30 Before 30

Today I turned 26! I’m now officially closer to 30 than 20.

On my 19th birthday, a relative told me they were turning 30 soon and I laughed at how old they were. I couldn’t even imagine being 30, it seemed so old.

But I’ve come to realise that getting older isn’t a bad thing. It means you got to experience new things and life doesn’t stop just because you hit a certain age.

We should celebrate aging and embrace the new adventures.

Since I have 4 years before I turn 30, I thought it would be fun to create a little list of 30 things I hope to do before I turn 30.

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5 Things To Let Go of During The Holiday Season

Christmas is such a beautiful time of year. Christmas lights, time with family and friends, lovely wrapped gifts, Christmas movies and the perfect excuse to drink hot chocolate every day.

The holidays can be so joyful, but they can also be a time of stress, anxiety and worry. That’s why to fully embrace Christmas, I’ve decided to let go of certain pressures to make the season fully enjoyable.

1. Overspending

Please don’t get into debt trying to buy someone the perfect Christmas gift or planning the best day ever. We’ve all heard the saying “it’s the thought that counts” and it really is true. Instead of breaking the bank trying to buy a fancy gift, spend a bit of time thinking about the person and gift them something meaningful instead. Something that I do with my best friend is set a price limit for gifts. We decide on a price that we can both afford and get a gift within that budget. It works well as there’s no pressure to try to spend more.

2. Pressuring yourself to make everything from scratch

We don’t have time to make everything. This is a season of joy and quality time with our loved ones. It’s not a time to be in a panic about trying to make everything yourself. We seem to put pressure on ourselves to make everything perfect and homemade, but really, there’s no need. Buying cookies instead of baking them is okay. Buying a gift instead of making something is okay. Buying decorations instead of crafting them is okay. Just give yourself a break.

3. Trying to cram everything into your calendar

Christmas is a time of events, meetups, and long to-do lists. But there are only so many hours in the day. With all the local Christmas events being advertised, it can be easy to fill out calendars to the point that we have no time to actually relax. We want to do everything and we burn ourselves out by trying to do so. Instead of filling your calendar, try slowing down and just enjoying the moment. Going to Christmas events is fun but it’s okay to say no if you want to.

4. People pleasing

This doesn’t just apply during the holidays, but it’s definitely worth the reminder this time of year. Whether it’s with family, friends, or anyone. We feel the need to make sure everyone is happy and we put ourselves in uncomfortable positions to please people. Well, stop that. Ask yourself what you want and go for that. You don’t exist to try and make everyone else happy.

5. Stressing yourself out and forgetting to enjoy the moment

As long as you’re surrounded by loved ones and everyone is having a good time, nothing else matters. Christmas is a time for joy and fun. Let go of any pressure that you have and just embrace the Christmas excitement. Be present and merry.

What are you letting go of this holiday season? What’s your favourite thing about Christmas?

40 Journal Prompts To Practise Gratitude

One of my favourite ways of expressing gratitude is by journaling. I try to write in my gratitude journal daily and it really helps me to feel like there’s some good in this world even though everything is more challenging these days.

Practising gratitude has such a positive impact on your health and well-being as well as making you happier in general.

What is a gratitude journal?

A gratitude journal is basically just a notebook where you write down what you’re grateful for. You can make it as simple or detailed as you like. It’s completely personal to you.

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Bookish Instagram Story Templates

Instagram is a great way of connecting with other readers and getting more book recommendations. Not that we need more recommendations with our ever-growing tbr lists.

One of my favourite things about Instagram is posting bookish content on my stories. A great way to do that is by sharing templates. They work as a great way to share more about books and help you followers get to know you more. Not to mention, they are super easy to use and no one is going to be mad at easy content.

Simply save these templates to your phone and use them to get to know the bookstagram community even more.

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Book Review: By Ash, Oak and Thorn by Melissa Harrison

“Three tiny, ancient beings – Moss, Burnet and Cumulus, once revered as Guardians of the Wild World – wake from winter hibernation in their beloved ash tree home.

When it is destroyed, they set off on an adventure to find more of their kind, a journey which takes them first into the deep countryside and then the heart of a city.

Helped along the way by birds and animals, the trio search for a way to survive and thrive in a precious yet disappearing world.”

By Ash, Oak and Thorn made me want to frolic through nature with its magical writing and whimsical world.

