Favourite Instagram Pics From July

I have not been happy with Instagram lately, as most people probably are. It used to be nice to look through the pictures of all the accounts I follow and I could be immersed in it for ages! Now I see the same few accounts over and over, and mostly it is pictures that I’ve already liked. It takes extra effort to go to the other accounts to check what they’ve been posting and I don’t usually have that kind of time! Many might say that I should then just turn on the notifications, however, I find it annoying that I should be checking those pictures when the app says so, instead of when I actually want to check them!

Sorry about the rant, I still enjoy looking through the pictures on Instagram and hope they could change it back! Now enjoy the pics I have been enjoying in July.

 

What Instagram pictures have you liked last month?

With love,

Lii

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017

I’ve been really good with reading this year and already finished my 24 book goal that I had set for myself for this year. If you missed the review on the first 12 you can read it here. Here’s to fishing I will manage to write a third one before the end of this year as well!

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

The Good Girls RevoltLynn Povich

A story about how the women of the Newsweek sued their bosses, because of the discrimination towards women in pay and title. The book observes the lawsuit and what led to it in the 70’s, in addition to what are the women’s rights and conditions at the newspaper now.  The book is not told in a story telling way but is rather a report of the events. However, it is very interesting to read about what the conditions were then and now and to acknowledge how long it still is to be truly equal, even though the book only considers journalism. I really enjoyed it, although felt spurts of anger every now and again. 4/5

An Artist of the Floating WorldKazuo Ishiguro

This is a second book I read by Kazuo Ishiguro and I instantly recognised his style. The writing flowed smoothly and it was enjoyable to read. I am not usually interested in reading when travelling, especially when flying, but this book didn’t leave my hands when I was travelling. However, as in his other book, the main character in this book as well was oblivious of what was going on around him and was wondering it through out the book. Unlike the other book, in this one what the main character was oblivious about wasn’t really explained and I felt the books ending was abrupt and confusing, which is a shame as I enjoyed reading it.

The story itself is about a Japanese old man who used to be an artist before and during the Japanese revolution and the second world war. At his older age, he wonders how Japan has changed since the war. How women are more outspoken, people don’t respect quite the same values and Japan isn’t the glorious country it once was. It was interesting learning about the Japanese history from this point of view, but the ending kind of ruined it for me. 3/5

A Girl In ExileIsmail Kadare

I chose to read this book because it was easy to carry with me on a flight, but the impulse buy wasn’t quite worth it. The story is about a famous author in an eastern European country where after a revolution the Royals have been shunned from the public eye and locked/controlled in small towns from where they are not allowed to leave. A young royal girl is in love with the author and when she dies he gets entwined into the investigation. This all sounds more fascinating than it is. Most of the book tells of what is going in the author’s head and his struggles with the situation. 2/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

CosmopolisDon DeLillo

Is a story about a rich business owner who drives on his limousine through a day, has sex with multiple people and is paranoid for his life. He gets into weird situations and seems to have lost his interest in life. Ir is an odd story and I found it really hard to relate tot eh protagonist. For being such a thin book it was surprisingly hard to read. 2/5

Big MagicElizabeth Gilbert

I read this book because I was interested of the praise it’s gained in the social media. I really liked Gilbert’s ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ and thought I might like this one as well. I was right. This one is more of a self-help book than a novel, but it is full of the positivity with which Gilbert wrote ‘Eat, Pray, Love’. The book was full of positive affirmations and offered ways of thinking about creativity which lets creativity flow and reduces the pressure from it all. Truly uplifting and motivating book! 4/5

Cabaret of PlantsRichard Mabey

I got this book as a birthday present and read it through a couple of months before bed time enjoying the world of plants. The book was fascinating with the history of discovery and research of plants accompanied by illustrations and beautiful photography. It was too exciting so that I got good nights sleep, but exciting enough that I wanted to reach for it every night before bed. The book was very well written. I don’t really know much about plants and I wanted to keep reading this beautiful book. I loved to learn about the rare plants, the oldest trees and the plant weirdoes. I would definitely recommend reading this one! 4/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

The Orphan Master’s SonAdam Johnson

Not a book for the light hearted. Although it was easy to read due to the easy flow of the writing, it tells a story about North-Korea and the most horrible things the people are faced with there from torture to slavery. The story is about a man who grew up as an orphan and how he went through his life through a series of obstacles that should’ve left him dead, but somehow he lived. I thought the book was very interesting, but it left me shaken. The book was well researched and believable, although not relatable and felt more of a dystopian novel. 4/5

A Box Of Stars Beneath the Bed

This was another book that I was reading before going to sleep. It is a perfect for it with so many different and beautiful short stories written by different authors. Even if you don’t like all of the stories there will be several that will stay with you! 4/5

