November Wrap-Up // December Plans

It’s the last day of November!

It’s going to be a short blog post today. I’m not feeling too hot, and I have a lot to do today because I’m going to be away over the weekend. This post is going to double as a November wrap-up post and a December plans post.

Part I: November Wrap-Up

At the start of November, I planned to partake in NaNoWriMo. I’ve won the challenge before, and was looking forward to doing it again. However, after a couple of days I realised I hadn’t done sufficient planning and I was unhappy with forcing myself to write 2,000 words a day when I knew I’d only end up scrapping the work and starting over at a later date. I decided it made more sense to use November for planning and getting to know my characters and their motivations a little better.

All of my shopping this month has been on Christmas presents, so I can’t tell you what I’ve been buying this month (and honestly, I don’t think you would care. I don’t buy interesting things). I am very excited to be unapologetically Christmassy for the whole of December, though. I’m actually going to put up my small Christmas tree in my bedroom today so it’ll be Christmas when I get back from my trip this weekend!

I’ve been binge-watching some old shows, but Peaky Blinders season 4 has begun and I’m loving that so far, too. If you haven’t watched Peaky Blinders and you don’t mind violence in your television, then I would highly recommend it. It’s one of the most well-written and beautifully shot TV shows I’ve watched in a long time.

November hasn’t been the most exciting month. It’s mostly been me preparing for next month. Speaking of which…

Part II: December Plans

There are four Mondays and four Thursdays in December. That means eight blog posts. I had toyed with the idea of partaking in Blogmas but decided not to commit to anything I wasn’t certain I would be able to stick to. I have a lot of plans for blog posts for the holiday season, so I hope you’ll stick with me.

Planned posts include baking adventures, favourite Christmas films and playlists, book reviews and maybe even some creative Christmas pieces. It’s my favourite time of year so I’m all in.

I’m excited to read everyone else’s holiday posts and to learn about everyone’s winter traditions. Are you excited for the holiday season, or dreading it?

Until next time, stay merry!

-K

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pannCREATIVE: Mortified, Archie. Mortified.

It wasn’t a particularly cold day. It was autumn, and it was a little windier than the last few days had been, so I had donned my large blue duffel coat instead of my denim jacket. I felt a little frumpier, but it didn’t matter just to take the dog for a walk – I didn’t care what people around the village thought of my appearance, anyway. I probably wouldn’t even see anyone.

We did our usual lap around the familiar streets. Every time he wanted to stop and sniff we would stop and he would sniff. I tried not to rush him – my podcast was keeping me entertained, and the longer we stayed outside the more I could listen. Like I had predicted, the streets were almost empty at this hour in the morning, so save for the odd car we were mostly alone. We preferred it that way.

To my relief, the rain stayed away, and when we rounded off the main road and onto a side close of houses I reached down and took the slip lead from around his neck. He was good at walking off lead, usually staying near me and if ever he did stray too far ahead he would turn and wait for me to catch up. We would be home in less than three minutes by our usual schedule, and since there were no more roads left to cross I thought he deserved a little more freedom.

He was already getting tired, so he walked a little behind me. He usually did this even if his lead was on at this point in our walk, so I didn’t think much of it. I carried on the ten or so feet to the end of the close and turned around to call him when I realised he had fallen some way behind.

He was sniffing around a gate, so I patted my thigh, called his name and told him to come on. He would normally run up to my side, but today he didn’t. I called him again, and he ignored me, and then I noticed that the gate he was sniffing was open.

“Oh no,” I thought. “I can’t let him wander into people’s gardens. I better go get him.”

I started to walk towards him, and seemingly at the sound of my footsteps he decided to make his move and trotted into the paved garden. I glanced from him to the door of the house, and my heart leapt into my throat.

The front door was open.

This usually would not have bothered me. Like I’ve said, he was usually well behaved, but his ignorance just now had me worried. I sped up, and as I began to jog towards him he followed suit and trotted faster.

I can still see it so clearly.

Seemingly without a care in the world, he leapt through that open door.

