Sunday, July 12, 2020

BURN



told me to disappear 
but
asked me to feed you  
 
told me to stay 
but 
begged me to die 

you,
a human with a set of fire 
a monster with tons of flowers 

bees rang on my ears 
whispered, 

"go" 

a sparrow rested on my shoulder 
whispered,

"stay"


my shadow slapped me
"let's leave," 
I was scared but I did 


I hiked the mountain of broken glasses 
tears and sweat became red

"keep going," 
I told myself 



my shadow was already on the hill
"keep going, you're going to love it here."

but, do I trust her? 

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Wednesday, July 01, 2020

PLAYLIST | VANESSA MAE


I grew up listened to instrumental/classical music because my dad loves music so much especially this genre. One of my favourite classical musicians is Vanessa Mae. She was the youngest violinist and soloist by the age of 13 to make a record on both Beethoven and Tchaikovsky. As a young girl, I looked up to her so much - she's Asian (half Singaporean-half Thai), beautiful, and talented! 

Today I want to dedicate this playlist post to her. Here are some of my favourite songs! Enjoy x 
  1. Allegro Non-Molto (Winter - The Four Season Op 8 No 4) - Antonio Vivaldi
  2. Bach: Toccata and Fugue in D minor - Johann Sebastian Bach, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
  3. Contradanza
  4. Red Hot - Symphony Mix - Ian Wherry
  5. Roxane's Veil - Vangelis, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
  6. Sabre Dance - Aram Khachaturian, Tolga Kashif, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
  7. Scherzo in C Minor for Violin and Piano - Johannes Brahms
  8. Storm - Antonio Vivaldi 
  9. Tango De Los Exilados - feat. Walter Taeib, Paul Bateman, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
  10. Widescreen - Mike Batt

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Wednesday, June 24, 2020

BOOK | ON CHESIL BEACH


I bought this book 2 years ago when I accidentally stumbled on a small bookstore in Melbourne (I totally forgot the bookstore name!). I wasn't looking for books, I was just walking around with my friend, Diane, we were trying to find a dim sum place that has a good review on Yelp. We did not find the place but I'm glad I found this book. I'm not sure what happened back then, cause I never finished it for some reasons.

On Chesil Beach is a very unique book, just like Ian McEwan's other works. It is 200 pages long – only covers about two hours of time: the first two hours of a newlywed couple’s honeymoon in which they fumble to consummate their marriage and that both of them have very embarrassing sexual dysfunctions. 

The main characters, Edward and Florence, sitting in a hotel room on the beach embarrassed out of their minds. It’s 1962, on the cusp of the sexual revolution, and the pair have neither the presence of mind nor even the vocabulary to communicate openly with each other. There is only a handful of words spoken until the very last chapter of the book. 

If you can imagine, this is such an awkward but interesting book to read. By awkward, I mean, we can feel how strange it was for both Edward and Florence - they're trying to rule their own dysfunctions, they want their first night as a married couple to be as special as they imagined. It's hard to explain without spoiling tho. I'd say just give it a go ;) 


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Wednesday, June 17, 2020

BABY STEPS TO BECOME MORE SUSTAINABLE


I've been more aware of my wellness and environment for the past year, I'd say I've been pretty sustainable at this point and very proud of it. I wasn't really going big like completely stop using plastic, become more organic or even change my diet, but I've taken some little things seriously. 

Today I'm going to share with you how I take baby steps to become more sustainable without overstressing it or even overdoing it. These things that I do are so easy that you can start doing today.

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Wednesday, June 10, 2020

(MORE) TV-SERIES TO WATCH IN ISOLATION


Here we go again! Another month, another tv-series recommendation for accompanying you on quarantine. But, seriously you guys, how are you doing? I'm doing okay most of the days, but you know, some days are harder than others. 

My way of coping up with this whole pandemic situation is either I'm binge-watching or I don't at all. There's no in-between. How about you? 

Here are some of the series I've been watching during isolation. Hope you enjoy it as much as I am. 

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Monday, June 01, 2020

IF MY WOUNDS WERE VISIBLE


I have been pretty open about my experience with mental abuse for the past year, to put in mind, my intention was never to seek attention nor I want people to pity me, but to raise awareness about that invisible abuse that leaves invisible wounds as well. 

