I am a Tutter.

I am a Tutter.

Lately, I’ve been focussing on taking a chill pill. I have become one of those people who get overly frustrated by dawdlers. I end up going to a dark place when walking behind those that should be in, what I would call, the slow-lane of life. I’ve often thought that if I were to become PM, I would enforce a ‘fast lane’/ ‘slow lane’ system.

I’m honestly a good person, like 99% of the time. But there is nothing that fills me with more rage than when somebody starts walking slowly in front of me.

Just to clarify- I don’t get wound up by people who genuinely can’t help that they walk slowly… I’m not a monster. It’s just that there are inconsiderate people who turn me into a tutting ball of rage.

I wondered whether I was the only one that felt this way and found a pretty funny theory from someone else online:

“The secret is to do nothing. Do not adjust your speed. Continue at a constant rate. If collisions occur, then the slow walkers must accept their fate. Like a rock in a river, they will be swept up in the current. . . or be eroded to sand in the riverbed.”

I mean- what?! I’m part nodding with agreement, and giggling with guilt that I know I’m just a speed walker at heart.

Speed walking is one of those things I wish I could put on a CV, it’s a skill of mine. There is a 6 year age gap between my sister and I, so walking to school meant holding onto the buggy. Aka, running alongside the super fast speed-walk of a rushing Mother.

Anyway, this tutting rage that slow walkers force upon us speed walkers. This rage is multiplied when in crowds. There is nothing worse than being in a rush and stuck in a crowd at the same time. Granted, other people need to get places too… but move out the way. If you’re really feeling the rage/ seeing red, you do the totally melodramatic huff as you barge past them. Just in case the tutting wasn’t picked up. Maybe even chuck in a dirty look if they’ve managed to push all your buttons.

But deep down, you know you’ve been a slow walker, a dawdler or just a tourist in your life too. But that’s totally different, because when I dawdle and people barge and tut at me- they just need to chill out, oh my gosh.

Are you a speed walker or a dawdler?

The Cherry on the Cake Theory

The Cherry on the Cake Theory

I am a free, independent woman, who don’t need no man. (This is not to say I don’t very much appreciate my man, but that’s by the by!)

I have always been very set on this. My life is my life. People can add to it, but my life will always remain exactly that- mine.

One of the best, most valuable life lessons that my Mum has taught me, is the Cherry on the Cake Theory.

Metaphorically speaking, the cake is life. In life we should surround ourselves with people we aspire to be like, people that make us happy and (most importantly) people who add to our lives. That make our lives that little bit sunnier. People come and go- and that’s OK. Sometimes it’s really easy to find someone special and fall for them, hard. My Mum has always maintained that this someone should be ‘the cherry on the cake’. They should make life better. But they should not be the cake itself.

My Mum knows a lady who lost her husband at an unfortunately young age. While they were talking she asked her how she managed to cope with it, and the lady responded that she had her own life too. That her husband wasn’t her entire life. He was, naturally, a huge piece. But she kept a piece for herself.

The point is, no matter how happy you are with your partner, it’s so incredibly important to keep your own life too. Keep in touch with your friends, have your own hobbies- have your own life. You’ll have more to talk about, you’ll be happier and you’ll never feel isolated.

10 Things I Would Tell Younger Me

10 Things I Would Tell Younger Me

Taylor Swift was writing songs about heart ache, being a teenager and boys right about the time these things were coming into my life. This is something I am forever grateful for, because there is nothing better than listening to a song you can totally relate to!

Her song, ‘Fifteen’, was one I was listening to in the car the other day with my friend Hannah. The song tells you that ‘in your life you’ll do things greater than dating the boy on the football team’. Not only is this totally TRUE, it’s got me thinking: if I could go back, knowing what I know now, what would I tell my younger self?

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So here are a few of the nuggets of wisdom I would give young me.

  1. Put number one first sometimes (that’s you). Give yourself some TLC, investing in yourself is never a waste of time. If you take care of you, you’ll have far more energy to help others.
  2. The people around you should add to your life.According to Jim Rohn, you become like the five people you spend the most time with. So choose carefully.
  3. Your sensitivity is not an imperfection. Your emotions are the good stuff. We live in a world of non-stop comparisons. Let go on who you think you should be and celebrate who you are. You are worthy.
  4. Say the words ‘are you OK?’ more often. People need to know they’re not alone. That people care. They’re four little words, but can mean so much.
  5. Asking for help is OK.You are not a burden. a) people love helping and b) how would you feel if the tables were turned? Asking for help is not the same as losing control. Never feel isolated. (And never underestimate the power of a cup of tea and a note pad. Write everything that’s on your mind onto that notepad- it helps with perspective).
  6. If you have the power to make someone happy… do it. The world needs more of that. A text, a phone call, a postcard, a hug, even a cheeky tag on facebook.
  7. Accept that not everyone will like you and that’s OK. Keep doing you. We all want acceptance.
  8. Stand up for what you believe in.Your beliefs are not odd, despite what other people think of them.
  9. Your best is ALWAYS enough.
  10. Plans are nice, but you don’t always need one.Sometimes not having a plan can actually be the best plan of all.

