28 Feb 2016

Two Today!


Well at the beginning of this month anyway, but that's not a sexy enough title!

It seems strange to think that I have been sat typing away on this laptop and recording two years of life, half of which I can barely remember.

 And it was in those years that my writing has improved massively since that first embarrassing post, I discovered that social media could actually be used to promote posts, I passed every single one of my GCSEs, went to prom, went on holiday with my friends twice, joined sixth form and learnt a heck of a lot about myself.

Currently I have 144 blog followers in total and 677 twitter followers, which in the grand schemes of things is not half as much as other bloggers have gained in that time. However, you have to remember that I am a full time student and emotional teenage wreck with blogging simply as a hobby.

The fact I have only gained a handful of followers in the last year is purely my fault.

 I'm inexperienced, busy and super lazy when it comes to blogging. It wasn't until last year that I properly discovered twitter chats and within that time I have been so busy during the weekdays that it has only been at the weekends that I've been able to blog. And that generally leaves little time to do much else, so when I get the chance to snuggle up on the sofa with Netflix or engage in a twitter chat, it's Netflix all the way baby!

Maybe next birthday we will have 200 followers! Or I'll write a post that is so super amazeballs that it will blow your mind and even the Queen and Beyonce will have read it...or maybe not. A girl can dream.

This second year has probably been my most successful in terms of audience engagement like comments which are so cute they blow my mind too! So here, just because I can't resist a bit of self promotion, are the most popular posts I have ever written:








Here's to another great year,
Love Beth xx

21 Feb 2016

The Top Five Instagram Accounts According To Me

I love myself some Instagram.

It's my constant companion that stores all my memories as physical objects, that keeps me entertained while I wait for a bus, makes me looking less of a loner that I already do and prevents me from sleeping at night because I just can't keep away. I'm an addict, what can I say?

In just six years, Instagram has well and truly taken the world by storm. In a survey of twelve to twenty five year olds it was voted as the most important social media site, which is unsurprising as it now has around 400 million monthly users! 70 million photos are shared every single day, adding up to 30 billion photos since it began which is over four times the number of humans on earth! And every year those numbers are continuing to rocket, so you can't really blame us bloggers, brands and companies for taking full advantage of it's awesomeness.

It's an amazing place to increase your following and is almost like a tiny little window into a person's life. It's a rose tinted window at that but all the same, it's a window. And here I thought I would share a select few of my favorite Instagram accounts whose window's I frequently and excitedly peek into on a daily basis...wait I didn't mean that analogy to sound quite as creepy as that!


Disclaimer: PLEASE DO NOT GO PEEKING INTO STRANGER'S WINDOWS. IT IS WEIRD AND SOCIAL UNACCEPTABLE, PEOPLE! 

1. @Bookmarauder  

I love books!

 I have said it once and I will say it again. My dream house would have a massive library with floor to ceiling bookshelves and ladders to reach the very top like in Beauty and The Beast. Until that happens, because IT WILL, I'll have to make do with Mara's Instagram account. Her colour coordinated bookshelves are to die for as are her cute book memorabilia, like the Pop Funko Hunger Games and Harry Potter character. I swear if I could jump into any Instagram account, I would jump into this one without hesitation.




Like me Freya is also a blogger  but unlike me she is an amazing humanitarian and animal welfare photographer. On Instagram she shares her quiet life in London with her adorable dog Mollie and other times (my fav times!) she shares her oversea travels from the bottom of mines in India, the hills of Guatemala and the market places of Morocco. Her feed never fails to make me smile and opens my eyes to worlds of poverty, animal suffering but also beauty that I never knew existed. 




For a long long time now Hannah's lifestyle and fashion blog has had me hooked like a fish on the end of a rod! I cannot get enough of her home life in Ipswich with her two gorgeous cats who just happen to have their own Instagram account as well, like ya do. She is so down to earth, funny to the point where I often end up in stitches and a bloody dab hand at photography too. Her feed is always bright, cheerful and contains lots of mouth watering food snaps- my type of gal! 


