Saturday, 31 December 2011

2011 - The Year of Blogging

So this year I started my blog up, although I have blogged in the past it has only really been like an online diary before now. Especially when I was a teenager with a lot of anger ;) But this year I started blogging what I would call "properly" and have loved every second of it. I think it took me a few months to get the hang of it and really get my teeth into it but I love having this little place, reading everyone elses blogs as well is just one of the best things I've ever done. It's wonderful being able to see peoples opinions and different lifestyles and I wouldn't change that for the world. This post is really just to say "thank you" to everyone who has hit the follow button on my blog, the only thing better than having a place to express my thoughts and opinions is the fact that people are reading them and actually taking into account what I say. When I started this blog I never expected that to happen! So thanks to all of you and I'm looking forward to the continuation of our blogging journey in 2012 together.

Friday, 30 December 2011

Very Happy!

So today, I think I found the answer to my "diet". My other half told me he would like to start eating healthier too, which set me into panic mode. This being because when I try to eat healthier, I mainly eat salads. It's no issue for me, I love them, but he won't eat them, which means we've been eating separate meals recently. So while the thoughts "oh shit what am I going to feed him??" ran through my mind, my lovely friend Robyn came online and suggested to have a look at slimming world. I knew she had been on this plan for a while with her sister and between them they must have lost a lot of weight in 2011 so I made my way to the website. I guess I hadn't looked at it before because when I think of proper diet plans, I think of starving yourself and of course those nasty little ready meals that weight watchers harp on about which aren't even healthy. Anyway Robyn told me to have a look at the recipes as I can make healthy food from their recipes without signing up to weekly weigh ins or giving them any money, I thought if I manage to find one or two meals that both me and Chris will eat it will be quite an achievement. Bear in mind that aside from baking, my cooking skills really are very lacking. Anyway, basically what happened then was I found over ten meals that both Chris and I would eat and I'm still searching through websites finding even more recipes. I've also found the most genius low fat cheesecake recipe I've ever seen. I made a little list and showed Chris and he agreed that he would eat everything on there. All the meals are things like fish and chips, pasta, pies, all normal food but you just make everything totally from scratch from the healthiest ingredients you can find. So basically, from Monday (as I still have bits to use up in the fridge freezer) I will be starting having fruit for breakfast, salad for lunch and making both Chris and I the same dinner. I'm really excited about this as we haven't eaten the same proper food for ages and it'll be nice to sit down and enjoy the same food! Hoping this will work, it sounds great though and I would suggest to anyone to have a look at it and try it out if you're looking to shed a few pounds or more.

Thursday, 29 December 2011

What a fast year

I'm writing this at stupid o clock in the morning because for some unknown reason I'm finding it hard to sleep these past few nights. I feel fine, in fact, I feel great and have no reason to be lying awake wondering why I can't sleep. It's funny how I can sleep fine in the morning when I should be getting myself into gear and getting things done! Although saying that, I've been trying not to sleep in too late to try to get myself to sleep at night but even though I'm really tired for some reason my body doesn't want to doze off! I think it's partly because my partner has been staying up late playing a new game; he always does this when he has a new one, and it doesn't help that him and 2 friends have decided to play through it together and one of them has been messing them around and not turning up to play when he says he will. Tonight he didn't show online until about midnight, which is fine for him as he's a student but Chris works 9-5 and usually he would be going to bed at around midnight. They've had a few tiffs about it and apparently this friend has had his "three strikes" and is now out! They talk on skype and were all arguing until Chris declared him to be a "dick fart" which concluded the barney. I do wonder why he didn't think of a better, perhaps more stinging insult but the lack of response from his friends shows that he doesn't need to bother. Says a lot about all of them really doesn't it! I'm not sure why and it's quite sad but I do find it harder to sleep when he isn't in bed with me, even if he is in the room next to me playing games to his hearts content. I think it must be his body heat and gentle rise and fall breathing that just allows me to relax and switch off that much easier.

While I can't sleep I'm considering where this year has actually gone. They say time flies when you're having fun but in all honesty I've had a pretty crappy year. Among relatives, including my Nan dying there have also been many months of stress and struggle, especially with money before Chris landed his placement job. At the time it felt like things would never get better, but time certainly didn't drag. I'm starting to see the correlation between growing up and the years moving by quicker and quicker every time a new one comes around. I'm pleased to say that things couldn't be much better at the moment and I'm loving every single day of life, enjoying my writing, university and family life. When I was younger I never thought I'd enjoy spending time with my Mum but now I try to see her once every week or two (we live 45 minute drive from each other and she does dodgy shift work) and even get excited about the next time I see her. Again, I feel this is quite a "grown up" feeling. I still don't really feel like much of an adult but I'm starting to see that I probably never will. I love living with my partner but it still almost feels like playing house - I can't even begin to imagine what it must feel like to have your first baby.

As you can probably tell I'm in quite a reflective mood and have written quite a heart felt post - not usually what you get from me so I hope you enjoy reading this one. I cannot wait to get 2012 underway, getting myself that little bit closer to finishing university (there will only be one more year to go!) and hopefully finding a job that I can use my writing skills for. Journalism is probably the top of my list, but hey, I'm not fussy to start with! In the nearer future I am looking forward to tomorrow as I am going to attempt to make myself some low fat cookies. I just love filling my flat with sweet smells and having a little treat that won't ruin the waistline!

What are you looking forward to in the far and near future?

Monday, 26 December 2011

It's boxing day

And I am starting to see everyones new years resolutions flying around all over the place. On blogs, facebook, twitter, everyone is talking about what they are going to change in the new year. It baffles me that so many people are saying "I will start on New Years Day!". I don't understand why anyone would have such good intentions but actually plan a day to start them. Surely if you have these thoughts and intentions you act on them when you first think of them? I believe this is the reason why so much money is wasted in January on deluded people joining the gym or forking over money for expensive exercise equipment. People delude themselves into thinking that when they wake up one morning they will automatically feel more inspired to attain something that for the rest of the year, they can't be bothered with.

I for one enjoyed a big meal yesterday and will probably not be eating salad today but I am still aware that I want to lose weight and have spent well over an hour today getting the exercise that I need. Even if I don't lose weight because I've had a few unhealthy snacks along with a big roast dinner, I feel better for getting off my ass and moving. And I know that I am not just sitting on the sofa with my feet up, greasing myself up in all the chocolate and sweets that I can find, like so many people will have done today.

Of course I am not discouraging people to go for their goals and try to lose weight, I am simply asking them to consider if the new year is really enough of a reason to make this push? Is your life going to drastically change within the next year? For example, my cousin is graduating from University in 2012 and she wants to lose some weight so she can look her best and smartest for when she goes on all those job interviews when she finds herself in the "real world" of work. I think that this is an excellent reason to lose weight but of course, if you have this in your mind now, why not act on it now? You will only regret sitting in front of the T.V pigging out in a weeks time so why do it to yourself? Of course, have a treat or two but keep active in order to keep the weight off, even if it's just going for a walk after your meal for fresh air.

