eyes wide open

do you ever feel like you can’t fully take in what’s happening around you? like your eyes are open, but can never open wide enough? i feel like that all the time and i always wonder if i actually am missing out on life, or if i’m tricking myself. either way, tonight i opened my eyes wide enough and i’m still riding that wave so i’d like to tell you about it. thanks for hanging.

we pull out of the quickchek yelling yer killing me and my head swoops with the milkshake in my hand. enough yelling – emily asks me if i’m ready as she rolls the windows down. i’m not ready. never ready. always almost, but never ever. it’s 8:30 pm in north jersey just before christmas, and when the breeze slaps me in the face, i think i’m ready.

she puts on sex, and i almost start crying. i yell and we yell – this album is so well produced! it is. after we’ve got one thing in common, it’s this tongue of mine i start looking out of the window. milkshake on lap and doritos in hand, i realize just how much life is out there on a friday night. christmas lights choke trees and houses and they stand quietly in submission. there’s a big curve on a major intersection and emily is harmonizing with matty healy, and i see it. i see it all because my eyes are so open they may fall out.

down the street, past the house with a million trees, they’ve all got boyfriends anyway brings me back down and i can’t explain what’s happened. the song changes but i am still awed – everything is bright at one time or another if you can see enough. my eyes are open and my hands are cold from sticking them out of the window and floating with the wind that carried them there, but my eyes are open.

my eyes are open wide enough. and this is how it starts.

love and light,
shalom xo

tunesday: live edition

Welcome back to Tunesday! We’re back! Today’s edition is focused on an EP release show I went to last week, and I am so thrilled to share it with you. Yay for live music Tunesdays. On with the show!

shoobies: cherry ep

The show was for Shoobies’ latest offering, Cherry. Shoobies, who’ve been around these parts before (see October monthly me) are a New Jersey four piece making the best kind of noise. Cherry is their secondary offering, putting out a completely different sound from their debut EP, Claude Monet. Cherry is heavy with soul influence and does the job of getting into your bones expertly. A more mature collection, the songs are called Love, Sex, and Drama. It’s a metaphor. But, if you take it literally and create your own, it’s just as good.

If there’s something that the guys from Shoobies know how to do, it’s put on one hell of a show. Complete with 70s esque mustaches being hastily shaved off before the show, an intro that did it right, roses, and an actual smashing of a guitar (which I never, ever thought I would live to see), Shoobies elevated The Saint in Asbury Park.

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You can listen to Cherry here, and Claude Monet here. Find the band on Instagram, Twitter, and everything that matters at @shoobiesnj.

the happy fits: awfully apeelin’

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The Happy Fits are three boys who find themselves bathed in blue light more often than not. A rock band with a cello, they’re an eclectic mix of The Black Keys, Alt-J, and Vampire Weekend. They played songs off their EP, Awfully Apeelin’  and just so happened to treat all of us with some songs from their upcoming album. 2018 is going to be a big year for the band – which is saying something, considering the fact that they surpassed 1,000,000 plays on While You Fade Away and expanded their fan base by quite a bit. Keep an ear out for their debut album coming out in the first half of next year.

hannah riley

Hannah Riley performed her first ever show at The Saint, and I was blown away by how good she is. A mix of heavy Lana del Rey influence with touches of Lorde and Halsey, Hannah’s voice is power and is full of tremendous capability. Her debut EP, Recovery, has true bangers including IDWBY, but her cover of Lana’s In My Feelings absolutely blew me away. To say that she’s going places is to understate just how good she is, so listen for yourself.

trustfall

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Trustfall is emo math rock that makes me think of 2009 and jumping. If this made sense to you, you’d adore them. Their set at The Saint was a joy – if you’ve ever wanted to yell lyrics with people who wanted to do the same, you can probably imagine the vibe to come from that. That’s exactly what the atmosphere was, and I am so grateful to have been there. Their latest release, Space Dawgz 2: Dogs in Space is full of the same; listen here.

