Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Instamonth #November2016

Not quite sure how its the end of November and nearly Christmas now... this month went by soooo fast. It's been one of the best months of the year for me! After quitting my previous job, I had another interview on October 31st, and found out the day after I got the job! So I've been working at this new place for three weeks now and I fucking love it! I'm sure I'm annoying everyone with my constant gushing about it but I really am so so happy and lucky to have found this position at this company.

We're currently in the process of finding a flat for ourselves. We live with my parents and sister at the moment and its super cramped cosy. We think we've found one. But I don't want to gush too much in case it doesn't go ahead. We are so excited though! Hopefully we'll be moved in next year.
My old piggy Blair | shopping for all the pink | bonfire night
autumn colours | canals near work | Christmassy nails!
evening autumn walks | party with the fam | pastel skies

Aside from starting my new job, we made it to see some fireworks at a nearby country pub where we drank mulled wine out of Styrofoam cups and sweated by the bonfire. We've squeezed in as many countryside walks as we can, mostly at the weekends 'cos its too dark to go in the evenings after work *sadface*.

I painted my nails all glittery for a family party we went to and got very drunk and laughed until our faces hurt. The nail varnish is Twinkle Twinkle by Barry M, a limited edition Christmas colour! It's very nearly December now so it's totally appropriate to get gassed about Christmas! Every year I get so excited to eat stuffing and roasties. Mostly the stuffing though. And all the Christmas lights! I'm such a cliche, but it's one of my favourite times of year. I'm getting even more into the spirit of the cold weather this year thanks to discovering hygge. Have a lil google and explore of hygge, especially if you struggle with the cold winter months, it'll change your attitude completely. The Danes are doing it right!

I hope you've all had a good November? Did you get out to see some fireworks? I wonder have any of you started Christmas shopping/planning yet?

Sunday, 27 November 2016

How to Write a Graduate CV That Will Get You Noticed

I spent at least a couple of weeks working on my graduate CV before applying for a single job. I've had many positive comments from recruiters so far, and It's helped me secure two jobs since I started applying.

I have no idea if I've updated you on my work life, I'm sure I told you all I quit that previous job. Less than two weeks after quitting I had secured another job which I've been at for three weeks now and I fucking love it! The difference in my mental health is incredible. No more panic attacks every day, instead I look forward to going to work! So clearly my CV is working quite well for me, I have Ryan and his own business On Point Recruitment to thank for making my CV so appealing! Which leads me into my first tip;

  1. Hire a CV writer
I swear it's so worth doing this and giving yourself the best possible start. CV writing is not something many of us are truly skilled at. Bigging ourselves up is a toughie. There are plenty of options for CV writing out there, some might be quite basic, others might be far more detailed and personal, like Ryan! When I first met Ryan I had a (very) basic CV and a list of experiences I wasn't sure were relevant. He was able to pick out skills I would have picked up and used by listening to me talk about my various experiences.

Now that I've done it the once and have picked up so many tips from him, I don't reckon I'd need to hire a CV writer again. Soak up as many tips from them as you can 'cos they know what they're talking about! 

  1. Be honest
Duh. Don't lie on your CV, you will get caught out! I can't believe some people so blatantly lie on theirs, it's laughable! Apparently, the most told lie on CVs is that they can play the piano.... I mean come ooonnnn! If you're gonna lie, at least make it interesting (no don't, seriously, just don't lie). You will always be asked for more detail about points on your CV in an interview. Don't get caught out!

  1. Include jobs you think were shitty
For example... I flipped burgers and served hot dogs and drinks to rowdy fans at Fratton football club and nearly didn't include it. If it wasn't for Ryan I wouldn't have! See, hire a CV writer. Best tip! Ryan told me it shows important skills, including compliance and knowledge of health and safety regulations. In the second interview I had for a job I got, I was informed they wanted someone who had worked at a shitty job, just like mine at Fratton FC.

  1. DON'T include...
Words and/or phrases that say you are punctual, hard-working, and passionate. these things are already expected of you as a bare minimum. 