4. @eejewelry  

Another thing I loooove is jewelry. Especially quirky, hand made jewelry!

That is where Eclectic Eccentricity come in. They are a beautiful company that specialize in re-imagining vintage components and draw inspiration from everything and anything including animals and science. If money was no object I would be on their website now, ordering every last item! Their feed always brightens my day, although my bank manger is never quite as happy and I can't possibly work out why...



5. @Ciderwithrosie 

Rosie is yet another blogger who I just adore.

Her Instagram feed is full of cute, troublesome spaniels that melt your heart, delicious home bakes, coffees upon coffees and stunning country walks that make you want to pull on your wellies immediately and go crunching through a forest whatever the weather. I am always eager, much like a spaniel myself (yes, I just essentially called myself a dog!) to see what adventures she will post next.


Is Instagram you fav social media site? And now you have seen my fav Instagram accounts, what are your?

Love Beth xx

15 Feb 2016

6 Things That Made Me Smile This Week!

Right now I'm sitting in the conservatory, soaking in the morning sun.

My poor body is really confused as to whether or not it is summer or winter, like why is it sunny but the trees have no leaves and some body is mowing the lawn but your phone is telling you it's only February?

Toby is enjoying the sun as well since he has managed to wedge himself behind a box of Bulmer's Cider where the floor has been warmed up the hottest by the sun's ray. Every now and then he lifts his head and meows at me for food even though I only fed him ten minutes ago! Does anybody else have this problem or is my cat just a greedy bugger?

Anyway, I'm sorry I've missed doing this post the past few weeks as I've been busy doing very uninteresting things that writing a post like this about would be similar to trying to get blood out of a stone.

Instead, this post combines about three weeks worth of stuff which are mildly interesting and hopefully won't bore you into extinction like the dinosaurs although I doubt their lives were very boring being the biggest, meanest monsters in town and all that....:

1. Classics which don't seem like classics 


I've recently made it my mission to expand my reading genres, in particular to read more classic books because I realised I can't proudly call myself a book worm without having picked up the likes of The Great Gatsby or Lord Of The Flies.

Currently on my list is Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier about a woman who falls in love and marries with handsome rich widower Maxim de Winters but the memory of his late wife Rebecca haunts their marriage and her identity like a phantom.

It is a thrilling and easy to read book that is unlike any 'classic' I've have ever read before. Compared to the beautiful but hideously complex Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights, this is a walk in the park!


2. Four posts which have made my day!

The reason I even started blogging in the first place was because I stumbled upon several blogs whose honest and hilarious posts I fell in love with instantly.

So although I haven't been blogging as much as I would have liked to these past few weeks, I have still been keeping up with my favorite blog posts. From Jaclyn's post on Barbie's controversial new look, Kim's thoughts on why quitting your job, travelling and falling in love won't make you happy which basically made me cry and scream hallelujah, Bored Panda's satirical evolution illustrations  and all my favorite posts from Hannah in one place!


3. When babysitting turns into dogsitting

Recently I've been babysitting two lovely kids and basically getting paid to relive my childhood and spend the rest of the evening eating free food and watching TV. I really can't think of a better job than that!

It wasn't until I popped over their the other day and was greeted with a big fat slobbery kiss that they said "Oh yeah we forgot to tell you that we've just brought a seven week old Jug puppy!''.

Now, I don't know if you have even seen a Jug puppy but let me just give you some time to click here and envy that I get to spend a couple of evenings a week with this cutey pie asleep on my lap. Now I really can't think of an better job than this...unless of course they buy a kitten in which case I won't ever leave!



4. Football, rain and happiness 

A strange combination but just hear me out!

This weekend I went to watch a football match and even though i still don't understand the offside rule despite four people trying to explaining it to me in the course of an hour.

I stood in a open field which was basically a hurricane magnet to the point where I was nearly pushed over by the sheer force of the wind alone. I wrapped up with a thick coat, gloves, two pairs of sexy mo fo leggings and two pairs of sock, yet that still didn't prevent my toes literally turning blue.

