Posted in Fashion, Life

6 Halloween Costume I Would Have Worn in 2020

With Halloween falling on a Saturday this year, I had full intentions of planning a costume for a big night out… which of course meant a blog post compiling all my ideas! However, it looks like no one is going OUT OUT this year so, like many things for 2020, I’ve had a rethink.

In my area, we can still go out until 10pm and in small groups, however the chances are that I’ll just stay home instead. I don’t have kids to keep entertained and certainly won’t be having a party, so I won’t be getting dressed up at home either. However, for the sake of staying in the spooky spirit, I decided I’ll share the outfits and costumes that could have been!

Zombie Nun

Spoiler alert – the days of slutty Halloween costumes are behind me. I remember the days when you could stick on a short, black dress and some devil horns or fake blood, and call it a costume… alas, I don’t have the legs or confidence for that anymore!

Zombie nun covers all bases… plain enough that you don’t have to spend a fortune, simple make up that you can make as scary as you like AND still covers everything up. Sorted.

Image from Party Delights

Twins from The Shining

If you’ve got no one to twin with, this still works for one as a creepy kid… although matching costumes would be handy on a night out if you lose your friend!

I figure as well that you can probably use clothes you already have if you didn’t want to fork out for an actual costume.

Image on the left from Party Delights; image on the right from The Shining film

Eleven from Stranger Things

Again, I reckon you could use clothes you already have for this one, or at least buy a cheap alternative! Drip some fake blood down your nose and you’re golden!

Image from eBay

Pumpkin

Image from Amazon

I actually bought the above pumpkin costume for last halloween, which I thought was hilarious… however it didn’t arrive in time so I chucked on an orange dress and painted my face instead. I had a great time but I’ll tell you now… I looked a right state! Especially given that we got caught in an absolute downpour on the way in to the club, but hey ho – I’d certainly love to go back to that night now and enjoy every minute of it! I said I’d save the proper costume for this year, but maybe next year instead…

I mean, it was still a great night!

And if you are going out (whilst sticking to the current guidelines) then you’ll need a…

Spooky Face Covering

I saw a few different bananas on Asos and thought they’re pretty cool, especially if you don’t want to dress up but still get in the spirit!

Image from ASOS

And if you’re not one to fully dress up, you still need to get in to the Halloween spirit, so something like a…

Spooky Little Black Dress

You can’t not NOT dress up, but it’s understandable that not everyone wants to go full on Halloween, so a little black dress with a spooky twist is another option!

Image from ASOS

What are your 2020 Halloween plans and will you be dressed up?

Posted in Fashion, Life

10 Perfect Nail Colours for Autumn

Welcome back to my blog and here we are for another autumn themed post, this time… nail colours! Coincidentally, these are all Essie shades. I’m in no way shape or form sponsored by them, I just generally seem to always gravitate towards their polishes! These are all older colours as I’m yet to get my hands on the 2020 Fall collection, although don’t they all look stunning?!

In the mean time though, these are some other shades that I personally think are perfect for autumn:

1. Yes I Canyon

Typically, the first polish I’ve picked out from my personal collection isn’t widely available anymore BUT the colour is too perfect for me not to include it. Yes I Canyon is from the 2019 Rocky Rose collection and although it’s not technically available anymore, you can still find it on the likes of Amazon. It’s a lovely burnt orange colour which just autumn in a bottle really.

2. Exposed

This one is from the Wild Nudes collection, although don’t be fooled, as I would say it’s more of a green rather than nude. You can still get hold of it from some sites too, like this one.

Shades of green are nice transitional colour for autumn I find, a bit like when all the leaves start to turn.

3. Chinchilly

If you’d prefer something more neutral, then grey is usually a safe bet. I’m actually wearing this colour right now and find it to be a lovely universal polish that will compliment any outfit, what’s more, it’s still widely available!

4. Smokin’ Hot

Here we have another shade of grey but this time with a hint of smooth dark purple, for when you want something a little different but still not too colourful.

If you’re in the UK like me then you can get this one on the likes of Amazon.

5. Licorice

Seeing as we’re in the run up to Halloween now, any nail polish collection wouldn’t be complete without a jet black shade!

This staple colour is very much still available from places like Boots etc.

6. On Mute

For something not quite black, but still dark as a spooky soul… this dark slate grey shade is perfect!

7. Say It Ain’t Soho

Back to the warmer colours now… this is such an awesome colour for autumn. Pumpkin orange tones, check… shimmery, check! This was from the Fall 2018 collection so not widely available anymore however it does look quite similar on nails to the new Don’t Be Spotted, if a little deeper in colour.

