Under the Willow Tree – POEM

 

We trekked towards the habitual spot

Became united under the Willow Tree

The alluring forestry cloaking us

Giving no glimpse to our antics

 

As seasons passed and the tree succumbed to the climates

Trifling and rejoicing in the leaves below

The scent would fill us

Reminiscing on the fun times we had

Conscious of the impeding phase

 

Till the sunshine fled

We jumped and clowned to our hearts content

 

I traveled lonesome

Awaiting his appearance

Could not fathom how he could be departed

And I let out a bellow

Exposing my sorrowing heart

As I grieved for him to reappear

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#BlackFriday Shopping Haul!

I actually don’t remember the sales for about half of it and I will not be including the final cost for anything that I bought because I always go a little crazy when I’m shopping and I just don’t feel like admitting that I went absolutely insane.

 

For those of you who will likely share their concern that I went Black Friday shopping, I went with my mother and her fiance and we actually went to some pretty calm places. Mind you, there are plenty of other shops that we went to and didn’t ultimately end up buying anything (i.e. Michaels and Rue 21).

 

Hot Topic

 

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Hot Topic always has some decent sales on Black Friday and this one was no exception. All of their t-shirts (except for Fashion Tees) were $10 and with Crimes of Grindelwald having just recently come out, of course I HAD to buy a Niffler t-shirt, do you know me at all? 

 

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This shirt actually was on sale for $12 dollars due to it being a fashion tee, but I didn’t realize that this was considered to be a fashion tee at the time so when I was at check- out, I was lucky enough for them to let me buy this shirt for $10 dollars. 

 

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Hot Topic also had a generalized sale of buy one, get one half off. But the thing that I got for half off was actually a Christmas present for my lovely, lovely roommate so I will not be advertising that gift on here (as Christmas has not come around yet).

 

But this is a holiday advent jewelry set, where it’s supposed to come with a bracelet and 12 charms in each one of these advents, where you open one a day every day before Christmas. Do you remember the chocolate versions? It’s the same concept! 

 

Bath and Body Works

 

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For this sale, it was buy 3, get 3 free and I always go a little… crazy when I’m at Bath and Body Works and as you all know very well, I am a STRONG believer in Aromatherapy so I bought a lot of their collection of that.

 

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Arometherapy’s Comfort, featuring scents like vanilla and patchoulli, shower steamers. The goal of this is to put it in your showers, right outside the steam/ water and let it melt slowly and it’s supposed to bring comfort. I fully believe in Aromatherapy, but I am a little nervous about shower steamers and was curious to see how it would work. 

 

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Aromatherapy’s Sleep, with the new scent of Black Chamomile, pillow mist. I thought that a pillow mist was fitting for an aromatherapy meant for sleep which is why I bought it and admittedly, I’m really excited about the fact that they have a new option for their sleep aromatherapy as I hate the smell of lavender and it made me less likely to use it as I wanted to desperately avoid the scent. 

 

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With my newfound single life, as my past relationship has officially dissolved, I decided to play around with Arometherapy’s Love, featuring scents of Rose and Vanilla, Body Scrub to see what would happen in the love department of my life.

 

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Aromatherapy’s Stress Relief, featuring scents of Eucalyptus and Spearmint, Concentrated Room Spray. I haven’t been talking too much about my dorm life but recently, it has come to my attention that some of my residential hall neighbors have complained about the scent coming from my dorm, AKA Apple’s fault. Because of this, Madison helped me buy one of those room sprays that spray every 5 minutes and I bought a carpet de-odorizer but in case those things don’t work, I also bought this and I thought both my roommate and I could really use this to our advantage.

 

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Aromatherapy’s Focus, featuring scents of Eucalyptus and Tea, nourishing Body Oil. I really feel that every college student needs this. It helps them focus on the task at hand, such as homework instead of getting distracted by their own mind. 

 

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Aromatherapy’s Happiness, including scents like Bergamot and Mandarin, Body Wash and Foam Bath. Happiness has probably been my internal struggle for the longest time and this honestly does make me feel a little better. 