 I left my phone at home, we lost the match, some poor kid dislocated his shoulder and yet I strangely enjoyed it. Maybe it was the hot chocolate warming my insides and that wonderful feeling you get when your cold and then enter a warm room, but I think it could have been something to do with spending time with my family. We are all so busy that it's hard to fit that quality time in but when you are stood in a field, being bored to death by football, you don't have any option but to actually talk to one another. And it's great!


5. Billy Elliot 

A few weeks ago my friend and I caught the train up the London and went to see Billy Elliot the Musical at Victoria Palace.

Now aside from how flipping amazing the show was, even though I have seen it before, I have to mention how beautiful the venue was. Like if I was rich and famous and money was no object, then I would not hesitate in buying that place and living there. It's absolutely magnificent, I mean even the bloody toilets were beautiful. When you spend 10 minutes staring at the bathroom wall you know it's a lovely place, right?



6. Puzzles 

Lastly, most people would probably associate puzzles which little kids and the elderly, but let me tell you if you think that, you are seriously missing out.

There are some absolutely fab puzzles around and if you find one you like (my current favs are the Panorama Disney ones!) then you will spend hours doing it.  Plus research has shown that it's good for our health so ya know, get to it people. Lets make puzzles the next colouring books!

How has your week been?
Love Beth xx



13 Feb 2016

Mars VS Venus At Valentine's Day!




This Valentine's Day I'm going to be a single pringle just as I was last year...and the year before that!

 But I honestly don't mind. It gives me a good excuse to buy flowers and cheap boxes of chocolates without looking like a sad chocolate addict who needs her fix NOW...which btw I totally am but don't tell anyone.

Nobody should ever feel pressured to date when they aren't ready and it's sad that young girls feel they have to have a boyfriend and throw their virginity away like it's nothing of importance because apparently that's what everyone is doing these days. So wrong!

Yes, Valentine's Day is great and beautiful and lovely but at the same time us singletons should stop dreading it's arrival on the fourteenth of February so much. It's not such a big deal, honestly! Hearts and roses and all that consumerism rubbish is not what Valentine's Day is about anyway. I remember an old English teacher of mine once quoting a John Donne poem in which love was beautifully refereed to like a compass and still to this day I can remember the lines. To me this is what love is:

"If they be two, they are two so

   As stiff twin compasses are two;
Thy soul, the fixed foot, makes no show
   To move, but doth, if the other do.
And though it in the center sit,
   Yet when the other far doth roam,
It leans and hearkens after it,
   And grows erect, as that comes home.
Such wilt thou be to me, who must,
   Like th' other foot, obliquely run;
Thy firmness makes my circle just,
   And makes me end where I begun"


For the past few years my gal pals and I have always taken part in the Valentine's Day alternative of Secret Santa, which we like to call Secret Cupid. It's great fun and makes you feel a lot less depressed about not having someone to snuggle up on the sofa, watch films with and wear matching underwear for! Someday it's just easier to pretend that red matches green and move on.

Anyway, when Adore Me, a lovely lingerie company for my American readers, got in contact about a little survey they carried out on men and woman's Valentine's Day views, I was intrigued to say the least. For centuries the sexes have been battling it out for supremacy and of course we all know the age old saying that men are from Mars and woman are from Venus. But are we really that different from one another after all?

Lets have a lookie:





What are your views on Valentine's Day?
Love Beth xx

This post was in association with Adore Me. Please see my disclaimer to find out more. 

11 Feb 2016

8 Things To Do When You Feel Suffocated By Life


I'll be the first to admit that my blogging game hasn't been quite as sassy as I've led myself to believe.

The problem is that recently there has been this constant nagging and uncomfortable feeling in my body- no in my bones- that I've just not been able to put my finger on.

I wasn't until today when I woke up a second before my alarm started that horrific beeping sound which will forever haunt my subconsciousness, when I had a shower using the same old shower gel that's always on special in Tesco, when I dressed in my usual comfortable tights and skirt combo, when I spent too long doing my make up that I had to shovel my breakfast down while walking to the bus stop in the typical English rain that I finally realised what the feeling was.