And to those of you who have no real reason to lose your weight apart from the fact that it's "new year" I would totally discourage you from spending lots of money on expensive gym memberships, perhaps invest in a kinect game or exercise dvd instead.

Good luck to everyone with new years resolutions and I hope that these couch potato "I will start in a week" types prove me wrong.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

A truly awful (but apparantly hilarious) day...!

For a change, I'm going to write a post about how my day went yesterday. This is because everything seemed to go horribly wrong but all my friends and family seem to think it was hilarious! Well it wasn't for me but I'm going to share it with you all because it might put a little smile on your face.

First things first, I had an awful nights sleep for no apparant reason and I couldn't drag my ass out of bed until about 11:30, which doesn't sound that bad really, but recently I've been getting up at 8:30 at the latest and having all my housework done by 9:30. My cousin Lorna was meant to be coming over so we could see each other a last time before christmas and I was surprised when I eventually got up and checked facebook that she had apparantly been lazy and lying in bed to stupid o clock too! She's an early riser and once awake she jumps out of bed to start the day so I was really surprised that we had had the same kind of day on the very same day.

I mustered up the energy to go to Tesco and buy the bits of food that we needed, and wonderfully, the weather was awful. I parked as close to the store as I could but the rain was so heavy I ended up soaked through anyway. This past week I've been getting more and more bad tempered about going to do the shopping as it's just packed full of people aimlessly wandering around, getting in your way and not moving unless you shove them up the ass with your trolley (yes I actually do this) and generally, panicking because the shop will be shut for 1 or 2 days so loading as much bread and milk into their trolleys as possible. Anyone would think we were running out of food and fighting for the last few bits. Anyway, I got through this ordeal and after getting drenched in the rain, made my way home and changed into my pj bottoms and my fiancee's t shirt and my fluffy bed socks. Minus the majorly frizzy hair, I was very comfy.

I hadn't checked my phone for a while so had a look and realised that Lorna had sent me a text about 30 minutes before saying she was just leaving, which meant she would be here any minute, and just as I started munching on my wrap, she buzzed the door. Obviously I went and let her in, apologised for my horrible attire and she literally had time to take her coat and bag off and empty the pockets in her jeans (so it was more comfy to sit down) when the fire alarm went off. I live in a big victorian house split into 5 flats and when someone sets the fire alarm off from burning food, they usually go and turn it off straight away and warn everyone that it's not a real fire. The alarm is the loudest most awful noise you can imagine, it literally hurts your ears and my wonderful neighbours, including the twats who set it off, completely ignored it. I have never set the alarm off so wasn't 100% sure how to turn it off, and I had to assume that because nobody was evacuating the building that someone had indeed just burnt their toast but couldn't be arsed to go and turn the noise off and let everyone know that they were safe. I opened my flat door open wide and went into the communal hall to the fire alarm settings and tried to work out how to turn it off, and to my horror Lorna followed me out and shut the door behind her. Yep, we were locked out, me in my pj's with no shoes on and she left all her stuff inside the flat, including her car keys. Luckily she had left her shoes on and while I flapped around panicking, she came up with the plan. She walked all the way (about 30 mins each way) to my fiancee's work place in the pissing down rain, with no coat, in hope that he had his keys on him, if not they would have to go to the letting agents and get them to come out and let us in. While she was doing that I was sitting in the communal hallway which isn't heated, wearing no decent clothes freezing my ass off, with no way of telling the time and just hoping and praying that Loppy would be back soon. Chris, my fiancee, was very surprised and confused as to why he was told that Lorna was in reception, dripping wet asking to see him urgently. Obviously when she told him, he laughed in her face and declared us both to be "knobs" but luckily, he handed his keys over to her. She then walked back in the pissing down rain and just as I was starting to imagine that this must be what prison feels like, I heard lots of knocking at the main front door and the jingle jangle of keys, I opened the door to Lorna who had a massive smile on her face despite looking like a drowned rat and we let ourselves into the flat as quickly as we could. Luckily Lorna was wearing her slackers clothes and had a big hoody on, and when she took it off she was pretty much dry underneath. I dried her hoody off as much as I could in front of the heater and we treated ourselves to a cupcake each. It took us both forever to warm up but we did have a really good chat after it had all happened.

Although it was horrible I do have to see the funny side and of course, acknowledge that things could have been a lot worse.

1. Chris might not have had his keys.
2. I might have been desperate for the toilet.
3. Lorna could have been wearing less clothes, or even worse taken her shoes off.

I do like to see the bright side of situations and I'm pleased to say that we both saw the funny side of it even when it was actually happening. Merry Christmas!

Monday, 19 December 2011

4lbs Lost!

Apparantly my little tactic is working! I've managed to lose 4lbs this week and now I'm wondering how much I can lose before Christmas day, and in fact before I go back to university; well I have a month off I may as well make the most of it and get some serious workouts done! Does anyone have a tip for getting through Christmas day? I'm considering going for a run early Christmas morning so that the big dinner I have hopefully won't do too much damage. Of course my blog is primarily about my writing and my life surrounding the writing so I won't be keeping a weight loss diary here. Maybe an odd mention here and there if I'm particularly proud of myself!

So as I mentioned, the tradition for us is that my partner cooks the Christmas dinner. He says that because I do most of the cooking throughout the year, he will do all the special occasions, including Christmas. I was a bit worried about this idea to say the least but I figured well he is offering, I have to at least let him try. A badly cooked Christmas dinner is better than one cooked by me, right? Well I don't have to worry about that anyway, last year he did a wonderful job and apart from a Toby carvery (god I love them!) I hadn't had a roast dinner so nice in a long time. Which means this year I'm just looking forward to getting my feet up and drinking wine while he does all the work. It's times like these I feel very lucky. I am wondering though whether to buy a dessert from the shops or to make my own? I'm a bit fussy with Christmas desserts and won't eat any of the traditional ones - I guess I'll have a look around and see what takes my fancy.

I met up with my wonderful girl friends over the weekend, had a meal, and swapped presents (but didn't open them!) which was really nice. I had a fairly small main course so I could go to town on dessert and had myself a chocolate fudge cake with a scoop of icecream which was just delicious! We decided to try to meet up for a meal and a chat every month and you can really tell we're starting to get "old". The choice of conversation being control pants and when to start our anti aging skin care regimes! Jo and Michaela are a few years older than myself and Loppy so they're starting to think about it all now whereas I have a couple of years left yet. Slapping a bit of anti aging moisturiser on your face between the ages of 25 and 30 is better than getting to 35/40 and realising we need to buy stuff to get rid of wrinkles. That's what we're going with anyway.

As for my writing I don't think it's going to get done this side of Christmas. The old republic is out which I'm really enjoying playing and when I'm not on there I'm either baking treats for friends and family or getting on the kinect for a workout. Once Christmas is over I will jump straight in and cure my boredom by getting some of my story written.

Here are the treats that I made for my girlfriends, the recipe I adapted from this blog (if you're into baking you have to press the follow button!) What I actually did was took the recipe for the gingerbread men from the Christmas section and then used them for cupcake toppers on top of the vanilla cupcake recipe. This is because although I like gingerbread one or two small bits is enough for me. They went down brilliantly and after having a sneaky taste of one they are definitely the best cupcakes I've ever made. I might even have to make some more because everyone's asking when they can have them again! They're going in my recipe book and I have a feeling my friends and family will be looking forward to these every Christmas from now on!