 

and so concludes the live edition of tunesday! honsetly, this last weekend was incredible, and i’m thrilled to be able to tell you all about it. congratulations to shoobies for releasing one hell of an ep, and to all the other bands that performed – what a night. now, back to my regular programming of being a mess? i think yes.

love and light,
shalom xo

of mondays and joy

experiencing fully fledged joy that isn’t mania as a depressed person is a strange experience. it’s very alien, and today has left me fulfilled yet super tentative of tomorrow, because i know something has to go wrong or back to normal, at least. it’s regression to the mean.

in the northern hemisphere (and now, all over the world too), the third monday of january is known as “blue monday” – the supposedly most depressing day of the year. it’s recognised everywhere and people really feel terrible and everything sucks, until tuesday. on tuesday, things go back to the way they were, and people no longer feel blue. for most people with depression, it doesn’t work like that. it definitely doesn’t for me.

i’m a happy person who’s depressed. i love people, and i thrive on the happiness of others. i adore belly laughs and tired sighs from days full of loving, but my brain also doesn’t make the neurotransmitters it needs to be making, so what we get from that equation is me. i rapid cycle between excessive optimism and damning despair far too much and far too fast. i’m dealing with it okay, though.

however, today has been a really great monday.  much like this one.

i didn’t get any sleep because i don’t get sleep, and had a really teary two a.m. i freaked out because i had so much to do including mailing transcripts for university admissions (keep those fingers crossed for me please!) and an interview for Lush. LUSH. The super amazing smelling, ethically brilliant and people focused brand. I was so stoked that I got an interview, but I was pretty sure it was all going to go to shit because of how my morning went. It was 21 degrees outside and I was sweating like a Christmas goat while trying to do my eyeliner because ya girl was anxious as HECK and also I was running late for a thing with a friend. It’s okay. I got there. Then the goodness began.

Jo bought me a hazelnut honey latte and I lost my mind because it tasted so good. We ran generic errands and I bumped into a storybook boy at the printing store. STORY. BOOK. As in curly hair big smile British accent story book. BOY. I sang to him about capitalism and he had a very cute laugh. I ran away because I’m an IDIOT and Jo gave him my number. He probably won’t text, but I’m glad I met him nonetheless. I have a boy to put in my stories now. I played with a Newton’s Cradle in a birthday store and got really giddy about science.

By DemonDeLuxe (Dominique Toussaint) – Image:Newtons cradle animation book.gif, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3717500

I then almost skipped out of my interview because anxiety, but went ahead and did the damn thing. I have a trial shift on Thursday! I am SO EXCITED. I then went to get some tea, paid for a short and got upgraded to a grande for free. YES. I then got free samples of cheese and of bread at Woolworths and bought a cheese and tomato baguette that surprised me with the best tasting basil & mayo I have ever had. My eyebrows also did the damn thing. I got home and napped for three hours, ate a pie for supper, found a blog that’s probably my new favourite (do check out Dora @ For The Goldfinches because wow – follow her on instagram too! She’s a joy.) and got invited over to swim with a friend tomorrow. It’s also MLK Day, so I got to smash down some microagressions regarding not being black enough, which was exhausting but necessary. I’m glad I did. Happy birthday to my biggest writing hero, Lin-Manuel Miranda, too! There’s a gif party on twitter if you wanna come. #gifTparty

I’m a bit sad that today is over, honestly. It’s been the best day that I’ve had in years. I’m grateful for it, but also hyper aware of the fact that everything has to swing back to the middle eventually. I learned about regression to the mean from Teen Wolf. I have a weird relationship with that show.

Despite how well today went, I still have the undercurrent of despair running through me, but I’m okay with it. It’s not the loudest in this moment, and every moment that my brain allows me to just be is one I am grateful for. I’m about to knock myself out with some heavy sleeping pills, and I’m really glad that I can. On Saturday, I didn’t think I’d make it to the end of the day. Thank goodness I did though. Who else would have taught that cute boy the capitalism jingle?

love and light,
shalom xo

le fabuleux destin d’amélie poulain

Amélie is one of my favourite films. It’s a 2001 French film directed by Jean-Pierre Juenet and written by Juenet and Guillaume Laurant, and has a score perfectly suited to an afternoon of studying or just staring out of the window.

In the film, Amélie Poulain is a twenty-something year old waitress in a Montmartre café, with a unique sense of the world and people around her. I don’t want to give any of the film away, but I will say that I loved the character of Amélie so much, it made me want to start taking French seriously. I watched the film in my French class in eighth grade and have rewatched it four times (this year) since.

“Without you, today’s emotions would be the scurf of yesterday’s.”