When in doubt, listen to Taylor. She is completely right. There is so much more to life than boys. You will realise bigger dreams of yours. 

Here are the 10 pieces of advice I would give younger me.

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Bee xoxo

Why University Boosted My Confidence

Why University Boosted My Confidence

Forever a home bird, I found moving out and going to University difficult. Despite people telling me about this incredible new chapter/ season/ adventure I was about to experience, I honestly wasn’t overly buzzed to go. Which sounds dreadful, because most people I speak to are so excited for University. That’s not to say I wasn’t looking forward to it entirely, I just wasn’t as ecstatic as my friends. To me, it just felt like I was leaving behind my family and my boyfriend and stepping completely out of my comfort zone. It forced me to do things independently and my confidence in myself grew.

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I became comfortable in my own company.

It’s funny how our minds embellish things, when I think back to my parents dropping me off at my halls of residence, I picture me stood in my room, surrounded by my stuff- simply wanting to cry. Which is actually super sad. I remember forcing myself to walk into the kitchen, introduce myself and make a cup of tea. I wasn’t to know, at that point, that my flat and I weren’t going to ‘click’ (What People Don’t Tell You About University). I think this is a general misconception. I honestly don’t know anyone who has got along with everyone in their flat. But I know pleeeenty of people who met friends on their course and through societies. Anyway, I ended up spending a lot of time on my own- and most of the time I liked it. I got into YouTube (a lot) and I started blogging. I skyped my boyfriend and family once a day too. I was comfortable in my own company. Though, I did find it hard to adapt to. Now the idea of being alone doesn’t intimidate me, but I know for sure that I prefer being with other people.

I could start a conversation with anyone.

I decided that as my flat and I didn’t ‘click’ I would make new friends. I mastered the art of walking up to people I barely knew and inviting them to coffee. Maybe I did come across loopy. But I felt lonely. I liked being on my own for short periods of time, but I needed to socialise. Otherwise I would have gone crazy. I had recently watched ‘We Bought A Zoo’ and one of the characters said that all you need is 10 seconds of courage. And that’s how I justified it. Because once I’d said ‘do you fancy going for a coffee?’ it was out there and I couldn’t take it back, no matter how silly I felt. I went on quite a few coffee trips, meals out and started being invited to social events outside my flat. So it worked and it boosted my confidence! One of the things that bothered me most was that I worried I was the problem. This proved that I wasn’t.

I realised I was OK.

That was one of the biggest, and most important lessons  University taught me. I had struggled at school and had quite low confidence. College was good for me in that sense, but I became far more confident at University. I ended up thinking that if I smiled, waved or spoke to someone and they didn’t do it back it was their problem, not mine. What’s the worst that could happen when you wave at someone and they don’t wave back? You look overly friendly? I mean over friendly has never offended me.

I was confident in my own decisions.

I didn’t particularly enjoy my Freshers, I had a rather unfortunate experience on my first Freshers event, and it really affected me. I felt quite uncomfortable on nights out and I realised pretty quickly I wasn’t going to be peer pressured into anything I didn’t want to do. This was something I felt really strongly about. I did, and still do, only go out if I have my ‘wingman’ (or woman!) with me. I’ve never felt entirely comfortable with clubbing, it’s just something I get quite anxious about- and my solution was surrounding myself in people I trust. People I know wouldn’t leave me alone in a club, feeling vulnerable. This confidence through making decisions for myself made me far more self confident. I socialised with who I wanted and when. Even now, I try really hard not to give into peer pressure.

 

University hasn’t been the easiest journey for me, but it taught me a lot about myself and what I want out of life. I would love to hear if you learnt any life lessons at University, had a bad experience or feel like an experience has shaped you as a person.

 

What People Don’t Tell You About University

What People Don’t Tell You About University

Recently, I’ve been feeling more and more as though my degree is coming to an end. One of the main things that I think when I look back on my 3 years at University is ‘it’s not what it was cracked up to be’.