Today is the first day of June, also known as World Narcissistic Abuse Awareness Day (WNAAD). Today is the celebration for all narcissistic abuse (mental/verbal abuse) survivors who strongly survived throughout the abuse and healing process, and also for those who did not survive. Survivors, if you read this post, thank you for surviving. What we've been through is not easy, you should be proud of yourself!  

To be frankly honest, I never thought I'd experience something like this. I grew up in a pretty healthy environment (although there are a few neighbours who like to gossip, I never cared what they're saying anyway), with a loving family, and I gained nice groups of friendship throughout the time. Some people said I'm one of those friendly, lovely, people. I took it as a compliment and motivation to be a better person for everyone on my surroundings. We always want to try our best, aren't we? 
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IF MY WOUNDS WERE VISIBLE (bahasa)


Aku cukup terbuka tentang pengalamanku tentang kekerasan mental selama setahun terakhir, niatku bukan untuk mencari perhatian atau aku ingin orang-orang mengasihani saya, tetapi untuk meningkatkan kesadaran tentang kekerasan tak terlihat yang meninggalkan luka yang tak terlihat juga .

Hari ini adalah hari pertama di bulan Juni, juga dikenal sebagai World Narcissistic Abuse Awareness Day (WNAAD). Hari ini adalah perayaan untuk semua yang telah bertahan menghadapi kekerasan narsisistik (kekerasan mental / verbal), dan juga bagi mereka yang tidak bertahan. Survivors, jika kamu membaca posting ini, terima kasih telah bertahan. Apa yang kita lalui tidak mudah, kamu harus bangga pada diri sendiri!

Sejujurnya, aku tidak pernah berpikir akan mengalami sesuatu seperti ini. Aku tinggal di lingkungan yang cukup sehat (meskipun ada beberapa tetangga yang suka bergosip, toh aku tidak pernah peduli apa yang mereka katakan), dengan keluarga yang sangat penyayang, dan mempunyai sahabat-sahabat yang baik. Beberapa orang berkata aku adalah salah satu dari orang-orang yang ramah dan menyenangkan. Aku menganggapnya sebagai pujian dan motivasi untuk menjadi orang yang lebih baik untuk semua orang di lingkunganku. Kami selalu ingin mencoba yang terbaik, bukan?
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Wednesday, May 27, 2020

BEAUTY | HIGH-END MAKEUP PRODUCTS


Di post sebelumnya aku membahas soal high-end skincare, hari ini aku ingin membahas tentang high-end makeup yang kualitasnya luar biasa tapi memang harganya bikin gigit jari. Semoga apa yang aku tulis disini bisa jadi bahan pertimbangan buat kalian, ya!

Untuk skincare, kadang aku masih 'gak masalah' kalau harganya mahal selama itu cocok di kulitku dan hasilnya juga sebanding dengan harganya. Tapi kalau untuk produk-produk riasan, aku sebenarnya lebih memilih untuk membeli produk drugstore atau produk lokal yang harganya lebih terjangkau. Kenapa? Karena dipenghujung hari, makeup juga dihapus. Jadi sayang kalau membeli produk mahal yang gak bertahan lama. 

Tapi... bukan berarti aku gak mencoba sama sekali. Banyak produk high-end yang kualitasnya luar biasa, kita harus lebih selektif saja membelinya. Misalnya ada lipstick yang harganya diatas satu juta rupiah, tapi buat apa ya kan? 

Berikut ini adalah produk-produk riasan dari high-end brand yang menurutku kualitasnya sebanding dengan harganya! 

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Saturday, May 23, 2020

BEAUTY | SIMPLE EID MAKEUP


This year's Eid will be very different from the previous ones. I can't celebrate with my big family because we're quarantining. So instead of celebrating together at my Grandma's house like our tradition every year, this year will involve heaps of video chat, from FaceTime to Zoom. We all still feeling grateful because technology nowadays is so advance. 

Today I want to share the Eid makeup look that is very simple, easy to do and still enhancing your beauty. Remember, Eid is not about showing off but showing your inner beauty and peace. 

