Tuesday, 22 April 2014

The gift that keeps giving. Organ Donation.

I'm a firm believer in making the most of the life that you have and leaving a positive mark on the world when your time is up... (A somewhat morbid thought there, ehh?)

And its for this reason that I'd finally sorted myself out and signed up to become an organ donor. I'm not going to lie, I've been thinking about it for years and now finally I'm now one of the 20,000,000 people that have pledged their organs to help save those that are on the Donor Register and actually need these organs to be able to survive their life and therefore leaving there positive impact. To me, its all one big cycle.

The actual sign-up was so unbelievably simple and I have a fully say in what they could take and which I am less comfortable will, so that they cant. (Funnily enough, I'm not liking the idea of them taking my eyes...) I, myself, cannot see why people who claim that they want to be a donor or agree with the idea put off the signup.

I know that everyone has their own views and that not everyone likes the idea of their loved ones choosing to give up parts of themselves if the situation happens to arise but this is my chance to leave a lasting gift to someone else.

I hope that my family are never put in the situation that this is what happens but this is my contingency plan for leaving on a good note. Either way, I will have a positive impact, no matter how big or small or someones life.

Friday, 18 April 2014

What I would tell myself as I started University?

Dear, Slightly younger and more innocent self,

Univeristy is the time in which it is safe to say that I have grown up changed and that I have learnt a lot that I now use in my life. There are several things I wish I had known when I had started and now is my chance to tell you so that you have the chance to change your ways!

1. Don't take life to seriously - Life's too short to be serious 24/7. Not only does it mean that there is less time to laugh and make memories, you will find that these memories are the things that you look back on, specifically late night, over a tub of ice cream, while debating how much you hate revision and realistically how well you can do with your exams.

2. Give your lectures a chance, even if you don't like the lecturer. - There is always one lecturer that you don't like/don't like their teaching style/can't be bothered with. All I can say is, persevere with it, you can do it. Just give yourself time and remember you won't be stuck with them forever.

3. Cherish those who make your life better. (And ditch those who don't) - The first piece of advice that I ever had about university was that 'the people that you meet in your first week will not land up being your best friends'. This is true. As is the people that you meet in your first year. Sadly, you will think that you know them, you won't. Find those who are there for you ever step of the day and focus on that friendship, rather than being sucked into the bitchiness and all-out-war.

4.Budgeting isn't as hard as you think. - Money does not grown on trees, which you very well know. Your student loan and income from work are enough to live comfortably on. The thing is as grownup as it seems, budgeting now will make things easier in the long term. Food shops do not need to be expensive, drinking needs not be expensive. Work it out and stick to it.

5. Mixing drinks is never a good idea - Rather self explanatory. Don't even bother mixing spirits and wine. You will honestly only regret it in the morning. I promise.Besides, by the time you get to the end of your first year, you'll have seen what happens from mixing drinks in more than enough detail with everyone else.

Remember, Live, Laugh and Love.


Your slightly older and way more tired self.

This is my entry to the 'What would you tell your younger self?' competition with Legal & General. Enter your entry here!

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Tuesday, 15 April 2014

The 5 Types of Student.

University is the first time most people get to spread their wings and properly fly the nest, meeting new people, experiencing new things (and doing everything mum & dad always told you you shouldn't do!)

You are all students. And I can pretty much tell you that is where the similarities end.
Students of Nan Hua High School gathering in t...
Students of Nan Hua High School gathering in the School Hall. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The people that you meet at university are the people who you'll live with and share the experience with, but I have come to believe that every student at university will fall into 5 distinct categories.

The Socialites - These are the students who spend their lectures as time to meet new people and plan nights out. They are well adapted to deal with the massive hangovers that they suffer, often seeing they as trophies that must be obtained for the night to be deemed a success. It is expected that they are members of a society or other such 'clique'.

The Foreign Exchange - These are those students whose home country isn't the UK. They are hardworking, studious, incredibly polite and can be found congregating in large groups of similar nationality. They are most likely to be found in the library late at night as they cram work in.

The Purposeful - Those students who know what they want to be, how to get there and how long it is going to take them. They are avid note takers, and are found with their hand attached to either their notepad/ipad/their goal. They have a way about them that makes those who do not know what they want to do feel even worse about their predicament.

The Drifters - These students are those who have only come to university for the reason that they do not know what else to do with their time. They are not yet ready to be working full time and although they enjoy their independence, they like to know that they always have someone at home to rely on. They pass the year in the middle ground and just drift from week to week, waiting for the student loans and holidays.

The Sponges - These students are the ones who seemingly do not have to study or revise. They absorb the lecture and seminar material without much trouble and can regurgitate it when necessary, leaving them time to work and play whilst everyone else is panicking about exams.

Which one are you?

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Monday, 14 April 2014

Magic Moments - My day off to London.

There's something impressive about seeing several men seemingly floating in mid air whilst we wandered through Covent Garden. It brought back that a sense of mystery, magic and awe that you can be surrounded with as a child. I was definitely fascinated. (even if they are slightly odd....)

 It was the perfect day out with Nan, my siblings and the BF. We explored Covent Garden, popped into the Barbican for an exhibition. meandered down Regent Street and was thoroughly fascinated at Ripley's: Believe it, or not! at Piccadilly Circus.

