25 September 2015

HEY WOMAN! THIS IS HOW TO TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR FINANCES

During the 19th century, women had no choice but to work in order to financially support their families. They used to work in factories, or did domestic service for richer households. This was an addition to their regular unpaid work at home, which included cooking, cleaning, taking care of their children...  When the First World War was declared, a large number of men had to join the forces, that's why many women were asked to occupy these jobs. The history behind women and work goes on and on, and there are a lot of things that still have to change (why do women earn less than a man doing the exact same job? why isn't well accepted for women to certain jobs because they are supposed to be "for men"?), but we could say that nowadays, we have become a very important part of the working world. 

Because women earn less over their lifetime than men and live longer in retirement, they also tend to have less saved, that's why it is so important for us to start managing our money as early as possible. Part of the reason I'm writing this post is to inspire women to manage their finances well and help close this gender gap. 


When it comes to staying financially organised, my mother is my role model. She keeps control of everything money-related in our house and she does more than well. I decided it would be a good idea to share some of her tips, so here they are:



- Ask for your receipts to see how much you spend: one of the things I admire the most about my mother is how she collects all the receipts and keeps them in an envelope. At the end of the month, she uses Excel document to write down everything she spent, I recommend you to separate it in different sections such as food, clothes, gas...  This way, you have more detailed information and it's easier to see where most of your money goes.


Save now, benefit yourself later: Woman usually assign money-related tasks to their husbands, that's why sometimes, they face financial struggles later in life. The problem is that when husbands die, women often find themselves with less money than expected, and they don't know how to manage it. Free tools like Personal Capital's  retirement planner and calculator can help with this. It allows people to manage their finances and plan for retirement on a simple platform. So start saving now girls!! When I talk about saving I also include holidays and other things to treat yourself. It's also good to have savings for the unsexpected expenses you may have (like having to fix the toilet, breaking your leg...)


- Avoid wasting your money: it's sounds obvious and pretty hard to do, but if you have your list of expenses it's way easier. The only thing you need to do is check on what you spent the most money on and find out a way to change that. Let's say you go to Starbucks every morning... you could cut down on that, or maybe you go shopping when you're hungry and you end up buying more stuff that you weren't supposed to get (I don't know why all the examples that came to my mind are related with food...). I would recommend you to invest on a good coffee maker so you can have coffe at home and to have a shopping list with you (don't forget eat something before going to the supermarket)! Quick tip: if you want to spend less, go cash! Having your card with you makes you more likely to spend money. Plan purchases ahead and take the money you need for the week and forget about your card!

- Set up a budget: I love budgeting!! I may have inherited it from my mum. Wether it's a small thing like your winter clothes or a bigger one like buying a car, I think it always comes handy to have an aproximate budget so you don't overspend. Be realistic when elaborating it, I would suggest to set a lower figure to make sure you don't get any surprise. If it ends up being cheaper than you planed, save the rest of the money!  If you find something you extremely like that doesn't fit your budget, look for other places where it's sold and compare, compare and compare! You never know when you'll find an amazing deal.

That's it for today's post. I hope you found those tips useful and if you have any advice, don't forget to share it with me in the comments below! Have a nice weekend :)

Disclamer: all the pictures are from UNSPLASH except the first one.

21 September 2015

A PHOTOSHOT INSIDE AN ABANDONED FACTORY

Since I bought my DSLR camera I've never had the chance to do a proper photoshot with somebody until a few weeks ago. At first I used to ask one or my friends to pose for me in the middle of the street or something to start learning how to use my camera and figure out the settings. 

However, I wanted to take my photography to the next level and prepare something cool. I found this old factory which was pretty close from where I live and I decided that I wanted to go there and take some shots. This time I had everything on my mind, I had a mental picture of everything I wanted to capture, how I wanted the model to pose... So I called my best friend, send her some inspiration that I got from Pinterest and told her: "Yep, you need to wear this and that because you'll be modeling for me", and then, she was in! 

The day we finally went to the factory to do the shot, it was raining a lot, and when I say a lot, I mean A LOT, so the lighting wasn't really good (excuses of bad photographers). Anyway, I loved how they turned out, that's why I decided to share my favourite pics in here. I'm no professional or anything, I just enjoy taking pictures and this time I had the amazing opportunity to do it while hanging out with my best friend, so we both had a great time! The building was amazing, it was a ruin and it could fall apart at any moment, the first floor was covered in mud (because there's a river next to it), but the rest was more than fine. The last level had fallen years ago I gess, that why I could take the first picture you'll see. Overall, the building was exactly how I had imagined, which was an exciting discovery one we arrived there. I was scared that I would be a simple and empty place with nothing to work with inside, you know what I mean? But it wasn't! 

