Forever by Judy Blume~ Book Review

Like last year, my family took two weeks of vacation for Halloween and traveled to the States. It was super fun to see my family and to re-connect with my American side.
Sadly, I think it was my last year trick-or-treating, because quite a few adults looked at me funny when I stood at the open door with my nine-year-old brother and tween cousins.
Anyway. One thing I always look forward to when going to the States is book shopping... There is no anglophone library or bookshop here in Lyon, which means I never get to browse around for new releases in the YA world.

I bought and read several books during those two weeks, and brought even more back home.

Today was a good day for reading. I got my wisdom teeth pulled out yesterday (yes, it was very painful, and the anesthesia made me feel quite foggy for a while there, but so far I seem to be surviving), and I read Forever by Judy Blume in less than 24 hours.



I heard wonderful reviews of that book, and I must say, it was not exactly what I expected.
It was definitely a great read. I was pulled into the story, and was definitely heartbroken when young Katherine and Micheal's relationship falls apart... I think it's a story that most people can relate to.

The only thing I did not adore was the pace and tone of Blume's writing. Am I the only one who feels that way? I don't remember her other books, such as Tiger Eyes or Are you there, God? it's me, Margaret containing so many ellipses.

Forever is a story about instant first-love, and first sexual encounters... and what happens when "true love", isn't, in fact, true love. It's a story about love, but also about moving on.  Even though the story is set in the 1970's, it feels as though it could have been set in the 2000's. I think the story is timeless.

It might not be a story for everyone out there, but if you're into teen romance, you should give it a try.

I give it 3.5/5 stars.

:)


To wear shorts or NOT to wear shorts?

Before it gets too cold, I want to share my opinion on a topic which, I believe, most girls/women can relate to in this modern day.
The topic is, to what extent should shorts be banned in school? Do they deserve to be looked down upon?

What stirred up these questions for me is the fact that one very, very hot day, I was stopped by a counselor at the entrance of my school, to discuss the length of my shorts.
"Your shorts are much too short", she said. "You will have to stop wearing them to school".

Although I did not argue with her, my immediate thoughts were "why ME of all people?! Half the girls are wearing shorts today! Why did she have to embarrass ME?"
And then I started wondering, why should I even be embarrassed? Indeed, it WAS a very hot day, and half the girls really WERE wearing shorts.

For the record, I wasn't wearing those types of shorts that reveal your butt. Yes, they were short shorts, but paired with the appropriate shirt and shoes. It was clear that my intention wasn't to be provocative.  I DO agree that teens, at school, shouldn't dress provocatively. But I think that the rules should be revisited.
      According to the rules, girls shouldn't wear short shorts, in the simple measure of avoiding harassment. Well, I think something is very wrong with that rule. If it's a hot day, and short shorts are more comfortable than long shorts, AS LONG AS IT'S NOT PROVOCATIVE, a girl should be allowed to wear her shorts without having to worry about being harassed. That is something that needs to be changed in GUYS, not girls! Guys have to learn to control themselves!
Girls shouldn't be discriminated against for showing some skin! Skin is human. The guys who will supposedly "harass" somebody wearing shorts NEED TO LEARN that YES, women have bodies and YES, they are allowed to do what they want with them and YES, they demand to be respected.

Don't you agree?


Switzerland ☾part 1☽

I've been in Switzerland for 10 days now and have come to this conclusion: Switzerland is NOT boring! Whoever came up with THAT idea! The food is amazing, the lake is beautiful, there are many sporting opportunities, and the Swiss are so friendly. 

I've been spending a lot of time in Geneva with my mom, exploring the different neighborhoods, interesting museums, and, um, FABULOUS restaurants and cafés. Hehehe. 
But we've also done some more outdoorsy things, like kayaking on the Lac Léman, hiking near St-Cergue, or taking a ferry to the French town across the lake, Yvoire. 
There will be a part 2 to this post, because I don't want to make THIS one very photo-heavy.
See for yourself :)

      •Rainbow over Nyon, Switzerland•


      •A small-town art gallery in Nyon•

     •Lunch at the Red-Cross Museum•
                          (Geneva)

          •Flags of the UN, Geneva•

  •A peacock walking through the parc•

                        •Geneva•

   •Iced coffee and vegan sandwiches at the Boréal Coffee Shop, Geneva•

Hello!

