I am

I am

A glass full of water

Under an infrequently dripping tap

Never knowing

Whether the next drop falling

Will be the one to make the water flow over the edge of

The glass

I am

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Content Moments

I have been reading a book about mindfulness lately. I’ve not yet finished it, and I’m only just now reaching the part about how to practice mindfulness in everyday life, but over the past week I’ve been, perhaps subconsciously, focusing on enjoying the moments and trying to make the best out of whatever is happening at the time.

Something really good happened to me at work today. One of my colleagues came back from his break, and as there were no people who had showed up wanting a tour at that time, he asked if I wanted to go for a walk, to which I agreed. We walked out of the café/shop of the museum, through the courtyard, out the front gate, and followed the path that leads up to the building all the way down to the road. Then we walked back up the path to the gate, and turned left and followed the path to the parking lot on the other side of the building, and back down again. We did this twice, then we walked onto the grass and through the garden of trees, admired our workplace from the garden with the trees framing it, and continued walking for a bit. We met some tourists, who said it was like watching a painting moving towards them, as we were both wearing our historic costumes. We spoke to them for a while, and when we saw other tourists approaching the front gate of the castle we began making our way back through the garden and into the building again.

We talked about many different things while walking, past, present, and future, which I won’t bore you with repeating here. What I really wanted to convey, is this amazingly content feeling I had while walking, or perhaps I should use the word strolling, through the grounds of our workplace. I almost felt like we were a part of some 1800s film scene, where two people in beautiful costumes are walking and having some sort of deep, important conversation. Two people who are comfortable being on this stroll together, comfortable talking to each other about the topic of conversation. I felt so incredibly at peace, and in that moment, nothing was wrong in the world, in my world, everything was calm and peaceful and  good.

I’ve had another similar experience with the same colleague this summer, actually. At that time, it was the start of the day, it was sunny and warm but not yet too warm, and we were sat outside on the curb by the stairs going from the lower to the upper courtyard at work. We were talking about life and the future, which has been uncertain or unpredictable for both of us, and in that moment, I felt like nothing else mattered, despite the anxiety I’d had the previous night, despite all the feelings that had been raging through me for days. In that moment, everything was perfect, and the feeling lingered and I couldn’t remember the last time I felt such serenity.

Last night I was sat wondering, how do people make friends in the real world? I only ever make friends on the internet, except for my two friends from university that pretty much decided to be my friend and that’s how we are where we are, two of us being godmothers to the third’s child, still friends despite studying separate things and living in separate places. I do know work plays an important role in making friends, and a lot of people know each other through work. I repeated this to my colleague today, whose fiancée I happen to know from working in the same place earlier, which lead to us playing Pokemon GO together outside of work and meeting up in uni sometimes as well – although I actually even knew OF her even before that, as we’re from small towns close to each other and have gone to school together. My colleague told me that just for the record, I am able to make friends outside of the Internet too; he likes me, and if I’d been staying in the city he’d hang out with me and play Pokemon GO with us now that he’s started playing again too. So maybe I don’t completely suck at making friends after all…

Xoxo

Julie

Times change

Earlier this summer I was talking to someone on snapchat (digression: I actually use it to have conversations with friends much in the same way as on messenger, just with pictures – not to send nudes that disappear in a few seconds like some people do and think is the purpose of the app), and I’d had my hair up for work which I do on most days. I work as a tour guide and in the café we run on site, two of the shifts have half a day of café, half touring, while the third shift does tours all day, and in the café we can’t have our hair down when we have long hair. So I’d had my hair up for work and left it up all evening, only undid it when I was getting ready for bed. And the person I was talking to said my hair looks really good down (not that it didn’t look good up, but that it looked even better down). I guess it must have been stuck in my head over the last several weeks, because I’ve started to wear my hair down more and more when I’m at home, undoing it when I get home from work, and even leaving it undone at work when I’m a guide and just doing a fast and easy ponytail when I’m on café duty.

