200 followers celebration- thank you.

engaged!

We’re always being asked to calculate. Calculate things.

Things like our happiness, for example. We shouldn’t base it on items or anything tangible, but on experiences, and people, as the exception. Or our value as people. That’s a big one too, isn’t it?

How many times have you been told to stop basing your worth on your success, or your looks, or anything fleeting or uncertain?

These are reflections of our deepest fears, and ways we try and go about answering our biggest questions: can I be loved? Am I enough?

I started out as a blogger three years ago. Yes, I’ve had this site for a long time, but I couldn’t work out what I wanted to do with it, or whether it was even possible for me to create something that people will want to come back to. Because honestly, a like button means nothing. I’d rather have genuine, real life likes. That’s what infinitelyadaydreamer is about: growth, humour, and story telling. I am so blessed to be able to create and share my words with you. I’ve learnt a lot about myself through this period of evolution, and I can say with 100% certainty that if I could, I’d lap life up and just keep going. But small milestones are great too, and they’re reminders to never stop pursuing what makes us truly happy.

So this is a big thank you to 202 (!!) people who cared enough to make my blogging journey theirs too, and also to the countless others who read my posts/ liked/ commented. You all have a special place in my heart, and I cannot express how grateful I am for everything. Your encouraging words and the priceless friendships I’ve made on this site.

This is what I calculate my worth in now.

Anything and everything that adds to me as a person, and blooms with me.

Not numbers, or likes, or views.

But they’re nice too.

๐Ÿ˜…

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Vegetarianism: I want to transform my life.

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Hello beautiful people!

As the title of this post suggests, I am now following a plant based diet, devoid of animal products. ๐Ÿฅ—

I want to start off this post by saying that while I have no qualms about sharing my vegetarian journey with such a supportive community, I am vaguely nervous about doing so as not everybody has received my news so well. One person, really. But that’s alright! This lifestyle isn’t for everybody, and that’s perfectly fine. In no way am I criticising anybody in this post. โค

You do you boo!

At this point, I feel a bit silly even making an announcement like this as I’ve only tried started following vegetarian rules for two days. I first started off vegan, because I felt it would be better to just go the whole way instead of being a vegetarian and still consuming some animal products. (Butter, milk etc.) I do understand that everything is a process though, and a life change like this will take some getting used to as I’m so familiar with an everything diet. I actually follow Islamic guidelines regarding food too, so I’m grateful for that as it’s definitely helped with transitioning as I can’t eat meat products in some restaurants and cafes as they’re unhalal.

A lot of theย  thinking behind my decision came from an offhand comment where my mum told me that she could see me following a vegetarian diet at some point in my life as I’m really compassionate and aware of the world around me. I took this with a grain of salt at first, because I’m that person.

I have said things like “vegetarian? no way! What a boring life.”

But.

Maybe I was wrong. I must’ve been, because I’m taking this seriously. I want to lead a more compassionate life that’s in touch with my morals and beliefs, and that I stand behind one hundred percent. I’ve struggled with bad body image and eating issues for a while now, and that’s part of my reason for wanting to go ahead with this. Not the main reason, that’s animal welfare, but one of my reasons. I think this will help me to stop being scared of what I eat, and start embracing what happens when worries fall away and only pure happiness is left.

So far, I’ve watched a documentary on veganism. It showed a lot of behind the scenes footage on how our food is really brought to us, and even though I was aware before of the practices, it felt so real to me this time. It really hit home. I’m hoping to make this my next stopping point. It’s hard at the moment as this announcement is a bit of a bomb that I’ve dropped, and there’s not a whole lot of food for vegan recipes at home ๐Ÿ˜‚ I did however make mini vegan cheesecake bites, and they were pretty yummy! My whole family tried them, and even my brother liked them. He’s seven and vaguely fussy, so I wasn’t sure if he would but I was pleasantly surprised by his reaction.

