The Awesome Blogger Award | Books, Goals & Music

Though I wasn’t nominated, I’d just like to thank Marta for leaving open nominations so that I could take part in this tag. Please read her answers to these questions! Now, let’s get on to the tag:

The Rules

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you
  • Credit the creator (Maggie @ Dreaming of Guatemala)
  • Tag this post with #AwesomeBloggerAward
  • Answer all the questions given to you
  • Nominate some people
  • Write 10 questions for them to answer

Marta’s Questions

What are some of your favourite songs to listen to at the moment?

Currently I’m enjoying Fine Line by Harry Styles and a little bit of The Beatles here and there.

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If you could shift into an animal, what animal would you want to turn into?

Some sort of bird, definitely. Wouldn’t it be really interesting to fly? 

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What is one thing you are currently obsessed with?

I love knitting and watching sit-coms! Not the most productive use of time in quarantine but it makes me so happy. I listed in a previous blog post what my favourite TV shows are. 

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If an unstoppable force collides with an immovable force, what happens?

Would it rebound? I’m not a physics whizz but I’d by interested to hear what happens in this instance. If you have any clue, please let me know in the comments!

What is your favourite book that you read in 2020 so far?

I don’t think there’s a singular book I could pinpoint as my favourite though The Spinster Club series is my favourite read. The first book in that series got me hooked, it’s called “Am I Normal Yet?”

What is the best piece of advice that you’ve received?

Very cliche, but live in the moment. I hold those words in my heart and try to make the most of my time on this Earth.

What is the best gift you’ve ever received?

Does it make me bratty to say that I’m not sure? My cello lessons are an amazing gift and I’m very fortunate that my parents could afford them when I started out. 

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If you could spend a day with anyone (fictional, alive, or dead), who would you choose and what would you do together?

I’d love to spend some time with the Doctor, she is such cool character and I could travel anywhere and be back in one split-second! The best use of a day in any case.

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What is your dream reading space?

There’s no need to dream; I already have mine. My bed is positioned an arm’s length away from my bookshelf so I don’t have to get up when I want to grab a book. A small room comes with advantages.

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What are your goals (reading or otherwise) for 2020?

My reading goal is 100 books but i’m a little behind on it! Hopefully, like last year, summer will be my time to get ahead. I set myself some goals in a post at the start of the year. At the moment my goals are to do yoga every day, and I’m on day 29! Try not to throw yourself in at the deep end, just set habits monthly and hopefully they’ll lead to you being a better person than at the start of the year.

I Nominate These Awesome Bloggers:

My Questions

Please answer Marta’s questions! It may seem like I’m just being lazy, but I’d be interested to hear your response to her questions. Don’t forget to let me know if you take part, by either tagging me in the post or commenting below.

What other posts do you want to see from me? Is there a particular type of post you most like to see from me? 

erin x

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Top 5 Easy Tips On How To Glow-Up/Get Out Of A Slump

Deciding to take a break wasn’t an impulse decision that happened overnight. In fact, the factors leading to my unexplained hiatus were brewing for a few months. I soldiered through my schedule, ticking boxes and the sort, until I realised that I probably need to step back and consider myself for a second. Because though I was promoting self-care and exercise, I wasn’t doing it for myself. It was very hard, at first, to begin my mini ‘glow-up’. Especially because beforehand my schedule revolved around school and being busy. When school closed and all my plans were cancelled, that’s when I found time on my hands. I didn’t spend my extra time productively and ended up binge-eating and watching a lot of TV. It was unhealthy but I caught myself before it got worse. I plucked myself out of my sad hole and said, ‘let’s take a break from social media, start working out, continue with my yoga and stop snacking’. The expectations of myself weren’t realistic, which meant sticking to them felt like I’d conquered heaven and earth. I’m still in the process of keeping to them, of course. Health is for life, not just for January. I’m not an expert but here are few tips for any of you that want to glow up:

1) Exercise

Workouts aren’t my cup of tea but I found an amazing YouTuber called Lucy who does 7 minute regimes that get your heart rate up but aren’t so hard that you collapse on the ground! I found it easy to slip it in to my mornings and it has had a profound impact on the rest of the day, making me feel like I can conquer my to-do list. You’ve heard me rant about yoga previously, and I also do that every morning. At the moment I can only go out for exercise once a day and it’s always a walk with my family. Though I only do a little bit, it has massively changed my life.

2) Waking Up At A Consistent Time

You don’t need to be a morning person to be productive. I always wake up at 6am but if you go to bed later than obviously you still have the same hours in the day (06.00-22.00 or 09.00-01.00). Go to bed at a consistent time and wake up at the same time too. Your body will get into a routine as long as you don’t skip a day (including weekends). I’ve not to a point where I can trust myself to wake up without an alarm but I’m sure you can.

