Tuesday, 18 March 2014

21 Things For 21 Years

A month ago I turned 21 and had the most fantastic day with family and friends. However in the lead up to turning 21 and ‘officially becoming an adult’ I had what might be described as a quarter life crisis.

I really began to feel panicky and question what I was doing with my life. By some people’s standards I may be seen as successful. I have held down jobs and am currently a final year university student on track to graduate in the summer. But this didn’t cut it for me. I love education and plan to continue into postgraduate study but I came to the realisation that I have always focused on academia and was beginning to miss out on other small things that I really wanted to do.

So I have come up with 21 things, big and small, that I would like to achieve in my 21st year of being alive. Below, you can see the list and the reason behind why I want to do these things. I hope that as I achieve them I can share them with you by updating with regular posts.

The list

1)   Share my poetry
This is a big one for me. I am in love with poetry and have dabbled in it since I was young. I want to share some of my pieces on this blog and also share some spoken word poetry through YouTube.

2)   Travel without an adult
I have always gone on holiday with my family or on school trips. I want to travel without adult supervision and do the things that I want.

3)   Donate blood
I have often seen the drives at uni and around town and have always wanted to do this but I have always chickened out. I am going to have the guts to help someone out this year… as long as someone holds my hand.

4)   Learn to knit
My best friend’s mum (Hi Clare!) can knit and I have seen some of the interesting things that can be made. Also, it’s always nice to have different skills under your belt.

5)   Climb a mountain
I hope this one is possible. I really want to push myself out of my comfort zone this year and do things that no one would expect from me, including myself.

6)   Learn to ride a bike
As embarrassing as it is to admit, I never learned how to ride a bike when I was younger. We moved so much that I never had the chance to get taught properly and as I got older I just felt like it would be stupid to learn. I guess it’s time to shake off that stigma.

7)   Run a 10K
I have run 5K’s and just want to take it to the next level

8)   Tie dye a t shirt
It looks like a lot of messy fun. If anyone has any tips I would greatly appreciate it!

9)   Try more adventurous bakes
If you know me you will know I am a big fan of ‘Great British Bake Off’. I have baked a few things but my portfolio mainly consists of victoria sponge and fairy cakes. My sister bought me a Mary Berry recipe book for my birthday so I plan to get more stuck in in the kitchen.

10)                  Explore more of my city
Swansea is probably known for a few negative things but there’s a lot of beauty if you just go looking for it.

11)                  Go ice skating
I can’t remember the last time I went and being self conscious I know I didn’t spend too long on the ice. This time around I want to just go for it and hopefully not break anything!

12)                  Finish ‘Wreck this journal’
I received a ‘Wreck this box’ from my parents for my birthday. I am excited to get stuck in!

13)                  Walk through an aquarium
I have a fear of aquariums. I don’t like the thought of so much water being behind glass. I always have the stupid though of what if it breaks. However I do love a lot of aquatic animals so I want to conquer this fear.

14)                  Cover my wall in photos
Having been gifted an old polaroid camera for my birthday I have decided that my bedroom wall should be slowly spruced up with some photographs.

15)                  Do my bit for charity
I want to raise some money for charity throughout the year. I’m not entirely sure what I want to do yet or what charities I want to support but I have started to look into it.

16)                  Become happier with my body
I have always had issues with the way I look. This year (and hopefully for many to come) I want to start being more accepting of my body and my looks.

17)                  Make an effort with YouTube
Some of you may know that I have a YouTube channel that I use in tandem with this blog to make reviews, book hauls and discussions. I really want to keep on top of this because it’s something that I really enjoy doing.

18)                  Read more classics
Looking at my bookshelf I have noticed that there is a stunning lack of classics. I have promised to correct this.

19)                  Learn to say ‘I love you’ in 50 different languages
I really have a love of languages and although I know it would take me over a year to learn 50 languages fluently I want to be able to say this small phrase. Anyone who wants to help out let me know!

20)                  Become a pokemon master
Start and finish a chosen pokemon game and document them all in the pokedex.

21)                  Get in touch with my spiritual side

I’m a big believer in karma and that you reap what you so. I want to stop being so bogged down with negative things and have a bit of a spiritual cleanse.

*All images are from Google Images

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Temeraire - Naomi Novik

Title: Temeraire - Naomi Novik
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Series: Temeraire #1
Service: Own
Release Date: 06/08/2007
Pages: 342
Format: Paperback


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Captain Will Laurence has been at sea since he was just twelve years old. Rising on merit to captain his own vessel, Laurence has earned himself a beautiful fiancée, society’s esteem and a golden future. But the war is not going well. It seems Britain can only wait as Napoleon plans to invade.

After a skirmish with a French ship, Laurence finds himself in charge of a rare cargo: a dragon egg bound for the Emperor himself. Dragons are much prized: properly trained, they can mount a fearsome attack from the skies. One of Laurence’s men must take the beast in hand and join the aviator’s cause, thus relinquishing all hope of a normal life.

But when the newly hatched dragon decides to imprint itself on Laurence, the horrified captain’s world falls apart. Gone is his golden future: gone his social standing, and soon his beautiful fiancée, as he is consigned to be the constant companion and trainer of the fighting dragon Temeraire…

Give me one word…
Why do you say that?

Will Laurence is a captain in the navy during the Napoleonic war. After defeating a French ship his crew take charge of a dragon egg that soon hatches an Oriental dragon, Temeraire.

The story line takes us with Laurence as he adjusts from being a man of the navy to becoming an aviator and learning to live alongside and train his rare dragon.

This book is such a beautifully written and heart warming story. The relationship between Laurence and Temeraire grows from something that Laurence could potentially be resentful of to something that he could not imagine his life without. There were many points in the book where you could almost forget that Temeraire is a dragon and imagine him as more of a brother.

By the time their relationship is established you are introduced to a variety of other dragons and their trainers and see the difference in their techniques. The emotions you feel seeing the rest of the aviators would not nearly be as strong had Novik not successfully made you fall in love with what can be described as the ‘bromance’ between Temeraire and Laurence.

I did have one or two issues with the book although they were not major. Novik throws a lot of information at you rather quickly sometimes. There was some military/ship terminology that I was not 100% sure of and we got introduced to different breeds of dragons with not a lot of information. However the latter point was resolved by the end of the book with a short extract from Sir Edward’s book about dragons.

All in all, if you are looking for a book with action and friendship I would highly suggest 'Temeraire'.