Current Favourites

Seeing as I missed writing a May Favourites, I thought I would write a round up of things I have been loving through May & June.

Moments

  • Traveling in the USA was one of the best experiences I have ever had! Being reunited with my boyfriend & exploring new places with him was super fun. You can read about all our adventures on the blog:
  • The weather! If you have been living in England during June you will know that something phenomenal has happened. It has been sunny & hot! Being able to sit in the garden with a smoothie and read a magazine in England is a real treat and I truly think the country gets a little more beautiful when the sun comes out. Keep up the good work England.

 

Mental Health

  • CALM book – you may have already heard of the CALM app and this book is made by the creators of it. It is filled with meditation techniques, journal inspo, travel tips & everything else you could ever want or need to remain calm during anxiety provoking situations.
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own photo 

Not only that, the book is also laid out beautifully *insert a thousand heart eye emojis*

Beauty

  • Rosehip oil – this stuff is like liquid gold! I recently got a bottle of Balm Balm rosehip oil in my LoveLula box (a vegan/cruelty free/organic beauty subscription box – read about it here). I had heard Ella Grace Denton rave about it and how it helped clear up her skin, so I was keen to test it out. My skin has thanked me so much since using this before I go to bed. I was dubious that an oil could help clear up my spots but my skin is as smooth as a baby’s bottom now! Definitely one to try out as you have the added bonus of knowing it’s a natural oil & not full of gross chemicals!

 

Entertainment

  • A lot of vloggers are taking part in June Vlogs or Vlune where you vlog every day in June – pretty self explanatory really! My favourite has to be Sunbeamsjess which you can watch here. I really enjoy her style of vlogging, how she edits and just find her a really cool person to watch. I definitely recommend checking out Vlune if you are new to daily vlogging (watching or making).
  • Love Island – I promised myself I wasn’t going to get hooked on any more crappy TV but here I am putting this on my list. It’s so awful it’s good. p.s. anyone else angry that Zara was stripped of her title?!
  • Orange is the New Black – my boyfriend & I are often late to the party when it comes to the most watched shows and OITNB is no different. We started watching it last week & are very much enjoying it. I won’t recommend it you as I’m sure everyone & their mothers have already seen it!

Other 

  • This month I was given the opportunity to work with a brand called Coconut Lane. They sell stationery, homeware, phone accessories, jewellery and more and all of their products are gorgeous! I bought a motivating wall print, a gorgeous notebook & the dreamiest of rings.

If you would like a 20% discount use the code completelyrambling20 at the checkout 

 

Social Media

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HOPE

The other day I was thinking about my ‘mental health journey’ and I began to realise how much has changed since I was diagnosed in October last year.

I just looked back at some photos from that time and I was going to add one in here but just seeing it made my cry so I think I’ll keep those private for now. However, what I will say about them is that I look awful. I remember when these photos were taken – I hadn’t eaten properly in days, I had cried so much I had made myself sick and I had had some pretty dark thoughts. I said at the time that I didn’t feel like me, Sophie, I felt like this completely other human being. I didn’t feel in control of my own mind and it was absolutely terrifying.

Over the next few months of being home, I saw my friends, I went on medication, I started an internship, I began to eat properly and I probably had about 5 panic attacks in all. FIVE! Compared to having 2-3 a day this was an incredible improvement.

I wasn’t completely me again but I was getting there. I started my Stopping the Stigma mini-series which you can read here and I started vlogging (channel link here) and I began to see that I wasn’t alone. Being able to talk freely about my experiences on this blog and with people I connected with through it has honestly saved me from a dark place I thought I would never escape.

Flash forward 6 months and here are some of the big things I have achieved that I had once thought my mental illness would never let me:

  • Working in London – my anxiety would send this huge big WARNING whenever I stepped on public transport & having a long commute on trains and tubes would have been impossible. But I did it.
  • Driving long distances – I used to be too scared to drive more than half an hour in my car. This year I have taken up to 3 1/2 hour trips which I thought was never going to happen. But I did it.
  • Going out with my friends – this used to end up with me crying  uncontrollably, ruining the night for everyone and hating myself the next day. This one took a little longer to accomplish but I recently went out, had a great time, didn’t drink too much and ended up being the one to console a crying friend. I didn’t know I could do this. But I did it.
  • Going to America – after spiraling during my time studying in America the thought of traveling there again filled me with dread. I was even supposed to go and see my boyfriend at one point but got into such a state when I booked the flight that I cancelled it. I was even deemed, unfit to fly by a doctor. Look at me now – I just came back from three weeks in the US, going to unfamiliar places, navigating unfamiliar subways and having an absolute blast. With only one panic attack. I never dreamed I would go back. But I did it.

The long and short of it is – IT CAN AND DOES GET BETTER. Don’t feel disheartened if you’re not there yet – it’s a journey & we all believe in you.

I’m sending all of my love & good vibes to you all out there & you know where to find me if you need to talk.

Huge shout out to the friends & family & internet people who have given me nothing but love & support. You’re all amazing.

