Purpose Tour 2016

Last Tuesday, the 1st of November I went with my 3 friends and my sister to see Justin Bieber in the 3arena in Dublin. Me and my sister have been huge Bieber fans since 2010. We’ve grown up with Justin, listening and loving everything he puts out, and sticking by him when the media rips him to shreds. So for the past year, since we got the tickets, we’ve been counting down the days. Finally last Tuesday the day had arrived.

We woke up bright and early, at 7 and were on the road by half 8. I took a few pictures of my makeup which was just a soft brown eye shadow and nude lip combo, with minimal eyeliner as i knew it would be running down my face in the cold after 5 minutes.

 

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We planned to wait outside the venue for most of the day, so I knew that my makeup would be long gone by 8pm that evening anyway.

For my outfit, I wore a plaid american apparel skirt I got for my birthday, with black tights (because November is cold), a grey bodysuit and a black leather jacket. I wore that with a very practical shoe choice, my black hi-sk8 vans.

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We were standing for the concert which was absolutely crazy. If you’ve ever stood for a concert and experienced pushing and shoving, I promise you this was 10 times worse. So many girls were fainting and collapsing it was very scary. I don’t like big crowds at the best ofttimes, but this was just awful.
I couldn’t let that ruin my night though. Justin came on and nothing else mattered. It was magical the whole night and I’m continuously blown away by his talent.

 

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I finally got my merch I’ve been waiting forever for too, and I’m happy as larry now sitting here looking back at my videos from the night and wearing my JB t-shirt proudly.
Are any of you going to Purpose tour, or have you been already? What did you think?

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My book collection and reviews

There’s nothing more relaxing than opening a really good book, and diving into it, letting it take over you brain (and your time) for a while. I have always loved reading since I was a little girl. Every Christmas my dad buys me 3 new books and encourages us to read as much as possible. I think my love of writing stemmed from there. As you can imagine, over many years of reading, I have collected quite a large number of books. I like reading all sorts of things, and have a very wide variety of books from thrillers to soppy love story books.
Pictured here is the line up of books I currently have on my bookshelf, that have been there for a while, as I go back to them regularly, to read a few pages, or review the things I have underlined. Do you do that too? I always have a pen or pencil with me when I’m reading, as I like to underline the things I find interesting.
I thought, for all the book lovers, or for those of you who don’t read very often, but are looking for some book inspiration, I would give a little review of some of my current faves.

Girl, interrupted.

 

I’m usually anti-book-to-movie nonsense, as it more often than not, ruins the image i created in my head of the characters. However, I admittedly watched this movie before I read the book and its one of my favourite movies. It follows a girl, the author of the book, Susanna Kaysen, through a difficult time of change in the late 60’s, as she struggles with mental disorders and lack of direction in her life. I loved this story so much, that I bought the book and loved that too.
There are heavier topics in this book, so if you don’t like things like that, it may not be for you.
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Bluets, by Maggie Nelson

 

I bought this book over the summer and was not at all expecting the book I got. It’s written in a kind of list format, and is all about the association the author’s life has, with the colour blue. She gives reasons, and situations in which she feels deeply connected to the colour. It’s easier to read it, than to explain it but it’s definitely worth the read.
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Looking for Alaska

 

As you can probably tell from the picture, I am a big fan of John Greens books. I’ve read all of them and can say confidently that Looking for Alaska was my favourite. This is one particular book that I would not want to see as a movie. I enjoyed creating the characters and their surroundings in my imagination. This story, follows Miles (or Pugde) as he enrolls at a boarding school and befriends some interesting characters, The Colonel, Takumi and Alaska, a beautifully unstable hurricane of a girl. To say any more would ruin the genius and the tragedy of this book. All I’m saying is read it, and you’ll know what I mean.

 

The Perks of being a wallflower

 

I feel a certain connection to this book, as I read it first when I was 15, the same age as Charlie is in this book, and was going through a rough time, as Charlie also was in this book. It breaks my heart a little bit to read this book, as each time I gain a new perspective, I see a new angle to it that I didn’t before. It’s the perfect view of teenage life, unglamourized, unromaticised and in its truest, provocative, raw and earth shattering form. I connected so personally with this book because it’s written, not like an adult looking back on their youth, but as a teenager, living in it. I think everyone should read this book, and appreciate it’s magic.