With no time to think, I ran in after him. There was a man standing in the hall painting his wall despite the fact that a scruffy black animal had just swanned into his home like he owned the place. I blurted apology after apology to him as I lunged past and grabbed my dog by his collar, stopping him on his way into the poor man’s kitchen.

“I’m sorry!” I told the man, who just smiled at me. “I don’t know why he’s doing this! I’m so sorry! I’m so sorry!”

I threw the dog out into the front garden, still calling countless apologies to the man in the house. He never spoke – just smiled. I slipped the lead back around the dog’s neck and pulled him down the street.

“I am mortified,” I hissed at him. “I am mortified.”

As it turns out, the man in the house had only just moved in. The previous homeowners were friends of my parents, and my dog had been to visit them before. Apparently, that day he’d decided to pop round and visit them by himself.

I don’t walk him off lead when we pass that house any more.

Ask Before You Pet My Dog

Today, Archie and I were on our daily walk. We had just crossed over past the church and as we were making our way up the narrow path, a car pulled onto the kerb. When the passenger opened their door to step out, I halted, slipping my hand lower on Archie’s lead and holding him closer to my side because there wasn’t enough room for us to pass before the car door was closed again. The driver made her way around to the boot of the car as the man slowly got out of the vehicle. I didn’t mind waiting. I held back and smiled and told the lady it was okay when she apologised for stopping us.

As we spoke, a bus passed us, and did that loud, hissing thing buses do sometimes. Archie jumped backwards and was clearly afraid, and the lady said as much. “You poor thing! What’s wrong? Why are you afraid?”

“He’s blind,” I told her, reaching down to scratch his ears. “Loud noises spook him.”

“Oh, bless him!”

The man stood out of the way so that we could pass them, and I said goodbye and went on. We got to our house just as the rain started.

I was so relieved that the exchange went well. See, like I told the lady, my dog is blind – or mostly blind. He can see shadows and shapes but not well. When strangers approach him suddenly and try to pet him he gets a fright and begins to bark. When we’re out walking, he doesn’t really bark at all. Other dogs bark at him, and he definitely has a good nose at people we pass, but he doesn’t really make any noise – which is great because if he hears a noise in the house he will bark for ages.

Every time somebody stops me when I’m walking Archie, I’m holding my breath. It happens quite often, because my dog is (in more opinions than my own) the perfect mix of scruffy and handsome. He’s got “a lovely face”; a “handsome face”. And when we walk, he’s well-behaved. People stop us quite a lot. That’s fine.

But please don’t pet my dog without asking me.

Actually, please don’t pet any dog without asking the owner. And please teach your children to always ask first!

A couple of weeks ago on one of our daily walks, I could see a couple of kids up the road petting a dog. Their grandfather was talking to the owner, and then they said goodbye and went their separate ways. I took out one of my headphones as we headed towards one another in case they spoke to me. The children ran on ahead, and then hesitated a couple of feet in front of me.

“Can we please pet your dog?” asked the girl. She was older than the little boy. I smiled and bent down to pet Archie’s head myself, and he began to sniff the girl.

“Yes, but just don’t pet his face. He’s blind and he might get a fright.”

The children stroked his back and true to his lazy, dramatic self he dropped to the ground and rolled onto his back so they could pet his belly. The grandfather caught up to them and apologised to me.

“It’s fine!” I assured him. “He loves kids.”

He does. Archie adores children, and he’s always gentle and lovely around them.

“Dogs like to be stroked,” the girl told her grandfather.

“Yes, but you stroke them without asking and you can’t do that.”

“I asked!”

I assured the grandfather that they had indeed asked, but I was so happy to hear his criticism because even though it was unfounded, it meant he was teaching the children how to be safe around dogs.

Every time somebody stops me, I’m always afraid they’re going to try to stroke him without asking me and he’s going to get a fright and bark and they’re going to get a fright and think he’s a nasty dog. He doesn’t bite, but he does have quite a loud bark despite his size and it can be quite startling when people don’t expect it. Every time that they don’t pet him without asking, I’m incredibly relieved.