 

UrthBox

 

This one doesn’t have a picture to come along with it but I decided to look around at the vegan snack boxes since I had a little extra money and came across UrthBox. I only bought one of their vegan snack boxes, their large one with 25+ snacks but for Black Friday, if you bought anything on the store then you got an extra box so I will be having two snack boxes coming in soon enough and I was actually planning on showing you guys what is inside the boxes! While I wouldn’t typically reveal how much I bought, I’m actually really proud of this deal as I bought two large snack boxes for $39.99. The box typically costs 49.99 but I also got another $10 off using HONEY!

 

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I had actually heard of vegan cuts before, as I had found a lot of videos on box openings and really, desperately wanted to try a box. I would have gone with Vegan Cuts for my snack box but the UrthBox was ultimately cheaper for more snacks today but I still got to buy their Vegan Chocolate Treasure Chest for $32 dollars and free shipping, compared to original cost of $76.15, not including shipping. I will also be doing a video regarding on the contents of this box as well! 

 

JC Penney’s

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This is a lavender, white, and grey sweatshirt with some sort of down arrow design to the top of the sweatshirt. It was actually one of the first things I saw at JC Penney’s and I just had to have it. I can’t recall what it was on sale for, as you’ll notice within time but I’ve always loved some of JC Penney’s clothing even though it’s typically on the girlier side.

 

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It probably doesn’t surprise anybody that you can find me in the boy’s section of many stores and JC Penney’s is no exception. As you can see on the tag, this shirt is typically $20 but on Black Friday, it was a mere $5 dollars. FOR A HARRY POTTER SHIRT NO LESS.

 


 

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The Bell Rang *Trigger Warning* – POEM

The bell rang

Piercing sound that had no change

There was no indication of the future

I sat at my desk

Unaware of the latest gossip

The teacher began

No indication of change

The squeaking door moved

Revealing his pale face

His hands in his hoodie

Snickers erupted

But I didn’t understand

I didn’t know

He sat beside me

As he always does

The snickers continued

The tick tock went by

Sucking his teeth

Jumping in his seat

Something was wrong, I knew

I had dated him long enough

Not until the scraping of his chair

Turned so fast that it was almost a blur

I almost didn’t realize

Screams erupted, chaos insued

Everyone ran

But I sat still

We weren’t friends

I didn’t even know his name

But I couldn’t stop myself from staring

I could hear his laboured breathing

The blood was visible

He said nothing, only stared

Others ran but I stayed

Staring at the kid I barely knew

The piercing sound continued

Not from the bell this time

Could hear the screams

Sound of tumbling

But my gaze never moved

It was only us

The kids on the floor and the teacher

He turned to me

Tears in his eyes

I thought I was dead

I thought it would all be over

He dropped to the floor

Crying and begging

As the door slammed open

Only My Life by Louis de Wijze: Book Review

 

Book Title: Only My Life: A Survivor’s Story.

Author: Louis de Wijze.

Publication Date: 1997.

Rating (Out of Five Stars): 3.

 


Book Review


 

I would first like to say that my heart goes out to this man, for he struggled in his time at Auschwitz and lost many of his friends and family. None of my critiques are meant to demean that fact as the fact that the Holocaust had to happen absolutely disgusts me. While Louis de Wijze is no longer with us, I am so glad that I had the opportunity to hear his story and it is because of people like him that those tragic events will be remembered.

 

That being said, there are both good things and bad things about this book so I will first cover some of the good first.

 

The Good

 

I thought his story was unique, as somebody who has read many Holocaust novels, you notice a lot of repeats and similarities in stories but his was genuinely unique. It is because of the connections that he made that he survived which makes his story unique because there will never be a second person who has an identical story.

 

I was surprised by some of the topics that he was willing to divulge, in particular, I was surprised about the scene with Aron in his bed. While I had assumed that things like this happened, I never would have thought that anybody would admit such a thing. Not because they don’t want to talk about the fact that they were aroused by somebody of the same gender touching their member or anything but out of respect for the dead. Especially during a time where people who even had pink triangle were not liberated and were simply sent to other camps (a fact that will forever haunt me).

