Sunday, 30 November 2014

I've been nominated


Amongst all the other excitement going on with the UK Blog Awards, I have also been nominated for what is known as a Liebster Award. Yay.

This type of award is ever so slightly different so let me explain.

The Liebster Award has been around for a little while now and the basic idea of it is to encourage bloggers to interact with each other. As well as enabling readers to swiftly flit from blog to blog, finding out more about us bloggers as they go. When you are nominated, you answer the 10 questions which that blogger has been desperate to find out about you. And then you nominate 10 more bloggers to answer 10 questions of your choosing.

I was nominated by Madeline over at Madeline's Mosaics and you can read her Liebster nomination post here http://www.madelinesmosaics.com/2014/11/ive-been-nominated-liebster-award.html

She asked me the following questions so here goes...I'm excited...

1. When did you start your blog and what is one thing you wish you would have done differently?

I have actually already kind of answered that here in my previous blogpost http://charlottecoster.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/what-blogging-means-to-me.html. I started blogging around the Olympics in the summer of 2012 and I don't think I would have done anything different actually. I like the way it has progressed over the past couple of years and I love the way it looks now. So I think I would have kept it exactly the same.

2. What's your favourite childhood memory?
 
My childhood was quite idyllic growing up in a little village by the sea in the south of England. I have amazing parents, four great siblings who I adore and then my family stretched even further when I started boarding school aged 11. I was so lucky to have so many different experiences and just a nutty childhood, where I grew up with my friends constantly around me, all night and all day. That school in general, was probably my favourite childhood memory and little moments absolutely made it unforgettable (eg having a genuine punch up with my now-best friend of 11 years through a curtain, and desperately trying to stay awake for a midnight feast but failing; telling ghost stories on our founder's day night and freaking ourselves out; pillow fights (or dorm raids as we liked to call them)...and so many more...I should do a blogpost on that.)
 
3. Who inspires you the most? For your blog or in general
 
This is a tough one...I don't really have anyone who inspired me. There are definitely people who I look up to and sometimes wish I could be like (nearly all my family members and friends; a smattering of celebrities and the Queen). But they don't exactly inspire me. I don't sit down and write because of them. And I don't act the way I do because of them. I write because I want to and because I have something to say. So in that way...I inspire me (and I don't mean that as arrogantly as it sounds). I also have this nagging self esteem issue which is that I have to try and impress everyone and make them proud of me....so in that way it's my family and friends who inspire me. Because they are the ones who I want to impress so they inadvertently make me the best that I can be.  
 
4. Favourite candy?
 
I am not a huge fan of sweets but Maoms are good and toffee crisp chocolate bars are yummy. And fudge...so sickly but so good all the same.
 
5. Post the link to your favourite post to date
 
I have already done this recently too...you can read my top 10 favourite blogposts here http://charlottecoster.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/top-10-articles-i-have-written.html. Sorry I know it's kind of cheating but I couldn't possibly choose one. That's like trying to choose your favourite child.
 
6. Favourite types of blog posts to read and write? (DIY, fashion, lists, personal, etc)
 
I love it when I have been away and can do a travel blogpost. Somehow I just get into the craziest entertaining scrapes with my friends when I go travelling and I always feel like my writing is at its best because I am so passionate about it. Plus the posts look lovely, because all the pictures are beautiful. Check out my travel tab for those posts.
 
7. If I gave you $100 right now, what would you buy?
 
Theatre tickets. Without a doubt. I LOVE the theatre but am quite snobby about it so I only really go to the West End in London or to see West End casts on tour. Therefore, of course, it's all very expensive but there is so much I want to see. With over £100 I could see three or four shows yay.
 
8. What do you binge? (Netflix, books, buy camera gear, etc.)
 
I buy a lot of books. And I mean A LOT. There is a great second hand bookshop in my town and I buy roughly one a week from there, which is crazy because I definitely can't read that many. But I just can't help myself. I also buy stationary all the time as well. I love pretty notebooks and writing by hand is the best.
 
9. If you could have a superpower, what could it be? 
 
To fly, so I could go wherever I wanted in the world and see extraordinary views.
 
