Turtles all the way down by John Green – book review

Synopsis

Sixteen–year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Picket, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.

Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts.

Overall Plot

In the beginning of Turtles all the way down, Aza is struggling with her intrusive thoughts and OCD. When an opportunity arises for the girls to possibly become rich, Aza and her best friend Daisy decide to investigate the disappearance of a billionaire.

Aza has regular therapy sessions and tries to come to terms with her thoughts and to stop constantly cleaning the Band-Aid on her finger with the help of Dr. Karen Singh. Her friend Daisy is a massive Star Wars fan and writes on a fan site. She’s actually pretty famous. Aza also meets an old friend while investigating Pickett’s disappearance.

Review

I absolutely loved this book! I’ve already read quite a few of John Green’s books and he has gradually become one of my favourite authors. I could relate to Aza quite a lot especially when she was talking about the thoughts in her head. “like invasive weeds, these thoughts seem to arrive at my biosphere from some faraway land, and then they spread out of control.”

Aza’s friend Daisy is a character I would love to have met in real life. She’s obsessed with Star Wars but even though she sometimes finds Aza annoying, she loves her a lot and supports her.

I like how Green talked more about the girl’s friendship and about Aza learning to deal with her OCD rather than focusing entirely on romance. I also liked Davis’s blog entries as it was an insight into Davis’s own thoughts and was a nice addition to the novel.

Conclusion

A really well written, enjoyable novel featuring a character whom many can relate to with OCD. Would recommend.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

This is the first book as part of the Mentalhealth-athon which covers the OCD rep.

Eurovision Song Contest 2019

The Eurovision Song Contest 2019 is now upon us. This year’s competition will be set in Israel after last year’s winner Netta won over the public with her song TOY. Madonna will be performing in the song contest this year.

The Beginning of the Eurovision Song Contest

The Eurovision began in 1956 making it the longest-running annual international television contest. The Eurovision previously only included songs from European countries but Australia joined the competition in 2015.

Ireland have won the competition a total of seven times since the competition first aired. The international song contest is broadcast in several countries including America and China. It is also available to watch live on the Eurovision website.

Voting in the Eurovision

Each participating country picks a song to represent their country. Six countries are automatically pre-qualified for the Grand Final while the remaining countries perform in one of the two semi-finals. After all of the acts have performed, each country gives a set of points for example: 5 points to a particular country and 12 points to a different country.

Viewers can’t vote for their own country. Lastly, viewers points from all participating countries will be added up at the end and the winner of the competition is picked.

My Favourites

Here are my favourite songs from this year’s competition:

Switzerland: Luca Hänni – She Got Me

Italy: Mahmood – Soldi

Hungary: Joci Pápai – Az én apám

Spain: Miki – La Venda

The Netherlands: Duncan Laurence – Arcade

Slovenia: Zala Kralj & Gašper Šantl – Sebi

Belgium: Eliot – Wake Up

Cyprus: Tamta – Replay

Estonia: Victor Crone – Storm

Ireland: Sarah McTernan – 22 ☘️

What are your favourite songs from this year’s competition? Let me know in the comments x

My Favourite Met Gala 2019 Looks

What is the Met Gala?

The Met Gala is an annual fundraising gala with a different theme chosen each year. All money fundraised goes to the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in New York City. It was established in 1948 and has become one of the biggest fashion events of the year.

Met Gala 2019

This year’s Met Gala took place on the 6th May. The theme was Camp:Notes on Fashion. Invited guests wore their “campiest” looks.

Fashion

So to get to the main part of this post, here are my favourite fashion pieces from this year’s Met Gala…

No Copyright Infringement Intended. All rights go to respective owners. This post is for entertainment purposes only and all images have not been edited in any way.