The film is beautiful  – aesthetically and in terms of content. The colours are vibrant and the narrator’s voice is wonderful, and it’s full of lightness and confusion and death and Dominiques.

You should definitely watch it.

Here’s a little piece of one of my favourite podcasts – My Brother, My Brother and Me – about Amélie.

On the last Thursday of every month, there’s a French film showing at Maboneng. I learnt about that though a man who I sat next to at a restaurant. You should come, if you’re in Johannesburg. 

Have a lovely Saturday.

Love and light, 

shalom xo

ça c’etait quoi? | learning languages

I’m really quite unfortunate when it comes to numbers. High school maths was a mess of a mission, except for the very end when magic and blood made a miracle happen. I am, however, better with words & languages. So today, by request, I’m going to share any and all language learning things that I’ve got swimming around in my head (and that are on the internet).

As of right now, I can confidently say I’m fully bilingual. I can speak English and Afrikaans fluently, and that’s mostly because I speak English at home and spoke Afrikaans at school for ten years. I’m intermediate in French, and a basic beginner in Spanish and a very basic beginner in Italian. BUT! I am learning all three of these languages with the end goal of being an eventual polyglot. Here’s the how to from someone who needs a how-to.

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There are SO MANY language learning apps out there. I’ve tried many of them, and the trick to knowing whether it’ll help is this: if it promises a short cut, it won’t. Un/fortunately, language learning is a long and specific process, so those “SPEAK FRENCH IN FIVE DAYS!!1!!1” apps really won’t help. Here are two that will:

  • Duolingo

Duolingo is amazing. It’s a super user-friendly app that will guide you through your language learning process. It costs ZERO MONEY (relevant to the July series I’m working on) and is really effective.

How it works is that there are bite-sized lessons that you can do on your phone, laptop, iPad, Apple Watch, or any device, and you slowly but surely increase your fluency percentage. Duolingo works. They have research on it. My advice: use a pen and paper along with this. It’s easy to learn phrases like “elles sont riche et calme” and “nosotros bebemos el agua”  but the grammar lessons (which can be found with a simple click to the comment sections) really help to understand why certain verbs are the way they are, why you can’t add that -le to the end of that word, and how to pronounce some words like a local.

  • Memrise

Memrise is another really good app for language learning, with a big focus on getting you to store the words and rules you’ll learn in your long term memory. The idea is that your mind is a garden of knowledge, and you really, really need to water the seeds so that you can harvest that gorgeous five-language-fluency. There are also different ways of learning which keeps the process fun & interesting.

people and blogs

Again, bless the internet. There are some amazing sites & people who’ve proven to be incredibly helpful. Let’s start off with ever favourites, Damon and Jo:

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DAMON AND JO MAKE ME WANT TO SHUT UP AND GO. THEY BLOW MY MIND. The creators of shutupandgo.travel, Damon Dominique and Joanna Franco are pretty much GOALS. First off, they’re huge inspirations of mine with French, Spanish, Portugese, English, and Italian (I think?) under their belts. IMAGINE. What a dream. They’re travel vlogger-bloggers who decided to #shutupandgo: stop complaining about wanting to travel, making moves, and travelling anyway. They’re also so YOUNG (Damon & Jo are 24 and 23 respectively) and make videos about their travels, but ALSO (!!!) about how to learn a language, and help you sound more local when speaking a language. For example:

Another blog I love is brainscape.com which has tonnes and tonnes of links to resources you can use for almost ANY language (10/10 would recommend). FluentU is another well of knowledge if you look for the right things, even if you don’t want to pay for a subscription (because I sure as hell do not, cannot, and did not). Preppy Burro (previously ‘Always Spanish’) is a fantastic spanish learning adventure, and Talk in French helps you to do just that.

other tips

  • change the language on your phone! you know your phone. learn what ‘lock screen’ is in italian.
  • have an other-language day (this is how i learned to speak afrikaans). for a couple of hours on a chosen day of the week, translate every sentence you say into the language you’re trying to learn.
  • watch youtubers in that language! hello! it always slaps me in the face but like !!!!! there are other-than-english youtubers!‽
  • keep a journal and make sure to write in your new language at least twice a week. check for grammar errors!
  • get a book. for real. grammar is important. it’s a spend that i hated making (don’t worry, the books aren’t that expensive, i’m just that broke) but do not regret.
  • learn about the culture. it’s nice to do.