10. What does your workspace look like for writing blog posts? 
 
I hate to admit it, but I write in bed. I tried for a while to write at my desk but it is opposite the window, which allows far too much scope for daydreaming (plus there is a rabbit who seems to escape it's owners every day and affords me far too much amusement.) On top of that, it is so SO cold in my house. Which means it's completely necessary to write in bed for my own wellbeing. And actually it does work pretty well for me. I have a V-shaped pillow that I snuggle into and then can spread out across the bed. It's important to be comfortable when you are writing.
 
Now it's my turn to call the shots...
 
 
I nominate you all to do the same. Make sure you:
 
1, Link back to the blog who nominated you (me)
2. Answer the questions I set out below
3. Nominate ten more blogs to answer 10 different questions
4. Comment on this post when you are done to continue the trail
 
What I want to know is this...
 
1. If you could have an interview with anyone for your blog who would it be and what would you ask (give at least 1 example question)?
2. What is your favourite place on earth and where's the place you would most like to visit?
3. In 150 years time how would you like to be remembered?
4. Why do you blog?
5. Which Hogwarts house would you be sorted into?  
6. What was your favourite subject at school?
7.If you could live anyone's life for just one day, whose would it be?
8. Who or what would you not be able to live without?
9. Paperback or Kindle? And why?
10. What do you want to achieve by Christmas 2015?
 
Let's keep this ball rolling.
 
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Friday, 28 November 2014

What Blogging Means to Me


Recently, while promoting my blog for the UK Blog Awards 2015, I have been saying things like 'Vote for me - I deserve it' and 'Blogging means so much to me, please vote.' But what I haven't really explained is exactly why I have been saying these things and what prompted me to start blogging in the first place.

Once upon a time, many years ago (well, 2 and a half years ago) a teenage writer was debating her post university options. At the time, whilst she was in the middle of a Primary Education degree, she was coming to terms with the fact that she didn't actually want to be a teacher so began exploring other avenues instead. Therefore she applied to write for the online publication, Planet Ivy. Despite being accepted and given a log on, they did not seem all that keen to publish any of her articles. So, after being rejected by them to write a weekly column called 'The Secret Diary of a Student', she decided that actually she could do a very similar thing...but in her own space.

And that's the story of how The World According to Charlotte Coster came into being.

Simply this blog was going to be used as a portfolio of written work that I could take to journalism interviews and show how dedicated I was to writing. I wanted it to be all my own work, so all of the photos were to be taken by me, all of the articles coming from the heart and very few guest posts. This was MY area.

And in that way, The World According to Charlotte Coster has barely changed. It is still me inside out. It is still my take on the world. It is still my experiences which I describe and set out for your entertainment. But it is no longer just a means to an end. This blog has become an integral part of my life and I am not sure I will ever be able to give it up. There is too much of ME here. It would be like abandoning a pet on the side of the road and leaving it to wither away. You wouldn't be able to do that and neither could I.

In the beginning, (and in my quest to act like a journalist), I wanted to keep the personal side of my life out of it completely. But I realised you can't be a blogger and do that. It just isn't possible and frankly, it's not that interesting either. Anyone can form opinions on the world but virtually no one knows what's going on in a little student house in Reading. That's what makes your blog unique. Those little moments which contribute into making you the person you are now. And what I have learnt is that, just occasionally they can really help people. People who think they are alone because no one has dared speak up.

I have been through a lot since I started this blog in the summer of 2012. I have battled and semi-successfully defeated anorexia, I have visited beautiful places, I have abandoned my chosen career path, I have attended amazing events, I have had confidence crises, I have been heart broken, I have laughed and I have made it through university. All these things are here, laid out for you. And by portraying them in this way, not only can I confront my issues but remember the fun and the amazing experiences that have been constantly alongside that.

I have a feeling that this blog is now going to always be here and as my life adapts, it will adapt too. At least, I hope it will. I don't really want to still be writing about the problems of student living when I am 56. But I think this is one of the most important lessons that I have learnt while blogging -my blog can literally be anything that I want it to be. It is my space to do with what I will. It would be a good idea to remember that - not only within this blog but within my life as a whole.

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Monday, 24 November 2014

Bloggers Gift Swap


It's exactly a month until Christmas Eve and it's safe to say that I AM EXCITED. I love Christmas and everything about it - the food, being surrounded by family, the decorations, the songs, the communal stress of buying presents. It's all such good fun.