Lady Gaga

Nicki Minaj

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 06: Nicki Minaj attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 06, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for THR)
https://www.redcarpet-fashionawards.com/2019/05/08/2019-met-gala-the-major-ones-we-missed/

Gemma Chan

Miley Cyrus

Saoirse Ronan

Regina Hall

Deepika Padukone

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 06: Deepika Padukone attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 06, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)
http://time.com/5580692/deepika-padukone-at-met-gala-2019/

Dakota Johnson

Dua Lipa

Zendaya

Mindy Kaling

https://hellogiggles.com/news/celebs-who-went-blonde-unrecognizable-met-gala-2019/

Rita Ora

Mandatory Credit: Photo by David Fisher/REX/Shutterstock (10225566im) Rita Ora Costume Institute Benefit celebrating the opening of Camp: Notes on Fashion, Arrivals, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA – 06 May 2019 Wearing Marc Jacobs
https://extra.ie/2019/05/07/entertainment/celebrity/rita-ora-dances-nude

Kate Moss

Gisele Bundchen

Taylor Hill

Idris Elba and Sabrina Dhowre

Elle Fanning

Solange Knowles

Met Gala 2019 Best dressed red carpets Outfits menswear womenswear best dressed Travis Scott Jared Leto Halsey Frank Ocean Awkwafina French Montana Solange Knowles Gwen Stefani Cardi B Harry Styles Alessandro Michele Florence Welch Anderson Paak Katy Perry Nicki Minaj Lady Gaga Kanye West Kim Kardashian Serena Williams Gigi Hadid Bella Hadid Michael B Jordan Emily Ratjakowski Benedict Cumberbatch Tommy Hilfiger Tom Ford Ezra Miller Winnie Harlow Pyer Moss Jeremy Scott Kylie Jenner Kendall Jenner Tessa Thompson Janelle Monae Donatella Versace Zendaya Dapper Dan Anna Wintour Naomi Campbell
https://hypebeast.com/2019/5/met-gala-2019-best-outfits

Kacey Musgraves

Sorry for the length of this post but there were so many looks I liked, I just had to include them all.

I hope you guys liked this post and thanks for reading x

Let’s talk about phobias …

According to Wikipedia, A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder, defined by a persistent and excessive fear of an object or situation. There are various types of phobias some of which we have heard about from books, TV etc. and others, not so much. In this list I will be discussing the symptoms, causes and treatment of 10 different phobias.

Mysophobia

The most common phobia in the world is Mysophobia – A fear of germs.

Symptoms: washing hands obsessively, avoiding crowds, nausea

Causes: genetics, as a result of anxiety

Treatment: medication, psychotherapy, exposure therapy

Agoraphobia

Fear of open spaces

Symptoms: Unable to leave the house, excessive sweating, dizziness, feeling shaky

Causes: depression, other phobias (claustrophobia), have had one or more panic attacks

Treatment: antidepressants

Claustrophobia

extreme or irrational fear of confined places

Symptoms: sweating, nausea, feel like you’re having a panic attack

Causes: dysfunction of the amygdala (part of the brain that controls how we process fear), as a result of a traumatic event such as being stuck in an elevator

Treatment: desensitisation/self-exposure therapy

Acrophobia

-Fear of heights

Symptoms: dizziness, heart palpitations, sweating

Causes: thinking you might fall or be injured, as a result of a traumatic experience

Treatment: Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT)

Arachnophobia

-fear of spiders

Symptoms: overwhelming fear of spiders, intense anxiety, panic attacks

Causes: a result of evolutionary selection (we associate spiders with infections and disease)

Treatment: Counselling, CBT, medication

Coulrophobia

-Fear of clowns

Symptoms: nausea, anger, fast heartbeat

Causes: brain function, genetics,

Treatment: CBT

Nyctophobia

-fear of the dark

Symptoms: racing heart rate, chest tightness, light-headedness

Causes: fear of what the darkness masks

Treatment: desensitization, anti-anxiety medication, therapy

Cynophobia

-Fear of dogs

Symptoms: increased heart rate, nausea, shortness of breath

Causes: may have been bitten by a dog in the past,

Treatment: Psychotherapy

Apiphobia

-The fear of bees

Symptoms: breathlessness, sweating, detachment from reality

Causes: Have been stung by a bee in the past or have seen someone else get stung

Treatment: CBT, understanding facts about bees may help in overcoming the fear of them

Telephonophobia

-Fear of talking on the phone

Symptoms: Feeling terror, dry mouth, nausea

Causes: many factors such as negative experience, electromagnetic fields, or OCD

Treatment: Directly confront the fear/talk to a therapist

There are hundreds of more phobias all of which I can’t possibly list on this post – If you would like to learn more about other phobias check out this top 100 phobias list.