Let's get started! 
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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

BEAUTY | HIGH-END SKINCARE PRODUCTS


Kalau mengobrol soal skincare atau makeup bermerek high-end, pasti ada rasa ragu atau cemas tentang kualitas produk-produk tersebut, 'yakin bagus nih? harganya kan selangit, sayang banget kalau ternyata harga tidak sebanding dengan hasil!'. Aku beberapa kali kecewa dengan produk-produk dengan harga yang menguras kantong tersebut, tapi, gak jarang juga benar-benar puas dengan hasil akhirnya! 

Sebenarnya membeli produk skincare atau makeup tergantung pada kebutuhan kita sendiri. Biasanya aku membaca ulasan dari produk tersebut sebelum membeli, kalau 4 dari 5 ulasan yang aku baca setuju dengan kualitas produk, aku mulai yakin. Ketika membaca pun perhatikan apakan si pengulas memiliki jenis kulit yang sama dengan kita, tinggal di kota atau negara beriklim sama, baru deh mikirin harganya.

Kemudian, aku juga membiasakan diri membaca kandungan formula yang terdapat dalam produk tersebut. Ada banyak bahan kimia yang harus kita hindari karena bisa merusak pigmentasi kulit bahkan mengakibatkan penyakit kulit seperti kanker. Bahan-bahan tersebut adalah parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, toluene, sulphates, silicone, dan lain-lain. 

Buatku, skincare itu semacam investasi karena efeknya jangka panjang, makanya aku lebih berhati-hati soal skincare. Sementara makeup kan hasilnya langsung terlihat tapi efeknya juga jarang banget yang jangka panjang.  

Berikut ini adalah produk skincare yang menurutku hasilnya sebanding dengan harganya. Kalau kamu memiliki jenis kulit yang sama denganku (normal cenderung kering dan sensitif) mungkin bisa mencoba produk-produk di bawah ini! 

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Monday, May 18, 2020

BOOK | GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES


This month's I read Grimm's Fairy Tales by Brother Grimm. Growing up, I always loved fairy tales. But this one, however, not your typical fairy tales. Even though I know that these are all classic tales, I feel like I'm reading them for the first time, like they've been reinvented related to a grown-up me in dark and strange ways. 

It's a bizarre but interesting experient to read this book - most of the stories are those who I'm familiar with like Snow White, Alice in Wonderland, The Princess and The Frog, Cinderella, Rapunzel, and more but some are the new ones that I haven't read the original versions yet (keep in mind, I'm not growing up with western fairy tales, I just privileged to have such open-minded parents to bring some of the tales home). 

I'm an adult and yet, I still imagining these fairy tales. I'm still rooting for the character, hoping them to get their best chances. I guess that's why I love fairy tales so much, even in this darker, bizarre versions of them, it still has a happy ending. 

I hope you guys stay healthy, happy, and please, stay at home. 


Love, Vera
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Saturday, May 16, 2020

ALTER MEMORY


maybe it is true
time heals nothing 
it is just replaced the memory 

but 

what if
someone came to alter the bad images
with the most beautiful unexpected remembrances?

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Wednesday, May 13, 2020

PLAYLIST


Hi, everyone! 

Today marks my ninth week of self-isolation and honestly, I feel a bit sad and drained. I love meeting people, hanging out, hugging, and I love being around with people. However, this is the least I can do for the world, to stay at home. 

For some people including myself, being self-isolation can be though. Those who have been abused, traumatised, or struggling with mental illness need to go outside at some point. to distract their minds to something more positive. Although you still can go out (just keep in mind to keep your distance from people!), I understand how challenging time like this can be. 

I make a little playlist to keep my mind at ease. It helps me, I hope it helps you too. 
  1. Blue Suede Shoes - Elvis Presley
  2. Calliope - The Well Pennies 
  3. Coverage - Maya Hawke
  4. For Now - Lauv 
  5. Fresh Roses - Juke Ross 
  6. Love Me Less - MAX, Quinn XCII
  7. Lover - Taylor Swift feat. Shawn Mendes
  8. Sweet Little Lies - bülow
  9. Tomorrow's Comin' - Atticus Walker
  10. Physical - Dua Lipa

Stay safe, healthy, happy, and please stay at home! Xx 
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Saturday, May 09, 2020

BEAUTY | MAKEUP SWAKARANTINA


Hai! 

