Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Monthly Memories: March

01.03.16

As part of my pre-birthday celebrations, 2 of my close friends from school decided that we should all go out for pancakes and milkshakes. One of the waitress' put a candle on my pancake and then they all sang happy birthday to me, which I thought was incredibly sweet, as well as slightly embarrassing! I honestly had the nicest time and I felt so grateful at the fact that the girls cared enough to want to take me out and celebrate with me. Although the pancake and milkshake combination can be extremely filling, it was delicious and I also think it looks very aesthetically pleasing, right?

02.03.16
 On the day of my actual birthday itself, I had a half day at school. I actually don't mind Wednesdays at all, because they are actually one of my favourite days in terms of the lessons that I have, but it was an extra treat to be able to get off school early too. My mum and grandma came to pick me up and then we went back to my house. I had a little snack, laid all of my presents out in the living room ready to open that evening and then I got ready for my birthday meal out to the carvery. It was just the 4 of us, as unfortunately my sister had to work, but then we went back home and she was able to come round to see me open my presents and have tea and cake, which made my day even more special. I did actually put up a blog post on the day, so you can go and read that here if you would like to do so. It's all about some of the life lessons I've learnt and my biggest achievements!


07.03.16
 If you have been reading my blog for a while now, or you know me personally, then you will be aware of the fact that I'm literally obsessed with sunsets. I absolutely adore them. I thought that I just had to include this one, because it was particularly beautiful! It's good to remember that no matter what you're going through, or how much of a tough time you might be having right now, the sun will always rise and the sun will always set. I just think that's something worth remembering. Be like the sun. Make sure that you always wake up with a smile on your face and make sure that you always make it through to the end of the day as well. It may sound silly, or cheesy, or whatever, but I think it's quite cute if I'm honest!



16.03.16
Sometimes, certain people come into your life and once they are actually present, you have no idea how you could have ever been happy before they came in. This is my best friend, Sam. I became friends with her when I was in Year 7 and I'm now in Year 10. This girl is my absolute world. We may have had loads of silly, little arguments in the past, but we haven't had one in a long time. I have supported her through many things that she's gone through and I am honestly so proud of how far she has come. I'm not going to take all of the recognition, because I'm not the reason she is the amazing person that she is, but I do believe that I've helped her as much as I can and I've never stopped being there for her. We've both had relationship problems. We've both had difficulties with our lives that we don't always want other people to know. We have both had drama and heartbreak. But, we have stood by each other through the good and the bad. which is the most important thing that proves that our friendship is true. We have endless memories, which I'm not going to share with you, as she already knows what they are, same with our inside jokes, but trust me, there are many! She is such a beautiful, bubbly, hilarious, strong girl and she's my girl, no matter what anyone thinks or says. I shall always have her back and I honestly do believe that our friendship will last a lifetime. If you're reading this, I love you unconditionally Sam. You really are my long-lost sister. Thank you for everything.

18.03.16

As part of my controlled assessment for the GCSE Geography course I'm on, I went on a day trip to Windsor. The main aim was that we had to interview members of the public, complete surveys and maps and all of that fun stuff that's compulsory. My group in particular were in control of taking photographs, which meant that we were focusing on the buildings, the scenery, the different types of tourist places that were around - that kind of thing! I'm really into photography, as I'm sure you can tell by this style of post and my blog in general, which is exactly what my friend Nadia is like too, who was also in my group, so that was really nice. We were getting very snap-happy and then we were just relaxing, walking around, doing the work that we needed to do and enjoying ourselves as much as we could. I enjoyed the fact that on our lunch break, we were allowed to do whatever we wanted! 

18.03.16
Whilst I'm on the topic of the Geography trip, I thought I'd also talk about another gorgeous girlie, who was also in my group. Lisa is one of my close friends that I stuck with throughout the day and she helped me to feel less nervous than I initially was as well! She made sure that I wasn't left out and then when it came to the lunch break, we had our lunch on one of the benches along the high street that we had been working on first of all and then we wandered off and looked in Boots, swatching all of the makeup! I liked it more, because we were able to just go off by ourselves and do whatever we wanted for an hour and a bit. It allowed us to feel much more relaxed and we had more freedom, which was great. Overall, I really did enjoy the trip and it made it even better knowing I was with some of my favourite people.
 
What have you been up to this month? Have you done anything exciting?
 
Lots of love,
 
Jade x
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Sunday, 27 March 2016

All About Happiness

 

I think that one of the most important things in life is happiness. There are a huge amount of people in today's generation that are so unhappy and so damaged, which really does break my heart. So many of us are attempting suicide and harming ourselves, because we feel like the world doesn't accept us for who we are and we don't believe that there is anyway that we can find joy, not even in the little things. Innocent lives are being taken away due to the society that we live in. This is unacceptable and this can't go on.

Today I'm going to be talking about ways that you can all try to add a little more positivity into your day to day life. I'll be talking a bit about how I personally remain positive, but I'll also be sharing tips on how you can do the same, regardless of your background story.

Without meaning to sound vain, I like to think that I'm quite a positive, cheerful person. Whenever someone compliments me about my attitude or my mind set, I always feel so honoured that they actually notice! I do think I've always been this way, ever since I can remember. I usually have a smile on my face and I'm always the first to notice when someone else is feeling down. I do have bad days and I have gone through particularly dark, unpleasant stages, where I haven't felt like being cheerful, but that's okay. We are all human and we are all allowed to go through difficulties, as that's just the way life is.

In order to remain positive and to keep a smile on my face, I try to focus on having a good outlook on life. This is particularly important, because you won't ever get anywhere if you're always dwelling on the negative things that make you unhappy. By having a good outlook, you will become much more aware of the little things that life has to offer. Try to appreciate the fact that the sun is shining or the fact that you are healthy and well.
It doesn't always mean that a miracle has to have happened in order for you to smile. If you become more conscious of the smaller things, like nature or your friends and family, you will soon realise that they are actually the things that have the largest impact on your self-esteem. I completely understand that some people may not have the greatest of home lives. Some of you may be abused, bullied, neglected or you may be experiencing something else equally as horrific. You can still be happy though. Happiness is a choice and you should wake up each day, accepting that choice and making the most of it.