8. Penny Talk

Another metallic colour but something a little more neutral than Say It Ain’t Soho… this is such a pretty colour for autumn!

9. Clothing Optional

Maybe don’t take the name of this one literally, especially with how the weather can be in the UK at this time of year!

This colour is a classic nude, with a lovely warm tone which to me definitely makes it just right for autumn.

10. Style Cartel

Finishing this list with something slightly different! I wasn’t going to include this one as I’m not sure how I feel about royal blue in autumn… however it’s very similar to the new Shade called Waterfall in Love, so here we are!

I still have a bottle so I’ll get it used up before purchasing the new blue as I don’t like to have too many similar ones!

Which out of these is your favourite? Let me know in the comments!

Posted in Life, Reviews, Shopping

Autumn and Halloween 2020 Lush Haul

A bit like scented candles, Lush bath bombs are an all year round affair for me, but I can’t deny that they really are best enjoyed in autumn and winter. The Halloween collections never disappoint, and then it’s only a matter of time before the Christmas collection comes out!

I haven’t treated myself to any Lush products in a while so when the 2020 Halloween collection came out, I felt it was only right that I treated myself! Here’s what a picked out:

Bat Art bath bomb

Lush says: “Be spellbound by this bat bath bomb. Full of bath-art worthy surprises, deep glittery waters await with a fresh, herbal scent that lingers.”

I gave this one a try this week and was not disappointed. The water turned deep purple and shimmery… as did I when I got out of the bath! (Shimmery that is, not purple)

It’s quite a fresh smell but still has an autumnal tone. It’s an easy 10/10 from me.

Very Very Frightening shower gel

Ok I have a confession… I rarely buy anything from Lush that’s not a bath bomb, or the odd bubble bar. I have had a couple of shower gels before but generally, I stick with the bath bombs… no real reason, I’ve just not ventured in to using much else. However, I’d like to give more of their products a try, and I have to say the bright yellow colour of this one made me very curious!

I can confirm… it’s just as bright when you open it, it almost feels like you’re using paint! I’ve only used it once but definitely like it, the scent is very citrusy which is something I like for a morning shower as I feel like it’s a refreshing way to start the day.

Lush says: “Embrace your sweet side with this bold, uplifting shower gel. Containing fresh lemon and fig juice, it is palm oil and SLS free, plus it’s vegan!”

Monster’s Ball bath bomb

An old favourite of mine and I didn’t need to use it last night to tell you it’s a 10/10… but I did anyway!

Monster’s Ball is one of those bath bombs that puts on a show in the water. Bright pink and blue shoot out to leave the bath a gorgeous shade of purple… and it smells like heaven!

Lush says: “With this monstrously pink Halloween bath bomb, you’re ready for a ball. Full of uplifting neroli, toning olibanum, and cleansing lime oil.”

They’re not wrong!

Bewitched bubble bar

I haven’t used this yet this year but I have done in the past and I’m excited to use it again, mainly because… the water turns black! It doesn’t get more Halloween than that.

Lush says: “This friendly feline will boost your luck with blackberry scented bubbles and plastic-free glitter. Perrrfect for packaging-free bathing.”

I’m so ready for it!

Ghost in the Dark soap

I don’t have a home for this little guy yet so I haven’t tried him out… but look how cute! How could I say no to soap in the shape of a ghost!

Lush says: “A handmade soap with refreshing lemongrass and uplifting bergamot oils, and it glows in the dark!”

It GLOWS in the DARK! Enough said!

Pumpkin Pumpkin bath bomb

I’ve also had this one before and I’d say it’s my least favourite out of the Halloween bath bombs, but it’s still worth it before that cute little face!

Lush says: “Watch this Halloween favourite glide round the surface, releasing bright, mood enhancing citrus oils as it goes.”

I think the reason this one is my least favourite is because it’s very citrus-y and I go to those scents to wake me up, which isn’t what I’m having a bath for! But hey, that’s just me, I’d still give this one a solid 8/10!

Pumpkin Patch knot wrap

I’ll admit that I’m a bit clueless on what to do with a knot wrap but I saw this one, I had to have it and will use the suggestions from Lush for sure. I’ll most likely use it as a headband but I was curious to see if perhaps it can be made in to a face mask!

Oh it’s made from recycled plastic too!

Lord of Misrule bath bomb

I’ve possibly saved the best for last here, as this one is a definite firm favourite! Patchouli GALORE… oh and you think it’s green but guess what? The water turns red!

Lush says: “A Halloween bath bomb with a spicy blend of patchouli and black pepper. A deep green exterior froths away to rich wine coloured waters.”

12/10 from me!

Have you bought or tried any of these products? Let me know in the comments!

