Lavender Fields (Poem)

in the perfect world

we’d be lying side by side

in some lavender fields

and talk and talk and talk

 

about aliens and robots

the future and god

memories and polaroid pictures

poetry and art

and about how we both never quite understood kafka

 

you’d confess all the things you wish you’d done differently

and that you did cut off some of your sister’s hair while she was sleeping when you were 7

you’d tell me your childhood dreams

and how much you still love having pancakes for breakfast on sundays

 

you’d crack a silly joke

and giggle and giggle and giggle

and outshine the sun with your smile

 

we’d lie quietly then

not because we’d run out of things to say

but because being there would be enough

just us, floating on a cloud of bliss

 

you’d point out the nature around us

but your face beneath the deep blue sky

would be all i’d be looking at

 

a butterfly would sit on your nose

and we’d laugh until we’d forget how to breathe

feeling light like two feathers

being carried by the breeze

 

the sun would go down at exactly 6:05

and i’d take your hand and squeeze it tight

and be the happiest i’d ever been

 

(Inspired by the song “Lavender Fields” by Jerry Williams and this photo:)

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Music Recommendation: Jerry Williams

So this weekend, I spontaneously decided to get tickets for Emergent Sounds Festival, which is a rather small, but absolutely brilliant acoustic festival taking place inside a church in Cologne. After an amazing first evening where I got to see Jamie Lawson, who did not only perform amazingly well, but also turned his set into a bit of a comedy show (“Nailed it! Actually, I probably shouldn’t have said that in church, quite a sensitive topic”), I was back for more the next day.

When I’d briefly looked up some of the musicians performing at the festival before, I’d instantly loved Jerry Williams, but as soon as she went on stage and started playing, I was completely obsessed.

Her music is influenced by artists like Jake Bugg, Slow Club, Coldplay and Vampire Weekend, which you can definitely tell when listening to it, but that certainly doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have her own style.

One of the reasons Jerry’s songwriting is so special and unique is probably that each one of her songs seems to tell a story or is based on her own experiences, which makes them seem particularly honest and relatable. Her music generally feels very youthful and light, the sort of thing you’d listen to when having a nice picnic with your friends on a warm day in spring. On top of that, her voice is absolutely incredible and will literally make you want to listen to her 24/7.

Jerry is already quite popular in Portsmouth, where she lives and has even been awarded Best Solo Artist for the Portsmouth Guide Awards in 2014, but she’s so incredibly talented that it’s a shame she’s not more well-known outside of her hometown as well (even though I do think that’s only a matter of time).

She’s been writing songs since she was twelve, started playing gigs at 17 and has brought out two EPs so far, but there’s a third one coming out at the end of this week, which I’m already very excited for.

My personal favourite song is probably “A Hairdressers Called Sids”, but every single one of them is so amazing that it’s nearly impossible to pick the best one. So if you think you might enjoy Jerry’s music as well, you can check her out on Spotify or watch some of the live sessions she did on YouTube, I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Do let me know what you think when you’ve listened to her and also leave a comment if you know any artists who make similar music! x

 

Why Feminism Is Still Needed In Western Societies

Do you think that feminism is obsolete and that we’ve already achieved gender equality?

Well, we have made great progress thanks to feminists who have fought for women’s rights in the past, but believe me, we’ve still got a long way to go. Here’s a few reasons why:

✿ Let’s start with the obvious: The gender pay gap. According to The Guardian, women in the UK earn about £300 000 less during their working life, due to a gap of 24% in average full-time annual salary between women and men. Quite often, women are paid less for doing the exact same job as their male colleagues, for no other reason than being female.

Another problem women face in their workplace is that their opinions are not always taken seriously or that their abilities are completely underestimated. For example, my boss used to work at a big tech company, and when she applied for a job where she would have to manage a lot of the company’s money, one of her colleagues laughed at her and asked her whether she really thought they were gonna trust a woman to have access to so much of the company’s fundings.

Additionally, it’s not uncommon that women are actually fired for their looks (I know, it sounds too stupid to be real), for example if they refuse to wear high heels to work or cut their hair, which is clearly a restriction of personal freedom.

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✿ However, it’s not just at work where women are expected to live up to ridiculous beauty standards. Women with body hair are portrayed as unhygienic, even though it’s completely fine for men. They are expected to wear make-up, but not too much of it, because that would be “false advertising”. They are supposed to be skinny, but still have big boobs and a big bum, and women’s magazines keep advertising ways to become more attractive and get more male attention as if looking good and being liked by men was the only thing women are good for.

This is terribly degrading and dangerous because it makes young girls hung up about the way they look, feel insecure and strive to become an unattainable “perfect”, despite the fact that they’re already perfect in their own way.