Just wanted to assure you guys that I AM still alive. I am currently on vacation, in Switzerland, in the cutest little town by the Lac Léman. This summer has been awesome and I can't believe school starts again in less than a month! During the last week of July I was at camp with my best friend and my camp friend from LAST year who lives in Canada (I am feeling extremely lucky for getting to see her again!). I am in great spirits these days. Even the summer books assigned by my school have been enjoyable! As I read somewhere, every summer has a story. So that's it. I will definitely be posting on a regular schedule again from now on. How has your summer been? I won't bombard you with pictures JUST YET because this post will get way too long. But here's a sneak peek of the pictures to come! 

                           ↠Nyon, Switzerland↞  



Sunflower blogger award!



Hello everyone. It has been a long time!
I am on summer vacation right now, and for a brief moment I started feeling bad about not posting more on this little corner of the earth. But then I realized how very lucky I am to have so much going on in my life. So I'm not going to apologize. NEVER APOLOGIZE for living your life to the fullest! The best part of living is being out in the world, with the people you love, DOING what you love. 

Anyway. A long, long time ago, Natasha from Savouring Each Moment nominated me for the Sunflower Blogger Award. She is a great blogger so you should definitely check her out! Thanks Natasha :)


The rules:


1) Share 11 facts about yourself.
2) Answer the questions asked by your nominated blogger.
3) Nominate your bloggers 
4) Set 7 questions for your nominated bloggers.


11 facts about myself:
1) I'm learning how to surf this summer (YAYY!)
2) I just came back from a trip to Paris with my best friend a few days ago.
3) Cats. Cats. Cats. KITTEHS. 
4) I am 15 years old.
5) When I was little I imagined that at age 15 I'd be living the life of Gabriella Montez from High School Musical.
6) Indeed, when I was little I was OBSESSED with High School Musical.
7) My obsession has now moved on to the movie How I Live Now (GO CHECK IT OUT).
8) I overthink. I'm not going to say "way too much" because I personally think that it's great to THINK.  I'm not even sure if I agree with the term overthinking
9) I am vegetarian.
10) Sometimes I'm slow. I tend to enjoy the process instead of getting right to the point.
11) I made a pact with myself that I will NEVER, EVER be a smoker. 


Natasha's questions:

1.      What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?(lame, I know… ><)
This is not a lame question, Natasha, NOT LAME!!! But there are sooo many flavors!!! I have to say that I absolutely love Ben&Jerry's Peanut Butter Cup (I think it might actually be heaven under the form of ice cream) but I also love a good mint-chocolate-chip. Hmm.



2.      What’s your favorite kind/brand of chocolate?
I don't think I can answer this question. There are too many brands of chocolate. And so many of them are exquisite! But am I allowed to say Reese's? I know it's not really a chocolate brand but it's still my favorite.




3.      If you could change your name, what would you change it to?
I never really thought this through... I'm actually quite happy with my name! I don't know many Carmens. :) 
But I have thought about what I would name my daughter: India, Olivia...


4.      What’s your favorite sport?
I'm not sure I have a favorite sport! I love dancing, yoga, swimming... Even running!


5.      What was something you believed to be real (when it actually wasn’t) when you were younger?(sorry… I just can’t phrase it right :[)
Ummm... :] probably many things :]



6.      What was the weirdest food you’ve eaten? 
It might not sound "weird" at first, but... Cheese. Cheese is a very, very peculiar food. Cheese is rotten milk. 

7. What is one thing you wanna do but know you can never (or most probably not be able to)accomplish?
Never say never! Unless you have unrealistic dreams like "living forever", with enough determination, ANYTHING is possible. It's true!

The bloggers I'm nominating:
+ anyone else! If you want this award comment below and I'll add you to the list :)

My questions:

1) What's your astrological sign? Does your personality actually correspond to what it says about you?
2) What is your favorite social media?
3) If your home burst into flames, and you could only save three things, what would you grab?
4) What book did you last read?
5) If you had to stay the same age your whole life, what age would you pick?
6) What is your favorite snack?
7) Why did you start blogging?

