Friday, 31 October 2008

Halloween Hijinx

Image thanks to stevechasmar

Have a big Charade shaped Happy Halloween with these themed links.

College Candy have Halloween Treats That Are Better Than Candy plus Liq-or-Treat: Halloween Drinking Games and your Pre-Game Playlist featuring Michael Jackson's Thriller. Spot on.

Check out the 20 Most Awesome Pumpkin Carvings and The World's Wackiest Coffins from Oddee.

For all your scary movie needs discover 40 Free Sites to Watch Movies and TV Online.

Someone who really takes Halloween seriously, it's Boopsie Daisy. I love her Dread Spread and Ice SCREAM Sundae.

You know how much I love quotes, well here are a whole bunch of Halloween Quotes to Make You Go Spooky-Silly.

"Backward, turn backward,
O Time, in your flight
make me a child again
just for to-night!"
Elizabeth Akers Allen

Want some cute, last minute tips for Halloween on a budget? Money Magpie will sort you out.

Here's something truly scary... Dubai Architecture! (OK, well it scared me anyway...)

Image thanks to someecards

Adoration,
Megan x

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

When Unfriendliness Strikes...

Image thanks to icanteachyouhowtodoit

When you first start university everybody is super friendly, why? Because everybody wants to make friends, that's why.

But after a few weeks, you may notice a slight shift. I sure have. Suddenly, people seem less friendly. Maybe it's that they don't start a conversation when you sit down next to them at the start of a lecture, or maybe they don't make the effort to flash you a smile when they walk past. Sound familiar?

These people haven't changed, they're not any meaner than they were 5 weeks ago, of course they aren't. What's happened is their situation has changed: they've made friends. They have a group, they've got themselves a nice little slice of status quo and that's that; they just don't need to make the effort anymore.

You may not have noticed this, you may have happily made your own group of friends and done exactly the same thing.

But if you've not managed to get yourself a 'group' yet, perhaps because you're not massively outgoing or if you live off campus, when this switch occurs, it can be easy to get pretty bummed out pretty quick.

What's the answer? You'll be glad to know it's particularly easy. Just don't you switch, don't you stop being friendly. Hey, if anything, up your game!

YOU start the conversation when they don't, YOU smile when they don't, YOU make the effort. People still want to be friends, they're just not pushing themselves to go out on a limb anymore.

Why not help them out? Do it for them!

You are all that is standing between yourself and a great bunch of mates, open yourself up, and practice drawing people out of their shells too. Switch on that charm in the face of adversity and see where it gets you.

Make their day. Make your day.

Agree?

Monday, 27 October 2008

Words to Live By #11

Image thanks to Zach Klein

"Insist on yourself. Never imitate."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Adoration,
Megan x

Saturday, 25 October 2008

The Saturday Salute 25.10.08

Image thanks to bfick

It's Saturday! Let's celebrate...

My top link this week is Steve Pavlina's 10 Reasons You Should Never Get A Job. It's intensely good.

Find out why nightclubs are hell. This man is angry at the world, but it is funny, you have to agree with at least part of it.

If you live in Manchester in the UK, or even if you don't, check out Save The Student.

'...make the most of your finances in practical ways. As the cost of university education continues to grow, we believe that an awareness of your (often borrowed) money situation is as important as ever!'

Learn Ways to Boost Energy Naturally if the University pace is starting to wear you down.

Heard of mineral make-up but worried about splashing out? TaDa! Lily Lolo offer sample 5ml jars of their many shades for just 99p.

If you study English like I do then you may just find EnglishScholar.com a useful resource.

How to Get Rid of Things professes to help eliminate common annoyances from your life.

A Guide to Creating Success looks good. As does The 48 Laws of Power.

'Law 4: Always Say Less than Necessary.

When you are trying to impress people with words, the more you say, the more common you appear, and the less in control. Even if you are saying something banal, it will seem original if you make it vague, open-ended, and sphinxlike. Powerful people impress and intimidate by saying less. The more you say, the more likely you are to say something foolish.'


