Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Hail the sunny days

Share some thoughts for all the pretty people 
Bless the gods and all the wealthy fellas 
See how they run, see how they try to give their best for all our beauty 
They wear dignity like the falling angels,
Proper shoes and the velvet trousers 
We were tramps and whores who gathered around 
Let's shed a tear for those who's crying oh no 

And there ain't no shame 
Everybody's waiting for a sunny day 
Everybody gets their shot of being someone 
So use your sunny day 
This is  my favorite November track of all time. It's by the Swedish band called "Mando Diao". There's another story behind this, because it has helped me battling the dull, white grey days (not only in November) many times. Combine this with a hot soy chai latte or a simple green tea and I am in a good mood :)

At the moment my head is stuck in an apparent endless summary of cognitive psychology 2, the subject I have to take a MC-exam including open questions in two days. Plus, tomorrow I have a short exam at 8.45 im the morning. And another exam next Friday. Exams all around.
Probably should have saved myself some trouble and do things the other way round - but last year I was so keen on writing my BA thesis already and now all that's left for me is ti pass the rest of MC exams I have left to get my degree - next Spring, if all goes well.

On a more positive note: I'm going to Sweden for Christmas and New Year's Eve this year! J and I already have our flight tickets, we only have to agree on our travel route. I would love to spend NYE in Stockholm again, but we also want to spend some time Uppsala and Malmö and Copenhagen. I am so looking forward to meet J's family again, including his sister, her boyfriend and their newborn daughter. Definitely have to refresh my Swedish vocabulary before we go. "En kopp kaffee tack."

What I am currently obsessing about:
- baking chocolate chip cookies
- The Mindy Project (the current season)
- Taylor Swift
- the LINE mobile app
- sitting in front of the light box (without it, I'd fall asleep at 4 in the afternoon ... I mean, it gets dark by  5 *sigh*)

What do you enjoy in these cold November days? Let me know in the comments down below :)

Saturday, November 8, 2014

1989 Ask Anything Meme

The 1989 inspired "Ask Anything" meme.
  • Welcome to New York: If you could live any city, where would it be and why?

    I would love to live in Melbourne or London for a while. I love the easy going and sunny side-up feeling in Melbourne, but I also am obsessed with London's art galleries, music and food culture.
  • Blank Space: What's something that everyone thinks is true about you but is actually false?
    Everyone thinks I am from Germany when they hear me talking German, but I am actually from Austria. I don't have an accent in my german, so I basically speak a standard version and that's misleading to a lot of people.
  • Style: What's one item in your closet that makes you feel unstoppable?
    My favorite high heels. Which is a contradiction to itself, because I am a boots&sneakers kind of person. I usually wear them for special occasions like a night out or a concert in the city. The funny thing is that I almost didn't find them when I was shopping. I was surprised that they were real leather shoes and they were from an Italian brand, which I think isn't sold in Austria anymore. I think I will wear those shoes until they fall apart, literally. Then I might think about repairing them. That's how much I like them.
Denissa Levou on we heart it
  • Out of the Woods: What's one thing you're afraid of?
    Heights. I have been to a crag with my boyfriend last year and at the end of the whole parcour you had to do a "flying fox", which means that you are basically only hanging on a rope with a security rope attached to your climbing harness. Did I scream? You bet!
  • All You Had To Do Was Stay: Whose someone you wish was still in your life?
    The Swedish musician boys from Borlänge I met over the years when I was assisting in tour organization stuff. You can't keep in touch with them and it doesn't mean anything, but I miss them a lot sometimes.
  • Shake It Off: What's something you've had to shake off?
    The thought of not being perfect in my studies. I had to learn that it's okay to get average grades and that it's not the end of the world if you have to repeat an exam. I put way too much pressure on myself when I was younger.
  • I Wish You Would: What's something you'd like to happen right now?
    Going to a nice brunch with my friends. Or, in a bigger way, finding a job which actually has something to do with my studies.
  • Bad Blood: Have you ever had someone stab you in the back?
    Not in an obvious way. Rather "a stab in the back behind my back". A close friend of mine was talking bad about me to other people and I got to know it through somebody else. Classic high school drama.
  • Wildest Dreams: What would you like to be remembered for?
    My nature. My writing. My ability to listen and talk to people, even if they are at their worst.
  • How You Get the Girl: What's your favorite pick up line?
    I don't give a damn about pick up lines. I think they are only a made up gimmick for filling movie scenes with something audible. There's nothing better than I nice "Hello, how are you? Can I buy you a drink?"
  • This Love: What's something you got back that you never thought you would?
    I don't have an answer to this one, unfortunately. I usually lend things to other people and then I never see them again (the things, not the people).
  • I Know Places: Where's one place you always feel safe?
    At the sea. In the arms of my favorite person. In the bathtub.
  • Clean: What's an important lesson you learned in life and how did you learn it?
    Girls are brought up way too sheltered. We get told to shut up, to obey the rules, to listen to other people and to not voice our own opinion or follow our own path. That's nonsense. You have to stop doubting yourself. You have to listen to your inner voice. You have to follow your own interests. You have to stand up for yourself and put forward your opinion, even if it might be an unpopular one.
    This is all old-wise speech or something, but I learned this in the long run. Besides, one thing I also remember: life is not only a collection of good times. The bad times belong to it. Without them, you wouldn't notice the good ones as good.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Welcome to November & a rambling kind of day