Friday, 16 December 2011

New blog to look at

Hey guys, my cousin has just found her way to blogger! She is an art student in her third year of university and she wanted a place to upload some of her work and write down her thoughts and feelings and what better place to do that than here. It's literally her first day of blogging so she hasn't got much up there yet but I promise there will be exciting things to follow if you're in any way interested in art. Click here to view her blog and if you're feeling really nice why not leave her a nice little comment to welcome her to blogging!

I hope you've all had a lovely Friday and wish luck to anyone who needs to go christmas shopping this weekend; I can't imagine how busy those shops will be! I've spent my afternoon making gingerbread which is now settling in the fridge before I make gingerbread men cupcake toppers out of them later this evening. I'm hoping that Lorna and our other girl friends will enjoy them tomorrow when they're completely done.

Merry Christmas everyone and have a wonderful weekend x

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Boring few days

Firstly thank you to all my new followers, especially the ones who have followed me when I haven't written anything remotely about my writing for a few days! I've had a boring few days not really doing much, The Old Republic is now open for me to play and I don't even really feel like it. My partner yesterday said that he felt really unwell and so off we went to stock up on the cold and flu capsules and we've both been drinking shed loads of orange juice in an attempt to get some vitamin C and hopefully stay well. Tonight we were watching telly and I fell asleep on the "gaming chair" (it is ridiculously comfy..!) while clutching a hot water bottle and woke up about an hour later feeling like total shit.

Painkillers taken and a curry ordered (I know I'm on a diet but it'll be my treat for the week!) and I feel a little better. I'm hoping I feel better tomorrow as I'm meeting up with my girl friends on Saturday to swap Christmas presents and have a meal and I have a busy day planned for tomorrow, making them cupcakes as part of their gifts. I bought some lovely cake accessories from ebay super cheap and once I've made them I will upload photos of them and tell you the details for the bits that I bought in case anyone who reads this is a fan of baking.

As for the writing I plan to continue writing a story that I started months ago this weekend seeing as usually I'm writing so much for uni I don't really have the time to do it because I actually enjoy it. Very much looking forward to it and who knows... maybe the story will be finished in a few years.

I hope you're all managing to stay away from illness - it's times like this that it's nice having friends on the internet!

Monday, 12 December 2011

Diet starts today!

Yep I'm going for it properly as of today. Today has been incredibly productive and it's not even midday yet. By 9am I had done all my housework, I then went to uni and printed off and handed in my assignment. Then I went to tesco and bought a shed load of healthy food and stuffed the fridge full of it. I'm now relaxing after breakfast sipping on some flavoured water chilling out before I start my workout on the kinect.

I have always been a bit weird when it comes to my weight and when I diet no amount of weight loss ever seems enough. This is because I'm naturally heavier than most women my height - with my boobs being so big they weigh an awful lot and even when I lose weight they don't get any smaller. Of course I know that really but when I look at the scales and it won't go past a certain weight, even though I feel good I still feel like it's never enough. So as of today my partner and I are trying a new little trick that he suggested. First thing this morning I got my scales out and stood on them while looking up at the ceiling while my partner looked at my weight. He has stored it on his computer in a secret little folder that I won't look in and every Monday morning we will do the same thing. The plan is that he will tell me how much weight I've lost on a weekly basis and overall and I will stop dieting when I actually feel good about myself instead of letting myself get obsessed with numbers. I hope this little tactic will work, I suppose we will see that in the weeks to come.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Radio Play and RCU DONE

Hooray my last assignment of the year is done! Now I can officially kick back and look forward to Christmas. Well apart from the fact that I have to email my tutor with a digital version of the script and then she will be emailing them all over to the radio production students and they will be picking five or six of them to produce. I will be holding my breath hoping that mine is chosen, but if it isn't I am actually still really pleased with myself. I've had some hard times this semester and I'm really proud that I've managed to create a piece of work that I'm really proud of despite that. It doesn't need to be in by tomorrow and this time last year I was struggling to get everything done in time; a massive contrast to this year. I've been thinking long and hard about how and where I can improve and have been making tiny little changes that hopefully might make the difference. I really hope that I can get a 60 or over for this piece of work and have got everything crossed until I find out  my result in January.

So now that I have time to myself over Christmas what am I planning on doing? Working out is top of the list and I have a lovely shiny new kinect to do this with so I should have lots of fun while I do it. Being a bit of a nerd I love that I can get more gamerscore on my xbox account while I get fit. I also plan on doing some cross stitch, my Mum told me she can no longer see the holes in order to do it herself so she gave me one to do for her. She really wanted it done because it's a lovely picture of a dog that looks just like hers and she wanted it framed and on the wall at some point. I also want to get some baking done. I have my cupcake  maker as you know and I already have some recipes lined up that I want to try. There will be pics of my attempts coming up in the next few weeks.

For anyone else who has an Xbox live account my gamertag is Pink Banoffee, feel free to send me a friend request.


Friday, 9 December 2011

Christmas decorations are up

I've spent today cleaning and putting up all my christmas decorations and I actually feel worn out. Maybe it's the lack of sleep because my other half was out drinking with work mates last night and although I had a (fairly - for me!) early night he came in very loudly and making sure to cuddle me until I woke up and then he was telling me all about his lovely meal he had and how he had been drinking all night and hadn't paid for anything. So we were up for half the night just talking about what fun he had with his work mates, then I got up early and spent most of the day cleaning and making our flat look festive and now I feel just about ready to drop. I will very soon be having a bath so hot that I almost pass out when dipping a foot in and then settling down into bed. Tomorrow I'll be making the finishing touches to my radio play and writing my RCU which will be my last assignment before Christmas. I plan on doing some reading for pleasure which I'm really looking forward to and doing some writing for myself. I will have a whole month off over Christmas and I intend to do some creative things for myself - it's always much more enjoyable when you write because you feel like it instead of writing in an attempt to get a certain grade...

Whatever you're doing this weekend, whether it's quiet or busy, enjoy it. This time next week you'll be panicking about Christmas.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Help from writers...

I'm going to be trying to keep this post quite short as I've just been baking another cake - i'm going to visit my Mum on Thursday and she's cooking me dinner so I thought I had better make something nice for her for afters, and it's in the oven at the moment so I don't want to lose track of time and also - when I bake I tend to have a tipple or two and now I'm nicely lightheaded and easily distracted!

My point in this post is I'd like to know if any of my writer friends have always enjoyed one type or writing or do you write in more than one format? Uni makes you take all different modules and before I went I was looking forward to the prose and story writing but since I've got there I really enjoy and am good at the script writing. I'm confused as to what I want to focus on now or should I try more than one? Have you always known what you wanted to do? Or did you have to think about it and test it out? My dream was always to write books but I think it might be starting to change! I assume this is normal as we assess everything depending on what happens to us in life and doing well in and enjoying scriptwriting so much is really making me consider it as an option. If anyone has any opinions or advice then please comment I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Monday, 5 December 2011

New design

OK so I've spent ages trying to design my blog so it looks a bit more interesting and prettier - don't know if I like the outcome yet but I'm leaving it as it is for now to see if it grows on me at all. I love the purple colour at least I know that!

