the writers modesty, but what can we do?  I don’t see any issue with Dixon’s outfit.

‘Lady C’. Who the hell is ‘Lady C’!? The gown, for a start, looks more pink than white and says prom rather than red carpet. Secondly, this clearly, was a publicity stunt which Richardson gave into. I didn’t know who she was by looking at her. Her name rings a bell from some reality tv show but, other than that, does she have any accomplishments? I guess this will be a job for Google. Her over accessorisation suggests to me, that she’s trying to pretend she’s royalty. She has money and a title, therefore she must attend the red carpet looking like middle aged woman reliving her prom night. I’m sure in a few years time I too, shall wear my old prom dress and glide through my house on a fake red carpet.

Update: I have Googled. She is very well informed on the Royal family. That explains things, and her titled was gained from a 14 month marriage… Hm.

The next one on the list Boy George. His shirt was untucked, wouldn’t have called it untidy though, nor would I have said it looked like he was wearing tracksuit bottoms. I don’t find satin particularly comfortable at the gym, but whatever, I understand the point about the trainers but this is the NTA, not the Oscars. Not even the BAFTAS. He could wear his bloody PJs down the red carpet and people would just have to suck it up. I can see why he wants to appear hip and cool. He’s trying to break through into TV from wherever he’s been hiding and clothes are the quickest way to do that. I think the top half is particularly smart and I dig the hat. His eye make up is particularly amazing and I think I need his make artist to live with me forever. Red on the other hand, is an unfortunate choice for many red carpet walkers. It’s very easy to appear to look like a piece of the carpet.

If you liked this, look into the ‘worst dressed on the red carpet’ give this article a like and check out my other stuff! The link is attached above so take a look and let me know what your thoughts are too! Cheers lovelies! xx

 

 

Home Is Where The Heart Is, So They Say

Heyo, so it’s approaching that time of year when students start panicking about where they’re going to move over the summer. After already moving several times since coming to university last year, I hoped to settle down here. I found a house I like. It’s not dirty of messy like the last one. I’ve got nice house mates unlike the first one. I have lots of space, George can come over whenever he’s able to, and it just feels perfect. However, I’ve been told I’m going to have to leave because the landlords have given my house to another group. I hoped it wouldn’t come to this because I was told current tenants would get priority. I’m a current tenant and I didn’t not get priority. So it looks like, what’s left of us, will be looking for a new house. I’m a little bit peeved, I know how manky and tiny students houses can be. I’ve looked round enough of them. I’ve come to the conclusion, from the three landlords I’ve had now, that none of them are any good.

If you are a fellow student I have some advice for you:

Make sure you know what you’re mates are like before you move in with them. If you’re like me, messy but considerate, it will drive you insane if one of your group leaves your communal areas in a mess frequently. At my previous house, this drove me insane. because it was all the time. It’s not so bad every now and again but living in a mess all the time is a nightmare. How are you supposed to organise your work if you can’t even organise your kitchen? If you’re unlike me, and doesn’t understand how to use a bit of Fairy and a sponge, I suggest you learn how before you get slaughtered, or alternatively, if you’ve got one, use a dishwasher. But, make sure you rinse stuff off first. My house mates and I found out far too late. I don’t want you to be susceptible to the same fate as ours.

Mould is a problem I didn’t even realise existed. I mean, in my last house, don’t get my wrong, my windows were grotty as hell when I first moved in, but I didn’t realise walls got it too, until this house. If that’s a problem you’ve got, I suggest a few things: First, wipe it all off with an old flannel and some Dettol Mould spray. That works pretty well for any new mould However, it will take some of the paint off of the walls, but that’s your landlords problem, not yours, hopefully. Secondly, when you have the heating on, unfortunately, you will need to open the windows a little. You’ve got damp problem and you need to heat that water up and waft it out of your house.