Looking For Alaska ♥

You know those lazy, summer days where you tell yourself you're going to do many, many things but then you just kind of lie around in your pj's until one o'clock in the afternoon reading?

Well, I never regret those days. I feel creative, inspired, and all I want to do is LIE on this cloud of comfort and happiness.  Do you know what I'm talking about?






A few days ago I finished Looking For Alaska by John Green. Before I start talking about it, I must say that I'm sort of annoyed with how The Fault In Our Stars just recently became even MORE popular than it already was, all because of the movie. I know everyone should benefit from the greatness of that book, but I feel like now it has become more of a fashion accessory than a book of great philosophical content. You do not know how many people have posted a picture of that book to Instagram! 

Anyway.

You should definitely read Looking For Alaska. John Green just has that magical touch ; he has that way of pulling you into a book and capturing you so that you can't quite get out  before he turns your world upside down and makes you question a lot more about life than you used to. 
"How will I ever get out of this labyrinth!" is the main question he explores through a series of events that Miles Halter and his friends go through.

You cannot help falling in love with the story, the story of Miles Halter, a brilliant, funny, and nonetheless social-outcasted teen who starts a "new" life at a boarding school in Alabama. When he gets there, he makes a bunch of friends who change his way of viewing the world, and most importantly, he falls in love with Alaska, a crazy, emotional girl. Miles's feelings for Alaska are so poetic. And here comes my favorite quote of all times:

"so I walked back to my room and collapsed on the bottom bunk, thinking that if people were rain, I was a drizzle and she was a hurricane."

Need I say more? :')


Read that book. Just read it. The ending will leave you speechless (And you might cry. You've been warned).

To be part of a magical experiment

You might get the impression from this post that I'm INSANE, but bear with me. I need your help.
These past few weeks have been CRAZY busy and right now I am currently in the middle of studying for exams which will start on Thursday. I feel pretty prepared for these exams, but I'd like to do an experiment.
A MAGIC experiment! Which is why I need your help.
So here's what you can do for me: I want you to take a minute and think of how hard you want me to succeed and do well on these exams. I want you to think positive thoughts of/for me, and try to send them to me under the form of telepathic waves.
I truly believe this could work. I think mental power sometimes works wonders, and we often end up surprised. So please don't bail out!

Thank you so much for doing this. I will be waiting...

"may Carmen do well on her exams, may Carmen do well on her exams, may Carmen do well on her exams..."


I hope you all have a good week. :)

Wonderful work from Joel Robinson aka Boy_Wonder! I think @DAVIDsTEA might agree ;)    Who would've love a magical, mystical cup of tea!

Who are we trying to please?

I've always been one of the tallest, if not THE tallest girl in my group, so I have never actually known how it feels to have friends that are taller than me. I got a taste of that feeling this weekend, when I hung out with a friend who is significantly taller than me. I told my parents how different it felt, to look UP at someone, instead of looking DOWN, and then I said I hoped to gain several more inches or centimeters before I stop growing! Their response surprised me, because instead of saying "Oh yes, that would be great, let's hope it happens," they told me that being taller than I already am could be difficult in dating situations with men. They said that men most often look for women who are shorter than they are, because otherwise they don't feel tall, manly and protective enough!
What I'm about to say might sound paradoxical, given the fact that I am a tall person, but I've always wanted to be VERY tall. I'm not unhappy with the way I am, but there's just something about very, very tall people that I find extremely attractive. And all day I've been thinking about how unfortunate it is that a man would disregard a woman just because she is taller than him. And it brought me to this conclusion: Why try so hard to please a man? I think tall women are attractive, and if men have a complex, why should that change how I feel? Why should men's hang ups change MY tastes? Who knows, I might not even ever find the right guy for me! We should all focus on what we TRULY admire, not on what we "should" admire. Do you agree?

Tall Girl Problems well at least some guys are taller than me so maybe I won't be a lonely cat lady or maybe I will..... Darn it
Hahaha. x)

Is this a prison?

