The Music in me.

The Music in me.

I love music. I love music with every fiber of my being. And I think almost all of us do, we all have this unique and personal relationship with music. Our music preferences, our music histories, the music we grew up with or were surrounded by and influenced by, are all different.

Some of us are enthusiastic listeners, others are lucky enough to be avid concert-goers, and some are even creators themselves. Either way, all our music stories are so, so important as a whole, not just to the industry itself but to who we are as people, as individuals that could never be replaced. This is my music story:

Continue reading “The Music in me.”

Advertisements

Cobblestone.

Cobblestone.

This is actually one of the most long overdue restaurant reviews I have ever written, so here we go!

Cobblestone Bakery & Coffee Shop!

Another one of Walmer’s gems. If I had to use two words to describe Cobblestone, they would be comfort food.

This neighborhood restaurant has such a cosy, welcoming feel, and if those words had a taste, it’d be their food. It feels home made, as if you went over to your mom or your friend or your grandma’s place and they sat down and cooked and served you a meal. There’s just such a personal feel to this place, compared to other restaurants. There’s no over the top decor, or a menu I can’t understand, it’s all so simple and straight to the point.

2017-10-10 04.14.07 1.jpg

2017-10-10 04.14.08 1.jpg

Their WRAPS are to die for (more than your money’s worth), and so is their biscotti (so unique! A perfect combination of shortbread/biscuit-y and cake-like goodness), I’m not much of a fan of quiches but theirs and only theirs I can make an exception for because they’re that good, and their brownies I could cry over or live off of-they almost dethrone the ones they make at Pastry Works. Lastly, their ciabatta bread remains without rival (ciabatta bread from anywhere else just pales in comparison).

The only thing about Cobblestone I’m unhappy about is that they won’t cut my bread. On three separate occasions I have asked if they could cut up the ciabatta loaf for me, it just saves us loads and loads of time and effort, and they have obliged with no problem. Though now, they apparently don’t offer those services. It’s not like I was asking out of the blue, it’s literally been done several times before so I don’t understand why not, all of a sudden. And it’d only take them 2 seconds to do.

Otherwise, I still hold Cobblestone to a high regard.

The restaurant looks so unassuming from the outside! But you would be wrong to base any judgments off of that alone. So give it a visit!

Happy eating, my fellow foodies.❤

 

 

YouTube videos everyone needs to watch.

I’ll be the first to say that I’m the biggest YouTube enthusiast ever. I mean, how cool is it that we have access to such a wide variety of content for free, for free, people!

There’s a lot of talk about the platform dying, but if you ask me, it’ll live on longer than any of us ever will.

I thought I’d compile a list of my favourite videos/short films/music videos I’ve found on YouTube that everyone just has to watch (like, right now).

Fed Up

If you ever choose to watch one, and only one food/health documentary in your lifetime, please, please, please let it be this one. This 2014 documentary basically explores the way in which the processed food industry is poisoning Americans, and the world as a whole. Such. An. Eye-opener.

 

Freedom-International Day of the Girl

No words needed.

 

Looking back; Home.

I can’t remember how I first happened upon Josie Gailey’s videos (Instagram maybe?) but I’m so glad that I did. You should check out a lot of her older stuff, they’re quite unlike the typical YouTube video, it’s as if creativity flows through her veins.

 

Casey Neistat truly is one of a kind, if you’re yet to watch one of this American YouTube personality/vlogger/filmmaker’s videos, then these 4 are an absolute must see:

Life Explained in 27 Seconds

 

Follow Your Dreams

Do what you can’t

Make it count

 

Aquilo – The Story of Silhouettes

This British duo is sooo underrated, their music is art, and so is this short film about the process of creating their album, Silhouette, and how they came together as musicians.

 

MØ – My Home Town

I really do adore videos that explore the origins and inspirations of musicians. This is another beauty, featuring singer MØ (the girl who featured on Major Lazer’s ‘Lean On’ in case you thought you’d never heard of her).

