Review: Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life

Warning: This post contains spoilers about Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life, so if you haven’t seen it, you’ve been warned!

Source: TVLine
Source: TVLine

I’ve spent so long waiting for for the Gilmore Girls revival that I’m actually quite sad that it was over in 6 short hours. What an emotional rollercoaster those 6 hours were though! There’s so much to talk about, so I’m just going to divide it all into categories.

Rory

Career-wise: We find Rory at 32 years old, with a college degree unable to find a steady job.“The whole journalism thing didn’t pan out the way I’d hoped.” When she said that line, Rory became more relatable than she’s ever been throughout the entire Gilmore Girls series. I do feel for her though – she knew what she wanted, she didn’t get it and now she’s lost, like so many college  graduates of this generation. The fact that she took up the position of editor at the Stars Hollow Gazette was a blessing in disguise though, as that’s where Jess encouraged her to write about her relationship with her mother, which to be honest is something she should have thought of herself. We see her have some very real struggles with her career, she’s feeling uninspired, she doesn’t know where to go from here, she has no source of income – all things I can relate to.

Relationship-wise: The fact that she constantly forgets about her boyfriend (OF TWO YEARS!!!) and continues to sleep with Logan even though he is engaged to Odette really infuriated me. I know she’s going through a difficult period in her life, but does she not see how insane this is? Even after all these years, I’m still stuck in my decision over who was the best for Rory. Jess was the one who grew the most and became a better person, and he obviously still has feelings for Rory, hence the cute looking in the window at her scene! But Logan is the one Rory subconsciously calls when she’s upset, so that must mean something. We also see Rory’s relationship with her mother become strained for a while. It’s understandable why Lorelai wouldn’t want her life out there for the world to see when she spent so long trying to protect it, and Rory just can’t understand that. However, the two move past it, and that’s all that maters!

Emily

While all three Gilmore women deal with Richard’s death throughout the series (I would just ike to say that they honoured his memory amazingly), it is undoubtedly Emily that has had the toughest time. After 50 years of having a life with someone, she suddenly finds herself without the love of her life. Absolutely heartbreaking stuff! Emily goes through so much over the course of that year, from dealing with her grief to learning how to be alone and be comfortable in this new life of hers. Richard’s death has changed her – she has been able to keep a maid for over a year, she realises that DAR meetings don’t mean anything to her anymore, she opens her home to her maid’s ever-growing family and she discovers that the material aspects of life are not the most important. I’m so happy that Emily did realise that she wasn’t happy in a house she didn’t consider to be her home anymore, and instead moved in Nantucket, which holds a special place in her heart.

Lorelai

We really see Lorelai grow throughout these four episodes.  First of all, she has been with Luke for 9 years, which is probably the longest relationship she’s been in I think. She also goes to therapy with her mother, reluctantly, but she still does it. And she tries to understand Emily and her ways, she really does, and she tries to be there for her mother as best as she can while they’re all still grieving. Her whole life has changed – Sookie has gone on sabattical, Michel wants to leave the inn, her father is dead and she got no closure, her daughters life is a mess and she tries to deal with it the only way she knows how – following pop culture and going on a hike to find herself. In true Lorelai style she doesn’t actually hike, but she does get the clarity she is looking for. That scene where she stands on top of the hill and tells her mother about her favourite memory of Richard was one of the best scenes of the series, in my opinion. So many emotions! She is the one to suggest marriage to Luke, which is a big step for her, and I just think the whole storyline between those two was amazing.

Lorelai and Luke

I really like how they were still together from the start of this series, there was no are they or aren’t they about it. Luke and Lorelai have been together since the show ended in 2007, they live together, they have a life together. Yet, like any other couple, they have their issues, but they still remain together because they love each other and because they are true partners. I think it was sweet of Lorelai to consider surrogacy because she thought that Luke missed out on having children, and it was hilarious that Luke couldn’t quite grasp how surrogacy actually worked. I love that he loves and considers Rory to be a little bit his, and it’s so unbelievably cute how proud Luke is of Rory! It’s also sweet how considerate he is of respecting Richard, and chooses to stand for dinner instead of eating at Richard’s place at the table. While the four episodes had many emotional moments throughout, it Luke begging Lorelai to not leave him that finally reduced me to tears. Considering he is a man that doesn’t really show how he’s feeling or speak of emotional issues that often, his speech just proves how much he loves Lorelai. Their wedding was absolutely perfect, cheesy but sweet and romantic at the same time. Also, that song.