While taking this pictures I realised that using manual mode it's harder than it seems. At the beginning I tried to adjust the setting myself but I must admit that I finished using the automatic. Photoshop has been a great help when adjusting the contrast and the lighting. I only edited them a bit, lowering the brightness to give a darker look and increasing the contrast. Here's the final result, tell me your thoughts in the comments below and if you have any suggestion on how I can improve my photography skills don't hesitate to tell me!








13 September 2015

QUICK UPDATE


Tomorrow I'm starting school and it sucks... I don't want to go back to routine, being on holidays is way better. However, I have been doing really cool stuff for these past few days. I have done a pop-corn bath, I did a photoshot with my best friend inside an abandoned house and in general, I have been having a lot of fun. The only thing I like about back-to-school season is that I get to buy plenty of school material. My favourite things to buy are paper sheets, I don't know why, it is weird but even though they may all look the same, some paper is actually better than other.

My Photoshop free trial expires today, so I have been editing pictures like crazy. I really enjoy editing pictures in there, Jessica Kobeissi has the best tutorials and I have literally watched all of them. If you're into photography I recommend you checking them! Talking about photography, I have created an account on Unsplash, where I will be uploading some of my pictures. This site is very cool because you can download high quality pictures for free to use them wherever you want. Most of the pictures I post in here are whether mine or from there!

Well, I think it is time for me to go to sleep... Any advice for not dying tomorrow when I arrive at school? Wish me luck and thanks for reading, I hope you all have a great week :)

7 September 2015

SUMMER NOTES AND PICTURES: PART #2

This second part of SUMMER NOTES AND PICTURES is more about details, little things that I thought I would capture. If you haven't checked the first post, click right here and you'll be able to read it :) In a week I'm starting school again... Ugh. Two months ago I was excited about it, but now that it is this close I would rather spend the rest of my life on holidays. The fun part is that I get to go "back to school" shopping. Anyways, let's do a "remember when" of this last summer before it's over.

Beach, beach, beach!! This summer I went to the beach a lot and I loved it. Sometimes I have the feeling that I don't really get that tanned, but looking through pictures I see that this summer I got tanned which is such an achievement for me (I'm very pale). I've always wanted to take a picture like the one above because it looks very tumblr, so I asked one of my friends to pose for me and here it is! 

This is what I call one the best breakfasts I have ever had (looks yummy, doesn't it?). I remember how tasty this sandwiches were (writing this I'm starting to get hungry). The place had the nicest decoration and overall it was very cosy. When I took my DSLR camera to take a proper picture I felt a bit out of place, but as you can see, it was totally worth it! Now I can look at it whenever I want.

Yes, this pic is from Amsterdam as well. Something that really caught my eye is the fact that there were flowers (and bikes) everywhere. I have always wanted to ride a bike with some flowers on the front. I guess some dreams take a little more time than others...

Pineapples in a wood box. There's this kind of hype towards pineapples that I still don't get, but these looked cute. There was an old man next to them, having some coffee and looking outside the window, isn't that romantic?

4 September 2015

SUMMER NOTES AND PICTURES: PART #1


I'm not going to say that summer is "almost" over because it is over. Today it was raining cats and dogs for the whole morning and I even had to wear my wellies. Although it's still hot where I live and I have a week of holidays left, the whole "back to school" vibe is really upsetting me... To properly say goodbye to those tree months of wonderful holidays, I wanted to gather some pictures I have captured and share them in here. They may not be completely related with summer, but they have been taken during my summer break.


Ripped jeans and neon sneakers. I have had these pants since I was in primary school. They are from Zara and I bought them in the kids' section. Even though many years have passed, they still fit me. When they ripped I thought it was the right time to get rid of them, but now homeless jeans (that's how I like to call them, with no offence) are in so I will continue wearing them until they totally break.



When you have a beautiful city, like Barcelona, an hour away from where you live, you can't help but visit it very often. I don't usually go to tourist places such as Sagrada Família, that's why I decided to visit it and take some shots. If you ever get the chance to go there, don't miss it! It is totally worth it. (fact: there was an audiovisual playing that said that it would be finished in 2026...I wonder if it's true...).


Story time!! I went to this cafe to have something to eat before going to Sagrada Família. This young woman was sitting next to me and as soon as I saw her I knew that I wanted a picture of the scene. I didn't want to disturb her so I asked for permission to take the picture of her and she agreed. She was extremely nice with me. I regret not having given her the link of the blog, but in case she ever sees the picture I want to thank her (it was my first time asking a stranger for a picture). It may not be the most perfect photo ever but I really liked the way she was in there doing her stuff and writing. 




Last, but not least, my trip to the Netherlands. I have chosen three pictures from Amsterdam to share in here. It was the first time I took my new camera to a place where I could actually use it and I had an amazing time trying out all of its features. The trip was a great experience, I've decided that I want to go back there at some stage in my life... maybe study in there as well or something. Amsterdam, you stole my heart!!