Saturday, 27 February 2016

An Old Book | The Rescue by Nicholas Sparks

I have posted a couple of posts in this "An Old Book" series but definitely need to be contributing to it more often. This series aims to make sure I'm talking about books I read before I started my blog because so many books I read over three years ago are still a massive part of my heart. Today I want to talk about The Rescue by Nicholas Sparks.

The Rescue is about Denise, her son and Taylor the volunteer fireman. Despite being fearless when it comes to tackling fires and saving peoples' lives, it's falling in love that Taylor finds terrifying. He just won't do it. So when he finds Denise unconscious after she skids her car off of the road, he doesn't think twice to save her life. Their bond takes place easily but Taylor can't jump into Denise's open arms.

I think I read this book in a summer holiday a few years ago and, as usual, Nicholas Sparks had me turning each page quicker than the last. Due to Taylor being a fireman there is that spectacular dash of Sparks Tension he builds up so wonderfully. Denise often worries for Taylor and we do too. His lack of commitment occasionally irritated me because I so longed for their relationship to become as sweet as I knew it could be. I adored Taylor for his easy way with Kyle and for how much he obviously respected and admired Denise.

Denise's son, Kyle, has a rare impediment that restricts his language acquisition. He is sweet and is Denise's world. She moves in order to focus on helping him and it's beautiful to read about their relationship- especially when Taylor is added to it all and a lovely team is made. Denise is very intelligent and we adore her for so many reasons. One being how concerned she is about Taylor's struggle with his past. We want him to open up so he can move on and we spend the novel hoping he will for the sake of his and Denise's relationship.

This novel is very gripping and we ache for everything to turn out for the better. We want Taylor to forgive himself and for there to be the lovely happy ending we're never sure of when it comes to a Nicholas Sparks novel.

I rate this novel 4.5/5!

A Past & A Future,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Friday, 26 February 2016

Always Appreciate

A couple of weeks ago my best friend and I went to visit his nan. She's an awesome woman and he is definitely very lucky to have her. We sat with cake and played games and it was lovely to see their relationship. He visits her every now and then and he loves seeing her. He notes every time that he needs to stop using "life" as an excuse and needs to see her more often. It's not a hassle or a burden because he enjoys it, and even if it was he knows she's done so much for him, it would be wrong not to. Upon thinking about the lovely afternoon today, it got me thinking about the importance of appreciating and how much I value that quality, and how much I so aspire to always appreciate.

Last week I sent my mother some flowers because I appreciate her so much! She's not only the person who has taught me such lovely values, she's someone I'm likely to go to if I have an issue. And she will always try to help me as much as possible! We have a lovely time together and she puts up with my silliness. That's a mum that deserves appreciation! My mum has mothered me for twenty years now. And she has shown me a million times that I am appreciated by her. Just last week she bought me my favourite biscuits... just because! We're busy people but I hope I remember to show her she's appreciated as much as she does me!

I think making time - although it's naturally not always possible - is such a good way to show appreciation. It can be so simple, even if it's calling someone or arranging something for a few weeks' time. It all counts. It shows thought and wanting to put effort in. Even telling someone, "Man, I'm sorry we don't see each other as much as we should" is sufficient. I don't expect to take anyone's time away from them, but I know those who care always keep in touch when they can!

Sometimes I catch myself thinking, how frustrating is it that I really put effort into that and it wasn't appreciated?! However, we need to remember that that isn't the end of that story! We put effort into that and so we should appreciate that we did that! Or we may have put a lot of effort into helping someone and it may have seemed like it was for nothing... but it never is! We need to remember that it's awesome that we are that type of person. And we need to remember if we aren't being all that appreciated, sometimes the answer is to leave that thing to one side or to move on from someone.

Sometimes we might need reminding to always appreciate and that's okay- as long as we remember, and keep trying to! I want to always appreciate. Always, always. And always remember to appreciate yourself!