My dog is lovely. He loves attention and if you ask, I’ll probably say that you can stroke him. But please ask me before you do. Ask anyone before you stroke their dogs.

Do you have a dog? How do you feel when strangers approach you? Do you let strangers stroke them or would you rather they didn’t?

Until next time, stay cool.

-K

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Christmas Reading

The end of November is drawing near, and even all lf the Grinches are soon going to have to accept that the Christmas season has well and truly begun. With the American thanksgiving but days away, everywhere is about to be twinkling with fairy lights and unexplainable amounts of glitter, and I, for one, cannot wait.

Since my last post was about not being able to enjoy reading, I thought that for this post I would take some time to talk about a couple of books that I hope to find myself reading over the Christmas season. It’s going to be a short post, and I really do just mean a couple of books, but I’ll say a little bit about each of them.

Hogfather, Terry Pratchett

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Despite thoroughly enjoying Terry Pratchett’s writing from the couple of works of his that I’d read, I’d never read any of the Discworld books until recently. Hogfather was a book that my partner loved and used to listen to the audiobook of every year at Christmas, so a couple of years ago I bought her a beautiful copy of it and at Christmas she read it aloud to me for the first time, and I fell in love immediately.

Reading Hogfather has now become something I look forward to all year and one of my favourite parts of the Christmas season. If you haven’t read it, then I encourage you to pick it up. You surely don’t need me to tell you what a wonderful writer Terry Pratchett was, but I will tell you that this immediately became one of my all-time favourite books. It’s funny, it’s exciting and thrilling and it’s honestly magical. It’s also not really, truly about Christmas – it’s set at Hogswatch – so if you don’t enjoy Christmas then you can still get into the Hogswatch spirit instead by reading this.

A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens

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I said during my Victober post that I had never really read any Dickens, and that I was going to save A Christmas Carol for Christmas. It’s still one of my favourite stories – I saw it a few times on stage growing up and I’ve seen countless adaptations of it (my favourite one is the Muppets adaptation because I love Kermit the Frog) and they’re a staple of my Christmas, but despite this I’ve never actually read the book. That’s really weird, because I love reading and don’t really know why I’ve never bothered to pick it up before now.

Since I’ll be reading Hogfather with my partner, A Christmas Carol is going to be my solo-read this season. I haven’t decided yet whether I’ll be reading it on my kindle or splashing out on a lovely copy, but I’m excited nonetheless. I already know that it’s a story I love, and I can’t wait to see if I love the book as much as everything else. I can only imagine that I will.

So those are my Christmas reading plans! Like I said, just a couple, but stories that I love. What are you reading this holiday season? Do you have any staples or are you trying something new?

Until next time, stay cool.

-K

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Book Burnout

I love reading. I know that it’s cliché to use the phrase, “for as long as I can remember”, and that it’s the sort of thing that your teachers advise against you including in a personal statement, but this isn’t a personal statement, and for as long as I can remember I have loved to read.

I love reading the Biff and Chip books they’d send us home with whilst in the infants; I loved reading Kipper the Dog; I loved listening to my mum read The Chronicles of Narnia to my sisters and I before bed. The first book series I fell head over heels in love with was A Series of Unfortunate Events and it’s still one of my all-time favourite series and the books which have had the most influence over my own writing style to this day. I read The Secret Garden every year from the ages of seven to fifteen. I read every book I could get my hands on – children’s books and middle-grade books and young adult and adult books. If it had words in it, I wanted to read it.

I loved reading so much that I ended up doing a mainly literature-focused English degree (although I did take some language modules because language is actually really interesting). For three years straight, I read book after book after book, and managed to even squeeze in a few books I read just because I wanted to.

Then, I graduated.

