Monday, 28 April 2014

Perfect Playlist #1

It's been almost a week since I've posted, oops. Here's a post about my current fave songs. I make playlists all the time, and I listen to them until I get bored of the songs and then I'll make a new one. The playlist I have now though, I've been listening to for a while and I'm still sooo in love with the songs so I thought I'd share it with you guys!

01 - Do I Wanna Know? // Arctic Monkeys
02 - Alleyways // The Neighbourhood
03 - Kissed, Tricked, Addict // Greta Stanley (a local girl, you should check out her soundcloud here)
04 - She's Thunderstorms // Arctic Monkeys
05 - R U Mine? // Arctic Monkeys
06 - Chocolate // The 1975
07 - Let It Go // The Neighbourhood
08 - She Way Out // The 1975
09 - Arabella // Arctic Monkeys
10 - W.D.Y.W.F.M // The Neighbourhood
11 - Girls // The 1975
12 - Flawless // The Neighbourhood
13 - I Wanna Be Yours // Arctic Monkeys
14 - Welcome Home // Radical Face
15 - Knee Socks // Arctic Monkeys
16 - Always Gold // Radical Face
17 - Snap Out Of It // Arctic Monkeys
18 - Sweater Weather // The Neighbourhood
19 - Why'd You Only Call Me When You're High // Arctic Monkeys
20 - Female Robbery // The Neighbourhood

I honestly never make playlists for working out, studying etc. I only ever have one at a time. I usually play it on shuffle and enjoy. I really want to listen to some new artists/bands so leave suggestions below! 

I hope you enjoyed this post, sorry it's so short!

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Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Book Haul #2

Ahh another book haul! There will be another one coming soon as well. I've just put in an order on The Book Depository website which should be here in a week or two.  But for now, let's get started with this one! 

My Mum got all off these books from Kmart, excluding the top book. I'm not sure on prices but you could find them all online for fairly cheap if you want to buy them. I also won one of these books from Goodreads First Reads! I was super excited to win it, it's the first book I've ever won!

From top to bottom:
  1. Dead Ends by Erin Lange
  2. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead 
  3. Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare
  4. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
  5. Hades by Alexandra Adornetto 
  6. Disruption by Jessive Shirvington

I've read Clockwork Princess but I've been looking for the shorter (height wise) edition for ages so it would match the rest of my Cassandra Clare collection. The last book, Disruption looks fantastic and has a 4.5 star rating on goodreads. I won Dead Ends by Erin Lange on Goodreads First Reads, and I was so excited to get it in the mail! The publisher included a letter saying that they hope I enjoy the book, and I'm sure I will. There will be a review of this book up on my blog when I get around to reading it!

Both Ender's Game and Vampire Academy are movie tie in editions, but I'm not that fussed. I actually really love the movie book cover for Vampire Academy, I just really want it to match the rest of the series which probably won't happen now. I cannot stand series' that don't match but hopefully I can get over it for this one. 

I hope you enjoyed this short book haul post! Let me know what new books you've gotten recently in the comments below!

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Sunday, 20 April 2014

To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before

Author: Jenny Han
Publisher: Simon & Schuster 
Published: April 15th 2014
Goodreads // Book Depository

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them - all at once?
Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren't love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are the ones she's written. One for every boy she's ever loved - five in all. 
When she write, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she never would say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean's love life goes from imaginary to out of control. 

This was such a cute, quirky, fun read that is great for all ages. I really enjoyed Lara Jean's narrative and would recommend this to anyone who is into chick lit or just really cute love stories in general. While being a love story, this book also contains very realistic family dynamics. I loved how Lara Jean interacted with her sisters. If you think this book would interest you, give it a read. Spoilers below :)

In Chapter 1 when Josh is introduced, I knew straight away that Lara Jean had or has feelings for him. And I felt for her, having to see her sister be with him everyday, that's pretty harsh even if no one actually knows that's how she feels. When Peter is introduced, I liked him straight away. He comes across as slightly arrogant and self obsessed but he's likeable and funny and I could tell that he liked Lara Jean the longer they were fake dating.