Let's turn this around, shall we? After pondering a thousand and one ideas about social media and blogging, I returned to some basic thoughts: I love writing. I love the little things. I want to continue blogging, but on a more personal level. This time, I try to blog on a more regular basis. I want to turn this blog into a more "life" than "style" direction.

Vienna Augarten park on a grey Sunday afternoon

my terribly bad self-cut pony is already starting to annoy me. nonetheless, I'm still good at making over-excited
coffeine induced faces

What's going on here in grey, cold Vienna? Well, there's the midterm exams coming up at the end of November. I'm almost done with my bachelors degree in Psychology. 'Almost' meaning here that I have already done my bachelor thesis, but I have to pass a few more MC exams. Not a fan of that, to be honest. Especially not, when you have to study +500 pages and in the end it is more a thing of luck than knowledge if you pass.

Actually, I do enjoy the idea behind the European bologna agreement and the ability to study a bachelors degree anywhere in Europe & making all degrees more comparable and therefore easier to move around and work within Europe -- BUT in Austria, it lead to a lot of wrong decisions in turning big diploma based courses into "shorter" bachelor degrees. It turned into the direction of "get as many students through the degree or push them out of the system" way. You can feel that "outcome" pressure during exams and seminars. Unfortunately, there is basically little to none money available for more professors or extra courses. Most of them work as "external" professors, which means working a lot for very little money. It's a sign that University education and education in general don't mean a thing in Austria's politics and society.

Yes, it is nice to study at a University where you do not have to pay any fees at all for your degree. No, it is not the best situation when it comes to research or interest to study a subject in depth. You rather to that on your own than within the education system.

night of november 1st. foggy and cold. can you hear the trees talking?
In my case, I am planning to finish my bachelors degree in Spring next year (if all exams are done by then, fingers crossed). Afterwards I want to find a place for a master's degree abroad. I want to study again in the English language and honestly, after living seven years continuously in Vienna, I really need a change of place. There are a few places which come to my mind. My boyfriend is Swedish, so Sweden is definitely up there in my "study place wishlist" - as well as Denmark, Scotland, England and the Netherlands.

Besides the whole study thing, I am doing a drawing course at an adult education center. Drawing is a kind of meditational act for me. When you start to draw something, you start to get lost in looking at the details and everything around you turns blurry and nonexistent. Add to that, I try to learn Auto CAD for an online course in interior design I'm taking. Learning a new program is fun, the only thing which is bugging me here are the differences of the versions on the different computer systems. I usually work on a mac computer, but I also use a notebook with windows ... nerd problems, ugh! ;)

At the moment, there is also a "Christmas abroad" plan going on between my boyfriend and I. We've spent the last two years at my parents' place. We were thinking about going to Sweden again for this year's Christmas and visit a few friends along the way. We are both very indecisive and it will probably end in a last minute trip, but I will keep you updated :) Winter in Sweden is extremely cold and dark, but the people are so warm and welcoming. We'll see!

