codecodecode

Saturday

We Need More Representation in Young Adult Novels (Seriously.)

Hello everyone! Long time no bookish post! This is a little topic that I have been meaning to address, but I just haven't come around to doing it. A lot of bloggers have talked about it before, and it really means a lot to me, so I'll tackle the topic and perhaps get something out of it!



To find inspiration for this post, I took a trip to my bookshelf and glanced at my books, marking down every book that has a caucasian protagonist. The majority of books on my shelf fit this criteria. And don't get me wrong, I'm well aware that there are books out there with POC MCs, but the books that I looked at were among the most popular of their genre.



Let's look at the most popular children/young adult series:

Harry Potter? The only POC that I can think of off the top of my head were Dean Thomas, Angelina Johnson, Cho Chang, and the Patil twins, aka not enough. The three main characters however, were all caucasian.

Divergent? Again, off the top of my head, just Christina.

The Mortal Instruments? Does Isabelle count?

The Hunger Games? Rue. That's pretty much it.

Is it that difficult to write in some POC main characters? Our world is progressing, and especially with all the hatred going on and the extreme racism in the United States, it would do authors some good to represent other races and cultures. And perhaps educate their readers on sharing the love with everyone in the world.

In addition to that, young adult novels are obviously directed towards.. young adults. Shouldn't we be taught to be more open minded? Taught that not all heroes are caucasian girls? And it's sort of the reality as well, all of these amazing women POC scientists are left in the dust, even though they've done so much for our scientific world.


new thing: beyonce gifs


Caucasian female should not be the norm for a main character.

How about we open it up even more and say women in general aren't being represented enough in Hollywood, or in comic books?

Why do all the female superheroes have to wear tight suits and put "girl" somewhere in their name? Why is Superman called "Man" but then we have this TV show called "Supergirl"? Lame.



And why can't we see more kickbutt female heroes in movies that girls can look up to?

There's so much we can fix, and it can start with the arts. So you, my little amazing writer friends out there, next time you start planning out your characters, see if you can fit a few different characters, and be the start of something new. I see you.

In short, the three biggest reasons why we should see more diversity are:

1. Everyone deserves to be represented
2. Our world is diverse and so our books should be too.
3. Why not?




What are your opinions on this slightly controversial topic? Ooo and just for fun, come up with your own kickbutt female superhero and tell me in the comments! 

Love you all <3

Thanks for reading,
Noor

Sunday

Three Years of A Little Bit of Sunshine

HELLO EVERYONE.

THROW THE BALLOONS, RELEASE THE CONFETTI, PASS OUT THE CUPCAKES.

IT'S MY THREE YEAR BLOGIVERSARY !!!!

I'm thrilled I'm amazed how did I get this far explain explain


I made this blog 3 years ago on February 5th, 2014. And boy has it grown. I've watched it bloom, wilt a little, but it has never failed to make me happy and be a huge part in my life. 

I've invested a lot of time, thought, and MAGICAL IDEAS into this blog and it's paid off. IT IS A POT OF MAGICAL IDEAS. 3 YEARS WORTH OF MAGICAL IDEAS. 

I've been a faltering blogger for the past two months, maybe I don't deserve to have this blog for long but then I look back at my old posts. I cringe a little (a lot. IDK WHAT I WAS THINKING BUT LOOK IT BROUGHT ME THIS FAR K) but I also realize that I love this blog. Tis my baby, it goes to preschool this year. And my posts showed that I love this blog, or I hope. 

THIS BLOG HAS G R O W N. And so have I. I celebrated my 10th, 11th, and 12th and soon 13th (!!) birthday with this blog and all of y'all. I spent all of middle school with this blog. WOW. 

And my posts have changed, they've gotten better, and maybe worse, but they've changed! And it's kind of neat because I'll always know what I was like three years ago, based on my posts. I was a strange thing. I still am. No doubt about it. 

My follower increase rate went down, I don't blame yall I was so inconsistent. This wasn't my best year for blogging, but it just motivates me to keep it up and be RLY SERIOUS about this. BUT NOT TOO SERIOUS. Cupcakes are better that seriousness. And I'd rather my blog have cupcakes. Especially pumpkin ones but they don't sell them during the winter smh why. 

I guess I'll do that stat thing, keep up a tradition amiright?