   
       I might sound like a rebellious little girl who has never tasted a TRULY hard life given the privileged, lucky circumstances I live in compared to many people in the world, but no matter how good my day is, I always have the pending feeling that I'm trapped. Wherever I go. Like our society is a prison.
Do you know what I mean?

       This feeling comes from many different aspects of our society, but I especially get it from school. I go to a big school, surrounded by even bigger green spaces, and every single day, as I look out the window, I wonder, why is it that I am trapped in here, when I could be out there? And as time goes on, and school gets more and more stressful, I have the increasing sense that something is just not right. Don't get me wrong, I know school is important (and I'm lucky to be attending it), but I feel like it has became a much bigger deal than it should be. I don't know if this everywhere in the world, or if it's just in France or more particularly just in my school, but I think I can safely say that it has made many students, myself included, feel bad about themselves. It almost seems to me that school doesn't have as a goal to teach us stuff anymore, but to assign us a grade which ultimately rates us as a person. I have several teachers who have completely lost the joy in teaching, and prefer to yell at us instead.

       I know I am an overthinker, but I can't help but notice these things. It looks to me like school is just a test to see how apt we will be later on in life to obey the rules of society. I go to school five days a week, from 8:45 to 4:30, and have (excuse my language) a shitload of homework  to complete when I get home (... I am talking HOURS). I probably have, on average, an hour of free time per day, if I don't go to bed after 11 p.m. And I'm getting seriously sick of it.

Now tell me: is this how you've lived/live school? Is it just MY situation that's oppressing? I know that many, if not most, countries around the world,only  have a half day of school. To me that sounds like a much better system. And sometimes I imagine all the things I would do differently to reform the school system to make it customizable, a system where each student can study itheir domains of interest and therefore make the whole experience more enjoyable.

there is no "after homework". there is only homework.  True story.


All of this to say... I CAN'T WAIT FOR THIS SUMMER. I am more than ready for vacation, sun, and fun to start. :)
    Happy first day of June!


Hello June

Just another fan-girly post about Divergent




     I might possibly be the last teen alive who has not yet finished reading the Divergent series.


I must admit that I avoided it because I didn't like it's cover.
I know I am defying one of the most important bookworm rules here; don't judge a book by it's cover.
Sorry about that. I am truly sorry... Because I also defied another very important bookworm rule: read the book before watching the movie.
Yes, I watched the movie first. But it made me realize that I was missing out big-time on something amazing.
All of this to say, I started reading the book. 
YES it's amazing, and YES I'm totally in love with Tobias. The minute I started reading Divergent, I could not put it down. I just started book two.


     I'm sure there are already a billion other blog posts out there about this series, but I think it has some philosophical content which should definitely still be shared HERE. I quote:






   "A brave man acknowledges the strength of others."

...


"I have a theory that selflessness and bravery aren't all that different."

...


"Becoming fearless isn't the point. That's impossible. It's learning how to control your fear and how to be free from it."




These statements bring tears to my eyes. Especially the last one; it is so, so important to remember we cannot be fearless, that knowing our flaws is what brings us strength and what helps us surpass them.

I made these to illustrate this quote. Which do you like better?
















April in Pictures


How was your April? My April was pretty crazy (good crazy!). It consisted primarily of major studying, the visit of my cousins, and catching up on all the books and blogs I wanted to read and didn't have time to before.



Here's what I posted on Instagram for April:



This is my cousin Alex and me chillin' in the parc near my house. This was one of the first nights my cousins were visiting. They stayed with us for a week and we had so much fun!


We took a long bike ride one morning. Although the air was brisk it was nice to see all the blooming flowers.




On the last night of their visit, instead of sitting around like the screen-obsessed modern kids we are, my cousins and I practiced our mad drawing skills. What do you think?


Last Saturday, my friends came over and we made Caramel-Pecan milkshakes. This may possibly be the best milkshake recipe on earth. You have to try it ----> Caramel-Pecan Milkshakes


This is me trying out my new tee-shirt from Urban Outfitters. Did you know I'm obsessed with that store? I swear I could live in there. I had to order this tee-shirt because tragically, there is no UO in Lyon.