I understand that all of us experience difficulties throughout our lives. Whether they are big, or small, they are all just as significant. If something is on your mind all, or most of the time, then it's clearly affecting you and that issue needs to be sorted out as soon as possible, before it gets any worse. Sometimes we may go through horrendous things, such as break-ups, family meltdowns, bullying, or mental illnesses. Those are just some examples. During the moment, it may seem like it's impossible to ever get through the battle and it can seem almost impossible. You may shut down completely. You may feel helpless, worthless, lonely, or even as though you wish to take your own life. All of those emotions that you're feeling are valid and they really do matter, but it doesn't mean that any of them have to be the true reality of the situation. As your initial reaction, you can allow yourself a day, or two to acknowledge those feelings. You can be alone if you want to, or you can ask for someone close to you to come and support you during that moment. You can have a cry, indulge in your favourite type of comfort food, whether it be ice-cream, chocolate, fried chicken, popcorn, chips, or anything else, watch some films and genuinely just feel quite sorry for yourself. I think it's important to recognise that you deserve some time in which you can allow yourself to feel this way. There's no point in allowing those emotions to build up, as eventually they will get so high that you will feel consumed by them and it will only make matters once when you eventually let them go.
As hard as it may be, you should always try confiding in someone you trust, because a problem shared is a problem halved, as the saying goes and you will feel a huge weight lifted off your shoulder too. I do think that it's important to tackle the negative aspects of your life and acknowledge them, so then you can move on through better, more positive ways.


I'm now going to tell you all some of the ways that you can add a little more happiness into your life:

Find a hobby that you genuinely enjoy - Whether it's reading, writing, music, blogging, singing, dancing, sport, gaming, or another sort of passion. I truly believe that everyone is passionate about something, but it just takes time to figure out what it actually is. As I've said before, I feel that my main passion is helping people, tackling mental health, and blogging. By having my own blog, I can actually do all of them things and more. I do have other hobbies, but I would definitely say that this is the main one for me and it's also the one that I feel I get the most fulfilment out of. There are many people who are fighting their own battles that others may not even know anything about. I fought my own battles for a while in silence and I'm not saying that's always a bad thing. If you feel that you can cope on your own, then that's absolutely fine. It's just that everyone feels like they need someone to open up to sometimes. That doesn't mean you're weak. It doesn't mean you're weak at all. I just think that if you have a hobby, something that you're truly passionate about, you will always have something, or a few things that you can turn to either for comfort, or to cheer yourself up, even just for a little while. Trust me, it does help!

Open up to genuine, trustworthy people - This is a really difficult one. I completely understand that some of you may be reading this and you may be thinking "Oh wow, no way am I going to open up to anyone!". I feel like that at times too. But, think of it this way. If you don't open up to at least one person in the world, then how will you ever receive advice, or support? We all need someone sometimes. Even the strongest of soldiers have a breaking point. If there is even one person within your life, who you genuinely can trust, whether it's a parent, a family member, a friend, a helpline, a teacher, a neighbour, or anybody else, please do take advantage of that opportunity.
There are people out there who are willing to help you. Not because they feel sorry for you, not because they have nothing better to do; but, because they genuinely care.
I get the fact that you feel you may be bothering them, but honestly, if they are asking you, it means they're concerned and you shouldn't be afraid to open up. If you don't feel comfortable, then don't feel as though you have to do it, but it's just something that you could consider. Talking always helps me and it helps to see things from another person's perspective, who may not have anything to do with the situation, which will actually benefit you even more. If you feel as though you have nobody to talk to, then you can always talk to me. Please remember that. I will never judge and I will always keep everything 100% confidential, just between the two of us. I will try my best to help too.
Just keep your circle small and be careful with who actually do trust. People can be deceiving. Don't be too much of a fool to the point where you can't see a fake friend from a real one. I genuinely do mean that in the nicest way possible, believe me.


Build up your self-esteem - Low self-esteem can be such a huge issue for so many people, particularly if you're going through your teenage years. It can be so difficult to feel as though you fit in with society and the media can also put a lot of pressure on you. There are so many things which can lower your self-esteem. Relationship break-ups, putting on weight, losing friends, family fall outs - anything can be a reason as to why you have low self-esteem. However, there are ways that you can combat it. Stick positive quotes around your mirror, have a happiness book, or a memory box full of happy things, which you can look at whenever you're feeling low, or unmotivated, or even just surround yourself with those who make you feel like a genuinely loved, appreciated person. I guess it can take quite a lot of time to build up your self-esteem. As time goes on, you become much more able to accept yourself as you are. Your flaws are what make you stand out and instead of thinking that they make you ugly, or worthless, think of them as being your unique attributes. The people that love you will think you're beautiful no matter what and they probably wouldn't even notice the things that you consider to be flaws. You only pick them out, because we, as humans, constantly over-analyse every little detail about ourselves until we find flaws anyway!

Recognise your purpose in life - As I've briefly mentioned before, I believe that we all have a purpose; a reason to be on this Earth, if you will. I'm sure many of you are already aware, but I feel like my purpose is to help other people and help them to find their purpose too. I feel like writing a blog really does allow me to do both of them things. People don't necessarily read my blog purely for advice. They may also read it simply for the enjoyment, or the pleasure that they get out of it. I'm not trying to sound vain when I talk about my blog in this way, but I'm just explaining the different possibilities. I still don't really know myself why people seem to enjoy reading my blog and I've been doing it for almost a year now! Crazy right? I'd like to think I help some people. It really is such a huge compliment when people tell me I have actually done just that and I feel so honoured to be able to touch the lives of many, even if it's just in a small way. For some of you, you may feel that your purpose lies within the performing arts industry, or maybe you're into writing. How about sport? Catering? There are so many different paths you could go down. You just need to recognise where your full potential lies and then you will be able to say that you have recognised your purpose in life. Having a purpose can make you feel like you have a reason to live. I, for one, think that's incredibly important. Even if you haven't found what your reason is, just understand that I love you. I love you and I believe that your purpose is to simply live and enjoy life. Being alive is a gift. Don't take that gift for granted, or wish for things to be any other way. Your place on this Earth is special and the world wouldn't be the same if it didn't have you in it. So please. Don't ever feel like you are a mistake.