Right now, what I’m doing, it feels good. I feel good. Better than I have in a very long time.

[Also, this is a bit random, but I’ve just released a new video! Get in first and be amongst my most dedicated viewers ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜Šย The video has actually embedded itself below, but I’d love it if you could check out my channel.ย click here beautiful!

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Vegelicious magenta sushi ๐Ÿ˜

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VEGELICIOUS MAGENTA SUSHI!

If you exclusively ate food featured here on the frankie blog, you probably wouldnโ€™t be doing that great in the health department, what with our relentless posting of bickies and cakes. So itโ€™s probably high time we shared something truly healthy โ€“ and this magenta-hued sushi is about as nutritious as nosh gets. Dyed pink from beetroot juice, these rice rolls are chock full of various veggies and a bit of fruit, too. Pop over toย Random Acts of Pastelย to check out the recipe, which includes instructions for whipping up your very own wasabi.

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Pink Magic Sushi Recipe- Taken fromย http://randomactsofpastel.com/pink-sushi-with-juniper-wood-kitchen/

Makes 4-6 rolls

Ingredients:

โ€“ 2 cups organic sushi rice

โ€“ 2 ยผ cups filtered water

โ€“ 2 TBSP fresh beet juice

โ€“ ยฝ TBSP all natural rice vinegar

โ€“ 1/ tsp coconut sugar

โ€“ ยผ tsp fine sea salt

โ€“ 4-6 nori sheets

Filling ideas:

โ€“ Purple yam or sweet potatoes

โ€“ Radish

โ€“ Cucumber

โ€“ Mango

โ€“ Avocado

โ€“ Enoki mushrooms

Avocado wasabi whip

โ€“ 1 avocado

โ€“ ยผ tsp rice vinegar

โ€“ natural wasabi powder to taste (we used ยผ tsp)

Procedure:

1. Rinse rice under cold running water until it runs clear. This removed the starch so its better to not skip this step.

2. Put the rice in the pot and cover with just a little more water than rice. For 2 cups of dry rice we used a little less than 2 ยผ cups water (about a ยผโ€ of water to cover the rice in the pot).

3. Turn the heat to max and bring to a boil, occasionally stirring. Once it comes to a boil stop stirring, turn the heat to minimum and cover with a lid.

4. Check the rice in 6-8 minutes to see if all of the water has been absorbed. Tilt the pot to see if any water is sitting on the bottom. When the water is absorbed remove from heat right away to prevent over cooking the rice at the bottom.

5. Using only a wooden spoon, remove the rice from the pot carefully into a wooden or plastic bowl (metal will alter the taste of the rice vinegar we are about to use).

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6. While the rice is still hot add ยฝ TBSP rice vinegar, ยฝ tsp coconut sugar and pinch of sea salt. Fold the rice several times to evenly coat and distribute the ingredients. Next, drizzle 1 to 2 TBSP beet juice all over the rice depending on how deep you want the hue. Fold the rice as opposed to a stirring motion. Cover with a tea towel and let the rice cool at room temperature before rolling.

7. While the rice is cooling, cut your toppings and set up your rolling station. Have a bowl of water for dipping your hands into as you are handling the rice to keep it from sticking to your fingers. Cover your rolling mat with a large freezer bag or plastic wrap if you want an inside out maki roll (the rice on the outside of the roll). The cucumber, radish, and mango are best sliced into long matchsticks. The yams and avocados should be about the thickness of a finger.

8. With wet hands, spread the rice out onto the plastic covered rolling mat โ€“ donโ€™t make the layer too thick or the rolls will be too big. Try to keep it at a single layer of rice (about ยผโ€ thick). When itโ€™s even and slightly longer than your nori paper you can pat the nori down onto the rice. Fill with your fave toppings lengthwise in the middle. When you are ready to roll, wet the top edge of the nori (furthest edge from you) and carefully roll towards it using the bamboo mat as a guide and trying to keep it tight so you donโ€™t end up with rolls that fall apart.

