10 Inspirational Quotes by Women

Some of you may not know this, but March is Women’s History Month! This month is meant to celebrate and draw attention to the contributions of women throughout history, a primarily overlooked component of our shared history. It also perfectly aligns with International Women’s Day, which is celebrated on March 8 every year and has been ever since the 1910 International Socialist Women’s Conference.

Since this Friday is International Women’s Day, I thought I’d do my own celebrating through a week (well, four days - I had a pre-scheduled review on Monday!) of posts related to women. For my first post, I wanted to share 10 of my favourite quotes by women, from either distant or near history. These women are often noted as being “powerful” women, although I think it must be said that all women are powerful. These are just the ones who history has noted, though so many stories and influential figures have been left to slip through the cracks over time. With each of the quotes, I’ve put a little sentence or two about the woman who was quoted, so that maybe you might learn something new about women in history today that might just encourage you to look deeper into the lives of these fascinating women!

* * *

“I ask no favour for my sex; all I ask of our brethren is that they take their feet off our necks.” - Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg (b. 1933) is currently serving as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. As one of few women in her class, she attended first Harvard University and then Columbia University for law school, where she graduated first in her class. Her career has been marked by significant advocacy for the rights and equality of women, perhaps most controversially supporting abortion rights in a time where abortions were particularly scandalized. She has been a justice on the Supreme Court since 1993.

“The first problem for all of us, men and women, is not to learn, but to unlearn. We are filled with the popular wisdom of several centuries just past, and we are terrified to give it up.” - Gloria Steinem

Gloria Steinem (b. 1934) is a journalist, feminist, and activist who has spent the majority of her life on the road. Creator of the liberal feminist magazine, Ms., she has spent her career actively fighting for gender equality, travelling across the nation in order to speak to and learn from a wide variety of American groups. She has also been involved in a number of political campaigns, from the late 1960s onwards.

“Here’s what I think. Feminism is not here to dictate to you. It’s not prescriptive, it’s not dogmatic. All we are here to do is give you a choice.” - Emma Watson

Emma Watson (b. 1990) is mostly known for her decade-long role as young witch Hermione Granger in the popular Harry Potter movie series. After filming the final instalment of the series, she continued her education at Brown University where she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English Literature. She has since been appointed a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, has travelled globally to promote education for girls, and has spoken at the UN Headquarters to launch the HeForShe campaign.

“I do not wish [women] to have power over men; but over themselves.” - Mary Wollstonecraft

Mary Wollstonecraft (1759 - 1797) was an English writer and early women’s rights advocate. Her most well known work is her feminist writing, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792) in which she opposed the presumption that women have a natural inferiority to men. This position was extremely controversial in an era where women had prescribed roles in society which placed them below men. She was also mother to Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, author of the Gothic novel Frankenstein (1818) and another boundary-pushing woman of her time.

“No struggle can ever succeed without women participating side by side with men. There are two powers in the world; one is the sword and the other is the pen. There is a third power stronger than both, that of women.” - Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai (b. 1997) is a Pakistani woman who is an activist for education of girls. In 2012, while on a bus after an exam, Malala was shot in an assassination attempt by a Taliban gunman who opposed her activism. Although she was hit in the head with a bullet, she recovered fully and now continues her activist work, despite further threats from the Taliban. She has since written a bestselling memoir called I Am Malala and in 2014, she became the youngest Noble Peace Prize laureate at 17 years old.

“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me; I am a free human being with an independent will, which I now exert to leave you.” - Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre

Charlotte Brontë (1816 - 1855) was an English novelist and a third of the famous Brontë sisters. Charlotte lived a short life plagued with tragedy - she watched her sisters pass away before succumbing to a pregnancy-related illness herself. While she wasn’t outspoken about women’s rights or equality, her famous novel Jane Eyre was driven by progressive ideas, such as the right for women to have an occupation and inner beauty. This quote from Jane Eyre is quite personal to me, and I think it really embodies women’s independence.

“I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.” - Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou (1928 - 2014) was an American poet and civil rights activist. Her work, particularly her autobiographies, have raised awareness of racism and sexism, through her own experiences of both throughout her lifetime. In 1993, she became the first female poet (and second poet ever) to recite poetry at an inauguration of a president. Her writings displayed the importance of intersectionality - she was not a feminist, nor a civil rights activist, but rather a combination of both.