Adoration,
Megan x

Thursday, 23 October 2008

Costume Culture: Halloween 2008

It’s that tacky time of year again that is always much more fun than it should logically be. Yes, it’s Halloween, and we love it.

There’s something about dressing up isn’t there? Something that allows you to be just that little bit more silly, to act a little less like the character you generally consign yourself to. In short, it’s your chance to be naughty, in style.

We all know the classics. Well, here’s my 2008 twist on them, plus a few cheap tips and handy hints.

Vampire...

Product Info

I’ve gone pure sophistication with this one. I started off all flowing skirts and ripped stockings but then decided that, if I was going to live forever, I’d bloody well be stylish about it. (Check the pun.) I like to think of this look as Madame Dracula.

Witch...

Product Info

Here I’ve kind of gone with what I would wear if I were actually a witch. Wouldn’t it be fun?

Devil...

Product Info

Lust, Pride, Greed… doesn’t this outfit just scream them? It’s a cheeky look with a dash of genuine immorality.

As I’ve said in similar posts, these outfits are, on the whole, for inspirational purposes only. I don’t know many students with spare change enough to splash out on a pair of Louboutin heels! So here are a few tips on doing Halloween Charade style:

Devote an afternoon well before the big day to trawling all your local charity, second hand and quirky costume shops. This can be helpful if you have an idea in your head but even more so if you’ve drawn a blank. Get right into those rails and see what bargains you can produce.

Think outside the box. If you’re really inventive you may be able to work an outfit together with what you already have in your wardrobe, maybe by just adding a few cheap accessories.

Don’t splash out if you’ll never wear it again. As fabulous as the look may be, it just won’t be worth it. If you want something really special there’s always the option of renting from most costume shops.

If you’ve always had a penchant for pin-up or an aspiration toward the 80’s then go wild with it – you may find the items you buy have the potential to infiltrate themselves into your day to day wardrobe and, before you know it, you’ll have a whole new everyday aesthetic to play with.

Similarly, why not imitate a favourite icon? If it's someone you really respect then that passion will shine through in your costume and you're bound to attract a few more nice comments.

Stand out. There’s nothing duller than heading out on the town as an indistinguishable shadow of a million other costumed cuties. Do it your way. If it feels silly – wear a mask – who’s to know it’s you?

Live up to your costume, why let your look go to waste? Allow yourself a few tricks and treats. If you’ve gone with the witchy look then conjure up some potions (homemade cocktails!) and cast some spells (you might just bag the cutest guy on the dance floor.)

More, more, more…

College Fashion has done a nice little article on 10 Cute Halloween Costume Ideas For Any Budget. It's a little bit U.S.A focused but valid nonetheless, and guess what? She's done 8 More too. Lucky us!

The lovely Gala of iCiNg has also provided us with her own kooky take on Halloween Costumes. Though, that girl needs no excuse to dress up.

What are you getting up to for halloween this year? And what are you dressing up as?

I'm keeping mine to myself for now, but know this - I have two parties to attend so that means two separate outfits. Yes they will be on a budget and yes there will be pictures!

Adoration,
Megan x

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Opportunity


Opportunities are everywhere, I've been thinking about it ever since writing my guide to Crafting the Life You Want.

To achieve your fabulous life on a student budget you need to be ready to seize opportunity when it arises, otherwise you'll only ever be plodding along; waiting for something you'll never have the balls to take advantage of.

As soon as you actively open yourself up to the possibility of opportunity, I'm sure you are 100% more attractive to lady luck.

Like today, after being invited along by a work pal I attended a fancy 'Expert Seminar' for the company 'ghd' as a model. I ate crisps and cream buns, chatted with some lovely ladies, had my hair done and walked away with a free pair of ceramic hair straighteners just for taking part!

Score.

I was silly enough not to take a single picture at the event, so I can't show you any of the do's which is a shame because some were A.MAZ.ING. Let's just say there was a lot of hairspray and back combing!

Here are my (absolutely free!) little beauts...




I'll admit I missed a lecture to attend the event, but my reasoning was: I can always catch up on lecture notes, how often to I get to do something like this?

