journal

Thoughts And Feelings On Mum’s 50th Birthday // Journal Entry #3

Today was my Mum’s 50th birthday and I did something really nice for her. I bought her a tablet and a couple of other things. I’d never usually spend more than £10 on a gift for her and I’ve never thought why. This gift wasn’t just more expensive than normal but it was more thoughtful. It’s given her the chance to use the Internet on something larger than her mobile and it will also help with her artwork. She paints portraits and usually has a picture of someone on her mobile screen! I don’t know how she has coped with it for so long. Now she has a larger screen to see pictures better. I bought it this morning and then gave it to her this afternoon, before her party. She loved it and was very impressed. She said thank you many times! That was a success. It feels really good to make others feel happy. 

At the party, I got to see some of my family, which is always really nice. I live a little away from them so I often just see them at these events. I spoke a lot with my Godmother (although I wouldn’t identify myself as Christian) and her new fiancée which was lovely. The conversation was flowing really well and I often worry about this in social events, being introverted and a little socially anxious. However, my partner always helps as he is extraverted and not at all socially anxious! We actually had many interesting conversations. Who knew you could learn a lot from other people and not just from the Internet?! Yeah, I’m late to the party.

At one point my Mum invited me to visit a couple of tables, which was really nice of her because I find it hard to approach them, although I often wish to! I met a cousin who I have had no contact with in the past and she was lovely. An uncle was quite distant with our family when I was growing up but recently had reconnected with us. I didn’t get chance to speak to everyone that I wanted to but I’m sure there will be other opportunities in the future.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve found it easier to talk to family members that I wouldn’t have done when I was younger. I feel more respected and have a lot more to say to them as an adult. I was very shy and insecure as a child so that was probably one of the reasons. I truly feel that we should address children the way we address adults. They aren’t invisible and they take in everything!

My new outlook on life still remains and social events are becoming easier and more and more successful! Right now, I’m drained from it but at the time, and on the return journey, I felt really good. I often don’t want to go to them, but once I get there and I am immersed in what people are saying and what I am saying, nothing else matters to me in that moment. It’s just another way to be present. I get so caught up with my own thoughts and with conversations going on in my head that being social is actually helping me to feel better. If that makes any sense at all! 

At the end of the party, I offered to take Mum’s presents back to the house as they didn’t come in a car. I’m just really enjoying doing nice things for people, whilst putting myself first of course.

I just wanted to record this day right now. I’m in the bath with my phone so this was the only way I wanted to do it – journals and bath water don’t mix. 

Challenges · Shake It Like A Polaroid Picture Challenge

Shake It Like A Polaroid Picture Challenge // June 2017

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Alas my pretty Instax Mini 8 camera, my all important fidget spinner and my photo of the month.

For our five year anniversary, I got my partner a model camaro and he bought me an Instax camera. He gave me it a few days early so I could practice taking photos on it before we went on holiday to Jersey. I must say it was a little more difficult than I thought it would be and many of my first pictures were overexposed and came out white. After reading the instructions (I rarely do this) I figured out how to take half decent pictures and I was away! The camera is just buckets of fun and creativity and the camera itself is so cute (yeah, I can say that about my camera if I want to). I highly recommend getting one if you are into photography.

In June, I decided that in order to improve my photos taken with the camera and in order to not overuse or underuse it, I will go out with the camera every month, take a few photos and select one to be the photo to represent that month. I will then share that photo on my blog.

Before I show you the photo of the month, even though you can kind of see it in the photo above, I want to show you my cute case that Carl also bought me.

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The thing that makes these cases great, is not just how cute and attractive they are, is not just the way they feel, but it’s the practicality of them. The top clips on with poppers and you can either take it off completely or just flip it over so you don’t actually have to remove the camera from the case to take a photo.

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Carl bought me this one because he knows I am a sucker for cute designs! There are so many different cases you can buy online but most of them are leather so I recommend this one. If you are looking for a non leather one then hopefully this will save you time. There are three different colours.

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This is it flipped over and ready to take a shot.

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This is it. My June 2017 photo of the month. You may be looking hard at it and wondering what it is! Well, that is because I am not yet an expert at taking photos with the camera and also because it was flipping hard to take a photo of a photo on a bright day with a glossy finish. Ha! The photo was taken on our last evening in Jersey. We took a stroll out to the beach front. What is amazing is that the tide comes right up to the sea wall and you can see the waves crashing over the wall. The first time it happened to us we ran away and we were amazed! So much so that we wanted to take some photos of it happening. It was fun to watch it and it was also fun to watch other people casually walking and then quickly jumping out of the way. Being the last evening, I wanted to use this photo to commemorate our trip. The photo takes me back to that evening and shows me that the trip was so much fun.

