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My First Thoughts On Disney+ And My To-Watch List

Disney+

Yesterday was the day that all the UK Disney fans had been waiting for! The magical launch of Disney+ on our little island and I never clicked a button fast enough! I, like a lot of people, grew up with the Disney films and I have some incredible memories visiting Disneyworld in 1998! There was something so cool about seeing The Lion King and princesses like Belle!

How many of you preordered Disney+ months ago?!

If I had the funds, I would have but I’m still doing the monthly payouts to watch all of my old and new favourites. Okay, so what were my first thoughts on the site so far?

The first thing I loved was how clear and concise it looked! I’m a bit of an organisation freak and seeing everything set out in clear sections such as original movies, animated movies, Disney Channel favourites and more. I may have squealed on that last section because I saw so many of my childhood shows listed!

I adore how it has gone all the way back to the start of Disney with Steamboat Willie! Who else has the whistle tune stuck in their head? I know I do! I never realised just how many short films they did at the start! If you click search at the top, you get taken to a bunch of collections to check out. One of the first that you’ll see is the ‘Disney through the decades’ collection! If you thought that you’d seen every Disney film made, you’ll be sorely mistaken!

Grab some popcorn while you stay at home and see all the different creations through the decades!

I’ve already watched Stargirl which was both incredible yet confusing! It reminded me a lot of Bridge to Terebithia with a girl completely different to everyone else and a boy trying to figure her out! The songs were incredible and I think everyone will have different interpretations!

I’ve only watched Disney Channel original films in the past so can’t wait to check out other kinds!

Speaking of Disney Channel, this was one of my main channels to watch in the early 00s. The 90s had really introduced me to US kids shows like Sabrina, Clarissa Explains It All and that carried on into the millenium!

My days were full of The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, Recess, Ducktales, Lizzie McGuire and Wizards of Waverly Place.

Those were the cheesy days!

The important question: what am I going to binge-watching on Disney+ during my self-isolation? There are literally so many films and shows! We’re going to be set for months which is super handy! Here are the picks on my watchlist that are near and dear to my Disney heart (I’ll watch everything on the site soon enough!):

Movies

  • Moana
  • Tangled
  • The Lion King (animated)
  • Beauty and the Beast (animated & live-action)
  • Ralph Breaks The Internet
  • One Day at Disney
  • The Little Mermaid
  • The Jungle Book (animated & live-action)
  • The Aristocats
  • Brave
  • Big Hero 6
  • Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe

Like I said, I’m literally going to watch everything and anything on this site! There are so many films I could add to this list but we’d be here all day!

TV Shows

  • Lizzie McGuire
  • The Suite Life of Zack and Cody
  • Suite Life on Deck
  • Andi Mack
  • Big Hero 6: The Series
  • Gravity Falls
  • Tangled: The Series
  • Wizards of Waverly Place
  • The Adventures of the Gummi Bears (MY HEART!!)
  • Doug (I still have the VHS!)
  • Kim Possible
  • Recess
  • The Imagineering Story
  • Star Wars Rebels
  • That’s So Raven

Yeah, you can kind of tell that I was hooked to the Disney Channel on the weekends! There were and still are amazing shows to watch for all ages. You had your fantasy shows, your family shows, your animated shows and the shows that took the first step! I’m looking at you, Andi Mack!!

If you have Disney+, what are you excited to watch?

Books Fandom Harry Potter

5 World Book Day Costume Ideas For Grown-Ups

world book dayPhoto by Paolo Nicolello on Unsplash

5th March marks World Book Day and it’s such a fun day for both kids and grown-ups alike.

Every supermarket I’ve been in lately have had some amazing costumes for kids to wear. There was Mary Poppins, Matilda, a Golden Ticket, Alice in Wonderland and Dorothy from Wizard of Oz. They even had some adorable teeny costumes for babies!

I know that adults have fancy dress shops to make costumes but they’re never particular book characters! I mean…half the costumes you see for women in those shops are sexy! Not every woman wants to look like that. Some of us would like to have a nice costume without having to worry about showing much of everything.

That’s why I wanted to come up with some possible World Book Day costumes for grown-ups to wear. Whether they are for teachers, librarians or anyone who works with books.

Mary Poppins

There are so many fun ideas that you could take from Mary Poppins!!

You could be:

  • Mary herself (from either the original film or the more recent one)
  • Bert (who wouldn’t want to be Dick Van Dyke or Lin-Manuel Miranda!)
  • Mrs Banks (woo for votes for women!)

The great thing about days like these is that you can be super creative with whoever you choose. As long as you give people the book you’re from, you get to let them use their imagination. The fact that we’ve had Mary Poppins Returns means kids will more than likely know who you are. If I could, I would’ve loved to have done Mary in her ‘A Cover Is Not The Book‘ costume! Love that song.

Harry Potter

How I wish my teachers would have done this when I was still at school. I think mine were super boring because they never bothered to dress up and even scolded a few people who dressed up. These days I’ve seen so many incredible pictures of teachers who have dressed up for World Book Day as the teachers from Harry Potter. There are so many you can choose from too!

There have even been some that went as more creative characters such as Moaning Myrtle (toilet seat and all), Fred and George and one of the House mascots! I never thought of going as a badger but I might do that for a convention one day. That’s if I can figure out how!

Never be afraid to think outside the box!

Roald Dahl

I’ve literally seen so many people chatting about doing Roald Dahl characters. He’s never been as popular and I’m loving it!

He wrote legendary characters that both adults and kids alike adore. We’ve all read at least one of his book at some point in our lives. Since there are so many characters to choose, their costumes can be as easy as you want them to be.

Some amazing adult characters to try could be:

  • Miss Trunchball
  • Miss Honey
  • Miss Spider/Mrs Ladybug
  • Grandpa Joe
  • Mr Fox

Lord of The Rings

Depending on where you work, I think more people should dress up as characters from J.R.R Tolkien’s books.

You can’t go wrong with either being a badass elf like Arwen or Lady Galadriel or being one of the Hobbits such as Samwise Gamgee. The costumes are a little bit more tricky to do but I reckon it would be a great challenge for anyone who is up to trying.

