April Verbs

My twitter bio ‘Nomad with a Heart for Home’ has never been more apt.  Beautifully settled into our gorgeous new flat, I already had itchy feet.  So what happened?  We toodled off to Paris with less than a weeks’ notice.  It’s not that I don’t LOVE my flat, I do, so much.  I love everything about it, I love being in it, I love making it a home.  I think I just love the big wide world a bit more.  Here’s what I got up to in April:

Watching: Jackass

I’m not entirely sure how this happened.  We were settled down with our dinner, cruising over Netflix without the drive or determination to watch anything serious.  ‘Jackass 3D’ on ‘Most Popular’ – meh, why not?  We were laughing and rolling and drinking and before I knew it I’d ordered a skateboard.  Fast forward two weeks and we’ve watched all 5 films back to back … twice.  Oh, and I’ve pretty much fallen in love with Bam Margera.

These Boys.

These Boys.

Reading: ‘Be Careful What You Wish For’ – Jeffrey Archer

Also known as Volume 4 of the Clifton Chronicles .. Archer’s latest literary (for young adults) masterpiece.  No, I love it I really do.  I’m not quite sure how I stumbled upon the Clifton Chronicles.  All I know it 4 books in I’m so wrapped up in their lives, in their hearts, in their stories the characters feel like family.  Archer writes with a hunger for you to turn the next page, so you do … again and again.  Just read it.

The Clifton Chronicles.

The Clifton Chronicles.

Listening To: 4Music

I’ve ordered an Ipod.  Stupidly, said Ipod was ordered just before the crazy long Easter bank holidays leaving me with zilch music (and I must admit, I’m a little bored of Spotify Top Lists) thus resorting to 4Music.  The TV channel offers a good mix of shows, genres, battles and interviews.  It’s just a shame about the adverts.

4 Music

4 Music

Wearing on my body: Tye-Dye Vans

This April, I turned 22.  It wasn’t a particularly momentous occasion.  Not like last year’s incredible trip to the boutique Bath spa hotel.  No, this year I lay on my new sofa in my new flat, swigging champagne watching ‘The Sound of Music’ whilst boyfriend brought me bagels.  Anyway, a week after my Mum and I went on a wee shopping trip to Westfield to spend our monies (her birthday falls a week before mine).  I knew I had a £50 cheque in the bank so as we walked into Office and spotted these for bang on the money, I just knew I had to get them.  The kind of frivolous purchase that’s over in 5 minutes … but I’m oh-so in love, and they definitely caught a few eyes walking me around Paris.

Utter.  Beauties.

Utter. Beauties.

Wearing on my face: Nothing

So maybe I’m a bit late to the #nomakeupselfie party.  I did however do a pretty gnarly FB post having a rant and rave about THIS post from 4 years ago.  (https://bellasbits.wordpress.com/2010/02/23/why-i-dont-wear-make-up/)  I think I might have ruffled a few feathers.  This month my skin has been particularly bad so I decided not to encourage it further.  I’ve been wiping off the make-up and feeling clear and free skin from the get-go.

Holly looking BEAUT make-up free.

Holly looking BEAUT make-up free.

Eating: Café Rouge

Maybe this is why we decided to go to Paris in the first place.  My family collect Café Rouge vouchers with Tesco Clubcard and its always a good place to go with a lovely atmosphere, any time of the day.  My breakfast favourite would be Oeufs Royale and you just cannot beat the Goats Cheese Salad.

Cafe Rouge.

Cafe Rouge.

Drinking: Gordon’s

Boyfriend treated me to a big bottle of this yummy gin for our growing cabinet when it was on offer in Tesco (charmer).  I forget how refreshing it is with lemonade, lots of ice and a slice of cucumber.  Lovely!

This.

This.

What did you get up to this April?

