Wednesday, 28 February 2018

February Wishlist

Hi guys! Happy Snow Day (if you like snow that is, haha!). I absolutely love the look of it, and waking up to discover how much it has snowed overnight. It's beautiful to see fresh snow with no footprints in it yet, don't you think? However I am not a fan of how freezing it can get, especially since my immune system is crap! I will spend most of Autumn & Winter each year experiencing one cold or flu type sickness after another. I have only just recovered from one, and since yesterday I've had a sore throat and a bunged up nose. Eeek! Bring on springtime! I haven't shared a wishlist yet this year, so I thought it was about time that I did. Next month expect to see my usual monthly one and my March Kawaii & Geeky wishlist too. This month, I've just decided to mash the two together, and I hope you enjoy reading! 

1. Demonia Creeper 222 I have been after some creepers for a very long time now, ever since my late teens but there was always another pair of shoes that I wanted just that little bit more! Thus I saved for those and creepers took a back burner. Towards the end of 2017 though, I spotted an advert for some new releases from the alternative fashion company Demonia, and amongst those shoes were the Creeper 222's! I really liked how they were a simple black creeper, but then came with these unique removable and interchangeable 'ball gags' (you get a pink one & a red one). As some of my regular readers will know, I am into kink and so this little accessory was appealing to me. I think it looks cute, and if you didn't know what a ball gag looked like, it doesn't scream KINKY when you look at the shoes. I would just love for these to be my first pair of creepers! What do you think of this quirky look? 

2. Hell Bunny Navy & White Sailor Style Dress I don't quite know why but I have always wanted a sailor style dress! I love the traditional blue & white colour and the bow, and I think they are just lovely. They somewhat remind me of the typical Japanese girl's school uniform, so they always make me think of cosplay and anime too. At the moment, I am on the look out for dresses and other clothes that I can wear when I go to Portugal in May, and I would love to rock this in Lisbon. Hell Bunny are a company that I have always adored but could never quite afford when I was younger. I recently purchased by first ever Hell Bunny dress for my friend's wedding next month too :) Yours Clothing just have a fabulous selection of their dresses in stock at the moment. 

3. Barry M Under The Sea Nail Polish I have recently been spotting these gorgeous new Barry M nail polishes all over Instagram! The packaging is just so so nice, and the shades themselves look super pretty. I absolutely love all things iridescent! My favourite colours are 'Jellyfish' & 'Butterflyfish', but I would be happy to own any of them. They are the perfect colours for Spring and Summer!

4. Hello Kitty X ASOS Curve Oversized T-Shirt Some of you may not know it but I am pretty obsessed with Hello Kitty. My love for this super cute Sanrio (a Japanese brand) character started in my early teens and I have adored her ever since, as well as all of the other Sanrio characters. My favourite is actually Kuromi but Hello Kitty is a more well-known character and thus her merchandise was always easier to get. I loved how when I was in college, Hello Kitty became even more popular and the stores were filled with all sorts of products. I had bought a few Hello Kitty plushies in High School, but this is when I really became obsessed with adding more and more plushies to my collection! One thing that I always struggled to find was Hello Kitty clothing that was available in plus sizes, and it was so saddening to me at the time. So even all these years later, when I spotted that ASOS Curve had released a collaboration line with Sanrio, I was delighted! I think the print on this tee is sweet and I need it in my wardrobe so much! 

5. Paperchase Shark Stickers I LOVE stationery and I am a firm believer that you can never own too many stickers! I am yet to add any shark stickers to my collection and I need to fix that, haha! Sharks are awesome :) 

6. Ravenclaw Crest Cardigan With the launch of the Harry Potter range in Primark last year and me finally being able to find Ravenclaw merch, it sparked a need to just fill my life with more, to show off my House pride. It also got me thinking more and more about potentially cosplaying as a Hogwarts student for my next trip to Comic Con. I have had my eye on this item for a while, but I am in need of some new thinner cardigans to wear when the weather gets warmer (even though it feels like it never will right now!) so I hope I can buy it soon! It will be fantastic to pair with a Ravenclaw tie and black/grey skirt for cosplay. 

7. Set of 5 Kawaii Badges from Tofu Cute Omgosh I need these badges! I am a fan of covering my bags in button badges, especially when they are super adorable like these! Each pack comes with a random set of five badges, and there's apparently 20 you can collect. I am a sucker for collecting full sets of things, and at only £2.50 per set, I have a feeling I'm not gonna be able to resist! The Tofu Cute original characters are the cutest. They also sell pin badges of them and if you're a pin collector like myself, you should totally check them out :) 

8. Yankee Candle Kiwi Melon I am definitely someone who likes to stock up on the candle scents typically available in Autumn/Winter just because those are my favourite fragrances. However lately I have been burning quite a lot of them, and I just feel like it would be nice to get a lighter, more refreshing scented candle for when Spring arrives. Kiwi Melon sounds delicious (I love candles that smell so good, that it makes you wish you could eat them!). I love kiwis, they are one of my favourite fruit and it just sounds like this will have a lovely fragrance. It is reduced at the moment on the ASDA website because it is from last year's Yankee Candle line, so it's very tempting to take advantage of this bargain. 