If you do, let me know so I can fangirl over you!!

Disney

I’ve seen a few who say that people shouldn’t dress up as Disney characters because they’re not from books. At the end of the day, a lot of those characters have either ended up in books or did come from them. Look at Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan!

I adore all things Disney! It’s such a magical fandom to be a part of, you get to visit the kingdoms and you can relate to the characters. I grew up during the 90s when films such as The Lion King, Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast came out. It was an amazing time to be a kid and experiencing all of these coming to life. I think I still have The Lion King soundtrack on cassette tape! Haha!

Who could you be? Well…take your pick!

  • Jessie (Toy Story)
  • Jane (Tarzan)
  • Phillip (the guy Robin Williams plays in Flubber)
  • Rapunzel (Tangled)
  • Tiana (Princess and the Frog)

There is nothing wrong with dressing up for World Book Day regardless of the fact that we aren’t kids anymore. We read books too and love the characters so embrace your bookish love!

Who would you dress up as for World Book Day?

World Book Day

Books Fandom

Review | Heartstopper Volume 3 by Alice Oseman

I’m not embarrassed in the slightest that I have been fangirling over Heartstopper! There is something so special about Alice Oseman’s Heartstopper series and people need to read! This is my call to any friends, especially those in the LGBTQ+ community, get Volume 1 and feel all the rainbow feels!

I may have jumped ahead of myself a little.

Kind of saw Alice in person this week at her event for Heartstopper Volume 3 in Nottingham. Yeah…still kind of on a high from that and proud of it.

Heartstopper Volume 3

Since this is a review of the latest volume, I might as well calm myself down a little and give you my honest opinions. This is a continuation following Nick and Charlie’s gentle journey into their relationship. They’ve had quite a few bumps in the road in terms of homophobia bullies (I’m looking at you, Harry!) and Nick trying to understand his sexuality.

It doesn’t matter what these boys go through!

They’re just so in love and I literally feel my heart grow every time I read their moments alone together. You forget that you’re reading a graphic novel and truly feel immersed into their world. It’s so interesting how your brain adds colour to the pictures even when they’re black and white! Alice clearly paints the world with her words!

I can be good with words too, y’know! Haha!

This difference between Heartstopper Volume 3 and the last book is how many different topics are covered! We have depression, sexuality, homophobia, eating disorders and more! I adored how much Alice had me thinking even when the moments got rather dark. I will be honest and say that there were a couple of moments during this where I was triggered and had to step away. It wasn’t that they were super horrifying or anything. I loved them so much! I guess the character going through those moments reminded me of myself and I cried for them.

Just when you think you know what is going to happen, a curveball is thrown at you and you literally can’t turn the page fast enough.

Heartstopper Volume 3

Even though we only get the odd glimpse of her, one of my favourite characters has to be Charlie’s sister Tori. There is something so cool and sassy about her. She says what’s on her mind, doesn’t really if it embarrasses her brother (only sibling banter) and I just love her! I really hope that we get to see more of her in Volume 4 next year because she deserves more paper time!

Other characters I love are Darcy, Tara and Elle. I definitely have to say that Darcy and Tara are just as cute together as Nick and Charlie! They’re always holding hands or sitting in the other’s lap. To see them being so comfortable with who they are after everything is amazing! Plus Darcy is just a big Nick x Charlie shipper!

heartstopper volume 3

This above moment had me giggling for a few minutes!

I’d probably say something along the same lines if I knew two of my gay friends had been caught kissing. Nick and Charlie are still super new to being boyfriends and testing the waters. The fact that they’re having a quick snogging session while on a school trip to Paris (the romance capital of the world!) makes me proud of them. They still have a long way to go until they feel more comfortable being open but they’re taking great steps.

Moments that you have to look out for when you read:

  • Charlie’s reaction to Nick speaking another language
  • A medical emergency
  • Two characters finally getting together
  • Nick and Charlie posting on Instagram (and their comments!)

Oh!! Before I forget: Alice actually has two new books coming out this year which is incredible! They are Nick and Charlie (3rd September) and Loveless (9th July). I can’t wait to preorder my copies next week! We even have the TV show of Heartstopper happening at some point in the future!! Not sure when but I’m already casting people in my mind!

What are your thoughts on Heartstopper Volume 3?
Have you read any of the other Heartstopper books?

 

 

Books Fandom

My Top 8 Favourite YA Book Covers

Before we even read a book, we see book covers.

Sometimes you get a simple version to announce that the book will be published. Sometimes you get the gorgeous cover straight away (Alice Oseman is amazing for this!). Other times you’ll get a book that gets a new cover for their hardback or an update for the paperback! The amount of book covers that Harry Potter has had is crazy but I still adore all of them!

This post has been inspired by one of my favourite booktubers, HaileyInBookland. She spoke about being a book collector in her last vlog and you should see her Alice In Wonderland collection!

I have to admit that book covers are one of the big reasons for me to pick up a book and look at the synopsis. I’m a visual kind of person so colour, illustrations and gorgeous font always gets my attention. You’ll be surprised to see that I don’t have any of the Potter books on my list. It isn’t that I don’t love all of the covers but these ones really had me captivated!

book covers

Proud

If you’ve been a follower of my blog for a while then you won’t be surprised to see a couple of LGBTQ+ choices! The pride colours are some of my favourite to see on a cover! They’re just so vibrant and speak volumes on behalf of people who can’t!

What I loved about this particular design, other than the colours, is the fist in the air! It

That to me signifies a person who is celebrating who they are, determined to get their voice across and just has a strong personality! I could be wrong but that’s how it makes me feel!

The Places I’ve Cried In Public (Holly Bourne)

This book is one that definitely was picked because of the cover!

I mean…look at the design!! It looks so wistful! A person sitting on a bench by themselves and a tree with fallen leaves. It’s only when you see the smudge stain from a tear falling onto ink that you get the connection to the story. I know I related to the title when I saw it mentioned on Holly Bourne’s Twitter. I can think of quite a few times when I’ve publically cried about something.

Whether it be from bullying (crying in the school corridor), losing my mum (crying in the nursing home) or being told bad news (crying on the back seat of a bus).