Siapa yang selama swakarantina masih tetap dandan? Aku! Pasti banyak juga kan ya yang sama kayak aku, biarpun diam di rumah tapi gemas aja ingin dandan. Buatku, makeup itu terapeutik dan isolasi mandiri bisa bikin aku merasa terkekang dan stres karena cemas nonton berita soal covid-19, belum lagi stres karena melakukan rutinitas yang diulang terus menerus di tempat yang sama selama... mungkin udah hampir 3 bulan, ya? 

Hari ini aku ingin sharing sama kalian produk lokal dan produk terjangkau yang aku suka banget dan menurutku kualitasnya bagus, gak kalah sama produk high-end! Makeup ini aku pakai kalau mau ke ruang tamu atau nonton tv-series, atau untuk nulis blog di teras sambil ditemani kucing-kucing kesayangan ;) 

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Thursday, May 07, 2020

TV-SERIES TO WATCH IN ISOLATION


It has been... how many days? I lost track of days and time now! Isolation (or quarantine, or lockdown if you will) can be tough but if you look on the brightest side, this is the perfect time to catch up some tv-series/shows you probably haven't watched yet or haven't had time to start. 

I've created a list of combination of tv-series genre for you to watch during isolation. Let me know if you have more recommendations! 

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Monday, April 27, 2020

BEAUTY | CARA MENJAGA KULIT SELAMA RAMADAN


Hi, apa kabar? 

Selama bulan Ramadan, kulit biasanya menjadi lebih kering karena tubuh kita kekurangan cairan. Kulit yang kering bisa memicu tumbuhnya jerawat karena lapisan kulit memproduksi minyak berlebih. Belum lagi saat berbuka, kita pasti tergoda untuk makan takjil dan goreng-gorengan. Aduh!

Berikut ini adalah caraku untuk menjaga agar kulitku tetap terhidrasi dan bercahaya. Semoga membantu! 

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Friday, April 24, 2020

WHY I FEEL LIKE I DON'T BELONG


Have you ever feel like you don't belong? Either with someone, some group of people, a place, a so-called home? 

For the last two years, I felt so. 

The first time I felt it was 2 years ago when I went back to Indonesia after I spent a whole beautiful year in Australia. I thought, oh maybe this is just a phase. But the feeling stayed with me for the whole year! Every time I saw a photo or a video that reminded me of a certain place or moment in Australia, my heart ached. It wasn't only the feeling of wanting to go back or relive the moment again, but also the sense of belonging. 


As if I meant to be there.

Then the feeling grew to be something more complicated which was the need to leave my current place. I was no longer feeling safe, comfortable, and belong here. As if I no longer understood or related to my country home. I felt disconnected. For the first time, I didn't see myself to spend the rest of my life in a country that I was born in, the city where my loved ones live. I didn't see myself living here anymore but I couldn't just go. I became depressed. 

Every morning, I felt like a zombie. I did what I have to do but I didn't feel alive. Months past, I came to realise, this was so wrong. I had to do something. Maybe this is about my trauma. So I did something about it, I faced my trauma. Instead of feeling free, I was thinking, now I have no 'debt' to anyone, I can go wherever I want. I'm almost home.


But... Where do I belong?

Where is my home? This is my home. I live with my family, I can see my friends anytime, I don't have to worry about language barriers or cultural politeness, I don't have to think twice when I talk. But why am I feeling this way? Is it Melbourne? Is it Australia in general? 


Back in February, I realised something. I had a deep conversation with someone that changed my perspective and the way I feel. This sense of belonging is not about a place but about finding myself. 


I found myself in Australia - I learned so much when I was trying to survive there. I was living my best and worst life at the same time. The experience in 2018 changed me entirely. I was living a life that I always wanted in Australia but I was also slowly losing myself because of the abusive relationship that I had back then. 


The idea of going back to Indonesia haunted me because that's where the abuser lived. So when I had to go back, I was so terrified that I would be losing the happiness that I had in Australia, my happy-self. I was doing the right thing in 2018 and I couldn't do the same thing again because I was barricaded with the wall of fear. 


I was trying to bring back who I was before 2018 when I went back to Indonesia. I was trying to put the old me and my old life together when I was a completely different person with a new life to live.


The sense of belonging is not about a place. It's about how you feel. It's about something you searching for. I felt belong in Australia because I was searching for my best-self there. I was experiencing a new life with new challenges. I was searching for who I wanted to be and I found and love her so dearly. Now that I have back to my country home, what am I looking for? 