9. Chomper the T-Rex Plushie I headed over to the Gund UK website the other day to have a nosey at the new Boo The Pomeranian Fairy Tale range of plushies, which are soooo cute! But I got distracted by something even better... DINOSAUR PLUSHIES! I love love love dinosaurs and even though I own a few mini dino plushies, I don't have a big cuddly one. These plushies say cuddly in their name description! I like the T-Rex best, but I'd happily have them all. I really like the big happy grin on Chomper's face!

10. Geometric Dinosaur Print Duvet Cover More dinosaurs!? Hell yes! ASDA have literally been amazing for their duvet cover designs last year and it looks like they are keeping that up! I have been stocking up on double duvets for when my room decorating is all finished (life is getting in the way majorly with this! ugh), and I would love to get this one too. I really like the colour scheme. The geometric dinosaur duvet was first brought to my attention on the Instagram of the lovely Estelle over at Estellosaurus, who is a fellow blogger and dinosaur lover. You should all go follow her amazing IG account right now! 

Thankyou for reading! 

What's your favourite item on my post today?

Also, I'd love to hear about what's on your own wishlists this month. 
Let me know in the comments! 

I'd really appreciate it if you guys could show me some love & follow me on social media!


Sunday, 25 February 2018

Another Pop In A Box Update

Hello lovelies :) I am FINALLY getting around to blogging about the latest additions to my Funko Pop collection! At the moment, all of my free time is being filled with all things Eurovision Song Contest & also reading. As my regular readers will know from my previous post, things have not been the best for me lately and thus I am concentrating on doing little things that I enjoy and that make me happy. I love my blog, however with the way my mental health is at the moment I'm experiencing such a drop in my motivation to get posts written and photography done. I have lots of ideas but not enough energy psychologically to type them up. I'm trying to give myself positive affirmations and not stress over the things that I cannot do right now, putting more focus on what I am managing to get done. I'm really happy to have found my passion for reading again; I have actually been struggling to put my current book down! I'm reading Stephen's King IT & so far it's great. Anyhow, in today's post I'm going to be showing you guys my Pop In A Box subscriptions for December & January. Due to the Christmas post, most of my December figures arrived late so I thought it would be best to feature all of the Pop's in one big post. I can't wait to show them to you all :) I hope you enjoy reading! 

Pop In A Box

Have you heard of Pop In A Box before? If not, let me tell you a little bit about it :) Pop In A Box is a monthly subscription service perfect for those of you who love to collect Funko Pop! Vinyl figures! I have been collecting Pop's myself for two years now, and the majority of my current collection has come from this subscription. The Pop In A Box service allows you go through a massive selection of Pop! Vinyl and to select a 'thumbs up' to all of the ones that you would love to receive! There's also an option to 'thumbs down' all of the figures that aren't your cup of tea, and to tick off any Pop's that you already have too. It's a really cool subscription because you are always going to get something you want, VS subscription boxes where it's very likely that you will receive at least one thing that you don't like/want. And it allows you to not lose that element of surprise that makes subscriptions so fun! You can opt to be sent one to twelve random figures from your wishlist each time, and the more you buy the less you pay for each individual Pop! I usually get three every month, and since I'll be blogging about my December & January subscriptions... I have six figures to show you all! (Expect lots of photos guys!).

Birdperson Rick and Morty Pop Vinyl Funko

Birdperson Rick and Morty Pop Vinyl Funko

My first Pop from December's subscription is Birdperson, from the animation series Rick & Morty! Who else is a fan of this hilarious cartoon? Birdperson is my favourite character so when he appeared on the Pop In A Box website, I just had to give him a thumps up! Funko have done a great job turning him into a Pop, and overall I'm happy with the design. His wings/cape looks pretty cool. I also like his solemn, moody expression, as it reflects his personality on the show well. The only thing that's slightly annoying about the figure is that because of how thin Birdperson's legs are compared to the weight of his head, he easily falls over. You do get a little clear plastic stand to go with him though to stop this from happening so it's not too much of a problem really. I now have two Rick & Morty figures in my collection, and once I have one of Morty himself, I'll be happy :) 

Brienne of Tarth Game of Thrones Pop Vinyl Funko

Brienne of Tarth Game of Thrones Pop Vinyl Funko

I'm always delighted to add another strong female character to my ever-growing collection, and Brienne (of Tarth) from the A Song of Ice and Fire novel/Games of Thrones TV series is one badass lady! I am loving how pretty AND fierce Brienne looks. Her armour is also super detailed; I really like all of the different textures and fine detail that has gone into it! Even her boots are awesome :) There's a couple of patches of white on Brienne's blonde hair, and I'm not sure if it's supposed to be like that but either way, I don't like those random white spots. Paint job aside, I do love the design of her hair, especially the pieces across her forehead. It's a cute touch! The only thing that is a shame is that my Brienne Pop's sword is bent! As you can see in the photographs, it's a really thin sword and the material is pretty flimsy, thus the sword can easily bend and has in my case :( Still fabulous to have another GoT figure! 