I had long hair as a child. Long, fine, and incredibly silky. I used to beg my mom for French braids and she’d give in once in a while but most of the time there was no point, it was so difficult because my hair was too slippery and wouldn’t do anything. As I grew older, up towards my teenage years, I wore ponytails all the time and never had my hair down. In my early teens, when my hair was at its longest, I always had it down and I always carried hair ties on my wrist. My grandma always asked “can’t you tie up that long hair of yours?” when we were about to eat. Then, when I was 17, I chopped it all off. I had short bob styles until I was 22, when I decided I wanted to grow it out, and that’s what I’ve been doing for the last 4 years, telling my hair dressers to take off as much as necessary, but as little as possible, ie only what was absolutely necessary to keep it healthy and to keep split ends from spreading up.

As a student, I’ve worn my hair up a lot, and it’s been getting easier and easier the longer my hair has gotten, and with all the studies I’ve done it’s been convenient to have it out of my face, and I also used to go to the gym a lot, so I barely ever had my hair down, only when I was invited to an event and such, sometimes at work in the museum shop. I can do buns, different kinds of braids, headband styles… All kinds of stuff. And I’ve loved doing my hair! I feel classy, elegant, and I can look fun and girly and childish or adult and professional, the opportunities are endless! But over the last few weeks, I’ve found myself gravitating towards having my hair down again. It’s been a long time. But I’m loving this look now, too!

Xoxo

Julie

You can laugh, but I don’t care.

People think I don’t know when they’re making fun of me. But I know. I just no longer care.

I know I’m a bit weird. Quirky. Odd. Strange. I don’t always pick up on irony and sarcasm, I too often take things too seriously and believe stuff that’s not true. I’m book smart, theoretical, and don’t always understand right away how some of the things that are obvious to a lot of people work. With a lot of things, I’m a bit slow, and I need things spelled out to me.

But I know when I’m being made fun of, laughed at behind my back… I know it. I’m aware that it happens.

But here’s the thing. The thing is, I don’t care about it. If people have nothing better to do than make fun of me, then I feel sorry for them. If that’s what they want to spend their time on, then that’s their time being wasted, their life. I’m not gonna waste my time caring about it, because I lose so much precious time that way. Life may be long, but it might be short. We never know how much time we’re gonna get and I don’t want to waste mine. I want to focus on doing things that are good for me, that bring joy to my soul. I don’t want to care about people who have negative opinions about me.

And I want to share a poem with you. It’s one of my favourite pieces of writing, I’ve copied it down so many times, and I might have shared it on my blog before, but I wanted to share it again:

I love being horribly straightforward. I love sending reckless text messages (because how reckless can a form of digitized communication be?) and telling people I love them and telling people they are absolutely magical humans and I cannot believe they really exist. I love saying, Kiss me harder, and You’re a good person, and, You brighten my day. I live my life as straight-forward as possible.

Because one day, I might get hit by a bus.

Maybe it’s weird. Maybe it’s scary. Maybe it seems downright impossible to just be—to just let people know you want them, need them, feel like, in this very moment, you will die if you do not see them, hold them, touch them in some way whether its your feet on their thighs on the couch or your tongue in their mouth or your heart in their hands.

But there is nothing more beautiful than being desperate.

And there is nothing more risky than pretending not to care.

We are young and we are human and we are beautiful and we are not as in control as we think we are. We never know who needs us back. We never know the magic that can arise between ourselves and other humans.

We never know when the bus is coming.”

—Rachel C. Lewis, Tell The People You Love That You Love Them

Xoxo

Julie

Summer Freedom

There’s just two weeks left of my summer job and I’m only just now starting to feel like the time I’m not at work is MY time to do whatever I want. I’ve not had uni to deal with since my last exam on June 5th, why has it taken me so long to feel free? My summer job lasts 8 weeks, meaning it’s taken me 6 weeks to get to this point. This really baffles me. What have I been doing for so long? I honestly have no idea.