Posted in Life

5 Tips For The Ultimate Cosy Night In

I know it’s nice to go out in the evenings, especially in the summer when it’s still warm as the sun goes down… but that doesn’t mean there’s not something to be said for a super cosy night in, as the weather gets colder and the nights get darker.

That being said, it looks like we’re all going to have a lot more nights at home for the foreseeable anyway, so here are some of my suggestions for the ultimate cosy night in!

1. Have a nice hot bath

Let’s start the evening with something super relaxing: a hot bubble bathTreat yourself to a bath bomb to make it nice and special. Stay tuned for my Lush Halloween haul, the best time of year for bath bombs in my opinion.

Photo by Burst on Pexels.com

2. Get comfy

Cosy and comfy just go hand in hand really, don’t they?! My go to comfy clothes are really old and tatty pyjamas, but I’m very tempted to treat myself to some cute new loungewear for the upcoming colder months! I’m slightly obsessed with this set from Nasty Gal, which might not exactly be family friendly but that’s ok with me!

Sorry mum…

Depending on how cold it is, you might also want some cosy slippers or fluffy socks – I personally love a pair of Primark fluffy socks in the winter!

Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com

Why not throw some cosy blankets in there too for good measure!

3. Snacks and hot drinks

Now, if you’re a bit of a food lover like me then the perfect snacks for the occasion are of utmost importance! Depending on the sort of night in you’re having, you might just go for something like popcorn and sweets… which is great, but if you’re going for the full works then you may as well get a takeaway in! Personally, I’d go for a Chinese or a pizza… if you’re not as lazy as me then maybe you’ll make some food yourself of course, but I for one, am no good at cooking!

Photo by Sarah Dietz on Pexels.com

4. Mood lighting

Light your room of choice up however you prefer… I’m a bit weird and like to have lots of light but for the sake of the ultimate cosy night, I’m going to assume that you’re more inclined to prefer a darker room like most people I talk to! Whichever way you prefer, I also recommend lighting some candles to get those extra cosy vibes too! Check out my recent post on my current autumn candle collection for some suggestions.

5. Have a selection of films or a series to binge

Let’s set the scene now… you’ve got your comfiest ever clothes on, wrapped up like a little burrito in blankets, the Dominos has just arrived… and now you can settle in to watch your favourite series on Netflix (or whatever streaming service you prefer, or your favourite film – am I the only one who has DVDs these days?!)

My current favourite for a cosy night in is Once Upon A Time on Netflix. Either that or whatever new crime documentary is about. If I’m up for a film then I have quite a varying taste, but next on my re-watch list is Rocketman! I could write a whole other post about how much I love that film but maybe I’ll save that for another day… Harry Potter is also of course ALWAYS an autumn classic!

Photo by Taryn Elliott on Pexels.com

I hope you’re feeling extra cosy now! Let me know in the comments what else you like to do for a nice, cosy night in ❤

Posted in Home, Life

My Autumn Candle Collection

Don’t get me wrong, I love candles all year round… but there’s something even better about them in autumn and winter. The extra cosy vibes perhaps, or maybe I just prefer the heavier autumnal scents. Either way, I thought I’d share with you the candles I currently have at home and will be burning throughout autumn!

None of the links shared throughout this post are affiliate, I’m just sharing so that you can find any of these products if you so wish! This isn’t a paid for post or sponsored in anyway, this is just my own collection!

Autumn Glow by Yankee Candle

If you had to sum up the smell of Autumn, but without pumpkins… then this scent would be it. The fragrance notes are: sparkling citrus, autumn blossom, fresh cut herbs, patchouli, tonka bean and golden amber. I LOVE the smell of patchouli and you definitely get hit with that first.

I purchased it recently and already have far too many candles than I care to admit, so I went for a smaller jar for now. I can tell you though that I will certainly be repurchasing in future and probably in a bigger jar to last longer!

Warm Tobacco Pipe by DW Home

Another patchouli based fragrance, but with a twist! When I saw this one in TK Maxx (I didn’t realise DW was an American company until searching for the link!) I thought it will surely smell vile… but oh no! It’s absolutely delightful. My boyfriend even likes this one and that’s saying something.

The fragrance notes are: tobacco, brushed suede, aromatic greens, soft weathered woods, patchouli and smoky leather. Honestly, it’s amazing. It smells like… a cosy pub when you come in from the fresh autumn air! Heaven…

Pumpkin Apple Parfait by Yankee Candle

I actually got this one in a sample sale, just before the UK went in to lockdown back in March… so I didn’t buy it in autumn BUT it has pumpkin in the name, so I’m going with it.

I can’t actually find this on the UK site so perhaps the collection didn’t last, however it is still on the US site if you wanted to find it.