Brienne was originally not the Pop! that I was sent with my monthly subscription in December, but a replacement for another that I got. Sometimes with Pop In A Box, a few times with me now, they have sent me a Pop that I have not selected on my list or that I have even put a thumbs down to. It can be super annoying, especially when in the past they basically said it was my fault for not selecting anything, neither a thumbs up or down, on the particular figure. I was certainly not impressed then, however this time around, the employee that I corresponded with was very helpful and quick to solve the problem. I was told to choose any Pop that was marked as In Stock on the website, and I got to keep the Pop that I was first sent instead of having to send it back to them. It was one from the game 'Friday Night at Freddy's', which I have never played or know anything about, haha. I was very happy with how this mistake was fixed this time around :)

Krampus Horror Pop Vinyl Funko Chase

Krampus Horror Pop Vinyl Funko Chase

Krampus Horror Pop Vinyl Funko Chase

Krampus Horror Pop Vinyl Funko Chase

It was very hard not to spam you all with even more photographs of my Krampus Pop! because this little guy is just so photogenic & adorable! It was just perfect to get this vinyl figure around Christmas Time, since Krampusnacht (Krampus Night) is celebrated in December and is a Christmas folklore tradition in several Europe countries. Krampus is basically the opposite of Santa Claus; he is a demon-esque type creature that in the stories punishes mischievous children. I quite recently watched the 2015 thriller movie Krampus so it was cool to get a figure of him. I was hoping to add more and more horror characters to my collection, so that was another reason why it was fabulous to get him! One of the many cool things about this subscription is that the website offers costumers a chance to get a chase (rare/limited) version of some figures. When I originally ticked a thumbs up to the Pop! it was just the standard brown version of Krampus, and it was a surprise to get a red one in the post! I'm not gonna lie, at first I wasn't a fan of the red version even though it was a chase haha! I liked the Krampus figure as it was, however after photographing him, I just fell in love! He is super cute in red, and it just makes him even more Christmassy, which is nice.

What I really like about this Pop! is all of the detail! He's just so bright and eye-catching, and has so many awesome touches to his design. I really really love his horns! I think they look so bloody cool! I love the fluffy textured appearance of his fur, his iconic tongue and cloven-hoofed feet that resemble a goat, and his black claws. They all stand out so much! I love that Funko gave him his traditional broomstick, and the best part of all has to be the basket on his back with a naughty kid that he has taken peeping out of it! It made me giggle when I saw it because I just wasn't expecting it. It's cute! This Pop is now one of my favourites that I own. 

Crash Bandicoot Games Pop Vinyl Funko

Crash Bandicoot Games Pop Vinyl Funko

So, the first Pop that I received in January was this awesome Crash Bandicoot one! He is one of the newer releases to Funko Pop's Games collection, and I was over the moon when I saw that Pop In A Box had stocked him and the other Crash Bandicoot variations. You can even get Doctor Cortex too. Crash Bandicoot was one of the first ever games that I played as a child on my good old PlayStation1, and to be honest it will always be up there as one of my all time favourite games, especially Crash Bandicoot 4: The Wrath of Cortex (although that was a PS2 game). Everytime I look at this figure, it's super nostalgic and makes me think about the fun times in my childhood. It's a pretty simple design and the paint job is kinda messy, but it's cheerful with Crash's huge grin and cheeky stance! What was your favourite video game as a child? 

Ghostbuster Mike Stranger Things Funko Pop Vinyl

Ghostbuster Mike Stranger Things Funko Pop Vinyl

As much as I adore the Netflix series Stranger Things, I never really wanted any of the Pop! figures other than those of Eleven (because she's my favourite character) and of the Demogorgan (because epic monsters!). That was until I binge watched the season 2 and saw the boys in their Ghostbuster Halloween outfits. They looked super adorable in their matching nerdy outfits! So as soon as I saw that figures from the 2nd season where getting released, I had a mighty need to get Mike in his Ghostbusters costume. My excuse is that it wouldn't be right to have Eleven without her best friend, right? :D I love the freckles on this figures face, and the small details on the 'proton pack' on Mike's back. It has little buttons and wires painted on. I like the Ghostbusters logo on the side of the suit too. My Eleven Pop! now has a buddie and I'm glad about that (I'm such a dork). 