I Am MalalaMalala Yousafzai

I’ve already written about this book a couple of times when being inspired by tit. It is an autobiography by Malala Yousafzai who grew up in Pakistan, fought for girls right for education and got shot by the Taliban. It was interesting to read about her growing up in a Muslim country where people just want to live in peace but are int eh mids of Talibanisation. Really open your eyes to what Muslim is about and how terrorism affects us all. 4/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

The Architect’s ApprenticeElif Shafak

A story is about a young boy’s (Jahan) growth into manhood as an elephant mahout and an architects apprentice in Istanbul. Strange, unexplainable things are happening to Jahan and their building sites, whilst Istanbul’s population keeps growing and it is hit with one after another problem. The book is about Istanbul, love, bureaucracy, friendship with people and animals and perseverance.

I found this book a bit tough to read and felt that many parts of the book didn’t make sense. There were many story buildings which just unravelled or dropped out without explanation. In addition, the protagonist, Jahan, seemed to be very lucky through out the book that made it quite unrelatable. It was still interesting, but not the best book in the world. 2/5

The Heart Goes LastMargaret Atwood

A second book I’ve read by Atwood. In this book, compared to Handmaid’s Tale there was less remembering old times and the story builds on a straight timeline. It was about a couple who live in the USA during a time when 50% of the population is unemployed. A businessman comes up with a solution for the anarchy and offers people a twin city to live in. One month they live in beautiful houses, having jobs and security, and the second month they live in prison. It is a self-sustaining city and everything looks perfect. But it feels as though something else is brewing behind the closed doors. Although the book sounds like another dystopian story, the dystopia is within the love relationships, which it follows much more intently.

The book was easy to read and interesting, but not quite as good as Handmaid’s tale. 3/5

InfernoDante Alighieri

The first book from the Divine Comedy trilogy by Dante. I was afraid to start the book if it was too hard to read, but it wasn’t really. It is written as though it is one continues song and to make sense of what is happening you do need to concentrate on it. The harder part is the people discussed in the book who are from the 1700’s or before from history and other tales that the story slightly builds on. There is an accompanying explanation for each canto (chapter) at the end of the book though.

The story is about a man who is taken on a tour through the different levels of hell. It is interesting to read what was considered the worst sin at that time! 3/5

The 2nd 12 Books of 2017 - byLiiL

What have you been reading lately? Can you recommend any books for me?

With love,

Lii

Favourite Instagram Pics From June

When I started compiling these pics I thought at first how different they were compared to May, however, it seems they aren’t that different. There are still a lot of plants, although the colouring is leaning more towards pastel, rather than bright pink. I have few illustration here still, but not quite as many. This month I’ve definitely concentrated more on the positive message and sustainability, in addition to some decor dreams and office inspiration. I hope you are visually as inspired as I am!

What were your favourite pics in June? Let me know in the comment box below!

With love,

Lii

Inspiration of the Month – The Sustainable Futures Report Podcast

As I want to keep up with all the sustainability news and learn more about the topic I decided to find some podcasts that I could listen in addition to all the reading. I subscribed to few podcasts and although there were some which were good and provided me with new information none inspired me as much as ‘The Sustainable Futures Report’ done by Anthony Day. I’d never heard about him before and was surprised how much I liked his efficient reporting with on point puns where appropriate. He discusses sustainability issues and news from around the globe.

Inspiration of the Month - The Sustainable Futures Report - byLiiL

My favourites so far have been Promises Promises where he reviews the sustainable take and promises of the UK political parties before the last general election and Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Trump where he reviews the effectiveness of the USA withdrawing from the Paris Agreement. They were very informative, imagine how much time it would have gone for all of us to research it on our own, and very funny!

You can find the podcast here, in addition, there is a blog where you can read all the same information as on the podcast but with links to the sources, Anthony Day’s website (he is a sustainability coach, how cool!), and his Twitter! I am so excited to listen to his podcast and be inspired, I hope you are as well!

Picture is from his website.

 

Have you heard of Anthony Day or the Sustainable Futures Report before?

With love,

Lii

Inspiration of the Month – Fight and Thirst for Education

This is not the first time that I am writing about education or have an educational topic as something that inspires my month, and will probably not be the last. This blog is not about education, rather about sustainability, but I think all of it is connected and that is what I am writing about now.

Inspiration of the Month - Fight and Thirst for Education - byLiiL

I lately got inspired by a book that I read a couple weeks ago called “I Am Malala”. I am sure all of you know who Malala is, and if you don’t, it is a high time for you to google it. In short, this book is Malala’s autobiography about her thirst for education and the fight she and her father fought for the education, especially for girls in her country, Pakistan. Alongside the fight I learned about the culture of Pakistan, about how terrorism and ignorance have affected the country and the lives of the common people there, how easily people who do not know any better it is to rile up with propaganda, about corruption and politics and what the people who are driven out of their country really want. Yes, this book talked about all of this, and it is why I will be mentioning it in my happy favourites this week, but what inspired me most was the thirst and fight for education whilst under a threat of death!