I have a  soft spot for enemies turn lovers books, and while To All The Boys I've Loved Before wasn't exactly that, two people who didn't necessarily like each other struck a deal to fake-date, each of them getting something out of it, but ending up with more than they bargained for. I love books like this.
Lara Jean's dynamic with her sisters was one of the most realistic I've read. After their mother died Margot became the Mum and Lara Jean looked up to her for that. I really liked Margot at the start of this book, but by the end I wasn't a fan of her. When she got back even before she found out about Josh kissing Lara Jean, she was so critical of her. I felt sorry for Lara Jean. I really loved Kitty, she was adorable. I think her relationship with Lara Jean was one of my favourites in the whole book. Kitty knew what was up with Lara Jean and Peter before they knew themselves. I liked that Kitty was such a big part of the book, and didn't just get pushed aside so we could focus on Lara Jean and Peter.

Lara Jean and Peter were the best. I loved them. I loved their friendship, and their fake relationship as well. I knew before they knew themselves that they were starting to actually like each other. When they kissed in the hot tub, I was so happy! Finally, Lara Jean was actually acting on her feelings. I also thought it was so sweet that Peter was open about his first. Peter was so great with Kitty which is something I enjoyed so much. Once again Kitty was such a big part of the story line considering this all happened because of her, which we find out in the end. 
I really liked the way the book ended, but I wanted more. I just found out this is going to be a duology and I'm so extremely excited to read the next book!

Final Rating:

I hope you enjoyed this book review. Check back soon for a new post :)
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Tuesday, 15 April 2014


Everyone has insecurities, whether it's your stomach or thighs, or maybe even the way your voice sounds. I've always been insecure about all of these things, as well as a bunch of other things. But I realise now more than I ever have, that everyone has insecurities, they may not show it but they're thinking about how their legs look in their shorts just as much as you do. 

For me, one of my biggest insecurities is my hands, I feel like they're kind of chubby and not as and just really unattractive. Since starting the job I have now, with all the burns and cuts and scars I've gained, I like the way they look. Not because I like that they're scarred or cut, but because I feel like this job is a life experience that's reflected on my hands.

It's okay to be insecure, we're all going to have bumps and bruises we don't like, but they're part of life and they make us who we are. We might not like our thighs or our stomaches, but someone will. Someone will look at us, and fall in love. Being insecure doesn't make you insufficient or unworthy, it just means you have a healthy amount of doubt. Keeping that in mind though, we need to love ourselves before we can love anyone else. We need to learn to love our insecurities, even if it does end up being a love/hate relationship. 

Another important thing to remember is that everyone has insecurities, even the most confident people. I feel like to a lot of people I come across as having my life very put together, but I'm always so worried that I'm inadequate when it comes to school, and when I speak to people I'm always worried that they're going to judge what I say. But slowly I've learned to not care as much. Obviously I still make an effort, but if someone doesn't like what I say or judges me for how I say it, then I'm not going to waste my time on them. 

Be friends with people who don't pick at your insecurities, who don't think that your insecurities define you. Be with people who make you forget about those little things you don't like about yourself. In the end, it comes down to you and how you choose to react to insecurities, but being around positive people makes it a lot better to deal with. Positivity breeds positivity. 

I hope you liked this post! And remember, you're just as beautiful as the next person, there isn't one solid mould of 'beauty'. 

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Sunday, 13 April 2014

Favourite Quotes #1

I've been trying to come up with ideas about what to post today, and in the end I decided to do a post about my favourite quotes. Whenever I read eBooks, I always take advantage of the notes and highlight feature, I really like saving my favourite quotes that way. I usually only find 3-4 per book, but it's something I enjoy. I wouldn't dare highlight one of my physical copies! Plus, not all my favourite quotes are from books. Anyway, without further ado, here are my favourite quotes!