I'm going to wrap this post up here, as I feel like it's already super long! I really do hope it's helped some of you. That's why I blog. Not only do I enjoy it and feel as though it's a passion of mine, but I really do just want to help people. I know that life can seem incredibly dark and challenging at times, but I'm here to help you through, so that you can find the light at the end of the tunnel. Whatever you are going through right now, I'm only on the other side of the screen. It may feel like a million miles away, but it isn't, not really. We are all a part of this same 'Simply Jadey' community! We're like one large, happy family. Regardless of what you're going through right now, whether you're being abused at home, bullied, battling with mental illnesses, self-harming, fighting suicidal thoughts, experiencing a break-up, grieving the loss of a loved one, or anything else. I'm here. I'm right here. You're welcome to read my blog whenever you like. I'm sending each of you a huge hug and lots of love, glitter, sparkles and strength. You may feel weak. You may be struggling to stay strong for yourself. So, I will stay strong for all of you too.

You will get through this. Whatever it is. I promise you. I believe in you.
 
Imagine with all your mind. Believe with all your heart. Achieve with all your might
 
Lots of love,
 
Jade x











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Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Teenage Thoughts // Collab

 
Hi everyone! I have another collab for you all today and this time it's with the lovely Bethan from http://bepbeee.blogspot.co.uk/. Although I haven't been speaking to her for that long, she honestly is such a kind girl and her blog is just incredible! I adore reading all of her posts and if I'm honest, she deserves way more followers than she has, so please go and check her out. I'm pretty sure you will love her just as much as I do! Well, almost.
 
We decided that we wanted to do a collab post, but we didn't really know what sort of topic we wanted to cover, until she came up with a really nice idea. She decided that we could do a post on teenager thoughts, where we explain a couple of thoughts or worries that most teenagers typically have and then we could give examples of scenarios from personal experiences that we have had to do with them. She then decided that she didn't really feel as though she wanted to talk about that topic, which I completely understood as a fellow blogger and so instead of that, she is going to do a post about how to make the most of your day instead!
 
Relationships
 
I know, I know. I'm being a typical teenager and I'm talking about relationships. Oh well! I guess that goes to show that literally every single teenager is affected by them in one way or another. It's unfortunate, but that's just the way it is. I'm not even talking about official relationships here. I'm talking about 'crushes', falling in love, broken hearts, rejection AND relationships. Oh yeah. I'm talking about it allll.
 
I don't really think it gets much easier as you get older. I had boy problems when I was 12 years old and I still have them now that I'm 15 years old. Personally, I believe that there's 2 types of girls. There's the ones who are extremely confident, who are always willing to talk to any boy that they find attractive or who alternatively finds them attractive. They seem like the perfect girl to most of us. Do they really get attention off every single boy?
 
Then there's the girls who are like how I used to be. Terrified at the thought of even making eye contact with a boy, let alone approaching them and going out with them. That was literally me all throughout primary school and the first 2 years of high school. There wasn't even a particular reason, but I guess during our teenage years, we feel particularly self-conscious of ourselves, even when half the time, we are amazing just how we are!
Many of us fear that we aren't good enough, whether we're a boy or a girl. It's so important to remember that just because we have certain perceptions of ourselves, it doesn't mean that they are the truth and it doesn't mean that other people agree with us.
 
As I said, I was always one of the quieter girls, who didn't really talk to boys all that much. Not in a romantic way or in any other way really. It can feel incredibly isolating and you can feel like you're one of the only girls who doesn't get any attention or any appreciation from boys your age. You may feel like they don't notice you - but honestly, that isn't the case at all.
 
In February 2014, I met a boy whilst I was in the park with one of my friends. I guess after that first time that I met him, I kinda lost all contact with him until later on that year. We did have a lot of memories together and most of them were incredible. I really did feel that we had a strong relationship. However, as time goes on, unfortunately things change. I'm not saying that change is always a bad thing, but in my situation, it was. I guess you could say he did kind of break my heart. Quite a lot. I really did care about him and I tried my best to be what he wanted. It's just that sometimes, as much as we want to be enough for someone, that just isn't possible. After 2 and a half years of constantly talking to the same person and putting them before pretty much anyone and everything else, you won't be able to just cut them off straight away like they meant nothing. But, I do promise you that it is possible to move on.
 
Over the past few weeks I've had a real reality check and I've realised that it's probably not the most ideal situation to be in and it also really isn't getting me anywhere. This is why I've made the decision to cut him off. I was clinging to him for so long, because I simply didn't want to let go of everything that we had, but over the past few weeks, I've realised that I can't keep going on like this and it's time to let go. To find someone else.
I have been a lot happier these past few weeks - I honestly have. I'm beginning to adapt and during this process, I'm also beginning to learn that I honestly should stop caring so much. It's only been hurting me more and more each time that I thought about it.
 
Don't worry, I do have a point here. I'm not just blabbing on for no reason!
 
The whole point of that explanation was that it's okay. It's all okay. Whether you like someone, whether you're in a relationship, whether you are going through a breakup - it's all okay. Love is complicated and as much as we fantasise over how perfect we wish everything could be, it simply can't always be that way. It can get messy. It can break your heart. It can leave you feeling guilty, ashamed, regretful and devastated. Maybe just one of them. Maybe all of them at the same time over the same person.
I have been cheated on. I have been lied to. I have been used. I have had my feelings played with. I have been messed about continuously. But, I have also been careful. Careful of opening up, careful of trusting people, careful of showing people who I really am deep down. I'm never fake, but I'm just a little less revealing than some.
 
However your situation is in regards to relationships, just remember that it will always work out okay in the end. In 10, 20 years time, you may not even remember your current boyfriend or girlfriend, but that doesn't matter. They were an experience and they came into your life during that moment for a reason. Maybe you grew apart. Maybe you were destined to find someone better.
 
