First Post!!

Welcome to my blog!!! I am so excited to start this journey with you all and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

I hope to be posting often so make sure you are following to be the first to hear when I post.

Sending love your way,

NOVA.

What Lockdown Has Taught Me.

Earth is ringing its bells, sending warning after warning, telling us that we should stop and listen. To feed it with good instead of oil. To keeps its leaves instead of burning them. She has developed a fever that’ll take years to cure.

Life is delicate so please do not waste it. Many have lost loved ones that they thought they’d see tomorrow, Don’t take anyone for granted, and that includes yourself.

Some leaders have shown their true colours and now its our decision if we want them to keep their titles.

Lockdown hasn’t shown me this as I’m a victim of it but it has definitely shown a lot of other people. Racism is real and a black square isn’t going to stop it. People are killed just because of the colour of their skin and you tell me that all lives do matter.

People are good at telling stories, which ones will you listen to.

It is so easy to feel disconnected in a world that is so connected.

People are important. It’s hard to live alone.

Love,

NOVA.

I’m so sorry…

I’m just going to keep this one short.

I know I haven’t posted in a while and I just wanted to hop on and let you all know the reason why.

I’ve been in school for a couple of weeks now. It’s been a little bit stressful and usually the end of the day I’m just wrecked. We’re not getting a lot of work or anything, it’s just the pandemic that has been draining me.

The cases in Dublin are rising again and we’re at the same levels that we were in back in April but schools haven’t closed. It’s just the constant taught of my family and I getting sick that’s running through my head.

I have to be honest my time management skills haven’t been great either and it is something that I do hope to work on. At the moment I’m juggling school, track and hockey as well as the blog so I do ave a lot on my hands. Any free time I get I’m just scrolling through Instagram or watching Netflix which isn’t the most productive thing to do. I know its important to have set time for those things but what I’m trying to say is that I’m usually using Instagram when I’m supposed to be doing my homework and stuff like that.

My Instagram is also just dead. I haven’t posted anything on there for over a month now, which is something I just realised a couple of days ago.

To cut a long story short I’m going to try have a post up this week, if not I will definitely have one up next week and I also hope to resurrect my Instagram and I am very sorry for not posting in like forever.

Thank You all so much for your love and support.

NOVA

Sunshine Blogger Award

Happy September everyone!! I hope you’re all well and minding yourself. How has your September been so far?

I’ve been nominated for the sunshine blogger award by Nath and I want to say thank you so much for nominating me! I’m extremely grateful.

Rules:

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the sunshine blogger award logo in your blog post.

Nath’s Questions:

  1. Describe life in three words.

Interesting, Unpredictable and Challenging

2. What would your best day look like? Explain.

Honestly, my best day would be a casual day out with friends. They bring me so much joy, especially since I’be been locked inside for the last 6 months

3. Which of your posts is your favourite? Why?

I’d say my favourite post would be my post about natural hair. I find it hard to discuss such topics as I feel that I’ll make people unconformable but something I’ve learnt is that nothing is going to change if people stay in their comfort zones.

4. What “old person” things do you do?

I write in cursive 90% of the time. I’m not sure if that’s actually and ‘old person thing’ to do but I don’t see a lot of people writing in cursive these days.

5. Have you ever thought of moving to another country to live?

I’d love to live in London. I’ve always seen it as a more diverse version of Dublin. I’ve been several times because I have family there. I’m also obsessed with the music scene over there. Also, I visited Copenhagen, last October and I fell in love with the cycling culture there and the lifestyle. Everyone is so kind and the architecture is beautiful.

6. What weird food combinations do you really enjoy?

I actually can’t think of anything.

7. If you could know the absolute and total truth to one question, what question would you ask?

Is there life outside of earth?

8.What genre of books is best for your eyes to consume? Can you recommend one book from that genre?

I read a lot of YA fiction. I’m a big fan of ‘All the Bright Places’ by Jennifer Niven.

9. What’s the last movie you watched? Do you recommend it?

The last movie watched was ‘Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again!’ I definitely recommend it.

10. How do you deal with stress?

I try to focus on something else for a little while. It usually takes me a while to realise that I am stressed so when I do I’d sometimes write about it or journal and then I am often able to dissect the issue and find a solution.

11. What language would you like to learn?

I’m currently learning Irish, French and Akan Twi but I’d also love to learn Spanish once I become proficient in Irish and French.