Thought & Appreciation,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

"The World Was Hers for the Reading" | Book Haul

Recently I haven't had the time to sit down with a book but the last couple of weeks have been easier on me in terms of making this time and I can feel my excitement for opening my book and carrying on after that! I lovely the feeling of feeling passionate about the thought or the doing of reading. I've recently acquired a few books and my excitement is only strengthened by this. So here is a haul to celebrate this massive-grin-happiness.

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
I remember seeing this pretty-looking book in Waterstones last year and I never forgot about it. And I'm finally here on the blog chit-chatting about it. According to the blurb it is about Theodore Finch who is always thinking of ways how to kill himself however something good stops him whenever he tries. Violet Markey, however, is for ever looking forward to the future after a tragic family loss and All the Bright Places shows what happens when the two meet.

How to Read a Novelist: Conversations with Writers by John Freeman
I was browsing in Waterstones, not particularly looking for anything. These are my favourite types of trips to bookstores because you find so many hidden treasures- this is the one that caught my eye. In this book John Freeman shares a few things he has learnt from a lot of different writers. I am currently reading this book and I'm absolutely adoring it- it's not like anything I've read before.

Etta and Otto and Russell and James by Emma Hooper

Man, I've wanted to read this book for for ever and I finally have it in front of me! Etta is a schoolteacher and two boys fell in love with her. This story tells us of "love and joy, pain and passion, memory and forgetting." As soon as spring hits I'm picking up this book because I just think it's that kind of "new opportunities, spring clean" kind of novel with a lot of good lessons to be taught.

Extraordinary Means by Robyn Schneider
Lane is not enjoying his time at a boarding school for sick teenagers. However, upon meeting some new friends, he sees a new side of life. This novel seems to ooze meaning, fun, adventure, happiness but also sadness. I picked this up after briefly looking at it a few months ago and I'm super excited to see what exactly this book is about.
What books have you got recently? Are there any you really want?

Spines & Covers,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Turning a Page for the First Time

I woke up this morning, excited to know that today is the day to start a new book. How exciting is that?! I get to read a new story with new characters and new thoughts... I just can't wait! It made me start thinking about reading books for the first time. Sometimes we assume a book is going to leave an awesome impact on us; sometimes we know half way through; sometimes, we shut the book and thing, "Well, wow." We feel awesome and honoured and happy to have experienced this book. But we can feel sad. It's finished. I wish it wasn't. Not because it wasn't perfectly finished- it was perfectly finished. We may read it again, but... We'll never read it again for the first time.

I've had this "after finishing a book" feeling so many times. For example, I closed The Fault In Our Stars by John Green and just thought, and I'll never get to read that for the first time again. It's happened before that point and it's happened since. All of my favourite books leave this feeling travelling around my body. I adore the feeling but it does instil a whole load of nostalgia. It's not even like I don't enjoy the nostalgia. I, in fact, think I do. I think back to before I read the first page of that book and how lucky I was "back then." I was about to experience something awesome.

And yes, I will always get this with these kinds of books. Yet, it's also a feeling we get throughout life. When I come off of holiday I think, "Wow, I was so lucky at the start of that holiday to have all of that ahead of me"; I have it when I've had an ace day; I have it when a period of my life is over. We want to do things over again. We want to go back. I guess it's why we do re-do certain things- because they were so great. We learn how precious things are and we treasure them.

Not all the time, though.

We need to close the book - whether that be literally or metaphorically - and note how awesome it was. Then we need to make sure we act upon it next time. Treat the next potentially awesome book with absolute care. If you're too tired to focus properly, put the book down! Don't let yourself feel rubbish while reading that wonderful book. Savour every word. Enjoy every character that makes this novel what it is. Face your life knowing that this day could be one you'll miss for ever. You can miss it but don't regret not being able to go back.

So, I have Extraordinary Means by Robyn Schneider in front of me. It's perfectly new and singing for me to read it: And even if it turns out not to be as awesome as I really think it's going to be, I'm going to face it with this excited feeling. I'm going to savour every page. Because it may just well be a book I "wish I could read for the first time again." And I will treasure it for this reason; I won't regret it.