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Book of Books

So, way back when in 2007, I decided to start writing down all the books I read.  In honesty, I can’t quite remember why.  Nevertheless, this habit has turned into quite a passionate little hobby of mine leading me to write down every book I read, and when I read it.  It has created the self-titled ‘Book of Books’ (imaginative, I know!)  I think at the back of my mind I have some idea I might give my Book of Books to my children, so they can see what books I read and at what point of my life.  A personal literary guide, if you like.

The Book of Books contains all the books I have read for pleasure.  Through education, reading was no longer a hobby but a necessity.  I would spend my 9-5 reading journal articles, books, newspapers; all in research for the next essay or exam.  Thus, snuggling up at the end of the day with a personal book of choice was just no longer an option for me.  The words just jumbled on the page and I couldn’t make sense of it.  My relaxation through A levels and Uni became TV and Films instead, and the Book of Books was thrust into a drawer, throughout term time anyway.  Christmas, Easter and Summer have always been a different story (see what I did there..?!) filled to the brim with what I’ve read.

I’m not claiming to be any sort of literary genius, nothing of the sort.  90% of the books I’ve read are absolute trash (I’m talking Katie Price ‘novels’, a book titled ‘Essex Girls’ and a Lauren Conrad trilogy).  But the point is, I needed to read those books at specific points of my life.  I needed to get lost in a stupid love story and read about vajazzles and Los Angeles, just to stay sane.  University was hard and I poured so much concentration and effort into it.  So when I had a holiday, instead of 45 page long articles with 300 references, all I wanted to read was rubbish.  And I thoroughly enjoyed it.

As I’m getting older and wiser and have more time (for now) I’m trying to read more.  I’m attempting to alternate a ‘trashy’ book with a more grownup book, and for now it’s working out quite nicely.  Reading is now back at the forefront of my life as a hobby I know and love, and hopefully the Book of Books will continue to grow for many years to come.

Image

Image

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Have you got a Book of Books?

What Happened In April

1)  So at the very beginning of April (the 1st in fact), it was my lovely Mother’s birthday!  So we spent the day in Saville Gardens which was absolutely beautiful.  As you probably know, I absolutely adore flowers so it was just a generally great day out.

2)  And a few days later, it was my birthday!  Cue a very cheesy photo of me holding my Very Hungry Caterpillar Cake (and what?!).  I did do a blog about it, again, just greatness!

3)  And this shows Easter Sunday, which was absolutely beautiful.  My sister, brother-in-law and my gorgeous niece and nephew spent the day with us, eating too much and drinking too much.  It felt just like Christmas, but with more chocolate.  This picture shows boyfriend, my lil nephew Jake and myself preparing for our egg and spoon race.  Oh yeah.

4)  This picture is another Instagram photo (which I briefly mentioned in another post) showing the carnage of my birthday partay.  Standard.

5) and 6)  Not just the O2, but STEPS at the O2!  I don’t care if I’m lame, it was genuinely one of the best nights of my life.  The day started with my mother and I shopping before hitting up Cafe Rouge, drinking too much and seeing Steps perform.  Literally amazing.

7)  This picture shows the man and I ready to hit up my Performing Arts ball.  Blazer – Borrowed from my Housemate Hannah but from Primark.   Dress – TK Maxx.   Heels – Office.

8)  And this is the Performing Arts ball itself!  It was a proper dinner dance which was lovely.  Here’s my table of street dancers, so good!

9)  So a few days ago (in the absolutely rubbish weather), we went to Thorpe Park!  A very wet and wild day out.  We went on all the standard rides plus the newbie … Swarm!  Just by luck my housemate Jamie and I got at the front and it was amazing!  Oh, and this picture is of a lone duck that wandered into Burger King.  Classic!

10)  Yet more nail art!  This one shows a pink background then the Sunday Times Sports pages printed on top.  Darling, all you need is vodka.

11)  And this picture shows my house’s Poker Night!  It lasted for an entire 6 hours so was incredibly tiring but a lot of fun.  And the boyfriend won, yay!