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✿ Women are constantly objectified, reduced to their bodies and dehumanised and have to put up with catcalling and lewd or sexist comments on a daily basis. To make things worse, all this is often just dismissed with phrases like “boys will be boys”, which, as this girl explained on twitter, are not only extremely ignorant, but also setting very low standards for boys. Men are not mindless animals who are completely led by instincts and I’m pretty sure they’re perfectly capable of controlling their hormones when they see a girl in shorts.

credit:http://www.polyvore.com/doodles/collection?id=3297842✿ Another aspect that many people are not necessarily aware of is that the patriarchy is still very much alive and negatively affecting the lives of many women. In most families, girls are still low-key expected to marry and have kids and are therefore scared to disappoint their family members if they don’t, which puts people who aren’t straight or simply don’t feel like starting their own family under a lot of pressure.

As I discussed in a previous post, we’re often being told that we’re only fully complete once we’ve found a partner or soulmate, which is a concept I strongly disagree with because I’m convinced that every person is born as a whole and doesn’t need to find their “other half” to lead a happy life.

However, single women are often pitied for not being in a relationship, and people don’t seem to consider that they might prefer their lives this way; and the same goes for women who decide against having kids. Not starting your own family is not a loss or missed opportunity, it’s just another, equally good way of living.

If a woman does get married to a man and has kids, she’s usually still expected to take her husband’s last name and stay home with the children later on. I’ve often heard people say things like “She’s a mother and she still works a full-time job, she should be a housewife and care for her kids instead”, but have you ever heard someone accuse a father of not caring for his children if he works full time? Probably not.

Why does the man have to be the one to earn all the money? Perhaps, the woman has a better job or simply doesn’t want to give up on her career? Seriously, it’s the 21st century!

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✿ Slut shaming is still a thing. Basically, you can’t really get it right as a woman, because if you don’t have a lot of sex, you’re a prude, and if you do, they’ll call you a slut. Why is it so objectionable or undignified for women to have sex with a lot of different people, while men are being praised if they have a different girl every night?

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✿ Society is blaming victims instead of standing up against rape. There’s nothing that makes me more furious than hearing comments like “Well, it’s a horrible thing, but she probably wouldn’t have gotten raped if she’d put on some more clothes”. There is never an excuse for rape, and I truly wish that, instead of telling girls to cover up, stop wearing make up or stay home in the first place to prevent them from getting raped, we would start educating young people on the importance of sexual consent. Maybe that way, women will one day be able to walk the streets at night without having to be terrified.

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✿ Lastly, I would like to add that feminism obviously includes men as well. To be accepted in society, there’s an incredible pressure to be as “manly” as possible, meaning to always appear strong, fearless, tough and never show emotions; to the point where a lot of men are trapped in a prison of role expectations that prevents them from being who they really want to be.

Honestly, have you ever thought about how ridiculous gender roles really are? Why can’t boys wear make up if it makes them feel great? Why can’t they wear dresses or skirts without being judged for it? Or why is it strange if their favourite colour is pink? Colours don’t have a blooming gender, do they?

There’s nothing wrong with boys being feminine, no matter if they’re gay, straight or any other sexuality, and it certainly doesn’t make them weak. In fact, ignoring gender roles and being yourself is probably one of the bravest things you can do.

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These are only some of the reasons why feminism is still relevant and very much needed, even in Western Societies where women are already in a way better position than in many other countries.

I’d love to have a little discussion about this, so leave a comment if there’s anything you want to add, have a question or simply want to state your opinion! xx

 

Autumn Playlist

Are you just as obsessed with autumn as I am and have been wearing halloween jumpers, big scarves, boots and a hat since the first day of September, despite nearly melting in the heat? Or are you still mourning summer, but want to get ready for autumn nonetheless? Either way, I recommend you get yourself a cup of tea, some biscuits and maybe a nice book and put on this playlist with 25 autumn songs that will instantly make you dream of crunchy leaves, crisp air and pumpkins!

Some of these songs are actually about autumn and others are simply nice to listen to on a cold day when you want to get as cosy as possible. Enjoy, and do leave me a comment with your personal favourite autumn songs!

