Some of My Favorite Things: November Edition

SurpriseSaturday #1

I wrote this post two weeks ago at the end of November, but forgot to post is. So, Surprise!

At the end of every month I list all my favorites of the month (I haven’t done this for like 4 months, but thought it would be fun to bring this theme back!). It’s just a fun way to share all the new things I’ve discovered this month.

Here are my favorites for November:

Music
Let’s start with some music. I’ve had this song on repeat for the past month. I’ve always been a big musical fan and will be going to this movie as soon as I can! Do you know which song I’m talking about yet? It’s This Is Me from the Greatest Showman. The lyrics are truly brilliant and the music is absolutely beautiful!

Book
Most of you probably know I just finished my Master in Book and Digital Media Studies. I’ve always loved to read and although I haven’t been reading a lot lately, I do want to include a book that I always keep on my nightstand. It’s a book my sister gave to me a while ago. It’s F in Exams: The Big Book of Test Paper Blunders by Richard Benson. You can just open it up on a random page and enjoy the genius answers students have written down on their exams.

For example:
List two ways Pride and Prejudice can be read.
1. Sitting down, book on lap.
2. Lying down.

They aren’t wrong!

Food
Who doesn’t love food? This November I’ve been making some pretty amazing French Toast if I may say so myself. It’s easy and delicious! If you’ve never had French Toast before, you should really try it!

French Toast

My French Toast!

Art
To be honest, I don’t really go to museums, like at all. But I do love art. I just don’t like walking around in museums for hours. So this month, I want to share some art you can find outside. I’m talking about the art pieces created by Banksy of course. They send some pretty intense messages.
Banksy-art-itsnicethat-1

Joke
We all need to have a good laugh at times, right? So, here is my favorite joke for November. It’s this really bad pun!
A friend of mine tried to annoy me with bird puns, but I soon realized that toucan play at that game.
Oh, come on! You loved it!

Quote
Okay, maybe that joke was lame, but this quote will definitely inspire you.
Remember no one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
– Eleanor Roosevelt

Post
The last thing I would like to share is my favorite post written in November. The best way to improve your own writing is by learning from others. I try to read as many posts from other bloggers as I can. This month my eye fell on this masterpiece. Trust me, you have to read Things not to tell an Art Historian… by AudreyRose! I can truly relate.

Have a nice Saturday.

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Mindfulness: What is it and how do I get people to stop talking about it?

FreedomFriday #2

mindfulness_poster_UK

For a really long time, all people talked about was cross-fit and the fact that they were vegan. Lately, a new trend has worked its way into every conversation. No, Martha, it isn’t Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour.

Okay, that wasn’t funny. Okay, maybe a little.

But, the thing I’m talking about is mindfulness. It’s everywhere. It won’t be long until this trend will die and go to whatever place trends go to after they are no longer popular. Probably, some kind of government garbage site, maybe even area 51. Who knows?

But first things first, what is mindfulness? Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment. At least, that is what Berkley University has to say about it. Mindfulness is basically living in the moment, experiencing every little detail and being aware of the things surrounding you. Mindfulness basically wants us to get our heads out of the clouds and on to the ground. It’s a way to get you to stop overthinking the future by thinking about everything that’s happening in the present.

So…

Do you have conversations with people and zone-out somewhere in the middle of talking to them?

Or do you ask people a question and don’t even pay attention long enough to hear the answer?

Then maybe you need mindfulness. And don’t worry, it’s not some weird spiritual thing. It’s very serious. They teach you how to be more aware in some really intense ways. For example, you have to eat a raisin, but before you swallow it you have to be aware of the raisin and really feel the raisin in your mouth. You and the raisin have to bond and really feel connected… And then you can eat it. Another example is consciously brushing your teeth. Really feel the toothbrush.

So, I tried it. I consciously brushed my teeth. This is what happened:

I can do this. This is easy. I can feel the brush on my teeth, irritating my gums. The toothbrush kind of has a nice hum. Honestly, I’m an absolute pro at this mindfulness. Look at that brush go round and round. Isn’t it funny how my electric toothbrush does all the work for me, but I still move the brush in circles? I mean, I could just keep it still, but here my hands go moving in circles like it’s their favourite thing in the world. It’s kind of weird how we use an electric device to brush our teeth. How lazy are we humans? What’s next? A robot brushing my teeth for me? Probably.

Oh, wait!

I’m supposed to be paying attention. Well, I’m almost done now anyways. This was fun…

Okay, time for bed.

Maybe I should be more present, but honestly, people don’t know what it’s like living in my head. It’s just so much more fun up here. There are moments, though, where I zone-out when I shouldn’t. Sometimes I just nod while having a conversation and don’t even know what we’re talking about. I am working on it, though. And although mindfulness isn’t for me, it has shown me how unaware I am at times. So, maybe it’s a good thing we’re talking about it. It’s helped me.

Have a nice Friday.