YEAR ONE:

14,287 PAGEVIEWS
838 COMMENTS
34 FOLLOWERS
196 POSTS

YEAR TWO:

62,000 PAGEVIEWS
?? COMMENTS
132 FOLLOWERS
358 POSTS

YEAR THREE:

104,110 PAGEVIEWS
4595 COMMENTS
174 FOLLOWERS
469 POSTS


Okay what that's actually insane I think I'm crying wow.

THAT IS IT. THE THREE YEAR POST. NOTHING FUN OR EXCITING HOPE YOU ENJOYED THOUGH HAHAHA

WAIT before I go I'd like to thank. 

every blog i follow
every blogger i've emailed
every blogger whose blog i've commented on
every reader
every follower

YOU MEAN WORLDS TO ME <333 (yes worlds as in MULTIPLE worlds)

Thanks for reading (for 3 years!)

Noor

feel good // playlist


Run the World (Girls) - Beyonce 
Wannabe - Spice Girls
Hum Hallelujah - Fall Out Boy
Dear Theodosia - Hamilton
Cranes in the Sky - Solange 
Flawless - Beyonce
Sugar - Robin Schulz 
Wings - Little Mix
Test and Recognize - Flume

-- 

treat yourself with some chill tunes, let me know if you like <3


Thanks for reading, listening, looking at,
Noor

i got this idea from Vivian ,, check her out! 

Taking Care of Yourself Is Really Important, and Easy (and Cheap)

Hello everyone! Relaxation Sunday, not really, I have a crap ton of work to get done but I thought I'd semi "start" out the day with a nice little post for y'all <3

Ever since 2017 started, I've taken my resolutions really seriously and I've actually been trying to take care of myself. With Pinterest and drug store on my side, I've managed to figure out some tips and tricks, for broke people, like me. Enjoy! And treat yo self. And yo skin. Yo entire body. Yo everything. Love y'all.


((not my background, but the fact that it's gray, bothers me))


DISCLAIMER

All of these things are either, cliche, really good, or may not work for you!! And that's okay!! These are things that work for me,, a person with mildly dry skin, dry wavy hair, and mildly acne prone skin. Keep that in mind :)



DRINK. YOUR. WATER. WATER IS SO GOOD FOR YOU. LISTEN. THIS IS SO CLICHE. YOU WILL HEAR THIS IN EVERY SELF CARE RELATED POST. BUT DRINK THAT WATER. 

I drink two tall glasses of water EVERY DAY. And at first, it felt like a chore, it was annoying and I forgot. But after a week I SAW RESULTS.

My lashes were longer, I hadn't been breaking out, my sweat didn't smell (tmi BUT IT HELPS). 

I didn't like the taste of water (WATER HAS A TASTE NO ONE FIGHT ME ON THIS), I could barely finish a large cup without the bad feeling in my mouth. So I found an alternative, the BEAUTY THAT IS. Infused water. 

You put fruit in. (Make sure you cut it up) Or whatever the heck you want. Leave it in for at least an hour and a half, but not too long otherwise it's too strong, and bask in glory. You feel amazing after you drink that glass, you feel refreshed. AND YOU EVEN GET TO EAT THE FRUIT AT THE END. baboom. 

I like putting strawberries in my water, but the best things to put are cucumbers and lemons, they actually have health benefits. I originally just drank infused water because the taste is better. 

Also!! Don't get it from the store!! That infused water is more processed and just not good, if you make it at home, it's natural!! Yay!! And really easy!! Woo!!
I'm almost 13.. therefore I don't use that many skin products, like eye masks or things like that. But I DO wash my face and moisturize EVERY DAY. TWICE A DAY. And exfoliate twice a week, but that's just a little extra so I can GLOW. 

Cleaning your face is so important, especially if you touch your face often, it gets all icky and gunky and then your pores are icky and gunky and then you break out and that's icky and gunky. Ugh. It's not really good. 

Moisturizing is also good, it feels good, your skin is soft and you are soft, <33. Just love. 

I mentioned exfoliating, I do that as a little extra bit but if you do exfoliate, use cheaper products. They work GOOD. I use a scrub from St Ives that was 5 dollars, and my skin loves it. You don't have to spend 50 dollars on your masks or scrubs. Unless you want to treat yo self. Then treat yo self. 

For my body I just moisturize and put olive oil on! Use olive oil, it makes your skin so so soft <3 And for lips I use Vaseline, nothin fancy. 