Thanks for reading x

Mentalhealth-athon

About Mentalhealth – athon

Mentalhealth-athon is a mental health based readathon hosted by @beaut1fulchaos_ and co-hosted by @chaptercviii and @__rachael_marie. Each participant is shown a bingo board featuring 15 mental health prompts. The goal is to read and become aware of various different mental health illnesses by reading about characters with these illnesses. If you’d like to know more about mentalhealth-athon, check out Nicole’s YouTube video which explains everything you need to know.

Here is the mentalhealth – athon bingo board:

Note: I am a HSP (highly sensitive person) which means I can’t watch or read about violent or triggering events in films or books. Due to this, I have skipped 3 prompts, group book, eating disorder rep and PTSD rep.

And these are the books I plan on reading:

All book covers are from https://www.goodreads.com/

Own voices – Under rose-tainted skies by Louise Gornall
Non-fiction – Owning it by Caroline Foran
Anxiety rep – Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Schizophrenia rep – Everything here is beautiful – Mira.T.Lee
OCD rep – Turtles all the way down – John Green
Intersectional rep – Darius the great is not okay by Adib Khorram
Bipolar rep – An unquiet mind – Kay Redfield Jamison
Hosts pick – Marbles by Ellen Forney
Personality disorder rep – The Mortal Instruments(Book 1) by Cassandra Clare
Phobias rep – Liar and spy by Rebecca Stead
Other – Quiet: The power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking by Susan Cain
Depression rep – The silver linings playbook by Matthew Quick

Other bloggers taking part in mentalhealth-athon!

Are you taking part in mentalhealth-athon? Comment below x

I hope you all liked this post and thanks for reading x

Similar posts:
http://lifeisanadventure.ie/2019/05/03/mental-health-awareness-month/

Mental Health Awareness Month

Happy Friday! Today we’ll be talking about Mental Health Awareness Month.

Where did it all begin?

Mental Health Awareness Month was started in the United States in 1949 by the Mental Health America organization which was then known as the (National Association for Mental Health).

What is the purpose of MH Awareness Month?

It’s purpose is to raise awareness and educate the public about: mental illnesses, such as depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder; the realities of living with these conditions and strategies for coping with these illnesses.

The green ribbon represents mental health awareness. The hashtag #breakthestigma is commonly used across social media during mental health month.

2019 Theme

2019’s theme for MHAM is explained in a statement by MHA :“we are expanding upon last year’s theme of #4Mind4Body and taking it to the next level, as we explore the topics of animal companionship (including pets and support animals), spirituality, humor, work-life balance, and recreation and social connections as ways to boost mental health and general wellness”.

This will be Mental Health America’s 70th year celebrating Mental Health Month! Themes in the last few years included mental illness feels like, risky business and fitness #mind4body.

Why it’s important to spread awareness about mental health during MHAM

Mental health advocates are constantly bringing awareness to mental health all year round but during mental health awareness month , it is a chance for everyone to join together to try and break the stigma of mental health.

The Greatcoat by Helen Dunmore – book review

Synopsis

It is the winter of 1952, and Isabel Carey is struggling to adjust to the realities of married life in Yorkshire. Isolated and lonely, she is also intensely cold. And her husband – a doctor – is rarely home.

And then one night she discovers an old RAF greatcoat in the back of the cupboard. She puts it on her bed for warmth – and is startled by a knock at her window.

Outside is a young man. A pilot. And he wants to come in…

Overall plot

Isabel is a newlywed married to a doctor who is rarely home. Since moving to Yorkshire, Isabel spends much of her time alone. The flat is very cold and her landlord upstairs keeps walking around in the middle of the night. She finds a greatcoat in the wardrobe and throws it on the bed to keep her warm. While her husband is on a night shift, Isabel is startled by a knock at her window and discovers a young pilot outside the window, mouthing her name.

Review

Ugh this book had so much potential! I was so looking forward to reading this after reading the synopsis. It sounded like a classic ghost story to keep you on your toes. Instead, it was a great disappointment.

First of all, The Greatcoat reminds me of The Woman in Black: Angel of Death. The lonely woman, the creepy house, a ghost etc. There were various similarities between the two and I’m not surprised because the sequel to The Woman in Black was also published by Hammer.

