my week #126

This week at university was significantly lighter than any other week I've experienced thus far. As a result of this, I started some clinical revision in preparation for my first placement in a few weeks' time.

How has your week been?

an updated Smythson binder tour

Now that I'm properly back in my Smythson, I thought I'd walk you all through the set-up with an explanation for each section. It's not much different from the last post about it but I'm focussing more on the pages towards the back in this post (whereas in the previous one, I focussed more on the pages towards the front).

At the front is the quote page shown in the previous post. I found it through a Google search but it says 'designed by Francesca Ramos 2010' at the bottom so all credit to her for making it. There are also page markers on the flyleaf.

I'm still using the Filofax white week-on-two-page layout. I'm still debating if I want to continue using it this academic year but seeing as the year has already started, I don't think I'll be moving to another planner anytime soon.

Once the planner pages end, I have another page of quotes from Leonie Wise - again found on Google images. I love these inspiring quote pages as all too often, being the workaholic that I am, I find myself not allowing enough time to relax or unwind at the end of the day. These quotes give me a few minutes to read through them and just not think about work for that time.

Now, onto the bulk at the back. I have a post-it note with ingredients for a fruit cobbler which I want to make sometime during this summer.

To-do lists are all over the place and I should've made a better effort to ensure that they were separated into categories rather than mix them up. On the above pages, there are films I want to see, beauty products I want to buy and try, thing I want to bake, places I want to eat at and also things I need to study. Having written these things down myself, I know exactly where to find what to-do (my memory is pretty decent which can be a bit of a hindrance sometimes).

I make quite a few notes but the notes I will be showing you seem to be more lists.

There is a list of books I want to read at some point...

And a list of all the restaurants I've been to in the last two years. I'm trying to reach 100 before the end of this year and I think it is safe to say I won't get there as I've only eaten at 54 in 104 weeks. I don't even want to consider how much money I've frittered away on dining out...

And finally, at the back is the return of my clear pocket which has pictures of sentimental value. In the secretarial pocket, there are some stickers that I use to mark things on my weekly pages.

For 2015, I may well be in a different planner - with The Planner by Seeso being the most likely one. However, I still have a few other options to peruse so we'll see...

book review: paper swans by jessica thompson

I recently joined Bookbridgr after seeing Katie talk about them over on her blog and being a big reader (thank you, Kindle!), I thought I'd join up to see what the fuss was about. Let's just say I'm so far impressed with the whole concept - reading books and then reviewing them is fair trade to me! 

Let me introduce you to the first book I received through Bookbridgr: Paper Swans by Jessica Thompson. I received this book towards the end of August and I finished it in a week. Pretty good going considering for half of that time, it was term-time (hello, nine to five days where I leave the house at half seven in the morning and don't return til half six in the evening...).

Anyway, Paper Swans is a love story intertwined with mental illness. Without giving too much of the plot away, the book follows Ben's journey through the skeletons in his closet that arose from one unfortunate incident earlier in his life. It's all a bit cliche to begin with - a guy who seems arrogant and irresponsible and a girl who has no bad bone in her body. However, the fact that I read the book in seven days says it all - the plot, though nothing really that special, kept me interested enough to want to know what would happen next.

What I loved about this book was the sensitive way Jessica Thompson tackles the subject of mental illness. Though some parts were a bit unrealistic (in my opinion), the majority of it was relatable to the average Joe. We all go through periods of anxiety but for some of us, it can be more severe and chronic that for others and I think this book highlights this point very well.

Although the book is a bit of a slow starter, I would still recommend it. So far this year, I've read a lot of Lucy Diamond books and other chicklit books and if you have similar taste in books to me, I think you'll enjoy this book.

Overall, I give Paper Swans 7/10 (which is pretty decent as books rarely make it passed 7/10 when I rate them!).