Life, with it's boring daily routine and so called 'unexpected events' that I've seen a million times before, was suffocating me! Like physically smothering me it's metaphorical pillowcase of dullness and endless mind numbing cycle.

I've realised that I need to stop being such a Debby Downer and see that the only reason I'm feeling so fed up and trapped is because I'm trapping myself with those kind of negative thoughts. But thankfully, I think, I have now managed to untangle myself from that web!

And I'm really frickin' hoping that I'm not the only one to have ever felt this way. So what's a blogger  to do when she needs some reassurance and want to make sure that everyone else in the world remembers to keep on appreciating the little joys and pleasures of life?

She's going to write a list of course:


1. READ A BOOK

I don't care what you say, there is no better way to take you out of yourself and spend an hour or two in somebody else's life, than reading.

I personally find that first person narration is best as you really have the change to get inside a character's head, rummage around in all their thoughts, feeling and memories and pretty much forget about everything going on around you.

It's surprisingly quick how the walls stop trying to squash you and actually start behaving like normal flipping walls!


2. GO FOR A WALK

One of the reasons you might be feeling suffocated is because you have't actually left the house in a week. I know it's tempting to sit and watch Netflix in your Pjs all day but your poor lil' lungs are practically crying out for some fresh air.

Don't make excuses, just pull on a warm coat, a scarf and go for a walk. Preferably a nice country walk across fields and down footpaths but if not a walk to the shops, even if for a mere five minutes, it is still better than nothing.

There's a paragraph in the book I'm reading at the moment, Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier, that perfectly sums up the beauty of nature, emphasizes the goodness of a walk and unintentionally ingeniously links to the picture above:

"The daffodils were in  bloom, stirring in the evening breeze, gold heads cupped upon lean stalks, and however many you might pick there would be no thinning of the ranks, they were masses like an army, shoulder to shoulder" 


3. BAKE OR COOK SOMETHING NEW

Sometimes eating the same kind of food- you know the easy stuff like chicken and chips which requires no culinary skills what so ever- can make your life feel like boring, bland mush.

So why not push the boat out a bit? I'm not asking you to spend hours toiling away in the kitchen, making mitchelin star food. Instead search the internet for some quick but tasty recipes. Throw in a vegetable you haven't tried before. Add a pinch of spice to mix up the flavours etc.

It's not rocket science!


4. GRAB A CAMERA

Invest in a good quality camera or a Polaroid and snap away to your hearts content. I find that it completely makes you reassess the world around you and appreciative of all the little pretty things in it. Take pictures of anything that happens to catch your attention, different colours, textures and objects that make your heart swell with happiness. When you do actually take a good picture it will swell with childish pride that makes you want to thrust the picture in every strangers face that you see too.

Sorry about that...


5. MEET UP WITH OLD FRIENDS

I don't think people realise just how important friends are. Sure it's good to spend time alone or with your family, but friends provide relief and entertainment that neither of those things can give you. I more than anyone know how difficult and time consuming it is to stay in contact with friends that move away, but it's totally worth the effort.

Nothing makes me smile or laugh more than meeting up with my girls.We talk about everything and anything and act like hysterical ten years old just because we can!

So if there is somebody you haven't spoken to in a while, give them a call, text them or message them on social media and arrange to meet up. It will put some much needed sunshine back into your life and be an answer to the question "What did you do this weekend?"


6. TREAT YOURSELF

When you are feeling fed up with life, diets and bank balances don't matter! As long as you don't ho mad with your spending it's perfectly acceptable to treat yourself to something nice.

Whether is a massive slice of Victoria Sponge Cake from a cafe, a new outfit or a spa treatment, just go for it! You'll instantly feel so much better about yourself.


7. VISIT SOMEWHERE NEW

Going to the same place over and over again is something we all do because, whether we like it or not, our comfort zones are pretty amazing places that very few of us enjoy leaving.

