Friday, 10 February 2012

Daydream Believer

For as long as I can remember I have been a daydreamer. I often get very carried away with my thoughts, particularly when I'm on my own and especially when I'm driving, and before you know it I have completely forgotten where I am and what I'm doing. I know this sounds extremely unsafe, but believe me, I am that used to it that my subconscious keeps me alive. 

I can't say I daydream about one thing in particular, but one recurring theme recently seems to be living somewhere new. I daydream about living in a bright, open, airy apartment in Barcelona, drinking peppermint tea, reading a newspaper and leaving the windows open to make the heat more bearable. I also daydream about living in New York, in a sky-rise apartment overlooking Manhattan, drinking coffee, walking through central park and living my dream career as a photographer. Most recently I have been daydreaming about living in Paris, visiting the Champs Elysees and the Eiffel Tower, going to countless fashion shows and writing down every experience I have.

However, lately I have found myself feeling somewhat guilty about my daydreaming. In these daydreams I am living in a completely different country and leading a completely different lifestyle. If, in my daydreams, I am aspiring to live my life in Barcelona or New York or Paris, does that mean I am unhappy with my life as it is? Well, the answer is no, I can assure you. Does daydreaming about a different lifestyle mean I am unhappy with where my career is heading? Perhaps. Yet surely this is selfish, as so many people across the world would give anything to be where I am now. The truth is, I don't have the job I want, or live somewhere glamorous, or have a lot of money. I have two part-time jobs, living my life day by day to see what I can and cannot afford. But shouldn't I be looking at the bigger picture?

I have TWO jobs. Not one, but two. So many people these days can't even find one job and I am complaining about not having the career I want. Secondly, I have an amazing boyfriend, wonderful friends and a family which I wouldn't change for the world. Thirdly, I am young. One of my greatest fears is suddenly being 80 years old and having countless regrets. So far, I have nothing I regret about my life, and any mistakes I have made I have certainly learnt a lot from. Not to forget I have my health, which so many people do not.

What I am trying to say is, be happy with what you have. There is absolutely nothing wrong with daydreaming about a better life, or wanting more for yourself, or wishing you had more money, or aspiring to live somewhere new. However if you do want these things, don't let it erase your view of what you have right now. If you are having a hard time, remember to appreciate and concentrate on the good things in your life, because there is always someone worse off than you. Across the world are people who have to walk miles each day just for a drink of clean water, and single mothers with six children who worry about buying food and paying bills, and cancer patients who have no family left to comfort them. These are the kind of situations I like to think about in my head when I start to feel like my life is going nowhere. My life is beautiful. If I were to look from the outside in on my life, I would think, "That girl is incredibly lucky." And as long as I have my loved ones, honestly, there is nothing more I could ask for. It doesn't get any better than that.

And I know it's not Barcelona, or New York, or Paris... but where I live isn't bad at all, really.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

All Hail Zooey D!

I decided to write a blog about Zooey Deschanel because, well, as you are all probably aware by now, she is just plain amazing. I don't want this to be a big "OMGILUVUZOOEY" embarrassing blog, although that would probably be the easiest way to put it, because I bloody adore her. I have been a huge fan of hers for a number of years now, and wanted to explain why, as a lot of people have only just started to notice who she is since "New Girl" began airing on Channel 4 in January 2012. (I don't think I am alone in saying that Friday nights are now entirely dedicated to watching New Girl.)

Not many of you will know, but Zooey isn't just an actress - she is also an extremely talented singer. I think the first time I ever heard Zooey sing was in the film "Elf", and the first thing that popped into my mind was "She has such a lovely singing voice...". Not long afterwards, I read on the internet that Zooey was in fact in a band called "She and Him" with M. Ward. It didn't take long before I was absolutely obsessed with She and Him, and to date I have both albums, Volume I and Volume II, on my iPod. Not to mention their delightful Christmas album which was released in October 2011. I will always remember Christmas 2011 as the year David and I decorated our Christmas tree whilst listening to "A Very She and Him Christmas".

For those of you who haven't listened to She & Him before, here are a few of my favourites:

I think it is Zooey's beautiful, vintage sounding voice which makes me love their music so much. Every song I listen to sounds like something from decades ago, yet with a modern twist, and I love that. No-one sounds like She & Him and perhaps that's why they have never gone mainstream, but I'm sure they don't care. As long as they keep making music which makes me happy in any possible situation (seriously, try it! It works!) I will continue buy their music for as long as they release new material. 

