Saturday, May 16, 2015

No question. #VoteYES

Friday next, May 22, is a major date for every Irish citizen who is registered to vote. It is the date of the Marriage Referendum, in which we as citizens will vote on whether or not to legalise same-sex marriage in Ireland.

This is something I feel REALLY strongly about - personally I see it as a matter of civil rights and I think that the fact that there is even a referendum at all is ridiculous. For a long time, I happily assumed that a Yes vote would be ubiquitous - I, and everyone I surround myself with, would all be unified in our support for the Yes campaign - but in recent weeks, a No campaign (led by such 'wonderful' organisations like the infamous Iona Institute, and Mothers & Fathers Matter) has sprung up, with horrible ignorant posters like the below appearing on signposts around the country.

(Side note: I was cheered up to read that the couple used in these images [which were taken from a stock photo website] have denounced the use of their family photo in this campaign)


First of all, the main argument that the No side are using is that of the above - that every child deserves a mother and a father. Aside from this being a completely ridiculous and insulting argument towards not only same-sex parents, but one-parent families, children raised by grandparents, aunts, uncles, older siblings, etc - it is actually a completely invalid argument. Same-sex couples can actually already legally adopt in Ireland, and the referendum is in relation to marriage and marriage only, so pipe down hun, you haven't got a leg to stand on.

This is an issue that I feel so strongly about that I don't feel I can put it into words, especially when there has been so many amazing blog posts, articles and videos compiled in the last couple of weeks. Instead of writing a long-winded post, I'll share a couple of tweets I've posted, as well as media from various other sources that state the facts, that have moved me, and that I whole-heartedly agree with.

This video is from 2009!







Letter to the editor in the Irish Times, 12/5/15


A photo posted by Aisling Owens (@aisowens) on



I also want to quickly mention that, back when I was in transition year of school, I was part of the school magazine committee, and one of the pages contained a Vox Pop, in which one of the questions asked was, "Should gay couples be allowed to marry/adopt in Ireland?" I was one of the respondents, and I can't remember exactly how I worded it (because I have no idea where that magazine is now), but I know my answer went something like "Absolutely, they deserve the same rights as everyone else".

Now bear in mind that this was 2007, in a rural Irish Catholic-ethos school, so unfortunately some of the other responses didn't echo mine. Sadly, those that answered that question negatively did so because they had grown up in a society that saw gay people as outcasts by not allowing them all of the same civil rights as straight people. That's why a yes vote is crucial, so that future generations will grow up, never imagining or comprehending why LGBT people were ever ostracised.

Rural Ireland has always been generally conservative and backward in its views towards progression, hence why I'm sad to be from a rural area at times like this. But progression is key, and change is good, so lets just hope that equality wins out next Friday.

Any No voters reading this (I really hope you are few and far between!!) - please bear in mind that if this referendum passes, all that will happen is same-sex couples will be able to simply celebrate their love for each other - legally. That's all. No ifs, no buts.

No question. Vote YES.

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I'm alive!

I can't believe I'm writing this post on May 16th, having not written a blog post since the start of March. The last two months have whizzed by to say the least, and as a result I have lots of news!

So as you know, I finished my postgrad in Fashion Buying back in January, and graduated in February.

On graduation day at St. Patrick's Cathedral with girls from my class. L-R: Rebecca, Elaine, myself, Marina, Lynda & Katie

As soon as exams finished, the job search began and I moved back home because, well, for one, I couldn't stay in Dublin without a valid reason (i.e. working or studying), and also, I was applying to jobs throughout both here and the UK and so I didn't know where I would be going, or how soon it would be before I got something. I'm sure any graduate will agree with me here when I say that launching into a job hunt just after exams is so draining. Tailoring your CV and cover letters, researching different companies, and attending interview after interview, well it's all a bit soul-destroying to be honest. I had six interviews throughout January, February and early March (flying to the UK for one), and was starting to get seriously fed up when I finally landed a position, back in Dublin... with the Irish department store group Heatons. Anyone who is familiar with Heatons will know that most of their branches have an additional sports/fitness floor called SportsWorld; this is the division in which I am now working as a buying office administrator. It's busy and fast-paced but I like it; it's exactly two months to the date since I started working there now, and the time has absolutely flown.