“Because I am a woman, I must make unusual efforts to succeed. If I fail, no one will say, ‘She doesn’t have what it takes.’ They will say, ‘Women don’t have what it takes.’” - Clare Boothe Luce

Clare Boothe Luce (1903 - 1987) was an American author and politician who was the first woman to be appointed as a U.S. Ambassador to another country. While she was not entirely feminist in her thinking, expressed most prominently through her belief that all women must marry and have children, her determination in progressing in her career, despite possible discrimination against her gender, made her a strong female role model in that sense.

“I hate to hear you talk about all women as if they were fine ladies instead of rational creatures. None of us want to be in calm waters all our lives.” - Jane Austen, Persuasion

Jane Austen (1775 - 1817) was an English novelist who wrote six main completed novels in her lifetime, two of which were published posthumously. Her novels analyzed and critiqued the English landed gentry, as well as place importance on a marriage for love rather than marriage for financial purposes. In her novels, she portrays women as being strong, independent and often courageous, which has led many scholars to view her writing as early feminism.

“I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own.” - Audre Lorde

Audre Lorde (1934 - 1992) was an American writer, feminist, and civil rights activist. Throughout her career, she brought issues of race, sexuality, and gender to light through her writing, most specifically her poetry. She simultaneously attended Hunter College and worked to fund her education, and then after her graduation in 1959, she got her master’s degree in library science at Columbia University.

2018 Goals

img_1012.jpg

I don't believe in New Year's Resolutions. I feel like every year, we create these expectations for ourselves that we make ourselves feel horrible for when we don't stick with them. However, I definitely believe in writing out a few things I'd like to try to accomplish with the span of the year. For me, goal-setting can be really beneficial to my overall success so, here are the goals I'm setting for myself this year.

Create - and stick to - a TBR list

Oddly enough, considering how often I read and how much I enjoy it, I've never actually prepared a proper TBR list. Weird, right? I'm the kind of person to buy a new book I want to read, then put it on my evergrowing pile of unread books and reread the Harry Potter series for the billionth time instead. But not this year. I've already gone ahead and created my first-draft TBR list - which I'm sure will be added to once my favourite authors start to release new novels!

Declutter my wardrobe

It's time. It's time to say goodbye to the fraying, stretched-out pair of jeans I wear way too often and should've tossed months ago. It's time to part ways with the terribly worn out sweater I've owned since I was fourteen. I always hate to go through my wardrobe and declutter, as I hold onto everything because of sentimental value. But since I moved, my closet space is a third of what I used to have and now I have to share the space with my boyfriend - so it's time. Luckily, there are some things that I don't need that are still in good shape that someone else might need that I will be donating.

Reading challenge

This year, I'm challenging myself to read 50 books. Yes, you read that right. Fifty. Five zero. It seems crazy, I know, but I think I can do it! Goodreads allows you to set a goal and then once you record the books you've finished on the app or site, they add that book to your goal. I did this reading challenge for the first time last year and exceeded my goal of 17 with ease. This year, I'm up for a real challenge.

Rediscovering my creativity

This last year was a bit of a dud for me when it comes to writing. I had my heart set on making major progress on my novel, but it never happened. I was feeling a complete lack of inspiration. So, this year, I'm ready for a new creativity boost. I am convinced that comes from broadening my horizons. That means new spaces for writing, new adventures, and new experiences.

Respect the skin

The first half of last year, I did not stick to a skincare routine at all. I treated my skin like crap, if I'm honest. I finally started to treat my skin with some respect in the last few months of 2017 and I could almost immediately see the difference - my acne was disappearing and my stubborn acne scars have almost vanished. I've definitely learned my lesson. I'm carrying this skincare routine on over to 2018 and sticking to it for good.

1 Second Everyday

I am a big fan of the 1 Second Everyday app. I think it's a really cool idea. If you've never heard of it, it's an app where you take a one-second-long video every day and then you can put the videos into a compilation - pretty explanatory, right? I first heard of it from Zoella on Twitter about a year ago (who has since posted a video from 1 Second Everyday to show her year of being twenty-six). I'm determined to post a second every day for the entire year!

Focus on my health

I have the worst immune system. Ever. It's honestly awful. I've always had a poor immune system and this year, I'm going to be taking steps towards improving my that as well as my overall health. It's time to def get my health into check!

Happy New Year's to all!

Felicia x

Reflecting on 2017

Happy New Year everybody!!

2017 is officially behind us. Hasta la vista! My final year of being a teen is gone. Yikes.

Every year, as a new year is upon me, I like to reflect on the past year. It's always good to reflect on the good times, even the bad ones, before you move on. I thought I'd share some of my favourite and some of my not-so-favourite moments of 2017 with you guys!