Since graduation, I haven’t been able to sit down and read like I used to. I’ve tried countless times to crack open a new book and get absorbed in it, but even when I am enjoying the story I can feel my brain shutting down. It gets tired so easily now, and for a while I was terrified that maybe I wouldn’t enjoy reading any more. That was a terrifying thought and it played on my mind and kept me awake when I’d rather be sleeping. However, a friend of mine that also studied English alongside me told me a couple of weeks ago that she was talking to a colleague of hers who studied English and told her that, yes, it took him a while to be able to enjoy reading for fun again.

When she said that, the wave of relief that washed over me was so strong that it could have sent me straight into a peaceful sleep right there and then.

I still haven’t been able to really kick myself back into reading like I used to, but there are so many books that I want to read, and so many books that I want to write. I’m trying to be patient and not to force myself (because I know that will only make the situation worse), but ‘reader’ has been such a defining part of my personality for as long as I can remember that I’m terrified to let go of that label, even for the tiniest moment.

My current theory is that my brain is still so exhausted from the last three years of nonstop reading, much of which I did not enjoy (which wasn’t bad for a degree – it meant I had a lot to say in my essays) that when I open a new book it’s too tired to wait and see if it gets good. I think my brain isn’t done relaxing yet, but I’m tired of not reading. My new plan? To read an old favourite. Something I know inside and out; something I know that I enjoy and don’t have to put too much effort into comprehending the story because I’ve already done the work. I’m thinking maybe Good Omens.

My bookshelf is still my favourite part of my room, even though it only holds a fraction of the books I actually own. I hope that if I can find that part of my brain that loves the effort of digging into new stories, we can begin to work our way through all of the untouched books currently glaring at me from their place at the foot of my bed.

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Have you had a similar experience with Book Burnout? Have you studied a degree and found yourself tired of something you once loved? Could you even imagine not wanting to read? Or do you not really enjoy it in the first place? Let me know in the comments.

Until next time, stay cool.

-K

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Surviving The Pre-Christmas Christmas Season

If you’re like me, you’ve been excited for Christmas since September. You’ve bitten your tongue whenever you’ve had Christmassy thoughts and ideas; you’ve cut yourself off when you’ve caught yourself humming Slade or Wizzard; you’ve kept your purse pinched tightly closed whenever you saw a cute Christmas decoration in the shops because you know there’s no point in putting it away so it’d just end up left out and then everyone would have an opinion on it… but now it’s November, and we are so close to being able to unashamedly enjoy this wonderful, magical time of year.

My facebook and twitter right now are a mix of people jumping headfirst into the Christmas films and playlists and the people who are rolling their eyes and saying, “ugh, I’m still supposed to have a month before I have to listen to you all go on about Christmas”. Now, look – I get it. Not everybody likes Christmas, not everyone celebrates Christmas, and for some people, it’s an uncomfortable and unpleasant time of year. However, for me, it’s the best time. It’s the time when I’m happiest, and I feel most comfortable, and it makes every day a little easier for me to get through because the people around me are being kinder and are smiling more and it’s nice. Sure, it comes with its fair share of stress, but it’s one of the only times of year when I feel really, truly happy, and I want to celebrate that.

So if you need to mute or block or unfollow me on twitter, and if you want to unfriend me on facebook, that’s fine. I totally understand. But, I am trying my best to keep my Christmas chatter to a minimum for at least another week or so. And trust me, it isn’t easy. Here are a couple of things I’m finding are holding me over until I can go 110% Christmas…

HOW TO SURVIVE THE PRE-CHRISTMAS CHRISTMAS SEASON: THE CHRISTMAS LOVER VERSION

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Get your shopping done early!

I’ve been Christmas shopping since October and I’ve been planning gifts since September. I’ve made a list of everyone that I’m buying gifts for and sorted them into two groups – Big and Small. This basically means – my family and partner get a bigger allowance than everyone else. I’ve already completely finished buying for two of my Big people, have half finished another two and there’s only one that I haven’t gotten anything for yet. I hope to have everyone on the list sorted (or mostly sorted) by December 1st.