Source: www.CinemaBlend.com
Source: http://www.CinemaBlend.com

While I do hope that we will get to see a second season of the mini-series, I do feel like the ending is almost perfect. Lorelai and Luke are stronger than ever, and they have the most perfect, beautiful pre-wedding wedding. Lorelai is going to expand the Dragonfly Inn using her fathers money, and Luke will happily continue on with his one diner franchise. Emily has moved to Nanucket, where she is learning to find joy in life again and her family  will join her for three weeks out of the year. We also get the sense that everything is actually good between Emily and her daughter. Rory though… She is writing her book, but will it be successful? Will she tell the father of her child about her pregnancy? Will she do it alone, like Lorelai did? Will she stay in Stars Hollow? I acknowledge the fact that the newly pregnant Rory is now the same age Lorelai was the year Gilmore Girls started, making it a lovely ending to the series, but I need to know these answers!

I feel like we all need to say a massive thank you to Netflix for allowing this revival to happen (P.S. we need more episodes please), and also a massive thank you to Gilmore Girls fans who watched it before I did and didn’t spoil the last four words on me! Have you watched it? Let me know what you think!

Niamh

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Lost In A Book

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one.” – George R.R. Martin

As reading is one of my favourite things to do, I thought it would be fun to take part in the lost in a book tag to talk a little about my reading habits. I know that this tag mostly took place at the start of the year for so many bloggers, but I don’t want to be that person who just posts reviews about books, as they do genuinely mean so much to me, so here you go!

Life.
Life.

Do you have a certain place at home for reading?

I can read anywhere in my house, but it usually would be in/on my bed or curled up on a chair in the sitting room in front of the fire. Comfort is key!

Where do you like to read?

I prefer to read in bed or in the sitting room, anywhere that is comfortable and quiet.

Bookmark or random piece of paper?

Definitely bookmark! I love collecting pretty ones, and I usually buy a bookmark anywhere I go on holidays.

Can you just stop reading or do you have to stop at a chapter?

If I absolutely have to stop reading in the middle of a page then of course I will, but if not I definitely prefer to stop at a chapter. It’s a natural pause, like you’re finishing reading a certain point or something like that, and it’s kind of a goal thing too.

Do you eat or drink whilst reading?

I wouldn’t really eat when I’m reading for fear of getting food stains on my lovely clean books! I tend to get too engrossed in the story and forget that there’s actually food in front of me. However, I do drink tea while reading, curling up with a good book and a well made cup of tea is an ideal situation for me to be in.

E-reader or real book?

I have nothing against e-books, I even have some downloaded onto my iPad, and while they are handy nothing compares to holding an actual book in your hands. I love filling my shelves up with books, having piles of them on my bedside table and carrying one around with me in my bag. I’m that person who wants a little library in their home, with tea making facilities nearby and a nice, comfy window seat to sit in and enjoy them all.

Music or TV while reading?

Neither! My mam reads and watched tv at the same time and it actually drives me crazy because there’s no way you could give both your full attention. I like to be fully absorbed in what I’m reading with no distractions around me.

One book at a time or several at once?

One book at a time. Like I said above, I like to give what I’m reading my full attention, and usually I’m so absorbed in whatever it is I’m reading that introducing a new story into that would just ruin it all. My sister reads a few books at the one time and has them all lying around her room, all sad and half read, just thinking about it stresses me out!

Reading at home or anywhere?

I prefer to read at home, but I do usually carry a book in my bag so I can read it in waiting rooms/cafes etc. I can read anywhere except in a car because I get travel sick and it does not end well.

Reading aloud or silently in your head?

In my head mostly but if I was reading a complex book and I’m having trouble understanding what is being said I tend to say that particular part aloud, which helps me process it. Also, reading aloud reminds me of school, not really something I would like to be reminded of!

Fiction or non-fiction?