This year I am even more excited than usual because I am taking part in my first ever, bloggers' gift swap event. Run by @ViolaHelen_ who writes over at A Piece of Viola, the idea is simple. We send in our details, she pairs us up and then we get to know our partner...after which we send off a little box of goodies. And receive one in return. I can not wait and I will update you on every step that I take in the lead up to the event. So stay tuned =]

If you are a UK Blogger and want to get involved, there are still a few days left to sign up. But hurry, you have to send in your details by the 28th November. Click here to find some detailed instructions from Viola herself -  https://apieceofviola.wordpress.com/2014/11/14/get-involved-christmas-blogger-gift-swap/

And if you are taking part do give me a shout. You never know, we may be paired up =]

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Sunday, 23 November 2014

Dos and Don'ts of Tinder - An essential guide for men


Continuing along the dating theme that I seem to have going on here, I thought I would spend a little time talking about Tinder. This online dating app has been around for a couple of years but really took off at the end of last year. It has now been rumoured to have over 10 million active users. That's a lot of singletons, I had no idea there were so many.

Lots of my friends turn their nose up at it: those in relationships see it as online dating which still has a huge 'YOU ARE A LOSER' stamp attached to it. While those who are single, see it as just a last resort, where all the rejects accumulate to have some kind of massive orgy. I however think it is absolutely hilarious. And, if nothing else, it is the best ego boost in the world. Seriously, give it a try. When you are down, it is a great way of seeing that someone, somewhere finds you attractive.

I have had Tinder since the end of January, although I have only used it for about 6 of those 10 months (I stopped while I was dating people, like the good girl I am). During that time, I have noticed some patterns starting to emerge in the quality of individuals' profiles and the likeliehood of me swiping right. So all you single guys out there, take a look at these little tips I have compiled to ensure that a girl might actually consider you.

Do choose your pictures carefully
Tinder is linked to your Faceebook and therefore you have hundreds of photos at your disposal yet sometimes people really do not think their pictures through. If you put a picture of the back of your head, how the hell do we know what you look like? Or of the side of your face? Or if a stupid mask is obscuring your face? Be sensible about it.

Don't include a picture of a tiger
You might think you are being unique. You are not. And sitting with your arm around a sedated tiger does not mean we automatically assume you are well travelled and quirky.

Do include a picture with a baby/child
Men who are good with children are hot. It's wired into our basic DNA. If you don't have a child to hand, puppies also work.

Don't include selfies
Especially ones where you are holding up your T shirt. Yes you may have nice abs but you just seem vain. It is a good idea to have one picture alone though. If all of them, have massive groups of people in, I am not going to bother playing spot the difference between them to attempt to work out who you actually are.

Do have more than one picture
We like to know you are a real human being and haven't just lifted your singular picture from the internet. At least make the effort to lift a few.

Don't have a picture with another girl
We are jealous, slightly territorial and competitive. Even if she is your sister, we will assume the worst so it's safer not to have any other females in your pictures. Because we will automatically deduce that you are still clearly in love with her and she is far prettier than us anyway so there is no point in liking you at all.

Do pay attention to the bio
Don't ask us questions that we have already bothered to type out once. God, you can at least read can't you?

Don't ask us 'how are you?'
Errrr fine...thanks for asking. You however are boring. Ask us something interesting. I once had someone give me a test to see whether they would ask me out for a drink. A little weird, but actually quite fun and it is a very effective way to see whether we had anything in common. Apparently, we didn't.

Do message first
Females only ever message you if they drunk or being egged on by their friends. Or both. If you fancy her, tell her.

Don't spend months messaging us
Contrary to popular belief of older generations, we do actually like proper communication. And we also like to know you are real. And we slightly enjoy being wine and dined. Take us out. If you are nice enough, we will probably sleep with you.

Don't be creepy
This includes asking us where we live, if we have any fit friends, or making lurid sexual comments.

Don't ask us if we have whatsapp
We are not stupid. We know the only way you can have our whatsapp is if we give you our number. Just be upfront about it and ask us for our number.

Don't take it too seriously
We are fully aware that Tinder is for just one thing. Yet we are still here. You don't need to tiptoe around us.


