Exams ahoy…

With exams tunneling their way at 200 miles/hour towards many students, I thought it appropriate to share some of my study tips.

Since everyone knows the basics (start studying asap, don’t cram the night before, do past papers, make flashcards…blah blah blah blah…)I’ve decided to be original by compiling a list of ‘non-conventional’ methods to make exam season a little less hectic.

During the Study Period.

  • Study in longer chunks. I have been told and told again: “study in short chunks and give yourself a study break after 15 minutes of study”. Now, this tip might work for people who have short attention-spans, but it really doesn’t work for me. By the time my mind gets warmed up to doing math exercises, the 15 minutes will have passed and it will be time for a break.By the time I start relaxing, it will be time to start working again. Not cool. By working in at least 1 hour sessions, followed by a 15 minute break, it feels like I am able to achieve much more, and I am less likely to get distracted.
  • Talk to yourself. Find out your learning style. Are you an auditory learner? or maybe a visual, or kinesthetic learner? There are tons of tests online which can help you easily determine your strengths at learning.I personally am an auditory learner. For example, making flashcards doesn’t work well for me since there is no sound involved in the process. What does work is when I repeat facts out loud. I sometimes even record myself on my phone, and listen back to it on the bus, or the train.
  • Have music playing in the background. Now some people may find music to very annoying when they are trying to concentrate. I however, always have my Bon Iver playlist on in the background when I study. The sound is mellow, and the lyrics are calm and soothing, and (most importantly) difficult to sing along with. I would avoid songs which you know the lyrics to, since you will be more likely to end up singing along, instead of concentrating on your studying.
  • Study alone.  Maybe it’s my introvert tendencies seeping through, but group study sessions really don’t work for me. One person gets distracted and ends up dragging everyone else into the abyss of distraction. Plus, (as mentioned above) I like to be able to talk to myself when I’m memorizing facts, and I can’t really do that when I’m surrounded by a group of people.
  • Block Distractions. I use a Google chrome app called No procrastination to block sites such as Pinterest & Facebook, and sometimes Yahoo…yes yes, it does seem tempting to sort out your inbox when you should be studying instead. On my phone, I’ve gotten rid of all unnecessary apps (candycrush, anggrybirds..etc..) as well as Facebook and Instagram!
  • Buy stationary– its a great motivator. I bought myself some new highlighters and stickynotes… its the little things that count!
  • Make use of library resources. Enough said.
  • Invest in a desk. If you dont have access to a desk inb your home, now would be a good time to invest in one. Or you could study in the library…
  • Look at examiner’s reports. Not all exam boards will have these readily availiable online, but its possible to find them for IB with a little bit of internet searching. The reports are super helpful, since they show you what exam students in previous years have done well, or not so well. You can avoid the mistakes that others have made!
  • YouTube is your friend! Rich Thornley is great for chem, and Jason Welker has aided my studying for numerous Econ exams, and there are so many useful documentaries for History!
  • Don’t lose hope. When the going gets tough, (believe me, it will!) the worst thing you can do is give up. Instead of stressing out, take  a moment, close your eyes, and count to 10.

Exam Day

  • Dress up for exams. It may seem appealing to wear sweatpants, or a onesie… (or even -god forbid- your pjs) to the exam. However, I know, from personal experience, that when I dress up and take 15 minutes to apply makeup in the morning, I feel radiant, confident, sexy and ready to tackle the challenges ahead. Nobody wants to feel like a lethargic sloth in the exam room, right?
  • Go to bed at 20:00 on the night before.Force yourself to do it. You will thank yourself the next day.
  • Chew gum during the exam. It makes me feel less stressed…

(*Disclaimer: I am in no way, shape or form suggesting that these tips will work for everyone. They are merely suggestions that I am currently using, or have previously worked well for me)


In honour of international women’s day…

I don’t know about where you live, but here in Moscow International Women’s day is kinda of a big deal. And by big i mean HUGE.


Some of my friends wanted to go out for drinks in the evening, but I decided to skip in favour of spending the day with my mama instead. I rarely have mother-bonding time with her, and I feel like I don’t show her enough love.


My makeup for the night:  Left to Right- Maybelline Colorama Kohl (Bronze), Garnier BB Cream (Medium), Maybelline Collosal Black Volume Mascara,  Benefit Dandelion lipgloss, Benefit High Beam Highlighter, Benefit Porefessional Primer, Benefit Dandelion Blush, Witch Spot Concealer, Seventeen Ideal Cover Concealer (Ivory),  Maybelline Eyestudio duo (62 Mocha Mirage).

perfume and nails

^^Guerlain Aqua Allegoria (smells like honey!) Perfume & Essie Chinchilly




^^My wonderful boyfriend gifted me a some L’Occitane goodies (Rose aurore body milk, L’occitane origninal hand cream, fleur d’or hand cream). I loved the packaging just as much as the products themselves.