Both! I love diving in to imaginary worlds full of new thoughts and ideas, but I also love reading about real lives and events that actually happened. I still have my history books from school and every now and again I would actually go back and read parts of them because I find some historical events so fascinating. I also enjoy reading the biographies of authors, to see what inspired them.


“So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.”
― Roald Dahl, Matilda

Do you read ahead or skip pages?

Not going to lie, sometimes I am tempted to skip to the end, especially when I’m reading something dramatic, just so I can assure myself that it will all end up okay. However, 99% of the time I manage to refrain myself so I don’t ruin the story. The 1% of the time that I do skip ahead I feel really annoyed with myself.

Break the spine or keep a book like new?

Keep the book like new, always. I do take pride in the condition I keep my books in. Realistically, I will want to keep them for as along as I can, so I do whatever it takes to take care of them.

Do you write in your books?

I used to write in school books, but never my own collection. Even the thought of doing it makes my heart hurt. If I find a quote or a paragraph I love then I write it down in a special notebook I have, so I get to keep them all together.

Your favourite books?

These are the books that I read over and over again, books that I adore and could never throw out:

  • Rebecca by Daphne duMaurier
  • His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman
  • The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
  • The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling (I couldn’t possible pick one!)
  • The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Which author inspires you?

There are so, so many authors that inspire me, in so many different ways. Roald Dahl, Enid Blyton and J.K. Rowling inspired creativity in me when I was a child. I used to write little spin off versions or continuations of their own stories, so I guess they are part of the reason why I enjoy writing so much. Stephen King has taught me how to find a good story in the simplest things, and how humour can be applied to any story, no matter how horrific. Jane Austen, F Scott Fitzgerald and Emily Bronte opened my eyes to love and romance. Philip Pullman, David Mitchell, J.K. Rowling and Suzanne Collins inspire me to look at the world in a different way. My point is, every book I’ve read by every author has
inspired me in some
way, so I can’t just pick one!

Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed! Chat soon🙂

Niamh

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My Top 35 Songs To Help You Get Out Of Bed & Conquer The World

We all need a little help in the mornings, especially on a Monday. Some people find that help in the form of a cup of coffee or tea, some people find it in the form of a good breakfast or nice shower. Personally, I find that nothing gives me the boost that I need to get out of bed and conquer the world than a good motivational anthem. So, here’s a list of 35 songs that I blast to put me in a great mood and help me find the motivation to get out of bed, something that will be very useful on Monday morning when I have to leave my lovely warm bed at 6am. Hope you enjoy!

 

Career Diaries: Are Internships Really That Important?

Short answer: yes. Speaking as someone who has done three internships so far, I cannot stress enough how important they are. My first internship was in my local radio station, the other two were in PR consultancies, and I gained invaluable knowledge from all of them.

It’s one thing studying theory in class, but actually going into the world and putting that knowledge to use is completely different. The working world can seem very daunting when you’re still in college, but the only way you’ll properly learn how to take part in it is by getting experience in it. Internships are great for so many reasons, and I’ve outlined some of those reasons below.

You will discover if this is the path you want to go down or not. While I absolutely  loved working in the area of PR, some of my classmates did not, and came out of their internship confident that they did not want to go down that route. It’s okay if you realise that that isn’t what you want to do, and my classmates are fortunate that the degree we completed gave them knowledge of other areas of business too. Even if you’ve decided not to work in the field your internship is in, you’ve still made contacts, you’ve still worked and learned valuable skills that you can apply to most situations, and that’s so much better than nothing.

You will inevitably pick up tips, tricks and ways of doing things from your colleagues. I have learned so much from just being in the same room as colleagues when they’re pitching to a client or the media or in brainstorming sessions when people are bouncing ideas off one another. I truly believe that I have gained more knowledge from being in an actual working environment than I did from sitting in a classroom reading from Powerpoint slides (sorry former lecturers). I’ve learned different ways of communicating with people inside and outside of the business, how to approach certain people, and I’ve also learned when to realise that I’ve done all I can and can do no more.

