29/08/2015

Key Study Items For Students

As promised (and a little late!), part 2 of my essentials. Here we'll look at the items that I think are key to helping me study. I enjoy learning but hate revision time because I know I have to knuckle down but I have find having these key finds means I study harder and I'm more organised with my time.

Study Essentials
  • Laptop or iPad/charger- Probably the main essential! Let's face it, we all rely on our technology now so you need this!
  • Textbooks- As much as I rely on my laptop, I do like to be able to read into the modules I'm studying- old school I know!
  • Notebooks for each module- Similarly to above, I love writing notes and tend to take my notebooks to classes and type up my notes at a later date. I like to have a different one for every module!
  • Pens/pencils/highlighters- Like my notebooks, I like to write in coloured pens or at least do my headings in different colours too. 
  • External hard-drive- Because of them amount we store, it's so important to back up your files! This item is actually on my shopping list to buy with the advice of my dad.
  • Reusable water bottle- It's so important to keep hydrated and during exam times especially, I try to drink 3 litres of water a day!
  • A good lamp- I'm a daytime studier but for those of you who like to do work on a night, you'll need a very good light!
  • Planner- I've spent the last few days researching ways to decorate my new planner and have investing in lots of stickers and washi tape too!
  • Tissues- Exam time means stress time means you'll get more colds! 
  • A printer/printer paper/ink cartridges- I do like to view things on my laptop but I also like to have a hard copy to file away of many documents/Powerpoints. 
  • Stapler/hole puncher/scissors- To be able to file documents away, you need to be able to punch holes in them!
  • Pin board- I like to pin letters and inspiration onto my pinboard or urgent matters. I'm going to put my pin board up before the start of term!
  • iPod and dock- For me, I like to have music on when I study; it depends on my mood as to what I want to listen to. 
I haven't done any other essentials becuase I live at home so don't really need to purchse bedroom/bathroom essentials. If you are moving into halls, I suggest you take a look at this article for all the other essentials you might need or check out College Fashion, my favourite website!

On a side note, this is my 100th post which is exciting! Thank you all for reading and I look forward to hundreds more!
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28/08/2015

Key Wardrobe Items For Students

I really enjoy getting organised for going back to school/college/university. If you're a regular reader to my blog I apologise but for those of you who are newbies: firstly hi! And secondly, even though I am a uni graduate, I'm going to college to get my journalism qualifications. Even though the course is only a few months long, I still need to be super organised as I'll be travelling for around 4 hours a day just to get there and back. Because of the amount of money and time I'm putting into it, I'm definitely going to be putting the effort in to get organised so the transition when I start the course is as smooth as possible.

To ensure this happens, it's vital that I have all of the essential items that students need. And then I thought instead of just making a personal list, why not share it with you guys? So here is my essentials list for my wardrobe. I will remind you that this is not a shopping list; it's just all of the items that I'll need come term-time.