Chasing the Stars (Malorie Blackman)

I’ve been a big fan of Malorie’s ever since I discovered her through ‘Pig Heart Boy’. We were taught about people with differences and bullying through this book and I was always really excited to hear another chapter. After that, I tried to follow a bunch of her other books especially Noughts & Crosses and Chasing the Stars.

Even though I was overly sold on this particular book, I still loved its cover!

The gorgeous pastel colours all blurred, the gold background for the title that reminds me of a supernova and the lines going in circle that also remind me of when you need shooting stars! There is probably a better description of the cover (where are my astrophysicists?) but that’s as much as my mind stretches!

The Raven King (Maggie Stiefvater)

I’ll be honest and admit that I’d never heard of Maggie and her books before today. It wasn’t until I spotted her book covers on the Waterstones website that my interest was piqued.

The reason why this cover is on my list out of the ones I could have chosen should be pretty obvious.

Any guesses?

It looks like Harry’s stag patronus!! The stunning illustration of a stag with blue paintstrokes within it surrounded by ravens is something I would for certain put on my wall. It’s simple yet full of so much detail! I really wish I knew who created this cover so I can fangirl over them! I’ve now got the Raven Cycle on my TBR list to check out so I’ll let you know if I love!

Girl Hearts Girl (Lucy Sutcliffe)

LGBTQ+ cover number 2!

Believe me, my whole list would have been full of books with these covers but I had to kind of draw a line. Don’t worry…I’ll be allowing my little heart to run free for Valentine’s Day! If you have any other books in their genre, I’d love to hear some recommendations! I always want to read more!

This book, like Proud, is based on the personal experiences of someone in the community and that is Lucy. She writes about her experiences of discovering she was gay at 14, trying to figure out where to go next and then meeting her girlfriend Kaelyn. This broke and then glued my heart together when I read!

I already said that I loved the rainbow colours but I also love that blocks of colour are plane tickets! They have little hearts, the London skyline, two girl icons and are just adorable!! It’s amazing when little details are added to the cover and tell you the visual story.

The Paper & Hearts Society (Lucy Powrie)

If you haven’t read Lucy’s debut novel, then it’s a must!! It has such an amazing group of characters and, if you read it now, then you’ll be ready for its sequel ‘Read with Pride’ coming out in May!!

Does it have a Pride link to it?

*shuffles* Maybe.

Okay, yes!! I like what I like and proud of that! Haha!

What I love about Paper & Hearts Society is the sheer vibrance of the cover!! As well as being a brilliant bright yellow (my Hufflepuff side was so happy!), it also had little stars and hearts and a young girl sitting on a bench with a pile of books next to her.

This is me in book cover form!!

Autoboyography (Christina Lauren)

Okay, this list should really be titled ‘My Top 8 Favourite LGBTQ+ Book Covers’ because here is another one!

The main character, Tanner, is bisexual so wooo for the bi community!!

Unless you knew what colour were on the bi flag (they’re pink, purple and blue), then you might see some of the cleverness of the cover. It’s obviously upside down but I see the colours there as well as the gorgeous night’s sky! It’s a gorge blending of the colours and the two characters seemingly seem to be standing on a book and a mountain! That’s how it looks to me!

Utah has a lot of snowy mountains, right? I watch ThisIsHowWeBingham and they show lots of snowy mountains on their vlogs!

Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)

I had to finish this post with Pride and Prejudice!

I might be bias about this cover since I don’t live all that far away from Chatsworth House and there it is on here, but I do have other reasons for loving this version. It catches the romance of the story with the night’s sky and Elizabeth Bennet with Mr Darcy, but it also shows her sass!

She has her back to him and is too busy with her book! That is the fiesty Lizzy we know!

Puffin always seems to make the most beautiful designs so I’m not surprised that I added one of their classics!

What book covers have you fallen in love with?

Fandom Lifestyle

What I Got For Christmas in 2019 (Harry Potter, books…)

What I got for Christmas

Happy Boxing Day! I still have zero clue what meaning this day has but I know it’s a nightmare for my friends in retail. I love getting the chance to be a bit nosy and see what everyone got for Christmas. Even if you don’t celebrate it, I hope you had a great Wednesday anyway.

For the last few years all of the presents I get on the big day are ones that I buy myself. This isn’t as sound as sad as it seems. I have a list of items that I have my eyes on through the year and, if I still like them, I buy. Part of me thought that would be the case this year, but thanks to a Secret Santa and a uni friend, I had surprises!

It was great to feel like a typical Christmas for the first time in a while.

What I got for Christmas (for myself)

Hufflepuff Notebook (£7.99)

I’ve been drooling over this notebook for so many months and I could never justify getting another notebook. However, after almost a year, I just decided to get it! It’s so pretty! I love hardback notebooks! They last super well and the Hufflepuff design looks incredible!

What do you think I just use it for next year?

CHANEL No5 Deodorant (£36)

I bought this a few months ago before I knew someone was going to give me a pocket spray of it. This fragrance has such an important meaning to me since it was Mum’s favourite scent. Dad got it for her anniversary and I got carried on at Christmas. I really missed smelling this and it always makes me feel elegant when I wear it. You know the person who randomly smells their clothes to breathe in that nice smell? That’s me! Haha!

Thank you, Hannah!!

‘Live in the Moment’ 2020 Diary (£9.99)

I can’t find the link to this specific diary but WHSmith officially have some of the nicest diaries! I’ve been using their ones for around 10 years now and I’m never disappointed! I love getting the creative covered ones that are bright and hardback. This year I chose to get this quote because I need to learn to live more in the moment and not negatively.

Literally cannot wait to start filling it with all the dates I have for next year. I have a certain way of writing in my diary and it makes me more happy than it should!

Fellow stationery nerds get me!

13th Doctor Funko Pop (£9.99)

With the new series of Doctor Who starting next Wednesday, I think I timed getting this particular Funko Pop perfectly. It doesn’t take much to find out how much I have fallen for Jodie’s Doctor. She is so cool, intelligent, that usual Time-Lady quirkiness and Northern grit!

Got to say I missed a Northern Doctor since the 9th Doctor!