Going to the same restaurant, the same holiday resorts, the same hotels and the same shopping centers are just part of that reluctance to step outside of our routines. BUT WE HAVE TO because that cycle is what makes us bored and frustrated with our lives. We have to push ourselves to try new menus, visit others attractions and explore new cities and towns that we are quiet likely to get lost in.

You just have to go with it or face the prospect of becoming one of those weird customers the staff know by name!


8. GIVE SOMETIME BACK 

Surprisingly, the world is a whole lot better when you aren't focused on me, me ,me all the time.

Giving make to the community is a lot easier than you would think. It could be something simple like donating to Cancer Research UK, adopting an animal with WWF or volunteering at your local library to read with cute lil' cherubs.

If you really wanted to go all out why not sign up to the organ donation register or give blood to save somebody's life. What could be more flipping rewarding than that?

Anything else you would add?
Love Beth xx

2 Feb 2016

Is The Customer Always Right?



Earlier this week I went for a cheeky Nandos with my gal pals in between mock exams because sorry diet but you can't really treat yourself with a salad now can you?

 It was nice to get out of the house because most recently I've been feeling like a hermit crab locked away in her bedroom, studying hard and getting back ache from leaning over this damn desk all day.

For once I wasn't sitting in my pjs until lunch time without a scrap of make up on. I actually got up early, had a shower and was all glammed up (or as glam as you can be for a Nandos anyway) in this sassy new get up from new look before eleven. I probably should have taken a picture or something but it's getting dark now and mumma doesn't want her tea to go cold. I mean it's not often people will actually offer to make you one, normally I get hit with the reply "You got legs, make it yourself!"

When we finally did get to Nandos we ended up being served by a boy we knew. I still can't get my head around the fact that half my friends have jobs now- like real adult jobs where they have to be sensible and smile at those awkward moany customers when they would rather be curled up on a sofa eating pizza and watching Pretty Little Liars.

I suppose it will be even weirder when our friendship group starts getting married and having kids. I mean god imagine us lot as parents!

Anyway, the point of this post was that normally the waiters who serve us in restaurants are just people in uniform who bring you food and say "Can I get you anything else?".

 But now I was being served by a person who I knew had the worst potty mouth ever, who once asked me to have sex with him in the derogatory way boys do when you're looking particularly unattractive that day, who walks around with a pack of boys following him like he is a god, who posts those cheesy pictures online of him and his girl snogging and whose mum I have seen scream at him so loud when he got a bad grade that he nearly cried!

And it got me thinking that these people who serve us do actually have feelings and a life and a family. That it isn't really those people's fault if our food is cold or undercooked or hasn't arrived yet because they are cooking it fresh and not just warming up last years Chinese noodles. That we shouldn't ring and shout down the telephone at the person who just happens to be on other end about the fact our brand new oven has just blown up.

I've seen so many people scream at the staff in Starbucks for not putting cream on their mochas or giving them the wrong change. I've seen people wonder into toy shops on Christmas Eve and complain to the manger for not having a certain bike in store and insulted him when he suggested that they shouldn't have left it to the last minute.

In fact, as shocking as it is, 95% of retail staff have admitted to being verbally abused by customers, and many of these workers then go on to suffer psychological damage, even feeling that they have no choice but to quit their jobs! 

It's just not acceptable.

 I know we can have days when it feels like the world is against us and that everything that could possible go wrong has gone wrong. I know that those members of staff get paid to serve us. I know that they say the customer is always right. But what if they aren't? What if they are insensitive, bad tempered monsters who make the staffs' lives living hell?

Is the customer always right then? 

Of course not.

At the moment I'm in the process of  looking for a little weekend job just to top up my bank balance but it's awkward, argumentative customers who quite frankly make me terrified to apply.

At the best of times I'm clumsy, blind as a bat and socially uncomfortable and yeah sometimes it can feel like I've been laid the worst set of cards ever. But I'm willing to push through all that because at the end of the day, I'm not going to survive much longer on this planet without some sort of income.

So when I saw this boy serving us, it got me thinking that life would be so much easier if people treated staff members more like humans and a lot less like robots. That is a reasonable enough request right?

Love Beth xx

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