Getting organised

I’ve been staring at beautiful bullet journals with green eyes. The motivational side quotes, the habit tracker, memories, blog ideas pages… And I very almost bought my very own but restrained myself just in time. For one thing, I have plenty of empty journals that I just needed to buy that would suffice – even if they’re not dotted. For another, neither my handwriting nor doodling skills are slick enough to give me the gratification I am seeking.

So for now I will keep using my post-it notes and satisfyingly crunching them up once I am done, or towering them up on the side of my laptop.

And as for the lists tracker and quotes I will need to start using my ideas journal. It has some handy squared pages and some speech boxes for my fav quotes. One of my recent additions:

Sometimes your light attracts moths and your warmth attracts parasites. Protect your space and energy – Warsan Shire

And as for journaling, I spent some time this morning rearranging my posts with new categories:

  • Being active: activism, racism, sexism, political think pieces
  • Being creative: short stories, poems and crafting
  • Being thoughtful: reminiscing of the past, personal and emotional pieces
  • Being here: daily or random posts about my daily life or work

Damn that took a while and I’m pretty sure no one cares besides me. But going back to when I started writing, it was a collection of my own thoughts for me so it was worth the time. Reading back was a nice trip down memory lane.

I’ve had this blog for just over a year now. I wrote about my first 10 followers and there are now over 250. Never did I think, with no advertisement, I could achieve that. But here I am. And here I stay.  So thank you to everyone who reads, comments and likes. In a world full of so many we can feel so alone with some thoughts so it’s comforting to know you’re all here.

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Keeping memories: 5 awesome ways to record 2016

Still on the New Years hype and came across cute ideas to make this year one to remember. Journaling is quite daunting for many people so here are 5 ways you can still capture 2016 with minimum effort. I know it’s already the 2nd day but it’s easy to catch up on a few days.

  1. Memory jar:

    (Image from who-arted.com)

    Use an empty mason jar and fill with one memory to summarise the day. This can be a comment someone said, somewhere you went – any memory from the day. Write the date on the paper too. Fold it up and place in the jar. By the end of the year you will have 365 memories to look back on and can make a scrap book out of them.

  2. heyday app: a person journal on your phone. This app automatically collates where you’ve been and your photos everyday – a journal that writes itself. I’ve not used the app before but have just downloaded it so will follow up with an edit on how it goes.
  3. Memory box:

    (image from Design Sponge*)

    A box full of index cards for everyday of the year. You write one line summary of the day. Next year, you would write another line beneath the previous year – and reminisce about the day you had the year before. This idea takes a little effort to make – step by step instructions can be found here (check out the comments section for links to buying the box) – but I think it’s worth it. For those of you unable to make the box – here’s a book you can buy that has the same idea.

  4. Social media: private accounts are a great space to store memories. Tweet your daily happenings with a 140-character limit or Instragram a photo a day. Create a different Snapchat account and add yourself. Now, every time you send a snap – ones that you’ll want to remember – send a copy to yourself. Log in next year to see the whole story.
  5. Ticket box:

    (image from inspiredhoneybox)

    Fill a shadow box (a photoframe designed to let you put items in) with tickets collected throughout the year. This can include anything you want – holidays, cinema, theme parks, comedy shows, even restaurants. And this is an especially cute idea for couples where you can write “admit two”.

Happy memory collecting. Personally going to stick to the memory jar because I love creating scrapbooks and I think it’ll make a lovely scrapbook. I have also downloaded Heyday and am excited to see how that works.

Sometimes you will never know the true value of a moment until it become a memory – Unknown

Being ready

She wakes up ready.
Ready to take on everything she is not ready for.

As her kettle brews she brushes her hair. She irons the clothes that fit too tight and don’t fall right. She lines her eyes, applies mascara and taints her lips. She wraps her scarf around her head and pins it into place. She drinks her tea. And puts on plasters before wearing her heels. She is ready.

Ready to pretend she understands the capitalistic world she’s thrown herself in where the corporate call themselves the alternative. They pride themselves as diverse and inclusive yet she sees no one like herself and does not fit in. She pretends she does not mind that they get drunk and speak too close, spewing horrible fumes and dropping alcohol onto her beautiful gown. She pretends she does not feel offended when they assume she is against LGBT rights. She tries to laugh as the scoff at “chavs only buying clothes from Primark” whilst she is dressed in mostly Primark clothes and lives with her mum in a council house. She is patient when they ask “are you Islam?” and “so what are you doing about ISIS?”. She hides her offence at the “I volunteered in Africa (because obviously Africa is a country to them). It was weird because I was the only white person in the village”. She goes along to yet another evening of networking with the same clones and the same stench of wine.

And when all is done, she can come back home. She takes off the heels at the door, unwraps her scarf, wipes off the black around her eyes and changes into her mexi. She does not have to be ready anymore. She sighs with relief and gets ready for bed, dreading the morning ahead.

Stepping onto a brand-new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation, which is not nurturing to the whole woman. – Maya Angelou

I write

I write.

I write because the words I want to say remain jumbled in my mind, the voices repeating themselves again and again – so loudly yet remaining silent. Taunting me with the “you should have said this” and “you could have responded with that”. Hindsight. I want to feel the joy when I say it like I meant it and you get it like I intended it and we connect – even just for a little while.

I write so my heart aches less and to fill the void in my soul. To release build up of pain and bottling of frustration. I want to feed the juices that run through me, feel the buzz, rejoice in the energy.

I write to hide from my world. The judging eyes and piercing lips that with just a few sounds can crush my spirit. I want to feel unchained and winged. To say what I want without the fear of politics or religion or love getting in the way.

I write to be the many sides of me. To be more than my big brain or small body. I want to be multi-dimensional and fluid. The happy, the angry, the strong, the lonely.

I write because I can. Because I can’t say. Because you don’t see. Because we don’t listen.

My Life, the Book

And yes I was sad when Zayn left.

This morning I woke up with One Direction’s “The Story Of My Life” playing in my head. The song is close to my heart, reminding me of my time in Bangladesh. Strange choice I know. I recently travelled ‘back home’ on my own. Even though the majority of my family live there, mainly due to costs but also because of school, I hadn’t visited in over ten years.

With the stress of calling off my upcoming marriage and pressures from work, I made a random decision to visit and booked tickets two weeks before leaving. My family were surprised to say the least but perhaps I can go into my whole adventure in another post.

Back to One Direction. The plane there and back did not have a charging port so I was in the mercy of the in-flight music selection. One Direction’s album was the best there was – and I guess that says something about the selection. Regardless, somewhere in the process of replaying the album continuously for eight hours (each way) I came to love it, and now associate it with my adventures and family in Bangladesh.   Continue reading