Inspiration: Tristan Allen & Amanda Palmer

2 Nov

Mooncup

28 Oct

I have found another way how to reduce my carbon footprints, to save money and apparently my health, too. A menstrual cup.

I did hear about it years ago from a friend of mine, but I wasn’t ready for it then. I pretty much imagined that a glass of red wine would be out of question forever and ever. But then I learnt about the problems tampons can cause, such as toxic shock syndrome, dryness, irritation, pelvic inflammatory disease, even cervical cancer and about their impact on environment and I was prepared for the sacrifice. Guess what, I still enjoy my red wine as much as before! Of course, silly. Online reading proved to me that I wasn’t the only one with gory stories never to be told, that it was the part of the learning process, so be it. Have you learnt anything without pain, effort and persistence? I didn’t.

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The initial cost may be quite a shock but when you consider that for 10 years you won’t need to buy a new one and do your calculations on how much the tampons and pads would cost you in that period of time, then it comes rather cheaply. And what’s more, you won’t be filling the landfill! The statistics say that ’20 billion pads, tampons and applicators are sent to North American landfills annually’ alone. I believe The Mother will be more than grateful to us if we all choose reusable essentials.

I did learn to use this tiny silicone item in the end. I persisted in the name of eco/nom/log/y and I do love it as much as other women who have tried and used it and shared their stories on the forums and blogs. Some admitted that tampons weren’t the best option for them, causing them the pain, some were complaining about the discomfort and hygiene problems but all of them agreed that menstrual cup was the best solution. I am one of them. Will you care to join us?

About the writer: Zdena comes from Slovakia but has made Wales her second home, that is when she is not travelling, which she can’t live without. Two important things in her life are books and Scrabble and she also loves world cinema

I Am Woman

25 Oct

Ah so the time has come to present you all with my final lady of inspiration. During the decision process for this person, I sought out to discover a woman to top them all…the saints, the sinners, the brave and the everyday heroes. Then it occurred to me that no one female is better than another. Who am I to decide who’s worthy of recognition? The criterion of inspiration differs from person to person. What I find to be inspiring could be nothing short of a nightmare to another person.

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Now, I have given you the ordinary, the extraordinary, the famous and the infamous. Women of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds have been featured over the last 10 issues and they are all of equal importance. I have tried to incorporate a variety of women to accommodate the fact that we’re all different and this feature has been a great project of mine because it’s lead me to dig deep for those who stand out to me and it’s also made me realise that you don’t have to be anything out of this world to be someone’s muse. That is by far THE most important thing I have taken from doing this, which leads me to my final female. This should be by far the most inspirational woman out of everyone featured and this is the one I want you to remember and think about.

This woman is you.

Yes you, the ordinary girl with the 9-5 Monday to Friday job. You who has a fantastic talent in something that you’re finding difficult to express or can express to people who don’t listen. You, little lady, who would rather slip into the background than be at the forefront of it all.

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The point is it doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from, how old you are, the colour of your skin, which sex you’d prefer to be with, what you look like and whatever other brilliant features you have that make you, you.

You’re amazing. No question, and you should be so proud of who you are or who you’re on the way to becoming because you were put on this earth for a reason. You have a purpose and you may not know what that purpose is yet but it’s there and you just have to find it.

Take risks.

Overcome fears.

Be mature.

More importantly…be immature.

Don’t suppress your inner child. Locking her up is a sin.

Look in the mirror every single day and say, “I am here for a reason. I mean something to someone.” Be your own inspiration.

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I’ve been reading this book called ‘You Can’t Afford The Luxury Of A Negative Thought’ by Peter McWilliams. I advise you to read it. It’s quite clearly written for people trapped in a mid life crises but the principals are all relevant. It basically just encourages you to live instead of just existing, and what I have taken from reading it is that if you want something, get it. Put it above everything else and make it your goal.

If you want to write a book. Do it.

If you want to be a doctor. Do it.

If you want to sky dive. Do it.

If you want to travel the world. Do it.

If you’re 100% happy with the choices you’ve made and the life you have. Live it.

Whatever religion you follow or whatever beliefs you have in the afterlife, these are uncertainties and we cannot rely on them, as much as I wish we could. There is one thing that we know for certain and that is the fact we have one shot at life. Just one. Don’t blow it. If you’re not the person you want to be, then change. If you are, then great just keep being you and do whatever makes you happy not what you think would make everyone else happy.

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If you have read my previous submissions, I am grateful but if this is the only one you’ve ever read and will ever read then I’m happy. This is the one I want you to remember because there are too many women out there who hate themselves and are wallowing in self-pity and it doesn’t sit right with me.

One thing I always remember if I’m having a particularly crappy day is that my worst day could be the best day for someone else. It instantly makes me feel grateful for the life I have been blessed with.