My new job is partially to blame for my lack of blog posts - when I come home in the evenings I just want to switch off, my head is buzzing from purchase orders and margins all day, and honestly, the last thing I want to do is launch into writing a post. I suppose you could say that that's no excuse, that I still have the weekends, but to be honest I've been squeezing a lot into my weekends for the past while as well! Such as...

Celebrating birthdays and going-away parties...



...Secretly flying over to beautiful Bath to surprise my friend Cairistine for her birthday...

A photo posted by Aisling Owens (@aisowens) on



...and celebrating my cousin Claire's Gatsby-themed 30th in Birmingham!


So this weekend is the first in a looong time that I haven't had to rush around for something or other, or get up at 3am for a flight, and needless to say, I've barely moved all day and I'm loving doing nothing! 


However, next weekend is going to be a big one, and this I will elaborate on in my next blog post. Click 'Newer post' below to read it!

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Friday, March 6, 2015

March Favourites

Listening...
...to Maroon 5's latest earworm, Sugar.

Loving...
...Kim K's new hair CUT. Loving the bob - still in two minds about the colour. It might be growing on me...

Lusting...
...after this Rebecca Minkoff mini crossbody...perfect for spring summer!

Laughing...
,,,at the hundreds of hilarious memes about #TheDress. I f*cking love the internet sometimes!

Watching...
...reruns of Downton Abbey with my mamaw. Hurry up series six!


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Friday, February 27, 2015

LFW Street Style - Favourites

Here are some of my favourite #streetstyle looks from London Fashion Week!











So I think it's pretty evident from this post that I'm partial to a midi skirt and a pair of black skinnies!

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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wanderlust

Is it too late to say Happy New Year?! I haven't blogged since New Year's Eve so this is my first post of 2015, in February. The beginning of January was consumed by exams, which was HORRIBLE (I really don't know whose bright idea it was to have end-of-semester exams AFTER Christmas), but the silver lining is that they were my last ever exams! I just got my results in the post the other day, and I'm happy to say that I achieved a 2:1 Upper Merit, which I'm delighted with as, being honest, I did work my ass off for them!  



Today's post is one that Walking Primrose has only briefly touched on before, in that it's one of travel. This year, I turn 24, and unlike many of my peers, I have never carried out a J1 summer in the states or gone inter-railing throughout Europe. Add to that I haven't been on a proper holiday in forever, so it's fair to say I'm suffering from a bout of wanderlust! Many of my friends know that one of my favourite websites is (perhaps unusually) Google Maps. I visit it every day, drop Pegman in a random spot anywhere in the world and explore the surroundings, terrain and architecture. I also love playing GeoGuessr, where you find yourself dropped anywhere in the world and have to guess where you are by pinpointing the map. It might be an unusual pastime, or maybe a sign that I'm getting itchy feet! 

I find that AIRBNB is an amazing affordable way to find the most authentic nooks and crannies of the world - just obviously make sure your host has a few good reviews! AIRBNB is also a wonderful way to tick off bucket list items such as sleeping in a proper fairytale Eastern European castle, or having your own private island, all at a snip. I've used AIRBNB before (unfortunately never for holiday/leisure reasons), but I find it so easy to use and a wonderful way of staying in locations in which hotel rates would be twice the price.


Now, I, like most people, despise this time of year (January to March), so I try to distract myself by thinking of the summer ahead. If I can, I hope to go on holiday at some point this summer, as God knows I (and the rest of my Masters class) certainly need it after the past semester! So in this post, I list a couple of places that I find myself returning to on Google Maps, that I someday hope to visit, and in case any readers feel like venturing there also, I've linked some affordable AIRBNB listings there too!



Southern Italy

I don't know why, but I've always wanted to go to Italy, and the south of the country sticks out in my mind more than the north. Of course, I'd love to visit cities such as Rome, Milan and Venice as well, but there's something about the Mediterranean-kissed south that appeals to me. Perhaps it's from studying the film Cinema Paradiso, set in Sicily, for my Leaving Cert, all those years ago!