In other news my dramatic writing tutor handed me back my radio play today and told me that I should get a very high mark for it as long as my essay about it does it justice - which it should as I realised yesterday I've actually got a lot less to do than I first thought - it's the only thing I have left to do this semester! Big smiley face! So going to change a couple of bits in the play and then write the essay, and then I can look forward to Christmas properly! Yay! I finished writing my cards out today and will post them tomorrow, then I just need to buy a few more bits and wrap them. I'm looking forward to putting my decorations up at the weekend - then it really will be Christmas! I can't believe another year is nearly at an end - crazy times! Hoping that 2012 is a good one!

Sunday, 4 December 2011

I love Shakespeare...

Today I finished my essay off for my critical analysis of an extract taken from As You Like It and I'm quite pleased with the finished product. I do feel a bit of a nerd enjoying my work so much but it's simply because the topic is Shakespeare. Not only are his plays a pleasure to read or watch  because there's so much going on in them and of course the language and format but also because I find him such a fascinating character! Perhaps the fact that we know very little about his personal life makes him even more interesting to me. Anyway I have downloaded a book to my kindle about him and not only is it helping me massively with my studies it's also incredibly enjoyable to read. I started off just skimming through it earlier to find a quote to reference my essay to and ended up climbing into bed, snuggling under the covers and reading much more than I was intending! I'm definitely going to read the whole thing but will have to make myself wait until I have a month off for christmas as I have a few more assingments to do before this semester is over and they'll never get done if I continue reading this book! For anyone interested in Shakespeare as I am the book is called 1599: A Year in the life of William Shakespeare and can be found on amazon here. As I am an English Literature student as well as Creative Writing I intend on doing my dissertation on Shakespeare next year and I have a feeling that this book will be massively helpful for that.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

New writing tactic!

Well, this is going to sound incredibly obvious but oh well, I've had a moment of realisation! So I have an essay due in on Monday and I've been trying all week to write it but with no luck. This is mainly due to my fiance being home from work for a week and generally being loud and a distraction - always suggesting that we go do something shortly after I sit down to work. Yes this is my fault for not saying no, but still, it's annoying! The story is basically that I accidentally gave the modem a bath and now the wireless won't work! This is OK seeing as both our computers sit close enough to the modem that we don't need to use the wireless internet, but today, out of desperation I took my laptop to bed, feeling a  tad hungover after having a girls night in, and for some reason, having no internet, nobody on msn, facebook chat or twitter, I had written over half my essay within an hour! I've almost finished it now, just need to look through my kindle for some lovely quotes to finish it off. I am definitely doing this more often, not only is the quality of work better (in my opinion!), but I am writing so much quicker this way. So completely cutting myself off for an hour or two means more time to do fun things after! Sounds good to me!

Here is a picture of a lovely chocolate cake that I made while drinking last night with my cousin Loppy to brighten my blog up and make you all hungry! :) Hope you're all having a lovely weekend.


Tuesday, 29 November 2011

The Old Republic - pics!

Here are some pictures I found on facebook if anyone was interested to see what the new Star Wars MMO looks like:








Monday, 28 November 2011

Radio Play Update

So as I've said before, my dramatic writing assignment this semester is to write a radio play - and if it's good enough will actually have the chance to get it produced. The radio students need a script to make a radio play from and they will be choosing 5 or 6 scripts that my class has written to produce. Obviously I'm really hoping that mine gets chosen as one of the lucky few but  I'm not getting excited, in case it doesn't happen. I was worried about what people would think of it but today our lecture was to take in a hard copy of our scripts and pair up with a radio student and go through  it, and the girl I had really, really loved my play. She had to read through the entire thing to understand it and I was very nervous watching her sit there reading it with a poker straight expression on her face but the second she finished it, her head jumped up with a massive smile on her face and she declared "i love it!!". She understood it as well which was also lovely and my main fear was that nobody would "get it" as my writing tends to be a little odd to say the least. I'm hoping that it's this that will secure my play a spot in the production category but at the same time I worry that people might prefer to just pick up a normal story to produce. Time will soon tell but the feedback I got today was brilliant and also the girl I got paired up with is actually doing work experience at the BBC which is obviously a really good thing, so I took her opinion really seriously. The fact that someone actually really liked it is enough to make me really happy so I'm pleased but hopefully it's a step in the right direction to actually getting it made. We were also told today that the ones that do get produced they will be trying to actually get them out there for people to listen to and maybe even get them on the radio, if that happened it'd be just so amazing for my writing C.V and of course would make me the happiest person on earth! It's going to be a tense few weeks until I find out if it has been chosen or not!

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Star Wars - The Old Republic

So this weekend I've been really enjoying myself playing the beta for the Star Wars - The Old Republic. I thought I had better write my thoughts down here but before anyone sees it and starts bitching about what I've said - please bear in mind that this is not the thoughts of a female gamer, these are the thoughts of a terrible gamer who has only really ever played one game in any "serious" form and that is World of Warcraft. When WoW recently announced that their next expansion would be based around an awful panda race (which they actually "announced" as an april fools joke previously) I was deeply saddened. I have put (on and off) years into that game and it seemed like nothing could go wrong. Surely the fact that they used this idea to scare everyone as an april fools joke would point out to them how bad this next expansion is - I simply don't understand it. All I can think of is that they're either so sure that they could never fall from grace that it doesn't matter what they release, they will still rake the money in, or they are actually trying to scare their supporters away. When this was announced, I automatically started hoping that The Old Republic would be seriously good. I even announced to my guild that if I haven't already stopped playing by then, I will not be buying the panda expansion and I will not be playing once it had been released.

Please excuse me while I compare ToR to WoW but as I have already stated, it is not only the only MMO I have ever played, but the only "real" game I've ever put any effort into. This can easily be seen by looking at my Xbox live gamertag and noticing how little gamerscore I have, and then noting that the points I do have mostly came from fitness games on the kinect. So how does someone like that end up playing WoW? Well my lovely friends Becky and Becca from school were playing it and they got me into it. I really liked the idea of playing a game online. The way that Becca explained WoW to me was "It's easy, you just talk to this little man over here who will tell you to kill 10 bumheads and then return to him, that's all you have to do". So, in these terms, ToR is much the same, you go and kill so many bumheads or collect so many items and then go back and hand the mission in and claim a reward. Unlike WoW however, attached to every mission there is a cinematic which is not only interesting and fun to watch and help you enjoy the story, but there are a series of options for you to choose between as to how to react to the situation. Some of them even affect your allignment and will help you either go "light or dark". Because of this, you are in charge of how your game pans out and exactly the stance in which you want your character to take.