  1. Have a small hobbies section
My feedback from one interview was that I took a while to switch on and open up. Once asked about this blog my eyes apparently lit up and I smashed it from there! They need to see the more human side to you, they need to see your passion come through. It doesn't need to be a long section, the shorter the better really! Just include some interesting hobby you have and when they inevitably ask for more information about it, you have something you can very easily talk about!

Let us know in the comments below what are your top tips for writing a graduate CV!

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Reasons To Go Vegan & How To Do It

November brought with it a new monthly challenge, which was to go vegan for the month! I realise I'm a bit late to the party... but I started a new job and have been settling in for the last couple of weeks. 

If you have been umming and ahhing over going vegan for a while, now is the time to start! You can sign up to the challenge here. I've been fully vegan for just over a year now and still think it was one of the best decisions I've ever made. I had already been pescetarian from the age of 11, and slowly started cutting out eggs, then milk etc, for various reasons, during my time at university. In my experience, vegans get a lot of hate, but please don't let that put you off! Some of us are actually alright ๐Ÿ˜‰ 

Take this list as reasons why I am vegan, not necessarily why you should go vegan, though it'd be nice if it encouraged someone! What's the harm in trying it for a month? It ain't gonna kill you... and it'll actually save some lives.

  1. Animal suffering
Already at 11, I hated the thought of eating animals, it's hard to explain, some people seem to make the connection a lot later in life and treat the meat they eat with such disrespect until then. The people I went to school with thought it was fucking hilarious to wind me up about meat, I even had bacon slipped into my blazer pockets a few times. I try not to blame them, they, like me, were brought up seeing meat as food, and believe that the way the animals were killed was "humane". Wtf is a "humane" way of murdering?! (Rhetorical question - please don't try to answer this). I also totally thought free range chickens weren't exploited and milking cows were harmless. This was before I knew more about the processes...

Did you know in the egg industry, male chicks are put straight on a conveyor belt which winds them to a grisly death by grinder? I'd link to a video but I ain't looking around the internet for one, it's too horrific. Maybe it's what you need to see to wake up to the fact that the egg industry ain't so innocent. 
  1. Human suffering
Ok, let's say you don't give a crap about animal welfare, do you care about your fellow humans? Because working at a slaughterhouse ain't no picnic. The people employed are often exploited, paid low wages because they are desperate, and suffering mental illnesses and trauma because of the horrific job they do. You might think "why don't they just quit?" but as I just said, they are often exploited because everything about slaughter houses is so hush hush. 

  1. Health reasons
Before I make this point, I wanna say eating vegan isn't unhealthy for healthy people, but it's possible to be vegan and still be unhealthy. Vegan junk food is a thing! Maybe that should be a point of its own....

I've suffered less flu and colds since going vegan, my mental health is much better, I have more energy, and rarely feel bloated or stuffed after eating. Cutting out dairy also improved my boyfriend's eczema, it didn't cure it, there is no cure for eczema as it stands, but it can help. 
  1. The planet
Maybe you don't actually care about the planet but if you do the single best thing you can do for it is to go vegan. There are so many different ways animal agriculture negatively affects the planet. And yes, if we didn't breed these cows and sheep they would probably die out, but we domesticated them in the first place. It is kinder to simply stop breeding them, which will do wonders for CO2 emissions! Animal agriculture takes up much more space than crops do, producing far less for the amount of space taken up too. The animals obviously require feeding, and their feed isn't conjured up out of thin air, it also has to be grown which takes up even more space. Why not cut out the middleman (meat/eggs/dairy) and get the nutrition directly from plants?

Not only is it affecting the land, but it also affects the sea, with portions of coastal areas dead or dying due to animal faeces running into the water because there is so damn much of it, and contaminating the water, killing anything living there.

  1. Explore cooking
This wasn't an initial reason why I went vegan, but something that naturally happened. Over time I realised how many different meals and sweet treats I could make and I became pretty good at cooking! Not everyone likes cooking, but there are plenty of simple and quick vegan recipes to try, you might find something on my vegan pinterest board!