For some reason, there are just a few things people don’t talk about. And I want to. Some people might be able to say that it met their expectations and more. But over the last few years, where University hadn’t quite met these expectations, I wondered if it was me that was the problem. And that’s what I want to prevent- because it’s not you. 

University has almost become the norm for those finishing A Levels and putting off ‘adulting’ for a little bit longer. In fact UCAS announced that in England alone last year, 235,400 people at just 18 years old (aka not including people doing gap years!) chose to go to University. That is the highest number to date.

Before you’ve even started University, you think you know how it works. Lots and lots of drinking, whirlwind romances, friends left right and centre, minimal responsibility, caffeine non-stop, late nighters at the library and you come out the other side with a degree. And these three years will be ‘the best three years of your life’.

That’s what they tell you. And that’s what you expect. But half way through Uni, with these expectations in mind, you might question am I ‘doing uni’ right? Because there is an (very messed up) assumption that there is a ‘correct’ way of doing uni. But there isn’t. I assure you, you’re doing it right. It’s not you. It’s because of those expectations that you’re wondering why life isn’t exactly matching up to the typical university depiction.

University can be a lonely place.

Being surrounded by so many people, on a buzzing campus, with every opportunity to have the social life of your dreams- you wouldn’t expect this. To an extent, it’s true. Physically, you’re technically always surrounded. But there is something very different from living at home, living at University. This, I have come to the conclusion, is because you feel almost 100% comfortable in your family’s presence. During my first year, I was really homesick. I missed my family, my routine, my friends and even simple things like my bed. The simple pleasure of being able to see my sister every day. Instead, you spend a lot of time on your own. This isn’t entirely bad though. I am far more independent now and I am very comfortable in my own company. In fact, at times, I like it.

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Boredom.

Sometimes there isn’t anything to do. Whether it’s because you’re a friggin boss and have done all of your work, or whether you simply need a break. Sometimes you get bored. And you binge watch Netflix and watch YouTube until you can’t stand it anymore. Yes, this probably sounds like bliss. But after you’ve completed your one hour seminar of the day, with no other plans, it can be pretty miserable. Not to mention, anti-climactic compared to your expectations. To counter this, I mastered the art of being over friendly. I had, and still have, no shame in asking people out for coffee at the most random moments. I found that I didn’t really click with my First Year Flat, so pushing myself out of my comfort zone was a must. Another thing I learnt was to factor these coffees into my weekly budget. There is nothing worse that knowing everyone else is out having a coffee together and you can’t because of £££.

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Clubbing and Drinking Is Not Compulsory.

Drinking is often characterised as a big part of University culture- it is not. Do not ever feel pressured, and if you do, question whether these people are those you should be investing your time in. Some people don’t drink at all, some drink a lot. 

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It’s Never Too Late To Make New Friends.

I found moving to University quite overwhelming and, as I have discussed, found my first year hard. So joining societies etc was not top of my list. Instead I made friends on my course and got settled into university as best as I could. But every year I’ve made new friends and my little bubble of friends grows. Making new friends just helps when the going gets tough, or when you find that your immediate circle of friends have gone home for the weekend. Even in my 3rd year I’m still making friends.

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Having Freedom Doesn’t Mean Moving Away From Home.

As a home bird, I did take into consideration how far away from home I was willing to go. And for me, it was 3 hours. So I got out my map and drew a circle around Home. I then looked at all the Universities in that circle. As I lived in Southampton, I felt like going to Southampton University just wasn’t an option for me. I wanted to move away from home, but not too far. What the internet and social media neglect to tell you is that freedom doesn’t mean moving away. University is all encompassing. You have your own life in your own little bubble at University. I don’t regret going to Warwick, but I often wonder whether I would have enjoyed Southampton just as much. The train fairs surely would have been cheaper!

It’s just so important to do what’s best for you. I often wonder whether living so close to home would have helped me in my first year, had I felt the same way in Southampton. But then, this is all hindsight. It’s just something worth contemplating when you look at University, because even if you’re 10 minutes down the road from home- you still have that independence. 

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You Will Be Both Rich And Poor In The Same Month.

A student loan. A blessing. And a curse. Just make sure you budget, because that money that comes in somehow manages to disappear real quick! Top tip- don’t get over excited on ASOS the day the loan comes in, future (poverty stricken fashionista) will not thank you.

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Missing Home is OK.

While University is definitely a new chapter in your life and a step towards adulthood, you don’t have to abandon your family. I am a total home bird. This became clear, quite quickly, when I moved out into University halls. It’s just an adjustment though. Yes, I missed them (especially in the first few weeks), but it soon becomes your ‘normal’. When you see family or friends from home, you make plans and you look forward to it. It really frustrates me that this isn’t discussed more. If you’re already feeling homesick, there is nothing worse than feeling alone too. So speak to someone about it, chances are they have felt the same way.