(If you wanna listen to the playlist on Spotify, click here)

 

Falling Leaves & Cosy Days – Playlist

Autumn Leaves – Ed Sheeran
2 Poor Kids – Ruth B
November Rain – Guns ‘N Roses
Cherry Wine – Hozier
Youth – Daughter
Sweater Weather – The Neighbourhood
Hey Jude – The Beatles
Glasgow – Catfish & The Bottlemen
Fall Away – The Fray
Back to Autumn – Tall Heights
Twenty Years – Augustana
Songbird – Fleetwood Mac
Move Together – James Bay
Golden Leaves – Passenger
Ain’t No Sunshine – Bill Withers
Broadripple is Burning – Margot & The Nuclear So and So’s
All I’ve Got – Lucy Rose
We Are Going To Be Friends – The White Stripes
After the Storm – Mumford & Sons
Everything She Wants – Saint Raymond
Northern Wind – City and Colour
Autumn – Paolo Nutini
I’m Gonna Love You – Jamie Lawson
Daydreamer – Adele
Above the Clouds of Pompeji – Bear’s Den

 

Read this post I made last year to get you even more in the mood for autumn!

August Favourites

Winnie the Pooh

I’ve been reading more than ever during the past few weeks, and even though most of the books I read were absolutely amazing, the one I instantly thought of when I wanted to pick a favourite, is actually a children’s book.

When I spotted Winnie the Pooh at a little bookshop for only 2£, I decided to pick it up for old time’s sake, without really intending to read it. However, when I finished my other book and still had an half hour bus journey in front of me, I decided that reading Winnie the Pooh would probably still better than nothing.

After only one page I immediately got why I’d loved it so much when I was younger, and couldn’t help but laugh out loud at Pooh and his friends every few seconds. In fact, I enjoyed myself so much that I nearly forgot to get off at my stop.

So, no matter how old you are, I’d absolutely recommend the stories from the Acre Wood, they’re so relaxing to read and will brighten your day instantly!

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Shakespeare Insult Generator

If you are looking for a present for a friend who likes Shakespeare, this is absolutely perfect. Much like the similar websites you might already know, this little book helps you come up with typically shakespearian insults, which are literally the funniest thing on earth.

To say it in Shakespeare’s words: anyone who wouldn’t enjoy this book is a deceptious pigeon-livered stockfish!

 

 

Pin Badges

If you, like me, collect buttons, but usually lose half of them or don’t know where to put them because they’re too big, you might wanna try getting pin badges instead. They’re usually smaller, don’t break as easily and look a lot cuter on rucksacks. Just pick one up whenever you travel somewhere new and carry a bit of your favourite places around with you wherever you go!


 

Coasters

As someone who drinks at least 2 litres of tea every day, and has mugs standing around literally everywhere, it’s quite a shame I never had coasters before. Luckily, I recently spotted these at Afflecks Palace and simply had to buy them. Aren’t they the cutest thing you’ve ever seen?

 

 

Planner

I’ve always been terrible at using planners at school because I preferred to simply scribble lots of messy notes in my journal, but I thought getting one for uni would be good nonetheless, because – let’s be honest – it’s about time I get a bit more organised.

Surprisingly, I’ve actually used my planner a lot since I got it and even feel like I’ve been much more productive because I seem to get more stuff done if I write it on my to-do list for the day and am able to tick off the box once I am finished.

 

GBBO

For anyone who isn’t  familiar, the Great British Bake Off is a baking show where 12 contestants have to compete against each other in a signature challenge, a technical challenge and a showstopper challenge every week. There’s a different theme for each show and the bakes are judged by Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry, who also decide which baker has to leave the tent at the end of every episode. All in all, it’s the funniest, most intense, emotional and simply best show that has ever been made. (Not even an exaggeration)

I think I’m rooting for Val and Andrew this year, but I do love all of the contestants, so it’s definitely very hard to pick a favourite. Do let me know whom you want to win in the comments!

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Carrot Cake

I’m not very good at baking, but watching the Bake Off and seeing the amazing creations the contestants are making got me so hyped that I felt like I at least had to try.

Obviously, I knew I couldn’t really start off with a giant gingerbread showstopper, and instead decided to try a traditional carrot cake, which turned out to be the absolute best thing I’ve ever made in my entire life. Honestly, I still dream about it every night, it was that good.

(I used the recipe from the BBC food website , here’s the link if you wanna give it a whirl as well)

 

Zoella Body Mist

I’m a big fan of all of Zella’s beauty products, but ever since I got her new body mist, I’m absolutely obsessed. It’s supposed to smell of macaroons, which I don’t normally like that much, but the scent is absolutely gorgeous and I’ve literally sprayed it on all of my belongings.

 

York

Have you ever gotten off a train somewhere and instantly knew you were going to fall in love with that place? That’s what happened to me when I went to York. I didn’t actually know that much about the city when I went, but as soon as I arrived, I was already planning my future life there because it simply seemed like the ultimate perfect place. I loved to cute little cobbled streets, the market, the tiny independent shops, the city walls and how you could tell the place has a lot of history and honestly wished I could quit uni and move there immediately. So if you’re ever in the north of England, do make a little trip there, it’s absolutely beautiful!