The only way I can describe this book is this: You know when you see a video on Youtube and you click on it and then you realise it was clickbait? That’s what this book was like.

However, I was intrigued and was enjoying the storyline up until chapter 6. It was fast-paced and spooky but the book sadly turned from a ghost story into a romance novel which may I remind you is in no way mentioned in the synopsis.

Conclusion

I really thought this one had a lot of potential if only the plot stayed on track after chapter 6. Up until then it was quite a good novel.

Rating: ⭐⭐

The Greatcoat is the second book from my Charity Shop book haul

How to add the Goodreads grid widget to your WordPress site (Tutorial)

Log in to your WordPress account and your Goodreads account

Go to your wordpress dashboard

Click customise

Click widgets

Click where you would like to place the grid widget. (I chose Blog Sidebar)

Click add a widget

Click custom HTML

Leave this page open and go to Goodreads

Click profile then click edit profile (next to your profile picture)

Click widgets

Scroll down until you see grid widget

There’s a little box saying Copy/paste this HTML into your Web site. Copy the code.

Go back to WordPress and copy the code into the content box

Click done and publish

Educated by Tara Westover – book review

Synopsis

Tara Westover and her family grew up preparing for the End of Days but, according to the government, she didn’t exist. She hadn’t been registered for a birth certificate. She had no school records because she’d never set foot in a classroom, and no medical records because her father didn’t believe in hospitals.

As she grew older, her father became more radical and her brother more violent. At sixteen, Tara knew she had to leave home. In doing so she discovered both the transformative power of education, and the price she had to pay for it.

Overall Plot

Educated is broken up into three parts. Part 1 consists of Tara’s mother becoming a midwife. We are introduced to Tara’s family, her mother Faye( a herbalist), her father Gene( a devout Mormon), and her six siblings , Tony, Shawn, Tyler, Luke, Audrey and Richard.

The Westover’s didn’t use medication. When a member of the family were sick, only a mix of herbs was used to treat the illness. The women had to dress modest and most of the time everything was “God’s will” according to her father. 4/7 children ( Luke, Audrey, Richard and Tara) never attended school and had no birth certificate.

In Part two, Tara passes her exams and despite her father’s disapproval, she attends college where she finds it very difficult to fit in as a Mormon.

Part three is the final part of the book. Tara suffers from night terrors, an intervention is organised for her brother Shawn and Tara attends Trinity College.

Review

Educated is a wonderful memoir exploring the life of a young girl growing up in a Mormon household. This memoir covers serious topics such as physical abuse and violence.

I liked reading about the Mormon lifestyle because while I’d heard of the name, I never really knew about their religion or beliefs. It is evident from this memoir that Tara had a difficult childhood surrounded by religion, physical abuse and struggling to fit in to society due to her faith and background.

Conclusion

The admirable part of this memoir was that despite the author having never stepped foot in a classroom or having a birth certificate early on, the author still received an education. However, some chapters were a tad bit repetitive. The chapter describing her college roommates could have been particularly shortened. Overall, an admirable memoir.

Rating : ⭐⭐⭐

This is the first book in my charity shop book haul

How I organize my makeup

I like to be organised especially when it comes to my makeup because I have so much of it. I have often seen my mam trying to figure out if her makeup has expired or not.  At some stage I saw organisation posts online about makeup expiration where there were several mentions of writing the date on tape or directly on the product. I thought the tape was a pretty good idea and I’ve been organising my makeup this way ever since.

Without further ado – here’s how I organize my makeup:

When I buy a new product the first thing I do is write down the month I opened the product. Then I read the “date once opened icon” and count when the product will be out of date. For example, I opened this Revolution eye shadow palette in June 2018. The expiry date says 12 months so therefore the product will be out of date in June 2019.

I have these square pieces of paper that come in handy for things like this. I write “Ex Date/Exp date: June 2019 etc. “on the piece of paper and then cut it out.

I tape the piece of paper onto the back of the product. So it looks like this.

I check my makeup products each month to check if anything is out of date. When a product reaches its expiry date I just look at the date and toss it in the bin.

I hope you liked this post and as always, thanks for reading x