Enjoy May lovelies :)

The Days of Easter

Hello everyone!  How was your Easter?  Mine was absolutely beautiful!  Snaps and stories:

This is my beautiful nephew Jacob with an Easter egg (and me looking like a numpty in the background).  I’m wearing Top: Urban Outfitters.  Jeans: Urban Outfitters.  Jacob wears the most gorgeous smile in the world.

And on Easter Monday we popped to Worthing for the day for a glorious seaside outing.  But the weather was .. rubbish!  I wear Scarf – Zara   Blazer – H and M   Bag – Topshop   Maxi Skirt – Florence and Fred  Again, numpty.

This is the boyfriend and I out at the pub, and due to my odd angle, you can’t really see what I’m wearing … so I won’t bother explaining it to you!

In short, I had a gorgeous Easter, and hope you did too.  I’m back to Uni today so will blog soon with more fun and frolics!  <3

What Happened In March

1)  Loughborough!  An absolutely stunning weekend.  Read the post here: https://bellasbits.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/loughborough-2012/

2)  I found gin, in a hopeless place.  Well, in Aldi.  On a standard food shopping trip I stumbled across a £4 large bottle of gin and since I’m trying to be a bit healthier, and consume fewer calories, so gin was the only option; obviously.  Here’s me trying out Marks and Spencers canned gin and tonic.  See point 6.

3)  Amsterdam!  Again, just absolutely stunning.  Read the post here: https://bellasbits.wordpress.com/2012/03/21/dam-madness/

4)  Here is a beautiful picnic I had on a train journey.  Unfortunately, not the nicest train journey.  I was on my way back from Gatwick Airport after spending the weekend in the Isle of Man, due to Andrew’s grandmother passing away.  It was a sad and stressful weekend, so wine cheesy bites were a must.

5)  Aha!  One evening, one of my housemates Hannah and our friend Nancy took it upon themselves to make cupcakes … of everyone’s faces.  See mine in the bottom right hand corner:  Bella, with a bottle of wine.  It’s lovely to know my friends know me so well!  Other’s included chocolate covered fairy cakes for our friends Fatima and Tashan, a housemate Jan sporting an abnormally large nose and Andrew, in the top right hand corner with his big lips and chipped teeth.  Bless.

6)  My twitter review of point 4; the M and S gin and tonic.

7)  Oh goodness!  I thought Andrew was over with scaring the life out of me.  But no, March brought two trips to the Minor Injuries Unit and one to A and E.  First was pretty minor, a potentially broken foot which turned out to only be ligament damage.  The next trip was potential spinal fluid squiring out of Andrew’s nose, which turned out to just be snot.

8)  This is a beautiful picture of my rents, which I found under my bed when I came home to Woking for the Easter holidays.  Was so happy to see it after a year or two!

9)  I sold plenty more things on Ebay, including this gorgeous Topshop Unique Peter Pan Collar dress, which sold for £8 in the end.  I was sad to see it go, but alas, with growing up and into a woman, you physically grow too.  I earned £30, score.

10)  Ideal Homes Show, again, stunning.  Read about it here:  https://bellasbits.wordpress.com/2012/03/26/the-ideal-home-show/

Hope you’ve all had a glorious month :)

50 Questions That Freed My Mind

Hey guys!  I’ve just come back from the most incredible week in Amsterdam and am now back in Woking for Easter.  I’m currently in the midst of writing 15,000 words for Uni coursework so blogging may be my only release, so expect quite a bit more from me over the next few weeks :)  Hope you’re well, I’ll post about Amsterdam soonish but first, here are some questions I stumbled upon to mull over this Saturday afternoon.  So fall in love with life guys, I dare you:

1.  How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?

About 24.

2.  Which is worse, failing or never trying?

Never trying.  People fail everyday.  Who gives a monkeys anymore?

3.  If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don’t like and like so many things we don’t do?

To get to the place we want to be.

4.  When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done?

Nope.

5.  What is the one thing you’d most like to change about the world?

Persecution.

6.  If happiness was the national currency, what kind of work would make you rich?

Wine and cheese.