It’s a fruity candle so perhaps not what you might first go for in autumn, but it’s definitely worth it and I personally think it can be all year scent! The fragrance notes are: pumpkin puree, whipped cream, apple glaze, allspice, ginger, white chocolate, vanilla bean, cinnamon.

Heirloom Punpkin from TK MAXX

I’ve simply put TK Maxx as this seems to be unbranded. I mainly really liked the jar if I’m honest and the smell certainly isn’t as amazing as some of the others in this collection. I’m yet to burn it properly so I’m not sure how the scent will carry but it does smell very much like your typical pumpkin and patchouli scented, Halloween candle. I’m here for it though!

Vanilla Latte by DW Candle

I won’t lie, I saw this online and didn’t read it properly… I thought it was pumpkin spiced latte! However, when it arrived, I was not disappointed. The description online states: creamy, rich espresso combined with vanilla essence, and topped with whipped cream and a caramel drizzle. That is exactly what it smells like!

I’d been looking for a coffee candle for so long and so to end up with this is a very happy accident indeed. Perhaps coffee isn’t a very standard Halloween scent, but there are leaves on the lid so that’s good enough for me!

Yankee Candle Campfire Nights Collection

I mentioned in my autumn wish list post, that I was keen to get my hands on all of these scents and so when I saw that all the votives were in stock, I treated myself! I only wanted the votives so that I could smell them all first, without forking out for the jars… and then potentially not like them! However, they did not disappoint in the slightest. My only problem that I did have, is I ordered a lovely autumn mosaic votive holder to go with them… and it was missing from the package. Easily sorted but still, it meant I couldn’t include it in these photos!

First up is A Night Under The Stars. The fragrance notes for this one are: leather, spice, driftwood, clove, saffron, rose, frankincense, patchouli, cedarwood and you can certainly smell them all. It’s lovely, not too dissimilar to Autumn Glow actually.

Next we have Crisp Campfire Apples, which does smell exactly as the name would suggest. If you needed a helpful hint, the fragrance notes are: apple, clove, mandarin leaf, cinnamon stick, oak leaves, tonka, blonde woods. YUM!

Next is Warm and Cosy, which are the best feelings of Autumn are they not?! The name doesn’t give much away as to how this will smell, but I’ll tell you… it’s lovely and you just know there’s patchouli in there. Are you sensing a pattern yet? The fragrance notes are: balsam, peppermint, eucalyptus, cashmere, cedarwood, golden amber, patchouli, lit firewood, musk. Definite cosy vibes.

Last but no means least, and the one I wanted to try out most, is Pecan Pie Bites. This one smells amazing! I thought that at least one from this collection would be a dud, but they’re all divine. Imagine walking in to a bakery on a blustery autumn day and that’s this candle. The fragrance notes are: cinnamon leaf, burnt sugar, raw honey, white hazelnut, pecan, dark chocolate
clove, oak wood, smoked cedar.

So there you have it! I have a lot of candles to burn through this season but seeing as they all smell so incredible, I don’t think it’ll be a hard task! Stay tuned for more autumnal content and if you liked this round up of my autumn candles, then you’ll be in for a treat when we get closer to Halloween as I have a whole other collection just for spooky season!

Posted in Fashion, Life, Shopping

My Autumn Wishlist

I don’t know what it is about the autumn and spooky season, but I always want to buy anything remotely related, no matter what it is… mugs, clothing, nail varnishes, candles, literally any kind of Halloween decoration… if there’s a pumpkin on it, I need it!

I thought for this post I’d share some of the things on my wish list for this year, because why not really?! (none of these links are affiliate and I’m simply sharing things that I have happened to found recently)

Cosy Leaf Jumper (Kiel James Patrick)

@hellomissjordan shared this on her princess picks this week and OMG I need it! It’s the perfect colour, it’s cosy AND it has autumn leaves on it… sold! (well, maybe not literally as it’s a bit on the pricey side for me right now!)

Chances I’ll buy it: slim, unless it’s in a 50% off sale…

Pumpkin Candle Holder (Little Lies)

I mean, just look how cute it is!

Chances I’ll buy it: possible… I’m obsessed with near enough everything on the Little Lies website and have been holding out to treat myself to a few bits on there…

Bargain All Saints Jumper (TK Maxx)

When something from All Saints is reduced by 75%… it’s a no brainer right?!

Chances I’ll buy it: I’ve probably already bought it!

H&M Collared Jumper

I literally need this. That collar is just divine…

Chances I’ll buy it: definitely, as soon as it’s actually in stock

The Whole Yankee Candle Campfire Nights Collection

I am imagining these smell amazing… especially the pecan pie bites one!