Food can be expensive and 99% of the time, I bet you can’t even be bothered to cook. You’re tired, you’ve been working hard (or not) and cooking isn’t even in your vocabulary. Nor is food shopping. But guys, you’ve gotta eat! If you’ve not thought of it, try doing a house shop. Each chip in £5-10 a week. And do house meals, that way, you’ve got at least half the week where you’re going to be eating something good for you. Neither of my two previous houses did this. Well, the first one did, with my other house mate, but not with me and the second well, the living arrangements were as messy as our kitchen! In this house however, we did this and it was cool. it was nice to get to experiment and you got to try new things. Like, I’d never eaten lemon chicken before and my house mate’s was weird and delicious and while I didn’t like it, I really did and I wanted to stop eating it but I couldn’t… you get the picture? Keeping a house together is about team work. Your house mates need to be people you can depend on, work with and have fun with, of course.

I think that’s all of my student housing advice for now. I next want to talk about home. Home can be really subjective. When I say home, I can be talking about 5 different houses and yet none of them are really my ‘home’. My uni house can’t be considered home because I’m getting kicked out of it in 5 months. It’s a temporary solution. Home is something permanent. When I go back to Yeovil, I stay with my fiancé and we move between his mums and dads houses. Neither of these feel like home either, because like my uni house, they are temporary. I move between the two regularly and then I’m off again to Falmouth. I recently realised that moving in with your boyfriend (or in my case, fiancé now) and his family is an odd experience. I call it coming home, because I get to be with the one I love. However, it’s not quite home because I still feel like a guest; I don’t have a history there. It’s a new setting halfway through my story. I felt like that when I lived at my grandparents. It wasn’t my house, but someone else’s. they had different rules, different ways of doing things than I was used to. Then there are my parents houses.

My dad’s house is the one I grew up in as a child until about 14. That one doesn’t quite feel like home any more because: A. it has gone through many changes, B. The rest of my family aren’t there any more and C. It feels like so long ago since I lived there, I was just a kid. It’s got history, I’ll give you that, but it lacks something present, something now. My mum’s is the most like home out of all 5 houses. My mum’s there, my sisters are there, my dog’s there. I lived there very recently, before kind of moving in with George and I still go there a lot. It’s got more of a history and I’ve cooked there. That’s what I have decided the criteria for making a home is. Permanence + Memories + Being able to cook and clean comfortably + Family presence = Home. Family Presence can be taken out of the equation and still mean home, if you live by yourself, you can still be at home. You might have pictures of family or some kind of trace still around of them, they don’t necessarily have to live there with you.

I’ve been thinking about the idea of home and what it means to me personally, for a while. I wondered why I just couldn’t quite feel comfortable anywhere. I began thinking that I just didn’t belong any where and this made me feel very sad. I know now though, that all of these places are what makes up my home. I’m a bit of a traveller at the moment, moving from place to place, and I’m not quite feeling settled, but I know I will soon, once all of the temporary places get replaced for one permanent place. What’s your idea of home?

xx

I Have Returned!

Hello everyone. After a long spell away from WordPress (unfortunately, not from the keyboard) I have returned. I have a whole bunch of new topics to write about and moan about ect. ect. hopefully, for your enjoyment.

Where have I been?! I hear one of you rhetorically ask, well. That is a very good question and I’m glad one of you rhetorically asked it. My being away has been down to a number of this: Struggling to cope with being me, university life and life in general. I’ve found it difficult to stay motivated and happy. The next thing was Christmas. Coming home in it’s self is a massive rukus. I had lots of arguments with relatives (which didn’t help with the moods), I shopped like a hard session at the gym, I poorly attempted to study (which I shall return back to) and I got engaged! Yes, Sam Wiltshire shall, at some point in the hopefully near future, shall become Sam Clarke.

What’s that reader? How did this happen?  Well, It was Christmas. We had a whole line up of places to go and people to see. In the morning we went to my dads and we all had a lovely time. George was acting a little strange in that he refused to take off his coat, despite it not actually being cold. His words were ‘you know what I’m like’. Yes, I do know what you’re like Mister, and you were being weird. But hey, it was Christmas, I wasn’t going to question it. Anyway, we then went to Dorchester to have dinner at his aunts house with his dad’s side of the family. It was an amazing dinner, I must say. Everyone worked so hard and the results were absolutely delicious. So, I told my mother that we would be joinging then at 3.30pm-4.00pm. It was 3.15 but the time we finished dinner. Yes, I was panicking a little. It was going to take 45 minutes to get back to Yeovil. George was dwardling and I was panicking.