Whatever happens and no matter how things have been for you or how things are for you, just remember that you are strong enough to fight through anything. You will pull through. Don't ever, ever allow anyone to make you feel threatened, forced into things, used, worthless or anything else, which could lead to negative self-destructive consequences.
 
When it comes to relationships, I have actually been through quite a few things that I'm sure that some of you can relate to. I just want to say now that you should be very careful when talking to someone that you haven't met before. Regardless of how old they claim to be, it doesn't always mean that they are telling the truth. There are many kind people in the world, but there are also many nasty people who would do anything within their power to hurt others. I wouldn't suggest that you meet someone if you have only been talking to them for a day or even a week. I just don't feel that it's safe and I would hate to know that any of you had been put in danger. Make sure you properly know a person before agreeing to meet them or agreeing to begin a relationship with them. You can never be too cautious when it comes to your health and your safety. If someone is forcing you into things that make you feel uncomfortable or you begin to feel threatened or targeted by them, then please speak up. You can always contact me, a friend, a teacher, a family member, a helpline - anyone that you can think of. You can't allow anyone to make you feel inferior, no matter if you're just talking, catching feelings or actually together. Be with someone who makes you feel safe, comfortable, content and loved.
 
Whatever situation you are in right now when it comes to relationships, I just want you to know that you will be okay. They can be very difficult and they can cause you to feel a whole variety of different emotions, but everything always works out okay in the end. Take everything with a pinch of salt and treat it as one of many experiences that you will have throughout the teenage years of your life. You are only young once and you shouldn't let anybody, whether they mean something to you romantically or not, ruin that. Always try to remain calm, truthful, respectful and understanding. Do what you think is best.
Whatever is meant to be will be, so try not to overthink too much right now.
If you haven't had a boyfriend or girlfriend yet, then please don't worry or think that this makes you worthless. It doesn't, not at all. You are just as important as those who have had relationships. Your time will come and until then focus on bettering yourself as an individual and making your life the best it possibly can be with those who are currently around you. Some people may be 13, some may be 18 and others may be 25 or older. It does not matter. At all. The same goes for having your first kiss or losing your virginity.
Take your time. Make sure you don't regret any of your decisions and never let anyone force you into anything. No matter how much you think you love them, if they love you, they will respect your choices and wait until you are ready. Please do remember that.
 
GCSE'S
 
Seeing as this post is already quite lengthy (I do like to ramble..), I thought I'd talk about one other thing that's very important to teenagers who may be a little older. In England, every student begins their GCSE's (General Certificate of Secondary Education) when they are around 13-14, usually during the middle to the end of Year 9. When I initially started the process of choosing my options, I genuinely didn't know what I wanted to do. I mean, the 13-14 year old version of yourself is being asked to make fairly large decisions based on your future. That can be incredibly daunting and it can lead you to feel slightly out of your comfort zone, but every teenager has to go through it! After a lot of debating and talking with my mum whilst looking through the booklet of options, I had a rough idea that I wanted to take History, Geography, Business Studies and Health & Social Care. However, after I got told that I couldn't take both History and Geography, therefore meaning that I had to pick another subject, I went into panic mode all over again.
I then decided that I wanted to take Graphic Design instead of History, since I was adamant that I was going to be taking the other 3 no matter what happened. To this day, I believe that I have made the right decision and I think that's so important when picking which GCSE's you would like to be taking for the next 2 and a bit years of your life.
Despite the fact that I had genuinely wanted to take History, as I had a great interest in it, I'm now relieved that it hadn't worked out for me, because I've had much more of an interest and a connection to Graphics instead. That just goes to show that everything truly does happen for a reason, whether you believe it at first or not.
 
Based on personal experience, I think that you should always pick the subjects that you think will help you grow the most and will benefit you the most in the future, even if you don't really know what you want to do and I think you should also pick the ones that you genuinely like and feel that you have an interest is. Take other people's thoughts and opinions into consideration, but never let them drown out your own. If you don't feel passionate towards your options, then there would be no point in you taking them.
Ultimately, I believe that your GCSE'S are the foundation of your education. They are important and they do act as the starting point on the ladder of your future, but they aren't the be all and end all. Ever since you start towards the end of Year 9, the pressure and the fear is there right up until you sit your exams at the end of Year 11. Year 10 and 11 do get progressively harder as time goes on. I know that, because I'm halfway through Year 10 now and I'm already beginning to worry about the end of Year 11 and what the outcome may be. As long as you always try your best, revise as much as you can, ask as many questions as you need to whilst you have the opportunity and take your future into consideration all at the same time, you will be just fine. All of your teachers and the members of staff are there for you and they do care about your education and your future. They will push you, they will nag and they will challenge you, but they will also be there to show you, support you and answer any questions or concerns that you may have.
I will be doing a separate blog post on revision tips & tricks or anything else that you may want to see, but honestly, all you can do is try your very best and push yourself.
 
Never leave homework, coursework or revision to the last minute. Try not to miss too much school, particularly once you have actually started Year 10 & 11. Always, always listen and ask questions. Get everything school related out the way and then reward yourself by going out with your friends or family and having as much fun as you want.
 
I wish you all the very best of luck throughout your educational journey, but I have the utmost faith in every single one of you that you will all do incredibly well.
 
 
Thank you so much for reading this blog post and I really hope it helped some of you! Please make sure to go and check out Bethan's blog post, which is targeted towards anyone who wants to learn how to make the most out of their day. You can also follow her if you wish. I would highly recommend that you do, as she's an incredible, lovely girl, who's a very close friend of mine and if you like my blog, you will most definitely adore hers!
 
*Think positive, because thoughts are like the steering wheel that moves our life in the right direction*
 
Lots of love,
 
Jade x
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Sunday, 20 March 2016

How To Get Clear Skin

 

Hi everyone! I've only talked about skincare once or twice before on my blog and so I thought I'd do another post on it today, seeing as it went down pretty well last time.

When I was a little younger, I was never that interested in skincare. I'd just splash my face with water and that was literally all I'd do for the longest time. I made some goals at the beginning of the year and one of them for me was to get back into skincare, as I was beginning to get a lot more spots and that just led to me feeling really self-conscious.