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Your understanding of hygiene is completely different to others. 

Yup, sad but true. I have a ridiculously strong sense of smell. A weakness for a student. I can smell damp from a mile off. I’m not going to tell porkies, I often have a few mugs in my room that I can’t be bothered to clean- but I always eventually clean them. Some people, not so much. You will witness Tupperware come alive. Probably from a pasta dish, put on the side and never claimed. Sharing a bathroom? Yeah people are gross. Your Mum will recoil with horror when she sees it. Heads up.

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If it doesn’t have mould, a broken hoover and overflowing bins- it’s not a student home.

Moving into a house in your second/third year after a year in halls may seem like a dream. Reality: absolutely not. Moving into non-University accommodation can come with dodgy landlords and poor insulation. Student housing has a reputation for a reason. My advice (as someone who can get quite funny about yuck in my living space): buy cleaning products. Oh and keep your room tidy and clean, then if you live with students with a lower expectations of hygiene than you- you always have your room to escape to.

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You will change. 

I am not the same person I was when I started University. I am far more confident, far more worldly wise (even if I do have a heap tonne of lessons still to be learnt!) and I’ve made mistakes and learnt from them. A prime example being that a red sock in the washing turns everything pink. I also learnt how to live with a variety of people.

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Just embrace every aspect of it. You only go to University once, and there is a reason people call it the best years of their life.

Get Ready Faster

Get Ready Faster

Mornings are sucky. Your alarm clock has been ‘snoozed’ for the third time, your bed is toasty warm and you’re busy dreaming of the weekend. You’ve been awake for a while now, just lying there, contemplating what would happen if you just didn’t get out of bed today. Quite frankly, you’re too fabulous to suffer in the morning. So here are a list of things to make the transition from dreaming to ‘come at me world’ that bit easier!

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Don’t wake up to that  a l a r m   c l o c k  noise that we all despise, wake up to some feel good tunes! Here are a few of my favourite: Viva la Vida (Coldplay), Lovely Day (Bill Withers) or On Top of the World (Imagine Dragons). troy.gif

C a f f e i n e. Think of it in terms of Disney. Coffee is magic. It get’s Cinderella from rags to riches, makes Peter Pan fly and it turned a frog into a Prince for goodness sake. It’s an infinitely powerful and supernatural force. This stuff works miracles. The whirring of the coffee machine will become music to your ears.cinderella

To shower or not to shower: that is the question.

  • Yes/ To Shower: Get in there, you’ve made the commitment. You will be refreshed and will come out with your head well and truly in the game! Showers are great for prepping your skin for the day too, so why not do your skin routine in there too?
  • No/ Not To Shower: Organisation at it’s best. Evening showers are for winners! (It’s actually proven that there are skin-related benefits. Besides removing all the yuck and oils, it leaves you feeling super calm for bed!) You have less to do in the hectic morning, plus you’ve probably slept better too. The better you sleep, the better your skin and hair will look too! Result. If you want to be even more savvy, why not braid your hair before bed too? Even better, as there is not heat being used on your hair!

Keep your b e a u t y   k i n g d o m spick and span.That’s right, remove your day old coffee mug, put the contents of the makeup bag into the makeup bag, untangle your hairdryer from all the other irons and chargers and make sure all brushes are within arms reach for ‘morning-you’/zombie. It’s all about easy access, here are a few things I do:

  • Curl your eyelashes, add mascara and go (if in super rush!).
  • Want an easily applied, super long lash effect mascara? Benefit mascara.
  • Try to double up: use your lipstick as your cheek colour or your highlight as eyeshadow.
  • Opt for cream cosmetics and apply them with your fingers. ‘Zombie-You’ will love it, total ‘ug’ method and easy peasy, even if you’re half asleep. sleepy.gif

Put on some l i p s t i c k.Make you feel more glam, and make it appear as though you’ve spent longer than you have. Get some inner calm, girl. You are going to crush today. Morning frenzies are normal. joey.gif

Pre-plan your outfit, so that dreamy, motivation-lacking-You can just climb into them, without questioning what they’re doing. 7am shouldn’t involve thinking. Yes, it’s the sort of thing you did when you were 3. But does it get you out of the house looking like a put together sass ball of a woman? Yep, that’s what I thought.