My tips for shopping are: list your people. Think of multiple gift ideas for them – this might be easier if you make a little mindmap for each person and list the things you know they’re interested in and possible gifts relating to these interests. Decide your budget for each person! Make sure that the overall total is manageable for you and won’t break your bank (remember – you don’t have to spend a lot – or even any – money on someone to show them that you care, and your health and stability in terms of living should come before gift giving) and then pick out the gifts you want to give them from the ideas you came up with earlier.

And if that isn’t enough, wrap some of them. Or all of them.

I usually leave my wrapping until December, but I have a much smaller bedroom since moving home from university and that means I don’t really have space to hide gifts. Since my partner was coming over this weekend just gone, I decided the best way to hide them would just be to wrap them.

And listen – places like Home Bargains and B&M sell really nice wrapping paper. And I mean really nice and easy to use. Some fancy wrapping papers can be heavy and hard to fold and tape down because they keep wanting to pop open, especially if they’re foil papers and the tape won’t stick well. The wrapping paper I’ve used this year is from Home Bargains and it’s firm and sturdy without being heavy and frustrating. And it’s really pretty!

Look – having wrapped presents around is nice. And exciting. And it’s fun to tease people when they can see their presents are right there. Just make sure that you have enough willpower not to hand them over early.

Make lists of the Christmas activities you want to do throughout the Christmas season

This basically just gives you time to work out when you’ll be able to squeeze these activities in and gives you things to look forward to. Then you might actually manage to do all or most of them throughout the season instead of thinking of something you would have liked to do when it’s too late.

Start watching things slowly

Maybe start with the TV specials, and build up to your favourite Christmas films. Or watch the rubbish Made-For-TV Christmas films that are always on some channel right about now. There are probably a lot more Christmas films that you love than you can think of off the top of your head, so maybe start writing a list, too.

Hey, we’re making a lot of lists. Maybe you could buy a Christmas-themed notepad to keep them in.

Get organised!

Are you sending out Christmas cards? Double check you have everyone’s current addresses. Are you going away? What do you need to take? Who else will be there? Will you need to take an empty bag for the gifts you receive while you’re there? Do you have access to your favourite Christmas clothes or could your wardrobe use a good sorting through?

So, these are a bunch of things that are helping me not to talk about Christmas too much right now.

But, hey, if you want to talk about it? Go ahead. You want to watch all your favourite films? Do it. You want to blast Christmas music all day, every day? Rock on, then. Hell, if you want to put up all of your decorations? Go for it.

Do whatever you want to do to make yourself happy throughout this season. Take as much or as little time as you want and/or need.

Basically? Be happy.

So, are you like me, and are already vibrating with excitement for the Christmas season? Are you already going full-throttle? Are you trying to hold out to build excitement? Do you hate Christmas and wish everyone would shut up? Let me know in the comments!

Until next time, stay merry!

-K

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November: 7 Little Things

Nine days into November, and I’ve yet to make a blog post with “November” in the title. Shock horror! So here it is. This isn’t going to be an especially lengthy post, but I wanted to spend a little time talking about seven little things that are getting me through November.

November to me is a lot of things: it’s NaNoWriMo month (I started NaNoWriMo, and then realised I hadn’t done nearly as much planning as I’d like to for my current WIP and it would be a waste of a month to force out 50k words and then scrap them, so I’m focusing on planning this month instead!), it’s the month before Christmas… it’s basically a month of anticipation and excitement and I love it. It’s not a month where anything special happens for me, but it’s at a good point in the year, and as I’m trying my best to focus on the positives right now, here are the seven little things I’m loving this month:

  1. My favourite show is back

I’ve mentioned RWBY many times on this blog, and will undoubtedly mention it many times in the future. It’s my absolute favourite series in the world, and November means we’re back into the swing of things with the newest volume! Which I am loving. Unsurprisingly.

  1. Winter mornings

You know those bright, clear mornings where there’s frost on the ground and you can see your breath and you’re absolutely freezing but it wakes you up? And you can bundle up in a big coat and a warm scarf and nice gloves? I love those mornings. I can tell it’s getting close to winter, and everything just seems clean and fresh.