Which makes my point; don't be a slave to the status quo, get your feet in doors, get your fingers in pies. Enjoy life.

Adoration!
Megan

Monday, 20 October 2008

Words to Live By #10

Image thanks to chovee

Eek! I'm so, so naughty and neglected my Salute over the weekend. Sorry guys! I promise a list of top links as long as all your arms put together next week!

I seem to have quite a few new readers which is grrrreat, I'm so pleased. Please chirp up and let me know what you think, or just say hi.

Here's an awesome quote I found just today:

"...it is only by taking risks that we know we are alive."
Margaret Atwood

I hope you had a pleasurable Monday and are all enjoying your evenings (or mornings - depending on your location around the globe!) I'm currently listening to my boy practice his guitar playing which is very cute AND relaxing.

Bed time!

Adoration,
Megan x

Friday, 17 October 2008

Internet Shopping Over High Street Shopping

Image thanks to net_efekt

The adorable Carrie of Wish Wish Wish has most kindly allowed me to guest post for her this week. You can find the article and continue the debate here.

If you've wandered over from Carrie's site then Welcome! It's lovely to have you. Please stick around, there's loads to see...

Girls On Film is an article I've written all about integrating the aesthetics of your favourite movies into your everyday.

Check out my tips on How to Source Motivation From Desolation too.

You could even get involved with The Saturday Salute, a weekly slice of the pie that is: my Internet adventures!

And don't miss my many words on Student Money and Computing on a Budget for some practical, no-nonsense advice.

Don't forget to let me know what you think, or even Subscribe!

Adoration,
Megan x

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

The Lure of the ‘Young, Free and Single’: University and Long-Term Relationships

Image thanks to aWee

University life is, let’s face it, largely hyped up to be about the single life. It’s about being selfish (not necessarily negatively, it’s just a time when your main concern is you!) It’s also about new experiences and having a good time. This can often be construed as having new sexual experiences or having good sexual times, but this isn’t part and parcel of university life because, unless you’re very desperate, I don’t think you’re paying upwards of £6,000 a year just to have lots of sex are you?

Whilst the 'young, free and single' thing is all well and good, and for many is a beneficial life experience, don’t fall into the trap of thinking it is all university is about; thinking that it’s the only way to be; or considering it an amazing ‘greener-grass’ lifestyle. It’s not. I’m here to convince you that being at uni and being in a long-term relationship can work, and even better, it can be wonderful.

When we are totally immersed into a culture like student life, it can be hard not to start subconsciously agreeing with and acting like those around us. Well of course, we want to fit in don’t we? We don’t want to appear like the stick in the mud that isn’t up for a laugh, but it's crucial to realise the difference between actually believing in and enjoying what we're doing over just going along with the crowd. Don’t give in to one over-emphasized student tradition at the cost of your integrity (or relationship).

If you are currently in a long-term relationship that you are questioning because of the ideas surrounding the student lifestyle, you need to seriously figure out your own thoughts and needs before taking any action. If you are genuinely tempted by the idea of ‘no strings attached’ then you should recognise this as a product of feeling held back in your relationship. This is never healthy and could mean ending what you have going on is a sure-fire safe bet. A boyfriend or girlfriend, although often asking for a little compromise, should be an amazing asset in your life, not somebody that fences you in.

If you’ve ever been single for a substantial amount of time you may already know that it’s not all it can be cracked up to be. It’s often a lonely, unrewarding, underappreciated existence – NOT that this means you should enter or stay in a relationship for the avoidance of these things alone. Single life can be brilliant, it really can, if it’s what you want; all I’m saying is figure out your own preference without being swayed by the habits of other students.

It is true that lots of relationships started at school can have been founded very immaturely, even ‘just for the sake of it.’ You may well have changed as a person and want to move on to bigger and better things, just be sure not to completely close yourself off to the possibility of an ongoing relationship at uni: it can happen with the right person!

Don’t assume you need to be single at uni, you shouldn’t deny yourself a potentially sublime and fulfilling relationship at any stage in life. If your current relationship is actively holding you back then yes, maybe you do need to be single just now, but if your partner is loving and supportive you WON’T miss out on anything, apart from maybe a couple of cringe-worthy walks of shame!