My Nominees:

Paracosm & Stuff

Hey Jnelle

A Teenage Girl

Iridescent

Blogginwithtia

tonni mol

Zainab Chats

From Catherine

Jorja’s Journal

Bloggie Babe

Meghan’s Teen Life

I would definitely recommend you check these blogs out if you can.

My Questions:

  1. What inspired you to start blogging?
  2. What is your favourite colour?
  3. What is one place that you would love to visit?
  4. What is one thing that you believe society should stop doing?
  5. What is your favourite song at the moment?
  6. What is your favourite movie?
  7. What do you love doing in your spare time?
  8. What languages can you speak or are learning?
  9. What is something you could not live without?
  10. What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
  11. What is your favourite quote and why?

Tunes I’ve Been Jamming to During Quarantine

Hey guys, I hope you’re well and minding yourself.

I’ve always been scared to share my music taste with the world and even my friends for the fear of judgement lol. I’m just a lil insecure bean but I’m working on it!

So let’s just jump into the list because that’s what you came here for.

In no particular order:

  1. By any Means -Jorja Smith
  2. Tried Up – Ama Lou
  3. XS – Rina Sawayaman
  4. I Never Got Off The Bus – Tebi Rex ft. Local Boy
  5. Black Parade – Beyonce
  6. Cashmere Tears – Kojey Radical
  7. Summer – Celeste, Jeshi
  8. All I Need – Jacob Collier, Mahalia, TY Dolla $ign
  9. Grandad – NSG
  10. Carried Away – H.E.R
  11. Go Home – Yellow Days
  12. migh bang, might not – Little Simz
  13. mary magdalene – FKA Twigs
  14. Oui ou n on – Angéle
  15. Pink Youth – Yuna, Little Simz
  16. High Highs to Low Lows -Lolo Zoaï
  17. Make Room – Miraa May
  18. Hold Out – Sam Fender
  19. Taken for a Fool – The Strokes
  20. Stunnin – Curtis Waters, Harm Franklin
  21. 101 FM – Little Simz
  22. Ain’t It Different – Headie One, AJ Tracey, Stomzy
  23. West Ten – AJ Tracey, Mabel
  24. one life, might live – Little Simz
  25. Find an Island – BENEE
  26. Hurts -Joy Crookes
  27. Grace – RIMON
  28. On My MInd – Jorja Smith x Preditah
  29. My High – Disclosure, Aminé, Slowthai
  30. LOVE ME FOR LIFE – BROCHAMPTON
  31. Rover – S1mba, DTG
  32. Amour Plastique – Videoclub
  33. Gemini – Princess Nokia
  34. Baby Powder – Jenevieve
  35. Empty Love – GRACEY, Ruel
  36. W – Koffee, Gunna
  37. Stop This Flame – Celeste
  38. Wandering Romance – Jorja Smith
  39. Early – Joy Crookes, Jafrais
  40. The 1 – María Isabel

Here’s the Spotify playlist!

Drop me some recommendations and let me know what you listen to! I’d say my favourite artist are Jorja Smith, Ama Lou or Little Simz. I can’t choose. Who are your favourite artisits?

If you’ve made it down this far, I want to say thank you so much for reading and enjoy the rest of your day; know that I am very grateful.

Love,

NOVA

September and Back to School Goals.

Hey guys! I hope you are doing well and minding yourself.

This week I want to talk about my goals for the school year and for September.

I’m so excited to go back to school. I’m back this Monday and though I’m a little bit scared about getting the virus and stuff like that, I’m still so excited to see all of my friends again. It has been six long months since I’ve been in school.

My goals for September are:

1. Read one book. 

I’m currently reading ‘Kafka on the Shore’ by Haruki Murakami. I’m around a quarter way through it and I am really enjoying the book. You can follow me on Goodreads to see my progress! https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/81185871-nova

2. Continue my exercise habit. For August, my goal when it came to exercising was to just try and get outside and run once a week. Naturally, I am a very active person. Before the pandemic and my junior cert I was doing track 3-4 times a week, basketball twice a week and the odd day I’d be playing football. Once I started 3rd year/Junior Cert year I neglected my active life which I regret doing. I’ve lost a lot of strength, endurance and speed. During the pandemic, I didn’t even have the motivation to get up and out of my house. I’m so proud of myself now because for the last month I’ve gone out at least once a week. For September, I hope to just continue that habit.