3) No Snacking

It’s tricky, but it’s good for me. It means I can appreciate my meals more and I hardly ever feel bloated. I still have a tangerine mid-morning but I’ve cut out the late-night snacking thing that I really struggled with. 

4) Be Forgiving

I’ll have a packet or crisps every now and then. I’ll miss a workout or wake up later. The key is to not be hard on yourself. And the more forgiving you are, the easier it is to carry on again. I used to do workouts every day but then I’d miss one. Once I’d miss one, I’d think it was pointless then all of that effort has gone to waste. Please don’t do that to yourselves! 

5) To-Do Lists

It’s second nature for me to write a to-do list every day. I find them an effective way to keep on track of what you need to do. Especially with home-schooling, it’s important I’m getting my work done. Sometimes I might need to set my own work just to make sure I don’t fall behind! I keep my to-do lists in my bullet journal. As my bujo is a ‘pretty’ place, I feel a certain extent of pressure to tick off my lists just because it makes me spreads look complete. It’s a healthy pressure though and often means I get things done.

Those are all the five tips I have for you today. I am not perfect and I just want to make it clear that I don’t always keep to these tips. This blog is supposed to be as raw and truthful as possible. This sort of lifestyle is me at my peak, obviously why I’d like to share it with you. I don’t feel compelled to telling you about my unhealthy habits because that’s my past. I only want this to be a positive space, and I am living proof that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. So if you are going through a rough time, please talk to me or someone that you trust. I am always here for those of you that need me. If you don’t want to share with me, just try to follow these few tips. They helped me out of a rut and I’m sure they’ll help you too. 

Do you have any glow-up tips? How do you get out of a slump? Could you share some motivation in the comments of this post, to help someone going through a rough time?

Can’t wait to hear from you,

erin x

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7 Places & Countries I’d Love To Visit

Inspired by my good blogging friend Arabella (Sparks Of Ara) I’ve decided to share with 7 places I’d love to visit! As much as I love travelling, I’ve hardly been outside of Europe. Today’s post is going to be a little insight into my life goals. I’m very fortunate to be able to dream about where I want to go in life. I have friends that don’t have the money to go on holiday so I do feel really privileged to have experienced the things I have. Sometimes I can get carried away by ‘dreams’ and ‘wants’. Like any ambitious teenager, once I’ve finished university I’d love to go around the world! It’s been on my bucket-list since I can remember. If you have been/live in anywhere I mention in the post then I would love to chat about it!

ALL OF THE PHOTOS IN THIS POST ARE NOT MY OWN

Norway

Arabella chose this one too, but I think that Norway is such a wonderful country. It would be great to see the Northern Lights and have a little biking trip around all of the cute villages. However it would be a pricey ordeal so I don’t know how long it will be until I get to this one!

Provence, France

I’ve visited France twice, but always in the North. I’d love to venture South into the lavender fields of Provence! It is a very picturesque landscape and everything looks so stripped back and tranquil. 

New Zealand

Imagine if I could visit every continent before I die (possibly excluding Antarctica)? If I was to visit Oceania it would be to see the sights of New Zealand. My dad has a friend over there so it would be possible to have accommodation free 😅 I’m not as intrigued by Australia but seeing a performance in the Opera house would be stunning!

Japan

Full of huge stationery shops, wonderful nature and the birth place of Pokèmon – I wonder why I don’t live there already? Recently there has been a surge of people on social media visiting Japan and I’d just like to hop on the bandwagon. It is also home to the world’s biggest stationary store. I could spend by days flicking through art paper and trying out pens!

Morocco

I can’t handle heat but I would love to visit Africa all the same. A few people I know have visited Morocco for a holiday. I wouldn’t go for the culture but more of a ‘kick back and relax’ sort of destination. 

Canada

Learning French does me a favour because a lot of the world speaks it, even in Canada. If I could only visit one city out of the whole country I would go to Quebec. Or Toronto. I suppose I’d have to look into it more! 

Rio De Janeiro 

The only continent I’ve missed off this list is South America! Rio is a really lively and interesting place. It’s a hotspot for tourists and full of culture. I’ll have to improve my Portuguese before I even think about going though! I don’t know a word in Portuguese (other than the ones in the Twilight novels 😂)

Do you have a travel bucket list? What is the favourite place you’ve visited (even if it’s in the same country that you live in)?

erin x

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Focus Of The Year | Lykke

In this new year I would like to bring a focus. I see ‘words of the year’ all over social media and thought it would be a good idea to try it out for myself. The word for 2020 is Lykke, the Danish word for happiness. As one of my new years goals is to become a RAKtivist I thought it would be appropriate to use a word that would tie in with the idea of kindness. A RAKtivist is a person who commonly displays random acts of kindness. You can sign up on the Random Acts Of Kindness website and get a free calendar for each month. It is quite unrealistic for me to aim to do one random act of kindness a day but doing it sometimes is better than nothing.

