Friday, 9 December 2011

The end of a semester

Wow, the past 4 months have flown by! I can't believe that it's the end of my first semester at university already and I'm actually still here and not sobbing under my duvet back at home!

I go home on Friday and although I like university, I won't be sad to leave for a month :) It'll be lovely to spend some quality time with my family and to have some decent sleep! I have been awoken too many times by drunks returning to their flats at 4am!

Thursday, 8 December 2011


I'm too shy to phone up LoveFilm and cancel my subscription. If I'm too shy to do that, how am I going to cope with today? I'm doing a 15 minute presentation later! Yes, I'm presenting with two other people but people will still be looking at me and judging the work that I have produced!

I'm a bag of nerves. I'm going out for lunch beforehand with some friends though so that will calm my nerves hopefully.

Wish me luck!

Monday, 5 December 2011

Chinese all-you-can-eat buffet? Don't mind if I do!

In the run up to Christmas, a couple of friends and me have decided to celebrate the end of our first semester at university!

To do this, we're catching the train after our last lecture to go and eat at a Chinese all-you-can-eat buffet on Oxford Road in Manchester. The thing I like about Chinese food is that they're extremely vegetarian friendly. They have lots of options for us veggies to pick from: from egg friend rice to pineapple fritters, from noodles to coconut jelly! Bliss!

I considered going to the gym today to burn off some guilt calories...but you know what? I'm not going to. It's Christmas month after all, a time where everyone is allowed to be merry and indulge. I'm simply going to relax, eat and have a good time with my friends!

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Words cannot describe how happy I am!

A few months ago, I received a letter informing me that I had been shortlisted in the National Poetry Anthology 2011 competition, which is run by the publishers United Press. I was flattered to know that they had appreciated and enjoyed what I had written...I was ecstatic though when they went on to tell me that they were publishing my poem along with other poets' works in an upcoming anthology!

I came home from university last night and on my bed, there was a huge parcel! Inside this parcel, there were 6 advance copies of the anthology! Words cannot describe how I feel at the moment. Seeing my work and my name in print and knowing that they're there because other people enjoyed it is a indescribable feeling.

I've been reading the other poems in the anthology and all I can say is that I'm proud to share a book with these talented people!

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Hair detox?!

For some reason, society expects women to straighten, curl, crimp (and whatever else one can do with their hair) on a daily basis. As well as being time consuming, it is also damaging for the hair, despite all these heat protection sprays on sale.

About a month ago now, I decided enough was enough. My hair would sometimes smell singed and I found that despite spraying large quantities of heat protection spray onto my precious locks, it just didn't seem to be enough: my hair seemed flat and dry and I had numerous split ends.

I decided to go onto what I call a hair detox! In the past month, I've only used my hair straighteners once (and that was because one section of my hair simply refused  to lay flat. It seemed to be my hair's middle finger, sticking up and mocking me.)

There are so many ways that a woman can make her hair look pretty without heated appliances. There was a time when I wouldn't dream of going out without straightening my fringe because it would be wavy and unruly; however (I will admit this probably works better with a side fringe like mine), I found that by keeping a towel on my head until my hair was just damp instead of wet and then using 3 or 4 grips to hold my fringe in its usual place after I had combed it, it would dry relatively straight anyway. I also do this with the other side of my hair so overall, the hair that frames my face is straight.

As for curling, why don't us girlies do it the old-fashioned way and use rags/rollers? It will have virtually the same effect and it's not like anyone's going to see you when you're in this state. The secret to how you get lovely curly hair is yours and yours alone! I have a friend who uses rags to curl her hair; add her luscious dark tumbling locks and pouting lips to the equation and she looks like a 1950s pin-up...she also uses an artistically placed headscarf to add to this effect.

Or if you want simple waves, plait your hair whilst it's damp and once it has dried (naturally, don't cheat!) you will have simple yet pretty waves.

So, come on, girls. Don't be a slave to those heated appliances that are constantly making you late to work and dinner dates with friends. You can look just as good by using simpler, cheaper and healthier methods. Even if you didn't do any of the above to your hair, you're not going to look terrible; you'll just look how Nature intended you to look and if some shallow person can't handle this, they don't deserve any friends least of all you! I know it's easier said than done but don't look at all these celebrities in the makeup, perfume and hair adverts: these adverts display an unrealistic vision of what a woman should look like. For example, if you look at the Loreal advert (it is Loreal, right? I don't have a TV at university) with Cheryl Cole, the small text that briefly flashes on the bottom of the screen states that it's not Loreal who made her look like a lollypop with a heap of dark tumbling spaghetti on her head: it was fake hair extensions! So she doesn't really look like that. No woman has flawless skin or hair. We are all human after all and no human, try as they might, is perfect. But that's what makes us all beautifully unique.  

Christmas Markets?

Who's going to a Christmas Market?

My home town of Lincoln is hosting their annual Christmas Market this weekend and I'm going home tomorrow in the hopes of getting the chance to go along! For me, Lincoln's Christmas Market is magical. It is held in Castle Square in the shadow of the grand cathedral, which looms over shoppers and tourists alike, all lit up - almost like a protective deity keeping a watchful eye on the countless women, children and men who bustle along from stall to stall!

The air is filled with excited voices, laughter and the aromatic smells of hearty foods from all across the continent! For me, this is what Christmas is all about. Having fun and forgetting about the stresses of every day life by wandering from stall to stall, hands cupped around a polystyrene cup of hot and Bailey's or hot apple cider, buying hand-made goods or flashing fairy wands for the kids!

Here's a link to the official site.