He pulled me out into the hall way and asked if I was happy with him. Well, of course I was! I love him so incredibly much and it was Christmas. How can you be mad at anyone on Christmas? Anyway, I was confused. He took me back into the dining room with everyone else, asked how long I wanted to be with him. Forever, of course, was my answer and BOOM. Clarkus gets down on one knee and whips out the box. Overwhelmed all I could do was try to pull him up and kiss him. At this point I’m sure I could imagine the words that were going through his head: Get off me you crazy bitch and just let me propose to you. So naturally, I had to try and compose myself and try to listen to what he was saying and doing and I was just so shocked that the whole thing is a bit of a blur now. I remember seeing this ring glistening in this little box and I remember seeing his face full of happiness and pride. I remember looking like a complete twat in front of his relatives. Somehow, I managed to say yes and he slipped the ring onto my finger. Rose gold ring set with diamonds and an oval cut stone. “It’s something different and it felt like you.” And I agree, it’s perfect.

What I can never forget it all of the pictures his uncle took of us, and how everyone was crying, including me, of course. I was so glad I refrained from putting make up on because if my screwed up facials didn’t ruin those pictures, the running make up would have. Everyone gave us cuddles and, George’s aunt, seeing how I was quivering like a loose leaf in the wind gave me a glass of champagne to wash it all down. I felt like I needed a lot more than just one glass, however, I had a large in take of sherry through the dessert so it was probably best I didn’t over do it. George took everyone but his mum by surprised and I was glad that everyone was as happy as I was. And at least I had a valid excuse for turning up to my mums so late on Christmas day!

natalie hiding

By the time I got to my mums, we’d announced the situation, everyone was chuffed as punch. My step dad ordered me not to plan the wedding the same year as my mums. I of course, like the angel that I am, promised I wouldn’t even consider upstaging my guardian angel. Upon returning to my sisters in the living room they came together as a choir to sing me the chorus of Goodbye My lover by James Blunt. I think that’s probably been the happiest day of my whole miserable existence. I joke, I’m only miserable on, usually, from Monday to Thursday. Luckily, Christmas was on a Friday.

Anyway, I promise this wasn’t just a post about my engagement. After that, in the New Year, I had to return back to reality (turned out I’d been trapped in some kind of  fairytale) and I had a week or two to complete five pieces of work that counted towards my final grade. This, naturally, did not leave any room for enjoyment and leisure. Leaving behind my fiancé was awfully tough. While the work helped to take my mind off of it, it also stressed me out even more than I needed to be. I saw a counsellor during this point. I said I would get myself booked in last semester and I did. It helped a lot to work out what I was feeling and I booked another for next week. All of my deadlines are done now and its a case of writing as much crap as I possibly can, paint stuff, plan ahead for the next semester so I don’t have this womb ache ever again and spend time with my lover man and the family, because I miss them all like hell too. And Pagan Society stuff. Actually, that’s a point. I’ve made quite a bit of progression with that now and we’re planning to take it even further. I’m very excited.

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Thanks for reading, see you in the next post! xx

A Penny For Your Thoughts

“A penny for your thoughts?” the old man cries,
A penny for the tears that fall like flies?
A penny for all your endless goodbyes?
“A penny for me?”

“Any spare change?” the old man pleads,
“Any spare change for a nice cup of tea?”
“Any spare change to help us flee?”
Any spare change so we can be free?

“Give me some coins?” the old man begs,
“Give me some coins?” for he’s hurt his leg,
“Give me some coins?” his minds a power keg,
“Give me some coins for a nice scotch egg?”

“A penny for your thoughts?” the old man now whispers,
As the day draws nigh,
But he holds on tight.

“Any spare change?” the old man coughs,
As he pulls ’round his sleeping bag,
And lights up his last fag.