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Monday, 17 November 2014

Speed Dating with Originaldating.com


I have talked about being single a lot on this blog. I don't mind being single at all, but that isn't to say that I want to be single forever. And once you are out of university, suddenly meeting new people becomes a hell of a lot harder.

One thing I have never tried and always seemed like fun was speed dating. So when I was invited to join the originaldating.com speed dating event in London this weekend, I jumped at the chance to give it a go. And I was very excited about taking part.

That is, right up until the point where I entered the bar. I became absolutely terrified. The prospect of meeting about 15 strangers in quick succession made me almost turn around and walk out again. But I am so glad I stuck with it because I actually had a really great night.

The way it works is pretty simple and is exactly how you might expect speed dating to work. The females sit one to a table and then the males move around them spending four minutes with each. Which is an ideal amount of time. Surprisingly, I actually found with most of them, that it wasn't enough and just as it becomes interesting you are being told to move on by a aggressively high-pitched whistle. Alongside this, you are told to download an app called Mixeo and this is how you enter your matches. You each have a number and once you have entered this, you can access their profile and therefore make your choice of 'yes' 'no' or 'friend.'

So this event is pretty perfect whatever you are looking for. If you just want a fun night out, you can drink and giggle you way through it as I did. If you have just moved to London and want to meet people, it is a great way to make a bunch of new friends. Or if you are genuinely searching for The One there is the chance of finding it here as well. It is such a chilled out event, and suitable for absolutely any type of person. As we were in central London, I also expected all the people to be quite similar - the businessy type people who turned up in suits and complained how their job didn't allow them to have a social life. However, there weren't any of them (and no one in suits unfortunately - I love a good suit) and instead, there was such a varied bunch of people who were all entertaining in their own way.

I would definitely recommend this well organised and fun event. So check out www.originaldating.com for more info and to see the dates of the events that are coming up in the next few weeks. I guarantee you will have an entertaining evening and even make a friend or two.

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Sunday, 9 November 2014

Top 10 Articles I have Written


Over the past few weeks, I have been doing nothing but blogging. And writing my novel. And then blogging a bit more. The aim of giving my blog so much attention was trying to make it simply fantastic for all you lovely people, to tempt you into voting for me in the UK Blog Awards (I'm up for the Lifestyle and Young Person Recognition categories. Just saying...again.) So I have been trying to revisit the majority of my posts (all 135 of them) to check they are shipshape before everything kicks off tomorrow.

And it has made me realise, there are just so many great ones that I have forgotten about. Ones which I really loved writing and which meant a lot to me. So here is a list of my favourites (in no particular order). I hope you like them too and if I missed any that you particularly loved, let me know =]


It was the Best of Times, It was the Worst of Times
I wrote this article the night before I graduated, reflecting all about my time at uni. It was actually one of the easiest articles I had ever written, just flowing straight out of me, completely unplanned and fairly straightforwardly. Which hardly ever happens. It was great.

Dear Me
This was actually part of a poetry challenge which I didn't spend very long doing because I didn't want my blog to become overwhelmed by my mediocre poetic skills. But this poem, all about what advice I would give to my teenage self, was quite good. Though I do say so myself. It was quite readable, and it rhymed. Win.

Write 30 Interesting Facts about yourself
This, again, was part of a different challenge. One that I succeeded in doing, where I had to blog every day for a month on certain topics. Day 06 was to write 30 interesting facts about myself which is very self indulgent but was quite fun. So if you want to learn a little more about me, check this out.


Life without a mobile phone
I wrote this just after experiencing the emotional trauma of my iphone being stolen while I was in Spain. It is a comment on how mobile communications have taken over our lives and how that's not always a good thing.

Spain
My new year's trip to Madrid wasn't the best trip I have ever been on but a lot of hilarious stuff happened. So definitely check this one out.

Single Life at university
This is only a short article but I came up with this analogy myself and I was quite proud of it.


Boarding Schools
Whenever I meet someone new, they are always intrigued by the fact that I went to boarding school and surprised that I actually enjoyed. And here I briefly go into why it is fun. Boarding school was my home for the majority of my childhood, and is why I became the person I am today, so I really enjoyed sharing some of my experiences with you.