The next main difference is that each starting area depends on what class you choose instead of race, and as you level, you gain a companion who helps you on missions and who you build a relationship with over time. Each class gets their own companion and while it is an MMO and is designed to be played with other players, it also means that for the most part you can also play alone as well. I chose to play a Jedi Sage which is a healing class and having a big green lizard man helping me with lots of mobs really helped me to survive and get my missions done not just quick but actually enjoyably. These companions can also fill a role in a group if needed as well, for example I grouped up with 2 random guys to do a quest in a heroic area and one of us was able to use our companion as the 4th and final member of the group. I can imagine this being really handy if you can't find enough people for the task at hand. The choices that you make as you go on your missions affect your relationship with your companion and you can even win his affection by giving him gifts! I felt that this was another aspect that put ToR way above WoW. I can't remember the amount of times I have been stuck on a quest on WoW and either had to wait until a friend came to bail me out or just got fed up completely and logged out of the game completely. This mechanic should help with these issues a lot.

As for the storyline, as a person who has no interest in sci fi or Star Wars in the slightest I seriously doubted that I would enjoy the game at all. In fact the only reason I have been on the beta weekend is because my other half signed me up, unwillingly, for it. But so far the story has been really interesting and fun to play out, and actually, even at the very low levels has seemed quite "epic" which is something you just don't get on WoW. You literally have to go through tens and hundreds of "kill 10 of these" quests until you find something that you think, actually, that was fun and exciting on WoW. And of course all of the cinematics and engaging questions help to keep even people like me, who have as much of an attention span as a goldfish, interested and aware of exactly what is going on. And if you leave the game and come back to it later, you even get a "prologue" screen that gives you a run down of the last thing you were doing, just in case you forgot.


If I carry on writing I will be here for days, so we will keep it at those things that I feel, make the game so much better than I was expecting and what I have previously experienced in games. As a quick run down, the graphics are lovely, while still being cartoony are much less "crappy" than WoW's - probably because everything has been scaled much better and also there has been a hell of a lot of detail put into your surroundings. Even when I use my "meditation" spell, the light that comes off me lights up the room I'm in and also I can see the light shining off my companion. I'm sure the die hard Star Wars fans love it and that it is exactly how they would imagine it in their minds. I actually play on a crappy laptop and was worried that I wouldn't be able to play it - but it seems that I could not only run it but also with the graphics looking very nice still. The game was a little jumpy but it is in beta so I would expect that, and I didn't even get disconnected once. The community were really friendly and helpful but I assume again that it's because of it being a beta and everyone is excited because it's fresh and new!

I think the main reason why I have enjoyed it so much is because I have been getting increasingly bored and frustrated with WoW and ToR seems to have a fresh approach that while still playing an MMO, gives you a completely different playing experience. I don't think that any game could take players away from WoW but after the panda's were announced I am now really not so sure! I for one will not be going back to WoW once ToR is out because for the first time in ages I have been able to play a game for hours on end without getting bored. I would suggest that anyone who has been feeling tired of WoW as I have, should at least give ToR a go.

It has also made me consider what type of writing I would like to go into, and of course anyone who knows me knows that I 1) would love to have a career in writing no matter what sort of writing I was doing, and 2) really enjoy and excell in script writing. In fact my script writing tutor at uni even suggested to me that I should look into writing storylines and scripts for games and now I'm starting to feel like it would be something I would love to do and I am certainly going to look into it more.

I was hoping to post some screenshots but for some reason every time I tried to get some they ended up black?? My other half was having the same issue so I assume it was a bug that needed fixing while in beta. So because that failed, here is a picture of Yoda looking cute to make my blog look a bit more nerdy!

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Been Busy Busy!

OK so I've had some personal issues to deal with which have now settled down and I am back to focus on my writing. I'm currently putting the finishing touches to my radio play ready for Monday - I need to have a finished hard copy ready to show to the radio production students and I am really, really hoping that they decide to produce mine. I'm really pleased with how it's looking so far and am also really happy with the idea that I came up with too. I'm planning on putting it up here at some point so that people can start to actually see what my writing is like! I'm focussing on getting this piece finished, seeing if it can be produced and then putting it up here once all that's done. I'm going to finish it off now and then grab myself some food. On a bit of a diet and tonight is one of my "naughty nights" but still it's only a half fat quiche and 3% fat oven chips... but still it's better than salad so I will very much enjoy it! Hope all my friends and writer friends are well and I'll be updating here again very soon, and of course once my writing is finished I'll be catching up on all my favourite blogs!

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

First Essay of the Year Started!

OK so I have only written the title and a few words but hell I'm proud of myself. The essay doesn't have to be handed  in until the end of next week and is only 1500 words long. This time last year I would be putting it off until next week to do so surely this is an improvement. Now all I have to do is turn it into a paragraph or two of waffling and I will be well on my way! As much as I enjoy uni I will be glad when writing about things that I really don't care about are over and done with. Hopefully in a few years I will have my very own writing career and be able to write about things that I really care for. Like I do here I guess only in a "proper" capacity. Still, it's nice that I know there's people who read and care about what I have to say. That's why I keep coming back. Thanks to anyone mental enough to read my blog :)) x

Friday, 21 October 2011

The Right Thing

What is the right thing to do? How do we know what the right decision is? This is something I've been considering over the past couple of days and I have made my mind up that it is not always the option that feels the best for you. Depending on what the situation is of course, sometimes you really do just have to put yourself first. But when it comes to people and relationships you have to try and do what's best for them, if you care about them enough. Whatever will cause your loved one the least hurt, grief and pain is what you need to do, even if it makes you feel like utter balls afterwards. At least the feeling of knowing you have done the right thing for them should be enough to get yourself through the pain that you will feel.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Naughty naughty

OK I've been really really naughty and not updated this for absolutely ages. Well as of right now the break ends! I would love to say I've been really busy doing lots of uni work but sadly this isn't even the case. After doing nothing for weeks and weeks I've found getting back into the swing of uni a bit hard to say the least. But from now on I will be posting on here every few days like I did before, even if it is about utter crap and quite short.

So what shall we talk about today? I really badly want my hair cut! I'm just a bit scared to go have it done! I don't want to go to my usual hairdresser as she is ages away, and the only reason I went to her anyway is because work was close by, now she is a million years away and to be rather blunt I cannot be bothered to travel that far. So what's the problem why can't I just walk into any hairdressers? Because, where I live, is known for being rather expensive and I really don't want to have to spend a fortune to have my hair chopped. I've decided how I want it cut now I think. I was growing it but as usual, when I grow it it just gets to a point where it starts looking disgusting so I think I'm going to have a bob again. Maybe something like this:



I do love how Fearne is working this. Lets hope that I find a cheap enough but also good enough hairdressers fairly soon because I really feel like a change! So much so that I'm looking at piercings and tattoos. Getting a tattoo is obviously far too outrageous for me due to my horrible fear of needles but piercings I can put up with. I did have my belly button pierced twice and survived so anything else should be a walk in the park. So I was thinking maybe a little nose piercing. I think just a diamond in my nose would look quite pretty. So now to find somewhere to get pierced that isn't a tattoo parlour with big hairy men. Hmmm. It's definitely time for a bit of change in my life, even if it does just start with the hair and nose.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Kindle!