Wardrobe Essentials
  • Jeans that fit well- I have quite a few pairs of jeans and find that I start out the year with full intentions of dressing cute everyday but after the first week, I tend to stick with my trusted skinny jeans.
  • Go-to dress that can be dressed up or down- Contrary to what I've just said, I do sometimes like to dress up (I tend to have dress-up Fridays) and a dress that I know fits me, suits me and is suitable for day and night is easy just to put on first thing in a morning!
  • Basic t-shirts and vest- I have soft tshirts and vests in the basic colours of black, white and grey and then some of the colours I suit the most such as blue and red.
  • A good bag- I'm currently on the lookout for a rucksack for college that will carry my laptop as well as my lunch, books and all my other general crap. (I'm a handbag hoarder) When I was at uni, I used to have snazzier shoulder bags in all different colours because it was rare that I was in uni all day long.
  • A thick coat- I'm a natural cold-arse anyway but I always like to have a nice winter coat. If you can buy one in a neutral colour and classic style, it will last you years. I bought a grey one with glittery thread running through it from River Island for £40 about 5 years ago and it's still in perfect condition.
  • Comfy flat shoes- Whether they're pumps, sandals or sneakers, have a few, worn-in pairs before you go back because there's nothing worse than wearing new shoes on your first day!
  • A good pair of boots- Similarly to above, make sure you've worn them around the house a few times! I prefer to stick to black and tan-coloured boots so that they will go with everything.
  • Comfies!- As soon as I get in from school/work/college/uni, I get changed immediately, either into my PJs or sweats. I'm basically a slob.
  • Black tights- Because in the UK, we have summer that lasts approximately 3 days in the whole year, I find that the only way to get the most use out of my summer dresses, skirts and shorts is to wear a pair of black tights underneath them. 
  • Leather jacket- Before proper winter kicks in, I love being able to wear jackets rather than coats and my leather jackets are the first ones that I grab. I have a Zara black one as well as one in pale pink, burgundy and electric blue.
  • Something stripey- I love stripes in general but over the past year or so, I've been pretty much addicted to buying stripey tops.
Tomorrow will be part two of my key items lists focusing on those study essentials that you might need throughout the year!
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25/08/2015

Get Prepared For The New School Year/Semester

I'm probably one of the few people looking forward to going to college. I've been in education for too many years but this will finally be my last! I love being able to start over ever year and getting organised is something I do enjoy. Here are my top tips for getting ready to go back to school/college/uni!

As soon as possible/3 weeks before:

HAVE A HUGE CLEAROUT

This is the first thing I do every time I need to get organised; in fact I actually love looking through everything that I have to see what I need to add. This includes clothes, stationary, textbooks, CDs, DVDs, notes from previous years. This is my favourite thing to do when I have nothing urgent to do;  actually enjoy tidying and de-cluttering. Sell or donate clothes, trade-in any books/CDs/DVDs you don't like or need anymore, see if you can sell your old textbooks to other students and recycle any old notes if you don't need them anymore. I like to take everything out of my wardrobes first and sort through my clothes and shoes before moving onto my drawers and shelves. It also helps to do this slowly over the week if you can. Just put on some music and clear away!

WRITE A HUGE TO-DO LIST

After you've had a mass clearout, start by writing down everything that you need to do from now until you go back to school/college/uni. This could be shopping, printing off paperwork, meeting people online, gathering information for something, keeping your desk in order, reading, transport; the possibilities are endless. This list is entirely personal so look for inspiration online but make sure the tasks are relevant to you. When completed, stick it somewhere that you'll see it every day: on a pinboard, on your mirror, inside your wardrobe door. And make sure you tick stuff off once you've done it!

WRITE A SHOPPING LIST AT THE SAME TIME

Whilst writing your huge to-do list, it would be a good time to write a corresponding shopping list. I like to break mine down into wardrobe additions, desk/course supplies and miscellaneous. Wardrobe additions covers any clothing, shoes and accessories you might need, course supplies means any stationary, storage and electronics and miscellaneous literally is everything else: interior decorations, toiletries etc.

START SHOPPING AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE

When you've written your shopping list, go straight online to look for those items that you need to buy on the Internet then go out to the shops! I find that the week before school starts that the prices of stationary shoots up as does the price of some clothes stores. Most places have plenty of offers on for the weeks leading up to it but they know how forgetful people can be and that they will pay anything if they need the item! I also like to buy certain items such as pens and notebooks in bulk because I have enough shelf space and storage for them.

SPEND TIME WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY

Once you get back into a routine, you will have much less free time than you do in the summer. You'll have homework, revision, extra-curricular activities, travelling, part-time work, blogging etc. For me, Mondays to Thursdays will be 5am to 7pm days with my weekends spent at work. This means I will only really have Fridays free; however I imagine I will be using most Fridays to do all of my studying! Luckily my course ends in March but those closest to me luckily understand that I'm sacrificing a lot to do this course and that my eyes are fully focused on gaining the best grade possible.