Things which your parents provide that no one else can
Parents are important...and here's why.


The Avengers vs the New Avengers
This article is definitely geeky. But if you are a fantasy film fanatic, check this out.

Is the Olympics making us less British? and How to be British - a guide for those who are not
These two are quite similar so I thought I would stick them both into my final slot. All about being British and what makes up our culture. I wrote this while the Olympics were going on, so my national identity was clearly on my mind.

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Saturday, 8 November 2014

I don't know what to do with my life


Having happened just under 4 months ago, graduation seems to be a distant memory. In fact, university is fast becoming a slightly mythical place. Did I really only have 6 hours of lectures a week? Did I actually complain about having to get up at 9am once or twice a term? Did I seriously think it was a good idea to stay in bed all day just because I had been a little hungover first thing when I woke up? Somehow adult life has swallowed me up and my fun-loving, studenty self has been replaced by a slightly grumpier, busier version. I didn't think it would happen this quickly.

But some things have not changed. And I really hoped they would have by now.

When I left university, I was feeling unbelievably lost. All my friends seemed to be walking straight into various jobs while I still had no idea which path I wanted to continue down. I spent most of the summer, (alongside applying for a few jobs in EVERYTHING: marketing, charities, publishers, various writing jobs, you name it, I tried to get a job in it) putting off a career decision, month by month. First I was having a rest, then I went to Malta and Paris, and then I realised that I didn't actually need a job yet as I wasn't leaving my current job until the end of September. And then I wasn't being paid for my September work until the end of October. So it wasn't pressing that I made this decision about which type of job to apply for, until November...right? But I wasn't stupid. I knew I needed something, so I kept an eye out and applied for a few. And then panicked because I wasn't even getting to interviews for anything.

Eventually I decided to add retail to my list of potential jobs ideas, applying for a handful of jobs in my local shopping centre. And was really happy to be accepted by Mamas & Papas at the beginning of October.

It's absolutely perfect there. The work is faintly interesting, but doesn't take huge amounts of brain power (plus when I leave work, I can forget about it completely which you just can't do with teaching). The people, both the customers and my fellow colleagues, are absolutely lovely. And finally it's really flexible so I have a few days off a week. Which I use to either research other job ideas, blog or write my novel and I teach piano alongside everything else. Therefore it really is great for me.

But since accepting the job, I have had to explain to various friends, relatives and strangers why, despite having a degree, I've decided to return to shopwork. Which to be honest, I am a little bit sick of. It is not really anyone's business and I shouldn't have to explain my decisions (which, believe me, are in my best interests) to anyone.

All my friends seem to have their lives under control...the majority of them are teaching or are in some other form of fulltime employment with a stable yearly wage. They know what they want to do next and I am so envious of that. I sometimes think I am the only one who is going slightly nuts and have no clue what is happening. But you know what, I am not alone. And if you are reading this and thinking, 'this sounds familiar' I want to assure you that you are not alone either. It is perfectly normal for us to be a bit overwhelmed. Suddenly we have a choice in what we want to do next and how we live our lives (I KNOW - unheard of). Suddenly there aren't any parents or teachers or lecturers bossing us around, telling us what we have to do and when we have to do it. Suddenly we can actually make our own decisions. Which is why my brain has gone 'eek I don't want to, don't make me.' It has had no practice in this area at all.

So go ahead. Try new things, go see a new country, make mistakes, date ridiculous people, join a club, juggle several jobs at once, go out for a few too many cocktails, dream of impossible careers and riches...go out and live your life. It's a big world out there. And it's time we experienced some of it.

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Saturday, 1 November 2014

#Blogtober roundup

So at the beginning of the month I let you know that I was taking part within the #Blogtober fun that happens every October. I joined @tinkerbelljayne (from www.allabouttink.co.uk) in taking a photo every day throughout the month and I am really proud to announce that I managed it. I remembered to photograph something (not always a big thing, but some thing) every single day, without missing one. And through those, I can offer a little glimpse into my totally enthralling life.