I really need to work on posting more while I'm busy but it was my first week back to uni so I guess it's allowed! I have a kindle! yay! My lovely boyfriend bought it for me along with a gorgeous pink case with a light on it. The idea was to put all my uni books on it so i don't need to carry much to uni but that bubble was burst when we discovered the 2 biggest fattest books that I need aren't available on the kindle! Oh well! It's still gorgeous and reduces my "real" book collection by a lot and will help me to save money especially next year when I need books then as well. Also is quite helpful considering my flat is fairly small and now i can gain some space by chucking a few crappy old books out that I can now get on my kindle. I do love the smell of a new book and the feeling a book brings me, but at the same time, I feel that the plus side is much weighter than the minus. If anyone is a fan of reading and buys a lot of books they really need to consider buying one of these, and as for uni students, particularly english lit or creative writing, it is absolutely amazing. Go go, buy buy!!

Monday, 26 September 2011

1st day back to uni!!

And oh my goodness I am so tired! I forgot how much effort it is to walk the 40 minutes there, walk around campus all day and then walk 40 minutes back again. I should be losing a lot of weight very soon! So I'm a bit annoyed that they seem to have messed up one of my modules and put me on one for 3rd years??? But hopefully they will be able to change this for me and put me on the one that I wanted in the first place... anyway, I felt much better when I went to my first dramatic writing lecture of the year. My favourite module because, well, it's all about writing plays, which I love, and which I'm also rather good at. I would love for someone to like one of my plays enough to actually put it on... perhaps one day! Anyway that's kind of my point to this post. I'm actually incredibly excited about writing my assignment - I know right? What a freak! But once I've explained, it will make more sense! Basically, for my dramatic writing module this semester, the focus is entirely on radio plays. Plays that aren't acted out but that are spoken over the radio. Everyone's heard of the archers, right? I'm a bit daunted that I have to write an assignment in this format but also excited because the focus is entirely on needing really good, well written dialogue, which is my strong point apparently. At least that's what I was told last year! But the reaaally exciting part of all this is that once we have finished writing them, and handed them in to be graded, a select few of them will be picked out and actually produced. So this is not only a chance to put effort in and get a decent grade, but also to actually have the opportunity to have my work brought to life. It would definitely be a step up the writing ladder! So now I need to start thinking about what to write about and then crack on with trying to write it. There's some really good writers in my class, I just hope that what I come up with is good enough to contend!

Monday, 19 September 2011

Do we always mean what we say?

The simple answer is no. All it takes is to use one word that doesn't quite sound right and an entire sentence and even paragraph can be a lost cause. This is one of the reasons why I love writing so much; because if you make one simple mistake due to not thinking clearly, the atmosphere of the entire piece can be ruined. I don't feel like that is possible with most other creative processes, like painting for example. One wrong brush stroke isn't good news but it can be glossed over if need be. One wrong word can mean something else, completely, and you might not even realise it. This is why I have so much respect for writers who consistently write beautifully and coherently throughout their entire book(s), it makes a really good story completely come alive as each word rolls off another. It allows the reader to see how much love and effort has gone into making something that they truly believe in and care about.

But unfortunately we all make mistakes sometimes! Whether it's in writing, a conversation or, like what happened to me a couple of days ago, a status update. While it's important to be proud of those words that you put together that just simply work beautifully, I also believe it's important to have a laugh at our own mistakes. Luckily, after I read my status update back to myself, I realised how it sounded. Here's my example of not saying what I actually meant to:


Would love to hear anyone elses word faux pas to help brighten up this rather grey and dreary Monday morning!!

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Cakes cakes cakes

So today I've been using my time to bake some chocolate chip cupcakes, one of my favourite hobbies even though I don't do it as much as I should! One of my favourite posessions is my beautiful cupcake maker. It does exactly the same things as an oven only it cooks the cupcakes more evenly and finishes off the top beautifully. Always a perfectly shaped dome every single time. Not only that but it does it in half the time.


It is basically a pink waffle iron only with cupcake holes in it instead. You simply put a cupcake case into the holes and then spoon in your cake mix, leave for 5-10 minutes and then remove. The lights on the top show you when it is ready to go. These are a really good idea for professional cupcake makers as you can literally half the time it would take to bake them in the oven and as I said, I find it much easier to get the perfect result by using this little beast! I got mine as a Christmas gift last year and absolutely love it.... this should be a must have for anyone who enjoys baking as much as I do. A lovely gift idea for a man not knowing what to buy the lady in his life. Afterall it is nearly Christmas....

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

The Big White Dress

Sorry for anyone who likes reading my blog, I have been a bit quiet over the past week as it was one of my best friends wedding on Saturday which was really, really lovely. Everyone had a wonderful time and I would just like to say a big congratulations to Jo and Dave, the new Mr and Mrs Findlay.


Jo had been looking forward to her big day for quite literally years and I'm so pleased that everything turned out just how she wanted it to.

It got me thinking about weddings and how they're all so different, depending on what the couple (or lets face it, the woman) wants. Men are not as bothered by them, obviously it's still one of their biggest days of their lives as well but women quite literally dream about what theirs will be like for years until it finally happens. This is what makes me so happy to see everything run smoothly for my first friend to get married and I really can't wait until my next friend walks down the aisle, whether it's big or small.

Monday, 5 September 2011

It's September!

Which means all of the autumn/winter clothes and accessories are in stores and only a few weeks left until I get my student loans - a spend up just has to happen. I do love the summer but winter is definitely my favourite. Snuggling up with knitted jumpers, dresses with thick tights and my absolute favourite, comfy slouchy boots is just the best when the weather gets colder. Not to mention that I love knitting which only really feels right to do after the autumn starts. I don't feel quite so much of a hermit sitting at home knitting when its pouring with rain outside!

I've got my eyes on these shoe/boots to wear with leggings or a dress, a steal at 30 quid from new look
This long top to wear with leggings £19.99

and this absolute beauty! bit more expensive at £54.99 but it really is gorgeous!
Now I really do want my loans to hurry up! There's nothing better than a few lovely new season outfits!