P.S:   Did you notice the change in my blog design? The wonderful Rose C. has been re-designing it for me, and she's doing a great job! Thank you, Rose! 

And miles to go before I sleep ~♥

These days I've been reading a lot of poetry. 

I love how a few beautiful words, arranged in a rhythmical, fluid manner, can change your state of mind and give you something to reflect on for the rest of the day. This is what I hope to do in my life with writing.

As the days go on, I am more and more certain that there will be no return to the cold, harsh weather, and that the spring sun is finally here to stay.

So I wanted to share this sweet and "wintery" poem with you as a way to officially embrace spring.


Whose woods these are I think I know.   
His house is in the village though;   
He will not see me stopping here   
To watch his woods fill up with snow.   


My little horse must think it queer   
To stop without a farmhouse near   
Between the woods and frozen lake   
The darkest evening of the year.   


He gives his harness bells a shake   
To ask if there is some mistake.   
The only other sound’s the sweep   
Of easy wind and downy flake.   


The woods are lovely, dark and deep,   
But I have promises to keep,   
And miles to go before I sleep,   
And miles to go before I sleep.

----Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost


Cozy Cabin | by Chris Schoenbohm


woods

OR.GA.NIZE! #2 Wall art



Hey everyone! Is it as sunny where you live as it is here? The sun has finally shown itself and I LOVE it!

     Today I present you with the second post of my series OR.GA.NIZE! which I started a few weeks ago.
This project is a simple one. It's not particularly organizational; it's more decorative. This post is meant to encourage you to decorate your walls, by giving you a cute example of what I did!

     I recently purchased this poster from an Etsy shop owned by the lovely Ella Moe in Stockholm, Sweden.




It arrived in the cutest package and with a nice little note inside.



And because I had no frame to put it in, my dad and I ventured out to Ikea this weekend. We bought a very nice frame for JUST nine euros! Almost everybody I know has something from Ikea in their house, and I know that some people tend to avoid it because "it's not unique" or "too simple". But I have to say, you can buy some really great stuff there! Don't you agree?
RIBBA Cadre IKEA Le passe-partout fait ressortir la photo et rend l&#39;encadrement plus facile.

     As I said earlier, this isn't the most complicated or unheard-of of projects but it really dressed up my bedroom wall so I wanted to share it with you.
And I only just noticed that Ella Moe's Etsy shop AND Ikea are both Swedish! Funny right?

To recap:

  • Buy a poster (I recommend browsing on Etsy)
  • Buy a frame at Ikea (it really does look nice!)

I hope this is inspiring to you! For so long  my bedroom wall was bare and it made me feel so frustrated! This poster has already made a huge difference. 


Save the world! We can do it. YOU can do it!

Guys.
This is important, please listen.
We live our lives every day as if nothing bad will ever happen to us. We go to school, we go to work, we read our books, we tweet our thoughts, we eat our cake.
The world is going to end, guys.
It might not look so bad right now, but things are going seriously downhill in terms of the health of our environment. I know you already know this, but the truth is, it seems secondary to all of us at some point. But it shouldn't be. It's DEFINITELY our business. To each and every one of us.

What I am talking about here today is the Arctic disappearing. It's disappearing because oil exploiters want to access the oil waaay beneath the Arctic waters, the oils which will make the ice melt. It's disappearing because giant fishing companies are starting (and have started) exploiting the Arctic Ocean, which is destroying the icebergs. And it's disappearing because countries are fighting over the Arctic. Yes, that's right: the five neighboring countries are advancing their pawns to try to extend their territory. I quote Greenpeace:
"Countries are spending billions on Arctic weaponry, threatening the long-term peace of the region. Nuclear-powered ice-breakers, submarines and fighter jets are being purchased by Arctic states with overlapping claims on the area around the North Pole."

And why should we care about this? Because the health of the ice determines OUR health. No ice, no life.

"The ice at the top of the world reflects much of the sun’s heat back into space and keeps our whole planet cool, stabilising the weather systems that we depend on to grow our food. Protecting the ice means protecting us all."

This video also explains it.





