October 2020 Quote of the month

Quote of the Month

“Be proud of yourself, you’re doing your best.”

Times are complicated right now, especially at Northumbria University. We’ve had a delay in timetables, some of us have had the wrong timetables and some of us don’t even have timetables due to the cyber-attack in September. Then we’re trying to adapt to a new COVID-friendly environment with digital learning. That’s a lot for anyone and that’s not even everything. I understand that some of us are struggling with making friends, mental health, physical health, homesickness, financials etc.

So, I just want you to know you’re not alone and we are all in this together- WE WILL GET THROUGH THIS TOGETHER! You should be proud of yourself, you’re doing your best and your best is all you can do, so don’t put pressure on yourself. One day we will look back at these difficulties in awe and think how did we get through it! We will be passing these stories onto our children, grandchildren etc. A story that will inspire generations for years!

 

 

Is an electric toothbrush worth the money?

Oh my… how have I only just started using an electric brush?!

My teeth not only look good, they feel fantastic! I used to think electric toothbrushes were just a way of getting us all to waste away our money but honestly, it’s a teeth investment. The adverts are right- they feel like they’ve been cleaned by the dentist.

Most recently I’ve bought the Oral B electric toothbrush with the CrossAction head. (If you are reading this when this post was made and love a bargain, you NEED to get yourself straight onto Amazon, or if you can’t wait Tesco and Superdrugs are doing it half-price too!) I don’t think I would have bought one full price as I didn’t understand the hype of them at first. So if you are feeling like what I was, definitely get them whilst they are a lot cheaper than usual.

So why is it so good?  The CrossAction brush is so so so GOOD if you have small gaps or triangles in between your teeth because let’s be honest a manual toothbrush can’t get in there. The brush almost acts as an electric floss and brush all in one. It also buffs your teeth giving it a little sparkle to your smile. Another thing which I love about it is the small round head. I feel it catches every angle of each tooth and it reaches the back of my mouth a lot more comfortably.

So yeah- that is why I love an electric toothbrush, I’m sure there are more reasons why to love it on their marketing, but those are my reasons! I don’t think I will ever go back to a manual toothbrush again. I honestly look forward to brushing my teeth in the morning and before going to bed now, I’m not even joking!

Let me know whether an electric toothbrush as changed the game for you in the comments below!#

Housewarming Parties

So most recently me and my boyfriend had got an apartment together, which of course meant it had to be ‘broken’ into twice (that’s how it works, right? One party per tenant).

One thing which worked great for both parties was having a get-together at our apartment, then going out to a bar.

Having people round for the first half meant that we could all talk to each other freely and it was an easy way to just break the ice to start the night right! Another plus meant that we all saved a lot more money and even taught ourselves a few cocktail tricks and recipes. My lovely and very generous friend had bought me this cocktail mixer from Amazon and damnnnnnnnnn… is it absouletly brilliant, can’t believe I’ve lived my life without one! This was a lot of fun and something you can’t really do at a bar.

I’ve always liked to have people at mine or another friend’s house before going anywhere, I just feel it’s a whole different dynamic. It’s definitely more chilled and if people are running late it’s okay because we’re not at the bar yet. Alternatively, people can still be apart of the home shenanigans whilst getting ready at mine. It’s also a great opportunity to take plenty of photos while we’re all looking freeeeeeeeeeeeeesh.

My top tip for hosting a gathering at your own house:

  • Have plastic/paper cups- no glasses to be smashed and no washing to do!
  • Make room in the fridge- no one likes a warm drink, right?
  • Prepare some ice, especially if you’re going to be making cocktails!
  • Have plenty of kitchen roll or tea towels ready for those clumsy ones
  • Have a playlist ready, you don’t want to spend time choosing a song. You want to relax and let your pre-made playlist do the work for you.
  • MOST IMPORTANT TIP– drink markers! My friend had bought these funny ones. With what is going in the world currently, it’s really important that you know which drink is yours, so getting drink markers will help you to identify which is yours.

Though it was nice to stay, a change of scenery was just as great too. (Great for me because it meant less cleaning to do when I get back!) It refreshes the night out, keeps it exciting, and adds more entertainment. We went to Stack and it is such a vibe! With it being outside with plenty of outdoor heaters, it was easier to socially distant and still have fun! I really do love the vibe here, just the drinks are a tad expensive so definitely fill up before you leave your house!