It may sound really cliché, but honestly, it really does help to look after your skin. Nobody else is going to do it for you, so if you don't do it, you won't feel nearly as good as you will compared to if you do! Trust me, ever since I developed a proper routine, I have felt 1 million times better than I did previously. I understand that it can be quite expensive when you use a certain amount of products religiously, but if you are genuinely using them on a daily basis, then surely you will agree that it's worth the money, right?

As I said, I've already done a blog post before prior to this one, which was about my 'Skincare Saviours', but today I'm going to be sharing with you the products that I've found are currently working to help me with achieving clear skin and I'm also going to be sharing a couple of tips at the end, which have helped me along the way too. Enjoy!
 

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water // £1.99 - The first thing that I'm going to be talking about depends on whether you wear makeup or not. If you don't, then you can just skip to read the next bit! If you do, then it's important to remember that you always remove every last scrap of makeup. It honestly is such an essential, because if you don't, your skin will definitely be left to suffer without a doubt. I don't wear makeup everyday myself, because I prefer to wear it for a special occasion or on a school day if I don't feel myself for whatever reason and then it allows me to perk my face up, so I can give it a little more colour and definition. When I've got home, I always get a cotton wool pad and I just squeeze some of this cleansing water onto it, then I just remove my makeup from all over my face - all over my eyes, lips, everywhere. I have actually done a separate review on this product, so you can go and check that out if you want to find out a little more detail to decide whether you want to buy it for yourself or not. It's ever so gentle on the skin, easy to use and it doesn't involve any fuss either! You can find it from any supermarket or beauty supply store, such as Boots or Superdrug. It also comes in a 400ml bottle for £4.99, but it's on offer at the moment in Boots for £3.33!

 

No7 Beautiful Skin Foaming Cleanser // £9.50 - Since receiving this cleanser at Christmas, I have quite literally been absolutely obsessed with it. I usually squirt a few pumps into the palm of my hand and then I apply it all over my face. After I've done that, I wet the head of my No7 Beautiful Skin Cleansing Brush (you can buy new heads separate from the brush for £8, but the brush itself is £24.95 and it comes with a head initially), and then I just move it in circular motions around my face, focusing on my cheeks, forehead and chin, as those are typically the areas where I get the most breakouts. As the name suggests, this cleanser foams up incredibly easily and it has a really refreshing scent as well, which is always a bonus! I do have normal/combination skin and this product is recommended for normal/oily skin, so I think it's perfect for my skin type. Having said that, No7 do cater towards all skin types and that's what I love about this brand, as there is literally something for everyone, even though they can be quite expensive sometimes.


Lush Ultrabland Facial Cleanser // £7.50 - If I don't use the No7 Facial Cleanser, then I will use this one from Lush. I know you may think that it's ridiculously overpriced for what it is, because quite honestly, that's what I thought when I first bought it too. I've only tried it a couple of times, but that's because initially, I had mixed feelings about it. 2 of the main ingredients are actually beeswax and honey, which are clearly quite oily, thick and creamy, so when I first applied it to my face, I honestly wasn't too sure what I thought. It has a very solid texture when on the skin, but I usually just rub it in as well as I can. Your hands and fingers will feel very greasy and it can be quite unpleasant, but it doesn't really bother me all that much, as I know it's somewhat beneficial. I think it can be useful to have both a cleanser that you use on a daily basis and also one that's a little richer, which you can use more sparingly, because it's nice to switch things up sometimes and our skin deserves a treat every once in a while, don't you think? This is definitely 'a rich, soft oily cleansing cream', as it suggests on the packaging, but it's also relaxing and soothing, so I think that you should give it a go and see what you think about it.


 Lush BB Seaweed Fresh Face Mask // £6.75 - This product from Lush is literally my favourite face mask. I've tried the Mask of Magnaminty before, which comes in a slightly bigger tub, which I also love, but this seaweed one is just insane. It smells super refreshing, it calms and soothes any imperfections that you may have on your skin, it leaves it feeling rejuvenated, revitalised and as smooth as a baby. Although, yet again, it's quite expensive considering the size of it, a little really does go a long way. If any of you are fans of YouTube, then you may know that Tanya Burr has actually spoken highly about this product before, hence why I was so tempted to delve in and get it! I'd suggest that you try using a face mask either once a week or once every few weeks, depending on how often you get stressed out or feel the need to have a pamper evening!



Eau Roma Toner Water // £8.50 - I've had this toner now for a little over 11 months and it's lasted me ever since I purchased it way back then. I went through a stage where I wouldn't really gravitate towards it, but now I actually use it quite a lot, even though I've already repurchased the 'Breath Of Fresh Air' toning water. Once I've gotten out the bath or shower, I'll get a cotton wool pad and squirt a few pumps of this spray onto it, then I'll just gently massage it all over my face, particularly my t zone, as that's where teenagers can find that their skin is the most oily and prone to breakouts. I've mentioned this product to some of my friends a couple of times before, but they don't really know what a toner is used for. For those of you who may not know, I usually use this once I've cleansed my face as a way to remove any excess dirt, oil or makeup and just to refresh and lightly condition my skin before I moisturise it. It's not an essential, but I do think it's necessary to my skincare routine in particular, as it's always nice to revitalise your skin!
 
 
 
Lush Grease Lightning Spot Treatment // £6.50 - Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think that most teenagers get the occasional spot, if not, a few every couple of days. I used to be quite spotty actually, but I never knew what to do about it and so I'd either try to hide them or just wait until they went away naturally, which sometimes took a while! If you do suffer with spots, then you could try using a spot treatment like this one from Lush. It has tea tree and witch hazel in it, which can be an effective way of trying to zap those pesky blemishes elsewhere. All you have to do is either dab this on when you feel a spot appearing or if you already have some and then within a few days, it should be gone!