Eat on the go. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day (haven’t we heard that a gazillion times!) so have something you can grab quickly. Stick your toast in the toaster the night before, set out the coffee cups (and even the coffee pod!) or make some breakfast muffins. Make your lunch the night before too. Just keep it simple so you’re not running around like a headless chicken in the morning!sleep

Have some go-to hairstyles! A low pony, a messy bun, a low bun, or a plait: super quick. Practice and you will be a pro and able to do it in minutes! If you want to know more about some Easy Hair Hacks,click here for a blog post all about it. ariel.gif

Set your bag up, next to your keys and purse- ready to run out the door like the tornado Queen you are. You may be noticing a recurring theme… lay things out for Zombie-You, she needs the help. Really she does. tights 2

I hope this helps anyone who struggles to wake up in the morning and will help you turn your frazzled mornings, into oases of calm.

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University Life … In GIFs

University Life … In GIFs

Hi everybody!

Today’s blog is all about University… in GIF’s.

  1. When the lecturer reads off of the powerpoint #whyamievenheredarcy
  2. Deadlines.responsibilities.gif
  3. After I complete deadlines.celebreate.gif
  4. Realising you did the wrong readings.lily.gif
  5. Sitting next to ‘that person’ who knows everything and wants to debate everything too. 
  6. Putting the bins out and realising your flat live like animals.elf.gif
  7. When you don’t get your essay back for months on end. Like, do you realise how long I slaved away on this, Simon? I pulled an all nighter. I ate an entire tube of pringles.melissa.gif
  8. When somebody steals your milk. It’s war.
  9. Washing up after you’ve used every utensil and plate you own. #ignoreit #itwilldisappeardishes.gif
  10. Going to the gym with your friend.gym.gif
  11. When your friends aren’t in, and you’re alone on campus.one
  12. People stealing your chair in a study space.stress
  13. Awkward silences in seminars.seal.gif
  14. Finally getting a decent grade. powerranger
  15. When all your friends make it to the lecture. Bridesmaids.gif
  16. When the going gets tough, and you miss home. tears.gif
  17. Being given the ‘this is the most important year of your life’ speech for the millionth time. shut up
  18. Giving your friend that look because it’s your song. song.gif
  19. Looking at your bank account after ignoring it for weeks.amy.gif
  20. My brain during exam period. christina

Right now I’m a mixture of exam period, looking at my bank account and being told this year is the most important of my life! I mean, I’ve been told that every year so far (like since year 6)! So I’m also channelling my inner Melissa McCarthy and metaphorically punching this history degree right in the throat. Well attempting to!

Bee xoxo

Marie Stopes and the Birth Control Movement

Marie Stopes and the Birth Control Movement

This week, in the UK, we have been celebrating 100 years of women having the vote. I wrote an article for my University newspaper about Marie Stopes to celebrate the advances of the women’s liberation movement over the last century. I would love it if you checked it out!

Marie Stopes, one of the founders of the British family planning movement, was a highly intellectual, energetic, unconventional and controversial woman. When celebrating women’s rights, she is an individual who is undeniably relevant.

In March 1918, Marie Carmichael Stopes published: ‘Married Love’, the first British sex manual. In spite of her scientific training, Marie Stopes married at the age of 31, with no knowledge of human sexuality. After two years of marriage, and no child, she became concerned that there was something wrong with her marriage. Marie Stopes then spent six months in the British Museum reading every text, of multiple languages, regarding sex and human sexuality. Emerging from the Victorian era, people were both factually ill-informed and emotionally frigid about sexual matters, therefore literature on intercourse at this time was scarce. Upon her reading, Stopes came to the conclusion that her marriage had not be consummated, that she was a virgin and her husband was impotent. By 1917, having acquired a lawyer, the marriage was annulled.

The case of Marie Stopes and her husband, Reginald Ruggles Gates, is not unique. Stopes yearned to emancipate women through education of sex and sexuality. Stopes was a leading figure in the birth control movement, whom encouraged open discussions regarding the typically taboo subject and aspired to strengthen Britain’s slowly deteriorating nation through family limitation and female choice. Following the war, the health of the population was a national crisis. Education was central to this issue. Women were simply not educated on how to take control of their own fertility. Working class families were large, resources were minimal and the health of infants was poor. Thus, Marie Stopes’ sex manual ‘Married Love’, inspired by her own marital problems, ‘crashed English society, like a bombshell’. Within two weeks 2,000 copies were sold and by the end of 1918 a sixth edition of the book was readily available. Stopes’ writing did not end there. Throughout the 1920’s and 1930’s Stopes wrote more literature centred on sex, as well as contraception. These included: ‘Wise Parenthood: a Treatise on Birth Control or Contraception’, ‘Radiant Motherhood’, ‘Contraception: its theory, history and practice’, ‘Sex and the Young’, ‘The Human Body’ and ‘Enduring Passion’. Her writings inspired the formation of societies to promote contraception and the expectation of equality in sexual relations along with the establishment of birth control clinics in 1921.