I will leave you with this final thought…

“Believe with all of your heart that you will do what you were made to do” -  Orison Swett Marden.

About the writer: Melody has just finished a degree in Journalism, Film and Media with a 2:1. She aspires to work with vulnerable women and children subject to domestic, and or other forms of abuse. She is an animal lover and has a small obsession with Fearne Cotton. She is a constant joker and can be found on Twitter.

Halloween Costumes: 90s Edition

23 Oct

I may be having too much fun on Polyvore but I really can’t stop. Help me maybe? Or leave me here, I really don’t mind.

Anyway, with Halloween right around the corner here are some classic 90s character costume ideas for you!

Audrey Horne

Ah Audrey Horne. What a gal, amiright? Dominating, classy and very, very sneaky, she always looks amazing with an air of the ‘50s about her. Team a pink jumper with a tartan skirt for her classic look, swapping those saddle shoes for shocking red heels to sleuth around in. Add our own beauty mark with some eyeliner and wiggle your tongue to let people know what you can do with that cherry stem!

Tatum Riley

Tatum Riley had balls. No really: who makes jokes right to the face of an actual killer? Yeah, my point exactly. A neon yellow tee clashes wonderfully with the tartan pencil skirt and don’t forget to put your hair into some cute pigtails or super high pony tail – this is the 90 remember! Get some fake blood (in case someone forgot theirs) and as much beer as you can carry. Wench.

Helga Pataki

Helga Pataki couldn’t not make an appearance. Spruce up on your football based insults, beef up that monobrow and you’re on your way! A giant sparkly pink bow does wonders with the lighter pink dress and white accessories. And of course, where would Helga be without her heart shaped locket?

Mia Wallace

Mia Wallace. Dance the night away in a simple white shirt and black jeans. Keep those nails dark, your hair sleek and the prize shall be yours! A longline bra keeps your girls where they need to be and the target sticker is for emergencies only.

Ian Malcolm

Ian Malcolm. Well, why not? Grab anything and everything black, draw yourself a six pack and you too could look like this:

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Well, that about wraps things up for our 90s Edition of Halloween Costumes. I hope you’ve enjoyed it as much as I have. Happy Halloween!

About the writer: Daisy is an irregular photographer, wannabe writer and full time female. In between tea and toast breaks she spends far too much time on the internet blogging, tumbling and tweeting. She is unapologetic in her love of the Spice Girls.

Editor’s Letter

21 Oct

Hi guys!

So who’s looking forward to Halloween? We certainly are: only 10 days to go! What are you going to dress up as?

Well what an issue we have for you, Melody brings us the last in her series of inspirational women (take a look at her other articles here), Daisy has some 90s inspired Halloween costumes for you and Becky looks at whether it’s acceptable to eat food in a supermarket.

Audrey Horne
Audrey Horne re-imagined

Until next time,

Becky and Daisy

Winter Wrap-ups

14 Oct

We’ve well and truly felt the bite of winter this week and I for one find myself reaching for my mittens and scarf more and more.

But I do love autumn and winter; from getting all snug and cosy and spending the day watching movies on a truly hideous day outside to braving the weather armed with umbrella, furry leopard print hat and wellies. It’s all good, you just have to be in the right frame of mind for it, especially if it starts snowing.

So, here are some winter warmers for you, hopefully they’ll do their job and you’ll be as toasty as anything for winter.

Winter Wrap Ups

1. First up we have this navy plaid Swagger Jacket from Vivien of Holloway, which is amazing! It also comes in a variety of colours and looks super glamorous yet snugly. Do want.

2. Isn’t this Hooded Duffle Coat from Next cute?! The hood will help you battle against all elements and the navy blue will help you blend in with the rain when you get wet. Cause let’s face it – it’s gonna happen at some point.

3. This casual college jacket from Collectif is perfect for more mild autumnal days and comes in a small range of colours.

4. Now if this faux animal fur coat from Marks & Spencer doesn’t scream “I WILL KEEP YOU WARM WHEN WINTER COMES” then I don’t know what does. Lying carefully between tacky and not tacky this coat is definitely not for the faint hearted!

5. I love grey and although this shade is a little on the light side, this coat from Pepperberry is gorgeous and very much on my shopping list! Full skirts on coats just may be the best thing ever (besides functioning pockets) and this one definitely ticks all the boxes.

6. Now who wouldn’t want a jacket called ‘Wise Owl’? No one, that’s who. Smart, practical and a darker shade of grey, the oversized buttons are perfect – who has time for fiddly little ones when you’re hands are freezing?

7. Last up is this cute as a button Landlubber Cardigan from Hell Bunny. Another one for the gentler days of autumn, the anchor details are adorable and the sailor style neckline is always a winner.