Tiffany Bride of Chucky Horror Pop Vinyl Funko

Tiffany Bride of Chucky Horror Pop Vinyl Funko

My new Krampus Pop is amazing, but this Pop totally wins the spot of my favourite figures from these last two subscriptions! It is a simplistic design when put side-by-side with some of the other figures in this post, however I just love it! It looks really cool :) Tiffany now joins my other horror Pop's and even though the Bride of Chucky (1998) isn't one of my favourite slasher movies, it is still great and Tiffany is a iconic character within the Chucky franchise so I feel like my collection would be incomplete without her!

I really like her outfit, the contrast of the pretty wedding dress with the biker style leather jacket. I also love her eyeshadow, it's bright and my eyes are drawn to it as soon as I look at the figure. Tiffany's hair looks great too, and I like that Funko designed her hair with the roots coming through just like with the character in the movie. Although it's supposed to be more of black/brown shade and the box shows it like that, but it's actually grey on the figure which I don't get, haha! The design of the figure shown on the box has several differences to the actual figure: her eyeshadow is a dark purple/grey shade, her hair is longer and the detail that I wish was include on the Pop the most, long red fingernails. This would have been a nice addition to the overall look of the vinyl figure. It would have been awesome if Funko had incorporated a weapon into the design too, either a gun or a knife, but nevermind... she's still awesome! 

Pop In A Box Subscription Pop Vinyl Funko

I think that it's fantastic that every single Pop! Vinyl figure that I got in my last two subscriptions (if you ignore that Brienne was a replacement, haha) was from a completely different collection within the Pop! categories. I got figures from Pop!: Games, Holidays, Animation, Television, Movies and then Game of Thrones is a separate section all by itself (rightly so, because it's fantastic!). It just shows how much of a surprise you get each month. It's a shame that after February's subscription, I'm going to have to reduce my subscription to one figure a month, as I've got to start saving money for my trip to Portugal in May- Eurovision 2018, here I come! I hope that you've all enjoyed reading another my latest Funko Pop! additions :)

Thankyou for reading!

Do you have any Pop! Vinyl figures?
I'd love to hear all about them in the comments :)

Also, are there any that are on your wishlist right now?
My own wishlist is massive! :D

Are you a fan of Funko figures? Then check out these related posts:


Saturday, 24 February 2018

Eurovision: First Impressions #1

Hey everyone! If you follow me over on Twitter, you have probably noticed that I am tweeting a lot about the Eurovision Song Contest lately, using so many different hashtags that it's difficult for even me to keep up with them all! If you hadn't already guessed by now, I am a pretty big fan of the ESC. I just absolutely adore the variety of music that is involved every year, and it's just such a fun and exciting experience! Ever since graduating from university and having more time to focus on my hobbies, I have spent April-May each year celebrating Eurovision. I even went to watch it live in Stockholm, Sweden back in 2016! You can read all about that here if you're interested :)

I usually wait until the week of the show to listen to all of the contending songs in the two semi-finals, but this year, I finally decided to join in with my fellow Eurofans from the very start and I am so glad that I did! I have been watching as many of each participating countries semi-finals and national finals shows as I can, as well as following the release of their songs. It has been super fun (albeit a challenge with so many shows on at conflicting times!) to follow it like this, because I feel much more involved and so much great music is being brought to my attention. Usually I just hear the song that each country has nominated to represent them in the contest, and not all of the other artists who entered for a chance to represent their countries too and so it's been wonderful to hear those hidden gems that I would most likely have missed. It's also been fabulous to join in with the live-tweeting and other Eurovision tweeter conversations with all the other fans! 

So far, fourteen countries have chosen who will represent them in the Eurovision Song Contest and considering how ESC has literally taken over my life right now (my best friends & I have managed to get tickets for semi-final two, and two days ago booked our flights to Lisbon!), I thought I would share my love for this magnificent show with you all! If you personally prefer to wait until the main show is broadcast on TV to hear the songs, then don't read on because there will most certainly be spoilers! I'm planning to share a new post for each ten songs confirmed, and tell you all what I think of them :) So, here's the first ten! Enjoy! 

Eurovision Song Contest

1. Albania- 'Mall' by Eugent Bushpepa 

What a fabulous song to kick start the Eurovision year! One of my best friends who is literally a Eurovision super fan brought this song to my attention when it was still one of several contenders to preform in the Albanian national final, and right away I knew it was going to be one of my favourites in the competition this year. So I was over the moon when Mr Bushpepa won the final! It is a lovely alternative ballad, and I really like that it is sung in Albanian (which Eugent has confirmed is going to be the case for Eurovision too!).  The staging is very simple, however for a song with such power like this, I don't think it needs much more. It will still be interesting to see how it is going to be staged for the main event, even though I like it how it was in Albania's national final, with musical notes starting off in monochrome and as the song intensifies bursting out in a vibrant red. Hearing Mall for the first time got me very much excited for the Eurovision season to begin! 