It's almost like a puzzle you have to complete, those little things in life that matter the most. It is all about finding myself again. It's about facing your reality and lives the life that you have right now. It's about being who you are and what you want to do no matter where you are and whom you are with. 

I hope whoever you are and wherever you are, you always feel like you belong. 



Love, Vera
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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

BOOK | A THOUSAND PIECES OF YOU



Hi, guys! How are you doing? How's your self-quarantine? I have been self-iso for almost two months now, it's been crazy. I hope you are well!! 

I just finished this book by Claudia Gray and I have a very mix-feeling about it. It's very typical and I found myself kept asking haven't I read this story before? This book is basically every other young adult trope you can imagine - the male characters that keep protecting the female ones, the typical love triangle, the lovey-dovey type of young love. By the end of chapter 1, you can predict the ending of the book. The 15-year old self would be enjoying this book but I'm no longer into this sort of YA novel anymore. To be honest, what sold me at first was the cover. It was so beautiful!

If you are into that kind of story, this book might be entertaining for you. It still has pretty likable characters, an entertaining plot with the interdimensional time travel as the main event, and the writing is very good too. The love triangle wasn't the worst, but you know, predictable. 

Stay healthy, safe, and just stay at home. 


Love, Vera
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Tuesday, April 07, 2020

PLOT TWIST


least expected
but yet,
most enchanting of all 

oh, darling
what a beautiful plot twist you are
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Friday, April 03, 2020

PLAYLIST | BEAT THE TRAFFIC


The songs to keep me sane while I stuck in the traffic. 
  1. (You Drive Me) Crazy - Britney Spears
  2. All My Life - K-Ci & Jojo
  3. Bella Luna - Jason Mraz
  4. Bite - Troye Sivan
  5. Can't Pretend - Tom Odell
  6. Clap Your Hands - Whilk & Misky
  7. Genesis - Grimes
  8. H.D.L - Lewis Del Mar 
  9. I'm a Mess - Ed Sheeran
  10. In Your Pocket - Maroon 5
  11. I Want You Back - The Jackson 5
  12. Lowlife - That Poppy
  13. Malibu - Miley Cyrus 
  14. Riptide - Vance Joy
  15. Russian Roulette - Rihanna
  16. Stay Away - Secondhand Serenade
  17. Take Me to Church - Hozier 
  18. The Less I Know The Better - Tame Impala
  19. Truth Tea - Zolita
  20. Underdog - Alicia Keys
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Thursday, March 26, 2020

BOOK | THE SNOW CHILD


It took me almost a month to finish this book! I started on the first day of March and last night I flipped the last page. I was so surprised by how long I read this book cause this was a beautiful story! As I went to the internet to find who was Eowyn Ivey - the mind behind this book, I found that this was inspired by Russian fairytale. I never know until now. It was so magical to read! Well, I know why tho, with the pandemic and changes that came along, I also had to adjust my life to the situation that we are in. So reading a book was out of option at so many days. I hope this pandemic will be over soon! 

The Snow Child made me question the real story. Was Faina a real girl or just their imagination? I have to say, Ivey's writing style delivered a 'feel good' sense of what happened in the story and made it so easy to imagine their lives in Alaska (I've never been to Alaska before!). The description was so thorough and detailed, it awed me that someone has the ability to describe something like that without making it less interesting. 

Overall, this was a gorgeous, fun, and fascinating and a fast-paced read with a sad ending. I don't usually like sad ending, however, in this story, it was necessary to end like that. This book was no doubt a magical and classic fairytale for adults. I enjoyed every minute reading this book and I believe I will read this book again in the near future. 

How's your reading challenge going? 


Love, Vera
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Thursday, February 20, 2020

BEAUTY | WHAT'S IN MY EVERYDAY MAKEUP BAG


In day to day basis, I barely wear a lot of makeup. It's either I go with soft-glam or no-makeup makeup look, there's no in-between. Today I want to share what's inside of my everyday makeup bag, means, the no-makeup makeup look products.

I only have five products that I use every single day, they are easy to use, not too much, and most of them are drugstore products.