2 weeks before:

SORT OUT YOUR MORNING/EVENING ROUTINES

A couple of months ago, I bought this amazing book about organising your whole life. It splits everything down into one area a week and my favourite two sections are based on your morning and evening routines. Basically, it suggests writing everything down that you need to do every morning and evening as well as things you'd like to do such as exercise. Next you have to prioritise and put your tasks in order. Many things on the morning list such as make breakfast and lunch can be put on the evening list if you prepare enough. Try to group certain tasks together such as cleansing your face, putting your make-up on and brushing your teeth. Once completed, stick them somewhere visible!

ORDER TEXTBOOKS AND GIVE THEM A READ

If you have the money, it's a good idea to buy your textbooks in advance if you can because the prices increase ridiculously once the term/semester starts. Before bed, try reading a few pages every night so you know what you're getting yourself into!

DESIGNATE A 'SCHOOL/COLLEGE/UNI-ONLY' ZONE

This basically means you do your work in one place, you deposit all paperwork in one place (ideally the same place) and this place is just school/college/uni. Because my bedroom is on the smaller side now, my desk is in the spare room. Next to it, I have storage drawers for my stationary and a shelving unit on one wall where I keep all my notebooks, folders and textbooks. It helps that I actually like being organised but it means I can find things instantly. I only sit at my desk when I have work to do; it's my serious space so  can get in the right mindset.

START YOUR MORNING/EVENING ROUTINES

Start getting up at the time you'll need to when you go back to school/college/uni. I'm not looking forward to waking up at 5 every morning and going to sleep at 9 but once I get used to it, I'm sure it'll become second nature. If you practise your routines before you officially need to do them, you may find you get through them quicker than you think and might be able to fit in a workout or an extra 10 minutes in bed!


1 week before:

CLEAROUT YOUR COMPUTER AND HARD-DRIVES

I don't know about you but I collate so many photos on my computer and never look at them; I scour the web for photos of fabulous outfits and different types of workouts. I also seem to keep old assignments on my computer too. Going back to school is the perfect time to have a deleting spree. If you have loads of stuff to store, I suggest getting an external hard-drive so you can always refer back to it if you need to, plus it's important to back up your files!

UPDATE YOUR CV

While you're clearing out your computer, it would be a great time t update your CV. Add in any new grades you might have, any work experience you've done, any new skills you've learnt and any new hobbies you might have discovered. Also, make sure your address, phone number and email address are correct/appropriate.

ORGANISE YOUR PLANNER

This should be your number one item on your shopping list! It can be difficult sometimes to fill out until you go back to education because you don't get much info until you do go back. Before that, try to fill in everything else you can- birthdays, events, shifts at work, holidays from school, anything important to you (for me, I include rugby fixtures). I like to colour-coordinate it by type and modules too.

SCHEDULE A 'ME-DAY'

For me this is so important; I spend so much time helping others that I need to make some time for myself sometimes. Choose at least one day where you have absolutely nothing to do- no work, no plans. Then do whatever you want to do: treat yourself to a pamper day, go out and do 'fun' shopping (clothes of course!) or spend the day watching movies and stuffing your face with chocolate! Whatever you find fun, do it today!

GET A HAIRCUT

I love starting a fresh every year so this to me is vital. You can combine it with your me-day above on a pamper day or just when you can slot it in.


The night before:

STICK TO YOUR EVENING ROUTINE THEN RELAX

Get your clothes ready for the week, sort out your bag for tomorrow, get your lunch made and make a to-do list fir the next day. Once you've sorted that, have a relaxing night and go to bed early!


Any more tips for going back? Leave me a comment below!
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24/08/2015

My New Planner

I'm a huge stationary geek and wanted a snazzy new planner that I could show off to people. I have several criteria for a planner:

  • Must be pretty to look at
  • Must have enough space to write several events a day
  • Must be able to be colour-coordinated with everything
I'd seen on several American blogs about Kate Spade planners and did some research into where I could find one from. I found mine on Amazon for £32 with £1 postage. As that seems pretty expensive, I was impressed to find it's a 17-month organiser with plenty of space to write in. It has a month-to-view for every month and then pages of week-to-views to explain more details. It has a hardcover, it's spiral bound inside which I find a lot easier to use, plenty of space for general notes and pockets at the front and back for extra paperwork.