 

**This happened before local lockdown restrictions in the North East of England, please adhere to the current rules in your local area**

Jane the Virgin= 10/10

Most recently I’ve been binge-watching on this amazing show. It really is fantastic and that trust me- that says a lot for someone who has watched a lot of TV shows.

At first, the name of the show was off-putting, I hated telling people I was watching it, but there really is a lot more to the title…

Not only is the creativity of this show is truly unique and the empowerment of females is something which I’m all for. It brings to light so many important aspects of life and the diversity of this show is really phenomenal. (Trying my very best to not give away any spoilers)!

Here are a few things I loved-

  • We learn a lot about Latin America and it’s culture. The show is excellent at showing the difficulties some Latinos face with immigration and citizenship. I definitely learned a lot about Latin America and once I had finished the show it actually got me wanting to research more about it!
  • Various relationships, especially mother and daughter. The show has done an amazing job of portraying a true mother and daughter relationship with all disagreements, drama, difficulties, and love showcased so elegantly. We also see co-parenting relationships and love triangles. It really does have a lot going on, you’ll never get bored of it.
  • There is an element of crime throughout the show. This definitely kept me wanting to know more. Though it’s not the strongest part of the show, it still kept me engaged.

This isn’t even everything I loved about the show, there is so much more to this, but I really don’t want to spoil anything at all because you should definitely watch it.  It truly is unique and very imaginative, you won’t have seen anything like it before. I’m not even put off by the title anymore, I think watching this show is what I would call a ‘flex.‘ It shows how open-minded you are as a person as you’re brought to light by so many different perspectives.

Jane the Virgin deserves all the credit it can get.

 

Get to know the committee members

For my readers who don’t know what a university society is, the committee members are the people who take care of the society and plan the events for members. Without the committee, there wouldn’t be a Self Care Society at Northumbria University!

So let’s start right from the beginning- who are we? what is our role on the committee? what’s our favourite self-care activity? *In true Blue Peter style* here’s what we did earlier…

 

Here’s a little short clip about the Self Care Society at Northumbria University too!

 

 

We look forward to sharing all our wonderful and exciting and events with you this academic year!

 

If you have questions you would like to ask us personally or about the Society, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us. We are more than happy to help. 🙂

It’s peri nice chicken!

Nando’s is definitely in my top 5 favourite places to eat! It’s definitely one of the places I have visited one too many times since the easing of lockdown restrictions.

However, a few things have changed at Nando’s since re-opening…

On a good, but slightly bad note. If you’re like me and you fancy a cheeky Nandos spontaneously, you may not be impressed. Nandos ask you to book a table by visiting your chosen Nando’s and scan in that restaurant’s particular QR code. This is an issue if you’re starving and you’ve travelled a long way to get some peri peri chicken, to then find out that you may have to wait over an hour for a table, especially if it’s a Nando’s where there is nothing else in that area to kill time. You’d think you would be able to book via phone at least, cmon Nando’s! I do think it is a really cool idea though and very technical (which I love- I love all things technology), just needs a tiny bit more work, so people can scan the code on the way to the restaurant instead of having to go there to find out you’re waiting at least an hour.

On a very good note, my usual chicken thighs order is still a STRONG 10/10. The staff are really brilliant too with the new sit-at-your-table situation. If you haven’t been to Nando’s before lockdown, you usually go up to the counter to order your food, but now you’re asked to scan the QR code on your table to order food. (Great, if your lazy like me, so I ain’t complaining!) Though I love the idea and technology, you’re in a tricky situation if your phone is dead, or you cannot get service to connect your data or WiFi. I’ve not been in this dilemma yet, but I’m sure Nando’s would have a solution to this though- but heads up to anyone on low battery.

One thing I must mention though is that you no longer get bottle of sauces and you get packets instead. There are no extra hot sachets though, so be prepared my chilli hacker readers.  However, I’m glad Nando’s have found a COVID friendly option to sauces though- like can you imagine going to Nando’s without the sauce!?

Also shoutout to the wonderful service I’ve had in a few Nando’s in the Newcastle area! The staff have been amazing! I usually get gelado with my brownie for dessert (yup- I get dessert at Nando’s. Honestly coconut gelado and salted caramel brownie from Nando’s is one of the best I’ve ever had and that means something, as I never really get dessert when I eat out).  Unfortunately, there was no gelado on the online menu or ice cream and I really wanted to fulfill my Nando’s dessert craving that I’ve had since March *insert puppy dog eyes*.