You will develop skills that will be useful to you no matter what career path you go down. For me, I have developed the ability to talk to strangers on the phone. Anyone who knows me knows that before this, I would rather shave my head than call someone I don’t know on the phone. But now I don’t even blink an eye when I have to call someone, no matter what it is. You also learn to work as part of a team, which is a skill that’s needed in almost every job. You will also learn to become confident in yourself and your abilities, and you will realise the areas you need to improve on and how you can do that.  In my opinion this is not a quality that you can learn in college, so I can thank all of the internships I’ve done for giving me the confidence to learn new skills and develop the ones I already have.

So, those are just a few of the reasons why I think internships are absolutely essential to college students (or people looking to get into a new career). The only other thing I want to say is that I know being an intern can seem annoying. You will feel like you’re just an intern, and that you’re there to make coffee and post letters. While this can be true, you need to remember that everyone starts at the bottom of the ladder. The head of the company had to start at the bottom at one point, and look where they are now! At the same time, it’s also important to make sure that they’re not taking advantage of you. You’re there as part of the team, to try and learn from them so you can do the work that they do, you’re not their PA. And don’t forget to make the most of it, you should be enjoying yourself, not feeling miserable!

Until next time,

Niamh

x

 

Review: A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

“Wasn’t friendship its own miracle, the finding of another person who made the entire lonely world seem somehow less lonely?”
― Hanya Yanagihara, A Little Life

What it’s about:

This is a coming of age story that spans across several decades. It follows the lives of Jude, Willem, Malcom and JB, four friends who have recently graduated college and have moved to New York City in an attempt to establish their adult lives. They’re broke, passionate and frustrated, and the only thing all four of them have in common is their ambition. Willem comes from an emotionally cold background, yet in spite of that he is kind, friendly and would do anything for his friends. He’s an aspiring actor who never gives up on his dream. JB, a passionate yet sometimes cruel person, is the only male in his family and as a consequence is extremely spoiled and opinionated. He’s a gifted painter who has to work a little to get what he wants. Malcom comes from a wealthy background, is uncertain and indecisive about what he wants in life, and is an architect in a prominent firm. Jude is an enigmatic, withdrawn lawyer from unknown ethnic origins. He is extremely intelligent and a genuinely nice person, yet his friends don’t really know anything real about him. Over the years we get to see how their relationship with each other becomes affected by success, jealousy, addiction, pride and love As the years go on, the book takes a darker turn. The emphasises on the group recedes and there is more of a focus on Jude as we uncover the secrets and horrors of his past.

WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!

What I thought:

I’m just going to say this now: this 700 plus page book is an extremely difficult read. This story has many traumatic moments, with a slow build up to all of them. Just when you’ve gotten past a horrifying revelation and you believe that the character will be okay, something else happens and your heart just cries out for them. While all of the characters had horrible issues to deal with at some point in their lives, it was Jude who undoubtedly suffered the worst.

As the story develops, we discover the sexual abuse Jude suffered at the hands of his guardians, how he was forced into prostitution and exactly how much that affected him throughout his life. We see him suffer with self-harm, addiction, self-loathing and intimacy and trust issues. The chapters that outlined his abuse were very detailed, and hard to get through. It’s horrifying to read what happened to him before he arrived at university, from the childhood sexual abuse to the physical damage he deals with as a result. It’s possibly even more horrifying than it should have been because in between the revelations of Jude’s childhood, we got to see how loved he is by his friends and Harold and Julia, how much respect he earns at work, how how much he is cared for. But then you realise that he doesn’t believe any of these things, that he feels like he deserves to be the way he is, and it makes the situation that much sadder. Also, seeing how Willem’s death caused Jude to relapse into his self-destructive behaviour, after Willem, Andy, Harold and Julia all worked so hard to try and help him, was just heartbreaking. As if the story couldn’t get any sadder!

I liked how the story wasn’t set in a specific time period. There was no mention of world events, presidents, technological and medical advances, well-known people, nothing at all to tie it to a specific time. This makes the book relevant to anyone who reads it, whether they read it now or in 50 years, they’ll still be able to relate to it because in their mind, it could be happening in their world.