SIGN THE PETITION TO PROTECT THE ARCTIC HEREhttp://www.savethearctic.org/en-US/
Tweet it! Facebook it! Pin it! You can do so from anywhere it the world! We can stop this mistreatment of our earth! Our goal is 6,000,000  signatures and we've already gotten 5,162, 223! Sign now!

Let's save the world. :)

Motivation

I feel like I've disappeared from the blogosphere this week... I'm in a really busy period right now. Coming up on Tuesday are nine hours of tests which will determine whether I go to Lycée next year, which is the equivalent of high school (high school starts one year later in France than in the states). 
This means I'll be studying ALL WEEKEND!!! Yippee!

Sooo... I better get started. But first, here's some motivation. All of us, sometimes, need motivation, whether we need it for studying, exercising or ANYTHING really!

These are quotes I love... they're not very philosophical, but they sure are true, no matter which way you cut it. Which one of these is your favorite?

You are what you do, not what you say you'll do.The secret to getting ahead is getting started
❤ 
designersof:  ————————get your work featured by submitting it to designersof.com

Have a nice week everybody :]

OR.GA.NIZE! #1 Spice Labels

Spice Label Organization


I get very grouchy when the house is a mess, or when there is dust on the floor, or when I can't find something I need...
You know what I mean?
I want it to CHANGE!

So on my quest to be organized, I started a new Pinterest board where I am pinning all the smart, interesting, space-saving, and crafty ideas/projects which will help me fulfill my goal.
And I'm going to share my progress with you!
This means every time I do something from that Pinterest board and it was a success, I will post it here! This series will be called OR.GA.NIZE! Today, I present you with #1. I'm so excited!


Do you, too, have a shelf with spices bunged together in a manner that makes the spice you need UNFINDABLE?
That WAS the case for me. Not anymore! 
This project doesn't cost anything. And most importantly,  it doesn't eat up your whole day! The only tools you'll need are scissors, glue, and a printer.
Here's what I did:



DIY SPICE LABEL ORGANIZATION

  1.     Empty a drawer in your kitchen, and organize everything that was in that drawer into two piles: STUFF TO THROW OUT and STUFF TO PUT ON THE EMPTY SHELF (this helps you get rid of a bunch of unnecessary stuff kicking around!). What empty shelf? The shelf which is currently holding all your spices! Now that your drawer is empty, place all your spices in it, and organize what was in your drawer onto your shelf.
  2.     Now, label all the lids of those spices. Otherwise, it will be hell to recognize them! Click HERE for free printable labels. Cut them out and glue them onto your lids!

DIY Spice Labels



Spice Label Organization


I had to modify a bunch of the labels, as you can see, but they're still super cute!
Tell me what you think! 


GIVEAWAY ALERT!!!

Want to know something cool?

My mom is an AUTHOR!

And... she is hosting a giveaway! Three lucky winners will win her book! You have six days to enter. All you have to do is like her Facebook page. Here is the link to the giveaway:


The book is called Trailing: A Memoir. It chronicles the experience of a "trailing spouse" who followed her Médecins Sans Frontières husband to the frontlines in East Africa (in other words, it's the story of five years of my mom and dad's life in Africa, in which I happen to be born). It's been voted one of the best Indie Read of 2013!










Take me home

I wonder if some of you out there, after reading the review I posted last Sunday of the movie How I Live Now, went out and watched it... have you?
If so, then you'll recognize this song.

Yes, things have not changed since last Sunday, and I am still completely obsessed with this movie (and, uh... George Mackay who plays the role of Eddie. Teehee). In fact, I've had its whole soundtrack running through my head non-stop.

This song especially. It is used in one of the scenes where Daisy and Piper are walking through the forest on their way back "home", and you can just feel Daisy's despair and longing for Eddie. So romantic... *sigh*

This song is called "Home" and it's sung by an artist called Daughter. I'd never heard of her before!




Take me, take me, home.
Take me, take me, home.

'Cause I don't stand a chance in these four walls.
And he don't recognise me anymore.
Burned out flames should never re-ignite.
But I thought you might...

Take me, take me, home.
Take me, take me, home.