Inspiration of the Month - Fight and Thirst for Education - byLiiL

I know from my own experience, and I am sure many of you can identify with the lack of interest in education that we have in the western countries. As a preschool girl, I was eager to go to school, it was a milestone in my life, but it didn’t take long when the lack of motivation hit and my mother had to use different tactics to keep me motivated. I knew that school was something I should be excelling in for my future, but I didn’t know why. I was often questioning why something was important for us to learn and at no point was I thankful that I was able to go to school. I didn’t know that women had to fight heard for girls to be educated and I didn’t know that so many other children were not able to go to school for many different reasons.

Inspiration of the Month - Fight and Thirst for Education - byLiiL

The lack of motivation for education saddens me, especially when learning how Malala with her friends went to school knowing that if they were caught by the wrong people they might be killed. Imagine if pupils in the western culture would have the same motivation for education! I was most impressed with Malala’s father, who against their cultural norm behaved towards his daughter in an equal manner as to his sons. He recognised the importance of education for his daughter and all the girls in Pakistan and often did talks to promote girls education. He got death threats and he didn’t stop, because he saw how ignorance was feeding fear and inequality in his country and he knew that by educating all the children they would have the knowledge to make it better.

Inspiration of the Month - Fight and Thirst for Education - byLiiL

Education is power, and I don’t only mean education as school, but any education whether it is school, learning from elders, self-learning from the Internet and books, documentaries, on the job. We are fortunate in this modern world for all the opportunities that we have for learning and I hope we don’t take it for granted. There were many people who fought for the right of our education and there are still many who fight for their right to education! When it comes to sustainability, I believe education is important and although schools and Universities are slowly adapting to this change with an offer of sustainability courses, it is not enough. The more people know about sustainability the more they can do and work towards it. At the moment most of us are confused about what is contributing to sustainability and what is contributing towards climate warming. We are told using plastic is bad, wearing fur is horrible and to use less water, but how many know why.

 

What inspires you this month?

With love,

Lii

Happy Favourites of the Week – Sweet and Sweaty Treats

Homemade lemonade – The ultimate summer drink, which I can’t stop drinking. The store bought versions are too sweet and not quite zingy enough for me, so we made our own and it’s delicious!

Spiders are back – I remember around a year ago writing in my happy favourites about spiders being back which meant spring and summer times. And now they are back again. One of them seems to enjoy my kitchen window and has spent two days on it going up and down the window. I don’t usually really enjoy spiders presence, but it seems cheerful of the summer time coming, so I am as well.

Happy Favourites of the Week - Sweet and Sweaty Treats - byLiiL

OneSqin is getting more ahead – There is an article by Ethical Unicorn that wrote about OneSqin as well. If you haven’t seen my post about them, you can read it here. In short, OneSqin is a company that sells organic tampons and creams and the profits go to help educate girls. They are on Kickstarter now and I really hope they will be able to make it!

Salted Caramel Ice Cream – It’s my favourite at the moment and I could eat a pack of this a day and stay happy!

Happy Favourites of the Week - Sweet and Sweaty Treats - byLiiL

Visiting friends – I’ve had several friends visiting in Glasgow the past couple of weeks and it’s been a pleasure to spend time with them again! To our luck, we had great weather so we spend it on a terrace drinking cocktails and eating, chatting and enjoying the sun. Thankfully, getting burned only a little bit!

Super Sweaty Yoga class – The weather did its trick and we were sweaty before we started the power vinyasa. One and a half hour of movements where your mind and body is fighting back due to the heat and by the end of it the laughs and smiles that you got through the class. The rest of the day felt really elevating!

The Pink Evenings – I absolutely love watching the sky, which can be noticeable from my Instagram pics, and especially lately with the pink skies that have decorated every evening with the most beautiful colour dance on the horizon. I could stare at it for hours! Definitely the best thing about living high on a hill on the top floor! As you can see all the pictures are literally from the same spot because it is the best place to take pictures of the pink evening sky. I really need to find another one as well!

Making My Own Scent – Since I started buying oils I’ve really been into making my own scent by mixing them. I am not too good at it yet, mostly I can’t make the scent stay for the whole day, so I still need to do more experiments and read on the topic, but I’ve managed to make a lovely scent that I like to wear (and build up) throughout the day! Making my own scent I don’t have to buy perfumes from the store, most of which are not cruelty-free! And I get to experiment and find the scents that I love, which is SO fun!

Happy Favourites of the Week - Sweet and Sweaty Treats - byLiiL

 

How was your week? Let me know in the comment box below!

With love,

Lii