IMG_5752.JPG

Moving House

The first half of this year was a total whirlwind. It was full of moving boxes, tape guns, and bubble wrap as my family prepared to move out of the home I grew up in. The move was a huge adjustment. Moving from your childhood home is rough, I can definitely say that with certainty haha. I was pretty uneasy about the idea of leaving my house, my hometown, and the life I was so familiar with. But, in the end, moving away was an amazing decision for myself and for my family. It introduced me to a town that I absolutely adore! And I’m so in love with my house. It’s been a crazy, exciting experience all around.

IMG_2051.jpeg

New York City

New York City. Wow. It’s one of my favourite cities in the whole world. Back in 2009, I visited for the first time and fell head over heels in love with the city. And ever since my last trip in 2010, I’ve been dying to return. This spring, my family finally booked another trip back but this time, we brought along my boyfriend, a NYC newbie! I was so thrilled to be back in New York City, especially since I’d be seeing the city with my boyfriend and seeing him experience the Big Apple for the very first time! Fun Fact: When I was about 12 or 13, I actually looked into attending NYU because I was so obsessed with the idea of living in the city! (Spoiler alert: it’s a lot of money lol)

Read about my travels: here, here, here, and here

30158656_Unknown.JPG

Nashville

One of the highlights of the year was definitely our visit to Nashville! I’d never been to Nashville before and neither had my mum, and although we were only in the city for a day, it was wonderful! For me, visiting the Johnny Cash Museum was a dream come true (in fact, it was why we chose to do this quick trip into Music City). I love Johnny Cash and June Carter - their music is basically the soundtrack to my life these days. Getting to learn more about the Man in Black and the love of his life was so incredible and one of my favourite things I’ve ever gotten to do!

IMG_6679.JPG

Disney World

Of course, Disney has been a huge part of my year, just like it has been every other year! I think my love for Disney grew even larger this year. If that’s even possible! I have a newfound admiration for the parks, the resort, and all things Disney-related. This is probably partially because for the first time in nearly a decade, I got to stay on-property at Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter! It was mine and my boyfriend’s first-ever trip alone together as a couple which was so exciting. It was loads of fun to show him around as his family never stayed on property and together, we got to experience all the things about staying at the resorts that I loved so much as a kid. We’re already saving up for our trip in 2018!

Friends & Family

This year, my relationships with my friends and family have become so much closer and so important to me. When you’re struggling with mental illness, as I have been, it can be so hard to keep up with everyone you love as you’re constantly feeling blah. But my friends have been so amazing this past year. They’re the kind of friends you know will be with you through thick and thin - you always know they’re by your side, no matter what. I’m so grateful for everyone, but especially my parents and my boyfriend. I honestly don’t know what the hell I’d do without them!

I am so eager to see what 2018 has in store for me. I'm not a firm believer in resolutions - in fact, I hardly believe in them at all - but I definitely have a few things I'm going to hold myself to in the new year, which I look forward to sharing with you all!

I hope you all have a very fun, very safe New Year's Eve. I'll talk to you very soon!!

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Pre-Christmas Mayhem

img_0409.jpg

I'm so very sorry that this post is up late! I'd meant to have it out last night but it just wasn't meant to be. I've had such a crazy week, I just ran out of time! But better late than never, I always say!

  • Christmas is so close!! Good gracious. December goes by in the blink of an eye, doesn't it? I feel like I've a million things left to do. Christmas time seems to be largely about being busy for me haha

  • I've finally seen Star Wars: The Last Jedi!! The four of us (my parents, my bf, and I) went out to see it at the VIP theatre on Tuesday because tickets were super cheap and we love to have a ~special~ drink with our film haha. Leading up to seeing this film, we rewatched the original 3 films plus The Force Awakens, so we were pumped. Despite mixed reviews, we all really really enjoyed it! I thought they did a good job at staying true to the Star Wars storyline, without seeming so repetitive. I also liked that there were some humorous bits, like the first bit of the film (I won't say what it was for the sake of those who haven't seen it yet!).

  • My boyfriend and I had a lovely dinner with his parents to celebrate Christmas in the middle of this past week. We decided to meet at a restaurant about 40 mins away from my house and exchange gifts. We had a great time, and I was very spoiled by Steven's parents as they gifted me a super cute Roots poncho with a huge loose turtleneck (which I love) and a pair of adorable slipper booties!

  • I'm loving the snow. As I've mentioned, I'm all for a white Christmas. I had a bit of a worry at the beginning/middle of this week as the snow completely melted away. Like, I'm talking most of the snow was gone. I was so bummed out, I was hoping for a miracle at that point. And then it happened! Thursday night, the snow came and there is now a fresh blanket of beautiful white snow on my town. I'm major heart-eyes right now.