Chances I’ll buy it: very likely, I’m waiting for all the votives to be in stock and to find a holder I like (something autumnal of course!)

This Punny jumper (Not On The Hight Street)

It’s pink, it’s cosy looking, it has a pun on it… need I say more?

Chances I’ll buy it: I personally think it’ll be rude not to!

The perfect subtle Halloween-esque umbrella (New Look)

I have a bit of a weird thing against umbrellas but I’m slightly obsessed by this, and have a spooky photo idea in my head to make use of it!

Chances I’ll buy it: at £7.99… definitely!

Basically everything new from Monki

Monki has loads of cute leggings, tees and bodysuits, with cute little Halloween designs and basically I need them all!

Chances I’ll buy it: HIGH

Doc Martens (ASOS)

I’ve wanted a new pair of DMs for a while and particularly have my eye on “slip on” pair, for something easy but comfy to wear in autumn and winter.

Chances I’ll buy it: likely, just praying for them to go on sale on ASOS

The whole vanilla pumpkin Body Shop range

You can’t go wrong with The Body Shop really, can you?!

Chances I’ll buy it: pretty high!

This entire wax melt collection complete with cauldron burner (Cushty Co)

I have literally been checking Instagram daily for the restock date as I absolutely do need every single one of these!

Chances I’ll buy it: if I can get in there quick enough then definitely!

An autumn garland (Amazon)

Last but no means least, how can I not have one of these?!

Chances I’ll buy it: pretty high, if I can decide what I’ll actually do with it!

So, there you have it, a little sneak peak in to the items I’m currently pining after! I could have gone on for much longer, as there’s a ridiculous amount of items on my wish lists, especially ASOS…. I never actually realised how materialistic I was!

What’s on your Wishlist for autumn? Which of these items do you think I should definitely purchase, or which do you think I should steer clear of?

Posted in Life

6 Things To Love About Autumn

For me personally, I couldn’t love Autumn anymore than I do already… but I know the chillier days aren’t for everyone so to help get everyone else in to the spirit of things, I’m sharing a list of just 6 reasons to love this season!

Firstly, all things cosy! How can you not love getting all cosy in a jumper, with blankets and a hot chocolate, maybe in front of a fire if you’re super lucky… it’s just the best.

Photo by Taryn Elliott on Pexels.com

Next up, all of the Autumn LUSH goodies! I don’t know about you, I love a Lush bathbomb on any day of the year, but there’s something extra special about the Autumn and Halloween ones.

Monster Ball from 2016

After shopping at your local Lush, you might want to grab some lunch and a classic Pumpkin Spiced Latte. Yep, I’m that kinda gal. I know it’s become a bit of a love/hate thing in recent years, but I’m here to tell you that I for one… am ALL about pumpkin spiced EVERYTHING.

Pumpkin picking in my favourite Autumnal jacket

Then after the pumpkin spice leaves the cafes and shops… it’s replaced with all things Christmas, and if Autumn doesn’t get you excited… surely the run up to Christmas does?! I’m one of these weird folks that finds the run up to things almost more exciting than the actual event and now is the time that most wonderful time of year starts to creep up on us.

Next on my list, the colours… don’t you just love it when the leaves all start to turn? I can’t think of anything better than a walk in the crisp, fresh air, crunching on all the red and brown leaves as they start to fall from the trees.

Last but not least, and possibly the best thing of all… HALLOWEEN! Of course, with Autumn comes Halloween and honestly? It’s my favourite day of the year, I just love all things spooky.

Photo by Jillian Morkan on Pexels.com

So… grab yourself a pumpkin spiced beverage, run yourself a Lush infused bath, get cosy and pop on a spooky movie… it’s time for Autumn!

Do you love this season too? What are your favourite things about Autumn? Let me know in the comments!

Posted in Life

August Round-Up & Blogging Goals for Autumn

Just like that, it’s goodbye Summer.

Who can believe we’re about to enter September? It doesn’t seem right to me at all… March feels just like yesterday! This year hasn’t exactly been the best for anyone I think, so I suppose it’s not necessarily a bad thing that it’s flown by.

That being said, August seems to have been a busy month and so I thought now was a good time for some reflection before we enter my favourite season… Autumn.

What did I achieve in August?

Firstly, non-blogging related – Bought a new car – If you follow me on Instagram, then you may have seen my recent reel showing of the car that Dale and I have bought. We went for a Mini Countryman Sport and I love it! There are a lot of luxuries that I never knew I needed, like heated seats and Apple car play… but not only that, it’s a really sturdy car and I actually feel really safe and secure whilst driving. Writing this makes me feel like I should have written a full review!