The internet is amazing. There’s so much STUFF. Go learn a language. Pet a dog and tell it that it is beautiful in Italian. Sing happy birthday to your mom in German. Learn. 

Love and light,
shalom xo


note: none of these apps / people / blogs are here as a paid for endorsement – i love learning & they can really help. // photos are edited by me originally from death to stock, or are assumed to be in the public domain.

In Which I Consider Vision Boards and Their Effectiveness

Aside before we begin: somebody just went into my blog archives and read all my posts from when I was 15. I am cringing for them.

Do you believe in vision boards? Like, I know that you believe that they exist, because they exist, but do you believe that they work? That you can attract things into your life by…visualising them, I guess. It sounds like a lotta lotta mumbo jumbo, and I don’t know if I’m fully here for it, but it doesn’t hurt, right?

Vision boards are said to work on the law of attraction, which is “the name given to the maxim “like attracts like” which in New Thought philosophy is used to sum up the idea that by focusing on positive or negative thoughts a person brings positive or negative experiences into their life.”. Thanks, Wikipedia.

I don’t know if this is entirely true. I mean, Roald Dahl believed it to an extent, and I took most of his writings as gospel truth when I was younger:

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I still do, for the most part.

Anyway, the point is that I’ve made a vision board. Well, I’ve started it.The distinct lack of magazine-y things in my house has made it a little difficult, but it still looks pretty rad. I also made it on a day I skipped school. I haven’t put up a section regarding graduation or this degree yet. I probably should.

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Welcome to my vision board! There’s a lot of mess up here, but it’s meaningful mess. (Anyone catch my Hamilton reference?) What’s up here right now is all the things I’d like to be associated with, things I’d like to have, things I’d like to do…things that I’d like the future to bring. I seriously need to dedicate a corner to this degree.

I’m not sure what I’m aspiring to yet. I’m (1) aspiring to not being so crippled by the future or the idea of time, and I’m not too sure what else. Beyonce Knowles. (That’s a pun. Beyonce knows. Get it? I’m laughing at myself.)

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Do you really get what you give? Because I’m waiting for the truckload of all the positivity to explode on my forehead. For real. Not that I’m positive to receive positivity, but that it’d be nice to get some back. I don’t know.

If the New Radicals said it, it must be true.

Today is the coldest wintery day so far and I am loving it. I’m also about to try to convince my sister to drive me out to get Krispy Kreme doughnuts. Or any doughnuts. I’m just in need of doughnuts.

love and light,
shalom xo

ALEXANDER HAMILTON

This is the Hamilton post I’ve been talking about. I am far too excited to write this.

If you live in the US, you probably thought he was a president for a while. He’s the guy on your ten. You most likely had no idea where he was born, or that he was a bastard, orphan, and son of a whore. Not before Lin-Manuel Miranda & the amazing cast and crew of Hamilton The Musical shared Lin’s extensive (like, six years extensive) hard work and creative genius with the world at The Public Theatre, on Broadway, at the Grammys AND AT THE WHITE HOUSE.

(skip through to 8:50 to see the performance.)

Hamilton is a history Broadway rap musical about the life and work of founding father Alexander Hamilton. A lot of those words shouldn’t go together in a sentence. Briefly, Hamilton is the best thing to happen to the theatre business in a long time, the hardest ticket to get your hands on for the next year and a half, and also really fucking amazing.

Watch the video. For real. Just watch it.

Okay SO. When Lin-Manuel Miranda – the Tony, Grammy and Emmy award winning writer, actor, librettist and genius – thought that the first Secretary of the Treasury of the US embodied the very essence of hip-hop, a lot of people thought he was crazy. Most of those people supported him anyway, because they’re not stupid. And because they know that Lin’s a genius. I’m a big LMM fan. Can you tell?

I learned about Hamilton in November 2015, thanks to tumblr. (Thanks, tumblr.) I had heard about In The Heights (which I’m listening to as I type this), Lin’s first musical the same way. After my final drama exam in November 2015, I ran on the street yelling about my unemployment, slept over at a friend’s house, and got the cast album.

HOLY COW.

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Burr (Leslie Odom Jr) and Hamilton (Lin-Manuel Miranda). Cosmopolitan.