Photo by erica steeves on Unsplash
  • Try the 5 Hour Rule – When using the five-hour rule you choose something that you want to learn for one hour a day, five times a week. I hope to use this to help me study some of the languages that I am currently learning. This could go under my goals for the school year but I left it here as I feel it’s like a personal experiment.
Photo by Icons8 Team on Unsplash

My Goals for the school year of 2020/2021

  • Take is easy. I’m going into Transition Year/TY this year and its basically a year where you relax after doing your Junior Cert and before going into 5th year where you’ll be studying for the leaving cert in 6th year. TY is not compulsory and students do have the option to skip it and go straight into 5th year if they are not interested. So basically TY is the transition from the junior cycle which are your first 3 years into the leaving cycle which are your last 3 years of secondary school. I’m one to get worked up on the little things so I just want to enjoy the year. 

  • Find work experience. Another aspect of TY is work experience. TY is also the year where students think about what type of careers they want to pursue in the future. TY allows you to work in these fields and experience what it is like to work in the career you are interested in. Because of COVID-19, limited institutions and businesses are taking TY student this yea,r so it’s going to be extremely difficult to find placements. Hopefully, I can find some places that’ll be taking on students this year because so far it has been painfully difficult.

  • Study some 5th-year material. I want to get ahead by just a little bit so I’m hoping that maybe towards the middle of the year I can start studying topics for the year ahead.
Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash
  • Stop comparing myself to others – Whether it’d be through grades or awards, I just want to learn to start focusing on myself. I feel that once I start to focus on myself I’ll probably accomplish a lot more and be a lot happier.

If you have made it down this far I want to say thank you so much for reading. I wish you the best of luck for this academic year. I just want to add that we’ve reached 30 followers!!!! Thank you guys so much!! See you next Sunday.

Love,

NOVA

Tips for Back to Physical School

Hey guys! I hope you are all well and staying safe. Since we are all going back to school soon, I decided to write a post about ….. going back to school! So here are my top tips and things that have worked for over the last couple of years. I’m going back to school in person this year, which is quite scary since cases of COVID-19 are still rising here, but at least I now have an excuse to leave my house every once in a while. I know some of you may still being doing online school this year but I hope these tips can also help you out.

  1. Re-organise everything!

Throw out notes that you won’t need. If a lot of your files are digital, reorganise your iCloud or Google Drive. On your phone, delete apps that you don’t use as often or may find a distraction, such as social media apps that you don’t use much and games.

Photo by Jess Bailey on Unsplash

2. Review and study ahead.

If you have bought your books, the best way to make your life slightly easier is to study ahead and review topics before school starts. This helps you to get back into the habit of studying and helps you to get ahead of class. Also, do remember to revise topics from previous years just to jog your memory.

Photo by Georgiana Voiculescu on Unsplash

3. Find study techniques now.

The best time to find out what study techniques work for you is not the night before a test, do it now! If you find what techniques work best for you, you won’t end up searching the internet for study techniques the night before an exam.

Photo by Brandi Redd on Unsplash

4. Purchase PPE

In Ireland, it’ll most likely be compulsory to wear a face covering in school. Buy re-usable masks so that you can just pop them in the wash once used and have 5-6 available so that you won’t run out over the week. Alternatively, you could also buy a visor which you can clean by just wiping the screen with water and soap. Also, make sure to buy hand sanitiser and wipes just to be extra safe.

Photo by Vera Davidova on Unsplash

5. Find those exam dates.

This will help you to plan your study schedule ahead of time and around your exam times.

Photo by Eric Rothermel on Unsplash

6. Fix that sleep schedule.

I’d say this is the hardest on the list. I’m such a night owl and I just love staying up late, but I know that fixing my sleep schedule now will help the transition back into school life a hell of a lot easier.

Photo by David Clode on Unsplash

7. Make Goals!

Write a list of goals for this school year. Is there anything you want to achieve, write it down! Having goals for the new school years can also help you to stay motivated. For example, for each subject you’re doing have a target grade or maybe an average grade for the year. Aim high kiddos!

Photo by David Clode on Unsplash

If you have made it down this far, I want to say thank you so much for reading my post. I hope you found this post helpful. Stay well and stay safe.

Love,

NOVA.