I wish I could have gotten her in her long jacket but I just couldn’t find that one when I was in The Entertainer. I hope to collect another next week for my birthday so fingers crossed I can get it!

RWBY: The Official Companion (£14)

This was a gift I got myself during my trip in London to see Ali! We headed into Forbidden Planet so I could look for this book and I almost didn’t get it. We were kind of pushing it a little for time to get my train but we fought! Steven Moffatt had been signing there an hour before and I missed him. I was gutted.

Thankfully a lovely guy who worked at the store pointed me in the right direction. It was even reduced from £28 to £14 so highfive for the fangirl luck. It’s £22 on their website right now! RWBY is an incredible show if you love fairytales, the Brothers Grimm and fantasy. It’s so fun to watch and really has you on the edge of your seat.

What I got for Christmas (from others)

Dumplin’ and Puddin’ (£7.99 each)

Both of these copies came from my amazing Bookish Secret Santa. It was my first time taking part in it this year and everyone was so nice! We even have a Valentines one planned for next year so that will be super exciting for this spinster! I watched Dumplin’ on Netflix and it was such a heart-warming and thought-provoking film. If you haven’t watched, please go check it out. The sequel Puddin follows the same kind of idea but with someone new and a whole different situation!

Severus Snape Funko Pop (£9.99)

Look who decided to show up at my Christmas! HE’S ALIVE!! You can never go wrong with a Harry Potter Funko as a present. At least in my books!

The Secret Language of Cats (£7.99)

Ever want to know what the heck your cat keeps meowing at you? This book is going to teach me all the subtle things about what sounds mean in certain situations. Very scientific with the whole looking at phonetics so, Santa, you might confuse me while I read this!

Bomb Cosmetics Funkadelic Gift Set (£8.40)

Never tried bath bombs in my flat bath so that is going to be an experience! According to the little leaflet on the top of the box, it has inside:

  • Paper Tiger Bath Creamer
  • Pure Therapy Soap
  • Sun Seduction Bath Creamer
  • Free Spirit Soap
  • Hypnobath Bath Blaster

I’m going to have a very chilled start to 2020! I love it!!

Hotel Chocolat Nano Slab Gallery (£10)

I had wondered what this was when I was received it. The box it was in made me think of a board game at first but I was so happy to see chocolate! I’ve never tried chocolate from this shop before but it looks so yummy! All the different slabs of chocolate are going straight to my thighs!

I’m doomed! Haha!

‘Angel Wings’ Yankee Candle (£15.99)

My first thought on unwrapping this candle?

WHOA! THAT IS A FREAKIN’ BIG CANDLE!!

I’ve never owned a candle this large before so it was a shock to see. Not an unpleasant one! It smells SO good and I can’t wait to burn it throught the year. It’s going to make my place smell gorgeous. I’m super grateful to Santa for getting me this especially with it being called ‘Angel Wings’. Perfect for my parents!

I never expected any presents from anyone I knew. I don’t live anywhere near family so was expecting just me and me alone. However, someone believed that I should be blessed with incredible friends this month. What I got for Christmas is going to last with me for a long time.

Thank you so much to Ali, Gemma and Joe for thinking of me!

What did you get under the tree this year?

Fandom Lifestyle

My Highlights From The Last Decade (2009 – 2019)

decade

I can’t believe I’ve managed to get through another decade. This last decade has been one of the toughest of my life due to losing 4 of my relatives. I also was diagnosed with severe depression & anxiety, had 2 big operations and had me saying goodbye. Though have been many, many heartaches that had me questioning my life, there have been highlights scattered in between.

This won’t be a photo-heavy post at all since I don’t have many photos from the last 10 years. It’s definitely a family thing! I just don’t like having my photo taken much. I want to share what I’m proud of accomplishing so I can begin 2020 with a fresh mind!

2009-2010: Started a nursing degree

That’s right! I was almost a nurse! A Children’s nurse to be exact. I had done an Access to Higher Education course on 2009 and thought that doing the degree would make my mum proud. If you didn’t know, my mum had been a nurse for over 30+ years at this point and I did love children. I was accepting onto a course that only had 4 places available and had had to figure out maths! I am hopeless at maths. I’m not even joking with you…I struggle with multiplication, division and even substraction.

Somehow I was able to pass that exam with ratios and weird sums.

If I started this degree, why am I not a nurse now?

10 months into the course, I chose to leave. It wasn’t an easy decision because I desperately didn’t want to disappoint my mum by being a drop-out but, during an adult placement, I saw something horrific. It involved a child too. I questioned whether nursing was for me for a good few months and my tutors tried to get me to stay. Eventually I decided to go for my mental health.

2011: Started a theatre degree and graduated

In 2011, I started another degree!

I have to thank a friend, who was on the course, for pointing this out to me. I didn’t even know my university had a theatre course until then and it finally gave me freedom! The only career I’ve ever wanted to do from a child is acting. I heard all the usual stuff about how it wasn’t a proper career and that I wouldn’t have a life if I pursued it.

I knooow! Even on the first day of my degree my lecturer told us that 99% of us wouldn’t get any work.

People think theatre must be an easy and relaxing degree compared to the others but it’s actually the opposite. My course had everything included: stage management, script-writing, stage management and more. It was to make us completely ready for the industry! I loved everything about my course even the moments I really struggled. They made us work!

I was the first one on my dad’s side of the family to graduate from uni so I’ll always be proud of that! Being proud of everything I’ve done is a major thing!

2011: Fangirled at the final Harry Potter premiere

Having fangirled at almost all the Harry Potter premieres (except the first two!), I couldn’t not go to the final one for Deathly Hallows: Part 2! I knew that every fan would want to be there so I did what I hadn’t done for the others…I camped overnight. I couldn’t do the week that a few fans did but sleeping out in Trafalgar Square is an experience you don’t get too often.

It was so much fun though!

I was a bit too scared to sleep because I didn’t want to get mugged by anyone who snuck in so I gave Mum a camp chair so she could. It’s amazing how you can ignore how hard concrete is after almost 19 hours. Plus I did make friends with some Potter fans around me! I got interviewed by Radio 1, had my photo in the Evening Standard and had memories to last me a lifetime! It’s crazy to think we said goodbye to the Harry Potter cast this decade, especially since we grew up with them!