Birth control clinics were established in working class districts of numerous British towns and cities. There was even the emergence of other societies advocating birth control, such as the Society for the Constructive Birth Control and the National Birth Control Council (later renamed the Family Planning Association in 1939). These establishments were seen as political, helping advance women’s rights and empower the working classes. Despite her clinical work, literature and speeches evoking fierce opposition, especially from the Roman Catholic Church, she did manage to influence The Church of England. In 1930 the Church of England relaxed its’ stand against birth control, accepting that it could be used within marriage, when husband and wife felt compelled to limit the size of their family. By the 1950’s the working class bodies and sexuality had become signifiers of the modernisation of British class society. Working class women were perceived as being in control of the size of their family. Marie Stopes’ efforts to encourage women to take control of their reproductive ability led to the research allowing the establishment of contraceptive pill in 1961. With this, the 1967 Abortion Act was introduced following the ongoing illegal back street abortions. Over the last 100 years women’s right and methods of contraception have become embedded in our modern day society, evolving and adapting as we do.

The portrayal of Marie Stopes as the epitome of the New Woman and absolute feminist is further illustrated in her research and reputation as an academic, prior to the publishing of her best-selling guide to birth control. Her father, Henry, was a pioneering archaeologist and keen collector of Stone Age artefacts. Her mother, Charlotte, was a suffragette and Shakespearian scholar. The influence of such characters on Marie Stopes was evident from a young age. Stopes was indisputably given the opportunities other women in this period were not. She graduated from University College London in only two years, winning the Gold Medal for biology, becoming what all aspiring young women in the Scientific world wanted to be. Stopes study into botany after the turn of the century led to her being hailed as the youngest Doctor of Science in Britain. However, they were unaware that she was a woman. This detail encouraged those previously hailing her as a phenomenon to withdraw opportunities. But others were inspired to aid her rise in the Scientific world. This divide demonstrates the controversy her work as a woman had on the changing ideas of female capabilities and roles in society.

Marie Stopes career as a birth control activist and high prophet of marital sexual passion for both husband and wife, led to the publication of literature and establishment of institutes that initiated modern day attitudes towards womens’ reproductive health. The Family Planning Clinics, by the 1930’s, were thriving in London, Aberdeen, Leeds and Belfast. Though Marie Stopes remains a controversial figure. The image of Marie Stopes as a feminist pioneer breaking down the taboo surrounding women’s sexuality while advocating their right to decide when to have children, often overshadows her image as a staunch supporter of eugenics, and eugenic birth control. Her eugenic tendencies permeate through her promotion of contraception among the working class. In essence, her philosophy on birth control was centred on having ‘babies in the right place’. Stopes was a believer in removing the ‘undesirables’ in society. The original posters of the ‘Society for Constructive Birth Control’ founded by Stopes, were propagated in the name of ‘Society for Constructive Birth Control and Racial Progress’. The idea of the ‘unwanted baby’ assumes a completely different meaning when contextualised within the eugenics movement. Often, Stopes eugenicist beliefs are depicted as an unfortunate footnote to her achievements. It has been suggested she was merely a product of her time, a time when national deterioration and racism was not uncommon. But it begs the question: can this really be ignored?

Contraception has always been about reproductive freedom. For freedom in general. The ability to choose if, and when, to start a family has massive consequences for women in terms of educational and professional aspirations. This, in turn, affects their income as well as the fulfilment of their goals. The debates surrounding women’s choice and contraception are ongoing at an international level. Those anti-contraception arguments refer to ‘natural law’ and the human rights of the unborn child. In the 1920’s female’s that used contraceptives were perceived as promiscuous and generally immoral individuals, unfortunately being a common misconception of the time. This assumption continues today, though a minority view, in the radical anti-contraception movements. Within streams of the Christian Church, including the Catholic and Evangelical, the idea that birth control violates the culture of life remains prominent. However, the more generally accepted ideology regarding contraception in Western societies is that women have the right to do as they wish with their bodies. It has even been perceived as an environmental benefit with over-population becoming a very real problem. From legal and illegal actions, feminists of the Women’s Liberation Movement have employed an abundance of methods to demand social and legislative change. The BBC have made documentaries following the history of birth control, there have been countless marches and strikes for women’s rights, including the smashing of pornography shop windows and flour-bombing of beauty pageants. The policies of reproduction lie at the heart of feminist campaigns across the world. Though birth control is internationally used, and for the most part accepted, it is still hotly debated. But remains an irreplaceable part of our modern day society.