(P.S.: The last time I was so obsessed with a pop album was Britney's Blackout. 1989 got me out of the blue. Taylor Swift made a really fun, brilliant pop record. I've never considered her music to be of any interest to me, but hell yeah, you can count me as a fan of hers now. It's adding glitter and color to those grey November days! My favorite tracks at the moment are Out of the Woods, All You Had To Do Was Stay, Style, Blank Space and Wonderland. Damn catchy!)

Sunday, October 26, 2014

My Blogging Bowels

I am sorry for my lack of posting, but I am stuck in blogging bowels.
Or in other words: I have lost direction.
I am no news editor, I am no beauty or fashion junkie, I am not interested in digging through superficial topics, I am no graphic designer, I am no mummy blogger - so what is there left for me? Is the blog form itself wrong for me?
Maybe it is.

Lately, I have been more consumed by my upcoming exams and future worries and at the same time there is this big longing to just be offline. To disconnect from the daily "fake social mass media". The way I have been blogging before was not what my heart was in for. It was just blogging for the sake of saying "I am blogging" - and that's no fun, believe me. Hence, the lack of posting.

Also, I find that the blogging community has changed. I was part of livejournal in the 2000's, I was part of forums and even blogspot around 2011/12. But lately, all signs seem to go into the wrong direction. "How to make my blog profitable", "How to make money with blogging" are some of the most searched how to's in google. Did blogging itself turn to the dark side - or vice versa - did companies and pr agencies destroy the openness of the blogging community? I don't know.
All I know is that I don't want to be part of an "it crowd" for sake of "being something" better. I am not better than anyone else, I don't love my mirror face than the average person and I certainly don't give a penny about my coolness. I am nerdy, I am average and I love connecting with real people.

In conclusion, maybe blogging is just not for me. Or I just have not found the right drawer, the right place, the right topic to blog about. Or I am just stuck in a washing machine full of ideas and somebody turned the spin cycle on.

This blog might turn into something different from tomorrow onwards. I want to break free from all the stupid blogging guides and how to's and start over. Or decide to step away.

I will let you know.

// Isa

Sunday, October 12, 2014

#collect: design I want

I've spent my Saturday long enough staring on the computer screen involving Uni work, now it's time for some Augenschmaus - a typical Austrian word meaning "a feast for the eyes".
Here is a quick collection of design items I have on my "WANT!!!" list:

The illustrated cards by Nicholas J Frith are music to my doodly heart. Some splash of colour is always good to have after a long study session!

A cassette used as your playlist carrier (by Gnomo):

A pillow, designed by Marimekko, which reminds me a lot of one of my favorite nordic cities: Stockholm.

Two lace dessert plates in beautiful aqua (by Suite One Studio).

It's all about geometric patterns in my head at the moment. A perfect match for that: Vince Camuto's geometric scarf.

An honorable mention goes out to paper artist  Matt Shlian. His work is inspiring! I wish my walls could look like that :)

Happy Sunday everyone!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Let's go to the cinema ...

I've always considered myself being a "bookworm" or a "photography addict", but I tend to forget or embezzle my love for movies and the big screen. If you want to sum it up, I am in love with telling stories. The way a movie can suck you in and let you see things a certain character sees or think new things is unique to it's genre, but also more limited and 'neat' than a book or a photography exhibition.

Since my first movie I've ever seen (I think it was Disney's "The Junglebook") many years have passed and of course, I have seen many more movies. My favorites are biopics, book-to-screen adaptions and dramas or comedies. But I have no 'classic preference'. The only genre I rarely get into is horror movies or (I'm a scarecrow!). One of my favorite movies of all time is The Aviator made by Martin Scorsese, one of my favorite movie directors. I also like Woody Allen's films and I adore everything Richard Linkslater takes on.