Pond's Instabright Glow Up Cream in Pink Crush

I love this cream because it is a multipurpose cream: it can be your moisturiser, primer, or even highlighter. Although, because I have fair skin, it doesn't work well as a highlighter. I apply this cream after I put my moisturiser and sunscreen to add more moisture to my skin. It works well as a primer, smoothing my skin nicely.

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer in Fair

It's been my favourite undereye concealer for years! It helps to cover up my dark circles, brighten the area and of course, compliments my skin tone nicely.

Maybelline Fashion Brow in Gray

Instead of using a brow pencil, I prefer to use a cream product on my brow. It creates a softer and more natural-looking look. I like how this product is very easy to use but stay on my brows all day even when I wudū three times during the day.

Tarte Amazonian Mascara

I have quite a few favourite mascaras but I realised, over the last three months, this is the only mascara I've used. I've been using this mascara since two years ago, stopped when I discovered another mascara, then I came back to it again. This mascara is beautiful. It makes my lashes look longer and have more volume. It is also not a waterproof mascara so it doesn't hurt when I remover the makeup on the evening.

Lancomê Matte Shaker in #270 Beige Vintage

This lip product is so gorgeous, I can't get over it even I've used this for almost two years now. It is moisturising my lips, creates a beautiful, soft, velvet matte colour on the lips, and it can be used as a liquid blush as well! The colour, beige vintage, specifically is so natural. I got so many compliments whenever I use this product on my lips (and as a blush as well!).

What's your must-have beauty product? 



Love, Vera
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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

BOOK | LITTLE WOMEN


As I'm doing a book challenge this year, February's book is a book that is also a movie which is perfect! In my previous post, I posted the Little Women movie review. I kinda planned everything together because believe it or not, I never read the book until now! 

So, I've finished one of the most loved books by Louisa May Alcott just a few days after I watched Gerwig's 2019 Little Women in the theatre (the movie premiered on the 7th February 2020 in Indonesia). Although I've watched Armstong's 1994 version, it is still fun to read and then watch the movie. There's always a new insight into it. 

Little Women novel is truly a masterpiece. Since its publication back in 1868, it has been described as a new kind of literature, a type of feminism and realism that's needed at the time. Even now, decades after its publication, the novel still is a literature that has to be read by everyone. 

As I kept reading, I found myself rooting for the March sisters. As they go through love and loss, they truly learn how to be little women while all they have is their mother, Marmee, because of their father off to war. 

I'm so in love with everyone here. They have reasons to do what they have to especially the March sisters. Jo is not only boyish and rebellious but also fiercely independent. Meg with the softness and kindness that filled inside her heart, make her the lady she always wanted to be. Amy who always stay true to herself and Beth who's quiet but has the loudest mind of all. I like how the four sisters represent a different type of human nature. 

This book is also underline so many things about family values which pretty rare to find in most of the modern literature. Marmee is a beautiful mum who allows her girls to do and pursue whatever they wanted to be despite what society would think about them. She encourages Jo to keep writing, Meg to follow her heart to marry someone she loves although he's not a rich man, Amy to pursue whatever she thinks the best for her, and Beth to keep playing music. She never forced them to do something for her, but the relationship she has with the girls is full of trust. In the end, the girls always put her as their priority. The kindness and love she teaches the girls eventually comes back to her. I love it so much. 

Alcott's way of writing is so poignant and elegant. It gives you an impression of how to be a normal family in 1800 and how it feels to be a woman at that time. The society only cares if a woman marries a rich man - or should I say, marry his name? So you can be wealthy and able to support your family as well. Little Women describes that very well but the characters are nothing like the society, that what makes this book is beautiful. 

However, I have a few complaints. As how the classic books go, this book also a little bit boring at times. There are some plots that I feel unnecessary to add and not exciting for the readers. I also found how perfect all characters are, especially Laurie. He's so annoyingly perfect - handsome, rich, smart, and has a beautiful heart. I want to see the characters have flaws - just like a normal human. 

Overall, I'm so in love with this book. By the end of the book, I found myself reading the last line twice, I was so satisfied but also wanted more. I highly recommend this book for everyone, despite the gender and generation, you'll find something valuable to learn from this story. You won't find a book like this anymore.


Love, Vera
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Tuesday, February 11, 2020

MOVIE | LITTLE WOMEN (2020)

Copyright Columbia Pictures
"What does Amy call you?"
"My lord."