I think the feelings of freedom started when my parents went away on holiday. The first time I really felt free this summer was a day where I was on nobody’s time but my own. My parents had gone away for the day and were eating dinner out, my brother had plans to go on a hiking trip, and the weather was lovely so instead of going home after work I went on a forest walk by myself, just listening to happy music and playing Pokémon GO and enjoying life, because no one was waiting for me with food or anything like that. It was a lovely feeling.

Whenever I’ve been home for a weekend or even longer, during the past 6 years of living in the city and going to university, I’ve spent a lot of time with my parents. I’ve sat in the living room watching whatever they’re watching on TV, I’ve hung out with them, going for walks, going with them to shops etc. I’ve spent very little time to myself, next to no time in my room except for to sleep. The reason for this, is that I’ve sometimes not known when would be the next time I’d get to come home – it might be weeks or months until the next time, and therefore I’ve felt that I need to spend all the time with them.

Now that they’ve been on holiday, I’ve been entirely on my own. Taking care of the house, cooking for myself, spending time doing whatever I’ve wanted to do. I’ve had a couple of days where I’ve only read, I’ve had a few days where I’ve needed to do a lot of chores but it hasn’t been so bad. I’ve spent two mornings and an evening editing pictures for a friend, watched a movie, played a lot of Mario Kart on my laptop… I’ve taken back my time, even though no one has demanded that I do anything else anyway, it’s been liberating.

I’m moving, in 16 days from today. I’ll need to start packing soon, to prepare for the move as I’ve no idea when I’ll be back to pick up more stuff, and I can only bring a suitcase and my carry-on. But even so, I don’t feel the pressure that I’ve felt before, that I need to spend as much of my waking time with my family as possible. Because it’s not necessary to be around someone 100% of the time or to talk to them all the time to know and show that you love them, care about them, like them… It’s perfectly fine to take time to yourself, be by yourself, do things for yourself. Because YOU are the only one who has to be around you 100% of the time, and it’s important to do things that make YOU happy, that make YOU able to live with the person you are.

xoxo

Julie

Globally Friends

I have a feeling I’ve written about this before, but it’s a topic that can’t really get old so I want to write about it again. The topic is internet friends.

A lot of people receive so much bullshit for having internet friends.

“You can’t know they are who they say they are.”

“You have to be careful, they could be a predator.”

“But they’re not your real friends, you’ve never actually met them.”

Sound familiar? For me, I heard the first two in school and the last one from friends and family. And there is some truth to it of course, back when I was 15-16 and we talked in chat rooms and on MySpace etc, hiding who you are was really easy. But technology has changed, life as we knew it back then has changed. I’ve met a lot of my friends on the internet. Some of my best friends, and my boyfriend, I knew on Twitter first. But we moved from Twitter to other platforms like Snapchat, following each other on Instagram, messaging and calling using Messenger and WhatsApp… We actually talk and use video and send pictures on a daily basis, some of us. The development of the technology we have today has made it so easy to spot fake people.

One of my closest friends is someone I met on Twitter several years ago, we’ve still not been able to meet in person, but hopefully that will happen sometime soon. This friend is someone who has never judged me, who’s helped me through some of my hardest times with heartaches and panic attacks and depression, who’s talked me out of doing stupid shit and made me see things clearly when I’ve not been able to, who’s even been able to explain my feelings and the reason behind them when I’ve been majorly confused. Someone I can talk to about things I couldn’t bring up with my “real life” friends, because this friend understands me in ways others don’t.

I read somewhere that people originate from stars and we’re always trying to find the remaining bits and pieces of the star we originally were, someone said this was the reason why we have soul mates, they’re people originating from the same star as we do. I like to think that this might be true, and that the dust from the multiple stars have mingled together and that’s why we feel different kind of attraction to multiple people, that we’re connected in some sort of way. It’s a force we can’t really deny, it’s just the universe pulling us together like gravity. Some of us belong together. Friendly. Affectionately. Romantically. Sexually. Platonically. In person. Online.