 

Another aspect that I found to be fascinating was the discussion of cannibalism, as it never occurred to me that there was even a chance of that happening. While I understand the actual possibility, due to the amount of dead bodies that they’re surrounded by and the starvation that everybody was dealing with, it doesn’t surprise me that something like this would happen but it never occurred to me that it did and I was surprised when he even mentioned it.

 

In total, I find the story and the moments of realism. I enjoyed the fact that he did not try to censor the story to benefit anybody and was honest about what actually happened.

 

The Bad

 

With all of the good comes some bad, while I loved the story, I wasn’t the biggest fan of the writing style as I felt like it lacked detail and was shortened significantly too much. During scenes that felt it needed to have more information, it was lacking and I did not like the fact that it revealed at the beginning that there would be an execution, especially since the execution was relatively irrelevant to the story.

 

As something that was showcased at the very beginning of the story, I thought it would be more relevant to the story but honestly, the execution was kind of buried into the rest of the story.

The Devil’s Arithmetic: Book Review

Book Title: The Devil’s Arithmetic.

Author: Jane Yolen.

Publication Date: November 1988.

Rating (Out of Five Stars): 4.5.


Book Review


I should preface that I have always been fascinated by Nazi Germany and the happenings in Concentration Camps. Perhaps this is a morbid fascination and it’s not a fascination that I can explain very easily. It’s just there, something that is never ending and will randomly catch my heart once more. It’s been a topic of interest for me ever since 6th grade when we began learning about in History class. Because of this, I have read many stories set during this time period (which I am actually hoping to reread and will likely post book reviews of them after I finish them).

Admittedly, I actually watched this movie before I ever read the book. In my Sophomore year of high school, we read Night by Elie Wiesel and then we watched The Devil’s Arithmetic. I personally wish we had read this book and then watched the movie, not because I disliked Night because on the contrary, Night is actually one of my favorite novels but simply because it would have made more sense to me to read the book and then watch the movie.

After reading The Book Thief, which was one of the first book reviews that I ever posted on here (The Book Thief by Markus Zusak : Book Review), I actually stepped away from the entire genre for quite some time. I had been so badly disappointed by the novel that I simply stepped away but like every other time, there was just something that brought me back. Perhaps it was this story that kept running through my head, a story that I desperately want to write, or perhaps it was something else but regardless, I was brought back to it.

Which means I was on a new hunt for a novel, and I remember watching this very movie and I became curious about the book itself. This is not a comparison of the movie, mostly because I don’t totally remember what actually happened in the movie but I will be making a review about this book, which is what you’re reading right now.

The story is about a young girl in the modern time who is sick of remembering and doesn’t understand the significance of Seder or why it even matters and definitely didn’t understand why her family acted the way they did until she opens a metaphorical door, looking for a religious figure from the Jewish religion and finds herself transported back in time to 1942 and eventually finds herself in Auschwitz after attempting to attend a wedding.

The story was detailed and explained many things, it was interesting to see how people reacted to this young girl and her attempts of telling the future and how nobody seemed to understand and I was amused by the fact that she told stories from the present time and passed them off as movies that actually existed.

But more specifically, I liked the reality of the situation. You had Riftka, who was clearly meant to be the voice of reason. She knew how to survive and she was the character placed to explain what was happening and while this is common in many novels, especially in one of these novels where things need to be explained to a degree, I felt like she genuinely belonged in the story and that she was used for more than just explanation which was refreshing.

I found myself entranced throughout the entire study, not being able to take me eyes off the text and anytime I was forced to, I would think about the novel constantly until I could come back. I wanted more to be explained, I wanted the story to be longer, I wanted the story to never end.

It entranced me until the very last word and it was absolutely fascinating, and mostly I never wanted the story to end. That story could have been three times the length and I still would have been fascinated. The way the girl’s mind worked and how the author decided to handle the fact that she was from another time and even the idea of making her incredibly sick beforehand so that her family would right it off as being sick was fascinating.