The front cover

The first page with the pocket. I love the polka-dot lining too!

2016-2017 calendars. I like to be able to look quite far in advance.

The lining between each month.

The month-to-view page at the start of each month.

The week-to-view pages.

The back cover.
I'll be doing a post once I get into organising my planner but as of now, I don't have much to put into it until I start my college course. Black and white are my two favourite colours so the design is perfect for me. I'm excited to start colour-coordinating inside it though!

I really want to find more stickers and washi tape but it's hard to find them in the UK! Does anyone know where I can find it?
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18/08/2015

Pretty Little Liars Tag

This show is now my favouritee TV show; although I haven't watched the latest episodes yet (I'm just finishing season 5) I do know who the latest A is. I saw this post on Steph's blog and just knew I had to take part!

1. Who is your favourite character?
Aria or Spencer; my mum says I look like Aria because I'm brunette and petite but I think I'm more like Spencer personality-wise- driven, ambitious, studious.


2. Who is your least favourite character?
Alison. I know there's a lot of stuff involved but how do you pretend to be dead for two years?!

3. Who do you ship?


I love a romantic kiss in the rain scene.
I'm an Ezria girl!

4. Most memorable cheesy/stupid moment?


My favourite funny moment is the episode I've literally just watched when Emily and Hanna are dancing in the studio. Bless her, Hanna is so funny!

5. Favourite villain?
I loved Mona as A but I also have a love/hate relationship with Melissa. I actually love it when she plays evil rather than good!


6. Which girl do you think has been hurt the most by A?
All of them have really; Spencer got put in Radley so I guess she's had it hard.

7. Which girl's style do you love most?




I love all of their styles at some point and they all have some questionable moments but I'd say my style is more like Spencer's mostly; I like preppy and Blair Waldorf (I know, different show!) with a bit of the others mixed in. My favourite fashion on the show is the funeral fashion. Dress to impress!


8. Which girl do you relate to the most?
Spencer because of how academic she is but then I am quite creative like Aria.

9. Who's your crush on the show?
Ezra or Noel. Or Caleb. (I like brunettes!) In fact, the majority of the younger guys are good-looking. Plus I have a huuuuge girl crush on Lucy Hale (Aria).


I mean, come on. Look at that smile and those eyes!
Or just the body!
10. What was the most shocking moment for you?

It wasn't shocking but I nearly crapped my pants when Hanna was being followed by a police car, pulled over and went to look inside it and then Holbrook appeared from nowhere. But let's face it, there's a shocking moment in nearly every episode!

11. What would you do if A was after you?
I'd report it I'd like to think and run for the hills!

12. What has been your favourite episode so far?



My favourite episode was the Halloween episode from season 3 'This Is A Dark Ride', the episode on the train. I love the costumes on it and generally felt scared from Aria when she was kidnapped. Also I love "Team Sparia" in season 2 'unmAsked' when Spencer says to Aria "You're little, but you're big"; I like to think I'm like that too!


I'll admit that my favourite thing about PLL is the whole cast. Unlike other shows, you never hear any beef about castmates not liking each other (here's looking at you, Glee!) because it seems like they are all genuinely really good friends! 
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16/08/2015

My Recent Buys

I've had a big spending week as I bought myself a new car! I now have a Citroen C1 and after picking it up on Monday, I am loving it already! Since I splashed on a car, I decided I could afford a few more buys, a bit more blog-friendly. Saying that, I didn't spend a huge deal!