Thank You

Hello Everyone!
I just wanted to hop on and say thank you.
I want to say thank you to everyone who has followed my blog so far.
I’ve passed my 20 follower benchmark. Though that may not seem like a big achievement, I believe that it is important to celebrate the ‘smaller’ achievements.
You’ve all been so kind and so encouraging. Thank you so much! I am so grateful for you all!
Love,
NOVA

Let’s Talk….. Natural Hair

DISCLAIMER: This post was not made to offend anybody, I’m just talking about my own personal experiences in the rawest form possible. If we sugar coat peoples experiences nobody is going to learn anything and its denying the fact that things need to change.

Good morning, afternoon or evening wherever you are. I hope you are doing well and minding yourselves.

Today I want to talk about my experiences with my hair. I have afro-textured hair or natural hair as most people call it. 

I have a love/hate relationship with my hair. It brings a lot of unnecessary attention because people can be too overly curious about my hair and they’d want to touch and ask me all sorts of ridiculous questions about it. Now definitely there is nothing wrong about asking questions but if it gets to the point where you’re almost attacking the individual you’ve got to stop.

When I was much younger, I desperately wanted to permanently straighten my hair. All the other black girls in my class also had their hair straightened and, I was made fun of my hair. That obviously hurt, a lot.

I eventually got the opportunity to relax/ permanently straighten my hair a couple of years later and, I was in love with my hair. I finally felt like finally fitted in. I felt like I finally blended in with everyone else…. until it turned painful.

The chemicals used in hair relaxer(the product used to permanently straighten hair) are so harsh that they can burn your scalp!!!! That was something no one warned me about at all. My scalp hurt so much for the first couple of weeks after getting the treatment. I figured all the pain I was going through just wasn’t worth ‘fitting in’ so I decided to stop.

I kept my hair in protective styles such as braids and cornrows until all the damaged hair broke off. When I started to wear my hair out again, the comments came again.

‘Why does your hair look like that?’

‘How often do you wash it?’

‘Why is it so short?’

‘Can I touch it?’

No one with straight hair is asked these questions.

 I’ve also had:

‘Did you just get electrocuted?’ 

‘Your hair doesn’t look like hair.’ and 

‘It feels like a rope!’

Comments like these do hurt even if the person doesn’t seem to be offended. Again, I do understand that sometimes such questions are just out of plain curiosity. It’s just, we’ve been living amongst each other for thousands of years and its almost like we still don’t know a thing each other. Sometimes I almost feel like a foreign object, just because of my hair.

So, I’m here to clear up some confusion and answer these questions which are the ones that I have frequently gotten about my hair.

  1. ‘Why does your hair look like that?’

My hair looks like this because it’s a different texture. Here’s a hair chart, so you can visually see what I’m on about. 

The science: It all starts from the root. Our hair follicles are shaped differently causing the hair to grow with its curly pattern.

 2. ‘How often do you wash it?’

It depends but never more than once a week. Our hair does not get greasy often, it’s actually quite dry as the sebum produced at the scalp has a hard time travelling down to the tip of the hair, so there’s no need to wash hair less than once a week. Sometimes I’d go two, but no more.

3. ‘Why is it so short?’

It’s called shrinkage.

Our hair often deceives us too! Shrinkage is the decrease in length after the hair dries because the curls become tighter and also due to the elasticity of the hair, causing the hair to shrink and appear shorter than it actually is. This is one of the reasons why a lot of people think black people can’t grow long hair, but trust me, we can.

4. ‘Can I touch it?’

It usually depends on the person. I personally don’t mind. The only thing I hate is when people go grabbing my hair like it’s the property. If you’re thinking of asking someone you aren’t close to, don’t even bother trying. If you are close to his person and they say that you can’t, please don’t go and invade their personal space and touch it anyway, it’s rude.

And anyway we’re in the middle of a PANDEMIC nobody should be touching ANYBODY!!! That sounded weird, but you get what I mean.

I’m still on a journey of learning to love my hair. I know it’ll take a while but I’m so proud of myself for making it this far.

Anyways if you’re still here I want to say thank you so much for reading this. I do believe that to start change we have to be open to hear and discuss people’s experiences.

Again, another big, big thank you!

Sending love your way,

NOVA.

Starting Something New

Good morning, evening or day, wherever you are. I hope you’re well!

Now, I’m just going to get straight to the point. I disappeared and I’m sorry. From now on I’m going to try and post consistently. I’m thinking every Sunday maybe and starting from the Sunday next. I just needed to take the time to sort out myself and my health.

I’ll keep you all posted.

Love,

NOVA