The other day I wanted to throw myself off a cliff, surely that would be less painful than some of the emotions I was feeling at the time. Then I talked to one of those scary people on the internet, the ones I’ve been warned to be careful with, and my friend was able to put words to a lot of the things I couldn’t explain, and understood without me having to go into too much detail. My friend reassured me that there’s nothing unnatural about the feelings I was having, that it’s all just human. My friend, a person I’ve never met in real life, could be there for me in a way no one else that I know could at the time, and I could talk to this friend about things I didn’t feel I was able to talk to anyone else about. This friend wasn’t judging me or telling me I was a bad person, or get weird about anything, this person was just there for me, supported me, talked to me, and made me feel better. At the end of the night I was sat singing A Day To Remember songs at the top of my lungs, and my friend from the internet did that.

See what I did there? My friend from the internet. Just as natural as saying my friend from school, or my friend from home, or my friend from London, New York, Chicago, whatever. My friend from the internet.

They’re people, just like us. If I can be on the internet, so can they, and if they can be the “scary stranger” so can I. There’s really nothing different about it at all. There are 7.6 billion people in the world. Am I supposed to only now people that live where I live?

I want to conclude with an image of a post I came across on Tumblr the other day, when I was browsing my archive from the early days:

online friends

xoxo

Julie

It’s okay.

I fully believe that no one has to earn the right to talk to anybody. If you want to talk to someone, just message them. I often feel like I’m annoying because I can send like 5 or 10 snapchats to a person without them even opening the first one, and when they finally do they don’t really reply to them. I also feel like I bother people a lot by messaging them and that’s why they don’t reply to me sometimes.

But here’s the thing. You don’t owe it to someone to reply to their every message either. It’s okay to not wanna talk right now, doesn’t mean they’re not your friends or you don’t wanna talk to them ever. And it’s okay to be retweeting and liking posts on Instagram while not replying to a message someone has sent you. It requires a different focus, different energy, different moods to talk to someone than it does to sit on your phone browsing social media.

Really, what I wanted to say with this post, like the headline says, is that it’s okay. It’s okay to overly message someone if that’s what you feel like. It’s okay to not reply if that’s what you feel like. In my life, I’ve always been told that it’s important to think about other people, and people who focus on themselves a lot get called egoistic and other words with negative connotations. But the thing is, it’s important to focus on yourself too. You are the only person who has to be around you 24/7, it’s important to take care of yourself, and to do things you want to do. If you want to tweet, snapchat, Instagram your life, or send 15 messages in a row to someone on Facebook, do that. If you want to be alone and not converse with other people, do that.

This concludes my little rant for the night. Julie out, goodnight ❤️

A Very Satisfying Forest

[This entry is not sponsored in any way, just me talking about something I love]

I’m not talking about an actual forest, although I love real forests too. I’ve been using the app called Forest: Stay Focused, where you grow trees by not using your phone. Basically, you set a timer between 10 and 120 minutes, and click the button to grow your tree. Don’t touch your phone in the time you’ve set, or your plant will die. When it’s done, your phone will vibrate and you get the tree and coins that you can save and use to buy different styles of trees.

This week I’ve been using the app to stay off my phone during lectures, to stay focused when working on term papers and reading, and to keep myself from fidgeting with my phone when watching movies and TV with my boyfriend. I’ve got to say, it’s kind of addictive! Let me show you the forests I’ve made over the part week:

On Monday I didn’t grow a single tree.

On Tuesday I had 4 lectures consisting of two parts each, so I grew four of these Japanese cherry blossom trees, which I’ve bought with coins (you start out with only a flower bush or up to 20 minutes and pine trees from 25 to 120 minutes).

On Wednesday I had one 45min lecture, which is one of the trees in the picture above, and the rest are me working on an essay I needed to turn in on Thursday.

On Thursday I finished the essay and had one lecture consisting of two 45min sessions. I also needed to stir my dinner while it was boiling for 20min, hence the sunflower, which I’ve also bought using coins I got from growing other trees in the past.

Fridays I have classes for 6 hours in a row, but I only attended 4 this past week. However, I managed to get enough coins on Friday that I could buy a new tree, the yellow one, which I started using for TV and movies with my boyfriend that night.