Little Women is an adaptation (and also a remake from Armstrong's Little Women 1994) from Louisa May Alcott's masterpiece with the same title. Written and directed by the talented Greta Gerwig, this movie centred in four beautiful March sisters, Jo (Saoirse Ronan), Meg (Emma Watson), Amy (Florence Pugh), and Beth (Eliza Scanlen) who are coming of age during the aftermath of the civil war. They're surrounded by the poverty, hard times to securing work, education, and dealing with a lot of injustice toward women at that time. 

This movie came out in 2019, however, it's not arrived in Indonesia until February 7th. So it's a little bit annoying but it is what it is. It was a long wait but dear God, it's worth every second. Standing applause to Greta Gerwig for successfully bringing back one of the most loved classic movies to the cinema. 

What I love about this movie is how fun and light-hearted it is. This movie obviously has some sad aspects that meant to make you feel and understand what these characters are going through. Women at that time dealing with the status issue, because of all the society cared about was women marrying rich men, got their named and wealth so they could support their family as well. It was, of course, rough, not every woman wanted that kind of life. Some wanted to marry for love, some wanted to pursue their dreams first before making a big decision to marrying someone. That's what happened to the March sisters. They all have dreams, they're trying to make ways but life is not always as smooth as they planned.

Everyone in this movie is great! The cast is an absolute dream. The chemistry between the March sisters is undeniable. Saoirse Ronan is once again delivered a beautiful work, as well as Timotheé Chalamet as Theodore 'Laurie' Laurence who became the centre of affection for some March girls. Laura Dern as Marmee is also beautiful, and also Meryl Streep as Aunt March. Every character compliments each other. I'm so in love with everyone here. 

The cinematography in this movie is also really pretty. The colour palette coordinates with the costume and makeup really good, as well as the setting. It's time periodically accurate. Which reminds me of how the 1994 version did. There are some scenes that are really pretty and visually pleasing such as the dance scene, the wedding, and the painting scene is definitely my favourites.

My only complaint about this movie is how the timeline switches so fast and at some point it kinda blurry where we are, is it the present or the past. It keeps going back and forth like that. You can tell by how the hairstyle and the colour palette but again, sometimes it is too similar and it takes a second for you to realise where the movie is. 

Overall, this movie is truly a beautiful work of art. It plays with your emotions, at times it is a heartwarming Chrismas movie with all the warmth, goodness and kindness, the true meaning of a celebration. But, there are other times that make you hard to breathe because it's devastating and cold. 

What do you think about this movie? 

Love, Vera
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Friday, January 31, 2020

JANUARY FAVOURITE


The first month of 2020 is over! My overall impression of January is a month of balancing. I have a completely different mindset, I finally able to organise my priorities, and of course, pretty much get my shit done. 

Today I want to share my monthly favourites. I haven't done this kind of post for a while and I believe this is the year to bring back our tradition, yes? ;) 

Beauty
I only have one favourite in the beauty section which is the Bio-Oil Dry Skin Gel. This product is absolutely very unique and useful! I apply just a tiny bit on the dry patch on my face and body on the night time and voila, the next day my skin is very well moisturised! No more dry skin. 

Movie 
I have two favourite movies this month. 1917, which you can read the full review here, and UnderwaterI just watched Underwater at the cinema recently and I really like how this movie told the story about underwater creatures, how the people survived through bad things that kept happening. It's pretty entertaining, a little bit scary at some point. 

TV Series 
This month, I watched a really good amount of series actually. In the other note, I had so much free time (or lack of sleep?). My favourite shows this month are The Good Doctor (ABC). I know, I kinda late on the game but I literally binge-watching the first two seasons within one week and I'm not mad about it. This series is so good! Another series that I truly enjoyed this month is Dracula (Netflix). This limited series is so scary but good, I have mixed feeling about it. Not only it is scary but also gore (that kind of genre that I hate the most). 

Music 
I've been really into Florence+The Machine this month. I always like her music but I don't know, her music is literally my vibe this month. The most frequent album that I listened to is High as Hope (2018). So beautiful! 

App
One of my 2020 resolutions is to meditate more. I have a few favourite meditation apps, Headspace, Calm, and Mindfulness. I try to meditate twice a day, in the morning and before I go to bed. For my morning meditation, I'm switching between Headspace and Mindfulness. As for my night meditation, I prefer Calm because I can choose the sleep meditation as well and they offer good options.


