Friday, 12 February 2010

When working hard goes too far.


Firstly, just a quick apology for disappearing – I was at work all weekend thanks to The Princess and the Frog and then went home to a house with no internet until today.

Trying to please.
The above image may be a bit hard to place unless you’ve watched it recently, but it’s Anne Hathaway as Andrea Sachs in The Devil Wears Prada. A quick refresher on the plot – Andy is the frumpy wanna-be journalist who takes a job at High Fashion magazine Runway (e.g. Vogue) as one of the assistants to the editor, Miranda Priestly (read as Anna Wintour), played by Meryl Streep. Andy quickly discovers that being an assistant is no easy feat and that the fashion world isn’t all about which belt goes best with which dress. Now the image above becomes clear – Andy is swamped with work as she tries to meet Miranda’s every whim, while keeping the job she desperately needs to further her career. One of the main situations in the film is based on this – Andy is working too hard to please Miranda and quickly begins to neglect her own life and relationships. This brings me to want to talk about today – when working hard for that degree or promotion goes a bit too far.

Beep beep beep.
It’s only natural to want to do the best you can in work or school or university to ensure than you get the best results as possible. It also rings true to want to do everything you can to please those around you and make their lives easier as well. People pleasing can become a problem though – as we saw in The Devil Wears Prada, Andy started to reject her own life. When your home life starts to suffer because of your job or school work then it’s time to take a step back and do some re-evaluation.

You’re not their third arm.
It is unlikely that you’re extremely high up in the office hierarchy at this stage of your life, but this doesn’t mean that you are simply just the tea boy or filing girl – you’re a valued member of the staff and should be treated as such. If you start to agree to do menial tasks which are not part of your job description (like picking up your bosses dry cleaning), then it would appear that you are being taken advantage of. It’s ok to refuse to do something – it might not seem like the best idea, but it shows that you are strong, assertive and most of all aware that they’re asking too much. That’s not to say that if your boss asks for a genuine favour that you should turn them down – quite the contrary. It’s when it becomes a regular occurrence that you need to put your foot down.

Textbooks aren’t the only books.
Sure, a good grade means a lot. But then so do social skills, life skills and good memories. If you start to turn down plans with your friends to go drastically above and beyond your required reading and work, then you have a little bit of a problem. It’s all about balance – agree to go out to every second invitation, or if your friends just want to spend some time together why not set up a study day with lots of healthy snacks and drinks; if you’re doing the same course you could bounce ideas off each other and maybe pick up a thing or two that you’ve  missed out on or had trouble with. Your teens and early twenties are the times for you to learn about academia and yourself – there might not be an exam for the latter, but it’s still important.

Work is only a part of your life.
And to sum it up: be strong, be balanced and you’ll get where you want to be.


PS: You can buy The Devil Wears Pradafor only £2.98 at Amazon right now!

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Paul’s Boutique “Grace” Bag


The new bag finally arrived last week. I promised pictures over the weekend, but you’re getting them today. I’m no master photographer by any means, so I apologise now for the rather bad pictures – the bag is gorgeous though!


It’s lovely and big and the gold and black colour way really goes well together. I can take off the pin broach any time I want, but I’ve left it for the moment because I think it makes the bag a bit more interesting.


When my boyfriend first saw the pin he asked if I had won an award. Cheeky boy. Do you see the leopard print? It matches…


The inside of the bag where the black and gold detailing is continued. The one thing I was disappointed with about this bag is that it doesn’t zip close – the heavy weight of the padlock does keep it closed ok-ish, but I miss the extra security of a zip. That gold clip on top keeps the bag from looking too much like a sack, but it can be unclipped to make the bag huge:


And to be honest, I really don’t have enough things in my life to fill this bag with at the moment, so I’ll be keeping it firmly clipped closed. You can actually make the bag slightly bigger, while having the clip attached by loosening the straps at either side:


This means you can fit more in, but still have a bit of shape and structure to the bag.

Except for the zip I love this bag – though it does have that funny new bag smell, but I’m sure that’ll quickly disappear. Best £50 I have spent this year, so far!