Having a strong relationship whilst at university can be a major confidence boost, it gives you someone to turn to in a crisis, someone to share all your many plans and ideas with, and the knowledge that you are loved (who doesn't want that?)

You’ll notice I haven’t touched on the delicacies of long-distance relationships. I’m saving the subject for an article all of its own!

What’s your opinion on university and long-term relationships?

Monday, 13 October 2008

Words to Live By #9

Image thanks to kevindooley

Nobody trips over mountains. It is the small pebble that causes you to stumble. Pass all the pebbles in your path and you will find you have crossed the mountain.
Author Unknown

Hope you had a magic Monday.

Adoration,
Megan x

Saturday, 11 October 2008

The Saturday Salute 11.10.08

Image thanks to honkytonk89

Hello and good morning sassy students everywhere!

I've been a liiiittle bit slack this past week and posts haven't been as full and glorious as they should be. SO! Here is a juicy salute to really get your teeth into.

Love, love, love these cute laptop cases as discovered on Wish Wish Wish. I'm feeling like the hedgehog one will surely offer a home for my new laptop when I eventually get it... At $40 (about £24) they are a bargain way to stand out from the crowd when computing!

This week I discovered alpha student which I will shortly be adding to my blogroll. Beyond Starbucks: Great part-time jobs is an awesome article.

I haven't spent a lot of time on it but Librarian Chick looks interesting. Described as '...a collection of links to the best of the Internet's FREE resources for those with big brains and small pocketbooks!'

I just bought this gorgeous necklace from This Charming Girl. A great collection of reasonably priced trinkets to treasure. They're currently giving away a free keyring with every order so get moving ladies.

Get a helping hand from Study Guides and Strategies if you're struggling with the university workload. You'll find articles and exercises on Motivating Yourself and Thinking Like A Genius.

32 Keys calls itself 'A Collection of Ideas About Life.' Invest some time in a little self-improvement.

Adoration,
Megan x

Friday, 10 October 2008

What To Do When You Get A Hangover...

Image thanks to robstephaustralia

Hangovers suck; you're sick as a dog and yet, generally, can't get a wisp of sympathy because everybody is aware it's totally self-inflicted!

The worst part? Often, you won't even offer yourself sympathy, you're just mad at being such a dimwit and overdoing it as usual.

If you haven't cottoned on already, today I had the. worst. hangover from hell. It got to about 5pm, I was still in bed, and all I kept hearing myself think was 'Oh, you big idiot! Look at this! You've wasted an entire day in bed because you don't know your own limits. When are you going to learn to take care of yourself?!'

Eventually, after this evil uttering had gone around in my head a few times, I decided to give it what for. How did I do this? By allowing myself to use the one simple phrase that I've found to be crucial in making it through life without going insane.

'I forgive myself.'

We are humans, we make big old shining mistakes and then we suffer hangovers to boot! But, you know what? That's fine by me. I learn valuable lessons everyday and without the odd glorious mishap I'd have learnt a lot less over the years.

Whatever your suffering, whether it be self-inflicted sickness, laziness, not being 100% 'fashionable' all the time, over-eating, under-eating, looking 'ugly' now and again, being selfish, being silly, being bitter, being wrong - just know that we all suffer everyday in some small way with our own issues - however minor - nobody is perfect and nobody ever will be.

But we can all apologise to ourselves, and we can all accept that apology. Then, my dears, it's just a case of onwards and upwards! Relentlessly stressing over our issues will never make them go away, accepting them and moving on just might...

So, ladies and gents, today and everyday, your mission is to forgive yourself.

It's such a relief, I'm telling you!

Adoration,
Megan x

Monday, 6 October 2008

Words to Live By #8

Image thanks to Jason D' Great

Find out who you are and do it on purpose.

Dolly Parton

Who are you?

Adoration,
Megan x

Saturday, 4 October 2008

The Saturday Salute 04.10.08


Image thanks to decor8

Adore Sia, I saw her live this evening at an intimate gig and she was perfection.