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Being happy was something I didn’t get much of last year. I had a phase through the autumn wherein I was demotivated not only to blog but to simply wake up. I was building up to the new school year and expected it to be great but it felt so mundane. Luckily a spark was reignited and I managed to get back on my regular schedule before the new year began. Doing the second-a-day challenge gave me a great sense of gratitude for the little things. And being grateful brings me happiness.

Nothing will ever be perfect. I used to think there was a way to have an unflawed life but that was a foolish notion. Now I have lived through enough new years to know what I should expect from myself. I do have my new year’s goals coming on Friday if you’d like to have a look at them.

Happiness is that feeling that comes over you when you know life is good and you can’t help but smile. Happiness is a sense of well-being, joy, or contentment. When people are successful, or safe, or lucky, they feel happiness.

My main aim for 2020 is to spend less time dwelling on what could be, living in the moment and feeling lykke. You will be the witnesses to see if that happens!

Thank you for sticking by me through the years. I can’t believe that I’m entering my third year of blogging. And if it wasn’t for you, I’d probably be sitting on the sofa staring into space. 

Best wishes for the new year,

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10 New Year’s Goals | Ideas To Pursue In 2020 | Collaboration With Sophie’s Corner

Happy *almost* New Year!

The prospect of a new year invites time to reflect and set goals. I sat down with myself (and my bullet journal) a few weeks ago and starting listing things I wanted to do in 2020. It would be unrealistic for me to set more than five goals for myself I have managed to cut it down! Today’s post is a collaboration with Sophie’s Corner. As she only started blogging back in August this will be her first collaboration which is very exciting! We have both written 5 goals and some of them are quite similar (great minds think alike) and I thought they would be great inspiration for your new year’s resolutions if you don’t yet have any. After reading this post I would really recommend you go and check out Sophie’s beautiful Instagram or take a look at her wonderful writings on her blog!

  • Create a revision timetable and stick to it

My mock GSCE exams are in April so I would like to create a revision timetable so that I can revise. In the past I have attempted this and then not really kept up with it so I would like to try again and then stick to it religiously so that I get the best grades possible for my mocks.
  • Grow my blog

I started my blog in August and the main focus was getting some content on there, writing blog posts etc. But now I would like to grow my blog’s audience and try to invest a little more time into it. Blogging is something I would like to do in the future so I am going to be focusing more on trying to increase my readers.
  • Limit screen time

I think I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t like my phone; a quick scroll through Instagram, replying to messages, checking my emails, clicking through Snapchat. I wouldn’t say that I overuse it but I would still like to try cutting down the time I spend on it. I will do this gradually.
So, in January, I will start off by limiting my time to 50 mins per day, then in February in will be 45 mins and so on. This means that by the end of the year I will hopefully satisfied with the time I spend on it!
  • Do one kind thing per day for other people

I always aim to do this anyway but I thought that I’d make it into a real goal so that I am even more keen to do it! I love doing random acts of kindness and it makes me feel so happy when other people are happy! I have written 31 good deeds and put them in a jar so that for each day in January I can pick out a good deed and carry it out that day. Then I will do the same for February and so on.
  • Get a specific number of hours of sleep every night

I think it would make me much healthier to have consistent sleeping patterns, especially as I already wake up super early every day!

  • Work my way to sugar-free

The way I’m going to work this goal is by gradually cutting out sugar as the year goes along. In January I’m aiming to do one day a week without sugar. Then in February it would step up to two days. If I cut out sugar immediately then I would get cravings and probably flop. My friend is going sugar-free from Christmas to Easter so I won’t be doing this alone!

  • Daily journal

This is a traditional new years goal but I really think that I’ll be able to do it. In the end of 2019 I did daily journal and I felt it really cleansing. I did enjoy doing meditation for a time but it’s a very expensive habit so journalling is the next best thing. I know that I won’t be able to journal every single day but just when I can.

  • Read 100 books

Reading is one of my favourite hobbies (I don’t know if it beats blogging?) so this one will be easy for me. I managed it last year and the summer is my prime time for reading so I’m not going to force myself to finish a book every 3 days because I’ll be able to catch up in the holidays.

  • Collaborate with other bloggers a lot more often

In the beginning of last year I did a lot of collaborations and towards the end as well. However in the middle of the year it was lacking so this year I’d like to be more consistent.

  • Become a RAKtivist

Becoming a RAKtivist and performing random acts of kindness is such a lovely new year’s goal. Most of the goals I previously mentioned are based around my personal growth, but to bring happiness to another person is a really special idea. I have already signed up on the website and soon after writing this post I’m going to print of the kindness calendar for January!

Have you set any goals for 2020? What did you achieve last year?

Thank you so much for reading. I look forward to reading your responses in the comments below!

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