 

I’m not curvy, I’m fat – Olivia Campbell

I can’t tell you how many of Style Like U’s videos I have watched. This one’s a game-changer. The ‘What’s Underneath’ project by Style Like U founders, mother and daughter duo Elisa Goodkind and Lily Mandelbaum, invites strangers to explore what’s underneath personal style, and promote self-acceptance through these candid interviews.

 

Aurora – Nothing Is Eternal

This short documentary takes you through the life and thoughts of arguably the most magical human being to walk the earth – Norwegian singer Aurora. This video is stunning, and will lift up any soul.

 

Demi Lovato – Simply Complicated

Lovatic, or not, this documentary documenting musician/actress Demi Lovato’s battle against addiction, self harm, eating disorders, and living with bipolar disorder while in the spotlight is a must-see for everyone and will have you hooked from start to finish.

 

J.K. Rowling – A Year In The Life

Potterheads unite!!!!!!! Any clip whatsoever that gives me more info about Jo is one that needs to be watched asap, no questions asked.

 

Taylor Swift – Sparks Fly

This tour recap video will take your breath away.

 

R5 – Smile

Before you roll your eyes at this Disney-endorsed band, listen to their music. You’ll want to watch this video in particular, the entire thing is filmed backwards.

 

Bruno Mars – Superbowl performance

As if my respect for this man as an artist couldn’t grow any larger, it tripled after seeing this performance. Bruno Mars, are you even real?

 

On The Road With First Aid Kit

Love. This. Band. And I am obsessed with everything Australian photographer, Nirrimi Firebrace, does. Put those 2 together and you’ve got this little masterpiece. I’d kill to get to travel the world touring as a musician. I’m glad videos like this let me live that impossible dream.

 

Screen Tests – Kit Harington

I spend an awful amount of time watching interviews. I love to hear people tell their stories and talk about themselves in a question and answer format. It seems intimate, and it’s straight to the point. And I’m talking a good interview. I barely know even half of the personalities W magazine interviews but I watch almost every single one of these videos regardless because they’re that good. The choice to film in black and white draws in more of the focus to what the interviewee is actually saying, if you ask me.

 

Following Heart – The Artist

When I first heard about British YouTuber twins Jack and Finn, I thought they were just another pair of pretty faces on the internet with zero substance, purely famous for nothing more than their british accents and conventional good looks. My view took a total 180 when I actually started watching Jacksgap’s content. It’s amazing how much of a difference you can make, and how much you can learn through short films. This is what using your voice and your platform for something meaningful, looks like.

 

Perception – A short film made in 48 hours

Speaking of short films, here’s another one you must give a watch. I’ve been watching Mikey Murphy for a while now and he continues to amaze through his filmmaking prowess. This content makes me want to be a director/producer/screenwriter/cinematographer someday.

 

Mahogany sessions

You just have to watch one of these and see. You can find their channel here, and below is one of my favourites, reposted by Interscope Records featuring Billie Eilish. Wowowow.

Heart on paper.

Heart on paper.

Ever since I was about 7 years old I’ve been keeping a journal, and writing. After having done it for so long it’s become a habit, second nature, almost.

It’s so nice to read back on old journal entries and get to kinda go back in time and relive the day. And it’s so exciting to put down a story that’s been floating around in your head, to paper.
I write to express myself. I write to make sense of the world around me. Most importantly, I write to maintain my sanity. Kinda like sweeping things up into a dustpan and emptying it out when it’s full. If I don’t write, then I can’t think straight. My mind is cluttered. All the thoughts build up and swirl around, blocking space for new thoughts to come through and fogging up the clarity I need to focus on the present, until they are written down.
Journals have also always been my sole confidante. I don’t confide a lot of things in people. I put things down on paper instead. People often argue that it would be a lot healthier to actually talk to people (it is) because pen and paper don’t talk back, but that’s exactly the point. Often times when we need help, people are so fast to throw advice at you without taking the time to sit and listen, and understand, when a lot of the time, that is exactly all that you need. And as Anne Frank herself said, “Paper has more patience than people”.
I’m not much of an artist, so what actually fills up these pages?
Well, accounts of my day, poems, quotes that I love, song lyrics, original songs of my own, hopes and dreams, lists upon lists, of places I hope to travel to, hopes and dreams, fears, plans for blog posts or fictional stories , letters to people I’ll never send.
What do I write in?
I prefer notebooks that aren’t spiral bound (they tend to fall apart-but it was easy to make exception for the one my friend Pritpal gifted me-it’s stunning!), A5 size, with lined pages (can’t write in a straight line without lines to save my life) and I always write in black pen. Blue looks atrocious and makes me think of my school books ’cause I write class notes in  blue.
I thought I’d share pictures of my more recent journals, and excerpts of my life and my thoughts:

Processed with VSCO with  preset

A little paper geisha my friend Pritpal made. I taped it to the front of the journal he got me, and wrote a little note above it to remind me of the occasion.

Processed with VSCO with  preset

The ticket and wristband I got from attending the Safaricom Jazz Festival in 2015. My friend Leigh-Ann had gotten free tickets and invited me to come along.

Processed with VSCO with b1 preset

My wristband from my final year of school prom.

Processed with VSCO with  preset

A letter my best friend Wanjiku gave me on the last day we saw each other before I left for South Africa.

Processed with VSCO with  preset

Confetti from New Year 2016 celebrations.

Processed with VSCO with  preset

A picture one of the sweetest little girls drew of us two during the week I helped out at Holiday Club, lanyards from all the events I’ve helped out at my church this year, and the coolest handmade birthday card I’ve ever gotten from my sister Gloria.

Processed with VSCO with b5 preset

The ticket and program from the best production of Alice in Wonderland I’ve seen yet!

Processed with VSCO with  preset

Doodles of the cities I’d like to visit someday, Edinburgh, London, New York, and Cape Town (which I’ve been to before but was too young to appreciate).

Processed with VSCO with b5 preset

Excerpts:

(An answer to one of the 30 Days of Journaling prompts I got from The Messy Heads):
“Who are you really, at your core?”
I don’t know. It’ll take time to separate my true self from what other people’s expectations of me are, and the world’s brainwashing and conditioning.”
31.1.2017

I don’t feel like today was a fitting goodbye. It hasn’t sunk in. I feel like we’re just gonna meet up again next week at Sarit, or Mambo Italia, seated at our favourite spot by the window.
28.8.2015

First off, I overslept. I swear my alarm never even rang. My dad burst into my room and was like ” I thought we were leaving at 8:30?” And I’m thinking ‘Oh sh-t’. Didn’t eat breakfast. Wasn’t even hungry, just NERVOUS.
When we entered the school compound it was PACKED. It was so unbelievably crowded. I was just in shock. Yeah I thought I’d see 2 or 3 people but this? Madness.
It was so tense in there, just, not nice. So I retreated to the car and called Wanjiku while my dad waited in line.
13.8.2015

Love was a raven-haired girl folding up and putting aside her life to get her hands dirty on the mess that was mine.
13.8.2015

So she drove me and we talked and just….it was perfect. We were still talking when we got there. We didn’t even notice my dad order a drink and finish it. We hugged goodbye a million times.
7.11.2015

Today Gloria and I walked to the 6th Avenue shopping centre. It was so weird, while lining up at the till in Checkers, the lady in front of us just wouldn’t stop STARING. Finally she demanded “What’s that?!” Referring to the plastic full of ginger in my hands. She ended up asking what we use it for. She was just genuinely interested, and asked loads of questions.
1.12.2015

2 weeks and 2 days since I was last in school. Doesn’t sound like much but it felt, it feels, like a lifetime, like an endless string of Saturdays and Sundays. I feel like I don’t have a right to have a say in all of this, being the child of 2 Kenyans, from Kenya, Kenyan despite being a citizen of South Africa (a piece of paper doesn’t mean much does it?). My parents, grandparents, ancestors were not affected by Apartheid. I wasn’t either. So I can’t sit here and say that I can relate, because I can’t, I never could. But as a young, black, African woman, I can and I do, sympathise, and do empathise.
6.8.2016

All of a sudden there’s this guy next to me, probably one of the Youth leaders from the other churches, and he goes “Hey, are you alright?” And I say no, almost crying, explaining how dizzy I was and couldn’t walk straight and he puts his arm around my waist and walks me back to church and he’s shouting for a paramedic or a doctor but they’d already left.
2.4.2017

(A quote from Nirrimi Joy’s blog I loved): “I grow tired of feeling so much. Maybe it seems poetic in retrospect, but in the moment it’s just ugly and exhausting.”