Old & New Stories,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Friday, 19 February 2016

Using the Advantage of "The Outside"

This is not an original idea but it most certainly needs reinforcing; so, without further ado... Why is it nearly human nature to think one thing when we are looking upon someone else's situation, and yet give ourselves a much harder time when we are faced with a situation we would think different of if it was that "someone else"?

A friend will come to me with an issue maybe regarding university or work or a friend and I'll assure them of things that are totally right and totally things that will ease my friend's mind- because they should. I believe everything I'm saying and I'll be so glad to have helped. However this person may be giving themselves a hard time all the same. Because, like many I know, I do the same. I'll have my own issue and I'll put so much pressure on what's right and convince myself of some awful things. When, if I was my friend to myself, I'd understand the situation in a better and more honest light.

Although it's more of a drastic situation than I've been thinking of previously in this post, there was a situation in See Me by Nicholas Sparks where (SPOILERS. SPOILERS. BIG, BIG SPOILERS.), after someone (I won't name just in case you ignored SPOILERS SPOILERS PLEASE DON'T IGNORE THIS IF YOU HAVEN'T READ THE BOOK.) gets shot at Colin blames himself for various reasons. Everyone else knows it isn't his fault and they assure him of this, however he can't quite find it in him to believe it.

Now, we need to take our situations and put them to one side. We need to hear what other people say or what we know they would say and we need to apply all of this to when we are assessing a situation and ourselves. Of course I'm not saying that we need to be really nice to ourselves when we're in the wrong and that we don't need to act upon stuff, but we need to be so much kinder to ourselves. We need to save ourselves from the rain we can cause sometimes. We need the outside.

And, of course, there are terrible cases when someone or more than one people convince us of untrue and awful things. We would easily tell our friends or loved ones that they are totally in the wrong - or at least if they were right and putting it harshly, word it all much better - and so we need to be more caring with ourselves in these situations. If we look from the outside, we can see so much clearer!

Be a friend to yourself everyday!

Good Thoughts & Vibes,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

See Me - Nicholas Sparks

I have finally - finally - read See Me by Nicholas Sparks and as usual, my fangirl is, well, strong. I've fallen in love with another set of characters, despised some others, and fallen in love with love and, of course, Mr. Sparks's writing.

See Me is the love story of Maria and Colin. Maria is a lawyer; smart and hard-working. She doesn't realise that isn't all there is to her and yet Colin notices almost immediately. Colin is an ex-bar-fighter after getting into far too much trouble and realising his many, many errors. Trying to get himself back on track, he is now a student, working on keeping his anger at bay and staying fit and healthy. When their paths cross when Maria needs help and she is immediately terrified of the muscly man with the bruised face, they're soon off of each other's paths again, and yet they are not entirely off of each other's minds.

The relationship between Maria and Colin is so delicate and yet strong; wonderfully nervous and yet confident. The two fit like jigsaw pieces despite the jagged edges they believe they have themselves. Colin's quiet nature coupled with Maria's questioning makes the most charming duet who fall into each other's song with excited ease.

As a reader and a writer, I, of course, adore words and words and the power of not using words is central to this novel. It's one of my favourite aspects. An important aspect of Colin's character is that he is very honest and yet does not expand on opinions and such things unless asked to. All the while when he wants to because he wants his heart to be true, he will speak his heart and it's the most heart-warming thing to read.

See Me is a sweet tale, with an added sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seats value. Maria is getting stalked and she, her family and Colin want answers. It makes for a very haunting and thrilling read at times and it can go from being a beautifully lazy and lovely storyline to a very tense read. I love the mixture of it all.

I'm going to quickly address an issue I had and some questions on the tip of my tongue. This section is going to include spoilers so please do not read if you have not read this awesome novel! I was a little disappointed with Maria not stepping forward with sexual harassment claims against Ken when a lot of the women could have counted on her. I wanted to know a bit more about Maria's panic attacks at the end and how it was going with Colin's teaching dreams. And one issue I had with Colin's character was how he actually, at points, wanted to kill people. It made his recovery from his past seem far weaker and it made him, naturally, more unlikeable.