You can check out the photos on Twitter and Instagram (links below) or have a read of this roundup to see what I got up to =]

Day 1 I headed over to Bristol today to see my best friend from uni, Jon. The day didn't start well...I missed my train by 5 minutes and bought the wrong ticket so I spent about £10 more than I should have. But apart from that it was a really lovely day. I hadn't seen him in ages so we had a good catch up, did a little shopping in Cabot circus, went to the cinema (Lucy has to be the worst film in history. And it had so much potential doh) and finally went to see Clifton Suspension Bridge (see my blogpost about it here http://charlottecoster.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/clifton-suspension-bridge.html)

Day 2 Today is National Poetry Day so I thought I would dedicate the photo to my favourite poem. Which is Stop all the clocks by W. H. Auden. It is a little depressing and I am not a massive fan of Auden's usually (Philip Larkin is my poetry hero) but this is just beautiful. It's so simple but effectively captures the intense despair of grief in such an accessible way. He doesn't use any big words, or synonyms, he just tells us how he feels. I love the way it doesn't have a title either. It doesn't need one. And it represents how the (dead) subject of the poem has now gone forever, never to return.

Day 3 Nothing pleases me more than to curl up with a cup of coffee and a good book. I often go to Starbucks by myself to either read or write but I normally end up people watching. I love it.

Day 4 I had reunion cocktails with this lovely lady (who is a fellow blogger who runs http://expatabroadlondon.blogspot.co.uk/ and http://expatdiariesafrica.blogspot.co.uk/). Normally we would have had these cocktails; followed by 6 more and then danced the night away. But after these, we became absolutely knackered so headed home and watched telly in bed. Since when did we turn into old women??

Day 5 My housemate was in Canada at the beginning of the month, and I was intensely jealous. So, when I went out for breakfast, I decided to bring a little bit of Canada into my life despite the fact I had only gone down to the end of my road. I had never had this before and I wasn't sure if I would like the mixture of sweet and savoury. But it was amazing. This definitely has to be a permanent fixture in my life.

Day 6 After a few weeks unemployment, I started my new job at Mamas and Papas, an upmarket babyshop in the UK. I feel like a lot of my friends, who have waltzed into highpaid fulltime jobs immediately on leaving uni, look down on me for returning to retail. But they shouldn't and I don't care. I like retail, it suits me and (speaking after being there a month) Mamas and Papas is great. The staff are all fab, we have such a laugh and it is really entertaining. I meet some lovely people, have learnt a great deal about becoming a mother and about prams and cots and clothes (which is all good for the future) and it is training me in sales. Which again, is very valuable as most jobs consist of selling a product or service.

Day 7 Exactly four years ago today I caught Fresher's Flu at the beginning of my university career. I know because Timehop told me. Today, it was like I was having a flashback and have caught a stinking cold (I blame my new colleagues who all seem to have one.) Was feeling very poorly and sorry for myself so I hid in bed all day, watching films. Which I think is allowed.

Day 8 The moon was so bright this evening as I was walking home from work. It was weird, I mistook it for a streetlamp, genuinely.

Day 9 I was in London this evening attending a First Look Book Club (which you can read about here http://charlottecoster.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/london-literary-festival-first-look-at.html). I love London, it is so lush especially when it is all lit up at night. So I am absolutely determined to live there soon, maybe when this house's contract runs out next summer.

Day 10 It was my Dad's birthday today (aren't I a cute baby). I owe him and my Mum so much. They drive me nuts but they are always there for me and ultimately want what's best for me. I have relied so so heavily on their constant love and support throughout every decision I have made. I don't know where I would be if it weren't for them and my four siblings.

Day 11 I clearly didn't do very much today because here is quite a generic one about the weather...it has been pretty nuts this month though. Mostly it has been so summery. That sky could definitely be from a summer's day.

Day 12 My housemate returned from Canada today - hooray. I missed him so much. He brought me back this which apparently he saw in a shop and just had to buy for me. I think this just about sums up our friendship/mutual alcoholism.

Day 13 After visiting Madrid in the New Year, I decided that I really wanted to learn Spanish. And for once, I actually achieved something that I aimed to do. Well, it's a working progress anyway. I use Duolingo which is a great app for learning languages and am now in the habit in doing it every day. So I have improved vastly. I am determined to reach a whole year.


Day 14 I was invited to the West End this evening to review Urinetown the Musical. You can read my review of it here http://charlottecoster.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/urinetown-musical.html but to sum up - it was unexpectedly great.

