Hi guys, here’s a quick, no-talking video of my bujo setup for next week, 25 to 31 July. I wanted something contained within twp pages that visually separated all the different elements. I stick with a pink and green colour scheme and I’m pretty stoked with how it’s turned out.
What I use to bullet journal
Leuchtturm 1917 medium dot grid notebook in pink
Pilot G-Tec-C 0.4 pen in black
Staedtler Triplus Fineliner pens in assorted colours
Whitcoulls Fineliner pens in assorted colours
Faber-Castell coloured pencils
As always, thanks so much for watching and liking my videos! It makes my heart feel all warm and fuzzy.
Have you ever woken up one morning with an idea for a change of direction in life, and immediately get to work putting things into motion? That was me last week.
When I finished university in March of 2015 I was considering studying to become an early childhood teacher. I decided not to go down that path because, at the time, the idea of studying again straight away was utterly unappealing to me. I wanted to get on with my life, and be an adult with a full-time job and a social life. So, I began to pursue that and eventually got a job as a receptionist for a company in the city. It sounded like a great fresh-out-of-uni job, but by the end of my first week I was beginning to be acutely aware that this was not the environment for me (offices) and these were not my people (corporate types) and this was not a good use of my brain or experience (organising someone else’s dry cleaning is not ‘living my best life’). Eventually, I left, and then began the tedious journey of figuring out what I wanted to do with my life.
The question of what to do with your life is not always an easy one to ask yourself or one with consistent answers. I’ve wanted to be so many things in my life – clinical psychologist, artist, entrepreneur, YouTube creator, and so much more (teenager: photographer or actress). I still want to be so many things in my life! My goodness, there are endless options. But the one thing that I keep coming back to is my interest in child development and wellbeing. Children fascinate me. I love being around them, getting to peek into their worlds and see things from their perspectives. I love to teach them new things, be it throwing a ball, counting, or writing their own name. I love seeing them discover the world and learn new things. Alongside this fascination is the fact I’ve always had an immense urge to be a mother. Above all other things I could do with my time, eventual motherhood is the one I am most excited about. I like to nurture people, especially children.
Last week on Monday two things happened that were the catalysts for my change of direction. One was that I ran into a family friend who was asking me how I was doing and what I was up to. I admit I felt a deep sense of embarrassment as I admitted to not actually doing very much at all. I shouldn’t feel embarrassed. There are reasons I’m not working full-time, and I don’t actually have to be in the same stage of life as other 28-year-olds (full-time job, house or near to it, married, maybe kids). But, I felt shame and embarrassment, and I felt a sense of urgency to get the ball rolling in a direction I felt good about. The second event was a new book club that I attended with other 20-somethings. I listened as some of them talked about their studies and careers, and I felt, again, that acute awareness that I had stalled in my life. I felt a sense of urgency to make some kind of change and move in some kind of direction.
That night I stayed up too late and trawled through local job listings to see if anything came up that I could a) do, and b) would get me going in a direction that felt good. Mostly what happened was that I realised I can’t drive trucks, weld, and probably can’t lift 20kg boxes in a factory. My other realisation was that there were quite a few job openings in Early Childhood Education and that I wasn’t qualified for any of them. I felt sad, because, I realised, I would really like to teach kids and have a meaningful impact on their lives. I went to bed that night with a niggling sense that this might be the direction for me to go in. This might be the best option for me.
I woke up and the feeling was still there, a sense that this was a direction that felt right for me. I spent Tuesday researching different study options and finally settled on a college that specialises in Early Childhood programmes. They have a distance learning option so I don’t have to go to campus except for a couple of workshops, and they have a one year Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Early Childhood Education) which you can start at any time. I emailed them to enquire, found out I would qualify to apply for the Grad. Dip. and began the application process on Wednesday. Part of the application process is contacting early childhood education centres to see if they would be willing to be your ‘home centre’ – the place you work at throughout study, which is a requirement of the diploma programme.
This morning I phoned my first centre of choice, one that a nephew of mine attended. I’ve been there and really loved it, the atmosphere was always so warm and lovely. I spoke with the manager and she was amazing, and hopefully I will have a place with them! I’m really excited to go and meet with the centre tomorrow and fill out some paperwork. I can hopefully complete the college application process after I have that paperwork done. Then it will be a case of wait-and-see with fingers crossed. I don’t foresee any issues with my application, but I don’t want to assume anything just yet.
So, what does all this mean for YouTube, and this blog? I would like to continue with both if I can. I will certainly be busy with studying and working, but I enjoy doing YouTube too much to give it up just yet. The only reasons I can think of that might induce me to quit would be if they interfere with school, it becomes too much work to manage, or if my YouTube and social media presence (which is really minimal, let’s be honest) has a negative impact on my ability to work in early childhood education. It should be ok since my channel, blog and social media platforms are pretty family-friendly. I avoid swearing as much as possible (except maybe on Twitter – I should work on that) and sharing questionable content. I try to share only things I wouldn’t mind my grandparents viewing, for example.