Dermatologica Skin Smoothing Cream // £47.70 - Similarly to the Garnier cleansing water, I have actually spoken about this product numerous times on my blog before. This is probably the only moisturiser that my skin has actually got on with since I switched from my Garnier Moisture Matte one. I suppose you could say that's a cheaper alternative for if you have only skin, but yet again, they also have a variety of different kinds depending on your skin type and they are a fraction of this price, so you can go and check out Garnier if you're looking for something more affordable! Anyway, I really do love this moisturiser. It isn't too thick, it just sinks into the skin really easily, it gets rid of any flakiness or dry patches and it smells really refreshing too. A little goes a long way as well, but I do think if you're going to invest, then you should definitely invest in Dermatologica skincare, particularly this moisturiser, as it's a specialist skincare product and they really do know what they are talking about.

Thank you so much for reading today's post. I'm sorry it's quite long yet again, but we all know I do like to ramble to make sure I'm giving you enough of an insight into each product. Let me know if you have tried or are going to try out anything that I've mentioned!

Lots of love,

Jade x
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Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Working The Denim











 
 
Jeans // Topshop
Converse // Office
Denim Shirt // New Look
T-Shirt // H&M
Necklace / New Look
Bag / Topshop
 
I thought I'd do another outfit post today, seeing as it's now getting into the spring weather. Well, if you lived in the UK, you probably wouldn't agree with me at the moment, but we can still hold onto hope that it will only get warmer as the months go by, right? I do hope to put up an outfit post at least once a month, but that all depends on the weather, seeing as I like to take my photo's in the garden and it depends on my motivation to get myself out of comfy clothes. I do actually have another one planned for next month, which is going to be 2 outfits in a sort of mini lookbook, so you can keep your eyes peeled for that if you wish!
 
For today's outfit, I thought that I would still keep it quite casual, but I tried to add a sort of springtime vibe to it all by wearing a light, oversized denim blouse and a floral necklace. I know they aren't huge statement pieces that scream spring and warm weather, but I felt that they included a little symbolism for me and I really liked the way it came out. Naturally, the staple piece is the blouse, hence the title of the post. I feel like a blouse can really add a lot of character to an outfit. During the winter months, you can layer it up by including jackets, scarves and cardigans, but during these nicer months, where people tend to start venturing outside a little more, you can keep it really simple, yet girlie by stacking jewellery, throwing them over dresses or playsuits and by tying them round your waist if it's a slightly cooler day when you're wearing jeans and a top, but you still want to look kinda edgy. I also think that the pale blue colour is perfect for this time of year and it really stands out in contrast to the darker shades on the bottom half of my outfit.
 
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this post and hopefully there will be more regular outfit posts coming your way very soon!
 
Lots of love,
 
Jade x

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Sunday, 13 March 2016

Classic Chocolate Brownies

(picture is not my own - it was taken off Google Images!)

Everyone loves brownies, don't they? Well, I know I do anyway. I actually took a day off school recently, as I wasn't quite feeling myself and I decided that I just needed the break away from all of the general hustle and bustle. Even though I had a lay in and I didn't actually think I was going to do anything apart from lazing around (I mean, doing anything else would be kinda like committing a crime, seeing as I did take the day off..), I decided later on that I would do a little bit of baking.
 
We all have things that we like to do in order to relax and unwind - am I right? For me, I find that reading, listening to music, blogging and baking are some of my personal favourites. Life can get far too hectic at times and I think that it's essential that we take a step back, regardless of our commitments and just allow ourselves to chill out.
 
If ever you feel stressed out or everything seems to be getting a little too much, whether it's school, work or matters that may seem a bit more personal, baking is an extremely therapeutic way to zone out and forget about all those pesky problems for a short amount of time whilst you're in the kitchen, creating sweet treats to enjoy.
 
Whilst browsing the web looking for the ultimately classic brownie recipe, I came across one on the Cadbury website. Although I was faced with many choices, I felt that this was the one which appealed the most to me and so that's literally what I went for!
 
I didn't actually stick to the recipe or the ingredients entirely, so I'm going to be sharing with you exactly what I did which worked for me, but then I'm also going to give you the link so that you can go on over and follow the original one if you wish to do so!
The Ingredients That I Used To Create 16 Brownies Were:
 
  • 175g unsalted butter
  • 3 medium sized eggs
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 75g plain flour
  • 200 grams of dark & milk chocolate
  • 40g cocoa powder
 
Next up is the method, which honestly is so simple you wouldn't believe!
 
1. Preheat the oven to 180 ⁰C, gas mark 4. If you're like me and you get confused at the whole gas mark part, then just put your oven to 180⁰C or ask someone for some help.
You then went to grease the base and sides of either a cake tin or a baking tray. I just used any baking tray that I could find, which I had previously used to line with cupcake cases a while back, but anything similar to that will do. I didn't have any baking parchment, so I just greased the baking tray with the unsalted butter that I had.
 
2. Get out an average sized bowl and a pan. Fill the pain either a quarter or halfway with water. Place the chocolate and butter into the bowl over the pan of water and wait for the ingredients to melt once it has began to simmer. I think you can also just place the bowl in the microwave for a short amount of time, which may be quicker, but it's totally up to you - stick to your personal preference, as I did both, so whatever works!
 
3. Whisk the eggs and sugar until thick and creamy. I cracked all 3 of my eggs into a mixing jug and then I beat them with a fork. I then measured out the sugar and poured it into the mixing jug on top of the eggs. Once the mixture seems reasonably thick, then you want to pour it on top of the bowl with the chocolate mixture in it and begin to fold the whole lot together. If you don't know what it means to fold ingredients in, then I would suggest you Google it or search up clips on YouTube, which will show you how!
 
4. Sift in the flour and the cocoa. I began this step by measuring out the flour, getting a sieve and just lightly patting the edge, so that the flour was added into the mixture in small amounts and I then did the same with the cocoa. After both the flour and the cocoa have been sifted in, then you can mix everything together thoroughly.
 
5. Once I'd been mixing it all together for a couple of minutes, ensuring there were no lumps or any residue around the sides of the bowl, I then began pouring it all into the baking tin, which I had prepared previously, making sure that it went right to the corners. I did this accurately by tipping the bowl up and getting a spoon to just push the mixture out into the tin and I then spread it further with the spoon so that it was evenly distributed into each corner. After that, you can leave it to bake for 25-30 minutes. I'd recommend leaving it for 30, as that's what I did and they came out perfectly.
 