Primark:






Make-up bag: £3.00
Heart mirror: £1.00
Tan shoobs: £14.00

Matalan:




Black bib-collar jumper: £14.00
Striped slogan tee: £8.00
A5 lined notebook: £2.00

Asda:




Glamour mag: £2.00
Pencil case: £3.00
Pens: 2 for £3.00

For £50.00 total, I think I managed to pick up some bargains. I also get 10% student discount in Matalan but I didn't include this in the prices.
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12/08/2015

A to Z Blog Survey

If you've followed my blog for a while, you'll know how much I love a good survey. After having a nosy on Bloglovin', I came across this survey on Katie's blog. I love that my readers can get to know a little more about me.

A – Age: 22
B – Biggest Fear: Not having a god enough career to support my family
C – Current Time: 5.32pm
D – Drink You Had Last: Starbuck's chocolate creme blend. Yum!
E – Easiest Person to Talk to: Either one of my best friends, Ellie or Amy.
F – Favorite Song: I'm obsessed with Fifth Harmony's Worth It way too much!
G – Grossest Memory: I can't really think of one!
H – Hometown: Hull born and bred.
I – In Love With: Learning new things and Pretty Little Liars (Ezria all day er'ryday- I'm halfway through season 5 but know who A is, stupid spoilers!)
J – Jealous of: Taylor Swift and her squad. I want to be in it!
K – Kindest Person You Know: My dad.
L – Longest Relationship: Just over a year. 
M – Middle Name: I don't have one.
N – Number of Siblings: See above; I'm an only child :)
O – One Wish: To live a happy and healthy life (when I saw this question, I started sining Ray J's One Wish- classic!)
P – Person You Spoke To On The Phone Last: Either my car insurance company or my nanna, I can't remember which one was last
Q – Question You’re Always Asked: Are you sure you're 22? (I look very young)
R – Reason to Smile: I'm alive, I've got a lot of things going for me and have an amazing support system.
S – Song You Last Sang: Mallory Knox- Lighthouse
T – Time You Woke Up: 7.20am
U – Unusual Food Combination: I like my food plain so I wouldn't really say I like many food combos.
V – Vacation Destination: Dream destination has to be New York or New Zealand.
W – Worst Habit: Biting my nails.
X – X-Rays You’ve Had: I've never been to hospital apart from when I was born (touch wood anyway!)
Y – Your Favorite Food: Pizza.
Z – Zodiac Sign: Capricorn- determination to succeed, down to earth, self-motivated, responsible.

Let me know if you take part in this survey too; I'm nosy so I'd love to know more about my fellow bloggers!
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11/08/2015

I'm back!

I have been absent for a couple of weeks: I've been away on holiday, I've been at work and I've had to spend the last 9 days without any internet access! Yes I know, I nearly didn't make it through! Now it is working again, I decided it was time to get on Netflix and continue watching Pretty Little Liars (it's my new obsession and I'm getting my best friend into it too!) and I wanted to start blogging regularly again.

I feel that I've kind of lost my way in terms of motivation lately. I've spent the last few weeks stuck in a rut and now it's time to get out of it. I've not blogged because I feel like I have nothing to say; I've not exercised because I feel too tired. But I think I'm ready to get my life back on track. I'll try blogging a couple of times a week, I'll try exercising every weekday and I'll try to make the most of my time before I embark on a new chapter in my life in September.

As of September, I'll be commuting Mondays-Thursdays to Sheffield to get my NCTJ qualifications to become a journalist. It's something I've wanted to do for a while now but thought it best to finish off my degree and graduate first. I'll be getting up a 5 every morning and not getting in until half 7 at night. I know it will be a tough few months until the course is completed but I'm ready. I thrive off having routine in my life and I'll be able to maximise my train journeys by doing work whilst travelling and using my day off, Fridays, to catch up on work or make plans. In order to get ready for this journey, I'll be doing a blog series about getting ready for the next school year as I know many of you will start at a similar time to me. Obviously I'll try to make it as general as possible so it can apply to everyone going back to education, be it school, college or university.

I hope you'll all join me on this adventure and I'll try to keep you all posted!
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