“Spare me some change?”
But he knows it’s no good.
Who will listen in this neighbourhood?
When society ignores its’ ugly face
Of poverty and elite race.

Emma, Malala, Education and Equality

Into Film Festival opening Q&A

So, I just watched Emma Watson interview Malala and I felt completely overwhelmed by her brilliance and the brilliance of Emma. Had I have been in the same place as the two, I probably would have fainted or died of whatever it is these two women give off, my guess is intelligence, ideas and inspiration. Seeing two women, or completely different backgrounds coming together for a common cause- global equality and education for all is… I’m awestruck. I grew up with many ideas of my own but I felt because I was a child, I was not entitled to an opinion. I was not able to materialise my ideas. Watching Malala’s interview and how she talks about how age is not a restriction, really did get me thinking. I’d wished this had happened a lot earlier on. Seeing the affects drugs, alcohol and abuse can have on families, I have always wanted to do something about it but I never knew what. It is an issue that is a lot harder to track than education because hypocrisy is still live and well. Despite social media and our dependency on technology, we, like Victorians, still live a dual life. How do you change that?

I felt that because of how old I was, where I lived, where I went to school, who my friends and family were, because of how much money I didn’t have, I wouldn’t be able to make any kind of difference on anyone’s life. I had the dream of building a centre in my ever-growing home town for those ‘broken problem families’. I wanted there to be a safe haven for the scared, where children could have the space they needed and mothers, and fathers, wouldn’t have to keep looking over their shoulder. I knew kids that had to travel from which ever haven they were sent to to school. They’d forget all their equipment, half the time their uniform and they were disorientated. How do you reach out to these people without it seeming like you’re trying to stick your nose in? It’s very hard for a kid to learn anything when all that is going through their minds is what happened the night before with their parents, or other relatives.

And I agree with Malala, that education is so important. Most of what we learn, is what we need to achieve something in life and to contribute to society in some shape or form. I paid a lot of attention in school and had an awful lot of respect for most of my teachers, and even the ones I did not like, I still showed respect for. I didn’t think that I’d need a lot of what I’d learnt in school but recently, I’ve wished that I kept these things up. Hat making is not as simple as it appears to be, when you have forgotten mathematical equations and how to work with textiles. Maths, Science and Languages really are the core to everything but all of the other subjects are far from being useless. It’s true, there are a lot more things we could have learnt about in terms of our society and ‘how to adult’ but these things are buildings blocks for a career and hobbies.

It frustrates me so much when I hear about my younger sisters taking their education for granted and choosing to half-ass it. Getting sent out of class, or worse isn’t cool. You’re lowering yourself by missing something that could be so important to you and your future. There was a group of kids I went to school with who took their education as a joke. Sure, not everyone is going to need the full spectrum of what we learn but it’s better to have been giving a slice of the cake than to not be offered at all, which is Malala’s point. If kids in this country were denied a spot in school there would be an outcry and I bet you a lot more kids would want to go to school. I get the dis-appeal of the daily grind but it is necessary. After you’ve got the knowledge, it’s time to go out and get the experience and that’s all up to you. Education is there so you can just pick your future like an apple from a tree. Without this knowledge, you’ll be picking poisonous berries thinking that you’ve got a handful of blackberries.

My point here is to allow yourself to be inspired and fill yourself with as much as you can. When you allow this to happen, you can make things happen. I feel honoured to be able to have the opportunity to create a Pagan community down in Falmouth, for, hopefully, many to reap the benefits of. It is a breath of fresh air being able to meet like minded people that believe in similar things I do, because faith is not something I’ve ever been able to converse about. I’d also taken an interest in religious studies but I had always felt like an outsider to the conversation. Now I’m beginning to get stuck in and it really does feel lovely to be apart of such a welcoming community where no one is there to judge you. I’ve got a lot of ideas for this community and I hope with them to make some kind of change and to make an impact.

Thanks everyone. I really recommend you watching the interview and see how you come out the other side. Please remember, that each and everyone of you is capable of making change. x