Hamilton is just. UGH. I’m gaggingly awful at doing reviews of things that I love. From the first song, the musical is a fast paced whirlwind – some might even call it a Hurricane. (that’s a Hamilton pun you won’t get unless you’ve heard Hamilton.) I’m super grateful for the cast recording – the musical is sung through, so there are no scenes in between the numbers. Just…some force of crazy magic propelling the cast, chorus & Betsy Struxness (the chorus member who is just…pure…magic?). Hamilton makes the hip hop heads reconsider musical theatre, and makes musical theatre nerds start listening to rap.

 

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That guy in the purple? That’s Thomas Jefferson. (Daveed Diggs) Joan Marcus.

The founding fathers in the musical don’t look like the ones on the money. Daveed Diggs as Thomas Jefferson has much, much better hair. With a cast of black, Latino and Asian-American founding fathers & their phenomenally strong female counterparts, Hamilton does something that seems extraordinary, but is quite simple at the core: “This is a story about America then, told by America now“.

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From left to right (and their names): Thomas Jefferson (Daveed Diggs); James Madison (Okieriete Onaodowan); George Washington (Christopher Jackson); Peggy Schuyler (Jasmine Cephas-Jones); Angelica Schuyler (Renee Elise Goldsberry); Eliza Schuyler Hamilton (Phillipa Soo); Phillip Hamilton (Anthony Ramos)

Alexander Hamilton was a crazy, non-stop workaholic. Like, write 51 essays with a quill and ink in 6 months. HAMILTON WROTE THE OTHER FIFTY ONE. Lin, like Hamilton, has this awareness of mortality and the need to live, create and leave legacy now because it could all be over very, verrrrry quickly. (Click boom.)

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I think that’s why I connect with this musical so much. It’s so bizarre and insane and fun that someone would write their way to the top and then write their way write back down because they don’t know when to shut up. It’s 100% a Shalom thing to do. It’s the issue of knowing that death could be today, and what do you leave? What story do people tell? “If I throw away my shot, is this how you remember me?” Legacy has always been really important to me. I think the major difference between me and Lin & Hamilton is that my sense of time cripples me. Search ‘birthday’ on my site for references. What is a legacy if you’re too afraid of not having one to create one?

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Hamilton threw me into crisis.It’s the hardest ticket to get in the world. Sold out until 2017. I loved every second of it. I adore the idea of cabinet meetings as rap battles. I AM OBSESSED with the fastest song in musical theatre being a rap about brining Alexander Hamilton back to fight in the war. (6.3 words per second. Daveed Diggs, everybody.) When the smartest character in the show is Angelica Schuyler -the badass sister that reads Hamilton so quickly you’ll miss it if you blink, and makes sacrifices like you cannot believe- how could you not? This show is evidence of a mind at work (work).

Hamilton will turn you into a US history nerd. I already was – am?- but it just. UGH. YES. While it’s almost entirely historically accurate, it is a Broadway show. Lin takes dramatic license with a few events and characters, only making the show even more amazing.

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Marquis de Lafayette (Daveed Diggs), Hercules Mulligan (Okieriete Onaodowan), John Laurens (Anthony Ramos)

I don’t know if I connect with this show more because of its sheer brilliance, or because I, like Hamilton, am also a fast talker with a death wish. I don’t know. I DO KNOW that the Original Cast Recording is available FOR FREE on spotify, and if you’re in a part of the world without spotify, the YouTube playlist is here.

There’s a million things I haven’t done, but just you wait…

love and light,
shalom xo

(drop a comment if you caught the hamilpuns. seriously.)

YEAH, I KNOW. [Alternatively: Feb Faves & a Monthly Roundup]

So, my good friend Engie made a post about the things that were making her mad and stressing her out, and a lot of them revolved around college, being a blogger in college…you get where I’m going with this? I’ve been away for two odd weeks. I make these posts all the time (see…all my past posts for reference) but this time, I have actual things to say. Yay for planned rambles!

1. RE: UNIVERSITY.

This thing just does not let up. I’m a law student and I’m taking courses in philosophy, media studies and english as well. I had no idea just how far behind one could fall in three weeks. It’s safe to say that I’ve found out. Blogging has become la absolute SAFEHAVEN. I think I’m going to force myself to incorporate it into my failure of a schedule – like mandatory me-time? (I hate the phrase me-time. Ugh.)Some advice to all the hatchlings who will soon be embarking on the Great College Adventure TM: Come in armed. It’ll eat you alive if you don’t. Always have an umbrella, a charger, cash, and painkillers. Also a pen.