2012: Attended the Paralympics

2012 is definitely a moment in the decade that the UK will remember for years!

We got to host the Olympics and Paralympics with London being on the world stage for all to see. I’d actually auditioned and was accepted to be a volunteer at the Opening Ceremony but had to pull out due to life. I remembered being glued to the front of my TV watching all the events I could!

You might not know but I’m a big fan of athletics, swimming/diving and equestrian! There is nothing like the thrill of seeing your favourites trying to win gold!

While everyone else was desperately trying to get tickets for the Olympics, I applied to go and see the Paralympics.

I’ve always been interested in how a person adapts to a situation like sport, whether they had a disability they were born with or had one through an illness/event. Didn’t matter to me one bit. All I wanted to see was the athlete and how they did their thing.

When I heard that I was able to get the tickets to sit in the arena and watch, I was super excited! It had a double motive in that it was also a 60th present to my mum!

One of the incredible things I witnessed was seeing blind athletes doing the triple jump. They had a person at the end of the sand-jump who was there to help them perform. They clapped to get them running to a decent speed and then stopped when it was time to hop, skip and jump. Majority of them landed right in the pit which was incredible! Though one did miss a little bit and knocked one of the officials off his chair!

My favourite Paralympics had to be Richard Whitehead, Ellie Simmonds, Hannah Cockroft and Jonnie Peacock!

2013-2016: I started blogging

Who remembers when I was PromptsbyDee?

If you’ve known me for a while, you will. When I first started blogging I was planning to be a theatre/lifestyle blogger. I would chat about what plays I loved, what I’d been to see…basically a super bad version of Carpe Diem Emmie. Theatre is a big love of mine and I genuinely wish that I could see plays super often. However money and life just didn’t let that happen.

That’s why I turned to my other love: fandoms.

Unfortunately I lost that site when my domain and hosting ran out after looking after Mum. Caring took up more of my time so I decided to put blogging aside for a while. It wouldn’t be the last time you saw my face this decade!

2014: Won a competition to see Benedict Cumberbatch’s wax figure unveiled

You see that picture at the top?

That was one from the event and, ever since then, I keep popping up on the odd Madame Tussauds ad. It’s crazy seeing my face scattered around the internet! I googled before writing this post and apparently my ugly mug was on/in:

  • The Today Show
  • Madame Tussauds Website
  • The Metro
  • Vanity Fair
  • Wales Online
  • The Mirror
  • The Express

I look so awkward!! The girls I knew (Irene and Charlie) look really professional in any shots they’re in. I look a bit like a dork! At least I got to wear a deer-stalker!

2015: Visited Los Angeles

This had been a dream of mine for so many years! I think every actress pictures themselves in Hollywood filming at a studio or attending premieres in Downtown LA. When my mum told me that we could go after not being on holiday for over 14 years, I may have screamed. Not only were we going to LA, we were staying at the Beverly Wilshire right opposite Rodeo Drive.

It was mind-blowing!

I’ll be honest and say that I did cry for the first couple of days due to feeling unbelievably awkward. I felt so out of place compared to the beautiful and rich people I saw around. Thankfully a super lovely lady who worked at the hotel made me feel really special. We chatted, got to see her almost every day and she gifted me a gorgeous red lip gloss from Sephora. She’d been wearing it every time I saw her and I kept saying it looked nice! Haha!

Mum and I felt like stars! Guests at the hotel were able to be personally driven to anywhere we want to within a 4-mile radius and then picked up. IN A FREAKING BENTLEY!! I thought I’d get fined for even breathing funny in that car. The guy was great and gave us great advice on where to check out. My highlight had to be seeing Jennifer Lawrence buying coffee at a place called Urth Cafe! OH MY….I literally stopped breathing at the sight of my girl crush. My decade was everything including her! Hunger Games, memes, her winning an Oscar! She even said thanks when I held the door open since I did automatically without seeing who I was holding it for!

I personally can’t think of any other highlights after this since my world has been pretty dark since then.

If I ever do come up with other highlights for this decade, I’ll add them in.

What have been your big positives of the last decade?

Fandom Harry Potter

10 Magical Ideas For Any Harry Potter Party

Harry Potter party

There is one thing that I wish I could have had as a kid and that’s a Harry Potter party! I was lucky in the fact that my parents were great at doing parties for me! My dad made the best jam sandwiches! Something I still love to this day so thanks Dad!

It doesn’t matter how old you get, you are never too old for a party!

Before you say it, I know that most kids get them and adults get them on specific birthdays. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a little Harry Potter Potter party on your special day. It’s a little too short notice for my birthday (it’s next month) but I’m still going to share some ideas on how you can make a normal party into a magical one.

Game Ideas

Pin the scar on the Harry:

You’ve heard of ‘Pin the tail on the donkey’, but this is pinning Harry’s scar onto his forehead. Another pin game you can have is ‘Pin the nose on Voldemort’. It sounds like amazing fun and it would be brilliant to see how close people get!

Indoor Chaser Practice:

If I could I would totally play Quidditch! I’m so athletically challenged so would be horrendous at any position but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t try. A great way to discover a future Chaser is to build either build a mini table one with bottles, glow sticks and cups or a bigger one with buckets, poles and hula-hoops. The big one is awesome with red balloons as quaffles!

Horcrux Hunt:

Harry, Ron and Hermione obviously go on their hunt for the Horcruxes in Deathly Hallows so that would make a fun game! A Horcrux scavanger hunt! You get a handful of clues and have to search around for each Horcrux. Depending on how big your party is, you could even work in teams!

Harry Potter Scramble:

It’s exactly what it sounds like.

You get a list of Harry Potter items/characters and you have a certain amount of time to try and unscramble them all. I have actually played this game at a couple of midnight launches and it’s amazing how hard a couple can be!

Flying Keys:

Feeling a little hangry? Try playing ‘Flying Keys’! All you have to do is have a broomstick, attach 3 gummy/chocolate keys to it with strong string and, without using your hands, you have to catch/eat the key first.

