Sunday, 27 October 2013

And then... life happened!

Dear readers,

Well life pulled another fast one on me not long after I posted the last update. First of all, I was informed that my deadline for submitting a draft chapter of my dissertation had been moved up…. By three freaking months! So instead of the end of autumn it now became the end of September. Can you imagine how stressed/ freaked out I was? In the same week I was also informed that I would be teaching first year students for one hour a week. I was to teach a coaching session, in which students can ask questions regarding the reading they had to do for two different classes and in which I, together with another teaching and research assistant, have to teach them the basics for academic writing. So basically, you have to do the preparations for three classes, rather than just one… And they informed me of this 6 days in advance. In the same week I was also appointed as the webmaster of the UvA centenary website... I believe that at this point my stress level went through the freaking roof. By some miracle, though, I was able to meet the deadline… But not surprisingly, I was so tired after this month had passed that it took me a while to catch my breath.

Luckily, things have quieted down a bit. I am currently doing research for my next chapter, which will be about penny bloods (not to be confused with the penny dreadfuls). As very little research has been done surrounding the penny bloods I will be going to London in January for three weeks in order to do archival research in the British Library. Although I found this a little daunting, since I am not very good at the whole “going somewhere by myself” thing, my three weeks of being alone in London have become my three weeks of not being so very alone in London hahah. Both my best friend and my parents will come and stay at the apartment I rented for a couple of days and I will be visiting a friend (who is almost done with her PhD… gosh I really take my hat off to her) who lives in Leeds for a few days. So now I am actually really looking forward to it. There is something exceedingly appealing about the thought of sitting in a library whilst looking at old and obscure texts… I wonder if I will still think this way after I have spent nearly three whole weeks in library hahaha.

Due to all the stress and fatigue afterwards, I have not been able to start swimming once a week, as I was planning to do. I simply decided to put the entire diet on a hold for those 1,5 months. I have started again since last week and thing are going pretty well; just 3.2 kilo’s to go. Hopefully, I will finally find time to do some actual exercise though, but we will see how it goes.

Another fun thing which is coming up is that my best friend and I are actually going to launch that webshop next year. We were planning to do it mid-November, but as she is working 6 or 7 days every week and my life isn’t exactly laid back either (*cough* understatement of the year *cough*) we decided to postpone it to early February next year. Hopefully, things have settled down a bit by then for the both of us.

Well that’s it for now. I hope you will all have a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Battling the kilos with Weight Watchers! :D

Dear readers,

As some of you might now, I have been battling the kilos for a while now. As weight loss is quite a hot topic lately, I thought I should share my experiences with you. Since I can imagine some people are just anxious to know if the diet works and would not care to read about my motivations for starting a diet, I have divided this post up in two sections. Feel free to jump to the second section if you are just interested in the program itself. And for those of you who really don’t give a hoot about diets: don’t worry, this is one of the two posts in total that I will post on this topic. The second post is of course going to be when I actually attain my goal. 

Why did I go on a diet?
Many of you may wonder: why did I want to lose weight? More importantly I was starting to feel really insecure about myself. I was pretty much whining to myself about not liking the fat on my back and that I started to outgrow my clothes (seeing that I am rather proud of my collection of cute, adorable and witty shirts, this was a pretty big issue for me). I was basically now stuck in between normal sizes and big girl sizes. One day I was getting really sick of my own whining (which I mostly did to myself, so most of you will not have known that it was an issue at all lol), I looked it to diets picked one and signed myself up for Weight Watchers. Although I have a tendency to grow a little impatient with people who complain about something which they can easily change, with myself I absolutely have 0 tolerance for this hahaha. (Please note that I don’t mean that losing weight is easy for everyone! Some people really struggle to lose weight and still only lose a few pounds. 

Ever since I started studying (which is now about 7 years ago) I started to gain weight. When I started at the Hogeschool van Amsterdam, which is a University College, I weight 68 kg. When I started Weightwatchers I had gained 13 kilos (over 6 years); I weighted 81 kg! So yes, time for a drastic change. I decided that I wanted to lose 12 kilos, which would put me on my healthy weight (my height is 169 so I should weigh 69 kg) and a healthy BMI. 

Why not aim even lower and be all nice and skinny? One word: HIPS! I have naturally wide hips (those are bone, not fat), so if I loose too much weight, I will end up like this (but without the sexy vibe):

(All credit to Amy Mebberson for this awesome artwork!) 

Although this might look cute (and awesome!) on the artwork, in real life we would call this disproportionate lol.
Ok, so does Weight Watchers actually work? 
Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Visiting anime convention Abunai!

Dear readers,

This Sunday my best friend and I went to an anime convention called Abunai! Those who have been following my blog will know that I have been going there for the past three years. This year, however, was my first time dressing up as an Elegant Gothic Lolita. For those of you who do not know what elegant gothic lolita is, please see my previous post on the topic I have had the dress and blouse for a very long time, but have only been able to wear the blouse in public once. It really isn't something you throw on and go to work in it... :D But I love it nonetheless.

Although Abunai always offers quite a range of activities, such as lectures, workshops etc. my friend and I decided just to check out the dealer room. ^__^" As such this blog post will mostly be a shopblog; sorry about that. :D But keep reading, as there will be a bit of a revalation at the end ;).

Thursday, 8 August 2013

100 POSTS! :D

Dear readers,

Today is a very special post! :D It’s my 100th post! Although updates have been slow and irregular I still made it! So for today’s post I would like to look back at the changes that have occurred since I first created this blog. I started this blog a little over three years ago, so there is definitely a lot to look back on.

A major thing that changed is that I was still together with my ex-boyfriend when I created this blog. About 3 months after the blog was created, however, we broke up and I fell in love with someone truly amazing. And as you all know, we got engaged pretty soon after that. I am still very grateful to have my fiancé by my side. Really, going out with him was one of the best decisions I have EVER made.