I spoke to a lovely man and asked if they had anything to go with the brownie and he managed to get some ice cream for me even though it wasn’t on the menu and it was free of charge! Thank you so much, what amazing customer service! The food and the experience I get from here, is one of the reasons why I will always continue to go to Nando’s.

Nando’s you will always have my heart.

 

From the 7665479 times I’ve been to Nando’s lately, I keep forgetting to get a good picture of it for the blog, so here are a few from my personal Instagram! I’m sorry they are not as aesthetically pleasing as I would have liked them to be!

Happy Selfcare's September Quote of the Month

Quote of the Month

‘Great things never come from comfort zones.’

September- the start of a new academic year for many of us. Whether you’re going back to school or the parent preparing their children to go back or just a university student like myself going back to university for the third year or even just someone who wants to start something new this month like a personal goal or diet.

I think you all get the gist now? This quote applies to every single one of us. *YES EVERYONE*- you heard absolutely right.

We avoid getting out of our comfort zone because of fear- we’re scared we will fail, we will get hurt, or we won’t like it. Whatever the reason is, fear is something that limits our beliefs. What we have to do, is look past the scary thoughts and all the things holding us back because that one change could be the one that changes you to be the best version of yourself or ultimately change your life.

Getting out of your comfort zone you can prove that YOU are capable of doing anything YOU wish to. It also improves so many important skills like resilience, self-confidence, creativity, but most importantly I can guarantee that you will learn something new and even see a different perspective to life that you hadn’t seen before.

Sometimes, we don’t like to get out of our comfort zone because we’re happy with what we have settled with. I understand this and it’s great to be content with where you’re at, but sometimes it’s worth trying something out of your comfort zone to prove to yourself that you are still more than capable to achieve anything you want. Even if you go back to what you have settled with, you don’t have to think of the ‘what ifs’ or ‘could have beens’ because you tried and you should be proud of that. You don’t have to live your life in regret, wishing if you did things differently.

So to sum it up on a very carpe diem finish- live your life and take those risks, it’ll be worth it!

Thanks COVID, I’ve now learned to do my own gel nails!

Before COVID, I was obsessed with getting my nails done. I literally got a fresh set of acrylics every month, though it made my life a little harder when it came to things like opening a can of pop, it was all worth the struggle for gorgeous nails!

When lockdown happened, I had to learn how to do my nails. I tried the classic nail polish and billion-hour wait to dry routine first and… that lasted a week or so. My nails were just chipping constantly, especially working in a high pressured supermarket job at the time. I found my self painting my nails every night to fix the chips, it was driving me crazy!

I thought to myself, well how about I get a gel nail kit. I was looking constantly for a kit, but many had rocketed in price or sold out- I’m guessing a lot of us had the same brain wave. But, by pure luck, I managed to get a hold of one that was reduced to clear because of damaged packaging in Tesco! *hallelujah* I suppose the saying: ‘good things come to those who wait’ was really on my side that day.

The nail kit I got was the Sensationail Gel Polish Starter Kit . This kit had everything and more, I was over the moon! There was a file, buffer, cuticle stick, cleanser, lint wipes, primer, and LED lamp included! Most of the kits I had been looking for online, only provided a colour polish and top & base coat, so I was really grateful to find this little gem in the supermarket. Though the lamp is smaller than what you would expect in the salon, it still provides the exact same quality. It also made me wonder why the salon gel machines are so big, the small one provided in the starter kit works just as well! The instructions to the kit are really clear for new beginners too. So if you are looking for a gel kit to start with, I highly recommend Sensationail!

After a while, I had got sick of wearing the same colour, especially since coral didn’t go with everything. So I thought I would invest in something more natural. This is where I discovered the easiest eveeeeeeeeeer french manicure gel set! It was also Sensationail too since I felt that they were reliable, but what was so fantastic about his kit was that you didn’t have to paint the white tip of the french manicure yourself. The kit provided white stickers that you could stick onto your nail and buffer to your preferred length. This was the best hack I had seen! Especially when it came to painting your nails with the less dominant hand (my left hand). After you had stuck them on and buffered it, you add a layer of topcoat, then cure it. *Ta-daaaah* the easiest, quickest, cheapest frenchie you will have ever had! Here’s the link for the french manicure kit, https://amzn.to/2D6p5ah, or if you just want the magical white strips https://amzn.to/3fqJsM8.