The Harry Potter Series

 

There’s something about Harry Potter that warms my heart. I read my first Harry Potter book when I was about 10 and ever since I’ve read all the books, seen all the movies and loved every second of both. There’s just something so magical (pardon the pun) about Harry Potter books, that makes you feel comfortable and relaxed. It always somehow reminds me of Christmas, although I’m not sure why. Yes the books are based around adolsecent wizards and the things they get up to, but theres so much more to these stories. Lessons like the power of friendship and the strength of family bonds. I love Harry Potter and will go to my grave saying everyone should read these books.
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The Versatile Blogger Award!

The Versatile Blogger Award is an amazing award where you can find new blogs and people.

Thank you so much to sprinkleofanonymous.wordpress.com for nominating me for this! I’ve never been tagged in anything before so this is all very exciting to a rookie.

Rules:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you
  2. Share the award on your blog
  3. Share 7 random facts about yourself
  4. Tag 10 bloggers with less than 1000 followers and let them know they’ve been nominated

So 7 facts about me, here goes…

  1. I started my blog about 3 weeks ago now. I started it because I’ve always loved writing and I needed a visual space to publish my thoughts. Starting back at school was really getting to me and I decided to use this as an escape from the real world. Also, I love reading other peoples blogs and I thought, why not start my own.
  2. I’m currently 16 years old (about to be 17 in 2 weeks eek) and sometimes I think about the fact that I’m so young, and my blog can grow with me as I mature. That makes me really happy. I hope this blog (and the people who follow me) is something I can take with me.
  3. My biggest dream in life is to travel the world with my two best friends who are my entire heart. I want to see everywhere and experience all the different cultures.
  4. I love music so much. It’s a very important part of my life and my day. I like a lot of different genres and bands. I’m a massive fan of alternative music and my favourite artists like the 1975, twenty one pilots, One Direction, Troye Sivan, Lana del Rey, Halsey etc  have helped me get through a lot.
  5. I do not know what I want to do after I leave school (In about 2 years sigh) but hopefully something in Media or Journalism, which you could’ve probably guessed because of the whole blog thing.
  6. I have an enormous fear of confined spaces.
  7. I was born in Boston Massachusetts but I’ve lived my whole life in an incredibly rural part of Ireland. It’s very boring. Which is probably a contributing factor to why I love the internet and creative things so much. They’re kind of like an escape from reality.
Thats it then! 7 completely random facts about me. I hope it gave you some insight into me as a person!
I tag:
I hope you enjoyed reading these little facts about me! I’ve tagged some blogs I enjoy reading so follow them too!
I hope you have a great day/evening/night wherever you are in the world!
signing off,
alana.

Why Stranger Things is the best show of 2016.

It’s all in the title.

I am OBSESSED with this show. I started watching it one evening mid-summer when I was bored and had finished the show I was previously watching. I had heard the hype about it, and honestly I didn’t think I’d like it. From what I’d heard it was very science-fiction-y and not really something I would usually enjoy. I decided to give it a go anyway and I am so freaking glad I did.

For any of you who haven’t seen Stranger Things yet, it’s basically an 8 episode Netflix series, set in 1983, in a small town. The show follows the disappearance of a boy named Will Byers, his 3 best friends who are doing whatever they can to find their friend, and Will’s family. His mother is played by Winona Ryder, who is one of my favourite actresses purely because my favourite movie ever is Girl, Interrupted in which she plays Susanna. I absolutely loved this show and below is my list of reasons why it should be added to your Netflix list immediately.

 

1. Winona Ryder

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She’s just an amazing actress. Playing the role of Will’s distraught mother suited her to a T. She perfectly portrayed the mother of a missing child, desperate and eager for answers. I’ve always been a fan of Winona’s and when I saw that she was in this show, it made it automatically 10 times better.

 

2. The 80’s vibes

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80’s everything is just so much cooler. There was a lot of focus on the high school students and what they got up to (looking at you Nancy and Steve). It was just so different and magical getting to watch teenagers in a different time period. It was nice actually, watching Nancy fawn over Steve without checking her phone every 10 minutes for his most recent snapchat or Instagram.

 

3. The Style

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Their style! Apparently I’m not the only one who picked up on the chic, timeless edge that Barb and Nancy were sporting. It’s become quite a talking point of the show. Barb is serving this kind of preppy librarian look that oddly works, while Nancy dresses like a preschooler and still manages to look adorable and very much in style at the moment. I adore the styling in the show. It’s all very 80’s with the cable knit jumpers and high waisted pants. Each character has their own personal style and its really made the show even more interesting for me.