Birth control is often described as one of the most significant advances of the twentieth century. It gave women control. Control over their own bodies, over their family expansion and the ability to decide their own destiny. The emergence of ‘Married Love’, in 1918, sparked feminist debates regarding women’s sexual education, their role in society, their ability to limit reproduction and ultimately inspired questions regarding the rights of womankind. It is undeniable that women benefitted from Marie Stopes birth control advocacy, though her dark underlying ideology cannot be ignored.

Gift Guide for Her- Under £20!

Gift Guide for Her- Under £20!

It’s Christmaaaaaaas! Today I have put together a list of 25 Gift Idea for ‘Her’- all under £20! I hope this helps those of you looking for inspiration!

Disclaimer: I am a huge fan of mugs. I have far too many, but find them the most exciting gift to give someone! Is that sad?

Here we go!

1     Modern Garden’ Geometric White Planter, by Hope and Willow- £3.25: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/hopeandwillow/product/modern-garden-geometric-white-planterPlant pot

2     Marbled Glenna Mug, by Anthropologie- $18: https://www.anthropologie.com/shop/marbled-glenna-mug?category=kitchen-mugs-teacups&color=046

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3     Personalised Candle In a Can, by Kisses and Creations- £15: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/kissesandcreations/product/personalised-candle-in-a-can

scented candles.jpg

4     Personalised Botanical Decorative Initial Foil Print, by Lily Rose Co.- £6: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/lilyroseco/product/personalised-botanical-decorative-initial-foil-print

A

5     Estrella Cup and Saucer, by Anthropologie- $12.00: https://www.anthropologie.com/shop/estrella-cup-saucer?category=kitchen-mugs-teacups&color=010

gold mug.jpg

6     Battery Festoon String Lights, by All Things Brighton Beautiful- £17.45: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/allthingsbrightonbeautiful/product/battery-festoon-string-lights

fairy lights.jpg

7     Joy & Cheer Mug, by Anthropologie- $14: https://www.anthropologie.com/shop/joy-cheer-mug?category=gifts-for-her&color=089

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8     ‘Procaffeinating’ Typography Print, by The Motivated Type- £7.95: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/themotivatedtype/product/procaffeinating-typography-print

procaffeinating

9     Battery Flamingo String Lights, by All Things Brighton Beautiful- £14.45: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/allthingsbrightonbeautiful/product/battery-flamingo-string-lights

flamingo

10     Relationship Status:Tea Funny Mug, by Paper Plane- £9.95: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/paperplane/product/relationship-status-tea-funny-mug

mug 2

11     One Line A Day: A Five-Year Memory Book, by Anthropologie- $16.95: https://www.anthropologie.com/shop/one-line-a-day-a-five-year-memory-book?category=gifts-for-her&color=041

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12     P. F. Candle Co. Amber & Moss Travel Jar Candle, by Urban Outfitters- £12: https://www.urbanoutfitters.com/en-gb/shop/pf-candle-co-amber-moss-travel-jar-candle?category=stocking-fillers&color=020

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13     Wild Alpaca Pot, by Anthropologie- $18: https://www.anthropologie.com/shop/wild-alpaca-pot2?category=gifts-for-her&color=046

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14      Vagabond x UO Marbella Bubble Gum Suede Pouch, by Urban Outfitters- £20.00: https://www.urbanoutfitters.com/en-gb/shop/vagabond-x-uo-marbella-bubble-gum-suede-pouch?category=SEARCHRESULTS&color=065

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15     BH Cosmetics Contour & Blush Palette, by Urban Outfitters- £8.40: https://www.urbanoutfitters.com/en-gb/shop/bh-cosmetics-contour-blush-palette?category=stocking-fillers&color=000

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16     Binge Thinker Pen Pot, by Bespoke Verse- £9.95: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/bespokeverse/product/binge-thinker-pen-pot

binge thinker

17      Milky Bar Soap, by Lush Cosmetics- £2.66: https://uk.lush.com/products/exclusives/milky-bar

milky_bar_90g_soap

18     Tidal Pool Trinket Dish, by Anthropologie- $20: https://www.anthropologie.com/shop/tidal-pool-trinket-dish?category=gifts-for-her&color=040

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19     Gourmand EDP Fragrance, Urban Outfitters, scent: Macaron Rose- £16: https://www.urbanoutfitters.com/en-gb/shop/gourmand-edp-fragrance?category=stocking-fillers&color=066