Now he's moving close,
My heart in my throat.
I won't say a word,
But I think he knows...
That I've hardly slept,
Since the night he left.
His body always kept,
Mine inside of it.
Keep the nightmares out,
Give me mouth to mouth.
I can't live without you,
Take me to your house.

How I Live Now- Movie Review

I just came back from the movie How I Live Now... And I'm already writing this review, because- well, because- it was simply amazing. So keep reading.


How I Live Now In- I'm in love with this movie ;')
How I live Now

     Let's start with the background of this movie: it's adapted by Kevin Macdonald from Meg Rosoff's novel, How I Live Now.
Although I know the movie is a little bit different from Meg Rosoff's story, this is the description I found of the novel on Goodreads, if you're interested (if not, scroll down):

Fifteen-year-old Daisy is sent from Manhattan to England to visit her aunt and cousins she’s never met: three boys near her age, and their little sister. Her aunt goes away on business soon after Daisy arrives. The next day bombs go off as London is attacked and occupied by an unnamed enemy.

As power fails, and systems fail, the farm becomes more isolated. Despite the war, it’s a kind of Eden, with no adults in charge and no rules, a place where Daisy’s uncanny bond with her cousins grows into something rare and extraordinary. But the war is everywhere, and Daisy and her cousins must lead each other into a world that is unknown in the scariest, most elemental way.


     I haven't read the book, to be honest, which is why I just bought it on Kindle.
The story is touching, and surreal- but all the while SO CLOSE TO REALITY. It illustrates what a World War III would look like. We often look at footage from World Wars I and II thinking, deep-down inside, that it's all in the past and part of history. But we don't stop to think that in that day it WAS the modern time, it WAS the present moment. This movie shows us how scary war really is, and most importantly that it's REAL and not just some chapter of history to be forgotten.

     Can we talk about the characters in this story?
They are brave, determined and so young! I fell in love with each and every main character. Well, more importantly, Daisy and Eddie. They are both so strong and sweet (even if for Daisy it may not show right away). And how they fall in love... how they fall in love... *sigh*
It made me fall in love. The falling-in-love process was portrayed so beautifully.
Not to mention how amazing the actors are: Daisy is played by Saoirse Ronan and Eddie by George MacKay. Can we just obsess over the beauty of these people? I mean, just look at them!


❤
How I Live Now


How I live now
Saoirse Ronan


George Mackay... perfection <3
George MacKay- I'm pretty sure that's what perfection looks like.
     The war separates Daisy and Eddie, which makes their relationship all the more powerful when they find each other again. They've both gone through unspeakably horrific events, which I won't spoil for you by naming, which makes their reunion heroic, and...tear-provoking.

     This is a story about relationships- not just the romance between Daisy and Eddie but also Daisy's relationship with her other cousins. It's a story about survival, about love, and about hate. It's about loss, and confusion, and how war changes a person.
It's about finding the meaning to life.

     The music in this film is wonderful. There's all types of music: lyrical, hard-rock, upbeat and fun... they really suit the story and were well chosen (heading over to iTunes to buy the soundtrack right now!)

     I'd have to say the most beautiful part of this film was the ending. It was tender, touching, and simply perfect. I cried. I think it was the most beautiful end to a movie I've ever seen. I can't wait to find out how it ends in the book. Please watch the movie, you'll understand.

I give How I Live Now five stars.

Here's the trailer:

Thinking of a new blog design... HELP PLZ?!?!

Hi everyone,
Just a quick word: I've had this blog for a year and six months- and I'm starting to wonder if it's not time to update my blog design.
I like my background pattern, and my bio... but I feel like changing the shape, or the display, or SOMETHING on my blog.
 So I was wondering... how did you design your blog? Could you give the names of blog designers, or free template websites? That would be a HUGE help. :]
Or if you have any suggestions?

Thank you!




Silence

There are some things, in this world, which are irreplaceable, rare, and precious; you have to look out for them and appreciate them fully while they're still happening.

Like the sound of silence.