Edgar Allan Poe drawn by holding a
canvas over a candle.

Me & the BF on the world's largest Rockingchair.
It was massive!

Whitney Houston made out of cassette tapes.

It was the most amazing day, and though I was exhausted by the end of it, it was a day I will remember for a very long time.

Friday, 11 April 2014

My Very First OOTD - GoaTees Beard Shirts.

All my photos were taken by Valentino Messina
(@Messinav04). Thankyou for taking them with the rather
awkward model!
I'm not a fashion blogger. For that you have to have at least a tiny part of you that is/cares about what is fashionable and to be quite frank I do not.

I am that girl that is as happy to wander about it my BF's trackies as I am to get dressed up... and whether I do depends entirely on whether I can be a***d.

But today is a first. Today I'm sharing my outfit of the day, just because a. I can, and b. I think my t-shirt is amusing.

I present to you GoaTee's, The t-shirt to give anyone - even the least man-ly man - a chance to live with a beard. Supposedly, according to some psychological research, beards command respect from males (If that's not a reason to get one, then what is?!)

Evidently you can see that this is one of those outfits where comfort overrules fashion but hey! sometimes that's just what we need!

GoaTee's were created through a student company at Portsmouth University for a laugh and have actually been selling both online and on their stalls.

T-Shirt - GoaTee's t-shirt £10 (available here)
Leggings - Primark £5
Shoes (You can't see them here...) - Black Converse Hi from Schuh.com £48 - or something similar.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Family Dinner on 3 key ingredients.

Occasionally, we take it in turn to have what can only be describes as an uncoventional family dinner. We'll take it in turn to cook a meal where we sit down and just chat while enjoying good foods - which cost a whole lot less when you break it down to £ per head...

Today, I'm treating you to the rather delightful recipe that was cooked this week. It was something that I wasn't 100% sure I was going to like when it was first suggested to me by Emma (who blogs over here if you want to read something rather different to my little corner of the internet.) but I must admit, I was - as was the BF who doesn't particularly like vegetables - impressed and so will definitely be cooking this again.

All that you need (for 4 people):
-2 Tins of Baby New Potatoes
-2 Leeks
-1 Packet of Bacon

All you need to do:
-Boil potatoes until they are almost soft.
-Drain Potatoes.
-Fry the potatoes in butter, adding in a sprinkle of sugar every time you toss them.
-Chop leeks and bacon.
-Add leeks to potatoes in the pan and add sugar every time you toss.
-Fry bacon in separate pan.
-Combine both pans and then add pinch of salt & a little more sugar into the mix as a whole.

We served our meal with Tiger Bread and lots of butter. Just remember not to go too overboard on the sugar, it's just down to taste.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Help. Mental Health.

More and more people seem to be struggling through life. And by struggling I mean they can't cope with everything (Deadlines, work, volatile relationships, lack of routine and even insomnia) that they are facing, to the point that they break. They believe that this breaking is them being weak because this is what society has instilled in us for such a long time.It is all made somewhat worse by these people, more often that not, suffering in silence for a period of time before they feel that there is enough of an issue to bother anyone else.

A few months back, I wrote about how mental illness could effect anyone and that we needed to raise awareness by talking about these issues... But still I'm seeing people attempt to struggle on by. I know that not everyone likes to talk about things that are bothering them, but should they feel that their breaking is a weakness? No, the breaking is just a sign that they've been trying to be too strong for too long.

If you ever feel that you aren't coping or are even having a bad day, just take a moment to stop. I can pretty much guarantee you are not the only one out of everyone you know finding life hard - even if it feels like you have it worse. It is vital that you remember that no matter how isolated you may feel, you are not alone.

Talk to someone and share the load. Be it a friend, colleague or specialist. The #timetotalk campaign stands to highlight the fact that you are not alone. Never ever. Not even when things seem tough.

Regardless of whether the campaign is in full swing, we need to spread this message. Teach it to the younger generations and between us, we can create a support network to help all of those in need.

Monday, 7 April 2014

Saving Money on your Spends. The CheckoutSmart App.

There is one thing that I have learnt whilst I have been at university, and that is that the most important thing is to budget.

It may seem a brilliant idea to blow your loan on clothes, drink and meals out (after all, there seems to be this misconception that its 'pretend money' and that it means nothing....) but there is nothing worse than finding 6 weeks in that you have a bank balance of £0.76 and that you still need to manage to eat for the next few weeks.... When it gets like this, every will start to pull money from thin air whilst finding enough food to eat.

I have stumbled across this complete gem in recent weeks but wanted to give it a try before I showed you all it... It is a complete gem and magically makes money back on all those supermarket purchases.

I present to you: CheckoutSmart. (Search for it in the App store!)

You shop, upload a picture of your receipts and then make money back on depending on the deals that are currently available, all on your smartphone.

The deals vary week to week, but I'll be honest tend to be things that I buy on a semi-regular basis. I'm sure that if I started to properly think about using this app when I plan my food shops - yes, I plan in advance. It's another way I try to save money. - I could make enough back a week for a treat here or there, or enough to make the end of the student loan period a whole heap easier. (I just need to remember to keep using it!)

What do you think? Would this help you?

Disclaimer: I was not paid to write this review. I received special offers as detailed in this post. As always, all views are my honest opinion.