I was also surprised during many moments, especially in relation to the children. Essentially, and I don’t consider this to be a spoiler, children under the age of 14 were not allowed to live on the camp and so every time the commander came, children who were clearly incredibly younger than 14 would have to hide in the trash. The most surprising part is the fact that the guards were in on it and would even try and warn the children that they needed to hide and while nothing was done if the child was found outside of the trash, they would still try and help by warning them which was surprising. Nazis are portrayed as being fully evil, in both history and literature and yet you had this moment where Nazis were helping children survive.

A rare moment of humanity that surprised me but also pulled me into the story further.

I would have been this novel a five, as I believe it possibly deserved it but I do feel there are moments that they could have spread out. I would have loved to see a lengthened conversation between her and her Aunt Eva once she returned home and I felt that the moments right before she returned were very fast paced and could have benefited from slowing down a bit.

The Ghost in My Yard

 

I fully believe in ghosts, I would never deny that. I have a hard time believing that there is anything that could never exist, especially in relation to the afterlife. We simply do not know enough about what happens to our soul for anyone to tell me that it is not possible.

 

But there is only one time that I vividly remember thinking that there was a ghost around me, and I was admittedly at a very young age. I was probably in 2nd or 3rd grade (meaning I was 7 or 8 years old) and I lived in this very country neighborhood. Everywhere around us were woods and our closest neighbors were about 2 acres away.

 

But across from us were straight up woods with a railroad not far, and I remember that just at the entrance of the woods were these 2 long holes that seemed that I always thought looked like something had gotten stuck long ago and had since been removed. Honestly, it was probably a car because you could tell they tried to get out of the situation but it just went further in and it was a gradual thing. Like it started at one spot and got deeper throughout.

 

That sounds super weird but I don’t have any pictures and this specific location is very important to the story. Honestly, it always fascinated me that this existed. I wanted to know what caused it and none of the neighborhood kids knew what it was and neither did their parents, many of which had lived in the neighborhood since they were children themselves. They said it had always just been there and honestly, I spent a lot of time just examining it. Trying to figure it out.

 

I was admittedly a weird kid but I also had some of the weirdest experiences while I was standing there, playing in the holes or trying to fish out the frogs that had migrated over there after a storm. But I would randomly just hear my name in an unrecognizable voice, at first I would be convinced that it was my mother calling for me and I would all the way back to the house and go inside to ask if she had called for me but that was never the case.

 

Usually, it was just my name being called and after some time, I really did become convinced that there was a ghost there. After hearing about wagons, I came under the conclusion that somebody was driving a wagon and it got stuck and people passed away, mind you, I was a young kid and didn’t realize the unlikelihood of this.

 

However, it wasn’t just my name being called. Sometimes I would hear questions. Like “Do you want to play?” or something like that and each and every time, I would look around for the source of the voice only to never find it.

 

But yeah, I imagine I was probably just imagining it now. While I do believe in ghosts, I’m not so sure that this was one. But it’s the only notable story that I could think of.

Possible Costumes for Apple?

For today, I will be writing about possible halloween costumes for my ferret- Apple. I am opening up a poll for everyone to tell me what their vote is. I will announce the results in the future but make sure you fill out the contact form!

 

All of this links have been found on Etsy and I will be sharing the links with you so you can get an idea of what it may look like.


1.Rainbow Bat

I thought this was a super cute costume. A little more adorable than it is scary but he’s a ferret, he does not need to be scary!

2. Faux Leather Dragon

Apple is literally named after the Harry Potter ship; Drappe. Draco/ Apple. Draco means Apple in Latin. This almost seems like destiny and it is so cute! It should be noted that Apple would look cute in any costume though.

3. Charmander

I’m admittedly not much of a Pokemon fan but this is just the cutest thing ever.

4. Black Bat 

THE WINGS MOVE GUYS. Sorry, I just love the idea of Apple in any costume.

5. Chewbacca

I may not be a Pokemon fan but I’m definitely a Star Wars fan and I loved this the second I saw it!