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4. The kids

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The kids in the show are incredible. Not only are they amazing actors they just bring fun and humour to the show which would be really dark without some jokes here and there. The friendship of the boys is the stand out theme of the show for me. Its heart warming to see the lengths they will go to to help each other. There’s an air of innocence they bring and while the show has things like missing persons and crazy-scary government people, theres also some adorable scenes where the kids are just cycling their bikes or playing board games.

 

5. How badass Eleven is

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How can you not love her? She stole my heart from the beginning. Eleven is a little girl with… special powers (without giving away anything) who has clearly been mistreated by whoever she’s been raised by. She befriends the boys and becomes their kind of weapon and saviour at the same time. As well as being a total badass who can do amazing things with her mind, Eleven (or El) is a sweetheart, who just wants to eat eggo waffles and be loved. She breaks my heart and warms it all at the same time.

6. The soundtrack

No picture for this one, but I can say that Jonathan Byers, is the music expert in the show. He is seen in part of the show, giving a mixtape to his younger brother before he goes missing. One song on that tape that makes an appearance several times throughout the show, is “should I stay or should I go” by the Clash. A great song, a great show. All round thumbs up from alana.

 

Have I convinced you yet? I surely hope so! If you’ve already watched Stranger Things let me know below if you enjoyed it as much as I did. If you haven’t, but plan to after reading this, let me know too! Thanks so much for reading.

Signing off,

alana x

 

Morphe Brushes 35T Palette review

Hey again!

So recently in an attempt to make myself feel better because school starts today (eek) I purchased the Morphe Brushes 35T eyeshadow palette. I had originally been looking at the Morphe 350 palette, which is quite similar, but when that one was out of stock on Beauty Bay, I decided to just buy the 35T instead.

And wow am I glad I did!

The packaging alone was to die for. A sleek, black, palette holding so much vibrant exciting colour inside. I was like a kid on Christmas when it finally arrived in the mail. The delivery time was well within what Beauty Bay had said it might be and I was very happy with their service and will definitely be buying from them again in future.

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Please excuse the fingerprints on mine! I suppose that just shows how much I’ve used it which is obviously a good thing.

The inside of the palette looks like this:

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Isn’t it stunning? The theme of the palette is basically an array of Taupe/ Nude/ Glittery shades. They’re all similar in tone but so different.

There’s a great mixture of both matte shadows and shimmery ones. The shadows have a kind of soft, velvety texture to them and are incredibly pigmented. When I did swatches on my arm the first time I was baffled at how they didn’t wipe off until I used soap and water. I have been obsessed with trying new looks with this palette since I got it and there are endless combinations you can try. I personally love a smokey eye with some gold glitter for the autumn time and this palette caters to that perfectly.

 

 

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Here are some of the swatches in different lighting.

The most impressive thing about this palette is that you get 35 beautiful colours, for €24.70. I bought mine on Beauty Bay and I would highly recommend them.

Link: http://www.beautybay.com/cosmetics/morphebrushes/35t35colortaupepalette/

Well that’s it then! Conclusion, the Morphe Brushes 35T palette is a massive hit and a fantastic palette for the upcoming autumn. Thanks for reading and let me know in the comments if you have this palette and whether you liked it.

Signing off,

alana.

Guitar hero?

So last Christmas, I took a notion (like i regularly do) and convinced my dad to buy me a guitar. It didn’t take much convincing actually. When I announced that I wanted to learn the guitar he was quite happy to buy me one.
You see, I’ve never been much of an instrument girl.
Every child in Ireland has learned how to play the tin whistle. It’s like learning to tie your shoes. You just learn it in Primary school, play it now and again at a wedding or a carol service and then pretty much never again.
When I was about 10, my mum signed me and my sister up for piano lessons. We went for about 6 months and to this day, I can only play one song on the piano.
My dad bought me a beautiful guitar. It wasn’t a fancy one or anything but it looked stunning to me, all new and glossy. I sat it proudly on the stand that came with it, in the living room and marvelled at it. Days passed. More days passed. Weeks passed. MONTHS PASSED.
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Don’t try and tell me you’ve never done that sort of thing. It’s not that I didn’t want to start learning the guitar, its just that I didn’t know where to start. I procrastinated it so much that I let the whole year go by without learning a single chord.
THAT IS until about 2 weeks ago. I finally plucked (get it?) up the courage to dive in and it honestly is just as difficult as I thought it would be.
I found some really helpful tutorials on YouTube and managed to teach myself 3 chords, an A, an E minor and a D. I was chuffed not going to lie.
But now I’m stuck in a bit of a rut. It’s not easy teaching yourself.
So i thought maybe some of you people might have suggestions?
Do you know how to play guitar? And if so did you teach yourself?
Do you have any tips on how to make it easier?
I’d love to know!
for now!
signing off,
alana.