Come this weekend, I got hooked on growing as much as possible, so I grew trees and sunflowers for every episode, movie, and YouTube video we watched. Notice how the same tree changes depending on how long you grow it for? I figured out that the tree gets a little “fuller” at 60min than it was from 25 to 55, then again at 90, and at 120 you get the full tree you see in the shop – for the yellow one you can see it’s a full 120min tree when there’s a little statue next to it (the cherry tree will get a tea table next to it).

Come Sunday, all I wanted was to grow even more trees than Saturday just to continue the trend I’d been working all week. Got pretty close to a full forest, too!

What do you do stop yourself getting distracted by your phone?

See you soon!

Xoxo

Julie

Mini Makeup Haul 2.0

So I couldn’t help myself, I went back to H&M for the 2nd time this week and bought some more stuff!

Loreal Pure Clay Illuminating Cleansing Gel – I’ve almost used a whole tube of this stuff, I love that it’s a daily use face wash, and I use a little silicone scrub from Primark to wash my face with this, I just love this product, my skin feels so smooth after!

NYX Powder Puff Lippie – I got another three shades of this, in addition the the one I got a few days ago which was Pop Quiz; today I got Best Buds, Squad Goals, and Moody! The Pop Quiz one was a lot redder on my lips than I thought it would be after searching it on my hand, but I’m gonna do a swatch post on all these later, both on my hand and on my lips 😊

Essie Treat Love and Color – I haven’t tried any of these from Essie before, they’re supposed to strengthen in addition to color, and I got it on 95 Mauve-tivation!

Ardell Magnetic Lashes – last time I got the Double Whispies, today I got Double 110, which is less dramatic than the Double Whispies, which looked just like too much on me. ALSO: You’ve got to cut these up! With scissors! Just the bottom lash though, with one magnet on the inner and outer piece and two magnets on the center piece. It’s impossible to get them on otherwise, but when you do this they totally work! They become more like the One Two Lash ones, but a lot cheaper!

That’s all for now, see you soon!

Xoxo

Julie

Mini Makeup Haul

Okay, this is so small it can barely qualify as a makeup haul. I only bought four things. But why go home after work to write essays when you can stay in town and spend money right? Haha. Anyway. As I wrote in my previous entry, I want to get back to blogging because I miss it, and the only way to do that is to post when I have something I want to post, right? So here’s what I bought today:

NYX Powder Puff Lippie – this is the shade Pop Quiz. I’ve watched swatch videos on YouTube and Instagram and knew which shades I wanted to try – two of them had samples but we’re sold out, one had packaged ones but no sample, and so I tried the ones that had both samples and packaged ones, and ended up only getting this one. I’ll keep my eye on the rest and see if I end up buying others, if I like how this product works though.

Kolokrem – this is my favorite eye brow coloring kit, I get the shade “brown-black” as I like my eyebrows to be a bit darker than my hair. Last time I needed to get eyebrow color I couldn’t find this so I ended up getting the Depend brand, which I don’t like at all, so even though I’ve got a lot of it left I’m gonna use this one tonight.

Ardell Professional Magnetic Lashes – I’ve seen youtubers try these kind of eyelashes; of my two favorite ones, one loved them and one hated them! I don’t think it was this brand, as these were quite cheap, but I haven’t seen them in store before so when I came across them I thought I’d try them. Maybe I’ll love them, maybe they’ll be a fiasco! Either way, I’m excited to try them!

Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge – I’ve always loved my makeup brushes for foundation application, especially the Real Techniques expert face brush, but sometime last year I was at Primark and decided to get a pack of their “beauty blenders”. I actually really like them, and I’ve used the egg shaped one a lot lately! But some youtubers have said there’s a huge difference in sponginess, for lack of a better word (how fluffy/hard they are), so I thought it would be interesting to try another sponge too, since I often forget to wash mine until I need to use it and it’s filthy! And this one came with a case, which will be good for traveling! Plus it has a flat edge, which might work better for some areas of my face, too.

That’s it for now! Hope you’re having a great day and week!

Xoxo,

Julie