It just warmed me up inside from the top of my head to the tips of my toes, and he gave me hugs all day and said I was his favourite and told me stories and I wondered when it stopped being so easy to make friends. He’s at that age where it’s so easy to love, and he doesn’t care if I’m black or white or pretty or not or anything, he just loves me anyway. That purity, it breaks my heart because of how evil the rest of the world is in comparison.
4.7.2017

If you’ve never been inside a bird hide, its the most fantastical little thing ever, sitting there hidden away watching the birds through the slots in the wood, everyone sipping tea from flasks. All the purple flowers dotting the sea of green while birds rested on lily pads and skimmed the water. After that, we were at the beachfront. We found a tiny little fish, probably died washing up on the shore. It still looked so alive, bright and shiny, silver, glittering in the morning sun. Picked it up to let one of the ladies feel it’s leather-y skin. She decided to keep it to show her nephew.
15.7.2017

Last night was the most magical night of all, my heart swells just thinking about it. Mom got Gloria and I tickets to see Thumbelina the ballet at the opera house. IT WAS STUNNING. IT WAS BEAUTIFUL. IT WAS MAGICAL. We had front row seats!! The costumes were so dazzling and gorgeous. The dancers moved with such grace and vibrancy and it was all perfect. It made me so sad that I never kept up with ballet. How dazzling life as a principal dancer must be. Travelling from city to city, performing classics like Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker, the makeup, the costumes, THE STAGE. But of course, there is the side we don’t see. The long hours, the physical strain, the bloody feet. Blood. Sweat. Tears. Sacrifice. Lots and lots of sacrifice.
28. 7.2017

 

I feel the weight of my responsibility as a human to love others every time I leave someone’s presence. I feel so downcast, about how I wasn’t encouraging enough or enthusiastic enough or attentive enough or funny enough, didn’t make enough of an impact, lift them up enough. And that weight drags me down into a bottomless pit and I have to stop and remind myself that I’m ONLY human.
18.6.17.

That’s all for now. ✒

If you love to write too, what do you write about? I’d love to know!🌹

And if you’re interested in starting to journal and not sure how to go about it, writing prompts are a fun, easy way to start! I’ll link some here.

Till next time, friends!

xx

 

Let’s talk about mental health.

Let’s talk about mental health.

I’ve known for a while now that today was World Mental Health Day. What I didn’t know was whether or not I wanted to write about it because I didn’t really know from what angle I was gonna talk about it from. So bear with me if this post feels like a long, winding, bendy, crooked path to nowhere.

Today is World Mental Health Day! Which is every year on October 10th (so put it on your calendar).

In case you haven’t heard it today, always know, and never ever forget that YOUR MENTAL HEALTH IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS YOUR PHYSICAL HEALTH, if not, more.

I can’t understand how there can even be a debate about this because, your brain controls the rest of your body, it literally controls everything, your brain is one of your organs the same way your heart and lungs and arms and legs are. Therefore, it needs to be cared for.

And this is not a practice reserved for those living with mental illnesses/disorders, it is something we all need to do.

I started going for therapy for the first time this year, and I can’t tell you enough how beneficial it has been to learn how to open up more, to vent, and to work towards ending what has been an endless cycle of burying my feelings and problems till they were burying me. Therapy is not meant to fix people, but it does offer a great deal of help. I don’t know where I’d be without my family, and my faith (Christianity) and now therapy. Depressive episodes come and go, but they don’t have to be the sole narrative of the story;

I heard a quote from a Selena Gomez interview that therapy is like holding up a mirror to yourself and to your life and it is so true. Sometimes we need to bring everything we have been hiding to light if we hope to live a more wholesome and a more honest life, to get better. Sure the process is not easy, but it is worth every bit.