I’m planning on getting some accessories for it so watch this space! I’ll be sharing them on here in the next few months. Carl did get me a really cute case that said that it was made out of synthetic leather and on looking again so I could share the link with you, it says PU leather lower down in the description so it is being sent back. Just a little misleading but there’s no way I’d be sporting a leather case! However, most of them are, much to my annoyance.

Do you have an Instax Mini camera? Or a polaroid camera? Would you consider doing a challenge like this?

Look after for my July photo at the beginning of next month.

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vegan

Empathy & Emotional Bias // Veganism


On this random picture of my sweet dog, I would like to talk about emotional bias and empathy. I’ve been reading up on it and it’s interesting and something I want to share. It explains why many people are veggies/vegans and so many more are not. Many people stop eating meat because of empathy. When I think of young pigs being gassed to death I feel as if I were in their shoes. I’d be suffocating and terrified. Even though I did eat a little meat through my teenage years, I didn’t eat a lot and I certainly didn’t eat any pigs or cows. I could empathise with them greatly. However, when I thought about eggs being laid or cows being milked, I didn’t feel as if it was a bad thing so I didn’t feel empathetic. When I found out, from vegan activists, that almost one in two baby chicks were being killed at a day old as they weren’t needed and that dairy cows only lived a quarter of their lives before being killed for meat, and that their babies either had the same fate as them or they were killed for veal, I was able to see how that it wasn’t enough for me to just not eat meat. I was still paying into the industries that kill. If someone can’t empathise with animals being killed in the first place, then they might not consider that it is morally wrong to eat them. In my eyes, it has nothing to do with whose life is more important (a humans or an animals) but whether one can SUFFER. 
Which takes me on to my next point about emotional bias. As humans we are emotionally biased to our own kind. If animals could talk they would tell us that their own kind was the best. There are so many things that makes humans better than animals and vice versa. Just because we appear more intelligent and have the ability for moral reasoning doesn’t make us better than them. In fact, we could argue that humans have done more bad to the planet than good. But of course we would always take a humans side over an animals because we have an emotional bias. We feel a lot more empathy for a human than an animal because we are one. Humans have also been well known to have an emotional bias of people of the same race to them. Black people were slaves once because white people thought that they were better than them, which is truly shocking to many. Vegans and vegetarians don’t hold this strong emotional bias of other species as meat eaters do.

Now look at this picture of my dog. If anyone took him and killed him I’d be beyond devastated because I am emotionally attached to him. Just because I’m not attached to every other animal being killed, raised for meat or not (really doesn’t matter to me), it doesn’t mean I want them to suffer. I don’t hate people who eat meat. I think they just lack empathy for animals and have a stronger emotional bias towards humans than me. 

Taken from my Instagram. Follow me: @sarahnityxo 

vegan

Subtle Things That Happens When You Go Vegan (That You’ve Never Thought About)

Here’s some things that have happened to me. Not necessarily experienced by all.

1. You get to learn how to say no because of the times where you’ve had to decide between you looking polite or cows suffering. It makes it easier for you to say no by putting yourself first also.

2. The excitement of finding new items in the Free From supermarket ranges. Tesco’s Blackcurrant cheesecake anyone?

3. The excitement of finding another vegan! Making new friends that are also vegan is wonderful.

4. When your Mum gets out her blood pressure monitor and she offers to take your blood pressure for fun and you find out that you have perfect results. (Just me…?)

5. When you see through the fear mongering articles trying to get people to drink cows milk. The milk industry is getting scared, bless. It means people are seeing it for what it really is.

6. You become more aware of what’s in your food as you’re reading all the labels. E171, what’s that? *Googles* –> Titanium Dioxide A Carcinogen. What?! I’m not eating that.

7. You may grow to let spiders just be. They don’t creep me out as much anymore! I can even grab some tissue and let them climb on to be moved (small ones only – I’m working my way up).

There’s more but that’s all I could think of in a short space of time. Do you have anything to share? 

Lifestyle · Mind · spirituality

10 Recent Realisations

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It’s been a while since I last wrote a blog post. There’s a reason for that. I guess it’s partly a lack of motivation but right now I’m putting more effort into writing my book, making things and writing nice things for my Instagram posts (sarahnityxo if you are interested). I have discovered my love for writing poetry. I like how disordered it can be. It doesn’t need to rhyme and it doesn’t need to make perfect sense. I like how I can put my feelings into a few lines and somehow it just works. I also like taking photos for it and editing them.

I’ve come to some realisations recently and I want to share them.