2) France- 'Mercy' by Madame Monsieur

My friends & I watched the French finals and were pretty invested in our favourites, one of which was Mercy. I'm not gonna lie, I was disappointed that my number one favourite song, Eva by Lisandro Cuxi didn't win! However, Mercy is still a nice song, with a super catchy chorus. For me personally though, I don't think it stands out and will likely be lost amongst some of the more powerful songs as the competition goes on. I also feel like the staging needs improvement. I'm not a fan of the plain black full-body suits with the trainers; it almost looks like the performers Emilie Satt & Jean-Karl Lucas are going to burgle a house after the show and need those trainers to make a quick getaway! Still all in all, it's not a bad song and I'm looking forward to seeing how they might improve the staging and their stage presence for the Eurovision Song Contest. Being one of the countries which are known amongst Eurofans as the 'Big Five', they have automatically got a place in the main show too. 

3) Czech Republic- 'Lie To Me' by Mikolas Josef 

I LOVE this song! It is currently at second place in my favourites so far this year, because it is just so upbeat and catchy. It makes me want to dance everytime I listen to it (and dance I do haha!) It has a very modern vibe to it and sounds like a song you would hear in any countries Top 40 music charts. It very much reminds me of Macklemore. Who agrees? The studio version of the song was maybe the fifth Eurovision song I listened to, and it has remain a firm favourite ever since! There's a saxophone in the song, which makes it go up in my books straight away. To be honest though, the random camel in the music video was fabulous and made me love the song even more, haha! I'm curious about if and how it's going to be changed to make the lyrics a little more family-friendly before the show, but I love it how it is now and can't wait to see it. Fingers crossed I can get some tickets for Semi Final 1. The staging that I've seen for the song is very colourful and funky too. Eurovision 2018 is lovin' it's shapes that's for sure! 

4) Spain- 'Tu Cancion' by Amaia & Alfred

Don't get me wrong, Spain's entry for the Eurovision Song Contest this year is lovely, very cute, however it doesn't do much for me and is not very memorable. Alfred has an unique voice that reminds me somewhat of Salvador who won the contest for Portugal last year. I think it's certainly an adorable song, it's very sweet when they are singing into one another's faces, and the piano intro is nice but yeah I don't think it's got much of a chance of winning in May, but we'll see! Eurovision likes to surprise me XD

5) Malta- 'Taboo' by Christabelle 

Okay so I don't really like this song much at all! I was very much rooting for Brooke to win with Heart of Gold, or for Song for Dad by Richard & Joe, and I was super gutted that neither of them won. Brooke's performance was fantastic, and she was so close! Instead, Christabelle won *cry cry*. I sat through Malta's entire national final, in which I got to see more advertisements for random foods and kitchen appliances than I did songs, and endured a ridiculous amount of song recaps, to be rewarded with a song I didn't like winning! It was tragic :D The song isn't too bad, but I think that's mostly because of the beat. It is a song that I could happily dance along to. However the lyrics are pretty crappy in my opinion, they don't make sense in some parts of the song. The staging was kinda cool, but very unrelated to the song itself. I wouldn't choose to listen to it again. Sorry to anyone who's a fan of Taboo

6) Switzerland- 'Stones' by Zibbz

Zibbz was my favourite song from the Swiss line up from the start, so I was super happy that that this brother & sister duo did so well in the national finals. It is another entry this year with a very modern sound, so I think that viewers at home are going to enjoy it. Corinne has a great singing voice, and fashion sense too... I liked her outfit in that final's performance a lot. I'm lovin' the blue and red triangles on stage, and I really hope that they bring them to Eurovision! It is also nice to have a song in the mix that isn't all about love or war/peace. 

7) United Kingdom- 'Storms' by SuRie

I am very happy with my country again this year, for choosing the best of the entries that participated in the Eurovision: You Decide show this year. I thoroughly enjoyed the whole show, mostly because of the legend that is Mans Zelmerlow hosting alongside the hilarious Mel Giedroyc. They were fantastic, and I especially loved Mans cough*Brexit*cough line XD There were some great songs in the line up, but for me SuRie really stood out as the best from the start, and I was so happy that my fellow Brits voted for her!  I was a fan of SuRie as soon as I heard her say on one of the BBC's introductory videos that 'Eurovision is rainbows, dancing and unicorns' XD I really like the message of the song, it's lovely. The staging was pretty, and eye-catching with the colour changing background throughout the performance. I think that we might do very well this year with SuRie even though it needs a bit of a revamp (I just felt like there was a little something missing), and I am excited to see how she gets on in the final! 

