Wednesday 29 April 2020

March and April 2020 | Monthly Wrap Up

Welcome to the apocalypse! 

Favourite part?

Ha! What a couple of months. To be honest, I felt so out of control already that the whole global pandemic, everyone in lockdown thing hasn’t really thrown me too much out of whack. But we’ll start pre-apocalypse first.

The first day of March is St. David’s Day, so of course I had to celebrate in whatever way I could. I made vegan Welsh cakes and brought them into NEST, and I’m happy to say they went down a treat! I also themed the activities for that day as all Welsh-themed, it was great. The next week we also themed activities around International Women’s Day!

I attended several events at the beginning of the month. For FemSoc, I went to a talk on Feminism and Spirituality and as well as the Feminism Conference on International women’s Day, both of which were great. 

I saw friends a few times – going to coffee shops, celebrating birthdays, film nights and going for walks around Jesmond Dene. My friend Harriot and I went to see one of Chris Ramsey’s warm up comedy gigs before his tour (which has now been postponed for obvious reasons). It was a great evening and was basically the last social event I had before uni moved online and social distancing was enforced. 

The weekend before uni closed my family came up to visit me in Newcastle. It wasn’t the best timing, but it had been planned for ages so we decided to make the most of it. We went for a walk around the city, a trip down to the Quayside Sunday market, went to see Misbehaviour at the cinema (which is incredible, can I just add. If you can see it please do), and went for a lush meal at Karma Kitchen.

And that brings us to lockdown. I stayed in Newcastle for two weeks before heading back down South to be with my family. During that time I managed to get back into doing yoga almost daily, had several walks around Jesmond Dene and Heaton Park. I did lots of cooking, using up as much from my freezer, fridge and cupboards as possible (I got most of it used up). I've also been doing my makeup more often in lockdown and dressing up in some of my more snazzy clothes.

I did also however get several takeaways – hey, it’s supporting local businesses! I got Kimchi Planet’s vegan beef bulgogi, kimchi and kimbaps, a couple of different curries from Karma Kitchen and pizza and doughballs from Little Green and tried Pizza Hut’s vegan pizzas. I comfort eat, let me be. Honestly, though, the availability of great quality vegan takeaway in Newcastle is incredible and I properly miss them.

For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you’ll likely have seen my dancing and cooking videos. I’ve really enjoying making them, and I’ve had lots of people tell me they enjoy watching them, so they’re going to keep happening until I no longer enjoy them. 

I’m now trying to get some uni work done at last. Some of which is great (I’m writing an essay on female masturbation and I just love the reading I’m doing, it’s fascinating and I now have so many statistics about sex), and some of which is less great but I still have to get round to at some point.

I do still need reminders every now and again to go into the surrounding area. I am so lucky to have a garden, but nevertheless it’s still important to go into the countryside whenever I’m able, and not forget how pretty it is in the area where I live.

Oh yeah, and I dyed my hair again (not a lockdown thing, just a continuing thing but the red is definitely not fading).

Best read?

I’ve actually read a lot more in lockdown than I would have expected. After initially not doing much reading while I was still in Newcastle, everything kind of went out of the window at the beginning of lockdown to be honest. But I did start catching up with uni reading. For my English course I read Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie and am finishing Season of Migration to the North by Tayeb Salib at the moment. I’ve also read a bit of Transmission by Hari Kunzru, which I’ll hopefully be finishing in the next week too.

As part of lockdown activities, I’ve been organising a book club for N.E.S.T volunteers. So far we’ve read Animal Farm by George Orwell, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man by Dostoyevsky and What Not by Rose Macaulay. I’ve been meaning to read What Not for ages (I bought the book a year ago) and I really enjoyed Macaulay’s writing style.

Favourite tunes?

If you’ve seen my Instagram stories lately, you’ll have heard ome of the music I’ve been enjoying. From my dance party playlist to Disney to a lot of Billy Ocean. I’ve particularly been listening to Take That’s Beautiful World album a lot recently. I don’t know, I suppose I find it kind of cathartic. Especially Wooden Boat and Butterfly, I will never change my opinion that Wooden Boat is Take That’s best song. 

Favourite watch?

I’ve watched a lot of things this month. From all of Brooklyn 99 again and Outnumbered about 3 times, to new watches thanks to my week’s free trial of Disney +. Yep, thanks to that free trial I’ve rewatched all of Agent Carter, some of Wizards of Waverley Place, Suite Life of Zack and Cody, Cinderella 3 and Princess Diaries 2. Because I am definitely an adult. 

Since being back with my family, I’ve watched all of Vicar of Dibley, most of Hunted and been watching Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes. I’ve also finally started watching Killing Eve (I know I’m super late to the party).

Image Credit

What did I learn?

I’m better at being on my own than I think. And it confirmed how important alone time is to me. Dancing cures everything (as if we didn’t know that before). As well as a bit of basica Arabic! 

What’s happening next month?

More lockdown! Oh joys. May means deadlines, so I’m going to try my best not to procrastinate and keep ploughing through.  

What’s been on my mind?

Some things I don’t want to talk about on here. As well as generally worrying about people – friends, family, the kids at NEST. Also, honestly? Food. What to eat next, how to use everything up in my cupboards. When I get bored I think of food okay.

I’ve also been thinking a lot about how our general attitudes towards certain things are potentially changing at the moment. I’m hoping that people will start to think differently about their clothes and how much they consume. I’ve also thinking a lot about harity t-shirts. They often have great intentions, but they often have bad implications for workers and the planet. 

Favourite blogger/vlogger?

I finally joined Leena Norms’ Gumption Club this month and I’m really enjoying it so far.

Favourite post?

There’s not been much, so I’m going to have to say 5 Comfort Watches to Get You Through Lockdown. It felt good to actually publish a post that wasn’t a Monthly Wrap Up! Hopefully once uni work dies down a bit I’ll be able to write some more.

Biggest inspiration?

I suppose seeing so many people doing lovely things for others at the moment. I’ve heard of and seen some amazing things, even if they’re small gestures. 

Any other favourites?

A lemon cake which I honestly think is the best vegan cake I’ve ever made. My dad and I also made an absolutely amazing rhubarb crumble. Basically, sweet things.

If you liked this post you might like: February 2020 | Monthly Wrap Up

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