Not only do I love her singing, but the characters Zooey has played in films have made me admire her even more, simply because you can tell that each character is slightly like the real-life Zooey. For example, her hilarious role as Alison in "Yes Man" made me think, "I bet she really IS that fun and free-spirited." Her role as Summer in "(500) Days of Summer" made me think "I bet she really IS that quirky and spontaneous." Not to mention her role as Jess in "New Girl", which made me (and the rest of the world) think "I bet she really IS that hilarious!"

One of the main things I love about Zooey is her style. She never tries to look like anybody else, or follow trends, or look overly sexy. She just wears what she wants to wear because she likes it, and as a result looks effortlessly stylish. She is one of the few actresses who I admire because she comes across as the kind of girl who you could be friends with. Just a down-to-earth, normal girl, who wears cute clothes, has lovely hair and never tries too hard. One thing I dislike about celebrities is when they play it safe with clothes and are too scared to wear something they absolutely adore, just in case they end up on the "Worst Dressed" list. Zooey Deschanel is not one of those celebrities.  If she likes something, she will wear it - and in my opinion, she always looks incredible. 

And there it is. My explanation for why I love Zooey Deschanel. Not only is she an actress, singer and producer (Zooey is a Producer for "New Girl" -- just something else to add to her CV!) she is also growing to be a global style icon. Despite her fame only coming to light over the past few years, I predict this is just the beginning for Zooey. I look forward to seeing what happens with New Girl, She and Him, and not to mention her fashion choices in the future. In the mean time, I will just carry on following her every move on Twitter, and continue to ask God why he didn't give me big, piercing blue eyes like Zooey Deschanel.

All hail Zooey D!

Saturday, 4 February 2012

I'm a Virgin.

Calm down people. I'm not an actual virgin. (Sorry Mum.) I'm a BLOG virgin. Goodness me I am excited. For years I have read a number of blogs, and never actually written my own. Well here I go. Losing my virginity at the grand old age of 22.

I finally decided to go ahead and create a blog when my friends Roy and Rachel persuaded me to do so. After showing me a number of blogs they enjoy reading on a regular basis (some of which I am now also reading on a regular basis) I thought, "I could do that! Mine probably won't be as funny... or as interesting... but I could do that!"

My friend Rachel's blog (go ahead and enjoy it, it's far better than mine will ever be: also got me thinking about what I would like my blog to be called, how I would like it to look, and also how I would like it to be perceived. Well, first of all, I have always loved writing, and that is mainly what this blog will be based on - writing about anything and everything. Of course it will contain other visually delicious treats for you all such as the odd video or photograph, but the basis of this blog is going to be writing. I say that now, but for the past few minutes I have been writing ABOUT writing, so maybe I'm not as good at this as I originally thought. 

Secondly, I have been considering a number of names for my blog over the past few days and believe me, had some absolutely incredible ideas ('Rachel's Blog' was the number one contender for about fifteen minutes) and eventually decided on "I'm Smarter Than You Think". This is simply taken from one of my favourite quotes:

“If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together... there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart... I'll always be with you.” 
― A.A. Milne

Yes my favourite quote is from Winnie the Pooh. Got something to say about that? Yes? YES? No?! Didn't think so. 

I thought that name would be appropriate for my blog, as throughout my life (I know what you're all thinking: "Oh bloody hell, here she goes...") I have always had a slight suspicion that people believe I am somewhat unintelligent. Yes, I received nine average grades in my GCSEs. Yes, I received three (slightly below) average grades in my A Levels. And don't even ask what I got in my degree because I won't tell you. But the point is that I HAVE A DEGREE. However, in my opinion, qualifications don't mean that much unless they are absolutely outstanding achievements which, admittedly, mine were not. Despite this, I have always felt that my intellect has been underestimated by numerous members of my family and even a few of my friends. 

Thirdly, I thought "Shall I write a blog about my life? Or about tea and coffee? Or about the lack of jobs for young people in the UK? Or about fashion? Or about music? Or about photography? Or about relationships? Or about books? Or about movies? Or about losing people we love? Or about sport?...." and as you can guess, the list in my head went on and on and ON... until I realised I could just write about ALL OF THESE THINGS. Truthfully, one thing I have never done before (seriously...NEVER.) is share my writing with my friends and family. Yes, I have had the odd poem published in the past (my poems are published in books which I have buried in the deep dark depths of my childhood bedroom) and yes, I have updated my Facebook status countless times and Tweeted 4,618 times to date. But apart from that, my writing has never actually gone public before. And here we are.

Admittedly, I am slightly mortified that my first blog is about the fact that I am writing my first blog. Although I am somewhat impressed with myself for extending this subject further than four sentences. I am also finding it rather ironic now that my blog is named "I'm Smarter Than You Think". Congratulations if you have even read this far. I promise the next one will be better.