  1. Christmas shopping

I try to get the bulk of my Christmas shopping done early. I start in October and aim to be finished with the majority of my gifts before December. I love finding gifts that I know people will love and I love knowing that I won’t have to worry about it when the shops are booming with panicked parents and last-minute gift-buyers.

  1. Christmas lights

Today, I’m going to watch them light the big Christmas tree in town. I adore Christmas lights – the entire town looks magical. November means the start of a season of magic and that isn’t just reserved for people who celebrate Christmas. Everyone can walk under the sparkling arches and admire the twinkling trees – there are fairies out tonight.

  1. The Good Jumpers™

You know what I mean. In preparation for the Christmas season, the shops are bringing out their stock of good jumpers. Plain ones, patterned ones, ones with Christmas characters on and ones that turn you into Christmas characters. Fluffy ones, thick ones, ones with holes in… every style of jumper is about to be flooding the shelves in almost every clothing store, and I can’t wait to get myself something new to snuggle up in with a nice festive drink. Speaking of…

  1. Festive drinks

I wait all year for the black forest hot chocolate to return to Costa. All. Year.

  1. Films

I don’t just mean that it’s soon going to be acceptable to watch nothing but Christmas films. The sequel to Rooster Teeth’s original film, Lazer Team, also comes out this month, and I can’t wait to see it and to spend the evening with the community that’s basically like a really large, extended family to me. I love films and I’m so excited for this cinema experience.

So, those are seven little things that I’m loving this month. Just a handful of things that are making me happy and helping to keep a smile on my face.

What sort of things are keeping you happy this month? Are you hating the pre-Christmas-Christmas season or loving it like I am?

Until next time, stay cool.

-K

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Shuffle The Music Tag

Okay, so I wasn’t tagged in this. That’s unsurprising – I’ve only been blogging regularly since September and I definitely don’t fit into a niche, so I haven’t really found a spot in the blogging community yet. However, when I was looking through my collection of post ideas and prompts today, nothing really seemed like it was the right time to post it. Then, whilst scrolling twitter, I came across this tag from Britt at Alternatively Speaking.

I listen to music every day and I’m always finding new artists and new genres to explore. However, I mostly listen to music on spotify now – playlists made by my partner and friends and a couple I’ve made myself. I thought it would be fun to do this tag using my iTunes because I haven’t used it for a  good couple of years now, and it would be interesting (and a little nostalgic) to see what I had to say about the songs that came up!

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THE RULES:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you for this tag and link to their blog.
  2. Shuffle your entire music library (no matter how old songs the songs are) and talk about the FIRST FIFTEEN songs that come up (anything like why they are there, if they signify something, any story, why you like them, etc.)
  3. Mention the songs as well as the artists.
  4. Tag 7 people or more to do this tag and please let them know!

‘The Bitch of Living’ – Spring Awakening Broadway Cast

This was the first song from this musical that I ever heard, and I knew nothing about the show itself but I really, really liked this song. A couple of years later I came across the rest of the music from the production, but this one is probably still my favourite. I love rock music and I love theatre music and this combines the two beautifully. Listening to it again now after a year or so since I last heard it has made me remember just how fond I am of it.

‘The Fighter’ – Gym Class Heroes ft. Ryan Tedder

This is absolutely one of my favourite Gym Class songs and it’s one I still listen to regularly. It’s a song that always makes me feel better – it motivates me and reminds me that I’ve already made it this far so there’s no reason to give up now. It’s okay to struggle and it’s okay to not always feel like you’re winning because that doesn’t mean we’ve lost yet. We can keep going and it might be tough but there’s no reason I can’t do it, and anyone that doubts me is in for a shock.

‘A Change of Heart’ – The 1975

The 1975 are one of my two all-time favourite bands (joint top place). I’ve seen them live three times already and I fully intend to see them every time they return to Liverpool/Manchester for the foreseeable future. I think this is one of the songs from ILIWYS that I don’t hear about as much, but it’s one of my favourites. There are so many throwback lyrics in the whole album but especially in this song – it really speaks to me about growing up and changing. Over the past couple of years I’ve changed a lot and so have the people around me, and it’s led to us having to let go of some friendships because things just weren’t clicking like they used to. It’s sad, but it isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s okay to let go. Things don’t always go like we plan, but at least we have beautiful songs to share the changes with.