Wednesday, 3 February 2010

NYX Jumbo Lip Pencils – Small Haul and Swatches.


After seeing that Amy used these pencils and liking how they looked on her, I had to give them a shot. Everyone seems to be using some sort of NYX product these days as well, which was just another excuse to have a go. I got three pencils, for comparison, in three very different shades: Deep Red, Soft Fuschia and Iris.

And for some reason I can’t really fathom I swatched them in reverse order. The Iris is a pale frosty pink shade, the Soft Fuschia looks like a very dark nude pink swatched and the Deep Red scared me with how bright it was.

I really don’t like the Iris shade on. I guess frosted colours just don’t suit me – and it looked awfully silver in the light which made me feel like a robot.

The Soft Fuschia comes out a much lighter shade when it’s applied to the lips and I feel it just enhances the natural colour of my lips. I really liked this shade on, and it’ll probably become one of my every day staples.

And the Deep Red was just… I was quite shocked. I’ve never really worn red lipstick (or red anything) before and was surprised by how it looked on. The picture makes it look a little bit lighter than it really is – it’s actually a fairly dark, almost blood red.

The application of the pencils was really easy – they dragged on the first swipe across my lips but after that they were smooth and just felt really creamy. I’ve only had them for a day so I’m not too sure about wearablity and if they’ll have a drying effect on my lips, but I will be sure to let you know.

I bought the three pencils as a bundle from Joy’s Cosmetics shop on eBay for $6.99 plus P&P for a total of $10.52, which through PayPal conversion was only £6.70ish. She has most of the NYX products available for pretty cheap. She also ships out super quick – I paid on the 26th of January and they were sent out the next day on the 27th – they dropped through my letter box yesterday, the 1st of February. All the way from America.

Have any of you tried out any NYX products that you absolutely adore?


Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Promises of 2010: Update


Happy February everyone! I did mean to do this yesterday but got sidetracked by a visit from my boyfriend – we spent the whole day watching my new True Blood DVDs! At less than £18 on Amazon they are an absolute bargain - £10 cheaper than anywhere else.

But I’m getting sidetracked. Let me tell you how I’m getting on with my promises.

Love and Life.
I’m still on track with sharing the lovey dovey feelings with my boyfriend – which is a brilliant thing of course. I don’t think we’ll be doing Valentines Day (we think it’s a little bit silly), so we’re being happy now. I’m no longer on my own in the flat – at least one of the toxic friends is here at all times, but we just generally avoid each other; too much has been said and done to ever go back to being real friends. But we keep it all amicable – talking about electricity expenses and things, pleasantries and the like. All very boring. I don’t know if you all noticed, but I blogged every weekday last week and have at least two more posts planned for this week, so I’m keeping to my blog more promise. The book situation isn’t going too well, but I’m planning to do some reading once I’ve tidied my room after this!



It’s the cute little money bar again. Compared to last post it’s a lot fuller! In fact, it is now a fifth full – each little pink and purple bar stands for £10 and I have now managed to save a whole £100! I don’t plan on being able to save so much every month, but it’s nice to have a big kick start thanks to a much bigger than expected payslip for January. Being less frivolous with my spending money is going a bit better. I’ve found though that I had a lot of little things to buy in the last week and in the next week too – ink for my printer, new mascara and paper for going back to university soon. I think I’m doing a little bit better.

Classes still don’t start for another week yet, so there’s not very much to report here. I had my resit exam last week, but I still don’t know how I did on that. I hope well enough to pass, but we’ll just all have to wait and see.

I was doing really well with the nail biting thing and my nails had looked better than they ever had – except the skin around them had started peeling and splitting. It was definitely not very nice. This didn’t bode well for me and I’m right back were I started with horrible ratty nails. But I’m not going to let that get me down – I’ll just have to start again! For my weight and body image… it’s not been going too well. With being stuck in the flat with not much to do I’ve been boredom eating and just not taking very good care of myself. It’ll all be fine though once university starts back up. I hope.

I hope everyone else is having a lot of luck sticking to their resolutions and promises!