Planned content for the rest of the year – turns out that coming in to Autumn inspires me and then I was already on a roll so carried on for Blogmas and up to the end of this year!

Managed to publish posts consistently all month – I have struggled with consistency from day one so any time I can keep up with posting regularly is an achievement to me. In August I have shared more of my first Trek America trip, a photo journal, a review of StitchFix and also 8 things to know before you get a puppy.

Reached over 100 followers on my blog and 2,600 on Instagram!

In fact, it’s a been one whole year of Watt The Blog!

When you break it down in to small acheivements like that, the year doesn’t seem so bad after all.

Moving forward in to the glorius Autumn, here are my blogging goals for the season:

Continue to post consistently and more often – I’m going to aim for twice a week in the run up to December, then ATTEMPT a daily Blogmas up to Christmas eve… wish me luck!

Stick to my content plan – it’s all very well making a plan for the rest of the year, but I need to actually stick to it…

Reach 200 followers on my blog – that one might be a bit of a stretch, but I can try!

If I’m gaining followers on my blog, might at well reach 2,700 on Instagram and 900 on Twitter… again… I can try!

Create a blogging Facebook page – I keep meaning to do this, but haven’t quite got that far yet.

I’m sending out optimism and good vibes in to the universe right now and looking forward to reflecting back on these goals later on in to Winter!

What are you goals for the coming months and what are you proud to have acheived in August? Let me know in the comments!

Posted in Life

28 Life Lessons I Have Learnt in 28 Years

Happy birthday to me!

I’ll be honest, I’ve not exactly been looking forward to this birthday and have been struggling to come to terms with getting closer to 30. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t acctually think I’m “old” by any means, it’s just that time has gone so quick and it’s incredibly unsettling – I haven’t acheived everything that I thought I would have by now.

Life just really isn’t as simple as I though it would be, but I’ve sure learnt a lot on the way, so before I start rambling too much, let’s jump straight in to the 28 life lessons that I’ve learnt in 28 years!

  1. Too much stress is actually physically unhealthy. I’ve always been a stressed out and anxious person, so I’m well aware of the physical side effects this causes, but I never really considered the long term health effects until a few years ago – it’s quite scary what too much stress can do your body over time, so it’s important to keep it in check.
  2. That being said, your health is your number one priority. My mum always used to say to me that as long as I had my health, everything else was secondary and I didn’t really get it until we were hit by the recent pandemic. Since then, I’ve really started to appreciate my health and am more active in trying to look after myself.
  3. That means you need to look after yourself. Drink the water, brush your teeth, eat vegetables and wash your face. Once you get past 25, you’ll only regret all those times you didn’t.
  4. Life really is short. Unfortunately, I think this is something that only really rings true after losing a loved one. It’s one of those things we all sort of know, but until I have to say that until I experienced a family member passing away, it never seemed real.
  5. Time waits for no one. Similarly, time won’t ever stop, no matter what you’re going through. If you want to acheive something, don’t wait!
  6. You can’t plan life. You just can’t! You can plan for the short term of course, and I guess have an idea as to what you wish to get out of life, but you definitely can’t plan it all out perfectly.
  7. It’s ok not to be ok. Just know when to reach out and ask for help when you need it.
  8. It’s also ok if you don’t actually know what to do with life. Just like you can’t plan it all out, it’s ok if you don’t even have a clue where to start.
  9. When you do know what you want to do, do everything you can to work towards it – don’t procrastinate! I spent years putting things off and I often wonder where I could have got to, if I just just got on and done the things I wanted to.
  10. People can be amazing, they’re not always scary. I spent so much of my life being afraid of other people, when there really is no need. Sure, people can be as crap as they are awesome, but those people don’t matter anyway.
  11. Travel, travel, and travel again – and do it solo! Most of these life lessons I learnt while travelling solo to be honest, there’s so much to be said for giving it a go on your own, although I’d be lying if I told you I didn’t find it terrifying.
  12. Money isn’t the be all and end all, but it certainly helps. I used to feel like you had to be super rich to make it but that really isn’t the case. Not everything costs money and you can get a lot done on a shoestring! That being said…
  13. Budget wisely. It took me a long time to figure out how to budget properly to make my monthly pay last, and that’s when money becomes stressful! There’s a difference between not needing to spend much, and not actually having enough to buy food. Now I always make sure I budget properly for the month and can still save some too.
  14. Material things don’t matter in the end.
  15. BUT if it makes you happy at the time, and you can afford it, go for it and buy the things!
  16. It CAN be fun to drink and not everyone is an awful drunk. I had some unfortunate experiences with alcohol growing up and for a long time was convinced that drinking turned everyone in to the absolute Devil. Then I found a cocktail I liked and realised you can just get a little tipsy and have a good time, you don’t need to take it too far.
  17. You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to. Before I discovered a drink that I liked, I didn’t drink at all and got a lot of stick for it. I stuck to my guns though until I was ready and honestly I’m glad I didn’t give in to peer pressure – if there’s one lesson I could pass on it would probably be this one.
  18. In the grand scheme of things, no one else cares about what you do. Of course, people do CARE, and I don’t want this to sound harsh in any way but when you look at the bigger picture, we’re all looking out for number one.
  19. On that note, dress for YOU. Who cares if it’s not “on trend”, or if other people don’t like it. Wear what makes you feel good.
  20. A few, really good friends is way better than lots and lots of acquaintances. I spent many years through school being upset over not having many friends, and my mum also telling me that as long as I had a few good friends then that’s all that matters. Why are mum’s always right?!
  21. Similarly, you can’t make everyone like you. Stop trying!
  22. You can’t regret the choices that you made in the past, as they were right for you at the time. I vividly remember having to go to the Army Careers office a few years ago to collect my rejection letter. I tried SO hard not to cry but was so upset. The reason I was rejected was due to a medical issue that had only developed that year. I SO regretted not applying when I had originally wanted to a few years before that, as then I might have got in – the officer told me that I couldn’t regret it because I made the choice that was right for me at the time. It took me a long time to actually agree with him, but it’s definitely true.
  23. Education is a priviledge. I’m sure I’m not the only one who spent most of my school life despising school and not really appreciating my time there. Unfortunately, you could have never convinced me at the time but years later I realised I should have made the most of it.
  24. You can’t run from your problems. No matter how far away you go, the problems will be right there waiting when you get back.
  25. You can’t control everything, only how you deal with it all. It’s so easy to worry about things we cannot control, but what’s the point in worrying baout it if you can’t actually change it? All we can do is focus on is how to deal with it. That was something else I really realised during the pandemic: I was SO worried about everything going on in the world, but finally I ended up realising that I can’t do anything about it in the grand scheme of things, only how I cope and respond personally.
  26. A postive mental attitude is everything. Although that doesn’t mean you have to happy all the time, no one is happy all of the time!
  27. Everything happens for a reason. I’m not saying it’s all fate or anything, but honestly I do believe everything does happen for a reason, even though it doesn’t always feel like it at the time.
  28. Finally, it really WILL all be ok. I promise.