There is such a huge stigma surrounding mental health and mental illness which is such a shame because there is freedom in breaking the silence, and it is only by speaking up about it that those who are struggling find the help that they need, and use their voice to help all those in the same place to feel less alone.

If we could be immune to bad days or sadness, or health issues or illnesses, that’d be great, but we aren’t, and it’s important to know where to go, who to talk to and what to do when those times come. Talk to your Mom, or Dad, or brother or sister, or friend, or a teacher you trust, or student counselor, or therapist, or church pastor or leader, or even call a hotline or an online chat-room, the point is, there are people that are ready and waiting to help in the times that you need it no matter how alone you may feel.

I hope that one day, we can talk about our low days just as casually as we talk about the days we’re having a cold, that mental health services and resources are more affordabele and easily accessible to all, and that the wall of stigma is broken down to let all the people we are shutting out, alienating from the rest, in.

Hope you’re having a Happy Mental Health Day! ❤ Draw a hot bath, go for a walk, call a friend, if need be, make an appointment with your doctor – take care of yourself and the people around you.

Gonna leave links that may be of help, below:

SADAG

To Write Love On Her Arms

Kati Morton

The Mighty

Taking Stock.

Taking Stock.

I don’t think anyone does these posts anymore, but I still find them so interesting, and fun to look back on ☺ So here’s another Taking Stock!

Making: Tonnes and tonnes of lists

Cooking: Nothing new.

Drinking: Not enough liquids to properly sustain a human being tbh.

Reading: On Beauty by Zadie Smith

Wanting: Summer break to come faster so that there’s more time to sleep, explore, go to the beach, read, blog, LIVE.

Looking: For more authentic accounts to follow on the ‘gram.

Playing: These tunes… Chateau by Angus & Julia Stone

Black Spider-Man by Logic 

Heavy by Linkin Park


Wasting: So. Much. Time.

Sewing: Nothing (for now, lol.)

Wishing: I could attend Rocking The Daisies this year because Two Door Cinema Club is performing *cries for the next 20 years*

Enjoying: R5 Book Sales. Wow. Just wow, every booklover’s dream.

Waiting: For the day I actually learn how to drive. #pray4me #whyisthissostressful

Liking: How Bocadillos has half priced pizza every Monday, yaaaaaassssssss.

Wondering: How the elections in Kenya is gonna turn out. Regardless, I’m still impressed by the Supreme Court’s decision to nullify the previous election results due to irregularities.

Loving: The Moments I’m Missing by Nina Nesbitt


Hoping: To start an interview segment on this blog someday! I love to hear people’s stories, and there is so so much to be learned and gained from other people’s experiences. ✨♥

Marvelling: At how many gorgeous travel spots are around here in the Eastern Cape! 🍃

Needing: Tickets to see The Vamps in Cape Town next year omg 😭😭😭😭😭😭

Wearing: Less layers because sprrrriiingggg has sprung, and summer is on its way 🎉🎉🎉

Following: Johanna , Nirrimi Joy , The Messy Heads , and every single one of Zoella’s vlogs #foreverobsessed

Noticing: How much I’m on my phone or ab(using) social media and trying to cut down and be more mindful of how I use it, and more present in my everyday life.

Knowing: But not graspingthe full understandingof how precioustime is.

Thinking: About all the amazing humans I’ve gotten the chance to meet this year through being a Sunday School and Youth leader at Harvest.

Feeling: Appreciative of kind people. Kindness never ever goes unnoticed. It might not seem like much at the time but what an impact it makes on the people around you.

Bookmarking: The Messy Heads , Sea Foaming , The Mighty , To Write Love On Her Arms

Opening: My eyes to the fact that life’s what you make it.