Social Media
twitter: sophrambling // instagram: completelyrambling // tumblr: completely-rambling.tumblr.com // email: completelyrambling@gmail.com // youtube

you can also find me at johnsroadtovolunteering.com as part of the volunteering blogging team

My Favourite Magazines

Recently, I had 5 hours to kill in JFK airport…it was about as fun as it sounds. However, I had one saving grace – the newsagents. I used to love getting Mizz and Go Girl magazines when I was little but my interest in magazines has dwindled in the last few years. However, after watching Estee Lalonde’s video I felt inspired to have a look into what is on offer nowadays. So here is my definitive list of  what magazines I have been reading and loving.

FLOW Magazine

This magazine is full of inspiring women, articles on a broad range of topics including mindfulness & creativity AND every issue comes with paper you can use  for crafty ventures. The most recent issue I picked up had beautiful gift tags and a how to typography book.

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source: @flow_magazine instagram

Not only is this magazine filled with interesting articles, it is also filled with beautiful illustrations and photographs. If you enjoy scrolling through Instagram you’ll enjoy this magazine and if you love women who talk about creativity and positivity you will DEFINITELY enjoy this magazine.

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source: @flow_magazine instagram

The Economist

If you are interested in current affairs, politics and world news or you are looking to educate yourself on such topics, this is the magazine for you.

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source: @theeconomist instagram

Whilst it is not full of pretty pictures the articles are interesting and in many cases, eye opening. For instance, I had no idea that in some countries they are forcing women into taking virginity tests!

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source: @theeconomist instagram

I urge you to read this if you want to be better informed about the things going on around you. I was definitely more ignorant than I would like to admit and it has been great to expand my knowledge on current affairs.

National Geographic: Traveler

It is safe to say that I have caught the travel bug and am itching to go on my next adventure. This magazine is filled with tips for traveling, interviews with serial travelers and information about places around the world.

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source: intelligenttravel.nationalgeographic.com

Just be warned that once you open this magazine, your list of ‘places I want to go’ will dramatically increase!

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source: @natgeotravel instagram

What magazines do you love?

Social Media

my new vlog about our American Adventure is here

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email: completelyrambling@gmail.com 

Portland has my heart

I will admit that I hadn’t thought about visiting Maine until I saw Ingrid Nilsen’s snapchat of her holiday there which showed donuts, coffee and cute shops galore. I did no other research before booking our stay there and I have zero regrets because those snapchats perfectly encapsulate what Portland is about. It is the ultimate place to go if you are into organic food, quirky shops and places with a bit of a hipster vibe.

Day 1 

On our first day we had a little wander around the town – I spied so many shops I wanted to go in to but we had agreed to not go into everything on one day as it is a slightly smaller city compared to the other three we stayed in.

Instead, we hopped onto the ferry to Peaks Island and had a lovely little hour discovering all of its secret beaches & picking out the houses we would retire in. The island is worth a visit if the weather is good and you fancy having a little wander or a bike ride. However, it is fairly small and is generally where people go to retire so there isn’t a great deal happening. If you’re looking for some peace & quiet though, it is perfect!

During our walk around town we stumbled across a music venue called One Longfellow Square and spontaneously decided to buy tickets for a gig that evening. We ended up watching a very intimate little gig with Suitcase Junket, a one man band with some insane talent. He plays a guitar he found in a dumpster, creates crazy sounds with his mouth and has percussion instruments made out of various random objects such as a cook pot and a shoe. We really did find a little gem by taking a punt on something we thought sounded cool and it was totally worth it. The atmosphere was great with everyone singing along and Matt (Suitcase Junket’s real name) telling us lots of funny anecdotes in between songs.

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Day 2 

Originally we were supposed to go whale watching on this day but the company we booked with cancelled it due to bad weather offshore. We were gutted but decided not to waste the day and instead walk the 5 miles to the lighthouse in South Portland. Obviously, you can drive or get public transport there but we fancied getting a little exercise. We walked through gorgeous suburbs and even though it took a while we felt a sense of achievement when we reached the park where the lighthouse is. Unfortunately, we then saw that the lighthouse was covered in scaffolding so we couldn’t get a classic Portland postcard picture! Despite the long walk and disappointing lighthouse situation we did have a lovely time lying on the grass and watching the waves.

Day 3 

We explored more of the Old Port and I totally fell in love with all of the shops!  I recommend Holy Donut – they make their all donuts from scratch and have the most amazing flavours like Dark Chocolate Sea Salt! Next door to them is B.Good which is a vegetarian fast food restaurant. I got a quinoa bowl full of deliciousness for a very low price in comparison to others I had seen in the US. It really is true how cheap burgers etc are in comparison to a healthy option.

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If you are into thrift stores or shops with lots of random little things, Portland is the place for you. I could have spent a LOT of money but was conscious of how little space I had in backpack so restrained myself (with a lot of difficulty).

Our air BNB was very close to the East Promenade and we had heard a lot about paddle boarding there. Unfortunately, a lot of these activities are closed until after Memorial Day which is when ‘the season’ starts. This same rule is applied to the Portland Observatory which was so close to our condo but was closed! So if you are headed to Portland after Memorial Day please go and see/do these things and let me know if they are good!

Instead of paddle boarding we spent some time sitting on the beach reflecting on our adventures and the academic year that is now behind us. We have both been on a mammoth journey in the past 10 months but I’ll save talking about that for another blog post.

Portland has definitely claimed a soft spot in my heart and I can see myself going back there someday. 

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