‘212’ – Azealia Banks ft. Lazy Jay

This is the kind of song that I can listen to in the day and enjoy, but if it came on while I was out with friends I know I’d have a totally different reaction. It makes me want to go to a club.

‘Push’ – Matchbox Twenty

I really love Matchbox Twenty. This is a really sad song, but I still love it. The music is just really familiar to me and even though the contents of the song are definitely unpleasant, the music itself just makes me feel really full. I think it’s the combination of them both. I can’t help but sing along.

‘She’s American’ – The 1975

Oh wow, another.

I love this song, but a lot of the time I see it interpreted in a way that doesn’t pay attention to half the lyrics. I feel like people only hear the ‘she’s American’ lyrics and not the rest of them. But, to be fair, just because I interpret it one way doesn’t necessarily mean it’s correct, and I wouldn’t try to tell anyone else how to interpret it. To me, though, it’s not a song about having a good time. I always heard it as being around someone who doesn’t really care what’s going on beneath the surface for you as long as they can enjoy these fleeting and shallow moments.

I really love this song, though. One of my favourite things about ILIWYS is how upbeat the music is and how that contrasts with the lyrics and content of the songs.

‘Raise Hell’ – Brandi Carlile

This song reminds me of my pirates. Over the years, as a writer, I’ve written a lot of characters who are pirates – some entirely fictional and some inspired by real historical characters. This is one of the songs that I’ll always associate with them.

‘Toy Soldiers’ – Marianas Trench

Ah, my other favourite band! These guys share the top spot with The 1975, and I’ve seen them live twice. This is one of the first songs by them that I heard. I don’t listen to it very often anymore because I kind of over-did it when I first heard it, but I still think it’s an absolute jam. It’s another one of those songs where the content is about an unhealthy relationship, but the music makes it almost impossible not to sing along for me. This isn’t one of my favourite MT songs, but it’s definitely one I’m fond of because it’s one of the first ones I heard and there’s a lot of nostalgia attached to it.

‘I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful, Yet So Unaware Of It’ – The 1975

Well done, Shuffle, you’ve brought me three songs from ILIWYS so far.

There isn’t a song by The 1975 that I can think of that I don’t like. I love the music in this, I love the soft singing; I love it all. The lyrics, few though they are, are so colloquial and I adore that. I really like the use of ‘the big light’ because that’s what I’ve always referred to it as, but I’ve never really heard it used in the media (TV, films or music).

‘What A Catch, Donnie’ – Fall Out Boy

This song is so important to me and to a lot of people around me. It’s a song that deals with depression and suicide and struggling, and to me, it’s a reminder that just because we’re struggling doesn’t mean we’re not doing great things, and most importantly, that we’re not alone.

‘You Could Be Happy’ – Snow Patrol

This song makes me really sad, and I’ve heard it in a lot of different places at a lot of different times, but the one that stuck with me? Gavin & Stacey. Every time it comes on I remember that episode. I don’t even especially care about their relationship (come on, it’s a story about Smithy and Nessa told through the relationship of Gavin & Stacey), but this song makes me want to cry… but I still never skip it.

‘Your Song’ – Ewan McGregor (Moulin Rouge soundtrack)

I really love this film, and this song makes me think of my partner. It kind of reminds me of a bad time in my life, when I’d just started college and everything seemed to be going wrong, but looking back on it I can only be happy that everything worked out.

‘Odds Are’ – Barenaked Ladies

I’m an absolutely massive Barenaked Ladies fan, and this is one of my favourite songs. It’s so uplifting! Yeah, there are a lot of bad things that could happen, but the odds are that everything is going to work itself out. A funny thing for me about this song is that I heard it, and then later realised that the music video for it (which I didn’t see for a long time after hearing the song) was made by Rooster Teeth. If you know me, you know how important Rooster Teeth is to me. What are the odds? Eh? Eh???