Smelling: A renewed freshness in the air because spring has sprung 🌹

Giggling: At this Teen Vogue interview of the cast of ‘It’. Whoever edited this did a perfect job (lol those sound effects thooough)! I’ve watched this interview at least 4 times and now I’m almost obsessed enough with them to actually want to watch that demonic mess of a movie. Almost.


And this….”I’m a beautiful girl” 😭😭😭😂😂😂😂

If you have any blog/music/books/video suggestions, leave them down below 🙂 Till next time!

xx

IMG_20170822_170400_044[1]

Bookish.

Bookish.

If you’re not much of a reader, then this post will probably bore you to tears. But then again, if you’re reading this at all, you love to read in some capacity or another.

I feel like as we grow up, a lot of things about who we are change, evolve. Which is great, we should never feel bound to our old selves. However there’s that feature of our character that doesn’t change, that stays with us throughout the passage of time.

That’s my relationship with books. I love to read. I’ve always found comfort, a safe refuge, an instantly ready escape within the pages of books and the four walls of libraries.

Stories made me feel like I could be whoever I wanted to be, go wherever I wanted to go. There were no borders or barriers or limitations. I could slip out of reality when the world was dull and grey.

Books still do all those things for me.

I first came to my favourite library, Walmer library, around the age of six. I read everything I could get my hands on, dancing between books by Enid Blyton and Judy Blume, Dr. Seuss and J.K. Rowling, Roald Dahl and Anthony Horowitz, Lemony Snicket to Cathy Cassidy, the list goes on and on.

I still do read some of those author’s books up till now. As a reader, I feel like I’m at that weird in-between stage where I’m holding on to the children’s section and dabbling in the classics I should have read a long time ago while dipping my toes into the pool of adult literature.

I’ll admit there are tonnes and tonnes of common books I’ve never ever read (for one, Pride And Prejudice. Started it and couldn’t finish. Or anything by Shakespeare. Not my cup of tea).

But I’m trying to diversify my taste. Maybe some books just demand an acquired taste. Like eating your fruits (ugh) and veggies (forever yum).

My golden rule still stands: Never ever force yourself to finish a less-than-great book. If it’s dull or you feel yourself having to force yourself through it, dump it. There are enough good books out there, books for everyone and for all tastes. And like music, never let anyone shame you for your book tastes. The world is big enough for the Taylor Swift lovers and The Rolling Stones lovers, and the Shakespeare boffins and the mainstream young adult novel worshipers too. A book’s a book.

My all time favourites include:

-The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling (boy finds out he’s a wizard!)

-The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns and And The Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini (prepare to be emotionally torn. To. Pieces.)

-Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine (most hilarious book ever, just an overall good book)

-The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (never thought I’d read a book from the perspectives given within this book, i.e. death)

-Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery (wow, did not think it was possible to relate to a fictional character so much! And wow, what trouble is Anne gonna get into next, the girl.is always out doing herself without even trying lol. I think I re-wrote the entire book into my journal because every word in every page was so good. If you follow me on Insta I’ll be using quotes from the book as captions for the rest of my twenties, I reckon. #SorryNotSorry

-The Fault In Our Stars by John Green (Deep. So so honest, about life, about a lot of things)

-Driftwood and Dizzy by Cathy Cassidy (whoa this woman knows how to paint the perfect tragedies, your heart will be torn out of your chest. Don’t be fooled by the happy-go-lucky covers)

-The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (never read such rich imagery painted by words in my life. And I am still SO MAD AT THE ENDING, GAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!)

-The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde (so so witty, in fact, the definition of wit)

Books I’ve read so far this year, 2017:

-Dizzy by Cathy Cassidy

-The Catcher In The Rye by J.D Salinger

-Alex Rider: Crocodile Tears

-Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

-Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

-Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

-Indigo Blue by Cathy Cassidy

-Driftwood by Cathy Cassidy  

-Girl Online: Going Solo by Zoe Sugg

-Anne of green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

-The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

What are your favorite books? And what are you currently reading? 🙂

Processed with VSCO with a4 preset

Processed with VSCO with a4 preset