I use: Simple Face Wash, Simple Moisturizer, Neutrogena Naturals Scrub, St Ives Scrub (all products I got from my drugstore :0)
All I gotta say is wash your hair. Although not TOO much because it could damage your hair. Shampooing everyday for more than a month is really bad for your hair and could cause it to fall out. But conditioning regularly is amazing, your hair will be so so soft and nice <3

I also recommend using coconut oil in your hair! Every Friday night I just put it all over my hair, put it up in a bun, leave it in overnight, and wash it in the morning. You'll get very shiny hair, it's nice. 

This is extra, but I use a detangling spray when I brush my hair, it's good for my girls w thick hair. 

I use: OGX Argan Oil Shampoo, Garnier Sleek and Shine Conditioner, Some Coconut Oil, and It's A 10 Miracle Leave In Spray. 



what do you do to take care of yourself? any other tips for the crowd? let me know if you tried any of this!!! <3


Thanks for reading,
Noor

Saturday

The Depths of My Legendary Bullet Journal

Hello everyone! Happy Saturday! Since I've been so utterly obsessed with bullet journaling and everything related to bullet journaling, I decided to share a little bit inside my not so glorious yet thing I'm tremendously proud of, bullet journal! Some of my favorite spreads and things I use to make it m a g i c a l.




sorry for the dark pictures! it's been very cloudy lately :(



I've always enjoyed the idea of staying organized through lists and journals and such. I came across the bullet journal on Instagram a while go, and I've been fascinated. Mid December, I purchased a notebook and have been mixing with my planner!

It's a more creative approach to keeping myself on track, and listing things that I wouldn't normally remember. My bullet journal inspires me to do so many interesting activities/things that benefit my life. It's like my best friend, minus the whole talking part. I've also picked up a couple hobbies in order to spice it up, like hand lettering, which is a work in progress. yikes. 



a little quote (the darkness hides my terrible faux calligraphy) and a self care spread, which i love very much :)



I track a various amount of things in my bujo, from my daily tasks, to monthly tasks, to goals. I also like to track movies I want to watch, consistent "habits" I want to keep, honestly whatever comes to mind, and whatever I think will help me in the future!


Here's a sample month spread, I have a small calendar, a couple quotes, and my goals. It's minimalistic and a nice lil thing to flip to when I'm looking through the month. (yes i've started planning February DONT JUDGE ME.) 

To the right, I have a future log where I write reminders for the next couple months. It's a new thing I'm trying out! (hopefully it works ..)



You probably cannot see this, as it's a lot on one page, but this is a weekly spread I did! I've been using it for January, but for February I'm planning on switching it up to something more exciting besides a boring chart! On the right I just have some goals and a terribly done quote :)





I don't really think materials matter, any pen, any marker, any notebook works. My journal is a 5 dollar one from Target. The pens I use vary, but I often use Sakura Microns which were 10 dollars for 6 of them. I also recently bought a giant set of Mildliners which are these highlighters that were 20 dollars for around 25 of them :) 

I used to use sharpie and things that bled through, but it was a pain because I couldn't use the page on the other side smh. 



Hope y'all enjoyed! I might be sharing more of my bullet journal so look forward to that :D Have a lovely weekend <3

Thanks for reading,
Noor

Thursday

New Year, New A Little Bit of Sunshine

Hello everyone! Long time no see! I'm going to skip the apologies, the explanation and just start by saying it feels great to be back. This is the longest break I have ever taken in the history of my almost three years of blogging, and boy did I need it. December was a difficult month for me, it was mainly trying to figure out what I wanted by 2017 to be; how I wanted to take on this new year!



I'm officially back with the blog, and to relaunch, I thought I'd outline my plans for the revamp, the shiny glossy new finish I'm putting on it, which I have been working on for around 3 weeks. Enjoy and I hope you find some inspiration for your blog!



Posts are definitely going to remain the same or similar, my blog may be changing, but I haven't! I've learned to accept the fact that my blog will remain different and.. wild, no matter what I try to do!

You can expect these kinds of posts in 2017: how-tos, book related, fandom related (less than usual), life related, organizing related.

And more! Wherever my mind, and your minds take me!

I'm going to really really try putting my own personal touch on my posts! Like a magic wand! But me! Just so that if you read a post, you'd know it's from me.