6. Check on the brownies to make sure they are done after the recommended amount of time is up. They should be crusty at the top with a little bit of a wobble underneath. The aim is that they are crunchy when you first bit into them, but then they become gooey towards the centre, as that's essentially what a brownie is. They should be left to cool completely for a further 15-20 minutes, depending and then cut into squares.
Enjoy!
 
If you do try to recreate this recipe at home, then please feel free to send me in some pictures! You can tweet me @jademillardx or you can tag me on Instagram @jademillard_ too.
 
I hope you liked this post, as it was something a little different to what I normally do, but now you have seen a different side to me, which you may not have realised existed before. My brownies actually came out exactly like the picture above, hence why I used it and as I said, this mixture creates 16 in total. Now, go and get baking!
 
Lots of love,
 
Jade x
 
 
 

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Wednesday, 9 March 2016

You Should Go And Love Yourself

 
Hi everyone! I hope you have all had a really positive week so far. Apologies for not posting on Sunday. I'm not even going to say that I have an excuse, because I honestly don't, but some days I get so wrapped up in day to day living that I just don't have the time or the motivation to post. I'm sure most of you will understand and you probably think I don't even have to apologise for it, but I still want to anyway! Although I do have a schedule that I try to stick to for the most part, there will be days where I don't post and sometimes I may not even explain it. There may not be a reason, like there wasn't this time, but I will always come back sooner or later. It's just that I'm in Year 10 at school and I do have a lot of work, as well as a social life, so as much as I absolutely adore blogging and interacting with all of my followers, it can take a backseat unintentionally at times.
 
I thought I'd do another advice post today. I did actually have a schedule for the entire month, where I knew everything that I wanted to do and what days I wanted to post what, but unfortunately, I'm not as prepared as I would have liked to be. I will still be doing all of the posts, just on different days and at different times now! Once again, I do apologise, but these things happen and that's just the way it is sometimes.
 
How many of you can honestly hold your hand up and say that you love yourself, inside and out? I know I can't! Within our society, most people actually feel insecure about one thing or another. Maybe even more than a few. Some people may feel insecure about near enough everything, whereas others may not feel insecure about much at all. It all depends on how we are as individuals. No two people are exactly the same and if I'm honest, I don't think it would be any fun that way!
As cliché as this may sound, we were all born to be an original, not a copy. We all have different talents, different fears, different hobbies, different personalities and of course, different appearances. If we were all completely identical, there would be nothing to love.
 
Although we may feel like we have flaws, or we may feel that we aren't as worthy as our best friend is, those thoughts are completely irrelevant. Everybody has flaws. Everybody has things about both their personality and their appearance that they wish they could change or that they wish they didn't have, but their brother or their neighbour may wish that they could have the option to swap, even for a day.
People constantly say that nobody will love you unless you love yourself first. I think that's true to a certain extent, but I also disagree with it too. Other people will always love you, whether you are aware of it or not. They may not always say it, they may not always show it - but the love is always there deep down. There will always be people who care about you as well. Most times, when you're really down or when you feel really lost, as if you have no-where to turn, you will find someone, somehow. You can doubt it as much as you want, but there is usually always someone willing to offer a helping hand.
 
However, you also need to learn how to love yourself (I'm trying so hard to refrain myself from typing out all of the Justin Bieber lyrics right now). Whilst having a conversation with somebody close to me yesterday, I realised that I need to learn how to love myself as well, so with this post in particular, I really should be practising what I preach! People may not always be available to support you whenever you need them. After a while, you may feel so attached to them that you may just expect them to always be there. Then, one time they won't be and you will fall apart and begin to question everything. That's why you need to become independent and love yourself first. You need to have your own back. People in this world are evil and sometimes even your best friend may turn on you when you least expect it. Look after yourself, your mind and your body. Learn and experience new things. Take time out to relax. Eat and drink properly. Exercise and keep active. Remove yourself from negative people. Compliment yourself and accept the love that others give you. You should focus on you, always and then put others after that. Regardless of how important they are to you. Just do YOU. Always.
 
Lots of love,
 
Jade x
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Wednesday, 2 March 2016

'Cause Now I'm 15

 
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!!
 
I can't quite believe that I'm turning 15 years old today. It's absolutely crazy. I mean, I'm definitely getting older now and I don't know whether to be jumping for joy or crying over the fact that I'm having to say goodbye to my childhood as each day goes on.
 
To celebrate this very special day, I thought I'd compile together a list of things that I have learnt throughout my 15 years of life so far. It's always a lovely idea to have a little reflection and to appreciate all of the incredible things that have happened to you up until now.
 
A lot has happened since I turned 14 last year and so I thought if I don't make this post now, then when in the world will I make it? I'm going to be talking about things that I've done and things that I've learnt throughout this past year and hopefully it will help some of you or make you smile, even a teeny bit.
 
Life Lessons I've Learnt:
1. Always remember the younger version of yourself - This may sound like a strange point to start with, but it honestly is so relevant. Sometimes, we can be so hard on ourselves, even when it's completely unnecessary. If you always think of yourself as a little girl or a little boy, then it will remind you not to be quite so harsh. That younger version of yourself is counting on the current you to protect him or her. If you harm yourself or you neglect your body, then the younger you will grow up to be damaged, depressed or they may not even grow up at all. It's so important to protect your body and look after it, because after all, you do only get one shot at life, so make it count and live with no regrets.
 
2. Following on from that previous point, remember that the best project you will ever work on is yourself - Whenever I feel particularly low or unmotivated, I tend to think back to this quote. You are an individual project that is different to any other. You have to work on yourself, motivate yourself, encourage yourself, challenge yourself and teach yourself to create the best project possible in order for you to become a masterpiece in other people's eyes. If you create yourself to the best of your ability, then you are much more likely to have a positive, successful life with far less down days in comparison to a person who has no motivation and no passion. You should always remind yourself of your goals and your ambitions, so that you are constantly inspired to keep ploughing forward.
 