What are you looking forward to the next month? 


Love, Vera
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Wednesday, January 29, 2020

MOVIE | 1917 (2020)

Copyright Universal Pictures
The story about World War I seems never finished. There's always more behind the story, more behind the story's story and so go on. Like most of the war movies, 1917 did not focus on characters, it focused on the tale, on how it told and how it received. Back in 2017, Christoper Nolan's Dunkirk came out and that was the first movie about war that I did not flinch a bit. Although Dunkirk told the story about WW II, both movie has a similar storytelling wise. The filmmakers wanted us to be emotionally there without attaching our feelings to one or two characters. 

I'm so amazed with the cinematography in this movie! 

Sam Mendes' Spectre memorable opening scene was a legit success. That opening scene was so beautifully shot that the audience believed it was one shot. In 1917, most of the scenes are that tracking shot. That kind of camera work made the audience felt like playing video games because most of the time we were behind someone's back. It worked. 1917 has nevertheless the most beautiful cinematography in war movie theme. The colour palette, the camera work, the movement, even the close-up, everything was perfect. It was done beautifully that I was very sure it was shot one time only until I watched the behind the scenes video. If Mendes did not get enough appreciation for this kind of cinematography, I honestly lost faith in what so-told movie lovers wanted. 

Story-wise, 1917 reminded me of Spielberg's Saving Private Ryan. The way sets of corporals, Schofield (MacKay) and Blake (Chapman), searching for a brother, in a special quest to save a thousand lives. Either way, I love how 1917 did not let us attach to characters longer. I love a war movie that purely tells the truth (I guess we never know) about what actually happened, gives us insight on how the soldiers cope up with the emotional issue, how the battlefield looks like. 1917 gave you a simple storyline with heaps of troubles on the way. 1917 was dense with the atmosphere. Every time they stepped on a new place, I felt so uneasy and scared for them, there was always something went wrong. 

Thomas Newman's score was also providing more intensity and story to the plot, an eerie yet beautiful back sounds, the sound mixing for the sound of water, wind, leaves, and branches. Everything was born ready to give you an insight of battlefield horror. Music plays a fairly important role in a movie - there was always that one noise that ruined the entire atmosphere of the movie, however I did not find a single flaw in this movie. The story, the cinematography, the music, the acting, and directing, they complimented one another and that made a beautiful movie to watch. 

Sam Mendes' 1917 reminded you of every single war movie that you've ever watched but thousand times better. It is an astonishing film with a simple storyline. 1917 felt like wasn't a movie but an experience. 


Love, Vera
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Sunday, January 26, 2020

PLAYLIST | THE READING NOOK


Songs that keep me company while I sit and read on my favourite nook. 
  1. Arc - Yoste
  2. Be Free - MALFNKTION, Zoya
  3. Howl - Yoste
  4. On That Day - Ásgeir
  5. Leanonyou - Jairus Joseph Kersey
  6. Lover - Taylor Swift, Shawn Mendes
  7. Love Song - Lana Del Rey
  8. Palladio - Escala
  9. Runner - From Indian Lakes
  10. Zala - Pataki Gisella 
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Sunday, January 19, 2020

BOOK | THE BLACK DAHLIA


Hi! 

I will be, hopefully, post a book review every month as Zain and I do the 2020 Reading Challenge together. I also think this is great because the last two years have been bad for me, I didn't read as much as I usually do. One book a month should be alright, yeah? 

I love reading (and buying) books but one of my 2020 resolutions is to be more sustainable so I purchased the e-book instead. Honestly, it's been a strange experienced to start reading e-book again. I love the smell of a new book and flip from one page to another.  So having to slide onto the next page is really not my tea. However, I have to stop being selfish and think about the environment so here I am. 

This month's theme is a book with a colour in the title. Of course, I choose The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy. It has been on my reading list for so long but I haven't had time to find the book yet. 

I started this book right on the first day of January and I finally finished the book on the 16th. It took a little bit faster than I expected as The Black Dahlia is such a deep, complicated story to read on. I also didn't read this book religiously because of some errands that I had to do, appointments, and such. But I'm glad I finally finished it. 
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