It’s safe to say, just this year alone I have learnt so much about life in general, and I’m sure I’ve got a lot more to learn in the next 28 years – whatever they may bring! It’s been a bumpy ride, but I’m definitely proud for how far I’ve come.

Let me know in the comments what you’ve learnt about life recently and come back soon for the next post in my Trek America series.

Posted in Life

Black Lives Matter – What I Have Learnt and How To Help

This post contains links to other sites and social media posts, none are affiliate and I haven’t been asked to share these, it’s just what I have personally found helpful. Any links to resources have not been created by me unless stated otherwise.

I always intended to eventually use my blog to discuss important topics, as well as travel and lifestyle. The name “Watt The Blog” is a play on words with my name and “what the fuck” – the idea being to discuss my weekly WTF moments – I think we can agree that the world is one big WTF right now. However, I’ve found myself waiting for “the right time”, until I develop my writing skills and to have a bigger following, but… why wait?

Last week, I, along with many other White people, had to face up to the fact that we have an undeniable privilege that we haven’t been putting to good use.

Racism doesn’t just come in the form that first comes to mind, which is why a lot of us defensively state we are simply not racist. Unfortunately, it’s not that simple: the fact is that racism is a spectrum and right now, society is inherently racist against Black people. This means that, without always meaning to be, we have all been guilty of a form of racism and I won’t believe you if you try to argue otherwise. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure that if you’re reading this, you’re certainly not outwardly and overtly racist, but I’m also sure that you’re in the same boat as me in realising that things are complicated and we need to do much, much better. So, what next? Here is what I’ve learnt so far about how we need to step up.

Apologise and be willing to accept our White privilege

Without making this about me, (another thing many of us are guilty of doing, albeit without necessarily meaning to) here are my apologies:

I am so sorry that I had not recognised my privilege up until now. I have now realised what it is to have White privilege and accept the responsibility that comes with it.

I am sorry for ever thinking that I understand, when I could never understand what it means to face racism on a daily basis. The most (or least) I can do is stand in unity.

I am sorry for not understanding what Black Lives Matter meant up until now, and for previously taking the “don’t all lives matter?” stance. If you’re still not sure on this, the point is that all lives DO matter, but right now Black lives are being taken and treated as though they DON’T matter. All lives can’t actually matter until Black lives do too.

