Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Handwriting







I would love to see everyone else's handwriting so feel free to share them with me on Twitter =]

Like what I say?
Follow me on Twitter https://twitter.com/CharlotteCoster
Follow me on Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/CharliCoster/
Follow me on Instagram http://instagram.com/walkingintothesun
Like me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theworldwetread

Sunday, 27 September 2015

ZSL London Zoo


The title of this week's Sunday Snap, should be in fact, Sunday Snaps. I love photographing animals and took a few that I really liked - there were far too many for me to simply choose a single one. That would be unfair on the rest. Therefore you are going to get the 'many'.

It's been a good few years since I have strayed into this delightful part of London. I had forgotten how truly beautiful Regent's Park is. As I was wandering through it (attempting not to be late) I marvelled at the pretty flowers and fountains. I feel like it very similar to New York's Central Park especially as I strode along the Board Walk. With the many trees scattering their autumnally-golden leaves, it was the first time I was actually glad that we were leaving the summer behind. We are entering such a pretty season.

I was meeting a fellow blogger, Claire at the zoo for a day of explorations and animals. In particular - penguins. That's what she was getting excited about anyway, and they were pretty cute. I can't get over how wonderful they are in the water, while they are so hilarious on land, waddling along and constantly falling over.

I was definitely more excited about the giraffes though. They are so hugely tall but they still manage to be so elegant, unlike me who trips around all over the place - basically they are my inspiration. If I can conduct myself with half their grace, I would be doing reasonably well.

There were of course a few other animals there too - the lions had gone on holiday to Whipsnade Zoo while their 'Lion's Den' was being remade but we saw some beautiful tigers (which look like pussy-cats, don't you think??) We saw some macaws which looked like they were kissing, a pair of monkeys who got into a fight and some camels that definitely had the hump. We watched some vain lemurs and alpacas act as if they were in a photoshoot, turning this way and that while we photographed them and we stroked some goats. And then we fell a little in love with the lemurs and squirrel monkeys.You could walk through their enclosures and the temptation to either stroke them or to pop one in your handbag was unbelievably strong.
We finished up the day with a cup of tea and a chocolate brownie which gave us a chance to relax while chatting about everything from blogging, to comparing our experiences at boarding school to discussing the reasons we both decided to leave teaching. I had a wonderful day with Claire and I am so so glad to have met her. Huge thanks to her for inviting me and to Talented Talkers and Avios for gifting us the tickets, I had a fabulous time.

Like what I say?
Follow me on Twitter https://twitter.com/CharlotteCoster
Follow me on Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/CharliCoster/
Follow me on Instagram http://instagram.com/walkingintothesun
Like me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theworldwetread

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

You know you're a theatre nerd when...


As you can probably tell, I am one of the biggest theatre nerds out there...something which I declare with pride. And below are just some of the defining features of such a person.

You don't have to be all of them, but a majority is expected for this distinction - let me know if you believe yourself to be included within the group =]

1. You have seen all the shows in the West End at least once...

2. ...So then you have to start seeing them twice

3. You would prefer to go to the theatre than on a night out

4. You celebrate pay day by booking a show

5. You care more about meeting a theatre great than any other kind of celebrity

6. But even better would be someone from the world of telly or film who has roots in the theatre

7. ...Such as Benedict Cumberbatch...drool...

8. ...Or David Tennant...he will do nicely too...

9. You have contacted a theatre great on Twitter to tell them just how great they are...

10. ...And received a reply because they are so darn nice...

11. You have absolutely no problem with asking a kid for their autograph (they are just so talented!)

12. You have a bookshelf purely for theatre programmes

13. You have one or more pieces of theatre merch

14. This may or may not be a hoodie which you may or may not live in (and it's getting kinda old and smelly but there's no way you are going to stop wearing it)

15. You keep a list of your favourite shows

16. You cry when the top of the list announces it is leaving the West End

17. You know what is presently on in the theatre...

18. ...what is coming up in the West End...

19. ...And it's entire booking period

20. You celebrate any extension of this booking period with a glass of champagne and booking to see it again (one or more times)

21. You see a show again when the cast changes

22. ...and you defend the decision to see it again with 'it's practically a different show'

23. You run a blog so you can post reviews of the shows you have seen

24. And you actually get invited to stuff (which you still can't believe!!)

25. You join the London Theatre Bloggers to meet other nerds just like yourself

26. Going to the theatre becomes a weekly occurrence

27. You complain about the prices but then buy tickets anyway

28. You only ever sit in the stalls

29. Your entire inbox consists of emails from certain theatres and ticket-selling websites

30. All your birthday presents are theatre tickets or merch (your family know you well)

31. Friends come to you for advice on what they should see/book for their family

32. You have at least one spotify/youtube/itunes playlist of musical tunes

33. Or if you feel particularly traditional you own a collection of shows' soundtracks on CDs

34. Or, if you are feeling even more old-school, vinyl? Does anyone have shows' records?

35. Some of these are karaoke so you can sing along and pretend you are the lead in your favourite musical

36. You become extremely opinionated about the proper etiquette that should be adhered to in all theatres

37. ...and will turn into the Hulk if people don't abide by these rules

38. But most importantly, you just absolutely love it and there's nowhere else you'd rather be!!!

Like what I say?
Follow me on Twitter https://twitter.com/CharlotteCoster
Follow me on Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/CharliCoster/
Follow me on Instagram http://instagram.com/walkingintothesun
Like me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theworldwetread