I’m feeling excited and really positive about this new direction. It feels really good to be doing something that I know is going to benefit me in the long-term. I got into such a stagnant spot and felt really stuck with my life. It was affecting my mental health a bit and just generally felt really icky. It’s not at all fun. I’m the kind of person that likes to have a purpose and to have things that I’m working toward. Tangible things, especially, like a fixed-term for something, a specific end-point, or a particular kind of experience. It feels good to have a little more of that in my life again.
I’ve finally done a walk/flip-through of my bullet journal. This is a big and juicy video, so grab a snack and some tea, and maybe a notebook to jot down ideas! Check below the video for a list of inspiring bullet journalers, products I use, and so on.
Various people, in particular, have inspired what I do
Note: Due to the nature of this type of post, there may be some spoilers in my reviews, so read on with caution. Generally, I will give a brief overview of what the book is like (much like a back cover would), but I won’t give away major plot points and such. I will always warn you if I ever do, though!
This is rivaling Price and Prejudice for my favourite Austen novel! I thought it was written very well and the style seemed a bit more modern to me. I felt like it would be a good option for someone who hasn’t really read classic literature before but wants to give it a go. I don’t love the character of Emma very much because she’s incredibly self-absorbed and snooty, but there is something about her that makes it pleasant to read about her life. Love/hate, I guess!
This is a fascinating book about the differences between American and French parenting. While I don’t have children yet, I see no harm in arming myself with information. Plus, the areas of psychology I was always most interested in were child development and parenting, so there you go. Anyway, I absolutely loved the book. Not gonna lie, I’m a Francophile and am unrealistically and romantically biased toward almost everything French. That being said, the French view of parenting and childhood is something I have always felt akin to. It’s less helicopter parent and more parents have identities outside of being parents but children are loved and valued still. I learned that the stereotype of French pregnant women drinking wine every day and smoking is generally inaccurate, and corporal punishment is not a common occurrence anymore (at least among the middle classes of Paris, anyway). French parents believe in having firm limits for their children, but allowing them to have a lot of freedom within those limits. Babies are treated as rational beings and parents are encouraged to speak to their babies and explain what they’re doing and why. Babies are generally sleeping all night from about 3-months, which is partly attributed to French parents pausing when baby makes a noise during sleep, rather than rushing in to soothe at the first sigh or cry (because babies do make noises in their sleep and will often settle back down if left for 5 or so minutes). Children are expected, from very young, to be polite (table manners, greetings, appropriate address of people), but play is highly valued and they are allowed to run amok in daycare and at home.
The only thing I found really shocking was the attitude toward breastfeeding in France. Most women only do it for a short period of time, and some not at all. This is partly because women typically return to work anywhere from three to 12 months post-birth, so for ease and practicality, breastfeeding falls away as formula comes in. There’s a general attitude that formula milk is just as, if not more, healthy than breast milk. In my own culture, and that of other English-speaking ones, the whole Breast Is Best message is so strong that even I cringe slightly when someone willingly chooses to formula feed. Which is awful because that kind of attitude will potentially affect mums who can’t breastfeed for whatever reason. But in France, it’s just accepted and you will be considered strange if you breastfeed for a year or more.
The whole reason I ended up reading the previous book was because it was mentioned in this one, about the anthropological record of childhood around the world. I haven’t yet finished this book, but it’s been an amazing read so far. It’s definitely a book for people who are interested in attitudes toward children throughout the world. It details a rich ethnographic record of so many cultures, from isolated tribes to modern-day Western. It looks a little at the archaeological record of childhood throughout history as well. The overwhelming message, for me, so far is that the way we do things in the West is the anomaly. Compared with the rest of the world, we’re the weird ones, the different ones, and potentially “backward” ones (though I’m still fond of our medical knowledge and the fact we’re more likely to base what we do on scientific research).
What I want to read in July
Because I’m generally terrible at completing my reading lists for the month, except those I need to read for book clubs, I’m just going to include my book club read for the month.
I seem to recall having read this one, but maybe only once? I’ve already started this, and I’m using a speed-reading method in which you listen to the audiobook at 1.5x speed while reading along. It’s reminiscent of childhood, but I have managed to read about 60% of the book in four days, so I think it’s working!
Happy Friday! Here’s a new video for you, all about my July bullet journal setup. I’ve tried a different layout this month and it was quite fun to draw up, although more time consuming! So far I’ve been enjoying the layout and find that it works well for me, but I will update you further into the month. Below you will find the source for the inspiration and also what I use to bullet journal.
Layout inspiration from Christina. Her Instagram is full of beautiful bujo inspiration and I’ve been following her for awhile now. I found this particular layout via Pinterest and didn’t actually realise it was Christina’s until afterwards. Small bujo world, I guess!