8) Denmark- 'Higher Ground' by Rasmussen

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this song! It is by far my absolute favourite song to be confirmed so far and I don't think any other is going to top it for me if I'm honest. It just has everything that I could ask for! I am a history geek through and through, and this song just screams Vikings from the get-go. Jonas Rasmussen reminds me of Tormund Giantsbane from HBO's Game of Thrones right away, and all my readers know I adore GoT (he is not as gorgeous as Mr Hivju himself though!). The song is very much my cup of tea and makes me think of some of the songs by the metal band DragonForce with all of the history/battle imagery. Higher Ground is more of a ballad, but it definitely does have alternative vibes. I am in love with the staging, with all of the dark colours, the watery background on the screens, the smoky effects and those epic Viking-esque ship sails! I really like the Nordic sounds created by the backing singers too. I just love this song, and I am sooo happy that I have tickets for Semi-final 2 in May so I can see it performed live in Lisbon!

9) Italy- 'Non Mi Avete Fatto Niente' by Ermal Meta & Fabrizio Moro

I am seriously not a fan of this song, especially after Italy sent the fabulous Francesco Gabbani with Occidentali's Karma to Eurovision in 2017. Gosh, I adore that song and according to my Spotify, it was one of my most listened to songs of the year, haha!  In comparison to Francesco's song which was cheerful and one that I couldn't help but sing along to, Non Mi Avete Fatto Niente is boring to me. I don't like the way it is sang. One guy is no more singing than he is talking very fast into the microphone, and the other is shouting the chorus. The message of the song is an important one associated with war, so at least that's a positive to the song. It is likely going to be in the bottom of ranking for Eurovision this time around. 

10) Greece- 'Oneiro Mou' by Yianna Terzi 

The tenth song confirmed and the final one I'm going to talk about on today's post is a great note to end on, because this song is actually stunning! It is a unique and beautiful love-themed song. I was so happy when I discovered that it is sang in Greek, and it has lovely traditional sounds and instrumentals. I hope that it is going to be kept in Greek for Eurovision, and I am hoping that I get a chance to hear it in person. I don't know what else to say other than it is awesome :) 

Well, I hope that you have all enjoyed reading all about my  first impressions of the first 10 confirmed entries from the Eurovision Song Contest 2018. I have never really reviewed music like this before, so I hope that it was fun to read and that I didn't ramble, haha! Tonight is basically Euro Hell  for my fellow fans & I because there are five nationals on all around the same time!! Plus two semi-finals as well, one of them is Sweden's Melodifestivalen show, which is a must for me! It's going to be so hard to keep up with everything happening tonight, especially because I only have one laptop to work with! Eeeek :D Anyhow, have a lovely weekend everyone! 

Thankyou for reading! 

Are you a fan of the Eurovision Song Contest?

What was your favourite song in 2017's ESC?

If you're following the national finals this year, who's your favourite thus far?

If you enjoyed this post, then why not check out these too? 


Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Being Single on Valentine's Day

Hi guys! I know that my lack of schedule on here is probably getting annoying for you all, and you're likely getting fed up by now of waiting for me to share something new after basically ghosting my blog for the last two weeks. I don't like starting posts off on a negative note, however I feel that I should explain a little of what's been going on with me. The beginning of this year has not started off great for me, with family 'problems' and the loss of some of my beloved pets... there's just been one bad thing after another and life has been hard on my mental health. Not gonna lie, I've been in a really bad place. So, as much as I've wanted to blog, I have been struggling to even get out of bed or do the most basic of self care for myself. It's a little embarrassing to say that, but it's the reality of depression and it is my aim to be more open about my health on here. Anyhow, at 5am the other day, I had a sudden and unexpected urge to open word on my laptop and type up something related to Valentine's Day and what my personal feelings are about it. I'm not sure how interesting it's going to be to read and I'll probably ramble, but at least it's something and hopefully some of my readers can relate :) I hope that everyone is using today as an excuse to treat themselves, not that you need any excuse of course, you should treat yourselves whenever you can! But it's a good opportunity to get yourself a little something and practice some self love 

Well I'm not even sure where to start on this topic to be honest...

I have been single for a long time now, because of a few different reasons. It was difficult for what felt like forever to even consider another relationship after the breakup with my ex-boyfriend. I'm not sure that any breakup can be called a 'good' one, but mine was the complete opposite of anything good. It was horrible and it left me with quite a few emotional scars, which thankfully I have mostly overcome now. Time really does heal things like that, even though it seems impossible at the time it happens. I have been struggling with mental illness since I was 14 years old, and I can't put all of the blame on this breakup but afterwards, my depression and anxiety disorder started to get worse and worse over the years to come. There were lots of factors for that, like the appearance of my chronic health conditions, my struggle to get into the university I wanted and being forced to go back to study for a year at a college that my ex also attended, and I guess just all of the problems from my past combined with other feelings I had going on at the time.