‘The Parting Glass’ – Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag OST

AC is my favourite game series, but Blag Flag is not one of my favourite games. That said, the side characters? My absolute favourite. Hearing Anne sing this at the end of the game absolutely breaks my heart. It’s a lovely tune, but I’m an emotional baby who gets too attached to fictional characters and listening to this song makes me feel like I’ve lost my friends, too.

‘What Are You Drinking About?’ – Florida Georgia Line

Catch me passionately singing this song whenever it comes on. Literally every time. I cannot relate to this song even a little bit but you wouldn’t believe that by the way I sing along.

Now, I don’t think I actually know any bloggers well enough to tag at this point, so since I’m already cheating in that I wasn’t tagged I’m going to cheat again and over this up to anyone who is interested in the tag.

Let me know in the comments if you like any of these songs or artists! And leave me a comment if you do the tag as well and I’ll be sure to check out your own post on it!

Until next time, stay musical.

-K

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Dear Diary…

[A selection of fictional diary entries surrounding the switch between Halloween-Season and Pre-Christmas-Christmas-Season]

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30/10/17

Dear Diary,

Final touches of Halloween costume: assembled. Sweets: purchased. Skeletons: spooky.

Garden entirely cleared of any items that could be used against us this Mischief Night.

Note: Book in dentist appointment for post-Halloween check up. Expected number of trick-or-treaters dwarfs in comparison to amount of sweets bought.

Note: 56 days until Christmas!

Note: Google ‘how to get fake cobwebs out of jumper’.

31/10/17

Dear Diary,

Already eaten a quarter of the sweets bought for trick-or-treaters tonight. MUST BOOK DENTIST APPOINTMENT.

No trouble from anyone out last night, which is a damn relief considering in the past few years I’ve noticed that people seem to have forgotten the definition of ‘mischief’ and the night has escalated from harmless pranks to full blown crime.

Note: Mischief Night is sort of like the Purge except you still get arrested – people are just terrible.

Finally finished putting up the last of the Halloween decorations, at least. Selection of scary films are ready and waiting. I can’t wait to be terrified by trick-or-treaters knocking during the anticipation of a jump scare.

Note: 55 days until Christmas!

Note: Ate two more fun-size bags of Haribo whilst writing this diary entry. BOOK. DENTIST.

1/11/17

Dear Diary,

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Still have two unopened bags of Maoams because I only received about 15 trick-or-treaters. Refuse to waste money so will have to eat the rest of the sweets myself.

Note: Sort it into bags of pick ‘n’ mix and force them upon friends so we can all rot our teeth together and I will feel like less of a failure of an adult.

Received three more parcels of Christmas presents today and am now £60 down but 40% finished, which I find very impressive (thank you, Wowcher). Have broken out the Christmas playlist but cannot yet find the energy to take down the Halloween decorations.

Note: Don’t have much storage space, but cannot continue to throw out £15 worth of Poundland decorations every year if I’m attempting to be thrifty so must find space.

Note: Remove all batteries before storage. Have pooped my pants three times already by accidentally triggering motion-sensor skeleton.

Note: Correction – one unopened bag of Maoams.

2/11/17

Dear Diary,

Have heard seven (7) people complaining that shops are already putting up Christmas decorations because ‘it hasn’t even been bonfire night yet’. Very true – cannot believe shops aren’t setting off fireworks every hour! It’s a disgrace.

Dog is very distressed by the noise of the fireworks being set off, though. Amazingly, his reindeer toy has retained its antlers despite this.

Have made little more progress in gift-buying as L won’t decide if they have a gift in mind or would like to be surprised. Have made notes of potential gifts but this work could be scrapped at any moment.

Note: Begin compiling Christmas card list and double-checking addresses.

Note: Do NOT be a Pam this year. Wait until December to post the cards.

Despite the abundance of Halloween sweets still available in my home, have already purchased mince pies (two (2) have been eaten). Have yet to book dentist appointment.