  1. I’m not that much of a great writer. I enjoy it but I have a lot to learn and so I am.
  2. Struggle is there for a reason. To help us grow.
  3. Meditation can be done (almost) anywhere, like on a train.
  4. There is a little path down to the lake that I have wanted to go towards for years and it is wonderful down there.
  5. I have to nuture my spiritual side in order for me to feel fulfilled in life.
  6. London still continues to delight and excite me. Camden Town is amazing.
  7. Making new friends and connecting with people you just click with is more important than focusing on those you don’t.
  8. Positive feelings can be almost as overwhelming as negative ones.
  9. I won’t be able to exercise unless I actually do! It’s literally one of the biggest challenges to get myself to do any!
  10. Working is more enjoyable when I focus on other parts of it such as connecting with people.
Lifestyle

Twenty-First Day Of Blogmas // Vegan Cakes, Being Accepted And Quote 3/3

Today’s quote is really true for me:

‘Christmas! The very word brings joy to our hearts. No matter how we may dread the rush, the long Christmas lists for gifts and cards to be bought and given, when Christmas Day comes there is still the same warm feeling we had as children, the same warmth that enfolds our hearts and our homes.’ -Joan Winmill Brown

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At work our manager put a huge box of sweets and chocolates together for everyone. There were large Toblerones, tubes of Fruit Pastilles and stuff like that. Nothing I could eat. I was surprised when she handed me an envelope. She said someone had told her that I didn’t eat dairy (I assumes they told her I was vegan). So I got a Santa Mini Moo and some jelly beans. I had to look up the jelly beans to see if they were vegan. They were by Jelly Belly. They don’t contain gelatin and they are vegetarian but they do contain beeswax, which makes them so shiny and smooth on the outside. Still, I took them home and gave them to Carl. I’m not complaining. I know it’s hard to know what to look out for when you aren’t vegan yourself.

I was actually really happy as I don’t expect it at all. When someone brought in some Christmas biscuits they also brought in some Oreos for me. When someone made a chocolate sleigh, they made sure they had dark chocolate as well as milk. When that same person made fairy cakes, they made them vegan. When someone who is lactose intolerant made a yule log, they made it fully vegan so the other vegan and I could also eat it. Everything vegan that others have brought in has been really tasty. It feels really good that people don’t want to leave us vegans out. Other people ate the cakes as well and they all said they were really good!

I’m feeling very grateful right now. When I first decided to become vegan in February, I was worried that people wouldn’t accept me. Sounds crazy doesn’t it? It’s made me less afraid to share my values with others. It’s wonderful.

I was a little late writing this post but I will again make sure to write another one tonight! x

Lifestyle

Eleventh Day Of Blogmas // Vegan Secret Santa

I took part in Secret Santa at work this year. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what it’s about. I was lucky enough to get picked by my best friend and we always tell each other who we have so I knew early on. It’s so nice having a best friend at work. As soon as my present arrived she gave me it! I was so happy when I opened it. It’s a vegan goodie box by The Goodness Project.


Look inside! All these cute tasty vegan snacks that all colour coordinate. I hadn’t tried any of them before and felt well and truly spoilt for choice. The chocolate bar was delicious and this Goji Goodness bar was probably my favourite thing in there.


Although, the Booja Booja chocolate truffles were exceptional. I’ve had them before but they are super pricey. There were six chocolates and three different flavors. They are my favourite chocolates by far and I’d probably have still agreed if I had tried them before I was vegan. My mouth waters just thinking about them.

I got someone at work who was a vegetarian and I knew she had given up cheese and she was talking to me about free from chocolate so I got the impression that she was transitioning to a vegan lifestyle. She’d stopped eating meat as a child after finding out where it comes from. So for her present I got a really nice candle and some vegan snacks and treats.

Recently, my colleague who went vegan at the same time as me, left work. We had pretty much gone vegan at the same time. I mean one day I walked into a conversation that she and a few others were having about her and her husband going vegan and I just happened to have just turned vegan a few days before. It was weird as we had done it independently but it was also exciting to have someone who was going through the same thing. We would talk to the person I had for Secret Santa about veganism and how it is doable, as she had doubts. Then last week this person came up to me and told me that they were now vegan! I was over the moon and kind of sad that my ex colleague wasn’t here to share the excitement, although I did text her. There would have been three of us at work! I can’t believe that is going vegan influenced her to. It’s really amazing! 

Lifestyle

Ninth Day Of Blogmas // Animals Die To Give You A Treat


Just a quick one today! I was asked what I was going to have for Christmas dinner (again) today. They told me that Christmas is a time to have a treat. Well, I’ll have you know that this person has several ‘treats’ a week. A treat should not require the death of defenceless animals. An animal, like you, who is given this one chance to live and ends up with a very short life because they are killed WAY before their time. They don’t have these long lives like people seem to think. An animal, like you, who wants to live. How about you imagine what it is like to be one of those animals queuing for slaughter. Hearing you’re family and friends crying out before its your turn. But to some this killing and suffering is okay because it’s a treat for you. Yeah I see your side of things too. I see that you don’t see the harm because we other animals hunt and kill other animals for food but the way factory farms are ran and the way that humans treat animals is nothing but unnatural. Now that’s what I wanted to say.