Friday, 2 September 2011

Feeling inspired! & people going GAGA

So I have a few followers now and today I put some real effort into reading their blogs and looking at people who also follow my new followers! (there will be far too many uses of the word "follow" in this post.....) and oh my goodness there are 1. really lovely blogs around. Very nicely put together, thought out lovingly where people put down their inner thoughts and feelings... and 2. some really really good writers! It's amazing that some people put some of their work on their blogs where we can read and see what they're about and what they can produce and today I stumbled upon a lot of really lovely work and it has made me open up my documents folder and crack on with writing my story that I haven't touched for a few days. Definitely will be sitting at my desk writing over the weekend. Thanks to the people who put their work online, even if only snippets it's a really good way to inspire yourself by looking at what other people have produced. So yeah... will be continuing with my story for another 30 mins or so tonight and then some of the weekend :)

But if you know me at all you'll know this post isn't going to end there! I find something that annoys me almost daily and today it is peoples reaction to Lady Gaga who decided to dress up as a man for an awards ceremony. OK this isn't exactly normal behaviour for the average woman but since when has she been average? Never. I found lots of different blogs and reports online saying that she has finally gone "too far" by spending the whole evening pretending to be a man. I do not in any way understand why people are so shocked. In her new video for "You and I" (a really lovely song with a country kind of style that shows her vocal skills off very well) she dresses up in some weird outfits even including a mermaid... you know don't listen to me just watch it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9YMU0WeBwU&ob=av2e

Listen to the song as well because it's really lovely! Anyway as you will see, she dresses up as many different characters through the whole video, one of them being a man. Gaga has also done some photoshoots dressed as this man... it is all just to promote her new video. Why are people so shocked by this? She clearly loves being able to dress up as and be whoever she wants to be and she has done this in every single one of her videos and not to mention when she wore a dress made out of meat to an awards ceremony... how is this more shocking than that? People on the internet have been saying she has taken it too far as dressing as a man is a bad role model for young girls. I would love these people to tell me when Lady Gaga has ever tried to appeal to young girls? Her albums are all about sex, fame and not to mention her videos that have come before like Telephone set in a women's prison. None of this cries out to me that she is trying to appeal to youngsters at all.

What Lady Gaga represents not just to me but also to loads of her fans is that you can wear and do whatever the hell you want as long as you feel happy with it and I do not understand how you can put a limit on this to be able to declare that "she has taken it too far". Something might not be right for you but that doesn't mean that others can't do it... We are afterall, individuals.



Wednesday, 31 August 2011

I Love Literature!

And yet I still can't help but read "chick lit" novels and trashy magazines... why is that? At uni we are taught to only read the "well written" novels, books that the average person will have never heard of. In my creative writing lectures we have to sit through our teacher telling us not to write like Dan Brown or J K Rowling etc... hell he even snorts and demeans the way that their books are written! And the subject matter thinking about it... and yet he is an old man who hhas been writing his entire life and has obviously never really got much success from it. How can writing be creative if you cannot write about what you want? Well, we can but that means we will not neccessarily be taken seriously by certain people and you know what... that's fine with me. I would much rather read and write books that make me feel emotions instead of looking down at the page and thinking hmmm yes, that is written well. Don't get me wrong, one of my favourite people in the whole entire world is Shakespeare - I am a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company and I frequently go and watch performances in Stratford when I have the money to do so. The Turn Of The Screw is another that I love; a beautifully written eerie novella.... the list goes on. But I suppose my point is although we can enjoy the well written classics, we can also let our hair down and read books with less heavy substance.

I love reading, I don't see it as a chore like many people my age. I love the idea that a few words on a page can actually make me think and feel different emotions and I hope that one day I will also be successful in writing something that makes others do the same. That is my ultimate goal.

While it is still the summer (the weeks are disappearing quicker and quicker as the return date to uni looms) I have been reading some "chick lit" books and at the moment I am on "The Perfect 10" by Louise Kean. I have never picked up a book by this author before I just liked the look of it to be honest; light and fluffy... perfect for my summer. I was shocked when the first chapter detailed the abduction of a child in front of the heroins eyes. Not quite what I was expecting. But anyway I have only read 80 pages so far but I am genuinely really enjoying reading it. The main character is a 20 something woman who has lost an awful lot of weight but it still going... desperately trying to fit into a pair of size 10's before she can declare her weight loss "finished". I think I like this book so much because I too have been on diets and lost weight in the past and I totally understand everything she talks about. She mentions how all she has to do is look at an item of food and seconds later has worked out the exact calorie content. I can do that. I always thought it was normal behaviour until I met my boyfriend who was baffled by it. He started playing a game with himself, picking up a chocolate bar or a pork pie in the super market and making me guess the calories just by looking at it, shielding the wrapper from me. He still does it to this day, three years later and I am still getting 9/10 tries either right or scarily close to being so.

Anyway my point is that it's good to read books that we feel we have a connection with. It's wonderful coming across a character who seems to know everything about what you are going through or have been through and nobody should tell anyone what is "good literature" and what is "bad" for this reason.

Much love to all my friends reading and writing what they want to, not what they think they should

Sunday, 28 August 2011

The Sims Social!

Oh my goodness! Yes, it's landed and I absolutely love it! I am such a massive fan of everything "The Sims" and when I saw The Sims Social announced I thought to myself hmmm seems a bit crap - a dumbed down version of a game that I really love? Will this work? Actually, it really does. Obviously it lacks a lot of what the "real" games do but the fact that anything you want you have to work at and ask your friends to help you get it means that the social aspect is what makes it work.

So in social you don't actually go out and get a job to earn your simoleons, you do things around the house to earn you xp and money and as you level up and up more things are unlocked for you to play with. I managed to level up several times and earn loads of money just by cutting the grass and clearing away all the rubbish from outside - cleverly placed there to get the ball rolling as you get used to the game.



The bars at the bottom of the screen tell you what your sim wants and when, and again there seems to be a massive importance placed on the social aspect, having to visit your neighbours regularly just to keep your sim in a good mood.

You can build new rooms onto your house and buy new furniture in the shop section but of course your friends need to send you a certain amount of materials per item until it is completely done, the same as in Farmville when you want to build your horses a stable but need 10 wooden boards etc to complete the job. I have also noticed that as you do daily things around your house like cook or take a shower you collect random objects which can then be made into a mood boosting item once you have collected them all:







A nice way of helping your sim stay happy and to keep you playing the game for longer. You can also make money by growing your own food in the garden or even by playing the guitar, depending on what traits you chose for your sim at the start (mine is creative).

I could go on and on about everything I have found so far but really you do need to just go and give it a go. It's a brilliantly addictive Facebook game that actually involves your friends like never before. The best aspect for me is that if you want to flirt or even (yes, I'm being serious) woohoo with one of your friends they will either have to accept or disagree to what you want. Yes it is virtual but the fact that your friends will know you have thought about it is surely awkward enough! EA are being clever by doing this, appealing to a whole new audience, gamers who only want to spend 30 minutes a day playing and also staying social with their friends while doing it.

Thank you EA for giving me yet another version of The Sims to play and love! This will be keeping me off Farmville.... if you haven't tried it out yet go and get on there now!



Thursday, 25 August 2011

Is Gaming Dangerous?

Of course it bloody isn't. Yet we are still told that it's violent games, films and television programmes that inspire violence in our modern day society. It angers me that people, especially those that people respect and listen to, carry on saying this rubbish. Supernanny Jo Frost has now even gone as far as to blame video games for the UK riots. This not only upsets me, it downright pisses me off. Can we really blame something that's completely unrelated to the problem? According to her we can! Here is what she said in her column on express.co.uk:

With hooded youths in pitched battles with police, all reason gone and high on destruction, I felt for a moment as if we had stumbled into a real-life violent video game of the kind that so many of those involved are addicted to. These horrific games where points are given for burning, shooting and killing, where the graphics are so realistic you believe that they’re real scenes of carnage, where those who play fantasise they have the power of life and death, are so brutal they completely desensitise anyone taking part.