It might seem seriously daunting, but there is no need to feel the pressure or see going vegan as a negative thing! I have found it so easy to be vegan like I was always supposed to go this way. I have a few tips from my own experience for transitioning to vegan.

  1. Take it at your own pace
I've heard of some people going vegan overnight, from eating meat as well! I mentioned I was already a pescetarian, so cutting meat out of my diet wasn't a problem. Maybe start by going vegetarian first and getting to grips with that. I found milk very easy to cut out because soya milk is so yummyyyy! I know not everyone thinks so but there are SO FREAKING MANY dairy-free kinds of milk to choose from. We went for soya milk 'cos my boyfriend is also allergic to nuts. The hardest part is probably remembering to check ingredients on packets, but you'll get into the habit. Just don't beat yourself up if you forget or slip up, everyone does at some point.

  1. Easy recipes
Get some simple recipes under your belt first, like veggie curries, creamy pasta, stir fries, mac & cheese, so you have some go-to's for dinner each night. None of these takes particularly long to make, and I've found it pretty easy making up recipes as I go along!

  1. Look at vegan food porn on Instagram
Most of it doesn't look like anything I've made, but a photogenic mac & cheese will still inspire me to go make my own slightly sloppy but still delicious m&c. Making pinterest boards full of recipes and tips also helps, I have three separate boards now! The previously mentioned recipes & tips board, vegan sweet treats, and a vegan Christmas board!

So are you tempted to try it? If any other vegans are reading here, suggest your fave vegan recipes in the comments!

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Bookmarked #25

Another month went by already! It really feels like November now with the freezing cold weather, frosty mornings, and Christmas shit appearing in shops. Soz for mentioning the C-word! Don't worry, there are no C-word related links below ๐Ÿ˜‰ 
  1. Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World - I've loved Rachel Ignotofsky's illustrations for a while now, especially the women in science posters. Now she's brought out a book of women in science with  and I'm dying for it!
  2. Here’s The Real Origin Of The Word ‘Yas’ - everyone is using the word, even intersectional feminists, but you might want to know it's origin before using it. "...the word “yas” actually originated with the queer POC (people of colour) community circa the late 1980s".
  3. The Fascinating Story Of Rosalind Franklin, The Unsung Hero Of DNA - since reading The Dark Lady of DNA about Franklin's life I've felt so drawn to her! Take the time to learn about her if you haven't already.
  4. 5 Common Behaviors Cis Men May Not Realise Are Abusive (And How to Stop Them) - this is a really helpful article and I urge any cis men reading this, to read this! And any women to send it to their partners or men they know. Share it, it's important.
  5. Vegan diets for children aren’t abusive – raising a child to eat meat is actually more extreme - I really think children should know what they are eating, how is informing them and raising them to make compassionate choices abusive? If you're hiding the truth about animal agriculture and how the animals are killed, surely that is more manipulative...
  6. Mฤori Women Talk About Their Sacred Chin Tattoos - I learnt something new from this! You might not know about it either.
  7. Veganism and toxic masculinity - this is such a great post written by Nadia, something I haven't written about but have thought about due to being vegan and a feminist, they're two topics I consider often.
  8. 'Black Mirror's Gay Love Story In "San Junipero" Is The Best Romance Of 2016 - SPOILERS! If you haven't watched Black Mirror you need to do that now, skip the first few episodes if it's not your thing, but damn, this is the most heartwarming/breaking story ever. I was in bits after watching this! In a good way!
  9. Red Wine Hot Chocolate Is The Ultimate Winter Beverage - 'cos the weather has suddenly turned freeeeezing and I love hot alcoholic drinks! I had my first mulled cider of the year whilst watching fireworks last week! I can't wait to try this one, and Baileys offer a vegan option now too! 
  10. 'Abortion Saved My Life': The Activist Who Shields Women from Clinic Protesters - this woman is great, we need more people like Michelle in the world. Anti-abortion campaigners have been turning more violent and aggressive over the years, which has carried over from the US to the UK, and in Ireland, abortion rights are severely limited.
Let us know in the comments if you've read anything good lately! Or leave a link to your fave blog post of the week.