5 Ways to Keep Your Newfound Freedom from Bringing You Down is an interesting guest post for the new student, it's over on The University Blog.

Simply breakfast is FAB! It's a blog... about breakfasting! Spread a little charm on your toast.

Where have you been all my life Listography?

Adoration,
Megan x

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Who Else Wants to Create Their Own Luck? A Guide to Crafting the Life You Want (On Any Budget!)


The Gods of luck have been good to me just recently, life has been fine, I’ve been smiling. But, hang on… jeez, am I set to chalk all my future good fortune up as the result of a whimsical Irish notion? Put all of life’s fabulousness down to a happy coincidence? Hope for the best? Heck no! Maybe, just maybe, I want to take the reins. Maybe I’d rather create my own luck. In fact, scrap ‘luck’, lets just say… life, I plan to craft my own ideal life.

You fancy it?

There’s no reason why you, or I, or anybody, should not be able to realise the most perfect existence imaginable if we put our minds to it. Manufacturing the life you really want can be done so supremely simply, the question is not ‘can you achieve it?’ but ‘are you willing to achieve it?’

Step One: Precision

Decide exactly what it is you want. Glaringly obvious? Perhaps. But you’d be surprised how unclear we can become about our life’s aims when we fail to consider them regularly. Break it down for yourself. What is ‘the dream’? How will you achieve it? When will you achieve it? You can break it down as much or as little as you desire, as long as you are clear. Example: ‘Today I will start a conversation with at least 2 strangers in my quest to network.’ Or ‘By 2015 I will be in my dream career as a fashion buyer, living in a perfect 2 bed garden flat in London.’ Once you’ve done this, it is just a matter of relentlessly seeking to achieve it.

Step Two: Testimony

Your mind can only ever be so organised, and with daily incomings like ‘finish that essay’ or ‘do the washing up’ other, often more important, aims can be continually pushed aside. Here’s where testimony comes in. Show yourself hard evidence of your aspirations on a daily basis. List ultimate goals and pin them on your notice board or anywhere obvious to you. This can be done as simply as with bullet points, grouping different priority goals together, or you could get super serious about what you want by tracking yearly, monthly, weekly and daily goals on your calendar – giving yourself a deadline can be the key to success.

Make a five, ten, even twenty-five year plan depending the extent of your goals, it’s a simple idea but if you start planning what you want for the future now, think of the chances you’ll actually have achieved it all those years away? Some goals change, but some don’t, lend an eye to the future as well as living for today.

Work in reverse, figure out where you want to be at the end of your chosen time frame, then track back in little steps, even numbering them, until you get where you are right now. Again, this gives you a clearer idea of where you’re headed and how you’re going to get there, plus, it makes anything seem far more achievable.

Step Three: Voice


Writing your goals down is great, but even better to sing them from the rooftops! Give the things you desire a voice. Tell your friends, your family, your lover, your tutors, random passers by! Talk about your goals at every given opportunity, though be careful not to become too self-involved, listen to other peoples goals too – encourage them in theirs.

Once you know exactly what you want, let the universe know too, and you may just find it helps you out. Open yourself up to all those uncanny ‘coincidences’ and perfect opportunities that fall into your lap, tap in to that stream of so-called ‘luck’ and mine it for all it’s worth!

Step Four: Action

"Tomorrow, Tomorrow, I love ya, Tomorrow." Annie

Here’s a heads up – you’ll only ever get so many tomorrows, why not make today your day? Even the smallest thing you do can be chalked up as a step toward your ultimate goal; learn something new - anything! Get some experience; make a new acquaintance; sign up for a lunchtime class at uni; start a blog! Do whatever, just as long as you know you’ve done something.

It's never too early to start taking steps towards the life you want. Despite the importance I've placed on having goals, your perfect existence shouldn't be some elusive object on the horizon; life is what is happening right now, so start making it what you want it to be; start enjoying it.

Essentially, as much as it's important to keep your eye on the pot of gold, isn't it even more important that you learn to love the rainbow?

Adoration,
Megan x