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20     Magic Wand, Reusable Bubble Bar, by Lush Cosmetics- £5.95: https://uk.lush.com/products/bubble-bars/magic-wand

magic_wand

21     Elephant Tea Mug, by Urban Outfitters- £12: https://www.urbanoutfitters.com/en-gb/shop/elephant-tea-mug-001?category=stocking-fillers&color=004

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22     Women’s Credit Card Holder, by Vida Vida- £15: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/vidavida/product/womens-credit-card-holder

debit card holder

23      Personalised Recipe Journal, by Amanda Hancocks- £13: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/amandahancocks/product/personalised_recipe_journal

cookbook

24      Lotus Flower Ring, by Junk Jewels- £9: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/junkjewels/product/lotus-flower-ring

lotus ring

25     Eat Diamonds For Breakfast & Shine All Day Quote Notebook, by Posh Totty Designs Interiors- £12: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/poshtottydesignsinteriors/product/a5-pastel-stripey-quote-notebook

diamonds book

Hope this is useful!

xoxo

 

London Trip

London Trip

Hello everybody! 

Over the last few days I have been in London! It’s one of my favourite places in the world. No matter how many times I go, I never get bored. There is always something to feast your eyes on, whether it’s eccentric fashion, intricately made cupcakes or even beautifully built houses, buildings and monuments. The smells are often (but not all the time!) equally as intriguing. I love the smell of fresh cigarette smoke (not blown in my face by an inconsiderate arse, but just the smell of it in the air). I love breathing in deep enough to almost taste the smell of pastries and  coffee in the morning. I have just learnt not to breath in too deep without surveying the area first aka checked the surrounding area for public toilets. London is my favourite place to explore. 

There is a quote I think is pretty spot on, by Paddington: “in London everyone is different, and that means anyone can fit in.” Eccentricity is perceived as art, rather than peculiarity. It’s pretty awesome. 

I bought the trip as a gift to my boyfriend Jack for his birthday (in May- so we had a little wait!!) and it was perfect. 

Day 1: 

We got an early morning train from Southampton Airport Parkway to Waterloo Station and headed straight to our hotel to drop off our luggage. Ain’t nobody got time for that. We stayed in a Luma Hotel in Hammersmith and it was brilliant, cheap, convenient and even supplied a grab and go breakfast service. 

We then headed straight to Hyde Park on a hunt for all things food! We had a walk around and took some pictures. 


After agreeing that £12 for a burger was a bit cheeky we searched for somewhere (far) cheaper as we are tight arse students right now and can’t afford anything crazy! We went for an EAT and lordy it was fab. So fab in fact we ate there every day!! It does some great lactose-free options and delicious street food!

Here is me eating my quavers looking a tad cold in my yellow puffer (Newlook). 


We then headed off to the Natural History museum, which was pretty damn awesome. Definitely a must-do for people looking to do something on the cheap. It’s free entry and has so much to offer! It’s actually cheaper to eat in the Museum than on the high street! 

This is me with a dinosaur- RIP. 


We also got some pretty cool photos on planets too! ​​

Another picture of a planet but more of me: 


We then went to my favourite place in London- Harrods. We do this almost every time. We just dream. Everything is so beautiful. We had afternoon tea at Harrods (phwoar £££). 


Here are some of the photos we took walking around London on Day 1: 


I also got a nice little head shot from jack, though it took a bit of time! 


We then went to Bills for dinner where I had the best Haloumi Burger ever- I highly recommend!!


Day 2: 

SHOPPING! Regent street and Oxford street were crazy busy, but great fun! 

Here are a few snaps from our shopping day! We went to Urban outfitters, Lush, Topshop, River Island, Jack Wills and so many more! 


One of my favourite things about London is how colourful it is! Super pretty! 

We then ate dinner in Pizza Express (that do lacto-free option on all their food- eeek!) and had a Fiorentina Pizza. It was to die for! 


I was one happy Bee. 

We then met some friends in Covent Garden and put the world to rights! 

Day 3: 

Our last day 😦 we put our bags in the hold room and went straight for breakfast at Bills! It was AMAZING. And also lacto-free. 

I had the avocado on toast, with egg and smoked salmon!


We then headed off the the Science Museum and Covent Garden! Here are a few snaps we got from Covent Garden. We walked there from central London and it was such a nice atmosphere.  We watched a street performer get trodden on my a very tall man. It look painful, especially with the nails above and below him. But was mega impressive! 

I think Covent Garden was my favourite 💓


We then had to head back to the hotel, picked up our bags and went home 😦 it was such a perfect trip- London I will be back ✌🏻