See Me is, though, so incredibly charming. It portrays an endearing love, family values, the importance of forgiving and moving on and a lot of loyalty.

I must rate this novel 5/5 because it is one of my favourite Nicholas Sparks couples and storylines- I really, really adore it!

Beaches & Photographs,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

P.S. I am currently at university and I left the cover of this (which is so, so beautiful) at home so the picture is of the actual book and what a gorgeous colour it is!

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

The Yellow Dress

Seb was always liked at school. He was known for being a nerd and he liked it that way. He was amusing because of it. And, it was correct. He was a nerd. Although he wasn't the best at every subject, he was consistent and he had a particular talent when it came to History lessons. School came and went, and so did college. Soon enough his parents were saying goodbye to him as they dropped him off with his posters and figurines at university.

With glasses perched on his nose and his fluffy hair all over the place he pushed open the kitchen door with butterflies swarming in his stomach. Soon enough he found himself nosedived into this new world, where he was still nerdy Seb and people adored him for it. He lived with five new best friends and he had the best time every day.

One of his new best friends was Jessie. Her room was next to his and yet they would hang out a couple of nights a week, watching films and playing video games. Three years flew by, and they lived together with their other friends in the two years that followed the first. And Jessie remained one of his best friends. Probably his actual best friend.

Seb would go home for Christmas, Easter and summer and feel completely refreshed and delighted to be at home with his closest friends. He would love seeing his family and waking up in his bed. But his heart was a little lost without Jessie. He noticed that pretty quickly into the first Christmas break since university began. By Easter he realised he really loved her.

And now it was the summer after his last year at university and he was back at home, working at a newspaper company in the hope to become a journalist. It was the middle of August and finally the day he and his university friends were meeting up for dinner and drinks. Seb arrived in London at about two o'clock in the afternoon. He checked into a B&B he had organised, showered and changed into skinny jeans, a long-sleeved shirt and pulled on his Converse.

He had missed his friends so much, he could feel his heart bursting at the thought of seeing them. The six of them had been arranging this for months and they were as excited as he was. He met Alan at the bar they all agreed on and they were chatting over a beer when he grinned, "Jessie's here!" Seb turned to see Jessie in the yellow dress he always adored, grinning at them both.

His heart was thrown back to the previous three years and all of their memories. He remembered when Jessie was homesick and so he bought all of the movies she would watch at home with her mum, bought her favourite ice cream and fizzy drink, and they watched them all until three in the morning. He remembered when he received a result he was unhappy with and Jessie fired jokes at him until he was almost on the floor laughing. He remembered their first attempt at running together, and the times that followed afterwards. He grinned at the memory of them crossing the finish line together at a local 10k running even. He laughed at the drinks they drunk after to celebrate.

"Seb! Alan!" she squealed and they both got up, Jessie throwing her arms around Seb. "I've missed you, dude!"

"I've missed you so much, J!"

Their other friends soon arrived and the night danced on in the best way ever and Seb's heart ached at the thought of them parting the next day after a day of sightseeing. But as the night was coming to a close and Mazie was too drunk and Phil and Sandy were tired, Seb remembered he must live in the moment. Phil and Sandy, who hooked up in their first year, got in a nearby taxi and Alan and Mazie jumped in too. It was only a four-seater and Jessie waved her hand, "We'll walk!"

"Are you sure?" Sandy asked.

Jessie looked at Seb and he grinned, "We're sure!"

They walked along the Thames and Seb breathed in how sociable London is. He took a glance at Jessie and he didn't regret it one bit. "We had a good time at uni, didn't we?"

"The best," Jessie agreed. "I miss it, you know."

"Oh, me too."

"Life moves on, though, of course."

"Of course." Seb smiled sadly and took a breath before he said the words he didn't know he could say, "But I haven't, J. Not from you."

Almost in harmony, the two of them stopped and Seb didn't know how to handle this. He waited for Jessie to let him know, like he always would "back in the day." She touched her yellow dress and Seb felt his heart shout that he loved her. He didn't, though. "Seb?"

The vulnerability of her voice made his heart ache all the more. "You know, J. Surely, you know."