Catch the Death-Eater:

Did anyone ever play the game ‘Wink Murderer’ at school? The basic idea is that a detective is picked, sent out the room and then a murderer is picked. The detective has to find out who the murderer is and the murderer has to secretly wink at someone which kills them.

You can totally do this at a Harry Potter party!

Instead of a detective, it’s an auror and instead of a murderer, it’s a Death-Eater.

Instead of a wink, you have to pretend to flick your wand at someone to kill them with the Killing Curse.

Food Ideas

Hufflepuff Puffs/Pizza Puffs:

There are so many things you can do with House foods! I love the idea of having either puff crisps like Wotsits or Hippeas as a snack or pizza puff bites! It’ll be easy to make these vegeterian/gluten-free too!

Sorting Cupcakes:

Every Harry Potter fan wants to be Sorted into their Hogwarts House! If they haven’t been Sorted yet, why not make it fun for them by finding out through cake! You can either make yourself some cupcakes or fairy cakes, make a hole on top and pop either red, yellow, blue or green icing inside. That way, when a person bites into the cake, the person sees what House they’re in.

Better than eating an old hat!

Fruit Owl:

Who doesn’t love food being shaped into different things! If you want a more healthier treat for your party, then why not have a fruit salad in the shape of an owl. At least it won’t bring you mail from your dentist! Haha.

Honeydukes:

Have the funds left for food? Treat your Harry Potter party to actual Wizarding World sweets! You have Bertie Botts Every Flavour Beans, Pepper Imps, Chocolate Frogs, Fizzing Whizz-Bees. There are so many to choose from and, if you don’t all that much money, then buy normal sweets and add magical signs to them.

Children love the idea of sweets regardless!

There are so many other things you can do for a party like this! You can have invitations made like a Hogwarts letter, handmade wands as party favours, potions for drinks. You name it, I’m sure there is a Potter spin you can do on it! If you do have a Potter party, then have an amazing one and hopefully this post has given you some ideas!

What would you have your Harry Potter party?

 

Fandom

What’s On My ‘His Dark Materials’ Gift Guide?

his dark materials

The Definitive Guide to Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials (£25) | His Dark Materials: Northern Lights (£7.99) | The Book of Dust: The Secret Commonwealth (£14.99) | Lyra’s Oxford (£6.18) | His Dark Materials Cushion (£29.95) | Dark Materials Poster Set (£28.80) | His Dark Materials Poster Print – A4 (£3.69) | Golden Compass Alethiometer Watch (£40.33)

Who else is watching His Dark Materials on BBC One?!

Me!!

I’ve been adoring all the episodes so far, even though they’ve missed out some bits that pulled my heartstrings in the books! That said, I just had to make a gift guide for the show and franchise because they are so many pretty things out there! Some of these things you may already own and others you might not!

Grab your daemon and let’s see!

The Definitive Guide To His Dark Materials

Ever wanted to learn everything you could about the world Philip Pullman created?

This book has everything you could want! From lots of details about the characters, places, creatures, language and more! I love discovering all the things I’d either missed while reading or wanting to learn more!

With over 560 pages to flip through, I reckon you’ll be busy until next Christmas!

His Dark Materials: Northern Lights (BBC Cover)

Speaking of the BBC series, here is the cover for the book!

I know it may seem pointless to most people about buying the same book over and over with different covers, but for book lovers and fans, it doesn’t matter!

It’s another cover to the collection and you can appreciate it from afar. It’s an even big plus if you’re loving the series and the actress playing Lyra!

The Secret Commonwealth

If you’ve read His Dark Materials a fair few times and needed something new to check out, then you need to grab Philip Pullman’s latest novel featuring an older Lyra!! I wasn’t a massive fan of the first Book of Dust novel but there is just something about Lyra that had me hooked in this!

The second volume of Sir Philip Pullman’s The Book of Dust sees Lyra, now twenty years old, and her dæmon Pantalaimon, forced to navigate their relationship in a way they could never have imagined, and drawn into the complex and dangerous factions a world that they had no idea existed.

Pulled along on his own journey too is Malcolm; once a boy with a boat and a mission to save a baby from the flood, now a man with a strong sense of duty and a desire to do what is right.

Theirs is a world at once familiar and extraordinary, and they must travel far beyond the edges of Oxford, across Europe and into Asia, in search for what is lost – a city haunted by dæmons, a secret at the heart of a desert, and the mystery of the elusive Dust.

Lyra’s Oxford

Remember with Harry Potter when we were trying to pass the time in between books and films?

This was the His Dark Materials version in the form of a short story featuring Lyra and Pan! It’s only 80 pages so a perfect little stocking filler. It’s set two years after The Amber Spyglass and you know wherever these two are, drama can’t be far behind!

Have any of you visited Oxford and tried to look through Lyra’s eyes?

His Dark Materials Cushion

This cushion has the most gorgeous illustration of Lyra flying through the air in a balloon and, while it seems so peaceful, you can feel the magic! Nothing more perfect for a cushion than relaxing and feeling sleepy! The colours are so pretty and I reckon this would fit on any bed!

You can get this cushion 45cm with cover only for £24.95 up to 60cm with cover and insert for £43.95!

Pricey cushion, huh?

Poster Set

I adore this poster set for the reason that they’re designed in a kind of steampunk style! It shows off 3 of the most important places in the series: Oxford, the North and London! It’s just a really different kind of style compared to the colourful ones out there.

If you love steampunk, then I know you’ll love 1 or all 3 of these!

Golden Compass Alethiometer Watch

You can’t have a ‘His Dark Materials’ gift guide without featuring some kind of Alethiometer mention!

When I saw this watch mentioned on Etsy, I knew that I had to include it in my guide! It has the gorgeous design that we’ve come to know and love with the Alethiometer, but the straps come in different colours! 9!! I think everyone would find a gorgeous colour that they like!

It’s £40.93 and I don’t think that’s too bad for a watch!

Have you been watching the show/have you read the books?

Fandom Harry Potter Lifestyle

What’s Realistically On My Christmas List?

christmas wishlist

Over the years I’ve seen some gift guides that are so unrealistic. They tend to show off Christmas wishlists that either show off or that aren’t physically possible for most people. I love reading and watching people who do showcase luxury items, but I know I’d never be able to afford all of those.