  • My grandma came by later in the week to celebrate Christmas with my family, which was so nice as we haven't seen her as often now that she no longer lives with us. Since my boyfriend had to leave the next day to spend the weekend at home with his own family, we decided to exchange our gifts on that night - and my parents were so lovely as they did not only a stocking for me but also one for my boyfriend to carry on one of my favourite traditions to us. Some of my favourite bits from the stocking were the Too Faced Lip Injection Glossy in 'Milkshake', the heavenly Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter, and afelt pennantwith my university name on it, which I've always wanted. My boyfriend spoiled me rotten this year - he gifted me a beautiful wine-coloured Kate Spade purse and a Beauty and the Beast 2017 Soundtrack Vinyl Record which made me legit emotional lol

I hope you all have a marvellous Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! I'll speak to you all very very soon! Happy holidays :)

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Love Actually + Approaching Holidays

img_0495.jpg

Happy Friday everyone, welcome back! Hope you've all had a fabulous week. This week has been chock-full and so exciting, I'm excited to share it with you all!

  • I hate road closures whilst driving. Detours make me so uneasy - I just don't like not knowing where I'm going. I had to drive my bf to his exam on Saturday and I pulled up to the main road I take to school to find it was closed all weekend. So, I followed the detour, whilst screaming. I genuinely had a moment of panic like "oh my god my bf is going to miss his exam" - despite the fact that we were like two hours ahead of schedule. I basically looked like this:
  • We got our first real snowfall of the season!! I've been dying for a good snowfall for like ages (I even mentioned this in last week's Friday Thoughts). It's been so lovely to drive around and see that thick blanket of snow on the ground and on rooftops. It was the good, fluffy kind of snow, too.
  • My mum and I had a girls' night out on Monday evening to see Love Actually play at the VIP movie theatre in Burloak. At first, I was worried we may not even make it, as there was a ton of traffic due to the snow. But all was well. It was a great evening of laughter and a few fun drinks.
  • CHRISTMAS IS NEXT WEEKEND!!! WHAT?? Next week is gonna be crazy busy. My boyfriend and I've got exams to finish up, we're seeing Star Wars: The Last Jedi in theatres (any Star Wars fans out there?), we're having dinner with my bf's parents, and we're having dinner with my parents and grandma. My boyfriend goes home Friday for his own family Christmas celebrations and then Sunday is Christmas eve!!! Time's going by so quick. Hopefully, I'll have a moment of peace to fill you guys in on how it all goes.
  • Did anyone catch Harry Styles on tv being particularly cute whilst filling in for James Corden on his talk-show?? I watched a bit online afterwards. Nearly six years since I first was introduced to One Direction, and I still find Harry so adorable.

Have a great weekend everybody! Hopefully, you all have a relaxing weekend ahead of ya :)

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Harry Potter + Snow

Happy Friday to you all! Another Friday... jeez, before we all know it, it will be Christmas Eve. Who's excited for Christmas!? I know I am. Seeing all of the Blogmas posts from blogs I follow has only amplified my excitement. Maybe I'll have to partake in Blogmas next year....? We'll have to wait and see! But, for now, here's my weekly update for you.

  • I've started to re-read the Harry Potter series! I'm not really sure why, but I suddenly got into a very Harry Potter mood this week. I watched the first and then the final films last night, and today I've been lounging around in my Ron Weasley sweater, reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. I'm already onto Chamber of Secrets lol
  • A few weeks back, on Black Friday weekend, I ordered two vinyl records from Urban Outfitters as there was a ridiculous sale on records (something like "buy one, get one 50% off"). SO I ordered the Moulin Rouge and the 500 Days of Summer soundtracks. Flash forward to this week, they still hadn't sent a shipping confirmation or anything so I started to panic. Then they said 500 Days of Summer was back-ordered. So Moulin Rouge unexpectedly arrived yesterday afternoon. And today, 500 Days of Summer arrived... along with another copy of Moulin Rouge hahaha, so I guess I have two copies now??
  • Exam season is upon us! I get lucky every time, being an English major who takes a lot of online classes and classes that prefer final papers over exams - I only get two or three exams per term. But my boyfriend isn't so blessed. He has two exams tomorrow, one mid-day and then the other at night. So tomorrow will be a sucky day for him :(
  • There is snow expected for tomorrow and I could not be any more excited. I love the first good snowfall of the season. I've been eagerly awaiting our first snowfall for weeks now, after a fifteen-min snow tease last month. My family thinks I'm nuts (they're not snow lovers). I don't even really like snow. I just like it in December, but once Christmas is over, I'm like bye. 
  • I'm getting very excited for my trip to Florida. We live Christmas day, as usual, and I can't wait to see all that Disney has in store for this magical Christmas season. I truly believe that Disney wins when it comes to holiday decor. I just love to see all their decorations - I promise to share it all with you guys!