They looked at each other then, and he realised that she really didn't know. "You're my best friend!"

"Well I know that, silly." She smiled but he could see that she was still unsure.

"But you're my best, best friend."

"Oh," Jessie's smile faded but there was something in her eyes. "Tell me more about it," she whispered.

Seb felt empowered all of a sudden. He felt his hand reach for hers and he knew if he didn't say it now, he never would. "I love you, Jessie Rose. I know you know that, but not like that. Like this. Like people fall in love with London. Like the stars love the sky and all of that kind of thing." Seb dared to look at Jessie and there were tears in her eyes and he was suddenly more confused than he had ever been. "I'm not good at this. 'This' probably shouldn't be a thing but I had to try."

Seb turned around but he wasn't sure why. "You are," he heard her say. He didn't understand so he didn't know what to do. "You are good at this."

Seb felt like hi-fiving himself but he still wasn't sure what was going on. "I love you too, silly." Seb used one foot to pivot around and one eyebrow to ask if she was sure. "You're my best, best friend, too." She giggled and he took a step forward and waited for her to move in and jump. And she did.

And they did.

For the rest of their lives.


A simple story, but I like it!

Films & Video Games,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

"What's the Point?"

Yesterday a friend (who has the kind of views that resemble mine- views in the way of the world, and politically too, which I know because we've often discussed topics that fall into these categories) and I were talking to another friend. We were talking to another friend who admitted his political views - or more accurately decisions when it came to voting aren't based on research and are likely to be influenced by his parents or just a lot of sprinkles of laziness in bothering to find out more (information he offered himself). These views of his family's or these decisions based on, well, not a lot, didn't match or resemble my other friend's or mine- which is totally okay of course (I say okay- they wouldn't be if they were awful and radical, naturally!). However, we did fight for our beliefs and the general belief that you totally need to vote and you totally need to research to see what political party or decision suits yourself the most!

And I totally believe in healthy debate or healthy discussion- even if I get fired up. I believe in lots of things and I'll stand up for them. However the friend with the "more different" views to mine (let's call them A) was kind of uninterested in a debate because quiet frankly he wasn't all that fussed. He didn't fight against our views and he didn't stand up for the ones he believes or stands by. We brought this up: If he's agreeing with us, what is his basis for his choices?

Now, before I go on, we were not violating any kind of personal choice and A is a perfectly lovely person and who, we noticed, agreed that we should push forward with changing the world with rights for all sexualities and for equality and all of this kind of awesome stuff. He agreed with our political comments. So we had a chat, because why not encourage someone who seems a little uninterested to throw themselves into current affairs and stand up for what they believe in?

I have been brought up to always be curious, to always find out more and to be interested. These qualities are things I respect myself for! And I always want to get better at being curious and interested and this is awesome too. A is awesome and has awesome views and a lovely heart, but something he did say, did not match with something I would say and mean... "What's the point?" he asked, more than once, when we were talking about voting and politics and our views.

One time he uttered these words was in relation to voting. "What is this point in voting then?" The point in voting is that this is our country, and we have the right to have a say in how it's run. We have a right to talk of our views (and we have a right to, of course, not talk about them), and we are being represented by whoever is elected in any vote or by any decision made by a vote, so I always want to make sure my voice is at least being counted, even if it isn't the outcome.

What's the point is that, this is our world. This is our life. These are our views. I believe in equality for all genders and people and sexualities. I believe in goodness and keeping others safe and exterminating racism and homophobia and these awful attitudes towards religion. And I will keep telling A this, because I can see it is getting somewhere. Because he has these same views, just a sense of apathy that I know he can beat! I will keep telling him to research, to vote, and I will keep pushing forward with my beliefs. Because I believe in things that are worth caring about. They are worth sharing. Fighting my corner is important, and I know that.

That's what's the point.

Cheese & Crackers,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Saturday, 13 February 2016

A Little Running Diary #6

As my blog very well knows, I adore running and I made this "A Little Running Diary" series so I can talk a little bit about it and have this hobby known more and more to my blog- seen as the whole thing is about me, lah-dee-dah! Today I wanted to give the blog a few tips when it comes to running. The tips are not conclusive  but are some of the ones I follow myself!