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Miss Saigon


Yesterday me and London theatre were reunited. We had been on a brief break - well, I say brief, it actually felt like a lifetime - of around 2 months! But after getting some very severe withdrawal symptoms (which involved breaking into song at super inappropriate moments); I returned to the West End yesterday afternoon to watch Miss Saigon.

I have already seen Miss Saigon once but it is one of my favourites and it is closing in February and my friend hadn't seen it yet AND there had been a cast change. All these reasons were excellent excuses to go and see it again. Any one of them would have done - I would have grabbed it wholeheartedly, but all of them...well, I couldn't resist.

I always think that a new cast makes a show seem like a new production. All actors have slightly different takes on the characters. Jon Jon Briones was still The Engineer, thank goodness - please can you just play this role for the rest of your life? He is perfect - The Engineer is a very complicated character to play. He has a lot of songs to sing and ultimately is an extremely dark character who thinks of nothing or nobody but himself. But at the same time, he is slightly hilarious and has some really comic bits that are light relief from the emotional show. His balance is perfect and you kind of love him despite the fact the character is an absolute arse.

Eva Noblezada is still on as a wonderful Kim (her singing is just wow) and Hugh Maynard is still John. But apart from that, the rest of the leads and the majority of the company, changed. I was most interested in seeing what Chris Peluso was going to be like as Chris because I adored Alistair Brammer in the role. I did think Peluso was a lot less emotionally extreme, but he still sang well and was believable which meant you felt all the emotions as he depicted them on stage. Plus I now have a tiny bit of a crush on him - the quantity of fit men is definitely not the reason why I missed visiting the theatre so much. Of course it wasn't...

Like what I say?
Follow me on Twitter https://twitter.com/CharlotteCoster
Follow me on Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/CharliCoster/
Follow me on Instagram http://instagram.com/walkingintothesun
Like me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theworldwetread

Friday, 18 September 2015

13 Things you have to learn to love while you are at uni


It's getting to that time of year again - the start of the new year at universities all around the country. I hope all you Freshers are looking forward to beginning this brand new adventure.

You will have so many exciting things to experience and below I have collated a few little things which will definitely become a huge part of your lives over the next three years.

1. The cold
Halls don't turn on the heating until the last possible second, lecturers seem to gain a vicious pleasure in making you endure sub-freezing temperatures during classes and libraries are permanently drafty. My advice - buy a few extra jumpers and some thermal underwear.

2. Pizza
This is the only way you are going to get your 5-a-day. Fact.

3. People
If you are not a people person, you are going to have to become one. They are everywhere, all the time. And with the whole settling in and trying to make friends thing, you are going to have to at least pretend to be social for a little while.

4. Sainsbury's Basic Vodka
Somehow this ends up being in your shopping basket every single week. (Tip - mix it with Fanta Fruit Twist and it doesn't taste like rat poison!!)

5. Slow internet
Forget trying to watch a film - it's just not going to happen!

6. Fire alarms at stupid times
You know that the minute you step into the shower, some idiot will burn the toast, it will go off and you are going to be that person who will have to wait outside in your towel. 

7. NUS card
This becomes more precious than almost any other card you own. Never ever lose this. Ever.

8. Your phone alarm
You are going to become well acquainted with this feature of your phone. Getting up for 9am lectures is tough and the alarm only makes it ever so slightly easier.

9. Printing stuff out
Whether it's lecture notes, the twelve copies of your assignment you have to hand in or your reading that you have to do, fighting with the other students (and then the printer itself) becomes a fun daily ritual.

10. Coffee/Red Bull/Tea/Sweets/Wine
Basically anything which will help you through the crazy amount of all-nighters you will undertake to complete your assignments and uni reading.

11. Drama
Your whole life turns into a series of arguments either about who stole whose cheese or who slept with whose friend-who-actually-has-a-boy/girlfriend. It's never ending scandals at uni.

12. Club fliers
I don't know where they come from, but as soon as you have put a wodge in the recycling, they have magically been replaced by morning. They will decorate your halls (and tempt you out) all year!

13. An empty bank account
This is just a thing which you will have to come to terms with. If you are at zero, you are one of the better-off ones.