3. Notice those who are happy for your happiness and sad for your sadness, as those are the ones that deserve special places in your heart - If there are people in your life who genuinely do appreciate you and who are happy when you are happy and sad when you are sad, then you really do need to treasure them, as they are some of the angels within this world. They congratulate you on your successes and bring you back up if you have fallen down due to obstacles that may be in your way. You should never take them for granted. You should never, ever go even a day without showing them that they are appreciated. If you surround yourself with the right type of people and realise your own worth, then you will soon understand that you are capable of anything that you put your mind to. Don't ever let anyone dull your sparkle. You should follow your dreams, but still keep your loved ones close and forget about anybody else who may act as a barrier.
 
4. Stay strong for yourself and if you have it in you, find the strength to stay strong for someone else - This is a little quote from Demi Lovato's book 'Staying Strong', which I actually have myself and I bloody love it. Although I haven't actually read much of the book as yet (I've just glanced through it), I absolutely adore this quote and I can actually relate to it too. If you don't stay strong for yourself, then the reality of it is, nobody else will either. You have to stay strong for yourself and you have to have your own back. The sad truth is that not many people are actually genuine nowadays. Some are so selfish and they genuinely do only care about themselves - but that's okay. You don't need to associate yourself with them. You can focus on yourself and stay strong for yourself and if you can find it from within, then you will be able to stay strong for someone else too if they are unable to do so themselves. I think that's a true gift and it's something that I try to do as well. That's why I write my blog. I want to pass my strength onto those who don't have enough of their own or if they don't know how to gain any for themselves. Then, once I have managed to give them the strength that they need, they can carry on leading a happy life.
 
5. Every flower must grow through dirt - We all go through tough times and difficulties during our lives. I'm sure that all of you have had your fair share of heartbreaks, just like myself. The past few years in general haven't been that easy for me. I've had to deal with a lot (no, that's not a cry for sympathy), and although it has and does hurt like mad, thinking about everything that's gone on, I am and I will be okay. I have been pushing through the dirt for years and I do believe that I'm blossoming into a flower now. It hasn't been easy at all and I have needed a lot of motivation and strength, because it hasn't been pretty, but I've got through 100% of all the battles I've faced so far, which just goes to show that, really, I can get through anything else too. All of the terrible things have made me stronger and now I'm finally beginning to find myself. I know what my purpose is, I know who a couple of my true friends are, I have hobbies and interests and I know what I want to do with my life. Just because I'm still struggling myself with certain things, it doesn't mean that I'm unable to help others and offer my support. Knowing that I'm helping others is also helping me, because I know that I'm fulfilling my dreams and that makes me so happy. No matter what you're going through, no matter how low you may feel - I can promise you that there is always hope and there is always a reason to carry on.
 
Some Of My Biggest Achievements:
 
1. Starting a blog - I genuinely believe that one of my proudest achievements within my life so far is starting up my blog. I started it on April 5th 2015 and I honestly couldn't be any happier with how far I've come. I may not have the most followers, I may not get thousands of messages and comments, but I get a huge amount of satisfaction from it and I don't regret the choice to start at all. Knowing that I got the chance to begin living my dreams at such a young age has made me the happiest person in the world. I absolutely love helping and giving to other people and my blog allows me to do that. I do get messages and I do get comments and I do get lovely, heart-warming feedback from other young people, who say that I've helped them or I've made them feel better. That is such a privilege to me and I couldn't be more grateful to all of you who read my blog. Thank you all so much for being so wonderful and so supportive. I really do love each and every single one of you with all of my heart and I shall continue writing my blog until I'm old and grey. That's a promise.
 
2. Pushing myself out of my comfort zone - I feel like whilst I've been 14, I really have pushed myself out of my comfort zone as much as I possibly could. Well, maybe not that extreme, but I have pushed myself a lot. I've finally realised that life really is too short to say no to fantastic opportunities. Sometimes, you may only get the chance to do something once throughout your entire life. What happens if you turn that down and you later realise that it could have changed everything for you? Wouldn't that be such a shame? I've been up to London with one of my best friends, I've been to a youth club, I've been to large shopping centres, I've been to the cinema, I've been to sleepovers, I've been on holiday, I've met some many new people - I've done A LOT that I thought would never be possible. And I'm so, so proud of myself for that. I shall continue throughout this year too, but honestly, it does you the world of good once you step out of your comfort zone.
 
3. Talking to & meeting new people - Following on from my previous point, I've started speaking to a lot more people and I've also started meeting them in person as well. I used to be quite a shy, reserved sort of person, but now I'm willing to give strangers a chance and I'm happy to get to know them and see whether or not a possible friendship could grow. It's so important to mix with and get to know new people, because they could end up being some of your bestest friends. It's great if you can talk to others, who are from various different backgrounds with varying beliefs in comparison to you. I think it makes life so much more exciting!
 
4. Spending more time with those I love and care about - In the past, I haven't always spent as much time with my loved ones as I know I should do. I have often taken them for granted and neglected them, which was quite selfish of me and I feel quite ashamed to admit that, but it's the truth. You never know when your loved ones may pass away or fall ill, so it's important that you make the most of them today. Don't just say you will 'leave it until tomorrow', because what if tomorrow never comes? After all, it isn't guaranteed, not really. So, pick up the phone, get out of bed and appreciate those who do everything for you. Don't let it become too late. Don't lose people without appreciating them before their time is up.
 
5. Receiving incredible grades within subjects at school - I always try my best at school. I always have done and I always will too. I hope to go to university and I hope to get a really well paid job, so that I'm able to achieve all my dreams and live my life the way I want to live it. I'm currently in my first year of GCSE'S and so I've been pushing myself with coursework, homework and exams within school to make sure that I do the best that I can. Whenever I get good results, I always feel so proud of myself. It's not particularly easy, but if you push yourself, you really can do anything. Dream. Believe. Achieve.
 
 
Here's to another year of fun, happiness, laughter and success!
 
Lots of love,
 
Jade x

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