[Hereโ€™s aย videoย you can reference for sushi rolling techniques]

9. If you prefer traditional maki rolls with the nori paper on the outside just use the rolling mat without the plastic, put the nori down, rice down then toppings and roll.

10. Now you can prepare the avocado wasabi whip. Combine avocado, rice vinegar and wasabi powder in a small food processor or high speed blender to create a fluffy whip. Blend until smooth and light. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes to let the wasabi spiciness develop.

[Serve with gluten free organic Tamari, Avocado wasabi whip and pickled ginger.]

** If you want to make your own pink pickled ginger; thinly slice the ginger and place in an airtight container along with rice vinegar and a few drops of the beet juice. Let sit in fridge overnight or at least a few hours so the colour and vinegar absorbs.

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Awesome repost, right? When I saw this on the frankie newsletter, I knew I just had to share it with you all.

Do you like sushi? Would you try this recipe out? Is it not the cutest, most aesthetic dish you’ve ever seen?

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A letter to my younger self ๐Ÿ’“

Dear 12 year old Maryam:

We both know about your extreme love/hate relationship with primary school, due to some unfortunate changes over the years. Well, let me tell you: you’re in year eight, nearly nine now, and you’re wishing you could go back. Who doesn’t, I mean, wish they could be younger and redo periods of their lives?

It’s two years later, 8:09 pm, and you’re sitting in an uncomfortable chair at your brother’s yearly presentation evening. You’re getting sudden flashbacks. That time in year six (five?) where you were picked to go on a harmony day excursion, and they sung that song. We are one, but we are many.

Yes. You’d be surprised how much that can stick in your head. You’re funny like that, younger Maryam. You’re not very funny in other ways (you’re a late bloomer in terms of a sense of humour) but you will be one day. These are random, the things you remember. They have nothing in common, zilch- except for the fact that they are good. Good.

Just like you.

You are a good thing, sweetheart, and you deserve to be here with your own little space on this planet, making your mark.

And you do that well, when you are surrounded by love and kindness. You’re like a rose- naked, exposed and vulnerable as you bud, blooming into something spectacular. Your petals are experiences.

I can think of one of these now, little darling. That time in year six when your friends convinced you to try out for school captain. They were so positive, even when you were scared out of your mind. You thought it would be easier to just be part of the crowd, another faceless nameless person. Because standing up meant you could be seen. It meant you were in the spotlight, and you didn’t always like that. You were scared of being shamed, of being made fun of.

And it turned out to be a pretty good speech. Sure, you might’ve had a little help here and there, but it was all you, really.

You didn’t quite get the role you wanted, but you became a prefect. Of course, you already know this.

That was a hard year for you. Your mental health wasn’t optimal and you were sad, deeply sad but you pushed past that. You stressed too, like you stress now about year nine next year. You tell yourself that your precious challenges were nothing compared to what you face now, but I feel you, little Maryam- I know it’s hard. I know you want to give up sometimes. But listen.

Breathe.

You’re a rose in a garden. Beautiful to look at, but not without flaws and intricacies. Not all of your experiences were positive, but your growth was. You grew to have such a loving, thankful heart. And that’s because of you, younger me. Your petals fell when they were meant to, but they were in abundance- coming and coming.

If I could give you any advice, it would be this: Stimulate your mind, body and spirit. Love from the depths of your heart, and open yourself up to that same love. Cherish time. Every second. You are not insignificant. Respect, always. Seek what sets your soul on fire. Write lengthy, beautiful stories on share them with the people you love. Let faraway places show you the wonders of being alive. Be inspired by the the poetry worthy world you live in, and do not ever use the words ‘ordinary’ or ‘bored.’ Root for yourself.

And, most importantly, pick as many flowers as you like for a head start on your future collection. Don’t get caught!