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Twinkling Lights

img_0402.jpg

Welcome back, everyone! So sorry I missed posting yesterday. I got so caught up in a million things I've been doing lately, that it totally slipped my mind that it was Thursday! But, it's Friday, and that means it's time for a weekly update.

  • My house has been full of Christmas spirit and excitement as we prepare for our big Christmas party next weekend. There is so much more work put into throwing a party than it may appear from the eyes of a guest! Despite all the hard work, I can't wait to have all of our friends and family over to celebrate the upcoming holiday season.
  • We took part in our very first town Christmas celebration on Thursday. Every year, the town we've moved to throws this event called Light Up Night, where everyone gathers in the park and sings carols, then at 7pm they flick a switch and light up a bunch of Christmas lights. It was so much fun. Everyone was so genuinely happy to be there together. The decorations were adorable. There were even volunteers handing out Tim Horton's hot chocolate for free, which was so thoughtful. I'm so happy to be living in this town. Walking down the main street, past windows of Christmas decorations, made me really grateful for this move. I can absolutely see myself living here for a very long time and also raising a family here.
  • My mum and I started watching Mindhunter on Netflix, and so far I'm really enjoying it. We're only a couple episodes in so far but it's super intense and absolutely fascinating. My mum and I are huge true crime nuts, so to see the characters interact with actors portraying real criminals is so interesting to watch.
  • I've been loving how many Christmas films they've been playing on television lately!! I'm getting sooo excited. It's a month till Christmas after all!!
  • I received a book in the mail this week!! I always love when packages come earlier than expected, and this one came about a week early. It's called My True Love Gave to Me and it's a collection of 12 holiday-themed short stories by a bunch of YA authors, including some of my favourites like Rainbow Rowell and Stephanie Perkins. So far, I'm absolutely loving it!!

That's all for this week. Have a fab weekend!!

Felicia x

Friday Thoughts: Films and Winter Hand Soaps

img_0191.jpeg

Hello, hello, hello everybody! I have no idea how we've reached yet another Friday.  Anyway, I'm not complaining, as another weekend is upon us - woo!! But before I can begin to celebrate the weekend (aka sleep), here's my weekly Friday Thoughts update for you all!

  • Earlier this week, my family, boyfriend, and I saw Murder on the Orient Express at our nearest movie theatre (which is actually forty mins away haha). We all absolutely loved it! Kenneth Branagh did a fantastic job in this film, as did the rest of the cast. I was seriously impressed with the filmography, the storyline, and the acting of the film. I can't wait for it to be released on DVD.
  • I went a little bit Bath & Body Works crazy this week... My boyfriend had offered to buy me a few hand soaps, as we were running out of the last bunch we'd purchased a few months ago. But they had a huge "buy 10 for $25" promotion, and my boyfriend never ignores a good deal sooo..... guess who has 10 new wintery scented hand soaps??? Haha
  • Finally, the world and I are starting to synchronize in preparing for Christmas. The buses in Hamilton are starting to read "Seasons Greetings/Merry Christmas", I went to a mall tree lighting, and my town has put up a ton of lights and decorations for our big holiday celebration next week. I don't feel so ahead of myself anymore!
  • My boyfriend kindly bought me an adorable 12-pair set of Christmas-themed socks off Amazon and gifted it to me on Monday. Choosing which Christmas socks to wear is a big deal to me now... Never thought I'd say that lol
  • I watched 500 Days of Summer for the first time in, like, four years. I forgot how much I loved it. The "You Make My Dreams Come True" scene puts me in the best mood - it honestly has me giggling out loud, especially when he sees his "reflection" in the car and it's Harrison Ford lmao.
  • We've nearly finished decorating the house for Christmas! We have two trees left to trim (yup, two) and then all we have left to do is wait for the holidays!! Eeeeee I'm so excited - can you tell? Haha
  • On Tuesday, my family popped into our favourite store at the mall in Hamilton: Cinema. Cinema is a dvd shop - one of the last, might I add - that has sooo many movies and especially ones you'd never think of. We bought a three-movie pack that had in it Love Actually, Holiday Inn, and The Family Man.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Felicia x