Image^^ A quick selfie before heading out to the theatre with my mother. Outfit photos were taken, but the lighting situation made them very blurry. (Blouse: H&M, Cardigan: Wallis)


^^Sorry for the crappy iPhone quality, but they did not allow DSLR cameras into the auditorium and I had to leave mine in the cloakroom.

The theater production of “Nashla Kosa na Kamen” was unsurprisingly exceptional considering the fact that it was directed by Sergei Bezrukov. It tells the tale of a young woman in the early 1900’s whose family loses its wealth. As such she finds herself desperate to marry a rich man. The mix of hilarity and drama which ensued told a captivating tale.The cast was brilliant with many famous faces. The lead actors (Dmitri Dyuzhev & Karina Andolenko) had such authentic chemistry. It would be an understatment to say that the set decorations were simply stunning.

If ever get the opportunity I would highly recommend you watch this stunning performance.

Whether you did anything special or not, I hope you all had a wonderful day


In honour of World Book Day…

BBC Book Challenge

How many books have you read from the list?

It’s an interesting mix of classics and modern bestsellers.

If my counting skills are to be trusted, my score was 52, just over a half.

According to the BBC, the average is six which I find to be very a very depressing statistic.

1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen (x)
2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien ()
3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte (x)
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling (x)
5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee (x)
6 The Bible – ()
7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte (x)
8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell (x)
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman (x)
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens (x)
11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott (x)
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy (x)
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller ()
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare ()
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier ()
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien ()
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk (x)
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger ()
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger (x)
20 Middlemarch – George Eliot ()
21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell (x)
22 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald (x)
23 Bleak House – Charles Dickens ()
24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy (x)
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams ()
26 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh (x)
27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky (x)
28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck ()
29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll (x)
30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame (x)
31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy (x)
32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens ()
33 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis (x)
34 Emma – Jane Austen (x)
35 Persuasion – Jane Austen (x)
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis (x)
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini (x)
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres ()
39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden ()
40 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne (x)
41 Animal Farm – George Orwell (X)
42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown (x)
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez (x)
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving ()
45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins ()
46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery ()
47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy ()
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood (x)
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding (x)
50 Atonement – Ian McEwan (x)
51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel ()
52 Dune – Frank Herbert ()
53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons ()
54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen (x)
55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth ()
56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon ()
57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens ()
58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley ( )
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night – Mark Haddon (x)
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez ()
61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck (x)
62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov (x)
63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt ()
64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold (x)
65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas ()
66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac ()
67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy ()
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding (x)
69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie ()
70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville ()
71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens (x)
72 Dracula – Bram Stoker (x)
73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett (x)
74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson ( )
75 Ulysses – James Joyce ()
76 The Inferno – Dante ( )
77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome ()
78 Germinal – Emile Zola ( )
79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray (x)
80 Possession – AS Byatt ()
81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens (x)
82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell ()
83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker (x)
84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro (x)
85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert ( )
86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry (x)
87 Charlotte’s Web – EB White (x)
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom ()
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (x)
90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton (x)
91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad ()
92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery (x)
93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks ()
94 Watership Down – Richard Adams ()
95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole ()
96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute ( )
97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas (x)
98 Hamlet – William Shakespeare (X)
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl (x)
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo ()

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In honour of my grandmother’s birthday…

A lot of women inspire me, but my grandmother trumps them all.

Her kindness and hardworking nature, her enduring love for my grandpa,

her ability to raise four children and not ask for anything in return.

Such as the qualities I admire and respect so much.

I especially love listening to stories of her childhood.

Sadly living in different countries means I don’t see her often,

but that doesnt mean i love her any less.

Happy 76th Birthday Lolahon Oijon

Thank you for always being there for me. I love you very much.


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In honour of the first day of spring…

Hi Lovelies,

Happy first day of spring, and welcome to my blog!

Spring has traditionally been the time for fresh starts, so what better time for me to start a blog than on the first day of spring!

After many years of reading truly inspirational blogs, I’ve decided to dive into the blogosphere- for the second time. I did have a blog previously, but it was very neglected and lacked a sense of direction. It was also very embarrassing to read through some of the ramblings of my 14 year old self.

I hope you will join me on the journey of self discovery that I am about to embark upon, as cheesy as that might sound.

The blog will contain a small insight into my mind, ramblings and beautiful things that make me smile. My ultimate aim is to be able to create videos on youtube to work as a supplement to my blog. *fingers crossed*

You can read my “who am I?” page to find out a little bit more about me.

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