I can handle a lot of drama and horror in my novels, but even I had to put the book down a few times and go cuddle a puppy or just not read it for a few days so I could digest what I just read. I actually finished the book nearly two months ago and I’m still haunted by it, I feel like it’s going to be one of those stories that stay with me forever. I do think that it’s a book everyone should try and read if they can though – I found it eye-opening to the invisible pain others might be suffering from, and how deeply issues can affect people. This book resulted in a great conversation between myself and a colleague who also read it, I love being able to talk about a book that has seriously affected me with someone else who just gets it too. This story has also made me appreciate aspects of my own life a little bit more. I know that the characters are fictional, but they all go through very real issues, issues that so many other people in this world are experiencing right now. It’s not an easy read, but it definitely is worth a read at some point. If you’ve read it already, let me know what you think!

Until next time!

Niamh

x

 

It’s Okay To Not Be Okay

FYI – I was planning on having this completed and uploaded on Monday, but one handed typing took a lot longer than I expected! Better late than never though so have a read!

I’m going to tell you all something personal about myself. This isn’t something that I tell a lot of people, not because I am ashamed, but because I’m afraid of burdening someone else with my problem, especially when they have their own issues to deal with.

For as long as I can remember, I have suffered with anxiety. When I was a child I used to make myself sick with worry at the thought of changing my daily routine in a massive way. To me that could be spending the night in a friends house – it was something I wasn’t used to, it would take me a while to be comfortable in someones house, so the thought of being in another place overnight would make me completely panic and worry that I was somehow changing everything or missing out on something at home.

Eventually I grew out of being upset about not staying in my own bed, but my anxiety still lingered in other aspects of my life, mainly my health and the health and well-being of those I cared about. If someone didn’t answer their phone or was late or something along those lines, I would assume that they were in an accident or something terrible had happened to them. There was one time an ex-boyfriend had fallen asleep, and I completely panicked because I couldn’t get in touch with him. I was so worried he was hurt or something bad happened to him that he woke up to nearly 40 missed calls from me. I panic when I’m in cars, I’m constantly aware how easy it is to be involved in a car crash, how stupid some drivers can be. Knowing that people I love drive around in when it’s icy out or in horrible storms makes me panic until I know that they’re home safe and sound. I have OCD tendencies, again mostly to do with safety and health. When it’s bad, I check switches of whatever I’ve been using up to 20 times before I’m convinced that the appliance is turned off and won’t start a fire and burn the house down when I’m gone. I carry antibacterial gel in my bag and have to wash my hands right away when I touch anything that might be considered dirty – it’s gotten to the stage where I can wash my hands so often in a single day that the skin can become cracked and bleed.

It’s not easy living with this much fear and worry inside of you. I often worry so much that I’m reduced to tears, or I make myself physically sick. There are good and bad periods. It’s a dark place to be in, and I don’t really know how to not be like this. It’s hard because when I think about it, a lot of what causes me anxiety are perfectly rational reasons to have it.

So, in honour of World Mental Health Day, I encourage you all to be kind. Treat people how you want to be treated. Give others your attention when they need it. Make sure you’re there for your loved ones. Ask someone how they’re doing, and mean it. Be there for your loved ones. Speak up. Don’t be ashamed to admit what you’re feeling. Don’t be ashamed to seek treatment. Do what you need to do to get yourself into a good place mentally, whether it means taking a step back from things, changing your lifestyle or going to talk to a professional about how you’re feeling. Be aware of what it is you’re going through, and what can help you get through this, whether it is  your family, friends, or a doctor. Your health is your wealth, so take care of yourself.

Chat soon,

Niamh

x

Songs I’m Listening To Right Now #4

So, I’ve been out of action for the last 3 weeks, with another 3 or 4 weeks to go until recovered. Needless to say, having a broken arm is not fun. I can’t really read books unless I prop them up a certain way, and then there’s the whole page turning thing which makes it so much more difficult, so I’ve been listening to a lot of music lately.

As you know, in my goals for the future post I mentioned that seeing Coldplay would be the ultimate musical experience for me. Well, I’m absolutely delighted to be saying that I’m actually going to see them live next July in Croke Park! The seats are terrible but I honestly don’t care, I’m just so happy and amazed that I’m actually going to see them! So no doubt that I’m going to be listening to them a lot until then haha. But for now, here’s some of the songs that I’ve been listening to, it’s a mix of chart stuff (I’ve been listening to the radio so much that I can tell you every single song in the Irish charts right now) and a few oldish songs, so enjoy🙂

Chat soon!

Niamh

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