About the Writer: Daisy is an irregular photographer, wannabe writer and full time female. In between tea and toast breaks she spends far too much time on the internet bloggingtumbling and tweeting. She is unapologetic in her love of the Spice Girls

Are social networking sites and apps just a way of communicating or are they an open door to attack?

12 Oct

We’ve all heard of them: Twitter, Facebook, Formspring, Ask FM, Snapchat etc. but what people really lurk behind their computer screen and are they there to communicate or to insult? In this article, I intend to find out if these sites/apps are responsible for making us feel miserable.

Let’s start with Ask FM. I have to admit that when I first heard of this idea, I thought it was terrible. Why would you want teenagers to open an account and then have people ask them questions anonymously? This is a gateway for bullying. Still, it was popular and people went on to find out answers that sometimes should really be kept private. What worries me is that you didn’t even have to have an account to ask a question; it was a simple case of typing it in and pressing enter. Anyone can ask anyone anything. Of course, this was the whole point of the site but with the anonymity comes confidence and insult, with no discipline. Why not insult that person in your class if you weren’t going to get in trouble for it? There were no boundaries and still aren’t as to what you could ask, how you spoke or what you said. I only need to type in ‘girl kills’ into Google before my first suggested search was ‘girl kills herself over Ask FM’. Hannah Smith, a 14-year-old girl from Leicestershire, killed herself after receiving taunts in real life and from the site. While Ask FM bosses Mark and Lija Terebin, blamed the girl herself. However several major companies have announced that they will remove their advertising from the site following the controversy of this case and others. Another example is of Daniel Perry, 17 from Scotland, who killed himself after allegedly being blackmailed during a Skype chat and previously being told to commit suicide from anonymous people on Ask FM. The site has caused controversy by not having workable reporting, tracking or parental control processes, which have become the norm on other social media websites. However, Ask FM spokesmen responded by stating that they do have a reporting feature and employ a number of moderators to fight cyberbullying. Accordingly, the site has a “sexually explicit comment” monitor staffed by moderators; however, the comments are never deleted, even for explicit threats. This is a major cause of criticism.  Erin Gallagher, who hanged herself in October 2012 actually named Ask FM in her suicide note and said that she had been bullied on there.

Other sites known for causing hate from one to another is Twitter. The press constantly reports celebrities tweeting back and forth taking digs at one another. Notable examples are The Wanted vs. One Direction and Amanda Bynes vs. Miley Cyrus. Amanda Bynes tweeted a picture of Miley Cyrus stating towards her ‘ur ugly’. While Zayn from One Direction called Max from The Wanted ‘Chlamydia boy’ and ‘geek’. While Miley Cyrus wasn’t provoked by Bynes’ comment, she has replied ‘I think it’s all so sad that I don’t wanna add any fuel to that fire. It’s really so sad to me. I was rooting for a comeback until you start attacking me. I just thought it was hilarious that she mentioned my name the moment I was the worldwide trending topic on Twitter. It’s just funny. The moment you’re a trending topic it’s funny how many people want your name to come out of their mouth ’cause somehow they can associate, and maybe they can be a trending topic.’ Not all girls are that strong. However it doesn’t mean that you are weak to let these kinds of things offend or insult you.

And finally, Facebook. Does posing for pictures then uploading them onto Facebook make you vain or is it just a way to make yourself feel good? Dawn O’Porter thinks not that vanity might not be such a bad thing. ‘Well I think it’s terrible that such a negative connotation has been attached to people who like to share themselves with the world’ … ‘But snapping a selfie in a smashing bit of clobber and hoping a few people say you look alright, well that’s just a lovely thing to be able to do, isn’t it?’ (Dawn O’Porter, Glamour Magazine).

‘We cannot change the ever-developing social network era, but we can do our best to help the next generation realise that beauty comes from within.’

Regardless of what you think of social networking, they are without a doubt a way to communicate and if wanted, insult and degrade. Bullying can be such a horrible thing and with the added effect of the bullies able to hide behind a computer or phone screen, it is now much easier and more difficult to know when to stop. Many people don’t show when bullying or teasing is getting to them and the risk is increased when you can’t even see the person. ‘Following the suicide of Hannah Smith, British Prime Minister David Cameron called for a boycott of websites shunning the responsibility for dealing with cyberbullying on their sites.’ But can anyone ever control it? With so many small comments ripping into people, can there ever be a way of stopping people insulting others online? You could ask what we actually use social networks for: just a way of communicating or are they an open door to attack others?

About the writer: Becky has just finished a degree in English and Creative Writing and is very happy with her 2:1. She is friendly, bubbly and just so happens to be the co-creator of Yellow Bunting. She hopes you enjoy it and that you get involved!

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