Day 15 I didn't get a break at work on Monday so they gave me an hour today. Which considering I was only doing a 6 hour shift was pretty amazing. So I chilled in Starbucks with my book and a pumpkin spiced latte. They are definitely my favourite thing about the autumn.

Day 16 My favourite perfume. It smells so good, but it is about to run out so I bought myself a new one today. I love the bottle too, it's so quirky.

Day 17 The way my blog looks now, is not the way it has always looked. Up until recently it was very different indeed but I fancied a change so I had a little play with the font, background and profile principally. Then today, I made a brand new header. Which I really like. Hope you do as well.


Day 18 In honour of Halloween, Krispy Kreme have introduced a Trick or Treat doughnut. Where you don't know whether you are going to get a doughnut with a lime fizz filling or a chocolate truffle filling. Such a good idea but suddenly doughnut buying has become really dangerous. Luckily I got a chocolate one though.

Day 19 Today's entertainment was watching my housemate try to fix his bed with nothing but sellotape, a lighter and his wardrobe doors. What a DIY goddess he is.

Day 20 When people become intoxicated normally they leave stupid facebook status, order a load of Dominos or text their exes. I, apparently, go on Amazon and order books. Which arrived today in a big-ish box. It was like Christmas and I don't think I have ever been happier.

Day 21 Tuesday is mine and my housemate's day off so it has become a bit of a tradition to go for a burrito and a few cocktails every week. I genuinely think the staff in Mission Burrito and Las Iguanas are starting to recognise us. They are the same every week.

Day 22 I normally teach a little girl, piano lessons on Thursday afternoons which is slap bang in the middle of my two days off (I see it as my weekend as I have to work Saturdays and Sundays). But this week she was away in France for half term so tonight (Wednesday) after work I headed back down south to see my parents. I thought I would take advantage of the fact I had two completely free days and I hadn't seen my family for three months so it was time I paid them a visit really.

Day 23 I went to see this movie with my siblings. I was actually really disappointed with it. I loved the book a lot and I understand it had to be changed to make it viable as a film, but the changes were rubbish. It just didn't flow very well. But I still cried at the end so I clearly was slightly emotionally invested in the characters. I loved chilling with my two little siblings today and then afterwards, I went and saw my older brother in his new house which was really exciting. It looks very stylish.

Day 24 Whenever I visit the parents, I always make sure I go for a stroll along the seafront. Reading is quite landlocked for me and I just love the open space of the sea. It is so hypnotic, I could watch the waves for hours and hours.

Day 25 It's now been just over 4 months since I graduated from Reading University. And while I haven't done all that much with my time, my bezzie has managed to make it through her first half a term as a teacher. I am so proud of her and all that she has achieved. So we went out to celebrate this evening.

Day 26 This was a very late birthday present from my sister which I watched today. I love this film and can quote most of it. It is so gently humorous, it is great.

Day 27 I can't believe how quickly time is going. Blogtober is nearly over which means it's nearly November. And that means it's nearly Christmas, which signals the end of 2014. I have loved this year, so many exciting things were happening like my graduation. But I feel like there is still so much I want to do. I will make sure I don't waste the end of the year but some of it is going to have to wait until next year.

Day 28 I spent a lot of time writing today. There are a lot of ideas for novels, that I have started to scribble down in various notepads. So my job recently has been to type each one of them up. And this one was longer than I thought. I am going to be taking part in the National-Write-A-Novel month which begins on the 1st November. Let's see how far I get.

Day 29 The hour change has really been messing with my head. I have been feeling all over the place. And it has now made my walks back home from work very dingey. It doesn't help that it has been pissing it down either.

Day 30 Kids and Grown Ups love it so, the happy world of haribo. Love these. You know it's truly Halloween when these come out.

Day 31 Happy Halloween everyone. It has finally arrived. Which means I have successfully made it through the whole of Blogtober. Feeling faintly proud of myself. I hope you are all having a fabulous night of festivities and aren't scaring too many old ladies/children with your costumes.


I hope you have all enjoyed my photographs and what I have been up to this month. If you took part in it too, leave me links below, I would love to see what everyone got up to.

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