That’s why I wanted to make a realistic Christmas wishlist of items that I know I should be able to get myself this year. I guess this isn’t so much of a wishlist since I’m the only person buying presents for me. That said, life can happen and this time of year is when I allow myself to treat myself to things I’ve been putting off all year.

Chanel No.5

Daisy, you just told us that you wanted to be realistic so why have you started with a super expensive perfume? Believe me, I know that this is expensive but I have my reasons. Chanel was my Mum’s favourite perfume and I’ve really missed the smell of it over the last couple of years. As I know I can’t afford the actual perfume (maybe next year?), I’m planning on getting the deodrant version!

It still smells like the perfume and that is all that matters to me!

2020 Diary

For nearly 10 years I’ve been keeping a journal. I might even do a post about them soon but there is a specific brand of journal that I use and I love it!

I love using ones from WHSmith!

I can’t handle diaries that only have room for a little bit of writing! My writing is like my speech…I don’t know when to shut up. If I have a lot of stuff going on in my head, then I need enough space to chat. It’s the same when I’ve done something really cool and want to remember, I need to add in objects! I really should make a scrapbook…maybe I’ll do that for next year!

What I find with the WHSmith diaries is that some come with the rings so I can fold back the cover and get more room to manoeuvre. That and the front covers are gorgeous!! I’m loving the one I’ve chosen for 2020! It’s very blogger! Haha!

Calendar

You can blame one of my aunties for this!

She always had a calendar on her wall every time I used to visit to write down birthdays and important dates. Since my brain tends to be a little slow and doesn’t always remember things, I have to write down dates in multiple places to remember. I have my diary, my phone and my calendar.

The ones from the Calendar Club are my favourite because they always stock my favourite fandoms there such as Harry Potter, Doctor Who, Supernatural, Star Wars and Sherlock!

Which fandom do you think I’ll choose for my Christmas wishlist this year?

Pyjamas

Before you think I’ve either regressed back to being a kid or entered grandma status, don’t knock pyjamas!

Every year as a kid, I was bought PJs and I loved them! I could never do the t-shirt and shorts combo because, when you have thunder thighs, they don’t look good. That said, I adore the fluffy PJs from Primark. Again since they’re normally from my favourite fandoms: Harry Potter and Disney.

The ones I have are Harry Potter and they’ll speak for themselves when you see them in my ‘What I Got For Christmas’ haul.

Funko Pop

I very rarely buy myself a Funko pop during the year even though there are so many I want. I could literally have a whole wall of them and I’d be happy but I can’t. I need to have reasons why I’m allowed to buy one and these are usually at Christmas and for my birthday.

Even then I struggle!

It’s hard work being a fangirl of multiple fandoms sometimes. I’ve been going into my local Entertainer store to gaze upon all of their Funko pops because they’re so pretty! They have special edition Marvel ones for Christmas, Lord of the Rings, Disney, Frozen 2 and more. Do you think, if I wish really hard, that maybe I’ll win the lottery so I can give majority to charity and then spend the rest on Funkos? Haha.

I’ve chosen my one for this Christmas and it makes me so happy to own it at last!!

Now if only we could get Cursed Child ones! That would make this Christmas wishlist super special!

Something Harry Potter

This sounds so random but I can never decide what I want until the start of December. I guess the impending countdown is enough to make me choose. It doesn’t help that there is so much Harry Potter merchandise to choose from these days! It makes it difficult, okay?!

Do I get a wand? A jigsaw? A game? A film prop?

So. Much. Stuff!!

Even as I write this, I have zero clue what I should get. Okay, scrap that…I have an inkling of what I want to get but it might be a birthday gift instead.

It’s a choice between either Tonk’s wand or Bunty’s wand!

What I’ve discovered for this Christmas is that I’m actually getting 2 gifts that I don’t know!! I’ve taken part in a special bookish Secret Santa created by Mols with a group of other book fans and I’m so excited! The other gift will be from Ali who is sneaky and already sent mine off! Since we’re basically twins, I already had hers wrapped so take that, Miss Caitrin!

What is your own realistic Christmas wishlist this year?

Fandom Harry Potter

The Ultimate Harry Potter Christmas Gift Guide (Part 2)

There are so many things out there that you can get for a Harry Potter gift that I’ve had to make my gift guide two parts! Not that I mind, of course! Creating this particular guide is giving some great ideas on what to treat myself for surviving the year! Haha!

If you haven’t seen Part One, feel free to go check it out first! It’s not essential, but it would make me a happy fandom blogger!

harry potter giftPhoto by Christian Wagner on Unsplash

Teens/Adults

Forbidden forest winter coat (EMP – £119 to £129)

Daisy! You’re starting off with a super expensive thing?! What?! I know, I know! Once you see how awesome this coat is, however, you’ll understand! This coat has a gorgeous design on both the front and the back! Though, if you’re scared of spiders, this might not be for you. It comes with a detachable cape, buttons with the Hogwarts logo, removable faux-fur on the hood and sleeves, two side pockets and even an inside pocket (for your wand!)

With the weather that Hogsmeade gets, it’s better to be wrapped up warm! Another thing I love is that it caters for all! It goes for XS up to 5XL!

Patronus Jeans Jacket (EMP – £39.99)

One of my favourite spells in Harry Potter has to be ‘Expecto Patronum’! The idea of being able to create a guardian/light against a darkness sounds perfect for my mental health. When I saw that EMP had a Patronus jean jacket, I knew I must include it!

There are beads on the shoulders, a stag print on the back with Sirius’ quote: ‘The ones that love us never truly leave us’. I think it’s a fitting thing especially if you’ve lost a loved one over the years.

Marauder’s Map High-Top Sneakers (EMP – £32.99)

As much as Vans are a great brand, I didn’t really like the Potter designs they created.

These sneakers have a much better design! They’re a fun black and red colour with a white design of the Marauder’s Map and footprints all over. Simple but still really fun! They range from Size 4 to 10!

Hedwig Handbag (Loungefly – £55.99)

It wouldn’t be a Harry Potter gift guide without something with Hedwig on it!