			

How to make back to school easier

Hello again!

 

Ah the back to school blog post. Everyone talking about how this year is going to be the year for change. The year you’ve got to get your priorities straight and start looking towards the future with open eyes.

While thats all good and well, and very nice to read, I often find that most of its not very realistic. I also find that a lot of people, especially parents, don’t understand how stressful, and hard it can be going back to school. People say nonchalantly “oh back to school how terrible” but a lot of the time, it can feel much worse than just not wanting to go back. Personally, i struggle a lot with anxiety about these kinds of things. I find myself the week before I return to school, laying awake in bed, thinking about everything from finding the right classes, to where I’m going to sit in the canteen at lunchtime. It’s a truly horrible feeling, wondering and anticipating the first day back. I know there will be people who don’t mind going back at all reading this going, “wow she’s so dramatic”. Thats fine. This post is for anyone going back to school this year feeling dreadful and in need of a pick-me-up.

 

The best way to face the year with a smile, and a positive attitude is to take care of yourself. Make yourself happy. Don’t sit around and mope about how awful school is going to be, and feel bad for yourself. Get up, and try to cheer yourself up.
My absolute favourite way to do this, is by treating myself to some new “back to school supplies”.

 

I’m not talking pencils and copybooks.
No I mean things that you’ll use everyday when you go back to school.
Heres some things that I buy myself every year.

 

. A new Foundation/BB cream/any face makeup that you’re going to wear most days (if you’re like me) and you can wake up in the morning and enjoy applying. Find one that you really like, and waking up to do your makeup will seem so much nicer.
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. A new perfume. This one is really relevant. No matter what kind of human you are. Man, woman or child, everyone likes someone that smells good. Theres honestly nothing better than sitting beside someone in class who smells delicious (and nothing worse than sitting beside someone who doesn’t). Perfume doesn’t have to be expensive. You can buy a cheap one in Boots or any other pharmacy and it will probably last you the whole year. Last year I bought Beyonce’s Wild Orchid perfume and it smelled so insanely good that putting it on every morning became my favourite part of my morning. Plus, its always bonus when someone at school tells you you smell good.
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. Some good new music. If anyone knows me, they know that my absolute favourite thing is music. It has helped me through every problem I’ve ever had. I have a passion for finding music that I love. New music, old music, whatever it is, it’s in a playlist on my laptop. I find personally, that making playlists to suit my moods makes me feel a lot better. So for example, if you find you’re stressed over going back to school, make yourself a playlist you can relax to. Include some calming music, or any kind of music you enjoy. Make another playlist you can listen to in the morning before school, that’ll get you motivated and pumped for the day. Make another for after school, another to listen to while you exercise, or draw or paint, or any other hobby you enjoy.
I always say, you should never underestimate the power of music, and what it can do for your mood.
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While going back to school is clearly the worst time of year for any teenager, I can’t deny that my absolute favourite season is autumn. I love it. The leaves changing colour, the warmth of the fire in the evenings, cups of tea, halloween. There will most definitely be a blogpost to come about Autumn and why it should be everyones favourite season.

 

. One of the nicest things to do when you’re having a shit day, not only in Autumn but all year round, is run yourself a bath. It automatically soothes your mind. It eases your tense muscles, calms your mood, gives you that lovely warm, safe feeling. Baths can be made SO much better with the help of a bath bomb. My personal favourites are from Lush, the holy grail of all bath products.
While bath bombs from lush are my favourite thing, I recently indulged myself and bought the Mask of Magnaminty face mask and the Melting Marshmallow Moment bath oil. I’m excited to try both.
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There you have it! Some simple but wildly effective ways to make going back to school easier. If you enjoyed this post or it helped you in any way, leave a comment below! I’d love to hear what you thought.
Until next time,
signing off,
alana.