When I finally did get accepted to the university I wanted to go to, I was determined to make sure that I did well and so I invested a lot of my attention to that. As well as the studying side of it, all of the other aspects of university life, such as moving away from home, living with other people, having to be independent, etc., where enough to take my attention away from my lack of a love life. Well for the time being... as the pressures of my deteriorating mental health began to get to the point where I couldn't try to bury them anymore, all of my feelings of loneliness just got so intense. I knew that I was ready to move on, that I wanted to find someone to pursue a relationship with, however my mind had other ideas. I'll talk in more detail about how my mental health affects my ability to date further on in this post, but it really does put a wall up. By mid-way through my second year of study, I was really struggling to live my day-to-day life independently, due to the increasing severity of my anxiety symptoms. I found it difficult to socialise with even my friends, so it was near to impossible for me to interact with people outside of the university setting. There was no way that I would be able to go on a date. Like with pretty much every other area of my life, I was stuck in a place where I desperately wanted to be able to do something, to help to alleviate my negative thoughts, but it was something that was beyond my power to do so. I was ill and I needed help. 

A lot has happened since I have graduated from uni, although it would be hard to tell if you didn't know me personally. The improvements to my mental health have been small and to others might not seem to be of any significance at all, but for me and my well-being they are very important changes. Despite the fact that I am actively making steps towards getting to a better place with various symptoms of my anxiety disorder, I have now accepted it for what it is. A medical condition that I will very likely have for the rest of my life, and therefore there are things now that I will always struggle with and even if I get better at managing them, they will always be something that I have to deal with. The way I do things/go about things now will be different to how I would have before my mental health progressed, and this will of course affect my ability to find a partner and to date, etc. I'm okay with that, but will a potential partner be? This is where for me it has been proving a challenge... 

Being a spoonie is tough, living with both physical and mental health conditions makes so many things a challenge. I have had to adapt my life around my health, to find ways of still being able to do the things I enjoy, to spend time with my loved ones, all in a way that isn't going to make me regret it for weeks when I'm in pain and exhausted. There has been a lot of trial-and-error but now I'm at the point where I generally know what I can and can't do, and what is the best way to go about something whilst managing my symptoms to the best of my ability. When it comes to my mental health, there are things that I have still not been able to 'overcome'. I don't want to sugar-coat it, my social anxiety is severe and although I am now pretty good at communicating online (when you ignore having to read messages like a hundred times before I send them, having to often send my message and email replies to my best friend to tell me it sounds okay, and taking ages to even write said messages/emails), offline in my everyday life, I am literally a social recluse. 

Once I moved back home from university, to find myself pretty much house-bound because of my mental health, I turned to the internet to meet like-minded people. I needed a social and creative outlet, and I wanted to find people who understood what it was like to be like me: a spoonie, an introvert, a strange person with quirky interests :) At first and for a long time, it was terrifying. I was worried about how I came across, if people were going to judge me or dislike me, and so much more. I had wanted to blog for a long time and taking the step to share my blog and interact with fellow bloggers was definitely scary, and even though I still get anxious when I publish a new blog post or talk to people, it is no where near as hard as it was over two years ago. My own version of confidence is probably a lot different to others interpretation of it, but for me I feel that I am confident online. Aside from my blog, I have met a lot of people through the various other social media I use. Tumblr specifically has been very helpful for improving my social interaction comfort levels. I feel like I'm rambling but this all plays in with how I come across online.

When I first explored online dating, since that's gonna be the only way I'll probably meet someone now, unless my soul mate just so happens to bump into me at comic con and sweep me off my feet (yeah right! :D), it was just as hard as when I initially began blogging. Everything was new, and I put so much pressure on myself to come across as a 'good catch', I was embarrassed to be upfront about my health and I let my insecurities and loneliness feed my need to find someone, that I was just putting up with so much crap from people online. If you've used online dating websites yourself, especially as a woman, you will know that they are full of fuckboys, that you're likely to get some delightful messages in your inbox, that people can't be bothered to start a conversation with more than a 'hey' a lot of time, and that some don't even want to take the time to write more than eight words on their profiles. Finding someone via these websites is tough for lots of people, then throw anxiety into the mix and it just seems impossible. After using these sites on and off for two years and having become a lot better at talking online, I definitely find it easier to deal with. Not only to talk to people, but also to ignore the negative things too. I am currently giving it another go, and I now mention that I am a spoonie and have anxiety on my profile, although I'm sure that people still take that as 'oh she's just got a bit of anxiety'/'everyone is nervous meeting new people'/'she's just shy, that's cute!', along with a lot of society, who are forever undermining mental  and/or invisible illness. 