Truth be told since the salons have opened, I have gotten acrylics done since I love the extra length, but instead of getting colour at the salon, I now go home to paint them myself with my gel kit. It saves me at least £5 and I can pop on as many coats I like! I absolutely love it.

Let me know if how you got through your COVID nail journey in the comments below or if you do get this nail kit! I would love to hear.

 

Happy Seflcare's motivational quote of the month

Quote of the Month

The only person you should try to be better than is who you were yesterday.

For many of us, August is a month where we have more time off from our commitments than any other month. As we have more spare time during this month, we find ourselves scrolling social media more often. However, social media has its ups and downs like everything in life.

Here, I’m focusing on social media. Especially Instagram because Instagram gives the illusion that we have a perfect life by showing only the highlights of our life. Though this is good to be used as motivation to improve ourselves, sometimes we can fall onto the wrong track. We end up comparing our current situation to someone on Instagram that we feel we know, from seeing all of the snippets of their life they post.  Most of the time we actually don’t intentionally compare ourselves to another person, it is the way our brain is trained, unfortunately. However, what we can do, is retrain our brain to change this outlook. Instead of comparing ourselves to someone else’s, we can focus on bettering who we were yesterday- making us the best version of ourselves.

A few tips to help you:

  • Reflect- look at how far you have come! Admire your progress and all the obstacles you have gotten through.
  • Appreciate- focus on what you have and not what you don’t have.
  • Use yesterday as a target to help you maintain the path you’re taking or to change direction.
  • Focus on your actions and not someone else’s.
  • Spend time learning, whether that’s reading books, researching, or listening to podcasts, absolutely anything that will make you learn something new.
  • Cut back on the time used on social media, there are now locks you can put on your phone to help you limit your social media scrolling if you find it difficult to discipline yourself.
  • Most importantly, self care time- try to devote an hour of your day focusing on you and only you. It’s important to your personal growth and wellbeing!

With small changes made every day over a consistent period of time, you will start seeing a difference. Trust the process, you’ve got this!

Don’t go chasing waterfalls- let’s go walking waterfalls

Let me guess I got you singing TLC waterfalls in your head right now because it’s definitely in mine after reading the title.

Anyways, we’re not here to talk about R&B, though you all know it is my favourite genre of music- just thought It’d be rude not to give it a cheeky reference! (Head over to my music tab if you wanna talk all about those sweet rhythm and blues though).

What we are really here to talk about, is going on a walk to a waterfall! I say specifically waterfalls because I was watching Down to Earth on Netflix and Zac Efron (major eye candy and fantastic series) told a really interesting fact that got me researching. Zac said that ‘water in motion (waterfalls) produce negative ions, which is known to relieve stress, tension, fight depression and increase energy. In short, all these negative ions are creating very positive vibes.’ This is TRUE! These positive vibes increase our serotonin levels (the happy chemicals in our brain) which make us happier and invigorated. Aside from all these fancy scientific words, when we see something that we perceive as beautiful like nature and waterfalls, we tend to be generally happier due to the aesthetic qualities too. How great does a walk to a waterfall sound, right? We haven’t even discussed the physical benefits of taking a walk yet either!

In terms of the physical benefits of walking- you’ve probably heard them all before, it helps with blood circulation, strengthening your muscles, ease joint pain, lower blood pressure and weight loss. In fact, did you know you can burn from a range of 100-300 calories in 30 minutes, depending on your walking pace? A walk by the waterfall is what I would now I like to label as a WWW- a walking waterfall WINNER! (Yup, you heard this here first).

For me, besides all these amazing facts, just being physically present at a waterfall is so relaxing. I love just sitting by the side hearing the force of the water go by. The air feels so crisp and clean to breathe. I could literally sit by a waterfall for hours. Honestly, I think walking to a waterfall is possibly one of my favourite self care activities. It just ticks so many boxes all at once. Even if you’re a social person, you could easily gather your friends to go on a walk together to a waterfall. Or if you’re a foodie, make yourself a picnic and enjoy it by the pleasant surroundings. There’s a multiple of ways to tick a looooooot of self care boxes here!

If you’re looking for a great waterfall to go to, here is an amazing one that I just visited a few days ago in County Durham. This is a picture of Low Force Waterfall below I took myself. There is another bigger waterfall about a half an hour walk from it too called High Force, which has the most volume of water going through an unbroken drop in England. However, I actually ended on top of the waterfall instead at the bottom, so I couldn’t get a great photo.