In a noisy city like mine, how often do you find yourself in complete and total silence? Whether it's outside or inside, there is ALWAYS some sort of noise:
The tick of the clock, the motor of a car.
The sound of my brother eating cereal, the clickety-clack of my mom's fingers on her keyboard.
A baby's cry, the whoosh of the wind through the trees.
So when I find myself enjoying a book on the sofa, while my brother, next to me, is doing the same, and my dad is upstairs, and my mom is sipping her coffee without a sound, I literally

d
r
o
w
n

in the silence.
I drown in the silence, willingly, because it's one of the most beautiful things I've ever heard.
Silence, I've come to realize, is one of the loudest things you could ever hear.
Your ears are overwhelmed, in the best way possible, by the piercing absence of any noise, and your thoughts are crystal clear.

Remember to treasure these moments of silence: they don't come often and they are just as beautiful as a melody.

The number one key to “hearing” (more like feeling) your Higher Self is to quiet the ego.  The more you can keep the ego minimized and silent, the more you are able to feel and think via your Higher Self. --Cameron Day
image is from pinterest



The height of your success.

quote of R.Kelly; photography by me


We all know easy it is to lose ourselves to the TV when we could be working hard at reaching our goals.


I've been thinking a lot about this lately, with all the schoolwork and pressure I've been experiencing from everything and everyone around me. This last week I had several moments of pure laziness and carelessness where, when coming home from school, I decided to put my homework aside and watch TV while eating snacks and thinking "WHY do I have to do what OTHER people want me to do?

The thing is, nothing worth having comes easy, and if you really want something, you've got to work for it.
I want to succeed in my future. I learned that laziness feels good temporarily, but in the long run, hard work is what really makes you feel good.

Us humans tend to put what we love to the side, in acts of procrastination and fear that we might not succeed.
But the only way to succeed is to never, ever give up. This is something I've had to remind myself of many times. 

Us humans like to rest, relax, and enjoy ourselves, which is totally understandable, but I feel that sometimes we forget what we'd like to be living for. 
Sure, hard work can be HARD... it will often be a true STRUGGLE to get where you want.
But please, please keep struggling.
Because in the end, it's the depth of your struggle that determines the height of your success.




OVER 100 POSTS!

Hey peeps.
I JUST REALIZED that I've written over one hundred posts on this blog!!!
This post is number #105, in case you're wondering.

It feels surreal to me, and although 105 posts might not seem like a lot to you, it feels like a lot to ME, me who is on a quest to being a writer.
I'd like to thank all of my followers and supporters for reading my blog, following, and commenting!
Somebody once said that writing is a muscle that needs to be exercised every day, or else it will seize up (remind me who said this? It's brilliant).
I believe this is true and although I don't write every day, I come close to doing so, not only on my blog but in my homework agenda, my diary, sticky notes, and letters. Writing truly is a passion and this blog has helped me in so many ways to become a better writer.

Speaking of passions, most of you haven't ACTUALLY met me PHYSICALLY, which means you probably don't know that I play guitar... I don't blog about it much. The reason for that is, I have way too many activities going on in my life and I feel I can't consecrate time to practicing guitar outside of my one-hour class each Wednesday... so I'm thinking of giving up on it.
But thinking of GIVING UP on something makes me feel terrible about myself and I am overwhelmed with a deep sense of guilt. I feel that my dad, with his "it's your choice, I guess..." is extremely disappointed in me, that my guitar teacher is extremely disappointed in me, and, most importantly, I am disappointed in me.
This question, whether I should continue guitar or not, has brought on a lot of stress to my thoughts lately and therefore, I ask you, do you have any insight to offer?

Any piece of advice will help.

Love you all. :)



MATH CLASS


I believe it's important to keep a sense of humour in life. Although I might not always remember to, when I'm in an uncomfortable or stressful situation I try to look at it through a stranger's eyes and see what could be funny about it.
An example where this applies is...  in math class.

I am definitely not a math person. I prefer english, history, and geography let's say, a thousand times more?
Despite the fact that I have an awesome-math-genius neighbor in my math class who helps me out whenever I don't understand something, I often am on the verge of a mental breakdown because I find math so. complicated. And most of the time I don't get just WHAT is the point of learning all these complex theorems and properties.
Anyway, I try to see the humour in those moments... I think the image above pretty much sums up what I look like in math class.