Traditionally, every year at the end of October/beginning of November the Vienna film festival called 'Viennale' is held and various old cinemas in town show a wide range of indie movies, old movies, new movies or documentaries. Basically, a movie-mecca for my heart.
Tickets will be sold starting on 18th of October and they sell out pretty fast. Definitely have to note this down in my filofax.

Here I have made a little list of films I really want to see this year:
-) 20,000 Days on Earth
This one is a documentary about Nick Cave, singer and songwriter. Do I need to say anything more? The trailer itself is brilliant, I cannot wait to see this!! #excited

-) National Gallery
A documentary about one of London's best and one of the world's most famous galleries.

-) ADIEU AU LANGAGE 3D by Jean-Luc Godard (A cinematic GENIUS. Add him to my lists of myfavorite directors. Best french movie director, I think!) I don't like 3D movies, because I tend to get sea sick in them (no joking), but I have to give this a shot!

-) Turist
A few of you might know that my boyfriend is Swedish and has spent a few days back home during the Summer. When he came back to Vienna, he told me all about this 'Nordic movie'. I forgot the title, but I found it on the list of the Viennale program. According to J, this captures "Swedishness" perfectly. Definitely have to watch this!! :)

-) Love is Strange
A gay couple in New York finally can marry each other - but one of them who is a teacher at a catholic school, George, gets fired due to this. Now they have money problems, they have to sell their appartment and find a new place to live. #mustsee I have heard and read so many good things about this movie, plus there can never be enough LGBT involved stories on screen in my eyes :)

[The complete Viennale program can be found here (click me!)]

  I can't wait for the film festival to start. My inner movie nerd is gonna jump with joy! ;)
Meanwhile, here are my tea questions for you guys:

* Have you ever been to a film festival?

* Which was the last movie that had a long lasting impression on you? Which movie made you think about things differently?

>> Please let me know in the comments down below, thanks!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Sunday Inspiration

While the Vienna University's start and fall exams are moving closer every second, I took the time to make a collection of some motivational pictures and illustrations to enjoy on a late Sunday afternoon, possibly with some coffee or tea in your hands - I hope you like them as much as I do :)


Question: What really gets you angry?






And the song of the day today is from Ellie Goulding - cover of Kodaline's "ALL I WANT".

Happy Sunday everyone! :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A dizzy mind & a heavy head

This picture represents my state of mind quite well. I didn't know if I should write about this, but I end I figured: it's part of me, so it's part of my blog.
In the beginning of September I got stung by a horsefly and some days afterwards I had a lot of pain in my right foot, where the thing bit me, but also in my ankle and I barely was able to walk.
I went from doctor to neurologist, who told me I "probably have borreliosis or Lyme disease". I have never heard of this before and I started researching. It is usually given by a tick bite or a horsefly bite and a rather aggressive illness.

The problem about lyme disease is the following: it is a very complex bacteria and it is not well researched yet. Doctors all over the world are still fighting over the treatment of lyme disease and patients all over the world are suffering due to that. Also, there is no "final cure" for it. Only various antibiotics, which you have to carefully combine and adjust to the individual's case. Of course, if you know you suffer from it after a tick bite or horsefly sting and you take the right dosis of antibiotics right away, you will be completely healthy again. But if you find it out too late or, like me, get the wrong dosis of antibiotics, it might turn into "chronic lyme disease". I got really scared when I read about it and I felt left out by the medical care system, because the doctors at Vienna's biggest hospital told me "You can take those antibiotics for two weeks. If you are not cured by then, we can't help you."

I was going crazy feeling left out and not being taken seriously. I found a forum which focused on Austrian doctors who specialized on the treatment of lyme disease. Fortunately enough, I found a doctor who gave me an appointment one week after my first antibiotic treatment ended. My boyfriend drove me there - she is living 2 hours away from Vienna - and was relieved as well that I finally got taken seriously.