Depending on what store you shop at, depends on the quality of the Potter handbag or the design. Yeah…kind of tired of seeing the chibi characters everywhere! That said, I’ve heard such incredible things about products from Loungefly and had to show you this gorgeous Hedwig bag. It has her, a Hogwarts letter, yellow & red flowers and a Deathly Hallow symbol on the front!

It’s not a massive bag but has a long shoulder strap, handles for when your shoulder hates you and so much room! Maybe they’ve used an extendable charm inside?

Hogwarts: A History Journal (Mina Lima – £12.95)

Mina Lima are the geniuses behind all of the Harry Potter props we’ve seen in the films from Harry’s acceptance letter to all of the school books we see and more! I’ve always wanted to own a copy of Hogwarts: A History since my inner Hermione has been needing it. This might not be the actual book but it is a notebook with the design on front!

Harry Potter + stationery = heaven!

If you want the whole Hogwarts library collection, it will set you back £75 so best to save your galleons, sickles and knuts!

Back to school

We can’t have a gift guide without looking at the Hogwarts Houses! I won’t throw everything at you since we’d be here all day, but I can’t back down from finding out what is out there for the individual Houses!

Hufflepuff

1910 Hufflepuff Replica Exercise Book (Mina Lima – £10)

After seeing Crimes of Grindelwald and baby!Newt, I knew that I needed to own something from that era! I’m kind of hoping they release the school uniform from there one day but that’s a dream. What you can own is a school book from there! Look at how stunning the design in and, of course, in Hufflepuff yellow!

128 pages to gush on, write different notes and maybe write some fanfics!

Hufflepuff House Crest Set (Mina Lima – £14.95)

Can’t think what to get for that Hufflepuff in your life?

First off, we Hufflepuffs won’t mind what we get and why not get them a little bit of everything with Mina Lima’s Hufflepuff crest? In this set you get a notebook, card holder, a badge and a notecard!

We’ll love it either way!!

Hufflepuff School Robe (WB Studio Tour London – £74.95)

The ultimate Harry Potter gift you can get for a Hufflepuff is their very own authentic Hogwarts school robes!! The day that I received mine was the day they made me cry! I’d been wanting to own a pair for so many years and I’m still thankful to this day that I was able to get some.

They are no joke!

These will make you instantly feel like a proper Hogwarts student since they’re heavy-ish, have the yellow trim and even a pocket inside for your wand!

gryffindor

Gryffindor House Crest Maroon T-Shirt (Platform 9 3/4 Shop – £29.95)

Are you loving the brand new Gryffindor logo shown on the Wizarding World app? If you are, then the Platform 9 and 3/4 Shop has different merch with it on! It might be winter but you can still treat someone to a t-shirt!

Plus it’s so bright that you can’t miss whoever is wearing it!

You can get the same in: Hufflepuff | Ravenclaw | Slytherin

“Better Be Gryffindor!” Print (Mina Lima – £39)

This is something that all possible Gryffindors want to hear when they are at the Sorting Ceremony, especially if they are a Potter or a Weasley!

It’s a bright and wonderful print to have on the wall in a frame! Think we can persuade Mina Lima to make a Hufflepuff one with Newt? Haha!

Gryffindor Embroided Banner (WB Studio Tour London – £17.95)

I reckon this would make every Gryffindor happy! They’d be able to show off their House Pride to anyone visiting, young or old! They could have it above their bed, hanging on a book-shelf or have it near a front door to show even your postman that you’re a Lion!

It will last you for many years to come!

Life Update

Ravenclaw

Ravenclaw Attribute Mug (WB Studio Tour London – £12.95)

Have a Ravenclaw that might be doubting themselves a little and needs a reminder of just how great they are? This mug would be perfect! It would show them that they are more than just their books and that they can be wise in so many other ways!

I mean…look at Luna!

“For Those Who Are Learned” Soy Candle (Etsy – £10)

An amazing way to read a book when the weather is horrendous outside is to embrace your magical self and read by candlelight. Obviously you wouldn’t want that person to hurt their eyes but it would still make a great gift!

This is a vegan-friendly soy candle that has rosemary (symbolised for memory) and petrichor (the scent of the earth after rain and helps deep thinking).

ReadingRoomCandleCo (Sara) is the amazing person behind the candles and has the best smelling fandom candles around! Check out Gryffindor, Hufflepuff and Slytherin!

Ravenclaw Bookfold Art (Etsy – £40)

If you’ve never seen how breath-taking bookfold art is, then you need to check out this by BananaBookfolds! What else could be a perfect gift for a Ravenclaw than art made from an extra book?!

It’s made from a Harry Potter book (I knooow…try not to cry at the death of a book and pray it’s not your favourite!), wrapped with a blue ribbon and has silver painted corners!

slytherin

Albus Potter and Scorpius Malfoy Wands (Cursed Child Store – £32)

I couldn’t talk about Slytherin gifts without fangirling over two of my favourite Slytherins! You don’t have to have seen Cursed Child to appreciate you their wands! They’re so personal to the characters and I feel any Slytherin will understand how hard they push past the old ‘Slytherins are evil’ thoughts.

If you have seen the show, you can check out the official Slytherin section and the brand new Cursed Child: The Journey book!

Slytherin Hooded Sweatshirt (WB Studio Tour London – £39.95)

It sounds super cold down in the dungeons (believe me…I know!) so your favourite Slytherin will need something to wear during the weekends. No teen wants to wear their school uniform to keep them warm on days off!

This sweatshirt is actually unisex so it doesn’t matter what gender you are! As long as you want to show everyone how proud you are to be a Slytherin, you can wear! It’s 80% cotton so perfect to keep any snakes snug!

Slytherin Stocking (WB Studio Tour London – £28)

The final product in my ultimate Harry Potter gift guide is this Slytherin stocking! It’s a Christmas gift guide and, even though I never had a stocking to get teeny presents in, I still love the idea of having something to maybe open on Christmas Eve or before Christmas lunch to keep me going!

It’s such an elegant design with the House crest on the front and a teeny snake on the side!

If you could give any Harry Potter character a gift, who would you choose
and what would it be?