Love,

You. [affectionately known as the double rainbow. ๐ŸŒˆ๐ŸŒˆ]

Stories through poetry~

Hi everybody!

I apologise for not having a blog post published earlier for you, but it’s my birthday weekend [quite busy, highly chaotic, a very good adventure] and I just haven’t found the time. When I got back from school on Friday, the only thing I wanted to do was rest- even though I’ve been sick for the three days out of the five day school week, it’s the lead up to the end year holidays, and there’s more going on than I can keep up with.

My plans for today are fairly simple. I’m with my dad and brother because my mum is at my grandparents house in the โ›ฐ trying to get some work done. We’re going to find a nice park or ๐Ÿ– area to enjoy the day in, and then we’ll eat out- current plan is a Lebanese restaurant- and get ๐Ÿฉ after!

Anyway, that’s enough about me..

I’ve been wanting to share some poetry that I wrote with all of you.

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The first is from a while back, inspired by the lovely book ‘Where Dandelions Grow’ by Lydia Howe. My aim when writing this poem was to explore the theme of beauty and growth in the everyday world, and give an insight into just how imperfectly perfect yet curated nature is.

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Tell me weeds aren’t of value

Thriving on the heat of a warm bountiful sun

legging it through winter,

a small bud quivering in the cold

Blossoming during the seasons of change

Time a sculptor

of unnoticed

masterpieces

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My second poem is about yearning for new experiences and the unexpected. “Taking up space.” For instance, has negative connotations, but not in this instance. I’ve been feeling restless, I guess, lately. Eager to be in so many different places and leave parts of myself in those places, but still be whole.

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My heart yearns

To take up space

Longing in every beat

To Fill every inch of unexplored world

Simultaneously

Divide and conquer

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November PaperGang Box: Battersea Cats and Dogs home

Hey gorgeous people!

I hope you’re having a good day so far. I’ve been sick the last couple of days so I didn’t really have any plans for blog posts, so this lovely stationery box came just in time! You might remember that I did one of these posts on a previous box a couple of months ago. I’m just going to be sharing some photos but also talk a little about what I like in the box.

If you’re interested in signing up (which I highly recommend if you’re into cute stationery and surprises) then you can go to this page for more information:ย http://papergang.ohhdeer.com/subscribe/871225089_Papergang+%28NS%3A+SQ4351175%29

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This is the lovely box that arrived this morning- the packaging is always very cute, and I was especially impressed that it was delivered to me in perfect condition. Each month, a new designer works on items they’d like to include. November’s designer was Allison Black. She worked on Cat and Dog/Christmas themed items. The best part about this box is that part of the money from sales go to the Battersea home for Cats and Dogs, and that’s something I have no qualms about supporting. โคโค

I like how they include the boxes’ journey here, as per se. We often forget about all the people and processes that are involved and get our orders to us on time and with everything we’ve requested.

I always try to share pictures of my unboxing on Instagram, and also here, on my blog, so I can support PaperGang, and also because it’s fun! You all know that I’m into photography at the moment.

Here’s a sneak peek into the author interview.. I read this first when I opened up my box- for every month, they include a little booklet that tells you about the designer and answers questions. It’s really cool to be able to get to know the person a bit more while also owning something they’ve designed. For example, In the box, I got a Pug christmas card (pictured below), and if you refer to the ‘What was your favourite product to design in the box’ question, it feels a lot more personal than just a bunch of stationery.

And here’s the last photo that I took! At the top the box, there was a little bit of red and white twine which I arranged into the shape of a heart. It’s so cute! All the products are of a really high quality, and a lot of love goes into making them. It’s practical too- Christmas is coming up, and we need items like wrapping paper and cards.

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Anyway, I hope you liked this post! I’d love to rant a bit longer but I have writing to do- only one more day till NaNo ends, and I’m not quite finished. Eek! ๐Ÿ˜‚

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What I’ve been doing lately.. + sneak peek into Brooke Jade’s November Photo-A-Day contest ๐Ÿ’›

Hey everybody!