10 Things I’ve Learned As A University Student

10-Things-Thursday #1

I know, it’s supposed to be 10-Things-Tuesday, but today I want to make an exception. You see, today is extra special. I just had my graduation and received my Master’s Degree in Book and Digital Media studies, which is pretty amazing, but it also happens to be my 23rd birthday. So, here are 10 things I’ve learned as a student at Leiden University.

tenor

  1. Your degree is nothing more than a piece of paper. Don’t get too focused on getting your diploma. Sometimes people go to university, learn everything they need to learn and don’t actually graduate. It’s the experiences that really matter.
  2. You learn most from your fellow students. I’ve met some amazing people at my university and I’ve learned so much from all of them. Whether they were born in the Netherlands like me, or in other countries all over the world, they can teach you so much more than any professor ever could.
  3. University isn’t about agreeing to everything you’re told. Learn to form your own opinions. Don’t just believe everything your professors tell you. Always be critical! Never stop asking why.
  4. Sometimes second best is enough. Allow yourself to slack off every once in a while. Do just enough to pass that class. There will always be tomorrow. You don’t have to always give everything you’ve got. It’s okay to take a break and say f*ck it.
  5. If you love what you study, even the boring things will become bearable. We all have to suffer through classes we absolutely hate. This is unavoidable. But, in the end, these classes teach a valuable lesson: Even doing the things you love can be difficult and annoying at times. If you’re able to survive these classes, you know that you’re studying the thing you love.
  6. You can always say no. They always say that university is the time to experiment. It’s the time to figure out who you are. I say, screw that! I still haven’t figured out who I am. Does anyone ever do? Be brave and try the things you’ve always wanted to try, but be courageous too and say no if you feel uncomfortable. You know your limits, don’t let others push you over the edge.
  7. It’s okay if you still don’t know what you want to be. I know that university is supposed to prepare you for your future job, but if you don’t know what you want to do, that’s fine too. See what subjects interest you and search for jobs in that particular field. But even if you can’t find it, don’t panic. Allow yourself to just not know for a bit. Everything will fall into place, somehow.
  8. Internships are a great learning experience. When you start university or college, going to school is all you’ve ever known. You need to learn what it means to have a job. And more importantly, getting a job after graduation is a lot easier if you have experience. Internships allow you to learn more about your professional interests. So, do an internship, even if it’s not required.
  9. You will find a job! This is the most important lesson I’ve learned. It may not be the thing you always dreamed of doing, but we all need to start somewhere. Ask yourself what you love to do, and build on that. Don’t be afraid to try things. Quitting your job is not a bad thing. It doesn’t mean you are a quitter. It means that you know what you want and that job just isn’t it!
  10. When everything seems to fall apart, something good always happens. There have been moments that I felt like my Master was the wrong decision. I had moments that I just didn’t know what I was going to do next. I dreaded my graduation, because I felt like I wasn’t prepared for what was to come next. But, the truth is, you’re not supposed to have it all figured out after you graduate. So let life fall apart sometimes. You’ll be able to see things more clearly.

Have a nice Thursday!

A Message from the Universe

WordWednesday #17

Are you ready? Let’s do this. Here’s how it works: No plan. No ideas. Just words!

galaxy

Do you believe in fate
A single instance in time
That was made
Just for you

A manufactured moment
Too perfect to be left to chance
Carefully put together
To comfort you

For this fleeting second
The universe is telling you
Don’t worry about your troubles
I’ll protect you

Have a nice Wednesday!

Don’t Forget to Smile Today!

Thinking-Out-Loud-Tuesday #3

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I don’t really do these stream of consciousness posts often. Maybe it’s because consciousness is so difficult to spell. But, today I felt inspired. So, here goes nothing!

I had this appointment at the dentist yesterday and I don’t know if it’s just me, but a week before the appointment I start brushing my teeth like crazy person. I make sure I get every nook and cranny. No surface will remain untouched. I think my brain actually believes it will make a difference. Cavities will magically disappear and my teeth will become white again. No such luck, but it doesn’t stop me from trying. Then, after I had the appointment I barely touch me teeth at all. I do brush my teeth twice a day but I feel like a have the right to slack off for a bit. I’m not really brushing my teeth. It’s like I’m gently stroking them. Is it just me, or do you guys do this too?

The appointment was fine by the way. My wisdom teeth have decided to grace me with their presence, but it should all be fine. Isn’t it funny that my wisdom teeth are coming in after I graduated! I got my Master’s degree in Book and Digital Media studies. Which is kind of insane, but also really exiting. I also started this new internship a few weeks ago. I work as a copywriter, which is probably why I haven’t been writing as much lately. I will try to get back into it, I promise!

So… What else?

Well, wisdom teeth don’t actually have anything to do with wisdom at all. I just thought I should mention that. In Dutch they actually have a double meaning. The word is verstandskiezen which you could pronounce as verstands-kiezen which would translate to wisdom or intelligence teeth, but it can also be pronounced as ver-stands-kiezen, which would translate to distant position (far stance) teeth. Because they’re in the back of your mouth… Does that make sense? In Dutch it does make sense. I promise.

I feel like this entire post is just me talking about teeth. Well, I hope it made you smile. Not a just barely lifting my lips smile, but a showing all my teeth because they look amazing smile! But, you know, whatever smile works for you is fine with me!

Have a nice Tuesday!

PS. Don’t forget to brush your teeth. You’ll need them for the rest of your life.