The doctor took one hour to examine and talk to me. She made a four weeks treatment plan including three different antibiotics and various supplements to save my liver, my kidney and my stomache. I'm currently in my second week and I do feel better.
If you'd see a glance of my filofax, where I noted down all my medicaments and when to take them, you'd think I am crazy. I am not. This radical treatment is necessary, because this bacteria is severe and can do severe damage to your joints, your heart and in later stages even your brain. I try to be optimistic and focus on a positive outcome in a few weeks. If the symptoms will reoccur then, I have to take antibiotics again. It's a back and forth fight against the lyme bacteria.
The negative side of taking so many antibiotics is feeling really dizzy and tired all the time. Plus, you are not allowed to go outside and play in the sun, because your skin would have a terrible reaction and you would turn all red like a tomatoe. So although it's sunny and lovely outside in Vienna, I have to stay indoors. :(

Adding to that, the biggest exam in my bachelor's degree is coming up in October and I try my best to study for it. The medication is really making me think more slowly and makes it harder to study the way I usually do. I still try to keep up with the studying and try to pass the exam, it's one of the only things which make me feel normal at the moment.

I've also been thinking about changing the direction of my blog and pinning it down to one or two main things which I love, but this is a process in the makings and I will try to keep you updated on that.

I hope you guys enjoy the late Autumn sun & don't let yourself be biten by a tick or worse, stung by a horsefly!

Monday, September 22, 2014

My first "blogging conference" - my personal experience at 'Vienna Fashion Camp for beginners 2014'

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to be part of the Vienna Fashion Camp for 'beginner' , which was organized by Anna Heuberger, Maria Ratzinger and Sophie Burian. The location was in a place where usually people train for working in a hair salon, but it was enough space for about 40 people and had a nice setup including flowers in glas mineral bottles and tons of mini cupcakes.

a perfect match!

you can't keep away the girl from the mirrors

What did we do? Well, I was definitely not the target group of this blogging camp. I am by all means no fashion blogger and I do not care about fashion all that much. Nonetheless, I used the breaks between the various talks to get to know the people around me, find out if they are already blogging or what they want to get out of this conference.
The talk which inspired me the most was held by Sandra Konrad from Girls Guide to Blogging. She talked about how to find the right direction with your blog & how to find more blog readers. When I met her outside in a break, she was really talkative and friendly. When I asked what she misses the most in Australia, when she can't be in Germany, she said: "Of course, friends and family. My parents can't travel that far or are afraid of flying for so long, it's tough. And the Milchschnitte." (Milchschnitte is a sweet cream between to cocoa sponge cake layers.)

In the afternoon there were various workshops and the big group was split up into little teams. I was part of the 'photography basics workshop' held by Cliff from He held a short talk about various tips tricks for photography beginners and then let us experiment on our own in different stations. We should portray a cupcake in front of some flowers, using depth of field. While there were too many people for him to answer all the questions, he still offered to answer questions by mail. I think he was a refreshing photographer from the ones I've met before, very down to earth, nice and funny.

Unfortunately I had to leave early and was missing out on two more talks, one about "nasty comments" and the other one on "social media". Since I am rather a twitter addict, I hope I haven't missed out too much on the other platforms. But there's only so much time you have before you have to run to catch your train to your grandma's birthday ;)

I am really happy about meeting so many different people there and finally "seeing" some Austrian bloggers in real life. Due to my blog being in English only, not beauty or fashion related like the other 90 percent, it's rather rare to find them on my blog. So that was a nice change. Honestly,  I sometimes found it hard to 'mingle' with the fashion bloggers, but that's because I felt extremely underdressed with my jeans, sneakers and t-shirt. But in the end, I forgot about all those stereotypes and made some new friends. Can't wait to see them again!

What did I like about the event? It was really well organized, beautifully decorated and you had enough time to get to know the other bloggers or "beginner bloggers" around you.
What did I miss? I was hoping for some tech geek explaining the pro's and con's of various platforms (including squarespace, tumblr and weebly), as well as find a direction suitable for yourself. Probably that's a topic itself worthy of a conference or self-study.

Some visual impressions for you guys:

the photoshop workshop

where fashion bloggers are, there are amazing coats ;)

Cliff from during the photo workshop

the pretty feet from Ela from
the photography workshop in action ;)

flowers in mineral bottles
my street style #irony ;)

& Let me know in the comments down below: Have you ever taken part in a blogging conference or blogging camp? How was your experience?
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