"The only way to survive eternity is to be able to appreciate each moment." -Lauren Kate, Fallen

This quote is more or less a beautiful rendition of live in the moment. We don't know when our time will end, or what's around the corner, but what we do know is that at least we have today. Live in the moment, be spontaneous, don't put things you really want to do on hold, do them now because you never know when you'll get the chance again. 

"Some things aren't meant to be known. Only believed."-Mary E. Pearson, The Adoration of Jenna Fox

We're so caught up on proving everything, we have to find evidence that this exists and that exists, or this is real and that is real. There's very little that people just believe in these days, without trying to prove or disprove. Like other lifeforms (or aliens) for example, sure it'd be great to know that there are actually other living lifeforms out there, but the universe is extraordinary, we can't possibly know where it ends and it's completely legitimate to believe that there are others out there.

"I don't know a perfect person. I only know flawed people who are still worth loving." -John Green

I think this day and age is full of unrealistic ideas and expectations. Flaws are what make us original, people fall in love with them. Imperfection does not mean weakness or inadequacy, it makes you original, different and completely loveable. If everyone was the same, what would be the point of love? What would there be to fall in love with?

This is kind of a deep post, and I have plenty other favourite quotes that are a lot more light hearted, but I didn't think they really went well. Maybe next time! Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this post! Something pretty different to my previous posts, but I was thinking of doing these once a month, let me know what you think in the comments!
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Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Pen Pals

Spending time writing a letter, decorating the page and envelope is so pleasing and fulfilling, it's almost become an obsession. I've had a pen pal for a few months now and I recently acquired another, and nothing makes me happier than the time I get to spend replying to their letters. I also really enjoy getting their letters and seeing how they have to say. 

Beautiful Envelopes from Roberta & letters from Heather
For me it's calming to sit down and be creative. I can spend hours coming up with ideas on how to decorate the paper and envelope. It may seem excessive, but this year it's the only free time I've had to myself with school and work. It's something that I enjoy doing and hopefully get to continue to do it. 

Although postage takes a while and that's less than ideal, I love putting letters in the mailbox knowing that they're going to someone who's never met me and judges me only by what I write. I hated my handwriting until I started writing letters, but now I don't think there's any possible way for written letters to be ugly. There's something beautiful and nostalgic about the activity. I think that it's amazing that someone I've met on the internet, 3 states away is in possession of something I wrote, something I've drawn, something I've spent hours on. There's something about that, that makes me so content. It's an amazing feeling and if you every get the opportunity to write to someone, please do so. It's so satisfying and you make a friend in the process. 

Letter from Roberta
I hadn't really been friends with my pen pals prior to writing to them. I met them both through tumblr. I met Roberta when she hosted submissions to be matched with a pen pal. Robi matched me with her and we've been writing ever since! My second pen pal Heather was one of the first blogs I followed when I made my tropical tumblr. Later on, I opened submissions to be matched with a pen pal and next thing I knew I was sending the first letter. I love them both, their letters always make me smile. When I'm having a bad day and I get a letter in the mail, it never fails to make things even a little bit better.  

If you're worried about safety, I had seen both Heather and Roberta's faces on instagram and tumblr before we became pen pals, plus I have a P.O. Box so I wasn't that bothered, but they both gave me their home addresses, so they obviously trusted me. I think there are a lot of people on the internet that you can't trust but if you can find someone you do trust, definitely give it a go!

I hope you enjoyed this post and maybe you're thinking of getting a pen pal! If you are, let me know in the comments below, I might be able to help you out :)

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Saturday, 5 April 2014

Succulents & Cacti

Pictured: Ellie the Parodia Scopa Cactus

Two of my all time favourite things are succulents and cacti. I have 8 on my windowsill and I'm absolutely in love with them. They're utterly adorable and there's no possible way for me to kill them because they're incredibly drought resistant. Fun Fact: All cacti are succulents, but not all succulents are cacti, so I guess they don't really count as 2 of my favourite things after all.  