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The Rory Gilmore Reading List

Any Gilmore Girls fan knows that Rory is the inspiration for living our bookish lives. She always had a book with her and inspired many watchers to start reading.

Throughout the show, Rory references many different books and authors. In honour of it being Autumn now and we all know that Autumn is Gilmore Girls season, I thought it would be fun to share a list of all the books Rory Gilmore mentions and references.

Whether you just want to read a few books from this list or set yourself the challenge of reading all of them, now there’s a list of all the books in one place.

Here is a list of all the books on the Rory Gilmore reading list.

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Is Decluttering A Waste Of Money?

One of the comments that I often get on my decluttering posts is “throwing things away is a waste of money” or “how do I not feel like I’m wasting money?” and honestly, I get it.

When I first started my decluttering journey, I wanted to keep hold of anything that cost a lot of money because it felt like a waste to get rid of it. If I’d spent money on something, simply throwing it away or donating it felt like a waste.

That was until I remembered one little thing.

The money is already gone.

Whether I kept hold of that item or not, the money that I spent has already gone. It’s no longer in my bank account and it’s not coming back. Now I just have to decide if that item is worth the space and effort of keeping it.

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Raise The Stakes With These Minigames From Big Console Releases

Video games fall into two categories: those that are focused on a sole objective or mission and those with other things to see and do aside from the mission. For example, in the New Pokémon Snap game, players are tasked with taking photos of Pokémon to learn more about them, thereby having a sole objective. On the other hand, in Police Quest homicide, detective John Carey can choose to play the 1979 minigame Asteroids aside from his main objective, thus allowing for a new form of entertainment within the game itself. Sometimes, the minigames can be as engrossing as the main game, and even make it a better experience for the gamer. Developers have tried many different types of minigames, and here are our top picks from big consoles.

1. Golf in Grand Theft Auto V

Golf is a sport that is loved by people from all over the world, and so is racing. Grand Theft Auto V combined two amazing sports when golf was added as a minigame. If a racer is feeling flushed from the competition on the road, the players can drive to the entrance of the Los Santos Golf Club and pay the $100 entrance fee to begin a game of golf. The golf course is made up of 9 holes ranging from Par 3s and Par 5s, and you can play with different golf club members of various skill levels. Many racers like to go for a game of golf as a reward for completing missions or as a well deserved breather from the action-filled gameplay.

2. Poker within Red Dead Redemption

Red Dead Redemption has multiple minigames, as other Rockstar releases usually have. But out of all the minigames to choose from, Poker is probably the most entertaining one.

The popular Texas Hold’em variety was used in Red Dead Redemption, the variety most likely known to most players. Poker was a standard Wild West game found in virtually every saloon, which meant the minigame added to the overall feel of a true cowboy experience. Red Dead Redemption is already an amazing action-adventure game and when combined with the most popular card game, it becomes is a perfect combination of entertainment on the American frontier. Perhaps this is why a popular minigame in an already amazing game attracts so many players that end up wanting to play more.

3. Gwent within The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

The Witcher is a popular series of fantasy action role-playing games, but when Gwent was added to The Witcher 3 as a minigame, its popularity skyrocketed even more! It is so intertwined with the game that some of the missions require the players to win a game of Gwent to move on. Gwent is a fast-paced dwarven card game about the fight between two armies locked in combat on a battlefield with the players serving as the generals and the cards are their forces. The combination of Gwent as a card game mixed in with The Witcher exploring the open world provides a relaxing form of entertainment amidst the wild and dangerous adventures. Just like how humans enjoy cards, dwarves and elves in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt love playing cards too!

4. Dead Ops Arcade within Call of Duty Black Ops

Call of Duty Black Ops is a first-person shooter game, but with the addition of the Dead Ops Arcade game, it’s a twin shooter game. The Dead Ops Arcade game is a hidden minigame in the third Zombies map. A player can unlock the minigame by typing “DOA” or “3ARC UNLOCK” into the CIA computer. The mix of these two games into one is a very effective strategy to amplify the player’s enjoyment because both games, at their core, are really one and the same – shoot and try to survive for as many rounds as possible. Unlike other minigames that completely change the pace of the primary game, this minigame gives the player a familiar objective but with a different perspective.

Games are a wonderful form of entertainment, but the monotony can be overwhelming at times, and you just want a breather to refresh your love for the game. Try these games, and their mini-games, and experience double the excitement with a single game!