~ Drinking water is so crucial. It's equally important just in general, of course! Drinking water before and after runs keeps the body feeling great and prepared. I always take water with me and I'd recommend this to everyone too, because if you're feeling a bit rubbish or you need a sit down or something goes wrong, you've got safety in having the water with you! Water is so important to being healthy and yet so easy to forget, but if you get yourself into the routine, it's so much easier to remember!

~ Another tip that is useful anyway is to eat well! For many reasons eating your fruit and vegetables and having good meals means being kind to your body and helping it help you when you run! One thing I like to do if I'm running later on in the day is to have a bowl of pasta at lunch time. Of course it needs to settle and all that but it always gives me the right kind of boost! Porridge and a banana in the morning is always an ace way of having a slow release of energy too!

~ To let your body change and/or become healthier, we must change it up! If, say, you've accomplished running one mile (which is ace!) and two or three times a week you're always running mile, it means your body is adapting to this kind of distance and it is simply getting used to it which isn't great. Of course if you've just achieved this, go ahead and keep doing a mile for a while when your comfortable or if you're building your confidence or getting used to it or whatever scenario, but try not to keep it as your only aim. And make sure every now and then you go back to doing a mile! One way that is great to keep going back to distances is to make sure you're changing up your pace. If you fancy a slow run, go for one! The next time go ten seconds faster and then five the time after that!

~ Find particular ways to improve! You might have your own way to make sure you're improving or you might be able to follow a friend's advice or a program online! I know a couple of friends who got into running through the Couch to 5k and it kept and keeps them on track. It gave them achievable ways to keep going and meant progressing and feeling good about themselves! As of now I'm trying to improve my pace more and more. I'm going to start this by running one mile as quickly as I can (without making myself ill!), have a minute and a half walking and then do another mile as quickly as possible and then once again after that. In time I will cut down the break in between the miles and then I'll add more distance (so, one and a half miles and then two!) and I reckon it'll improve my pace so well! I also think it'll be fun and a routine that I can always do and adapt to my ability! I will also do runs without breaks so I can see my improvement and also nice and chilled runs so I'm not always pressuring myself!

~ Warming up and cooling down. It's a classic but so very true! We are pushing our bodies so we need to make sure we're being nice to them. Warm up before you run and cool down afterwards. It doesn't take much time and yet saves you a lot of grief afterwards! Have baths with muscle relaxing bits and bobs in them; get yourself lotions and sprays to help out; be safe with your body!

~ I know it might be easier said than done but don't let it become a chore! Find ways to enjoy yourself! Do other exercises and take friends and make sure you're seeing your improvement and not dwelling on anything bad about it so you're always motivated. Change up your route; challenge yourself sometimes; don't put pressure on yourself other times!

~ Two tips I think are so incredibly important are linked: give yourself a break and if you're injured or not feeling great, don't do it- you'll do more harm than good! You can't run every day of the week or run a ridiculous amount of times and miles each week. It's actually dangerous to your body! Let your body relax and recover or your muscles aren't having the chance to repair properly before the next time and this also means your body will get so used to it in a bad way! Of course we all have different limits but having a break is something we all need! And if you're injured (in a big or not so big way), don't run (or anything else!)! I've done it myself and it's so silly to risk it and I never do any more. If my legs hurt, I won't run. If I've got a cold, I'm not going to run- it has given me a cough more often than not.

So be careful (with your body and yourself- don't put yourself in danger on your route or with your body!) and enjoy!

I really enjoyed writing this post! Do you have any tips?

Trainers & Smiles,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

P.S. You can read the last instalment to this series HERE!

Friday, 12 February 2016

And That Was That!