Over the last couple of years, I have made a lot of progress when it comes to my own self image and my personal opinions about myself. I am not quite where I want to be, but I would not have believed someone if they'd have told me I would feel like I do now several years ago. My depression makes me question my self worth all the time and I used to believe all of the intrusive thoughts that filled my head whenever I felt bad about who I was. I still have hard days, but mostly I like who I am... I am happy and proud to be me. I am very self aware and I know what I want and need in life. I no longer put up with things that I used to from others, and when it comes to relationships, I am never going to settle for something I'm not completely happy with. I used to endure things because I believed that's what I deserved and I ignored my own feelings and needs. I'm not going to do that again, and I am really glad about how much my mind set has improved with regards to that. As much as I want to find someone, I mean I do feel lonely and I am ready to let someone into my life romantically, I am content with being single until I find someone who is right and good for me :) 

Finding someone who is right for me has been a challenge, and anxiety is a contributor to that. There are things that I cannot do that other people can, and that other people find easy or manageable, and it is hard to meet someone who is okay with that. I've had situations where I have mentioned not being able to do something because of anxiety, such as talking on the phone, which as my regular readers will know, is something I cannot do even with my loved ones (you can read more about how that affects me here). At first, people are seemingly understanding, but over time they have increased the pressure on me to do things that I have told them I am uncomfortable with. It is never okay for someone to pressure you into doing anything that you are telling them you can't or don't want to do, however I can sympathise that when someone likes you that way, they want to progress the relationship and to get to know you better, and when they don't personally know what it's like to deal with anxiety, they might not be able to empathise with why you can't do things that other people and themselves have with no issue.

I have not been able to find a lot of people who are willing to invest the time that I need to get comfortable with someone, and I am not blaming them really because they are on a dating website to find someone to be with. It's just that they are not the right person that I am looking for, but it's been emotionally difficult to deal with sometimes. I mean I will obviously develop somewhat of a crush on a guy I've been talking to a lot and getting along with well, so when they start to be unhappy with the fact that I am not ready to meet them in person, things will eventually drift off either on their part because they are tired of waiting, or on my part because I can no longer put up with being nagged to meet for coffee all the time. Dating me is not going to be easy if you're a guy who isn't willing to build up a relationship with me online first, if you're not willing to wait until I am comfortable enough to open up to you and let myself be vulnerable with you, if you are not going to accept that I won't video chat with you or talk on the phone for a long, long time. I have lots of online friends who am now very close to who will tell you how patient they have had to be with me to even get to point of me snapchatting with them, but they haven't given up on me because they value my friendship and they want to get to know me. They don't make me feel pressured and they just let things be; they're happy to communicate with me via whatever way makes me comfortable. I wish that I could find a potential partner who is willing to do the same. I hope that I don't come across as big-headed or whatever by saying this, but I am an interesting, complex, wonderful person and they are missing out! Good things come to those who wait is something that keeps popping into my mind as I type. Fingers crossed that I am able to find a guy who is happy to get to know me for as long as I need before we meet in person and go on a date, because I would love to find someone :) 

So my thoughts about being single on Valentine's Day are both good and bad. On the bad side of things, I have a lot of love to give with no one to give it to. I am a very affectionate person and I'm feeling pretty unfulfilled in my life right now without someone special. I can't deny that I am lonely and that I am yearning for someone to express a whole side of my personality that is neglected, both emotionally and sexually. My regular readers may have read my posts about being a submissive and into BDSM, and this is another thing that makes finding the ideal date a challenge. With regards to intimacy, I need to have a deep emotional connection with someone before I am engage in any kind of passionate relationship, and with no love interest on the cards at the moment, this is something that I am missing too. On a positive note though, I am happy to be able to focus more attention to working on my mental health 'recovery'. I am glad that I have been single for a while and have been able to develop a love from myself that I didn't have before. I am proud of the way that I think about myself now, and how I am now approaching life with a better mind set that I can take with me into my next relationship.

If you, like me, are single this Valentine's Day, please make sure that you are spending the day concentrating on self love. I know that it is easier said than done, especially when you're probably in the same boat as me and struggle not to look back on your past relationships especially this time of year when everyone is talking about love. It is hard not to dwell on your previous partners and breakups and things like that when every shop window and every website is basically slapping hearts and flowers and other romance imagery in your face. However, remember to be kind of yourself and focus on embracing all that is wonderful about you. Watch your favourite movie, listen to music that fills you with joy, have a relaxing bath and pamper yourself, give yourself some TLC if you know what I mean ;), do whatever makes you feel good. And as I noted in my introduction, take the opportunity to spoil yourself today (or tomorrow, because discount chocolate!). You are fabulous and you deserve a treat! To everyone who isn't single and is spending Valentine's Day with your partner, I hope you are having a lovely time and spoiling one another :)

I am not sure if this post has been fun to read or not, but if you made it this far then thankyou so much for persevering with my rambling. Happy Palentine's Day to all of you guys! 

Thankyou for reading! 

Are you a fan of Valentine's Day or not?

What are your personal thoughts on the day?

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