Succulents and Cacti are also really affordable. I picked mine up from my local garden centre for a pretty decent price. My cheapest succulent was $3(!) and the most I've paid for one is $13 which I don't find too steep at all, considering how in love I am with them. They're also extremely versatile, you can plant them all in one massive pot and have an incredibly adorable cacti garden or have them in their own individual pots like I do. The possibilities with succulents are endless. There are a bunch of different shapes, sizes and colours of cacti and succulents, you just have to find the ones that you like best! I have a few on my wish list that I can't find anywhere!

I'm not ashamed to say that I've named all of my succulents after book characters. There's Ellie in the picture above, who was named after Ellie from This Is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith which I read in late 2013 and really loved, plus 7 more. I've even got a Tobias and a Tris. Most of them are named after books I've read except Percy named after the main character of Percy Jackson & The Lightening Thief. I know, I know, I'm like the only person who hasn't read it, but I promise I will soon enough! The names of my other cacti & succulents are Chubs (The Darkest Minds), Isadora (The Chaos of Stars), and Gale (The Hunger Games). My 8th succulent, pictured above, isn't named yet. I've been feeling uninspired and I have no idea what I should name her (yes, I know for sure it's a girl) :(

All in all, if you're looking for some super cute plants that you won't be able to kill because you forget to water them, succulents are the way to go. You can pick them up from your local garden centre and supermarkets even sell them sometimes. I'm going to check out my local nursery and see if there are any cute ones there. Before long, I'll be a complete cacti hoarder! 

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Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Beach Blondes by Katherine Applegate

Beach Blondes

Author: Katherine Applegate
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Published: May 6th 2008
Goodreads // Book Depository

Summer Smith is in for the best summer of her life. Between the cold weather and her boyfriendless existence in Minnesota, Summer is ready for sun, sand and boys in the Florida Keys. And by the end of the first day, she has more than enough to keep her busy: Adam, the senator's son, has looks, power and all the money in the world. Diver, the mystery man, is mellow, intriguing, and definitely unique. And Seth, the perfect guy... only he has a girlfriend. But with new friends, cute guys and miles of hot white sand, Summer's in for more trouble than she thinks. 

I really enjoyed this book, it got me in the mood for Summer (despite it Autumn in Australia right now) and got me out of a massive reading slump. If you're into kinda cliche summer novels with a few surprising plot twists, definitely check out this book. 

Spoilers ahead, so if you plan on reading this book but you don't wanna know what happened, leave now! 

This book surprised me, I didn't expect to like it as much as. I had mixed feelings by the end. There were a few kind of predictable twists in the story line but I was on the right track every time I took a guess at what would happen next. I like books that surprise me, but I didn't really expect this one to, so I was pleased by the mild plot twists I wasn't able to guess. 

The character development was lacking a lot for me, I feel like none of the characters grew, except for Diana. I don't think Summer herself learnt a lot or overcame anything apart from having to choose between 3 guys. The rape storyline with Diana was one that I think helped progress the story more than anything. Diana had more character development than all of the other characters combined. 

I also feel like the ending was very rushed, everything was wrapped up very quickly. We find out that Diver is her brother in the second last chapter, and I definitely would have liked more of their relationship. This was hinted at earlier in the book when Diana finds all of the clothes she, Summer and Marquez had bought him, along with the deflated red ball. We get a quick conversation between the two and then Summer's off trying to get Seth back.

The ending with Seth was rushed. The fact that within 5 minutes of getting on that plane, Seth had forgiven her after she cheated on him is extremely unlikely. I definitely think more time should have been spent on this part of the story.

Overall I really did enjoy this book, it got me out of a massive reading slump (having not read a book since the start of March). I'm surprised I managed to get through it, being over 700 pages. I will be reading the next book whenever I can purchase it, I'd like to see how the story progresses and hopefully how Summer goes about introducing Diver back into the family.

Final Rating:

I hope you enjoyed this book review! More to come soon! 

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