2. Favourites!

I haven’t done much in the way of the fun things, but I have, as usual, made my home in the Internet. Here are some things (most Internet, some not.) that I loved this month:

Alt-Indie Music Videos

Troye Sivan, Halsey and THE 1975 all released music videos for such AMAZING tunes off of their respective latest albums. Troye’s video for YOUTH blew me away for several reasons: (1) SO MUCH PURPLE PASTEL INDIE TUMBLR TEEN. (2) HAPPY FUNCTIONAL PARTY TEENAGERS. (actually, Troye is 20 (21 in June!) but he still counts. For reasons. Halsey’s video for Colors (the South African in me is mega cringing at that spelling) is just…let me tell you, (#nospoilers), it’s not what you expect. The music video for THE 1975’s The Sound is really the BEST THING I  SAW THE ENTIRE MONTH. It’s a massive ‘up yours’ to all of the critics who “only heard chocolate once and hated it”. Watch it. WATCH THEM ALL.

 

Blogger: Maxine Zhao

Alright, so I feel super honoured to say that Max once told me that I served as inspiration for her starting her blog. And man, do you need to see it. Maxine is what I’d call an up-and-coming fashion and lifestyle blogger with INSANE talent regarding taking timed tripod self shots. She’s also an absolute doll with a tiny little car named Kevin. Did you need any further justification? Check her out here.

Beauty

I’m not even going to pretend to know a lot about beauty. At all. Because I don’t. But I’ve been using mostly Nivea products as of late, just because they happen to work the best with my skin. For now. Stress breakouts are a real thing  and a good skincare regime is legitimately another university must have. Here are some of the things that I’ve been putting on my largest organ! (Skin. I’m talking about my skin.)

I have combination to oily skin, and this shine control face wash from Nivea is just YES. It’s super soothing on the skin, first and foremost, and it also works really well? It feels a lot like a continuous sea breeze while you’re washing your face. (10 points if you can think of a worse sounding line.) In the way of makeup, I don’t wear much because I can’t afford much (lol) but I DO love the LA Girl Perfecting Liquid Makeup foundation in Mahogany. I adore this foundation. It feels really light on the skin, and doesn’t wear off at all – I generally don’t need to reapply it during the day. I should really invest in a BB cream for the days that I don’t feel up to the industrial task of putting on a bit of paint. Hmm. Money.

Winning!

This month, writer and illustrator Dallas Clayton announced a competition on Instagram. He made six journals, and asked for cities from every continent to send them to. He’s still looking for some participants from Antarctica. Long story short, he chose Johannesburg! It’s all very exciting. I’m excited.

3. February.

February has been orange. It’s been the sheer intensity of my media studies course pack readings, the only pen I could find for two weeks, my flats that the 10 minute walk between buildings on campus ruined, and the 36 C days. I have learned how to hold my breath for as long as possible when being utterly submerged by the ocean that is “adulthood”. I’m not really an adult. Not even legally – I’m still 17. It does, however, seem that I am in the bracket where ‘act like an adult’ is applicable. I’m acting, alright.

For the first time this month, I was paid an allowance (!) which may not seem like much, but you need to realise that I’d never recieved an allowance before. Oh, Shalom, how did you go out to concerts and movies and the things you loved with your mostly make-believe friends through out high school? I didn’t. It was really cool – until I ran out of money. And had no way to get home from school because I couldn’t pay for public transport. Or food on campus. I’ve learned a lot since then. (Bye, morning cappuccinos.)

I’m really stressed out about what March will bring. March sees my FAFSA deadline (thank you uncooperative parent for STILL not having provided me with your tax information 🙂 ), my first official written tests, learning how to write an abstract & a research paper, more poetry analysis than I thought possible, and probably more tears than I am hydrated for. It’s surreal to think that we’re already almost in the third month of 2016, but I’m glad we’re all here.

This was lovely to write and compile and all the rest. Thank you all for sticking around! I think you are all very kind. I also think I want to make videos? Because I keep wanting to say things – in my actual voice, that people can hear – but then I remember that I’m typing. Hm. A thing to consider.

Love and light,
shalom


photos: maxine zhao’s blog, death to stock, nivea south africa, thestyleandbeautydoctor.com (swatches), dallas clayton’s instagram

 

Guess Who’s Back

How does one start these things? Yeesh. A month is a long time to be away from blogging.