Like what I say?
Follow me on Twitter https://twitter.com/CharlotteCoster
Follow me on Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/CharliCoster/
Follow me on Instagram http://instagram.com/walkingintothesun
Like me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theworldwetread

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Body Shaming - The Thin Version


Body shaming is something which seems to be hugely in the press at the moment. Again.

At the weekend, I watched several YouTube Videos about various examples of it. Plus there was all that palaver with the 'beach body ready' billboard campaign a few months ago. But what I have noticed within that whole explosion back in May and now, is that body shaming is always always centred around fat people. And how fat people are getting abused and being called names and made fun of. What I want to talk about is the other side of the story. And the amount of body shaming that is directed towards slimmer people, which somehow doesn't get a look in at all.

I have had my fair share of insults about my weight over the years. For example I have been called skinny, countless times, twig-like, flat-chested, boyish, anorexic...all of them are a little horrendous, especially for someone who is sensitive about their weight and body in general.

Now, these are probably not as bad as someone who has been insulted for being overweight. But the difference is, people think it is ok to comment on my weight ALL the time. Last year, back when I was working in a shop in Reading, I was once told 'you need to go and have some lunch' by a middle-aged (slightly plump) lady who really should have known better. Although that sentence may not seem obviously insulting, it was to me, who was in the depths of a pretty hard struggle against anorexia at the time. So mentioning that I didn't look my best, was not ideal for my recovery to say the least. But, even if I hadn't been particularly sensitive, why did they think it was ok to comment on my weight??? And what would they have said if I had turned round and retorted that they should lay off the burgers. Neither comment is acceptable, but I was the one who had to endure the insult and laugh it off because of her thoughtlessness.

And then there is the whole billboard campaign scandal that happened back in May. Now, don't get me wrong, that billboard was ridiculous and definitely shouldn't have been there. It was worded wrong and was horrendously hurtful to a huge amount of people.

HOWEVER, the graffiti that people displayed in retaliation was equally hurtful to those who are slightly slimmer. For instance the picture I have put here, which describes the displayed body (which has a similar figure to mine) as 'not ok.' Not okay? My body is not ok?? Do you realise that suddenly, whoever wrote this/agrees with this are doing exactly the same as this billboard is doing to those who are larger. You are telling another human being that they are not good enough and need to change themselves to conform. And THAT is what is not ok!

This type of thing happens over and over again. In an effort to make slightly larger people feel better about themselves, sometimes the backlash against a slimmer person is horrendous. I have read in more than one place that a curvy woman, is a 'real' woman. So what am I then? What is the slim woman who has a limited bust? Are you in fact saying she is a man?

What it comes down to, is people shouldn't comment on others' appearance AT ALL. Whether they are slightly larger than average, or slightly slimmer this is how that person is. And this is what they have to live with on a day to day basis. There is no such thing as a perfect woman with a perfect body. Everyone is different and that is what makes the world great. Nobody should feel rubbish because of how they are or how they look. And basically, I think you should remember the rule that all parents tend to tell their children - if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.

Like what I say?
Follow me on Twitter https://twitter.com/CharlotteCoster
Follow me on Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/CharliCoster/
Follow me on Instagram http://instagram.com/walkingintothesun
Like me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theworldwetread

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

August Outfits


Throughout August I photographed what I wore every day for the entire month. Which turned out to be a really interesting exercise.

Knowing that a lot of people were going to see my outfits, (even when I was just lolling around at home), it made me put slightly more effort into trying to find unique outfits every day than I normally would. And this led me to examine my wardrobe extremely thoroughly to find interesting things to wear.

Out of curiosity I, incidentally, counted up my wardrobe right after I'd had a MAHOOSIVE clearout and this is roughly what I own now:

58 Dresses
45 Tops
32 Jumpers
17 Pairs of shoes/boots
15 pairs of jeans./trousers/leggings (7 of which were jeans. Which is interesting as I don't actually wear jeans very often)
10 skirts
11 cardigans
8 jackets/blazers
5 pairs of shorts
4 Coats
2 playsuits
1 pair of dungarees (they get their own category because they're awesome!!)
Total Items - 208

I really did cut down a huge amount, and I don't know how these stats are in relation to other people's (let me know yours because I would love to compare).

As you can tell, I basically live in dresses, and when I have my occasional down day, I tend to lounge around in big jumpers and leggings. It was interesting to see the themes across my wardrobe as well. I seem to be obsessed with stripes. So so many of my jumpers in particular have horizontal stripes. Lots of the dresses too. Either that or flowers. And there's a lot of lace as well.

My favourite August Outfits are displayed within this post but if you want to see the whole lot, head to my Twitter or Pinterest.

Like what I say?
Follow me on Twitter https://twitter.com/CharlotteCoster
Follow me on Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/CharliCoster/
Follow me on Instagram http://instagram.com/walkingintothesun
Like me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theworldwetread