I am sorry for not being actively anti-racist and for thinking that simply being “not racist” was enough.

Stop trying to be a perfect ally

Many have said they didn’t want to write a post until they knew how to properly address the subject and that it can feel like you can’t do right for wrong at the moment. However, it’s better to speak up and get it wrong, than to say nothing at all. We will need to accept that we may get called out, if we approach something from the wrong angle perhaps, but then if we do, to listen and learn and adjust our thinking.

This is a learning curve for many of us but at the end of the day, it’s a problem that needs to be fixed, which simply cannot be done by Black people alone. As James Corden said recently – “how can the Black community dismantle a problem that they didn’t create?”

Listen and learn

I highly recommend that you check out this link for the BLM card – these are more related to America but still relevant. If you’re from the UK like me then this article is also really helpful. If you have found any other useful links, please do share in the comments!

The learning curve is continuous. It’s vital to keep reading, watching, listening and learning until long after the protests have died down. This isn’t just a one time thing, or a social media trend. Although social media has been brilliant recently for sharing knowledge and I honestly feel that I’ve learnt more in the past week or so, than I ever did in school.

A few people also started sharing their favourite Black content creators and I can honestly say that I have found some new firm favourites that I can’t believe I wasn’t following before. It wasn’t until it was pointed out that I realised I didn’t follow many Black creators and so therefore my feeds and the information I was receiving wasn’t very diverse. In turn, the voices and opinions I had been sharing were of fellow White people. Although, something else I noticed too, was that I had actually been following some of these accounts already but they had then been drowned out by all the White content I was following. Diversify your feed and you won’t regret it – listen to what Black creators have to say, learn and share too. I particularly appreciated that Kelsey in London shared her favourite creators with under 10,000 followers, which means they don’t have a swipe up link, so it’s harder for them to share information.

While you’re at it, there’s also lots of wonderful black owned businesses too!

Donate and sign petitions

There are lots of places you can donate to, and lots of worthwhile petitions. This is a list of just some petitions, as well as a few zip codes you can use if needed. Once you’ve signed and/or donated, share the links too and keep the momentum going, I cannot reiterate this enough. Something to note though, don’t donate directly to the Change website when signing their petitions, as the funds will go to their promotion, rather than to an actual charity or funding page that needs your help more.

If you’re tight on money right now (many of us are and that’s ok) there are lots of videos on YouTube that you can watch, and then all the revenue will be donated – there is a whole Twitter thread of videos. This is another video too.

Also something good to know is that if you purchased the Caroline Hirons x Pixi Beauty double cleanser at any point this year, or are due to purchase in 2020, 100% of Caroline’s proceeds will be going to Black Lives Matter, AND Pixi are now matching the donation.

Use your platform to support

You’ve seen the word “share” countless times in this post I know, but seriously share any resources you have found helpful. Share links to petitions and donation pages, share the books your reading, the shows you’re watching, most importantly share the voices of your favourite Black content creators/authors/actors and of your Black friends. It really doesn’t matter how many followers you have, just speak up and support those that need it.

Continue to advocate change OFFLINE

The work online is only a small part of what we need to do. The harder part comes offline in the difficult conversations with friends and family who may have not seen, or noticed, what you’re sharing online.

Something I hadn’t even considered this week on my sharing sprees, was that social media is an echo chamber. The people you follow, and those who follow you, already agree with you. It’s your racist uncle (for example) who needs talking to, it’s the favourite brands that you buy from that need looking in to. When was the last time you considered how diverse a company was before buying from them? I know I sure as hell have buried my head in the sand up until now.

How about where you work… Have you ever questioned racism in your workplace? In my industry we’re lucky enough to be extremely racially diverse but many, many places are not. Advocate changes in every part of your life, not just online.

Continue to work and recognise how to do better

I’m under no illusions and know that I have a lot more work to do, as well as a lot more to learn but right now I believe that what’s most important is to think about how to move forward. What will you do now? Will you simply move on and go back to the way things were, or will you continue to actively be anti racist for the rest of your life?

Something that struck a chord with me this week was that Black people continue to live like this and fight for their rights every single day, for their whole lives, there are no days off. Black people, and those of other ethnic minorities, do not get to take a break from talking or thinking about racism. So if we’re stepping up as White people, we need to make the commitment to stand along side them, for the rest of our lives.

Thank you for reading – I hope this can help at least one other person!

Some other helpful links

5 things to do right now in the UK

How to ally

How to respond to common racist statements

Anti-racism terms to learn

How to be an active listener

7 ways White people invalidate Black people’s feelings

9 things that wouldn’t exist without Black women

Examples of microagressions

Racism in the UK

Racism in the UK (2)