Not too long ago I was on a train and was sat opposite a lady who ordered a tea from the trolley. She was on crutches and asked the man who served her whether there was a bin close by because she knew it would be a struggle to get off of the train with a cup in her hand. As well as having crutches to worry about, she also had a few bits and bobs to carry and it was pretty clear it would be a struggle anyway. I offered to take the cup off of hands when she'd finished with it. My offer wasn't extraordinary and it most certainly didn't impact my life at all- I sacrificed nothing. She knew that but she thanked me in the loveliest way all the same! She told me it was a lovely offer and I told her I was happy to help, because I was! So when she finished her tea and got up to leave at her stop, she handed me her cup, we wished each other well, and when I left I binned it- and that was that!

What I did, I am fully aware, was nothing incredible but it was an act of decentness- a decentness I know so many people have and one I really believe should be human nature. The world is so sad and so vile so often that we need these little acts of kindness to happen because who didn't win in this situation? My life was not affected and I made life that bit easier for this lady- like so many people would! I've always been taught to do things like this because I've always watched my dad step in or offer to step in if someone's struggling and also because of strangers I see being awesome. For example, I've often seen mothers on public transport with their baby in one arm and a pram in the other. From a distance I always see help being offered and it makes me so thankful for these little bits of kindness that help others muddle on through!

I can't think of anything off of the top of my head but a few times before I've so regretted not stepping in. It might be because I couldn't work out whether someone needed a little bit of help or whether I was just making a fool of myself- and you know what: Who cares?! You might just help someone out! And you're also helping yourself out by limiting the chances of feeling guilty afterwards.

Another time on the train I was sat at one of those tables with four seats around them and someone sat opposite me stood up and made their way down the aisle at a very busy stop. It was packed. As I looked back at the table I noticed there was a phone with no owner. I turned to the man sat next to where the lady that got up and checked that it wasn't his. He said, "No, it was that lady's." The lady that got up and was a while away by then. After being momentarily astonished at his lack of interest or attempt to help the situation, I got someone's attention in the very long traffic jam of people. I could see the lady at the other end of the train. I picked up the phone and said, "This is someone's who is down there; please pass it along and let everyone know!" I watched this phone easily go from one end of the train to the other and the lady shouted back the most grateful thanks. And that was that!

Can you imagine if that lady didn't realise before getting off the train and how that would have affected her day? It cost me nothing to pretty much do nothing to get that phone back to her. I'm no saint, but I restored a little bit of faith back into humanity after the uninterested man made me question humanity at his lack of effort. And we all need to make sure we're doing these little things to help each other out.

An Act & A Smile,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Friday, 5 February 2016

Working and Playing Hard

A couple of weeks ago a friend and I attended a Zumba class she often goes to; one her mum goes to twice a week. I was super excited because I'm trying to do all sorts of sports to shock my body and keep it guessing and I expected I would make a fool of myself but it would be fun all the same. And I was right!

To anyone who is considering a Zumba class or might do, it's so awesome! I know I'll go whenever I can! And once you get used to it and maybe even crack a routine, it feels awesome. It's incredibly fulfilling and Zumba can be such a high impact sport and it made me sweaty and worked-out and it was awesome. In the class I went to it was all about trying hard, reaching goals and having a laugh at the same time- I love that!

But that's not all I want to talk about. Everywhere I looked, there were ladies having fun! (And men could so be involved if they wanted to!). These ladies, I found out, returned every week; maybe more than once or even twice! They returned because they enjoyed this way of exercising. From any age between about 17 and above, ladies were doing awesomely; all of them better than me! They were working super hard and it was seriously ace.

Not only that but everyone enjoyed each other's company. No one took each others' mistakes seriously and everyone always ended up laughing good-naturedly at something. And then people would say how good another person was and it just made me so excited to be back again. I've never experienced such a lovely and supportive atmosphere.

It's not only a work-hard thing for so many of the ladies, but it's a social thing. Some go down with a close friend or a few friends and some come alone to see these new friends with the shared hobby. Everyone catches up and giggles. It's their chance to get away from work or have some "me time" and ignore their partners and whatnot! It's a chance for these ladies to let their hair down and see their friends and I bloomin' loved being a part of it.

I think my point is that we should use our lives to find things or a thing that allow(s) us to work hard and see our friends and relax and enjoy something that makes us feel good!