That’s it for today. Sorry there’s no joy in today’s post. I’m tired and have had a long day! See you tomorrow. x

Lifestyle

Fourth Day Of Blogmas // Vegan Christmas Dinner

Today I woke up at 4 am with a stomach ache. It was too uncomfortable to sleep so I got up and ended up spending the majority of the day on the sofa watching Netflix and then we went to take the dog for a walk. Not exactly how I wanted to spend the day. I feel pretty tired and not in the mood to blog but I am committed to doing blogmas so here I am. I also feel like I might be coming down with a cold but I’m really hoping not. I’m not a good ill person at all. I feel sorry for the people around me who have to hear the constant moaning and I feel even more sorry for myself. 12 hour days at work with a cold are not fun at all. Getting up at 5.20 am with a cold is really unpleasant.

I have watched so much of the Gilmore Girls today that I am starting to believe it is real. I am literally thinking about the show right now. Who thinks about shows? It’s feeling pretty real to me right now and I need to get back into reality.

In 2 weeks, Carl and I are going to Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park, London. So expect a whole blog post on that! I’ve never been before and am excited!

Okay that was just an update and now lets head in to todays post.

 

What am I eating for Christmas dinner?

 

I am getting asked this question an awful lot. I don’t really get why people think I can’t have an ordinary Christmas dinner with just a few switches. I guess it’s a good thing that people are interested but many vegans are probably fed up with people finding out they’re vegan and asking, ‘what do you eat?’ It’s just another variation of that. Sometimes I feel like telling them to mind their own business. Most are surprised there are vegan alternatives to most animal products but they just think they won’t be as good.

If you are interested to know here is what I’ll be having:

  • Quorn Vegan Meat Free Pieces
  • Vegetables
  • Roast Potatoes
  • Mash with Vitalite (dairy free spread that tastes really good)
  • Vegan Yorkshire Puddings – I’ve seen loads of recipes online so just need to find a really good one
  • Vegan Gravy

And anything else that takes my fancy. I’m going to search Pinterest at some point.

Throughout the day I also aim to eat vegan cheese on crackers, dairy free chocolate and Pringles.

That sounds really good to me and all that matters is that I like it and I’m not eating any animal products.

I’m not big on fake meats because I didn’t like red or processed meat when I was younger so why eat the fake versions of them now? Maybe I’d like them but I’m not that interested in trying them. Plus most have onion in which often gives me reflux.

I say eat what you like anyway. When I was younger, my Mum and I just ate bread and soup this one time as that is all we wanted! It doesn’t really matter what you eat as it is just another meal really. You can make it as special or as not special as you want.

Thanks again. I’m going to get back to chilling on the sofa. Have a nice evening x

Lifestyle

Second Day Of Blogmas // New Clothes!

Hi all and welcome to the second instalment of the month. Today has been interesting. I worked 11-7 as overtime (I normally do 7-7) and it’s been a breeze in comparison. I had a really relaxed morning. I stayed in bed until 8am , watched 2 episodes of the Gilmore Girls, showered and listened to music.

At 10am the doorbell rang and a parcel was delivered to me. However, it was not a parcel that I was expecting. It was from Select. I wondered if my sister had gotten something delivered to my house. I opened it and saw a bunch of things and wondered if I had placed an order and forgotten about it. But no I definitely hadn’t. I text my sister and it turns out she had bought me a few things! I almost cried I was so grateful!

Here are the things she got me.

This shirt and these purple high waisted skinny jeans, which are my favourite type of jeans! I decided to wear my Led Zeppelin top with them and it gives it a grungy feel.


Along with that came a black long sleeved top, some cool socks and a chocker, which is my absolute favourite type of necklace.

It all makes an entire outfit. Aren’t I lucky?!

My day at work was somewhat enjoyable for once. I was in my favourite area and I had to speak to the health and safety auditor as I am the health and safety rep and I always get really worried about these sorts of things but they usually seem to go really well for me!

In the work canteen before I started

Today’s advent chocolate was a little strange. I couldn’t figure out what it was meant to be but I think it’s a monkey.


One final photo. Here’s me by the tree.


I’ve just been to pick up my sister from the train station and I’m about to dig in to that mac and ‘cheese’ I’ve been wanting all week.

Thanks for reading X

PS There is snow on my website!