Another thing that changed is that I had just gotten my bachelor degree when I started this blog. As my dedicated readers know, I have now also completed a research master in Literary Studies and have made it through to my first year as an externally funded PhD student! :D I sometimes complain a bit about all the work I have to do for it (who doesn’t complain about their job once in a while?), but I am still greatly enjoying it! I am currently working on a chapter on detective fiction… I read Sherlock Holmes for research! I honestly believe it doesn’t get much better than this! Though I have to admit that I miss having a summer holiday T_T. Anyway, for those of you who are interested, I have created a tumblr account on which I post some stuff on what it is like to be a PhD student. Most of it is just me poking fun at myself, so it’s pretty exaggerated (again: being a PhD student isn’t all THAT bad). Here’s the link: 

Just after I created this blog I was accepted for an internship at the Athenaeum bookstore. This internship made it clear to me that editing is not for me… I am simply too slow of a reader. So partially thanks to doing the internship that I decided to go for a PhD instead. After the internship had ended I went to search for another job, and I ended up at WoningNet. I still love working there. My colleagues are simply awesome (everyone is sooooo nice!) and the company really looks after their employees. Last week when it was super hot, they had someone get lots of fruit for us, just to cool us down and make everything a bit more bearable. :D How awesome is that?! Also, although I have been hired as a call center agent, I have been mostly doing a lot of other tasks for the past year. So that really keeps things interesting.

Something that has not changed AT ALL is my love for Victorian literature, cutestuff and Disney! Well, it is good to have some constant factors in your life right? ;) Hahaha I honestly think that some people would believe the end of the world to be near if I suddenly stopped liking Disney or Victorian literature for that matter.

Anyway, I really want to thank all the readers that have stuck with me for such a long time! I really hope that I will be able to keep you interested in my blog. :D I will most definitely try!


Saturday, 3 August 2013

Trip report Shrewsbury (with pictures!)

Dear reader,

Long time no see! A lot of things have happened since my last update; some really great stuff, and some not so great stuff. Today’s post, however, will be dedicated to my six day trip with my fiancé to Shrewsbury.

The first thing people have been asking me when I told them I want to Shrewsbury was “why Shrewsbury?” Well, my fiancé has a friend who lives in the vicinity and he really wanted to visit him. At first my fiancé wanted to go to Birmingham… As you might remember from my Birmingham trip report, I did not like that city at all. So I pretty much vetoed that we would not be staying there. So he asked his friend which nice towns were near Birmingham and we settled on Shrewsbury.  

My fiancés friend, who I will refer to by his nickname Beswick from now on, promised to pick us up at the airport when we arrived. He was such a lovely person! As many of my readers know I am a very shy person and don’t usually say a whole lot when I meet someone for the first time. However, Beswick is a very open and kind person, so it didn’t take long for me to open up to him. Perhaps it was because he greatly resembles my fiancé, characterwise… Anyway, we stopped for some drinks and dinner, had a chat and stocked up on some much needed water and sunscreen in a humongous supermarket. ^__^” Although they had not had a heat wave in 7 (freaking) years, we ended up right in the middle of one. >.> Just our luck.

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Disneyland Paris and the Louvre; a shopblog.

Dear readers,

Well it has been a while again. I have been really busy and just when I was planning on writing a trip report on Disneyland, I got a throat infection which pretty much forced me to stay in bed for 1,5 weeks... You can’t imagine how glad I am right now to be able to do something other than just watch tv or a movie. After a couple of days that really gets old. I am still on anti-biotics though, so I apologize if there are a lot of typo’s and such in the post.

As I have already provided you with a number of Disney trip reports, I thought it would be nice to do something a little different. I will be writing a shopblog instead.

Before going to Disneyland my best friend and I had decided that we will not be going to Disney for the coming 1 to 1,5 years. We have been to the park quite often and we do not want it to lose its magic for us. So, as I was walking through the stores I noticed that they had some really awesome table ware. Now seeing that I will hopefully be living together with my fiancé before my next trip to Disney, I thought it would be a pretty good opportunity to buy some essentials for our yet to be found home. I called my fiancé to discuss this. I even had a picture at the ready, but he pretty much gave me the get go without ever seeing the picture. His reaction was: “Well you know my taste” and “If I don’t like it.... well I guess we will then just have some ugly dinner plates. That’s not the end of the world. So just buy them if you like them”. So having received the get go (and having called dad just to make sure my parents wouldn’t flip if I came home with a boat load of stuff) I bought the following items: 

Friday, 10 May 2013

Disneyland Paris Tips and Tricks: Enjoying your visit

Dear readers,

Because life got the better of me, I never quite got round to finishing my Disneyland tips and tricks series, so here is the third and final part! This post will give you tips and tricks for when you actually are in Disneyland itself, Walt Disney Studios or Disney Village.

In case you had completely forgotten that I wrote two previous posts, where you can find these or if you are new to my weblog, please see the following two links to my previous posts: 

1. General tips.

a. Bring your own food and drinks.
Disney is really expensive when it comes to food and drinks (think 4,- euro’s for 6 kip nuggets... o.o that’s 0.67 cents per nugget!), so you might want to bring your own food and drinks for during the day. There are a few gas stations near the park, so you should be able to get something there if you want. Example: at a nearby gas station you pay 0,50 cents for a bottle of water, in Disney you will pay 2,20 or more.

b. Make sure to bring along some wipes.
Sometimes you might want to get a snack, which turns out to be a bit more sticky than you were expecting. If you are cueing up for a ride, things might get complicated (and yucky). Especially if you have little kids!

2. Disneyland