7.  Are you doing what you believe in, or are you settling for what you are doing?

I believe in Geography, and I’m doing that.

8.  If the average human life span was 40 years, how would you live your life differently?

I would be married by now.

9.  To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life has taken?

A huge one.  I have worked very hard to get where I am today.

10.  Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things?

Doing the right things.

11.  You’re having lunch with three people you respect and admire.  They all start criticizing a close friend of yours, not knowing she is your friend.  The criticism is distasteful and unjustified.  What do you do?

Speak up.  Tell them to bleep off.  There will be plenty more people I will find, respect and admire throughout my life.

12.  If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be?

Smile.  Your baby photos will be much cuter.

13.  Would you break the law to save a loved one?

Yes.

14.  Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity?

Every day.  I didn’t even know I possessed creativity until a couple of years ago.

15.  What’s something you know you do differently than most people?

My eating habits are very different from most people.

16.  How come the things that make you happy don’t make everyone happy?

Because everyone is different.

17.  What one thing have you not done that you really want to do?  What’s holding you back?

Travel the world.  My life situation and my bank account.  But one day, one day.

18.  Are you holding onto something you need to let go of?

Perhaps.

19.  If you had to move to a state or country besides the one you currently live in, where would you move and why?

I would move to New Hampshire.  Because it’s fairly close to New York, one of the most beautiful cities in the world, people speak English there and it’s not too far to visit home.

20.  Do you push the elevator button more than once?  Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster?

Nope.

21.  Would you rather be a worried genius or a joyful simpleton?

Joyful simpleton.

22.  Why are you, you?

Because of the experiences I have had.

23.  Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend?

I like to think so.

24.  Which is worse, when a good friend moves away, or losing touch with a good friend who lives right near you?

Losing touch.

25.  What are you most grateful for?

My family.

26.  Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or never be able to make new ones?

This is the only question I have paused upon.  And I genuinely don’t know.

27.  Is it possible to know the truth without challenging it first?

I don’t really understand this question.

28.  Has your greatest fear ever come true?

No.

29.  Do you remember that time 5 years ago when you were extremely upset?  Does it really matter now?

I remember.  And no, it doesn’t.

30.  What is your happiest childhood memory?  What makes it so special?

Learning the Macarena in Australia.  And the smell, I’m obsessed with the smell of Australia.

31.  At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive?

Portugal 2010.

32.  If not now, then when?

NOW!

33.  If you haven’t achieved it yet, what do you have to lose?

Exactly.  Thank you quiz, you read my mind.

34.  Have you ever been with someone, said nothing, and walked away feeling like you just had the best conversation ever?

Yes.

35.  Why do religions that support love cause so many wars?

Because of humans.

36.  Is it possible to know, without a doubt, what is good and what is evil?

Good and evil are subjective, so no.

37.  If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job?

No.

38.  Would you rather have less work to do, or more work you actually enjoy doing?

Less work.

39.  Do you feel like you’ve lived this day a hundred times before?

No.

40.  When was the last time you marched into the dark with only the soft glow of an idea you strongly believed in?

A few days ago.

41.  If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today?

My Grandmother.

42.  Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous?

No.

43.  What is the difference between being alive and truly living?

Feeling the air enter and exit your lungs.

44.  When is it time to stop calculating risk and rewards, and just go ahead and do what you know is right?

Now.

45.  If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake?

Because people judge.

46.  What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you?

Go clubbing much less.

47.  When was the last time you noticed the sound of your own breathing?

When I answered question 43.

48.  What do you love?  Have any of your recent actions openly expressed this love?

I love cheese.  And running about a cheese shop in Amsterdam helping myself to far too many samples openly expressed this love.

49.  In 5 years from now, will you remember what you did yesterday?  What about the day before that?  Or the day before that?

Yes.  Because Amsterdam 2012 was incredible.

50.  Decisions are being made right now.  The question is:  Are you making them for yourself, or are you letting others make them for you?

For myself, every time.

Have a think, you’ll feel better for it.