This is just a warning that I will not be posting anything long today as I am completely and utterly busy (and also haven’t been getting much sleep at all lately, and I must change that and go to bed early. ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚)

But for the sake of my blog not dying, and also because I will miss all you lovely people, here’s a short summary of what I’ve been up to lately!

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1. YouTube!!

No, I’m not going to rant about how great my channel is-ย click here children!

But um yeah.

I kept my promise and a new video is out.. or will be out. Very soon. I did my whole theories video and ended up getting so involved in it that thirty minutes went by and I was still blabbering on. So much for making a nice, short video. But it’s okay- I guess, think of it as a thank you for having to deal with me and my very short minute photography videos.

Just a word of warning: if you ever personally feel the need to film very long videos, expect to wait daaaays for anything to upload. Seriously. My video is currently processing at 19% and my patience levels are just dropping very quickly. Anyway, you can expect that to be up soon!

I expect to see all of you fangirling over how amazing I am and how I make such great videos.

T o t a l l yย  k i d d i n g.

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2. It’s my birthday soon.. and I’m having a party!

Yes, I know it will be epic.

I am having a party for my 14th Birthday this weekend and the theme is fiesta!

There will be a prize for the person who is most colourful and fits the theme the best. My best friend Alyssia and I were actually scrolling through Pinterest party ideas, and that’s where I got all my inspiration from. Friends are just the best.

I like, have a personal party planner, and it’s the best. You can be damn sure that the big day will involve everything I love most- the people, the food, the cactus, the unicorns, you name it.

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3. The summer holidays.. freedom, joy and Instagram ๐Ÿ’œ

90% of my friends have Instagram now, and I couldn’t be happier.

While I do think that constant posting and social media related worries are depressing as hell, I also find that if you do it right, you can find jealousy free inspiration in the ways that others lead their lives. At some point, I used to follow a whole bunch of random people that I didn’t know, but now I only follow accounts that I’m genuinely interested in. I’ve also changed my old theme and now only post my own photos.

You can find me @ soulfeels

My account is all about good vibes and a happy lifestyle, so if that’s your thing too, come visit!

Oh, and yes, it’s nearly the summer holidays! I’ve got three weeks to go until we break up, and I am no longer in 8th grade. It feels like the time flies by so fast, but it still really drags at times. I’m just trying to make the most of everything I can at the moment and just enjoy myself. For once, I am grateful that our school starts exams early in the term so we can chill out and enjoy the end of term.

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4. NaNoWriMo (:

I don’t know why I put that smile there. Maybe to trick myself into believing that NaNo is a nice, innocent little cherubic angel when really it is the devil. I don’t know why I thought I’d be able to write 20,000 words, let alone 50,000 in a month. It’s the 22nd of November, and I’m about 4,000 words behind my target goal of 14,000.

Even though I’m not getting a huge amount of time to write, especially at home, I often find myself just sitting down in Home group and finishing off parts of my story. I enjoy those couple of moments where inspiration is like a flowing river. I’m a real pantser, in terms of writing. I don’t like to plan, I just go with how I’m feeling and spread my intended message.

If you didn’t read my last post on my NaNo novel, I’m writing about violence, racial inequality and issues like divorce and death of a loved one. It is definitely a challenge, incorporating so many meaningful themes, but I’m loving the process.

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5. Last of all.. the photo contest!

To end this post, here’s a sneak peek into a little contest I’m participating in- It’s hosted by a fellow teen blogger, Brooke Jade, and here’s a link if you’re interested and love photography. (Be quick though, this is a November post!)

Click here!

I will be posting all of my photos by the end of this month, but here are some of my favourites..

 

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Thanks for reading- Happy Wednesday!ย 

I’m feeling random today. Are your ears pierced? What do you eat for breakfast? Know any vegans? Do you know what Kawaii means?

 

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