In the historical center of Lecce in Lecce

House in Lecce, Italy. Detached house situated in a quiet area of the historical center: a few steps from the church of Santa Croce, the best example of Lecce Baroque, and a 5 min walk from Piazza S.Oronzo, the heart of the city. Easily accessible for those arriv... View all listings in Lecce


Bavaria, Germany

This will seem probably crazy to some readers, as some of my friends were appalled when I told them, but I didn't see many of the iconic Disney films until I was well into my teens or early twenties. My parents are not really cinema fans, so unless we were gifted movies on video or if they were shown on TV, my brother and I didn't really get to see many films that were released when we were younger. However, that doesn't mean that I was unaware of all of the Disney princesses as a child. In fact, I was obsessed with them, as I used to collect issues of Disney Princess magazine every fortnight! I made up for it in recent years, as thankfully Netflix has got almost every Disney film I yearned to see when I was younger. The point I'm making here, though, is: one thing I certainly wasn't deprived of when I was younger was fairytale books, and it would be an understatement to say that I absolutely loved them. So, as a result, I was extremely familiar with the original fairytale stories, the ones written by the Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen and their counterparts, before Disney got their hands on them and Americanised them for the big screen. A friend I was talking to recently was shocked to find out that Cinderella was originally German, Belle originally French, and Ariel originally Danish, having thought that they were all American! So although I may not have been lucky enough to watch all of the Disney films as a child, I'm quite proud of the fact that I was exposed to the original stories before I saw the Disney adaptations. My love for fairytales has always stayed with me and so there's a part of my that would love to stay in a castle in the heart of Europe, where so many of these stories originated.

Schloss Möhren | Castle holiday in Treuchtlingen

Castle in Treuchtlingen, Germany. In the middle of one of the largest nature parks in Germany lies an authentic, small hunting Castle, were real Pappenheimers (who does not know them ...?) has lived. Now, in this special atmosphere and beautiful surroundings 3 holiday homes are fo... View all listings in Treuchtlingen


Iceland

Just a few weeks ago, Ryanair announced that this summer they would be debuting a direct flight from Dublin to Reykjavik. Iceland, despite being one of our nearest neighbours, has always been a bit of a mystery. Located right on the edge of Europe, Iceland is home to kooky singer Bjork, who, for her continued work as a cultural ambassador for her homeland, was gifted a house on Ellidaey Island by the Icelandic government. It is also listed as one of the happiest countries on earth, so who wouldn't want to go there for a bit of cheering up!

Penthouse apt. downtown Reykjavík in Reykjavik

Flat in Reykjavik, Iceland. A beautiful lively apartment in the heart of Reykjavík. 50 meters (200ft) from the central square and one block from Austurvöllur (House of parliament). The apartment is 85m2 (900ft2) and consists of two bedrooms, hallway, bathroom and a living ... View all listings in Reykjavik



Ko Pha Ngan, Thailand


Ever since watching the film The Beach, I've held a certain fascination with Thailand and wanted to visit it, especially Ko Pha Ngan. I think that this part of the earth is the closest thing we have to paradise. Idyllic white beaches and clean, azure seas. Heavenly.


The Glass Cottage - Koh Phangan in Ko Pha-ngan

Cottage in Ko Pha-ngan, Thailand. Glass Cottage, Plai Laem Beach Simple Luxury at its Best. The Glass Cottage nestles snugly into a gentle hillside on a secluded strip of shallow sandy beach in a sheltered cove on the island's peaceful west coast. Intimate and stylish, the Glas... View all listings in Ko Pha-ngan


New York, USA


I have never been to America at all, and really hope that I can go in the near future. My inner basic bitch is just dying to channel Blair Waldorf or Carrie Bradshaw and live the ultimate single gal life in NYC... Coffee on the Met Steps, jogs around Central Park, flea-market shopping in Brooklyn, oh and all the while having a guaranteed Chuck Bass or Mr. Big waiting on standby to complete the happy ending!

New Upper East Side 1 BR Apt! in New York

Flat in New York, United States. This completely renovated one bedroom flat - that we like to call "Gotham Penthouse" - is in a luxurious neighborhood that's filled with great restaurants, shops, bars, and cafes. The building is a quiet gem in the big city... on a tree-lined bl... View all listings in New York



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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

37 Instagram posts that sum up my 2014

JANUARY


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FEBRUARY



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MARCH


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APRIL


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MAY




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JUNE


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JULY


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AUGUST



SEPTEMBER


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OCTOBER


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NOVEMBER




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DECEMBER


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Happy new year lovelies!

xxx

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