Hello, readers! If you’re returning, get comfortable – your seat has been waiting & warmed. If you’re new, the new passengers’ seating is located by clicking the ‘follow’ button on your right. (Just kidding. You’re welcome, follower or not.)

Since December 2015, a lot has changed. Welcome to 2016! Congrats on making it this far. Here’s a list of things you should have left & brought with you, courtesy of Nathan Zed – one of my top five favourite youtubers at the moment, and also the funniest. And smartest. And one with the best hairline. (I like him a lot.)

Quick recap of January:

  • Matric results (Confused? Look here and here.)
  • Finished uni applications!
  • DRAMA. Family, friend, internet – you name it. All of it.
  • Said goodbye to so many of my friends who started new adventures in Cape Town, the UK, Stellenbosch, Rhodes, Mafikeng, Pennsylvania, Any Other Place That Does Not Permit Me To Get To Them In Under Three Hours…
  • Got dreadlocks? Hopefully, one day they look like Tiffany Ima’s – style icon and ULTIMATE EVERYTHING. That’s her in the featured image.
  • Started uni in SA in the hopes developing my brain before the HOPEFUL OVERSEAS ADMISSIONS LETTERS COME
  • Bank card. Bank fees. Bank. Gross.
  • DID NOT BUY DOMAIN BECAUSE I DO NOT HAVE $18.
  • Lived in filth, i.e. my bedroom & the couch in the lounge that I inhabited (and have since been chased away from).
  • The theme has changed! The About & Welcome pages will be changing, too, soon enough.

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My life currently consists of cards, cords, and contact lens solution.

The heatwave and drought South Africa is experiencing right now makes just about zero things easier. I’m melting, my eyeliner is melting, my ice-cream is melting, my patience is melting…things are a little crazy up in here.

Despite it all, I’m making it. My future is still a little (read: EXTREMELY) uncertain, and I’m not sure what’ll happen in the next six months. Hopefully, it involves a scholarship or two, and a flight to a colder part of the world.

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David and I have similar to-d0 lists. I, however, am without a single Apple device.

I’ll be posting on Tuesdays and Saturdays this year, and maybe a little more frequently when (a) important things are happening, or (b) a mosquito has bitten my finger and I need to move it. Both situations are applicable today.

Thanks for sticking with me, team internet! I know a handful of you personally, but the majority of you all think that I’m interesting enough to read what I have to say. I appreciate you all, and I hope that 2016 is a heck of a wave that we can all ride together. On separate boards. Mostly because I have no idea how to surf and wouldn’t want to drown you all.

love and light,
shalom

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photos from death to the stock photo here, and first covers here.

Blogmas, Vlogmas & December In Between | Update

Aloha! I have updates and news that are 70% irrelevant to mast things concerning most people. Little things that are happening (for real this time) but before I start, I should inform you: I’m in South Africa. Snow at Christmastime is NOT a thing. Okay. Now, it begins!

  1. Blogmas & Vlogmas

Starting on December 1st, I’m going to be doing a blog-a-day until Christmas and sometimes, a little vlog too over here on my YouTube channel – you can subscribe to get first dibs! I think I low-key know that I’m only committing to Vlogmas so I have a reason to get up and shower every day. Or something. Stay tuned for my lonely December misadventures while all my friends are (a) overseas, (b) partying it up by the sea, or (c) both. Everyone is welcome to join! I think I’ll be using WeBlogWeVlog‘s Vlogmas calendar from last year – just scroll back to December 2014. Here it is too, for your added convenience:

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2. Ta, High School

I got through exams! Somehow I managed, and I don’t know how I’m going to stay sane until results day in January. In any case, a school uniform will never mandatorily adorn my body again. Bless.

3. The Series Quest

I’ve got a lot to do in terms of time wasting. For example, I’d love to watch Jessica Jones BUT I’m lucky enough to live South of the equator where Netflix doesn’t exist. Except maybe in Australia? I’m not sure. In any case, I need new series to watch, old series to finish (I see you, Game of Thrones) and something, anything, to obsess over.

That’s pretty much what December looks like for me – I hope you stick around! What does your December look like?

(That was the cheesiest, most cliche blogger ending I have ever typed out. Yeesh.)

Love and light,
Shalom