I've become more organized since I last put a post up on this blog. Can you guys believe that I've kept up a bullet journal since December 11th? Bow down to the Princess of Bullet Journals.

I've always loved planning, it's so fun and makes me artistic and inspired and.. organized! Hopefully this will motivate me to start posting more often, and on time!

You can expect posts in 2017 to be: at best; every other day and at worst; once/twice a week. And the occasional week break when I need it, breaks are important!



Probably the thing I've missed most about blogging is my lovely wonderful blogging friends! I love y'all and I'm so so so so so so so sorry if I have not answered your email, I haven't checked my email in a month.. yikes.

You can expect to see me on your blog in 2017: probably about every day! Or at least whenever you post :P

I can't wait to get back into reading blogs, I'm aiming for at least three blogs read a day, and at least a new blogging friend made every month! (Help me out by shooting me an email.. here!



Quality quality quality. This is something that has often fluctuated in my blog, one month I'll be A+. Another month.. a solid D-. I'm going to try and keep it at a B level every time, and if you don't see a post from me when expected, that means I'm gussying it up to make it beautiful. (Gussying means beautifying, my soccer coach taught me that one, somehow..)

You can expect my blog in 2017 to be: full of beautiful pictures, nicer cover photos, more interesting posts, and medium length!



I'd really really like to thank everyone who is still following my blog, I'm up to 170 followers now! Thank you! I can't express how much it means to me that you still believe in me, even when I didn't. I won't let you down again. <3 Really. Thank you. 

Thanks for reading + Happy New Year!
Noor

Friday

Why I Couldn't Complete NaNoWrimo

Hello everyone! Sad day, 5 days left in NaNo and I should have been done. Should have been done. I still have 20,000 words to go, and with only 5 days left, that's 4,000 words a day which is nearly impossible for me.

It's very sad for me to say that I will not be able to complete NaNoWrimo this year. Despite all the hype I had getting ready for it, I now realize that I wasn't ready for it.

However, that doesn't mean that I'm giving up on the novel. I plan to take it back up in January, after I finish my mourning and move on, not quite, but move on from the loss.

This loss has really helped me to see the bigger picture, how I can become more organized, how to manage my time, etcetera, etcetera. So I decided to share my findings with you all! Although I am somewhat ashamed that I only made it to 30,000, when last year, when I was a worse writer and younger I made it to 60,000, I think this will help me grow as a writer and as a person!

After all, mistakes are only part of the journey.



i didn’t prioritize or make time for writing

This was probably the major part that caused my doom. It wasn't that I didn't have time, I had a lot of it, I just didn't make time. I wouldn't set up a time for writing, I would just find a slot and fit some writing into there.

I also didn't make it a higher priority. Of course I put things like homework and violin first because I definitely needed to get those done, but for some reason, writing was pretty low on my list of priorities.



A nice thing I could do is possibly make myself a lil to-do list (because LISTS MAKE ME HAPPY and they make me want to actually DO THINGS) and order it based on importance (because ORDER MAKES ME HAPPY)

I should probably set up a time for writing, where I'd actually know when I'm going to write.. good plan.


i slacked and let myself do it

Error number two broskis. Slacking. My goal was 2k words a day, so I would write 600 and then come back and write another 400 and then just didn't write. And I knew I was supposed to be writing, but I didn't do anything?



you know what you gotta do, so do it. For me, 1000 words takes 20 minutes, 2000 would take 40, so why not? Actually by 2000 I'd probably be tired, so take a half an hour break in between.


i wasn't ready

I knew I was going to take on NaNo, and I started preparing in August, but then I slacked. I didn't truly prepare until the last weeks of October. I thought I was prepared for it, but I wasn't. 

I may have been physically prepared, my computer was ready, so was my outline, but I wasn't ready. My brain hadn't really processed that I had this dedication to write 2000 words a day. 

The funny part is, my novel was great. It wasn't a disaster. I was the disaster. I just couldn't GET myself together enough to write it more often. When I did write, it wasn't bad, I'll be honest. 


Start working in late September. Know what you have to do. Make your outline better. Just plan, even if it may not be for your novel. 


So I'm hoping to have this done by January, and then begin editing in March which means I'll maybe be having beta readers by end of March?? Look forward to that I suppose. 



how was your november? did you complete nanowrimo? do you have any tips for this loser? ahem. any tips about recovering from a loss?



Thanks for reading,
Noor