I love Grand Theft Auto as much as anyone but I can honestly say I have never accidentally mistaken it to be "real scenes of carnage" and I really struggle to believe that anyone else would do the same. Even the rioters aren't that stupid. Many of the people rioting were doing so for a reason: protesting because the London police killed an innocent man. The people who didn't really know what they were doing were all teenagers, bored over the summer. None of them were running around with guns shooting prostitutes, stealing cars or killing people for no reason whatsoever, so why do games which allow you to do these things come into question? They shouldn't.

Technology is allowing us to do or be whoever or whatever we want in this modern world and I think it's a wonderful thing. What about all the children who want a puppy but can't have one? Nintendogs will sort that out. What about all the football games that allow you to play for your favourite team? What about all the games that allow you to sing and dance in the comfort of your own home? There are so many games out there that aren't violent in the slightest yet it's the same thing. Obviously there are more grown up games like Grand Theft Auto or Call of Duty where you can kill people, but coming home from a long day of work and shooting a few people on the Xbox is not going to make someone think they can do this in real life in the same way that playing Guitar Hero doesn't automatically make people think they can go and become a real rock star.

As for "completely desensitising anyone taking part" I wonder if Jo Frost actually realises how stupid people would have to be for this to be true? If she is owning up to seeing a violent game and therefore feeling the need to be violent within her life like she is suggesting, then to be honest she needs help. We play these games because we can't and wouldn't do it in any other way and there is nothing wrong with that. In my opinion, this is the way life should be. I love taking my anger out on Black Ops by shooting people in the face, it makes me feel better and if I'm stressed there's nothing else that makes me feel better this quick. You really don't need to be a genius to know right from wrong and it really isn't hard to understand the difference between real life and a fantasy. I play a hunter on World of Warcraft it doesn't lead me to believe that I can go tame a wild lion and shoot dragons in order to get myself shiny things. I dare Jo Frost to find a handful of people that play games who believe that they can do in their day to day lives what they do in the game - they just do not exist. With technology advancing the way it is "gamers" do not exist anymore. Everyone plays games in some sort of capacity even if it is just Farmville or the Wii Fit. The people playing these games are normal people who are brought up to know the difference between right and wrong, real and fake.





Saturday, 20 August 2011

Bare Minerals Bright and Beautiful set


I wanted to say a few words about this make up set that my Mum bought me for my birthday. I have used Bare Minerals before but mostly just the foundation and brushes.

The first thing that I will say about it is that the foundation that comes in the kit is absolutely massive. I had a smaller pot that actually lasted me over a year with frequent (but not always daily) use so I was over the moon when I saw the size of the one I was getting in this kit. It also has SPF15 in it and because of the soft mineral style of the foundation it never goes on cakey or thick and most importantly to me it never causes me to get spots like other, cheaper and especially liquid foundations do. The Prime Time Brightening foundation primer does exactly what it says on the tin, as well as leaving my face feeling soft and ready for foundation in just one quick spray. I simply pump once onto the palm of my hand, rub my hands together and quickly rub all over my face. It's wonderful putting make up on when it feels so good and kind to your skin as there's no worrying about what spots you're going to come across the next day due to thick make up!

The "vivacious" blush is yet again in a massive pot that I should think will last me forever, and if not forever it will certainly keep going for years. I was worried about putting this on when I first used it as I have very pale skin and if I put even slightly too much on the brush with other brands I always end up looking like a clown, but that doesn't happen in this case. I can put a decent amount on the brush and apply straight away. You learn how much is the right amount for you by starting off putting a small amount on and building up. This blush allows you to make the look right for yourself, if you only wanted a tiny amount on you can do this by applying a small amount and buffing onto your skin. It blends right the way down or up if you wanted a heavier night time look. I love this about this blush as I was using cheaper brands before and had to use different colours for different occasions. Now I can do everything with just one.

One of my favourite parts of the kit is the Prime Time Brightening eye lid primer. It really does keep all my eyeshadow in place for hours on end and gives a beautiful soft nudey golden shimmer. You can even wear this alone for a natural but bright eyed look. I like to apply it all the way up to my brows so that it works as a highlighter above my shadow once I put it on.

The eyeshadow that comes in the kit is a lovely dusky pink colour. I find that it works in the same way as the blush, If I apply a small amount it stays pink and fresh looking and blends down lovely, but if I want a darker more dramatic look (which I always do as I love playing up my eyes) I simply apply more and blend and it becomes a more purple plum colour which is gorgeous and very flattering. It also goes very well with the plum Big and Brightening eyeliner that comes in the kit. It's very creamy so goes on with no tugging, even on the upper lashes which I usually struggle to do with pencil eyeliners with other brands. I have quite sensitive eyes so it's a joy to find an eyeliner that I don't have to spend ten minutes applying. After two minutes if that both of my eyes are done and raring to go. The best aspect of this eyeliner is that it does not budge! I can wear it in the daytime and not need to worry about needing to apply it again every thirty minutes. This makes it a great one to wear to work, or actually anywhere that you will be busy.

The pink glittery lip gloss ties it all together into a completed sophisticated look. I shy away from colours on my lips as my eyes are always the focus of attention which suits me perfectly in this kit as the lip gloss is a barely there colour but gives an amazing amount of shine and glamour. For girls who like to show their lips off if you put a lipstick underneath this gives an amazing top coat and looks incredibly glamorous.

The only pieces that I use that are not bare minerals is a liquid concealer for bags under my eyes and mascara as I like my lashes to look very black and bold.

The kit comes with an eyeshadow brush with a smudge type brush on the other side which I will be treasuring. It's so hard to find decent brushes without paying mega money and the brushes I have got with my Bare Minerals kits soon became my favourite and easily the best brushes I have ever used.

I would not call Bare Minerals cheap but one kit really will last you such a long time that it is brilliant value for money. Personally I would rather spend a chunk of money in one go and know that I will not have to spend anymore for a long time (6 months - a year) than spend small amounts but end up needing to spend more every few weeks. I am a student with not much money at all and for me these kits are brilliant as I can get pretty much everything I need for a full face and not have to worry about replacing for, in my case a year or possibly even longer.

Because of how well these blend I would say they would suit any skin type and especially would suit girls who suffer from spots or bad skin because of how light they are. I tend to get spots from wearing make up but since using Bare Minerals I rarely ever get them now - only when my hormones are going crazy!

The best thing for me about Bare Minerals is I can go to uni looking natural but groomed and can blend more in for a night time look very easily. Also, it goes on so easily that it literally only takes me about ten minutes to have a completed full face of make up which for a student is great news - more time in bed before those early morning lectures!

http://www.qvcuk.com/ukqic/qvcapp.aspx/app.nav/params.pricefilter.00000.brandfilter.null.stonefilter.null.specialfilter.0.trymefilter.0.ezpayfilter.0.level.3.class.UKAKTFOP/walk.yah.UKHB~U050

That link will take anyone who is interested in Bare Minerals to the QVC page, they don't seem to have the kit I have reviewed here in stock but there are other kits listed that I will be looking into buying when my student loans come through. I absolutely love Bare Minerals and can't wait to add more to my collection!