Work Hard & Play Hard,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

3 Reasons to Smile at Your Blog

Tonight I've been sat here wondering what to blog about. Even though I have a big plan ready for February, tonight just wasn't the night for any of those posts- and that's okay! Sometimes our ideas need more inspiration or we just aren't feeling them and it's, for me anyway, not set in stone most of the time what I "have" to blog about- I mean it never is. I couldn't think of anything to blog about and so I went back to 2013 The Girl in the Moonlight to go back to basics. I ended up looking through my blog posts from the last couple of years and it made me think of a few reasons why we should sit back and relax when we're getting writer's block or we're lacking inspiration or we're nervous for some reason or another... Because blogging doesn't have to be stressful! We definitely have loads of reasons to smile!

1. We all started this hobby for a positive reason!

I started this blog because I wanted to no longer just have this hobby of writing that I loved, but to use it! I used all of the passion I had (and have) for writing and I channelled it into this little space on the internet. That's awesome! We need to remember how cool it is to take one thing and put it out there and let our words be heard. For me, it felt kind of brave and I still believe that. It's a part of me I admire myself for! I took a leap because I wanted to make myself happy in this way!

2. We are hard workers!

I put a lot into this blog, even when I think I'm letting it down. I work hard for myself and that's ace! I don't get paid or anything like that and so that means I'm doing this blogging thing for me and my blog. I can smile at my blog and feel positive about it because every time I log in, I'm doing that, once again I shall repeat, for me and my blog. That's so cool!

3. The results!

One of my favourite feelings is logging out of my blog and seeing it signed out in front of me. I think, that's what my blog looks like to everyone but me. No one else sees backstage. When I complete a month's worth of blogging and sit and think, "Hey, look at me!" And one of the best part of The Results Stage is thinking, "You know what; I like what I'm writing... I might even love it!" It has to be one of the best things about blogging!

Whether you write it or say it or think it, give your blog some love- seen as it is the month of lurrrrve and all! We do this blogging thing - whether we've been doing it for a little while or a long, long while - and we deserve to pat ourselves on the back!

Smiles & Hugs,

The Girl in the Moonlight.

Monday, 1 February 2016

Aim: To Listen to all Cheesy Music

So it’s the first of February and I risk sounding a little cliché but: Where is this year going already? A month of 2016 has already flown past and I find myself falling into that embarrassing trap where we think time is going “quickly”; you know, life is too short. Life is, however, the longest thing any of us do. It might seem like time is going quickly, but, as obvious as it sounds, we can change our hair or lose friendships or change jobs but the one consistent thing throughout it all, is life. However for a million and one reasons life does seem to run past us over and over again and therefore, if we're going to bleat on about life being too short and going too quickly, let's at least consider a few things.

"Life is too short" to not have goals and aims- and when we're lacking in them, life is too short to not find new hobbies or new thoughts to inspire new aims. I feel amazing when I achieve a goal and so why wouldn't I do this as often as possible? In contrast to this, life is too short to not relax when we need to; we must recuperate and respect our bodies with all of the good, healthy things.

People. Good people- keep 'em! Bad people- stay away from them. We need people who deserve our positive vibes and we need people who can give us theirs as well. Life's too short to be horrible to people. It's too short not to forgive, but it's too short to always forgive. Life's too short not to give to others; it's too short to not give to ourselves.

Life is too short not to learn and cherish and love and give and hold. It's too short not to say what's on our minds (without malice), and it's too short to not let people know how we're feeling. Words can do a lot in this world and so can a million other devices- use them.

And for goodness' sake, life is too short to avoid music you love because it's lame or it's cheesy or if you're going to listen to it, it must be named a guilty pleasure. I won't spend my life avoiding music that has this label attached to it or a label I've attached to it- if I like it, I like it! And so I bloomin' well will dance around to it whilst singing at the top of my lungs!

These were just a few life-is-too-short-esque ideas that came to my mind. What do you think?

Sweet Berries & Lemonade,

The Girl in the Moonlight.
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